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From the Brink of Death

Date: 01-04-02
Poster: Daniel Frasier
Post # 1

He had been gone several months and near after the family had moved onto, or was invade a more apt word?, Heathfield lands. He had even kept to himself during that short duration and then got the itch again for traveling. He'd hung out down at the port and bartered himself a pass to Europe, he wanted to explore the German countryside....their ale.....festivities and customs. He found the people warm once you proved to be trustworthy and their culture rich. He loved their songs.....dancing and especially......their ale. He even had a few barrels of Lowenbrau sent back to the Thistle for when he got back.

All had gone well until he cut through France to make it to a port and a way back. Near the coast he woke to find his horse had been stolen, he set out to find the ones and did. They were handed over to the law who found them guilty and hung but his horse had been run lame and it was found they had been horse wrestling quite a few ranches. He gave a  young lass he'd met the horse as such would not be a demand on the steed for the remainder of his
years. She was not of any influential family with money and her need was more dire than his. What he didn't know was that he left behind some angered families of enough influence, at least feared and related to the hung men, in his wake. Why the gang had gotten away with their deeds for so long until he came along. He had upset their little ring of crime.

His mood had not improved as he boarded a ship that would take him back to the Rhydin port. The weather was poor and freezing cold that there seemed no relief from. A good week passed with the slowness of wind and weather as he began to try to remember what warmth was. The ship finally ported and he stopped at that din of inequity that was called a tavern before continuing down to Heathfield. It only got worse before things improved as he had to walk the distance in all this snow that wasn't there when he left! "What the.....bloody hell......holy grail....sweet mother of god." Words most often grumbled under his breath as he was near frozen upon reaching the Thistle, even with that heavy overcoat and collar tipped up, gloves and fur hat. It seemed things slowly changed after reaching his destination. He found the barrels of ale had actually made it home before he did and he found his sister Hannah, he still had yet to find the rest of his family. He 'thought' they were here too. Hannah seemed happy, even radiant, and he could kick himself he had missed her wedding. He would not feel too guilty as learned it was on the spur of the moment, so how would he of known or word gotten to him? He would have to think of something really nice to get them.

He still had one problem, least so he thought for little did he know of the shadows left in France that were indeed attempting to follow.......he needed a horse. Not just any horse would do for the over picky man, not just picky on horses either, so he had yet to find one he was willing to buy and train.

Daniel William Frasier
of the Frasiers
~feeling much a new man in a new land~

Date: 04-17-02
Poster: Daniel W Frasier
Post # 2

PierreALafayette, PhilipeLafayette and Daniel W Frasier

Pierre and Philip have been waiting for the perfect opportunity and tonight they felt was the moment. He had come up with the idea of planting a basket that looked like it held a bundled up infant. This ruse was set in place in the alleyway just under the small amount of light a storage window gave off. The rest of the alley was pitch as there was no moon this night. They found good thick lengths of wood that were handled with gloved hands. They had masks on of a think cotton fabric and loose cloaks that would help hide their forms. Dressed in black from head to toe they blended in well as the stood off in the shadows near some large barrels of debris. Hand signals given instead of speech for their accents would be a telltale sign if all didn't proceed as plan. Thus they waited in that silence with rarely a signal even given. Their own eyes having long adjusted and they crouched close enough.

He had just come back from a good long swim....feeling totally refreshed an invigorated now. Even a whistled tune filled the quiet night around him as he made his way back to the tavern. It was time to celebrate....a good bottle of cognac...good conversation...and maybe one of these nights the woman of his dreams would walk though that door. With all the courting type looks lately.....shiver....even had him thinking those stray thoughts. Hell....anything could happen....even that.

From his position he could see the road clearly and spotted Daniel's familiar form approaching even before the sound of the man's whistle reached his ears. He gave Pierre the signal they'd worked out to let him know this was their mark and tightened his grip on the club he held.

His own hand tightened as did his whole body in ready position. Carefully he let out this small muffled wail of a newborn infant, one of the aspects he was good at was imitation as he use to mimic the songbirds as a child. It was intermittent, first just a hint, then stronger before it died off as he listened for footsteps and by such would know if they were heard.

He had taken the first step as a note in that whistled tune was 'off' and it died upon his lips as the weight of his foot pressed into that step. He thought he heard something but was unsure but then there it was stronger and a child? Dark brows curled down towards the bridge of his nose as his foot left that step and another taken to where the side of the building opened up into the alleyway. At first he didn't notice much for how dark it was......moonless night. Just about to turn again he noticed the basket....that was odd....and so he was back around again to stand in the middle of that opening. It was a basket.....that look to be holding a child. "Freaking hell....." He hated when parents did this. He actually had a love of children and was now cursing under his breath as quick sure steps had him down that alleyway to the bundle.....leaning down to gather it up and take it inside....find one of the women to take care of infant....least until they could find out more.

He stepped out from behind his hiding place. All Daniel might hear is the crunch of gravel beneath boots before the first blow struck, the club brought down to strike the back of Daniel's head with his considerable strength.

There was that quick signal to Philipe before he shot up, raising that club type stick as he went. Timed just so when Daniel leaned down to have it come down on the back of his head with a 'crack'.

His hand had just curled around that handle in a good grip and started to straightened when the basket was dropped.....stars.....a zillion of them blasted his eyes....he knew what was happening in that split second as a hand fisted as he turned on his way going down....connected with someone's gut before the lights went out completely He didn't even feel hitting the pavement.

Another slam of that thick wooden stick came down on Daniel's right shoulder as he turned with a swing at his brother. He hit hard before that gloved hand gripped again to bring it back up and back down against his back.

He stumbled back with the blow to his abdomen, sucking in a breath and groaning with the pain. Muttering something crass under his breath he lunges at the fallen man, bringing that club down on his unconscious form again and again and again.

He added a few more blows on the lifeless body before that quick signal to Philipe for him to make sure none others had come while he checked for any breathing.

There were cracked ribs and a good concussion.....he was near close it had lowered his heart rate to where there seemed to be no breath.....he was alive.....barely....somewhere in there in that blanket of unconsciousness. He never felt any other blows after the two at the back of his head.

Stepping into the mouth of the alley he glanced around for witnesses and nodded satisfaction when there were none to be seen. "Let's go..." is whispered harshly to his brother. There is no possible way the Frasier man could have survived this, in his mind.

He didn't feel any breath so they had accomplished what they set out for. That signal to his brother to follow him as he still kept quiet just for that safe
measure. The instrument of death was dumped into one of the barrels he passed as he went to the back of the ally. A board had been loosen he moved aside and went through to a path that would lead into the woods behind the tavern. It would eventually take them out to a larger path then on to this cabin he found to hide out in and get changed.

He didn't even bother to toss his stick into a barrel, he just tossed it onto the ground and followed after Pierre as quickly and quietly as possible.

~to be continued~

Daniel William Frasier
"The helping hand" of the Frasier Clan

Date: Daniel W Frasier
Poster: 04-17-02
Post # 3

FrancoisCIouseau, Neale M Frasier, PatrickLFrasier, Daniel W Frasier, Lahoneee and Sarina Maree

Francois had lost track of Daniel somewhere between there and here and cursed himself for it as he hurried along the road, gray eyes darting to and fro, searching for some sign of the tall, Frasier man. It was by sheer luck alone that he found him. Catching sight of a dropped basket near the alley he ventured in for a closer look and nearly tripped over Daniel. Dropping to his knees he bent to check for any signs of life from the unconscious man and realizing this was Daniel himself, gave a shout of frustration.

Neale's arm curled around the earthen pot which contained a healthy clump of wayward daffodils which he had saved from the trampling feet of workmen.  He thought he knew a certain Lady who may enjoy them on the front porch of her cottage.  He passed that alleyway with only an absent glance into the shadows.  Those steps stopped and he leaned back to a booted heel to take another look.  The crouched form of one man was barely a darkened lump, but it was most definitely someone there.  At this hour, down that alleyway...there was no good to come of it.  A slight bend of knees had that pot to the walkway.  The lift of leg, the lowering of hand, and his dagger was pulled from the sheath concealed in his boot.  "You there!"  Announced his arrival, and he closed the space between himself and the man obviously up to more than he should be this night.

So absorbed had he been in his examination that he had not heard Neale's approach and now looked up in startled surprise, an expression that quickly turned to one of urgent panic. "This man needs help!" Only then recognizing the form that approached.

Why was it, whenever Patrick happened upon his relatives...something was going down?  He'd barely been able to catch up to Neale as it was.  And what exactly was he holding in his hand?  And what in the hell?!? Help?!  Patrick put his legs to work, closing the distance he'd kept from his brother Neale.  Frasier green's snapped as they regarded the lump of a man bent over another.

The features of the man remained unseen even though Neale recognized that voice. "Clouseau?"  He spun with weapon in hand to the one who had come up so quickly behind him only to find Patrick.  A quick nod, then he pushed past the Frenchman to see to the one on the ground.  That one...recognized immediately.  "Dear God" His words barely made their way past the tightening of his throat.  "Patrick, it's Daniel." Fore and middle fingers pressed to where a pulse should be throbbing.  "Help me here."  His dagger dropped right there beside his brother, and Neale struggled to heft the dead weight of one rather large Frasier over his shoulder, not really even waiting for the help he asked for...there was no truth, Neale's chest constricted with the knowledge that time..had actually run out.

He'd taken a quick step backward, just to avoid being pummeled.  As Neale seemed to know the stranger there was only a lift of a brow before he heard his brother. "Daniel?"  Down to his knees he came at his brothers side.  He'd couldn't believe this was happening. Daniel wasn't moving.  Hadn't they just lost their father?!? Who was responsible.  As Neale lifted their brother he staggered to his own feet before tripping towards the tavern door. "Get him inside, inside.."

"I do not know if he lives or not, I only found him here minutes ago." Walking around to aid Neale and Patrick in whatever way he can. "We must get him help." Stating the obvious.

He had to live. Patrick couldn't lose Daniel. He'd just lost his father.  Why was God torturing him like this, just when he felt secure enough venturing out.

Neale stumbled over that club left behind, and not knowing what it was, gave it a mulekick somewhere back behind him in frustration.  It almost had Daniel dumped back onto the packed earth of alley.  "Bloody hell, Patrick...get that door." They had come around and were once again into the dim lighting of street.  The acrid scent of blood, the dead weight of body...Daniel was lost to them.

He was stumbling towards it really, grabbing onto the handle and yanking it open with force. He couldn't believe this was happening. No, not again. Not another.

His own fury was barely contained at this point. He had failed in the task he'd set himself. Another life lost to the Lafayette's, it would haunt him forever.

Honeee was in the back going through the reports from her as usual. Something she did every few days to keep track but something was off, that chill from the unknown that teased up your spine to the back of your neck. It had been quiet here except for the cook in the kitchen, those sounds in the distance one filtered out as part of the norm. That niggling wouldn't leave as the papers were settled to the desk and she up from her seat to make her way out to the tavern part itself. It was then she had that strong quiver something was wrong along with the sounds.

Then Neale plowed right through.  The flowers left behind and forgotten.  Insignificant was their rescue...when the one he now carried was gone.  He didn't even look to who was within, just crossed straight to the couch to gently lower his brother there.

He followed behind Neale only half seeing. Daniel was gone.  Lost, dead.  He swallowed several times to keep himself calm. God, he was glad Sprite wasn't here.  As Neale lowered Daniel he was right at his elder brothers side.

Her day had been quiet and relatively uneventful. She had arrived at the Thistle some time ago and sat curled up in a chair by the hearth with her brandy, lost in thought until the door burst open. Eyes went wide at the sight of Daniel and she was quickly at Neale's side to kneel there before the bruised and broken man. "What happened?!" Panicked and horrified at once, hands already reaching out rest gently upon Daniel's chest and forehead.

Questions bombard him.  Questions he could find no answers for.  His anger and his sorrow melding together into a lethal combination.  Neale Frasier most times was the most placating sort.  Boring more like...but this... this was family!  He stepped to the side hearing Sarina, dropping to a knee there beside her.  "Good Lord, Sarina."  Was he relieved to see her?  None others would he have wished to have here at this moment.

He followed them both in but remained by the door, watching the scene unfold, helpless to do anymore than that.

He could feel himself start to shake.  It wasn't just anger. Barely concealed rage was more like it. It licked at his insides and curled around his mind, turning his vision red.  No way this was an accident.

She moved fast then as she realized the cause of that inborn instinct and was there now by their other side as that ocean blue gaze went over Daniel in a study.. deep study. She almost seemed comatose herself but it was what she was doing.. seeking.

"We found him in the alley..." His gaze lifting to Clouseau, there was without a doubt an accusation in that green gaze. "Honeee."  Not even actually spoken, just another intake and exhale of breath to form her name.

"Sarina, I will need your help. He is alive but barely. I feel between us both as it has been awhile, we can possibly bring him back. Do you know how to channel the energies?" She needed information and fast as she kneeled down there by his head.. placing her hand now over his forehead.

Neale knew Daniel was dead...there was no need to ask.  He just dipped his head and rested his forehead to his fist, eyes clenched tight.

"Neale, warm water, cloths, bandages, all needed for the cuts to be cleaned."

"What?"  Neale's head jerked up, but he didn't actually need to hear Honeee's words repeated.  The eldest Frasier just scooted back, still on that one allow the ladies access to Daniel.

"Yes..." she too had sensed the life within. "He's strong, he's hanging on by the barest thread."

Alive? Daniel lives? Daniel Lives?  Could he even think to hope?  Through the haze of red he saw a bit of light.  Could it be?

"Aye...of course."  A push of hand to the floor had Neale reeling away and standing to see to just that. "Come, Patrick...hurry."

"Aye...Aye!"  He would follow wherever Neale went.  Stunned.

"You!"  A finger jabbed toward Francois. "You see to boiling that water!"  Then Neale lead Patrick off in search of the cloths to be used as bandages.

"Yes, but he needs our help to guide him back and heal was we go along." She held out her right hand to her while her left hand remained on Daniel's forehead. "Concentrate with me now and I will draw your strength with mine to give him."

She would have healed Daniel alone in a heartbeat but it would leave her exhausted for days. It seems the gods will alone that Honeee is there and able to help her with such a massive undertaking, something she is most grateful for. Taking the Queen's hand she closed her eyes, gathering the life energies about her, her free hand placed upon Daniel's chest.

He was greatly relieved to learn that Daniel still lived and without question went back to the kitchen to boil that water. Accusations could be dealt with later.

Lashes lowered as she centered herself between the energies deep within mother Earth and out into father Universe. All thoughts drained along with all sounds as she let this flow of light and energy enter her, drawn in and channeled out to her left hand. As Sarina did the same, she drew in those energies from her right hand and through. Then within her mind she followed that which made creation to touch upon Daniel's mind. Unspoken words were but that drawing thought to lead him back to her and his family.

He robbed the bar of every clean towel it had.  He started piling them one on top of the other. How many bandages would they need?!?

More than that.  "This way."  To the closet, Neale's arm stuffed beneath a bundle of linens, pulling them out and handing them toward Patrick.  Another stack done the same.  Then another stack was pulled from the confines and the door slammed with the urgency of the moment.  Without another word spoken, he returned to the common room, his steps slowing from that mad dash as he looked to Sarina and Honeee over Daniel.

If they watched, they would actually see somewhat of a glow, that unsure kind unless they were ones that could see auras. Tendrils of healing energy were guided around to the back of Daniel's head where the damage was the most.. stopping any more internal bleeding. That was first and foremost.

Why was it, he always had the duty of carrying everything?  At least Daniel was going to live! Daniel Lives!  He could have floated back to the queen and the other woman, Sarina he thought her name was.

There was a light in the darkness and a gentle pull that called to him, somewhere it was. He felt like he was turning around in the middle of a pitch black room at first, searching and seeing nothing. First it was that sliver off to the right which slowly grew larger. A moan as he went to reach it.......pain. There was a wall of pain but that light still beckoned as he tried again.

She trembles slightly with the expenditure of energy but never once loses her focus. With their energies combined, she absorbs only a small portion of the injuries that she normally would.

Moaning was good in this situation.  It meant Daniel wasn't dead.  He was going to kiss both of the women's feet! He swore he would!

He emerged from the kitchen with two pots of boiling water and brought them carefully to the hearth where the healers worked. Gray eyes narrowed as he watched the two.

She kept that pace as she felt the reaction, drawing even more as she knew she would be draining Sarina soon. She eased off there and took more upon herself instead as the natural ability she had, she found was still there. She actually spoke this time, a soft chant now to tease his hearing and bring it back to help follow sound. "Daniel.. come.. your family awaits to greet you."

Now the voice was not just in his mind as he moved along that wall of pain, determined now to break through. His 'family' that he heard above all else as the sharp groan of pain actually broke through orally this time through blood dried lips and the coughing came bringing up the blood as he turned his head some with a moan right out of hell itself.

As they continued, without even realizing, Neale had approached to stand just off to the side, watching in silence.  He could have wept with relief. Daniel was not dead...but the man would be hurting. 

Very very hurting!

~to be continued~

Daniel William Frasier
"The helping hand" of the Frasier Clan

Date: 04-17-02
Poster: Daniel W Frasier
Post # 4

FrancoisCIouseau, Neale M Frasier, PatrickLFrasier, Daniel W Frasier, Lahoneee and Sarina Maree

As his brother came back into the realm of the living his thoughts turned towards who just might have done this.  Who would hurt Daniel?

"Geesus."  Neale dove forward with that stack of linens he held, jerking one from the top to catch that blood which erupted from Daniel.  Nearly toppling over the Ladies who helped Daniel come further from that abyss. 

Honeee had to break it now as her hand slid from Daniel's head as he did rejoin them and she back onto her heels with deep breaths. She kept Sarina's hand her hers a few moments longer as to not whiplash her before that too was broken. She just sat back trying to center herself again and regain her own strength as the severance was the most of the pull away. She barely stopped from being on her back with the shove as a hand shot out to connect with the floor as those breaths were still sucked in.

Even with the cough that signaled Daniel's return to consciousness she continued to give what she could until Honeee broke that contact. She was already kneeling on the floor and slowly drew her right hand away from Daniel's chest, sitting back on her heels.

He nearly lost the towels he'd been holding, stumbling towards Daniel and Neale.  Hell, where had the grace he'd been born with go?!?  Apparently, right out the window.

Francois moved quickly to keep the lady from falling backward and helped her to her feet, keeping a hand nearby in case she needed to be steadied.

Alex knew what to prepare for the drink for Honeee and Sarina, it was a mixture of certain rare herbs that Andrew had gotten. Tasted mostly like a sweet tea, some things good for you did taste good. He brought the cups over, those small ones for not much of such should be drank as he waited for them to be taken. She could use the help too and so let the man help her, to shaken legs she did notice Alex now. "Sarina, drink this .. tea. It helps."

The pristine white of clean linen was soon stained crimson with blood as it was pressed to Daniel's mouth.

Her hand shook as she took the cup from Alex and focused on Daniel again, watching Neale and Patrick with him, reassured herself that the man still lived.

She had healed most of the damage internally to the back of Daniel's head, what she could in that short time and the rest would eventually dissipate over the next few days.  What came from his mouth was a lot of what could have caused clogging in his head instead.

He couldn't believe Daniel lived.  He was brought to his knees nex to his brother, seeing what else could be done for him.

His vision was blurred but he knew the voices.....his own came in a raspy quality. "Neale......Patrick?"

"Aye, here Danny-boy." He could have wept like a babe, but he wasn't going to.  He was a Frasier and there were ladies present.

He remained there by Honeee for no other reason than to lend support. His expression remained unreadable.

"Aye, Brother...the both of us.  As well as the Lady Sarina and Honeee."  His gaze lifted from Daniel for a brief moment and he looked to Francois.  There would be no confrontations, but there would be answers required.  Better than just "being on vacation." 

She took the cup of 'tea' herself as she watched solemnly, taking small sips of it. She did give the man a smile as she slowly regained her own energy and stepped back so the brothers could reunite. "Thank you." Was whispered to the man before another sip of the tea was taken.. this she did do slowly.

Answers he would have. There was little point in keeping anything from these men at this point. He gave Honeee a nod to her whispered thanks.

"We owe you all more than words can express...more than what can be repaid.  Thank you."  Greens lowered once again to Daniel and Neale sucked in a slow, calming breath.  "Thank you."  A bucket of flowers fell far short for his gratitude, once again, for Sarina's assistance with saving one of his family.

She smiled faintly but said nothing, taking a sip of the tea.

"Neale, do not let him sleep more than six hours at a time for the next two days. He should be very tired and I will have special soup made for him that will help his recovery faster." The first was so he didn't slip into that void of unconsciousness again.

He didn't know who Sarina was, but he would be sure to kiss the ground she walked on...later.  As he heard Honeee's words he nodded.

"Can we move him above? To his room?"  With a press of hand to his knee, he stood, looking first to Honeee, then to Sarina for the answer, nodding as the instructions started to come.

For the answer to that she looked to the more experienced healer.

"Yes, that would be best. I shall have someone to sit with him for the next two night unless any of your family wish to take turns?"

"I'll see to him." Patrick cursed himself for not having been around.  Why did he have the need to go into hiding in order to deal with his father's death?

"I shall see to it, thank you."  Between Patrick and Neale...Daniel would be taken care of.
Maybe if he had been around, this would not have happened.  Guilt was a slow, cold wash for one to take.  He grunted his agreement with Neale.  Frasiers took care of Frasiers.

A look to Patrick and a slow nod of understanding.  It would be the two of them...and Daniel would recover.  "Alright then, Danny ole boy..let's get you all tucked in with your bedtime story."

He dropped the towels, going in to help Neale ease Daniel to his feet. "Aye, we'll tell you the tale of the three little bears."  Humor was good for Patrick. He kept his mind off of the need to snap something in two.

Neale bent to slide his arm beneath Daniel's shoulder to once again heft him up, then see him above and settled comfortably as possible for a man who had met the wicked end of an attacker's club.

She stood on shaky legs and stepped out of their way, collapsing into a chair instead.

There was a lot of groans and he let his brothers help him up. He found his legs like rubber....and then the pins and needles set in.....this time the groan came with a muffled curse.

On Daniel's other side, Patrick hefted. He couldn't let Neale take the brunt of his brothers weight again. And getting him up the stairs was just going to be a chore in itself.  "Aye, that's it." Cursing would help Daniel.  At least, it always helped him when he was in pain.

With Daniel draped like a chinchilla stole over Neale's one shoulder, gripped by the pit by Patrick on the other side, they started those shuffling steps toward the stairs

He watched them heft their brother up and carry him off then went around the bar. He needed a good, stiff drink.

That mouthed "thank you" to Sarina, a smile and nod of respectful gratitude to Honeee...a look of...appreciation as well, to the Frenchman Clouseau. 

He didn't know who Sarina was, but he would be sure to thank her later.  Honeee was given a brief, tight smile as they did the "drunken man" shuffle up those stairs.

She did smile with the mouthed words from Neale.

He downed a shot or two of poteen then took his leave. He had things that needed doing.

t seemed Neale would be taking the first watch with Daniel so back down the stairs he went once he saw his brother as settled as he was going to get. It was with heavy feet that he clomped down the stairs.  Was it any wonder after all that, that he wouldn't go straight for the pool of blood and all the towels. Someone had to clean up the mess and Patrick seemed to be the one to get the job done.

She looked in Patrick's direction and gave him a slight smile. "Is Daniel settled?" As settled as the man could be with all those energies. She did not have the energy to clean up the mess just yet or she would offer to help.


Daniel William Frasier
"The helping hand" of the Frasier Clan

Date: 04-18-02
Poster: Pierre Lafayette
Post # 5

PierreALafayette, Sarina Maree, Neale M Frasier and Daniel W Frasier
~so it continues~

Philipe was sent to inform Georgette of their successful night and as usual for Philipe he was drinking now in celebration back at the cabin. Now they could pack up and leave but Pierre found himself coming back. He felt they should at least stay two more weeks as to not seem suspicious, even attend the funeral of the Frasier man. The place seemed quiet but such was norm for this tavern over the loud and stench filled room of that more popular one. His biggest gripe there being they didn't have the vintages of wine he had a taste for.

"That's good news. I haven't had the chance to see it yet, myself. I'm sure it will be lovely." Lifting her glass for the smallest sip of her cider.

"You're welcome to come out anytime...when you have take a walk about.  It's actually looking like a structure, the rooms even recognizable."

He soon had the door eased open. No jacket this night was worn but the flare sleeved poet's shirt in a tan shade tucked into dark brown leather pants, that some might feel were a little too tight as they hinted well of the muscular form beneath.

"Ellyn has already picked out which room will be hers" with this he smiled, leaning to the side to place his cup to the table.  The contents were cold...and far from able to be consumed.  " happens to be the East parlor. I'm afraid her room is not quite that size." He looked toward the door.  His hand lifted with a greeting to the familiar face. Just up...then down.

His smile brought about her own smile and his words a soft laugh. "With luck she'll forget about it, little ones that age can change their minds on an hourly basis."

"Aye? Will be the kitchen next?" The sound of her soft laugh made it just as easy for him to join her with the rumbling of a chuckle.

At least here he knew he could get a fine Rosé or Blanc. That bronzed gaze darkened as it came to rest on those here then to settle on Sarina. "Bonjour
mademoiselle Sarina, est-ce que je m'interromps? Then to Neale. "Bonjour monsieur Frasier."

She turned her head at the sound of the door. Her light smile faded to one more formal. "Good eve, Pierre. No, you're not interrupting." The chance to enjoy the rarely heard chuckle was lost, unfortunately.


Danny was groggy and not fully with it tonight....but stubborn devil he was as he splashed cold water on his face and hair....then shoo'ed the doting nursemaid away with an actual swat at the one's behind. was good to be alive!...even if not fully back to par. He did take his time coming down those steps......even had to hold onto the rail at times. He had overdone it today with being out twice.....but had slept a good four hours since then up until now.

As Neale departed for the privy or wherever she sipped silently at her cider. Glancing up at the sound of Daniel's descent, the glass is set aside and a smile appears. " should be resting." She couldn't sound stern or admonishing if she tried.

If he was shocked seeing the dead man walk, he didn't show it. If he hand held a glass of wine or such at the time then a reaction might have been noticed.
This was NOT good. Now he had to find out what miracle saved the man. He grew quiet as he had
moved to the wine rack and for all intents and purposes was going over the various labels seemingly fascinated there.

She did rise from her chair, laughter in her eyes. If she'd had the energy, she would heal away the rest of the man's aches and pains but for now he would have to bear them on his own.

Evening......Sarina.....Pierre..." Words spoken as he moved towards the bar, then shifted turning to approach Sarina instead....without warning....and without a word....the press came of warm lips just to that tender sensitive spot below her earlobe and before her jawbone....husky words came in the breath it took to form then. "Thank you.....sweetheart."

"Bonjour Daniel." Greeting given as he slid out one of the vintage wines and proceeded to read its label.

The sudden approach had her taking a startled breath. Her cheeks flushed hotly but she smiled and impulsively kissed him on the cheek in return. "I'm only glad I was here to help."

"I should kiss the queen too...." Spoken as he stepped back, but that smile was coming in that infectious boyish way with the returned kiss. "But I'm sure someone would lop off my head. I do owe both you and life."

She couldn't help but laugh at that but then shook her head. "Then live well, that's all the payment I need."

Eureka! his mind screamed as he carefully eased the bottle back into its slot. At least with the bad news to be given his brother and Georgette, some good news could be given too. He should get back and find them as quickly as possible so no blunders were made in assuming Daniel Frasier was dead. The easy swaggering stride had him near Sarina..he'd seen the kiss but he was very much in control of his reactions. "Mademoiselle Sarina, I regret that I need to get back to my frere and ma soeur. You had agreed to showed me some of these fine lands here and if the offer is still open I would like to take you up on it."

"Of course, I would be happy to." Lifting her gaze to him with that gentle, polite smile. "Give your brother and sister my best."

He was already scheming...if they could rid the place of its healers then their attempts could not be thwarted again. He really hesitated on sending Philipe
after the queen when he actually spoke last night and there was always the chance of being overheard. Even if Dan survived the beating there was luckily no way he could have heard his brother, still, Philipe took a chance. "Mon plaisir you will mademoiselle," Then between the two he nodded as he stepped back. "Bonne nuit, I shall bring your tidings to my brother and sister."

"A good night to you Pierre...." and he was glad he had more left now!

She curtsied slightly, bowing her head, ever polite.

With that flair of the Frenchman he swept a bow coming up with another step back and into a turn.. making his way out and seeing to business

Pierre Andre Lafayette
From Bordeaux in France he came on a family mission of
la plus grande importance

Date: 04-18-02
Poster: Pierre Lafayette
Post # 6

PierreALafayette and Sarina Maree

He was all dressed up but still casually. A white neatly pressed shirt did have the first couple buttons left open showing off just a hint of a tanned chest. Black twill pants were also neatly pressed, his attire almost like whom he was..the good and the bad. Hair was neatly combed and he wore a light spicy aftershave for he was also clean shaven. He held a red rose in one hand as a token for the Lady Sarina as he waited at the tavern on their appointed time and he was on time.

She had received the note from Jon and despite his worry that she would feel guilty, guilty she felt. With tears stinging her eyes she tucked it away and took the path that led to the tavern, turning the same thoughts regarding Neale and Jon over and over in her mind. She knew, she *knew* there was something there with Neale but had only seen it once, when he allowed his feelings to override his sense of propriety. Since then he had held strongly to it in her presence. The guard assigned her by Daniel trailed behind her at a distance. She'd grown so used to his presence that she never even looked for the man anymore, just assumed he was there. A warm smile appeared as she approached Pierre there. "Good day, Pierre, I hope I have not kept you?" She had noticed his well-groomed appearance.

A slight but perfect bow was executed, his breeding evident as that bronzed gaze rested on her and a smile came to charm his features. "Bonjour mademoiselle Sarina." and in a lower tone "dame de la beauté, ah, but what is this I see?" A brow shifted upwards as a hand came to caress her cheek and his thumb in a gentle sweep below her eye. "These are not tears on the lovely lady on such a beautiful day?" He still held the rose while he waited to find out what had those tears in her eyes.

Her cheeks flushed with his compliment, blue eyes lowering. She does not pull away from the touch but rather shakes her head to his question and taking a small step back. "Something to do with a friend, I'm fine." Dismissing the subject. Her smile soft as her gaze lifted again.

There was the slightest of nods as he would not persist where she seemed reluctant. It was then he held out the rose to her. "If this could be some small
consolation until things mend to bring a smile to your lovely face. I would be humbly pleased."

"It's lovely, thank you, Pierre." Taking the rose from him. Turning the stem in her fingers she let the soft petals brush her lips, inhaling the flower's sweet scent. "What sort of things would you like to see today?"

"I shall leave that up to your expertise on what you feel a tourist should see. I shall be in your company so wherever you pick I shall enjoy." The smile
held that charming quality as he took the few steps to open and hold the door for her. This way she could show him where she felt comfortable and all the better to assure this feeling of safety in his presence.

"I thought perhaps we might walk toward Ballicastle, there's quite a bit to see between there and here. The lake and the meadow, some the town." Stepping past him and out into the warm spring air.

Once she passed he stepped out behind her, easing the door closed as he did. A step taken brought him up alongside her as he offered his arm to take.
Staying now mostly to English it did flow with that thick French accent. "This sounds perfect to me." Perfect emphasized as that gaze alighted upon her lovely features once more as if alluding to them at the same time. "I shall be your humble company to follow where you lead."

The flush returned to her cheeks, her gaze lowered once again then lifting as she places her hand gently in the crook of his arm and begins to lead them off, bound in the direction of the lake. She caught a glimpse of her guard moving to follow. Whatever her reservations about Pierre, she felt safe enough knowing the armed man was not far behind them. "Tell me about your country, Pierre, I've never been to France."

The guard was well noted by him but he gave no indication of such. It would be a matter now for consideration in dealing with to further their plans later. "France is a beautiful lady, cultured and refine. The latest fashions for the ladies can always be found in her cities. The countryside green, like here, the kind you take walks in. But..we are to talk of these lands and what they have to offer, oui?"

"Yes, of course. I'm only curious. I haven't really done much traveling." Her smile thoughtful. "I haven't been here in these lands for very long, myself so some things are still new to me."

"Then another time maybe I can persuade you to go to dinner with me, French cuisine and wine and I can tell you all about France."

"Perhaps," giving nothing away by her polite tone. "The lake is always beautiful, particularly at sunrise. I sometimes wake early just to see it, it's very inspiring."

His pace slowed to a lazy swagger as they strolled along. "You like the water then and nature? How big are these lands and are there many lakes and other sites to see? Mountains, valleys, businesses, farms?"

"A little of everything. Many different businesses, mining, lumber, shipping...there are vineyards, dairies, almost anything you can think of. We can't see it all in one short walk but I'm sure I can arrange for you to see more another time, if you like."

"Oui, sil vous plait, I would be in your debt to seem more of these beautiful lands with une belle dame."

The blush in her cheeks was fainter this time. "There are others who can give you a far better tour of the lands than I can." This said as the distant shore of the lake comes into view.

The stroll now averted to turn back towards the tavern as the hour did grow late and he had Georgette waiting on him. The tavern gradually reached as the light conversation continued and his hand came over hers when their steps halted in a light caressing squeeze. "I shall be looking forward to our next time together Mademoiselle Sarina for it has been a true pleasure to spend time with you. I need now to get back to my sister Georgette." Adding with the light sense of humor. "Before she buys all the shops out you have in your marketplace and my brother and I are left penniless."

"It was a pleasure, Pierre." Releasing her hold on his arm to step back and curtsy. "Do enjoy the remainder of your day."

"I shall for I can reflect on the time spent with you." With those parting words and a bow he did take his leave.

Straightening she bowed her head to him then turned and went inside the tavern, her mind returning to the thoughts that had previously occupied her.

Pierre Andre Lafayette
From Bordeaux in France he came on a family mission of
la plus grande importance

Date: 04-21-02
Poster: Pierre Lafayette
Post # 7

PierreALafayette, Sarina Maree, GenevieveDouglas and Neale M Frasier

Georgette, Pierre and Philipe had met the previous night to deal with the fact of the plot failing to kill Daniel, which turned out to be in their favor for the furious Georgette had not wanted it. Her hand print left on both their faces in a show of that displeasure, even if the slap was well worth that
fire to spark in her, for other reasons...later. There were a number of issues discussed, each given a task to complete. Pierre set to his that very next evening.....

He was setting the pot of coffee back, his own mug filled but there was that slip of a portion of rat poison slipped in it now. Giving the pot a good swirl to mix in that downward motion would go unnoticed. He knew Neale should be appearing at any moment through that door as he held this position
until he heard him enter.

The information which Francois had shared led Neale nowhere. None had seen or heard of those with the family name of Lafayette.  Frustration mounted as did his anger for with any who could do such a thing to Daniel still lurking about, any of his family could be at risk.  It was with that annoyance that he slapped his hand to the wood of door and gave a shove, entering in.  Coffee...the first order of the evening.  Perhaps the rote of familiar would ease his nerves and his ire.  It seemed a fresh pot had just finished brewing, so he didn't slow his pace at all, just kept right on toward the bar. "I trust that's as fresh as it smells."  A nod of greeting to Pierre as he approached.

He had left a few mugs by the pot and just enough of the poison to make him extremely ill but not kill him, as per Georgette's instructions. Hearing the
footsteps as if on cue he turned with his own steaming mug of coffee and lifted it for a tasting before lowered and he stepped away from the pot. "Bonjour monsieur Neale.
Oui, I like coffee now and then but after trying some in that other tavern I had stopped drinking such until here. Its very good here."

A nod started him around the bar, claiming one of those cups which waited by the pot. "To that I will agree.  Have you been sightseeing again this day?"  He pulled his gaze from the man to lift the pot, pouring himself a cup of the steaming brew, following the level now with his gaze though his attention was still on Pierre and his response.

"Non, but I will soon." Not offering much in the line of information. Noting he had poured his cup he was in the midst of draining the rest of his own. It was a slow process as he awaited Neale to move away from the pot but didn't look like he was waiting and that his mug still had enough in it as he took a slight lean against the counter. He had patience.

The kettle set aside, Neale turned to look to the man, his cup halted there at chest level. "You've picked a lovely time to do just that, Monsieur.  With the arrival of spring, beauty is surely there for your enjoyment."  His comment shared it brought the cup the rest of the way up, tilting it back for that first taste.  A moment to allow the haze of steam to clear from his vision, then he did...suck in a careful sip.

Her mood today was as sunny and warm as the weather outside. She had taken the walk she promised herself and felt better for it. In one hand she carried a chain made of daisies and in the other, another half dozen freshly picked along her walk to the tavern. Pushing the door open with her shoulder, she slipped inside, a smile there for those gathered within.

He had now finished off his own, all in the timing as he was up and around Neale to refill his own mug. But alas, the pot slipped from his hands as it was lifted and shattered to the floor in a crash. He grumbled some curse in that French accent as he shoved his mug aside, grabbed a towel to mop it up carefully along with getting the broken glass up.

Neale jumped back, nearly spilling his own cup, but had it lifted high to keep from losing a drop.  From the Frenchman to the door, a nod and smile there for Sarina before he set his mug aside to help the man clean up the mess. That glass could be dangerous...

"I must have, what you say here...slippy fingers." He was up and dumping the pieces of glass in the trash before he got one of the chambermaids to get a mop to clean up the rest. He also saw to the pot being replaced and another 'normal' pot of coffee made.

Her smile fades and she nearly jumps out of her skin at the sound of the crashing pot. Once she realizes the source, that smile returns, a silent nod given to Neale as she steps to the bar.

That bronzed gaze was soon to capture Sarina beneath its appreciation as it lingered there. "Vous avez un sourire comme soleil lui-meme, belle dame.

"Now tha' be a nice thin' ta say.."  She came in hearing the compliment and almost scowled when she saw whom had given it. Clearing her throat, a smile was slapped onto
her features, but her eyes didn't warm.  "Good evening to you Pierre." Cool and nicely cultured she tucked the brogue away.

A faint blush fills her cheeks. "Thank you, Pierre." A polite reply to the compliment given, turning at the sound of Gene's voice to offer her a smile of greeting.

A brow lifted as he noted the reaction written upon her lovely features. "Pardonnez-moi if I have overstepped, mademoiselle Sarina?"

Neale also enjoyed Sarina's smile, his gaze lifting to rest on Pierre a moment before he stood with his own palmful of glass shards.  A backstep had them dumped to the waste and he lifted his cup again.  "Good eve, Lady Douglas."

Ah but it was that 'other' one as that bronzed gaze shifted to Gene but still his expression was unreadable as a polite smile remained to his features as his
head was dipped her way.

"No, of course not." Brushing the whole thing off as she stepped around the bar to pour herself some brandy.

"Good evening, Neale."  The smile tightened on her lips and her throat felt dry.  Her stomach quivered, in reaction to the man's presence.  She didn't like the slick, slippery types.. Weasel. Nodding in polite greeting to Pierre she swept across the expanse of the commons towards the bar.  Now, she just needed a stiff drink.

One eye closed to the slight ache behind was not a wink.  His cup lifting again as he swallowed down his coffee...and Sarina's reaction to Pierre's words.

How are the babes, Gene?" Brandy poured, the glass was lifted for that first sip.

Then back to Sarina his attention was quickly averted. "I shall come back another time, oui? It seems my presence upsets some." Although he had done nothing 'visible' to have earned it. "Georgette awaits for some more spending money. Bonne nuit, unless later." He was already making his way as a good excuse to not be around for what would happen in another hour's time.

"Very well, thank you."  Pierre may not have done anything visible, but Gene didn't like him and she trusted her gut.  "Good evening to you, Pierre." And Good Riddance!

"Give your sister our best, aye, Pierre?"  Then again that cup was lifted.

Her brow knit in the slightest bit of a frown. "Good eve, Pierre." Stepping back around the bar.

"Oui, I shall," Called over his shoulder as he headed up the steps to her room, if she was there still!

Pierre Andre Lafayette
From Bordeaux in France he came on a family mission of
la plus grande importance

Date: 04-26-02
Poster: Lisette McTiel
Post # 8

PhiIipeLafayette, LisetteMcT, RobFrasier,  Eau D Eglantine and Kionly Deviant

He was not in the best of moods. He was itching to just kill off Daniel Frasier and be done with the whole thing but Georgette would not allow it so here he was again. Muttering under his breath he poured himself a glass of red wine and found a seat where he could brood in peace.

She came in like a soft summer's breeze.. wisp of a willow in the dancer's steps near upon tiptoe. Her smile bright and she the energy around her was electrifying like one having just come from the meadows.. for she had. Basket full of wild flowers she decided to gather to decorate the tavern with.. help kill any 'stench' left by some.

The stench of others he might agree with but her very presence brightened the room considerably. "Bonsoir, Mademoiselle," He spoke gently, standing to bow in greeting.

She caught her breath a moment, small gasp as she thought the place was empty. Sapphires darted to alight on the one who spoke, recognizing him immediately. "Bonsoir Philipe." Slight smile quirked as she set the basket on a table then was off and around the bar to find some vases.

"You look as lovely as the flowers you have with you this evening," His smile rather charming, reflecting a light in his dark eyes.

She gave him a suspicious wary glance but her smile was sweet enough as she dipped that blond head to his compliment as she went about searching through the cupboards. "Thank you" And making it sound as distracted as possible too, not rude but certainly not encouraging. She found one vase and set it on the table before she was up keeling on a stool to reach the other. Still distractedly talking as she set to her task. "You and your brother and sister are enjoying your stay? When do you leave to go home?"

Those dark eyes flickered dangerously when she turned away. "Soon, I think. Depends on my sister and what she feels up to." His tone is polite and offhand.

To her feet she was upon the stool now, practically climbing into the cupboard as she went to tip toe in a precarious lean... then backed out and back to the flat of her feet as she dragged a few more vases out. "Then, you wont be staying?"

"I do not think so but I believe we will be visiting again." His grin was almost leering, his eyes freely roving over her while she worked to find the vases.

She was clad in soft tanned britches, dark brown and a light blue soft sweater turtleneck, such did accent her figure well as she came down from the stool and moved it aside. She had gathered about ten vases of various sizes, now she was taking them over to the sink, one by one and filling them with water before setting them on the counter again.. lining them up. "What is France like" Off handily said as she kept busy but kept a conversation going as to not just be rude.

"It is very beautiful. Rolling hills and soft meadows," He moved around the bar and began to help her with her task, whether she wanted it or not.

It surprised her he actually started to help as a smile was offered as she passed him to get another vase to fill. Then once that was done, went over to the table where she had left the basket of wild flowers and retrieved it.

He filled another without being asked and brought it to the table where she worked. "The women here are as beautiful as my homeland, some even moreso."

Hefted onto the bar she carefully started separating them then calculated about how many she had for each vase and the decision made to make each the same. His words caught her attention as all she ever heard about France was its beautiful women, or was that style of dress? "Do the women there wear the latest fashion? How could those compare to here?" She was genuinely curious.

It proved well into the night, that the willowy figure of the albino chanced to meander downstairs.  She had spent the better part of the afternoon trying to make the maidservant assigned to her rooms understand the dangers of simply barging within to clean.  The albino herself proved immaculate, hardly a bit of her presence was seen within the rooms themselves; though she cared not to chance upsetting her gracious hosts by having a bustling little maid chance upon the sleeping Diablé.  Sweet natured as he was to his mistress, it never was good circumstance to chance upon a highly venomous serpent digesting a meal of field mouse.  A very violent headache pounded within her skull, perhaps a cup of tea would soothe it.  Arguing with the brogue speaking "lass" had well tested the limits of her patience, yet, surprisingly she endured; with only a headache for her efforts.  So soft booted footfalls found solace down the stairs and to the bar, as ever not a bit obtrusive; merely there with nubile digits massaging her temples.

"Some women there do, the rich women. The women here have a different quality to them. They are more gentle...delicate." Stepping up behind her, close enough to breathe in the scent of her hair. "Like you, mademoiselle."

Watch her near jump out of her skin as she felt the breath upon her neck. He was quick but so was she as she gave him one of those small unsure smiles as she stepped away. She wanted to say she bet he said that to all the women but she suspected he might not take that too well and she didn't want to play with a fire she was unsure of. "I am non prettier than the others, many here are but I thank you for the compliment."

"Au contraire, mademoiselle," He did not follow but simply smiled her way. "I hope I have not made you uncomfortable?"

The patrons, sparse this eve; and not a sight of the guardsmen she had noted were often about.  They seemed well distracted and such suited her just dandy, that slow sensuous serpents gait well had the fragile boned albino past the bartop and on to a seeping pot of tea.  Quite strong scented as no doubt it had been there quite awhile.  A simple cup chosen, as many proved fairly fine made ; and the tea was filled to the brim.  Only lemon added to the brew, and a noiseless slip upon a stool.  A sleeking brow silver and endlessly fine inclined, as she favored that quite polite dip of head to the woman's greeting.  The merest bemused twitch of lips at her reaction to the albino's sudden appearance.  A knowing amused red eyed glance befell her, as pale lips sought the rim of her cup for a gentle sip. "<vvsw> Evening . . .  care for some tea while I'm nearby?"

Uncomfortable and nervous to be exact as that small smile quirked and a blush was soon highlighting her cheeks in that dusty pink. "I am not use to such compliments monsieur." And that was the truth of it, Rob had only started bestowing ones on her and that was different. The appearance of another was a welcome distraction as her smile lifted a little more, pausing in flower arranging. "Evening to you.."

He nodded to Kionly but his gaze strayed from Lisette only for that moment. "A lady like yourself should receive many, many compliments of this nature."

She was almost shoving the flowers into the vases as he was starting to make her even more nervous. She moved around to the other side of the bar to put that barrier between them "I would like some tea if its no problem." She realized she had not taken time to get anything to drink yet. "I'm Lisette MacTiel.. and this here is Pierre.." She blinked as daisies were now shoved in with wild carnations of various colors. "I didn't get your surname monsieur."

"Philipe, mademoiselle. Philipe Meaux."

She amended to Kionly then. "Monsieur Philipe Meaux." And she had that French touch to her tone of words.

The soft sibilant tone carried neither an infliction of malice, nor overly gushing kindness.  Just quite polite, and neutral; though baring the merest hint of amusement.  A rarity she was, both in form and manners; albino's of her age and health were quite rare indeed.  The claret tainted gaze lingered upon the lady, noting her unease around the male.  Perhaps this evening would prove interesting after all, a slight lean had the dark clad frame pressed over the bartop to procure another simple cup of tea.  The surname seemed fairly odd, though she would make no indication of her observation.  A slight nod favored to the seat aside her, as the pale lips twitched nearly kindly towards the femme. "<vvs> A pleasure Madame...  I am Kionly.  Do you take sugar and milk, or perhaps some lemon?" The ruby gaze was given a slight askance gaze to the male, though that soft sibilant tone held nary the inflection of kindness laced within her tone for the lady.  Rather dry, she never did like men who unsettled women. "<vvsw> Charmed, Monsieur Meux..."

"As am I, mademoiselle," with a dip of his head to the lady.

A serpentine grace etched upon every one of her movements, and she seemed to bare more than a passing resemblance to her venomous pet.  The teacup was set to the stool aside the blanched pedagogue, the meek bird boned frame an offered barrier.  A tiny carafé of milk and sugar bowl placed before the cup, allowing the lady to choose her own additions to the beverage.  The cool calculating gaze tinged of blood cast pleasantly upon the floral arrangements. Though such was not her personal forté, it was fairly pleasant to look upon.

"A little sugar and some lemon." Her smile warmly flowed then to the woman. "A pleasure meeting you Kionly. Excuse me a moment I need something from the kitchen." She eyed Philipe a moment before she disappeared into the kitchen to prepare some herbs to add to the water to preserve the flowers and help keep their colors vibrant. She was in search now in the pantry just off the kitchen itself, for what she knew was kept there just not sure exactly where.

He did want a word in...private with the lady and stood after she had retreated. "I will be right back," and he followed after Lisette.

He pushed through the door and into the tavern, already wearing a smile, anticipating meeting a certain someone tonight.

Ah a similar taste, that brought a touch of a smile to quirk upon the pale lips of the lurid pallored scholar.  A slow sip of her tea favored, though a sharp narrowing of her gaze angled at the tagging along of the male.  The Ghost well attuned her attention upon the doors, with a wry twist of lips.  A rhythmic tapping of snow white digits to the bar.  A gentle rise of brow at the entering male, though like a striking serpent her eyes lingered upon the door to the kitchen. Rather ill at ease, though she intoned with that polite sibilant tone.  Pleasant, though carrying a soft hint of disquiet. "<vsw> Evening to you Monsieur . ."

"Might I be of help, mademoiselle?" Stopping a foot or two behind where she stood at the pantry.

"Good eve, m'lady," a nod to the pale lass at the bar as he stepped behind it to retrieve a glass and a bottle of whiskey for himself.

A pouch was retrieved from one of the many drawers she had open as that voice had her spinning around to face the man.. surprise did register in her eyes not having expected him to follow her. Fingers gripped around that pouch in a vice grip as knuckles slightly whitened but she schooled her voice and expression quickly enough after the initial surprise. "I thank you for the offer Philipe but as you can see I found what I needed." She even held it up some to make sure he saw.

"I can see that. I had hoped to have a moment alone to speak with you..." Taking a step toward her, closing that distance.

Meek and willowy of form, the red eyed albino.  As she flicked her gaze towards her companion at the bar, a quiet twitch of nose at the scent of alcohol wafting from his chosen drink.  A fairly bemused quirk of lips, as she cast the delicate line of her chin in the direction of his beverage.  A pedagogue through and through, her hobbies however were something else.  Yet she quirked her lips in a bit of a smile.  The tea really was helping her headache. "<vs> How is it you can drink that vile beverage?  I daresay one could strip laquer with such a brew..."

She could have a bit of sass to her tongue as she soon quipped like shield armor her words. "I'm not hard of hearing that you need to draw closer monsieur Philipe. What is on your mind you need speak about?" She was gauging the distance to the door of the pantry and where he stood, how fast she could move if needed.

Dark eyes hardened with her words, the muscles in his jaw tightening. "You are not afraid of me, are you?" His tone is rather mocking.

Filling his glass he shot the lass a crooked grin and shrugged, lifting it up for a swallow. "Puts hair on your chest."

It was taking a fair while to obtain what the lady needed from the pantry.  From time to time as she chattered pleasantly the cool calculating gaze of crimson befell the kitchen door.  From time to time the tiny plaits woven into the fine locks tinged as pale as new fallen snow; tipped with tiny silver beads flickered.  A whisper soft laugh, soft and sibilant; baring a passing likeness within of a hissing serpent.  Oddly pleasant never the less. "<vsw> No wonder I care not for such beverages. . ."

"I do not know you well enough to be afraid nor be comfortable monsieur." Chin slightly lifted in defiance as sapphires held a sharp glint to them now. "Is this what you wanted to speak to me about?" How odd and her tone as much as said so.

The faint aroma of eglantine entered the tavern as the door swung open softly before admitting the feminine form of Demoiselle Georgette.  A delicate hum whispered from her, her big blue eyes trained upon the floor and hooded by long, dark lashes.

"Non, it is not," derisive in his tone. "You are a most beautiful woman, I only wanted to know you better." Is that a crime? He asks with his eyes as he leans in toward her.

She inclined her head to the side to her companion, and his vile beverage.  Her tea sipped at, as the icy gaze of red lingered upon the kitchen.  A somber muse, as she settled back upon her stool as though to get more comfortable. The carmine gaze veiled by snowy white. "<vsw> How long would you say it takes to procure something from a pantry?"

She switched the pouch to her right hand as the left shot out to push with her palm against his chest to keep his distance before moving past, hand slipping away as she scooted for the door. "Non but I favor someone." Called over her shoulder and parried.

~to be continued~

Lisette MacTiel
The Dancer

Date: 04-26-02
Poster: Lisette McTiel
Post # 9

PhiIipeLafayette, LisetteMcT, RobFrasier, Eau D Eglantine, Daniel W Frasier and Kionly Deviant

Fingertips trailed along the wood of the door before she allowed it to brush closed again.  She paid little heed to those who might be present in the establishment, and merely continued on with her husky, hummed lullaby.

His hand shot out to grasp her arm as he turned, whirling her about to face him, pulling her up against his chest. "There is no need to taunt me, mademoiselle," His face so close she can smell the wine on his breath.

He was soon lumbering down those steps after a nice leisurely soaking in a hot tub. Such did ease the sore muscles after working all day, once more, at the manor home. He was soon rounding the corner from the hall and into the main part of the tavern, a glass of cognac his goal. Ah, the simpler pleasures!

He only grinned and glanced toward the hall, expecting Lis to appear at any moment.

The iced gaze burned, as she continued to peer at the door to the kitchens.  Ivory tainted digits drummed, an odd beat for something random.  Something primal, though pleasing to the ears.  The albino frowned ever so slightly, as white crowned head flickered to the side.

Her heart plummeted in yet another surprised movement on his part. It was her turn to surprise as she struggled at the same time letting out one hell of a high pitched scream. Enough to wake the dead and to echo over the whole town... might even shatter his ear drums! Whatever wine he drank, it sure smelled rancid.

The creamy forefinger of her left hand toyed lazily with a night-dark curl as she sauntered her way toward the bar, moving in time with her song.

Might? Hell, he let go of her immediately and took a step back, looking most injured as he brought his hand up to cup his ear.

The shrill scream brought those liquid blue eyes to lifting.  Twin raven eyebrows rose in unison, and though the sweet hum drew quieter, it didn't die off entirely.

The lithe delicate frame pounced straight up with the shriek, and vaulted the bar in a surprisingly lithe movement.  The kitchen door nudged violently with the svelte curve of breached hip, paving the way for the doublet of males present; as she knew precisely the direction the shriek had come from.

He nearly dropped his glass at that ear shattering scream from the kitchen. He did not have the chance to acknowledge his brother but was around the bar and pushing into the kitchen, hand on the hilt of his sword.

Once he did, she was dashing out the door, her heart pounding as much as his head had to be about now. She was racing for the kitchen door, a pot or two clattering to the floor in her rather clumsy sprint. She ran right into Rob at that point, her face pale as more out of fear at this point but it sure looked incriminating on Philipe's part.

He heard the scream and was fast on Rob's trail, his own hand reaching down to the hilt of a dagger sheathed just under his overcoat.

He caught her up in his arms, looking from her to the man that stood only a few feet away. Putting two and two together he released her to take a menacing step toward the man. Drawing his sword as he went.

Pure animalistic rage flickered in the iced gaze tinged carmine, as she followed after the males noiseless as a hunting serpent. Her movements at ease, now though tightly controlled noting the paleness of the femme's pallor. The Frenchmen observed with the slightest cant of head, her tone even and level; cold as ice. "<vvsw> What have we here?  I take it your "help" in the pantry wasn't needed, hmm?"

He could hold his own in a duel but with the entrance of the second Frasier behind his brother he realized his odds were not so good. Backing away from the advancing Frasier he bowed mockingly then turned and fled through the back door.

Finding herself alone as the rest of the patrons flew into the kitchen, the hum stopped.  She worked her jaw, sliding teeth together in mild anger.  She quickly wiped the emotion from her face, however, and followed behind the others, pausing just as the door and feigning caution as well as the best masked actor.

A slip of movement, had her aside the sword drawn male and the upset Lady MacTiel.  Her tone lowered softly, that dulcet hiss merely comforting now.  As she held a hand out gently, to lead her to the warmth of the fire and a cup of tea.  Indeed the best thing for the upset woman, rather than being privy to the males incessant queries "<vvsw> Come, Madame MacTiel, your tea awaits.  Perhaps a seat by the fire... hmm?"

Considering now who the lass that screamed was and the look on his brother's face he would extract blood for how things appeared. His own hands itched against the dagger's hilt as it had been retracted. "What went on here? Lisette.. Pierre?" But the man bolted which was an admission of guilt right there. "See to Lisette, I will see to him, Rob." He was fast on Philipe's trail as he followed him out the door.

Innocence came so easily to those big blue eyes, and she used that small gift to her advantage as she saw her 'brother's' hind end disappear out the door. "What has happened?" Her expression was of genuine concern, faked though it was, as her gaze moved from the assaulted lady to the youngest Frasier.

He was not about to be left behind. He would see to her later, he wanted a piece of this blackguard for himself and was hot on Daniel's trail with an "I'll be back," tossed the ladies way.

Out the door, down the steps and sprinting toward the trees beyond the tavern. Once within he could lose them easily. Seduction might not be his forte but he could hide well and cover his tracks.  And...he was fast.

Georgette worried little for Philipe; he had a headstart, after all, and if there was one thing that boy could do, it was run and hide.  Those matching brows drew downward in the first trace of anger.  That part, she didn't have to fake.

Her heart still pounded as her gaze tore from the brothers to Kionly then the other woman just beyond before it was back to Kionly. "I could use something to relax my nerves, thank you." She went with her then, slight dip of her head to the other woman in passing before she was soon at the hearth, tea taken up but she preferred to stand... pacing slightly until the men returned.

His sword fully drawn he gave chase, seeing only the shadow of the bastard flit into the trees. "Damn it!" But still he ran.

Observant the willowy albino, as she deigned to settle near to Lisette; the cold gaze tinged of blood flicking side to side with her pacing.  A soft tone offered, as she folded into a seat before the hearth. "<vvsw>You really should sit, Madame MacTiel; you are safe.  It is best you soothe your nerves, no doubt when the men return; they will wish to question you some.  Please, it is for the best."

"Dam" Rang out as the shadow he almost kept up with had disappeared into the blackness of the forest and night. No worry, they knew who he was as he turned back, it would be unwise on his part to follow one into the cover of the forest. "Rob best we find out first from Lisette what happened."

Reluctantly he halted, breathing hard as he turned back to Daniel. "I can guess what happened," a growl as he sheathed his sword and stalked back toward the tavern.

The light dancer's pace to her step, paused on a pivot and soon settled to one of those chairs but on the edge as if ready to spring. Teacup was balanced to a knee but held securely within one hand. "I know." And she felt foolish in how she would explain that a man tried to compliment her and got too close so she screamed.

Fond the soft sibilant voice, consoling; lacking that vast neutral inclination she soft often kept within her voice.  A gentle twist of lips befell her as the carmine gaze noted her stressed mannerisms.  She was a scholar after all, and deigned to slip noiselessly from her seat to set up residence upon the floor before the lady.  Sitting cross legged, with a reassuring smile. "<vvsw> It is alright, though it is best you try to relax some.  If you want for anything, do not hesitate to ask.  More tea, a stoke to the fire...  I will be happy to oblige.

A large hand fell to his brother's shoulder in a gripping squeeze of support, words left unspoken as it retracted.....leaving it just that silent communication as he took up that step taking him back to the tavern with his brother.

Once in side he hurried through the kitchen and into the tavern proper. Frasier greens fell upon his blonde dancer almost immediately. "Lis... what happened?" His steps taking him to her side, a rough hand lifting to cup her cheek, his eyes searching hers. "Did he hurt you?"

Yes, did he, indeed?  Georgette kept her ears open while her hands went through the motions of pouring herself a fine red wine.  Her eyes were kept to her task as well, awaiting word on Philipe's...failure.

She was nearly stepped upon by the male, and hissed ever so softly in annoyance of being nearly bowled over.  A slight flicker of her hand, of which was near crushed by his boots; and a wry twist befell the pale lips.  A slightly askew seat now, not half as well maintained as before.  A slow measured shake of head, though she nodded ever so gently to Lisette; a soft smile favored her way.  The gentle sibilant tones ushered forth, as she slipped away slightly so as to not get crushed.  A whisper soft sigh. "<vvsw> Hardly foolish, Madame MacTiel.  That male indeed seemed .... off, somehow.  I would have done much in the same."

The kind words did draw her thoughts from the incident for a moment and helped to calm her as a smile actually lifted. "Thank you for your kindness Kionly, I am starting to relax already."  Words lowering just some. "I just hope not to appear foolish for what happened." Hard to explain that 'icky' feeling of a certain one that went beyond just the actions. She was up then, teacup set aside as sapphires met with those Frasier greens. "The man followed me into the pantry. Compliments and when I told him I favored one and tried to leave, he caught up my arm and pulled me against his chest. I screamed. He let me go then and you were all there, so he ran."  Even she was rather surprised it all just came flowing out like some observer.

His fist clenched at his side but the hand that touched her cheek remained gentle. Looking over his shoulder at Daniel, the silent question in his eyes...had he heard all that?

He lingered by the door of the kitchen, just inside the tavern as a dark brow lifted and that deep green gaze settled on Georgette under its scrutiny as she seemed unaware of him. She had to have seen it was her brother but then crimes of the brother were not of the sister. What got him mostly was her seemingly lack of concern. He gave a nod to Rob then as he had heard what happened. Not enough to kill the man but a good beating by Rob might just well be in order for having offended Lisette.

Satisfied that Daniel had heard he turned back to Lis and pulled her close, simply relieved now that she hadn't been harmed. "I'm sorry I wasn't here sooner." Whispered against her ear.

What she had seen were a pair of pants with legs in them escaping through a door.  That she had known it was her brother the moment she heard the scream was hardly common knowledge, and not in the slightest bit evident to the eye. As of yet, she had not heard the fool's name to display her faux ignorance.  As for Daniel ... when she turned from her lean against the inside edge of the bar, she jumped just slightly at finding him there.  Big blue eyes widened in innocent concern.  Her question was quiet enough to travel no further than the man. "Monsieur Daniel...who was it?  I did not arrive in time to see what sort of foul man would corner a woman in a pantry."

"Yes, the man does seem off." She was quick to take up the hug Rob offered being she was seeing the man properly and the consoling made her feel protected and helped quell those ruffled feathers to smooth away. "Thank you Rob, Daniel. Have you met Kionly, she has been very kind."

He loosened his hold on her but did not let her go, not yet. "Kionly, a pleasure, lass. Thank you for your help."

A sigh slipped past pale lips, at the sheer indignity of being nearly stepped on.  True she was fairly small, but surely the near gleaming white flesh, hair and crimson eyes gave way to her presence.  Perhaps it was the black attire.  C'est la vie, and thin shoulders inclined just a bit.  A smile touched upon her lips to both Rob and Lisette.  A delicate dip of head, as she mused softly; with a touch of amusement within her tone. "<vvsw> You are most welcome, both of you.  Provided you do not step on me, again.  Then I shall have to do a host of horrible things to you; take away that foul beverage you favor." Was she teasing, the only indication of such was the slight flicker in the near transparent gaze of red flickered up to the doublet.  A slight incline of her head.

There was a wry smile but still handsomely displayed upon his features as that now stormed brewed green gaze took in Georgette's surprised look. "You just missed your brother Philipe, mademoiselle Georgette."

Liquid blue eyes grew even wider at the news.  She looked truly horror stricken as one hand grasped at the bar, and the other flew to cover her mouth.  She shook her head, tossing the thick black curls against the curve of creamy neck in the process. "Mais non!  Philipe?  You are sure?"

"I am positive, you did not know your brother is a rake? You heard what Lisette said in what happened. The lass doesn't lie."

Or perhaps he was just preoccupied with Lisette and what had happened and hadn't the presence of mind to take in anyone else at that moment. "I apologize, m'lady, for any offense on my part." He wasn't in a particularly humorous mood at that moment.

The cool calculating gaze again crept into the carmine eyes, as she pursed pale lips.  Unsure whether or not to offer her "special" assistance, then again perhaps she would only offer to teach the Lady Lisette what a nice swift kick to the groin was capable of; when dealing with undesirables.  A pedagogue she may be, frail boned as well...  but she did know well how to turn things to her favor in a fight.  A soft smile touched upon her lips to the doublet and she inclined her head to the side. "<vvsw> And I am told I have no humor . . . pray do be settled, no doubt the Sire was frightened half out of his wits by the sight of you charging within sword blazing.  No doubt he will not attempt such stupidity again.  If he values his ....  "assets"

"I'm sure Rob didn't know you were sitting on the floor Kionly, he is not the kind of man to go stepping on others." Her smile lifted once more as it was obvious the man was more than just upset but another thought flickered as sapphires shifted to Rob again. "What will you do about him now?" Well, that would had been next if her ear shattering scream had not worked.

She blinked at him a moment, as though taken aback by his tone.  Then she slowly bowed her head, lowering her gaze to the floor. "I did not mean to imply she would, Monsieur Daniel.  Mes freres have not any idea how to properly treat a woman." Without looking back up at him, she fled the bar and moved swiftly to Lisette's side.  Dipping into a fine curtsy of elegant grace, she whispered her apology. "I will never be able to apologize enough for the actions of mon frere, mademoiselle.  But I will see he is brought to justice, and be sure he pays for what he has done." That, at least, was the truth.  "He has dishonored our family; I am ashamed to be his sister for what he has done."

Lisette's question was almost missed for he was listening to Daniel and Georgette. "That scoundrel is your brother??" His voice low, nearly a growl.

She drew in a deep breath then let it out slowly. "It is not your fault milady, but your brother could use some lessons in manners."

Green eyes narrowed even further as they rested on Georgette's face. "You may tell your brother that should I see him again he will have a lesson in manners from me." His demeanor plainly said he was not so willing to accept her apology or promise at face value. Not a particularly forgiving man when it comes to harm done his family or...those close to him.

"I will deliver your message, if he has not fled all the way back to France already, monsieur.  Je promets." Her head was still bowed, her hands clasped in shame before her.

She deigned to slip within the chair aside Lisette, observing in silence for now.  The albino's frail form settled comfortably upon the edge, as the pale lips pursed. Regarding the self proclaimed sister of the male, the oval visage inclined to the side.  In a somber interest, her gaze flicking to Lisette from time to time to make sure shock had not settled in.  She may not be much of a conventional healer, but through scholarly pursuits such things were easily learned.

"See that you do, m'lady," Dismissing her and the subject as he reached across the bar for his glass, one hand remaining on Lisette's shoulder.

~to be continued~

Lisette MacTiel
The Dancer

Date: 04-26-02
Poster: Lisette McTiel
Post # 10

LisetteMcT, Eau D Eglantine, RobFrasier, Daniel W Frasier and Kionly Deviant

He didn't like to see the blame fall on Georgette as brows drew in that curl near the bridge of his nose. He knew well they were all upset but the lass
was not her brother's keeper. "Dame Georgette, can I get you some wine or something to drink and let all this settle now?"

Her ire rose like a molten apple to lodge in her throat at being so offhandedly dismissed.  Rather than let it show, however, she quickly and deftly used it to bring tears to her eyes.  When she lifted her gaze haltingly again toward Daniel, the liquid blue shone wet in the lamplight.  She sniffed lightly once. "I just poured myself some wine, but merci." As if to prove it, she stepped back to the bar and wrapped her fingers lightly about the slender glass.

He gave a nod to Kionly belatedly in all the confusion but he had heard her name. "Kionly.. a pleasure to meet you even under the circumstances, my apologies for not responding sooner."

A smile twitched upon her lips, as the albinos delicate visage dipped in a polite gesture of greeting.  The carmine gaze slowly filtering from her watchful vigil over Lisette to settle upon the new greeting with a pleasant nature. Though she was not overtly given to gush in joviality, simply very gracious and polite in manners. "<vvsw> Ah, worry not Sir, I quite understand.  A pleasure to make your acquaintance . . ."

The adrenaline surge had worn off now and left him very wary. "Are you sure you're alright, Lis?" Peering into her eyes once again.

"I am positive, Rob... please let it go. I'm sure he will not bother me again and his sister seems she would see to him, plus she has your own warning to him." Her hand touched upon the top of his own to soothe him for he was now more upset than her. The tea had helped.

Damn right he was upset, he was incensed but he forced himself to take a deep breath and nod, moving round the bar to refill his glass.

There was a dip of his head in acknowledgment, the tear welled in her eyes also noted.....but he was one immune to tears as so many had tried them on him he just got use to it. He did try to lighten the mood. "Maybe he will run all the way back to France. What part of France are you from?"

A sip of said wine seemed to fortify her, for when she again looked to him, the evidence was gone and all that remained was a sort of mortified sadness. "The Southwest...Bordeaux.  They make the best wine known to man." Her smile was faint and halfhearted, her gaze once more resting upon her glass.

A cool gaze of red befell the sister with the gift of crocodile tears.  Though she spoke note a word, save a gentle whisper favored to Lisette.  That nimble albino's
frame leaned ever so slightly. "<vsw> Would you like more tea Madame MacTiel?"

Returning to Lisette's side he perched on the stool there, his eyes both watchful and thoughtful.

"I was through Bordeaux some time past, beautiful countryside and many nice people there." He seemed nonchalant with his conversation as he drew up a bottle from under the bar of cognac. Seemingly distracted as he opened the bottle and poured a glass he was very much aware of her.

"Yes I would, you will join me in some too? You brewed a good pot of tea Kionly." Her smile warmed once more before her gaze touched upon Rob, he could see the look of concern there and the flush upon her cheeks for having caused it, well, didn't really caused it Philipe did but she ended up an unwilling part of it nonetheless.

"C'est vrai?  You are right, it is beautiful country.  I miss it." She sighed softly and sipped delicately from the glass.

Seeing that flush he gave her a smile meant to be reassuring and bent to press a gentle kiss to her forehead.

An incline of head befell her other watchful guard with a teasing smirk etched upon her lips.  The cool red gaze unreadable save for the impish light within. "<vvsw>You Sir, tea is far more pleasant than that foul brew you seem to favor.  Care to join us, as well?"

"Thank you, lass but I'll stick to my foul brew for tonight." A bit of a grin to her as he straightened again.

Now for the test as that gaze fell directly upon Georgette, his own features expressionless.. not a hint of being anything other than what they should be. "There are a few prominent families there, one very noteworthy are the Lafayettes. You know of them?"

A reassuring wink of amusement veil a ruby tainted eye.  As she slipped off with that unusual weaving gait of hers.  Rather lithe the undulations of a serpent on the move.  Seemingly blown by a breeze to where she deigned to arrive.  A touch of tea set to brew and seep as she set out two fresh glasses; each laced with a small wedge of lemon and a touch of sugar.

"His foul brew might just help him best." One could tell she had eased now all those ruffled feathers as a hand slid to confiscate his bottle and add a little of the whiskey to her tea.

He gave a light chuckle, a glint of humor in his eyes as he watched her. She knew him well.

A small gasp escaped her before she could manage to hide it with a hand.  Quickly, she shook her head, her eyes wide once more. "We do not mention that name, Monsieur. They are not good people.  They...they do terrible things. They are the reason I have one beloved cousin fewer." She bowed her head, her expression of respect for the dearly lost genuine.

A brow lifted as he well noted her reaction, question was.....were her words done to quickly mask it? Frasier greens held that intensity to them as he remained comfortable in his own mask. "I did not know they were not good people as my stay was not long......tell me then of how they gained such a reputation. I am sorry for your loss.....of this cousin."

The tea was poured as she raised a silvery brow in interest at the one who as of yet had deigned to give his name.  Though she was clearly impressed by his impassive interrogation, never a word spoken.  Simply not obtrusive in the least as she weaved her way back to Lisette, with a doublet of tea cups in tow. "<vvsw> Lemon and sugar as you like..." A smirk played over her lips, as she wrinkled her nose at the whiskey.  Favoring a wink to the one partaking.

Better for Daniel to do the questioning, he would not do well with it, far too hot-headed at the moment.

"Their hands reach into everything, monsieur.  And they stop at nothing to make sure everything they touch turns to gold and stays that way." For a moment, she closed her eyes.  Then, when they opened again, she took a longer sip of the wine before continuing. "My cousin...he fell in with them.  I do not know the whole story, since they killed him before he could tell us.  Now..." She gave a worried look over her shoulder at Lisette before her eyes found Daniel's again with the faintest hint of sisterly fear. "Now I wonder if perhaps mon frere is following his path."

"Thank you Kionly" taking the tea as she added some of the whiskey to this up now too, she didn't mind the tea cold especially when it had that touch of whiskey to it. She didn't drink much but a little was fine. Her words near in a whisper as she was listening too to Daniel's conversation. She had introduced him to her earlier but she may well not of heard. "That is Daniel there, Kionly, Rob's brother and the lady Georgette, sister of the other man Philipe."

His jaw tightened briefly with the mention of Philipe, a protective hand placed at the small of Lis's back.

She intoned in a rather dry voice, to Lisette's words something akin to wry mockery.  The gaze of iced ruby flickered and she spoke just loud enough to allow Rob to hear her words.  The thin albino's frame leaned in a conspiratory manner towards the duo. "<vvsw> The Lady Meux...  hmm." The pale lips pursed thoughtfully, as she favored a smirk.  Rather like the enticing grin of a crocodilian, as she cast her head to the side; a slight askew glance favored to the one called Daniel. "<vsw> He makes a fine interrogator, I must say I am most impressed with his skills."

"If they are as you say.....then your fear should be real, Lady Georgette." He kept his thoughts to himself and just gathered the information along with any body language that bespoke even more than words said......still.....he held that quality of ease about him.....something well practiced. "I would say a sisterly to brother talk in depth is in the forecast.....I feel you would wish to help your brother that he doesn't end up like your cousin......" Leaving off other implications and letting her guess what else could have been added there.

A dark brow quirked, greens slanting Daniel's way then back at Kionly. "Aye," The single word very low.

"If it is true, monsieur, there is nothing I can do for him." Her forehead furrowed in pained sadness as she closed her eyes once more.  Georgette was one of the best; when she submitted to a cause, she gave it her all.  There would be no thread, even the tiniest hint, of evidence to do anything but lend credence to her story and the emotions she chose carefully. "I am but a woman, monsieur.  Philipe has a fierce temper.  I am no physical match for him, and he would rage at me if I even suggested such a possibility."

And she just dipped her head ever so slightly to the comment.. before leaning to Rob. "I need to get back now as the hour does grow late. I can stay here if it would make you feel more comfortable." She knew she could use one of the extra rooms upstairs but she did need to get to sleep soon as she had an early day tomorrow, then to Kionly. "I hope to see you about again, I enjoyed meeting you."

She smiled faintly, then rose slowly in a singular serpentine motion.  An affirmed nod, favored.  The carmine gaze veiled, as she sipped nonchalantly at her tea. "<vsw>I would greatly enjoy such, Madame MacTiel.  I stay here as well, if you should like I can have one of my pets watch over your room.  If it would calm your mind, they are very loyal, provided you treat them with respect."

"Stay here, then, I'll know your safe with the guards upstairs." A slight nod as he pushed off from the stool to see her upstairs. It was doubtful he would sleep much tonight.

"Then it is best that you should not confront him, or.....with your other brother present. Pierre....he would help you?"

She lifted fearful blue eyes to him slowly. "<q> You would have me trust one brother, when I think the other in league with the wrong sort?  They are the ones who wished me to see this land, to leave our father's home.  How do I know they would both not turn on me at such an accusation?"

"Guard Pets?" She was unsure but it did bring a smile. "If you think it would help." Uncertainty in her voice as she prepared to leave.. she pictured a Doberman or such to sit outside her door. "Thank you.." Then to Daniel and Georgette. "A good night to you as well." Taking up Rob's arm to see her upstairs as the last of her words were given.

She smiled warmly, a truly rare occurrence.  A reassuring wink favored to the Lady MacTiel.  Her soft sibilant tone ushered forth, truly no one with half an ounce of intelligence would enter a room with a venom bearing serpent as the guardian.  A fond nod dipped her head, as she smiled ever so faintly. "<vvsw> Provided you do not touch him, you will be quite safe.  His name is Diablé, should you wish to speak with him.  I shall have him posted near your room this very evening.  I pray you do not fear serpents..."

There was a slight dip of his own dark head. It was well noted how easily she turned on both her brothers that they should be watched. He gave a quick glance to Rob and Lisette with his words but Rob would catch his it was away from Georgette for her to see. "Night to you both, I'll catch up with you later Rob."

"Good eve, Daniel...m'lady." A dip of his head to both then another to Georgette. "I think I'd rather have a guard watch her door, m'lady, if you don't mind." He was not all that fond of snakes, himself. "Aye, I'll be awake." Offering Lisette his arm.

She smiled softly, with a dip of head.  Nevertheless Diablé would lurk nearby, unseen though quite definitely there.  He really was a sweet natured creature, provided one treated him with respect.  Quite like his mistress, and she smiled reassuringly. "<vs> As it please, he shall be nearby; as shall I. Only but a shout away!"

She gave the pair another apologetic bow of her head. "Bon soir, monsieur, mademoiselle."

How about a scream away.. obviously they would all hear her again! Her steps adjusted to fit alongside Rob's as they soon disappeared down the hall.

She had seen Daniel only once before the night's incident, and she, personally, wasn't willing to make unfounded assumptions.  She had been in his company but a few moments before, and were he to tell her he didn't trust her brothers entirely, she had no reason to discount him either way.  It seemed, as little as they knew about each other, a safe ploy.  Especially when considering she honestly didn't trust either of those she called brother. "Perhaps I should just go back to France and let my father confront them..."

She was skeptical by nature, and she knew crocodile tears when she saw them.  The quickness in turning them off in an instant when they did not work; was reason enough to be wary.  But she let none of it show, simply sipped at her tea with the demure grace of a pedagogue.  Quiet, and observant; admiring silently the technique of the one called Daniel.  A smile touched upon the lips of the Ghost.

"If you feel that might be for your own safety but you will be protected here.....within this tavern....even from your own brothers if need be." Outside of the safety of these lands she was on her own. She had said as much she didn't wish to be here.....still.....there were things just slightly off. "Perhaps we shall get a chance to talk again....mademoiselle Georgette."

"I would like that, Monsieur Daniel.  If only to attempt to atone for Philipe's horrible behavior tonight." Again, she bowed her head in embarrassed shame.

"I have things now to attend to before I can rest. I bid you a sweet good night Georgette and Kionly..." The cognac kicked back in one swallowing before the glass was set aside and he up into that long stride with the intentions of catching up with Rob before he made it to his bed.....even see if Neale was up too.

A quick but elegant curtsy was given to Daniel as he made to depart. "Bon soir, Monsieur Daniel.  Sleep well."

Lisette MacTiel
The Dancer

Date: 05-02-02
Poster: Pierre Lafayette
Post # 11

Sarina Maree and PierreALafayette

With a basket over her arm she walked the wooded area on the path that would lead to the Thistle. Here and there she stopped to pull up the leaves or root of a plant, gathering them for medicinal purposes.

He was dressed to perfection....dark blue twill pants were neatly pressed. The palest of blue slightly ruffled shirt fitted him well as did the pants.
Opened partially down left the hint of curled hair on a well tanned chest. A light jacket matching the pants were worn....topped off by gold cuff links. Hair combed neatly....face freshly shaven and the hint of a light spicy cologne. He had been watching....actually waiting as he timed it perfectly to come around a corner as if he'd been walking the opposite way. Hands in his pants pockets while he whistled the call of song birds to perfection..he
had that gift of imitation.

She wore a lighter weight, summer dress today, already bearing a few grass stains. So involved with her task was she that she thought that whistle was of the song birds at first but caught movement out of the corner of her eye and glanced up. She nearly did a double take at the sight of Pierre there but managed to catch herself and gave the man a guarded smile that hopefully did not betray her nervousness in his presence. "Good day, Pierre."

He looked surprise as he moved within that respectable distance. His smile devastatingly charming as that bronzed gaze might even be genuine at this point. "Bonjour mademoiselle Sarina, ma dame de la beauté qui rivalise les dieux..". He tipped his head as a hand was offered palm up. "Let me carry your basket and walk with you as you gather the herbs."

"Oh... thank you," glancing over her shoulder to see if her guard was nearby. She didn't see him but he often kept a distance to allow her some privacy. She wasn't too far from the Thistle, in any case and consented with a slight smile, handing over her basket.

She would not see her guard but only figure he was keeping his distance. He was in fact in dreamland right now and tied up. He didn't kill the one this time
for some reason. "I have been walking these paths and I know where a patch of ginseng root is. I have always been told it cures many an ailment. Would you be interested in me showing you?"

What she really wanted to do was set a brisk pace for the Thistle but she did have her guard... and she didn't want to be rude to the man, particularly if he had no part in any wrong doing. "I don't have very long, perhaps a quick look?"  Her smile was nervous, no way to hide that.

He actually did know where a spot was as he studied her a moment..slight nod as he indicated with his free hand the path that veered off to the left. It
would take them somewhat further from the Thistle but also did lead in that general direction. "Oui, this way then dame Sarina."

She gave a slight nod and started that way with another glance over her shoulder for that guard. "How have you been?" Small talk but it did serve a purpose.

"Oui, I have been well, mostly.. I was sick for a few days but it has passed. Non to worry." He seemed very pensive as he directed her from the path off to
a woodsie area where big pines grew and ginseng trees hidden will within the protective walls of pine to the naked eye.

"Sick?" Reassured by those words she relaxed some. "Nothing serious, I hope?"  A glance given him as she stepped into that area and spied the ginseng.

"I don't know what it was, virus, flu but I was very sick..oui. A woman of the village gave me something that helped. Dame Sarina..I would like to talk with
you." He did come close as he set the basket there to the ground for she would need to dig away the soft rich earth to uncover some of the roots.

"That's good to hear. We think there was something in the coffee, Neale was also very sick. I was able to help him but we were worried about you." Kneeling before the tree she glanced up at him again and nodded. "What about?"

"About you.. and me." He gave that slight indication of his hand to hear him through for he was going to give it his best shot. "I am a rogue and not all
that good of a man, I have done things in my past, oui. I have never met a woman like you and I find myself wishing now to change no matter what it takes. I wish to court you at least down the line as it would be too soon vous etes une belle dame to even look at moi?"

It was a good thing she was already kneeling on the ground for what he said might very well have knocked her right over. With a hand to the trunk of the tree she came to her feet, turning to face him with that sinking feeling in the pit of her stomach. "You've been very kind to me but I... I don't think that's going to be possible, Pierre."

"Why not, not even a chance mon cheri?" He took the step to close the distance between them as an arm slid around her waist drawing her into that strong embrace of scented spice and the warmth of his breath it took to speak those words in that flowing accent. Held close as lips touched upon that sensitive spot just below her ear to entice...then drawn along the softness of her cheek to tease at the corner of her lips. "s'il vous plait, give me a chance."

The palms of her hands went right to his chest, blue eyes widening in surprise, her heart suddenly racing. Simultaneously turning her head to the side and pushing at his chest to free herself from his grasp. Where was her guard? "Pierre, no... there's someone I favor... I can't." Sounding at once apologetic and afraid.

"So be it then." He released her and none too graciously. "I was wrong about you, about women. There is no changing." It was all he said as he turned back into the woods leaving her there in disgust and planning to put plan B into action. He had seriously thought about changing but she only proved such was not worth doing so.

She was left standing there blinking, too stunned to do anything for a moment. "Pierre... I'm sorry..." Leaving her basket, forgetting about her guard she hurried after him. "Please... it's not you, I can't help the direction my heart goes!"  She felt terrible, miserable.

He was long gone, having never heard her words.

Pierre Andre Lafayette
From Bordeaux in France he came on a family mission of
la plus grande importance

Date: 05-03-02
Poster: Sarina Maree
Post # 12

She went straight to the Thistle after the incident with Pierre so it was some time later before she realized her guard was, in fact, gone. By the time she'd returned to her cottage and packed some of her things she had begun to wonder if  there was a connection between the guard's sudden disappearance and the encounter with Pierre. When she reached Heathfield Castle she penned a note to Neale and Daniel that read:

My Lords,

The guard that you so generously assigned me seems to have gone missing. I'll be staying at Heathfield Castle for the time being and can be reached there.

Most Sincerely,
Sarina Raslin

She didn't like the idea of abandoning the gardens she'd started at the cottage but as much as she valued her privacy and independence, she felt that something was afoot and knew she needed to see to her own safety.

Lady Sarina Maree
~Happiness is as a butterfly which when pursued is always
beyond our grasp, but which if you will sit down
quietly may alight upon you.~

Nathaniel Hawthorne

Date: 05-06-02
Poster: Pierre Lafayette
Post # 13

Sarina Maree and PierreALafayette

Most any leisure time she had saw her in one of the many gardens of Heathfield. Slow walks along the garden paths gave her time to clear her head and center herself.

He had found a rock, a good sized one..more like a boulder that was along this path leading through one of the gardens. He was wearing plain leather pants and a loose fitting shirt left partially open...looking much like the statue of the thinker as he sat there motionless in the quiet of the late afternoon. Birds fluttered and sung around him busy with their tasks while his mind was far far from where he was. One knee was bent more than the other as a bended arm had his elbow braced to his knee, his hand fisted gave his chin a resting place.

So like a statue that at first she didn't even see him there, lost in her own thoughts. As her gaze swept over the area again, blue eyes came to rest on that solitary figure, recognizing him a moment later. Hesitantly she steps forward, speaking softly. "Pierre?"

It was very rare that Pierre was ever startled but it had been so quiet and he so lost in his thoughts that when he heard his name he all but fell slipped
from that boulder to come up standing. The look of surprise was evident as he tried to just brush off his pants from the residue sediment coating his perch. "Oui, pardonnez moi I was...thinking and did not hear you dame Sarina." He still held that fog of really deep thought clinging to his being.

"No, no, pardon me. I didn't mean to disturb you. Would you like me to go?" Doubting he wanted her to stay after what had transpired between them last.

He stood there in hesitation as this woman was probably the only one he knew the best here and sometimes one had to take a chance if they wished their life to change or help with such. He slightly shook his head as hands had stilled to rest along the top of his thighs to the side. "Non, it might be good you came along. I think for the first time in my life I need someone to talk to...a confidant so that I might change things about my life. I don't know you well enough so it would be taking a chance...with my life." There was almost a smile more of the wry variety with his lowered words. "Je suis attrapé
entre une roche et un endroit dur... aucun espoir pour le désespéré, oui?

She remembered him talking about wanting to change the last time they spoke. Before she replied her eyes searched his, taking in his hesitation, the tone of his voice, his stance. Whatever this was about it was not to be taken lightly. "There is always hope, Pierre. I will help you if there's anyway at all that I can." Offering a gentle smile.

He would now find out if she would or would she run. "I am not a bon homme but nor am I really une mauvais homme. I am Pierre Andre Lafayette and we had come here to find retribution for the deaths of family members. I have not actually killed anyone myself but such is the way of ma famille. I stay it is a death wish, if I go back now, it is a death wish. As bad as I may be judged by others there is one thing I cannot tolerate even from ma famille and that is to bring harm to the innocent." which to him meant females and children although there were exceptions of women who were as men. "and the plan to abduct a child."

Putting two and two together didn't take her long as he spoke, she had already suspected some of it but had kept her thoughts to herself, in case she was wrong. Still, her eyes widened with that last bit. "Abduct a child? What child?"

"C'est mon frere Philipe, his plans to take the young Ellyn to further this retribution and I don't know what Philipe would do so I cannot just stand by and
see this through. He would not listen to me on is a plan of his own devise." So in essence he did the biggest breach of family trust to appease his own conscience.

She knew it would be Ellyn's name before he said it. What better way to get back at the Frasier family than to take a much loved, innocent child. "You don't think he would hurt her?" Panic and horror written in her features. "We need to alert them... Neale...Daniel..."

"Non, but with Philipe I cannot say. I do have doubts or I would not be telling you. He.. he goes fou dons la tete, he could harm her, I cannot take that

"When does he plan to carry this out?" Her voice far calmer than she feels.

"Tomorrow evening when the crew changes over. It has been watched and we know a few new sailors were hired. I think he plans to take one of them out and put himself in his place to get aboard with all the right papers. Neale is usually at the tavern at that time with his family." Taking him out was putting it nicely for Philipe, unlike Pierre, preferred to kill. "If I am to survive now, I will need a place to hide from ma famille once this is done or I am dead man walking right now. If I am to die at least I go with a clean conscience now." That spoken almost under his breath as he looked off into the distance of the hills being washed in the sunlight as the birds still sung around if taking one last look to bring with him.

She felt a little relief. They had some time, then. Plenty of time for Neale to put together a plan of his own. "For this kind of help, Pierre, I'm sure
they'll be happy to help you... " Stopping, a thought occurring to her. "Were you part of the... attack on Daniel? Or poisoning Neale?" If they thought for a second Pierre might have been the one to nearly kill Daniel his life would be forfeit, whether he'd helped with Ellyn or not.

"Importe-t-il maintenant si j'etais n'importe quelle partie?" It was immaterial as she knew if he said 'non' he would have to be lying for the mere fact of
his name and he was here with his brother.

"It will make a difference, Pierre. They'll be willing to help you, to trust you... if you tell them your part in things."

A hand lifted to run over his face as he grew so very tired in that moment with this weight he carried. He slightly shook his head as one doomed, if he was
to change he could not base his new life on lies. "Then there is no hope for I am the mastermind behind a lot of things even if I had not seen most through myself." He was very intelligent and had just used that ability in a corrupt way so far. "I will die here at their hands or die at home at my own families. Francois is a death warrant if he brings me back to seek justice for even if he is a good man he doesn't really have that power to protect me now, no one does. You tell your brothers, stop mon frere and the woman if she is there but I don't think she knows about this Philipe hatched on his own and not be there." He knew now he was on his own and best flee this night if he wanted to survive at all. "Either way this will end.. there is to be no more retribution I will take part in."

"No..." shaking her head. "Past deeds can be forgiven if the reasons for wanting to change are good ones. Neale is a good man, a just one. If we go to him with this he'll be angry..." Angry was putting it mildly, she was sure. "...but he'll be willing to help you. He won't kill you."  He might want to but he wouldn't, of this she felt certain.

"Une belle dame, you don't understand family. The Frasiers are like us in a way but on the straight and narrow...they could not let me live for what I have
done already but at least saving the petite fille from this cross fire I feel will atone for what I have caused already."

No, she didn't understand family, not entirely. Her family had been quick to turn on one another, to use and betray people they claimed to love the most. To have people in her life that she knew she could trust completely was new for her, and even with that knowledge there were always lingering doubts. Still, the time spent with the Frasiers had shown her a great deal. Tight-knit they were but also compassionate. "The Frasiers are not like your family. They will forgive you, Pierre. You've trusted me with this information, now trust me when I tell you this. They will be angry and they won't hide it from you but they won't kill you. You will have to earn people's trust... you have to be ready for that but you will have your life and you will have protection."

He could come clean to protect the child but his own life was at stake here and he knew what they were like. He would be on the run the rest of his until
they were stopped in France itself. Even staying he would endanger them all except for the fact he was their most cunning and could probably outwit them but this he knew he would have to do alone now. If he could survive, it would be hard being so outnumbered but still he could not risk them further. "You have been kind not to wish to kill me yourself and allow me to impart this information for the sake of the little girl who should not be a part of
this. You go to them and tell them but I must go it alone for your own safety now." As his mind had been made up to disclose enough so it was now made up in light of what he knew, knew of his own family. "Time is wasting you will need to alert them now." The last he spoke before he was moving in a stealth she had not seen before and was gone almost like disappearing before her very eyes.

Maybe not stealthy enough for as he disappeared she turned to search for her guard. When he stepped out from behind the bushes she hurried to him. The man had been close enough to hear the entire conversation. "Follow him... let me know when you know where he's going."  There's an authority to her voice that is usually not heard so the guard does as she says. When he's gone she makes her way back out of the garden, setting herself in the direction of the Thistle. If Neale was not there she would have word sent to him.

Pierre Andre Lafayette
From Bordeaux in France he came on a family mission of
la plus grande importance

Date: 05-08-02
Poster: Pierre Lafayette
Post # 14

HFGuards (played by Sarina Maree) and PierreALafayette

He had come back to that hidden cabin deep in the woods a good mile from where the tavern was they frequented. It was perfectly located and had been abandoned so long ago there were not even paths to find it anymore, all were grown over. The few trips they had made here still left no beaten path,
yet, and they didn't plan to be here long enough for that to happen. He was one to wander the woods and how he came across it accidentally, checked it out well to make sure it was not in use at all then claimed it for him, Georgette and his brother. He had was almost done packing that sack and doing it quickly as time now was of the essence and his life would depend on it.

The guard following Pierre had sent word to Sarina and she, in turn, had organized Pierre's capture on her own. In only a few hours, a half dozen guards had been sent to the cabin where he was currently hiding. They were quiet and stealthy and quickly surrounded the structure. They had been informed by Sarina to wait until he emerged from the cabin to take him so wait they did. Silent and patient.

His thoughts whirling as he didn't plan to tell Sarina when he did, it all just happened so he hadn't made plans further than the decision to get out. So
involved in this rushed task he came up fast a moment as he thought he heard a twig snap. Frozen in his spot he waited barely breathing but nothing more was heard so he felt it was just part of his imagination. A glance out the dirty window which could be seen out from not in..held nothing out of the ordinary, he drew a breath and finished. The sack thrown over his shoulder as he decided not to even leave a note, let them wonder or figure he met his
demise somehow, even better! He was to the door pausing there as he listened again..then swung it open moving out.

The instant the door swung open they were up and moving, three surrounding him while the other three blocked off escape. "Pierre Lafayette, you are ordered to come with us." The guard who spoke left no room for argument in his statement.

That brought him up fast in surprise, no way in hell he was a dead man if he did. An elbow swung in an upwards arch with the sack held as he came around ploughing that sack into the other guard in a domino effect to shove him into the third guard. He was on the run...leaving that sack with his few possessions behind he would just have to make do without.

They had been told to expect him to be uncooperative. The other three guards had set themselves up in a strategic position and as he bolted, they swooped in on him and tackled, the center guard colliding with Pierre and knocking them both to the ground.

Next the knew the ground had come up to meet him and the air knocked from his lungs, still he struggled even for a breath as he tried to get from underneath a guard that was more like wrestling with a boulder. He realized then he was outnumbered as there were six of them now. A groan erupted as he just stopped the struggle and thumped his head back against the ground. "Alright, I will come with you." It would be futile to try and fight six, three he could have managed as those were probably over to help these guards by now.

That they were and as he gave in the center guard jumped to his feet. There would be no more force used unless it proved necessary but nonetheless he had one guard take hold of each arm. "We have orders not to harm you so long as you come quietly." And with that they began to march him back toward Heathfield proper.

He was up to his feet, twigs, crushed leaves and pine needles clinging to clothing and hair. He didn't say word at this point but let them lead him off
peacefully. He knew when to fold his hand and would await a better deal. If there was a way to escape he would discover it. It was not easy to confine Pierre Lafayette.

Pierre Andre Lafayette
From Bordeaux in France he came on a family mission of
la plus grande importance

Date: 05-08-02
Poster: Sarina Maree
Post # 15

(RP with Rob Frasier, Daniel W Frasier, Neale M Frasier,  LisetteMcT, Sarina Maree and Kionly Deviant)

He came whistling down the stairs and into the room, lifting his hand to his brothers he went straight for the bar. Priorities...after a hard day's work.

Daniel gestured to the bar.....where Alex upon hearing the request set out a glass of whiskey.....probably find abandoned packs there never knew but there was no charge in these lands....he was not in Rhydin anymore.

Neale cut those greens over to his brother, smiling behind the rim of mug

His attention then shifted to his other a smile fell into place again easily. "Evening Rob..."

"Robert." Just the man's name as Neale watched the direction immediately taken.  "You're just in time, Rob...the night has not even begun." He nodded toward one of those chairs in the grouping where they sat.

"Good, good." Pouring himself a fair portion he made his way to where they sat and dropped into a chair there.

A light cloak was folded over her arm as she made her way in through the kitchen door, a smile lifting as a sparkle was set to that sapphire gaze as the cloak was now folded over the back of the chair. A cheery greeting sent. "Evening everyone!" As she took up a glass to pour a little brandy.

She had lifted her skirts and run the last leg to the Thistle, out of breath by the time she pushed that door open and hurried in, stopping in the doorway to seek out the familiar Frasier faces.

"Good eve to you, Lisette."  Neale pushed up from his chair as the young woman entered, but looked to the door as it opened again, only to find the flustered Sarina.  Dark brows raised and then just as quickly dipped into a frown. "What's wrong?"

Glass in hand she soon crossed the way over to where the brothers were seated, pausing in her step as Sarina came in..winded. "Sarina is everything all alright?" She did glance behind her to see if she was being chased.

He was up from his chair at the sight of Lis but his greeting to her was halted by the sight of Sarina's entrance.

That had him moving up in his seat as he leaned forward some....ready to move all the way up in a moment's notice.

His coffee mug found the wood of table none too gently and he made his way around the chairs toward her. "Are you alright?"  Repeating Lisette's question as he closed the distance between them.

Trying to catch her breath as she hurries across the room to where they sit, her head shaken at Lis's question. "I'm fine... it's not me. I just spoke with Pierre."

He was up all the way as he hung them room but he did move closer to find out. A nod given Lisette in greeting before his attention was back on Sarina.

His hand came to rest on the small of Lisette's back while he watched.

A smile did filtered albeit warily now and a nod given Neale and Daniel as she instinctively moved closer to Rob as she too was listening.

"Has something happened to Pierre?"

A brow had inched as if to encourage her to go on.....before they all just reacted.

Neale did attempt to hear the details before reacting, but this was a first to see Sarina in such a ... state.  It took all that he had not to give her a shake to have her telling them the rest.

She hardly knew where to start but shook her head in answer to Neale. "No, not yet. His family's responsible for everything... his surname is Lafayette, he told me, just a little while ago."

"What?" Just that name alone had Neale growling out the one word response.

"He didn't touch you did he?....." He well remembered what the brother had tried....a glance given Neale... then Rob and Lis.

"He told me... who he is and what his family's done and what they plan to do... he wants away from them, he's planning to run..." Another shake of her head. "He didn't touch me, he wanted my help."

Silence was Neale's reaction, his jaw tensing and relaxing and tensing as he sorted through this information.  The best thing for Pierre to do, at the moment, would be run...for if Neale got his hands on him, help would be of no use to the man.  He looked away from her to one of the windows.  The reflection from the lantern light within and the darkness without his center of attention while his mind raced.  With Daniel's directive, he nodded slowly, though still, silent...and watching nothing toward that window. "And tell us...what they plan." For to Neale, what had been could not be was what the Lafayette's planned to come that was all that mattered.

He gestured to Alex the man soon came with a snifter of brandy for the hopes to calm her nerves....Frasier greens settled on her again. "Start at the beginning....take it slow so we are sure of the information."

Taking the brandy she nods, bringing the glass up for a quick sip, trying to gather her thoughts, free hand pressed to her chest. "I was walking in the
garden and found him there, he was just... sitting there. He said something about taking a chance on his life by confiding in me and then told me he couldn't stomach what they were doing because Philipe... he plans to take Ellyn. Tomorrow, when they change shifts on board the Fury. He plans to make himself look like one of the new sailors.

Neale's gaze snapped back to Sarina.

He looked from Sarina with a flash of green to Neale and back. "You believe him?"

She met Neale's gaze then Daniel's. "I believe him. I always sensed something wasn't right about him, now I know why but today... it was the truth, I have no doubt of it."

Fists clenched at his sides, green eyes narrowed but not a word spoken...yet. He waited to see what his older brothers planned to do.

To board his Lady was a threat to Philipe's health. To attempt to take his Ellyn...would be the man's death. "Regardless of whether he tells the truth or not, we can't take that chance." His words came growled and low...forced past the anger mounting. "They were staying here...were they not?" Neale turned to look to Daniel, then to Rob.

The anger had been fully expected. "I sent my guard to follow him."

"The sister was, I don't know about the brothers."

"What time does the shift take place Neale.....we will of course waylay him instead....but one of us should watch from the port taverns to make sure it is not a trap either....have guards ready to come in."


Date: 05-08-02
Poster: Sarina Maree
Post # 16

Sarina's comment was not one that would ease Neale's she was without protection.  Still, the realization that she had acted wisely pressed through, whether he wished to acknowledge that fact or not.

" have uncanny instincts that are beyond the norm.....have you been wrong?"

Cradling the glass in both hands she sat on the arm of one of the chairs. "Yes... I've been wrong, more than once but not when I could feel things so strongly as this."

"We need to search that room..." Then he looked to Daniel. "Are you willing to chance Sarina being wrong, Daniel?" Neale shook his head, knowing the answer to that. "We will do as you say, have someone there at 18 hundred, but Ellyn...will not be aboard."

"I have weighed the odds in favor of instincts before Neale.....but we will have backup.....and yes...Ellyn will not be there. We should put what seems a child form in her room to make it look like she is sleeping."

"There will be no need for backups, Daniel..." Philpe's time was running out and Neale now held that hourglass that saw the sands slipping away.  "I will alert a few of my men...and I know what the Frenchman looks like."

"I can watch her...if you like, take her to play with the Queen's children, she'll be safe there." Making the offer.

"She would like that." No reason for the young lass to worry why she had been dragged from her room when, at that hour, her Nanny would be preparing her for the upcoming bedtime.

She couldn't have too much pity on Philipe after what he tried on her. Pierre she really didn't know and now wondered if the man was really trying to help or not. There was reasonable doubt but the threat was so they needed to ensure Ellyn's safety. "There is one thing that tells me the man might be telling the truth," her opinion offered softly.

"I'll be there." At Neale and Daniel's side. Was there any question?

"Do share, Lady MacTiel..." a silent dip of head toward would be the way of it.

He gave Lisette's hand a squeeze, encouraging her to continue.

"So far they have tried to stay anonymous in their dealings in this. He gave Sarina his surname which blows his cover. He would not do that if it was
trap for we also now know who they are."

"The game is up...there is no reason to continue to hide their identity.  Pierre Lafayette is either a very wise man...or extremely foolish.  Either way, we will take him at his word...and be prepared for all that might come of it."
"I know he's telling the truth, the last time I spoke with him he... was going through some kind of inner turmoil. Today he'd resolved it." Lifting her glass for another swallow of the warm liquid within.

"I feel you are right Sarina...just doesn't make sense the other way for there is Francois here and he knows it."

Only from Sarina would he take such words as absolute truths.

The last time she'd spoken with him was the day her guard had been waylaid, too. Probably not the best time to mention that.

"I will inform a few chosen men..." Better she didn't at this point, Neale was still working through the fury of having actually grown to respect the man.  His anger at himself for not "knowing". The coffee pot shattering...the poison...Daniel in the alley...the same sort of poisoning in Daniel's ale.  Aye, Neale was seething at himself nearly as much as his anger for the whole of the Lafayette crew.  Nearly as much...but not quite.

He didn't know Sarina well enough to know if her instincts could be trusted but what Lisette said made sense to him. Either way they would be prepared.

"I will see Ellyn to Hannah's can see her to the castle from there tomorrow, Sarina.  If he's watching the ship, I don't want him to see her leave."  No, that wouldn't work....and Neale growled under his breath.
But Daniel....had that deep rooted he had buried those drowned kittens as a kid when all laughed at him calling him crybaby.....he was willing to give the man a chance....if this was not some trap.....first things were first. IF it was a trap.....he would personally tear him apart from limb to limb.....slowly.

She gave Lis a slight smile, fighting the urge to do something to soothe Neale's temper. Doing so might only anger him more... "I could take her there with
me tonight, bring her nanny so she'll feel safe enough."

"If...he is watching the ship, he will expect to see her playing about." For Ellyn was so much like the young Hannah, as much at home in the riggings as she was in a nursery suite.

"And if he doesn't he might suspect a trap."

The look exchanged back as much as stated to wait, Neale, afer all was a man.

He brought up a hand to swipe from forehead to chin. " we need to see her off without drawing too much attention and not frightening her in the process." Neale would not subject his Ellyn to more...for so young a lass, she had already been through far too much.

"You wouldn't know any midgets about the docks that might fill in?" So it was a long shot!

God bless her, Neale looked to Lisette and almost chuckled.  "Not...right off hand."

Wouldn't that be a surprise on Philipe to find.. a very vicious midget to greet him knife and all.

He caught himself smiling at the suggestion, giving her hand another squeeze.

She smiled for the first time since this conversation began and squeezed Rob's hand in return too..that smile turned over to them all reassuringly.

"Sarina, you will take Ellyn tonight...I will send her Nanny from the ship tomorrow to go for a doctor, the lass has not been feeling well...that will get her safely away as well.  Let the man think Ellyn is safely tucked away below in her room ill...even less a chance of struggle...and no reason to be above during the day."


Date: 05-09-02
Poster: Sarina Maree
Post # 17

He actually chuckled.....the idea was not that far fetched. "I do think there are a few around challenged in height and make up for it in other ways."

"Alright." Nodding to the directive. There were few places safer than being inside a well guarded castle.

"Those men I confide in can even mention the fact that Ellyn has not been feeling well...especially after the shift changes." Greens settled on Daniel with his addition to the previous offer from Lisette.

The past few days had been filled with the tedium of "moving in."  Hardly a pleasant way to spend time, and both she and her unusual menagerie of pets
were in rather a dour mood.  Diablé; of which was presently resting over samite Kionly Deviant: bound shoulders as some thick leathery bright colored boa, had not eaten in several days since arriving.  Not at all surprising as the stress of the move had caused a great many of her pets to molt.  Yet she thought perhaps a bit of fresh air would do him good.  So with a light creak of door, the Ghost slipped within.

"To Hannah's tonight, Sarina..." Now speaking directly to her. " not to alarm Ellyn. Then to the castle tomorrow to play."  A slow nod as his mind
continued to process the necessary plans.

"And assign a few guards on Hannah's place.....we can let Lan know....I'm sure he will agree."

"Lan alone could deal with the likes of Lafayette...but aye, if he wishes it, guards could be arranged."
NO chances taken.....where any of them were concerned even if he knew Lan could take care of them....still....the man didn't have that kind of ego that he had noticed.

Adrenaline always wore off too quickly and left her feeling shaken. The brandy, at least, calmed her nerves. Another nod is given in answer.

Neale well knew Lan's talent with a blade...two times at least he had seen Lan in action.

But too....Lan was hurt badly when outnumbered in rescuing his sister....who knows what help the Lafayettes had here they were unaware of.

Neale had no problem with guards for the Kearney's...but it would be with Lan's consent only.

She watched between the four before she noted Kionly at the door.. a smile given her way in spite of the severity of the situation at hand.

He nodded Kionly's way, and reached for his forgotten glass.

It seemed for sure her arrival was ill timed, and the ruby gaze regarded those present within.  One of the scant few females seen without a guardian of some sort, even rarer to be attired as she was.  A curiass of finest samite, black spidered through with tiny threads of silver.  The collar well ensnaring the albino's neck to the delicate line of her chin.  A protective hand rose deftly to shield her blunt headed pet from an accidental strike, as she inclined her head in a polite manner to Lisette and Rob.  That gently shielding hand stroking affectionately the warm ventral scales, as she slipped to a position and seat slightly askew of the others.

"Good evening." Offered to the woman entering, a faint notice of the oddity of her "appearance".  But then, what was "odd" remained in the eyes of the beholder alone. His hand lifted to rest on the back of Sarina's upper arm, a touch of comfort and gratitude for the information shared.  All would be well...or he would die in the attempt to make it so.

She looked up and offered a small smile, gentle and reassuring.

A dip of his head in greeting was given now to Kionly......but one could tell he was calculating all the information he gained tonight.....sorting it through.

"If you come up with any ideas, you can find me for a while on the Fury while we prepare Hannah's." What a shock for his sister when he
comes pounding on her door after midnight tonight, child in arms.

"I would like to accompany you to Hannah's....or just meet you there as not to attract undue attention...." Good excuse to see his sister, brother in law
and nephew along with his niece.

That nod toward Daniel. "Dan, why don't you stop by there then, let her know what is underway...and I'll bring Ellyn along?"

From time to time a wayward glance flickered to the doorway, almost expecting yet another impromptu visit from Uncle Audric.  The very thought brought a touch of a smirk upon unpainted teirs.  A soft affectionate hissing sound; as nubile digits teased under the brightly banded serpents chin.  A near affectionate nuzzle of cheek favoured along that thick healthy form looped lazily about her shoulders.  The pink tinged gaze even chanced to hood, as she
murmured ever quietly. "Perhaps Love, Audric will come visit you.  I am quite sure that would make you feel better hmm?" Indeed it seemed the Scholar was speaking to her pet as though it could understand.  And indeed it was  likely the creature did.  For the onyx eyes glittered up to it's mistress with a deft flicker of forked tongue.

She would ask Honeee to assign her another guard or two and hoped the other would send word to her soon on Pierre's whereabouts.

"Sounds like a good they stay up until you do....that way we are not arousing them from their bed." And would give Hannah time to prepare whatever she needed for Ellyn's stay.

A light squeeze where his hand rested then he dropped it away, one more nod to each of his brother. "Excuse me then, I will see to Ellyn.  Good evening once again." To the stranger and with a final glance to Sarina, his gaze passing over her features then lifting to look into her eyes. "Thank you." Again...he seemed to be always thanking her - then Neale Frasier crossed the room to the door, to see to his charge's safety.


Date: 05-09-02
Poster: Daniel Frasier
Post # 18

Neale M Frasier, Daniel W Frasier, PatrickLFrasier, Brandy Winston, PhilipeLafayette

All had been seen to as planned.  Ellyn had been skirted away during the night previous, ensconced with Hannah for the evening and now, within Heathfield castle walls for her safety.  The workings of the ship continued as the norm. Neale made sure of that.  Those three he entrusted with the information made sure all knew that "the wee lass, Ellyn, was feeling under the weather. She is not to be disturbed."  Several had even asked Neale about the child. 

He had dressed as one of the sailors and was up helping with the rigging, he did know how as he had been on his brother's ship many a time. He too liked sailing even if not as much as Neale. All was in place and soon they would find out if what Pierre told Sarina was true or not. Bare chested but he did wear a cap as to hide his face enough.

To that, he would nod and respond "She will be fine, our Ellyn.  In time."  For that was the truth.  Neale would speak it no other way.  Between Neale, Daniel and Rob, the deck was well watched.  Though the three blended well. Neale supposed to be there.  Daniel bending his back as any sailor would.  And Rob, a common occupant ... even without the dastardly Iron Anne.

Ever the recluse was it really any wonder that he'd staked out a place more along the wharf and docks than on the ship?  More scruffy with the shadow of whiskers just coming up.  Yep, he'd taken up a position too. Thanks in part to Robbie-Boyo.  All would be watched, and well within hand should anything come to it.

It was not uncommon for any of the brothers to be aboard the Fury. Ah but spending any time on board a ship made him think of 'ol Iron Anne. Looked like he'd be giving her up! His thoughts were on the task at hand tonight, though.

The nanny had been sent off not even thirty minutes prior, claiming the need to locate a physician for the child.  Her look of concern for each of the brothers aboard was only greeted with that nod of assurance from Neale.  She needed to get along now...and leave them to their business.  That hike of skirt and that hustle of step, had her down the gangplank and scurrying on her way toward Heathfield castle. Neale made a cursory inspection of dockside, the time drew near...a slow, deep intake of breath prepared him.

From dockside, she could barely see those aboard, unable to make out any faces Brandy drew a deep breath. Pulling her cloak tight and tugging the hood down so her face was shadowed, she hurried up the gangplank. Brave, very bravely she was going to fight off this fear she had. Neale had invited her, but he intended to escort her. Something within her just couldn't bear it turning into something where she'd run and hide in fear in front of him and the others. Alone that was best.

Brandy was clearly seen, and with her arrival he thought it best to get himself aboard.  But not just yet, he'd hang back a little while longer and just see what he could see.

"What the...?"  Who was this boarding?  The frame and stature was not male.  A quick glance was shot to Daniel up in the riggings.  Then those Frasier greens shot to the other side searching for Rob. This was ... not planned.

What is a ship without the occasional rat? Dressed as one of the sailors he bided his time, working out on the docks as any other man might until the hour was right and then he made his move, starting for the gangplank but pulling back when he caught sight of the female form ascending.

Greens looked from one face to another and when he met Neale's gaze he gave a slight shake of his head. He had not the first clue what she was doing here.

He cursed under his breath and almost got hit with a rope that went slack he was that Frasier green gaze rested on the one he certainly recognized.

The time was upon him to leave, make it appear he was heading to the tavern, as his routine would dictate. Not good.  His jaw tensed and those greens narrowed, starting him forward toward the approaching form. "Excuse me...I believe you have the wrong..."  But as he approached, and the shadows from her hood no longer hid her features, Neale almost groaned.  "Lady Winston?"

He gave a look to Neale as he came forward that he would take care of 'it' as a hand came to Brandy's elbow and he put on the accent of the sailors. "Be ye lass a bit late will yet.. let me see ye off ta ya cabin."

Wasn't he glad he had decided to hang back and wait? The "sailor" wasn't one of the crew, and he knew it. Just a while longer, Paddy me boy. Keep your patience.

Gasping rather loudly, she gave a shuddering breath as she dared look at the dark water. God help her, what the hell was she doing? Quickening her pace, her face paling as she came upon Neale. "Lord Frasier, I thought it... "

Very slow came that nod and he stepped aside with the sweep of hand for her to go along with that 'sailor'.  "Allow the man to see you below, Madame."

Praying in her head and speaking at the same time wasn't as easy as it usually was, particularly now. "I didn't want to embarrass myself in front of you, thought I'd take a..." Nodding, she glanced to the man. Wait though! Turning to Neale. "The ship isn't going to move, aye?"

He got an idea, the cabin across from Ellyn's would be perfect to wait, although he considered tying Brandy to the cot there too. He ushered her away as she spoke instead and all but dragged her below.

His expression would be difficult to read but as she passed, his voice lowered, though he appeared to look straight ahead. "We are locked fast, M'Lady...get you below."  No further argument would be allowed.  A demand was made with that look to Daniel to get her Neale started down the same way she had come.  The appearance of normalcy. Daniel was to do see to the Lady's safety now that she was aboard.

Well she was hardly going to argue, but she had a thousand questions. That poor sailor! Lowering her voice as he practically dragged her below. "Really tis no need to tug on my arm so hard, I assure you I can walk on my own. Where are we going?"

The door swung open to the cabin across from Ellyn's and closed behind them. Releasing her into the room as he blocked the door. A quick swipe of his face before speaking very low. "Brandy there is something very dangerous going on now. I need you to trust me and to stay here. We will not be pulling out. I don't have time to tell you all and now we have to remain absolutely quiet."

Into the shadows he went, gritting his teeth with impatience. Leave it to a female to get in the way of his plans. He had begun to clench and unclench his fists by the time Neale made his way down the gangplank. He watched until he was certain he was off to the Thistle and straightened, a glance to each side, then he started up that plank himself.

"Quiet? She'd been stunned into silence, Daniel's face the last she'd ever expected to see. Nodding, she sat and tried to breathe, she could be quiet, very quiet.

He, in the mean while was going to wait for that 'sailor' to get aboard. He'd follow shortly there after, with a trunk slung over his back.  All was normal here. Yep, normal, normal...normal.

Neale, he knew, would backtrack soon enough, for now he maintained his position, jaw tightening as he watched the French bastard board the ship.

Nothing had alerted him to any abnormality in routine, not yet. He felt he managed to blend in reasonably well, exchanging nods with other men aboard, working his way across the deck.

Around the street corner to the shop locked tight against the night.  Neale slipped in the key and twisted, the "chink" releasing the barrier.  A shoulder applied to the door and he was within.  From there to the cabinet where the transformation would take place.  He peeled off his clothing to don the garb which would allow him the freedom to move.  Lastly, his sword was strapped to his side, his dagger secured in his boot, the poniard in its sheath in the waistband of his pants behind.  Retracing his path, he backed from the shop, locking the door once again and tucking the key away in his pocket.  He owed Old Man Blythe.  He would be repaid.

He turned now with his ear to the door listening. One hand on the latch ready to flip it open as the other was on the hilt of his dagger. Muscles tensed and corded along his back as he waited like a cobra ready to strike.

Trunk slung over shoulder, he mounted the gang plank a ways after the Frenchman.  Head bent low, only the top of the grubby cap seen as he came on board. The trunk would be stashed to the side, along with an assortment of other... cargo.  Dagger still within easy reach, out of sight and out of mind..

Well that moment of quietness was over, regaining her voice, though she at least thought to keep it to a bare whisper to him, "Daniel, do you know your half naked, I think we spoke about that once before" Shaking her head, she added as well, "That cap is ugly on you, no I do not like it one bit" With that settled, she shushed. For the moment.

He didn't bother to glance around him, that would arouse suspicion. A nod to another sailor and he made his descent below. When his feet hit the floor he looked about and satisfied he was alone, began the walk toward the cabin he knew Ellyn slept in.

It was as the man disappeared below decks that he finally moved, starting across the deck.

The struggle from shop back to the Fury was to keep his pace steady and slow.  That casual stride was forced, but soon he stood on the dock looking up to his Lady.  Sufficient time had passed...the Frenchman should be aboard.  His hand slipped behind his back as he started up the gangplank, pulling free the long, deadly blade.

Making sure he shadowed the Frenchmen in sailors clothing he kept his steps light, Frasier greens seeing Robbie, he gave him a nod as he fell into step with his brother.

He turned one moment with a glare, the intensity of which should have ignited the spread on the cot. "One more word and I tie and gag you up. Later you can attempt trying to reprimand me. Lives are at stake" That was all and she could tell he meant every word as he went back to listening.

With the tip of it, he pointed toward one of the men he trusted, that one moved casually toward the opening which lead down to the walkway below.

He stopped as he neared her door. Had he heard voices? Eyes narrowed, staying firmly rooted to that spot until he could be sure of what he'd heard.

He wouldn't dare! Giving him a hot glare, she wished for once God would answer one of her prayers... at least this one, that the look she gave his back would scald his backside, just so he knew what she thought of his rudeness!

He was close on Neale's heels. Dagger freed now he followed in silence.

His whole body tensed he could only pray now that Brandy's mouth kept shut.....he could hear one in the hall and his whole body tensed even more....knees slightly bending but still he waited.

Satisfied, he went on, stopping again when he stood before the little girl's door, already smiling, he reached for the latch and let the door swing open.

Reprimand him! Just wait till she got him somewhere alone, that man was going to learn a thing or two. Particularly how to treat a lady like her with such delicate faculties.

Barely below was more like it.  He'd barely flanked the doorway and the stairs before Neale was upon them. Steps were kept light, a quick, quick nod given to his elders as he had his weapon at the ready. He would be the first to sneak a peak around the corner, and catch sight of the bastard.

He noted first Rob...then Patrick...then Neale pressed his back to the side of the wall leading down, watching as Patrick took that look.  A brow was raised in question to his younger brother...waiting for that look to confirm.

There she slept, all quiet and peaceful like. He crept in, closer, closer, until he was close enough to peel back that blanket with one hand...the other reaching for the filthy strip of cloth he'd brought to gag the brat with.

Ooooo he was bending! The temptation was almost too much to put her foot against his arse. Did she want to risk being tied up though, for that matter she didn't want to risk someone's life and something told her, she walked into something dangerous. Oh well, there was sure to be another time, she swore to herself.

It was a slow easing back, a turn of his head as Frasier greens snapped vengefully, while his jaw twitched in time to his anger.  The nod was curt, the cutting of a blade no sharper as nostrils flared.

In that moment he swung the door open as he was stepping back then springing forward out into the hall blocking the way for any retreat further down into the ship, only way would be up where his brothers were.

His eyes widened then and he tore that blanket aside, fist coming down on a pile of blankets in the shape of a child. Growling he realized he'd been tricked and now that fight or flight instinct hit. By the time Daniel had swung the door open to emerge he was launching himself into the hall, fully expecting someone to be there and fully intending to knock them right over.

He knew he didn't need to warn his brothers into silence, but still that blade pressed to his lips as he dropped his foot down from that last step to move out into the corridor.

---to be continued---

Daniel William Frasier
"The helping hand" of the Frasier Clan

Date: 05-09-02
Poster: Daniel Frasier
Post # 19

Neale M Frasier, Daniel W Frasier, PatrickLFrasier, Brandy Winston, PhilipeLafayette

He didn't need to be told, it was clearly set in the lines of his face.  His whole body was rigid with barely contained rage, kept in check by steely discipline, and cold hearted determination.  Weapon master, he was ready.

Coming around just in time to see Daniel dart to Ellyn's room.  Then just as suddenly, the explosion of man from the same room out into the hall.  "Philipe! Hold!" The rasp of sword against sheath to add to his order.

Now where had that man gone! Gods! Looking up at the ceiling of the cabin and suddenly realizing she was in a cabin, alone...oh no, she wasn't staying here, if this ship went down she wasn't sinking with it. Scurrying to the door, pushed it open and stepped out. Looking about confused, just what was going on here, she was wondering!

In such tight quarters, the sword was more a hindrance than a help, but it could serve as a shield if needed and that look in Philipe's eye made it clear...he was not going to give over easily.

He was right behind Neale, dagger freed, just waiting for the opportunity to pounce on the man.

He yelled out as did his knife slash at Philipe's side as he was herald back into the wall "GET HIM!"

His ground his back teeth down, surely they would be dust soon when Brandy appeared.  Blast that woman! Couldn't she stay where she was put?! Neale's sword may hinder, but he had Robbie and Patrick as backup. Not to mention Danny. Danny seemed to have less of a grip on his anger than Patrick himself did.  Frasier greens flickering at those words.  He wanted a slice of the man himself.

Philipe was going nowhere.  Three Frasiers blocked his direct path.
He heard Neale's order and was not about to give in. He turned and nearly collided with the female that stepped out of the cabin and in only a split second he had her pulled up against him, dagger drawn and at her throat. "You will take orders from me now." Snarled at the Frasier men, positioning himself so he could see all four.

Just as soon as this was over, he was locking Brandy away. Period. Jaw locked he watched the tip of the Frenchman's blade, weighting and seeing just how serious he was. Just like any cornered rat.

Neale started to bolt forward, that split second of recognition as Philipe grabbed for Brandy.  His arm outstretched with the tip of that poniard toward the man. "Either way, Philipe...chose your exit" Using the woman only marked him for death.  He would either die here below...or above.  Neale cared little which at this point.

Another curse came under his breath and it had Brandy's name with it as he still held his own knife wavering it back and forth but stood a clearing distance letting Neale make the call on this one. Let's see how enterprising Brandy was for all her other antics. He hoped she grabbed his balls into tomorrow if that would get him to drop the knife.

Afraid to breathe, looking at the Frasiers, she pleaded, begged, prayed they would do something. Every thought now focused not on that blade, but how to extricate herself. Hadn't she saved herself and Ro from a sinking ship? Surely this was something she could save herself from. "You are a motherless cur" It was the lowliest thing she could think of to call him.

"Such a pretty would be a pity to mark it now, would it not?" A cornered man was a desperate one. He cared only for saving his own neck now. If he had to slit her throat to do it, he would and his expression made that clear.

If he slit her throat, he would die...if he managed to drag her above...he might live another night, but he would die at the end of Neale's blade.  So he vowed as that green Frasier gaze narrowed on the man.  His arm lowered slowly and he took a step away, pressing the back of his shoulder to the wall of the corridor.  "Make your move, Lafayette.  But the Lady so much as'll not smell the sea breeze above."

With Neale's weapons stayed his own was resheathed.  Gaze frought with green angry fire.  The man wouldn't live, and it was as simple as that.  A growl itched its way up his throat and only his will kept it from being vented. Standing aside, as shoulder blades felt the wall behind him.

Growling under his breath he followed Neale's lead and lowered his blade, moving out of the man's path.

"Good." Sneering approval as the Captain lowered his blade and pressed against the wall. He glanced at each and began to inch his way along the corridor, Brandy his shield. He was a smart man and held that dagger in such a position so that should anyone lunge at him, her throat would be opened before they could get a hand on him. Or rather, he thought himself a smart man.

He wanted to throttle Brandy but he didn't want her hurt as his own blade was lowered, tucked back in his hand at an angle that would allow him to flip it flying forward if he was given an opportunity.....he had very good aim.

A twitch of his left eye was the only indication that the deadly instinct of sea captain had taken over. As the man scooted that careful path past them, he followed him closely with that gaze.  Any opening...any...and the man would feel the cold metal of blade plunge into the warmth of flesh. 

He wished he had his flanchettes with him. The paper thin blades would have easily slipped beneath the hollow of his arm into his heart from where Patrick stood. But, if he made a move, he'd give himself away. He had to bide...bide a little longer until the Frenchman past. Once he looked away from Patrick, a move could be made.

Once he reached that corridor's end he turned to face them all, that dagger still held firmly against Brandy's throat, a triumphant gleam in his eye. "Hush, little one," pressing the blade more firmly against her throat. "You have spirit, I like that." Grinning at the brothers over her shoulder. "When I finish with her I will see if your sister is just as spirited," looking at each in turn "and then... maybe even the quiet one." Dark eyes stopping on Neale. "Make your family suffer as mine has."

He was inching closer, moving along but keeping the same distance. Fingers were very itchy along the hilt of that blade as one finger all but caressed against the cold steel blade not quite to its sharp edge but the dagger wanted a new home in Philipe's throat.

It took every ounce of willpower to keep him from lunging at Philipe. Fists clenched in the effort to control himself.

There was no controlling the hatred that washed over Neale's features with the man's threats.  His poniard was tossed in the air, spinning then landing with the hilt in his grip.  Yet again.  Then again as he watched Philipe.  "Such words of confidence, Lafayette...and still you hesitate in the hallway."  Once again he spun the weapon...keep an eye on it Frenchman.

Frasier greens clouded over, coldly dispassionate as a sliver of metallic was given vent from beneath leather vambrace.  Steeling himself, he glanced only glanced to Brandy and prayed she got the silent message.  He wouldn't kill the bastard. Oh no, that would be the pleasure of his elder brothers. No, he was only going to distract him, and hope Brandy was as smart as she looked. Metal flashed, it was so quick, just a streak of metallic, but it landed with force and dug through skin and muscle to lodge square into his shoulder, right up to the hilt.  He always liked that trick. Like...Magic.

Shoving her point of her elbow into the man's balls, she growled "You are no gentleman and you'll never touch us!" with that, she flung herself to the wall, flattening herself before she ended up on the tip of a Frasier sword.

Neale's words earned the man a cold glare. He was just about to throw the lady at them and make his escape during their scramble to catch her when that knife sank into his shoulder. He couldn't have looked more surprised nor in any more pain when Brandy's strike hit home. Against his will he sank to his knees with a cry of anguish.

He was fast to lunge forward as he grabbed Brandy's arm and pulled her forward then behind him.

That streak of metal from his periphery and that poniard was flipped again, this time blade to his palm before it whizzed in a direct path, streaking past Brandy's and Daniel's form to jab deep into the side of Philipe's neck.  Even as that was released, his leg lifted, his sword was dropped and the dagger was jerked from his boot, this too was zinged with deadly intent toward the Frenchman, aimed in that split second to the socket of his right eye. One was for threatening the pulsebeat of their family, Hannah...the other...for even daring to look, much less threaten, the ladies of this land.

Falling back, silver flashed from the cover of the leather vambrace, and held at bay. He would only use it if the Frenchman made a mad dash forward.  Then he'd use his talent again.

Brandy being his bane tonight he was making sure she could not interfere again.

There would be no dash forward from this man. He barely had the time to register the blade through his neck before the other sank into his eye and he fell over on his side, dead.

Behind Daniel, she turned away. She couldn't look, wouldn't. See what happened when she went on ships?! Either they sank or something worst, no...this was her last time. He deserved to die, was just the way of her, he was
going to die, if he wasn't dead already, she said a silent prayer for his soul, at the very least it might get him purgatory, a sort of hell in itself.

He could wish though, knowing it was for naught.  When he crashed into the floor, Patrick was there to remove his flanchette.  He wouldn't let a perfectly good piece of fine silver be wasted on the man.  It didn't stop him though as he spat on Philipe, nostrils flared as he cursed him straight into the devils embrace.

The sight of the man lying dead did little to dissolve his fury. There was still another brother out there and a sister somewhere, too.

Neale dipped his head, his hand coming up to brace his forehead.  As with Ferris, he would have preferred it otherwise.  A look was then shot to Daniel.  "Can you see her away?"  That nod of head toward the woman behind him.  He saw Patrick's response to the dead man...Neale experienced that same need but instead, he crossed to the man and leaned forward, pulling the weapons from their marks.  These were set aside on the first step and he stooped, digging his hands first, then up his arms, beneath the man's upper body to pull him above board.  The warmth of blood seeped into the material of his sleeves, drenched his shirtfront, plastered the cloth to his chest and arms.  It seemed Pierre had spoken the truth...but that one, and his sister...would soon hear of this.  Family matters seemed to be as important to it was the Frasiers.

He relaxed now as it was done, Philipe could not survive the knife in his eye let alone in his throat too. A nod to his brother before he turned blocking Brandy's view of the man as he stepped so very close. No way could she see around him. "I'll meet you back at the tavern brothers." Then to Brandy he spoke softer now. "Are you alright?.....we best be getting you out of here down the other way there is another stairs that leads up."

Stiffening her shoulders, she put on her best brave face, her voice only faltering slightly "I'm fine, Daniel. Just don't let me see the water, don't care if you have to put something over my eyes" It would be all she could do to keep her stomach calm. She wanted to say more, yet...not now. She was in no mood, in fact she was rather still angry.

Having secreted away the finely made weapon he took Philipe's feet and helped Neale haul him above. No reason he should bear all the dead man's weight.

No Frasier would ever have to bear any weight...alone.  A nod to Patrick and he started that backward pace up the stairs.

His dagger returned to its sheath before an arm came around her making it so she had to bury her face against his bare be it as he led her down the hall, the stairs taken then out into the warmth of the night deep breaths were taken. That pause taken before he was leading her down the gang plank......a rather funny sight were she was all but plastered to his chest.

They would see to the body, Neale would clean up...then he would seek out Ellyn at the castle, and hold her while she slept.  At the moment, he needed to hear the reassuring sounds of her breath.

He went up after Neale and Patrick. He would help see to the body and return to the Thistle. He needed at least one drink and probably his bed. At least he knew Lis was safely away from all this tonight.

Once this was all over and done with, a quiet spot would be sought out and Philipe's death would be thought over.  It wasn't in Patrick to hate so quickly and so whole heartedly and he would ask forgiveness. But the man had threatened his niece, his family.  He had to die.  There just was no other way around it.

Steeped into the darkness, she'd rather it this way then embarrassing herself in front of him or anyone else. It seemed almost as if he'd carried her, her feet hardly touched the ground as he got her off the ship. Her muffled voice vibrated against his chest. "Are we on the dock yet?"

"We're on the dock now Brandy....." Letting her go then so she could breath.

Taking great gasping breaths as she took a step away from him. "Daniel, when I'm up to it, we shall talk...about many things" Ooohhh she had a list in her head.

"At least you are capable of talking Brandy...." Those dark Frasier greens took her under that intense scrutiny again. "If you would like to get a drink at the Thistle...." Spoken in invitation if she wanted to join him but that was where he started heading already.

"Yes..." Frowning, as he started to walk away already. She though walked slowly, trailing behind him...and realizing something. "Daniel! Your still half-naked, when we get back you should put on a shirt" With that said, she closed her mouth and smiled to herself.

And he called back over his shoulder "You didn't seemed to mind a few minutes ago with your face pressed there!" She could hear the chuckle as he quickened his pace.

Daniel William Frasier
"The helping hand" of the Frasier Clan

Date: 05-09-02
Poster: Eau D Eglantine (Georgette)
Post # 20

         Gleaming blue eyes watched as the crowd on board the Flames Fury dispersed into the night.  The woman resisted the urge to shift her weight, forcing her trained muscles to hold tight to their present position.  Buried beneath a veil of shadows between the squat buildings, she had remained unseen for the duration of the evening's...antics.

         It had been quite the show.  The moment she had first sidled along a dark wall, she saw them all.  The Frasier men had positioned themselves expertly, each taking up a place to fan in and trap their rat.  And what a rat he was, too.

         Georgette had not given him permission to kidnap the girl.  Indeed, she had only discovered Philipe's impatient plan some twenty minutes before it began.  Finding both her companions missing earlier in the day, it hadn't taken long to discern what had happened to Pierre.  Philipe had been another matter, however.  It was only by chance that she accidentally stumbled across the Frasier's nanny, worry painting the woman's brow like chocolate
covered bon bons.  A nanny without her charge, and with such a dire expression could only mean one thing with Philipe missing.  The man was predictable in his drive, and to the docks Georgette had quickly scurried.

         Now, staring from the cloak of darkness, her eyes flashed like raging blue fireflies.

         The heavy, hollow thud of lifeless flesh on wood reached her ears from the deck of the ship.  Philipe's fate had been of his own devising.
         Stifling the urge to curse vehemently, she slipped back the way she had come.  She made sure as she departed the port that she wouldn't run across the path of the still-fuming Frasiers, choosing instead to disappear soundlessly into the cover of forest.  Had any of the men glimpsed her movement, there would be nothing left to lead them back to her.

         Georgette, after all, was a professional.  And she was no misguided Lafayette.  Oh, the name had been forced upon her through marriage, and she had hated every moment of it.  But she wouldn't have to bear the shame ever again.

         The morning rays of a warm sun would shine upon a small, seaworthy vessel floating in a vast field of glittering ocean.  It would sail day and night until it finally reached a port on the coast of southwestern France.  There, her passengers would disembark after a discomfiting voyage; Georgette would be among them, having escaped Heathfield with nary a scratch nor backwards glance.

Date: 05-10-02
Poster: Pierre Lafayette
Post # 21

PierreALafayette and Sarina Maree
(in a windowless holding cell in Heathfield castle)

He was pacing the small room, not even a window where he could see whether it was night or day. It was clean and a comfortable cot had been brought in but he looked much like a caged animal.

She approached the guard and nodded for him to allow her entrance. After a restless night and an even more restless day, unable to focus on any one task, she was tired but Pierre had been locked away for a day or two without a word to him and she felt she should at least pay him a visit. The door clanked and opened and she stepped inside. His appearance didn't rattle her, she'd seen men in far worse condition than his.

His condition was fine physically but being cooped up like this weighed on him mentally. He expected each time the door open it would be a piling in of the guards to take him away to be hung without even a trial. He could understand it but still he rebelled for one did guilty or not when it was their life that would end in such a way. It would be a crux too after he decided to come clean and live a different life not to get that chance. the door open he swung around on a heel ready to fight for his life, he'd rather it end by steel than a rope around his neck like his brother back in France...what had actually started that glint of reformation but such was usually never an overnight thing. Seeing who it was he came up straight and steeled himself even if Sarina was about the only one he trusted...not to kill him on the spot. There was a dip of his head followed by his words spoken in softer tones but still with that husky masculinity that was naturally his. "Dame Sarina...bonjour."

Any lives she had taken in years past were in self-defense alone. Killing Pierre, she felt, would serve no purpose at this point, something she hoped the
others would see, in time, if they didn't already. "Pierre," a tired smile offered. "Have you been treated well?"

"Oui, even the food I was given was very good. The cot comfortable and the room warm." Not that he ate much of his meals for the stress he was under but he ate enough that the guards didn't complain, it seemed they wished to keep him healthy for now. He had to admit the way he was being treated, all considered, was an oddity in itself, maybe there was hope? Better not to hope where there was none so he didn't think much long on it. "You have been well?" Small talk avoided finding out what they had decided on him.

"I have," glancing toward the door she sat on the edge of the cot. "I have some news for you. I'm not sure if you'll think it good or bad but I'm sure you
expected it..." her pause is not for dramatic affect but rather to keep her voice as calm and soothing as possible. "Philipe did try to take Ellyn, as you said he would. He was killed in the attempt." Her gaze lifting to watch his reaction.

He stiffened as he stood motionless for a few minutes before a hand raised to run over his face. A rub of his chin as his eyes glazed a moment for right or wrong Philipe was his brother, many years they had been together, growing up from childhood and even all the fights they had. Philipe did have a meaner streak in him than Pierre did and the way their family brought them up only nourished it in Philipe naturally. Pierre always struggled, at times he even wondered if he had been was only his intelligence they liked using. Actual killings were left to the others he just came up with schemes to
keep his family alive. His hand lowered away as he shook his head. "Oui, eventually it was to happen. I am expecting I will be next." His last finally out as they had him good to see to it now. No one would mourn over Philipe as no one would mourn over him, sad lives should end that way but the way they had been taught to live it could only end that way. Even family members only respected the others in that wary way, they could only do each other
harm while alive and in death they no longer had to worry about one turning on them. "Ellyn, she is alright then?" At least in all of this he may well of save the child harm or even was some consolation.

As she watched him she couldn't help but think that she and Pierre had something in common. They both had families they detested, they both sought to escape them. "Ellyn is fine, she wasn't even aboard." Brushing a hand through her hair she tried to smile. "No one else was hurt." Lowering her gaze she waited a minute before speaking again. "You are not going to be killed. What will be done, I cannot say, but you won't be killed."

"Good, then you did heed my warning and made it there in time. Mon frere Philipe he...he probably did something stupid to cause his own death." Pierre knew him well and almost got killed a few times for his hot headed brother, his mean streak would take hold and any logic or reason was just not to be found. "I am pleased to know non else were hurt. Who, who will make the decision here on whether I live or die?" He was curious for whom it was might make the biggest difference if he survived or not.

She didn't know exactly what had happened on board the Fury and hadn't asked for details. "Neale will be the one to make the decision since this involved his family."

There was only the slightest of nods for that answer to him...sealed his fate which meant if he had any praying to do in forgiveness he'd better do it soon. He had hoped to amend these by living a better life but such would not be his choice. "When will I know what has been decided?"

"I don't know, I'm sure Neale will come and speak with you when he's ready to. There are things weighing in your favor."

"Oui?" Said in surprise as a hand had come over his chin to rub again, a nervous habit when caged. Brow lifting as his hand finally settled at his side. Had
this been Philipe in here he would have tried to take Sarina prisoner to get out even if it was an illogical thought...but Pierre was not Philipe even if he had the strong desire and drive to survive too. He had patience and if he could get away without bringing harm to anyone he would take it.

If it had been Philipe in here this visit would not have taken place. It was Pierre himself, what she sensed in him, that had her here. "Oui," a soft smile
given as she stood. "Pierre, I will do everything I can for you. It's rare for people to want to change and lead a different, better life as you have." When she reached the door she stopped and turned back. "I want you to know something. If I weren't already in love I would have gladly accepted your offer to court me."

Now that also surprised him and he realized the compliment it was too. "I know you have for I would be dead already if you had not, dame Sarina. Had you not been in love then with another, I would have been a lucky man for you to consider my offer." But he knew right now he was the worse thing that could happen to a lady until he changed his life around. One day, if luck did shine upon him now, he would have that.

Her smile warmed some then she gave a rap on the door for the guard to let her out. "I'll come and speak with you again when I have a chance."

"Au revoir dame Sarina, until that time...I will be waiting here." Adding just a touch of humor as she parted. Maybe his prayers should be for his brother
more than him this night.

With a dip of her head she stepped out and the door closed behind her.

Pierre Andre Lafayette
From Bordeaux in France he came on a family mission of
la plus grande importance

--Pierre's story continued in the folder: Evasion de Heathfield -05-13-02--


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