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Thistle Tavern

Date: 12-01-10
Poster: Rory McAndrews
Post # 21

Three's the McAndrews' Charm

Rory was already here going through those old Gazettes he found stacked on a side table. Some of them had stuff to say on their uncles' shenanigans. He was laughing while having some of the pure. The more he drank of it, the more he was getting use to it too. It brought to mind a few nights prior being out with a few others to that northern tavern. He would have to bring his brothers there.

Bryan wandered over towards the tavern, hoping to see a family member or two there. He'd kept himself busy the last couple weeks, getting into a solitary pattern that sometimes came over him but now he was ready for some fun. He stepped in through the door, tossing his fisherman's cap on a hook and immediately spotted one twin at least. "Little early for potcheen don't you think?" He teased with a smirk as he headed over towards the table where Rory sat.

"Aye," before laughing again as he turned a page without looking up just yet. "Mid afternoon drink. I'm getting fortified." He would have to show Bryan the trick he pulled on the others too, at the right moment. Finally he looked up. "Where have you been hiding? You missed some fun as did Charles." They both knew where they could find Charles when he went missing. Nose in a book in some alcove of the library.

"Fortified, right." That was a new name for a mid-day drunk. But he just grinned some and made no further comment, pulling out a chair and easy his lanky form down. "Been hanging around the fishing docks mostly. Got work helping an old man gut his catch to sell." Hopefully the smell wasn't clinging to his hands still, he had to wash them in lemon juice and strong soap to get rid of it. "What sort of fun?"

That was just it, he was not drunk. Not yet. He was nursing it too. He turned around the Gazettes for his brother to see. "I think they hid these in Ballicastle," maybe so they couldn't read about their uncles and even their cousin Riley. "Gossip column is pretty funny." He didn't recognize all they were speaking about but he did some. "If you need more help, I'm available." Instead of getting into trouble all the time. "We headed north to clean up an old tavern that was deserted. Got my first kiss there," which had a slow grin rising as he sat back looking like the cat that ate the canary, "she offered it up."

"Really." He said with a slow grin to match, though he didn't say whether he himself had had his first kiss or not. Bryan could be very private about things, though half the time keeping mysteries from his brothers was a source of fun in itself. "Who was she?"

Well, there was a lot more to the story than he was letting on yet. The fact she near froze off his cheek for him being too flattering but yet, offered a kiss, one he... a McAndrews had hesitated on with thoughts of blue lips lip falling off and worse. "Korea, white hair and silver eyes." She was very different looking but hey, she was pretty and he would probably never see her again anyway. Although she showed up here once too.

"White hair?" His brows lifted and he pretended to look horrified. "How old was she?"

Charlie was whistling as he made his way inside the tavern after a brisk walk from the zoo.  Even though it was winter, and some of the animals were inside shelters, it was still open.  He was carrying a bag from a stop he had made at the Pastry shop.  Though Hazel's pies and cookies were great, he had wanted some sweets.  And with his brothers here,  well, he could share.  "Hey brothers mine. Want some treats?"  And after those were offered, he intended to have a drink of the pure.

"Young, maybe younger than us. It was snow white hair, not the old kind of white hair," as if that explained it. He pointed at Charles as he was coming in, "ask him! She was young, around our age." He would take one of the treats, always room for them.

"Uh huh." He looked over his shoulder to wave to Charles. "Hey Charlie. Bring 'em on over." None of them would ever say no to treats. "What about you, did you get a kiss from the young old girl too?" Giving Charles a grin.

Glass in hand, he carried the bag over then sat and shook his head. "Nah, she just was interested in Rory.  Besides, I told him I want my first kiss to be with someone special."  He chuckled, "If it ever happens."

Which he gave a shrug to, "the lass I end up with will be the one that can knock my socks off with her kiss." His first kiss wasn't bad at all so he was not complaining. "It had been her first kiss too." He grabbed the bag of pastries and got out one of the apple turnovers before sliding it over to Bryan. No flies on Rory!

Bryan reached out to snag a pastry and took a huge bite. That would keep his mouth busy for awhile as he went quiet while they chatted about girls and kisses.

"And yeah, she wasn't much older than us if she was even our age.  She didn't tell I don't think."  He settled with an eclair watching his brothers enjoy the treats.

"You should meet Molly and Ellyn, they went to the northern tavern with meself and Tykir. You've met the wing prince yet, Bryan?" Charles had that first time they went north.

"Nope." He had to speak through a mouthful of pastry though he chewed and swallowed before going on. "Can he really fly?"

"Aye, he can, though I haven't seen him.  Heard folks talking about him and his sister.  We won't get to meet her for a while.  She's in Kildare with her sister-in-law." Sometimes you got to hear a lot of gossip in the library.

"Aye, he can really fly, I watched him take to the air." Giving an affirmative nod, "he has a sister that can fly too, but she is in ... " but Charles beat him to it! "I hear it said she looks like a real angel with long golden hair and pure white wings." There, he got to add to that anyway! "I think Charles is holding out to kiss her." Grin.

"Am not."  He snorted out a laugh.  "She'd more than likely would whap me upside the head from what I hear." Wouldn't that be a sight. An angel whapping one of the lads.

"Maybe that's how she shows affection?" The conversation had him chuckling too. "An angel princess. Nothing but the best for our Charlie." His fingers dove into the bag again, wondering if there were any more sweets left.

"So if she makes a cooing sound by your ear and says, Charles dear, would you give me my first kiss.. would you turn her down??" He was trying to sound serious and changed his voice to mimic a lass for effect.

"Aye, I'd refuse if she didn't mean anything to me."  Bravado because more than likely he'd never see Rina.  And there were plenty more goodies in there.  Charles knew his brothers had appetites like his own.

Bryan rolled his eyes as he pulled out another pastry to devour. "She's a princess, she's probably had her first dozen kisses already from courtly admirers."

"Maybe, maybe not, would you kiss her if she asked you?" Hell, it was far better without ties set to a kiss. Once Bryan had his second treat, he'd find the bag gone as he grabbed it back and gout out a cherry filled turnover to devour.  The last he was addressing to Bryan, being Charles already said he wouldn't.

"How could I say no to a lass like that?" He grinned broadly and licked some apple filling from his fingers. "But I wouldn't want to do it in public, or else the King or Queen might have me run out of town."

"Aye, I'm in agreement with you and I'll have to let her know not to ask Charles for he will refuse her!" Don't put it past him to slip that in when he got to finally meet the lass.
  It seemed that Bryan wandered off as he stepped outside and didn't return. At least not yet. So, Rory took the bag of pastries to see what was left. "Where did you get these? They're really good." This time it was a Boston cream.

"The bakery here in the commons. Big selection and I figured we could all use some sugar." He grinned at his brother. "Though I think Bryan got too much."

Which had him giving Chas that look before he burst out laughing. "I don't think there is such a thing. Maybe too much potcheen but never too much sugar."

Hopefully Rory never used that nickname because he really, really didn't like it. "That's true enough."

The cold had long ago gotten to her. She was tired and stiff and a good brandy would surely make things seem a whole lot better than they did now. Pulling up stakes and moving to a completely new land was never an easy thing, and so it was being proved to her. She was made of stern enough stuff, though, to weather the trial of it. She had spied the tavern ahead long back down the road, and finally having reached the turn into the place, she sent her team into the road, aiming for the stables at the rear.

Probably as much as Chucky, which had been used before too. See the smirk, maybe reading his brother's thoughts, dimples easily showing. He stuffed the Boston cream in his mouth cause he could. With a mouth full and his lips parting, it was as a mouth piece in that light tan to fill the area.

Easing the team of horses to a stop, the woman slipped down off the seat of the big wagon, after she made sure the heavy tarp the crested up high behind her was snug and secure. She made sure the stable hands would put up the team and stow the wagon, and then she turned her tired self for the door of the tavern proper.

He had enough of the sweets and concentrated on his drinking. Snickering, he watched Rory and shook his head. "That looks appetizing."

She eased through up over the porch to the door, and paused to pull in a deep breath and straighten her shoulders. She was all of five feet nothing, her bone structure fine and delicate. A thick, luxurious fur cloak of red sable covered her form, but she was unmistakably female. Her hair was that shade somewhere in between blonde and light golden brown, with highlights of liquid gold. Eyes of blue green set in a lovely face held a serene expression that might jar with the short bow and the quiver of arrows that was at her back. Finally, she pushed into the inn itself, pausing to look about.

Which had him start to laugh and the darn doughnut near popped out of his mouth. Had him to clamp down his teeth to rescue it and didn't the pudding ooze out, coming down on his lips making him look like a mad dog just as one came through the door. That is the sight she got of Rory. Eyes going wide and he couldn't say anything, not with trying now to eat the thing down. More pudding oozing from the corners of his lips but at least they were closed at this point.

Charles probably wasn't helping matters. Though he knew someone had come in, he was laughing and laughing hard. When he realized there was a woman at the door, it got worse. And Charles didn't laugh quietly.

Her eyes swept over those within and the man behind the bar, before settling on the laughing man, who she gave a dip of her head to, and then to the lad with the creamy mess about his mouth. She gave him a smile that was nothing short of gracious and charming. Her very French blood demanded nothing less. It was quite as if the young man did not have anything amiss with his dessert. In a voice rather heavily accented, she greeted them. "Bonsoir, this tavern taking lodgers at this time, do you know?"

He was trying not to laugh and trying to get the doughnut down his throat. Luckily it was something soft and the lump went down as he was up for some water to get it all down and any residue. A napkin to wipe off his face and finally be able to speak. A glance shot to his brother and dimples were still there showing with the grin. "Evening Miss, I'm Rory and this is my brother Charles." Not using Chas or Chucky although he was tempted. "I apologize for the moment as you caught me with me mouth full." Over flowing to be accurate. Then to answer her question, "aye, they always have room for travelers for as long as needed. Some even stay. There is no cost for all is paid for already, courtesy of the monarchy."



Date: 12-01-10
Poster: Rory McAndrews
Post # 22

The girl did not appear to be too very much older than the brothers, though she surely looked 20 or so. She smiled once again at Rory as he introduced himself and his brother, that one getting a smile, too, and then she shook head at the apology, with a kind smile. Dark gold brows rose up at the mention that the room had no cost. Such an idea floored her. "I ...see. How very odd. I am an emigrée, and I hope to settle in these parts. At least if there is need for my particular skills." Saying this, she moved towards the brothers, untying her cloak. A gown of hunter green wool gown could be spied beneath it, in demure design.

He finally stopped laughing enough to stand as the woman and Rory spoke, bowing slightly. "Pleasure, Miss ... " Letting that trail since she didn't give a name yet.

Rory and Charles were identical as was their third brother Bryan. Much fun could be had and it might be hard for her to keep track which was which for they were attired similar. Dark tunic and pants, same as the boots lacing up to below the knee. He didn't speak French but he figured out the word in context of her statement. There were French here she might find out if she stuck around. "What kind of skills?" She had his curiosity there. Collecting another drink of the pure that Alex allotted him only so much for being seventeen.

That she had missed the return sharing of her name showed how truly tired she was, for normally she would not have been so impolite. She blinked at Charles as she realized her error, a slight blush rising to her lightly bronzed skin, and then she brushed a hand over her forehead, pushing back gold and brown strands towards the coronet of braids that crowned her head, once she lowered the hood of the cloak. As she drew nearer to them, she noted that they  looked alike, and she blinked once again, wondering for a moment if she was really so tired that she was sleeping on her wagon out in the cold. "....Mon dieu....but you are so alike....vraiment." Wondering tones, there. "Ah, forgive my faux pas, gentlemen, sil vous plait." Her voice, though showing her fatigue, was yet melodious and soft, the accent strong in her tiredness. "I am Evony Rose Miette Jolie. Furrier and huntress."

Well, he thought he didn't know French but he was understanding her which was surprising him. Maybe he was more attentive to their schooling than he realized? "A pleasure to meet you Evony Rose. Would you need a drink or something to eat after your long journey?" He was guessing here but for some reason, here too, she seemed like she had traveled so far it left her weary.

"Well met, Evony." He bowed slightly again, then glanced at Rory. It was hard to keep from snickering but he was managing.

She looked immediately interested in the offer of food and drink. A warm, serene smile was given to Charles at his and his brother's words. "It is a plaisir, messieurs. I would adore a brandy, if this establishment runs to that luxury. If the smugglers are able to bring it in, at least." She smiled gently at her own words. "If there is fowl or fish to eat, I would be most grateful. Even soup and bread would be a delight."

Good thing or he might start calling him Chas or Chucky! Alex was already setting out a snifter of brandy for her of fine brand. "We're not under the jurisdiction of some countries that have it banned." Shifting a glance to Alex for the movement of his hand as he came to set it there then was away again. He picked up one of the menus to see what they were offering tonight. "Hazel is an excellent cook. There is chicken cutlets, chicken vegetable soup, steak and kidney pie, stout braised lamb shanks and fried potatoes." Which he handed her the menu.

Evony moved closer to Rory as he looked at the menu, though not into his space, or even close to that. A very polite distance away, she paused, and then took the menu as he offered it, with a gentle smile offered to Alex. "Ah, merci, merci, Rory. Vous et tres gentil....erm...." She paused and took a calming breath. Control. So important. "I thank you." Leaving it at that, she perused the menu, and then ordered the lamb shanks from Alex, setting the menu back and taking up the brandy with another smile to Charles and Rory.

It took Ellyn a couple of days to really recuperate from that night out of  drinking. Something she had never done before but then she was doing a lot of things she had never done before. She was trying to cover up the yawn as she came down from upstairs. A comfortable gown of a spun thick cotton worn. One of a deep wine hue that set off her green eyes and dark hair. She paused blinking. She had met Rory but there was another looking exactly like him.

Then the lass would see a fight between the brothers. He smiled again, then sat, going back to drinking the potcheen.

The almost-blonde smiled at the lass that came down the stairs. Taking a seat at a vacant table, she waited for her food, and sipped at the brandy, stifling a yawn.

He saw the look upon Ellyn's features and grinned, "you're seeing double and had you been here earlier you would have been seeing triple. I'm Rory you met and this one of me brothers, Charles. This is the lady, Evony Rose." With a glance their way then back to the lass, "Ellyn Royce from Ballicastle as well."

He stood as Rory spoke to the new lass. Seemed like it was going to be that kind of night. The name was familiar though. "Evening, Miss Royce. Of the Frasier family, correct?"

She felt like wiping her brow but kept from doing so as she smiled instead. "Hello, nice to meet you Charles and of you, Evony." Smile held warmth as she headed for the bar and some of the flavored punch Alex served. A nod given as she turned after making her request, looking from Rory to Charles, "yes, you would know of them?"

The furrier smiled again to Ellyn as she was introduced, though she did not stand, for she was so very tired. "It is a plaisir, Mademoiselle Royce." The news that there was a third brother looking so like these two had her marveling.

Evony might marvel even more when she finds out that there are ten of them in all, the oldest being twenty and one. The question seemed to be more directed to Charles as he took the moment to enjoy some of his drink.

"Aye, we would." Being they were of the same realm. He sat after the question. "Be remiss if we didn't know about the Frasiers of Ballicastle." He cut a look toward Rory though. Hadn't he told the lass their last name?

Her food arrived, meantime, and so after thanking the server, she set to eating in delicate manner, though she listened to the conversation. She would marvel indeed at that many siblings. She herself was one of but three children in a family of small size over all.

"As I would be remiss not to know of the McAndrews, yet it is the first I am meeting any." Which warmed her smile as it pleased her that her family was so well respected. She was over to take up one of the wingback seats in from of the fire. A good time to relax as she slipped her slippers off so she could tuck her feet up underneath. "I am wondering if there are ones here that will train one of my gender and age to be a warrior?"

The lass's words had Evony looking over at her in some surprise. It was not too many females in her experience that wanted to endure such a vocation, or yet was built for it. That the girl did want to do so was something, all by itself. She must be very brave, or so ran Evony's thoughts.

Ellyn was of a descent height, near five foot seven. She was neither large nor small frame but sturdy and though feminine in curves she was athletic even if there had been no circumstances to demonstrate that. She noticed the look given her way by Evony and only smiled in return. Warmth in her smile that reached her eyes. It was almost as if to say, you need not worry on me.

The smile given back was warm in nature, too, and respectful, for women who were not willing to stay in the more traditionally pressured roles had such from her. Then she went back to eating, and thinking on what manner of soft bed may await her upstairs.

He just smiled at Ellyn before he leaned back in his chair, eyes closing slightly. It had been a long day and he was getting sleepy sitting here.

Eyes shifted from Ellyn to Charles, the book worm, already dozing off and probably thinking what books he could read tomorrow. Rory would have him live them instead. In fact, if they confiscate Riley's ship that he had originally confiscated from their uncle Collin and take it out to sea, find some pirates or a pirate's island to loot. That was where his mind was for a few moments before making a comment to what Ellyn said. "There are a few lady knights here in this realm that might take you in. I know the Crown Princess is involved."

Yeah, that would go over well with Riley.

Why they should do it!

"The crown princess," that would be Noirin if she wasn't mistaken. "Thank you Rory." The thought had her smiling again with a far off look before drawn back as she finished her punch. She was up, feet unfurling from beneath and down to slip into her slippers. "I will see to finding her tomorrow or at least to obtain an audience," or of whom they referred her to. "I bid you all a wonderful evening and night as I've some letters to pen before I find my sleep." She was already heading over to the bar to leave her empty glass there with Alex.

Rory gained his feet again as Ellyn took to leave. "A good night to you Ellyn, sleep sweet. Maybe we shall head north again for some fun." It was fun even if they had drank too much.

He stood Ellyn did, flashing a grin at his twin. "Good night, Miss Royce."

The little furrier learned that there were royalty in this realm, as was no real surprise, but that those within this tavern were on such terms with them was a surprise. She studied them quietly as she ate, and once she had eaten as much as she could, she simply sat in serene calm, sipping her brandy. A tip of her head and a smile were sent to the lass as she prepared to take her leave. "Bonne nuit, mam'selle."

Her smile blossomed between the three, and she spoke in French to the lady, "bonne nuit, elle a été mon plaisir," dipping her head before she was light upon her feet and off to the hall and stairwell that would take her up to her room.

She was quite charmed that the woman spoke her native tongue to her, for it made her feel quite welcomed. She smiled to her as she left, and then set about finishing up her brandy. "Such a lovely woman," quietly murmured.

Charles yawned, not bothering to sit back down. His empty glass was carried over to the bar as well. "I think I'm going to head out, Rory. Awfully tired for some reason." He hated it when he got this tired, this early. "It was a pleasure, Miss Evony. Enjoy your stay in Heathfield." And he headed for the back hall and the way out.

He was surprised to hear Ellyn speaking French and that he understood it too. He was up finally too. "Head out like in back to the castle to stay or find a card game?" He would get some air in the least and possibly track down their brothers.

"Back to the castle but I'll join you for a game another night." Called over his shoulder, though he paused to see what Rory would do.

"It was a pleasure to meet you both. Thank you for your kindness to a stranger." She rose and smiled, before moving towards Alex to bespeak a key.

He was going to head back with him, "goodnight Evony, sleep well, see you soon." Being she was going to stay around! Then he headed out to catch up with his brother.



Date: 121-02-10
Poster: Shaun Shawnesey
Post # 23

New Sword

It was a quiet night so far that found Shaun at the Thistle. He'd taken a meal here along with a tankard of ale before he was off to one of the wingbacks in front of the hearth with a glass of the pure. Since it was quiet except for the crackling of the fire, he pulled out the new sword his brother had fashioned for him at his smithy. Although it gleamed brand new, he laid it across his lap and with a polishing cloth began the process of taking care of his weapon. A small tin held a waxy substance for this purpose. He was bent over his task with a diligent look upon his features. Curling hair was pulled back into a small tail at the nape of his neck. A tunic in a midnight blue worn over black pants with natural hide boots laced up to below the knee and a cuff turned over made up his attire.

Chilled air rushed in as the side entry opened, and so did Tykir in his attempt to keep as much of the night cold out as he could. A complete circle was performed: In. Around, Door closed. Around again. Just entering the tavern, he did enter, and quite naturally. Odd how that could be accomplished even if it took a bit of effort. He rubbed his gloved hands together, as if that would help to warm up. To help even more, he crossed to the hearth. "Hey Shaun." He didn't even look to his friend yet, just faced the fire in his attempt to kill the chill. A shiver coursed through his body as the warmth began to seep in, then he turned, turning his backside to the fire next and facing Shaun. "Hey! Nice weapon there!" So much for the fire! He forgot all about being cold and crossed  to Shaun. "Did Rhett make this thing?" He squatted down next to Shaun's chair.

His head jerked up with a quick look back towards the door, the draft still shifting before back on Tykir. Blue eyes were bright as a smile was quick to emerge. "Aye, Rhett forged it just for me as a gift. Said I couldn't be in training with a shabby sword when I have a brother who is a blacksmith." There was a lot of sense to that and the fact Rhett had made it for him had it special. "Isn't she a beauty?" Lifting it up in a way that Tykir could hold it if he wanted.

He heard the light 'clunk' of glass on wooden bar surface, smiled to himself knowing his drink was there, but remained where he was for now, admiring Shaun's new toy. Darn right! Hands slipped beneath the hilt and flat of blade, bringing it closer. "Very, very niiiiice." He stood, fingers curling around the detailed handle and pointing the tip of the blade toward the fire so that the glow ran up the honed surface and showed not a single flaw. "And here I thought having a mage and a couple Kings for brothers was cool." His grin followed as he turned the sword to present the hilt back to Shaun.

"He certainly knows how to work the metal as well the decorative addition. It is the perfect balance of weight that makes it an excellent sword." He watched Tykir's every move and the way he moved hinted that he was training with the sword. "I will be coming to the King's Field soon with Sir Cole. If he drills me hard like many others have commented, then I say that is good. I've a legacy set by my brother to live up to."

Raspberries to that! "Dang, Shaun, you have your own legacy to live up to. If I tried to live up to the legacy of my brothers?" He waved the whole idea away with a single hand swat. He started toward the bar, stopped and looked back. "You have a..." A point from the bar to Shaun to the bar...

And suddenly she was there! Making a grand entrance after another day of cleaning! She looked fantastic in dust and webs, but that was okay. "Good evening!"

"Another?" Whoa, he was doing good tonight. He took the sword to slip back into its scabbard and set it on the table out of the way. He needed to get use to wearing it when not on the field, there was the sitting thing and all, stabbed his leg, stabbed the cushion (even in a scabbard) and tangled it up in the legs of the chair. The gust of air that proceeded another had Shaun whipping another glance there. "Hello Fawn," if she remembered him! "Have you met Tykir?"

Of course she remembered Shaun. A bright smile given to him. "Evening, and I have. Nice to see you again, Tykir." She requested a mug of hot cocoa from Alex. "How is everyone?"

He threw up one hand and the other reached for his drink. "Hello Fawn, and yes, Shaun. She was supposed to go with us to the MT that night, but wasn't able."

"Ah, yes. It was later than I had thought. I can't have Madam worrying over me all night. I'm sure she worries enough that I'm gone all day and she doesn't know why or where."

Well, covered in cobbies and dust bunnies, no wonder the Madam worried over her. "You were much missed." Is what he offered to that bringing his glass up to drink. "And missed much." A quick grin, then he drank.

"It's nice to be missed." Thanking Alex for a her drink and took a small, careful sip. "Perhaps next time I'll be able to go."

Well, he certainly remembered her as that shy smile hinted. He also had found out she was a year or two older than him as well. That was crushing news. "I'm doing just fine. I've become a squire to Sir Cole. How about you?" Which had a blink, "I wasn't here for the second trip there." Though he had heard something on it, like some of them had gone.

"Well..." Tykir chuckled. "You weren't missed." He shot out a hand and thunked Shaun on the shoulder.

He was grinning Tykir's way, "did you miss me too?" Laughing then as he answered before he asked! He gave back the thunk too.

"I heard about that. Congratulations." She tipped her mug towards him at the contrast and smiled again. Laughing quietly to the banter.

"The real question of interest, is how have you been, Fawn? Get all settled into your manor?"

"I've been well. I've left the settling to my brothers and Madam Fiona. I've been busy tending to my own things lately."

Which would be rolling in cobwebs and bathing in dust? Tykir was enjoying his mental conversation and drinking his whiskey.

He would be dared to say that aloud!

He was Solarina's brother! Think he was one not to take a dare? "Hope you've been successful in getting those done then." That's what he said...out loud!

"Is that why you're all dusty?" Direct but not so harsh perhaps? He was noticing with the dip and lift of blue eyes.

A glance down at herself, she laughed. "It is. I've been working on my own means of income to help with the manor. First is...getting it cleaned up."

Holy Snap Peas! Tykir had just taken a sip of potcheen and nearly choked. Get out of his head, Shaun!

"Really?" His interest rising considering the state affairs of her clothing and hair. He didn't point the latter out but maybe he should? He came closer instead and with the drift of a hand, combed away some of the webs and wiped them off on the side of his pants being it wasn't boogers or the like.

Nodding, she reached down to shake out her skirt. "Yes. I don't want my brothers to have to take on everything regarding the manor alone. Not that they can't, they're more than capable. I still want to help and need something to do. I'm hoping Madam will help me when it's ready."

"So, what's it going to be, Fawn? This means of income?"

"Pottery and ceramics. But please don't say anything. My brothers and Fiona don't know yet. I want to surprise them."

Tykir shrugged. When was the winged-prince ever going to come across this Fiona or any of Fawn's brothers? Not any time soon more than likely. "Alright then."

Never know when people might come across other people. Anything was possible! Tykir got a smile. "Thanks."

"I can understand that. Doing your own thing on your own, by yourself, then showing those you care about, that you can."

"I'm hoping Fiona will join me once it's set up. She likes to paint, and someone's got to decorate everything."

He was nodding as she asked, "I wont say anything," side stepping to give back her personal space too. He advanced on the bar to claim that second tumbler of the pure.

She smiled to Shaun. "I appreciate it. Do you know anyone's who's got a ladder I can borrow?"

"There are ladders here, I'm sure you can borrow one. Lots of things in the storage room too you might be able to use. Different kinds of furniture, desks, shelves, chairs, beds and so on."

"I just need a ladder for painting. Luckily, the shop came with most everything else."

The front door swung open, and was closed quickly again so no one would freeze. He grinned when he saw Shaun and Tykir in there and headed for the bar. A nod given to the lass as he clapped first Tykir, then Shaun on the shoulders. "Good place to be on a cold night, aye?" And he set about ordering potcheen.

A nod in returned to the person she didn't know, she sipped her cider thoughtfully for a moment with a smile.

Almost slammed in Josh's face! Reinforced toe of a boot acted as a bumper that had it swinging back open just as fast. Hand shot out to stop it as it bumped off the wall and was coming back. Amusement shone in green eyes for a moment before stepping in without incident and closing the door behind him.

"Squidilly, diddily, doo, now we're talking!" He gave Turlough an uplift of chin in greeting. "But then again, a good place to be any night come to think on it."

Kieran got a clasp too. "Think you will be knighted when the problem in Kildare is cleared up?" Actually he wouldn't mind having Kieran as a squire while he was one, but he'd been one for years?  "Hello Kir, Josh!" Noticing the next to come in.

More cold air! She waved lightly to Josh and smiled. "I was hoping to speak with you!"

He still had the chaps on under the long coat, woolen pants, high boots that showed the wear of fields and such working them with the cattle. Stetson sat neatly on his head, dipping in the front as arms came out from his sides, flannel shirt showing beneath, "I'm all yours," like he came in on purpose as if he knew. Then again, his father was one of the Druids and teaching his son.

"I hope so. I think Eion Quinn was hoping to be knighted beforehand but things are moving too quick." He leaned against the bar near Tykir and grinned. "I do agree with that. Good place to be any night."

Brow quirked. "All mine?" A grin flashed, she would wait for him to get settled with a drink and everything.

He gave a low whistle to that, "that would be grand if you were knighted with him. Bannon, I think is up for being knighted too." So he started a lot later than they had.

Smile swept with the wink as hands fell back naturally to his sides and the rest of his trek made to the bar to claim the glass Alex set out for him. Something that would warm him quick and sure, potcheen. Once collected he moved away and closer to the others as well Fawn, "you're looking.." with a blink and a short chuckle, "like you've been cleaning an attic."

With this, that and the other, Tykir just drank and listened and watched. No reason to do otherwise as yet.

Once she looked down at herself and laughed. "Yes, yes. I've been helping the spiders move. I promised them that since I was ruining their current hopes, I would clean the attic for them and they could relocate there."

"We'll be happy with whatever the king decides. " He laughed softly. "Teach us a bit of patience and all that. Bannon is off in Kildare, guarding Rina. He grinned at Tykir. "Which Tykir here knows isn't an easy job and even harder since Bannon isn't able to fly. He's learning to run fast from what I understand though."

He just muttered ... "I wouldn't want the task, sure."

He was eyeing Ty for a long moment. "Do you have any plans to head north again to that tavern or is it all fixed up and back in use? Kir, you should go with us when we do." If they did again. The last has him whipping a glance between the two. "Are you heading up there then too, Ty? I'm hoping Sir Cole takes me with him when they go."

"Have every intention." He started his reply. "If we get the chance again before I'm off to Kildare myself" He nodded to Shaun since he just answered the question. "Last we went, it looked like it was getting fixed up just right, place was pretty busy even then."

"You're not going to play the flute and have them all follow you up to the attic?" Teasing came easily but he was keeping an ear on the other conversation once Kildare was mentioned.

"I might. Would it be bad if I did?" A curious tilt of her head, she waved her hand dismissively. "How are you carvings? Do you have enough to perhaps let me put a display together in a week or so?"

"Don't know who was responsible, but all the wood workings were new and place was well stocked with ... supplies." A crooked grin. "Though McAndrews brought Sean's brew just to be sure."

"Not at all, you'd probably get a lot of jobs playing your flute then." The teasing continued, "so that would be your question?" Which he was calculating in his head what he had done lately and what he already had sitting around. "About fifty pieces, some bigger than others of course." Most were hand held sizes.

"I don't know. It's up to Sir Trevor and he hasn't said anything. If we do go, I'm not sure we'll be allowed to take part." He looked at Tykir, a brow lifting. "Sounds like it you had a bit of an adventure."



Date: 121-02-10
Poster: Shaun Shawnesey 
Post # 24

"Well, if you're interested, I will have a vacant window at the shop I will be opening soon and I thought perhaps you would consider putting some of your carvings on display. Only if you want to, of course."

Tykir? Adventure? When did the dark prince ever have an adventure? "Could use a repeat, whenever you think to join us." He lifted his glass toward Kieran in a toast. "Just saying."

"I will bet Sir Trevor will take you with him being you are close to being knighted and all, would be a good test of your skills." He was newly under Cole, why he wasn't sure if he would get to go.

"I would like that very much. A great way to finally show more of what I can do with wood and a whittling knife." Much like his uncle Maurice. "When would you like me to come by?" Figuring by the look of her, she was still cleaning. "Unless you'd like another pair of hands to help you with getting your shop ready."

The Frenchwoman came from the trees around the inn, having been on a long walk in the freezing woods. It made sense to her, though it might not to others. In one hand was a pinecone, and the other clutched her red sable cloak to her slim form as she pushed into the place, blue green eyes looking around and taking in the faces, all new, as she slipped inside.

"By the by, what kind of shop is it, what will you be selling?" Realizing that had not been mentioned.

"Well, I have to paint the inside first before bringing anything in. I wouldn't want any of your crafts getting splattered. An extra pair of hands would be wonderful." A grateful smile. "Pottery and ceramics."

"Sounds like a plan. I'll have to start coming here more to make sure I don't miss it or maybe you can swing over and let me know that's where you're heading." One thing he was always willing to do was go where he likely shouldn't.

Another draft of cold air had blue eyes turning that-a-way, "hello, come in and get warm Miss. Fire certainly is," grinning with the last. She was not one he had seen before but, there were probably many he had not met before. Being Shaun was there too, he could be let know of the next excursion. He was there for the first but had missed the second.

Since Kieran resided in the barracks, word could definitely reach him from the castle. "I'll see to it." The woman entering was offered a nod of greeting. The second was as spur of the moment as the first! Or else word could have spread like wild fire to join in!

Evony gave her gracious nod to those that met her eyes, her smile serene and calm as she nodded. "Bonsoir. It is trés.." searching for the word, "cold outside. The fire's heat will be most fine." She headed that way, to stand before it if there was room, without crowding any. She wore a blue wool gown below the cloak, the skirting flaring a bit, though not too much, for it was of narrow cut.

"How did things work out on that Ashford affair?" Something that popped to mind and right out aimed at Tykir. Certainly it got around when the four from the force of five were headed that way.

"Good evening lady," green eyes turned upon the woman addressing him as he finally took off the Stetson he wore and set it on the bar. "I am Joshua, my friends," indicating each so a name could be pegged to the right face, "Tykir, Shaun, Kieran and Fawn." Then back to the last, "there use to be a potter lass but she up and left, seems no one knows why. Disappeared but no signs of foul play either. It is good there is another potter finally."

"Ashford?" Tykir smiled, he couldn't help it! "Quite interesting. Found all sorts of interesting things in a hidden room accessible through a closet!" He reached around and set his empty glass on the counter. "A laboratory, for experiments with mixing should come to the castle sometime, see the books, look at the slides. Fascinating."

When introductions were given, A wave was given tot he woman. "Evening." Accompanied with a smile, she nodded to Joshua. "That is what your father told me. He's the one who showed the shop to me. I have taken over the previous pottery maker's shop. " Back to the woman, she looked at her hand and blushed lightly. "A pleasure to meet you, Miss Evony." She'd offer a hand, but hers were dirty from cleaning.

"Well met, messieur, mam'selle." To the men and the one lass. "It is a very great plaisir to meet you." Murmured quietly, with but a trace of the French accent, for she was not tired as she had been before, though they would not heard her that night. She smiled all around to those whose names were given. "I am Evony Rose Miette Jolie. Furrier."

"You have access to them or anyone?" That interested him indeed. "So they were the strange creatures I heard about that no one really had a description of.." more mussing with that before focus shifted to the lady, "a pleasure Evony Rose, welcome to the lands and the hearth here at the Thistle."

"Enjoy your stay here." This to the Lady Rose. "Can get access..." Came the reply to Shaun. Tykir had been studying the logs and the slides described in them with great interest.

Her own hands were busy, as well, one stretched before the fire to warm it, and the other still holding her pinecone, rather inanely at this point, but she was not going to put it down, now. It would draw too much attention to it. "Thank you, sir." That to Tykir. And another nod of thanks offered belatedly to Shaun.

"Well met," He nodded to the woman then took a drink of the potcheen, just listening in now.

She murmured a quiet thank you to Kieran, staying quiet herself, for she did not mean to be talking over the others. Blessed heat soaked in, and she closed her eyes for a moment in enjoyment.

"That's great then. When will you be there to clean again?" So he could arrange his own chores and get there to help. He was also listening to the comments on Ashford and making a mental note to get to see those slides.

"The cleaning is done. Tomorrow I will be asking Alex to borrow a ladder so I can start painting the shop."

She was, however, wondering a great deal about the strange creatures. It was most intriguing. Perhaps she could ask Alex, later, about that.

"Would you like something warm to drink, Evony," being she was getting warm at the hearth, that might help her warm up even quicker.

Oh..! ::She heard the offer of a drink from Shaun, and smiled over at him. "That would be most delightful, oui. A cognac would be most welcome, sil vous plait." A smile was sent over to the scaled woman, blue greens studying the formation of them surreptitiously.

And speaking of, he was warmed by the company and the whiskey, and he was ready to chance the chill outdoors again. Perhaps to search out that large book again and look some more! Time for Tykir to depart before he got in trouble! Up came a hand in farewell. "Later, all ... You..." He gave a point to some in the room that would be heading North next venture. "we'll be getting together soon."

Oisin drifted off thoughtfully and sipped her drink, turning back to the bar since Joshua seemed lost in his own thoughts. "Have a good night, Tykir."

"Good night, Tykir." He grinned as he saluted the dark prince. "See you on the field tomorrow."

Evony nodded to Tykir as he was leaving, and smiled over at the other woman, the potter, if she had heard that right, before drifting over towards the bar. Alex was already getting a brandy poured into a snifter and setting it out upon the bartop for her at her request. She nodded her thanks to him with a smile and took it up for a sip. "Mmm."

"Good night Ty, I'll catch up with you soon. See you on the king's field tomorrow!"
:Tomorrow morn at dawn certainly fit the bill for soon.

He gave a wave to Tykir. "Take care my friend."

"Most times just can't help but to." He smiled to Fawn with a twitch of a wink. "Aye, tomorrow, Friend." He called to Kieran as he reached the door. He braced himself for the cold by pausing and taking a deep breath. Okay... Ready...Set ... Crapcrapcrap...GO! He jerked the door open and hurried out. "Yes!" He called back to Shaun, even as the door shut behind him.

Settling on a stool, she sipped her brandy and watched the fire, listening with half an ear to the others, simply for the sake of feeling the bulwark of human companionship on such a cold night, and in a place where she was a total stranger. It was pleasant simply listening to their voices.

"I will come by tomorrow and help you with the painting then. Right now I need to get back and help with moving the one herd for the night." Which he didn't have to do often. Giving Fawn a wink and a wave to the others. He was out on Tykir's heels to catch up with him.

Evony nodded to Joshua as he departed.

Joshua got a grateful smile. "Thank you very much for the help. If I'm not at the shop, I'm here acquiring a ladder from the very kind Alex."

"Shaun, I think I'm heading back to the castle too." He wasn't trying to catch up with anyone, just see what trouble he could get into. And he was out the door as well.

It was time for bed. She took her snifter and with a smile to those remaining, she rose up and headed for the steps. "Bonne nuit."

"Good night Evony, hope to see you again and talk some." Which he didn't get to do and usually tried.

She smiled over her shoulder at Shaun and the lass, as well. "It would be a plaisir, monsieur, and I would like to get to know the Lady Fawn, as well. For now, bon voyage."

"Good night, Miss Evony. It was nice to meet you."

Another smile, warm and soft, was given to Fawn, and then she was up and out of sight on the stairs. The bed was most inviting.

She looked to Shaun and smiled. "And then there were two."


Which had him exhale a breath and eye where he had left his sword. So it was in its scabbard as he was over to attach it to his belt. "Have you made these pottery things to sell yet?" Wondering if she would have any before the Yule season. If she did, he'd get some for his mother.

"I have a few things but nothing I've made since acquiring the shop. I hope to get it finished so I can have some things to display for the holiday coming up."

"I would be interested in something for my mother with the upcoming holidays. I'm usually at a loss what to get her."

"I have some wind chimes that I made before coming here. I'm afraid that's all I have at the moment, however."

"Wind chimes? That would be perfect. Something that is not for baking, cleaning, associated with household chores. We have a nice porch to hang them on. I don't wish to pressure in any way but maybe come by some time next week?"

She smiled lightly and nodded. "Sure. I'll have them at the shop by then. Is there anything particular she likes? Like...maybe butterflies or hummingbirds or anything like that?"

"Both of those sound really nice. Do you have dragonflies too?" Those would be rarer to have.

Thoughtful for a moment. "I'm not sure. I'll look and find out, but they will all be there for you to look at."

"I will come by then, you can pretty much count on a sale." Possibly two if he got where he couldn't choose between two. "If you are heading somewhere tonight, I would be honored to walk you back." as it was getting late although he didn't make a move to be leaving just yet.

"My first sale." Beaming a smile, she glanced towards a window and nodded. "I should get back to the manor so no one worries." Though she doubted her brothers were there. Fiona undoubtedly was home, though.

"Then we can talk as I walk you home." If that was a yes to his offer. A bit of that shyer smile came with a press of his lips. There were times one could tell he and Rhett were brothers.

"That would be nice." Slipping off her stool, she picked up her cloak to wrap herself in and pulled her gloves on as she thanked Alex, then turned to Shaun. "Whenever you're ready."

He had gotten his cloak on, helped her with hers then offered her the bend of his arm. His ma and pa would be proud seeing that he was exhibiting the manners they instilled in him. "Good night Alex," grin came a bit fuller as he headed out with a pretty lass on his arm. Oh yes, maybe his chest puffed out a little more. She was an older pretty lass!

A wave to Alex before taking Shaun's arm with a smile, she walked with him to the door then out once it was open. "It was nice of you to offer to walk me home, Shaun." Hopefully Fiona wasn't standing at the window. Undoubtedly if Fiona saw this, she'd not leave Fawn alone about it.

They would both never hear the end of it if that were the case. Word would get around like wildfire and they put as a couple or the like. Not that it would bother Shaun much at all, but might her!

Fawn would care less really what others thought, but having to listen to Fiona prattle on about it might drive her insane!



Date: 12-04-10
Poster: Kuwan
Post # 25

Wintry Night

Snow was falling all around as Kuwan made her way to the Commons. Evening was setting in with a wintry sky of white near the horizon and darker blues above leaning more towards purple. A layer of snow left tracks, not enough to be cleared away but was the first sign that winter was close at hand. The huskies along with the Others had been seen to before she left the island. She would be staying overnight into midday tomorrow. Supplies were needed that she would have sent over that was too much for her to handle alone. Alone was something she was not use to and it weighed upon her mind. She had never been so alone before. Even with all the chores she had to see to, that fact seeped in regardless of how busy she was. It had been weeks now. Their little camp was immaculate with the wigwams made for the others well tended to and furs added. She headed through the commons with a smile for everyone that she passed. It was so good to be amongst humans again. Ones not half beasts even if some of them were coming out when she left the food, curious of her and no longer so much afraid. A covered basket rested against her hip as the handle went over her arm. It was one big enough for it was loaded with rabbit pies. She had to bake them for someone! So it was a gift she was bringing to the tavern and anyone within. Of course she was hoping to see some of those she called friends, ones she felt close to.

"Kuwan!" Conor saw the Indian lass with her basket strolling along the snow covered walk. He hurried his pace, making sure to nod a hello to any who called out a greeting, but not stopping to chat. Instead, he came up alongside the lass. "Absolutely perfect day, is it not?" This weather brought out the best in Conor. Air so crisp and clear it almost made the lungs burn, snow drifting about and settling down, giving the earth a clean appearance. And the chill? When prepared for the cold, the warmth of heavy cloak and clothing beneath, gloves, scarves, boots, made it possible to enjoy the nip of cold against the face. "Here, let me take that for you. Going to the Thistle, maybe?" Even as he offered to help, he was slipping the basket from her arm.

There might not be much snow on the ground but it was slippery when one was startled and spun around having her slide a little. Her heart pounding for a moment and then the unexpected followed, she wrapped her arms around him in a bear grip hug, it also helped to prevent her from sliding any more than she had. "Conor," more muffled against his chest before the bronze of her cheeks rose a shade deeper as she released him from the hug. "You smell the rabbit pies?" Teasing as she handed over the basket. If she had slipped they would have been all over the ground, all twenty five of them.

Wasted rabbit pies would be a sin worthy of an eternity in hell's fire! He had an arm wrapped around her back to keep her against him and on her feet. Who would have thought the Indian Goddess wouldn't have snow feet, especially in so light a layer. "I smelled them all the way from the ranch, and came running straight away." Which wasn't true. He had no idea what she had in her basket, but finding out that there were Kuwan's pies in the wicker carrier definitely made the trip into town all the more worth it. "Let's get them inside, before they get too cold to enjoy."

Which had her laughing as she swatted him with her free hand, "you love them as much as Patwin and Mat." Which immediately had that saddened look shadow her eyes in a fleeting moment. "Yes, I think I should buy new boots tomorrow." As an aside as they continued towards the tavern. Just the feel of him near appeased that loneliness already. People were good to have around, she was not an island, and friends even more precious. "You have been well? Grandmother? All your sisters and brothers?"

Having come down from her room above some time back, the Frenchwoman was happily ensconced in an armchair before the fire, a steaming mug of cocoa at her elbow on a small table, and she was working on sewing together a delicately sized pair of leather gloves, fur lined with a rich, dark sable. Her work basket was at her feet and a heavy, simply designed , demurely styled wool dress of periwinkle blue was adorning her small self. Pausing to take a sip of her cocoa, Evony studied the flames before her and wondered if the convoluted route she had taken here had fooled those it was meant to fool. At some point, she supposed she would find that out, but for now, at least, she should have a long spell of peace. Months, even, if she had been very clever. Shaking her head, she let sad eyes return to her crafting, and set back to work.

The basket in one hand, he braced Kuwan with a light touch to her elbow with the other, guiding her up the front porch. He leaned forward, releasing the latch and pressing the door open to the Thistle beyond with the basket-draped arm. "We have arrived, Alex!" He called to the tender even before they had even fully entered. "And Kuwan has pies."

Charlie guided Ears past people busy in the square, not wanting any one to get stepped on, smiling as she went, gawds when had the area become so populated she queried of the mule. Turning him towards the Thistle knowing that a drink could be had. Which she needed, shopping for Kenneth for Christmas was as hard as any task chosen, he claimed to need or want nothing, making her bug eyed at the prospect of finding the right gift for him ...

A light coating of flakes settled on pitch dark hair by the time they were up the steps and heading inside. "It is good to see you again Alex." Noticing another woman by the hearth as she removed the furs that fell in a cape style around her frame. Hair was left mostly loose flowing down to her waist with a few small braids, ones braided with beads of mostly blue and white, kept the rest from her face. Her outfit was lined in fur of a soft doeskin dress that had leggings beneath. Here too were intricate designs of the same beads offsetting the top. "Good evening lady." Politely that came with a smile before she was heading for the bar.

Ears did not bray, because his mistress had not ask him to announce her. Silly animal got a kick out of it when she requested it, sliding down from the bug draft mule, she tweeked his nose, "remind me to get some grain for you."

The near bursting inside of the man and woman, as it seemed, had the furrier lifting up eyes of bluegreen to study the pair with interest, a faint smile of pleasant design upon her odd little mouth. Upside down, it was, or might seem to those looking. Her smile widened upon the woman at the greeting, and she dipped her head, the golden brown and blonde mixed length was captured and confined in a neat wreath of braid, a coronet upon her head. Not a single strand escaped to dangle down. " Bonjour, mam'selle. I am Evony Rose Miette Jolie. A great plaisir to meet new people."

Though Kenneth usually kept the horses fit, she liked picking up corn and molasses for them, to have a little extra kick. Turning to the steps she tromped in, smiling as she saw a new person, Conor and the young native Miss. "Afternoon everyone," she trilled quite pleased with herself...

It had to be said that her eyes moved with sharp interest to the dressing of the other, taking note of the beadwork, but more interestedly, the manner of making of the fur-lining to that doeskin::

Conor started to make sure the door closed behind him to keep the cold out and the warmth of the tavern within, but wait! Mz. Charlie! He held the door for just a moment more for her to enter then continued toward the bar to deliver the basket there. "And a good one at that, Charlie." He smiled, hefting up the good sized basket full of pies and depositing it there for Alex. "Ms. Jolie, pleasure, I'm Conor Quinn, and this is Kuwan...and if you aren't already introduced to Mz. Charlie..." But Charlie was already about introducing herself, efficient woman. He just fell silent with a lingering smile and turned to the basket. Were they allowed to have one...or two...or maybe more?

"Thank you kind sir I do appreciate a gentleman," and she did, grinning as he seemed to walk faster then she did to the bar, cocking her head to the side, even as she sniffed the air.  "Hmm something smells good," though her gaze was not looking at the basket of pies .."Oh bonjour ..and Howdy Miss," a wink to Evony .. "Charlie One Time ..little flower," she mused...

Another smile and dip of her head to the other woman entering, serene pleasure lighting her eyes. She liked people, and especially wanted to take the measure of the people in this land.


"It has been many moons since I have seen you, Charlie." Greeting her as she was in near on her heels. The other woman was now pursued with genuine curiosity too. "It is pleasure to meet you Evony," carefully pronouncing her name, the rest too much to consume being one long name after Rose.

Yeh Charlie was good about some things, she stopped at the bar, looking at that basket of goodies," well hand em out partner, let's eat," she could pack away a meat pie or two with a mug of hot cider ....

She directed her smile then to the gentleman, at his introductions, with another calm smile at Charlie for her interpretation of her name. At least, so it seemed to be. "Everyone I have met here is so very charming and pleasant. A very gentile land, it would seem." And an appealing aspect to the place!

"Indeed Miss ..I had forgotten the path to your home, though those of the forest tell me all is well." Charlie was like the native woman, but unique to herself in other ways ...

Talk of the forest, which she would soon enough be having to meet and venture into, to earn her living, had the Frenchwoman listening intently, as she lifted her mug of cocoa for a long sip.

She noticed Conor looking and lightly nudged him, "go on, have as many as you want. I was hoping you would be around with my coming here." Although she noticed he had not answered her questions on his family. Made her worry. Then to Charlie, "we no longer live upon the mainland but have moved to the island called Ashford." Probably one of the reason she had not run into her nor the braves, Yas, Mat and Patwin.

Charlie was good at making peoples' heard spin, she could be a motor mouth when she wanted to, which was most of the time, A look to the french lady. "What brings you to this land Miss Little Flower," and yes she understood some French but preferred to butcher it like any other language she spoke ... "I have heard of it." meaning the island, made it hard to just drop in when she was wandering.

He would apologize to Kuwan if he realized his slight, but he was a male, with a nose for her cooking, and her question no longer even existed in his mind. Permission granted and brows danced to Kuwan in response. He was about handing them out just Charlie had ordered, one, two, three and he turned to look at Evony with another pie in hand. Eavesdropping as he was to the conversation (how could he help it, it was the only patter underway at present), he interjected. "And quite the home it would be here...Kuwan's pies alone are worth settling here for." There it was, in his hand, held out toward her clear across the room, if she so desired.

Evony turned those brilliant eyes to take in Charlie, sedate amusement allowed to peer out at the other woman. It was not quite an accurate naming of her, but it was close enough to have her shifting in her seat a bit, considering a response to the question. "I am seeking a new home, mam'selle Charlie." The accent was there, but fairly well controlled at this point. "Taking a handkerchief out, she took the pie from the gentleman, nodding her head in gracious elegance to him......across the room. Which meant she stood and made her way to him to take it. "Vous ete tres gentil..." pausing for a moment to recall the spoken language here. ", thank you so much, monsieur Quinn."

Nodding to Evony" this is a good land, and the people are fair, you should do well here " Charlie mused, taking that pie Conor handed over.


She would probably ask him the same questions later when he was not so distracted by rabbit pies. She too was eavesdropping or just listening in as she was in plain view!

The furrier smiled and looked to the lovely Indian woman, the pie warm and fragrant in her hand. "You made these, oui? Tell me, sil vous plait, how is the hunting in this land?"

After Evony took the pie, he turned back to his own.

"Yes," there was pride in her one word answer to the affirmative. "The rabbit pies are much like by a few." She would find the crust flaky and the meat tender mixed with vegetables and herbs, the taste smooth upon the palate. "The hunting is very good. My friends could show you once they have returned. They are very good hunters and know all the woods from here to the border of sister land."

Charlie lifted a pie to her mouth,humming with the bite taken, it had been a long summer ago when the whoo whoos had brought her meat pies. Good stuff..

Evony smiled at Kuwan in great interest, the sparkle in her eyes showing that clearly enough. "I would be most delighted to travel the woods with them, oui. It would be a great honor to be shown the ways of this land." Meaning the forest and the animals, of course. "I am a furrier by trade." Being bluntly honest about the source of her interest. Then she took a bite of the meat pie, and a delighted sound came soon after, for it was delicious. "Mmm..fantastique, mam'selle!"

Charlie nodded her head, hunting was good as Kuwan said, Charlie missed roaming around, guess she needed to get away from the vardo more often, but he cold made her want to hibernate...


"You hunt for hides and sell them then?" Wondering if she also produced end products made from such. "There are also others that hunt," she was sure as she heard mention of the men in some of their discussions. Her smile brightened in that instance, from the sound made by the woman when she bit into the pie and her confirmation to follow. Even if not a word she heard before, she understood its meaning.



Date: 12-04-10
Poster: Kuwan 
Post # 26

Charlie figured that the Lady would do well as a furrier, they all wore leathers at times, and Charlie all the time, though her winter garb was lined by sheerling, to keep her warmer. Smiling between bites, Kuwan was doing great, the talking she was just going to consume the pie at hand ..

Clearing her mouth and using the handkerchief to clean her lips, she nodded slowly, considering Kuwan's words. Carefully, as she did most things, she answered. "I hunt for fur, mam'selle, fur to cure and then craft into garments for wearing. Cloaks, hats, gloves, fur mitts, clothing...whatever is needed, really. I do hunt for hide to make tan into fine leather, and sell that as is."

Charlie listened carefully as she ate, pausing between bites to lean over to ALex and request at least two pies wrapped for Kenneth who would love them as much as she did, and a hot cider of course, to wash it all down...

"I use the rabbit's fur for warmth," and the fact it was one of the softest furs too that trimmed her outfit, lined her boots and made up part of her cloak. She used every bit of the rabbit so they were not just killed for wear.

Not a word from Conor would be heard added to the mix. In the process of enjoying a second, he had made himself comfortable at the bar and just listened. As the newcomer spoke with Kuwan, Conor passed his gaze over her attire, making note of any possible signs of her handiwork. That, and well...he'd make sure it appeared only 'that'.

"Maybe it would be good if you go with the hunters that hunt for food?" That way all of the animal would be used. She knew the castle had hunters that provided meat regularly as well to the butcher that sold such in the marketplace to others.

Charlie finsihed her pie, drinking down the cider, as fast as she could, nodding to Alex .. Conor was oogling, not that she said anything, she had been obseving as well ...

The Frenchwoman studied the Indian lass as she spoke, trying to read whatever else was there, unspoken, if any. She had known many Indians in her journeys and the learning of her craft. She smiled in serene fashion and nodded slowly, understanding. "A very bon notion, mam'selle Kuwan. It is better not to waste, oui? I find that a very wise practice through my life." Those eyes perusing her dress would find the only bit of fur she had on her person was a finely crafted little ermine collar that graced the high neckline of the blue wool gown she wore. Not a stitch taken ill, and all of tiny, expert crafting.


Charlie giggled collected the pies wrapped for her by Alex, "Kuwan, Miss Evony," see she did listen, she just liked poking fun at most folks, "I am going to take these treasures to Kenneth at the vardo, and I shall return." After she drove the gypsy mad of course. Though he seemed content with their lives ...

"It was a very great plaisir to meet you, mam'selle Charlie." The liquid sound of her name may be different than Charlie was used to. "Please do come soon again."

"And don't eat all the pies Conor," she teased, knowing that like many the pies were greatly appreciated ..

"Yes," they hunted for food only and used the skins, all from the animals after giving thanks for them giving their lives for theirs. She had seen the white man kill only for killing sake, leaving the bodies to rot where they fell. She was pleased the woman understood. "It was good to see you again Charlie. I hope the path is soon again to be crossed."

"Oh you betcha Miss ..enchante and all that bon bon stuff," a sly wink, and laid a kiss on Kuwan's cheek, and poked Conor with her finger, bear skin cloak, flapping as she aimed for the door.  "Adeui..tata ..and umm bye for now," waving as she went, outside she climbed on the earger mule, reining him towards home, the short cut way ...

She nodded to Kuwan's agreement, her eyes moving to follow the other woman as she departed, deep amusement registering there at the farewell words of Charlie. That was an easy woman to like.::

Conor couldn't say anything to Charlie's departure. He had just taken a rather appreciated bite and didn't want to chew it down and swallow it too quickly and lose the flavor of it. He could only wave, but that with the pie-clutching hand.

"Mm...delightful femme, non?" To both of the others, before she took another bite of the pie.

Once the bite was fully enjoyed, he swallowed then spoke. "Intriguing always." He offered in regards to Charlie before he spoke directly to Kuwan. "So, you are alone on the island now? Your folk on their way to your homeland?"

At Conor's question to Kuwan, she looked to that woman, wondering if this was the time to step back to her chair by the fire. It was possible the Indian woman would not want her personal business aired before a stranger. She gave a tentative look over to her chair and the set aside pair of gloves.

Which a soft smile remained as she listened to Evony then shifted a look up to Conor near her side. "You have heard then?" She wasn't sure who had heard or not, or that they might not say much to advertise she was alone on the island until their return. "They have been gone many weeks and it may be many weeks before they return. I worry on their welfare this time of year." And worried on their tribe if there was still one left. She had her visions that told of certain deaths but she could not see all in her visions.

Even though it had been mentioned briefly earlier, with a glance to Evony, he continued. "The Indians have inhabited Ashford Island with perhaps more to come." Quinns were as Irish as they came. Nothing was sacred and nothing was least...nothing unless they decided a particular 'nothing' did not apply to the nothing law. This was not an exception. "Aye, have...and this time is never the best to travel. But from what I've heard, seems there they couldn't wait."

The looks from the other two did not say to her "go away", and so she remained, for the moment, at least, though ever ready to beat a retreat if it was signaled that she should do so. Soft, dark blonde brows furrowed gently at what she was hearing. "Pardon...sil vous plait...but you are alone?" Moving softly into the tongue of her birth. "C'est trés mauvais...! You are careful, non? With weapons, oui?"

"It was the visions that made them go. I stayed behind to see to all here." Then low she asked as this was something that was not to be spread around and the island turn into a freak show drawing others. "Would you like to meet the Others sometime?" Certainly he heard of the halloweeners that had ventured there and the outcome which in turn brought an investigation with yet another outcome. Then back to Evony as she gave a nod of her head. "I am needed alone to keep the camp until the others return." Another nod on the mention of weapons. "I have knife and bow with arrows." She was very good with both. Hunting on her own since the men left.

Her eyes, like black opals in their bluegreen shimmer, widened at the mention of visions. It would seem that this Indian lass was gifted with the Sight. Respect and a tinge of awe filled her eyes. She had her own reasons to deeply appreciate such gifts in others. The assurances of the woman that she was able to protect herself allowed Evony to relax, though the mention of Others had her wondering things.

Because he was asked in so low a tone, he only nodded to her. He would drop it here to glance to Evony. "With your chosen profession, you have chosen the perfect time to visit these lands. There will be many looking for holiday gifts and what better a gift than that of warmth. I've a need for several fur lined gloves myself, considering the number of Quinn females. Are you able to add fragrance to them? That would be nice." And then he remembered! But he couldn't very well snatch his attention from the lass he had just asked a question to in order to answer Kuwan's inquiry some time ago. But he would make sure to address it soon enough!


There was her very characteristic pause before she responded to Conor's words, while she translated in her head, and while she considered the best answer. Then she nodded with a gentle smile. "Oui, monsieur Quinn. I brought with me many things already prepared, as I left prior residence with much of the winter's stock already made up. I have many gloves already made, and make more even today." Pausing again for a moment, "I add a special conditioner to the furs that adds a fresh, pleasant fragrance to them, but I do not specially perfume them, non."

"Well enough, I've several sisters and cousins .. .and ... " He leaned toward Kuwan and gently touched his palms to each of her ears, quickly adding. "friends." He released the hold, smiling to her. She may have even heard him, what with the soft touch which was more a show than to actually block out his words. "And all deserve a holiday package." It was easier for him to manage his own gifts for his brothers and male kin.

Which had her blink, being Kuwan would never presume to be added to someone's list with the holiday coming up they celebrated here. The touch had her blush however, probably meant more to her than him. She averted to a safe topic, one that allowed her mind to focus there. "How is Grandmother?" Only asking one of the few she had originally asked that went unanswered earlier. Hard to wedge them between a man and his rabbit pie! Presently he had his fill.

Evony smiled at Conor and Kuwan, her gaze steady and holding a serenity that was intrinsic to her nature. She was an easy, calming person to be around, generally. Amused enjoyment came at the hands placed on Kuwan's ears, a warm smile curving her funny mouth, the blink of Kuwan spawning a soft chuckle from the Frenchwoman. "I have several different fur linings and colors of leather, as well as texture, Monsieur Quinn. You have but to specify your desires and I am happy to comply with them." Her own pie was now disposed of and resting comfortably in her belly, her handkerchief employed to dab at her lips to clean them. The cocoa had long since cooled off, and so she took the moment to ask Alex in a quiet voice if he might make her another, though this one perhaps to add in some Peppermint Schnapps?

Colors! Excellent. He knew more about matching a color to a female than a scent. "Then I'll say thank you now, and then when we are able, I'll select the perfect ones." The mention of Herself could no longer not be addressed.

She nodded with another smile to Conor's thanks, and then held quiet to let them talk.

"She is quite well, Kuwan. Buzzing like a bee with the impending birth of Dolly's babe. Not to mention all the preparation for the holiday." The manor house always had a welcoming fragrance of baking and cooking but now, the addition of pine and cloves was most enjoyable bringing on warm-fuzzy memories. He looked to Evony, so she'd be a part of their conversation. "My Grandmother, Mary Quinn, is a name you may hear while in the lands. And sure to meet if you decide to make Heathfield home."

Lifting her eyes from the hot cocoa laced with something of a bite, she smiled again at Conor. "She sounds like a formidable (saying it in the French way)...erm...which means terrific..woman, monsieur. It would be an honor to meet such a one."

"She has not had her child yet?" She thought the woman would be sooner than this but some babies don't come when they are suppose to, either very early or late. She would have to make sure to visit Mary before she left for the island again.

Brad was only stopping in, top hat on and a wool suit under a noble's cape. The drift of a scented cigarillo trailed him mixing with the falling snow. Boots leaving tracks behind him as he headed up the steps to the porch and continued coming in out of the cold. The door to swing open then closed behind him as he took off the top hat, leaving the snow to fall way then set it on the shelf. He proceeded to dust off the shoulders of his cape but left it on being he'd not be staying. He had a box tucked under his arm that he brought over to place on the bar for Alex, a selection of the finest cigars and the smaller cigarillos. "Here you go ole Chap." Said respectfully of the older tender.

Conor chuckled. "Aye, Miss Evony, she is both, formidable and a terrific woman." He took a moment to touch his fingertips to the crumbs on the counter then gently rubbing his fingers together to shower them down to the very spot they had been before. "No, Kuwan, it seems the babe has an agenda which has nothing to do with being born as yet."

Bluegreen eyes studied the motions of the man's fingers as he crumbled the crumbs, a smile forming a bit wider at his comments about his grandmother. It spoke well of the man himself. Her eyes moved over to the man coming in, a quiet study taken of him as he delivered the box to the tender.


The shift of dark eyes turned on the man coming in and instinctively stepped a little further from the bar, giving him plenty of room.

"I hope I'm not intruding," as Alex took the box to first view the contents then slipped it under the bar to a shelf under there with an appreciative nod. Blue eyes turned on the three, "I am Bradley Harrington, new proprietor of the Tobacco shop in the commons." He had the manners to put out the cigarillo he'd been enjoying, one that left the warming scent of French vanilla in the room.

The Frenchwoman looked from the newcomer at his words to Kuwan and then Conor, before smiling and shaking her head politely. "Not at all, monsieur." Those words out before it occurred to her that the other two would probably know the man where she did not, and she likely should have let them answer the comment. She closed her lips firmly.


Date: 12-04-10
Poster: Kuwan
Post # 27

"It is as the lady says, your company is welcomed. These are the ladies Evony Jolie." So he didn't provide her entire name, but those were the ones he remembered the order of. Rose was in there somewhere, but because he wasn't sure of the set-up, he stuck to the ones provided. "And Kuwan. Conor Quinn." He added lastly. Kuwan would notice he also didn't mention her entire name when introducing her. It wasn't because he didn't remember it, but easier for others to do so.

"You are not. Well to meet, Bradley." Politely. She was easy to quiet at this point as her thoughts were a million a minute charging through her head. She quietly ordered an enhanced tea from Alex.

Evony Jolie would do just fine. It was simply a habit of hers to say both of her middle names as well, a habit from her childhood. She dipped her head, giving a sedate smile to the new gentleman. "Bonsoir, Monsieur Harrington."

"Jolly good, I'm pleased to meet you all. Evony, Kuwan and Conor. Quinn you say? I traveled with Ciaran, Evan and Liam. The latter I've made good friends with. He has a boxing ring going." Then again Conor would know that? "Please call me Brad or Bradley, Evony. I've an uncle here that would be turning his head instead." Giving a quick smile and wink.

"Ah, pardon moi, monsi....Bradley." Smiling equably and then taking a sip of her steaming cocoa.

"Ah, well steeped in Quinns you are." Conor's amusement laced his words. "Have you participated in the man's matches then?" Harrington didn't look the sort, but there was no accounting for a man's choice of past times.

As the talk moved to male things of interest, Evony smiled at Kuwan in the way of women everywhere, a sort of good natured mental shaking of the head.

"Yes, I am," which had a humorous laugh erupt. Although he didn't get into how Fawn reacted to him. He wasn't even sure why. "You're the one that makes the saddles?" Or he had him mixed up with another. There were that many. He shook his head with the last, "not yet but I've been tempted. How about you?" A shifting glance went from Conor to Evony with that settled smile and twinkle in blue eyes. A slight study of the woman but nothing overly and hard to read any thoughts which was typical of an Englishman.

Bluegreens shifted to Conor at the mention of saddles. Did that mean he might need good leather? Interest if only for the sake of future business contacts had her studying him. Masters of understatement, Englishmen were, in her experience. She missed his bit of study of her, in her effort to read something of Conor. It was not a long study, though, for that would be rude, and she was never that, if she could help it. She went back to sipping her laced cocoa, little hands curved about the mug savoring the heat of it.

"I would be that 'one' with the finest McDonough leather at that." Since Brad looked to Evony, so did Conor. But it was quick, with just as faint a nod, since they both had their hands in the leather trade. No, he hadn't mentioned it to her. But he had been taught by Herself that a gentleman speak of a lady's interest and leave his to talk between men unless asked directly. "My experience with a fight or two have nothing to do with a ring, I'm forced to admit." A sheepish grin was sent to Kuwan and Evony for the mentioning of a fisticuffs in their presence. Although, that didn't mean he wouldn't enter into one in their presence if the opportunity forced his hand.

The initial survey of the woman would be to judge whether she'd be friend or foe. Still hard to tell what he came up with or if anything at all yet. He had another profession in contrast to the typical English noble. A swamp fox of the colonies. Wouldn't that be a shock for some! He was laying low right now for their last outburst. "I will be getting myself a riding horse as well one for my uncle, would you be interested in the commissioning of two saddles?" He heard he was very good even if there was a lot said well on the MacKay brothers that had a store in the commons of leather goods.

Ah, it sounded like a family business there, the McDonough leather. He must get his leather from them, and if it was a family enterprise, it was likely cattle, good leather for working saddles, as she understood it. She did not deal in that kind of leather, herself, and so she would not be able to provide it to Conor. Just as well, as she did not want to cause conflict or competition, herself. She was hoping for a relatively untouched market in furs and specialty leathers, herself. The men's talk of fighting had her looking up at them, smiling faintly at Conor in soft amusement for his sheepish grin. She had no problem with such a subject, as she tried to show him by her look.

The MacKay brothers had a fine store of leather goods. Conor frequented it himself at times. Still, for a personal touch, Conor Quinn was the man. "Two saddles? Indeed. Come by the shop at the Ranch and we can discuss your specific wishes for them."

"I will bring the two horses with me." Which he planned to buy from Rory McDonough so it would all be very convenient. He took up the tumbler Alex set out for him with a lift to seal the deal, then kicked it back.

The Frenchwoman listened interestedly, trying to take in who did what in this land, so that she could fit in more easily. Understanding the lay of the land, as it were, was a key thing to such a hope.

Kuwan was being very quiet, studying this man talking to Conor, as well as Conor in how he responded to him. A fly on the wall in essence, how one picked up on a lot of things. More to add to all the other things floating around inside her head.

Kuwan was usually quiet. She wasn't really the type of lass that chitter-chatted, at least, when Conor had been in her company. "Bring them by, we'll see them well saddled, Harrington." To the man he nodded, pleased for the additional business that would definitely help the deficit that the holidays would be causing to his pockets.

"Who is a good person around here to get a good riding animal from?" This query posed with politeness to any who might care to answer.

To her question, Conor's smile grew. There was a bit of devilment in that grin to be sure and certain, and he wasn't really the kind to hide it. "What's your preference for a riding animal? Horse? Mule? Goat?"

She was silent a long moment as she had to translate that and then be sure he was not being serious. It was more the imp in the grin that she caught on to, and then a warm chuckle left her, as she shook her head. "Small as I am, I don't think a goat could bear me for long, Monsieur Quinn. A mule would be too fractious, like many a man of my acquaintance, and so it better be a horse, non?" One dark blonde brow lifting in amused query.

"It should be by the end of next week. Then whatever time it takes." They usually gave one of the old saddles with the purchase of a horse so they would do in the meantime. If you will excuse me." It was time to catch up on a few card games or even head to Brogan's casino. There was a splendid idea. "A great pleasure meeting you Evony as it was of you Kuwan. Conor, I shall see you soon. Pip, pip, cheerio, stay well." He was over to collect his hat which he tipped just so on his head with a pat before he was out the door, securing it closed, and on his way.

A gracious nod was given over to the departing and then gone Bradley, quite before she could get out any words of farewell. It was her slow translating that bedeviled her at times.

Conor lifted a hand in farewell to the man then looked back to Evony. Many a man, eh? Funny. "Horse? Then I'd recommend Rory McDonough, at the McDonough ranch."

She could admire how swiftly Bradley moved once he decided to depart. A soft smile rested there as she didn't get a chance to respond to that departure. She was distracted upon something else. So nothing was said as a dipping glance took in how much was left in her mug of tea. "Your sister Melantha also sells horses?" Glancing up to Conor then to Evony as there was at least one other. "There are four stables, two in these lands, two in Ballicastle." She learned all this when she had gone to one of the races to see what they were like.

"McDonough. Rory McDonough." She said the name, with her soft French accent, so nearly controlled and almost not there, when she focused. "Merci, monsieur, I shall endeavor to find their place." She paused as Kuwan spoke of the sister.

Conor brought his hand up and coughed behind it. "Aye, there is that." But that would mean that the Frenchwoman would not be coming to the ranch. A twinkle of eye touched on Kuwan. "My sister also sells horses. A good many of them are fast, for racing. But that is another option for you and a bargaining tool."

The cough was a cue and she was trying to read it. His last words, though, provided a reason for his not mentioning his sister, though she was still uncertain. She resolved to go to the first place told to her, and not cause possible discomfort in anyone. "Merci, monsieur, I am grateful. I do not yet know this place well, eh?"

"Heathfield is a friendly enough place, it won't take you long to get to know her well."

She nodded with a smile, a pleased look on her face. "It is true. Everyone I have met has been kind and welcoming. I have growing hopes of being able to stay."

She was wondering if she had enough money to buy the racehorse Skade. Or better for her to wait after the first of the year for she probably had hefty winnings that would be tacked on. Then again if she waited, someone else might buy her. Of the ones left Skade interested her for the tale behind the name. Rory was the one that had the race horse for sale. Two of them in fact, the other was Melantha if she remembered correctly.

All she would have to do was suggest her interest and the horse could be held for her. Kuwan was good for it!

"Do you know if the McDonough's have horses suitable to taking out in the wilds? For hunting, in fact?" She spoke after sipping from her cocoa, eyes moving from Conor to Kuwan.

Conor reached into the basket, retrieving not one but two pies from within and handing them over to Alex to wrap for him. "I would think so, Miss Evony. But surely if they do not, Rory would know of someone to refer you to." Alex brought back his pies and Conor thanked him with a nod. "Guess I should be heading back home myself."

She nodded and smiled. "Very well, I shall not hesitate to ask." Turning to set her cup on the bartop, she smiled and gave a quiet thank you to Alex, before turning back to the other two. "Well, I have work that must be done before I can rest this night." Pausing as she crossed the man in speech, with the same intent, apparently. "Oh, pardon, monsieur." A quiet laugh, and then she was dipping a bit of a curtsey to the two. "It was a very great plaisir to make your acquaintances, mam'selle, monsieur. May the day bring peace and contentment to you, eh?"

"You will bring rabbit pie for Grandmother and your brothers and sisters?" Coming out of her reprieve as she realized he was heading out.

Conor smiled slow as they did voice the very same intentions. "A pleasure indeed. Hope to see you again soon." He turned to look to Kuwan. "If you wouldn't mind, I'm sure they'd enjoy them greatly. Would you like to deliver them yourself? Or would you rather I did?"

Moving to her chair near the fire, she bent to gather up her basket and the gloves she had been working on. Her belongings retrieved, she cast another smile at the two near the bar, and then she moved up the steps and to her room.

"Good night Evony, it was pleasure meeting you." Before the woman got away and she miss her farewell like earlier on the man. Dark eyes turned on Conor with a hint of a smile. She would like to see Mary and the others again and check on Dolly herself. "I would like that." She left pies for Alex and Hazel and the rest would be going with them. "It would be nice to walk with you." She was sure Mary would thank her for that, getting her grandson there and then he'd have to stay for dinner too.

"I could stop there on my way back to the ranch..." He let his statement hang so she could say whether she wished to travel with him or alone. Conor would never assume when it came to Kuwan. "Then let's be off." He brought down the basket and placed his two chosen ones back in it, then offered an arm to Kuwan for their walk to the manor.


Date: 12-05-10
Poster: Liam David Quinn
Post # 28

Quinn Night Out

Another cold night, another one with many more to follow no doubt before Heathfield welcomed Spring again. Not that it mattered to Conor. He had his woolen coat, scarf, hat. His leather gloves, boots. His thickly cabled sweater.  Bring on the chill! But that didn't mean he wanted to live in it! No, he spent just enough time in it to travel from one place to the other tonight and once there, he was quick to enter into the tavern and close the door behind  him.
"Best keep the whiskey coming." He called over to Alex as he raised his hand in greeting. He tugged off his gloves, scarf and his woolen cap and stuffed those in his coat pocket then peeled out of the outer layer of garment and hung it to a peg. He rubbed his hands together and continued on to the bar where the glass and bottle just waited patiently for his arrival.

Since he had become Liam's manager, Ciaran didn't care to walk there on a night like this. So for the moment, and for likely nearly every night, he'd avoid the gambling and behave himself. He slipped through the door and hurried inside. The warmth was welcomed and he offered Alex a grin. "Same for me, Alex." They were cousins after all.

Hearing Ciaran had entered, he turned and grinned. "Cousin! Come on, come on! The drinks are just getting ready to pour!" Alex placed another glass on the counter next to the original one and Conor filled them both.

"Conor!" He grinned as he headed for the bar once his cloak was hung and gloves tucked in a pocket. "How does the night find you?"

"Frick'n cold, but excellent. How 'bout you?" He handed over one of the glasses of potcheen even as he brought the other up for a drink.

There was a cut along Liam's jaw that had been cleaned up. He had showered too after the match or he would need distance standing room only amongst others. Such elevated his mood still as damp hair formed some ice at the edges as he rushed in, quickly closing the door behind him. Collar was up on the lined windbreaker which helped to keep his neck and ears from freezing overly. "Woooooo!" Came out in a rush that still frosted his breath, quick one and gone for the warmth of the tavern. "It's getting bitter cold out there. Snow is getting thicker too," which he was dusting off his shoulders, boots in testament where it caked against the sides.

Conor heard Liam as he entered and chuckled to himself just before he took another swallow.

One final night and things were about as finished as they were going to get. Cleaned and ready, now all she had to do was start making things! But now she was going for some warm cider and thus ventured to the Thistle in a rush to get out of the snow, just about on Liam's heels. Hope he moved away from the door or Fawn would feel bad for running into him. "Oh heavens it's freezing out there!" Oh look! Family was here. "Hello brothers mine! And cousin!"

"Evening, Little Cousin. Want a glass?" He gave an up nod to Alex who placed another glass for Liam and even placed one for Oisin just in case. Conor filled them both, just in case as well. He could take care of the female cousins if she was going to wimp out on them with some girly drink.

"Evening, Fawn. Good night to be out of the weather and in where it's warm." And there was plenty to drink. "We were discussing days and then Liam blew in like a storm himself." Lifting his glass to salute her and then Liam. "Well fought tonight."

He was around to wrap Fawn up in a hug, good way to share some warmth, or steal hers! "How are you doing my little Fawn?" Releasing her in the next moment that she could get more from Ciar and even possibly Conor.

Karina had come to town to pick up some supplies for the Gardens, but as she finished her errands, snow began to fall. Ugh. She detested the wet, frigid stuff, and turned up the collar of her heavy navy wool pea coat as she walked faster. A potcheen at the Thistle would be just the thing to warm her before starting her trek home. Tucking her parcel of shopping beneath one arm, she pulled one hand out of a pocket only long enough to push open the door, then turned to close it immediately behind herself. Karina wore layers of wool stockings and a russet red skirt beneath the pea coat, and her amber ringlets exploded out from beneath a wool cap. This was tugged off along with her coat as she shifted the package from hand to hand and finally, turned to face the room. There were some familiar faces, Liam and Ciaran and Oisin, and she started to grin... and Conor. Now she was hesitating.

He took off the lined coat, "I think tomorrow I'm going to get a fur cloak for how cold it is going to get here.." Dark eyes shifted to the others as he hung the garment to a peg then was over to get some potcheen. That would warm him up inside real quick.

Big hug was returned with a smile. "I am fantastic!" Then over to the bar to pounce Ciar with a hug and Conor so she could peek at what they were drinking. "You'll have to ask Liam if I can have some." For that, Liam got a sweet smile. Nothing like the little sister getting a little tipsy and giggly.

"On a night like this, sure, or the punch which is not quite as strong but will warm you up too." Taking up a lean, he would leave it to her. The punch was tastier or so he was told by the ladies.

"She's a Quinn, she can handle the potcheen." Conor returned the hug then stretched around to take the glass and hand it over to Fawn.

This night she was in her working clothes, as she considered them. Tucked away in the stables behind her wagon, she was working on the rear right wheel, leather breeches and a leather jerkin comprised her outfit, both of them lined in red sable. Atop that she wore a sturdy shearling coat that went down to her ankles and covered her arms in heavy warmth, fastened up the front with sturdy frogging. Warm gloves on her hands and a fur hat on her head matched the knee-high boots of more leather, fur lined as well. Finally shaking her head, she stepped back and studied the work she had tried to do. The blasted wood of the wheel was splitting and not a thing she could do about it. Giving it a scowl that should fire it into cinders, she came around the wagon and out the stables, heading for the door.

Fawn just smile and pulled her gloves off before taking the glass from Conor. "Thanks." When another entered, she turned and waved. "Evening, Karina!"

He just grinned over his glass as he watched Fawn though another entered and he nodded toward her.

Karina. Well now the holidays were complete. "Karina." He offered with a slight dip of chin to her in greeting. All the more reason for Alex to keep the whiskey coming.

Guess pouncing Ciar didn't result in knocking him over like she'd hoped. She' d have to work harder on that!

Nope, he had been working out some at Liam's place so he could give her a good bear hug and keep on his feet at the same time when she pounced. "Beautiful as always." A grown woman nearly but he hoped she never changed.

Aaaand she was caught, too late to duck out the door unnoticed. Eyes shifting over to Fawn, she offered her a lopsided smile. "Evenin' Fawn." She nodded to Ciaran in return as well and began to approach the bar. Almost as wary as a doe aware of its hunter just around the next tree.

"Guid eve'in tae yea, Karina." Comfortable lean taken as he kicked back the first tumbler of the pure only to be followed by a second, then pouring a third. This one he waited on. Waited to see how the first two did.

Evony came pushing in the door, dusted with fresh snowflakes, raising her head to smile over at Fawn as she greeted the Frenchwoman. "Bonsoir, Mam'selle Fawn. So lovely to see you again, hmm?" She smiled as she moved inwards, aiming for the bar and Alex. "Ah, Alex, most noble tender, please to pour me a cognac, eh?"

Fawn would always be a kid! That was another reason she was always warding off guys. She so didn't want to grow up. Not that much at least. "Handsome as always." She smiled and settled on a stool, waving. "Evening Miss Evony."

She nodded to Liam as well, and then to Conor, since he'd acknowledged her with a stating of her name. Claiming herself a stool at the bar, she settled on its edge. "Potcheen for me, Alex."

The others present got gracious smiles and a nod of her head quite as if she was in her normal gown and had her hair all properly coiffure. Conor she gave a nod to as well, having met him before.

Only Liam's dark eyes shifted to take in the one coming in from a partial profile view. Blazing glance as his adrenaline was still high, from fur hat to booted feet, weighing and sizing up before set to her face in study there with a fuller turn of his head. "Eve'in tae yea miss." Slight nod before kicking back what was held in his tumbler.

Good Lord, Conor wouldn't bite...her. The opening of the door was a welcomed distraction. "Good evening, Miss." He offered to the Frenchwoman, smiling with her nod.

The brandy was set on the counter for her by the tender and the furrier smiled at him with a murmured thanks, pulling her gloves off and setting them on the counter to take up the snifter. The hat covered the top of her head, but did not hide the braid that fell behind her to mid-thigh. The coat she unlatched with one hand while sipping cognac with the other. "It is trés froid, oui?" Said to anyone, really. " very cold."

She wasn't so sure about that. Nodding to Alex in thanks, the petite skinny lass kicked back the full shot of potcheen like a pro. A slow exhale pushed through slightly parted lips as it burned its way down.

Miss. Fawn took a small drink of the potcheen and looked between her kin and Evony and smiled. "Miss Evony, have you met Liam, Ciaran and Conor? Or Karina?"

She gave a nod and smile of the polite sort to Liam, only then noting his study of her. Her gaze was serene and calm, not the least bit disconcerted.

Eyes shifted briefly to the new woman as she began speaking in some foreign tongue, she quirked a brow then glanced away, minding her own business. That is until Oisin spoke up and she offered the stranger a smile. "Hiya."

"Aye, it is, grand isn't it? The cold?"

First only the corner of his lips twitched then were quick into a smile. Brows lifted as Karina took down her drink like a sailor. "W'ere 'ave yea been 'anging out t'ere Karina?"

"I have not met anyone here but you and the monsieur, Conor." Smiling over at Fawn, before nodding to each of the new named people. "Very lovely to meet you all."

"Oh, well that's Liam and Ciaran." Closest to Ciaran, he got an elbow nudge. "This is Miss Evony. She's new here."

Turquoise hues flicked from Evony over to Liam, and her lips stretched into more of a grin at his comment. "Rougher places than this I can assure ya." And she nodded to Alex in request for another.

"I bae Liam," shifting up from his lean at a descent height no less. "A pleasure tae meet yea Miss Evony." Being that was how she was introduced.

She chuckled over at Karina for her comment. "It is merveilleux, if one is born with a fur coat, non?" Smiling and then sipping her cognac.

He nudged his brother Ciaran as he'd gotten far too quiet.

"Pleasure to meet you, Miss Evony." He nodded in her direction, giving a half smile before he chuckled. "I was getting there, Fawn." And then Liam did the same.  One from either side. "Ow!"

"Good that all aren't, Miss Jolie, or you'd be searching for new employ."

"Someone has to pick on you, Ciar. Liam gets it from Madam, Evan gets it from Mariah, so you get picked on by me." Smiling brightly to him.

A warm laugh left her at Conor's words, and she nodded with dark blonde brows rising. "Indeed, c'est vrai, Monsieur Conor. I would be in such deep trouble, oui."

Brad's top hat was covered in snow as well the shoulders of the lined tiered cape he wore. Certainly the fashion in England which was the fashion in Boston. He wasn't quite the quirky fop he presented sometimes and he genuinely liked good clothing. Not so much the styling over the material. He was in with a whoosh of snow and cold air before it was closed off and the top hat removed first, tapping off the snow before it was placed on the shelf over the pegs to hang the cloak. That came second, gloves to follow tucked away in a hidden pocket. One a number of fine Turkish cigars were taken from and then offered to the men in turn which included Alex.

Karina stared at Evony for just a brief moment. Between the accent and the switching back and forth between English and French, she couldn't understand half of what the woman was saying. But she seemed nice enough and Karina glanced again to the door, nodding to the unfamiliar and very well dressed gentlemen. Potcheen number two went down the hatch neatly.

Blue green eyes looked over at the door as the swirl of snow came in, bringing winter cold with it. She shivered a bit and took a restorative drink of the brandy, and put off removing her coat for a few more minutes. Recognizing the gentleman, Evony smiled to him. "Bonsoir, Mons...." :remembering in time. "..Bradley." It was only because she was very upset about her wagon wheel that the French was so prevalent, though of course none of them could know that. As she calmed and contained herself, she would ease back into the sparser sprinkling of her native tongue. For now, though, she was too perturbed.

"Hello, Brad, just in time. The drinks are flowing." He waved the English gentleman over to join the Irish. Here it mattered not.



Date: 12-05-10
Poster: Liam David Quinn 
Post # 29

"Good eve to you Miss Evony," politely given with a hint of a smile that also turned on the other. "Fawn, Liam, Ciaran, Conor," stopping upon Karina, "I don't believe we have met?"

The breeze brought attention to the door to see Brad entering. A nod given to him. "Evening, Mr. Harrington." The glass was finished off, she turned to the bar to reach for the bottle and refill her glass.

He accepted a cigar, but tucked it away for now.

She took a deep draught of the brandy and then smiled to Alex. "Perhaps another one of these, in a few minutes, eh, sil vous plait?"

Catching Bradley's eye she offered him a shake of the head; indeed they had not met before. "Karina," she offered her name and her hand to shake. She might dress like a girl these days but still had somewhat boyish tendencies.

He too took one of the cigars offered as he ran it down along under his nose. "Nice," more muttered before slipping it in a vest pocket.

"It is my pleasure to meet you Karina," taking her hand like a true Englishman, fingers slipping beneath the palm before it was lifted to the barest touch of his lips upon fingertips then lowered to release as he straightened. He had heard her name before but he was trying to place it. "I trust everyone is having a warm enjoyable evening."Turning a glance over the rest before he was collecting a glass of the potcheen offered here.

"Thanks," quietly given to Bradley before the cigar was tucked away. He was more listening than watching, his eyes focused on the floor.

Evony gave a nod to Bradley for his kindness in asking such, smiling to him before she climbed up a stool and settled upon it. Twirling her snifter in her hands to warm the brandy a bit more, she was content to be quiet and listen.

With a bit of amusement, Liam broke the growing silence. "Ciar, 'ave yea seen t'e newest recruit, goes by Jones?" He had tried him out in the ring earlier today and was impressed with one not green behind the gills. "He stayed tae practice w'ile I 'ad tae gae out." Why he was asking his brother on the one.

Karina blinked as he kissed her hand rather than shaking it, eyeing him with a good long look that he might find peculiar... not yet knowing her personality. Relenting that hard look, she reclaimed her paw and idly twiddled her hands in her lap as the conversation moved around her.

"Aye, I watched him a bit this afternoon when I returned from running errands. He looked to be in pretty good shape." He knew some about boxing from watching his brother.

Seemed they all were in listening mode save Liam. Add drinking to the mix and that made for a decent night. Add drinking to any mix and it made for a decent night. Conor, however, wasn't so sure he was interested in having a decent night. Talk of boxing caused this particular Quinn to think of ways around just decent.

"I'd like him added tae the list for the real rounds, not just the spars. We should keep an eye on this one, I t'ink 'e will advance fast but I want tae be sure o' w'ere 'e is at 'eart." Which Ciar would understand after all they had been through in the far northern cities.

Because they were so quiet, the resounding thud, against the tavern wall might have sounded more like danger, had it not been followed by pure laughter, heard only when a certain gypsy was about. Where they to glance at the window, they would have seen two furry figures close together, both laughing, then one parted from the other, with a resounding call of "TAG you are it catch me if you can." Knowing very well that the wild gypsy was the only who could catch her, and Charlie wheeled off the porch, heading of course for the stables. Laughing all the way, as Kenneth followed his laughter ringing as he gave chase....

Such a look would go over Brad's head for it was so common place to do so, he'd not be looking for such a reaction. Drink in one hand, bottle in the other, he wandered over to the hearth to take up a seat there. Settled in quite comfortable. It was then he noticed the pile of old Gazettes as he set down the bottle almost in trade as he picked one up and started leafing through it as he drank.

Evony listened to the talk of the up and coming fighter, or so it seemed that is what they were discussing. Her eyes on Liam as he spoke, she wondered several things, but none of them were queried. At the thud, she tipped her head to the side for a moment, blond brows lifting as she heard that laugh. She didn't know Charlie well enough to recognize it. She heard what seemed like playing, and that made her smile.

Time stretched on and Karina debated whether to leave or order herself another potcheen. The two she drank in quick succession had her feeling nice and warm and just a wee bit disjointed. Glancing up at the thud and muffled familiar voices shouting outside, she smirked some to herself and tapped her fingers lightly along her glass.

"The Banshee! She bea wailing fer someone taenight," most likely Kenneth! That's how Liam reacted to the thud and following high pitch laughter.

Charlie had the right idea! Now that was a good way to get the night moving beyond decent!

Oh yeah beware the hayloft, or stall where ever they landed, it was a good night to be alive and in love ...

It was a very good thing that Evony was done in the stables!

"I'll see to it when ... " He faded off and looked toward the window then took a long drink. Maybe a good night to just stay at the Thistle.

With the snow coming down heavily, who knew was lurking outside hidden under white, she probably look like a banshee. Noticing Evony looking his way there was a quick wink of a dark eye, the gleam in which spoke of mischief.

Oh, okay, that caused her to smile at him and chuckle. Surely that was not the laughter of spirits out there. She would swear there was both female and male laughter.

Taptaptap went her fingers before she made up her mind. It probably seemed abrupt when Karina leaned forward on her stool to peer down the bar to where Conor sat, waiting to catch his eye before she spoke shortly.  "Can we talk?"

Evony looked over at Karina when she spoke, though when she noted who she was looking at as she spoke those words, she hastily looked away again.

What the...Karina was looking his way. Hell, she was leaning forward on the bar and looking right at him, but he still glanced around then back at her. His initial response was...why? But then, guess the whole talking thing would bring the answer to that question. He shrugged a shoulder, tossed back his drink and set his empty glass on the counter. "Sure." One word answer. He really had no idea what she'd have to say to him at this point, but if she felt a need to 'talk', she could 'talk away'.

He finished off his drink as he was up and over to Alex, a few words exchanged as the older man handed him over extra gazettes to read. "Good night everyone," tucking them under his arm as he headed for the peg that held his cloak and the top hat from the shelf. "Liam, I would like to stop by tomorrow, see this boxing ring of yours." Tipping the hat with a gloved hand as he was ready.

"Night, Brad...thanks for the smoke."

The second brandy was set at her elbow, the first almost gone, and she smiled at Alex, who was a most wondrous tender." Merci beaucoup, Alex." Then her eyes moved voer the others, with a nod to Bradley. "Bonsoir, sir."

Karina wasn't exactly sure just what she wanted to say to him, either. She just knew that this uncomfortable tension whenever they were in the room together seemed a ridiculous vestige of something that felt to her as if it had happened years ago. Well, it had been a year or so at this point, hadn't it? Hopping off her stool, Karina gestured towards the back room with a nod of her chin and headed back there, hoping and assuming Conor would follow. And in the few seconds while she waited she tried to gather some sort of speech into her head.

It was too quiet. So...two of them were going off to talk, and one was leaving. She turned her eyes to Fawn, Liam, and Ciaran. "Do any of you know, perhaps, of a wainwright?"

"Aye, yea bae welcome anytime there Bradley. Guid night tae yea." Saluting him with the uplift of his drink before it was kicked back. "Aye," turning a look to Evony. "That would be Raphael O'Keeffe."

Pleased with that and a few things to see to, he was out the door as quickly and quietly as possible.


"Good night, Bradley." He lifted his glass in salute before downing what was left, picking up the bottle and refilling his glass. Conor and the girl were given a studying look before he leaned back against the bar.

"Ah, bon. Where might I find, hmm?" Smiling to Liam.

Conor was a Quinn, he was never uncomfortable while in a tavern. Especially not because of a female. Dang. She was heading off, this discussion couldn't be handled in the common room? He cut a look to the others, smiled quick like, then strode off to where Karina waited. This definitely wasn't his idea of making a decent night better.

There was a quick to his lips as he was first going to say, look to the sky, but that might confuse the lass. "He bae in the commons, 'as a ware'ouse full o' wagons, surreys and now 'orse drawn sleighs."

She would have not at all understood Liam had he answered her that way. She smiled at him and nodded. "Very well, I shall see if I may find him there in morning. Merci, Monsieur Liam." She rolled the new snifter in her palms, her eyes flicking over to the direction the other two had left in, before coming back to smile over at the others. "There is a ranch, as well. Erm..the McDonough? Monsieur Conor mentioned it. I would like to have directions to this place, oui?"

He took a lean against the wall, arms crossed over his chest. "Talk, Karina, I've a glass of whiskey calling my name out there."

Karina wasn't the type to discuss private matters out in public. At least, not while more than half sober and she was still there at this point. Her arms had crossed tightly over her chest but she dropped them when Conor stepped in, turning to face him. And with that confrontational tone of his, her goal to remain calm and pleasant evaporated. A defensive frown curved her lips as she looked up at him. "Listen, I'm not sure what I ever did to you but there's no reason to act like something smells bad whenever I walk into the room. It's ridiculous and it makes people..
uncomfortable." Not least of all her.

"There's two McDonough brothers and a son. What would you be looking for?"

"His place bae up from t'e crystal gold lake. Yea 'ead nort' from 'ere, once past Clearview manor yea bear tae t'e east, can't miss it wit' all t'e cattle. Fences along t'e road leading up tae t'e ranches. Fork take a left tae Maurice and 'is son Rory's Stables and rig't takes yea tae Josep'."

Eyes narrowed for just an instant. What the heck was she talking about? Conor hadn't grown up with a houseful of females without learning to just say. "Okay." At least with his kin, he sorta-kinda knew what the heck they were talking about. He pushed up from his lean and lowered his arms. All was good now, right?

Blue greens the intensity of black opals looked over to Ciaran with a suddenly disconcerted look. "Oh...I have need of a steed, Monsieur Ciaran. I don't know which one I mean." Those eyes turned to Liam. His directions were.... well. Challenging was the best she could say about it. But she smile and nodded as if she understood. "Ah, merci. I am sure I...will not miss it."

Either he was feigning ignorance or he was as dumb as a tree trunk. She highly suspected it was the former. Both brows jumped up at his simple response. "Okay?" She echoed in disbelief. "Don't act like you don't know what I'm talking about. Everyone else gets grins, and when you look at me, it's a look could freeze the sun." She knew she wasn't imagining it and her frown evolved into a more challenging one.

"You head north from here. You'll see Barrington Hospital, then Clearview Manor and bear east, lots of cattle. At a fork you go left, and that's where the stables are." They were brothers but Liam had a thicker accent of late.

He'd been hanging around with his maties. He started chuckling as Ciar gave the same directions after he gave them. That was smothered behind another drink. Now he was wondering how many Ciaran had.

He snorted out a quiet laugh, a cant of head taking in her attitude and her comment. Don't ever pressure a Quinn, no matter the subject because they could be a stubborn lot. "Okay..." He leaned toward her. "What else do you want me to say, I'll say it. Cause unless you tell me what you want me to say, nothing I say will please you, aye?" And since he really didn't want to step on anyone's toes, he smiled to her, a grin that should settle the matter, then he turned to walk away and rejoin the gathering.

The Frenchwoman turned grateful eyes to Ciaran, and she smiled warmly at the man. "Merci, Monsieur Ciaran. You are very kind.."

Just two. He was interpreting. She was French, Liam's accent was Irish. It might be confusing.



Date: 12-05-10
Poster: Liam David Quinn 
Post # 30

Jacquette stepped into the tavern quietly, as if trying not be heard. The girl was a fire cracker though. She hesitated at the door and let the smell of alcohol and the whispers of the crowd hit her like the winds of relief. It had been a long day today, and she was done playing working girl. It was time for a nice glass of soco and maybe…just maybe, a few beers. Her trouser suit jacket was draped gently over her arm and once she made her way to the bar, it found its place as a seat cushion or rather protective barrier against the bar stool material. She dug dark heeled shoes into the rungs of the stool and waved her hand in a shy manner in an attempt to capture the tender’s attention.

Oh no he didn't, not so fast. Karina hastily stepped forward to block his exit, and while she was much shorter than him, he'd stop if he didn't want to trample her. "Wait just a second, don't just blow me off. I deserve better than that." Her chin jerked up to regard him with an even scowl. The old Karina might have just punched him rather than speaking in such a way but she'd changed. That skittery little street rat had been replaced by the more self-assured young woman who stood before him. "I don't want you to say anything, I just want you to treat me like I'm a half-decent sorta person. I'm sick of feeling like an invader in this place whenever you're here too."

Were their voices rising and was that movement in the hall as dark eyes turned a curious glance towards that very one his cousin and the other disappeared down. Except there was another to come in from the steadily falling snow and cold. "Guid eve tae yea lass," sliding glance to his brother before back upon the one. "Food and drink are free here as well a room if needed. Alex will serve you," indicating the older gentleman at the bar.

Evony smiled at the newly arrived woman, with a nod of welcome, before sipping her brandy again. It was good stuff. She wasn't sure what the others were drinking, but she meant to find out one of these nights. For now though, the old and comfortable was perfect for her. It warmed her nicely, and was hitting her legs with that warm, wimpy feeling. She was starting to feel a little better.

Old Karina...she was still Karina. And Karina's voice was the only one raised. Conor wasn't the type to raise his voice, his was more of a controlled and monotone... "Oh-kay." Really, what else could the man say? She felt she deserved better, she no doubt felt that in a lot of ways. Okay. She wanted him to treat her as a half-decent sort of person. Okay. She shouldn't feel like an invader. Ohthefeckokay! He stood for a while where he was, her blocking his path, but she was a wee lass compared to the Quinn. If she didn't move from his way, she could be quite easily displaced ... and replaced.

She nodded kindly to the gentleman and lady who acknowledged her and offered a smile especially to the gent. Only apologetically, due to the fact she stared for a long moment after he spoke, processing his accent. Luckily she had been around her new students long enough to grasp the basics of their heavily over pronounced lingo. Alex had finally made it her way and brought her a small glass of golden colored liquid over ice
as she requested. She sipped slowly, letting the alcohol's warming affect take it's time on her.

He could apologize for treating her so? Or at least pretend to feel bad about making her feel this way... but it was becoming clear that her efforts might be futile. Unfortunately she was just as stubborn as Conor and she set her jaw as she studied his features. "Why? Why are you acting like this? We used to be friends at least, so why don't you just talk to me instead of acting like you can't say more than one word at one time." And her voice was tense, but not raised so loud as to be heard out in the commons.

The woman was lucky only the first part of what he had to say held to the accent, then it was dropped due to his brother acting like no one understood him, his interpreter.

Grin! Always glad to lend a hand.

Liam would get even. See those dark eyes grow even darker in a quick narrowed glance Ciar's way. Only warning. He'd not know when the sky fell on him.

Again it was quiet, and she felt as if she should somehow be conducting the conversation. Why? Likely because she was French, and it was just the right thing to do to be social and aware of other people's comfort levels. Smiling at the two men, she spoke. "You have a resemblance, I think, to each other. Am I far wrong in thinking you related, messieurs?"

"Where are you from, ladies?" Ciaran getting his profile and hard to read look but there was just the twitch at the corner of his lips. Dark eyes shifting between Evony and the other. Which reminded him he didn't have a name. "I am Liam, my brother Ciaran and the lady Evony. What do you go by?" Karina and Conor were down a hall and out of sight presently.

Why should he feel like an apology was needed when he wasn't even doing anything to his knowledge that required an apology. "Because, Karina, I may have nothing more to say. Don't have any more to say now. Okay?" This time the  word was a question. His hand came to rest on the wall just by her arm, the same hand that would see the little hissfitter moved from his path in five, four, three, two...

"Oh, pardon...." crossing Liam in speech, she apologized and then hushed.

"He's the oldest." Ciaran explained as if that was relevant." And it wouldn't be the first time either he or Evan got even with the youngest.

Which had him laugh, one of those quick outbursts with a look shot back to his brother. "We are brothers," shifting his focus back upon Evony. "Conor is our cousin."

"Jacquette Miller" She extended a hand to however felt it necessary to grasp it in greeting. "I am from the States... Foreign exchange, uhm. Teacher sort of thing I suppose. I am a professor." She smiled awkwardly and indeed did not expect to be confronted with conversation so early in her arrival.

"Nothing more to say? You haven't said anything! Not to me anyway, not in almost a year!" Okay, her voice might have been just a little raised now, but she was completely baffled. She was more confused than angry and she held her ground, not one who liked to leave things unresolved. "Why do you hate me?" She blurted. If memory served, she was the one with good reason to despise him, and she had, for a long time. But she had gotten over that some time ago and had hoped that at least they might be friends again. Those hopes were being dashed to smithereens by this conversation, however.

"Nice to meet you Jacquette," taking her hand in his with a shake. Roughen skin against smooth for the few moments but there was strength and warmth in his. "I'm not sure were the states are, unless you mean the Colonies?" He heard something about them forming into states especially with the rebellions mounting against England. He was impressed, being she was a female teacher, professor even. Wasn't totally unheard of but rare. "That is very impressive, what do you teach?"

The girl turned her eyes towards the hallway for a very brief moment, and then politely turned her eyes back to the others. "Oui, lovely to meet you, mam'selle Jacquette." Evony smiled at her, and then nodded to Liam and Ciaran. "Ah, oui, merci."

His drink finished, he set the glass aside and stretched. His arse was getting numb from sitting so much lately.

Conor drew in a deep, calming breath, releasing it slowly before he spoke. "I don't hate you, Karina." Began his reply. It was all how a person looked at the situation. Which shoes were on whose feet. "I really don't. I just don't have anything to say. Would you have me comment on the state of the roads? The change in weather? The fact that feminine attire suits you? Or...perhaps, ask you how Rhett is doing?" He shook his head with a chuckle. "From where I stand" He motioned with his finger between the two of them. "This is comfortable. Like it or not. This is who I am and that's about all I have to offer."

"The pleasure is certainly my own." She retrieved her hand from his and relaxed a bit more in her seat. "I focus particularly on chemistry and the maneuvering of different elements...  medicine, things of the sort."

"You've done a hell of a job pretending then," she muttered under her breath when he assured her that he didn't hate her. She really didn't like being made to feel like an idiot for bringing this up, as if there had been no reason for doing so. She crossed her arms tightly against her chest, her frown holding her features as he finally offered more than just a few words. Though his questions only made her narrow her eyes at him almost suspiciously. There was a strange sort of compliment mixed in there somewhere, and why was he bringing up Rhett? She had every right to court whomever she chose. Someone who wanted her as Conor hadn't. She was finally silent when he finished speaking, only because she wasn't sure what to say. Except to give up. "Fine." Her tone was short and almost tired. "If acting like the other doesn't exist whenever we're in the same tavern is what's comfortable for you, then fine. I won't attempt to talk to you any more, I promise." This was not how she hoped it might end. But what else could she do? He seemed determined to keep a chilly distance between them and if that was what he wanted... she wouldn't impose herself upon him again. And she stepped aside, silently letting him pass her by as he'd been trying to do since he first stepped back here.

"Nice to meet you, Jacquette." He gave a boyish smile before taking a lean against the bar, instead of sitting. "I think I'm going to find a game." He raised his voice so Conor could hear. Ciaran hadn't been to the docks in a while and staying out of trouble was wearing thin. "You coming or staying, Liam?"

"It was very nice to meet you, Monsieur Ciaran." Expecting Liam to go with the man, she nodded to him as well, a smile given to both men.

He was even more impressed. "You have a noble and honorable profession, Jacquette." He glanced to Evony being she was the French lady and the other with a French sounding name. "I am going to stay a while longer. I will catch up with you at the manor. Check to see that Fawn got back all right?" She was coming and going late hours for a while but then he knew why.

"You as well." She sipped from her glass once more, before further explaining herself to Liam. "My father was a popular scientist in the states, and it's frowned upon that I take such a heavy passion in the field of study, but I truly believe it was my calling…now my father and I are here opening a small school to try to grasp the young minds of the women here, create a revolution in science if you will!" She voice rang with over excitement. "Thank you very much, good sir."

Conor grinned for real this time. "Do you mean ... okay?" He heard Ciaran's intentions, but kept his gaze on Karina for now, lest he be accused of not paying attention to her.  He didn't move past her yet, even though she had granted him the space to do so. He stood where he was, a smile on his face, and both brows raised as he waited to hear her say it.

She was hurt, and he was smiling at her as if he didn't have a care in the world. It sort of made her hate him all over again. Her arms tightly crossed, Karina's eyes moved away and her jaw tightened. Still silent. She wasn't going to dignify that with a reply, and besides, if she opened her mouth now she might just start spewing fiery words that would get them nowhere. So her answer, was no answer at all.

Her eyes moved to Liam as he said he was staying, before looking over to Jacquette. "It must be a very difficult thing to do, Mam'selle Jacquette. I salute your bravery in going against the strictures of society in this way."

She was not incorrect by calling them States, all thirteen of them, also called the Colonies or Colonial states. "Here, being in the states?" Using the term she was, for certainly it was not here in Heathfield lands.

Hell, he didn't have a care in the world. Karina made her choices, he made his. She shouldn't have any either! Such was life. When her reply was silence, even after he had tried to lighten the mood, he dipped chin with a slow shake of head. "Enjoy your evening, Karina. It's a fine one." With the space provided, he turned to the side and eased passed her, making his way back out into the common room. His initial scan took in those who remained, and then, any new faces in the room while he made his way back to the bar.

"I appreciate your admiration, Miss Evony. When you grow up around it, and you find yourself mixing different elements for fun rather than amusing yourself with dolls and trinkets, it becomes hardly difficult! It has been a struggle, but I am blessed with my father’s reputation, it helps…" Although she did not like to think that her father got her to where she was as an up and coming doctor, it definitely played a part. Eyes focused on Liam.

She had offered an olive branch and he had thrown it in her face. How should she feel? It wasn't like her to take such a chance, and the step had sent her toppling gracelessly over a cliff. She should  have known better. Refusing to meet his eyes lest she reveal the hurt pooling there, she didn't acknowledge his words but waited for him to clear the doorway before stepping out herself.

"Excuse me! Yes, I've been here but a few days and my mind has yet to leave home! I imagine my inability to hold my drink with grace may play a part as well. Yes, in the colonies. It’s a marvelous endeavor
. Exciting. We're surprised at the support we're receiving. Miraculous."

"All right then. Good night, ladies. It was a pleasure to meet you both." He crossed the room to grab his cloak and pulled it on. "I'll talk to you later then, Liam." Potcheen, cards, a fight or two, maybe a comely wench. A hand lifted to Conor as he started for the door.

"Ho! Ciaran! Where are you headed, I may join you in a few!" Right now, he needed a drink and that's what he was seeing to.

Without a word or glance to anyone she was heading straight for the door, quickly darting past Ciaran. Coat, hat, door, and she was gone.

"To the docks. You know the Fiddler Crab? I hear there's going to be a big game tonight."

She smiled at Ciaran again as he readied to head out. "Lovely to meet you as well, sir." Hearing Conor, she looked over to him, and then her eyes moved beyond to the woman who had talked with him. She gave her a friendly smile as she was leaving, though she did not look up.



Date: 12-05-10
Poster: Liam David Quinn 
Post # 31

"It is easy to do, even without a drop of liquor in oneself." Smile showed a touch but then he was distracted by Ciaran. "Oh, you are not going back to the manor.." catching the familiar name.

He watched the lass pass, a brow lifting. Like a storm cloud moving overhead.

Fiddler ... and there went Karina.

Karina's fast exit. had him blinking.

"That is a grand thing, Mam'selle Jacquette. I am glad to hear you have support." Smiling, liking the thought of education for girls and other revolutionary things like that.

"Perhaps, if the night permits, I will see you there then, Cousin." He lifted his refilled glass to the departing Ciaran, allowing the other to depart in the silence she demanded she didn't want.

"And yourself Miss Evony, Liam, sir? What wonderful and enticing things are there to partake in here?" She was unfamiliar with the lands, and a bit cast off by her father, who had his own agenda she dared not question.

"What kind of game does he mean?" To Liam or Conor, either one. A smile to Jacquette, then. "I am new here, myself, mam'selle. I am a furrier by trade."

"I am head of me family and I am establishing a boxing ring that will have both training of those lads interested," and one lass already if and when she ever showed up, "as well matches once we have the benches in."

"Cards, Miss Jolie." Conor offered, sparing a look over the lass that wasn't here before. "And with that, many a game can be afoot." He slowly returned his gaze to Evony, a smile followed with a twitch of eyebrow to emphasize the possible other ... games. Not that the Lady would get the implication, but, she was French, surely she was no prude.

Jacquette certainly followed his implications and let out a small huff before perking up at Liam's words. "Boxing! There's something I have yet to try! And I do like to try new things very much."

She looked from Liam at his description of what he was doing, to Conor at his answer. Nodding her head, she considered his answer, the translation and the look sifted through until she had his meaning. Tipping her head to the side her serene smile drifted over her upside down mouth and she nodded. "Oui, I see, Monsieur Conor." She looked from Conor to Liam and then to the lady. Amusement flicked in her eyes as they were about to be deserted by the gentlemen.

"If you're in, I'm in, we can catch up to him." Let the games begin for there was another bit of news he had discovered in a Flower Garden no less.

Her spirit was heightened by her new company, and the images of her, in a boxing ring, contending left a smile to linger upon her features.

Never deserted. Besides, he had a full glass of whiskey, he would be finished with that before he ventured into the cold again. No matter the gaming to be had. He could wait a few moments more before he emptied his pockets to the more experienced players. He had a good time of it, but most times he was well liquored up while playing. Was it any wonder he often left with not even lint in his pockets when he dared the tables?

"It is a sport that can get a pretty face rearranged." Although Liam had kept his nose from being broken or his brows from any pounding that his face was still 'pretty' as his brother Ciar put it. Ciar was cruising for trouble.

"You are very brave indeed, Mam'selle Jacquette." She was taken aback, though only a little, at the woman's intention to perhaps join the boxing ring. She let her admiration be seen, though, for it took courage. "Good luck to you, if you try it, eh?" She looked over at Conor and his glass, and then to Liam and his. Was it the same thing? She lifted up on her seat a bit to peer more closely, if she could.

"I'll certainly need it! I suppose I'd have better luck beating this old drunken fool at a round of cards or two. I do dabble in the sorts..." She offered a teasing grin at Conor. She had a marvelous attraction for anything out of her socially structured limits and wouldn't half mind joining the two and testing her limits.

Did she just call Conor an old drunken fool? She was confused. She looked between the two, and pursed her lips, running over the words again. She needed to work on her translating.

Was she calling him a fool? Old at that? Drunken, that was a given on too many occasions, but an old fool? Come on now lass, they had just met! Evony's action was taken as a question as to what he was drinking, not so much if it was the same as Liam's, so he turned to motion to Alex and the tender brought over an empty glass.

Alex, seeing how Evony was looking at the men's drinks, set out a tumbler with dram in it, small amount to try. Potcheen, made by one of the Princes, Sean DeBurgh, distilled trice to a smooth blend some call mountain dew, moonshine.

Wait...they hadn't even met and she was calling him a fool! "Conor Quinn, Miss, the Thistle's old drunken fool." And with that, he tipped his glass to her in a toast, reaching around to claim Evony's glass and then offered it out to her.

Perhaps old was a bit harsh, it just poured out of her though, words flowing as freely as the liquor down her throat. She laughed in what seemed like the first time in ages.

She noted what Alex did, and then what Conor was doing...blonde brows raising. "Is that ...I think I heard someone mention...po...posh.....erm...something like that." She took the glass that was offered. "Merci, Monsieur Conor." She sniffed delicately at the contents. "Ah...something like..a bourbon?"

"Potcheen..." Conor aided in her translation. "Whiskey, distilled here in these very lands by one Sean DeBurgh."

"Pleasure, Mister old fool! Jacquette Marie Miller, foreign loudmouth of the colonies!"

Conor was older than his cousin. Although his brothers were older than him. Oh, he was amused and there would be much teasing to come later.

No doubt there would be teasing. Grand. Just grand.

She looked in bemusement at Jacquette and decided on the instant that she liked her a great deal. A warm smile was given to her, before she looked back to Conor. "Ah...Potcheen." Said with that liquid meshing of consonants the French had. "Merci."

Alex was over with a small tin of salve made by the Druid Prince. It was set near Liam's elbow with a look to the bruising cut along his jaw. He got the hint as he took it up, nodding a thank you as he slipped it into a vest pocket. He would see to it soon but not right here.

"A pleasure, Miss Loudmouth." He offered her a cant of head with amusement lacing his words, then looked to Evony. "Well done." Now let's see if she could manage the spirits as well as the name.  He was shaking his head. This was nothing like a bourbon, but Evony would find that out soon enough.

"The other is much worse.." called under his breath where Alex would hear. Amusement dancing in dark eyes that turned on the two ladies about to sample some of the pure.

Lifting the glass to her lips, she took a sip of it, and then gasped for air. It burrrrned. "Mon Dieu.....C'est un feu sur la langue!"

Both brows shot up as the lass spewed quite a litany of words. The first, at least, he understood.

She returned the smile to Evony, before setting her empty glass on the bar top after trying the potcheen. Perhaps she had taken too kindly to the liquor if not too quickly. She found herself in a frenzy of excitement and slight
showmanship towards her new acquaintances. Especially, Liam, to which she found herself fond of, due to his reaction to her career choice. Yet, here she was! Acting like a buffoon! She winced as the liquor made itself present and shook slightly. The young lady had yet to try anything so strong.

"Good stuff, aye?" He tossed back his drink, turning to set the empty glass on the counter and give it a slight nudge toward the back of the bar. He was done. "It is ... uhm ..." He stroked his chin, smiling to them both since now they had both tried the brew, "an acquired taste?" Hell, these Irish lads went from the breast to the bottle...the whiskey bottle.

Shaking her head, her eyes watering a bit, she flushed with bright color. "Oh, la ......a fire on the tongue." Translating her earlier words. She took another sip, more cautiously than the first, and decided she liked it, but oh, she would have to be careful with it!

He kicked back the last of his and confiscated the bottle for the cold trip to the Fiddler Crab, interesting story behind that one not to be told in front of a lady. The McAndrews even better with the brew.

"I do hope I won't be acquiring it anytime soon, or I may find myself in a terrible place. I'm a bit of a clumsy drunk, if not carefree at all. I'd hate to see what a few more drinks would do. I'd lose sight of being a lady completely!"

"Then best you do watch your intake, Miss Miller. None would want that." He offered her a dip of head and shoulders, by way of a modified bow and then he stood. "Are you staying here, Miss Jolie? At the Thistle?"

Clearing her throat after the second sip and fanning her warm face, she pulled in a cooling breath. "Oui, Monsieur Conor, I am. My wagon is in the stable, and until I find a place to open as my own, thees...this..will be home, eh?"

Conor crossed to Liam, a hand clamping down on that man's shoulder with a squeeze. He didn't look to Evony as he spoke, not just yet, just grinned to Liam. "I'm glad to hear it. It's a fine place to settle at first." His gaze shifted then to rest on her, even though now he spoke to them both. "Ladies, do excuse us. I do believe it is time to relieve a man or two of the contents of their wallets." More than likely his...but, what the heck!

She took a sidelong glance to the empty glass. Consuming the entire sample, however small it was, in one shot, was not the best idea. She'd hate to see herself attempt to stand and although frowning at the idea at first, it seemed the Thistle could quite possibly become her temporary home as well.

"Aye, it is time tae gae before we are buried in snow." Which he started up a song in a good tenor's voice. "Let grasses grow and waters flow in a free and easy way, but give me enough of the rare old stuff that's made near Galway Bay, come gangers all from Donegal, Sligo and Leitrim too. Oh, we'll give the slip and we'll take a sip of the rare old Mountain Dew." Moving to get his coat and derby hat. "There's a neat little still at the foot of the hill, where the smoke curls up to the sky, by a whiff of the smell you can plainly tell that there's poteen, boys, close by. For it fills the air with a perfume rare, and betwixt both me and you, as home we roll, we can drink a bowl, or a bucketful of Mountain Dew." Giving the ladies a wink, "guid eve tae yea both, sleep in angel's peace." Then continuing with the song, "now learned men as use the pen, have writ the praises high of the rare poteen from Ireland green, distilled from wheat and rye. Away with yer pills, it'll cure all ills, be ye Pagan, Christian or Jew. So take off your coat and grease your throat with  bucketful of Mountain Dew." It wouldn't matter for Liam for he was going to have a good ole time win or lose. Although he usually won.

She gave Conor and then Liam a serene little smile, and nodded her head to them both. "Bonne chance, messieur! It was a delight to meet you, again. Bonne nuit."

He had no idea what she said mixed in there, but it sure sounded nice. A twitch of a wink followed and he spun on a heel, heading over to the pegs to collect his coat. From there he was wrapping around his scarf, tugging on his hat, wriggling on gloves and he was ready to go see what Chance had in store for him.

Jacquette offered a polite wave goodbye, and interrupted by Liam's singing, she giggled. Crazy gents, they were.

An enchanted smile curved her funny mouth, as she listened to Liam, her glass lifted for another sip as she listened. The wink from Conor got a chuckle.

"So help me, Liam, if you caterwaul the entire way, I'll stuff a snowball in your ..." And he stepped out the door, the last of his threat hushed to the ladies in the room.

"I think I will like thees place, mam'selle Jacquette." The furrier laughed softly as the men left, her eyes turning to Alex. "I had best go to bed, as I must go to a ranch and a wainwright upon the morrow, non?" Rising up, she smiled at the lass and the tender. "I must make my way to the room above. Please to come again, mam'selle, I found your company most delightful."

He stepped out behind Conor and shoved him forward, "I'll help yea getting tae it.." Of course it would escalate from there and the two coming into the Fiddler Crab like two abominable snowmen.



Date: 12-08-10
Poster: Raphael O'Keeffe
Post # 32

Getting to Know Others

"No, I think I will wait to do that till I have decided if I will fit here." Also, she had to make sure that the one seeking her had not followed. No sense in exposing these good folk to such a madman, nor to getting her hopes up about this place if it was not going to work out.

Charlie just smiled, she knew that everyone had a past, she did too, still she never let it stop her, "ah well I am sure that spring will bring more then a good time to plant." It would allow her to survey the areas that were suitable for hunting ...

"Indeed, that is my hope. I will just winter here, I think, and work on crafting what furs I have brought with me." Smiling, she drank more of her mulled wine.

Charlie hummed, "it will give you time to meet everyone, though I must say, with all the youngings coming around lately, I feel very old." Which in measure of time she was, but of course she was timeless in other ways ...

The woman chuckled, looking Charlie over:  "You do not look to have very many years with you, mam'selle Charlie.  But you do have that look of wisdom that generally comes with it."

That made her laugh softly, "some times wisdom is no fun ...I live life to the fullest every day ...keeps Kenneth young," the gypsy was in constant motion ...

"Ah, now who is this Kenneth you name so lovingly, hmm?" A soft smile to the other woman as she listened.

"My sunshine, my beau," she mused, "he is a gypsy, he parks his vardo on the ranch where he works the cattle and horses. I spent a lot of time between here and there," though there was not given a time frame or origin ...

Evony nodded her head, smiling a gentle, serene smile for the woman and the man she described. "It is a wonderful thing to have a soul mate, non?  I am so glad you have that, mam'selle Charlie." It was a true sentiment, clear  in her eyes.

Charlie nodded her head, "he is my ground to the world, and yes he is my soul mate," after years of seeing handsome men, and thinking none were for her, there was Kenneth and he made every thing seem right ...

The girl envied that, though she feared such would not come her way, or if it did, she would have to pass it by, considering her circumstances.  She did not have much to offer, she felt, because of them. Another smile was given to Charlie before she moved to another subject. "Tell me, sil vous plait, who are these youngsters you mention, hmm?  I think that I met two of them, anyway. The two lads how are born of three? Erm," searching for the words. "Triplets!"

"Ah the MCAndrews boys," nodding her head. "Most of the people I know have children who are coming of age, Joshua ..Kenneth's nephew, Shawnessey.. and several young ladies that are relatively new to the region ..." Charlie was terrible at names most of the time ...

"McAndrews." She nodded her head, trying to put the name in there. "Well, every land has those who are coming up to adulthood.  Are these young people of good heart?"

"I have watched many grow up, chased a few from places that they should not have been," almost caught one or two, but scaring the bejeebers out of them, had been a valuable lesson. "I know their parents better," since they had all wandered the same taverns, and enjoyed mischief..

A warm chuckle came from the French woman as she sipped her mulled wine. "The young are wonderful, very energetic, oui?" She was in the group herself, being some 22 summers old.

Charlie grinned, "wonderful  until they start asking what their Fathers did at the taverns and the like," though Charlie told the truth. She polished it some what, because men will be men, and their secrets were safe with her, and had been for many years. "They look for adventure and that in itself keeps one young I think," of course having Charlie tag along meant a lot of adventure with a twist of mischief ...

"Oui, they will." There was a smile with a distinctly sad taint to it, her blue green eyes fixed on her mug.  It lingered for long moments, before she moved to yet another subject. "Can you tell me something of the royalty here, mam'selle Charlie?  I hear there is a there also a king?"

Charlie nodded her head, "yes there is ..Lahoneee, though I seldom think of her as a queen, we use to run together to the tavern, to see what trouble we could find," she mused, continuing. "Karl is her king, and a very nice man. Very private, but still he has a sense of humor," he had too. "They are good people and very fair in dealing with those that make their kingdom .."

Sadie, fresh from a bath, sort of slid down the stairs, stockinged feet bumping from one tread to the next without much lift. Visiting her old patients all day had been both lovely and a little heartbreaking, babies she'd delivered were already in school. Emotionally and physically tuckered, stepped into the main room with damp curls and a stifled yawn.

Blonde brows rose up high, though a smile curled her lips. "A queen who visits taverns? Oh, trés audace, oui?" Laughing softly.  "In France, such a thing would not happen. The arrival of the woman she had seen in here once before brought a smile and a welcoming nod from the Frenchwoman. "Bonsoir, mam'selle.  Welcome."

That had Charlie smiling more, "a good ruler has lived as their people, in all aspects of life," she turned her head to the appearance of Sadie. "Evening ma'am," smiling and waving lazily from the hearth ...

Evony turned a surprised look to Charlie, thinking of all the terrible things she herself had been forced to escape, because rulers could not or would not do such a simple formula.  She could see how it would work to make the ruler sympatico with the people.  She smiled, and nodded. "Oui, c'est si bon."

"Bonjou." Sadie flashed a lazy smile at the two women. As she liked company and was insanely nosy she'd likely join them. As soon as she had some hot tea and a plate of food, that was.

Charlie had seen the same thing herself, how the privileges did not fall down to the people, and the attitude of the rulers, as if they were deserving of all things, "It is a good place here, as you learned when you came looking for a room and a hot meal," by taking care of her people, Lah earned respect and much more from those who lived in the kingdom ...

"I am really starting to see this, mam'selle Charlie, with the help of people like you, and for which I am most grateful." A warm smile for the older woman, before her eyes went to the other woman at her greeting. "It is a very cold night, oui?"

"Too right," Sadie's changeable accent easily carried. She leaned at the bar, robbing one foot along the calf of the opposite leg. While she wasn't sporting shoes she did have on perfectly respectable leathers and a white linen shirt. "But you two seem to know how to keep warm." She turned to pass her order to Alex. Happy to slouch against the bar while she waited for him to fill it.

Charlie did not mind another pair of feet on the hearth, she was enjoying the heat, never quite warm enough herself, but she was willing to share. It was so cold that Charlie had left Ears in his warm barn with the other animals... "Best seat in the house, of course" gesturing to the nice fire that they were enjoying .." looks like you could use some quiet comfort," though quiet for Charlie was relative ...

As Evony was currently wearing her red sable fur coat, it was a very good point that Sadie made.  She chuckled, and finally feeling warm enough, she pulled the fur from her shoulders and draped it on the chair next over. Her gloves and hat already occupied that spot.  She was attired in a long wool riding habit of forest green, which highlighted her eyes nicely. Black leather riding boots went up to her knees below the long skirting of her habit. "I have learned, mam'selle, that this place is an easy one to get warm in, non?  I am Evony Jolie, and this is Mam'selle Charlie.  What appellation may we call you by, hmm?"

The back of Sadie's hand stifled another yawn, so she couldn't help but laugh and nod. "Feeling too lazy for anything else. "Shame, that." Sadie's grin was lightning and sunshine. "A pleasure t'meet you both. I'm Sadie Badeau." With an accent leaning heavily on France and Australia with a lovely dash of who-knew-what thrown in.

Charlie waved her hand at the introduction, at some point in time, every one had heard of her, "salutations and welcome to our fire," she grinned ...

Evony looked in somewhat perplexed manner for a moment at Sadie, the accent something she could not place or parse out the sources of. The French changed to something else, and she could not place it.  It was not important, though, merely a curiosity. She smiled warmly at the woman who was clearly tired. "Well, do come and sit over here where the fire is so toasty, hmm?  You look tired..?" A lead in for the other, if she wanted it.

Sadie certainly had, but then she'd lived here a number of years ago. With plate in one hand and tea in another she joined them. "Thank you," in answer to Evony as she did indeed join them. She actually moaned as she settled into a chair, closing her eyes. "Got t'get a horse if I'm going to traipse about the countryside." She opened sea-glass green eyes and grinned. "Decided to spend the day walking it like a great fool." Hence the lack of shoes. She wiggled her toes then tucked her legs up under her, balancing her plate on one knee.

"You picked a cold day for walking, though it is always good for the body." Charlie did a lot of walking when it was too cold, not wanting to leave Ears in the cold nay longer then necessary, "hopefully your walkabout was worth the effort?"

Evony chuckled at the other woman as she wiggled her toes, and settled in.  Taking another sip of her warm mulled wine, she let Sadie have a few moments to take a few bites before she spoke again.

Sadie smiled around her mouthful of food, swallowed. "Saw some old patients, so it was worth it." She lifted her cup to take a sip, then said, "I used to be a doctor here. Well, I'm still a doctor, I just haven't been here." Clear, right?

Blonde brows rose up, Evony's eyes looking both surprised and delighted. "Oh, how merveilleux!  So rare is it, a woman doctor.  Magnifique!" She nodded her head in respect to the woman.

Charlie nodded her head, a doctor was always welcome in places, "well then if all was well, it made for a good day."

Sadie smiled at Evony. Yes, and here it wasn't such a problem as in other places. A good enough reason in itself to return. "Mais ouis. But I've interrupted your conversation and I bet it was better than fevers and aching bones."

"Umm loves and the royal family." Charlie mused, and in that order too, after horses of course. "It was just easy conversation, as Evony is still learning the area and people."

"Best people I've ever known." She nodded and blonde curls, not well pinned, bobbed.

"Indeed." Agreeing with Charlie. "You did not interrupt, not at all." Smiling, she sipped again, and offered something of her new experience in case the woman needed an idea of where to go.  "I have only yesterday bought a horse. He is a fine animal.  I got him at the McDonough ranch, if you are interested in purchasing one, Sadie."

Charlie hummed agreement, she had told Evony that too, "indeed .. generous people.." listening to Evony speak of her horse, smiling, any woman that spoke so of a horse was aokay in her books ...

"McDonough's I imagine?" Sadie grinned as she overlapped with Evony. "I do. Didn't have one last I was here, but I'm thinking I should have one this time.

"Oui, that is the place." Laughing softly at the cross in conversation, she sipped again at her mulled wine. It was almost gone, and the food that Sadie had looked good. She rose up, to move in the direction of the bar. "Mam'selle Charlie, may I get you a refill, as I am going that way?"

She shook her head, "no I am good thank you," eventually she would wander off to check on Kenneth, since it was so cold ..

"Very well." A warm smile to the woman, and then she was looking at the menu on the bartop, after smiling at Alex.

The steak and kidney pie was fantastic. Between talking Sadie was eating swiftly.

"Rory has good stock, and he breaks them well," with out breaking their spirits. "I imagine he could find one suitable for a doctor," she mused..

"Oh, yes, Alex, I will have the Pork cutlets, sil vous plait. And another mulled wine. It was very tasty!" She smiled again at him, and then turned to face the others while he got the order for her, "Oh, yes, he was amazing! I saw him breaking a mare, and he was so gentil! Firm, but gentil, you know? He did not care to ruin and subjugate her. It was the thing that told me I was in the right place."

"I don't know horses as well as I do people, but I'd trust his reputation." Sadie took a sip of her tea. "Do you? Know horses, not people. I imagine your good with those though." Sadie looked over to Evony with another quick grin. "Handsome and gentle, then, if memory serves." Inveterate flirt, she appreciated men often quite vocally.

On a cold slippery night as this, there was only one way to get to the tavern for a meal. Especially since he was coming from the tree house built down at the lake. He no longer stayed there but visited it frequently to check on the status of the vortex that hadn't open yet. He came down in a whoosh of black wings striped in white and blue. Oh, those stripes had their purpose too. Once landed he beat them hard, having the snow all around to rush up in a dazzling whirl played off by the dim lights from the street to shimmer.

"I have both horses and mules, I prefer the mule to any thing," which was like Charlie herself. Charlie gurgled with laughter, "they are all handsome .." she mused ..

The man gave her her plate of food and her mug of hot mulled wine in short order, and she thanked him before moving back to her chair before the hearth. A surprised look flickered in her eyes at Sadie's words about herself, and then again about the description of Rory. She gave a little chuckle. "He is a very prepossessing man, oui. His eyes are all for his lovely wife, though, and his petit son." A soft smile of enjoyment on her face at the memory of the happy family, she settled in her chair and began to eat without commenting on her knowledge of horses or people.



Date: 12-08-10
Poster: Raphael O'Keeffe
Post # 33

The wings were gone in the next moment as with a roll of his shoulders he was heading inside making use of the side door. He was surprised to find a few within although not ones he knew. The lined over cloak was removed and hung to a peg. "good evening ladies," smile had a boyish tilt that reached in a warmth to bronze-green eyes as he headed for the bar.

"Too right." With a wink to Charlie. "Oh, that's lovely, then. A lot of weddings while I was gone, so I hear, and births. Which, as a doctor, I think is the effect of these long winters." She dimpled with her smile then took another bite of the more than half gone food. Mouth full she waved her empty fork as a salutation to the man.

The Frenchwoman looked up at the man that entered, a friendly smile on her funny mouth, the bluegreen of her eyes holding a serene expression. She was in a forest green riding habit and black boots, her fur coat, gloves and hat on the chair beside her. "Bonsoir, monsieur." Another smile, and then she chuckled at Charlie's words, before nodding to Sadie. "Oui, le froid makes people get very close, non?"

Charlie smiled and waved her hand to the newcomer, she could swear he was one of the whoo whoos, but said nothing, better that way then explaining what such creatures were, "Evening to you welcome to the fire side chat," uhuh, here comes trouble maybe ...

He was hungry as he ordered the pea soup with ham, warmed brown bread with plenty of cinnamon butter. His main meal to be the stuffed capon with fritters on the side. His stomach growled low just ticking it off to the respected tender who in turn would alert Hazel. A tankard of ale and a bottle of potcheen so he had the pure for a chaser. "Cold night," turning with that ever pleasant smile, tankard in one hand and the tumbler and bottle in the other as he paused taking each in. "I am Raphael," offering an introduction as he headed for the nearest table at which to enjoy his meal rather than at the bar.


"Always lots of wedding, I think it goes hand in hand," though she loved children, she preferred other peoples children. Not sure she had what it took to be a parent ...

"Very close." Sadie, personally, would appreciate not seeing wings. Although she was bound and determined to examine someone's at some point. What was the skeletal structure? Was there a skeletal structure? Not that these were her thoughts now. Sadie nodded at Charlie and might've agreed about not having what it took, the prospect had sent her scurrying once before. Then, to Raphael. "Evenin'. Sadie Badeau."

"Charlie One Time," added to his own introduction, knowing the others would fill in the gap of their identities ...

Ah..... yes. Charlie was recognized but he may not be without his wings to show. They were down into the tattoo on his back like his comrade Gabriel.

Evony studied quietly as he ordered his meal, though only for a few moments. As Charlie spoke she looked back to her, smiling at the mention of weddings and children. There was that taint of sadness again, but it was soon smoothed away to her serene look. When the male spoke again, she looked back to him, and a spark of surprise and something hopeful appeared on her face. "Oh......erm, I am Evony Jolie, Monsieur Raphael. Would you, perchance, be the wainwright in"

See she knew it, a whoo whoos, still she just smiled, "Wasn't Raphael one of the Guardian Angels?" Like she might want one. NOT. Kenneth did not have wings but his heart did, and that was all she needed ...

Raphael and Gabriel, along with Mo, had a whole different kind of wings that still might be of interest. A long story. He pulled out a seat but had only set the drinks when he turned back to the trio. "A pleasure to meet such lovely ladies. Certainly to have you here has brighten my day and evening. Far better the sight of angels than the grumpy men wanting to get home than do what they were hired to." Charming smile in all sincerity with a slight bow, "Charlie, the name is well known. Sadie and Evony very French sounding. The gaiety of Paree.." Although the last from Evony had him focus on her. "Aye, does my reputation precede me?"

She just chuckled softly, angels with horns maybe, still she was on her best behavior for the evening .. "thank you," added just for good measure ..

He was a charming man, that much was clear, at least when he wanted to be? She had no ruler against which to judge him. Smiling pleasantly at his flattery, she did not comment, but simply ate her pork cutlets. However, then he told her he was indeed the man she sought. Hurriedly swallowing, she wiped her mouth with a napkin and then spoke. "Oui, Monsieur Raphael, it does. Several have mentioned you would be the man for me to speak to. I have need of a wainwright, you see."

Yes, yes they would be. Rather like Andrew's gift, far beyond her ken or ability but the same mind that made her enjoy science had her intrigued by magic. Sadie dimpled at him, then continued eating as she listened.

For a moment or three she kept quiet to let Evony describe her predicament, sipping her cider listening ...

Which had a rich rumble of laughter, "at least I am a wanted man even if for business. It keeps food on a man's table and as well single.." one could tell by the laugh crinkles aside his eyes that he took life in measure of humor than anything else. "Do you need mending or a new set of wheels?"

"Ah, as to that, Monsieur Raphael, I am unable to tell you." She frowned gently. "I tried to see what I could do, but I seemed to make the crack worse. The right rear wheel of my is a large is cracked. They all took damage, for we had quite a long..." and hard, being they were fleeing, "...journey, over rough places."

"Where is your wagon presently? I have extra wheels the size for covered wagons. If it is the same, I can exchange it for a small price and keep the other to fix." That way she was guaranteed of a good wheel.

She looked interested in that deal, and nodded. "It is about the same size, I believe, though I do not know the wheel base. I would like to do thees...this, oui. It is in the stables now, along with my draft horses."

It was the beguiling kitchen maid Rosie that came out with a smile upon unpainted lips and a saunter to her hips as she was over to set his meal. Moving close by him that he got a whiff of both jasmine and his food all at once. Forgive him that moment for certainly Roise knew she had what it takes and just as quickly she was gone, the tease of her scent in her wake. He blinked, with that completely lost look for a moment. A shake of his head to follow as if shaking off the effect completely. "Are you in a hurry to leave? Otherwise I will check it tomorrow morning, bring over a couple size wheels that are standard."

The Frenchwoman, being French, had seen such a look before, and a faintly amused look covered her face for a moment as she watched the man go ga ga over the woman Rosie. "I am hoping to make this country my home, Monsieur, so non, I am in no hurry. Take your time."

Sadie took the last bite of potatoes and watched Rosie's Syndrome's immediate onset. She was grinning when she unwound, the amusement supplying her enough energy to make an uncharacteristically lazy trip to the bar. On the way she tried to catch Evony's eye for a commiserating wink. She passed off her plate and asked for a refill on her drink.

Evony caught that look from Sadie and a soft chuckle escaped her, the wink returned with a warm look and nod.

"Then I hope it all works out for you and welcoming you here." Brows lifted with a turn of a glance upon the other two ladies. "Sadie, are you of these lands that I've just not met before?" Then save the best for last as he turned a wicked grin on Charlie. "You, madame, reputation precedes you. A night of mayhem and two braves circling. The owls hooting or was it the braves?"

"Merci, Alex. You, I adore." She winked, then turned to head back to the fire. She shot that same sleepy-eyed smile to Raphael and answered him on the go. "Newly returned to the area."

"Merci beaucoup, Monsieur Raphael." She smiled then and resumed finishing off the pork cutlets.

"I think it was a bit of both ..and yes I figured you for a whoo whoos as well," she grinned, saying nothing of her reputation, she enjoyed laughter and life ...

She looked up at the mention of the braves and hooting, and then over to Charlie at the mention of whoo whoos. A very confused look was on her face.

A wink was the only confirmation of what a whoo whoos was, it was a long story and sketchy enough as it made Charlie laugh ...

"Ah, returned, meaning you have been here before and have come home." Made as a statement but certainly could be corrected. His smile broadened upon Charlie. "I believe I was only an on-watcher having caught sight of the antics underfoot. I was impressed with the braves in how well they could leap up on your vardo and shake it until you came out." Something like that except he knew the lads and knew she wasn't in any kind of danger at all. Or, he would have easily whisked her way, up into the air to a safe place.

Blue greens widened at what she was hearing, before a thoughtful look descended. Then a faint smile as she rose up to take her plate to the bar. She was liking this place more and more.

Charlie nodded her head, if she was ever in danger she probably was unaware of it, there was always adventure to be had. "Hmm, as I recall the one visiting my fire ring that night was scared properly into running into the woods," which was never a good thing to do in a strange place, with even stranger animals about ...

Sadie was equally clueless, but enjoying the byplay. As for his remark on her, Sadie nodded. Absolutely correct.

A very good point. One she already knew, thankfully, but then, in the heat of a panicked moment, one could not always make the wisest of choices. She set her plate on the bar, thanked Alex quietly and asked him to send her compliments and appreciation to Hazel. Returning to her seat, she stretched out before the fire, aiming her feet towards the blazing heat. A pleased smile lingered on her lips as she sent that look over to Sadie and Raphael,  before then settling those intense bluegreens on Charlie. "I hope to see the woods with you one day."

He was trying to remember how many braves were there but he only saw the two and eventually watched from a treetop so he could see better. "If you will excuse me ladies, I will leave you to your own company as I descend upon this all too tempting plate of food to consume before it gets cold." The few minutes should have it at the right proper temperature. Seating himself, he started in with great pleasure. The look upon his features at times, eyes closing with almost a rugged purr deep in his throat. He was not one to inhale it but enjoy each morsel.

"Mais ouis, monsieur." Smiling softly to Raphael as he excused himself so politely to eat his food. She sipped her refreshed mulled wine, a soft laugh leaving her at the sheer enjoyment for his meal that was evident on the man's face.

Sadie had a moment thinking of her own odd encounters in the woods. She really did need to make a trip to the hospital and see how Gates and Sara were faring. Tucking her feet under her, she leaned towards the fire, missing the heat of her birthplace. "Sounds like being anywhere with Charlie would be exciting."

Charlie nodded her head. "I will like that, there is much to see and track." Charlie liked being out in the woods as much as she liked anything. She rose from her chair at the hearth. "I however fear, I need to check on Kenneth and make sure that he is warm enough, or we might have to travel to the cabin," she mused, not that it was bad in itself, winking at Sadie, most of the time it was interesting being with Charlie, one never knew what sort of trouble they would get into ...

"Have a nice night, Charlie."

Evony rose up to her feet and nodded to everyone gathered. "I too, need to seek my bed. I have to be up with the dawn in the morning. Mam'selle Sadie, it was lovely to meet you. Mam'selle Charlie, it was a delight to speak with you." She gave a nod and smile to Raphael, so that he did not feel the need to swallow hastily to send her on her way. "Au revoir, everyone."

"I shall try," she grinned, tugging her furred cloak snuggly about herself." Be well Evony, perhaps I shall see you tomorrow, Raphael ... " she waggled her brows, "I hope to see you sooner then a full summer ago," making her way to the door with a wave for Alex and any she may have missed .....

With that, she made her way to the stairs, taking her mug with her.

"Bonne nuit, Evony." Sadie waggled her fingers as the room cleared.

By the time he was done, two had left as he collected up his plates to bring over to the counter between kitchen and tavern. "Do you have friends here, Sadie?" Turning to make sure she was still here.

"Je suis désolé, Raphael, you're stuck with me." Yes, indeed, she was still here. "A few. A number seem to have moved on, though."

"Have you caught up with them all, those that are here.........or are there still ones to seek out and see if they remember? Unless not that long?" He had the tumbler of the pure in hand to enjoy which would cap off his meal.

"A few to look up." Her smile was soft. "I haven't made it to the hospital yet." Her hospital, if she were being as proprietary as she was inclined to be. "It's been four years. And yourself? Have you been here long? Well, you must have been if you all ready have a reputation." Smile quirked as she answered herself in what, if he came to know her he would learn it was a frequent occurrence. Even sleepy-eyed she talked to fast and too much.

"I have been here at least two years." Which he didn't get into the long, strange story, of what brought him here. "I hear the hospital is doing well. The Doctor Barrington schooled in both the new sciences and the old ways of healing." He paused hearing those few words on reputation. "Oh, and what one precedes me aside my being a wainwright?" See the brows inch and possibly even a waggle.

"Mais ouis, he's a very fine man and physician." Speaking of odd stories....At his wagging brows Sadie tipped her look over a shoulder, all sultry and sly. Then, she laughed, that loud loose laugh of hers. "Sadly, only what I gathered here. But I bet you do have a reputation that my old patients just failed to tell me about as they were praising Gates and complaining about their joints or their toddlers today."

Which had him chuckle for he really had no reputation at all. Well, least like say some of the others here including Charlie. He happened on her the one night while out flying. Sure, Oh, I was flying about. It was at this point Jed came to the door with a quick wave to Raphael that he was needed. Jed was his youngest helper. "I have to go but perhaps another time we can get to talk some more, maybe swap stories." He was already on his way, grabbing up his cloak as he headed out the side door.


If he wanted to be stripped on the spot just mention the wings. She was salivating to see what they were about. "Sure, mate. You have a fine night, darling."



Date: 12-11-10
Poster: Rhett Shawnesey
Post # 34

Working too Hard
Karina was a little apprehensive to visit the Tavern, after her latest run-in with a certain stubborn Quinn here a few nights past. Argh, it still peeved her whenever she thought about it. The man was a stubborn jackass and she couldn't understand one damn thing about him. She had offered an olive branch - finally ready to do so - and what had she got for it? An olive branch thrown back in her face. She opened the door halfway first, peeking in and swinging a quick glance around. The coast was clear so she stepped in fully and began peeling off layers of winter clothing. Her heavy navy blue peacoat first, then gloves and the colorful scarf Segan had given her a couple years past. It took a few moments and she was already thinking of a hot cider to warm her chilled digits. A light snow had begun falling outside much to her distaste. Her scarf was a bit tangled around her neck, she disentangled it and tossed it over the same peg as her coat, then tugged at the heavy skirts of her thick wool dress. It was a nice dark green color, and she was grateful for its warmth but still getting used to the layers of skirts and underclothes beneath. The neckline was not too low for the cold of the day, but dipped in a modest scoop along her upper chest.

It had been a while since Rhett had seen Karina. Not that his thoughts didn't go there at times while working or just relaxing short periods between working. He was always working. There were the continual orders for everyday swords, nothing fancy but made well. They didn't take as long as the others but the multitude of them did. When he wasn't making swords, he was making parts for Raphael's wagons, or fixing anything made of metal down to shoeing horses. He thought about taking on an apprentice. An idea he was holding onto going over in his head, the pros and cons. Such were his thoughts when he opened up the Thistle door, figuring on eating a better meal than he could prepare for himself. A long cloak was worn over the usual rugged clothing beneath, boots for the snow that was falling outside, gloves and tje Stetson dipped in the front. One that was soon swept from his head and dusted off before placed on the shelf. The shoulders of his cloak being dusted off as blue eyes shifted in perusal of the tavern. A quick sweep only to halt upon one familiar as if brought about by his thoughts. A pressed smile was the result before speaking up. "Good afternoon Karina.." the cloak removed and hung where it could dry as he headed for the bar and some potcheen to warm up with.

She was raking the snowflakes from her mop of curls and making her way to the bar when she was arrested by a familiar voice behind her. One she hadn't heard in several days, for how busy they both had been. She grinned to herself before turning to regard him. "Hiya, stranger."

"Hiya yourself," she was barely around when he was advancing on her so fast that he had her around in a swirling dance step before hugged. "How have you been?" Easing from the embrace as he had a meal to pick out yet to eat. "Hungry?"

Automatically her arms lifted to hold onto him for support as she was swung around like a rag doll, which made her laugh merrily. Now the grin was in her eyes as he set her down again. "I'm starved. You must be too. You've been a slave to the forge lately.." She gave him a crooked smirk, knowing how his work and hers for that matter had stolen their time from each other.

His hair was a curling mass that looked like it needed a comb through it even if clean. Way it curled in wash and dry without the use of one. Being he wanted to save room for dinner, he ordered Irish stew with a loaf of brown bread on the side. A tankard of ale too to help wash it all down. "Aye, why I've been thinking of taking on an apprentice if there is a lad that wishes to learn." More than likely there were a few that would jump at the opportunity. He straddled a stool there at the bar as he might as well eat his lunch there. A booted foot hooking into the stool next to him to draw it closer and a pat on the seat in invitation. "So what all have you been up to?"

Karina noticed that, and smirked broadly as she reached up to ruffle his hair thoroughly. She actually rather liked it, all messy that way. Catching Alex's eye, she greeted him and ordered the same thing as Rhett, figuring a bowl of hot stew would be just the thing. She was about to claim a stool when Rhett dragged it closer to his, making her grin lightly as she settled upon it. Close enough for their arms to brush, which was welcome rather than an annoyance. "We've been training up some fledglings to release when the snows pass. Teaching 'em how to fly well first off, then how to hunt." Nodding to Alex as she received her hot cider, taking a nice warming gulp. "I think an apprentice is a good idea. Maybe then you'll actually be able to get away from your smithy every once in awhile." She offered a crooked smile. "Got anyone in mind?"

Smile pressed again as she ruffled up his hair, he didn't mind because it was her. "Maybe you need one too so you can get out more often. I imagine it is interesting to work with the birds in training them." Even as the smile eased from his lips, it remained in blue eyes. "Naw, just came up with the idea today so that is the first step. I'll have to ask around and then see if they have a talent for it or not." It took talent to do what he did even if some never realized it.

That made her laugh. "An apprentice can't have an apprentice, and that's what I am to Vanessa really." She had learned a lot in her time at the Avian Gardens, and had taken on many more responsibilities than when she had started... but she still considered herself to be 'under' Van. "It'll get less busy soon enough. We won't be able to spend much time outdoors much longer, and the birds won't want to do anything once the weather sets in, either." A little grin and then their stews were arriving. She dug in as she always did, with a vengeance.

"All right, then another apprentice taken on by Vanessa so the workload is eased some on you both." Pressed smile was back again. By this time the bowls of stew were delivered and set before them. The smell alone was heavenly as he took that in with a growl of his stomach in appreciation. "Not anything more than huddle together as you'll be huddled in front of your hearth." He was taking a moment in visualizing that. "Do you need any more firewood?" Making sure that she had enough or he'd split some more wood for her.

"I think she's already training up Ysa to become the third Bird Girl once she's old enough," she snickered. The infant was growing by leaps and bounds and was fascinated by all the birds of the gardens, though of course it would be years before Ysa could do any real work around the Gardens. She spoke between big bites of stew, which was so hot it burned her tongue but didn't slow her down. "We could always use some more," she answered with a sly smile that might suggest she was only saying so to lure him over to her cottage. "Ya know... you're always welcome to come huddle in front of the hearth with us."

"That doesn't surprise me." Giving a nod as he was picturing Ysa, small as she was right now, teaching the birds to fly or some other smaller part until she got bigger. He waited a few minutes before he started in on his stew, soaking up the broth first with chucks of bread.

He seemed too busy eating to answer her last comments, so she just smirked faintly to herself and continued sating her appetite as well. Ripping off a chunk of bread to scoop up some stew with. "We should go ice skating again," she hinted with a little nudge of her elbow and a sidelong smile.

He got that first pang of hunger sated. "I'll be coming up with more wood in a couple days and we can see about practicing our huddling before the fire." As he certainly caught on and even added to the idea. "I was down that way yesterday, the lake is already starting to freeze, a couple more weeks and it will be frozen deep with the colder temperatures that are a norm now." Plus there was less daylight so most likely they would skating at night. Although there were torches placed along that area and up into the field where the snow runs were made. His dragon run having become the most popular that he built every year over the past three or four. The first time, right before he was near killed in the battle in Kildare. As she nudged a hand slipped to tickle up her side. "At night, while it is snowing and bringing us into a wintry world of our own."

He came back around to her comments eventually, making her grin a bit. She nodded to his words, knowing that the deepest months of winter were just around the corner. Only things like ice skating with Rhett made the prospect even slightly pleasant. She squeaked at the tickling and whapped his hand away playfully, but his words had a smile dancing in her eyes. "Aye, and you better keep me warm..."

With her playful swatting, he took a quick glance to notice Alex had gone into the hall leading from the bar to the storage rooms. That's when the wicked gleam in blue eyes sparked and he all but tipped her stool so that she spilled in against him. His arms surrounding and she got a stew enhanced kiss. Yummy. That quite answered her comment about keeping her warm.

She let out a yelp, thinking that he was going to tip her right to the floor but she spilled into his arms instead, her yelp smothered by a steamy kiss. Eyes widening, she shot a brief glance around the room but then forgot to care who might be watching. Eyes slid shut and she sidled over to sit on his lap, easy to do for her petite size and his strong build. Her arms encircled his neck to return the kiss fully, something she'd been missing for days.

Something he'd been missing. Obviously by the intensity. What was fast and furious slowed to soft and tender before the kiss was done. She knew what passion he could rise to and what tenderness too. Both had been combined in that kiss. "Care to take a walk down to the lake?" Roughen tone set by the emotions stirred and since they were done with their lunch, it was a good idea to him to spend some time together not just inside.

She could rise to that point of no return all too easily as well, and she melted into his embrace, pressing searing lips against his hotly and then more gently at the end. Pulling back finally it was almost like rising from a long dive under the water, cheeks slightly flushed and voice breathless. "Great idea." She agreed instantly. Hopping off his lap she slid her hand down to take his and she would lead the way to the door. Eager? Just a little.

Which he was all too willing as she slid down, he was up and taking them over to collect their cloaks, his Stetson that he placed on her head, gloves and scarf before they got out that door.



Date: 12-17-10
Poster: Mikhail MacKay
Post # 35

Tarot Readings
Charlie chuckled softly lifting her hand, "whoa" she spoke softly but firmly, both mules stopped standing still ...

Evony was so sweet. But honestly, Anthea did not feel very graceful right now. She felt like a mule on a mule! "Sas efharisto, Evony.. Thank you." Keeping her arms extended was growing hard to do, so she flapped them like a bird.

"Lower your arms and rest a moment," she mused ...

Sadie's green eyes rolled. As long as she was only expected to hold out her arms while Ears, so well trained, did the work, she could pull off grace. When Charlie stopped them she dropped her hands to give Ears a stroke and another round of adoration. "Ange, you are such a good, smart mule. So helpful! So steady!" What? Men liked praise, right?

Pardon her....she had to clap a little hand over her mouth not to laugh at seeing Anthea flap like a bird!

She had lowered her arms before Charlie said so! They stopped, and she was holding Hercules' mane tightly with a small smile. Ok, that was fun, sort of. Brat!

Hmm reminded Charlie of a story about a sparrow, perhaps later.

Mikhail worked for the Crown in many ways. One was serving the crown of one of the princes from here in tactical warfare maneuvers, taking on the crown prince of Ballicastle lands as his apprentice. Tonight was an easier mission, or so he hoped as one never knew, that brought him back to the tavern. He had taken his hiatus in the wilderness mountain cabin. Good reasons for a seer which was more in his nature than anything else. He paused at the stable, feeling the vibes beyond the oaken doors that traveled by voices. A hand upon the latch hesitating until a few moments later he was pushing it open to see whom they belonged to. He recognized the one, Trouble's. The very thought had a twitch to the corners of his mouth. He didn't say a word yet.

Mikhail would see a lone palomino stallion outside the barn as he approached the tavern, standing there with reins dropped to the ground, and his saddle loosened, snuffling at a handful of oats upon the ground.

"Indeed it has, you have been hiding," she grinned, waggling her brows," okay ladies ... I want you to turn your left heel and touch the mules in their ribs .."

She wanted to stay on Hercules' back, so she kept concentration on the mule doing so good. "What a good boy you are, Hercules." Touch what, where? Ok, so got this far, how hard could this be?

When they did so the mules would side pass, a teaching that could save their lives or smack them into a tree, "it is a side pass, and allows you to move with out walking."

Sadie smiled and nodded to the man, but she was giving the mule all sorts of affection as he had kept her on his back. Then, her hands slipped back into his mane. "Left heel," murmured to herself as she followed the instruction. A very light touch.

With her left heel, she did as she was instructed. Silver gaze to never leave the mule's ears. This was new, and beginning to grow fun. And, silently, did she pray.. no hard lessons!

"Now do your right heel," she told the two ..

The right heel now applied light pressure to Hercules' side, his ribs. Listening closely to all Charlie was instructed. Nibbling on her bottom lip hoping all was being done correctly.

Sadie wished she had a notebook. She liked taking notes to study later. "Right heel,"murmured as she did the action.

Both mules shifted to the right moving slowly till they stopped touching their heels ..

As Hercules did shift, Anthea tighten her hold, but remembered Charlie's words and easily loosened her hold once again.

Evony watched the girls as they learned, and thought to herself that Charlie was a good teacher. She was calm, she stayed calm, and she presented things in a no-nonsense way that was good for a new learner. She turned her head take in the new arrival, and smiled his way. "Bonsoir, Monsieur." Offered quietly.

Nodding her head, "you doing good now click your tongues and make them move forward."

With a smile, and a breath taken, did Anthea click her tongue softly upon the roof of her mouth. Almost giddy as Hercules moved forward, and she was still on the mule and not on the ground rubbing her bum.

Sadie was feeling a little easier on the mule's back. "Très bon, Ears." She glanced at Charlie, then clicked her tongue.

"Good, now as they move press your left heel to their side and feel how they move from the pressure," she drawled, watching Anthea first ..

"You girls are doing so very well!" She smiled back to the women after greeting Mikhail. "Before you know it you will be riding as if you are breathing!"

"Bonsoir madame," giving a nod as he stepped aside, muscular arms crossing over a barrel chest, he looked every bit the warrior he was.

Anthea turned to her friend with the brightest smiles. A smile that brought silver eyes to sparkle.."Sas efharisto, Evony.." Then with a breath she took note of the gentleman, a smile to come easy to another new face. "Good evening, Sir.." Now, back to concentrating on the task at hand. Hercules was so good!

Okay...was it really bad, really sinful of her...that she could not help letting her eyes take a little surreptitious peek at that fine, manly physique? Because...good heavens. She was! Once she realized this, though, she promptly flushed and hurriedly turned her eyes back to the others.

Sadie followed suit after Anthea. Such well behaved mules. Sadie flashed a grin over at Evony and the stranger, then focused back on her mount.

"Charlie.. what does the pressure do to them?" As she moved her heel as Charlie had taught her days before, and she to finally do this on the mule.

"While the area here is small, a mule can out walk most humans and get further then you think," she told them, "most of the time unless spooked by you or something they see as danger, you will be walking," since neither woman would be racing anywhere anytime soon." A few more rounds if you like then you can stop them and slide down," she chuckled... See Anthea no broken necks or bones ...

She gave Hercules a soft pat to the side of his head. Bringing soft whispers of Greek to his ears. Words of how proud she was of him, and how happy he was making sure she did not fall. Her smile did brighten, for Charlie had been right. This was nothing like a horse.. nothing at all. "Charlie I am finally doing it, ne?" She could hug the mule, but instead, she only whispered her praise to him. Wait, slide off?

"Good evening," to those who wished the same, studying each in his way of it and listening to their speech, the tone of their voices, the way they expressed themselves. For one like Mikhail they all added up.

Oh, yes, that meant Sadie was free to chatter at Ears encouragingly. French, English, a smattering of other words to really explain to him how appreciative she was of his good temper. "I may have heard mules could be stubborn, but, non, such sweet temper." After two more times around she whoa-ed him to a stop.

Charlie focused on Mikhail smiling, "you have been gone a long time ..were you hiding?" She queried of the Gypsy Warrior.. wondering if both women remembered the word for stop ...

Uh oh.. umm... "Woah" Came her words, pressing her legs to his side, and hoping this was right?

Squeezing ones legs would make him go forward ..." relax your legs Anthea are stopping not going," she mused ..

Once Evony looked away, dark eyes shifted there a moment. The hint of a smile remained traced to the edges of his lips before he was back in the next instant in watching the ladies handle their asses.

Sadie slid off and stroked the mule a few more times, only now looking over to give a decent greeting, "Evenin'." She was grinning. Oh, yes, very different than using a saddle.

And glad she was this ass was doing good. "Yes, Charlie.. squeeze to go.. halt to stop." She eased those slender legs from Hercules' side.. petting his side to show her pride in him.

With Charlie's question he spoke up. The draw of a seer's voice held a baritone ancient quality to it. Rugged as times past when men were more as the beasts they hunted. "I have been to Kildare and then to a cabin in the mountains to clear my head." Something needed after doing too many readings and residue settled.

"Ahhh, bon, mes amis, you have done so very, very well, oui? And Charlie, such a good teacher you are!" She smiled with her Gallic enthusiasm for all of them, at all of them, before rising up and signaling to Tommy, one of the stable lads. He approached, and she asked him to put Trésor away for her.

When the mule did finally stop. She eyed Charlie, and slowly looked down to the position of her legs. Hooking one leg slowly over, and then to slide off the slide until feet landed with a soft thud upon the ground. Anthea was not one to ignore the baritone of a man's voice, but not only a man, she felt one with much importance. "Ok, Hercules.. perhaps Charlie will let you and Ears have carrots now?" She kissed the side of his face, as proud of him as she was of herself.

Charlie glanced his way, nodding her head. "Hmm, it is often necessary to clear ones head," she replied, "Anthea make sure that Hercules is cool, and you can out him in his stall," she mused, she had taught her cousins to ride, "yes they can have carrots, but remember they have to work for them from now on," she grinned ...

"Of course, Charlie.." She glided those fingers along the side of the mule, happy to finally learn to ride. Perhaps not a horse, but special nonetheless. "Yes, Charlie.." With a skip she moved to gather carrots for both.."Heads up.." Grinning to Sadie as the tossed a carrot her way for Ears.

"I have come in search of the new lady citizen, Anthea Drakos," which Charlie just mentioned her name. "I come in the name of the Crown of these lands but a matter to speak on once we are out of the stables  and into the comfort the tavern has to offer. That is, if that is your destination from this premises?"

Sadie didn't resist an urge to rub cheeks and murmured a few secrets to Ears. Sadie winked at Anthea. Yes, treats time. Now, where were the carrots? "Merci!" She grabbed it mid air then turned back to the borrowed mule. "And merci to you, ami, for putting up with a clumsy new---" She stopped mid-sentence, glancing back to the man and then to Anthea. All that weighty import he exuded took on a concerning quality.

The mention of Kildare had her eyes moving back to the gentleman, whose name she did not know. For reasons she was not yet sure of, she had a fascination for that land he had just mentioned. Perhaps it was the mention and rumors of fantastic beasts prowling the place. As a furrier, she had an interest in such.

Sadie was one that often made her laugh, and now she was grinning as she feed Hercules his carrot with a wink. "I am.. " She turned to the man in question.. a smile for her name.. "I am Anthea.."


Charlie nodded her head, "we only used the stables since the animals were here, and the area enough to show them how to ride, the rest takes time," she replied to Mikahil "and yes we were going back inside the tavern to drink."

Now that he stated his desire, she was very curious. Anthea was wanted for discussion. Curiosity soared, but she contained it, as it was not her business, after all.

She was curious but would wait. "One minute Sir, please.. I need to tend to Hercules and make sure he is good for the night." The stable boy was there, and Anthea smiled her gratitude for the help. "Thank you lad.. " Well that was taken care of.

Charlie smiled, as she clicked her tongue for Ears, moving to his tack that had rested on a stalling, with in a few moments he was bridled and his cloak thrown over his back, to warm while she went inside to get cider, "if you ladies are ready?"

"Of course, take your time ladies, I will see you within the tavern." A minute dip of his head followed respectfully as arms unfurled. Stepping aside and out as he would leave them to their task to finish without further interruption. The night had that brisk bite to it that was breathed in as he made short the distance from the stable to the tavern itself in long strides. He was up and in using a side door as he had a few things to discuss with Alex on Crown matters. Alex had been with the Crown a lot longer than he.

She studied the man until he was out of sight. What was this about? Perhaps the home she wanted? Well, she would not find out by standing here. "Good night, Hercules.. tomorrow we ride again, I promise." She blew kisses to her beloved pet and turned with her gaze to roam to her friends before she gathered her jacket, mittens, scarf and woolen cap. "Sadie you did very well.." Spoken with a smile, they both had done good, or so she thought. She, was a shy woman of this they knew, but she was also one that when curious was like a cat.. solve it or die. "Ready?"

She smiled at Trésor as he was brought in, moving over to pet him and murmur soft words of French for his ears only, before she then moved towards Charlie and the ladies, nodding to her friend. "Oui, ready, eh?" There is a reason for saddles, oui.


Charlie nodded her head, "shall we see what Mikhail wants with Anthea," though she wouldn't ask. Charlie bit her lower lip, both women because they rode bare back had a tell tale sweat mark on their backsides, their reward for doing it right ...

Sadie nodded, turning to retrieve her medical bag. "Thank you again, Charlie." Then she grinned at Anthea. "I watched you." And she had! She hadn't had as much time with Charlie before the lesson, so she copied Anthea.

"Of course.. and Charlie.. thank you so much." She couldn't help it, she rushed to the woman and hugged her tight. She was learning so much in these lands, and could not wait for what the future held. With a smile, she held no idea her snug, woolen pants were coated with sweat. Nope, she was smiling at the pride of learning so well! "Well, Sadie.. I was afraid to watch anything at first.." Came her laughter as she moved from the barn, and toward the stable.. but then.. "Should I change.." For she felt he was very important in these lands.

A little sweaty bum was worth it. And not even close to what she looked like after helping deliver a child. Sadie swung her bag a little as she trailed after the others.

"It will allow you to ride at a walk will learn the trot ...when it is day light," she grinned ...

Evony kept pace with them, her mind there, with them, and also surging ahead to Christmas day and what they all might do together for their feast day. She wanted to let Charlie know what they were doing, too. Perhaps she and Kenneth would stop by and visit them on their visiting route.

As feminine strides carried her closer to the Thistle, slender fingers placed the mittens and cap within the pocket of the jacket of the jacket. Male clothes she wore, and perhaps would keep on until sleep claimed her. "I cannot wait.." And she couldn't, but for now.. did she move within the thistle. The jacket and scarf to hand upon the hook, and fingers to smooth any tendrils of hair that escaped the dark, french braid. "I am sorry, Sir..." Her way of apologizing for the late arrival.

Cetain that both would do well, she had taught them to balance, it was why they had their arms out, finding that balance as the mules moved ...

Up the steps and then into the door, which she held open for the others, a quiet smile on her upside down mouth, as she waited.


Charlie was an excellent teacher. Sadie bussed Evony's cheek in greeting and thanks as she passed, then paused to the side to shed the jacket and accoutrements. Bag in hand she dipped out to find the washroom.


But first, those strides carried almost in a excited manner to the bar. "Alex, I learned to ride a mule.." She was indeed very happy and proud of herself. It was an accomplish of something she had never tried to learn in her past.

A fond smile was sent to the taller woman after that kiss to the cheek, and then she shut the door on the cold night air. Her smile was soft and affectionate for Anthea's excitement as she told Alex her news. Moving that way, though more slowly than the others, she let things settle and resolve before she approached Alex for a drink.


Date: 12-17-10
Poster: Mikhail MacKay
Post # 36

Mikhail finished up his conversation with Alex as he turned with a fuller smile this time to face the ladies with. "I trust you are all well tonight and enjoying yourselves?" They seemed, in the least, to be enjoying themselves. "I am Mikhail MacKay," which they may recognize the surname. "It was brought to the Crown's attention of your interest in books, reading, writing them too and a proposition to pose for your consideration. There is a printing press that gets used for flyers now and then but not used like it once was. A Newsletter to be put out once a month or as needed, which means that once a month is not restrictive to that time frame, you could put out more or put out less, like one in two months depending on the availability of news. We had a Gazette for a number of years but it became difficult to put out such an elaborate paper after a while." There was a lot involved in that decision which he didn't get into for it had not been his decision, he had nothing to do with it. "I am told that Hiram Jones is back in the lands. He was a reporter to the forerunner of the Gazette, the Heathfield Newsletter so it is possible he is looking for his old job back as a reporter." He had said plenty so now awaited on Anthea for her reaction to all this.

Charlie followed smirking as she went to where she had left her tankard, that was half full by her accounts, amused by Anthea who still whole and hale ...Charlie nodded, "right as rain," she agreed, sitting comfortably .. Charlie listened studying Mikhail, as he spoke, intrigued by what she heard, waggling her brows at Anthea ...That had Charlie giggling, oh yeah good ole Hiram, giggling behind her tankard ...

She took note of the man's name, and yes, she had heard that last one before. Saddles, she thought. Something like that. She quietly ordered a mulled wine from Alex as she listened to his proposal to Anthea, and a slow, truly delighted smile curved her little mouth. It seemed perfect for her friend!

"Oh yes, Sir.. this evening has been very eventful.." She answered for herself, but also.. "Charlie is a very good teacher.." And she was alive! Then, well.. she slowly gazed down to her male attire, wondering if she should change. And that thought stayed in her mind as she waited for her normal cup of tea. MacKay? Those silver hues roamed to Charlie in silent question. Was this a relative of the leather maker? Perhaps another time. But for now.. "Ne... " coughing.. "I mean yes, very much so.." Printing press? She listened with a glint of excitement in her gaze. A newspaper? A way to write and tell all of the news of this land. And perhaps even to write her children books as well. Silver hues seem to sparkle at each word this man did speak. But, she was not stupid either, it gave her an excuse to look to this man. One that was so handsome, she wondered why she had not swooned yet. Oh yes, she didn't swoon. Anyway.. she shook her head and smiled.. "I would be honored to do this, Sir.. very much so.." But.. and this had her winking to Evony, and then those silver hues to glance to the handsome man once again.. "Would I be permitted to use the press to print out children books as well.. knowing the paper would definitely come first?" Her reaction, well.. she was overjoyed!

Sadie might grab her bag, Anthea was liable to faint dead away .. Charlie nodded her head absently, yep the MacKays were related, though she couldn't have guessed the question in a million years ..

Blue green eyes that had the intensity of black opals turned to Anthea to see her reaction.

Sadie came traipsing back out of the washroom, curls sort-of bundled back with a strip of leather. Most of them weren't long enough to scoop away, but most of it was now off of her neck. She came back in to find Charlie giggling and Anthea excitedly discussing her books. Sadie stopped on the edge of the little group, a hand going to her hip, the other around her bag. She'd definitely missed something. Charlie was always giggling!

When wasn't Charlie giggling?

If she had swooned, he might have to catch her up in his arms and that would be the headlines of her first paper! "Aye, I do not think the Crown would mind as long as you put out what is suitable in a Newsletter."

Anthea wouldn't argue that! First line of the paper.. Headline! Anthean swoons, and is scooped up only to swoon again! Details upon further investigation! "Ne, of course, Sir.. I would never do anything to hurt any feelings, or pry where I should nay pry.." The crown? She had to smile. "Please convey my deepest thanks for this opportunity." She turned to Evony with a tilt of her head.."Like a novel.. each chapter to be written in each paper?" The excitement filled each tone of her accented voice. She was so happy she could hug the man, but of course.. the shy Greek would not do that. "Sir, thank you so much."

"Ohh..Anthea, you could even put a story ...a story you that paper a weekly or monthly installment. Leaving cliffhangers all the time!" grin. The furrier moved slowly around the edge of the group to stand next to Sadie. Leaning in to her, she murmured an aside. "He says the crown is offering her the use of their newsletter making machine, and want her to do a newsletter as was once done before." quiet whisper.

POOR Anthea was so excited she might pop ...

"Aye, I did not think so." Which had him chuckle, a sound that rumbled up from deep in his chest. "More in that it doesn't interfere with the Newsletter getting out. I would suggest donating a book to the Orphanage too." Being she would be using the equipment and all that.

She offered a nod to Anthea as she caught on to her idea. Smiling, she sipped her steaming mulled wine. A nod of approval to the man, at the idea of a book for the orphanage.

Sadie's mouth formed an O as she got what was happening. She was smiling now and moved in a the bar to order herself a drink. The bag went up on the bar and she eased onto a stool. Good things. She'd had no need to be worried, after all.

"Most definitely, Mikhail.. if I may use your given name?" The smile could be infectious, for she could not stop doing so.."And perhaps the royal library as well?" As Brogan had suggested. Anything for the children, for she loved them so. Well, she wouldn't kiss the man, but.. she looked upon slender palms.. rubbing them on her pants before holding her hand out to him. Those silver hues to sparkle in pure joy.

"Oh. I don't think he got our names. Monsieur Mackay...You know le bon Charlie, and now you know the lovely Anthea, oui? But this is Sadie, Madame le Docteur, and I am Evony Jolie." A warm smile was given to him, before she retreated to her mulled wine and quiet.

"Aye, you all may use my given name if you would like. If I may learn the others?" As it was time for introductions being he gave his name but had the mission to see to first. Taking the offered hand in his a moment before released. And there was his answer before he had even gotten the question out. "I am very pleased to meet you Evony, Sadie, I do remember you being here before, Charlie I know for some time and now Anthea."

Ah, but Evony had spoken as he did...she smiled and flushed a bit.

Gawd loved the French woman and her impeccable manners. "Anthea you met his brothers the other evening at the saddle shop," she mused ...

Now, time to find the man he spoke of. She would meet him, and perhaps start off with learning all she could from the reporter, and making the paper something the crown would be proud of. "Ahhhh, I remember now.. very nice, and the one very shy but polite.." And where she had, and was still getting most of Noel presents for all. She moved so the gentleman could speak to all. If she was one that did somersaults.. well she would be doing them!


Sadie flashed a quick and dimpled smile to the man. "That I was." Of course, she'd had no occasion to meet him, she didn't think. Surely she'd remember that bo--er, him. Surely.

It was going to be hard for Evony to forget, that is certain.

ERM what Body, he was a hard working man, she just saw a Gypsy Warrior, with long legs ..and hair ... not to mention a nice speaking voice ..

"Ladies, you are all newly back, would you like a peek into the future by a card? I shall warn you foremost, nothing is ever written in stone and the cards I use are about one's path of life's learnings." Charlie had her own Gypsy, that's why!

That had Charlie grinning, "go for it Anthea ..Sadie, Evony," she had seen him with the cards a few times ..

"If you will excuse me.." She smiled warmly to the man that had just given her a life she only dreamed of. With a kiss blown, and a .. "Cards? I would love that, but for now.." she rushed out the door.. shut it behind her, and then begin to dance like a fool.

"A card...?" She had a puzzled look on her face.

True, and he was all she ever thought about.. Charlie watched Anthea go, laughing, "we might have to check her, she may keel over," she teased ..

She had a purely scientific interest. He was an exceptional example of the human male form. Sadie thanked Alex for her tea, all but laughing as Anthea dashed out, then focused on Mikhail and his offer. "Oui, merci." Intrigued. Sadie winked at Charlie. "I have smelling salts." She patted her bag.

"Aye, it is said that a tarot card can tell much. I do simple peeks with one card. If it is unclear then up to two more cards can be drawn to clarify the first. It is rare such was needed."

"I think she should have a thimbleful of the potcheen, as we discussed, ladies." grinning, though listening to Mikhail.

He collected his glass of potcheen from Alex before he motioned to the table in front of the hearth. Moving there as he picked a center wingback in front of it to address the cards. Cards that were taken out from a pouch as he sat and began shuffling them. "Would you like to go first Sadie?" Being she responded first to the affirmative. "There is a man here, that needs not cards to see. He is the Druid Prince Andrew. Perhaps you will meet him some day."

"I have never heard of one who is male to have zee Sight. How formidable." Smiling at the man.

Charlie nodded her head, "yep that is her ration."

Winter's kiss seem to caress her features, and Anthea to smile like a Cheshire cat before she did return. Flushed were her cheeks, and lips now red from cold. But she was silent as she did return.

Sadie was chuckling and, scooping up her bag, she gestured with it after Mikhail. "Oui. We should toast her good fortune as well as her lesson." Sadie picked up her pace with that long-legged stride. "Absolutely." She paused. "Where do you want me?" Then she paused. "He cured my sister." Her face was blank when she offered that, though she hadn't met him then.

Anthea silently moved her slender form to the ground. Legs to fold beneath her, and she to sit Indian style as he spoke. But, she still smiled, so happy was she.

Setting the cards back to the table with a tap of his finger against the top card in indication. "Shuffle the deck then cut it three times to the left. Bring the cards back to one in any order you want."

She nodded to that information, filing it away. A druid prince? How interesting this place was. She smiled and then listened and watched Sadie and the man with the cards.

Charlie nodded to what Mikhail said, she knew Andrew, though not well, lifting her tankard to sip quietly observing ..

Sadie opted to kneel on the opposite side of the table, her bag tucked under it. Then she picked up the cards, shuffling them with nimble fingers. When she was satisfied she cut the cards and brought them back: left, right, middle on top.

This land was indeed interesting, and very intriguing. She prayed her good fortune each day, that her ship had made port here.

"Evony, wasn't it Merlin the wizard who had sight?" recalling old history ...

Anthea turned to Charlie with a smile. She loved the legend of King Arthur.

Indeed behind every legend was a grain of truth, though to Charlie it was something akin to romantic history ..

"Well, yes, he did, as the legend goes, Charlie, but how he got it is in dispute. Though Morgana le Fey was the real seer."

It was how Anthea thought as well. All myths, all legends.. did come from something. Including the myths and legends of her own land.

Charlie nodded her head smiling, "yep" ..

Being French, naturally her opinion ran so. Couldn't trust an English legend, after all. They tended to skew things.

Screw em too ..

She would be choking on her wine had she ability to read minds.

He turned over the top card, the Hierophant showing. The picture portrays a strange figure, a Centaur, with the torso, arms and head of a man and the body of a horse. His long brown hair and beard and his benign, mature face suggest a priest or teacher. In his left hand he holds a scroll containing written wisdom. His right hand is held up in an ancient sign of blessing. To each side of him is a stone pillar. Behind him can be seen the rough rock of the cave which is both him home and his temple. Light streams down upon his crowned head from a circular opening in the roof of the cave.

Anthea rose upon knees, nay to be nosey, but to see how cards were read. Feeling she was intruding, she slowly sat again. But words she would listen too, and interest did come. Silver hues roamed to Sadie, curious what she thought.

Evony watched with very careful eyes, fascinated and yet uncertain of what the out come would be. What if...this man was really good? What if something of her past came up? What if...her wanted status came out? There was real trepidation and some frisson of fear running through her.

And so he began with the draw of his eyes from the card to Sadie, "this card implies that the individual will begin to actively seek answers of a philosophical kind. This may emerge as the study of a particular philosophy or system of belief or as a deep commitment to a quest for meaning in life. The Hierophant may appear in the form of an analyst, psychotherapist, priest or spiritual mentor in outside life to whom we turn for comfort and help. So the Fool, as we are considered in this kind of learning, emerges from his discovery of the underworld and the hidden powers of the unconscious seeking answers to the enigma of himself and the meaning of his life." He had no idea how this fitted into Sadie's life but to him it was a great step in the learning process.

Charlie studied Mikhail as he read the card, noting his intensity, and then glances to Sadie, unable to see the card, she waited...


Sadie thought it was lovely artwork, but beyond that she looked up to Mikhail's face. She didn't have a clue what such a card might indicate; God knew she'd had her share of teachers, right up to Charlie just now. As he explained, her left hand snuck up to the claddagh she wore on a chain around her neck. It lay silver, a sharp contrast to the blue shirt, until her fingers twisted around it. She nodded, all joking aside. What he said made absolute sense to her, from herself to her profession, the doctor was questioning and questing. "Thank you," subdued. "I think, no, I hope I find that person."

Most interesting, this was. It gave her courage, for it was not something specific about a thing, or a person...or an event.  She smiled at Sadie as she commented on her card, nodding her head. "Perhaps he is Monsieur Gates?" Saying the very first thing that came to mind. Please don't hit her.

He noticed her action, hand to go to what was on the chain about her neck. A dear connection to her, so the meaning came across to him. Pausing there leaving the sensations roll over him before dark eyes were drawn back to hers. "I would think, for the card appearing, that you will find that person." Shifting a glance to Evony with her outburst, one might consider it, slight smirk to appear, "could be anyone."

Warm was the smile at Sadie's reaction to his words.  But no words did she speak, only to sit quietly by as the words still seem to sink into her friend's mind. His words brought Anthea to smile.  But she felt he was right.  Eyes of silver laid upon her friend, not in worry, but in her reaction to his words.

She smiled at Mikhail for his response, and nodded. Truly, he was right, it could be virtually anyone.



Date: 12-17-10
Poster: Mikhail MacKay
Post # 37

Which she found encouraging. She held his gaze for a moment, then, laughed at Evony's suggestion. "I'm going to hope not, all things considered." She winked to Evony. She just didn't think that was the way to start off a mentoring relationship, groping a man up. Sadie settled down, crossing her legs. She'd move if anyone else wanted the floor while their card was read.

Which he crocked a finger Evony's way for her outburst, she got to go next if she wished. After the motion, he put the card back into the middle and shuffled them all up good before setting the deck back to the table.


She pulled in a breath at that finger crook, and the slowly rose to her feet.  Hands shook for a moment, but she gripped them together to hide this.  Then she moved to the table, not disturbing Sadie. "....Very well, Monsieur Mikhail." Settling into the chair, she studied the deck, and then looked up at him, with wary eyes. Taking the cards then, she cut them, one, twice, thrice. Settling them back into a pile, she put the bottom on the top, and set it down before the man, to settle back and wait patiently, her hands going back to that wringing hold on her lap.

Silent did her inquiry registered within her gaze.  Was Sadie alright?  This came first in her mind.  With a final glance, did she lean back against the side of a chair.  Cup to be lifted with ease, and full lips to wrap about the edge for well deserved drink. "Sadie, do you wish another drink?" Spoken softly as she held her own cup within her tender grasp.  "Charlie?"  Evony she would leave alone.  Who knew what the cards would bring her.

Charlie smiled, the cards were seldom wrong, some things couldn't be explained ..

Sadie had actually completely forgotten her tea. Recalled to it, she picked it up with her free hand, the other still worrying the ring. "Non, cherie. But, thank you." She winked, belatedly having realized Anthea had been looking at her with some concern. She was well, just thoughtful.

Anthea was relieved to see the wink.  "Anytime, my friend.. anytime.."


"I am good chickie," she grinned, her thoughts having wander to Kenneth ...terrible wasn't she?

His smile was reassuring, there was no damnation in these cards but encouraging one along their path as they faced new learning experiences. Eyes held a moment before he turned over the card. The Queen of Swords showed. The picture portrays a cool, stern faced yet beautiful woman with pale hair, severely dressed in a simple pale blue robe. She wears a golden crown and is seated on a silver throne. In one hand she holds a silver sword; in the other a jug from which water spills onto the ground. Behind her a vista of snowcapped mountains can be seen beneath a still, cool blue sky. He gave her a moment to study the picture before he began.

No! She was in love. With another smile, given to Charlie, she turned her attention to the card reading.  And regained the silence again.


If it didn't wander, it would be worrisome! Sadie was looking at the card over the rim of her tea cup. Sea-glass eyes drifted from Mikhail to Evony, then back to the cards.

Her eyes widened at the image, her head tipping to the side. As long as it was not the Death card, or the Tower, she could continue to breathe. "I don't know this card, Monsieur Mikhail..."

"When this card appears it is time for the individual to meet that dimension of himself, or herself which clings unswaying to an immovable faith in high ideals. These ideals may be noble and lofty and help to improve consciousness and the quality of life. But they may also reject life and be a defense against the fear of being human and therefore vulnerable to hurt. The individual needs to see where he or she might create problems through demanding superhuman perfection of others or oneself. If the Queen of Swords enters one's life as a strong, idealistic aloof woman, it may be seen as a catalyst through which one discovers this aspect of oneself." Which had Mikhail pause as he studied her. That wicked touch to dark eyes, "would you have a list of qualifications you secretively hold in what you want in a man?"

She was listening really, but her thoughts were filled by her gypsy, and what new torment she could come up with to distract him ..

As he told her what it meant, very slowly her eyes widened, until she was staring in something like great surprise.The question, the look in those eyes, they had her flushing a little and considering that matter.  She shook her head slowly, trying to give an answer without incriminating herself. "I would be...unfair. attach, when I am ...." in grave danger and could bring it all down on the poor sap's head at any time. ".....uncertain what the future holds."


He could taste her fear as a hand reached out to capture hers in a comforting way. Warm and calloused of a hard working man. "One day, not too far in the future, what needs to be resolved, will." Easing the hold as he tried to encourage her for insights he had beyond the cards. Perhaps it was the fact he knew the Chariot card rested beneath the other, one that foretold of conflict and struggle, pulled by the black and white horses trying to go in different directions.


Oh, it was good she did not know that last part!  She pulled in a startled breath at the grip of that hand, blinking and then smiling a little, though it was all still there. Like a gray fog of violence in which she danced a ballet of fear.  Hoping all the time it was not her swan song. "You are very kind, Monsieur Mikhail.  Very."  A stressed little smile curved her lips as she rose up, and then she stepped back. "I ....must go. I have some things to handle, oui? Ladies, it was so lovely to see you again. If you will be around tomorrow, I would love to talk with you each about the presents we have for the others, non?" Smiling a little more naturally, there, she swept for the stairs. Evony and her fleeing escapes.  Sadie had seen it last night.


"I am sorry," for exactly what he didn't say but she seemed to be fleeing him and she might feel uncomfortable around him from this day onward. That was until she defeated her past.

"Night Evony," she waved, wondering at the quickness of her friend ..

Confusion lined her features.  Silver eyes to watch not only her reaction, but that way in which she did leave.  Almost as if she was escaping., she was not uncomfortable with Mikhail...but he would only discover this over time. She cast an reassuring a look over her shoulder to Mikhail as she could at the moment, to his apology. He had nothing to apologize for! Then with another little smile to the ladies, she left.

Sadie considered Evony, then tipped her head back as Evony rose to go, then flew out before Sadie had done more than start to lift a hand in farewell. Sadie's eyes settled on Mikhail. "She does that sometimes." As in, don't take it too personally.

Anthea was glad he would skip her this night.  And, her friends, well.. she prayed they would be calm about it soon.


Charlie lifted her tankard, listening to them talking, as Evony went off, she was tired, but content, smiling ruefully...

Sadie tucked a loose curl behind her ear. "Thank you, Mikhail. That was..." she shook her head, verbose lady didn't quite have the word, "well, thank you." She grinned. "Plus, you've kept us out of trouble."

Anthea turned from the card reader. Interest filled her being, perhaps nosey, perhaps worried. But she was intrigued by the reading for her friends. With another sip of the tea, she too relaxed against the chair enjoying the flame.

"Lady Anthea, I would like to do a card reading for you another night so that my mind is clear as the hour grows late." He had a feeling she would not mind for certainly she had a lot of excitement for this night already. Although he was tempted.

Keeping them out of trouble was definitely a major feat, as they got into it on a regular basis Charlie wasn't alone any more ....

"Mikhail, you brought me good news.. of that I thank you very much so." She was not overly worried, for her cards would come when time permitted. "You're kind to think of me, Sir.. but rest must come first." And her own story to hold quiet for now.

"I doubt the cards would bring bad news over what one needs to do to continue on a growing path of learning. Otherwise one becomes stagnant and that is the worse that can happen to the living."

Nope. All trouble, all the time. And some poor person was going to be her spiritual guide? They'd have to be seriously patient. Sadie nodded at Mikhail, mouth curving.

She could only smile, how could she add to what he said. She felt this man was not only wise, but perhaps mystic as well.

He was enjoying watching Sadie at the moment, it was like her thoughts were written all over her body language and a nice body it was too. "Good night," tempted to add 'sexy', "Sadie, our paths will cross again."

She had a problem with that. Well, not the nice body, she was very all right with that, just the inability to sit still and not convey every single thought. "Good night," she flashed an appreciative smile at him, unaware of what all he might get from that. "I hope so, Mikhail."

Charlie lifted her hand to wave at Mikhail, noting that gaze where it went, "night Mikhail, it was good to see you again."

"Be safe, and thank you again.." She had to mask the grin behind her sip of tea. For she noted his gaze as well. So, for now.. she kept her gaze averted and enjoyed the dancing flames.


Was Sadie the only oblivious one in the room? Sheesh. She was out of practice.

Charlie was half tempted to ask Mikhail if he danced, but decided that might be too much information in one night ...

"Good night Charlie, always a pleasure. Give my regards to your Gypsy." He liked Kenneth and spent time with him and the other gypsies when he could. Mikhail could dance, provided she like dancing with heavy primal undertones.

"I will," she grinned, knowing that he would eventually get around to the vardos ...

When did they get invited to see the dancing?

UMm she might pass on that, seen too many wild men dancing, Kenneth was all she could handle ... In the Summer when the gypsy gathered, almost every night ...and then some ..


Anthea would definitely be liking this job. Watching all the dance, for the good of the paper of course!

Until she was grabbed by a whirlwind and spun like a top .. who knows Hiram might spin her ..

It was time for him to get moving too as the night called, moon on the rise painted high like a lantern to light the way. There were secret places to be visited and the life forms that didn't mix with the humans that came out to inform the few like Mikhail. "Good night Lady Anthea, until we meet again." Smile upon his lips reached his eyes as he collected his cloak, a bottle of potcheen from Alex then headed out.

"Bonjour," called after him as he headed out. Then she glanced to her two friends. "Never a dull moment, ladies."

Again Charlie waved, watching him go shaking her head, there would be a puddle of drool in his wake ...

"Good night, Lord Mikhail.." She had never been called a Lady before, and thus did she bow her head. Nay to smile, but perhaps to blush at a simple word not important to some.

"I would say not," she grinned like the Cheshire cat ...

"Never, Sadie.." Soft wink. She wanted her own home, yes. But, she would still come to the Thistle each night.

Um, they dabbed. They were tidy. Sadie laughed at Charlie's Cheshire grin. "They grow them..." she looked to the door, trying to think of an appropriate word, "....mmmm, well, here." Well. An understatement.

Grow them? That brought Anthea's attention to lay upon Sadie, bringing siver hues to roam to both. Perhaps curious, or totally ignorant of their words.


"Oh yeah I never noticed," she teased, of course she did, but her standard was Kenneth, and well hot as Mikhail was, he was not as hot as Kenneth ...Though if truth be told, he was damn well dippable ...

She was going to start keeping marshmallows to chuck at her friends. "The card readings were intense. Do you suppose Evony is well?" Sadie wasn't dipping anyone again. She was too exuberant a dipper.

That how it was suppose to be done ...sorta.

What could she say to that? She had seen the fear in Evony's eyes, but also did she see Sadie's emotions change, if only a second. "Are you, Sadie?" Words softly spoken.

IT was Mikhail who made them intense but she didn't say that, "yeah where's Sadie and who are you strange person." uhuh ...

Oh, Charlie had taken Kenneth to the floor? Sadie flashed that smile at Anthea, nodding. "Oui. He, ah, was very on point. It was surprising. I'm," she waved a hand, "at a--I'm looking for answers, I suppose. I didn't expect anyone too see that." Because, obviously, she hid that sort of thing behind her grin.

Oh yeah, the floor, the couch, the wagon, the fireplace, where ever they did not get hurt ...

"Then it was good you met Sir Mikhail, ne?" Words uttered barely above a whisper, not wishing to pry. You go Charlie!

Charlie should tell them more about that!

Eventually she might ...Charlie stood, her tankard empty.

"Masis oui," she laughed, she would have reached out to pat Anthea's hand but she was too far away. "Very good," she shot them a suggestive and sultry look.

"Well my friends, I think I gonna go play fire fighter for a while," she laughed, making for the bar to set her tankard down ..

She hazzard a glance to her friend. Feeling he hit a spot very close to Sadie's own thoughts. "And, I hope Evony will be alright.." She eyed Charlie, a smile for such a good friend.. "More riding lessons at another time?"

"Indeed, you have to learn to trot and to canter," she grinned ...Turning for the door way ... "Evony will be alright, in her own time," she added, suspecting that they all would ...

"I cannot wait.. but for now.." She thought perhaps her smell scared Mikhail away. "I need a bath.. if only from a basin." She rose upward, her own cup empty and now taken to the bar. "That is good, Charlie.." Kisses were blown to her friends as she moved toward the stairs.. "Time to be a girl again.." Which meant.. out of men's clothing! "Good night to you all.." With a flick of her wrist, she was gone.

Sadie nodded, thinking Charlie's answer was right. "Good night, darling." Then, to Anthea, "I'm all abandoned. Good night, love. Sweet dreams."

POOR Anthea had a lot to learn about men. "Night dear ..mind your spiritual leader," she cackled and hurried out the door ...



Date: 12-21-10
Poster: Lahoneee
Post # 38

A Royal Visit

"I do not know, Sadie. " Her eyes seem to glaze over, with images of wings on a person. How utterly fascinating. "I once cared for a down bird. I just cannot see how wings could support a human.." But, then again.. "I do believe in the ancient myths.. such as Pegasus and the like.." So perhaps it could happen. She had to smile to herself.."Sadie.. " How does she ask how it was to see a winged person? Say it.. "Were you shocked?"

"Right?' There, Sadie's scientific curiosity was up. She scootched higher, tucking a leg under her but keeping her boot off the chair. "What is the musculature like? Do they hook into the skeleton? And do they glide or flap a lot? Do they molt?" Sadie grinned. "Obviously, I haven't asked. But I want to." Sadie nodded. "Of course."

She was a shepherdess, a wool maiden and her crowning glory was the golden spun hair. A style worn with braids that twisted and twined around free falling strands. Pearls woven in like tiny flowers and a fur line cloaked to keep her warm unless she had a man whose heart to surround her in warmth. Setting aside such fantasies as certainly such invaded near every woman's thoughts, she was quick to ascend the steps and come right into the place. Her smile bright as she caught sight of a few, "good evening to you," bringing a basket full of woolen mittens, scarves, caps and blankets which Alex knew what to do with.

Attention was fully on Sadie. Her words were confusing at best, but in a way she was confused more by a person having wings! Tea cup was forgotten, mind going a mile a minute with images of magic. .. "Mus.. muscu.. what?" The other she understood. How did the wings work. Did it hurt to fly? This was indeed very fascinating, but soon forgotten at the voice that filled the interior. "Good evening.." Spoken warmly. With the notion that she would definitely bring this up with Sadie again.

Sadie finally stopped her theoretical list of questions, grinning at Anthea. It was the same one she turned on the new woman, "Evenin'," and a hand lifted in a wave.

She got a glass of the punch potcheen in a black cherry flavor before turning back to the two ladies, "I am Mariah, McCormick," which had her pausing as the surname probably didn't mean anything to them for certainly they were newcomers. She knew everyone here, that had been here a long time having grown up here, born here.

Anthea easily untucked her legs from beneath her form. Stretching them out, to place upon the floor with grace. Her smile curved about lips, glad to meet another, and it showed within the sparkle of her gaze. "A pleasure to meet you, Mariah.. I am Anthea Drakos.. and my friend.." She turned to Sadie, letting her friend introduce herself.

Their accents would have marked them outsiders, even aside from not recognizing their faces. Anthea with her Greek and Sadie's all muddled, French and Australian. "Sadie Badeau, lovely t'meet you."

With Christmas just around the corner, the new owner of the Commons Toy Shop had been quite busy. Evan had re-opened the store several weeks ago and it felt like there had been an increasingly heavy stream of customers ever  since. The place had been decorated from the inside out and resembled nothing so much as Santa's workshop, with the shelves of toys and stuffed animals, the rocking horses and lifelike dolls. Some of it had been left over by the prior owner but much of it had been built by Evan himself. It was exciting to explore this craft which he'd been piddling at for years but never thought to make a career out of. His puzzle boxes were in high demand and he stayed up late hours making more, but this night, he felt like he hadn't left the shop in days and needed to get away. So when the last customer left, he locked up and headed into the tavern for a much needed drink. A long wool coat kept him warm and a black fisherman's cap kept his hair somewhat under control. Stepping inside, his gaze swept the mostly unfamiliar patrons but paused on the golden haired one and he grinned. Catching the other ladies' eyes, he held a finger up to his lips to ask for silence then crept up (as quietly as such a tall man could) behind Mariah and put two large callused hands over her eyes.

Not a peep out of Sadie, just a quick look to Anthea. Imps, everyone, that came through here.

Anthea noticed the tall gentleman, and lowered her gaze to give him the silence he did desire. But then, well, she gazed to Sadie and winked.

"It is a pleasure to meet you both," she thought she had heard footsteps behind her and was about to turn when her sight left her beneath calloused hands. She stiffened at first but then who would harm her in this place? Still it didn't hurt to threaten, give the one something to think about. "You better be someone I know or this fist," lifting up said fist, "will be in your gut," like a feather knocking one over she'd be.


A clear sky coupled with the brisk chill of night made for the perfect evening to enjoy a winter's stroll. Karl and Honeee spoke quietly between themselves unless they paused to speak to those they met on the street. The golden glow of lantern light glistened on the snow like gold dust, adding to the blissful atmosphere. At one point, the man paused their progress to touch a kiss to the lady's gloved hand that he held but soon they were crossing the street to the Thistle. A few more moments to talk to passersby, then they continued in, the door held open for the Lady to enter.

Many made way, stopped to bow and wish happiness and health upon them. Such was given back as Honeee glowed with her arm tucked in Karl's. A smile to warm as Karl touched a kiss to her gloved hand. The hood was up covering the length of golden brown hair streaked in sunlight as ocean blue eyes turned upon her husband with adoration, such still there after all these years. There was a time he had to stand as her champion, as her guard. Perhaps some of those memories shown in blue before they ascended the steps to the tavern.

"I dare you to try," he all but growled but it was a familiar voice that brushed her ear, and familiar lips that brushed her cheek. He dropped his hands and ducked around to stand in front of her with that dashing grin of his. "You're looking even more lovely than usual tonight," he added on a quieter note, a hand lifting to briefly caress her cheek and tucking a stray golden strand behind her ear.

A yawn caught her off guard. Anthea might be onto something about this resting thing. She gave herself a push, struggling to balance on her boots. "I've a few things yet to grab out of my room. I think I'll just go grab those." And by grab she meant lie down and rest her eyes and by that she meant pass out until 3 a.m.

Once inside, Karl assisted Honeee with her cloak and then hung both hers and his to the peg by the door. "Good evening, Alex." He called over the ever present tender without a glance that way yet, but as he turned, he nodded to the others in the room. "And to you all. Happy holidays to you.."

Anthea could not help the smile that crept along her lips. Noticing the yawn, and hoping the doctor would soon fall in bed to sleep. But, she had to ponder. Why not move herself? She held the key to the cottage. "Of course, my friend.. only good dreams.." The voice, unfamiliar, reached Anthea's attention. And, of course she had no idea who the pair was. "Happy Holidays to you as well.." Smile came to both, as it did to all.

There was one thing about Evan Hunt, he was quick as her hand shot out as if to see to her promise but it was to grasp the cloth cover his chest to yank him closer. "You scoundrel where have you been hiding?"Although she knew exactly where he'd been hiding out as she had been hiding out in the wool shop doing the same. "The ladies are Anthea and Sadie."

Sadie, on her feet, turned to wave to the new folks. "Evenin', ma-" and she rolled her lips together. Probably oughtn't call them mates, right? Sadie turned the now awkward smile to Evan and gave a nod. Yep, smudged up and sleepy, that's when she'd bump into royalty.

Honeee wore a rich gown of a deep green velvet that was not overly adorn, she was not one to be overly adorned but thrived in simplicity. "Thank you," came softly to her husband before the impish curl of her smile turned on the others, "Happy Holidays and however you celebrate the season," a last glance lingered on Mariah, she knew the young woman to see her but it had been many years and she'd grown into a woman.

He just grinned wider, allowing himself to be pulled closer by the much more petite woman. "Underneath a pile of work," he answered with a chuckle, still running the back of his hand along a strand of her hair. An intimate gesture that was stopped by the arrival of the royal pair. He straightened up subconsciously and bowed his head deeply to them. "Your Majesties.."

Mariah was quick to dip a small curtsey, there was something about being informal in the tavern but hell, this was the king and queen, "Thank you and I wish the same for your holiday season. She had let go of Evan too and was about to nudge him but it seemed he knew who they were.

Anthea's pinafore held smudges of work, and perhaps she could have changed. But.."Nice to meet you.." Spoken to the man that minutes ago had hidden Mariah's gaze from view. "Happy Holidays, my Lady.." Addressing the woman so she felt was right, but then, Holy cow! Majesties?? Anthea felt her mouth dry up. Felt palms water. The highest nobility she had ever met had been a Baron. Should she curtsey? Or just let a hole open up and swallow her. "I am sorry." Quickly she jumped from the chair, almost stumbling to her face as she did so. Oh God, Anthea was a dolt!

Karl rested his hand gently against the small of Honeee's back, starting them forward toward the group, but with semi-formalities underway, he stopped a moment to offer a dip of head to each one individually as he and Honeee were greeted. He glanced to Alex, saw the man placing drinks on the counter top for them but his attention shot to the young woman bumbling from her chair. He started forward, but she seemed to catch herself well enough so he reined in that need to help her, lest she become any more uncomfortable than she already seemed. "A lovely night." Is all he added, then crossed to Alex and shared a few lowered words with the man.

"Hello Mariah, and your handsome gentleman," giving her a wink before her smile turned on Anthea. "There is nothing to be sorry for. You are Anthea and working hard on our newest newsletter. Thank you. Sadie," turning to her in turn with the softness of a smile. "I am pleased you have come back. The hospital will do even better with your talents and expertise. I hope that what took you away resolved to have you come back to stay."

AND here she comes to save the day, well a moment in time, maybe, she late, for an important date, but had seen the royals and needed to impart greetings to her long time friend, and troublemaker, and of Karl too, as well as her friends, thump and she was inside "I AM HERE " ta-da striking a pose, a bear that had human legs almost. Her shorter waist coat effect for riding fast...

He heard Honeee doing one of the many things she did so well-putting everyone at ease and allowing them to realize they were appreciated by the lands for their desire to be a part of it.

Christ, what did a girl do when she was wearing breeches? Really, she should have found this out sooner. Bloody hell was her singular, articulate, thought. Sadie reached out to balance Anthea, for once equally stumped. Grew up in a 
 penal colony! And really felt like it. The hand she had on Anthea was more for her own comfort at this point. "Merci, I plan to stay, oui." And thank you Charlie. Sadie turned and the smile widened. Huzzah!

"Yes, he is handsome, isn't he," so willing to agree as her smile only brightened more. Now she leaned in with a little nudge, hopefully he didn't move either!

"Yes, I do believe our Miss Trouble has arrived," giving a wink as she turned to open her arms for a hug, "Charlie, how have you been? Kenneth still alive?"

Slowly did she take a deep breath, swallowing down any fear of meeting nobility. She stood in complete silence as Honeee spoke to Sadie. Feeling the butterflies flutter about in her stomach, and swallowing down the nervousness. She held Sadie's hand as if it was a life line. Blood Hell, her first meeting and she had fankled it up! "Sadie.. I am a fool." Muttered under breath, and still standing like some statue!

The voice was recognized even before he turned to find the woman so perfectly posed at the door. His chuckle vibrated deep in his chest and he offered her a dip of head and a smile then as Honeee welcomed her friend and previous accomplice, he turned his focus back to Alex and they returned to the discussion at hand.

Hurrying across the room to the open wide hug, "iamfineheisfineiamlateforadatewithhim" she rattled off in one long breath and spun her friend around "I have missed you Lah" she grinned, then dipped her friend, kissing her soundly on her cheek ...

He grinned foolishly at the compliment from the queen, ducking his head in a thankful nod then passing Anthea a wink when she stumbled. Anyone could get flustered in the presence of royalty but one got used to seeing them around at times. He blinked when Charlie rushed in to embrace Honeee but then shrugged slightly. Offering a reassuring smile to Sadie he then turned attention back down to the lovely woman in arm's reach. "How have you been? I've missed you," he said feelingly to Mariah.



Date: 12-21-10
Poster: Lahoneee
Post # 39

Amazing, she knew Charlie so long, she understood what she had said. "Don't keep that man of yours waiting too long but to see an old friend, could spare a few minutes." Hugging her good at that point before easing from it.

Sadie wasn't entirely sure you were allowed to sit. Somehow, being so sleepy, she had all sorts of rules of address and comportment mixed up. She was a little afraid she wasn't s'posed to have her head higher than theirs and since she was a lot of inches taller than the Queen she wondered if she should squat. Charlie, though, had her chuckling as she leaned over to whisper to Anthea.

Next came the dip and kiss which had her laughing more. "You will make Karl jealous for the way you can smack them at the end!" If Sadie squat she might get rushed out thinking she was doing a call to nature.

Charlie giggled, helping her friend right herself, then she kissed her cheek again. "I will give him one too then," turning to Karl and well you guessed she pointed her finger upwards at the mistletoe, waiting for him to look up ...

Greek flowed with ease. Going on and on about not curtseying. Not acting like she should? On and on she went, not realizing her native language was flowing with such ease. Well, Sadie's whisper only had her Greek going more.

He broke from the serious conversation to comment on Honeee's. "It has always been Charlie I have been ..." He followed the direction of her point and broad shoulders quaked with laughter that had yet to have sound. "So well decorated, Charlie. I suspect you had...nothing to do with it." He held out an arm to welcome her to him.

Her words turned to a whisper as she watched the scene before them. "I have been well. I have been missing you and thinking of letting my help take over the store for a day that we might take a sleigh ride." She wondered if he had anyone to help out yet.

And when he looked up, she politely reached for his shoulders and kissed his cheek, with a resounding smoooch at the end ... "of course I did I hung it myself," she grinned waggling her brows with the usual mischief ...

Luckily Anthea distracted her! Couldn't have the doctor copping a squat in the tavern. Nope. She gave Anthea a nudge with her elbow. "We should..sit." Yup, she nudged Anthea along and then perched on the arm of the chair she plunked her in. Abbott and Costello over here.

He managed to turn his face just enough to return the holiday affection, though with not as much 'umph' of sound.

"You love it and you know it Karl," she teased, cause she did, he was the best man that ever happened to Honeee,and she was off yet again, looking at her two cowed friends. "Oh really girls, she puts her pants on the same way we do both feet a time," as if she jumped into them. Charlie was human, and well they were her friends, she had manners in court but she seldom went there, and promptly she kissed Anthea on the cheek, then reached to do the same to  Sadie...

"After you finish your holiday running around, Charlie, you should come to the castle..." He rested his gaze on Honeee, knowing she would be needing her good friend once they departed for Kildare.

Well, she smoothed out the pinafore, and then remembered. Gah, smudges! Costello sat with a thud. Face palm. But, wait.. she played there? Silver hues glanced to Sadie, but so quickly it would not have been noticed.

"Ahh, I don't know if I could get away before Christmas.." he said reluctantly, features twisting into a regretful grimace. So far it was just him running the shop, and with Christmas so soon it was the busiest time of year. "But the day after, I'm going to whisk you away for a sleigh ride or whatever you want. I promise." He reached out to take gentle grasp of her elbow to pull her just a bit closer, smiling his dazzling smile down at her.

Sadie laughed, but when Charlie kissed her Sadie goosed her. Minx.

"Indeed I do," which she lifted her skirts enough to show the leggings underneath before they were released. "There is a thing about being practical that far outweighs adornment or silly protocols."

His arm remained out, this time to Honeee even as he finished his discussion with Alex and brought around Honeee's drink with his other hand. 

"I shall surely do that Karl, I love to visit," and make mischief as she could. and she was goosed, did she honk, maybe, maybe not, moving with less speed to Evan and Mariah " good evening to you both, and Merry Christmas " SEE SHE
 dint kiss every one ...

Dark brows shot up with his wife's lift of skirts.

"Charlie.. I am a mess. And.. well... " Smiled almost in awe.. "She is beautiful.. did you see her clothes." Leave it to this Greek to love the queen's clothing! And smooch, loud and quick, was blown Charlie's way.

"Then, if you allow me I will come and invade your shop. I shall bring a warm lunch and help you see to customers while you work on the making."

Sadie laughed again, then promptly winked at the queen. "I agree." And she patted her dusty breeches. Was winking inappropriate? Damn, she was always inappropriate.

Well, Anthea had lived thru that. With a wink to Sadie, she turned slightly at the waist to pick up the cup of tea. "Wish I had whiskey right now" Mumbled to Sadie.

She was lithe on her feet, had to do with the fae part of her blood, mixture even there was she curled into his arm taking her drink from his hand as she did.

"Oui, that'd be helpful. You'd be snorting every two minutes," Sadie bent her head to murmur back, snorting herself as she tried not to laugh.

Karl passed his gaze over the room, noticing all the decorating that had taken place. Even the tree was happy and gay with all its trimmings. If anyone left this place not in the holiday spirit, they were beyond hope.

"Perhaps sound like a pig.. or was it a horse?" She leaned in to get closer to Sadie, using her knees under her form, to aide her. "Snort.. or.." The sound of horse sounded. But low, she was not going to embarrass herself!

Sadie lost it at that. There was that big, bawdy laugh of hers in response.

"Evening," he said to Charlie with a quick grin before looking back at Mariah in delight. "Really? You'd do that? I would love that." Not only would it give him more time with her, it would be nice to have a couple more helping hands around the shop.

Low, but not inaudible. In the sweep of the room, Karl's notice paused on Anthea.


"Made you laugh?" Grin coiled about her lips. Grinning to her friend, and glad to see her laugh. She worked to hard!


If only they knew that Honeee and her twin sister were raised in the forest by a craggy old wizard who had become very dear to them.

She had to swipe a tear from her she'd laughed so hard. It didn't help that she could remember, clearly, the Quinns and Anthea looking around for the horse. If Anthea caught His Majesty looking, Sadie wasn't taking the blame. Not like last time.

She was noticing too and wouldn't you have it that there was clump of it hanging over her husband's head. A man quite taller than herself as she was quick to draw up a chair and stand on it. Hands coming to cup his bearded cheeks as leaned in to give him a kiss that would have him anxious for later. A promising kind before it ended with a little flutter of one and then she was done.

Anthea wasn't going to look that way. She had already made an arse out of herself in front of both. "My mitera often said.. laughter is the best medicine. Is this true?" Crossing her eyes to Sadie, and becoming rather silly. "Was she right, doctor?" Grin!

He was mostly pleased they were enjoying themselves.

"Aye, I will do that. Look forward to it as I've two ladies that help me out. They worked there before my father handed it over," bit of a story there but it was to get her out of the house and meet others. Barely out of the house and she met Evan! Her father's plan worked faster than even he'd of thought.

"Oui," Sadie chuckled and got mildly distracted by the kiss. When she shook her head and came back, she winked at Anthea. "On your own, darling. I'm off to finish getting my things." And she followed suit quickly, a blown kiss to Anthea and then a "Fair evening to you," a semi-serious nod happening to King and Queen, if they had parted, then she was off. Escaping. Er, dashing. Yes. Dashing.

He was even more pleased as he watched Honeee scoot things around to better suit her...suit him! His arm went around her and he returned the kiss, though he was quite surprised by the delivery of it.

"Glika onira.. sweet dreams." She let that luminous smile glow, brought her silver hues to train on Sadie. " Only good dreams, Sadie." Then her own kiss was blown before turning in her seat to enjoy her tea.

....and she grinned, hopping about," Merry Christmas to all ..I am off to see Kenneth," she trilled, and she was galloping out the door laughing ...

"Be safe, Charlie" Called out and hoping she could hear before she dashed off.

"Oh, good." He was relieved to hear that it wouldn't be a problem for her to leave the shop in capable hands for a day. "When can you come? Tomorrow?" Did he seem eager? He gave a hopeful grin.

Her words came whispered as she eased down from the chair with an inborn grace. "I hope we didn't chase Sadie off," knowing well Charlie had to go or she would be whopping and hollering them on. Nothing should surprise Karl when it came to Honeee.

"Brazen female." He chuckled to his wife, twisting slightly to set his empty glass back on the counter for Alex. A shake of head provided the silent denial for a refill. "When you are ready, My Queen, we shall continue our stroll." And on a night like tonight, with Honeee in such good spirits, who knew where the two may end up and when they may make it back to the castle? 

"Alex, be expecting Yule tide baskets being delivered here to be handed out to the families," which Alex knew they came twice a year as he gave a nod. The bit of brandy was consumed before she was at her husband's side again. "Willing, able and ready m'king." Which she would fold back into the cloak to ward out the cold of the night they were to face again. There was a certain bench under a lamplight that had afforded them privacy long ago when she was queen and he was her champion that was destined to become more.

Karl would always loose himself in that twinkling of her eyes, and he just smiled to himself as he helped her with her cloak and then donned his own. "Once again, the very best to you all. Goodnight."

"Yes, tomorrow," dipping another quick respectful curtsey as the king and queen prepared to depart, "a very happy holiday to you and yours."

The silence brought Anthea to conjure images within her mind. Images of how she would decorate her new home. How Hercules would like it. And, she was determined that her ancestry would touch the decoration. "Kalinishta, good night, your majesties.." Soft call came with ease. Silver hues to touch the pair in respect before lifting to watch that of the dancing flames.


Watch for Karl to limp out! Her smile was swift with warmth before she was being escorted out and their conversation set between them in whispered tones.

"A pause to turn to the royal pair and he bowed again. "Good evening, your majesties, have a happy holiday."

She had enjoyed the time this evening. And could not wait to tell Evony about it. But for now, she was content to enjoy the flames and hopefully lull her to wish to seek her bed. "It was a pleasure to meet you both.." Spoken as she lifted from the chair to place the cup on the bar. "Pleasant dreams.. " Smile was seen, and then she was off.. vanishing up the staircase.

It was very nice meeting you  Anthea, perhaps we shall meet again and share a conversation." Certainly they had not considering as she headed out with Evan, time for a walk.

Date: 12-21-10
Poster: Broch Cunningham
Post # 40

Broch is Back

Sadie, alone again, had just headed into the tavern from checking out her new cottage. This would be her last night in the Thistle, so she was settled at the bar, intending to enjoy not feeling obligated to cook her own meal. She was chattering at Alex between bites, but he took it manfully. In that he took it stoically and let her talk about what she planned to do over the next several months, although not with the house. She could only talk about her patients.

The Cunninghams seemed to be nomad types except their sister Laurel and possibly Michael now that he became smitten with a lass from Kildare. Logan was still scaling cliffs while Broch wandered but always came back what was considered home. He'd been in and out of relationships, just hadn't found the right one for him, or from another view, the right one for him hadn't found him? Bah! Tossing such thoughts aside as the front door swung open to admit a mountain of a man in furs that kept him warm this cold season. Snow layered on his beard and moustache as well any hair that stuck out from under the fur cap. "Guid evening," a glint coming to life in burnished green eyes as he spotted Alex and yet another, a lovely female that his eyes could feast on after not seeing any for his mountain excursion lasting a few months. He noticed the look Alex gave him but he was already seeing to the closure of the door and the relief of cap and cloak to a peg there by the door.

Sadie had just taken a bite of bread when the door swung in. She turned to wave, inevitably using the hand holding the bread. She chewed as fast as she could and swallowed, "Bon soir!" He was...intriguing, all fur and snow and beard. "Or, perhaps, bienvenue," welcome. Sadie, on the other hand, was looking rather tame. Gold curls fairly ordered and a green silk to go with her usual tan breeches and boots.

"Aye, yea bae speak'in a foreign tongue t'ere lassie," like anyone could understand his speech as he was already headed her way getting taller by the second by the time she was reached. He drew in a deep breath, "t'ar bae nay finer scent t'an t'at o' a woman, aye Alex?" Like Alex was going to even make a reply to that comment as Broch interjected instead, "except may bae Hazel's cook'in."

Sadie tipped her head back, unable not to grin at the behemoth of a man. "Welcome." And then she nodded, "mais yeah, darling. Hazel's food, none better." Gesturing with her bread again to her half-cleared plate.

Which had him looking around, sweeping glance with the flare of nostrils, "t'ar bae t'e scent o' one C'arlie One Time tae about t'e place." That set that twinkle back to his eyes and the sparkling of a smile swept his features for a second or two. "Ah bae Broc' Cunning'am o' t'ese lands and ah bae 'onoored tae meet yea lass," which he straddled up the stool next to her. Being a big man that had a thigh and knee to bump as he settled in. Catching sight of a menu he scooped one up to look it over.

Sadie laughed. "You know Charlie then? Then I'm going to like you." Settled. She reached over herself to offer her free hand, "Sadie Badeau, Broch, and a pleasure to meet you." Yes, interrupting his menu perusal.

He ordered the chicken and leek pie along with a bowl of Irish stew and brown bread served up warm and soaked in butter. An ale to wash it all down which was poured and set in front of him. She got to see his profile, the line of his nose spoke of nobility, the set of his jaw and chin of strength. Broch had some very interesting stories to tell if he ever told some of them. Green eyes turned her way as did the cant of his head and a smile to tuck within the beard. "Aye, t'ar bae very few 'ere t'at din kin C'arlie. S'e 'as been coming 'ere a long time." Turning more as he took her hand in his only to cover it with the other and held in a warm calloused hand. "It bae mae pleasure, Sadie Badeau." And he had no trouble pronouncing her name and perhaps just a huskier sound to his voice as he released her hand.

Aquiline features were a surprise, but they suited him--like the big voice and the lively green eyes. She could only imagine he had quite a life story. Travelers usually did. He seemed to exude good feelings. That or Hazel's stew was spiked tonight. She met his gaze with her own, her hand swallowed up, an unusual occurrence for her. When he released it, she went back to her stew and bread. "Good travels?"

"Aye, very guid. W'at o' yea Sadie Badeau? Yea 'ave traveled far tae come t'is way, aye?" His food was being delivered as he spoke and barely the question out before he was diving into his stew with a very hearty appetite. Barely any sound all considering his over all appeal one might think he ate like a barbarian too.

She had a moment where the accent defeated her, and then, "Oh, oui. Australia." Penal colony and probably a sound explanation for why she felt so at ease with him. Sadie dipped her bread into her own stew. "But it is always good to land here afterward. Good people, fine food." She bit into the soaked bread, the last she'd be able to finish of her dinner.

"Aye?" Taking a moment from his food as brows swept up from darkening green eyes, "yea bae an Aussie t'en, come from t'e land down under," which he leaned a little closer in emphasis of some good humor, "althoug' some bae wonder'in exactly w'at it bae under." Straightening back from that slight lean as he finished off his stew. Waste not, want not, besides having the appetite of a bear. "Yea bae mak'in friends t'en?" Which he started on the chicken and leek pie.

Sadie's laugh was loud and raucous. She didn't do lady like laughter, which could be surprising for some. She winked,"That's our secret, mate." Putting on the Australian. "Yes. It's easy t'do here. But I'm guessing you know that."

"Aye, I bea suppos'in it bae from t'e view o' t'e one look'in up or t'e view o' t'e one look'in down?" Which he was suppressing a laugh as he shared in the good humor. He actually knew the real reason and it really ended up as a point of viewing a globe. "Aye, indeed it bae," especially this time around compared to the first time around where he died in these very lands. Deserving too for the man that he'd once been. That man was in essence dead.

Morgan was in port for the holidays, though he'd be collecting Deirdre and Adam and heading for Kildare and Montrose in a day or two. Family celebrations were always enjoyable though he was wondering if Faelan and Regan would make it. Last he heard, she was off seeking warmer waters. She had grown unpredictable of late, and though her independence was a good thing, he couldn't help being concerned. Then again, she was always unpredictable. But now she had become more reckless. He decided to head to the Thistle to stay the night since Adam had been busy and it was late to head to the manor. Dressed in a long coat of black, with black pants tucked into boots folded over, a vest of red and a buccaneer's shirt, also of black, he was cursing the wind. Had to carry his hat. He came in quickly, closing the door behind him and turned to survey the common room.

Sadie gave him an easy bump with her shoulder. She was tactile in general but he seemed the type that wouldn't mind. And she would never have guessed at a dark or deadly past. She opened her mouth to say something teasing back, when the door swung open and she instead called out, "Bienvenue," the laughter still in her voice.

The gust of wind that brought the captain in had Broch turn on his stool. Knee bumping certainly wasn't minded nor was the shoulder one. "W'ar bae yea sassy lil sister, Morgan?" Regan was a little spitfire he liked exchanging teasing with. "O' yea brot'er," they formed a trio where the sea was concerned even if not the notorious Unholy Trinity that was reserved to the likes of real evil. "T'is bae Sadie Badeau. Sadie, t'is bae Morgan Calli'an."

"Evening, Broch, good t' see ye." He gave both an easy smile, "Good tae meet ye, Sadie. They both best be on the wintry seas, and heading back to Kildare or our Da will have their hides. Right cold out there, aye?" He hung his coat and made his way to the bar, leaving his hat resting on the countertop at his elbow. "How ya been, Broch?" He'd get to Sadie in a moment.

Her smile deepened, curving dimples into her cheeks. "Pleasure t'meet you." Sadie twisted back on her stool to take a drink of her tea, easy enough with listening to the two of them.

"I 'ear t'ere bae some ta-do 'n Kildare o' late." Meaning the forests and the rumors that had reached even his ears. "Yea brot'er James will bae 'elping out wit' t'at?" That being logical deduction being James was the eldest, except his father who had stepped down from those responsibilities. Understandably for his health. Broch had been up that way but not quite that far. "I've been guid and yea 'ave me 'elp if needed."

"Aye, it has been, though I'm not sure if anything is near Montrose." The yet wasn't sounded out but it was there. "I'll be sure to pass that along to me brother. I'm here to collect Adam and Deirdre for the yule celebration." He had a drink in hand now, so all was good. "Are ye a newcomer here, Sadie?' Offering another smile. After all she was a right pretty lass.

Sadie let Alex take her plate, skipping desert for once. She had her cup to her mouth when Morgan addressed her. That was always the way. It wouldn't be, of course, if she would stop with the food. "Non, well, I've recently returned." Mouth curved in a quick smile.

He took all in that Morgan had to say with a nod to follow, his ale in hand as he let the two talk as the conversation was turned her way with a question.  "Yea 'ave been 'ere before?" He was surprised he'd not run into her but then, there were a lot of changes and strange adventures that he embarked upon. "Yea 'ave maybe met me brot'ers, Logan and Mic'ael?"

"Or me brother, James Callihan." He had been here for some time before his siblings joined him.

Dark curls flowed down her back like tendrils of shadows. Luminous smile tugged at moist lips with the thought of tea to quench her thirst. She was parched after a long walk within the village. A walk that brought the music of children laughing, adults conversing with one another, and dogs barking. But now, silver hues observed the main room as she entered the Thistle, fixating her sight upon the comfortable chair near the blaze within the hearth. A blaze that brought heat to the room, and dancing colors to amuse the Greek at this point in time. Delicate strides brought the woman to her destination. Strides that were not rushed, but smooth, almost exquisite in enough. The beige, pinafore dress covered the chemise, with a golden ribbon to wrap about her waist to bring the attire some dignity. It was not the most glamorous outfit, but it had been good enough to enjoy the outdoors, and enjoy exploring the press shop.

Sadie'd been hearing Kildare dropped in practically every conversation in the tavern, so she didn't mind eavesdropping. She hadn't asked because it seemed people were purposefully careful with their words about it. "Oui. I worked at Barrington Memorial." Sadie paused, considered the names they offered. "Logan sounds familiar. So does Callihan, really, but I've been gone more than four years now." Just because she was talking didn't mean she missed Anthea's entrance and she twisted 'round to greet her friend, "Bonsoir, darling."

But, her destination was changed, for the hearth did not deliver tea. "Good evening, sweetheart.. " That smile spread for Sadie and then gentlemen as well. But, it brighten for Alex, wishing that tea desperately.

The tracking of burnished green eyes followed the newest addition to the tavern proper, dipping as she passed with that glint in his eyes appreciatively before he was back to the conversation at hand. There and back to the one at the hearth, she had seemed on a purpose than being necessarily social. Broch had a stool straddled near Sadie being they had both enjoyed a meal there at the bar. He was like a mountain on a mole hill with an arm braced against the edge of the counter the other resting along his thigh, at least the furs were off but he was still a big man. Perhaps not as big as some but he gave off that impression even more than actual girth.

"Greetings, Alex.. and thank you so much" Her voice held a chill to her tone, with a slight warmth to line the vowels from her homeland. She noticed the mountain of a man, but she did not voice that certain thought! "I trust everyone's evening has been lovely.." She was told to try and be more sociable, well, this was Anthea trying.

He was drinking so not saying much. A glance to the lass entering and he cut another toward Broch, hiding a smirk. As the glass was lowered, he saluted her. "Evening, Miss."

Sadie felt a little dwarfed and she was Amazon like in height. Anthea would get there, particularly if she kept hanging out with Trouble and Sadie. "Anthea, meet Broch Cunningham and Morgan Callihan." Green eyes went to each man, making certain she got it right. "This is Anthea Drakos or, as I call her, Madame Journalist."

The tea was accepted, her tender grasp wrapping about the heated cup. Enjoying the warmth, but knowing she did not need it. With the cup hovering inches from her lips, she brought the cup to lower, and she to nod her dark head politely. "Greetings, Sirs.. a pleasure.." Madame Journalist. Yes, she loved Sadie for that nick name!

Unfortunately, with that, Sadie had to scoot off of her stool. The morning meant moving, plus the dozen other errands she'd need to see to before she spent a night in the cottage. Like getting a bed. She wasn't above sleeping on the floor, but she'd prefer not to do so. "Broch, Morgan. Nice t'meet you both. Anthea, if you see Evony let her know we have an option for Yule dinner." Her grin flashed as she dipped fingers into a pocket and brought out a key. "I have a cottage. It isn't furnished, mind you, but it'll have a stove."

"Evening, lass. A pleasure in the meet." He saluted her with his glass before he took another long drink.

She was not good at holding her cup, keeping the hot liquid from spilling. Smooth strides brought the petite Greek to the chair that held her gaze fixed since leaving the press. Almost on a mission, to find rest. The soft nod was seen to the man's salute, finding the comfort of the chair with a sigh. "Of course Sadie.. I am so sorry to have not visited more today.." Kisses were blown with a sparkle of happiness for Sadie and her new found home.

"Guid tae meet yea Ant'ea," which he was finishing up his ale before the tankard was set to the counter with a slight twist of his body bringing his knee into contact with Sadie's thigh again before he was back around. "It 'as been a pleasure meet'in yea Sadie, I 'ope tae bump intae yar about." Giving a wink for there were bumps tonight for the proximity of the stools or just he was a big man filling one.

Sadie didn't mind at all. Brock and Morgan weren't the only two noticing looks in the room. She waved off Anthea. "Non, cherie. I've only been here to eat. I'll see you in the next day or so." Then she chuckled at Broch. "I hope so too. Evenin'." Nope, she didn't mind being bumped. The limp she had going was due to a boot or a leg, she still wasn't sure which, and the floor to her bum. But she moved pretty quickly towards the stairs.

He spoke her name like Shawn. A man that still brought a twinge of pain to flow within her soul, but pain that she masked well with a soft smile to his greetings. She would hope so. But, she knew her days would be busy with the press. Not only to explore it, but her new home as well. "Madame Journalist is the name.. for I help run the press shop now.." Spoken off handily, as to not bring these men think she could not speak. She was trying, and felt pretty proud. She had done well socializing the past few nights.

"It was a pleasure, Sadie." He stood when she got up, gave a bit of a bow.

"Dae yea now?" Held that hint of teasing that came so naturally for him. "T'at bae a big responsibility. 'ave yea met t'e crones?" Which he shifted a glance to Morgan, certainly he's run into those two a few timed down at the docks.

"Quite a nickname, but shouldn't ye be Madame Printer?" He'd rather not remember, thank you.

"Aye.." Word came easily. "I wish the responsibility.. for it will keep my time from sitting here with only the hearth to keep me company?" Twitch of a grin. But then her shapely brows did lift. "Crones?" Morgan, well his words were kind as well. Journalist or Printer.. she was just glad to have something to do.."Perhaps both?"

"Surely yea 'ave made friends wit' more t'an t'e 'eart'?" Brows were up as she didn't come off as a mouse or hid in a corner too scared to make any friends.

"Perhaps. " He gave her an easy smile before he leaned back against the bar, elbows resting on the counter. "Tell her about the Crones, Broch."

"Oh yes, my Lord.. but at times, when others were out and about.. I tend to sit here.." She was still a bit shy, and it had been hard to make friends, thus why she enjoyed the children. "Yes, the crones?" Change of subject came with a smile.

"Ye'll not forget 'em iffin yea get tae meet t'em." Smile tucked within the trimmed beard as that spark of mirth danced in burnished green eyes, first trained on Anthea then shifted to Morgan. "Yea bae a better one tae speak o' t'em." Implying he knew them personally for practically living down at the docks and harbor area.

Silver hues roamed to Broch, and then slowly to Morgan as the explanation was shifted to him. Cup was lifted gracefully, lips to capture the rim and drink slowly as she did listen.

"I am not. I avoid 'em whenever I see them. They're too ... older ladies, widows. Maddie and Pearl. Gossips who have no equals." And that was all he was going to say about that.

Silver hues seem to sparkle at the explanations. Gossips? She lowered the cup to her thigh, licking lips free of any tea left behind. "So they know a lot that happens?" Questioned softly.

"What they don't know, they make up." He chuckled as he glanced at Broch then looked back. "Never been the target of their tales, m'self."

Gossip was not something to place in the paper, but perhaps help with a lead to a good story. Interesting. "They are amusing then?" Question as she heard the chuckle.

"Yea read t'e Gazettes," which there was a stack of them down the end of the bar. It was when they had published a larger paper but it was too hard in the upkeep after a few years. He was up from the stool in a stretch of limb as he glanced to where his fur cloak and hat hung by the door.

"I will have to.. perhaps read up on a lot before printing the first edition, ne?" Looking to Broch, she took note of his gaze. And brought the cup to her lips once again, not wishing to keep the man if he had to leave. The man was ... well... Mount Olympus had nothing on him! Goodness. Anyway... silver hues glanced down to the end of the bar. Perhaps read tonight.

"You should enjoy them." He put down his now empty glass, yawned and stretched. It was getting to the time and though he usually fell asleep with the rocking of his ship, tonight it would be a bed in the Thistle.

"Thank you both.. will be good to read." Not only to learn of the paper, but of the land, of the people. The Greek brought that luminous smile to form again. Happy to have met both, and definitely to find more reading material. "Well.. I believe I came too late to enjoy good company." Twitch of a grin as lithe physique rose from the chair with tea cup in hand. "A pleasure to have met both of you, and only pleasant dreams."

"Yea bae t'inking t'ar bae a late game down at t'e port?" Collecting his coat as he addressed Morgan then turned a wicked grin that reached his eyes upon Anthea, one that turned appreciative with a dip down then back up just as quick. "It bae mae pleasure, a guid nigt' tae yea Miss Journalist." Being she seemed to like that title.

Smooth strides carried her to the bar. A smile to both men as the cup was handed over, with tea still left. "Thank you.." Flick of her wrist brought a wave to all, and then the stairs were her destination. Hair of black to sway as she vanished up the stairway.

"I might be able to stay awake long enough." Maybe he'd be sleeping on the Naiad after all! "Aye, I'll take some of yer money." And he grabbed his hat before heading for his coat. "How's yer brothers, and yer lovely sister?"

Which the rumble of voices in conversation would continue as the two headed for the docks and a late game before turning in.



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