The post below, from the thread “A beautiful evening to remember”, belongs to Helene de Croismare, played by Secar.
It was planned weeks before, in fact, at Hélène’s arrival in the Caribbean in the end of August she wanted to throw a lavish party for the notable citizens of the West-Indies, to celebrate her arrival and to get to know everyone in just an evening. The planning however got interrupted by a storm that struck the entire Caribbean, every colony, every city and every citizen. The list of invitations was expanded; not only the most notable citizens of Hispaniola and Jamaica would attend, but also the crew of the French flagship ‘Le Phenix’, as a thank you for their hard work to get everyone home safe. It did not work out for everyone, a sailor here and there, Cécile the maid, many citizens got lost or past away, but that was inevitable in a storm of such a caliber.
Hélène was busy with planning the party since the return from the Michaelmas Feast, to clear her mind. It had to be a great party, to forget the horrible storm and all the bad things that came along with it. It had to be perfect in the tiniest details, from the flowers, the hors d’oeuvres to the music. The party would reflect her standing, style and her ability to be a great hostess. And for the grande finale, a modest fireworks display and maybe a special announcement.
She woke up excited, it would be the first party for her to throw in the Caribbean, with many to follow she hoped. The weather was just perfect, ofcourse a tropical temperature but the breeze was delightful and made it bearable. While enjoying a cup of tea in the morning on the terrace at the back side of the manor, overlooking the ocean and the gardeners busy maintaining the garden for the evening, she asked for a report from Émile Delage, the lacquey. ‘Mademoiselle de Croismare, everything is going just as you planned. When you are done with the tea, you can inspect everything. Everyone is busy with preparing for the evening.’
As the said cup of tea was finished, she rose from the chair and entered the manor, starting at the front door, she walked through every chamber with her eye for detail. As she instructed her servants, everything was just perfect and everyone was busy. The flower arrangements reflected the meaning of the party. Made of the most beautiful roses, the colors all had meanings; the pink for appreciation and grace, yellow for joy and friendship and peach for appreciation and gratitude, filled with green leaves and the delicate asparagus. The big vases throughout the mansion were overwhelming. In salons, ballroom and dining room servants were on ladders dusting off the crystal and gilt chandeliers after the candelabers near the stairs and the gilt wall lights were shimmering. New candlesticks were placed and the marble floors were mopped. In the kitchen the maids were busy with polishing the crystal glasses, the servants with polishing the silver serving trays, candlesticks and terrines and the cooks preparing the hors d’oeuvres with caviar, salmon and tropical fruits. In his room, Delage was busy with filtering the wines in the crystal decanters and selecting the bottles of champagne.
It didn’t happen much that Helene threw a big party, so it was quite new for her and she was relieved everything went so well. The evening drew closer and the musicians arrived to play the best danceable gavottes and classical masterpieces by Moreau, Lully, Vivaldi and more. Though the moments of joy dissapeared, as she realised Cécile wasn’t there to help her dress for the evening, an other maid had to do the job. The choice fell on a cream and white coloured gown with golden accents and trims, made of the finest silk. One of her most precious dresses. In the wig were placed strips with diamonds and topazes, just like her necklace, earrings, devant the corsage and bracelets on her white silk gloved arms.
As she did a final round through the manor, through the windows of the front façade she could see the first carriages riding on the lanternlit drive to the manor.
Click on the photo to read the story of the whole party!
labelleotero:Farewell, My Queen
Belle told me last night to write down my confession and bury the note afterwards at the root of a tree of my choice, in the garden, if I want to be free of my past. She gave me ink, quill and paper, explaining me again what I had already understood while in her magic bath: it is between me and God, and God is forgiving in the right circumstances.
So, given that Baptiste had left early, this is what I have been doing before descending to the main hall, today, the day of our wedding feast. The day I am starting a new life.
As I will be watering that tree every day, praying for my forgiveness, beyond a novena, the paper will become dust, wiping out my sins with it, and I will find my place in Purgatory, but not in Hell. And this is something I would like – there I’d get reunited with Baptiste again, I am sure. He is a pirate, so he can’t get into Heaven, but he isn’t mean and greedy, so the Purgatory would be the right place for both of us.
Please, God, have mercy of me and forgive me - I killed a man in self defence. I sinned with my anger and fear, but what else could I have done then? The Devil must have been closer to me in those moments, but You know for sure how it happened. To let him kill Baptiste? To let him force himself on me? For him, it was not Baptiste’s love and desire, that I knew later; it was only his desire to own my body and to break my spirit, to see me submitted to his power, obeying his commands. He would have hurt me and killed Baptiste, and I couldn’t let it happen.
I have been paying for it with so many sleepless nights, when the nightmares awakened me. Now, if there is a solution to have them wiped away with the sage water last night, so be it. Please, help me, God, and forgive my sins.
Please, God, have mercy of me and forgive me – I stole from my master. You know it had never happened before, and it would never happen here either. I am not a thief. I had worked for so many years without a “Thank you!” Even on the great holidays, if I received a octavo I was happy.
Haggling and obtaining better prices from don Garcia and from the other smugglers was not stealing, it was only good business spirit. I deserved a quote from those savings – and the quote was given not by my master and father, it was given by don Garcia at his idea.
And if I stole when I left, I stole much less than the price worth for my work for so many years. These were money I earned through my work and he would have spent on drinking and gambling anyway. Yes, a father should have ensured dowry for his daughter and marry her away to a good husband. Instead, he gambled away even the price of the blood a white father gained by selling his dark-skinned slave son, so I would have been next to be sold, instead of being married honourably. At least my so gained dowry will be put to good use – and You know it was much less than my diligent work deserved.
A father shouldn’t sell his children – be they illegitimate. He got his comeuppance with remaining alone and without the money I had earned (for him or for myself) during the latest few weeks. I am not repenting for what I had done - but those were special circumstances. Now I am free and I promise solemnly to never do it again, no matter to whom. This is my true repenting, the understanding that it shouldn’t happen ever again.
Please, God, have mercy of me and forgive me – I have lied and I’ll keep lying about my freedom. Nobody has to know that my manumission papers are forged, and that I am a runaway slave. I am Baptiste’s lawful wife in front of God and in front of people, a free woman. This is what counts, and I’ll never say anything different. The past has been buried even before this note, and the flower-scented water Belle washed me with had been thrown out with slavery, abuse and humiliation washed out of myself.
I am clean, pure again, thanks to Belle and her soothing ideas. I am ready to start a new life here, together with my beloved husband, without nightmares and suffering. I love Baptiste more than anything in this world, I have never lied to him and I never would. I will help Belle to bake Saint Anthony’s bread… and I’ll bake my own too, in sign of gratitide, even if I had never promised it. God and all saints had been merciful and generous to me, so I am convinced my sins will be forgiven.
Now, it remains to go and bury this note, then to go to the main hall and see what I can help with for my own wedding feast…
Click on the photo to read Carmen de Lafont’s bio and why she has done what she has just confessed!
And if you like our characters, join us!
sailorgil:” Mermaid and Sailor “ … Folk Art Woodcarving
Click on the photo to read the whole story!
marshalsandoutlaws: But she is the main reason to love “Master and Commander”.
William Ernest Henley
ritasv:Tall Ship Painting by Patricia Gilmore
“It is a long name, indeed, but a very dignified one. He’ll grow into it!” Why, with a name like that one would almost think his father was the admiral or something….
And Esther gulped. She knew Celestine knew Lucia pretty well, therefore she might have an idea…. The admiral! The poor little girl, no wonder….
Esther knew now wasn’t the time to discuss it, but she would like to find out what Celestine knew concerning this incident. And whenever Esther De Garmeaux wanted to find out something, sooner or later, she usually did.
begrudge the midwife a penny; Celestine was glad to help, and that mother and baby were both well. Too many were lost for want of help when it was needed. The basement of the church was hardly an ideal place, but better than giving birth in a shed or a field, as many did. “It is a good name, Lucia. I am sure he will grow in to it.” Using the last bit of water to clean her hands, she tried to dry them on her still-damp dress before moving to sit at the young mothers side. She pressed a cool palm to the Lucia’s sweat-soaked brow, watching as the midwife made her departure.
She wondered if Madame Garmeaux had noticed how healthy the boy was, for being ‘premature’. No matter. Lucia’s Admiral had given her a living and a name…not his name, but a good name none the less, the name of a grand blanc from the continent, which was more than some could or would do. A name could make all the difference. One could be forgiven a shade of tawny or two in the West Indies if they had the right patron and the right name. Lucia had come out fortunate so far. Celestine knew that the fragile girl loved the man who kept her, and she hoped for Lucia’s sake his interest would last. From what she understood, he was young and unmarried, from a good family, and his career was swiftly on the rise. Such a man would not likely live out the rest of his days in this little corner of the world.
But now was not the time for such thoughts.
“His father will be very proud. You must try to rest p’tite. I think the storm is almost over. Listen to the wind…it’s not howling any longer. And see? We are all safe. God has watched over us today.”
Click on the photo to read the story of the baby born in a church… The quotes above belong to Joelle and Alicia.
The post below belongs to Secar:
Christophe and Hélène, arm in arm, walked up to Marie and Christine, as Christophe suggested to walk up front when they were about to head for the inland. Ofcourse, it would be terrible if they encountered strange animals or slippery grounds when one of the ladies was walking up front. He couldn’t allow it.
He looked at Christine and Marie,
‘If you allow me…’, he glanced at Helene, he was walking with her, but he was questioning whether she would walk along with him up front, he corrected himself in a questionable manner towards Helene, ‘I mean, if you allow us…’
Christophe quickly observed the grounds and the vegetation to search for a path that was least adventurous for the heeled ladies. They experienced enough adventure for their noble futures.
They walked past a big tree with, he stopped, making Hélène stop too as she was still around his arm. On the tree in the crevices of the bark, were colorful flowers, orchids.
‘Well look at these beautiful flowers! Isn’t that the most beautiful thing you have ever seen in your entire life?’
It was the start of a compliment Christophe was practicing on since he saw the Comtesses admiring the flowers near the beach.
He looked at Helene,
‘No. You are the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.’ He was blushing as he wasn’t used to making such compliments, and the surprise he wasn’t stumbling on his words made him fell triumphant.
As he picked the most beautiful flower, yellow with hints of purple with strange but interesting shapes, he spoke to her with a soft voice, ‘It doesn’t reflect your beauty half as much, but still, as a sign of my admiration for you, I offer you this flower’
Do you want to know what mermaid had smitten whom? Click on the photo and read the story!