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Offline Evie

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Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« on: September 30, 2011, 09:32:44 am »
   Chapter Four

   Rhemuth Castle—Duncan’s personal chamber
   January 6, 1136—Twelfth Night
   

   “Wait here,” Father Duncan said, leading Helena to a cushioned window seat, his concerned eyes studying her intently as she sank onto the bench seat, too emotionally and mentally exhausted to do anything now but comply.  “I’ll be back in just a moment.”

   She watched absently as he walked towards the door—not the one they’d just come through, the concealed door in the wall, but an ordinary one.  As he passed the hearth, he gave a quick flick of his fingers towards the firewood within, muttering a low syllable, and the dead fire sprang back into life again, adding light and warmth to the chamber.  He continued on towards the door ahead, which led out, it seemed, into one of the main passageways through the apartment block of the castle.  

   Helena was only dimly aware of all of this, though now that the growing firelight dispelled the room’s shadows, she saw that she was in a private chamber.  It was a small space, quite cozy, and even though she’d never seen it before, it seemed somehow familiar to her.  Perhaps that was due to the furnishings, which put her in mind of those in Father Duncan’s study at the Basilica, and also the small pile of books stacked up on a low table nearby, which made the strange chamber seem comfortingly familiar.  Against the far wall was a wide, high-backed yet simply carved bench-like piece of furniture, well-constructed, with a cushioned surface on top that could serve equally well as a deep bench seat or a narrow mattress.   A folded blanket draped across one end of it spoke to the latter use.  Was this a bedchamber, then?  Duncan normally slept at the Basilica in a private apartment reserved for his use, but she had heard he also had a room set aside at the Cathedral for occasions when Church business required him to stay closer to the heart of the City overnight, and also a private chamber in the main apartment block of Rhemuth Castle for those nights when he was engaged into the late hours with the King’s business.  Perhaps this was that chamber.

   He stood at the open door now, speaking quietly to someone she couldn’t see.  She should probably leave now—she’d never meant to impose—but her limbs refused to move, her mind refused to focus on what to do next.  So she simply sat and waited, waited as he’d bid her to, watching the moonlight play on the new-fallen snow outside, the lovely snow that looked as cold as the chill lodged deep within her soul.

#

   She ought to be chaperoned, Duncan thought.  Under different circumstances, of course, it would be unnecessary, for a bishop was considered a perfectly proper companion for a woman under more ordinary circumstances, but it was close to midnight now, and they were alone in a sleeping chamber.  There were people who would think the worst of them both if they knew he’d brought her here this night, no matter what the true circumstances were behind that choice, and he did not wish to take any chance on staining her reputation.

   He considered who he might call upon.  Richenda, perhaps?  No, her son Brendan had been knighted at Twelfth Night Court earlier in the evening, after having spent the entire night before keeping his vigil in Saint Camber’s Chapel, and he thought he remembered seeing her and Alaric leave the Great Hall fairly early, after only a few shared dances to celebrate Sir Brendan’s passage into the order of chivalry.  Alaric had been up quite late as well, although not the entire night long as his stepson had.  Duncan had met Alaric entering the chapel the evening before to share a few private reflections with young Brendan, just as Duncan had been leaving after doing the same, needing to prepare for the Midnight Mass ahead.  That had been a couple of hours after Compline, he thought.  No, if they’d left the Great Hall early, it was doubtless to catch up on some well needed rest.  Either that, or possibly to celebrate Brendan’s knighting in much more private ways, but if that were the case, he certainly didn’t want to try to establish a mental link with either of them if there was any chance they were engaged in such intimacies!

   The sounds of boisterous singing and laughter echoed through the passageway, and at one end of the narrow corridor, coming around a corner, he could see the new knight in question, arm half draped around the shoulders of another young man who looked equally unsteady on his feet.  The other newly minted knight was Sir Corin, and the lads were belting out some tuneless melody with lyrics of questionable merit involving Border men and sheep.  Duncan gave them a wry smile despite his predicament.  It was obvious he could depend on no help from that quarter!

   Following behind the young knights, however, were two younger pages, and one of them was Sir Brendan’s half-brother.   Ten year old Kelric gave Duncan a merry grin as the small entourage passed by him, shaking his head in silent amusement and looking uncannily like his father Alaric had looked at that age.  Yes, Kelric would certainly do!  Duncan tapped Kelric on the shoulder as the boy started to walk past.

   As soon as you can break free, can you return here?  he asked Kelric silently, opening the door a little wider so that the boy could catch a brief glimpse of the chamber and his unforeseen guest.  Sister Helena has had some sort of a fright and we require some privacy, but it would be best if we were chaperoned so no one will misconstrue why she’s here.  Despite himself, he felt his cheeks warm slightly.

   Kelric’s startled glance turned into quick understanding, and he nodded. I’ll be right back, he assured his bishop cousin.  Just let me pour Brendan into bed first.

   The rowdy party moved on, disappearing into one of the adjoining apartments.  Duncan withdrew into his own, shutting the door behind him.

#

   The room was heating up, the newly relit hearth shedding cheery warmth, but still she trembled.  She sensed Father Duncan’s return, and after a moment, something soft settled around her shoulders.  Her uncomprehending fingers reached up by instinct, feeling its texture, finding the edges to draw them closer around herself.  It was his blanket, she vaguely realized, and she found herself burying her face in it, inhaling its faint scent.

   There was a sound of liquid being poured, then she felt him return, settling down on the cushioned window seat beside her.  He offered her a goblet and she took a mechanical sip from it, the dark garnet wine blazing a trail of fruity warmth as it trickled down inside her.  She took another, desiring the warmth.  It was a feeling, a sensation, but it was one she was able to bear in this moment when she’d shut down all other feelings to stay sane.

   She thought she heard the door open and close again, but she didn’t look up.

#

   Kelric Morgan let himself quietly into Duncan’s chamber.  His ‘Uncle Duncan’ was tending to Sister Helena, offering her something to drink.  He didn’t wish to interfere, so he simply found a quiet corner and sat cross-legged against the wall.  He was sleepy, but Duncan needed him, so he didn’t mind staying up a bit longer.  

   Duncan spared a glance and a quick nod for him, but it was clear his mind was elsewhere, on taking care of the Schola magistra, so Kelric said nothing, simply smiling back and resting his head against the wall.  If Uncle Duncan needed his aid, he would ask.  Kelric settled into his corner, physically present but his mind according the bishop and his guest the privacy they sought by wandering elsewhere.

#

   The wine unlocked her tongue and also her emotions.  They leaked out of her in the form of tears.

   “What’s wrong, Helena?  Is there something I can do to help?”  He kept his voice quiet, pitched for her hearing alone, all but a whisper.  

   She shook her head, her shivering beginning to abate.  He draped an arm around her anyhow, his hand rubbing gently at the blanket wrapped around her shoulders as if to chafe the warmth back into her more quickly.  “I….it was just….”  No, she couldn’t speak of it, not yet.  “My brother-in-law is here,” she said instead.  “I wasn’t expecting him here.  Not here.”  She realized she was starting to babble, the panic beginning to rise up in her again, and she clamped down on it firmly, taking a calming breath.  

   His voice went on, gently soothing.  “Your brother-in-law is with the delegation from Joux?”

   Was that why Gaspard was here?  Yes, she supposed it must be.  She nodded, not looking up at Father Duncan.

   “And you have reason to fear him?”  

   She drew up further into herself, unable to tell him.  Not this man, so good and kind, so caring, unlike her late husband or the brother who had inherited from him.  She knew Father Duncan was a priest, knew that in his priestly office he’d heard all manner of confessions, knew the depths of mankind’s depravity, but still she didn’t want him to know what had happened in her marriage, what she’d endured at Gaston’s damned, mad, frenzied quest to gain an heir at all costs, even at the cost of his wife’s girlish adoration and the breaking of her spirit.

   “I’ve made my confession already to the priest at Saint Jerome’s.”   It was no lie; she had confessed, driven to seek absolution in those early days of her widowhood when she’d fled to that scholarly refuge.  The story had come pouring out of her then, shocking that pious old man, who had wept and crossed himself and assured her that she was not to blame, needed no absolving for such evil deeds for they had not been her own choice, but while her mind agreed with him, her heart still found it difficult to forgive.  Not just to forgive her husband or his brother, but also herself.  She must have been complicit in some way, whether she’d meant to be or not, or how could such awful things have befallen her?  No, she couldn’t tell Duncan.  She couldn’t bear to see the look in his eyes if she did, the pity mingled with horror that she’d seen in the eyes of that old priest.  She didn’t want him to see her as the damaged, broken thing she was deep inside.

   He wiped a curl of hair off her face, trailing wetness across her cheek, and she realized her face must be streaked with tears.  She dashed at the moisture with her fingers, and found a soft cloth pressed into her hand.  “I’m not here as your confessor unless you need me to be,” he told her.  “I was asking as a friend.”

   A friend.  Oh Jesú, she wished it were that simple for her!  Why, after all the romantic dreams of maidenhood, followed by the abrupt shock of a dozen years trapped in the harsh realities of her marriage—her loathsome, traumatic, barren marriage—and her blessed release at last to the solaces of scholarship and occasional thoughts of taking holy vows and entering the cloistered life, had her heart decided to wake up now, here in Rhemuth, and kindle long forgotten stirrings for a man?  And not just any man, but a bishop?  No, deep down, she suspected she knew the answer to that.  What safer love could there be for a woman no longer heart-whole, unable to conceive children, her desire for remarriage or even dalliance completely shattered, than a man who could not offer her those things anyway?

   She wondered, if his wife had lived, if he’d remained a married man and had never taken holy vows, and then his wife had turned out to be barren, would Duncan McLain still be the same caring man he was now?  Or would that experience have embittered him, soured his love for his wife until she became nothing more to him than a thing to be despised, to be conquered, to vent his spite and his will upon, all in the name of duty and inheritance and his never-ending obsession to sire an heir?  She couldn’t imagine such a thing, couldn’t imagine this man turning into a monster like Gaston.   Couldn’t imagine him even fathoming such bitter hatred as that which her own husband had borne for her, after the early years of their marriage had passed without her womb quickening even once.

   But no, this man's wife had died fulfilling her purpose, had conceived an heir who was now the Duke of Cassan.  She’d died giving birth to him, Helena had heard, but despite that, a part of herself felt vaguely envious.  Father Duncan's bride's life might have been brief and over far too soon, but at least she had known what it was to be loved, and some part of her lived on in her son.

   Oh, Jesú, she couldn’t continue on like this, stuffing down the fear and shame and the bitter anger, constantly terrified that something, some chance encounter, would cause it to pop back up again someday and consume her, swallowing her whole.  Engulfing her as it had tonight, leaving her emotionally eviscerated.  She needed healing.

   Duncan was a healer, both of bodies and of souls.  She gave up her inner struggle and poured out her pain to him, trusting that he would accept it, applying his healing touch and setting her free from her secret torment.

#

   He felt her resistance crumble and was grateful, although he had no idea what had sparked her capitulation.  She began to share her story, not in words but in fleeting images and memories that cascaded into his mind, haltingly at first but then in a growing torrent.  He sensed that she withheld much from him, and yet what she shared was enough to build cold anger and a fierce protectiveness in his soul.

   She shared her memories of herself as she’d been as a newcomer to Joux, sent to her great-aunt’s household to learn Court polish and finish her Deryni training, for her father had hopes that his wealth might secure a husband of high birth for his precious daughter despite his own merchant origins.  Helena’s mother had been of noble birth, a knight’s daughter, and her dowry had helped to expand his business, had built up his own wealth to the point that he had hopes his daughter might marry even higher than her father had, and that his grandsons might be landed nobles someday.  She had been cherished, coddled, adored, then sent off to Joux for a final polish and to make her fortune in the way all maidens were expected to, through an advantageous marriage.  And there had been offers—several, in fact—but one suitor in particular had been especially charming, and Helena had fallen for his handsome face and his gallant manners.  His name was Gaston, he was young yet not overly so, a baron of Joux and in need of a wife to secure his inheritance.  Helena had entered married life with the excited hope of many a young bride, happy to have pleased her family by securing such a good match and eager to please her new bridegroom.

   Their love had lasted about a year, perhaps two years on her part, but with each passing month her new husband became more disenchanted.  At first he seemed understanding enough about her failure to conceive, assuring her that not every bride produced an heir so early into a marriage, but once she settled fully into their new life together, all would turn out well.  But it hadn’t, and by their second year of marriage, his understanding had turned into anger.  Anger had eventually, over the years, turned to desperation, to bitterness, to blame.  There were his bastards, five of them, sired over the years as Gaston’s angry proof to her that her failure was purely her own, no fault of his.  There were the continued visits to her bedchamber—mercifully, she shared no vivid memories of those!—yet she shared just enough for Duncan to know that she’d grown to fear the desperate and hateful visitations that had replaced their previous acts of shared passion.  

   And when inflicting himself repeatedly on his increasingly reluctant and fearful wife had not been sufficient to produce an heir of his body, Gaston resigned himself to accepting an heir of his family bloodline instead.  Surely he’d already known that the effort would be useless—Helena was the barren one, not he!—but his mind refused to believe there was no solution to his plight, and if he could not sire an heir on her, perhaps his younger brother could.  Certainly Gaspard had been willing to try, for while many younger brothers were eager to inherit from an older one who had no sons of his own, Gaspard was not.  He had other ambitions, but he’d once been one of the many suitors clamoring for young Helena’s hand in marriage, and his suit had been spurned in favor of Gaston’s, so why not enjoy the delightful irony of his brother coming to him now, begging him to sire heirs on his lovely wife?  No one need ever know, besides Gaston and Helena of course, and Helena’s wishes hardly mattered in any case.  If she conceived, she’d never tell who the true father was in any case; why would any woman bring public dishonor to herself?

   Helena considered killing herself afterward.  Eternal hell seemed hardly a threat anymore; she lived there already.

   And then suddenly, blessedly, Gaston had died.  She’d hardly believed it at first—it had been a freak accident, a horse stumbling on a badly rutted road as he’d hastened to reach Court before nightfall, throwing him out of the saddle.  He’d landed head-first on a rock, and when his squire had brought his body home for burial, Helena had been numb with shock at first, then—as the reality began to soak in—nearly dizzy with relief.  Gaspard had been furious, had tried to force her to remain as dowager baroness and tend to the day to day running of the barony so he could continue on with his intrigues at Court and collecting bribes in the courts of law, but Helena had left at the earliest opportunity, seeking sanctuary with the nuns at Saint Jerome, and he’d had no legal recourse to force her return, so eventually he’d settled grudgingly into his new duties and she’d finally been free, free to determine her own destiny.

#

   The entire flood of shared memories and unleashed emotion lasted only seconds, but it seemed like half a lifetime’s information for Duncan to absorb, as indeed it nearly was.  Helena had wed in her sixteenth year and had not been widowed until some months after her twenty-eighth birthday.  Duncan marveled at the woman’s resilience.  She’d had seven years to recover and heal since that time, but even still, such scars ran deep, far deeper than he’d ever suspected.  

   He knew without having to ask that she’d never sought justice from the Court of Joux for the wrongs that had been done to her, although some legal redress would have been well within her rights.  Few wives would have done so, under the circumstances.   Her husband’s ill treatment of her was, for the most part, technically legal, and while he might have gained some level of societal disapproval for his excesses, any such revelations—especially coupled with public confirmation of Helena’s barrenness—would have made her the object of open pity and shame as well.  As for her brother-in-law Gaspard’s actions, those were prosecutable—here in Gwynedd, the penalty for rape was a fine of thirty sovereigns, owed directly to the woman who had been wronged—but again, that was hardly something most women would wish to admit to in front of gossip-hungry spectators at a Court of High Justice.  Even if she’d managed to prove her case and the judgment fell in her favor, she’d be subjected not only to pity and stares, but also a great deal of blame, for many were quicker to judge the victim than the attacker in a rape case, especially if the man were powerful and had many friends and allies.
   
   Helena's trembling had finally stopped.  Duncan held out the goblet to her again, watched as she took a deep draught of its contents.  He took a firm grip of his fury, reining in the anger until he was certain he could speak without the emotion showing in his voice.  He didn't want to frighten her, nor for her to assume his rage was directed at her.  “How long have you been holding back those secrets, sweeting?”

   She gave him a startled look.  “I told the priest in Joux most of it,” she told him.  Her cheeks turned pink beneath her filmy veil.  “As much as I could without implicating any living person specifically, at least.”

   He nodded, understanding her reasons.  She had entrusted her story to the convent priest in a formal act of Confession, and it was standard practice not to reveal the identities of any other involved parties insofar as that was possible, nor to confess their sins for them, for the Sacrament of Reconciliation was meant for the healing benefits to the soul of the person making the confession, not for the purpose of bringing forward and discussing some other person's sins.

   “And your brother-in-law has made no further efforts to contact you since your departure from his barony?”

   “None.”  Helena paused.  “Well, there was one letter early on, right after I arrived at the convent.”  She folded her hands around the stem of the wine goblet, studying its contents.  “He…he tried to order me back home—to my former home, I mean—and promised to repay me lavishly for my silence.”  She looked up at Duncan for the first time, a wry smile on her face, a faint glimmer of her usual humor returning to her eyes.  “I know how much Gaspard has in his coffers; I’m the one who tended to the baronial accounts while Gaston was gadding about proving his manhood, and I’m sure his brother has added his own considerable fortune to the strongbox since then.  My brother-in-law’s a very wealthy man now, but not all the wealth in the Eleven Kingdoms could lure me back into his control.”

#

   Helena dropped her gaze again.  The room had warmed considerably since her arrival—or perhaps it was simply that the icy core of panic within her had finally thawed out—and she was acutely conscious of Duncan’s proximity to her on the window seat they shared.  Had he truly called her ‘sweeting’?  If so, he’d seemed to have used the endearment without realizing it.  It was, given her hidden feelings for the man, rather disconcerting, though certainly not in an unpleasant way.

   Duncan stood, drawing her attention again, and offered her his hand.  “Do you think you’re ready for the trek back to the Basilica now?  I’ll escort you back through the parklands, if you are.  Or shall I just ask the chamberlain to arrange suitable accommodations for you here in the castle tonight?”

   “At this time of night, with the chambers already filled with visiting nobility needing accommodations for Twelfth Night Court and the household staff waiting for the revelry to be over so they can drag their pallets out into the Great Hall and grab a few hours of sleep?”  Helena shook her head.  “Jesú, Father Duncan, he’d hardly thank you for that request!  No, I’ll be all right now, I think.”  She felt her face flame.  “I apologize for…for losing control of myself like that….”

   He raised a brow at her.  “You apologize?  Why?”

   She stared up at him.  “Because…well…I wasn’t thinking clearly, I simply reacted.  I wasn’t strong enough.”

   “Hell’s bells, woman, you’re one of the strongest people I know!”  He rang his fingers through his hair, his face a study in…what was it, exasperation?  He took a deep breath, the expression fading.  “Sister Helena, I would think that given all you’ve been through, you’re entitled to a perfectly normal fight-or-flight reaction, especially after unexpectedly coming face to face with a former threat you had no reason to ever expect to see again.  You’re a person, not a statue.”

   Yes.  She was a person.  Perhaps that was why she’d fallen for this man.  He treated her like one.

   “I’m ready.  But we don’t have to trudge through the snow.  I know what to expect in the secret passage now, and I can just tighten my shields when we get to the spot where Prince Conall’s teacher died.”  She cocked her head at him.  “It was him I sensed there, was it not?”

   “It was.  But are you certain you want to take that route back?  I don’t mind walking through the snow, and you can wear that blanket as a cloak if you need it.”

   “I’m certain.”  She glanced down at the gown she wore.  “I don’t want to ruin Duchess Richenda’s fine handiwork by damp-staining this lovely silk.”

   His blue eyes flitted downward towards her gown’s hem and back to her face again, his eyes crinkling slightly.  “Well, if you’re sure.  I suppose I could carry you through the parklands, but that’s almost certain to cause talk if any gossips are still awake at this hour.”

   She laughed.  “Jesú, let’s not do that!  It’s bad enough I’ve dragged you away from the festivities to come after me, not to mention….”  Her voice trailed away as she looked around, fully conscious for the first time of their surroundings.  Her gaze landed on a small boy sitting in a dark corner near the door.  “Is that Kelric?”

   Sleepy gray eyes lifted to smile up at her.  “Good evening, Magistra.  Or maybe good morning instead?”  The boy stumbled to his feet and bowed, glancing uncertainly up at Duncan.  “Do you still need me, my lord?”  He stood at attention, every inch the proper Haldane page.  His bishop-cousin smiled.

   “Just witness our departure, then you can escape to your bed,” Duncan assured him.  He glanced back down at Helena, who realized with a start that she was still absent-mindedly holding the hand he’d offered her earlier.  She finally accepted his offer of assistance, quickly rising from her seat, dropping his hand with equal promptness as soon as she’d found her feet, thoroughly mortified.  She covered her embarrassment by turning away slightly, carefully refolding the blanket and leaving it on the cushioned seat she’d just left.   He raised his hand to sketch the magic glyph in the air, opening up the secret doorway in the castle wall.  She lit pale blue handfire and walked through it, the bishop following close behind her.


Chapter Five:  http://www.rhemuthcastle.com/index.php?topic=762.0
« Last Edit: October 07, 2011, 11:12:30 am by Evie »
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Offline Jerusha

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2011, 10:11:26 am »
Excellent chapter - just enough detail to allow me to hate Gaspard and Gaston thoroughly.  I hope Sister Helena and Bishop Duncan can reach a state of comfortable companionship that will allow them to continue to enjoy each other's company in their scholarly pursuits.

And I loved Kelric as the chaperone.   :D
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Offline Alkari

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2011, 04:02:23 pm »
Having married off the three maidens causing mayhem, not to mention Sextus, I see you are now specialising in writing unhappy marriages and brutal husbands  :D

Hope Duncan and Helena can sort out their feelings for each other.  Suspect they will both be rather embarrassed in the morning, so will tiptoe around things for a while.  And LOL @ Kelric - royal pages / younger brothers have many unexpected duties!


Offline Evie

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2011, 04:09:26 pm »
Having married off the three maidens causing mayhem, not to mention Sextus, I see you are now specialising in writing unhappy marriages and brutal husbands  :D

LOL!  Well, the next story queued up, unless my characters surprise me with another in the meantime, will be one about a grown-up Duncan Michael, who I assure you won't be a brutal husband, and I'm hoping he'll end up married and living happily ever after....   ;D  Granted, I've only got a five chapter start on that one, so who knows how it will turn out?  Of course, he's likely to hit a few bumps in the road of some sort along the course of the story, or it wouldn't be an Evie story....   ;)
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Offline derynifanatic64

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2011, 06:52:20 pm »
Gaston and Gaspard--2 bad, evil peas in a brutal pod.  I wouldn't mind seeing Gaspard suffering an "accident" like his brother.  I would love to volunteer for that job.
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Offline Evie

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2011, 07:15:45 pm »
I suppose I could write you into a story as an assassin....  ;)
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Offline Alkari

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2011, 07:16:21 pm »

 
Quote
I wouldn't mind seeing Gaspard suffering an "accident" like his brother.  I would love to volunteer for that job.
Alas, I think you have to join a long queue.   Bishop Duncan McLain is at the head of the line and I doubt that very much would be left of Gaspard after he'd had a somewhat unholy "meeting" with Duncan ...  :D

Offline Evie

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2011, 07:23:10 pm »

 
Quote
I wouldn't mind seeing Gaspard suffering an "accident" like his brother.  I would love to volunteer for that job.
Alas, I think you have to join a long queue.   Bishop Duncan McLain is at the head of the line and I doubt that very much would be left of Gaspard after he'd had a somewhat unholy "meeting" with Duncan ...  :D

Bishop Duncan laying down the hurt...now that gives new meaning to the phrase "Come to Jesus meeting"!  ;D
"In necessariis unitas, in non-necessariis libertas, in utrisque caritas."

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Offline Elkhound

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2011, 09:16:07 pm »
Now, I'm not quite clear.  Did Gaspard somehow learn that Helena was in Gwynned and arrange to come to find her, or was this just an unfortunate coincidence that he chose to exploit?

Offline Evie

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2011, 09:27:03 pm »
It was a coincidence.  He is there visiting Kelson's Court along with a delegation from Joux, and he didn't even realize Helena had moved there until their paths happened to cross again at the Twelfth Night Revel.  The last he'd heard of her, she was at a convent in Joux, but that was seven years earlier.  He was probably just as unaware of her presence as she was of his until the dance brought them together again.
"In necessariis unitas, in non-necessariis libertas, in utrisque caritas."

--WARNING!!!--
I have a vocabulary in excess of 75,000 words, and I'm not afraid to use it!

Offline AnnieUK

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2011, 12:46:20 pm »
Now that I reread it, this scene reminds me of the scene between Duncan and Richenda in HD - Duncan picking up female waifs and strays again!  Lucky he didn't fall for Richenda, or the 4 other books in the Kelson era could have been rather different! ;)

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2011, 01:42:04 pm »
Yes, it would have been a shame if Alaric had killed his cousin years before Dhugal could learn who his true father was....  :D
"In necessariis unitas, in non-necessariis libertas, in utrisque caritas."

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2011, 10:31:44 am »
Oh, while I'm thinking of it....  I will be out of state for my parents' 50th wedding anniversary celebration on Friday, so the next chapter might be posted late.  They have internet, but Friday is the all-day party.  I'll probably also miss next Sunday's chat unless we've found a hotel by that time, since we'll be traveling back home on Sunday and Monday.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2011, 03:03:02 pm by Evie »
"In necessariis unitas, in non-necessariis libertas, in utrisque caritas."

--WARNING!!!--
I have a vocabulary in excess of 75,000 words, and I'm not afraid to use it!

Offline Elkhound

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Re: Visionaries--Part One--Chapter Four
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2011, 12:44:13 pm »
Have fun!

 


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