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Aria

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    Commoner

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  1. Aria

    Away & Here Notices

    The new laptop will (hopefully) arrive tomorrow. If not, it will be Saturday or Monday. Soon I will be posting again.
  2. Aria

    Random Thread of Randomness

    Sophia is worried that her baby might resemble Arundel instead of Don Juan, but if it pops out looking like this, she'll have a lot of explaining to do: Or is this someone else's baby? We've got a lot of preggers NPCs running around this season.
  3. Aria

    Random Thread of Randomness

    But that's Worf and Worf is awesome. (Wait a minute, I love Star Trek. Does that mean my hubby isn't the only geek in the house?)
  4. Aria

    Random Thread of Randomness

    Thought for the day: Everything is better with a purring kitten on your lap:🐈😺
  5. Aria

    Newcastle Residence, the 6th, 2pm, Matters of Marriage

    “Very well,” the Duchess conceded. Was the fact that she didn't curtsy a clue to Margaret's personality? Could it be that she was arrogant and didn't believe that she should have to curtsy to a mere Baronetess nor give deference to a lady who was older and wiser than she? Or was she so amiable and down to earth that she thought a polite nod was sufficient when greeting relatives in her own home? It was difficult to tell from the gracious expression on her face. She didn't look nervous at all. Nor did she seem overconfident. “Thank you, my lady. And no, I'm afraid I have no recollection of that occasion, though I wish I did.” She reacted neither positively or negatively to Lady Lucas' comment about her delicateness, and before she could answer her question, the tea and refreshments arrived and everything was set upon the table. “May I pour, Mother?' she asked and Lady Newcastle nodded. Margaret, still standing, lifted the pretty porcelain teapot and poured the amber liquid into all three glasses, not spilling a single drop. There was a distinct elegance about the way she performed the simple service and when she was done, she set the teapot down without it clinking upon its plate. Sugar and milk were provided so that each lady could enjoy her tea the way she preferred it. “Physically, mentally, emotionally, or metaphorically?” she answered finally as she sat down. One expressive hand fluttered to the spoon in the sugar bowl and added a small amount to her cup. The Duchess suppressed a sigh, hoping that Margaret didn't answer each of Lady Lucas' questions with another question of the evasive sort.
  6. Aria

    The Haunted Trail April 6 Morning

    “Unruly brothers are a far cry from murderous thugs,” Susan laughed. So Charles knew the daughter of the house's owner, not his wife. She knew how the ladies fancied him. It had probably been easy for him to find the chest. Since the lady had asked to keep it, she had known where it was. How could any girl resist his charms? She appreciated his concern for her, though she did not believe he cared for her as more than just a friend. That was fine with her. Susan found him attractive and would not have refused if he wanted to marry her, but she believed if that was his intent, he would have done spoken to Philip by now. It was also possible that a romantic relationship would ruin their easy camaraderie. It was better this way. She treasured their friendship and hoped it would continue long after this mystery had been solved. “But I would have been safe with you, even from mischievous children,” she teased. “You'll find it harder to stop me if this adventure leads us somewhere else. Why should you get to have all the fun?” Lord Langdon seemed to value love letters. No doubt he had an entire room full of them, most likely from 'secret admirers.' Few ladies were bold enough to come right out and say they liked a gentlemen. Unless they were of the libertine mindset. Susan grinned playfully. “Maybe you felt awkward because I wasn't there to read them with you.” Were they so explicit that they had made him uncomfortable? No. He would not give them to her if they contained anything that was not suitable for virgin eyes. Curious she untied the ribbon and unfolded the first yellowed piece of parchment. Upon it was a beautiful sketch of a newborn baby. After reading the words on the back, she looked at Charles with wide blue eyes. “Did you see this one?” She held it up. “They had a son. It must have been written after the Lion's death. She says she doesn't know where he is. His ghost couldn't tell us anything about the child because he died before it was born. The Swan must have continued to write to him and left the letters at the inn in case he returned. Maybe they used to leave notes for each other there.”
  7. Aria

    Ghostling Goading

    Sam was glad that she was mistaken and Lord Langdon didn't plan on interrogating the servants immediately. There was also the matter of the box of letters on his desk. They were connected somehow with the dagger she was twirling around in her hands. What if the owners of both houses were working together? When one noticed the chest missing, he could tell his associate and that man would offer a reward to whichever servant could retrieve it when they were called in for questioning. Charles had not tried to hide his identity when asking to search the house and the man who wanted the dagger already knew who he was. “Threatening to send them away is an excellent idea. They may be more willing to cooperate if they fear they will never seen their families again. There might even be one or two who want to start a life in the colonies. They may tell you everything you want to know. Once they're on the ship, their former master won't be able to harm them.” Everything seemed to be settled. Sam handed the dagger back to Lord Langdon and stood up. “I have some duties to perform before the day is done,” she said. There was a note of reluctance in her voice. Though their conversation had not strayed into personal territory, she had enjoyed this time alone with him. “Thank you for the wine.” With a brisk salute, she turned around and strode out the door, he lips turned upward in a soft smile. Maybe he would call for her more often now. And perhaps he would begin to see her as more than just a friend. Though she believed that unlikely, a girl … even one who lived the life of a man … could always dream.
  8. Unfortunately, no. I'm still struggling with my old one, but hopefully not for much longer. I'm leaving the computer selection up to my hubby. He knows what I need for one of my other hobbies ... 3d graphics. Hopefully he'll find the right one soon. The above resolution is from my 27" monitor, which is also old. The newer ones have higher resolutions.
  9. Aria

    Random Thread of Randomness

    My hair was a bit lighter when it was purple, probably because it had to be bleached to within an inch of its life first. My natural color was medium brown but now its 70% gray. I can dye it light blonde without bleach now, so when I color it purple again, it will be a light pastel shade. Gray hair also fades faster, so within a month, it will probably be back to its generic blonde with only a few hints of pale purple. I have to keep the current shade for awhile longer because the part that I bleached white hasn't grown out yet and whenever I dye it, I get an accidental ombre. And that's probably more about my hair than you ever wanted to know. My husband is a ginger, and now that he's growing old, he's not going gray but strawberry blond. He's so lucky. As for Toledo. because of his obsession with honor, I always picture him like this:
  10. Aria's resolution: 1920 x 1080. Can you tell I'm married to a geek?
  11. Aria

    The Haunted Trail April 6 Morning

    Susan had wanted to go with Charles, but he had refused to allow her to accompany him, saying that it was too dangerous and that her volatile brother wouldn't approve. She had not believed the first reason, but the second was definitely true. Philip wouldn't approve of her being alone with a man in a locked room of the library either, but Lord Langdon had always been willing to meet her here. It seemed as if she had been right about there being no criminals in the house brandishing knives. Only a lady that Charles already knew, though not well enough to have been told where she lived. Most adventures of his, she had discovered, appeared to involve ladies in some fashion. Sometimes that lady was her. “Let me guess. The lady was the wife or daughter of the owner. I said that s family probably lived there and not a bunch of murderous thugs.” She grinned mischievously as he pulled out a bundle of letters tied with a red ribbon. “I told you so.” Susan laughed at his conjecture that she wouldn't have time to do anything but research all season. “If it takes that much of my time, I'll assign some of it to you. I don't plan on spending every day in the archives.” A soft smile curved her lips as she thought of Lord Chichester and his art exhibition. Had he guessed who she was? Or would he send an invitation to every young blonde lady at court, hoping that one would be the swan who had won him at the bachelor auction. Maybe he had forgotten about her already. She certainly remembered him. Shaking her head to clear it, her blue eyes focused again on Charles. “Have you read the them yet? Are they more love letters?” A pretty blush blossomed across her cheeks as she remembered the suggestive missives they had found in the secret room and read to each other.
  12. Aria

    Ghostling Goading

    So I was right, Sam thought. He wants the man who tried to kill him to know that he's aware of his plans. She admired her superior officer for his boldness and his confidence that he would always have the upper hand. However, the owner of the vacant house had tried to kill him once. He could attempt it again, this time in a sneakier way. She didn't like the idea of Charles putting himself in danger, but confronting problems head on was part of who he was, and he was perfect in the young soldier's eyes. Sam saw no harm in questioning the servants or letting them believe that their master was in danger of rotting in jail and losing everything he had. In fact, there might be a few who were not loyal to him and would spill everything they knew in exchange for protection or another offer of employment. There were always tasks to be done around here, and by keeping them close, both Charles and herself could keep an eye on them. Joos and Trijnte could be useful too. They were clever little things and good at spying. “Now?” she asked when Charles spoke of bringing some of the servants in. “It might be better to wait a few days so that we can prepare some questions, and decide how best to get them to cooperate.”
  13. Aria

    Newcastle Residence, the 6th, 2pm, Matters of Marriage

    Though her expression remained neutral and polite, Lady Newcastle was overjoyed that Lady Lucas wanted to meet Margaret. It was what she had hoped. She understood the other woman's intentions, and was pleased to let her interview her enigmatic middle daughter. The Duchess didn't worry that the girl would spout inane drivel, but that she would say exactly the right thing and nothing more. Margaret had taken saying exactly the right thing to an art form. Because of this, it was impossible to tell what she was really thinking. She had also turned keeping one's own council into an art form. Perhaps she would divulge more to Lady Lucas than she did to her mother. All girls wanted to marry well, and she knew that Margaret was no exception, even if she had never come out and said it. She had agreed that she should marry as high as possible. That was, after all, exactly the right thing to say. “Of course,” Lady Newcastle said a bit too quickly when asked if she would be supportive. It might seem strange for a Duchess to defer to a Baronetess, but Lady Lucas was an expert at matchmaking and she needed all the help she could get with Margaret. Somewhere beneath that secret smile and perfectly proper demeanor were opinions and feelings. Perhaps Lady Lucas would be able to draw them out. The Duchess had even gone so far as to search her room to find clues to her personality, but there had been nothing at all that hinted of her interests. She had been hopeful when she found her diary … until she read it. Every short entry was exactly what one would expect of a sixteen-year-old girl. It was as if Margaret had written it precisely because she wanted it to be discovered, which hinted at a cleverness that bordered on diabolical brilliance for a young lady of her tender age. Lasy Newcastle prayed that she was mistaken, though being shrewd enough to do such a thing could serve her well in the future. She instructed a nearby servant to send for her daughter and to have another place set at the table for tea. “I will even leave the room if you wish. Margaret may be more likely to open up to you if I am not present. However, I will remain if you think it is best.” Lady Newcastle looked with interest at the portfolio. “And yes, after you have spoken to her, we will go through the list.” She was very curious as to which names were on it. Some of them she might have already guessed, as she had been pondering husbands for Margaret for some time. Lady Lucas likely knew of more eligible lords than she did. Margaret arrived at the same time as the third place setting. She was a pretty girl of average height with shiny chestnut curls and intelligent green eyes, garbed in a blue gown sprinkled with embroidered violets. Her cheeks were flushed becomingly and her lips were turned up in a polite smile. She looked like the perfect Duke's daughter, her mother thought with an inward sigh. Everything about Margaret was exactly as one would expect. Something wasn't right about that. “Lady Lucas, I would like to introduce you to my daughter, Margaret,” she said. The young girl inclined her head respectfully to the older woman. “I am pleased to meet you, my lady,” she replied in a sweet clear voice, which was, the Duchess thought, precisely the kind of voice one would think she should have.
  14. Aria

    Away & Here Notices

    Hope everything goes well, Wayfarer. As for me, I now have a nasty stomach virus. I felt a bit sick last night when I posted my other message, but I thought It would be gone by morning. Not so. I was ill all night and still am. The good thing is they never last very long with me, so I should be posting in a few days.
  15. Aria

    Away & Here Notices

    Good news: I'm not dying. Bad news: My computer is. I have a spare (that's so old, it has Vista), but if I have to, I can use that one until I can get a new one. I might be posting a bit slower than usual, but I will be posting. I might not just be able to do all my posts in one day like I usually do for awhile.
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