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Diana Butler

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    Horseback riding, archery, fencing, politics, espionage, and clever conversations

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  1. There was a small almost unnoticed roll of her eyes at his answer as to what he’d do. She’d known that he wouldn’t have spent all the trouble he had if he did not intend to go after the cross but what Diana wanted to know was on a deeper level. What would he do once this search that had consumed so much of his life was over? Diana would never have admitted it out loud but now that her search for a husband was complete she found herself seemingly lost and a bit adrift, bored even… maybe. Raising her eyebrows slightly, she curled her lips. So, he’d looked into who she was. Tilting her head sideways at him, the small smirk grew into a grin, “If my story is true?” She purred in amusement, “Now you’ve truly awoken my curiosity. What other stories have you heard?” His words quickly drew the smile from her lips to be replaced by her careful court smile. You think the worst because your Father failed and that is a thing not easily forgot. Yet you are different. You would be the same as me … stubborn as most women are and keep to the course. She held his gaze for a moment or two longer than she’d intended and then looked to her hands clasped in her lap. If in my place what what you do? Satisify my curiosity as I did yours. Tis only fair after all. And then I shall take me leave. “If I am different it is the challenges I’ve endured that have made me such.” Her words were quieter almost as if she’d breathed them out before she slanted her gaze back up at him. “Yes.” It was a strong but simple answer. “Are you happy now? I would keep to the course. I’d take what was mine and not even blink about it or what I had to do to achieve it.” With a sigh, she stood up and fiddled with the rose pink silk robe. Maybe such an omission made her sound a bit bloodthirsty but sometimes the world was not a very nice place. She sniffed inwardly and looked at him again, “For your sake, I hope it’s everything you’ve dreamed it could be.” And not a fool's errand. “Perhaps next we meet it shall be under better circumstances.” She crossed her arms under her breasts and waited for him to take his leave. “I would see you out but I assume you already know you way and I now have a mess to clean up if I don’t want to wake the maids to do it.”
  2. The room was bathed in the softest of glows that was only ever achieved by candles. It wasn’t the most elaborate bedroom in the house but in the sunlight it was a rather pretty room. It was why she’d placed the statue in here; Aphrodite needed that morning sun as she rose from the sea. Her lips pursed as her intruder walked past her quickly forgetting about her and scoping out the room. She stepped through the threshold and closed the door softly behind them. Curiosity was a fatal flaw of hers. The reverent way he handled the statue only stoked that tiny fire of needing to know what details she was missing as he examined it, she examined him with equal amounts of curiosity and cynicism. His voice was the first to break the silence, issuing the order to sit down as he told the tale. Her lips thinned slightly as she fought the urge to not tell him it was her damn house and she would sit where and when she wanted. She almost disagreed with him but finally relaxed and moved to the chair and sat down. Cross her legs and folding her arms into her lap, her gaze never wavered as she waited to hear what he had to say about all of this. She listened to the story with a neutral face. Did she believe him? Hmm… She believed he believed what he was saying but Diana had learned a long time ago fairy tales were for children and that the people who chased them sometimes lost everything in the process. Wasn’t that what had happened to her father. He’d decided to sink what small fortune they had into trade, they’d moved to the East Indies to be closer to his investments, and when it was time to return home… there had been nothing left. No, she really didn’t want to find herself hoping for a dreamer again. Her gaze dropped for the first time at the same time the candles sputtered out and he paused, Tilting her head and pressing her lips slightly together. The tales of grave robbers and secret crypts, of jeweled coffins and an ancient cross. It was a story her father would have thoroughly loved but instead of making her excited she felt… almost a sadness wash over her. Even if it was true, she couldn’t quite shake the trepidation. Straightening as the story came around to her and it made sense as to why the last one had been broken. She raised an eyebrow at him, the questions obvious in her eyes. How did he know this was not just another cheap statue? How did he know this was the one that held the secrets of his grandfather? As if in answer, the statue fell from his fingers and shattered on the wood floor. She shifted slightly, and found her gaze settled upon the parchment. “And what will you do once you possess the cross?” She found her gaze settling back on him, gauging his reactions to the parchment, to her question, to all of this? Was he in this quest for the adventure or was the cross purely a mercenary acquisition? Not giving him a chance to answer, Diana relaxed in the chair, “You know, my father would have liked you. Most of my childhood was spent chasing one adventure or another so I’m speaking from experience but what will happen if you find this crypt and there is nothing there?” That was the worst case scenario for any dreamer, it was a bit of murdering their hope, wasn’t it?
  3. With a sigh, Diana stepped into the room and lit the candle before stepping backward and waving him inside with a slightly raised eyebrow at him. "It's over there, help yourself." She murmured letting her gaze shift around the room boredly. If he wanted it he could get it all by himself. Leaning back a little against the wall, she crossed her arms demurely in front of her lap and waited.
  4. A low, sharp laugh echoed out of her at his words and she jerked her head to look at him. "Where is your proof that it belongs to you, huh?" She hissed the words at him with a glare, "I went into a shop and bought it. You snuck into my home and are planning to take it. Now, I may just be a simple-minded woman but there does seem to be a bit of an ethical line of distinction between the two forms of procurement." She paused at the doorway out of her room and swallowed, it'd have been a lie if she'd said she hadn't thought about making a mad dash down the dark hallway, screaming her lungs out and awakening every one with one quarter of a mile of their home. But Diana had questions and a woman's curiosity often clouded her perhaps better judgement. She sated that logical voice in her head by reminding herself that her thief was in breeches and although she was tall... the chances of making such a clean escape were not in her favor. She swallowed and took a slow step outwards into the hallway, ignoring his veiled thread. "If you wanted the statue so badly, why did you break the one in Ireland?" She muttered, making her way down the hallway carefully passing the doors until she came to the third one and then slowed and paused. Her hand on the door knob and tilted her head to look at him again, looking for something visible to cling to in her brain about him. "I've the oddest feeling that as soon as I give you my statue I'll never get my answers." She looked away and sighed a bit sadly then opened the door and prepared to step inside feeling like she'd quite lost a game of chess and had somehow failed which was something she never usually dwelled upon but right then seemed to be eating away at her a little.
  5. A snotty little voice in Diana's head parroted back, 'Very wise to understand the situation. I do detest a blithering female', but she kept her lips pressed tightly against each other and bit the inside of her cheek. He'd withdrawn his hand but the blade was kept visible as a reminder to behave. He seemed to contemplate the information she'd given and then gestured with the knife for her to stand up and her eyes widened slightly. He'd just told her to sit down now she was to go on this jolly little stroll down her hallway to find a pretty piece of porcelain and hand it over to him. With put out sigh, she used her hands to push herself up from the chair. Tilting her head, she shot him a look as she muttered, "Why not? You came in here all alone, makes sense you go out there alone..." Her words trailed off though as he grinned down at her, slowly letting his eyes travel over her. Tilting her head, she settled an unphased look on him of a woman who knew she was beautiful and perfectly comfortable with leering looks. "Bold of you to assume that you'll have another opportunity." As he stepped backwards she took her first step around him and leaned in just a little to murmur silkily, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me..." Looking up at him for just the length of time it'd take to make most men squirm a little, before she looked past him and swept past him towards the door. "Come along then, if you're going to rob me... then let's get this over with." The boredom she inflicted upon the words was edged with a barbed sharpness. The lout had already declared that he was in a hurry and wouldn't tell her what this was all about already, after having told her he'd tell her once the statue was in his hands. What else would he prove untrue with?
  6. For a woman clearly use to flattening anything that stood in her way, she flopped back down in the chair with a heavy, unsatisfied huff and the glare of a petulant child who'd been told 'no'. Pressing her lips together as he spoke, she didn't say anything immediately even after there was enough pressure with the knife tilting her chin up to feel the sharpness. Again. Where is it? Damn him. Damn. Damn. Damn! If looks could have killed, he'd have been dead several times over. "Not in here, obviously," She bit out as her anger flared just a little bit with the momentary loss of her control tones. "I moved it to one of the guest rooms this afternoon." Diana didn't offer anything more with that statement just yet. Tilting her chin a little further up at him, she fought back the urge to pull backwards sharply away from the scraping of the sharpness of the knife. "But, you are more than welcome to search the room. It's in the room three doors down, on the right... there is a writing desk and I left it sitting on the desk."
  7. Diana Butler

    Desperatis hic in Vinarium | Saturday after 10pm

    Diana had settled into a quietness, letting the conversation happen around her as she sipped the remains of what would be her last glass of the rum. As Lord Kingston and the dark-haired Countess spoke there was a small lift in the corner of her lips and her eyebrows lifted at Kingston’s comment regarding large hunters not always killing the beast. She raised her now almost glass in a silent salute of agreement. Size wasn’t worth much if you didn’t know how to wield it; at least in her opinion. Shifting, she sat her glass on the makeshift table. Had their party decided what they were going to do now? Sliding a glance to Nicolette and then to the King, the French miss had landed quite well on her feet. (OOC- Sorry, not much there but wanted to give Nicci a chance, but feel free to summarize Di out)
  8. Diana Butler

    Away & Here Notices

    Isn't chocolate the only flavor for cupcakes?! 😂 *snaps fingers* I knew I should have read the fine print on that insurance contract... My plans have been thwarted again! I hope you're happy. LOL!
  9. "Really?" Diana tilted her head and grinned at him, "You'd hate to hear that?" An eyebrow arched puckishly at John then pressed her lips together to suppress a laugh. "I think it might be the most stimulating conversation from them." She smiled again. He was right of course, the Butlers, after they recovered they would roll with it and perhaps even enjoy the unorthodox of whiskey and cucumber sandwiches. "Would the initial surprise be from the whiskey or our cucumber sandwiches?" Leaning back comfortably against him, her mind drifted to thoughts of a particular night that she and her cousin, Henry Howard Jr., and Lady Neville had snuck out for a night of drinking and debauchery at a pub. Truthfully, she didn't remember much of that night except that it had been less exciting than she'd imagined dressing up in Henry's clothing and pretending to be someone else. Her arms wrapped around his neck and she sighed and shrugged a saucy wink at him, "Bold of you to assume that I haven't already seen how rough it gets out and about at night."
  10. Diana Butler

    Away & Here Notices

    Oh no, Margaret! Hopefully, it'll take a swing for the better again. And Charles! That 'set small goats' had me snort out my coffee. Maybe after I get caught up again I'll toss some 'small goats set up' pictures in here because I can legit do that. BG, are you trying to tell Hope and I to take it slow and not fall off the wagon and light the wagon on fire and use the insurance money to buy cupcakes? 😐 Cause I have to say, if you are, I was really looking forward to those cupcakes... *pulls out pen and paper to write down small goals* Plan Z is to do them tomorrow after the goats are bottle fed and milked. Also, CB I was rereading Dark Angels by Karleen Koen to get back in the mood and because I needed something that'd jumpstart my brain out of 'What are words?' mode. Love Karleen Koen, never fails to put me back in Restoration mood.
  11. Diana Butler

    Away & Here Notices

    Same here. But hopefully this weekend is coming and I can stop chasing my tail in circles long enough to get caught up and maybe straighen myself out. Hope everyone is doing okay! ❤
  12. Diana Butler

    Away & Here Notices

    Well, if it's not one extreme it's the other. Today the high was 81F and had windows and fans on in the house. <facepalming> And we have been again super lucky, the well came back on and no pipes busted anywhere. The animals are all troopers and fairing pretty well, I do have one mare that has a bit of a cough but I think she's got a little cold from the rapid weather changes. My family all made it through it really well too. So thank you guys for the good thoughts. 💞 @Davina Wellsley Poor Houston though, they aren't use to freezing rain and all of that... and the rolling blackouts there I heard were pretty bad. I'm glad to hear you grandmother and her sister though made it through it good. @Caroline Despanay Welp! I can wipe an Alaskan Cruise off my bucket list... I'll just rent the National Geographic dvd on whales 😂 Also, yeah we were on water rations and lucky didn't have any colic, but we took the thawed gallons of water and heated them and then used the hot water to melt the ice in their buckets and... I can't believe I'd ever see the day where I'd have to thaw snow for water for the animals but it's all we had. Which is lucky because turns out our vet clinic burned down during all of this so... yep, I'm thankful all of ours are real troopers. @Blackguard Vivid in my memory... <insert minor panic attacks here> ROFL! Aren't you a ray of hope?!... jk SoCal would never work for me, it's way, way to close to all the wildfire action. I need to be at least 500 miles from those wildfires CA has. I'm even less prepared mentally for wildfires than I was for my 7 day free trial of Alaska Life. Anywho, while everything is fine outside it appears that indoor hibernation and a clean house do not go hand in hand so I'll still try and be back next week and hope that I demolish all the house cleaning between now and then.
  13. Diana Butler

    Away & Here Notices

    So, I am still here... but... it'll probably be next week some time before I can play catch up. This winter storm has hit Texas pretty hard, y'all. <*headdesk*> Today was the first day it was warm enough to sort of truly access the damage but we have another hard freeze tonight. We've been out of water for a week, which means no plumbing in the house and if that's not bad enough... with 4 horses and a herd of goats it's been a nightmare. Our house and barns are designed to combat temps upwards of 110F for weeks but -15F to 20F for a week it was not. And everyone here is in that shape, there isn't water to really be bought and if you do find it... it's at a gallon at a time (which doesn't go very far with the horses and goats). All that being said, we've been some of the lucky ones not to lose power (which has been really fortunate since everything including our heat in the house is electric), but some of our friends also have been hit really hard. A dear friend has lost over 18 head of goats this week due to the weather. We have tornado plans... wildfire plans... even hurricane plans but we did not have extreme cold plans. So, I'm still here but it'll probably be a week before I get this stupid mess sorted out enough to post.
  14. Every movement Diana made was carefully crafted to fill out the man in her room. She watched him through the mirrored looking glass of her bureau. If he thought to surprise her by his knowledge of her letter opener in her pocket or scare her with the flashing glint of his blade he would be a bit disappointed. Stiffening slightly as he stepped a little closer, Diana shot him a narrow look through the glass. At his demand to ask her to sit down, she straightened as well up to her full height, and although was not as tall as him, she often appeared much taller than she truly was. Clearing her throat, she slowly turned around to face him when he all but shouted at her to sit down and she saw the first crumble in his control. With a small nod, she stepped back over to the chairs around the lighted hearth, “Shout at me again and you’ll wake the entire house.” Sitting in a chair nearest the fire, she situated herself so that her back was to the fire and she could watch him. It was time they got a few things straight. “I didn’t take you for dense but I am beginning to wonder.” She carefully said, “I’m more than willing to give you the statue for some information and I can definitely assure you that is the wisest course of action from this meeting.” Pressing her lips together, she waved at a chair on the other side of the hearth. “Please sit down… You don’t mind if I call you Mr. Smith do you?” Her nostrils flared slightly but she continued calmly. “Harming one hair on my head will set every military man and lifeguard in the whole of England upon you, it’d make a man of your profession to have to retire early and honestly, I’m far more intrigued with you than I am that statue.” She waved her hand again at him, “So sheath your knife and behave. You’ll get your statue and I won’t even try and stop you. This is simply business.”
  15. Well… He did seem to have her quite figured out, didn’t he? An elegant eyebrow raised up at his words almost daring him to prove that she didn’t know that he’d been there. “Mice aren’t really that quiet, now are they?” She murmured with a small sigh and a less than polite roll of her eyes. Why was he so interested in her statue? Had he been the same one from Ireland who’d torn her room up? She took in the size and shape of the man, with the mask on it’d be hard to identify too much there but there were always other things that might give him away. Clearing her throat, she frowned at him. “Now, why would you want my statue? Didn’t you have an opportunity to possess one in Ireland, already?” Shifting in her seat, she tilted her head slightly at him as she waited for an answer from him, clearly still quite in control over her emotions as he issued his threats. “What an impudent thing to say to me, and here I’m being quite cordial about you breaking into my room! How rude, what would your mother say to those manners?” She tsked, and stood up walking over to her bureau and set the pillow down and reached up with her left hand to poke at an imaginary line. “If I’m to lose my statue tonight the least you can do is tell me why you are so interested in it.” She pursed her lips in the mirror, although her grey eyes watched him carefully through it so as not to be taken by surprise. “I’d ring for tea but it seems like a most unreasonable time to wake the servants, perhaps some whiskey instead while we discuss my statue and your interest in it?”