Jump to content

JOIN OUR GAME!

Your Stories Await Telling

Hope

EASTER 1678 | A rousing evening with Her Royal Majesty (8th)

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

Athenry and Sophia

 

A hint of scarlet to match Sophia's own flared up on Athenry's cheeks, belying his own youthfulness, spurred on somewhat by the evening's intake of wine. Her comments as towards Toledo's possessiveness gave the truth to his own discomfort in private matters; to wit, neither of them any intentions in that regard, of course, but he was as ever far from a libertine. Even suggestions in that sense caused a very Catholic consternation.

Blessedly, the topic moved on. “Un poco,*” he replied softly, returning her grin with a more-subdued playfulness in his voice. “As I said, I'm horribly out of practice.” He had met few Spaniards outside of Artois, and mostly at official court functions where it would have been strange to resort to their mother tongue – and besides, French was the language of diplomacy, of courtly manners, of literature. “Even still,” Cadell conceded, “You have my word that I'll remain at my most politic, and endeavor fully not to restart the Franco-Spanish War.”

A few agreeable nods greeted Sophia's thoughts on Moliere and Racine, the viscount considering her interests in literature as ever commendable. The natural weaknesses of women, the humanists taught, were remedied best by education, and as something of a pedagogue himself (intentionally or otherwise), he could not help but agree. “You may have one of the chapbooks I brought back. Her Grace's wardrobe required some adjusting while we were abroad,” a light, lyrical Welsh laugh passed his lips as he made the jest. Portsmouth's tastes were famously expensive, no thanks to the two kings he served. “And I fear I'm now obliged to make room for it.”

 

A Catholic enters the fray

 

Kingston and Chichester were the first two to offer verses, the libertine under Buckingham's sphere offering a verse from John, while the well-dressed earl chose the contrasting Matthew. The proverbial ball then fell in Cadell's respective court, or so he believed: an educated Catholic voice would have provided good contrast to the Anglicans old and new.

And besides, finally there was a court contest that he could succeed at without the machinations of his so-called wife.

“My lords, I thank you both for your suggestion of the gospels,” he answered earnestly, raising his voice as he steadied himself on his cane to rise. “For mine own part, I admit that I favor the history of the growth of our Lord's ministry, particularly during these holy days, where His Kingdom began in earnest.” Feeling more confident in this than in most other courtly endeavors, Cadell went on to quote,

“And Peter opening his mouth, said: In very deed I perceive, that God is not a respecter of persons.

But in every nation, he that feareth him, and worketh justice, is acceptable to him.” With enough of his typical introversion to appear somewhat abashed, he smiled meekly and bowed his head. “Acts, chapter 10, verses 34 through 35.**”

It was both an earnest statement and a coded message, one he hoped subtle enough to pass the scrutiny of the Anglicans around him – they too believed in works, as he understood it, simply not in the manner Catholics did. “To me, it serves as a reminder that all men are brothers and women sisters under the Almighty, redeemed by His loving sacrifice, and that none are loved more or less by Him save by their actions.” Inwardly, his commentary involved several diatribes against the Five Solas of the Protestants, and pointed barbs elsewhere, but instead he simply added before sitting down and facing Sophia with a brief shrug, “An important reminder when events threaten to tear us apart from others, and a motivator at all others.”

 

*A little bit.

**Specifically, the Douay-Rheims version of the Bible, favored by Catholics at the time.

Edited by Cadell Mortimer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dorothea

She had held her breath those first few seconds, seconds that had seemed like minutes - she'd even (irreverently) crossed her fingers for someone to step up and begin!  It had been Francis who did it.  If she could take back all the times she'd teased him for not attending dawn service, she would have at that moment!  He was the most pious Englishman present surely! (Apart from the bishop of course.)   

Dorothea smiled to the trail-blazer of biblical verses, she would have clapped her hands even if such a response had been appropriate - it was only after attention swayed away from Francis that she whispered, "so very well spoken."  

and from that point the passages begun to flow, all men initially, but surely a woman would cite some verse soon?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chatham and Darlene

 

Darlene restrained a smirk; which meant to say she lifted her hand to lips to conceal the grin at Charles reply.  He was doing very good she thought, to keep so serious while spouting such blatant lies.  Lies that were dressed with apt coverings, making them almost indistinguishable to truth, whatever the truth on the matter might be. 

"If one cannot laugh at oneself..." she half heartedly defended her position, while wondering how much more it would take to break him down, "and don’t you think that a little feminine silliness is the very best antidote sometimes. Like for instance," she leaned closer still, lowering her voice to the barest hush, "when you are..." Darlene was daring herself to put a kiss on his cheek. 

Luckily the Bishop cleared his throat.

Drawing attention, and then there was a prayer. 

Then people started making their bible quotes. 

Darlene was not thinking of bible quotes though, she was thinking about how she'd like to kiss such a stuffy fellow till he smiled again. Probably after he smiled she'd loose her interest in him again. Which she probably should do, so as to be a good fiancée to her own Charles Whitehurst. She really shouldn't go around town fancing kissing men should she - best she purge that demon. 

The next quoter of bible quotes read verses that jangled a little with wrong words*, which pulled her attention back towards the man speaking.  Most importantly though, was that she realised that this was a stage before her.  And Darlene did love attention, and putting on a show. 

After Cadells quote

Standing she smiled prettily, "Except the Catholics!"  

She paused expecting much laugher, all at the expense of the poor fellow who'd failed to clarify that he'd not meant that god loved Catholics!

"Ladies." she then smiled addressing the copious number of women in the room, "shall I share one of our favourite verses? We after all cannot let the evening be too swamped with serious talks.  I speak of the song of Solomon of course, whispered with hushed voices and imagination soaring.  'Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth, for your Love is better than wine."

Enough said!  Darlene reluctantly relinquished the stage. 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chichester in support of Cadell

Too much time spent at the House of Lords - for when  George heard Cadell speaking on Tolleration he wished to stamp his stick in show of support, or call out a 'hear hear'! 

Then some scallywag woman spoke up and said the exact opposite!  George frowned and made an audiable huff, "Now I beseech you bretheren, mark them which cause divisions and offences and avoid them; Romans 16:17"

Perhaps only those closest to George heard his outcry against Lady Hamilton

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Davina Next To George

She watched with interest as the Gentlemen so it appeared were intent on some rivalry from the start which might well prove quite entertaining!

It was then that Lady Oakham stood and Davina could not help the stifled laugh as that Lady spoke. Honestly could she not judge the situation accordingly? The Song of Solomon was hardly fit for this gathering.

It seems that George agreed for he was quick to execute a response that was a clear rebuke and a warning tied together but she doubted many had caught it.

So with a small sigh she stood and in her clear voice recited -

'and this is testimony that God gave us eternal Life, and that this Life is his Son. Whoever has the Son has Life; Whoever does not have the Son of God does not have Life"

John 5:11-12'

She gave a small curtsey in the direction of the Queen and Bishop then resumed her seat.

Edited by Davina Wellsley

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stood behind Beverly

Mistress Dundas was not a controversial woman, quite the opposite really - her cheeks had flamed when the Vicountess (a saucy widow!) had cited verse from that bible book!  Fortuntely Mistress Wellsley was there to stifle any untoward thoughts within the room, with a quote that surely dampend any ardours previously raised.  Though Agnes did not quite understand the significance of Davina's verse other than that. 

Still, to heap water upon the fire, (and just to be certain that her gentlman companion was under no illusions to her own interest) she spoke

Quote

"Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.

"from the book of Hebrews, chapter 13:4.  Surely says it all!" 

Unfortunately she could not sit again, to try shift eyes off her - but she had to remain stood, severely regretting that her quote held the word whoremongerers, even if the sentiment was quite virtuous.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Thanks to you, my lady, I had ample preparation time," he whispered back with a sly and slight wink.

 

Poor Francis had very little idea what happened after Chichester first spoke, for there then seemed to be some dissension brewing. Perhaps there should instead be more dissimulation. After all, this was to be an enjoyable evening for a very pregnant Queen and it would not do for things to get too...exciting.

 

He whispered again to Dorothea, "I fear I am missing something..." The he added with a quiet, judgey snort, "Other than most are not following the Lord Bishop's suggestion of giving the personal significance of the verse."

 

The word whoremonger coming from the quiet Agnes nearly made him snort aloud just a few moments later, thankfully he caught himself and pursed his lips to control his amusement, staying quiet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Agnessss"   Mary, nearest to her, hissed under breath.  But it was too late!  Her brown eyes turned and sweet brow furrowed, looking towards the grand Lady Mountjoy.  Any of the queens ladiesmaids in the room knew there would be words later! 

Standing, the little Lady Beverly opened her bible to the markers page.  "My own favorite verse, and one I am honored to share for Her Majesty, is 1st Samuel 1verse 27; 

Quote

'For this child I prayed; and the lord hath given me my petition which I asked of him."

Mary, with hand upon her belly made a gentle pause then added, "which is surely the greatest joy possible on this earth." 

Sitting again, she gave her Lord Husband a small smile.

 

 

 

 

  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Athenry and Sophia

 

Lord Athenry was cute when he blushed, though Sophia felt guilty about embarrassing him by her impromptu choice of words. English was a complicated language, but at least they didn’t have as many articles as German. Her native language was probably harder to learn.

 

As for Spanish, Cadell admitted he was by no means fluent, but his simple answer was easy to understand. “Just try your best,” she suggested. “My lord husband is accustomed to my imperfect Spanish. I think he will appreciate your effort, though will most likely switch to English before long.” A good Ambassador respected the country in which he served, which meant conversing in its native language most of the time.

 

She laughed when he promised not to restart the Franco-Spanish war. “Thank you, my friend.” Her voice held a teasing tone. “A war would completely decimate my drawing room and then I would have to redecorate it all over again.”

 

The young Countess adored discussing books with Cadell. Most gentlemen, she suspected, would be appalled at the diversity of her reading material, which went above and beyond what ladies were supposed to be interested in. They had bonded over their love of reading and had recommended books to each other, the way he was doing now. Sophia clapped her hands, heedless as to whether looks would be cast in her direction. “I promise I will take good care of it and return it to you when I am done,” she said about the chapbook he offered her.

 

He didn’t seem thrilled with his wife’s expensive tastes. Luckily for Sophia, her own husband didn’t mind hers. Or perhaps he did, but Juan had ordered him to deny her nothing.

 

The recitation began. She was a bit surprised that Lord Kingston went first. He had never struck her as the kind of man who craved attention. Was he changing now that he was being guided by the Duke of Buckingham? His style had certainly improved. She hoped he wouldn’t become as arrogant as His Grace.

 

Lord Chichester followed with a verse of his own, and Sophia smiled in his direction. He was sitting with Mistress Wellsley. She’d seen the two of them together before in previous seasons. Were they sweethearts? She glanced over at Davina. She’s Catholic too. Maybe she can give me advice from a woman’s point of view. Mistress Wellsley would be getting a letter from her too.

 

Cadell spoke up next and she nodded as he explained his choice of verse. She could tell that he was a bit uncomfortable. When he sat back down, she smiled reassuringly. “Very true,” she agreed, “and something that people need reminding of.” She fervently believed that God loved everyone equally, no matter their gender, faith, or nationality.

 

A vaguely feminine voice spoke against Catholics. Lady Oakham? She was allowed back at court after stabbing poor Master Killigrew last spring?  Beside her was the utterly fascinating Lord Chatham. Sophia reached up and touched her cheek, the secret sign that meant she was thinking of him.

 

Lady Oakham, rather predictably, quoted Song of Solomon. Lord Chichester reprimanded her with another verse. Davina went next followed by Sophia’s new friend Mistress Dundas and Lord Beverly’s wife. The blonde Countess could identify with the last verse, as she, too, was with child.

 

Short but sweet

 

“And here we go,” she whispered to Cadell as she stood, her gaze moving theatrically around the circle. Utilizing the acoustics in the presence chamber as only a highly trained musician could, she projected her voice so that it seemed to echo from all corners of the room.

 

 

Quote

“I will sing to the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.”

 

 

"Psalm 104:33. This is why I sing. God gifted me with a beautiful voice so that I could use it to praise him. Every time, I lift my voice in song, I sing for his glory.”

 

With a cute little curtsy, Sophia sat back down. “I hope I didn’t mess that up,” she murmured to Cadell.

Edited by Sophia de la Cerda

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chatham and Darlene

Charles had never expected to find himself glad to see the Bishop open his mouth, but he was thoroughly grateful for the interminable droning as Compton opened the celebration of hypocrisy. His composure had nearly cracked under Darlene's last sally, and the distraction allowed him to gather himself. (It was absurd, of course, to care so much about winning a game with no stakes, but Charles was deeply competitive.)

"Feminine silliness is to be tolerated, as a foible of the weaker sex, but only to an extent madam. Have a care," he whispered once he trusted himself to look sidelong at her without smirking.

His impersonation was helped by just how much of a bore the pious recitation proved to be. It was no struggle to keep his face locked in an expression of stern, pensive pomposity. It was worse than he had feared, one meaningless quote after another. There were Bible verses warning against just such empty repetition of scripture he recalled.

How did it go again? 'This people honoureth me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me?'

That thought inspired a grim amusement, and he toyed with the idea of using that as his quotation, swallowing a smile. It would be deeply, deeply satisfying, but not enough to compensate for how equally deeply unwise it would be. No, if he was to poke at the assembled crowd, it would have to be more subtly.

He pondered that for a time, paying no real attention to the rush of quotes until Sophia's voice roused him from his reverie. He looked up, and idly adjusted his cravat as she curtsied and resumed her seat. He had an apt verse in mind, now, and if it was a more obtuse mockery of this event than he would have preferred, well, he had no intention of wasting any more time and mental effort thinking of a better. He stood smoothly and pitched his voice to carry, and closed his eye in a fit of theatricality. He had always enjoyed rhetoric lessons as a boy, and it was about time he made proper use of them.

Quote

"Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. /And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. / And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing."

"Corinthians 13, verses 1 through 3. That has always been the core of it, for me. So much of scripture can be taken from its proper context and made to fit evil ends, but that is a simple, pure directive that cannot be twisted. We are commanded to love Him and to love one another, and if we fail in that we are nothing."

He opened his eye, inclined his head, and seated himself again.

"I shall have to concede our game, I think," he whispered to Darlene. "That was not a Cromwellian choice of verse, nor a Cromwellian delivery."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Darlene & Chatham

It was little surprise that Darlene's voice was 'vaguely familiar' to Sophia, for when the German girl had first arrived at court she had attended the Opera that Darlene had held.  Sophia had begged to perform in the next.  That had been a lifetime ago now, the dramatics of court life was like that. 

Sulking after her own performance had flopped, Darlene paid little attention to the following bible quotes until Sophia spoke - her choice of song themed verse reminded Darlene of that time way back when.  Perhaps I should host another Opera for her? she wondered to herself, unaware that Sophia's kudos on that score had moved far past the point of accepting theatrical hand outs.

Then her Cromwell finally chose to take a turn, Darlene was sure he'd make it a especially stuffy one. Perhaps something from Revelation even. 

But it was not.

Sitting again, he admitted his loss. "I forgive you," she whispered back, "this is a tough crowd to try crack, anything with more, thrust, would flop."

A small smile tuged at the pretty lady's lips once more.

"Do you think it's almost over yet?" 

She felt done with it, and ready for some 'after the event' fun.  

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Individuals continued to stand, taking a turn at presenting a verse.   

 

It was one of the Moustacio'd group who stood next; William Abdy infact.  He had found a bold and manly verse with a sword in it,  that he hoped might impress the ladies present! 

Quote

"For the word of God is quick and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of the soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Hebrews 4 verse 12 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dorothea and Francis

"We should have guessed that would happen." She agreed, likewise dismayed as for a moment the quotations took on a political, and then almost bawdy tack.  Thankfully the night was saved, as Lady Beverly made a course-correct. 

Dorotha’s eyes slid to the Queen, who through all of this maintained her usual ‘court’ smile, hiding her deeper opinions on this one or that one’s offering. 

“I think she is pleased.” Dorothea whispered to Francis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Davina Next To George

"Very mild mannered," George commented in a whipered teasing-tone to Davina following her delivery, and with a grin continued, "I hardly recognised you." 

His and Davina's tempers, both unstable at times, was one of the resons that their thoughts of a serious relationsip had failed. But as friends, they got along just swimmingly. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Beverleys

 

The young viscount beamed at his lady wife. 

 

Ha! Let any say I have made a poor choice! If clapping was appropriate, he would have done so, but instead he gave her a smile and a generous nod and one for Her Majesty as well. For, he wished the particular verse brought her happiness as well.

 

When attention shifted from them, Beverley said, "I do think you have steered the ship some, dear wife. Well done." 

 

After all, he had chosen Mary partly for the background and education he knew that she must have, for Lady Basildon and Lady Worcester were quite capable and intelligent ladies. And such tender redirections were better done by a woman anyway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

For they are not permitted to speak, but should be in submission, as the Law also says. 1 Corinthians 14:35.

 

The verse could have made an excellent, if entirely improper, sarcastic retort to the lady who spoke against him. Cadell had nearly made it a day in London without feeling a longing for the byzantine ways of Versailles, where at least respect was shown and the true faith acknowledged. Even were he not a Catholic, he could not help but shake the feeling that le Roi or his queen would not have approved of the dark-haired woman's slight against his words and the transition to the Song of Solomon. The flush in his cheeks, which began with Sophia's verbal misstep (easily brushed off) and continued with the urging of one glass of wine too many (more than welcome), seemed to refuse to leave.

His courtier's mask became a scowl, one Athenry hid behind another sip of wine, the glass raised momentarily in acknowledgment of what appeared to be Chichester's defense of him, inaudible though it may have been. Smiling gratefully at Sophia as she provided a measure of reassurance, the viscount attempted to seem diffident in his shrugging as he murmured a quiet, wry, “If nothing else, their ignorance of the principle of tolerance spurs the competition onward.”

And thus, away from his embarrassment.

“Very apt, my lady,” Cadell commented on Sophia's suggestion, nodding once in approval. “And a beautiful Psalm besides. 'May sinners vanish from the earth, and the wicked be no more'.” In a very un-Christian manner, his grey eyes drifted back to Darlene briefly, wondering who his naysayer was before reclining slightly in his seat, shoulders beginning to slump. He felt tired, all of a sudden, and the wine in his belly had begun to shift from relaxing to distraction. “I suppose if Her Majesty is pleased, then the venture was worth it,” he observed to Lady Toledo with a slight sigh.

Then, a weak chuckle. “Leave it to court to turn the word of Our Lord into a competition, hm?”

Edited by Cadell Mortimer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Athenry and Sophia

 

Cadell seemed to need Sophia’s reassurance. She would have been upset too if somebody had insulted her faith. Then again, he must have suspected that as a Catholic, he would be ridiculed in a roomful of Protestants. They had been persecuting Catholics for as long as she had lived in England. Were Catholics so violent and outspoken or did they respect the right of religious choice? Her friend did not make a retort. Maybe if Catholics were more tolerant, she should definitely convert.

 

Nobody commented on her own verse. As she sat back down, she glanced discreetly in Charles’ direction just as he adjusted his cravat. He was thinking of her! What more could she wish for but a night alone with him? His simple but heartfelt gesture made attending this boring gathering worthwhile. She hoped she would get the chance to talk to him before it was time to leave. Maybe he had found that room for them, with a bed in it.

 

“Thank you,” she told Cadell, turning her attention away from the fascinating Lord Chathan. “Yes, I love the entire psalm, but I didn’t want to hog the spotlight by reciting the whole thing.” There were a few passages from the Bible that she knew by heart.

 

Corinthians 13 was another one, and she loved the way the first three verses sounded coming from Charles’ intriguing lips. His delivery was every bit as theatrical as her own. Hmmm, perhaps the two of us should perform the Song of Solomon together. I shall have to suggest it to him. That book of the Bible had embarrassed her when she was younger, but now it was one of her favorites.

 

Her blue eyes widened at the idea that his affection for her might have inspired his selection. After all, he had stood up right after she sat down. She drank in the sight of him until he took his seat again. “Courtiers turn everything into competitions or political statements,” she remarked to Cadell. “I wonder if this is what  Her Majesty intended or if she is sorry for hosting this evening’s event.”

 

She shrugged. “Well, I’ve said my piece and will say no more unless I am asked to sing. Maybe she will call an end to it soon.”

 

And then I can speak to Charles again, if luck is with us both.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Darlene & Chatham

"They are girded by a wall of pompous hypocrisy, yes," Charles whispered in agreement with Darlene, barely resisting the urge to roll his eye as some youthful non-entity declaimed from... Hebrews, he decided after a moment's thought, though chapter and verse would not come to him. 

If the word of God meant anything to you, boy, if it meant anything to any of you other than a stick with which to beat others, you would not lessen it with empty quotation in a courtly pissing match.

The thought was worth a cold smile, and Charles felt his gaze stray to the Queen. 

What do you think of all this, I wonder? You are young, yes, but surely not so naive as to think this a genuine outpouring of faith...

But Darlene was asking him a question, and Charles turned back to her and shrugged one shoulder in response.

"That depends entirely on her Majesty, I think." He lowered his voice still further. "Though I fervently hope she calls a halt soon. All this excitement cannot be good for the babe."

It was a frankly heroic effort to keep a straight face through that, and Charles allowed himself a moment to feel put out that it would pass unrecognised.

"In the meantime, though, much as I appreciate your forgiveness for my failing, you need to name my forfeit for losing our game."

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lady Beverly lowered her eyes, modestly flushing with pleasure at his compliment - she greatly enjoyed his attention, "While uncharted, it is a course we navigate together."  whispered she.  They were well matched if you considered their diligence to duty, well for other reasons also, reasons that became more apparent as they got to know each other.  

Perhaps they would get to know eachother a little more in the carriage ride home?  

That was no time soon however - for unfortunately perhaps, persons continued on standing to speak out their verses; and yes as Cadel noted there was very much a competitive air to their executions, drama even - though some managed to pull it off better than others.  There were a septet of ladies who read one creation day each  from the Book of Genesis.   There was a fellow who dared to be different by quoting the book of revelations.  There were at least 4 separate individuals who separately quoted 1John 5:16, 'God is love' (while apparently not noticing that it had already been used).

The evening waxed on... and none seemed so delighted of it all as young Dorothea, who sat there with bible before her with book mark firmly in place.  The Queen did not seem to be flagging yet either, but then she had not been at the second half of todays services (for those had been in the hours of her prescribed afternoon nap).

It was near to 9:30.. when Bishop Compton stood, and clearing his voice (his insider tip to rouse those who's mind have become vacant as they eye-open napped)

"Her Majesty has asked Lady Dorothea to read her own selected verse."

 

At which, Dorothea stood, and giving a smile to those around about begun.

Her Majesty has selected verses from the book of Hebrews, chapter ten, twenty four and twenty five.  'And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works. Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some, but exhorting one another; and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching."

"Just as we have done tonight, sharing our faith and in support of one another. While 'the day' referenced within the verses is one other than 'the day' that she  greatly anticipates, she is likewise grateful for your support though attendance this evening." 

To which, Karoline gave a smile to her childhood friend - endorsing that she had spoken as wished.

 

The Bishop then closed the evening with a prayer, after wish he announced: "Please feel free to remain, and enjoy a supper..."  

 

* The Queen did not immediately leave, but remained a time in the company of the Mountjoy’s and Bishop; it was a rather rare opportunity to approach Karoline. 

** Note: We have slipped into the 'closing up' section of the time frame, but I think we can give ourselves an OOC week or two to mingle yet.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mountjoy covertly addressing the Queen

The evening progressed with various courtiers offering verses some with the intent to expound on their religious views and others, as courtiers are wont to do, with an eye towards personal or political advancement. Charles was much more in the second camp and had intended to use this occasion to mark his return to court politics but he found the evening had reached a natural conclusion without him making any contribution or statement as he had spent the time in silent contemplation ruminating on the state of affairs, not of state, not of affairs but of his marriage and relationship between he and his wife.

The tension between the two could not go on as it was beginning to take a toll on both and that was detrimental to their relationship and to their positions at court so he resolved that something needed to be done sooner than later so resolved to act upon the sisterly advice given to him by Lady Oakham and used the momentary diversion of the gathering breaking up to quickly approach the Queen as everyone’s attention was elsewhere.

As Ursula was momentarily distracted he sidled up to the Queen. “Your Majesty…” he said softly but warmly for he was quite fond of and devoted to the Queen, “…May I beg your indulgence after the Easter devotions to deprive you of the services of your Mistress of the Robes? I would so like to spend some quiet time with the Margravina at Saxony House for we have much to catch up upon and the peacocks do pine for her terribly.”  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Francis, Dorothea, & Compton

 

The 4th 'God is Love' elicited a quiet groan of annoyance from Francis.  Sitting next to Dorothea he could not help but pay attention to the selections, for she seemed so pleased of all of it that he could do little but attempt to seem entirely enthralled such as any good friend would do. 

 

When the Bishop rose, and Dorothea was announced to have the Queen's selection for the evening, up rose Francis' blond brow. He gave a smile at her and listened to what it was that was important to the Queen. He admitted to himself alone that he was not entirely sure all the things that were meant in that verse. He would have to think more on it or ask Dorothea he thoughts on the selection. She would probably illuminate him immensely and easily. 

 

The closing placed on things with a prayer, Francis said to Dorothea, "That was well done. You spoke eloquently what Her Majesty selected."

 

"Do you not think, my lord?" he added to Compton. The young blond was quite adept at drawing compliments to ladies, and they did always seem to enjoy it. 

 

He noticed Lord Mountjoy move to speak with the Queen and it reminded him that he both needed to give her Mister Nash's answer and confirmation of the Easter gift for His Majesty as well as speak of that other matter. However, he could always pass the message through Dorothea if needed. He was sure there were many who had attended that evening that did not have such opportunities. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Karoline, drawn aside by Lord Mountjoy

"Certainly." she agreed,  stretching muscles that had atrophied these past hours of sitting she commented, "But you must know she has been free this entire time, she is not chained."

"Besides," her eyes slid around the attendees, "I am wanting of variety, and there are candidates here that I would be pleased to Sunday afternoon with."  

 

Lady Mountjoy greets the Beverlys, Von Bruhl and Agnes 

While her husband claimed an aside with the Queen, Usula moved the few steps towards this group.  "Gentlemen, Ladies." she greeted.   

 

Francis, Dorothea & the Bishop

Dorothea hardly wanted more public acclaim, and lowered her eyes as Francis drew the Bishop in also. 

"Precisely what I was thinking." said Compton, "it is almost a shame that public speaking is a male arena, for you showed yourself most capable of it."  His glance towards one of the 'god is love' ninnies to punctuate his point.

"I'd thought it might go a bit differently." changing topic, Dorothea expressed, "but the gathering was larger too than I had expected. With such a sizeable group, some of the personal aspect becomes lost."  

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Beverleys, Agnes, Von Bruhl, & Lady M

 

Beverley rose, offering his wife his hand to join him, and was about to address Von Bruhl more about horses when Lady Mountjoy approached them. It was somewhat unexpected for the viscount, but he was thankfully thickly bred courtier and offered a perfect bow anyway. 

 

He paused his eager thoughts on horses and found a more apropos comment. And an easy one to say.

 

"Good evening, Lady Mountjoy," he said. "Erm, I do hope Her Majesty is pleased of the event." 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Francis, Dorothea, and Compton

 

Dorothea demurred over the attention and compliments, so Francis failed to say anything more of it. He had thought to remind them both that such a thing might be publicly disallowed, and for good reason, but that court gatherings in England had oft allowed women to ascribe to roles they had not previously, especially in His Majesty's reign. The King rather indulged the minds and ideas of women. It was a conversation for another day. 

 

However, Francis did not fail to notice the look the bishop delivered to one of the God is Love fools. He stifled a snort of amusement. By going first, he had assured he could not make that mishap!

 

"Yes, it truly was a large gathering for the original intent, but I should think that means many wish to support Her Majesty now and to keep her in good cheer." 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mountjoy and the Queen

“Thank you your Majesty.” He replied as the Queen gave her assent. He moved a bit closer as Karoline stretched in case he needed to offer his arm. He had been told that it was often uncomfortable for women in the late stages of pregnancy. To her comment on the availability of his wife he offered “Has she indeed… I have not seen her at home.” Then to lessen the comment least he appeared to disagree with her Majesty or imply a rebuke to the Margravina he continued, “No doubt she wished to stay at the palace in case she was needed for she, as indeed I am, is quite devoted to your person. Upon resumption of service to your household I should think I myself would spend more time at the palace so as to ensure your needs are met. But I do find my library at Saxony House to be very welcoming as I do enjoy my books. The gardens, as I believe you yourself have experienced wile in residence, are also very convivial. The palace is very grand and it is an honor to be graced with apartments there but sometimes one wishes for the luxury of more intimate surroundings.”

“I wish to surprise her with a luncheon, just the two of us, where we can converse tete a tete. We still have the Margravina’s German cook who has promised a traditional Ostersontag meal. I shall miss our traditional English hot cross buns but I must confess that German deserts are superior.” He smiled in mock conspiracy “please do not let that comment be known at Court or it may damage my reputation as a proud Englishman.”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Davina Next To George

She gave him a teasing smile in response to his whispered comment adding as she resumed her seat

"I am as always Lord Chichester. When have I ever NOT been that?"

She then turned her attentions to the next speaker but soon her gaze wandered back over The Company and rested upon Daniel wondering just how far she would go. That she was missing Charles despite his treatment towards her she understood. Her body was used to being played and now without that activity she was restless and thus prone for making a reckless decision. Yet how could she not wonder? She had had only one lover after all! What would he be like and how different from Charles?

Lost in such thoughts unaware that things had wound down and everyone was standing she quickly adjusted and smiled at George hoping that she had not been caught out. He was too observant she knew so made as if she was stiff from sitting one hand using his arm for balance.

"I think my foot has fallen asleep - will you stay a moment? Then I must to Lady Mountjoy although she is much occupied so perhaps I shall escape." 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Athenry and Sophia

 

Sophia seemed somewhat distracted, a reminder that a great deal of time had past – ever if it was not as long as it felt like, it nonetheless served a purpose for Cadell, bringing to mind just how quickly court moved, whether one was present or not. His friend had gone from a blushing young thing whose talents with music exceeded her grasp of English, to a married woman with connections to high-ranking Spaniards and friends outside his own circle.

The same could be said of him, he supposed, although his true allies in London seemed rather limited – the spectacle during which the dark-haired lady who interrupted him in such a boldly cheerful manner seemed proof of that. Lord Athenry, as of yet, had no claim to fame beyond his marriage to the “French whore”, as Mistress Nell would have likely put.

Nonetheless, the viscount was buoyed somewhat by the shift in conversation, and even managed a wry smile when Sophia offered her reasons for not reciting the entire psalm, saying, “My dearest lady, I'm impressed. Since when do you avoid the spotlight?”

The other quotations seemed to peter out in terms of their controversy and creativity, although the one selected by Her Majesty was curious enough – strange, Cadell thought, to hear a Protestant German reference good works. “If our good Queen thought this was court exhorting one another,” he muttered to Sophia with a grimace. “I daresay that I fear for those events scheduled outside of Holy Week.” Even a game of Bible quotes was filled with one-upsmanship and peacocking, along with...whatever it was that inspired such butchery of the Book of John.

Unceremoniously, he drained the rest of his glass of wine, weary from the voyage, the drink, and the courtly games alike. Steadying himself on his cane slightly longer than ought to have been necessary, his tired eyes managed one last bout of warmth for his friend as he addressed her. “As always, my lady, your presence has been enlivening, but it, hm, seems that even you are powerless against the promise of a decent night's sleep.

“I,” Cadell yawned, and gave a courteous half-bow. “Will eagerly await your missive. Adieu, dear friend.” And off he hobbled, in search of a coach and a final glass of wine to smooth out the mixed emotions of his return to Whitehall.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Mountjoy and the Queen

Aside from good hopes, Karoline did not mean to get involved in the troubles between Ursula and Charles.  "Towards that end I shall relieve her of duties for the full week if it serves a happy outcome.  While I must comment, my Lord, that we are England now not Germany."  

"I for one am... ah, a verse springs to mind even, 1st Corinthians 13: the verse of how once grown, one must putting aside the ways of youth. Which in this instance might apply also to ones country.  Hmm, I am just saying that perhaps English fare is the preference." 

 

Francis, Dorothea - Compton leaving

"Indeed." Compton agreed, and then catching an eye yonder uttered an "excuse me' politely moving off to further mingle.

"Lord Kingston." Dorothea in an hushed tone called for his full attention, "I think we could have events like this every week even, what do you think? Although I should enjoy them to be a bit smaller. Perhaps a dozen persons only.  But how shall we cull down the numbers? I mean, I'd hate to  upset people who were especially hope to have an invite." she grinned, "Oh and don’t worry, you shall of course be on top of the list." 

 

Beverleys, Von Bruhl & Lady M 

"Yes I think we can call it a success Lord Beverly.  The season seems to be bubbling over with good news even." smiled she with a look to Mary, a discreet congratulations.

Attention then moved back to the men, and she asked, “May I have a moment alone with your Lady’s, Gentlemen?”    

Edited by Hope
fixing typos!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Queen and Mountjoy

The Queen’s offer of a week without obligations was both a blessing and a curse. He would surely love to have that time together but might that not make Ursula even more suspicious that he was trying to supplant or lessen her in some way. He would need to respond carefully. “That is very generous of Your Majesty and I am inclined to accept straight away but I am loathe to assume the Margravina’s consent for as I said she is extremely devoted to you and your wellbeing, particularly at this time, is of paramount importance. It is my intention, unless it displeases the Margravina, to spend more time in your service which will give me more opportunity to spend time with my dear wife. I should know more after tomorrow.”

It was then that Karoline said that she, but using the royal we, was England now and that made him so proud with how much she had grown since arriving as a foreign princess. He beamed. “Aptly said your Majesty, you are indeed England now and also the vessel for the future of England. I agree completely but it has been a long time since you were tempted by Frau Klebb’s pastries. I am as proud and English as a man could be but I am still a man susceptible to the temptations of the stomach so I ask you to think none the less of me for my weakness. I shall do my patriotic duty and have a double portion of roast beef the day following.”

He then recalled something that had been nagging at the edge of his thoughts and he thought this was an opportunity for his curiosity to be laid at rest. “There is one thing that perhaps Your Majesty may illuminate me upon. I noticed on one occasion that the Margravina was wearing a most impressive emerald hat band. As the stone was of royal proportions might I inquire if it was a gift from Your Majesty?”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Francis & Dorothea

 

"It does seem so, does it not? The room was quite active and many standing. Although, I do not know if I am personally well-versed enough in the Bible to have much material or discourse to add so frequently," he added, with a wink. He oft brandished a self-deprecating humour, so it was hard to tell if he was being so or being honest. "I am, of course, happy to lend my support to Her Majesty, duty-bound or not." For the King had asked him to perform the duty, that he could also manage to enjoy himself in its execution was simply a bonus blessing, and he did rather enjoy it. Even when it was a late evening call to procure some thing he could barely pronounce! 

 

"And my support to a friend, always," he added.

 

He had done well by a number of his friends. Helping them with the Duke or the King. Going to their performances. It was nice to have such relationships, for the sea had separated him for attachments in many ways. A captain had but few friends and confidants no matter his popularity - Francis had never been particularly lonely at sea, being a man who could socialize with commoners on some level, but he now also recalled what it was like to have friends. Friends of his rank. And, to be honest, female ones too. 

 

And court would be boring without such engagements and activities. Francis was far too active an individual to stay mentally or physically idle very much. 

 

"Perhaps cull the number by those you and Her Majesty find have the most interesting discourse or wish to confer the most favor. Or rotate the invitations such that it becomes seemingly more exclusive thereby. Or have a different lady of the Queen's choice choose the invitations for that week?" Francis posed. He was a far better event-planner and understander of people and their proclivities than he was Bible orator. It was hardly strange that was likely his best skill in the service of the King, for it was not the political, for he was a neophyte compared to men like Buckingham, or his influence, for he truly had none. 

 

He prettily untangled a bit of hair from his sapphire earring, that kept pulling when he turned his head. 

 

"And I think the Bishop would disclude any who uttered God is Love in reference to John tonight. It would be very good of you to spare the poor man in your decisions," he added, with a giggle.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×