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Fixed Manners, Kings Head, early afternoon 8 April (open!)

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King's Head Tavern & The Green Ribbon Club

  • 'This house was doubly balconied in the front for the clubsters to issue forth in fresco, with hats and no perukes; pipes in their mouths, merry faces, and diluted throats for vocal encouragement.'



He was tempting fate by being here, of that much Cadell was certain. The upper level of of the King's Head -ironically named, given the Cromwellian sympathies of its members- was reserved for those who were clearly not of his stripe, politically, religiously, or fashionably. For this outing, he'd taken up, against the advice of his own manservant (and conversely, on the advice of the male staff assigned to the Duchess of Portsmouth) with a justacorps of scarlet silk, brocaded in silver, accented over a navy waistcoat and matching breeches. His shoes had red heels matching his baldric and overcoat alike, in the French style, and the ivory head of his head had now been in laid with a single sapphire.

All in all, it was a striking figure, had the figure in question not been walking with a marked limp. Hardly a soldier, with that appearance, it was true, but nonetheless, the idea of sprezzatura had been taught to him by one Master Ashburnham at first and later by the greats of the Sun King's court.

And so he had sauntered, if an obvious invalid could be said to do so, into the tavern, having already prepared his excuses for avoiding the morning's services held by the Church of England – Paris, the saying said, was worth a Mass, but when it came to London, Athenry's feeling was less than certain. He had taken his coffee with little ado, and opened his copy of Spinoza's Ethics upon finding a quiet(ish) corner booth. The late mathematician had some grand ideas, the devout Catholic would admit, and Athenry hummed quietly to himself as he considered the passage before him.

Individual things are nothing but modifications of the attributes of God, or modes by which the attributes of God are expressed in a fixed and definite manner.”

“Easy words for a philosopher to say, and a dead one, to boot,” Cadell murmured, his accent having since become an odd blend of Welsh, English, and courtly French. His right hand, that which normally grasped his cane, reached for a pewter flash, prefacing  the abysmal local ale with a pull of cognac, which made the whole drink a great deal more refreshing. The thought occured to him, rather obliquely, that at some point he would need to make a truly public appearance, marriage and all, if only for the sake of His Majesty. Or both of them, as it were. “If we're all to be attributes of the Most High, that means none of us are wrong.”

He took a swig, gulping down the ale and distantly wondering what his faux-wife was up to. Swiving some noble relative of the King, or His Majesty himself, no doubt. The expression of God, at either rate. Grimacing, Cadell swept back a loose strand of hair and focused on the text ahead, keeping an ear out for interesting conversations. He had a job to do yet, he considered, even as he proclaimed to nobody in particular, “Wise words indeed, for a man that the Almighty Himself just claimed.”

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