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Lord and Lady Chichester get comfortable | Tuesday evening


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Apartment of Lord & Lady Chichester

The apartment is small, but comfortable, with two rooms. There is a living room, with a small seating arrangement near the hearth and a table. A pair of windows is set into the south wall, overlooking the Long Walk and Castle Hill. A small carved walnut table and chair set rests between the windows while a small door, hidden behind a wine-colored curtain with thick tassels, beside the fireplace opens into a little closet. Candelabras rest on the table and mantel, casting long shadows over the polished wood of the floor.

In the next room a large walnut bed resting against the east wall. The bed is hung with wine-colored velvet, the fabric trimmed with gold tassels. Across from the bed is a stone hearth whose crackling fire keeps the chill at bay. Small silver bells have been affixed to the edges of the mantel with silver satin bows and to the tie backs of the drapes and bed curtains. A pair of windows is set into the south wall, overlooking the Long Walk and Castle Hill. A small carved walnut table and chair set rests between the windows while a small door, hidden behind a wine-colored curtain with thick tassels, beside the fireplace opens into a little closet. Candelabras rest on the table and mantel, casting long shadows over the polished wood of the floor.

The door opens into a narrow corridor that opens into the apartment’s drawing room. The room is furnished simply but elegantly in shades of pale green. A bank of windows along the south wall offers a view of the Long Walk and Castle Hill, letting in prodigious amounts of sunlight on a clear day. A carved rosewood writing table is placed against the windows while a handful of straight-backed chairs, cushioned in matching shades of green, are dotted throughout the room. Along the west wall is a deep-set stone fireplace that crackles merrily at all times to ward off the cold: it is draped with a swath of royal blue velvet, a wreath of seasonal flowers gracing the center of the swathe. An iron chandelier hangs from the ceiling, the light glinting off of the polished wood floors. Silver bows and bells adorn the tiebacks of the drapes..

In the Hallway

“I hope you enjoyed the wedding and the reception?” George asked Caroline as they approached their apartment. 

Till now he’d been sleeping here and there around the place, not wanting to set gongs to wagging, although the rooms had been set aside for them jointly since the season beginning.  Tonight though, it was to be expected.  George was admittedly a bit nervous about it but supposed Caroline would be understanding.

Arriving at the door he unlocked it, then turned to his bride and prepared her.  “I shall now sweep you up in my arms for the entry, god forbid we should tempt fate, lest you trip*, and of course, you know me to be a traditionalist.”

That said, he readied to scoop her up and move into their apartment directly. 

A crate in the reception room. 

Only once through those doors would the pair discover a mysterious unopened crate in the middle of the floor. The card attached:

from Lord and Lady Mountjoy, wished the happy couple many felicitations upon the occasion of their wedding 

 

* I checked and the carrying is to prevent the bride from tripping, which would be bad luck. 

 

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"Of course I enjoyed it. Little tense there for a moment with Sophia but otherwise I thought it went well," Caroline assured her husband, for that is exactly what he now was. They were officially married.

Then they both stood before the door of their suite, George unlocking it while she just stood there gazing at him and his every movement. He was very handsome and more importantly though for a successful marriage, he was an honorable man. This, her second marriage, just had to work. He now announced he would 'sweep her up in his arms'. She almost scoffed, like she was that clumsy she would fall into the room? She hadn't even drank that much at the reception. But he admitted he was a traditionalist and wanted it done the way things apparently had always been done. So fine with her.

"But, certainly, George. I am yours in all things now, my love," she let the man then pick her up and carry her inside, gently letting her down just short of the bed.

It could hardly have escaped either of their notice that there was a large crate right in the middle of the floor. So naturally it had to be checked out. As she examined the attached card, she nodded happily.

"A wedding gift, from the Montjoys. How nice of them. Please, open it then, George. Let us see what they gave us?" she couldn't help but be curious.

 

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With the enthuse of the moment, Caroline seemed to barely weigh much at all. She was certainly easier to lift than a sack of potatoes, and her hold around his neck also helped. With a great armful of lady and her excessive fabric, he took a large step across the threshold - well, through the doorway.  

"There seems to be nothing that can stop us." he announced cheerfully, as he ticked yet another item off his groom 'to do' list.

"It makes me a little nervous to hear you say so, it is my responsibility as much as it is my pleasure," George replied seriously as he set her down.   Jointly their attention was then drawn by the crate, and they moved closer to examine. 

"What on earth can it be, I hope it's not a stuffed head.  I prefer my wildlife alive and roaming free." he uttered and looked about for some method to open the crate.  His wife was waiting on him, this was in fact the first masculine feat she'd set him in their marriage.  But toffs rooms did not come with claw hammers.   "Ah, this might work." he found his silver-tipped cane (his belongings having been delivered earlier) and wedged it into a crack in the planks with the intent to lever it.  Feeling very masculine he warned. "Sheild your eyes lest it splinter." 

He gave the plank a good wrench, then motivated with progress, he quickly took off the top, revealing a spiral woodshavings lucky dip.  "So far, so good, there is no beastly scent." George gestured that she take the next step in their discovery.

 

 

 

 

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George had opened the crate quite expertly, getting Caroline's silent approval. He apparently was worried the present might be something alive, Caroline giggled, "Oh, hardly, my dear."

He then played the role of gentleman and gestured for her to take a first look which she was most willing, "Certainly."

She peered into it.

::The wedding present was a table suite consisting of a pair of Meissen porcelain candelabras and a centerpiece. The candelabras were themed, one with a figure of a milkmaid amid a motif of flowers and dancing cows, the other with a shepherd boy amidst foliage and leaping goats. The centerpiece was an intricately laced cornucopia, wherein fruit or flowers could be placed, held up by three cherubs with garlands of grapes covering their intimate parts in deference to the sensibilities of Lady Chichester upon a base of colourful flowers and foliage  ::

"Amazing! Take a look, George. This is beautiful! And they certainly did not spare any expense on this gift," Caroline declared with a wide grin.

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George had feared it was some stuffed animal head on a plaque that Mounjoy had gifted; everyone knew the Marquis thought them to make excellent decorations.  But fortunately, this was not that.  Caroline's pleased tones encouraged George to approach closer to take a good look;

"This must be Lady Mountjoy doing surely." he admired the candelabras then chuckled, "These are 'his and hers!  They shall be ideal at the long table on those nights when we row and sit at opposite ends."  he was joking of course. 

 

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"They will surely be a fine addition to your....our residence," Caroline nodded, "We must send them a thank you note."

George made a wise crack about a possible 'row' and sitting on opposite sides of their dining table.

"Oh, indeed? Not even married a full day and night and you now expect us to quarrel. How do you know that I won't hurl that centerpiece right at you in my fury? You have never really seen me angry and you don't want to either, dear," she declared with a smile. But part of that might just be the truth.

She'd done far far worse to her first husband of course but then he deserved it.

 

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