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Your Stories Await Telling

James Winchester

James Winchester

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"I do apologise for dashing off like that, I trust that you were able to find some suitable fun without me?" James asked as the carriage made the short drive to Pall Mall.


"Of course, I am more than capable of finding my own fun." Gwen replied archly but with a smile. "Don't think I'm going to wait for you if you're going to dissapear on me."


"I did say I was sorry." He reminded her mildly, reaching out to put his arm around his wife's shoulders, a gesture of genuine affection.


"I know." Gwen smiled and leaned her head against his shoulder. "Is Her Majesty alright?" She asked eventually.


"Yes, she's nearing the end of the pregnancy is all, the baby was moving and causing discomfort. They will both be fine." Gwen nodded sleepily and they sat in contented silence as the coach rolled up the long drive to the large house at the end, set amid well kept gardens.


James's position as Queen's Physician was partly responsible for their comfortable lifestyle, as was Buckingham's complete infatuation with Gwendolyn and his habit of showering her with gifts, especially when she'd bourne his son.


James offered her his arm up the stairs and as they entered the foyer and servants appeared to take their coats and cloaks, he mused that their marriage was an arrangement which had suited them eminently well at the time and still did, even though Arthur was at university and young George was clamouring louder every day to join him or go to court.


Gwen yawned sleepily at his side and patted his arm affectionately. "I think I must retire, or sleep where I stand. Goodnight James." She leaned up and kissed him on his cheek.


"Goodnight Gwendolyn." James returned the chaste kiss then sought his own rooms, in the opposite wing from Gwen's. It was indeed late and he too was tired, although he wasn't entirely certain that he was ready for sleep.


As he made his way down the hall James was amused to see candlelight under the edge of the door of the room next to his own. Smiling in a fond but slightly exhasperated fashion he didn't bother to knock but simply opened the door quietly, grey gaze falling on the figure seated at the desk, deep in concentration.


Wandering up quietly to wrap his arms about slim shoulders and rest his chin on one of them, blonde curls mixing with blonde waves, he looked at the strange symbols upon the paper on the desk. "What are you doing?"


"I am endeavouring to determine the equation for the interference of the sun in the moon's orbit due to it's gravity. It is distant James, but so very large that it has an appreciable effect. However, it is proving complex." A long-fingered hand made an irritable scrawl on the paper with the quill, dismissing the work of the last few minites.


James sighed fondly and kissed the nearby cheek. "Isaac, it's long past midnight, leave it for tomorrow and come to bed."

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"How do I look?" Rachelle asked, turning in a slow pirouette before him so that he could admire her dress from all angles.


"Like an angel." James replied. Like your mother.


"I just love this dress!" Rachelle exclaimed, turning again to admire the effect in the full length mirror. "Thank you so much Daddy."


"Only the best darling, especially on your special day." He assured her, watching her with paternal affection as she played with the lace on the dress in front of the mirror.


"Do you think he'll like it?" She asked eventually.


James smiled indulgently. "I'm sure he'll be entranced, no matter what you wear." That earned him a playful pout as Rachelle realised he was humouring her.


Watching his daughter, James held no doubt that any man would be entranced by her. She was a tiny thing it was true, but then her mother had been too and he was not a big man. Pale golden curls cascaded from her up do over bare shoulders white as milk and the fine lace of the dress. She was delicate and graceful, and looked younger than her seventeen years, another trait from both her parents. Her delicate, heart-shaped face was all Noni, but the intelligent grey eyes that watched her reflection in the mirror were James's.


Letting his gaze unfocus the vision in white before him took him back to his own wedding day, and for a moment it was Mignonette standing before him, looking like an angel fallen from heaven. He still missed her unassuming manner and gentle ways, and grieved again that she had not lived to see her own daughter grow up.


A familiar, bitter feeling rose up in James. Really, what was the use in being one of the most well-regarded physicians in London, considered the expert in issues of women's health and consulted by the elite of court, when you couldn't even save your own wife? She'd bled to death before his eyes, while their baby daughter had wailed, and there had been nothing that he could do.


Now their baby daughter admired her wedding dress in the mirror. James sighed gently, causing Rachelle to turn and look at him.


"You're thinking about Mummy again, aren't you Daddy?" She asked him, as insightful as ever. She had her father's intellect, and her mother's concern for the feelings of other people.


"I am. I wish she was here to see you." James admitted.


"I am sure she is watching." Rachelle said with a smile, turning away from the mirror and coming to stand before him. "Don't be sad, not today." She knew that fits of melancholy sometimes overtook him when he got to thinking of the past. But despite her words James's expression didn't change. "What is it?" She asked him, taking one of his hands.


"Are you sure about this?" James asked her on impulse.


"Of course I'm sure, Andrew Everhart is a good man." She replied, looking slightly peeved.


"He's a big man. I don't want to loose you the way I lost your mother." James said suddenly, gripping her fingers, his expression one of earnest worry.


"You won't." Rachelle assured him with all the certainty of youth. "I'll take after your side, I'm sure. You'll have so many grandchildren you won't know what to do."


James made himself smile for her sake. "I'd like that."


"You do realise that Grandmother will be at the wedding." Rachelle pointed out, meaning James's mother. He was the third of four children and Mary Evelyn Winchester was still going strong.


"Indeed she will, and she will not be impressed if we are late. So we had best be going my girl. Have you got everything?"


Rachelle smiled because he smiled. "Yes Daddy, everything."


"Come along then." James offered his daughter his arm, and the two set out for the waiting coach and the church.

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Thanks Fluff.


The death of Noni is sweet?


The death of Noni is supposed to be very sad, especially as James is still mourning her 17 years later. I wanted a more melancholy note for that one Delphi.


A lot of people have been doing 'good future/bad future' but it's hard to think of a really bad one for James. *huggles her doctor* I shall have to consider it further.

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