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Rebecca Halifax

Guest Rebecca Hale

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1678, October


Months in the Tower had melted the roundness from her limbs and features. Unwelcome visitations had caused a haunted look in green eyes and an increasingly severe conservatism of apparel. At least they left her alone for the most part once the novelty had worn off, allowing her to remain supplied in paper and ink and watercolors. They had taken away the lute after the garrote incident.


During her final days, Lady Rebecca was far more at ease then she had been in a long time. Everything of value had been secured in Ruth's possession and the Ruffled Duchess had agreed to officially adopt the young maiden. Her music had been safely delivered to the Maestro, even the opera and Ruth's symphony, and the fashion designs had been sent to Mistresses Norrington and Froust in exchange for a particular gown for her final public appearance. Her only regret was that she'd had to disappoint their Majesties by falsely shouldering another's guilt, but she was content to buy her sister's safety with her death.


Sometimes the only way to save your king from checkmate was to sneak it onto another board entirely.


She made her appearance at Tower Green surrounded by an honor guard in brilliant red uniforms, looking more like a bride then a prisoner. Snowy white silk damask, elegantly simple and modestly cut, with not even a hint of ribbon or lace and only a single white rosebud tucked into her dark flowing curls. She smiled sweetly as she looked around the assembled faces of the court who'd decided to attend the relatively private execution. So very few were friendly. When asked if she had any final words before sentence was carried out, Rebecca merely shook her head and remained silent.


Rebecca Halifax, found guilty of patricide, was executed by beheading on October 15th at noon. It took the headsman four swings to completely sever her neck.


She did not scream.

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Sometimes sleep deprivation makes for good writing! I have several more in mind, but they shall have to wait for a little bit. New boss got himself in an accident so I have to cover peoples' shifts.

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Umm....How is Rebecca going to marry Lord Ogle if she is executed? HMMM?! I WANT HER TO MARRY OGLE SO BAD! Because he's adorable! Also, I recognize that I'm too lazy to actually write out a future right now, but maybe later I will edit this with a not-half-assed message

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It was a cool day for summer. The breeze had a little warning nip of the oncoming autumn to counter the warm sunlight, but fruit laden trees transformed the grassy nook into a comfortable haven. A heavily pregnant woman in a rich blue traveling cloak stood before a stone slab, twirling a spray of musk roses between her fingertips while a dark haired man and girl quietly played in the flowers just out of earshot.


"I won't be visiting for a while, Darling. George's been given a post in Italy. It looks to be fairly long-term, he's taking the best of the household with him. At least Sarah will enjoy Rome. I know you would have, and she reminds me more of you every day. She found your music last week; my heart nearly stopped when I heard that damned symphony ringing through the halls again." The blue eyed woman laid the roses on the top of the slab and ran her fingers over the cool granite with a gentle smile. "I'll come back, Love. We all come back here eventually, don't we?" Brushing her fingers over two other stones as she walked away, Ruth slipped an arm around her husband and daughter and set her face towards new horizons.


A petal fell from one of the blooms and drifted down the face of the stone, catching for a moment on the deep weather-worn carvings in its face.

Rebecca Eleanor Halifax

November 7th 1659 - June 23rd 1676

The star that burns twice as bright burns out twice as fast

She had weathered many illnesses in her short life before finally falling to a fever that would not be denied. Upon her death, King Charles settled the family estate on the sole surviving heiress with the intent of recreating the title when she married. Rebecca was buried at Amberwell beside her mother and brother in accordance with her wishes.

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*laughs* Alright, darlings, I think I can write a happier one now that the saddest are out of my system.


Cairo, 1713


Sweet music wafted gently on perfumed night air. A small woman in an elaborately embroidered silk caftan smiled at her children's skill and rested her head on her husband's knee. He looked down from his seat on the garden bench and petted the silver streak in her dark hair.


"I know your moods, Beloved. What troubles you?"


"Nothing particularly important, Dearest. My sister turns 55 today, and that realization has made me ponder exactly how much of her life I have missed. I am a little melancholy because of it, my Heart, but it will pass."


Though her smile was beatific and her posture open and peaceful, he knew her too well to be fooled. He had watched her transform from the willful mouse fresh from the slave market into a dutiful odalisque of his father's household and from there to a confident and subtle concubine and wife. He had long since memorized every twitch and tweak that betrayed what his little lamb felt and thought. She would let the sadness fester if left to her own devices. Running a callused hand through her curls, he kept his voice carefully gentle.

"Beste, my sweet one, would you wish to have spent your life in England instead?"


As he knew her every gesture, so did she know how to read him. Whenever he used her name in such a carefully considered tone, she was in danger of making him unhappy. She thought too highly of her husband to wound him thus, and so straightened up long enough to turn her head and set her other cheek on his leg, staring up with green eyes full of apology and smile full of sweetness.

"And give up all this? Never. I will not say that it has been easy, but Allah has showered me with blessings. He safeguarded me through fire and flood and brought me to you. We have seven beautiful children who shine at everything they turn their hand to, I have not been ill in many a year, and best of all my angel Ismail loves me. To have my sister know that I live and know her life has also been well spent would simply be the final currant in the cake. It is not necessary."


Ismail smiled, glad to have turned her mind away from darkened thoughts, and drew her up from her cushion to sit within the circle of his arms. "Then perhaps, beloved wife, you should not look to see who is so interested in our Suleiman."


Raising an eyebrow at her handsome husband's entirely-too-pleased smile, Beste turned her head towards the gate to see her most cherished youngest son looking so grown up in his best clothes escorting a quartet of Europeans into the garden. She did not know the young man who was so interested in what his Mediterranean peer was saying, nor the slightly younger lady who could not help staring at dark skinned eunuchs, nor the gentleman in heavy frockcoat eyeing the architecture, but the older lady with silvering hair piled high and stiff-bodiced silk gown was instantly known to her eyes. Sparing just a moment to passionately kiss her husband in thanks, she leapt up and ran to the woman. Despite the encumbrance of Parisian fashions, her counterpart ran to meet her half way. They threw their arms around each other, laughing and crying.


"I missed you, Becca-bee."


"I missed you too, Ruthie-rue. Happy birthday, little sister."

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Blame Kane for these next couple. Mwahaha!




Rebecca looked down through the palace window into the gardens and sighed happily. What a handsome figure of a man her husband cut in the morning light. Rising from her bench, she finished the last of her tea and tied her dressing gown shut before advancing into her boudoir. There was always someone who wanted to see her in the more casual setting of morning. Sometimes it got to be quite the crowd.


The impromptu salon was quickly in full swing. She did so enjoy surrounding herself with intelligent people. Sheffield and Fox were trading poetic barbs back and forth for the amusement of the room when the footman crept forward and whispered the name of the newest arrival. Rebecca was a little surprised that the Weeping Willow was up this early. She'd been under the impression that she'd been entertaining Charles last night. Ah well, perhaps she'd been wrong. When Louise was ushered in, Rebecca smiled warmly and extended both hands, air-kissing the older woman on each cheek. "Louise darling! Bonjour, my dear. Come, sit and advise me. Isabeau would have me in sapphires today and Sophie insists on opals."


"It has always been my opinion that emeralds look simply divine on you."


"Ah, you know me so well. Jenkins, if you please?"


If Fubs was surprised by the warmth of the welcome, she did not show it. She simply took the chair that was brought next to the dressing table for her and joined in the small talk while Rebecca picked out which set of emeralds she felt like wearing that day. When one of the Johns made a crack about willows, Rebecca sprang to her defense before the poor woman could start wailing. "John! Don't you have duties to attend to?" She waved a hand dismissively. "I tire of wit so early in the morning. Kindly depart and allow me to dress." She stayed the Royal Mistress' departure with a hand on her wrist while the others made their obeisances and left.


"Ah, peace at last. Now then. What was on your mind, dear? I had not thought to see you before lunch." Now that her hair was finished, she stood and led Louise to the wardrobe for advice on the day's gown while they talked in a little more privacy.


"I hardly know how to begin, it is such a delicate thing. Have you noticed a certain...?" Louise drew out a pale blue with dark green embroidery and a green and white india print while she hemmed and hawed. Rebecca indicated that she would wear the blue and nodded understandingly.


"You too? Ah, poor darling. We must warn the others. I have already spoken to Dr Winchester, but we must assure him that our love for him remains unchanged." Rebecca embraced Louise and offered a lacy kerchief to dry the threatening tears. "Just be your usual charming self and all will be well. Now, if you would not mind catching up with Heather and telling her the bad news, I'll tell the others."


Louise smiled and curtsied. "You are wise beyond your years, Majesty." Sharing a smile with the young queen, the French Mistress departed to warn her fellow Mistress about the problem with King Charles' "little general" while Rebecca finished dressing.

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