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Redemption

Magnolia Manor

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a part of Redemption, by Jane Storm.

None

Jane Storm holds sovereignty over Magnolia Manor, giving them the ability to make limited changes.

300 readers have been here.

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Default Location for Redemption
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Magnolia Manor is a part of Redemption.

13 Characters Here

Aulay Charlie Archer [0] "Let's make like the sun and all be bright, alright?"
Helmut Jaegar [0] "Which, if not victory, is yet revenge."
Damon Greystone [0] "Together red tears we wept - in vain, As in darkness were we lock'd in wed"
Alric Wilhelm [0] The sheep in wolf's clothing
Luna J. Darwin [0] "Don't touch me, filth."
Adelia Chevalier [0] "The flowers have bloomed..."
Byron Mayfair [0] Lord of Magnolia Manor
Vasile (Basil) [0] The Divine Messenger
Alayna Renoldi [0] The Ice Queen

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#, as written by lumikb
Now that awful dream had stopped she was surrounded by darkness.There were voices she could barely hear around her , she wanted to open her eyes but for some reason she couldn't.All those stories , those images ....they had no sense as real as they felt for a second.This was supposed to be her "vacation" , the solution that her father came up with so she would return to normality.That was important since she would soon had to marry as the laws of her family asked. Maybe she should have taken the medicine before entering this house , there was a chance that what just happened was nothing more than her usual delusional self.

"It feels so warm" she said to herself in that darkness.She was moving , helped by someone perhaps , she once again tried to open her eyes with no results.Embarrassed by what happened and by her actions , her usual weakness and stupidity always getting in her way.Adelia smiled in her mind as she would always do when she realized how powerless she was, she was also smiling in reality as well.
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Helmut came back to the room where everyone seemed to have came back to their senses in a way.Some of the people had left the room , it seemed that they could finally retreat from this insanity.He prepared himself to follow one of the servants when he heard a woman's voice that caught his attention.

"This this, this is..."

A doll of a girl was sitting in one of the corners obviously annoyed by what was just presented to them.Her glaring looked cute in a evil and twisted way , that sweet little mask of hers had alot to hide.For as innocent as she would look for your average male , Helmut could easily read between the lines.No young lady would have so much hatred in her eyes as this one.Adelia for example , since they seemed the same age , could have never managed such expression even if she tried.
He felt then a small pain in his chest , that wasn't from anything obvious , but because the image of this girl.

He ended up walking towards her :
"My dear Lady , I am Lord Helmut Jaeger of France .." he smiled and did not dared to kiss her hand.."I couldn't help but notice that this discussion and show of illusions had affected you."

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As Alayna released all the emotion she locked within her heart, she was vaguely aware that someone had found the summerhouse. She started coughing and hiccupping. The noblewoman had never acted this way in years. The last time she broke down like this was when her father died and at least than she had someone to comfort her. This time there was no one. Alayna was angry with herself for wanting someone to be there. Why of all times did she want someone now? She thought she buried such wants and needs long ago. Wasn’t this the very reason why she sealed herself up; was so she couldn’t feel any more pain? As her tears started to dry up, her anger and frustration too over. Why? Why couldn’t all the pain just go away? It was like it was always there. Even as a child, as happy as she had been, there had been this underlying anger and fear that she could never explain that was there lurking. She felt it when she watched her eldest brother parade around with different ladies and it ate at her as time moved on. Her thoughts drifted to tonight when she recalled the image in that bowl of water. Seeing her face and to watch love enter her life brought back a feeling she was well familiar with; and it was bitterness.

Looking up, Alayna glared to the ceiling and shouted, “Why?! What do you expect of me? What have I done to deserve all this torment?! Is it because I am mortal? All I ever wanted was to find happiness and to share it with someone! If you want me dead, just my down right now! Better that than to keep on having miscarriages and cheating husbands!”

She wasn’t thinking now, but just acting. She was shaking in anger and started throwing loose objects in the building. It was then she heard knocking and a voice. Where did that come from? The voice was from the one she was not expecting to hear. It also seemed to break through her emotions and she calmed a bit. What the hell was she doing? She was acting like a little girl throwing a tantrum. And now Lord Wilhelm was here and he probably heard everything she said too. That thought alone was mortifying. However, she would not hide. She still had some courage and pride. Trying to fix herself up, Alayna went to the door, unlocked it, and opened the door.

“Yes, what do you want?” she asked, trying to sound calm.

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Just after he knocked on the door, and inquired his entry, Alric heard Alayna's outburst... And at first, he thought it was directed toward him. It all made sense up until the mention of miscarriage and unfaithful spouse. And for that moment he thought he was to blame, Alric pulled his hand away from the door, hearing the crash of flying objects smashing against the walls of the small structure.

It was soon that the woman decided to open the door, her voice attempting to sound strong and powerful, yet her face red with hurt and anger, her cheeks glistening with the faint lines of her tears that remained. He looked at her with his head cocked to the right with a slight frown, not a scowl, but a sorrowful frown. "I want to see if you're okay." he began, stepping swiftly into the home, and closing the door quietly behind him. "I'm not quite the heartless businessman people make me out to be... And hearing someone in such agony pains me." Alric moved toward the opposite wall from the door, and took a seat after clearing it of debris from the girl's tantrum. Offering up a faint smile, in an attempt to comfort her, Alric waved her over and motioned for her to take a seat by his side. "Now, you probably don't want to be talking to me about what's troubling you," he said, resting his arm on his knee, drooping to the ground, "I wouldn't think anyone would want to talk about such things... Ever... But I will at least keep you company. From what I hear, being alone is driving you mad with sorrow."

Alric soon leaned his head back, and closed his eyes. "I will say this, however." He sighed, and closed his hand slowly into a fist. "You're alive... And as long as you are, there are chances abound for you to make peace with your troubles. Unfortunately, my father died before either of us realized this." And with a sudden realization, Alric made to retract his statement. "I mean- Erm... I'm sorry... I don't mean to push my guilt onto you. Forget I mentioned anything. My point is, you're a charming young woman, and have plenty of time to set things right. Don't give up hope."

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The girl fret in his arms, but she did not open her eyes. Byron watched her delicate eyelids moving as if she was dreaming. He never liked sensitive women, especially young ones. Adelia’s innocence scared him, not because of what he could do to her uncorrupted mind, but because he never dealt with such a type of girl before. To Byron, she was but a child, untouched by the vices of adulthood and unaware of the harsh reality around her. Yet, here she was, wrapped in his arms with her long hair almost touching the floor. He had no idea which was her designated room, but he guessed it had to be somewhere on the first floor.

He went up the stairs quietly and entered the first room on the hallway. There he set the young Adelia on the bed and checked her wrist for the pulse.
Such a small hand he thought then he placed his palm on her forehead.

“You’ll be alright” he said without thinking. “I’m surprised I didn’t collapse myself after all that shite.”
Byron looked like a father caring for his daughter in that moment, something which surprised him as well.

~~~~~~~

Vasile listened to lady’s Mayfair explanation and he observed all the other guests, one by one as their reactions overflowed. He never got a chance to say anything before they left the room in a whole different mood then the one they were in when the party started.
Lord Byron left in a hurry carrying Adelia in his arms while lady Mayfair remained, looking in his direction long after he was gone.

“Often we desire the very thing which isn’t good for us, Lady Mayfair” he said approaching the red haired woman. Vasile felt Emma’s gaze at the back of his head like hot iron needles piercing the skin. “For instance, what one defines as happiness is another’s downfall.”

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What a terrible...terrible evening this turned out to be, was the first thought Genevieve Mayfair had when more of the guests left the terrace, along with her husband. On the other hand, she was surprised to see that a lot of the people believed what they saw in the water which was, in fact, the truth.

“Often we desire the very thing which isn’t good for us, Lady Mayfair. For instance, what one defines as happiness is another’s downfall.”

She was surprised to see the young missionary still there.

“Ah, Sir Vasile, you startled me.” She said turning her head to face the man. At first she didn’t understand what he was trying to say, then the real meaning of his words made its way into her mind. Genevieve looked right into his eyes, a gesture she rarely did with other persons other than her husband.

“Isn’t there true happiness when there is nothing more to wish for? When all your desires are fulfilled? I am so far away from happiness, therefore I must be far away from downfall as well.” She sighed.
“What do you believe Sir Vasile? Is there any chance for us to receive forgivness after all you just witnessed?”

*

Damon set his eyes on the tall blonde woman who was probably as dazzled as he was by the events. He was hardly interested in talking to her or any other woman at the party, but he felt a strange sudden urge to communicate with her somehow. It wasn't the same feeling he had when he first saw Byron, it was much deeper and urgent this time.

"I don't think this celebration is going to come to a good ending." he said in the air as if he wasn't talking to anyone in particular and with the present guests at the same time. "Maybe the Mayfairs find this type of amusement suitable to keep the boredom away from their guests, but I do not. Be it truth or a simple bad joke, the outcome will surely be disastrous."

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Lord Wilhelm sounded sincere, but Alayna didn’t trust it. After all she had been through she doubted she will ever trust again. While the noblewoman agreed on a few of the things he said, she still did not believe everything. Hope? Now that was a laugh. She did believe in it once, before cold reality dashed it away. Alayna would never give up either, but that was because she was very stubborn. She honestly didn’t think one had to be hopeful for good things to happen. Sure, her life might be a façade and trial, but that didn’t mean she was going to complain about it. At least she had the ability to help others, and that was one of the few reasons she kept persevering in this life.

When the gentleman motioned for her to sit next to him, Alayna found herself hesitating for a moment. She still wasn’t in complete control of her emotions and she honestly felt a little vulnerable. Still, by someone unknown force, she found her feet moving and before she could hold her breath, she was sitting next to Alric. Lady Renoldi kept her back erect though and she did not dare get any closer though as she crossed her arms. This man was a contradiction. He had the appearance of being cruel, yet his actions were kind. All the more reason not to trust him because of his actions. Still, she could not deny the connection she felt to him and that unnerved her more than anything. She could not hide her reaction when he called her charming. She looked at him, thinking he was nuts.

“Sir, let me assure you that I am the least charming woman here, possibly of all England. To me, being charming means being kind and I am not a kind person; ask anyone in the ton.” She replied.

Well, that was true to some extent. She was perceived as unkind because of her brutal honesty and icy demeanor. She also believed most people would tried to be charming were putting on a mask. The only one she believed to be sincerely charming was Lady Adelia, but that was only because she was ignorant.

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Clarice kept her nose in the air. This was silly, everything Genevieve said was silly. This whole situation was awful and totally unrealistic. She just could not stop thinking of Damon though. He was the man from her dreams, there was no hiding it. All those nights she had stared out her window and formed his face in the stars, well now he was staring at her in the face and she could not just look like an idiot.

"I don't think this celebration is going to come to a good ending." he said in the air as if he wasn't talking to anyone in particular and with the present guests at the same time. "Maybe the Mayfairs find this type of amusement suitable to keep the boredom away from their guests, but I do not. Be it truth or a simple bad joke, the outcome will surely be disastrous."

The duchess did not want to speak to him. In fact, she wanted to get as far away from him as physically possible. The sound of his words danced though the tense air and into her ears. The dim lighting made her hair shine lightly with a curious glow. An inquisitive look pranced through her eyes, though it was mostly hidden by an annoyance on her face. She crumpled her brow before responding, though just like him, she responded out loud not looking for a specific answer but secretly desiring him to be the one that spoke back to her.

"This is idiotic and out of line. Surely this shall only end in confusion and dismay. Everything like this always does."

A small smirk played on her lips, this would end up as a game. The situation was perfect to ruin everything or at least to cause some chaos; if she was going to stay for a while, she would not play fair.

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Vasile was now looking at Genevieve from another perspective although nothing much has really changed. The theory was simple: this woman belonged to him and to no other. This change of heart amused him. He was always the one who stood up to any kind of temptation, the one who even fought with demons. Now he had to win over this woman in order to save her, himself, Byron and all the others. This was indeed an awkard position for him, but something from within told the story of their past lives together and how Genevieve always betrayed him, choosing Byron at first, only to come back to him in the end.

Her question was to be expected. Instead of him, Rakvael’s words went out of his lips.
“At last, my lady, redemption is within our reach.”
He used “our” instead of “your” to make her understand that he was in the same situation.

"I don't think this celebration is going to come to a good ending." he heard coming from the other end of the room were Damon Greystone stood.

“God is mighty and He is telling us through His saints Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked; and not rather that he should return from his way, and live? As proof of His words, He sent His only Son to die so that we may live. I believe in this salvation, I have seen it taking place each time I fought with my demons and others, from every type of low heaven.
Now each one of us must do their best in order to be saved. I feel it in my bones that this is the time when we will return home.” It was loud enough for everyone in the room to hear.

Vasile only heard Clarice’s reply before he approached Genevieve close enough to feel the warmth of her breath. He watched her eyes which were looking for answers, her wavy red hair and the line of her neck. It was silence and they looked at each other as if they were drawn by magic, closer and closer to one another. Then he felt sadness.

I can not do this he thought she is another man’s wife. The wife of a man who sheltered me, their union was made in Heavens and I CAN NOT BREAK IT. Why, Lord? Why must I carry such burden?

He stepped back, leaving a good distance between him and Genevieve, refusing his mission and his punishment. Then he felt a shiver down his spine and thoughts of rebellion against God came into his mind. He saw a demon in fron of him, his face was of a human’s, but his body was only rotten flesh and he smelled so vile that it made Vasile want to puke. From the other side of the room other demons were coming carrying chains. Some of them he recognized from past battles. He remembered his father’s words There will come a day when your soul will be troubled and you will feel that God has wronged against you. Then they will come, thousands of them, with chains to enslave you with.

He saw Genevieve surrounded by them and everything got dark, even his own light started to fade away. Then he heard Rakvael’s voice “Remember His name!”
Vasile closed his eyes and prayed.
“Jesus Christ, please save me, I cannot carry this anymore.”
He felt his body getting weak and his legs gave in, making him fall to his knees. When he opened his eyes everything was back to normal. He had beads of sweat on his forehead and his skin was hot.

“I am so sorry, my Lady, I’m not feeling well at all.” He pulled his cane closer and he thanked God for saving him again. Emma was right next to them and she looked like she saw exactly what he had seen.

*
Byron left Adelia’s room in a hurry. He was irritated, confused, angry with himself. All that he could think of was how to wipe away her image from his retina, how to cleanse her perfume form his hands. He needed a woman for that, a realwoman. He though of Clarice, then of Alayna. It was a hard decision judging by their willingness to speak with him – or better yet, by the lack of it. Then he saw Genevieve and Vasile talking to one another, the priest being on his knees and looking like a ghost. He didn’t feel any jealousy whatsoever, only the urge to get the young girl of his mind, out of his system.
Genevieve didn’t seem to notice him. Any other time, this would have triggered his anger, but today he didn’t even saw it.
“My dear, the young girl is resting now and everything seems to be fine.” He said and went over to them.His eyes were locked on the blonde woman from across the room, standing at a short distance from the silver haired man..Greystone... Byron’s first impulse was to go to her, but he saw Damon turning his head towards Clarice. Maybe this wasn’t the best time to invite the lady for a drink.
“My dear Sir, are you alright?” he said with irony and offered Vasile his hand to help him stand up.

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She couldn’t believe how close his handsome face was to hers. Only a few inches more, and someone might believe they were lovers. On a second thought, maybe ..Genevieve looked right into Vasile’s eyes and what she saw was exactly what she longed for. The only difference was that the love she yearned for many many years was coming from this man,practically a stranger and not from her husband.
A flutter in her stomach brought back memories. How long ago did she felt butterflies in her belly for the first time?
This is not happening. It is not. Genevieve tried to reason with herself. How could it be that her own plan, this entire celebration turned against her?

All she wanted was to save her marriage. To make Byron understand what were the risks. Now she didn’t understand herself. Vasile’s words, aimed at her and at Damon with violent assurance were most welcome, but not soothing at all. There was no saving for those who broke the vows of marriage, that was her only belief. Of course, if for Byron there was still hope then maybe... No, Geneveive...just don’t!

As proof to her theories the missionary fell to his knees. Then Byron came in like storm, offering his hand to the man, as if he was mocking him. Was he truly that jealous? Then for the first time in their marriage Genevieve looked at Byron differently. What exactly was it that she saw in him?

She slapped his hand and pushed it aside, offering hers to Vasile. For unknown reasons, she didn’t want Byron making any kind of physical contact to him.

“You may ask for a servant to prepare his room.” She said coldly. “I believe all he needs is a good rest. Isn’t thar right, Sir?” she said warmly.

~~~~~~~~

"This is idiotic and out of line. Surely this shall only end in confusion and dismay. Everything like this always does."

Damon was intrigued. Heaven forbid if he ever felt anything, but this time he was out of a suitable reply. Why would any woman speak her mind? Weren’t all of them covered in honey and sweet words only to hide their true rotten natures?

“You..disapprove of this?” he asked interested. “I thought every woman likes fairy tales and other fantasies about soulmates and happily ever after.” He drew closer, just a few paces away from her.

“Under what circumstances have you met my father, Miss?” ha asked trying to remember her name. Was she one of the “candidates” his father scooped up on the way?

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Clarice was shocked when the angelic man replied. It was what she wanted, but at the same time it was not what she expected. She kept her composure as she held in a breath of air for a moment then released, attempting to know what to say.


“You..disapprove of this?” he asked interested. “I thought every woman likes fairy tales and other fantasies about soulmates and happily ever after.” He drew closer, just a few paces away from her.

The duchess scoffed. Fairy tales? There were no such thing. Nobody ever lived happily ever after and despite the fact that was what she wanted, she knew it was just a silly wish. Clarice just wanted to survive and get away from everything she had endured as a child. What that entailed was simply not up to her.

"I am not like most women if you have not been able to tell. I believe that every girl has a desire to have a family on an estate with all those petty things, but the difference between me and the other women, is that I grew out of that fantasy a long long time ago," Pain raced through her eyes just for a moment, "and I do not desire it to return in this lifetime." Clarice met her eyes with him, unafraid of the man he presented himself as. For a lady, she was not shy and most likely did everything in the wrong order but for her it worked.

“Under what circumstances have you met my father, Miss?”

"My name is Clarice Phaedra. You can call me by whatever suits your lips. I am the Duchess of Versailles, France, through my late husband Duke Irvine. I know your father through my husband's business, though your father did have a tendency of coming to see me and me alone." Clarice meant nothing by this comment, but in fact, his father had came to see her asking for her advice. She was one of the only people, let alone women, that truly tried to understand his notions in society and Clarice being the educated woman she was had no issue advising him behind closed doors. "I do believe he and I first met when I studied at Oxford. He mentioned having a son a few times and that he would much fancy me meeting him, but I never showed an interest." The woman stepped a tad closer to him, angling her body towards his but leaving a good distance between them, "funny how things work out, is it not? Also, very clique that you and I should be talking right now. It seems Lady Genevieve's little tricks worked."

Clarice licked her lower lip ever so slightly. Sir Damon was not a nice man and neither was she. It was perfect.

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#, as written by lumikb
The man that had carried her was now gone but Adelia still felt him near in some sort of unknown way.She was still captured in that darkness.Who was this man whose warm hands she felt , whose perfume was it that made her feel so strange.Yet the questions haunting her mind were slowly drifting away into the night.
It was time she left all the worries away , a fatherly presence that was taking all that doubt away letting her relax.Soon enough the young Adelia was lost in sleep , her hair was now messed up covering her face partially.She was mumbling and streams of tears was covering her face for even in her dreams that something she couldn't explain wanted to give her the answers that she was looking for.

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Helmut soon lost interest in the little chameleon lady , he was like that with women sometimes.Getting all worked up by their looks or personality then while taking a closer look it was never enough to keep him going.Not like her , not like that woman , that poor horrible woman he once knew.A tender smile took over his expression but he wiped it off just as fast.

He grabbed another glass , ignoring everyone and waiting to be leaded to his room.Everyone seemed so unique , too unique not to look strange as if all this had been planned well.Except this lady who was incredibly average.From her height to the color of her hair and eyes , hazel , she was just plain.Her dress wasn't something to talk about either especially in comparison with Clarice.Could such creature entertain him enough at least before bedtime?

From his point a view a woman so simple would probably be flattered to be courted by a man such as himself.That thought appealed to his ego so he gathered himself up and went up towards this mystery character.

"My dear Lady , I am the Lord Helmut ..I wish to make your acquaintance since we didnt have the chance to talk till now." he gave her his best smile .."I would be most interested of hearing an intelligent opinion of tonights insanity."

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Astonished as she was by everything that was being said, Anna didn’t have much of any other reaction to what was thrown in the short replies that were flying across the room. To a person that would only just now join the conversation it would seem like the conspiracy theories and insane ramblings that could only be found in an asylum. She considered herself much saner than listening to these stories, yet she listened to them, without interrupting, huffing, puffing or downright bursting into fits of sarcastic laughter, dismissing everything in the process. Still, logic was the only thing worth pursuing in her eyes, it always had been, so this wasn’t the time to dive in and accept the uncanny, like fallen angels, former lives and everlasting bonds made between ethereal bodies. After all, she had only just met these people, how could she stomach all that nonsense?!

She readjusted her composure, straightening her back and letting color come back to her cheeks, though her face still looked haggard. The only things that upset her in this entire affair were the visions she recalled so easily and vividly and the promise of bad things happening. Luckily for her, she had brought Alma and ’92 along for safety reasons, and right she was to.

"My dear Lady , I am the Lord Helmut ..I wish to make your acquaintance since we didn’t have the chance to talk ‘till now. I would be most interested of hearing an intelligent opinion of tonight’s insanity."

Her train of thoughts was stopped by the voice of a high-class looking man. Charming as it was, this statement of his, it didn't sway her much, for she had a hard time believing any noble would throw a second glance at her without wanting something.

“Lord Helmut, it is a pleasure to make your acquaintance, I am Annabelle Penclave.” she slightly tilted her head in reverence. “I am so sorry to disappoint you, but I am no lady, neither by status nor by society’s standards. Neither can I truly consider myself intelligent, but I would gladly share the thoughts that my mind so gleefully churns, preferably over a good book and a glass of brandy. So, if you can keep up with a tumultuous conversation, hold your liquor and enjoy a good read, I invite you to further our conversation in the library. The same goes for anyone in this room.” She ended her invitation with a rather strained smile, as she didn’t quite like the attention gained or the events up ‘till now.

Regardless of who accepted her invitation, she made her way out of the room to find the library, the only place she could find peace and chaos ruling in harmony. On the way she stopped a butler to ask for directions and a 75 oz. bottle of brandy. When she arrived there, she searched the large bookcases for as many interesting books as could catch her attention, all the while running her fingers over their leather-clad spines. Anna took out a fairytale book, an obscure novel and a book entitled “The Book on Souls”, hoping that after a few glasses of brandy and a few interesting chapters she’d be ready to face the gruesome dream-weaver that unsettled her so.

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#, as written by lumikb
“Lord Helmut, it is a pleasure to make your acquaintance, I am Annabelle Penclave.”“I am so sorry to disappoint you, but I am no lady, neither by status nor by society’s standards. Neither can I truly consider myself intelligent, but I would gladly share the thoughts that my mind so gleefully churns, preferably over a good book and a glass of brandy. So, if you can keep up with a tumultuous conversation, hold your liquor and enjoy a good read, I invite you to further our conversation in the library. The same goes for anyone in this room.”

So it seemed this maiden had some spunk in her , truth be it he didn't see that coming.The thought of a glass of brandy and some nice company did sound good and after all that has happened until now it would have maybe bring back some sanity to his world.Miss Penclave was by far intriguing , her appearance might have been plain but her personality wasn't.There was a certain something about this woman , she for sure wasn't what he would usual want from a woman yet he wanted her.

Since she left before he could give out a proper answer , thing that ticked him off a bit , he just followed her towards the library.The bookcases here were huge , with small statutes , paintings just like in France.The smell of old paper felt welcoming and made him to slowly enter the room.Miss Penclave seemed as if she already had made her self comfortable , he couldn't catch the name of the book that has stolen her attention from him .

Helmut sat down on a large chair and grabbed one of the glasses then poured brandy into it without taking his eyes off this peculiar woman.After taking a sip he took his chances on talking to her:

"I love the smell of old books , it reminds me of when i was a child." that was a very stupid way of starting of conversation , at fault was the image of this woman in the light.She was so different from all the others , no fancy dress , no make up , no cleavage just simplicity and a tough attitude.Now that he thought about it Miss Penclave was similar in many ways to that lady but he pushed that idea away and took another sip.

"May I ask what you are reading Miss Penclave?"he smiled , not in the sly way but a sincere one.

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The library felt so welcoming to Anna, like a secluded temple where she could always feel welcome. The moment she let her body drop in the big armchair she could swear she fell in the arms of a person who’d always love and protect her. Nothing relaxed her mind and body more than places like libraries, studies or gardens. She took a sip out of the glass of brandy and started reading the novel. She soon got bored of its sappy romance and put it down, far away from her. Next, she took “The Book on Souls”, it had managed to catch her attention for long enough when Lord Helmut entered the room. Anna didn’t take her eyes of the pages painted with letters, but jerked up one corner of her mouth when he admitted to liking the smell of old books. To her, the smell of old books meant knowledge of the past, immersion into worlds and timelines that had already ended and a true feeling of being rich, thing which many would consider silly.

"May I ask what you are reading Miss Penclave?"

His question managed to make her raise her eyes from the book’s pages. She only threw him a short glance, then continued staring at the small, black ants forming paragraphs.

“It is called “The Book on Souls”, it presents some interesting hypotheses on the evolution of a soul and what changes it may suffer over the course of several lives.” She answered him with a slight smile, all the while not taking her eyes off the page. “For example, did you know that a soul may have blonde hair and blue eyes in one life and black hair and dark eyes in another? I definitely can see where Lady Mayfair came to read up on this soul mate affair and why she did so, this book is quite interesting. I’ve only read 5 chapters, but I have half a mind to finish it before the end of this fortnight. But for the moment” she said as she put the thin, red bookmark between the pages, set the book on the table near her and took the fairytale book, “I’d like to see what fairytales this book holds. Would you like me to read them out loud?”

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Damon listened carefully to all that the attractive woman in front of him had to say. Much to his good name, Damon Greystone wasn’t one to look at a woman’s chest when talking to her. He hardly even looked at one at all and some considered him to be rude on this account.

Clarice was intriguing, least to say. She didn’t lie when answering his question and she didn’t use fancy words to please him or for the sake of the conversation. This kind of honesty was something he never seen at another woman before.

"funny how things work out, is it not? Also, very clique that you and I should be talking right now. It seems Lady Genevieve's little tricks worked."


“I cannot say that they’ve worked judging by a single conversation, Miss Phaedra.” Damon’s voice, while cold and stern, held a tone of amusement in it. He was in the mood for joking, probably because the events took him by surprise. It was happening too fast and with too much intensity for him not to try to shield his feelings behind a mask of pleasantries.

“I think people can never really know each other through words , they can only deceive using them. It takes great patience, time and a lot of effort, not some cheap saloon tricks to know another’s heart. Not to mention that a woman’s heart is fickle, isn’t that what the poet’s always say? I’m not a poet, but as an artist I cannot agree more.”

Damon saw that Lord Byron entered the room, then the little incident between him, Lady Mayfair and the young priest. Genevieve’s gestures and words only proved his words to be true and Damon looked in their direction again beckoning Clarice to do the same. A hint of rage could be seen in his statuesque features, but this only made him look even more handsome.

He felt again the need to speak to Byron, only this time he felt he could punch him in the face at the same time. He couldn’t explain these mixed feelings and it was hard for him to control them as well.

“I think it is best that we leave” he said hastily, not thinking much on his words, not realizing that he just invited Clarice for a walk. He wanted to get out of the room as fast as possible and as far from his feelings as he could.

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#, as written by lumikb
“I’d like to see what fairytales this book holds. Would you like me to read them out loud?”

He faintly smiled to this since for his perverted mind that was more like an invitation for something else rather than just listening to stories.Judging by this womans way of being it seemed too dangerous ,at least for now, to try anything.But the thought of grabbing that book out of her hands and kissing her was creeping in his mind.It was strange that he felt so attracted to a lady so simple.Yet he couldn't help but want to make love to her right here in the library and transform her in a submissive pet.The smile on his face widened when he realized that her smug and manly way of acting was what had lured him to her in the first place.

A strange thing for Helmut indeed since in the past most of the women he had taken were so different especially when it came to looks.Only one word came into mind and that was excited.

"I would be most interested in hearing this story of your Miss Penclave."he took another sip from his glass while looking her in the eyes.
"It will surely prove more entertaining then the show we witnessed earlier.One word before though , I must admit miss that your attitude is very intriguing.Women this day and age tend to be so boring that you feel like a breath of fresh air."

With that said he took his eyes away from her and made himself more comfortable so to pay attention to what she had to say.There was one thing he couldn't drop though and that was the feeling that he had known this person for a long time.He felt familiar to this strange Miss Penclave.

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Something had altered in Damon, whether it was his tone of voice of the ever so tiny smirk that played along his lips; Clarice could not tell exactly what it was. It was not like she did not enjoy the twist of the normally cold man. Everyone seemed to have disperse around the room and some people had even left the room, yet their conversation carried on.

His words were not meant to be harsh and Clarice did not take them as such. Most women's hearts were fickle, but the same could be said for just about any man. The declaration of all women being "undecided" was a double standard. Then again, the whole joke of being together with someone forever was silly and practically folklore. The blonde could not help but deny the electricity in the air. It was probably just the weather was the excuse she gave herself.

"Do you not think that men are the same?" Clarice arched one eyebrow, "I will not deny your comment though-" she paused and looked around the room, "but that is all apart of the game we are all bound to play whether or not we willingly join?" Her crimson lips pursed together for a moment as she thought.

"Dear, Clarice, is this what you want?" The pale teenage boy whispered to her while his hands were interlocked around her waist. Soft white silk wrapped around her body and around the room laid parts of her dress. A corset on a chair, one shoe in front of the door and the other seemed no where to be found. The two were both so young and naive. Her hand trailed down the side of his face to his lips, she had never seen anyone so angelic.

"You question my motives?" A smirk trickled over her unpainted lips as she leaned forward. The two fit together perfectly. His hands fit perfectly around her slender body while their actions spoke when words could not. The beautiful mistress pulled away from her lover for just a moment, "Damon, stay with me." The sincerity of her voice plagued his mind as his fingers traced the outline of her fingers on his skin. Both of her orb like blue eyes beckoned him to come closer.

"Forever." Damon leaned forward again and pressed a kiss onto her lips. They both knew it would be difficult. Their family feuds and hatreds for each other would only worsen, but they did not care. Nothing could drive them apart and if they could not be with each other, then there was no point. Clarice repeated the word he had just spoken before they both melted back into the summer's moonlight.


Clarice shook her head and snapped the image from her mind. The silly dreams that infected her sleep had begun to come to her now that she had met the man in them. Her lips parted for a moment.

“I think it is best that we leave."

His words shook her to the core. She wanted to leave the room as well, get outside, breath in the warm air and walk in the moonlight. Clarice nodded to him, her blue eyes met his for just a moment, "Lead the way."