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 First dance - Public Opinions (Arthur & Viola), Arthur, Viola, Charlie and Thomas
Arthur Dalrymple (Vikki)
Posted: Oct 26 2008, 01:36 PM


Lord Linley


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Posts: 356
Member No.: 7
Joined: 26-April 08



Arthur led Viola to the nearest set that was forming, where they took their places for the dance that was about to start. "If it weren't for your style of dress, Lady Viola, I might imagine that this were still three years ago. You look no different to the last time we danced." It was true enough - in looks, she did not appear any older at all, only in dress. He didn't remember her ever being a giddy debutante, so in personality she hadn't changed much either, though she seemed to have more enthusiasm now than in her last months in town before her stay in the country. Perhaps absence did not only make the heart grow fonder of other people, but also of cities and environments.


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Viola Fitzgerald (Rose)
Posted: Oct 26 2008, 02:16 PM


Lady Viola Fitzgerald


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Viola smiled briefly at Lady Cornwallis on her right as she took her place in the set about half way down. She imagined that Lady Julianne and her partner would be at the top. At her debut she had been at the top of one set and Lady Julia at the top of the other. She wished she could remember her partner though. She suspected he had been the heir to a Marquisate, but could not remember which, which was a shame, come to think of it. She had also danced with Lord Linley that evening for the first time.

"Thank-you," she responded to her partner, glancing quickly at her dress. She wished she could say the same for him, but he seemed more serious somehow and she did not have to think very hard to imagine why that might be. "I may look the same, but I feel rather different."

Then she felt slightly annoyed with herself for seemingly being unable to discuss anything except how much she or town had changed.

She grinned at him. "I do like this dance, and it is not one we dance regularly at home."


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Arthur Dalrymple (Vikki)
Posted: Oct 26 2008, 06:31 PM


Lord Linley


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Member No.: 7
Joined: 26-April 08



"I rather thought it was one you enjoyed," he remarked with a smile, bad mood beginning to dissipate. "I shall try to make the experience worthy of the expectation." It was a pity there wouldn't be much opportunity for conversation, but there was always supper or breaks between dances.


"I trust your family are all well?" he asked, as they waited for the rest of the dancers to assemble, and after taking a look to see who would form the other four they would be dancing with. He recognised one of the gentlemen and one of the ladies - both in different couples - and knew them to be capable dancers, so he had no concerns about anyone messing up the figures. "My stepmother was reminiscing about you and your mother the last time I was at Haddon. I daresay that if she didn't have the children, she would be in town and eager to reclaim her acquaintance with you." He pulled a face that suggested he was glad for Viola's sake that the children kept the Countess at home, instead of in London or inflicting a visit on the poor unsuspecting Fitzgeralds. His stepmother was not that bad of course, but she was exactly the kind of insipid woman who would bore Viola to tears.


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Viola Fitzgerald (Rose)
Posted: Oct 27 2008, 10:21 AM


Lady Viola Fitzgerald


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"And I shall try as well."

Viola smiled, correctly interpreting the Viscount's grimace. The Countess of Haddon had made it her business to become friends with the Countess of Rotherham when Viola and her step-son had first become acquainted but she was not a woman who appealed to either mother or daughter. Nevertheless, Viola had learned much from tea visits to her in those early days about how to maintain a conversation on trivial topics with every appearance of interest despite being almost asleep on the inside.

"My family is very well, thank-you. My eldest brother expects another addition to his family any day, though I daresay you have heard of that considering the Surreys' absence from the season this year. My mother is preparing to make the journey into Cheshire to be with them. You must pass on her regards- and mine- to Lady Haddon, and our regret that we will not meet this season. I do hope both she and your father keep well."

Then she recollected her latest news. "My sister, however, is to come to London at the weekend to make her debut. When I spoke to you before at the theatre, it had not been quite decided if she was to come out this year or next, but she has now determined on this year." She wondered what Lord Linley would make of Olivia and vice versa. He would surely like her because it would be very hard to dislike her and she was quite sure that Olivia would make at least an effort if she told her to. "I would be very happy to introduce you to her next week."


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Arthur Dalrymple (Vikki)
Posted: Oct 27 2008, 04:47 PM


Lord Linley


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Joined: 26-April 08



"They keep very well, and I will do so," he agreed, and wondered when he would next have any reason to write home. It was unlikely to be very soon; but then, Viola's message was hardly of any urgency. "And I had heard some talk in the club of your brother's good fortune. Would you be so kind as to pass on my felicitations when appropriate?"


The music struck the opening chords of the dance, and the dancers began the introductory reverence to their partners. He had to wait for the first couple to pass between them before he was able to express any pleasure at Viola's sister's arrival, as he was sure was expected. If the girl was anything like her older sister, he would not find it difficult to be genuinely pleased. "Another Fitzgerald in town - the season gets better and better." Another pause, dictated by the pattern of the dance, and then a moment where they came closer together. "I would be glad of the introduction; assuming of course that your mother and aunt do not find me entirely unsuitable company by now." He had yet to encounter Mrs Greystone this year, and so was unsure what her opinion was. He was also, for the moment, forgetting his vow of keeping away from single young women.


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Viola Fitzgerald (Rose)
Posted: Oct 27 2008, 09:29 PM


Lady Viola Fitzgerald


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Viola was touched by Lord Linley's response, as she danced down the back of the set. He was generally serious about these things and she felt grateful at the genuine compliment implied by his words. Her heart warmed towards him.

When they met up again, she grinned and could not resist teasing him. "You must believe me, my aunt considers you very suitable! And you know that my mother always liked you."

Another pause later and she added, "But I am glad that you will meet Olivia. I do not want her to be lonely when she arrives, though to be honest it is incredible to me that she is old enough to be coming out at all!"

Of course, it was absurd to imagine that a beautiful and outgoing debutante like Olivia assuredly would be could be lonely, but Viola wanted to provide her with some acquaintances that she could definitely trust in advance, and hopefully spare her from the mistakes that so many debutantes make.


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Arthur Dalrymple (Vikki)
Posted: Oct 27 2008, 10:07 PM


Lord Linley


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"Very suitable in comparison to, say, Stapleton - fine man, of course, but I can imagine your aunt's objection - or Baron Rutledge, dissolute rake?" he queried with a quirk of an eyebrow. There were degrees of suitability, and degrees of suitability. With any other lady, he would be uncomfortable by now by the outright approval of her chaperone, lest that approval be transformed into predatory efforts. But with Viola, he knew there was nothing but friendship between them, nor would there ever be. Her aunt's good opinion, however enthusiastic she might be, would never sway the stubborn and self-aware niece. It meant that he was well able to return the teasing. The knowledge that Lady Rotherham had always liked him was touching, however.


"I'm sure that every older sister, or brother, feels the same. I imagine those very words are being spoken in a score of places around this room just now," he added as the dance brought them together again. "But loneliness? Surely not, with all of your acquaintance to introduce her to?"




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Viola Fitzgerald (Rose)
Posted: Oct 28 2008, 03:58 PM


Lady Viola Fitzgerald


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Member No.: 18
Joined: 26-April 08



"Oh, my aunt is doing her very best to keep me away from fortune hunters and rakes such as those two. The number of people I should not talk to is perfectly shocking!"

She wondered suddenly whether expressing a decided interest in one gentleman, particularly if he was a very high ranking one, might stop her aunt from fretting. Of course it was an absurd idea: the sort of thing the heroine's young and immature best friend or sister in a novel might think up. And then she would fall in love with the person she was pretending to chase- Viola was not such a fool.

She made another turn before replying, "It is surprising how lonely it is possible to be when surrounded by people. But you are right, Olivia has a happy disposition and would make friends easily even if I had none, I am sure."

A pause in the dance while the next couple danced between them, allowed her a chance to exchange a few words with Lady Cornwallis. When she next had an opportunity to speak to Arthur, she pressed forward with another line of speculation. "You are very much in Miss Pritchard's company, I notice. I have only met her once but she seems a pleasant girl. Tell me, " she smirked, "when am I to wish you joy?"


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Arthur Dalrymple (Vikki)
Posted: Oct 28 2008, 08:52 PM


Lord Linley


Group: Members
Posts: 356
Member No.: 7
Joined: 26-April 08



Very much in Miss Pritchard's company? Spoken in that tone, too... yet Arthur was surprised it had taken someone this long to start speculating on his status. At least Viola would not be difficult to set straight, he hoped.


"You are not to wish me joy at all," he corrected, "and I'll thank you not to put the idea in anyone else's head either. I have met her three times," he further explained, as and when the dance allowed. "One of those was after a summons by her aunt at the theatre - Lady Emerson would have me endeavour to be more cheerful - and one was this evening while waiting for other acquaintances. I could hardly leave her to be salivated over by Edencourt, poor child." Or for that matter by any of the other namby idiots in town, for that matter, but Viola didn't need to know that and he wasn't certain that Charity would be pleased with him divulging details of what had been a private conversation.


Turning the conversation on its head, he riposted. "For that matter, when shall I wish you joy? You seemed quite comfortable in the company of Gabriel Pritchard."


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Viola Fitzgerald (Rose)
Posted: Oct 29 2008, 10:14 AM


Lady Viola Fitzgerald


Group: Members
Posts: 582
Member No.: 18
Joined: 26-April 08



Viola laughed properly when she was able to reply. This was what was so nice about old friends!

"You have no need to wish me joy at present with Lord Gabriel either; I have only met him twice and was merely protecting him from the wiles of the devious debutantes he is convinced are pursuing him. He is an agreeable gentleman, however, and I do like him."

She cut herself off rather abruptly at this point. She had been about to say she liked him so much more than his brother but had remembered that Lord Linley was a friend of Lord Emerson. She longed to ask him to explain his friend's conduct but knew it to be improper.

"I hope your Lordship intends to dance a great deal after this, for I remember you to always enjoyed it."


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