Haddon Hall

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Post by Mrs Figg Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:56 pm

I think the idea of the Elizabethan costume party is brilliant, and the Friends of the House is perfect, I have been to one of those kinds of events and they are funny because some people went the whole hog to try to get every detail correct and some people just hired a costume from a joke shop which ruined the atmosphere somewhat. Shocked
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Post by Turembar Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:29 pm

Mrs Figg wrote:I think the idea of the Elizabethan costume party is brilliant, and the Friends of the House is perfect, I have been to one of those kinds of events and they are funny because some people went the whole hog to try to get every detail correct and some people just hired a costume from a joke shop which ruined the atmosphere somewhat. Shocked

Lol, yes I find the re-enactors the most interesting aspect at those kind of events. I can understand some of it being drawn to role playing games or stories, but it is a whole other level to cross over into physical acting out.

Thankyou for the compliment. Smile I have been scratching my head looking for a way to connect the times and find a hole through which the characters traverse them. In reading a bit (belatedly Embarassed ) on Haddon Hall, I read that in Elizabethan times the Lady of the house eloped during some sort of party the King or Local Duke had thrown at the Hall. When you mentioned the re-enactment or play occuring in the present time setting it gave me the idea. But it still is very fuzzy... I am looking at the motive power of restless spirits and plain magic present in certain locals/artifacts. I think the costume parties may be especially magical, like a focal point of the year when supernatural forces are their most powerful. Some fun possibilities with people crossing thru time too. Maybe chaotically so. Laughing

As far as the central 'problem' I have been working with the concept of some misjustice involving Lady Litton, or even perhaps multiple negative events involving your character. As a reason why these occur, I have been playing with a struggle between families for ownership of Haddon Hall. The hall is currently owned by the Manners who I think took over from the Vernons, around the Elizabethan period. My concept is that the current decendants of the Vernons are trying to get it back. Stymied in the present day, they somehow have found out how to traverse time, and try to go back to kill or otherwise get your Elizabethan self out of the way. But messing with the past is dangerous. Laughing

Should have looked at this much sooner, but for reference:

Haddon Hall - Page 5 Haddon-Hall-Derbyshire-q75-1459x1021

Btw, where is the restaurant you mention in the barn located ? I got the impression it was outside the castle itself.


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Post by Mrs Figg Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:21 pm

wow this is fantastic stuff, my brain is buzzing like a buzzing thing that has just won the buzzingist thing competition. wow! Great idea about the family time travelling to stymie the inheritance, Lady Litton could be the heir and they make her disappear in mysterious circumstances during the party? and your idea about a what do they call it genius loci?, no maybe thats spirit of the place, you were thinking of a totem? the silver torque perhaps? is great too. I am a bit worried about my character having horrible things happen to though pale might give me nightmares pale . maybe the party happens on a specific date like the celtic festivals. I am more heading towards a time/space worm hole explaination rather than magical reasons but they are not mutually exclusive they are all mysterious phenomena.


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Post by Turembar Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:31 pm

Not to worry. I had already kinda guessed & the flip side is that our goal/solution to the problem is preventing your death.

Already concieved & mostly written in my head, was that what you witnessed down in the crypt, you interrupted and that the lady was drugged, not dead.

I don't myself like dallying on morbid details. The only exception I was playing around with, concerned Odo, Petty and Orwell and three female characters (nicknamed the three fates) not yet introduced. But it is in a farce-like tone.

I am more interested in developing a twisting plot based on an elaborate cat and mouse game.
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Post by Mrs Figg Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:36 pm

I forgot to say, yes the cafe barn is outside the house, down a bit towards the river from what I remember.

nice plan of the house. Very Happy
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Post by Mrs Figg Tue Mar 27, 2012 11:03 pm

The Portrait.

I woke up and groaned, every muscle in my body felt as if it had been stretched over a mangle and then rubbed with sand by nasty little orcses. My stomach muscles in particular were bruised and I staggered to my feet doubled over and swearing like a sailor. I bumped my head on something soft and I realized I was in a tent, it was hard to make out because it was pretty dark inside, my bare feet stood on pelts and goat skins, from the smell rising up I figured most of the goat was still attached. My head was woozy and I stumbled out and tried to gather my thoughts, first where was I?, and second where were Tom and Halfwise?, and thirdly when was I?
The answer came sooner than expected.
An unmistakenly Roman soldier walked up to me and started to shout in Latin, I remember bits and pieces from school but this chap was talking quickly and in who knows what accent, the Roman Empire stretched from Britain to Africa. Maybe he will understand Italian I thought, and I giggled thinking 'when in Rome, speak Italian'.
I started by asking for water, he looked at me frowning and stopped shouting, nice! I thought, the day is not a total bummer then.
I cobbled together a mix of rubbish Latin and Italian and hoped I could make myself understood, I asked where my friends were, "ubi sunt amici? He beckoned to me to follow, "hic sunt", he said pushing me into another smelly tent.
Tom and Halfwise were in a worse pickle than me, they had been tied up, and there were red marks on their wrists where the ropes had bitten in.
Tom told me we had been taken for celtic tribes people or spies but as both of them had spoken in excellent schoolboy Latin they had been untied and left to await the decision of the captain who was out on a boar hunt. "This is getting beyond a joke", I said, "if they know we are not enemies why are we still kept here, and why was that soldier shouting at me?", I said. "For our own protection", said Halfwise with a strange gleam in his eyes, "There is talk of a battle afoot with the pesky celts, and Tom and I have been volunteered in to swell the rank and file, Romans aren't fussy who fights for them, as long as they follow orders and dont mind wearing woolly leggings".
"well I said, I am a pretty good archer, my cousin taught me and he won local championships a couple of times". Tom and Halfwise looked at each other and smiled at me, "I dont think they allow females into the army, especially females with red hair, it makes them nervous after what happened in Colchester".
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Post by Turembar Wed Mar 28, 2012 3:45 pm

(Lol, Latin! Don't know hardly a word. But I think I could recognize 'Gaul is divided in three parts...' Anyway, if you want to get in a bit of archery practice you may need to somehow join the other side. I am divided in my loyalties, being half Italian (with possibly a dash of greek - My grandfather from Italy was named Achilles. (?) - my brother participated in the Genome project, and it might show when he gets the results) and the rest of me is Irish & English.)
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Post by Mrs Figg Wed Mar 28, 2012 5:40 pm

My husband is Sardinian and I think there are isolated villages which have also participated in that project?, they reckon the gene pool hasnt much changed in thousands of years and most of them live to be at least 100 years old. Its really facinating as they also looked at the japanese to see why they too live so long, but seeing as the Sardinians live on lard and wine and the japanese on soya and fish they couldnt figure out if its nature or nurture that makes them all long lived.
I am half Welsh and half English its funny cos the two halves are always at war inside my head, the stolid sensible Anglo Saxon fighting with the away with the Faeries Celtic side, mostly the airy fairy side wins though.
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Post by Turembar Wed Mar 28, 2012 7:26 pm

The unusual Sardinian gene pattern came up recently in another study. They recently completed a DNA test on the mummy of Otzi the Iceman (5300 years old found in Tyrol Alps in 1991 as Ice receded). The only correlation they could find to modern European populations was to Sardinia and Corsica.

My wife (German/Polish/Irish) may have some genetic surprises, in that her German ancestors come from Silesia which has some unusual gene patterns not totally understood yet.

Lol, I am familiar with the Celt-Germanic conflict. My wife definately leans towards the phlegmatic germanic temperment while I am decidedly Celto-Romano. We don't have loud or disturbing conflicts, but there are nevertheless long drawn out & quietly bloody ones which I never, ever, win. Like the Celts if I do not win in the wild first charge I am toast. I frequently stab myself and bleed all over the place just to get the bloody thing over. Laughing
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Post by Mrs Figg Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:01 pm

lol! the thing about Sardinians is they are quiet but deadly, stealthy, its the bandit blood, but its the Dutch Ovens that get you in the end.
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Post by Turembar Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:03 pm

Haddon Hall

(Midsummer)


Tom made his way up the small hill to the castle. Reaching the base of a wall, he walked a bit in each direction looking at the architecture, and then consulted his plan of the castle with a small flashlite. He was glad to find he had only a short distance to go to place himself at the end of the lower courtyard where he wanted to go over the wall. Reaching the spot he wanted, he took out a rope ladder with grappling hook. It took several tries, but he finally heaved it high enough and it caught. Testing it with his weight and satisfied, he began a slow climb up the ladder. He had to favor his right leg, due to a car accident injury several years back that had never really totally healed and probably never would. But he had learned to work around it to a large degree and at last heaved himself up on his stomach on the battlement top. Fortunately he was in complete darkness, as the moon being still low only illuminated patches here and there. He lay motionless for a moment and surveyed all he could within the castle courtyard. The lower one was mostly in darkness, with a few ground lights on the perimeter, and no one seemed about. He could now hear the play being held in the upper courtyard quite clearly, but was unable to see anything of it due to buildings that seperated the two courtyards. Satisfied he drew up the rope ladder and repositioning it lowered it down the other side. Rotating on his belly he fished around for footing blind on the rope ladder.
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Post by Mrs Figg Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:11 pm

[url=Haddon Hall - Page 5 Godsreturn_LR][IMG]
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Post by Mrs Figg Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:47 pm

The Portrait.

Night fell and the cold and silence filled the camp the slowly creeping fog swirled and curled like icy fingers strangling everything it touched. Our tent was on the outmost edge, the less important people would be the first to get any unpleasant little 'visit' from the tribesfolk. We could see their camp fires within the shelter of the forest, little dancing lights which looked quite welcoming if you didnt know what they really were. It was the Winter solstice and great bonfires had been lit to ward off any unwelcome intrusion. I wanted to run back up the hill to find the door, to put this crazy adventure behind me, but Halfwise and Tom warned me not to try, there were strange things lurking just out of sight in the shadows, strange antlered headed things with the amber eyes of owls but the bodies of men, Herne The Hunter had come amongst us.
The Romans were sure the Celts had sent the fog, that they lay in wait, waiting for them to break ranks and run. But the romans were well disciplined and feared only the wrath of their commanders and the thought of never seeing home again.
They seemed wary of me, of my red hair and trousers, only tribeswomen wore trousers, Roman matrons would have found me to be uncouth and barbaric. But ironically it was the Romans I had more in common with than the Celts, they had laws and society that was not so far removed from ours, they liked spectator blood sports it was true, but watching modern Italians drive during the rush hour was rather Ben Hur so it was buisness as usual there. I huddled into the pelts and ignored the goaty smells, it was warm, it was enough.

Suddenly a great cry and clamour arose we were under attack from all sides. In the silence they had crept up and were throwing fireballs at us with sling shots, the tents going up like rockets, they were using pitch to ignite everything, it was mayhem. "we have to fight", said Tom, "if we dont we are toast". I ran outside and grabbed the first weapon I could, it was a large bow and quiver, I slung it over my shoulder, "we need light", cried Halfwise. The smooth precision of the army went into gear, men ran, armour was put on, weapons at the ready, sheilds in defensive position, horns blew, ready. A great ball of firey pitch screamed past us and our tent burnt to a crisp in seconds, I had an idea, I thrust an arrow head into the fire pitch and fired out into the night, it looked like a falling star and lit the scene before us. The night was crawling with enemies. Not my enemies, but if we were here and caught it wouldnt go well for us I knew well.
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Post by Turembar Wed Mar 28, 2012 10:09 pm

(These latest illustrations seem thematically similiar to each other. Are they from a story or series? Pretty cool btw Smile Sorry about getting distracted with the other thread, I had meant to get more done.)

Haddon Hall

(Midsummer)

Tom shifted his weight onto to ladder, but a section of rotten stonework gave way and he fell. Disregarding the rope ladder he was entangled in, during that brief space of 1-2 seconds that he plunged, he tried to position his body for a parachute landing. He would try to hit with feet together, but at an angle to purposely collaspse and then hit calves, thigh, shoulder and lastly arm enshrouded head in a series of lesser impacts. At the last fraction of section before hitting, there was a sudden blinding flash of light and a bang like a large gun going off. Then he hit and did the absolute worst landing ever, smacking his knee and face into the ground in the process. He lay on his stomach, on the ground stunned for a minute, barely audibly groaning. "Shit, that hurt!" was his first clear thought. "I wonder if anythings damaged?" he then thought with concern. With his eyes closed he moved the various parts of his body and all seemed to work, but it felt very weird and this scared him. "Maybe I damaged some nerves?" he wondered. And his snout was throbbing with pain. "Snout?" Opening his eyes he moved his right hand to feel his face, but instead saw a hand covered in silvery grey fir coming at his face. He let out a startled and half choked cry and flung himself over rolling. He grabbed the furry hand with his left hand as he did so and rolled over and over with his imaginary foe.




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Post by Mrs Figg Wed Mar 28, 2012 10:18 pm

It was odd and rather foolish but I didnt feel fear for myself, but I wanted Tom and Halfwise to be safe, I dont think I truly believed that we would come to any harm here, it wasnt our world, but the danger was all around us, it was folly to remain where we were, there was a great burning tents and clashing of swords, I saw the way out quite by chance, the Celts seemed to prefer to attack from the south where the forest lay, it provided them with cover and an easy retreat. They had not surrounded us, as the hillside behind us was steep and rocky and the Roman archers could have picked them off easily. I grabbed Tom by the hand and pointed upwards, he understood me without words, we backed away, we were no match for the battle around us, modern soldiering was not designed for wild sword fights with savage wode painted tribesmen and women, when there were no modern weapons to hand. Halfwise took the lead, he found us a torturous path up the hillside, all the while we were aware that we could be spotted and felled, but somehow in the darkness and confusion we escaped. The noise of the battle lessened the further away we crept, it felt good.
We staggered to the crest of the hill and my foot caught something, it felt like a horse shoe, it was curved and made of metal, I couldnt see properly in the dark, so i put it in my pocket to look at later, like any good cultural tourist, I wanted a souvenir.


(( they are all from an artist called Donato Giancola, I dont know if this is a series I found them seperately, he does mostly sci-fi stuff like Star Wars, and also some LOTR, these I am not sure about. Very Happy ))


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Post by Turembar Thu Mar 29, 2012 12:28 pm

Well done Figgy! I think those last two sections are your best yet. I have not studied writing and so don't necessarily know the right terms, but the 'readability' of it was very good. I could read through almost without a hitch. The action and descriptions flowed smoothly and naturally. I see the Torque makes an appearence and Winter Solstice may be as powerful as summer. Liked your description of the Celts swarming around and giving the Romans the Willies, and also your revealing of the thoughts going on in your mind. My contribution on the other hand was pretty crappy & I knew it. Like Strongbad would say, not just regular crap, but the kind you get when a piece of crap takes a crap. Was distracted by other thread and just wanted to make at least a little progress.
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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Mar 29, 2012 5:56 pm

Thanks Turembar, I have never studied writing either, I havent a clue how to construct a story, I guess i just go with the flow and follow my own logic, I dont mind really as long as I enjoy doing it, and people like it thats good enough for me. I dont know why you dont like your last bit, it was unexpected and thats always good to read, I want to know if he is hairy all over? pale Its funny how I get inspiration, I kind of play it out in my imagination and then I go to Google Images, not very high tech, but I look for pictures that I find interesting and use them to highlight a bit of the story, I found those two paintings by Giancola and they gave me the idea to include the fog and the archery. Very Happy
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Post by Amarië Thu Mar 29, 2012 6:18 pm

(Must find time to read through this thread, I want to curl up in the sofa when all is nice and quiet and enjoy the story. study )

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Post by Turembar Thu Mar 29, 2012 6:19 pm

Haddon Hall

(Midsummer)

Tom rolled out of the moonlite into the shadow and his back slammed into the base of the castle wall. With his mind racing, heart pounding, he jerked his head around wildly, searching for his assailant. There was no one, and he was quite alone. Looking down he found he was holding his own right wrist with his left hand. "What the Hell?" he thought, sitting up, back to the wall, to compose himself. As he did so, he unconciously stretched one leg out and his foot just poked out into the moonlite. He experienced a strange sensation as he did so, and looking up found his foot had changed form and was covered in fur, like a dog or wolf's. The rest of his leg and body was normal. He pulled his foot back into shadow and again felt the sensation but now found his foot was back to normal. Now more curious then frightened, he tried it again with identical results. He experimented with his hand, reaching out into the moonlite and found it remained handlike, but was fur covered and when he flexed in a certain way, sharp narrow claws extended out from each finger. "Wow!?" he said softly to himself, and sat back against the wall. He drew his knees up to his chest, wrapped his arms around and resting his head on his knees tried to get his mind working again.

He decided first he best get his body back under control and started slow controlled breathing. Once he no longer felt his heart pounding he continued his timed breathing but also began to survey the area. "Something is different. he thought as he looked around, and then it registered. He could see no ground lights anymore, and instead torches placed in holders burned at long intervals along the courtyard walls. He assumed it was done to help create atmosphere for the Masquerade, but was puzzed why he hadn't seen anyone going round to light them. He then looked towards the upper courtyard and through an open gateway in the middle could see people moving, maybe dancing. Listening, he no longer heard the actors speaking over the loudspeaker, but instead old fashioned music, like from the Renaissance, lilted down and it sounded live. "Was I knocked out for a while?" he wondered. "The costume party wasn't supposed to start till 10:30." Pulling his watch out of his pocket he saw it was still just 9:30.

"Well, one mystery at a time." he instructed himself, and tried to sort out the Wolfman part. "OK", he began to himself. "I must be dreaming." But if it was, it was totally unlike any dream he had before. Suddenly he rapped the back of his right hand against the stone wall. "Ow!" he thought, "Too Hard!" and sat there sucking on his scraped knuckles. He tried to think of more less painful tests, but at last abandoned it, feeling already certain it was no dream. "OK...Two, I hit my head in the fall, or over-stressed out and have gone dellusional." But he couldn't come up with a way to test it. "Call it possible then" he thought.

"Hey... Ere ee is then. I told ye I saw someone." Tom heard a man's voice say in a whisper, quite near on his right. Looking towards the sound he could just make out two shapes coming closer along the wall. They seemed to be carrying something, like poles or guns.
"Dream or not, they won't catch me!" Tom thought and he jumped up and took off at a run accross the courtyard towards the open gateway in the wall between the lower and upper courtyards. It was about 100 yards distant.
"Hold! Stop! ya...." he heard someone shout behind him. But the voice was cut off mid sentence. For the two castle guards now stood watching a man in a amazing Wolf costume sprinting accross the yard.
"Blimey, whats up wit him?" the second guard said.
"Had a bit too much ale probley?" offered the first guard.
"Aye, these Lords and Ladies cant hold their drink proper" agreed the second guard.

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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Mar 29, 2012 6:29 pm

The Portrait.

The three of us stood on the crest of the hill and looked down at the battle below us, there wasnt much to see apart from fires lighting up moving figures, acrid smoke filled our nostrils. Shadows raced this way and that, and cries and the clash of metal on metal was lessening. I was worried about the soldiers and hoped that they would survive, it was strange that I felt more empathy for the Romans but I felt their desolation and sadness at having to survive in this cold grey land so far from their sunny home. We turned and left the brow of the hill and started to search for the Door, I hoped and prayed it was still there. Walking through a copse of trees I noticed a light swinging in the distance, it looked as if someone was walking with a torch as it swayed from side to side. "Look ", I whispered, and we silently crept towards the light. Three Roman soldiers were crouched in a small hollow, one of them was digging a trench and the other two watched.
Halfwise grabbed my arm, and I gave him a look that said, 'I may be quite high up on the doofusometer, but even I know not to disturb armed men when they are digging large holes'.
"Quickly Odo!", said one of them, "those Celts will be on us and planting US if you dont get a move on!
They are English!, I thought, curiouser and curiouser, I wonder if they happened through the door like we did?, but that didnt explain the fact they were dressed as Roman soldiers.
"Aye Odo put yer back into it laddie". The other one was Scottish, tall with red hair.
"Well Petty" said Odo sniffing hard, "if you can do better, you do the digging, I am pooped!".
"POOPED! POOPED HE SAYS!, roared Petty, We'll be DOOMED, if ye dont bury this yon treasure, and get the heel out o here", he cried.
Tom and Halfwise looked at each other and made complicated hand signals that could have meant Auntie Harriet wants her toasted muffins for all I knew, but actually meant lets go this situation is dangerous.
Tom took my hand put a finger to his lips to signal be quiet, and we slunk away into the night.
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Post by Turembar Thu Mar 29, 2012 7:15 pm

Mrs Figg wrote:... Its funny how I get inspiration, I kind of play it out in my imagination...

That's exactly how I do it! I play around with scenes/ideas and sort of play them out. Sometimes it is just eh, or kinda goes nowhere, and I try a different one. Other times it plays out very nicely, and its strange because I don't at that time know where its going... it kind of writes itself. For dialog it's even more self-writing as I just imagine the person's (and their personality) and they speak in their own voice automatically. The biggest disadvantage for me at the moment is having only the lightest feel for the characters. But even so, being lightly based on a real person is much easier for me then thinking up an imaginary one. I think the totally ficticious ones I come up with are the most cardboard-like (Fake). It's the same in art for me. Trying to draw or sculpt a person or animal from my memory/imagination is always vastly inferior to using photo's or other actual guides. I might get away with inventing new clothes or props on a figure, but can't get the figure right without a model.

On the hair details. Yes, totally hair covered, but I actually forgot about a rather important detail. Until you said something I was planning to just run right into the masquerade and try to blend in, get lost in the crowd! Laughing I am working on the 'fix' at the moment.
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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Mar 29, 2012 7:25 pm

btw dont mind Petty his hearts in the right place but he can be quite annoying sometimes, Mad I have had serious falling out with him in the past, but its never for more than five minutes. He likes being provocative, he's Scottish, nuff said. whatyagonnado?

oh this, Moon is always effective, as is this, Haddon Hall - Page 5 Banana]Haddon Hall - Page 5 Banana he hates carrots and bananas.
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Post by Turembar Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:26 pm

Mrs Figg wrote:btw dont mind Petty his hearts in the right place but he can be quite annoying sometimes, Mad I have had serious falling out with him in the past, but its never for more than five minutes. He likes being provocative, he's Scottish, nuff said. whatyagonnado?

oh this, Moon is always effective, as is this, Haddon Hall - Page 5 Banana]Haddon Hall - Page 5 Banana he hates carrots and bananas.

Thanks Figgy. I did appreciate when you tried to stand up for {{{Americans}}}. Those btw are two of my favorite fruits and veggies. What self respecting ape doesn't like bananas and I was literally eating a carrot when I read your lines above. Laughing
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Post by Norc Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:37 pm

I would like to read the stories here, please, could someone (ELDO!) do something to make them all in the right order? please Smile
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Post by Turembar Thu Mar 29, 2012 10:33 pm

Haddon Hall

(Midsummer)

Half way accross the field, Tom glanced back and was relieved to find the two guards had not followed. He slowly reduced speed and reached the gateway between the two courtyards at a walk, trying to assume a casual demeanor. Through the gateway he saw a large crowd in costumes dancing merrily to the pleasant music in the upper courtyard beyond. Momentarily at least unpersued, he leaned over in the moonlight and placing his hands on his knees, tried to catch his breath...only to gasp it all out again, as he saw he was indeed furry all over but in a certain part still quite human and totally exposed. He rushed into the deep gateway, and backing into a shadow resumed human form with his clothes. "Now that was freaking close!" he thought to himself, horrified he had almost walked straight into the costume party like that. But then he shook his head and started chuckling which progressed to periodic laughing fits as he imagined their reactions.
"Well I am glad you think its funny!" suddenly said a familiar voice. And looking up Tom saw someone dressed as 'Cousin It' with a Top hat, cane and glasses, standing in the gateway.
"Halfwise ?" Tom said tentively
"Yes, of course it's me!" Halfwise replied impatiently.
"What ? No countersign this time Halfwise ?" Tom said still in a humorous mood.
"No time for silliness Turembar" Halfwise retorted.
"OK. But what are you doing here ? What's Up ?" Tom asked.
"I came to warn you" Halfwise answered drawing his words out.
"Warn me about what?" Tom said trying to hide his own impatience.
"Janoc is here." Halfwise replied flatly.
Tom took in and exhaled a deep breath. "Shit!" he said bitterly.
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