Vi Veri Veniversum Vivus Vici
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Our story begins as the United Kingdom enters into the year 1873 on a snow-filled evening. At Eaton Hall, an estranged noblewoman vying to become head of household when her father passes and an American military officer, a veteran of the recent American Civil War, no less, meet as sparks begin to fly. The pair must come to terms with how they feel for one another as the noblewoman deals with the arranged marriage her parents desire for her with the American must lead his men as the relationship between England and America begins to strain as Reconstruction begins.
Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Frederick Straton, U.S. Army (AceSorcerer)
Lady Eleanore Claire Christenson (The Returned)
Snow fell gently from the sky, forming crisp layers on the ground below as the sun began to set on the thirty-first of December, 1872. The Duke of Westminister, the esteemed Duke James Reginald Grosvenor, and his family were hosting a party to celebrate the new year of 1873. Among the guests were various members of the nobility as well as Her Majesty the Queen, along with other esteemed and recognized individuals. Of course, the favored English Episopalian clergy- the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Archdeacon, and the Chaplain to the Archbishop and their respective guests- were in attendance. As such, Eaton Hall, home of the Grosvenors, was abuzz with conversation as all of the greatest foods from Cheshire, England, and beyond were brought in for the nourishment of esteemed and noble guests.
One of these guests in particular is the esteemed Doctor Ichabod Thaddeus Orson, the court physician and surgeon to Queen Victoria. Accompanying him is wife, Isabelle Marjolaine Orson, who is with child, while their two children, Edward and Ophelia, remained at home where they were being watched by the maids. Accompanying them upon the request of Field Marshal Roland Cole, a member of Her Majesty's chief military staff, is Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Frederick Straton, Ichabod's principal American cousin.
The two cousins in particular were fairly close, enough as so that Ichabod insisted that his children refer to him as "Uncle Joseph." The two shared mothers, as both of their mothers were Americans from Massachusetts. Ichabod's mother was the elder sibling, though Joseph was a year older than his cousin. And while Joseph was unmarried, Ichabod had married fairly young and had started his family with Isabelle.
Ichabod was a tall fellow with combed brown hair and green eyes, dressed in a black tuxedo and fine dress shoes. Like his cousin he was clean-shaven, and the good doctor also wore a pair of spectacles upon his nose. Isabelle was dressed in a fine emerald ballgown, one bought specifically for the evening.
Joseph, however, was not dressed in such finery. Instead, the army officer took the approach of honor as opposed to fashion as he wore his dark blue ceremonial dress uniform. His black hair was covered by his forage cap with the battalion insignia, the hair itself freshly cut and his face freshly shaven for the evening. His outermost garment, atop of his dress uniform shirt and undershirt, was his senior officer's frock coat with his epaulets and a red sash. The epaulets themselves had a silver oak lead cluster upon them, his symbol of rank as n American lieutenant colonel. Tied onto the red sash was his light cavalry saber, an item of both combat and ceremony that had served him well during the Civil War. On his pants one could see that his Colt Caliber .45 Single-Action Army revolver pistol was holstered in its black leather carrier. As a course of habit, the pistol was loaded but the safety was on. This act of secure paranoia was one of the side-effects of participating in warfare, but it was one that could easily be a good habit when faced with the gangs and mobs of London and the surrounding cities.
Soon enough, Joseph checked his silver pocket watch as the soldier and his cousins left from London in their carriage to Cheshire shortly after seven in order to arrive in good time. After putting up his watch in its correct pocket the young officer sighed, stretching slightly as Ichabod spoke in a baritone that accented his English accent.
"I do hope you remember the protocals of the court, Joseph, especially should you meet my most important patient."
At this, Joseph spoke up in his bass voice after a quick laugh, which was accentuated by his Southern accent.
"You worry too much, my dear old cousin! If anything, you should focus more on either the child that will arrive in roughly three months time or about how your two children back home are behaving. You know that I am an upstanding gentleman of character, after all. I took it upon myself to learn all the social graces of the United Kingdom well in advance. The only annoyance is I will know none there save yourself and a few of the lesser military officers in attendance."
"It won't be that bad. After all, what is the worst that could happen?"
"I embarrass myself publicly, ruining opinions of myself, our family, and my country to various nobles, influential clergy, members of the Parliament, and Queen Victoria, as well as various ambassadors including the American ambassador to the United Kingdom."
"...Forget that I asked."
After this, the conversation moved to more pleasant topics as the time remaining seemed to flay by somewhat quicker, the trio arriving at the estate at roughly seven twenty-five in the evening.
(The example above is missing the appropriate embroidered golden braid below.)
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