An Arragement Most Foul


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I enjoy Fantasy, Scifi, Romance, Magical, Modern and much more. I probably can't list them all! If there is something you want to try and it isn't listed here, just ask. I rarely say no!
Annaliel sat at her vanity quietly as she looked herself over once again in the mirror, atempting to find something, anything to fix to delay what she would soon have to face. This morning, at breakfast, her mother surprised her with an annoucement that nearly made her cry.

Annaliel would be having an arranged marriage.

At first Annaliel was completely speechless, but she did not protest, how could she when she had been the one to out herself in such a situation? Her parents gave her plenty of chances to choose a man on her own, taking her to balls and dinner parties while introducing her to every available male in the room. She of course had not spoke to any longer than needed and often avoided them, her hiding only seeming to make them chase her more. She only nodded at her mother and went to her room when she was told to go prepare for a meeting with him, the suitor would be coming with his parents that afternoon.

It was now 12 o' clock

Annaliel could feel her throat swelling with nervousness as she thought about this suitor. What would he be like? Would he be horrible and supressive or rude and flirtatious? More importantly, what could she even say to him? She didn't even now his name! Her mind could only come up with horrible pictures of him, each worse than the last. The suddening ringing of a bell startled her and her heart only seemed to race with nervousness and insecurity even more.

That had been the door...He was here.

Annaliel glanced at the mirror once more before darting to her window for a small peek. She had not been able to see who stepped out of the carriage, they were already at the door. She did take note that is was a fine carriage with beautiful horses, meaning that whomever she was meeting today was of great wealth. She would wait just a bit longer, just until they were taken to the sitting room by her parents and given tea, at least that way she wouldn't have to face him right away...
Constantine Evingsdale, the very handsome and eldest son of the Duke of Hemmingsway. Vain, selfish, charming, and much of a heartbreaker, it's hard to imagine that he of all people was getting married! "Married?!" some would say, "That's impossible!!!" But, much to Constantine's displeasure, he was. He could hardly believe it himself. A couple nights ago, he had come home, late in the night as drunk as an Irishman with 2 equally drunk prostitutes on his arm. Even though he had thought he had come in quietly enough so that he wouldn't wake his parents, he was wrong. In fact, his parents already awake anyway, desperately and angrily awaiting for him to return. Of course, they were even more distraught by the state of their son and the 2 young girls he had carried up to his room, but it didn't matter beacause they had something to tell him that he wouldn't like at all. It was the argument above all arguments Constantine had ever had with his parents, and as he drunkingly tried to change their minds, it soon became clear that nothing could be done. They left him in his room to knock over various things and yell in rage. He had never thought that that night would be the last night he'd be able to sleep with whomever he pleased without question. Of course, he was still going to try and sneak a few girls around whether he was betrothed or not. He was Constantine Evingsdale not a husband. In fact, he already had planned himself a way out of this engagement which he would take into effect after he met this "pretty young lady" his parents had swooned at him over the dinner table the night before the meeting.

And now, here he was, in his best and most expensive suit riding in the carriage to meet his "betrothed" and her family. Constantine sat slumped down in the seat across from his parents carelessly holding the bouquet of roses he was to give her. He wanted this to be over with and fast, but his parents made it clear they thought otherwise. "Constantine, quit slumping and hold that bouquet right! And don't even dare think you're going to do anything in front of that family or to that girl to ruin this!" the Coriella Evingsdale yelled to her son. She was sitting beside the Duke in her finest dress with the most uninterested air around her. She was as posh and stuck-up as they come, but cared enough for her eldest son to get him the best girl, possible. And she had, too! Both she and the Duke made absolute sure that this family was rich and poised enough to meet their standards, so that when Constantine became Duke, not just any old girl would be at his side. Constantine sat up straight and looked out the window as the carriage driver pulled in front of the house. Scoffing he stated, "It's so small compared to our estate! What kind of hooker did you put me up with?!" Duke Arelson Evingsdale whapped his son on the head at this comment, and corrected him, "She is absolutely NOT a hooker! Unlike those women you bring home every night! Now straighten your clothes we're getting out!"

Constantine got out of the carriage quickly behind his parents as they knocked on the door. In a matter of minutes, he was going to meet his "bride-to-be". Not that he was excited or anything.

The door was quickly answer by a maid who pulled the door open and stepped back, allowing them to enter. Off to the side a lovely woman stood her arms open and a smile on her face as she approched the family, another maid popping up and collecting any hats, golves or coats that they wished to shed. It was Annaliel's mother, Milicent Arkworth. Behind her was her husband, Oscar Ackworth. He smiled at Duke Arelson, giving him a look that said it was going to be a long tea time.

"Coriella, I am so glad to see you again, it as been far to long since Sir Dennmen's Ball!" She said as she approched Constantine's mother first.

In fact, it was the to women to blame for the current situation, both having met each other at the ball and ended up slipping into conversation over their children. After a few brandies and a discovery that each had what the other needed, A match was made! The husbands went along with it since it seemed that they didn't have much else of a choice. Milicent looked to Constantine and her smile widened.

"And this is him! Oh you are ever more handsome than your mother discribed! Well, Annaliel is finishing up some morning lesson but she will be joining us shortly, so until she does let's all go to parlor and have a seat, the tea will be ready in a moment!" She said.

While Anneliel's parents chatted with the family happily and lead them into the parlor, Annaliel stood at the top of the stairs. She waited one more moment before walking down as slowly as she could. Her blond curly locks had been pulled back neatly and had a flower pin placed in it, her dress long white and flowing as it was decorated in beautiful lace. Her freckled cheeks colored red from her nervousness as she approched the door. She certainly looked nothing like she did in the picture in the parlor, sitting over the fireplace. It was a famil photo from the time when she was much younger and plumper while her elder sisters had been skinny and lovely. With a slow intake of air she knocked on the door lightly and waited...hoping that maybe they would send her away.
Boring! Boring! Boring! If Constantine, could say it aloud, he would, but his parents would kill him if he did. Every now and then, they'd look quietly over at their son to make sure he wasn't being rude, and Constantine had to sit up straight and pretend like he actually thought the conversation was interesting. This girl's parents droned on and on about everything, from the wedding, to the weather, and where his mother had gotten her beautiful necklace. He hadn't paid attention at all to the girl's name. Ann-something? If this little "meeting" didn't end in a few minutes, the young man would've definitely started letting some of his sarcasm show! Thankfully, a light knock was heard from the parlor door. And Constantine felt his stomach drop. Oh no....It's her!...I bet she's uglier than a wart on a foot! The parlor doors were opened slowly, and he finally got to see the "pretty young lady"...........

"Oh come in dear!" Annaliel's mother called to her.

Annaliel stepped into the parlor quietly and looked at her parents, her cheeks a little red with shyness. She walked over to her mother and father slowly. She stood next to them closely as her mother introduced them.

"Annaliel, this is Duke Evingsdale and his wife and this is their eldest son, Constantine."

Annaliel looked up at them quietly as she curtsied politely.

"It is a pleasure to meet you all." She said softly as she stood stright again, looking up at Constantine for a second before looking away again.

Well she certainly didn't expect her suitor to look like this. She could feel her face get hotter as she. Looked down shyly, this situation was not turning out well. If he was this handsome then he must have been a flirt. Even then the rumors she had heard about their eldest son were not all that great either. She could feel her heart sink into her stomach but she remained calm, it would not be a good idea to make herself pass out in front of guest, even if she really wanted to.
Well! She wasn't all that bad-looking after all! She was even kind of....cute! Constantine shook this thought from his head. No way was he going to fall for anybody! Colette Machird was even more beautiful than her, and yet he hadn't fallen for her! And, apparently, this girl was kind of shy, looking down not even giving him a second glance! Constantine couldn't remember the last time a girl had ever not wanted to look at him! Childhood, maybe? But, then, he saw this as a good thing. Obviously, if she didn't want to look at him, then she was probably not too interested in marrying him, either! Yes! At least she's not swooning over me! Getting out of this will be a whole lot easier than I thought! All of a sudden, he could feel his mother's icy glare that said, "GO OVER AND INTRODUCE YOURSELF!" His parents had been making him rehearse the words for a week now, and it was all pretty much stuck in his head. Getting up slowly, he walked over to her. Sighing softly to himself, he managed to force a smile, and say, "Hello, my name is Constantine Evingsdale. I'm 28 years old and the eldest son of Duke Arelson Evinsdale. I hope I am the suitor of which you dream. Here is a token of my love and appreciation, in hopes that you will find our engagement to your liking." He then held out the bouquet of roses for her take or not. He really hoped she wouldn't take them. Then, maybe, he wouldn't have to marry her!

Annaliel's cheeks deepened in color as he held out the roses to her, making look up at him once again. She could feel that stare of her mother burning into her back, as well as her father's. She shyly reached up and took the roses slowly from his grip, knowing that rejecting them would come off as extremely rude. She admired the flowers quietly for a moment she for she spoke softly again.

"Thank you...I also hope that I am to your liking...and that this arrangement will turn out well." She said as she looked back down again.

It was hard trying to find something else to say, especially since it was their first meeting. Luckily, her mother spoke quickly to fill the growing silence between them.

"Well, now that we are all introduce, why don't we sit down and have a cup of tea while we talk about the arrangements. This is a big step for everyone here so I would be best we get organized." She said as she smiled over at Constantine's parents.
Constantine's parents laughed in agreement leaving him with an unsettling feeling in his stomach as he sat back down. Now what? His parents would laugh with her parents while they forcefully made wedding plans. Every now and then his mother and father would look over at him and ask him a question about the wedding, looking for his opinion, that he would give out even though he really didn't want to. He had never really thought about marriage, but even if he did want to, he had never imagined it would be like this! With the Duke and Coriella pulling him on a leash like a dog! He was 28 years old for goodness sake! Not a toddler! This only made his doubts about the wedding go down even further. Every hour that passed by felt like days to Constantine, and he was looking for anything, anything just to get out of the parlor. Thinking quickly, he sat up and asked the girl's mother politely, "Excuse me, but could I use your restroom?"


Annaliel sat down as well, still holding onto the roses. As the parents chattered about the wedding she could feel her stomach flipping with worry. Getting married was a big step, as her mother has said, and to do it so suddenly with a man she barely knew seemed crazy. But she couldn't say no to her parents, the looks on their faces as they talked about where to hold the ceremony, the joy in their eyes as they talked about the reception, how could she deprive them of that after so many years of being difficult? Did she even have the right? It didn't matter either way, for it seemed like there was no turning back now. Annaliel spoke very little, her parents only addressing her on her opinion on a certain matter, she had nothing else to say in this situation. Right now, all that matter was figuring a way out. When Constantine asked to use the restroom Annaliel took this as her change.

"Oh Yes, just walk do the hall past the stairs and it will be the first door out your left dear!" Milicent said as she smiled at him politely.
Yes! Constantine got up politely, after a swift "YOU BETTER NOT DO ANYTHING, STUPID!" look from his mother. He walked out of the parlor and as soon as he was out of earshot, he let out a heavy sigh. "Uggggh! What the hell am I going to do?! There has to be a way out of this!!!" he whispered to himself. Noticing a glass bottle of wiskey nearby, he poured himself a glass and then sat down on the stairs quietly thinking to himself. He let the alcohol coat his throat all the way down not really watching how much he drank. If there was any way of him surviving the rest of this stupid meeting, he was going to have to do it drunk. Constantine looked up the stairs. He really didn't really have to use the restroom, although he was pretty curious as to what was upstairs. Slowly rising to his feet, the glass of whiskey still in his hands, he walked upstairs. It was really nice and though most of the room doors was shut. Heh! I feel like playing "Guest Gets 'Lost' And 'Accidentally' Stumbles Upon Someone's Bedroom"! Walking around and studying each door carefully, he gently opened a random room door and, of course, it was someone's bedroom. A young girl's bedroom, at that. Maybe it's that Ann-whatever's room. Constantine decided to snoop around a bit. After all, what else was a young man supposed to do in this boring house?

As soon as Constantine was gone Annaliel tried to think of a way to get out of this meeting. She'd have to be quick as well or she would have run into him in the hall. She let her parents talk as she tried to come up with a plan, noticing that the roses were going to start wilting soon...and there was her plan. While no one was looking, she plucked a few petals from a rose and let them fall to the ground slowly before letting out a smalll faked gasp of surprise. When her mother looked to her she put of a sweet smile and said the flowers were wilting. She quietly excused herself to go deal with the flowers and quickly left the room. Hopefully this made it look like she was somewhat interested in their son and not trying to escape.

She headed off toward the kitchen to find a vase and put the flowers away, glad that she didn't bump into Constantine. Elsewhere, where the older gentleman happened to be, was in her room. Now it was obvious that this was a young girls room. The bed was covered in soft flora blankets and silky sheets, a vanity in a corner held many jars and bottles of lotions and perfumes, a wardrobe filled with lacy colorful dress, some for balls and some for everyday. However, there was one big difference. The room was filled with books! The walls were covered in shelves where ever there wasn't a piece of furniture or a window. Some books sat on her bed while others were resting on chairs or her desk. Some were old, others knew, and some where just blank journals.

Most of the books were educational, involving math or english or science, though there was also a good amount of regular novels sitting out. On her desk, a book sat open with writing in it, it seemed to be a lesson plan of some sort, something that a teacher would have. Another book laid next to it, but this one was a journal, filled with her personal feelings and written in her true personality, loud, pushy and lively, something very different from the girl he met.
Constantine walked around the book clad room mesmerized. There's so many books.... Almost every book in the room he saw, he had already read, and knew a lot about them. He had always had a secret knack for knowledge, but of course, he would never say it aloud. If there was one thing he didn't want to be labeled as, it was "bookworm" and apparently, this girl was very knowledgeable. Constantine scoffed, "Typical of a quiet girl to be so holed up in books!" He walked over to the desk and picked up the journal. Heh! Found her diary! He wondered whether or not he should open it. He was a nosy asshole, not a pervert. Still he was quite curious and decided to open it up and take a quick peek. Of course, he wasn't worried about anyone walking in and catching him snooping around.

Annaliel finished getting the flowers put into a lovely crystal vase and smiled a bit, having relaxed since she left the pressured feeling of trying to impress a duke's son. She couldn't help but find them very pretty, which was to be expected from someone of his class. Originally she was going to leave them on a table in the hall, but they had been given to her, so it would seem only right to put them in her room...that, and doing so would keep her out of the parlor for a little while longer. She grabbed the vase and headed up the stairs slowly, humming a bit as she went on her way.

In her journal, there was and entry from the night before.

It seems that tomorrow we will not be having the usual tea with Emmilia, Rebecca and Sophia, along with their husbands. I was hoping to catch up with them since I was unable to meet with them until late last time. I was also hoping to see John and Samuel, they are both so cute! I will never be able to choose which one I love more! Mother said it was because we were doing something else, but she refused to tell me, saying she'd explain at breakfast tomorrow. I'm not all that sure why, but I don't have a good feeling about what mother will have to say. I'm sure it's not all that bad, but then again, she has surprised we with a lot of things as of late. My only hope is that it won't take to long, I plan on seeing my sisters no matter what tomorrow, even if I must ride a horse to do so!

Annaliel arrived at her room, not noticing that the door had been opened and quietly stepped inside, only to be greeted with Constantine standing there. She let out a surprised squeak of sorts and let go of the vase suddenly, not having expected him at all! When she realized what she had done she quicklyy moved to catch it before it broke, she could only imagine the horror that would happen if the parents stumbled upon them alone in her room!
It seems that tomorrow we will not be having the usual tea with Emmilia, Rebecca and Sophia, along with their husbands. I was hoping to catch up with them since I was unable to meet with them until late last time. I was also hoping to see John and Samuel, they are both so cute! I will never be able to choose which one I love more! Mother said it was because we were doing something else, but she refused to tell me, saying she'd explain at breakfast tomorrow. I'm not all that sure why, but I don't have a good feeling about what mother will have to say. I'm sure it's not all that bad, but then again, she has surprised we with a lot of things as of late. My only hope is that it won't take to long, I plan on seeing my sisters no matter what tomorrow, even if I must ride a horse to do so!

Constantine couldn't help but chuckle at this entry. He had to admit, he was pretty worried when his own parents had summoned him into his father's office all of a sudden. Of course, they weren't as indirect as her parents seemed to have been. In fact, as soon as he walked into the room, his mother practically spilled it out: "We've arranged you a marriage." Constantine shook his head at the thoughts of what had happened only weeks earlier. Being so deep within thought, you'd think he would have been startled when someone had entered the bedroom. He turned around calmly as Annaliel came in, practically squeaked, and nearly dropped the vase filled with his roses. He laughed a bit at her startledness then said unashamingly, "You've got a way with words, I see!" He waved the journal around at her so she would be embarrased. Ha! This is going to be fun!

"W-w-w-what are you doing here?!" She asked breathlessly, having just barely caught the vase she dropped.

Her cheeks were just as red as the roses when he waved around her journal, completely embarrassed that he had seen it. She quickly set down the vase on her vanity and snatched the journal out of his hand quickly, a look and upsetness on her face. She held the book to her chest and glared at him for a second before quickly looking away, her shy nature being dominate even when she was angry.

"I would think that a man of your status would know not to snoop around a host's house. If you got lost I will understand but certainly you should know better than to read one's private writings. Now if you would be as so kind as to step out of my room, we can return to the parlor and finish tea..." She said quickly and softly, trying to get him out of there as fast as possible without getting anyones attention.

If she could, and if she had the confidence to do so, she would have screamed at him and shoved him right out the front door! How dare he read her private writings without even thinking about her feelings! So much more him being a gentleman. She should have known better than to think that this man had been serious about using the restroom, he had seemed just about as eager to be in this situation as she was. That didn't matter though, the two of them were stuck with each other whether they liked it or not, it would be best to lay teh ground rules down now. She continued to look down and wait for him to leave, having nothing else to say to him, since everything else she wanted to say would certainly insult him and start up some trouble.
Constantine pretty much tuned her out while inspecting his nails. He walked around the room more before responding, laughing all the more, "I like your collection of books you have must be very smart......although, you should of thought the very opposite of people of my...caliber...or so to speak. Since we're so rich we have nothing else better to do, but invade other people's private lives...." He smiled at her with the charming gaze he gave all girls whenever he flirted. "But...we are going to be married soon....and I like to know everything about a girl before I....court her...," he whispered in her ears seductvely. Laughing loudly, he walked outside of the bedroom, and his mother had just walked upstairs herself. Coriella eyed him up and down suspiciously, "What's going on here?-----Never mind! No matter! No matter! Constantine, it's only just now that your father and I have just looked at the clock---We really must be going, now since your father has important people to meet with the King and I have to go and visit with your grandmother before dusk. And I also am going on a walk with that Machird girl's mother early in the morning tommorow. Come along, then!" Constantine drank the rest of the whiskey, and then looked back at Annaliel once more, with a small smile, "Well met, beautiful. Hehheh! See you tommorow, fiancee." He walked downstairs and got into the carriage, once again. He knew a way to get out of this, and he'd start tommorow. Leaving the Ackworths' home was relieving to him as he slumped down even further in his seat. He didn't even care to look back at the house while the carriage pulled out and away. The quicker he was washed away of that girl, the better.

Annaliel looked up at him and watched him look around her room quietly, it seemed that his true nature was coming out now. She felt herself step back when he came closer and shivered as he shivered, his breath tickling her ear. He was far to close for comfort. Luckily, he quickly stepped back and left her room. When his mother took him away she felt relief fill her... and her legs give out. He really had been to close for comfort. She could feel her face turning completely as she sat on the floor of her room. Was this her future? Was she doomed to spend the rest of her life at the side of that rude and obnoxious man? She could feel anger bubbling in her chest as she stared at her open door. Oh if she could only speak her mind, she would show him. That...that...that..

"Bastard! I can't believe he would stoop so low! Certainly you told mother and father about this! They would never stand for and marriage if he was going to act this way!" Her sister, Emmilia said as she held onto a curious baby boy in her arms, looking around and trying to escape his mother's grasp.

It had been a week since Constantine and his parents had visited, luckily there wasn't another meeting planned for awhile since the Duke and his wife would be very busy. The only thing she would have to worry about is him coming over on his own, though she doubted that would happen. Annaliel looked down at the baby in her own arms, also trying to escape and crawl about the garden they were all sitting in. Emmilia, Rebecca and Sophia all came for tea, though their husbands were absent for work. Annaliel quickly confined in them her problems and they all seemed to take her side. She gave a small sigh and looked up at her eldest sister, the expression on her face showing upsetness.

"How could I? When I came back down both of they were as happy as ever! The idea of me getting married as made their lives complete. I can't bring myself to take that away from them..." She said softly as she pat the babies head gently, the motion grabbing his attention and making him grab onto her fingers and naw on them with his gums.

Sophia, a pretty blond like Annaliel, snorted in dislike and took a sip of tea, her rounded belly plump with her marriage's first born.

"I don't care if mother an father threaten to kill themselves if you say you don't like him! his habits are absolutely gross and his has the worst character possible. I'd rather have a donkey for a brother-in-law than him!"

"I couldn't agree more!" Rebecca said, a tall and elegant woman with black hair like her father, her belly also round with a child.

Annaliel sighed and hung her head a bit, this situation was just getting worse and worse. A maid came over a moment later, bowing a bit as she spoke.

"Miss Annaliel, you have a guest waiting for you, it is Mister Constantine."

Annaliel could feel her face pale as her sisters growled protectively. She would couldn't turn him away, that would be rude, but she really didn't want to invite him in, her parents weren't home and her sisters were like wolves ready to pounce on their prey. She told the maid to let him in and gave her sister a weak look, asking them to stay under control, at least it would be easier to get through this with them at her side.
As soon as he had gotten home that night after the meeting, he secretly met with a man in the fields. He had been plotting with him for the past week or so since he had found out about the arranged marriage, and everything was seeming to go as planned. Walking towards him and looking around him making sure no one had followed, Constantine addressed straightforward, "I'm going to be quick with this! Do you have the money?!" The man looked at him in sudden despair, having failed miserably, but feared to tell the Duke's son at all. "U-um. I'm very sorry, Constantine! It seems as if your father has wiped out all of his secret accounts----Apparently, he knew what you would try to do ahead of time!" The young man cursed and smashed the flower pot nearby in fury, "DAMN IT! Why was I so naive to think he was that clueless?!?!" He walked back home and laid in his bed tired and feeling very stressed. He was going to steal some money from his father and take a ship to America in less than three days, but, unfortunately, the Duke ruined that plan head on! What was he going to do? He absolutely did NOT want to marry that girl! Sighing, the young man drank from the cup of tea in his hands, as he talked to the very beautiful blonde in front of him. It has been nearly a week now since the meeting, and his equally rich childhood friend was effortlessly trying to cheer him up about Annaliel.

"No one says you have to marry that whore!" Colette Machird exclaimed, as she whimisically pushed back her beautiful golden locks. She was the eldest daughter of the Duke of Walsberg, as stuck-up, extremely beautiful, and rich as they come, and absolutely bent on marrying Constantine herself! She sipped her own tea as she continued, "I've dealt with a lot of annoying bookworm girls in the past, and every time I came out on top!.......I could help you, maybe. You get rid of her. I've never really liked those Ackworth girls anyway!"

Constantine looked back up at Colette and forced a grin,"Colette Machird, now just what would your parents do if they had found out about your deviousness!"

Colette responded with a seductive grin, "Well....they couldn't disown me, that's for sure! I'm telling you Constantine, I would be more than happy if you could take me to see these little....wenches. Then, I could scope out the competition and pick them off one by one! Come on! What do you say? You did promise to take me out sightseeing, after all!"

Of course, he had to oblige. What harm would Colette do, anyway? He had always found her to be pretty helpful in certain situations like these, and while she was a pretty nice friend, he had always felt a bit......more for her. Sighing, Constantine stood up, "Alright, Colette! I'll take you there! I think overheard from a few people that she's with her sisters right about now......But only if you behave! I don't want to look like a complete jerk in front of them!"

Colette squealed and hugged him excitedly. "Yay! Thank you, Constantine! You won't be sorry! I'll just bring up that ball that I spoke to one of this Annaliel's sisters at! And we'll be gone in no time!" She then smiled deviously as Constantine led her into the carriage and to the house. will be mine and mine alone!

Strolling through the garden towards the women, two seeming to be pregnant, the Duke's son smiled as he approached Annaliel with shockingly, Colette clinging to his arm close. "Hello, Annaliel! I wanted to say I am awfully sorry if I upset you in anyway the other day! I was in a bad mood, you see, and I tend to take it out on other people. Please forgive me, if you will," he said all of this, and this time, he actually meant it! He handed Annaliel a case with a small smile. "I hope you will accept this. I picked it out just for you!" he said. Inside, was a small diamond necklace in the shape of a heart with a charm shaped like a book on the side. He then looked towards Colette and introduced her, "Oh! I forgot! This is Colette Machird, Annaliel. She's a good friend of mine, is all. And this is Annaliel and her sisters, Colette." Of course, the whole time, Colette had been eyeing each girl carefully making mental notes in the back of her mind about each one. She then began her charade, remembering Emmilia from a certain ball.

"Oh my! Why if it isn't Emmilia! You remember me from Lord Tricel's ball, don't you? Big poofy, pink dress? The one that talked with you about those awfully stuck-up girls? Oh I do hope you remember! I was just dying to run into you again!" she said to her with a smile.

Constantine.jpg Colette Machird.jpg
Annaliel could feel her shyness kicking in as he approched, though she was a little more curious as to who the girl on his arm was. Her Emmilia seemed to give a small groan as she say the girl but kept it quiet so they couldn't hear it. Annaliel knew what the sound meant, it meant that the girl was someone she did not like and she never, never, disliked someone without a good reason. When he apologized she felt like he was being meaningful about it, though her sisters would still probably hold a grudge against him for the rest of his life. She accepted the box quietly and looked over the necklace, keeping it a safe distance away from the baby's reach.

"Thank you and It is alright, everyone has their bad days..." She said softly as she closed the box and set it to the side.

When Colette was introduced Annaliel could feel her shyness take complete control. She was very pretty and seemed to be of similar status as Constantine, meaning that she probably had the same attitude as him. When she approched Emmilia, Annaliel was a bit surprised. Emmilia had become less of a ball person after her twin sons were born, so the idea of her being away from her children shocked her a bit. Emmilia smiled politely as she nodded her head and adjusted the baby in her arms, the young son having tuckered himself out when trying to escape his mother's hold.

"Yes, It is hard to forget such a lovely girl." She replied politely.

Annaliel knew that Emmilia was holding her tongue back out of politeness, it wouldn't be right to be rude to someone, especially since she was also of high status. Sophia stepped him and motion with her hand quickly.

"Please, do sit down and join us for tea. The afternoon is lovely and we certainly shouldn't hog it all for ourselves." She said as she summoned a maid to bring two more chairs.

Annaliel kept quiet as her sister politely examined Constantine, their pretty faces hiding their dislike for him. She listed in and added here and there but mostly kept out of the discussion, keeping herself busy with the other son who seemed to have dozed off against her.
Constantine was glad that Annaliel had accepted his apology. Truth be told, he had only meant to tease her a little, not to come off as a jerk, even though that was his specialty. He was actually quite confused and worried at this point, and slumped down in the chair a little ways next to Annaliel. He felt so helpless and didn't really know what to do. You could just see the stress written all over his face. He had no idea of Colette's real intentions. He was so deep in thought, he could barely even focus on the conversation. Colette noticed this, and took advavntage of it immediately.

"Oh goody! I am so glad you remember me! It's quite wonderful seeing you again! We highly esteemed rich women find it very hard to befriend trustable people! Why, just yesterday, I caught a dear friend of mine practically oggling my sister's husband! The tramp!" she exclaimed. Sighing she looked over at Annaliel with the nicest smile she could manage, "But, you Annaliel, dear, are so fortunate to have a fiancee as great as Constantine! He's such a sweet man, really. Just has a hard time expressing his feelings!"

Constantine eyed Colette trying to figure out what she was getting at, but to no avail. He hoped that she wouldn't do or say anything terrible. He had always known her to be loose-lipped towards pretty much everyone! Sitting up in his chair as best he could, he looked over at Annaliel and said softly, " are you this morning?" Of course, by this time he had a burgeoning headache and wanted to speak quickly so he could leave as soon as possible and escort Colette back home. Trying not to display his eagerness he said to Colette, "Don't be so straight-forward! People of our caliber should very much act more the part, as a young lady once told me in her bedroom...." He then exchanged a quick smile towards Annaliel.

Colette giggled. "Only a fool would believe that people like us act so posh all the time! We've all definitely had our sloppy moments whether we admit or not! I must admit, I've been a bit sluggish myself before. But that's just how we are! We do what we can to make our lives easier beacause being of high status sure has its downsides! I've heard the King picked his ear in front of the King of Scotland!"

Constantine.jpg Colette Machird.jpg