“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 78 (PG-13): Chance Made us Sisters, August 30, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #626)

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 78 (PG-13): Chance Made us Sisters, August 30, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #626)

aaaN&SJohnThorntonLoveLessonsFanFicCoverDec2913GratianaLovelace-256x401(An original fan fiction copyrighted by Gratiana Lovelace;   All rights reserved; Based on the Elizabeth Gaskell novel, North & South and its 2004 BBC adaptation; No copyright infringement intended)

 

[I will illustrate my story using my dream cast from the 2004 BBC production of “North & South” and other actors for additional characters:   Richard Armitage for John Thornton, Daniela Denby-Ashe for Margaret Hale, Lesley Manville for Mrs. Maria Hale, Tim Pigott-Smith for Mr. Richard Hale, Sinead Cusack for Mrs. Hannah Thornton Ogilvy, Jo Joyner for Fiona/Fanny Thornton Ogilvy, Brendan Coyle for Nicholas Higgins, Graham McTavish as Dr. Cameron Ogilvy, Holliday Grainger for Angharad Ogilvy MacIntosh, Simon Woods for Baird Ogilvy, and Emma Ashton as Mrs. Dillard, John Light as Henry Lennox, Tim Faraday as Watson, Gillian Anderson at Carlotta Quint Watson, Jeremy Northam as Dr. Miles Houghton, Gerard Butler as Lord Jamie Ogilvy, Juliette Lewis as Lady Thistle Ogilvy, and Helena Bonham Carter as Brigid Gordon, etc.] [(1) story logo]

Author’s Mature Content Note: “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” is a story with mature themes of love and relationships set within a period drama of the 1850’s. As such there will be heartfelt moments of love and sensuality (S)–as well as other dramatic emotions (D), including some violence (V)–and I will rate those chapters accordingly. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide, then please do not read that chapter. This is my disclaimer.

Author’s Recap from the previous chapter: John and Margaret returned from Airlie Castle in Scotland with their two adopted children–baby Douglas and two year old Catriona–and their four year old Audrey Grace. Their Nanny Brigid is a great help in gently overseeing the children–including her own baby son Arthur. And with Parenting duties slightly lessened, John and Margaret are able to rekindle their romantic spark after children tending had put a damper on things. The girls–Audrey Grace and Caty–become especially close. But as with any sisters, difficulties will arise.

 

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 78 (PG-13): Chance Made us Sisters
(This chapter is dedicated to Kitty–a sister friend in my heart.)

During the first week of her stay at Thornton Manor, Brigid enjoys eating below stairs with the other house servants- -and becoming fast friends with Head House Maid Sarah. Brigid welcomes finding a sisterly soul in Sarah since her own family is so small now–just she and her baby son Arthur. Brigid has living parents, but they are back in Scotland and advanced in years –and she is not likely to see them ever again. Brigid had hesitated briefly at the offer of the Thornton’s to join them in England. But her parents insisted that she take this chance to make a new life for herself and their grandson Arthur. And so Brigid is making a new home for herself and her baby son.

And Brigid notices off handedly, that the man Higgins seems to be a regular visitor to the Thornton home. However, Brigid is usually so engaged with the children–playing with them in the nursery when she is not nursing baby Douglas–that she does not have much time to think upon it. The children in her charge have also taken to familiarly calling her Nanny Brigid–rather than addressing her more formally as Nanny Gordon. And that is just as Brigid prefers.

And Audrey Grace is delighted to have not one, but two playmates in her newly adopted two year old sister Caty and Nanny Brigid’s seven month old son Arthur. Although, it is true that Arthur does not do much but sit and some crawling. Audrey Grace will have to wait a year before he might become more interesting. However, two year old Caty delights in playing dollies with Audrey Grace, and she with her–dollies being something that had been left behind when Catriona’s grandparents took her to the Airlie Castle Orphanage with her baby brother. Margaret enjoys watching the girls play as she sits with Brigid while she nurses baby Douglas. Then Margaret burps him to feel part of his feeding routine.

Brigid: Buttoning her blouse after feeding baby Douglas, Brigid observes. “Mrs. Marrrgarrret, If ye do na mind me saying so, the little gerrils arrre quite enamorrred of each otherrr already.” She raises her Scottish eyebrow in emphasis.

Margaret: “Yes, Audrey Grace and little Caty are getting along nicely.” Margaret smiles lovingly at her two daughters–the four year old Audrey Grace and the two year old Catriona “Caty”.

Brigid: “Yes.” Brigid draw out slowly–as if delaying her reply might soften it. “But ye should be watchful … forrrr jealousies and tantrrrums.”

Margaret: “Jealousies? Who would be jealous?” Margaret looks at her daughter Audrey Grace and sees only the picture off sweetness in her.

Brigid: “It is naturrral for olderrr childrrren to rrresent the youngerrr childrrren–because they rrreceive more attention, or get special treatment that they did not. Or the rrreverrrse–because the youngerrr one feels they are in her olderrr sibling’s shadow.”

Being the younger sister to her older brother whom Margaret doted on–and her cousin Edith who was like a sister, albeit a slightly whiney and selfish one–Margaret takes issues with that assessment.

Margaret: “Nonsense! Sisters and brothers always love each other.   At least, that is my experience.” Margaret adds for emphasis, yet it points out that her statements might not be universally true–just true in her case.

Brigid treads carefully in her reply as she picks up her baby son Arthur and blows on a pinwheel for him as he claps his hands with glee.

Arthur: “Ah eee yah!”   Brigid lovingly kisses her baby son’s forehead.

Brigid: “Mrs., I am glad that ye have had only good experiences. But life has taught me that people and places can be different than I expect.”

Brigid looks at the little girls as they seem to become more boisterous. But Margaret is not looking directly at them and does not notice.

Margaret: Inclining her head toward Brigid in interest, Margaret inquires as she pats baby Douglas’ back, trying to coax a burp out of him. “Oh? What have you found different?”

Brigid: “Well?” Brigid thinks for a moment–both to formalize her thoughts, and to try to frame them in a tactful way. “The Earrrl and his Countess arrre one example. They arrre our lorrrd and lady to whom we owe ourrr loyalty and ourrrr toil. Yet, they do na exploit us as otherrr masterrr’s have. They carrre about the people in the village and who worrrk on the Airrrlie Estate.”

Margaret: “They do.” Margaret nods. Then she thinks back to her Summer days in Helstone with her parents. “My Father was a minister, Vicar of the Parish of Helstone.” Margaret says pridefully and Brigid nods in respect. “Some ministers were only interested in their wealthy congregants. But Father always tended to the poor and sick of the parish. I would go with him and we would take a basket of food to those in need.”

Brigid: “That was rrright and fitting forrr ye to do.” Brigid acknowledges, the respectful tone in her voice is clearly evient.

Then little girlish voices playing become loud enough to intrude their mother Margaret’s conversation with their nanny.

Audrey Grace: “Caty, This dolly is mine. Her name is Susie. I gave you my other dolly. But I like this one best.” Audrey Grace is trying to reason with the two year old Catriona, even as Audrey Grace hugs her favorite dolly to her chest.

Catriona: Her little face becoming red as her lip trembles, Caty cries out. “But she is so prrretty.” Caty has never seen anything so beautiful in her life as Audrey Grace’s dolly–with its soft blond hair and real eyes in a pretty dress of blue silk, which Caty only knows is soft. Caty reaches for the dolly, but Audrey Grace turns away from Caty so that she can’t touch the dolly. Then Caty erupts in tears. “Waaaa!   Waaa!   Waaa!” Then Caty flops forward onto the floor and sobs uncontrollably.

Margaret instantly stands up and walks over to the two little girls–her still carrying baby Douglas.

Margaret: “Audrey Grace? What is wrong? Why did you make Caty cry?   There there, Caty Dear.” Margaret kneels down , then sits on the floor and pulls Caty to her with her free arm. Caty cuddles next to her and continues to cry–touching her baby brother’s foot for comfort. He is her only connection to her past life–to her past family.

Catriona:   “Hmmm. Waaa. Hmmm.” Caty sobs.

Audrey Grace: Audrey Grace looks up [(2) right] into her Mama’s accusative eyes. “But AudreyGrace-almost-four-image-is-Tête_d'Etude_l'Oiseau_(1867)-byWilliam-Adolphe_Bouguereau_(1825-1905)_Jul2614wiki-crop2Mama, I didn’t make her cry. Caty wanted my favorite dolly Susie. She’s mine! I gave her my other dolly to play with.” Audrey Grace clutches her dolly to her and begins to cry–not out of fear of losing her dolly, though that is part of what is causing her distress, but Audrey Grace is worred that her Mama thinks she is being bad.

Brigid: “Ah me!”   Brigid sighs and stands up, depositing Arthur in the floor play pen. Then she walks over to Margaret. “Mrs. I’ll take baby Douglas so ye can tend to the gerrrils.”

Margaret: Clutching baby Douglas to her breast, Margaret replies sharply. “No! He hasn’t burped for me yet.”

Margaret is fiercely protective of her motherly bond with Douglas. If she cannot breast feed him, at least she can burp him. Of course, the parallels to the little girls and their dollies, and Margaret and her baby, is only observed wryly by Brigid as the little girls continue to weep–though they have lessened to sniffles by this point.

Brigid: “Aye. Of courrrse, Madam.” Brigid says respectfully. Brigid understands that Margaret has a difficult task ahead of her–to learn how to lovingly parent three children equally.

Audrey Grace: “Mama, please do not be mad at me. It is just that you gave me my dolly Susie– and I do not want to give her away.” Audrey Grace’s little red rimmed eyes look pleadingly at her Mama.

Baby Douglas: “Errrrrp!” Baby Douglas finally burps.

Margaret: “Ahhh!” Margaret sighs, satisfied in having achieved one mothering accomplishment today. Then Margaret looks at the stoic Brigid standing politely and patiently a few feet away. Margaret kisses Baby Douglas and then hands him to Brigid. “Thank you, Brigid. Please check Douglas’ diaper then put him down for his nap.” Margaret smiles wincingly. Of course, Margaret did not need to tell Brigid how to tend to baby Douglas–she was simply asserting her place as his Mama.

Caty: “Duggles!” Caty whines not quite getting her baby brother’s new name right as she reaches out to him–but having her new mother Margaret clasp her hand as Brigid takes him away to check his diaper.

Margaret: “Now Caty. You can’t have every dolly, or baby, that you want.” Margaret rocks Caty in her arms.

Audrey Grace is not certain that she likes the sound of that–for she has all the dollies and toys that she could ever want.

Audrey Grace: “She can’t?” Chastened thinking that she also might be bound by her Mama’s new rule, a four year old Audrey Grace offers a compromise. “Mama? May I choose which of my dollies to give to Caty? And then she can decide which of those dollies she wants to keep?”

Nanny Brigid raises her eyebrow at little Audrey Grace’s plea, even as Brigid puts the now still dry Baby Douglas in his bassinette for a nap–then she picks up her son Arthur for a cuddle. You see, Margaret had haphazardly selected some of Audrey Grace’s things to give to Caty–without asking her daughter first, thinking that they were toys Audrey didn’t play with any more. Her mother-in-law Hannah had made the same mistake with Fanny’s dolly Betsy–giving the dolly to Lissa Dillard. However, the maturing twenty year old Fanny was able to sanguinely part with her favorite dolly–not so for the almost four year old Audrey Grace and her favorite dolly, Susie.

Margaret: Bringing Caty to sit on her lap and then drawing Audrey Grace in close to her embrace as well, Margaret asks. “Well Caty? Would that be fair? Then you may pick which dollies you want to keep for you.”

Audrey Grace: “Please Caty? I would like to share some of my toys with you.”

Margaret: “And …” Margaret smiles pleased with herself for navigating the breach between Audrey Grace and Caty–when it was actually Audrey Grace who did that. “We will go to Mr. Lindquist’s Children’s Emporium in Milton tomorrow. And I will let each of you pick out one new toy or dolly. Does that sound fun?” Margaret isn’t really trying to bribe the girls–not consciously, anyway.

Caty: “New, Mama?” Caty looks up at Margaret, uncertain about what new means. Though not dirt poor, Caty’s family did not have store bought toys for her to play with–let alone, something new. A wooden spoon with a flour sack string bow on its neck and eyes and a smile carved on its rounded scoop that Caty tapped on any surface she came across, had been little Catriona’s most frequent playtime toy–if one can call a repurposed kitchen utensil a toy.

Audrey Grace: “Yes please!” Audrey Grace claps her hands together. She likes getting new presents.

Margaret: “Caty, You shall have a dolly all your own.”Catriona-imageis1860sGermanChildrensFasion-byJ_Nitschner_Portrait_F_Keban_Aug0114wiki-sized-crop

Caty: Caty shyly [(3) right] points to her brother sleeping in his bassinette. “Duggles?” Caty wants her baby brother to get something, too.

Audrey Grace: Audrey Grace also looks at the serene countenance of Nanny Brigid watching them as she hugs her baby son to her breast. So Audrey Grace leans into her Mama and asks sweetly.

Audrey Grace: “And for baby Arthur, too, Mama?”

Margaret: Smiling, Margaret squeezes both her daughters and kisses the tops of their heads. “Yes! All children under our roof will get new toys tomorrow.” Margaret takes out her linen hankie and wipes each of her daughter’s tears away.

Then Audrey Grace leans toward little Catriona and kisses her cheek. Caty looks shyly at her newish older sister Audrey Grace.   Audrey Grace holds out her arms and little Caty climbs out of her Mama’s lap and into her sister Audrey Grace’s arms and they embrace lovingly, kissing each other’s cheeks and rocking back and forth–their hearts’ concerns mended for now.

And though Margaret is not overly fond of needlework–her not being as proficient at as her mother-in-law Hannah–she resolves to embroider two companion small heart shaped sachet pillow gifts for her daughters with the inscription:   “Chance made us Sisters, Hearts made us Friends.” It is a favorite phrase of Margaret and her cousin Edith, whom she grew up with.

However what none of them realize now is that baby Douglas has a new family nickname, Duggles–courtesy of his sister Caty. The nickname will stick, much to Margaret’s amusement and to her husband John’s chagrin.

And Nanny Brigid Gordon and her baby son Arthur will continue to thrive in their new Thornton Manor home–as well as, she will provide a calming influence and helpful guidance as the Thornton Family faces its growing pains with now having three children. And in Brigid and her son’s near future, a chance encounter with a kind and humble man’s fortunate awareness will start them on a path that they could not have foreseen for themselves when they left Scotland.

To be continued with Chapter 79

 

“N&S: JT Love Lessons”, Ch. 78 References, August 30, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #626)

1) “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” story logo: Richard Armitage as John Thornton and Daniela Denby-Ashe in the 2004 BBC period drama North & South, was found at richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/nands/album/episode3/ns3-110.jpg ; For more information about this wonderful 2004 BBC miniseries adaptation of Elizabeth’s Gaskell’s story North & South, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_&_South_%28TV_serial%29

2)  Audrey Grace Thornton almost four year old image is Tete d’Etude l’Oiseau by William Adolphe Bouguereau found at http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/William-Adolphe_Bouguereau#mediaviewer/File:William-Adolphe_Bouguereau_%281825-1905%29_-_T%C3%AAte_d%27Etude_l%27Oiseau_%281867%29.jpg

3)  Catriona Thornton image illustration is an 1860s child painting found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1860s_in_Western_fashion#mediaviewer/File:Joseph_Nitschner_Portrait_Francisca_Keban.jpg

 

 

Link to Previous Ch. 77:
http://gratianads90.wordpress.com/2014/08/27/ns-john-thornton-love-lessons-ch-77-r-rated-s-bedtime-stories-august-27-2014-gratiana-lovelace-post-624/

Posted in "N&S: John Thornton Love Lessons", Creative Writing, Family, Fan Fiction, Love and Relationships, North & South, Period Drama, Richard Armitage, Romance, Something About Love | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Thespian Thursday: Recent Richard Armitage Portraits are Awe Inspiring, August 28, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #625)

In the last week or so, I have come across several awe inspiring Richard Armitage portraits and news shared by others that have stilled my heart and breath due to their beauty and graciousness. I will keep it to three images.

1) And in one stunning portrait of the exquisitely talented British actor Richard Armit2014--RichardArmitage-asJohnProctor-TheCrucible-byJayBrooks_Aug2714anglophilechannel-sized-biggerage (right) now appearing as John Proctor in The Crucible at the Old Vic through September 13th photographed by Jay Brooks, I was glad that my rescue inhaler is nearby. Seriously. I literally stopped breathing for several seconds when I first saw this portrait. *THUD*

But seriously, I tried to pinpoint what drew me in about this image of a bare chested Richard Armitage–when we don’t really get to see his chest (but we know what it looks like from other characters where he has doffed his shirt). And several descriptive words sprang to mind: evocative (he’s bare, *THUD*), raw (he’s bare), powerful (all of his muscles), secretive (turned slightly away from us), vulnerable (shielding his body with his arms), disbelief, degradation (his character John Proctor is imprisoned, which might account for him appearing dirty), alien (his fingers draped awkwardly over his head and partially covering his ear), resignation (his accusative stare/gaze), explosive (the muscles again with the broad back and a hint of his sturdy torso), posed (in an unnatural self comforting embrace), sinister, dignified (only upper torso, no nips), etc.

But given Proctor’s fate, this Armitage as Proctor portrait image also jarred a memory within me– harkening back to 7th grade art class and 220px-Dying_slave_Louvre_MR_1590-by Michaelangelo-viaWiki-crop-sizedlater my wanderings in art museums. Not only does this Armitage as Proctor body pose seem classical (see Michaelangelo’s Dying Slave at left), but the darkened makeup helps to further define Richard Armitage’s features–with the interplay of light and shadow upon him seemingly reminiscent of El Greco to me due to the dark quality of the image’s lighting, and with the dirty skin being quite a contrast from his other pale complexioned portraits where he is bare chested.

2)  Richard Armitage’s portrait as Proctor again (right), also photographed by Jay Brooks. 2014--RichardArmitage-asJohnProctor-incoat-TheCrucible-byJayBrooks_Aug2714anglophilechannelThe hair and coat textures were what I noticed first–with the coat on close up seeming to be a sheep fur, classic. And Mr. Armitage’s hair and beard are perfectly coiffed–not haphazard and almost wild as they seemed to be from some of the production stills. Yet the extra space ProjectMag2011-07RichardArmitageinShearlingCoatAug2714ranetabove his head seems to make him appear smaller/shorter. Or is it that the accusations Proctor faces beat him down from the tall and proud man he was before them? And, of course, the averting gaze and body pose made me think of a similar July 2011 Project Magazine photo shoot (image left).

  • Thorin Oakenshield, King Under the MountainThorin (right on Fortesque’s tumblr via Thorin of Erebor and Robin T. Thanks!), is in the building–as he is rebuilding his Thorin-contemplative_Aug2714Fortesque-tumblr_na39mfqiaw1ql524yo1_500people’s futures. But when I see Thorin here, I see a man for whom legions would follow him–and I’m not merely talking into battle. Ha! The touseled hair, the elongated nose, the piercing blue eyes and the long wavy hair all lend an other worldly–or Middle Earthly–Heartthrob ambience to him.   In this slightly contemplative Richard Armitage as Thorin, what do we guess about his emotional state? I, for one, am smitten by Thorin even being allowed to look handsome in this portrait here–not ferocious, but still passionate, quite like this John Thornton portrait (left). And for a mNorth&Southepi3-172-RichardArmitage-asJohnThornton_Aub2814ranet-sized-brtan to wait and plan nearly 175 years to seize the briefest moment of opportunity to “reclaim his homeland” betokens a man with passion, patience, and perseverance.

 

Whereas Proctor’s portraits above and elsewhere are full of righteous fury, this Thorin portrait is reflective, handsome, and charming. Though charming is not a descriptor typically associated with the character of Thorin, it is with the man who plays him, Richard Armitage.

 

And Richard Armitage and his wonderful storytelling make me smile on a regular basis. And these Richard Armitage role character images above are somehow different for me–visceral–and touching me so deeply that I was surprised by my reaction to them. Mr. Armitage’s roles are usually so complex and intense, I can only hope that he might attempt a little light hearted romantic comedy fare at some point–allowing his character to: live, get the girl, become a parent, and live happily ever after. Sighhhh!

In the meantime–as we await the release of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies in December–I will enjoy these and other images old and new that are released about Richard Armitage.

 

 

 

Posted in Beauty, Fangurling, John Proctor, John Thornton, Middle Earth, movies, North & South, The Hobbit, Thorin | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 77 (PG-15, S): Bedtime Stories, August 27, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #624)

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 77 (PG-15, S): Bedtime Stories, August 27, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #624)

aaN&SJohnThorntonLoveLessonsFanFicOct1413GratianaLovelace-256x388RevAn original fan fiction copyrighted by Gratiana Lovelace; All rights reserved; Based on the Elizabeth Gaskell novel, North & South and its 2004 BBC adaptation; No copyright infringement intended)

[I will illustrate my story using my dream cast from the 2004 BBC production of “North & South” and other actors for additional characters: Richard Armitage for John Thornton, Daniela Denby-Ashe for Margaret Hale, Lesley Manville for Mrs. Maria Hale, Tim Pigott-Smith for Mr. Richard Hale, Sinead Cusack for Mrs. Hannah Thornton Ogilvy, Jo Joyner for Fiona/Fanny Thornton Ogilvy, Brendan Coyle for Nicholas Higgins, Graham McTavish as Dr. Cameron Ogilvy, Holliday Grainger for Angharad Ogilvy MacIntosh, Simon Woods for Baird Ogilvy, and Emma Ashton as Mrs. Dillard, John Light as Henry Lennox, Tim Faraday as Watson, Gillian Anderson at Carlotta Quint Watson, Jeremy Northam as Dr. Miles Houghton, Gerard Butler as Lord Jamie Ogilvy, Juliette Lewis as Lady Thistle Ogilvy, and Helena Bonham Carter as Brigid Gordon, etc.] [(1) story logo]

Author’s Mature Content Note: “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” is a story with mature themes of love and relationships set within a period drama of the 1850’s. As such there will be heartfelt moments of love and sensuality (S)–as well as other dramatic emotions (D), including some violence (V)–and I will rate those chapters accordingly. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide, then please do not read that chapter. This is my disclaimer.

Author’s Recap from the previous chapter: John and Margaret adopt the baby boy and his two year old sister from the Airlie Castle Orphanage aare rename them Douglas John Thornton and Catriona “Caty” Maria Thornton. And Higgins in meeting them at the train station notices and takes a liking to the children’s new and buxome Scottish Nanny, Brigid Gordon. John and Margaret hope to ease their new children through their transition to their family.

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 77 (PG-15, S): Bedtime Stories

So the expanded Thornton family plus three–Brigid and her baby son Arthur, and Higgins–head back to Thornton Manor from the Milton Train Station on this late April 1855 Monday morning–all are glad to be home, with little Catriona and Baby Douglas in their new home. After a few days of settling in–with little Catriona sleeping in Audrey Grace’s bedroom at Audrey Grace’s insistence so that Caty wouldn’t be scared at night, and Brigid tending to both her seven month old son Arthur and one month old baby Douglas as his wet nurse–Thornton Manor begins to settle into its new expanded family routine.

John and Margaret also have a new bed time routine to adjust to. Before they had more children and the need for a nanny/wet nurse, Margaret and John saw to their daughter Audrey Grace’s night time routine of bath, story, bed, her not wanting to go to sleep right away, and Audrey Grace regularly ending up sleeping cuddled next to Margaret because of some scary windblown tree branch against her windows in her bed chamber. John found this arrangement less than ideal–especially where romance was concerned.

However when Audrey Grace was still little–until she was just about the age of two–John and Margaret had a system whereby they could then gently remove a finally asleep again Audrey Grace from their bed and place her sleeping in a small cot bed that they positioned at the end of their bed in front of the sette whilst John and Margaret enjoyed some muffled loving tenderness under the cloak of their bed linens and comforter being careful not to awaken their daughter.

Of course, that plan was eventually derailed the first time a two and a half year old Audrey Grace awoke in her cot bed in her parents’ bed chamber needing help to use the potty and she climbed over the sides of her cot bed onto the sette at the foot of her parents’ bed. AudreyGrace-almost-four-image-is-Tête_d'Etude_l'Oiseau_(1867)-byWilliam-Adolphe_Bouguereau_(1825-1905)_Jul2614wiki-crop2Audrey Grace was going to wave at her parents to get their attention. But she couldn’t see them sleeping in bed. She could only see the pretty patterned comforter blanket rising and falling. Temporarily forgetting her need for the potty, a sleepily mesmerized then two year old Audrey Grace [(2) right] watched the undulating paisley patterns float up and down for a time–until the movements stopped and the comforter floated down to the bed again and her parents both sighed. That was when Audrey Grace saw the back of her Papa’s dark head of hair as he lay on his stomach on her Mama. Then she saw her Mama’s face as her parents kissed as they embraced.

Then Audrey Grace remembered again that she needed the potty. So Audrey Grace patted the comforter–finding and sqeezing her Papa’s foot– to alert her parents of her need, the potty. John froze in a most delicate embrace lying on top of his wife as Audrey Grace clambered over the end of the bed to lay on top of her Papa’s comforter covered back. John was mortified and Margaret was getting crushed–though John tried to lift himself up a bit from her, some things cannot be entirely accomplished with a toddler on one’s back. So after Margaret convinced their daughter to head to the bathing chamber–and that her mother would soon follow her, after Margaret put her nightgown back on–little Audrey Grace was pottied and returned to her cot bed at the foot of their bed with a kiss from her Mama. And John and Margaret had realized from past experience that once their daughter ended up in their bed chamber at night, they could not get her to go back to her own bed chamber.

Finally, Margaret slid into bed next to her very crimson husband and they whispered to each other.

Margaret: “Are you alright, John?” Margaret looks at him as she blushes a bit, herself.

John looks at Margaret, opens his mouth, then he closes it. Margaret looks at him pointedly.

John: “That depends.”

Margaret: “On what?” Margaret smiles cuddling close with him. Audrey Grace’s potty need had interrupted their post lovemaking cuddles.

John: John turns to his wife Margaret with an embarrassed frown on his face. “How much do you think she saw of us?” John waves his hand in a circle in lieu of voicing the rest of his thought.

Margaret: Margaret winces. “Maybe nothing. Afterall, we were covered up by the sheets and the blanket comforter. At most, she could have seen …” Margaret wisely stops and sheepishly shrugs her shoulders. For John’s movements raising and lowering the comforter as they joined their bodies together was what was on her mind.

John: “Oh God! How can I face Audrey Grace in the morning?”

Margaret: “John. She does not know that we were making love. She is a little girl. Audrey Grace has no context within which to ascribe meaning to our actions.”

John looks at Margaret askance.

John: “Is that from a clinical perspective, my Love?” He wonders at her technical word choice.

Margaret: “It is from a parental perspective, John Dearest.” Margaret had attended a mothers’ parenting seminar at the Ladies Tea Room the previous week and had found it most illuminating.

Happily, Audrey Grace had been too sleepy to remember the night before or ask about the moving comforter. But thereafter, when little Audrey Grace slept in her parents’ bed chamber, sleeping was all that anyone was doing in it.

***

And while the Thornton’s were in Scotland meeting and getting to know baby Douglas and little two year old Catriona last week, no romance was happening then either. So it is upon their fourth night back at home at Milton Manor–a Friday night–with Brigid seeing to the little one’s baths before John and Margaret read them a bed time story, that John thinks that he Margaret21isDanielaDenby-Ashe-inN&S2004Aug2614NorthandSouth2004comand Margaret might get to have some private time together this evening. But though their nights since returning home have not been interrupted by Audrey Grace wanting to sleep in their bed chamber–since Brigid was there to see to her night scares and calm her back to sleep–Margaret is feeling bereft [(3) right] of having the close contact she previously enjoyed with her daughter’s every waking moment.

So after John and Margaret change into their night clothes, he relents and they don their robes and creep back toward Audrey Grace’s bed chamber that she shares with little Catriona. John and Margaret peek into the room and see the two little girls slumbering peacefully in each others’ arms. It is a precious sight and bespeaks the growing sisterly bond between the two girls. Then John and Margaret lightly knock on the connecting door to baby Douglas’ nursery–where Nanny Brigid and her baby son Arthur also sleep.

Brigid: “Come in.” She whispers as she rocks baby Douglas her her arms after feeding and burping him.

Brigid wears her night dress with a shawl over her shoulders. Her own baby boy Arthur is fast asleep in his crib next to her bed.

Margaret smiles at Brigid and goes to her, while John stands quietly at the threshold–him not wanting to disrupt the baby’s night time routine, but understanding his wife’s need to see to their children’s tending herself.

Margaret: “Douglas is still awake?”

Brigid: “Barrrely. Douglas has just fed and he wants to go to sleep–but he is fighting it. Would ye like ta hold him a bit, Mrs.? Being in his Mama’s arrrms might soothe him to sleep.”

Brigid has said the key words that brighten Margaret’s incandescent countenance as she takes her new baby boy Douglas into her arms. Holding a baby–especially one’s own baby–is a joy that transcends all others. This little life entrusted to she and John is Margaret’s last chance for a baby. And she will cherish each moment she has with him. John smiles at seeing his Margaret’s joy.

Margaret: “Mama is here for you, Douglas.” Margaret whispers soothingly into her baby son’s ear, brushing her lips upon his warm rosy cheek, inhaling his smell, imprinting him into her heart.

Baby Douglas: “Hhhh! Ohw ha!” The baby sighs and tries to stifle a yawn even as he wiggles his fingers. Then he settles down to sleep.

Margaret: “Ohh! He went to sleep.” Margaret beams at Nanny Brigid.

Brigid: “Aye! Ye have the gift, Mrs. And baby Douglas knows ye arrre his Mama.” Brigid smiles knowingly at Margaret–one mother to another. Margaret smiles and nods her thanks.

Brigid gently lifts the sleeping baby into her arms and then places him in his bassinette. Then Margaret leans in and tucks the blanket around baby Douglas’ little body.

John holds out his arm toward his wife.

John: “Come, Margaret. Let us leave the children and Nanny to their rest and go to bed as well.” He smiles lovingly at her.

Margaret nods and goes to her husband. Then in taking his outstretched hand, she turns once more to look back at her new baby son and smiles. John caringly caresses her shoulder.

Margaret: “Thank you, Nanny Brigid.”

Brigid: “My pleasurrre, Madam.” She smiles warmly at the so obviously in love young couple–John and Margaret.

John: “Thank you, Nanny, and we bid you good night.” John says cordially.

Brigid: “Goodnight, Sirrr.” She nods respectfully.

***

As John and Margaret walk back to their bedchamber down the empty hallway, John possessively snakes his arm around Margaret’s waist and rests his hand upon her curvy BedroominTheBuccaneers1995epi4_vlcsnap-10h02m10s187_Mar1413GratianaLovelaceCaphips encased in a silk night dress and quilted cotton robe. They smile shyly at each other, then enter their bedroom.  The room’s comfortable elegance is enhanced by the glow of firelight [(4) right]–and no child bed in front of the sette, thinks John. They each go about their nightly routine before getting into bed. Margaret sits at her vanity mirror and removes the pins from her hair, brushing it out and then plaiting her long auburn hair into one loose braid that she allows to fall loosely over her shoulder.

While unnecessarily checking his diary on his nightstand, John lovingly watches his wife’s nightly ritual. He notices her hair pins are neatly placed into an open pressed tin. Then she gives her hair twenty five brushes, until it shines lustrously, and only then does Margaret loosely braid her hair to avoid it tangling while she sleeps at night. John unties his robe, then smiles as he walks over to stand behind his beautiful wife Margaret–his hands lightly resting upon her robe covered shoulders. They gaze at each other in her vanity’s mirror.

john: “Have I told you recently how beautiful you are, My Love?” John leans down and kisses Margaret’s cheek.

Margaret: “No.” Then caressing his slightly stubbled cheek, she teases. “Scratchy.”

John: “Oh! I’m sorry, Margaret.” He feels his own cheeks to ascertain their roughness. “I should shave.”

Margaret: Margaret stands and turns to face her husband. “Don’t bother.” She smiles. “It is nearly midnight and we will be abed soon.”

John: “Bb but …” John sputters, fearing that his loving evening plans are slipping away from him.

Margaret walks toward her husband and caresses his face and they both smile.

Margaret: “I like you unshaven at times. It makes you seem … even more … masculine. Hhhh!“

Margaret sighs and her eyes flash to John’s eyes.

John: “Hmmm.” He growls deeply.

John’s need for his wife this night is a primal thing. She is his and he is hers. He aches to hold her in his loving arms with no fabric constrictions, nor fear of interruptions from little ones. John takes a step forward toward his wife–their bodies flush against each other, with him now towering over her as she looks up at him. He tugs at her robe’s bow, and pushes it off of her shoulders as it loosens. Margaret is wearing a new silk nightgown with a ruched empire bodice to support her full round breasts, with a generously proportioned neckline that now falls over one of her bare creamy shoulders. John cannot resist and he gathers her to him even as he nibbles upon the soft skin revealed to him.

Then Margaret quickly pushes his robe off of John’s shoulders and John lets it puddle at JohnisRichardArmitageasLucasNorthinSpooks9Promo-45Mar2913ranetCropTatoosRemovedGratianaLovelaceFlipClrDrkClr2his feet as he stands bare chested before his wife. Her hands gently skim his muscular clavicle and shoulders as they move upward to wrap around his neck and pull him down to her for a kiss. There is nothing shy and demure about Margaret’s kisses to her husband after five years of marriage. She is a well loved and loving wife. She wants and desires her husband as much as he wants and desires her. The heat from John’s smouldering gaze could warm several households [(5) right].

John tugs further at her night dress–exposing both of her shoulders to his searing touch. Margaret holds her hands in front of her chest briefly, before lowering them and letting her night dress fall to the floor at her feet. Her beauteous womanly curves for his eyes alone–as his handsomeness is for her eyes alone. John would fall to his knees to adore her at this moment, but he would much rather get her into bed as quickly as possible. So he lifts her up into his arms and carries her to their bed. After gently laying her in the middle of it, John peels off his night pants and slides into bed next to her.

They instantly entangle their arms and legs in their languorous kissing and caressing, John leaves no part of his wife Margaret unadorned this night. Indeed, he cannot help himself when he kisses her loveliness as he caresses her, and she arches her back toward him in seeking the pleasures that he gives her. Her hands explore his body’s sinews, teasing him so mercilously, such that John guides his loving Margaret in their bodies’ fusion of joining together in loving tenderness.

Some time later that evening, after Margaret’s trembling ecstasy is joined in chorus with John’s shuddering sensual release do these two lovers lie sated entwined in each others’ loving arms for their nightly rest.

With no need to arise early, John and Margaret prefer to linger in their bed this early Saturday morning. And John intends to adore his wife so completely this morn so as to eclipse their romantic interlude last evening. And John raises a very wicked eyebrow as he rolls her to lie on top of him.

John: “Engaging a nanny for the children was brilliant of you, My Love. We should have done that ages ago. Ha ha ha ha ha!”

Margaret: “Ha ha ha! I agree.”NandSepi4-340RichardArmitageasJTandDanielaDenbyAsheasMHKissingMar2512ranetcrop

Then John and Margaret kiss each other with such loving abandon [(6) right], that their morning will be quite taken up with their romantic interlude.

However, there is still another couple in Milton–and associated with Marlborough Mills–who have yet to reach their own understanding of love.

To be continued with Chapter 78

 

“N&S: JT Love Lessons”, Ch. 77 References, August 27, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #624)

1) “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” story logo: Richard Armitage as John Thornton and Daniela Denby-Ashe in the 2004 BBC period drama North & South, was found at richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/nands/album/episode3/ns3-110.jpg ; For more information about this wonderful 2004 BBC miniseries adaptation of Elizabeth’s Gaskell’s story North & South, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_&_South_%28TV_serial%29

2) Audrey Grace Thornton almost four year old image is Tete d’Etude l’Oiseau by William Adolphe Bouguereau found at http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/William-Adolphe_Bouguereau#mediaviewer/File:William-Adolphe_Bouguereau_%281825-1905%29_-_T%C3%AAte_d%27Etude_l%27Oiseau_%281867%29.jpg

3) Margaret image is Daniela Denby-Ashe in the 2004 BBC drama North & South found at http://northandsouth2004.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Margaret21.jpg

4) Image of John’s and Margaret’s bedroom was found inTheBuccaneers1995epi4_vlcsnap-10h02m10s187_Mar1413GratianaLovelaceCap

5) JohnImageisRichardArmitageasLucasNorthinSpooks9Promo-45Mar2913ranetCropTatoosRemovedGratianaLovelaceFlipClrDrk

6) John Thornton is portrayed by Richard Armitage and Margaret Hale is portrayed by Daniela Denby-Ashe in the BBC’s 2004 drama North & South found at richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/nands/album/episode4/ns4-340.jpg

Link to Previous Ch. 76:

http://gratianads90.wordpress.com/2014/08/24/ns-john-thornton-love-lessons-ch-76-pg-13-arrivals-and-new-beginnings-august-24-2014-gratiana-lovelace-post-623/

Posted in "N&S: John Thornton Love Lessons", Drama, Family, Fan Fiction, John Thornton, Love and Relationships, North & South, Period Drama, Richard Armitage, Romance, Something About Love | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 76 (PG-13): Arrivals and New Beginnings, August 24, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #623)

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 76 (PG-13): Arrivals and New Beginnings, August 24, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #623)

aaaN&SJohnThorntonLoveLessonsFanFicCoverDec2913GratianaLovelace-256x401An original fan fiction copyrighted by Gratiana Lovelace;   All rights reserved; Based on the Elizabeth Gaskell novel, North & South and its 2004 BBC adaptation; No copyright infringement intended)

[I will illustrate my story using my dream cast from the 2004 BBC production of “North & South” and other actors for additional characters:   Richard Armitage for John Thornton, Daniela Denby-Ashe for Margaret Hale, Lesley Manville for Mrs. Maria Hale, Tim Pigott-Smith for Mr. Richard Hale, Sinead Cusack for Mrs. Hannah Thornton Ogilvy, Jo Joyner for Fiona/Fanny Thornton Ogilvy, Brendan Coyle for Nicholas Higgins, Graham McTavish as Dr. Cameron Ogilvy, Holliday Grainger for Angharad Ogilvy MacIntosh, Simon Woods for Baird Ogilvy, and Emma Ashton as Mrs. Dillard, John Light as Henry Lennox, Tim Faraday as Watson, Gillian Anderson at Carlotta Quint Watson, Jeremy Northam as Dr. Miles Houghton, Gerard Butler as Lord Jamie Ogilvy, Juliette Lewis as Lady Thistle Ogilvy, and Helena Bonham Carter as Brigid Gordon, etc.] [(1) story logo]

Author’s Mature Content Note: “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” is a story with mature themes of love and relationships set within a period drama of the 1850’s. As such there will be heartfelt moments of love and sensuality (S)–as well as other dramatic emotions (D), including some violence (V)–and I will rate those chapters accordingly. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide, then please do not read that chapter. This is my disclaimer.

Author’s Recap from the previous chapter: John and Margaret meet the little baby boy and girl that they hoped to adopt from Cameron and Hannah’s Airlie Castle orphanage. Uncertain at first about each other, John and little Caty warm to each other–well, thaw. Then the newly expanded Thornton Family spends the next few days at Airlie Castle getting even better acquainted in familiar surroundings for Caty before they all return home to Milton. Caty is less fearful and shy around John now that she sees him interact with other children. And in partially renaming their newly adopted children, John and Margaret want a way for their baby boy and toddler daughter to retain part of their Scottish heritage, while also embracing their new family. So it is a newly expanded Thornton family that returns to Milton the following Sunday–John and Margaret, Audrey Grace, Catriona “Caty” Maria Thornton, and baby Douglas John Thornton.

 

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 76 (PG-13): Arrivals and New Beginnings

The train ride from Angus, Scotland to their new home in Milton, England this mid April 1855 is the first for little two year old newly named Catriona Caty Maria Thornton and her one month old baby brother now named Douglas John Thornton. And the wonders of train travel–with everything moving so fast past their train compartment window fascinates little Catriona. However John and Margaret Thornton’s almost four year old daughter Audrey Grace takes the homecoming with a new baby brother and new little sister in her stride–afterall, she is her usually unflappable parents’ child.

And the Thornton’s are not alone. Since baby Douglas is only one month old, the Thornton family is also accompanied by his Scottish wet nurse [(2)] the widowed Brigid Gordon and her own almost weaned seven month old baby boy Arthur Gordon who will also seek a new life for themselves in Milton after her disappointment. John and Margaret are only slightly aware of Brigid not having a father for her child–though they were spared the details from their stepfather/father-in-law Cameron. Of course, the baby had a father or it wouldn’t be in the world. It is just that the father was already spoken for–by his wife. But Brigid is a plucky Scottish lass of twenty-five–practically ancient for having only her first child from the Scottish village where she comes from.

The scene at the Milton Train Station platform on Monday is a bit chaotic to say the least. The incoming passenger train with the Thornton’s on it had to wait a quarter hour before it could arrive–it sitting on a siding track, waiting for the goods train [(3)] to off load and pick up supplies at Milton and then continue on its way West. So when the Thornton’s passenger train finally arrives at Milton Station, the platform is piled high with goods yet to be picked up or stored until they can be loaded onto a different train bound for another city.NandSPromo17RichardArmiageasJohnThorntonMaskCropBigMar2512ranetGrati

John gives his luggage tickets to a train station porter–whom he is familiar with due to their frequent traveling to Scotland–so the porter will collect them from the freight car for him. Then John [(4) right] stands just outside his open train compartment door and spies a familiar face of a man striding toward him.

John: “Higgins! Good to see you man!   But why are you not at Marlborough Mills?” John asks in a concerned tone.

Higgins: Crossing his arms across his chest, Higgins replies in mock anger. “And would yo have anyone but me see the Mill shipment off to its destination this fine day?”

John: Breaking into a smile, John shakes his Senior Overseer’s hand. “No! Of course! I had not realized that we were that close to finishing the Cheltenham order.”

Higgins: He looks at the master slyly. “Well, I canvassed the mill workers to see who would welcome extra pence in their pockets for working double shifts the four days you were in Scotland.   Not surprisingly, nary a one turned down the offer.”

John: “Hmmm. I trust that you checked with our payroll clerk Dunn that the Mill can stand the extra pounds this overtime will cost?” John raises a business sharpened eyebrow.

Higgins: “Not to worry. The incentive from the buyer for early delivery of the shipment of cotton more than covers the extra pay to the workers–you could buy a new carriage with the profit.” Higgins boasts.

John: “Well then, I am delighted!   And with my expanding family, I will need a larger carriage.” John smiles and reaches in to his private train compartment and pulls little Catriona into his arms, situating her on his forearm.

Catriona looks with wide eyes upon Higgins–almost meeting him eye to eye from her perch on her new papa’s arm. These days, Higgins clothes are neat and tidy–him being the Higgins-isBrendanCoyle-asBates-inDowntonAbbey-article-Sept1611_306x423_Aug2413DailyMailcouk-sizedMarlborough Mills Senior Overseer–a position of distinction that few simple folk like him can attain. Nicholas [(5) right] is dressed in a plain white shirt and jacket with a vest and a small cravat–he is even wearing a bowler with his over coat, making him look even more dapper. Higgins’ shoes are like new–well made hand me downs from John Thornton, who is Higgins same shoe size, though Higgins is quite a bit shorter in height than the Master of Marlborough Mills. And Higgins’ ready smile disarms the still quite shy Catriona,who smiles at him then quickly buries her face into her new father’s neck for comfort. John pats her back and sways his torso a bit as if to rock her comfortingly. John is making progress in his relationship with his new daughter.

Higgins: “What’s this? Miss Audrey Grace has not shrunk during her stay in Scotland.” Higgins smiles jovially at the small child in John’s arms.

Audrey Grace: Exiting the compartment clutching her small reticule containing her linen handkerchief and a pence given to her by her grandparents Nana Hannah and Grandpa Cameron for candies, Audrey Grace chirps. “I’m still big, Mr. Higgins! See?” Audrey Grace twirls around and smiles at him.

Higgins: “And so you are.” Higgins looks with confusion between the small child in John Thornton’s arms and Thornton’s daughter standing before him. “I thought you were going to see about a baby boy?”

John: “We did.” John states cryptically with a knowing smile.

Then Margaret alights from the compartment carrying the said baby boy.

Margaret: “Hello, Nicholas! I see that you have met Audrey Grace’s new little sister, Catriona, known as Caty. And here is their baby brother, Douglas.”

Margaret smiles joyfully holding the sleeping baby in her arms. John puffs up pridefully. Audrey Grace scrunches up her nose and lifts her shoulders in a gleeful way.

Audrey Grace: “I’m a big sister!”

Higgins: “As I see!” Then Higgins taps Thornton’s other arm with the back of his fingers. “Thornton! You have outdone me! I had but two girls–now one with my Bessie’s passing.” Margaret’s face saddens at the mention of her late friend Bessie. “And now you have a son, too!”SleepingBabyJun0514MSOfcClipArt-sized

John smiles at Margaret and their baby boy Douglas [(6) right], then at Audrey Grace, and finally at little Catriona in his arms.

John: “We are blessed!”

Then the last of their party exits the compartment, when Brigid Gordon steps onto the Milton Train Station platform with her seven month old baby son Arthur in her arms.

Brigid: “Ooh! I was neverrr so glad to be frrreed frrrom sitting down in me whole life!” She Brigid-isHelena+Bonham+Carter+helena_Aug2414lastfm-sized-sepiahuffs out gratefully as she smooths out the skirt of her brown traveling dress of a servant that she some how manages to make look sultry. Though not of a station where her innate beauty would be appreciated fully, Brigid [(7) right] is womanly curvy and she has a cordial way about her which people find affable–which in turn, makes people find her pleasing.

Baby Arthur: “Mmm naaaa wollll!” Baby Arthur flails his arms about as he sees the bustling train station platform scene before him.

Higgins eyes go wider. Then a pleasantly surprised smile creeps onto his face as he appreciatively gazes at the petite buxom woman before him. He is transfixed.

John: “Higgins, this is Mrs. Brigid Gordon. She is … she is …” John finds that he can’t say the words wet nurse as he pinkens up.

Margaret: “Oh John!” She smiles amusingly at her husband. “Nicholas, Brigid will help me look after the younger children now that we have three times as many as before.”

Higgins: “Aye!”   Then thinking someone is missing, he asks delicately under his breath to Margaret. “Will yo be needing Dr. Houghton to suggest a wet nurse for the baby?”

Having overheard Higgins, the ever forthright Brigid speaks up.
Brigid: “That’ll be me, Sirrr. Me baby Arrrthurrr is almost weaned, but I still have plenty of milk forrr the wee one therrre.” Brigid casts her eye over to baby Douglas as she tilts her head.

With the mention of wet nursing, Higgins attention is thus drawn to the Brigid Gordon’s full bosom encased in her traveling suit that is anything but demure, he nods slowly as he unconsciously wets his lips.

Higgins: “Ah! How fortunate, Mrs. Gordon.”

Nicholas smiles and goes to shake Brigid’s free hand. But Brigid just stares at him. Women of Scotland are even less inclined to shake hands–let alone touch–a man who is not of their acquaintance. There is an uncomfortable silence as Brigid looks slightly askance at Mr. and Mrs. Thornton. Simple folk she may be, but some courtesies should still be observed.

John: “Oh! Pardon me! Mrs. Gordon, This is Nicholas Higgins. He is my Senior Overseer at Marlborough Mills. He is my right hand man.”

Higgins: “Ma’am.” Higgins nods his head respectfully as his hand pinches the brim of his hat at his forehead through courteous habit. Brigid’s head tips down imperceptibly in acknowledgement.

Margaret: “And how are Mary and the children, Nicholas?”

Higgins: “They are fine, growing like weeds.” He beams proudly. “Only the littlest two are still at home with Mary now. The rest have all gone to school or work. And of course, Thomas is at college.”

John: “Thomas has a fine mind.” John nods–him fondly remembering the young boy whom he helped read the word animal when the boy was waiting for Nicholas to get off work at the mill one night–and the young man that Thomas has become who now enjoys one of the first Marlborough Mills college sponsorships.

Brigid looks at Higgins impassively, but with a frown threatening to erupt. At first, she had thought that Higgins looked promising–with his kind face and his connection to Mr. Thornton speaking well of him. But that notion is squelched when she hears a Mary mentioned–no more married men for her.

Noticing her good friend Nicholas’ interest in Brigid–and Brigid’s questioning glance at Nicholas–Margaret kindly relays some pertinent information to them both.

Margaret: “The cottage must seem lonely with your daughter Mary moving away with her new husband and taking the little ones with her.” Nicholas nods. Then Margaret turns to Brigid. “You see, five years ago, Nicholas and Mary had taken in six children whose parents had died. Now that Mary is wed herself, she brought the children to her new home since she is, in essence, their mother now. And like you, Brigid, Nicholas is widowed.”

Brigid stiffens, which everyone interprets as sorrow. But in reality, Brigid is not a widow and she feels uncomfortable with the lie. But she must lie to protect her son’s future–so he is not thought of as a bastard child. However, Brigid feels that her little baby son Arthur is her very greatest blessing–as she is to him.

Higgins: “Oh! My sympathies to you Mrs. Gordon. Losing one’s spouse is difficult–and you with a little one. My Sharon has been gone these past ten years.” He winces sentimentally.

Brigid: “Thank you. And you have my sympathies, Mrrr. Higgins.” Brigid smiles kindly at him.

John: “Well!   We had best get back home to Thornton Manor to lay the little ones down to their rest for their naps.” He pats the sleeping Catriona in his arms.

Audrey Grace: “But I’m not tired, Papa.” Audrey Grace whines a bit–a certain indicator to her parents that she is tired.

Margaret: “But you will be.” Margaret caresses her daughter’s cheek with a knowing smile.

Higgins: “I have brought the carriage with me to take you home in.” He smiles warmly at the Thornton’s. Then he motions to the porter waiting with the Thornton luggage. “I will see to loading your luggage.” Then he walks ahead of them to attend to that.

John: “Then let us away to home.” John gestures with his free arm, collecting the assemblage of weary family travelers with him.

So the expanded Thornton family plus three–Brigid and her baby son Arthur, and Higgins–head back to Thornton Manor from the Milton Train Station. All are glad to be home, with little Catriona and Baby Douglas in their new home. After a few days of settling in–with little Catriona sleeping in Audrey Grace’s bedroom at her insistence so that Caty won’t be scared at night all alone by herself in a bed chamber, and Brigid tending to both her seven month old son Arthur and one month old baby Douglas as his wet nurse–Thornton Manor begins to settle into its new expanded family routine.

To be continued with Chapter 77

 

“N&S: JT Love Lessons”, Ch. 76 References, August 24, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #623)

1) “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” story logo: Richard Armitage as John Thornton and Daniela Denby-Ashe in the 2004 BBC period drama North & South, was found at richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/nands/album/episode3/ns3-110.jpg ; For more information about this wonderful 2004 BBC miniseries adaptation of Elizabeth’s Gaskell’s story North & South, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_&_South_%28TV_serial%29

2) Babies whose mother does not breast feed them herself, needed what were called “wet nurses” in the time before there were baby formulas; for more information, please visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wet_nurse

3) For information about the British railway system, please visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_freight_in_Great_Britain

4) Cropped and masked image of John Thornton (as portrayed by Richard Armitage) from the BBC’s 2004 production of North & South, Promo pix 18 was found at richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/nands/album/NandSPromo/album/NandSPromo-18.jpg

5)  Higgins image is Brendan Coyle portraying John Bates in Downton Abbey found at http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2011/09/16/article-0-0DE5482C00000578-348_306x423.jpg

6) Image representing one month old baby boy Douglas sleeping is an MS Office Clip Art stock image.

7) Image representing the Scottish Brigid Gordon is that of actress Helena Bonham Carter found at http://userserve-ak.last.fm/serve/500/34779527/Helena+Bonham+Carter+helena.jpg

 

Link to Previous Ch. 75:
http://gratianads90.wordpress.com/2014/08/16/ns-john-thornton-love-lessons-ch-75-pg-13-finding-our-way-to-loving-from-the-heart-part-2-august-16-2014-gratiana-lovelace-aaary-post-621/

Posted in "N&S: John Thornton Love Lessons", Creative Writing, Family, Fan Fiction, Fathers, John Thornton, Love and Relationships, Period Drama, Richard Armitage, Romance, Something About Love | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

43rd Birthday Wishes for Richard Crispin Armitage, August 22, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #622)

A facebook friend of mine named Sueli shared again the image (right) that I had earlier shared from EsquireUK2013--RichardArmitageinMirrorAug2214RAFranceFB-sizedRichard Armitage France’s Facebook album (From the Esquire UK 2013 Portrait shoot video).

And Sueli asked what we would do to be with Richard Armitage or any one of his characters? Eschewing the stalker and pact with the devil possibilities (Ha!), I interpreted her question to mean, what we might give him.

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????And since it is the exquisitely talented British actor Richard Crispin Armitage’s 43rd birthday today (my graphic left; RA image from www.RichardArmitageNet.com; background image http://www.dreamstime.com), below is a list of gifts that I subjectively think that he might find appealing as birthday gifts (*facetious/humor* alert)–in the Wine, Women, and Song vernacular:

1) Wine: Richard Armitage the man loves wine (image, right)–or so he tells us. It is a ArmitageWines--bottles_Aug1314armitagewinescom-sizedveritable feast for the senses for RA opening up the bottle, pouring the liquid into a glass with some sloshing to and fro (visually and aurally), sniffing the wine’s fragrant aroma, sipping it briefly as a foretaste of what is to come, and then gulping it down like lemonade (Harry/Dibley gif below courtesy of kelbel75 at her blog NoWhere in Particular’s recent sweetly funny post on RA Fanning). Just kidding–about the foretaste. Ha!).

2) Women: Hmmm. Per my friend’s challenge, I would risk getting carpal tunnel  RichardArmitage2003PromoFeetAug2214JoniasCut-sizedsyndrome by giving RA as Guy/various John’s/Lucas/Harry, etc., an all body massage from tip to toe–working every muscle group in his wonderful neck, chiseled jaw, broad shoulders, muscular arms, large and graceful hands, massive torso, equally massive back, impressive legs, and swoonworthy feet (right) of RA’s, etc. And there would definitely be my fingers running through his slightly longer than now hair. Purrrrr!

My then 93 year old granny loved my massages that I gave her when I was a teenager! Maybe RA would, too. Ha! Though RA is 50 years younger than my granny was–and he is quite a bit more …. Well, more. Sighhh! I would have to adapt my massage technique–since I wouldn’t have to be quite so gentle with him, yet, I would need to conserve my strength for the duration of the massage. *Kkkhhh!* But it would be a relaxing experience–for both of us. *wink*

3) Song:  And finally, what is a birthday without a birthday song? So for a blast from the past, below is the first RA Fan video that I ever made–for RA’s 40th birthday–a retrospective of his roles before The Hobbit juggernaut took off, and became three films instead of only two films (Ha!):

So, all I have left to say is:

Dearest Richard,

Thank you for your gifts of acting and storytelling artistry that you share with us. Thank you for your professionalism, kindness, and compassion for others–be they colleagues or fans. And thank you for setting an excellent gentlemanly example for others in how to conduct oneself as a public figure and role model.

You touch our hearts and inspire us to challenge ourselves personally and creatively. My husband and I will make a donation to the Childline charity at your Just Giving site in your honor for your birthday.

May your 43rd birthday be all that you hope it to be–however, and whenever you get to celebrate it, perhaps on your day off on Sunday, with family and friends. I wish you a most wonderful 43rd birthday–and, I wish for you every happiness that you wish for yourself.

Love, Hugs, & Cheers! Gratiana

Posted in Birthday, Blessings, Charities, Family, Fangurling, Gifs, Giving, Graphic, Harry Kennedy, Portraits, Richard Armitage, Something About Love, The Hobbit, Video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 75 (PG-13): Finding Our Way to Loving from the Heart, Part 2, August 16, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #621)

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 75 (PG-13): Finding Our Way to Loving from the Heart, Part 2, August 16, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #621)

aaaN&SJohnThorntonLoveLessonsFanFicCoverDec2913GratianaLovelace-256x401An original fan fiction copyrighted by Gratiana Lovelace;   All rights reserved; Based on the Elizabeth Gaskell novel, North & South and its 2004 BBC adaptation; No copyright infringement intended)

[I will illustrate my story using my dream cast from the 2004 BBC production of “North & South” and other actors for additional characters:   Richard Armitage for John Thornton, Daniela Denby-Ashe for Margaret Hale, Lesley Manville for Mrs. Maria Hale, Tim Pigott-Smith for Mr. Richard Hale, Sinead Cusack for Mrs. Hannah Thornton Ogilvy, Jo Joyner for Fiona/Fanny Thornton Ogilvy, Brendan Coyle for Nicholas Higgins, Graham McTavish as Dr. Cameron Ogilvy, Holliday Grainger for Angharad Ogilvy MacIntosh, Simon Woods for Baird Ogilvy, and Emma Ashton as Mrs. Dillard, John Light as Henry Lennox, Tim Faraday as Watson, Gillian Anderson at Carlotta Quint Watson, Jeremy Northam as Dr. Miles Houghton, Gerard Butler as Lord Jamie Ogilvy, and Juliette Lewis as Lady Thistle Ogilvy, etc.] [(1) story logo]

Author’s Mature Content Note: “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” is a story with mature themes of love and relationships set within a period drama of the 1850’s. As such there will be heartfelt moments of love and sensuality (S)–as well as other dramatic emotions (D), including some violence (V)–and I will rate those chapters accordingly. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide, then please do not read that chapter. This is my disclaimer.

Author’s Recap from the previous chapter: Luncheon at Airlie Castle in Angus, Scotland this Thursday, April 9th, 1855 was a bit subdued–what with John Thornton longing for a son or sons like Lord Jamie Ogilvy has. And John still treads lightly about whether he and Margaret will adopt just the Douglas boy baby, or also the baby Douglas’ two year old sister Catriona. But this afternoon’s events will prove to be the deciding factors.

 

“N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons”, Ch. 75 (PG-13): Finding Our Way to Loving from the Heart, Part 2

Around one o’clock after luncheon at Airlie Castle in Angus, Scotland this sunny and breezy Thursday, April 9th, 1855, Lord Jamie and Lady Thistle commandeer the children of the extended Thornton-Ogilvy-Ogilvy family for a little outside play on the back garden’s extensive golf putting greens. There are 18 greens of varying difficulties and hazards–some hazards natural like undulating land, some hazards man made, as in small rows of boxwood hedges. It is a whimsical design based on a similar but less elaborate putting greens layout from his childhood that Cameron Lord Airlie created for the amusement of his son, the little three and a half year old Lord Gavin.

So Gavin takes his little but four months older neice’s Audrey Grace’s hand and they join Viscount Hamish, Lady Blythe, and little James to try out their luck–even as the older three to eight year old children of the Airlie Castle orphanage also join them in play. Gavin’s nanny Pims follows dutifully behind him, every watchful should his sniffles return and he needs to be whisked inside at the express orders of Hannah Lady Airlie. The air is cool, but not chilly. Gavin’s mother Hannah only relented to let him play outdoors because all of the other children were going–and Pims would bring him back inside if needed.

And the golf putters the children use are an L-shaped stick made out of a soft wood that can hit the lightweight tightly woven twig balls with ease–and greater safety. The game of golf is typically associated with Scotland and was made more popular throughout the British isles beginning in 1852 with their majesties Queen Victoria and Prince Albert built their home Balmoral in Scotland [(2)].

Once the children have left the dining room, Cameron and Hannah smile at John and Margaret–gesturing to guide them up to the children’s nursery to spend time with the baby boy Douglas and his sister Catriona, Caty. As John and Margaret walk up the stairs, they begin to tense up. John is worried that he won’t be able to warm to the children. Margaret is worried that John will only want the baby boy, when she also wants to adopt his two year old sister Caty. Their family would instantly almost double in size–but happily so. John’s mother Hannah is worried that John and Margaret are worrying too much about themselves when they should be more focused on the children’s needs. And Cameron? He doesn’t worry–worrying is a useless time wasting activity in Cameron’s mind. Cameron sanguinely thinks that either John and Margaret will agree to adopt both children, or they will not. It is as simple as that.

At the slightly ajar door to the nursery, John stops and stares at the door. Margaret stops and she squeezes her husband’s hand in hers and she looks up at him wonderingly, even as he gazes down at her.

Margaret: “John?” Margaret asks hesitantly.

John: “I’m nervous.” John sighs sheepishly.

Hannah blanches, then does one of her own nervous unconscious mouth tchs as she glances over at her husband Cameron.

Hannah: “Tch!”

Cameron and Hannah have seen this uncertainty in prospective parents before.   And they know that time and interactions with the children are what help the right parents and children find each other.

Cameron: “Shall we?” Cameron fixes his indulgent, but impatient look at John. John looks at Cameron. Cameron rolls his eyes, then he tries to puncture John’s mood with an analogy. “Ach! Laddie, if god had taken this long to decide on Adam and Eve in the Garrrden of Eden, I darrre to say that the worrrld might not belong to men, but to the animals.”

Hannah: “Kkkhhh!” She coughs to get her husband’s attention and then fixes her gaze upon him with a raised eyebrow.

Cameron: “Well! To men and women.” Cameron tilts his head in acquiescence to his beloved wife. Hannah smiles at him and nods approvingly.

As they walk inside the large and airy nursery bedchamber, John feels that the room feels almost empty without the boisterousness of the three year olds. Though the room has homey touches of crocheted blankets, stuffed bears, dolls, and other toys, and a cheerful red, green, and yellow Ogilvy tartan color scheme.Catriona-imageis1860sGermanChildrensFasion-byJ_Nitschner_Portrait_F_Keban_Aug0114wiki-sized-crop

Inside the nursery, two year old Catriona is gently patting her baby brother’s tummy as he sleeps. She smiles at him [(3) right].  He is her baby brother.

Then while standing out in the bedchamber hallway, John & Margaret and Hannah & Cameron hear a wailing cry from within the nursery.

Catriona:   “Nooooo! Baby is mine, mine!” The two year old girl shrieks as the nurse attendant tries to pull her away from baby boy Douglas’ crib. Caty has lost much–her mother, her father, and her grandparents. She cannot also lose her brother if they are adopted separately.

John and Margaret rush into the nursery to see the nurse gently trying to pry Catriona’s fingers off of the crib. Hannah and Cameron also walk in, but stand back.

Nurse: “Ye must come away, Caty–and let yourrr brrrother sleep.” The nurse says softly as she pulls her away from the crib.

Catriona: “Waaaaa! Waaaa!” Caty sobs with tears running down her cheeks as she holds her arms out yearningly for her baby brother.

Margaret: Margaret rushes over to Caty and takes her into her arms as she sits in the rocking chair while John stands by. “What is wrong my little sweetheart?”

The nurse steps back to allow John and Margaret to interact with the children as she has been told by Hannah Lady Airlie earlier they wanted to do.

Catriona: Caty breathes quickly and speaks only in gasping gulps between her mewling cries and she points at her baby brother in the crib. “Baby … mine. Mama … baby mine.” Caty buries her face into Margaret’s neck again.

John: “Hhhh. Poor little thing.” John says caringly, moved by the little girl’s distress. And John tries to pat Caty’s head.

Caty’s head jerks to one side as she sees the tall and imposing John Thornton towering over her. Caty buries her face into Margaret’s neck in fright as she continues to cry.

Margaret: “John. You’re scaring Caty again. You’re too tall. Sit down, please.” Margaret shakes her head with a pleading look on her face. Margaret desperately wants this to work–she and John adopting both the baby boy Douglas and his two year old sister Catriona.

John looks around for a chair, but finds none nearby. So he sits on the end of one of the low to the floor toddler’s cot beds–thus reducing his height by half–with his knees up near his chin.

John: John mumbles under his breath. “The other children in the family aren’t afraid of me. They like me.”

Cameron: “John, They starrrted out as babies and they didn’t know any betterrr.”   John looks at Cameron, clearly indicating that he feels insulted. So Cameron back peddles his remarks. “What I meant to say is that the bairrrns gradually grew up knowing ye–such that yourrr height did na frighten them.”

John: “Very well.” John gives Cameron a half hearted nod.

Hannah: “Let me give you the baby to hold, John.” Hannah’s mother suggests helpfully. She hopes that if Catriona sees the baby being soothed by John that she will be less afraid of him. Hannah picks up the baby boy Douglas from his bassinette crib and places him in her son John’s arms.

John: “Thank you, Mother.” John smiles at her, then he gazes upon the little baby boy in SleepingBabyJun0514MSOfcClipArt-sizedhis arms [(4) right] as he gently rocks him to and fro.

Baby boy Douglas is napping after his feeding and diaper changing. He is quite the happy baby–no matter who is holding him–and he makes cooing sounds in his sleep.

Baby boy Douglas: “Mmm, mmm. Hhhhh!” A large yawn escapes the baby’s mouth and he moves his little arms as he yawns.

John: “He is so precious!” John sighs. “I remember when Audrey Grace was this small.” He smiles lovingly at his wife Margaret.

Margaret smiles in remembrance, too. Then Caty tugs at Margaret’s blouse and Margaret focuses her attention on the little girl.

Caty: “Mama, Baby mine. Give back. … please.” She pleads in a tiny voice. Little Caty had seen another baby leave in the two weeks she has been here–and she doesn’t want to lose her brother.

The adults look at each other, feeling that that are at an impasse, for now. Then they hear soft footsteps and turn to see both little Lord Gavin and his neice Audrey Rose walking toward them and wearing fuzzy sweaters. Gavin’s nanny Pims stands at the nursery doorway at attention.

Hannah: “Gavin, did you take a chill? Maybe you should stay inside and play today.” Hannah caresses her little son’s face. It is neither too warm with a fever, nor too cold from being outside.

Cameron:   “Hhhh!” Cameron sighs while standing behind his son Gavin–with his hands on Gavin’s shoulders. Cameron is the physician, but it seems that where the health of their son is concerned, his wife Hannah overrules him most of the time with her cautiousness.

Gavin: “Nay, Mama. Me niece Audrey Grrrace was chilly.” Gavin points his thumb accusatorially. He so hopes that his Mama won’t make him stay inside and miss all the golfing fun.

Audrey Grace: “Was not!” It is just that Audrey Grace had to attend to a personal matter. And, well, she was a little chilly.

Gavin: “Yes, ye werrre!” Gavin gazes at his niece with a puzzled expression. For why did she put on a sweater if she isn’t feeling chilly?

John: “Audrey Grace? Gavin?” John says in a deeply commanding yet still soft as silk voice.” “We must not wake the baby.” John continues to rock baby boy Douglas in his arms.

Gavin: Walking over to his brother, Gavin asks. “Arrre ye adopting the baby boy, John?”

Audrey Grace walks over to her Mama, Margaret’s side. She wants that question answered, too.

John: “Um?” John blanches and looks at Margaret. Then they both look at little Caty.

Margaret:   “Actually, we would like to adopt both the baby boy and his sister Caty.”

Margaret looks caringly at her young daughter, Audrey Grace–and she can see the wheels turning in her daughter’s mind.

John: “Do you like that idea, Audrey Grace?” John hesitantly asks his daughter. Though John and Margaret dearly want these two children to join their family, they must also consider their daughter Audrey Grace’s feelings.

Audrey Grace: She thinks for a minutes, then Audrey Grace responds resolutely. “I do, Papa. Thank you!”

Audrey Grace [(5) right] then leans against her Papa’s arm and smiles up at him–lays her AudreyGrace-almost-four-image-is-Tête_d'Etude_l'Oiseau_(1867)-byWilliam-Adolphe_Bouguereau_(1825-1905)_Jul2614wiki-crop2head on his shoulder–as he holds the baby. John turns his head and places a kiss on the top of Audrey Grace’s head.

Little Catriona has been watching this exchange with widening eyes. And she makes one last attempt to stake her claim to her baby brother as she reaches out her arms to touch him. And John leans toward Catriona to allow her to do that. This is closer than she has allowed in the past. Gavin walks over to little Catriona. He has played with her from time to time during her two week stay.

Gavin: Gavin gives little Catriona a hug. “I’m glad forrr you and yourrr brrrotherrr, Caty. Me brother John is a nice boy.” Gavin pats his brother’s cheek.

Cameron: “Kkkhh!” Cameron guffaws at his little son Gavin calling his brother John a boy.

Catriona:   With a spark of curiosity, Catriona quizzically asks Gavin. “Brother?” For she knows that the baby is her brother.

Gavin: “That’s right. Gavin takes Catriona’s hand and places it on the baby’s cheek. “The baby is yourrr brother.”

Catriona nods in partially understanding that the word brother means she has a connection to the baby. Then Gavin places his hand on his brother John’s check–in the same way that Catriona’s hand is on her brother’s cheek.

Gavin: “John is me brrrotherrr.” Gavin smiles up at his big brother John, who smiles right back at him.

Catriona: Catriona looks thoughtfully at Gavin. Then she looks questioningly at Margaret. “Mama?”

Margaret: “Yes, sweetheart?” Margaret inquires of little Catriona.

Catriona still can’t quite comprehend what is happening to her, to she and her baby brother–that they are about to be adopted by a family. But Audrey Grace understands–and approves, wholeheartedly.

Audrey Grace: “Yippee!” Audrey Grace squeals with delight. “Thank you Mama! Thank you Papa!” Audrey Grace hugs her parents equally. Then she hugs Caty and kisses her cheek. “I always wanted a sister and a brother. We will be sisters.”

Catriona’s face brightens with seeing the other children’s cheerfulness. Something good must be happening. A small smile threatens to appear on Caty’s face.

Having stayed silent for a little while–to let Catriona get used to him–John now speaks to his wife, then to his daughters.

John: John stands up from the cot. “Margaret, please take baby Douglas for a few minutes.” Margaret nods and she stands to receive the baby from John, then she sits on the cot next to the standing Catriona. Catriona looks at her sleeping baby brother and pats his tummy. John sits down in the rocking chair. “Audrey Grace, Please come sit on my knee.”

Audrey Grace: “Yes, Papa!” Audrey Grace eagerly complies and sits on her father’s left knee.

John: “Caty?”   John opens his other arm wide.

Audrey Grace: “Come on!” Audrey Grace motions eagerly.

Gavin: “Come on Caty. I will lift ye up.” Gavin takes Catriona’s hand and walks her the few feet over to John. Then he lifts Caty up onto John’s knee. Caty sits there awkwardly at first.

Audrey Grace leans back into her Papa’s embrace as he begins to rock. Then Audrey Grace reaches across her Papa’s vest and jacket covered chest to guide Caty to lean back into her Papa’s embrace.   Then Audrey Grace smiles at her new sister and continues to hold her hand as their Papa rocks them gently in the rocking chair. Both girls soon fall asleep to the steady rhythm. And John and Margaret exchange relieved gazes at each other. Gavin nods his head and his Mama and Papa guide him back to his bedroom for own his afternoon nap.

About thirty minutes later, John and Margaret decide to take all three sleeping children to their guest bed chamber. And the Airlie Castle staff help with moving the children’s crib, cot bed and belongings into the Thornton’s guest bed chamber. They want Caty to see John-isRichardArmitage-andMargaret-isDanielaDenby-Ashe-inNorth&South-Epi4-17h54m34s7_Nov1013GratianaLovelaceCap-hi-res-brt2-cropvisually that both she and her brother are being adopted by John and Margaret–they will stay together. And John and Margaret both feel like they are on the cusp of new beginnings for their family as they kiss [(6) right] in loving tenderness as they sit on the sette in their bed chamber and sweetly holding each other’s hands.

The newly expanded Thornton Family spends the next few days at Airlie Castle getting even better acquainted in familiar surroundings for Caty before they all return home to Milton. Caty is less fearful and shy around John now that she sees him interact with other children. And in partially renaming their newly adopted children, John and Margaret want a way for their baby boy and toddler daughter to retain part of their Scottish heritage, while also embracing their new family. So it is a newly expanded Thornton family that returns to Milton the following Sunday–John and Margaret, Audrey Grace, Catriona “Caty” Maria Thornton, and baby Douglas John Thornton.

To be continued with Chapter 76

 

“N&S: JT Love Lessons”, Ch. 75 References, August 16, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #621)

1) “N&S: John Thornton, Love Lessons” story logo: Richard Armitage as John Thornton and Daniela Denby-Ashe in the 2004 BBC period drama North & South, was found at richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/nands/album/episode3/ns3-110.jpg ; For more information about this wonderful 2004 BBC miniseries adaptation of Elizabeth’s Gaskell’s story North & South, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_&_South_%28TV_serial%29

2)  The History of Golf was found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_golf

3) Catriona Douglas image illustration is an 1860s child painting found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1860s_in_Western_fashion#mediaviewer/File:Joseph_Nitschner_Portrait_Francisca_Keban.jpg

4) Image representing 1 month old baby boy Douglas sleeping is an MS Office Clip Art stock image.

5) Audrey Grace Thornton almost four year old image is Tete d’Etude l’Oiseau by William Adolphe Bouguereau found at http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/William-Adolphe_Bouguereau#mediaviewer/File:William-Adolphe_Bouguereau_%281825-1905%29_-_T%C3%AAte_d%27Etude_l%27Oiseau_%281867%29.jpg

6) John is Richard Armitage and Margaret is Daniela Denby-Ashe in North & South- Epi4 _17h54m34s7_Nov1013 Gratiana Lovelace cap.

 

Link to Previous Ch. 74:
http://gratianads90.wordpress.com/2014/08/12/ns-john-thornton-love-lessons-ch-74-pg-13-finding-our-way-to-loving-from-the-heart-part-1-august-12-2014-gratiana-lovelace-post-619/

 

Posted in "N&S: John Thornton Love Lessons", Fan Fiction, Fangurling, John Thornton, Love and Relationships, North & South, Portraits, Richard Armitage, Romance, Something About Love | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

8 days until Richard Armitage’s 43rd birthday!!! RANet is collecting your messages by August 19th! August 14, 2014 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #620)

Dear Friends,

Today is a multiple family member shared birthday–we have three of these in my ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????family. And my birthday later in the year is one of these shared birthdays. And then it hit me!

In 8 days, the guy (little g) whom we all so admire will celebrate his 43rd birthday!  (right, original RA image)

The exquisitely talented British actor Richard Armitage is turning 43 on August 22nd!!!!

And 43 is a prime number for a man hitting his prime!  Like fine wine, Richard Armitage just gets better with age.

43rdRABirthday2014LogoforBdayMessagesPageAug1314ranet-sizedWhat to do?   Throw a party?  Send gifts?   Make a donation to RA’s Charitable Just Giving site?

Or, send birthday wishes through RANet (image left)?

If you choose the latter, here is the website link for leaving birthday messages for Richard Armitage that Ali will forward to him:

http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/birthday14.html

Please be mindful that you have to enter your message(s) earlier than his birthday, if you want it to be included in birthday messages that Ali sends to Mr. Armitage:

“This page will close at 9pm (UK) on Tuesday 19th August.”

If you would like to also share your birthday wishes for Richard Armitage in a comment below, that would be lovely–helping the rest of us figure out what to say. Snap!   But please note that you still must enter your message at RANet in the link above for it to get to RA.

Cheers! Grati ;->

P.S. And for fun, here is an earlier wallpaper that I made that I don’t believe I have shared here on my blog yet:

Sexy-is-defined-as-the-talented-RichardCrispinArmitageJul0514GratianaLovelace

Posted in Birthday, Black Sky, Charities, Fangurling, Graphic, Richard Armitage, Sexy, Something About Love | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment