(An original Contemporary Romance fan fic story copyrighted by Gratiana Lovelace, 2022;
All rights reserved) [(1) story cover top left]
[Illustrations: I cast my stories as I write them. So from time to time, I will illustrate my story with actors and such, including the original cast of “A Castle for Christmas” (2021): Cary Elwes as Myles the 12th Scottish Duke of Dunbar and Castle Dun Dunbar, Brooke Shields as the American Sophie McGuinty, Vanessa Grasse as her daughter Lexi Brown, Dalmeny House as Castle Dun Dunbar, Lee Ross as Thomas the Castle Dun Dunbar caretaker, Andi Osho as Maisie the Dunbar Village Innkeeper, Eilidh Loan as Rhona the young pastry chef par excellence in Dunbar Village, Tina Gray as Helen the elderly Dunbar Village knitters group leader, Kevin McKidd as Dr. Ewan/Scott Roxburgh, and others as noted.]
[Author’s Note: This original Contemporary Romance fanfic is a work of fiction, and as such, any character names, scenes or other descriptions were made at the creative discretion of this author. And this is a gentle romance (G to PG-13), but with some frank discussions about love and marriage put to humorous effect. This is my disclaimer. And I came up with this story idea hoping for the creators of “A Castle for Christmas” (2021)—loved it–to give us a sequel! So if they see my fanfic story here, I hope that they consider this a suggestion for a possible continuing story for Duke Myles and Sophie and the Dunbar Village folks.]
Ch. 04: Navigating a father and son reunion, part 2: Weathering a crisis together
Though Sophie would have preferred to have her daughter Lexi and Lexi’s beau stay with she and Duke Myles at Castle Dun Dunbar for the Wedding and Christmas Holidays, Sophie understands Lexi’s wish for privacy. And Sophie reasons that she will see her daughter every day, no matter where Lexi and her man friend sleep.
Then precisely at 1pm on Sunday, December 11th, Sophie breezes into the Dunbar Village Inn’s sitting room area adjacent to the bar and takes a chair with the knitters and opens her knitting bag. She is making a warm winter scarf for her love Myles. Duke Myles follows her in, him smiling at her as he heads straight for his friend and Castle Dun Dunbar Caretaker/Docent Thomas standing at the bar, four feet away from the knitters.
Sophie: Looking up, and noticing someone missing, Sophie asks the knitters. “Where is Maisie today?”
Rhona: “I’m not surrre. She went to check in some new inn guests 15 minutes ago and we haven’t seen herrr since.”
Sophie nods sanguinely, because if the new guests had been her daughter Lexi and Lexi’s man friend, surely Maisie would have let her know right away.
Helen: “Such perrrsonalized attention by Maisie is surrre to incrrrease business.”
The well groomed mid seventies knitting leader lady Helen [(2) right] nods knowingly.
Rhona: “Would you like a lemon cake, Sophie? I baked them frrresh this morrrning.” Rhona holds out the plate of delectable treats to Sophie.
Sophie gazes thoughtfully at the cake offerings, with her hand hovering over them before making her selection. However, Myles is not so circumspect.
Myles: “Might I also be delighted to parrtake of one of your delicious cakes, Rhona?” His hand moves to the plate as Rhona offers it to him. He decisively makes his selection. “Thank ye!” He smiles and returns to the bar with his lemon cake.
Thomas: “Myles? Arrre ye going to eat that cake with the beerrr taste testing selections that I have barrrman Scotty herrre lining up for us?”
Myles: “Perrrhaps with some coffee, beforrre hand—to wash the cakes down and clear my palate. Then I’ll try the beers.” Myles suggests wisely.
Then Maisie comes rushing into the sitting room and bar room to fetch Sophie.
Maisie: “Ah! Therrre you arrre Sophie. Lexi has arrrived and wishes to speak with you.”
Sophie excitedly stuffs her knitting into her bag and jumps up from her chair.
Sophie: “Where is she!” She looks around.
Maisie: “Oh! She’s up in herrr bedrrroom suite, settling in. I’ll take you to herrr.”
Then Myles [(3) right] also stands again—still holding his coffee mug and wearing his sage colored warm vest coat over a white collared shirt–him ready to accompany Sophie to see Lexi.
Maisie: “Not you, Myles. Lexi asked to speak to her Mum, prrrivately!” Then to stave off Myles pout at being excluded turning into a discussion/argument about why he should accompany Sophie, Thomas interjects.
Thomas: “Nay Myles. It’s obviously a womanly discussion. They could be at it for hourrrs. Let us enjoy our beerrr tasting selections while we wait.”
And that seems to do the trick for Duke Myles—labeling the mother and daughter discussion about womanly topics. For Myles relents and sits back down to finish his lemon cake and large man sized mug of coffee. Crisis averted, for now.
So Maisie guides Sophie upstairs in the Inn to Lexi and her man friend’s bedroom suite that comes with a sitting room and an adjoining bedroom and bathroom. Lexi is waiting for her Mom in the sitting room, whilst Ewan is taking a shower and making himself more presentable. Maisie knocks on the bedroom suite door and Lexi opens it. Then Maisie returns to the Inn’s pub area.
Sophie: “Lexi, Sweetheart! I’ve missed you!” Sophie lunges at her daughter Lexi. And they lovingly embrace each other for several moments.
Lexi: “Hi Mom! I’ve missed you, too!” She hugs her beloved Mom lovingly.
Sophie: “Where is your man friend, Lexi?” Sophie looks expectantly around the sitting room area.
Lexi: “Oh! He’s in the shower. Air travel is not his favorite mode of transportation–for the lack of sterile cleanliness of airplane seats and such. It’s the surgeon in him.” Lexi explains while raising her brow knowingly.
Then not realizing they have company already, Ewan walks into the sitting room area of his and Lexi’s bedroom suite–with naught but a towel around his abdomen and thighs after his shower, with rivulets of water still falling down his handsomely muscular chest, arms, and legs.
Dr.EwanR: “Lexi Love, did you pack my …” He doesn’t finish his sentence when he sees her with a mature lovely woman who must be Lexi’s mother. “Ach! I beg yourrr parrrdon.” Ewan blushes crimson. Then he quickly turns around and heads back into his and Lexi’s adjoining bedroom and bathroom.
Sophie: “My! He’s a handsome man!” Sophie gazes at her daughter who is now blushing.
Lexi: “And a good man, Mom. Let me go see what he was asking me about.”
Lexi quickly walks into their suite’s bedroom to find Ewan emptying the remaining contents of his carry on bag onto their bed—whilst still wearing the towel and naught else. Ewan looks up a seeing Lexi enter their bedroom.
Ewan: “Ach! Was that you’re Mum? I’m so sorrry, Lexi. I did na rrrealize that we had guests alrrready.” He pouts forlornly.
Lexi: “She’ll get over it.” Lexi waves her hand flippantly. “By the way, she approves of you, if her curling smile is any indication. What are you looking for?”
Ewan: “My shaving gear and a toothbrush.” He flings his arms wide in frustration and embarrassment.
Lexi: “I had already unpacked and put our bathroom things in the bathroom cabinet drawers. Your stuff is in the top drawer, oh tall one.” She jests impishly. “Get dressed, with shoes and socks…” Lexi clarifies. “Then I’ll formally introduce you to my mother.
Ewan: “Alrrright.” He nods sheepishly embarrassed. For who wants the first impression they make to a potential mother-in-law to be them almost naked in front of her?
So Lexi returns to her Mom Sophie in the sitting room.
Lexi: “He’ll be just a few minutes.” Sophie tilts her head questioningly. “He couldn’t find his shaving and tooth brushing stuff, since I had already put them away in the bathroom cabinet drawers for us.”
Sophie: “Uh huh. Well Lexi, you seem quite domestically congenial with each other.”
Lexi: “We are.” Lexi smiles happily at her Mom.
Sophie: “And?” Sophie bobbles her head as if to finagle some more detailed information out of her daughter Lexi.
Lexi: “We’re very happy, Mom. And we’re just taking one day at a time. So no pressure, please.”
Sophie: “Me? Pressure you? Of course not!” Sophie mock huffs with incredulity. However she is a mother, and she is Lexi’s mother. “But please give me a few details. How long have you known each other, and such?” And it’s usually the and such that delicately implies relationship details are also requested.
Lexi: “Two months—to both of your questions.” Lexi smiles wryly. “What can I say? It was love at first sight between us.”
Sophie: “Oh! My baby’s in love.”
Just then, Lexi’s Love Ewan walks back into the sitting room area—fully clothed, shaved, and shod. He addresses Lexi’s Mom Sophie.
Dr. EwanR: “Ms. McGuinty, my apologies for my earlier appearance deficits. But I am delighted to meet you now.” Ewan [(4) right] feels much better prepared to meet his love Lexi’s mother, now that he is properly attired.
Sophie: “As I am to meet you. But call me Sophie, everyone does.”
Lexi: “And Mom, this is my partner Dr. Ewan Roxburgh.”
Dr. EwanR: “I’m just Ewan to family and friends.” He avers.
Sophie leans in and gives Ewan a gentle hug. Her being 6 foot tall to his 6 foot 2 inches tall self, her hug reach was an easy one—compared to the much shorter Thomas’s hug given to him earlier today.
Sophie: “Ewan.” She nods as she steps back. Then she tilts her head quizzically. “Roxburgh?” The name sounds familiar to her, since she has been steeping herself in Castle Dun Dunbar history for her latest book. He nods at her—him wondering if she knows who he is.
Lexi: “And Mom, there is something you should know about Ewan.” Ewan tenses up. “He is …” Lexi hesitates.
Sophie: “… a Dunbar.” Sophie’s eyes widen in understanding. “Your resemblance to your [Great G]randfather Duke Giles Roxburgh Dunbar is uncanny. His portrait hangs in the ballroom.”
For Sophie has guessed the connection almost immediately now that Ewan is dressed, him wearing a dark suit coat over a light blue dress shirt and jeans. He could only be his father’ Duke Myles’ son, for his crisply groomed appearance.
Lexi: “Yes Mom. Ewan is Duke Myles’ son, from his first marriage.”
Dr. EwanR: “Aye. But we do no know each otherrr.” He states stiffly.
Sophie: “How long have you known about Ewan, Lexi?” She asks pertinently.
Lexi: “It was only last week when you called to invite us to the wedding that Ewan and I both realized his connection to Castle Dun Dunbar and Duke Myles. Ewan and Myles have not seen each other for almost twenty years.”
Looking quite ill, almost green, Ewan clarifies his coming here—with an out clause.
Dr. EwanR: “And though I have cleared my patient schedule for the coming week to join you early for the Christmas Holiday’s and your wedding planning, I might have to return briefly to Cambridge Thurrrsday to help cover some shifts at the Medical Center due to lower holiday staffing levels with their regular staff taking some time off to be with their families.”
Sophie: “Of course. But I hope that for your first visit to Dunbar Village and the Castle, that we’ll have time to start to get to know you over the next few days.” Ewan nods his head in agreement.
Lexi: “Mom? How do you think Myles will react to Ewan? Thomas seems to think that Myles has been following Ewan’s career via the internet. So that sounds favorable.” She hopes.
Sophie: “I don’t know, Lexi–and Ewan. Myles was very hurt when his first wife, your mother, left him for another man—as she told him at the time. And then for Myles not to be told about your existence until you were ten years old—by happenstance due to a thorough hospital record keeper tracking him down when you were brought in for an appendectomy surgery. And then you pushed Myles away when he tried to get to know you over the next three years, Ewan. It broke his heart all over again. So I don’t want you to hurt Myles again. If you can not be open to getting to know Myles as your father who loves you—and you only want to seek revenge for your own hurts about the situation—then please don’t give him false hope of you both reconciling.” This is tough love, Sophie style.
Lexi: “Mom!” Lexi almost chastises her Mom for her stridency on Myles behalf. And it is a delicate balance that Lexi must achieve—supporting her love Ewan, whilst also understanding the perspective her of her soon to be step father Duke Myles.
So Lexi begins to defend Ewan’s feelings about his absent father Duke Myles, but she doesn’t get the chance when Maisie bursts in to their bedroom sitting room area.
Maisie: “We need Ewan! Helen is having a heart attack!”
Sophie: “Oh god! No!”
Sophie wails as she races down the stairs with Maisie, and trailed by Lexi and Ewan who grabs his medical bag that he always has with him.
The scene in the Inn’s bar and sitting area is pandemonium when they reach it. Everyone is hovering over a writhing unconscious Helen lying on the Inn pub’s floor. Ewan takes command.
Dr. EwanR: “I’m Dr. Roxburg. Please step aside from my patient so that I may tend to her.” The knitters and the Inn’s bar patrons part and let Dr. Ewan in. “Tell me what happened.” In the meantime, Ewan is checking Helen’s pulse, heart rate, and breathing
All eyes turn to Duke Myles, who stands riveted with shock and gazing at his son Ewan. Then Thomas gives Myles a nudge.
Duke Myles: “Helen is 75 yearrrs old and she has a hearrrt condition that she takes digitalis forrr. Today she was fine forrr the starrrt of the knitterrrs knitting session. Then a few moments laterrr she seemed to be in pain of some kind and she starrrted to curl her body forward. And her breathing became labored. Then she lost consciousness and fell out of her chair.”
Dr. EwanR: “Ach! Then she might have broken bones as well, from her fall. Is there a local clinic which might have a back board and a neck collar, iv solution, and some standard emergency injectables? And we need to get her to the nearest hospital as fast as we can!” He states earnestly. Then Ewan looks up to see who had given him Helen’s medical history, him paling when he sees that it is his father Duke Myles. But he regroups for the sake of his patient, Helen.
Maisie: “No clinic, but my office here at the Inn has some of the emergency medical supplies like that and an AED in case of emergencies. And Myles here can helicopter you and Helen to Edinburgh Medical Center.” Maisie and the towering knitter Angus dash to her office to get those much needed medical supplies for Dr. Roxburgh.
Duke Myles: Moving into medical emergency helicopter pilot first responder mode, Duke Myles asks. “Thomas? Does the helicopter have a full gas tank?” Duke Myles knows that he can get to Edinburgh Medical Center on a half tank of gas, but he never wants to take a chance on having less gas.
Thomas: “Aye! I filled it up just the other day. And your helicopter recently had its annual mechanical inspection last month, as well as your pilot’s license renewed. So you should be good to go.”
Maisie and Angus return with the back board, neck brace, iv supplies, and an AED. And Dr. Roxburgh puts the first three items in use for Helen. And holds on to the AED device in case it is needed mid flight.
Duke Myles turns to Ewan. And not wanting to reveal his connection with the doctor to the general populace in the inn, Duke Myles addresses him formally.
Duke Myles: “Uh, Dr. Roxburgh. My small MedEvac helicopter can airlift myself and a navigator up front, with two people and a patient in the back to Edinburgh Medical Center. I can be ready to take you in 10 minutes. Sophie, you’rrre with me as navigator.” He tosses his jeep keys to Thomas. “Thomas, please drive my jeep to Edinburgh Medical Center so that our group has a way home, without having to helicopter back.” Thomas nods. Then Duke Myles heads out to his helicopter parked in its designated open park area for it at the edge of the village.
Rhona: “And here is Helen’s purse. She always carries her medical conditions information, as well as, a list of the pills she takes. Please make me Granny well again.” She pleads. Because Rhona is the daughter of Helen’s son.
And with the chaotic circumstances of Helen’s heart attack and fall, Duke Myles has not thought to let Dr. Ewan know that Helen was also his Mum’s mother. So he and Rhona are blood cousins. And Helen is also Dr. Roxburgh’s grandmother. So Dr. Ewan will find even more family connections in Dunbar than he could have imagined.
Dr. EwanR: “That’s verrra helpful. Thank you.” He peruses the meds and health conditions lists for a moment. “Good! She’s not already on a blood thinner or low dose aspirin—which might have worsened any internal bleeding due to her fall. So I’m going to give her a quick injection to try to help stabilize her heart rhythm.”
Dr. Ewan gives Helen an injection, as well as he starts an iv drip for Helen. It is fortunate that Maisie keeps a small supply of these medical supplies for just such emergency needs—since the Dunbar Village Inn is so centrally located in Dunbar County.
Dr. Ewan nods to Lexi sitting quietly in the corner. Lexi has been writing down everything that is being done to help Helen, for the official medical record. And Lexi has recently taken advanced first aid and emergency medical training for her to be able to help out in a support capacity in medical crises situations like this one.
Lexi: “Ewan? I’ll guide you to the helicopter then ride with Thomas to Edinburgh.” Flying in planes is one thing for Lexi, but flying in a helicopter is so not her thing. However, Dr. Ewan has long been used to helicopter medical transportation in his line of work—especially with Doctors Without Borders.
Dr. EwanR: “Nay, Lexi. I need you in the back of the helicopter with me and our patient Helen!” He gazes at Lexi determinedly. And she nods in agreement. Lexi’s caring presence will be as much for Helen’s medical support, as it is for Dr. Ewan’s, as Helen’s emergency first responder doctor.
So everyone converges on Duke Myles helicopter—with the still unconscious Helen lying strapped to the back board and ferried by Thomas driving Myles jeep with a deep back end for transport. And she is loaded onto the helicopter.
Duke Myles: As part of his pre-flight check, Duke Myles alerts the Edinburgh Medical Center (EMC) of their imminent arrival via the helicopter’s coms system. “Edinburgh MC, this is Myles Dunbar of Dunbar Village—in MedEvac helicopter registered as H19-6977ME. We have a 75 year old heart attack patient named Helen Fitzwalter whom I am helicoptering to you within the next 20 minutes. Her symptoms began at 1:15pm this afternoon, it is now 1:30pm. We have Dr. Ewan Roxburgh of the Cambridge Medical Center on board who has stabilized the patient. The patient also fell out of her chair when she became unconcious. So there might also be some broken bones and such to deal with as well. Over.”
Edinburg MC: “Rogerrr that Duke Myles, this is EMC life flight controller Brian McTierney.” Though blessedly, medical emergencies are few and far between in the small villages in Dunbar County, Duke Myles does make several medical emergency helicopter flights each year to the Edinburgh Medical Center. So he is a known person in the regional emergency medical first responders sphere. “We will alerrrt xrrray, the ICU, and surgerrry in case they arrre needed for yourrr patient—as well as our on call surgeon Dr. James Tristan to take over for Dr. Roxburgh once you land. And you should have a clearrr landing on the helipad at EMC Building A. Over.”
Duke Myles: “Rrrogerr that, we will land at EMC Building A. Aye! I have landed therrre beforrre. See you in 20 minutes. Over and out.” Next to Duke Myles, Sophie takes notes as to their planned EMC Building A landing site, travel time, whom Myles spoke with at EMC, and such for the official records.
And even as Duke Myles, Sophie, Lexi, Dr. Ewan & patient Helen take off in Myles’ emergency helicopter for Edinburgh Medical Center, Thomas, Maisie, Rhona, and Angus pile into Duke Myles spacious jeep for the one hour road trip to Edinburgh Medical Center in Edinburgh, Scotland. The Dunbar Village Inn bar man stays behind to tend to any Inn guest needs and such.
All of the Dunbar Village friends en route to Edinburgh focus on their dear friend Helen, who is now also Dr. Roxburgh’s patient Helen. The next few hours and days will determine whether Helen can rally from her heart attack and fall, or if she succumbs. Medicine is life and death. And the stakes do not get any higher than when a loved one is involved.
And though Duke Myles and Dr. Ewan did meet again under this medical crisis circumstance, they set aside the tension between them and each behaved as trained emergency responders and medical professionals. But it still remains to be seen if once the medical crisis is lifted, whether they can begin to heal their fractured father and son connection, in the hope of creating a lasting bond and solid relationship for the future.
To be continued with Chapter 5
References for the Ch. 04 of “A Castle Wedding for Christmas 2”, December 13, 2022 by Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1496)
- My “A Castle Wedding for Christmas 2” story logo includes a cropped of Castle Dun Dunbar from “A Castle for Christmas” images of Castle Dun Dunbar filmed at Dalmeny House was found at https://hookedonhouses.net/2021/12/10/castle-for-christmas-movie-filming-location-scotland/
- Helen—the smiling elderly Dunbar Villlage Knitter leader—is Tina Gray-from-ACastle-for-Christmas2021-Netflix image viaIMDB_Dec13-2022GratiL-szd-crop-blur
- Duke Myles–with-coffee-mug-is-CaryElwes-in-ACastle-forChristmas2021-Netflix, viaIMDB Dec13-2022GratiL-szd-crop-blur
- Dr Ewan Roxburgh–is Kevin McKidd circa Greys Anatomy era in a suit coat & blue dress shirt image viaGreysWiki_Dec13-2022Grati-cap-crop-szd-blur2-brt
Gratiana Lovelace Wattpad site for Ch. 04 “A Castle Wedding for Christmas 2”, December 13, 2022:
Previous SAL blog Post # 1495 link for “A Castle Wedding for Christmas 2”, Ch. 03, December 11, 2022:
December 13, 2022–Thanks for voting/starring my SAL blog Post #1496 with Ch.04 of “A Castle Wedding for Christmas”!
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