“A Lonesome Lord,”  Ch. 08:  And important visitor arrives at Woodbury Castle, by Gratiana Lovelace, March 27, 2023 (Post #1518)

(all rights reserved by Gratiana Lovelace; copyrighted 2023); [(1) Story Cover, below left]

Illustrations:  I cast my stories as I write them.  So from time to time, I will illustrate my story with actors  or illustrations, including:  Richard Armitage as Lord Pendleton  MacKittrick (aka Lord Mac to the Carpenter family), Justine Waddell as the widowed Corinne Carpenter, various Noah Carpenter illustrations, Bill Peterson as Dr. Finneas Lively, Samantha Bond as Lady Anne Elizabeth Pendleton, Charles Dance as Lord Henry Leopold Noah Lively the Marquess of Livingston, and others as noted.

Author’s Notes:  This original Regency romance is a work of fiction, and as such, any character names, scenes, locations, historical, medical topics, or other descriptions were made at the creative discretion of this author—visit the reference links to learn more about them.  And this is a gentle romance (G to PG-13), but with some frank discussions about love, marriage, and Regency society put to humorous effect.  This is my disclaimer.


                       Ch. 08:  An important visitor arrives at Woodbury Castle

Even as Lord MacKittrick and Corinne Carpenter gaze at each other with widening eyes about the unexpected arrival of her maternal grandfather Lord Henry Leopold Noah Lively the Marquess of Livingston to Woodbury Castle during its later afternoon Garden Party, young Noah Carpenter and the footman who bring the news of their distinguished  visitor’s arrival as they walkout to the Woodbury Castle Gardens to beg Dr. Finneas Lively and Lady Anne Pendleton to come into the Castle  to meet Dr. Lively’s father in the Gold Parlor.

For Noah Carpenter being so young at six years old, the  quite tall Woodbury Castle Footman finds that he must hurry along his own gait to keep up with the little fellow.  In fact, they almost collide with Dr. Lively, Lady Anne, and the footman assigned to notify Dr. Lively of his father’s arrival.

Noah: “Hi Uncle Finn!  Lord Mac invites you and Lady Anne to join he and my Mama in the Gold Parlor to see your Papa Lord Livingston.”

Noah smiles pleased with himself for remembering the instructions given to the footman accompanying him.  Though the footman accompanying him has a slightly chagrined look on his face—to be bested by a six year old.  Yet the footman nods to Lord Lively that the information that young Noah conveyed was accurate.

Dr. Lively: “Ah, I see.  Thank you for the information, Noah.”  Then noticing that Noah does not budge from his spot where he intersected them, he asks.  “And did your Mama indicate whether you are to play with my grandchildren or return to meet your Great Grandfather?”

Noah: “Not Mama.  But Lord Mac said I could play with your grandchildren, Dr. Lively.”  Noah smiles, eager to meet more children and to play with them.

Lady Anne: “Could play or should play, Noah Dear?”  She asks hopefully—for that he should play.  Afterall, she surmises that young Noah would be bored with their impending adult conversations about possible alliances between her self and Dr. Lively, and one other couple.  And having young Noah in the room, might even stifle getting much accomplished.  And then again… “Noah, it will be your choice.  Would you like to meet your Great Grandfather Lively first, then join Dr. Lively’s grandchildren in playing games?”  Lady Anne knows how well young Noah can command a room—or a Garden Party.  And she surmises that one curmudgeonly Marquess might be astonished to be thwarted by a six year old. She turns to Dr. Lively, who smiles knowingly.

Dr. Lively: “My Dear, you are inspired.  Let us greet my Papa and then we may all rejoin the Garden Party.”

Footman with Noah:  Speaking in a hushed but pleading whisper to Dr. Lively.  “But Dr. Lively, his Lordship expressly wished for Noah to be … able to play with your grandchildren.”

Dr. Lively:  “And so he shall, after he greets his Great Grandfather Lively.”  Dr. Lively makes clear his wishes about Noah’s disposition this afternoon, and aligning himself with Lady Anne’s astute thinking in that regard.

Noah: “Thank you Uncle Finn!  I should like to meet my Grandfather.”  At present, Noah does not know what makes his Grandfather great.  So he hopes that means that his Grandfather Lively is very good at lawn bowling/skittles and other games—or even foot racing maybe. There is nothing so determined as a young boy wanting to play games outside—even if he is hampered by his still healing and now quite sore broken arm.


So Dr. Lively, Lady Anne Pendleton, and young Noah walk with the two footmen leading them into Woodbury Castle and its Gold  Parlor.  And they find themselves converging upon Lord MacKittrick and Mrs. Corinne Carpenter walking toward the Gold Parlor as well.

Lady Anne: “Ah!  This is well met, Pendleton and Corinne Dear.”  The ladies smile knowingly.

And the footmen having discharged their duties, disperse to return to their responsibilities in serving at the Garden Party.

The four adults look at each other, in slight trepidation upon what humors that they might find Lord Livingston in.  However, young Noah has no such hesitation and he opens the Gold Parlor’s door and walks inside.  It is a large room filled with comfortable settee and wing chair seating upholstered in gold flecked fabric, some  shiny candelabra and dull needing to be polished cups, gold satin swag draperies, and gilt picture frames of ancestors, as well as nature and landscape scenes.  Situated amongst this gilded splendour,  Noah finds Lord Livingston [(2) right] standing in front of the carved gray stone fireplace and mantel with an impatient look up on his face.

Noah: Seeing a much older man than his Uncle Finn standing near the fireplace, he walks over to the impatient looking gentleman  and cheerfully asks.  “Are you my Grandfather Lively?”

Lord Livingston:  Looking curiously at the little boy wearing a sling, he replies.  “That depends.  Who are your family?”  His phrasing and demeanor are more gentle toward the child than Lord Livingston might normally use—more due to the upset on his journey here causing him to be somewhat subdued.

Noah: “My Mama is Mrs. Corinne Carpenter.”  Noah holds out his good hand and she comes to stand beside him, patting his shoulders.

Then Lord Livingston looks from Corinne and her children to his son Dr. Lively, who nods at him.

Corinne:  Corinne dips a graceful curtsy to her Grandfather.  “Grandfather Lord Livingston, I am Corinne Thackeray Carpenter.”  She smiles hopefully at her often stern Grandfather.  This is my six year old son Noah, and my nine month old baby daughter Nancy is in my arms.”

Lord Livingston:  “Ah, another Noah in the family, I see.”  His lips curl ever so slightly in an unacknowledged grin.  His granddaughter returns his small smile.

Noah:  “Oh?” And young Noah wonders who else is named Noah.  For Noah does not know that he is his Great Grandfather’s namesake.

Lord Livingston: Then Lord Livingston smiles and kisses Corinne’s cheek and gently caresses the heads of each of her children in a silent blessing.  “You have grown into a lovely young woman and mother, Lady Corinne Dear.  I am pleased to see you again—and that you are not wearing pig tails this time.”  They both grin at the long ago memory that he evokes. Then he remembers the other two people in the room and directs his command to his son.  “Finneas, please complete the introductions for the other two persons in the room.”

Dr. Lively: “Certainly, Papa.  It is my honor to introduce you to the Earl of Woodbury, Lord Pendleton MacKittrick and his young unmarried maternal Aunt Lady Anne Elizabeth Pendleton.  Lord MacKittrick and Lady Anne, this is my father Lord Henry Leopold Noah Lively, Marquess of Livingston.”

Lord MacKittrick: He bows to Lord Livingston and extends his hand in greeting. “Lord Livingston, it is an honor to have you in my home today.  We have been looking forward to your arrival as soon as your son Dr. Lively mentioned that you and his children would be visiting the area in the coming weeks.”

Lord Livingston:  Lord Livingston shakes Lord MacKittrick’s offered hand and nods once. “Lord Woodbury.”  He uses the more correct form of address for Lord MacKittrick’s Woodbury earldom title.  It is simply that Lord MacKittrick chooses to be informal with his friends and close family.

Noah:  “Grandfather?  We call him Lord Mac.”  Young Noah leans over and whispers to Lord Livingston.  Corinne’s eyebrow rises at her young son inserting himself into the adult introductions.  But the old Marquess gently pats young Noah’s back with a small but true smile—for his namesake Great Grandson, Noah.

Dr. Lively: “And Papa, may I present the Earl’s young unmarried Aunt Lady Anne to you.”  Lady Anne curtsies and smiles cordially at the old Marquess.

Lord Livingston:  “Lady Anne.”  He nods and bows a bit deeper to her than he did to Lord Woodbury, him noting her poise and his son’s seeming preference for her.

Lady Anne: “I am honored to make your acquaintance Lord Livingston.”  She states with great poise and confidence.  She may be only an Earl’s daughter, but she has circulated amongst the upper echelons of British society these past twenty two years, since her debut at eight and ten years. And she is no simpering young miss.

Then the five adults and one child in Noah sit upon the two facing settees in front of the fireplace—with Lady Anne pouring their tea and Noah offering a plate of his Mama’s apple tarts that everyone partakes of by placing them on their saucers.  Lord MacKittrick smiles with Noah sharing his Mama’s treats, and he quickly takes a bite of his apple tart to avoid Noah’s commentary about him being hesitant to try them when they first met.  But then, their topic of conversation shifts unexpectedly.

Lord MacKittrick:  “Lord Livingston, since the weather has been dry of late—no rains—I hope that you had a pleasant experience upon your journey here.”  Lord MacKittrick smiles cordially to the older man.  Weather and the state of the roads are typically neutral conversation topics—except for today.

Lord Livingston: “Truthfully?  Not by half.  We were waylaid by highwaymen on the road just before we reached the outskirts of Woodbury Village.  But I travel with a dozen or so outriders outfitted with guns and swords, so they made short work of the criminals.  And your butler, Lord Woodbury, kindly agreed to lock them up in your dungeon—since  you are the local Magistrate as well.”

Lord MacKittrick goes deathly pale regarding Lord Livingston being attacked on the road. For highwaymen killed his parents and older brother twenty two years ago on their way to taking his brother Dartmouth back to school.

Dr. Lively: “I am distressed to hear that, Papa.” Then he turns to Lord MacKittrick.  “Think you that information about today’s fete at Woodbury Castle somehow was made known to the criminal element, who tried to take advantage of it?”

Lord MacKittrick: “I cannot guess.”  He is too shocked to say more.

Lady Corinne: “Oh no! Uncle Finn and Grandfather Livingston, my children and I must return home to our Carpenter Orchard Farms estate to insure that it remains unpillaged and our estate staff are unharmed.”  She pleads urgently.

Lord MacKittrick: “But Corinne, will you be safe there?  Perhaps there are other criminals waiting to pounce on unsuspecting villagers?”  Lord MacKittrick inadvertently slips and refers to her by her Christian name.  But given the dire nature of the news that Lord Livingston imparted, no one seems to notice.  And then again, …

Lord Livingston: “If you have a bedchamber for me, Lady Corinne, I will stay at your home and lend you my and my staff’s security for the duration of my visit.  If that is agreeable to you, My Dear?”

Lady Corinne:  “I do, Grandfather.  Thank you!”  She nods her grateful thanks.  “Our stone cottage is small but comfortable, with three family bedchambers and two guest bedchambers.  And staff quarters in the stables.”

Lady Anne: “Oh my yes!  I was fortunate to spend a night under Dear Corinne’s roof when my carriage became mired in mud on my way to visiting my nephew Lord Pendleton MacKittrick.  Lady Corinne is a most gracious hostess.” Lady Anne and Lady Corinne smile warmly at each other, for their developing friendship.

And uncharacteristically, young Noah has sat quietly noshing on his apple tart and sipping his milk that the cook had thoughtfully provided for him.  It has been a long and tiring day for Noah, with playing the early afternoon games with Lord Mac, and then getting no afternoon nap.  So after Noah eats his apple tart and drinks all of his milk, he starts to doze off and slumps next to Lord Mac, sitting on the same settee as his Mama.

Lady Corinne: “Oh!  I’m so sorry Lord MacKittrick. Noah has missed his afternoon nap today.”  She pats her son’s right shoulder.

Lord MacKittrick:  “That’s not a problem … My Lady.”  He switches to the most formal mode of address for Corinne, since he now knows that she is an Earl’s daughter and Lord MacKittrick is mindful of the proprieties since her Grandfather Marquess is having tea with them.  Then Lord MacKittrick pats the sleeping young Noah’s good right hand and finds it warm.  “Noah? Do you feel ill?”  But Noah is unconscious and does not respond.  “Lady Corinne, Noah seems over warm to me.  And I cannot wake him.  What do you think is wrong with him.?”

Lady Corinne feels her son’s forehead, and Noah feels extremely feverish—and listless.  Then she notices that Noah’s left hand resting in his sling for his broken arm, seems swollen.

Lady Corinne: “Uncle Finn?  Noah is burning up—and his broken arm is swelling!  Please help him!”  She pleads.  “And all of my medicinal herbs are at our home.”

Dr. Lively: “I will examine Noah here, and then we must get him home to rest and recuperate.  Was he very active in today’s children’s games playing?  If so, then he is likely to have  reinjured his broken arm.”

Lord MacKitrrick: “Noah only participated in the skittles lawn bowling and with the foot racing.  But he must have jostled his arm too much when he raced.”  And Lord MacKittrick silently chastises himself for not have the foresight to keep Noah more sedentary today, due to his healing broken arm. Then in a burst of Lord MacKittrick wanting to be useful to Corinne Carpenter, he offers her his aid.  “Lady Corinne?  I will join you in taking Noah home and insuring that your home and estate at Carpenter Orchard Farms is free of miscreants.”  For he and young Noah have formed a special bond between them.

And Lord MacKittrick also feels a developing attachment for Corinne. Though with her grandfather Marquess now planning to stay with her for an indeterminate period, Lord MacKittrick feels that the noble gentleman will be a most unfortunately intrusive chaperone for the two of them.  And in the distress over young Noah falling ill, Lord MacKittrick has forgotten about all of his Woodbury Castle Garden Party guests.

Lady Anne:  “Yes, Pendleton and everyone, you see Corinne and her children home.  I will remain at Woodbury Castle to attend to our guests—whilst also apprising our guests of the criminals who have been apprehended, should they also wish to head home early to insure their own homes are secure.

So what had started out as a most promising day for the Woodbury Castle Garden Party, has become worrisome on several counts.  Lord Livingston has yet to reveal his viewpoints on:  the two potential romantic couples of Lord MacKittrick and Lady Corinne, and Dr. Lively and Lady Anne; the additional  criminals possible lurking in their neighboring Woodbury Village; and young Noah’s prognosis for recovery.  And the next several days will be most illuminating for all three situations.

To be continued with Chapter 09

References for  Ch. 08    of  “A Lonesome Lord”,  szy  March  27, 2023  by Gratiana Lovelace (Post #1518)

  1. My “A Lonesome Lord ” story logo is a composite of a portrait of British actor Richard Armitage from 2020 by An Le, and Harrington text on a teal background.

    2. The image representing Lord Henry Leopold Noah Lively the Marquess of Livingston is that of British actor Charles Dance in “Bleak House”2005 miniseries found at https://www.frockflicks.com/mcm-charles-dance/

Gratiana Lovelace Wattpad site  link for  Ch. 08  “A Lonesome Lord”,  March 27,  2023  (#1518):

Previous SAL blog Post # 1516  link  for  Ch. 07 “A Lonesome Lord”,  March 20, 2023:


About Gratiana Lovelace

Gratiana Lovelace is my nom de plume for my creative writing and blogging. I write romantic stories in different sub genres. The stories just tumble out of me. My resurgence in creative writing occurred when I viewed the BBC miniseries of Elizabeth Gaskell's novel North & South in February 2010. The exquisitely talented British actor portraying the male lead John Thornton in North & South--Richard Crispin Armitage--became my unofficial muse. I have written over 50 script stories about love--some are fan fiction, but most are original stories--that I am just beginning to share with others on private writer sites, and here on my blog. And as you know, my blog here is also relatively new--since August 2011. But, I'm having fun and I hope you enjoy reading my blog essays and my stories. Cheers! Grati ;-> upd 12/18/11
This entry was posted in "A Lonesome Lord" (2023) by Gratiana Lovelace, Creative Writing, Drama, Fiction, Love and Relationships, Richard Armitage, Romance, Social Justice, social media, Society, Something About Love, Storytelling and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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