Chapter 9

Screenshot-18Estelle gaped in utter astonishment.

“What do you mean ‘it fell off’?!”

Screenshot-22The driver, a rather simple man they had hired, scratched the back of his neck sheepishly.

“I mean it must of fell off on them bumpy tracks a while back. Guess I mustn’t have tied it on as well I thought I did.”

Screenshot-13“Well what am I supposed to do without clothes for the next three days?!” Estelle snapped.

They had been on their way to the Afonsine country estate when they’d hit a snag. Whereas Marielle’s bags were in perfect condition and all accounted for, Estelle’s was nowhere to be seen.

Screenshot-28Sodden and practically dripping wet as she was, the thought of having to greet the Viscount –and worse, his mother!– in such a state was not a scene Estelle wanted to even consider.

Screenshot-32Naturally, Marielle looked perfect and miraculously unruffled, considering the long journey they’d just been jostled through.

“Oh, Estelle! You do look funny! Rather like a drowned cat!”

Screenshot-39Estelle’s jaw clenched painfully in irritation.

Thank you, Marielle.

Screenshot-31“Estelle dear, are you sure you’re quite alright? Youve been in a wretched spirit all day!”

Screenshot-25No, I am not sure, you little chit! In fact, I am not at all sure why on Earth I agreed to come to this ridiculous house party in the middle of this horrid rainstorm!

“I am… quite sure, My Lady.”

Screenshot-48Thunder seemed to shake the earth. Estelle winced, as another thunderous boom rumbled in the distance before a streak of lightning cracked the air. She shivered, and wondered how the day could possibly get any worse. Except she already knew.

“Please don’t let him greet us, please don’t let him greet us…

Screenshot-46Estelle steeled herself for the torture that was about to ensue over the next three days. She hadn’t seen the Viscount for almost a fortnight, not since she had… expressed herself to him in the library of the Buckingham’s townhouse.

screenshot-97She had worked herself up into a frenzy over his façade of insolence and the blithe attitude he exhibited towards women; her foolish tongue had simply not been able to remain still.

Screenshot-21But apologise? Never! And she doubted he would either so… that was that.

They would stay out of each other’s way for the next three days (not to mention the following months and years) and hope that one day they may come to forget what had occurred between them.

Screenshot-48Even distracted as she was, Estelle couldn’t help but take in the sheer magnificence of the Afonsine Estate. The grounds were vast and richly textured with trees and, from what she’d heard, there was even a lake somewhere.

Nervously, she wondered whether she would even be allowed in, in her current, sorry state…

Screenshot-19Inside, Estelle could not stop the ungraceful drop of her jaw as the footmen stood back to reveal the entrance hall.

It was magnificent. Magnificent and huge.

It was all just so… overwhelming, and they hadn’t even walked in yet.

Screenshot-15“I see that the best has truly been saved for last.”

His voice echoed through the space, bouncing off the walls with aggravating clarity. Estelle’s eyes darted to his figure, her heart suddenly jerking awkwardly within her chest.

Screenshot-24Glancing down at the dreadful state of her attire, she desperately wished she could crawl into a large, dark, bottomless hole and stay there for eternity.

Screenshot-33Marielle began to giggle and walked to the Viscount, grinning with girlish charm.

“Oh, how splendid this is, my lord! How delightfully splendid!”

Screenshot-43Estelle closed her eyes, opting to count silently to ten, hoping that nobody would notice her. It usually worked without any effort on her part. One, two—

“More guests, Vaughn? Oh, mon dieu!”

Damn it!

Screenshot-38Estelle looked up, straight into the eyes of Lady Afonsine.

She had to blink several times before she actually believed that the woman was Vaughn’s mother. She had heard of the Countess’ beauty and elegance before now, and yet none of the descriptions she’d overheard seemed to do the real article justice.

Screenshot-64“Uh… good afternoon.” She said hastily. “Please excuse my… my appearance, my Lady, you see I—”

Screenshot-52You poor dear!” The Countess exclaimed. “What on Earth—What happened?!”

“Well I—”

“Oh, heavens, you’ll catch your death! We must get you out of those ruined clothes at once!”

Screenshot-53“Where is your valise, my dear?”

Estelle swallowed as her heart sank further, the awfulness of the situation making her stomach churn. Again.

“I’m afraid I no longer have one, my Lady. It… it seems to have fallen from the carriage in the storm.”

Screenshot-50The Countess frowned slightly before regarding the sopping mess standing in front of her.

“Well… this will not do at all.”

Screenshot-63Estelle fought the urge to cringe with embarrassment and shame.

“I am truly sorry, my Lady, I can—”

Screenshot-56“I will not hear of it!”

The Countess exclaimed with a flourish.

“We cannot have a guest running about all day in rags!”

Screenshot-67Estelle looked down at the floor, wishing she could melt into it.

“Why, you will borrow my clothes!”

Screenshot-44Estelle’s head snapped up.

“I-I beg your pardon, my lady?!”

Screenshot-86Rather shocked (to say the least), the governess looked to Marielle, who still stood several feet away with the Viscount, and was rather amused to see the girl’s mouth hanging agape.

Screenshot-68The Countess was generally described to be a fairly eccentric woman, but Estelle had never before heard of such manic generosity.

“My Lady, I-I couldn’t possibly—”

“And what else do you suggest, my dear? That I let you catch a fever?”

“N-No, but—”

Screenshot-57“Well then it is settled, is it not?”

The Countess declared resolutely.

“Are we not the same height? You will borrow my clothes. Alors, Annette?”

Screenshot-84A maid appeared instantly.

Trouvez mes vêtements anciennes, Annette. Tu sais… euh… les robes que j’ai portées à Paris quand j’étais plus jeune… et moins grosse. Mais seulement les plus belles, d’accord?

Oui, Madame.”

Bien! Now, take Miss…?”

Screenshot-45Estelle blinked, mortified at the realisation that she hadn’t actually introduced herself. “Murphy. Estellise Murphy.”

“How wonderfully exotic!” Lady Afonsine beamed.

Screenshot-83She turned back to Annette. “Take Miss Murphy to her room, please, and show her where everything is.”

The maid bobbed a curtsy towards Lady Afonsine before nodding to Estelle, who duly followed her, smiling her thanks to the Countess.

Screenshot-31They walked past Marielle, whose jaw still hung open, and could do nothing but shrug her own confusion.

Screenshot-89Then, quite accidentally, her eyes darted to the Viscount, who hadn’t said a word to her in all this, only to find he was looking elsewhere, purposefully acting as if she did not exist.

Screenshot-39Well, that suits me just fine! she told herself.

Screenshot-88She just hoped he would continue to do so for the remainder of her time there… ignoring the whisper in her heart that wished he would smile at her again.

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7 responses to “Chapter 9

  • kathleen

    Yay! Another fantastic update. I love how you made use of the seasons expansion pack in this one! I wonder how accidental the accident was though… I mean, just one case happens to fall off and it just happens to be hers? lol

    • Becki

      Thanks =D

      Yeah, I just had to include at least one aspect of it… I really do love seasons! I just wish they’d included skirts in outdoorwear. As soon as my sims step outside they’re wearing jeans and bubble-coats – not exactly fitting in with the historical context of the story!

      • kathleen

        You’re welcome! Yeah, I’ve just got seasons myself and I found the same thing. I’m not up to the point in my story where I’ll be using the seasons… yet, so I figure I’ve got some time to learn how to re-assign some of my custom content to work for outerwear because It’s driving me crazy even playing my modern families! I’ve never done anything like that before but I figure there must be a guide for dummies on it somewhere because I can’t be the only one that wants to do it!

      • Becki

        I know, right?!?!?!

        If you eventually do find out, please let me know! Aside from being out of context, some of the outdoor-wear is just plain ugly!

      • kathleen

        Hi, I found out how to do it! See here. You need to download s3pe but eben if you’ve never used it before you can follow the steps given. Its actually prety easy! 😀 Yay!

  • Beth :)

    Great chapter 😀 Poor Estelle but her face in the first picture makes me laugh too much 😛 Lady Afonsine seems really nice, if slightly strange. I wonder how she will react when she finds out that Estelle is just a governess who her son ‘wants’ to marry… 🙂

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