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Celeana King

[1836/1837][EN]There comes the knight in shining armor

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Posted (edited)

March 1836

 

London was a great city, it truly was. Well, the better part that was. She did not want to be found in the area where the poor people lived. It was disgusting there, with garbage on the streets, low life people, filthy animals all over the place. of course, she would not go to that part of the city. Instead, she stayed at the upper class, attending social parties, trying to search for the one man that could give her what she wanted. At this point that was her one goal in life. Find a suitable man, have a beautiful little girl she could spoil, feel like a princess again. Celeana still had time, since she still had enough money for a year or two, but she had to be careful on how to spend it. That was bothering her, because she liked to shop for clothes, the latest fashion. She needed to secure her future, an inheritance. But she had to be careful and not just pick the first rich guy she encountered. She had made that mistake years ago and look where she was now.

 

Having less money each week did not stop her from going out on a shopping trip. After all her newest dress was already two weeks old and she was in desperate need of a new one. Soon, she would attend another party and she had to be the best dressed guest, of course. So the woman had decided to go to Diagon Alley, hoping to find a new dress, a pair of shoes and probably some new jewelry as well. A simple shop wasn't good enough, of course. She went to the most fashionable, exclusive shop there was. From the outside, it looked small, but on Diagon Alley nothing was what it looked like. Inside it was much bigger than you would have thought and for a while Celeana considered herself in heaven. That was until something terrible ruined her shopping trip.

 

"Aaahhhh!", she screamed, her voice pitching really high. She ran towards the nearest table and climbed on top of it. Maybe not as graceful as she had liked it to be, but she had no other choice here! "Get it away from me! Get it away!". She pointed towards the dirty little rat that was hiding under the same table she was standing on. She lifted her skirts up a bit, but not higher than her ankles. She still had some dignity, okay? But who knew if this rat could jump very high and ruin her pretty shoes! Or worse, destroying her skirt! "Please, someone! Get rid of this..this..ugly thing!".

 

OOC: Private

Edited by Celeana Thompson

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The knight in shining armor with a limp. 

 

Raphael loved the Diagon Alley. With all its little stores, varying in quality and quantity, and the way the streets felt different during the day and then again during the night. The way the lamps all lit up at once when the sun went under, and the way each store had its own smell. This little store was one of his favourites: close to his theatre and it always had the best assortment of french silk, which he liked to use for his cravats, and good walking sticks. Raphael believed in luxury, why not? He could afford it, had worked hard for it and in his branch, if you didn't look like your best, no one would trust your sense in business.

 

He had been casually browsing through the walking sticks, when suddenly a woman screamed and leapt on a table. Raphael stood frozen for a moment, but no one else around him was getting into action and well, he couldn't leave a woman up there all along, could he? So he made his way to the table. A rat! He pulled back his upper lip in disgust and then made a number of gestures with his wand, so the rat bounced right out of the stoor. "That is utterly ridiculous!" he said, sternly, and then offered his hand to the woman. "Are you alright, mademoiselle? You should file a complaint to the owner, all stores should have proper rat-repelling spells!" He would never allow a rat to enter his theatre, that was for one. "It didn't hurt you, did it?" 

 

But it had been disgusting, that was one thing.

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Posted (edited)

Limp or not, Celeana was happy at least someone acted. Everyone else stood there in shock or even dared to laugh at her. She glared at one of the store servants. Didn't they understand this could ruin their business? She had thought this was a classy store, with high quality clothing and no vermin. Instead, there was a ugly, disgusting little rat running around here as if it owned the place. If that thing had made contact with her shoes or dress, she would have had to destroy it, because here was no way in hell she would wear something that was infected by a rat!

 

Grateful, the woman took the man's hand and allowed him to help her down from the table. She blushed with embarrassment, but was happy the little thing was at least out of here. Well, one of them anyway. She couldn't help looking around, almost expecting another rat to run passed her. However, the way this man spoke to her distracted her a bit from her trauma. Mademoiselle? Oh, didn't that sound classy? He immediately had her interest, offering him a charming smile. "I am okay now, thank you". She bowed her head as a sign of respect. She would make a reverence normally, but she was still slightly shaken with the idea of a rat almost attacking her. Noticing the event was made worse in her head every minute, didn't you? Celeana was very good at that.

 

The brunette released his hand, straightening her dress for a moment. "I most certainly will! It's outrageous a high quality store like this did not do anything to prevent this". She looked at the cashier with disgust. "I hope you do realize this will cost you costumers? I certainly will not buy my eveningwear in a shop that has vermin running around freely", she said, sounding very offended. In a way, she was offended. She almost died here! Or at least almost got some terrible disease. She turned to her savior. "I owe you, my lord. I would like to get out of here as fast as possible and file in the complaint through writing. At least allow me to buy you a drink". She smiled, charming and sweet. Because, yes, she had noticed this was a man of status and a man like that would have her interest. If he was taken, she would simply move on quickly. She just couldn't resist the challenge in finding out more about him. "As a thank you. I do believe you saved me from more embarrassment than has already happened. No one else acted as fast as you did. I'm grateful". And grateful she truly was. Especially if she finally found what she was looking for.

Edited by Celeana Thompson

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She was pretty. In a classy sort of way, the way that spoke of expensive dresses and good face cremes and sleeping underneath the softest covers. Raphael smiled at her, all courteous and friendly, while he did a quick sweep through the store to check for any more vermin, but if there were any around, they were well-hidden. "Yes, indeed," he said, throwing a stern look to the cashier to back her up. "I think I will find another establishment in the future." Even if it wasn't for her, he wasn't going to stay here when there were rats wandering around.

 

"Oh!" He turned towards her with a hint of surprise, but then quickly smiled. "Yes, of course, I would be delighted to have a drink with you." He gave her a pleasant nod of his head and extended his arm towards her so she could take it. "There is a little teashop nearby with delightful tea, but ah, forgive me, I haven't introduced myself." And he couldn't just take a strange woman out to have a drink without at least telling her his name. "I am Raphael King, delighted to make your acquaintance." He bowed kindly for her. 

 

Secretly, he was really curious what her name was. 

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See? This lousy store was already losing customers. The gallant man next to her totally agreed with her and he would find another establishment as well. If the other customers were wise, they would do the same thing. Actually, this store should be broken down so every bit of vermin could be exterminated. And maybe, with the right protection spells, it should be build back up so another classy shop could make his entrance. The owner of this shop did not deserve a good place like this. Diagon Alley, or this part at least, wise very popular and if there was vermin here, they could move to another shop as well. Now that Celeana thought of it, she considered finding herself a better shop in Hogsmead instead. Surely there wouldn't be rats there that would traumatize her, right?

 

She had surprised him, she noticed with amusement. "It will be my honor, sir", she said, hooking her arm through his. Unfortunately he suggested a teahouse close by instead of a pub. After this traumatic event and her near death experience she could have really used something stronger. On the other hand, getting drunk in a pub wasn't very classy. And this man obviously liked classy. He had a classy name too. Rahphael didn't sound really English but his last name suggested status. Seriously, if he had been a farmer or someone of low standards, he would not have been in the same shop as her. Besides, which low life would have the last name King anyway?

 

"Celeana, sir", she introduced herself with a pleasant smile. "Celeana Thompson. The honor is all mine". This time she did make the proper gesture, though with a bit of difficulty while she had her arm hooked in his. The woman allowed him to lead her away from this terrible place. It might have been a terrible experience, but the outcome had been worth it, she hoped. So far she was very satisfied with her catch of the day. She was smiling pleasantly, charming him, sometimes flirted innocently as if she did not notice herself. But while they ordered their tea and found a place to sit, she kept an eye on his body language and his facial expressions. It would tell her soon enough if he was worth her attention or if their paths would separate after today.

 

"So, Raphael, isn't it? It's a lovely name". She chuckled softly. "Forgive me, but I must admit I'm very curious. Do you happen to have French roots?". His 'mademoiselle' had already indicated towards that. Hm, French was not bad at all. Didn't they say the French were very romantic? If that was the case, this would be much easier than she'd thought.

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"My mother is French," Raphael explained, kindly. He always liked it when people asked about France, or where he came from, because the country was his greatest love. Yes, his theatre would come second, and Elena perhaps third, but France was... France. "And I lived there the first six years of my life, before we moved to England." His life was a little more complicated than that, but well, nothing to tell to a complete stranger, lovely though as she were. Celeana Thompson, almost the name of a fairy tale princess. 

 

"Have you ever been to France?" he asked, as the tea arrived. Raphael made certain to fill her cup before he filled hers. He was a gentleman on average, always taking care of others, but he always felt the need to work a little harder for pretty women. "I was born in Paris, so I must admit I have a particular love for the capital, but there are plenty of other beautiful spots in the country." From the warm, sunny beaches in the south, to the mountains with permanent snow. "But England is beautiful too," he quickly added, before the woman could feel offended. 

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Celeana smiled, pleased with the fact she had been right. Raphael did come from France, though he did move to England at a very young age. Considering he seemed wealthy, she figured he would visit his country now and then. Maybe, once they got to know each other better, she got to lure him into taking her to France. it would be the perfect place to tighten her ropes around him. If he was worth it. So far he had mentioned his mother, but not a wife. That was positive, right? But she wanted to be sure and so she had to guide the subject towards that. Which he gave her a perfect opportunity for.

 

The woman shook her head. "I'm afraid I never got the chance. My late husband and I intended to, but unfortunately he got very ill. He died before we got the chance". Although her husband had been too busy with other women to take her anywhere. The first year of marriage had been good, but soon after, she had lost his attention. She still had not figured out what she had done wrong. She simply could not understand he would spend time with every other woman but not with her. "And after that..". she shrugged, looking a bit sad. "I don't know. France is not exactly a trip a woman alone would do, I guess". Notice the 'alone' part, Raphael. It meant she was alone, that she hadn't married again. That was important, you know.

 

"Oh, I do know England has its charm", she admitted. "It's just.. . Well, it would be nice to visit other countries once in a while, you know? Visiting beautiful places, the culture, things like that". She smiled pleasantly at him while she lifted her cup of tea. She took a small sip from it, letting it warm her from the inside. It was just what she needed after that terrible ordeal at the store. "Would you mind telling me a bit about France? I once heard someone say Paris is the city of love? Is that true?".

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Ah, poor thing... Being a widow was such a sad story. He had never been one himself, unfortunately, he would've gladly had gotten rid of his ex-wife like that, but he did the appropriate 'I'm so sorry for your loss' nod. Followed by a 'I understand completely' nod, because yes, a young woman on her own, widow or not, should not really be traveling on her own to a foreign country. Not because he didn't think women were soft creatures (again, his ex-wife had taught him some things about that), but because... well, a foreign country, even France, could be dangerous. 

 

"Oh yes, indeed," he said. "It is a beautiful country." A small smile, that Raphael simply couldn't help, appeared on his face. He loved talking about France. "And Paris is a beautiful city. Indeed, the city of love, but I might be a bit biased. But there is a wonderful park, right along the Seine, hidden from muggles, that is absolutely beautiful. I think that if anyone should fall in love, it should be in that park, along the winding paths, between the beautiful fountains, on a lovely warm, spring day." He smiled a little forlornly. "I really hope you will get to go someday." Because obviously he could not offer a woman he met five minutes ago to take her to Paris. Even if she was a widow.

 

"But there are plenty of beautiful places to visit in France. Are you more in favour of heat or cold?" 

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Ah yes, such a sad story about her being a widow. Very unfortunate as well, since she was all alone without children. Such a lonely life. Ha, she had been relieved when her darling husband had passed away. Hello, she had been the reason he was dead! Celeana smiled sadly, as if she appreciated his support and understanding nods. She didn’t dare to speak though. Not because of the emotions, but because she was afraid she would sound a bit too happy with her husband being dead. It was better to have Raphael think she was a lonely young woman. It was the best way to make him meet her again. By now she started to believe this man was single. He had not mention a wife or a partner. Not even when he talked about France.

 

Paris was the city of love, there was a lot of beauty and all the other things Raphael mentioned. But not once he mentioned he would go back to France from time to time with his wife or fiancée or whatever. That was hopeful, to say the least. Celeana might have secret intentions, but even she could not help but smile genuinely when she heard Raphael speaking about his country. He was so passionate about it and in a way, it was rather attractive. “I really hope so”, she sighed longingly. The way he described Paris it was something she absolutely had to witness for herself. He made it sound like paradise and didn’t she deserve anything less than paradise? She deserved the best of the best.

 

The woman sipped from her tea, thinking about the answer if she liked the warm weather or the cold weather. “I think, in a way, both has its charms. I especially like it when everything is covered with snow, but I must admit I wouldn’t mind sitting in the sun for a bit”. Not too much of course, since she did not want to ruin her skin. She hid her face behind her cup of tea, though in secret she had pushed her cheeks against it softly to create a red blush. “The winter wonderland has something romantic, I must say”. She wasn’t very romantic, to be honest, but she could be if it would gain her everything she wanted. “How is the weather in France? I mean, isn’t England cold and rainy compared to France?”. She honestly did not know if there was any difference. Thanks to her lousy dead husband she hadn’t gone anywhere outside England. “And if I may be so curious, what part of England do you like the most?”. Then she knew where to meet him next.

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"Then you must visit both," he nodded to Mrs Thompson. A journey through France, what a wonderful idea! One he would want to do himself. Maybe with Elena, so she could see his motherland? It wasn't hers, but he still tried to raise her as French as he could.

 

And a journey through France would be very suitable for a honeymoon, but he didn't reach that thought yet. Yes, Celeana was very attractive, but thinking of marriage during a first meeting was quite... something. 

 

"Ah, it really depends. The northern regions can be quite rainy, like England itself, but the south is warm and sunny. And probably best not to compare it to Scotland at all." He grinned a little. Scotland wasn't one of his favourite areas, but it was beautiful, in its own way. "Well, I love London," he nodded, practically to the outside of the little tea shop. "The Diagon Alley is beautiful. My own business is here, I own the Manour, the theatre, it's very close to this shop. But if not London... I'd say Cornwall is rather beautiful. The coast in general." 

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Visit France both during winter and summer. Well, if he would invite her, she would not say no. But hey, this was just the first meeting, so that part was still far away. It would definitely be something worth working for. So far everything seemed to go right with Raphael. After all, she still had his attention and he hadn't left her behind just after one cup of tea. Though she drank her tea very, very slowly to extend this meeting. At least until she knew for sure he was worth it to meet again.

 

And he was.

 

"You are the owner of the theatre?", she exclaimed, truly impressed. That theatre was doing very well, so there was a lot of money in it. That made Raphael worth a lot as well. Celeana smiled. "I totally adored that last play there. That actress was phenomenal". The woman took another sip. "I mean, I like plays, a lot. I often go to them". No, she didn't, but she had seen the last play. She liked those trips, showing off her status and all that, looking for a new target. Unfortunately, she had never seen Raphael there before, or she might have approached him sooner. "I heard a new play is coming?", she asked, leaning in a bit as if he had some secret to share. "Can you tell me a bit about it? No spoilers of course, because I want to see it for myself, but I can't help being a bit curious". And of course, she was going to be there. She just had to see if she could figure out which night he would be there too.

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"Ah, someone who appreciates the theatre!" he said, excited, because if you asked Raphael, there were never enough people that appreciated the theatre. He loved it himself, the plays, the actors and actresses whose talent made you believe they were someone else entirely, the set pieces, how you could create an extraordinary world just on what was basically nothing more than a few pieces of board and a curtain. Theatre was magic, even more than magic was magic. 

 

"Oh, it's a beauty," he grinned, particularly willing to show off. "It's a fairy tale, about this young girl that gets turned into a cat. And it's about true love and a wonderful romance, mixed with a story of a young prince trying to find his place in the world. It's a magnificent story, everyone loves it." But if she was such a special fan of theatre... couldn't he do something for her? "Would you like a ticket to the opening night?" he asked her kindly. "Most of them have already been sold out, but I always keep a few aside for special guests. You can even bring a friend," or a date, "if you want to? If not, I'd be delighted to see the play with you." 

 

Wasn't he just terribly nice to this woman he had just rescued? 

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That was it. Theatre seemed to be the magic word that got him talking. The way Raphael spoke about his business proved he was very proud of it. And he should be, because it was a great business. Celeana might have told a little lie when she said she was going to a play often, but she did truly enjoy those evenings. It was great to sit there, watching an entire story come to life on stage. She could've stand there as well, she was sure, but she had other things to do. Being an actress wasn't something she dreamed about. It took years to gain fame and only seconds to destroy it. A marriage was more trustworthy to secure her future. Or so she had thought until her late lousy husband.

 

To be fair, the new play did sound really interesting. Surely he had seen something of that play already, because surely the actors would have rehearsals in that same theatre. She felt a bit jealous of that, because Celeana might be selfish, but she too appreciated famous people. Or people that could be famous. Good connections were handy, you know. "Oh, that truly sounds like a beautiful masterpiece", she sighed. The woman would have gone anyway, just to meet up with this man again. Now she truly wanted to see the piece coming alive on stage as well. She really should save some money for that.

 

Or not.

 

Celeana sat straight up, surprised at his offer. Inside, though, she cried out in victory. This was the exact thing she needed. "Are you serious?",she asked, holding back her enthusiasm with difficulty. Though she probably was more enthusiastic about having the chance to meet him again than seeing the play. "Oh, I would love that. To see the play, of course". And of course she was not going to bring a friend. "But I'm not sure if I can accept such a gift". Of course she could, but being humble usually worked when you tried to charm someone. She even managed to blush a bit. "And I'm sure you're very busy. I wouldn't want you to sacrifice precious time to enjoy the play with me. Surely you will see it every night and as owner of the theatre you must be really busy". She smiled, looking at him charmingly. "But if you're absolutely sure of it, I will not decline the offer. It's hard to resist the opportunity to go to a play with a nice man". She chuckled, feigning shyness. "I must say I feel honored, though. I mean, are you sure you don't need the ticket for a more important special guest?".

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