Welcome back to the Norrington legacy! It's a Victorian themed legacy with all the handicaps that implies. 1) no pre-marital or extra-marital woohoo within the legacy family. 2) males inherit except in extenuating circumstances. times are changing 3) no modern appliances or electronics... you get the picture.
Meet Miss Marygold Tertius, the host of our third chapter. Young Marygold eagerly agreed to do a quick recap for us. Let's see what's been happening with the Norrington family shall we Marygold...
"Gladly. Last time we checked, The Norringtons were blessed with the birth of Abigail Virginia after years of trying with no success. She's a fair skinned beauty with her mother's blue eyes and dark hair. "Young Asher Michael grew into a strapping lad with a love for all things in nature and never caused a lick of trouble. Stuart finished the first phase of the new house and the family moved out of their original cabin."
"Poor Evelyn found herself with child once more and spent most of the pregnancy in either the outhouse or in bed. Her illness caused the entire family a great deal of worry and it was rumored neither she or the child would see the pregnancy through." Thank you Marygold. I'll pick up from here.
It was a somber season at the Norrington's. Asher did his best to distract himself with chores. It was harvest time after all, and the crops had no knowledge of illness and such things. When he felt very low he contemplated his favorite piece of art. But his mother was never far from his thoughts.
"It was a gift from a favorite school teacher of mine." "Mama?! You're out of bed! Shouldn't you be resting?"
"Perhaps but I'm feeling a bit better now. Besides, it's your sister's first birthday. I certainly didn't wish to miss it. "Happy birthday my little dove."
And Abigail grew into a precious toddler like her brother before her. Unlike the rest of her family, she was a bit more finicky about getting grubby. She shared her father's kind heart and loved a good laugh like the rest of the Norringtons. (5 neat, 2 shy, 6 active, 7 playful, 6 nice)
Afterward Evelyn's exertions caught up to her and she wondered if she would ever feel quite well again. "Dearest, I would not have you over doing it. Please, go lie down and I'll look after the children."
And that's what Stuart did. Through the last months of Evelyn's troubled pregnancy, Stuart spent all his spare time seeing to his children's many needs. Though it wasn't much trouble playing with he sweet little girl.
It was a bit tougher for Asher. Though he kept his complaints to himself. He managed to earn a bronze gardening badge for his devotion. Oh but how he wanted things to be the way they once were.
"Mama! You're up and about! How are you feeling?" "Much better love, though I think I'm having a bit of indigestion. I thought a change of scenery would put me in better spirits. I certainly am tired of that bed."
(hmmm... perhaps not indigestion after all, eh Evy?)
Once again Stuart rushed to his wife's side to assist in bringing their new baby into the world. "You're doing wonderfully dear. Just another push and it'll be over."
And another girl joined the family. Skin like her brother, dark hair like her mother and her father's green eyes. "Hello beautiful. I certainly am pleased to see you. And to think, we almost didn't meet. How fortune has smiled on us both."
Stuart felt a moment of ultimate relief that both his girls made it through... then a moment of clarity... "Another girl?! That's another dowry and another marriage to arrange!" Really Stuart, it's not so bad. Just take a look at her.
Well? "I suppose she is as lovely as her mother, which makes up for the expense. We will call her Alice Mackenzie Norrington."
And so christened, Alice began her first night in the Norrington nursery...
While her older sister wailed in the background. Poor Abby suffered a bit of neglect through all this new baby nonsense and was letting everyone know how she felt about it. I think we're all in agreement that it was not behavior becoming of a lady. (despite her nice points and general sweetness... Abby was a screamer!)
After a couple days rest, Evelyn eagerly jumped back into her motherly duties. She felt as though so much time had been wasted being ill. Abby was not so quick to forgive her mother's absence...
But do to those nice points found it difficult to hold a grudge for very long. "What a beautiful smile my Abby has, yes she does."
Asher was doing wonderfully in school despite his workload at home. Though one day Evelyn took a look at him and realize just how much he'd grown. Asher was her little boy no more but soon to be a young man. And while he still loved his mother, he was no longer dependent on her and hadn't been for quite some time. The realization saddened her somewhat.
The years were slipping through their fingers quite rapidly. Asher would be a teenager and soon Abby would leave the toddler years behind.
That evening Stuart spoke to his wife about a long awaited promotion. He was no longer an apprentice but a doctor in his own right. He wasn't much more than a common surgeon but it was well paid and a great position for one who hadn't received any proper schooling. He found conversation with Evelyn stilted, and wondered if she resented him for his desire to have so many kids. Had a wedge formed between them after all this time? He needn't have worried. He only had to ask and Evelyn was too happy to reassure him of her love and devotion. Theirs might have been a quiet and at times polite sort of love, but it was tried and true.
Weeks later and Evelyn was quite sure that she was once more with child. Yup. Boy are these two making up for lost time. Meanwhile...
Asher had reached the tender age of thirteen. His parents gathered together for the bittersweet moment and said goodbye to their little boy.
My, aren't you dashing. Having had a poor and humble childhood, Asher decided he would prefer to make his fortune rather than have a large family. He hoped to find a young lady who, like his mother, was masterful in the kitchen but he rather fancied yellow hair. And like his father he feared the smelly un-dead which lusted after the minds of others. (quick reminder: 1 sloppy, 7 outgoing, 9 active, 10 playful, 1 grouchy)
Despite his new ambitions, Asher still had a great love for his family. His dreams and wants were different to those of his parents but he thoroughly respected those who had raised him.
And despite or maybe because of the difficult time they both had together, Evelyn thoroughly enjoyed Alice's infancy. She'd been dubbed the 'miracle' and everyone took a shine to her.
Soon Abigail had turned five, and her favorite thing to was clean up after her sloppy family. She was quite pleased to be able to bathe herself as often as she liked these days. And right after that Alice reached her first birthday. A bittersweet milestone for all involved. (lil Abby left her sister's birthday celebration in order to make her parents' bed. oi vey)
And here's Alice, looking very much like her brother Asher. She wasn't as pretty a baby as Abby, and there was a definite twinkle of mischief in her eyes. She would be most at home throwing mud pies and giggling like mad. (1 sloppy, 7 outgoing, 9 active, 10 playful, 1 grouchy )
In her spare time Stuart had Abby instructed in music. Every young lady needed an occupation and he would not let it be said that the Norrington girls were unaccomplished. Fortunately, Abigail seemed predisposed to music and enjoyed practicing.
Asher took a keen interest in his sisters. It gave Evelyn time to study and made for a calmer pregnancy this time around.
He taught Alice to walk... And Abby, he taught the game of chess. He was determined that his sisters be intelligent as well as handsome, like their mother.
Meanwhile baby number four made it's presence known on a regular basis. Evelyn could tell already that this one would be quite spirited.
Where was Stuart during all this family ruckus? Working and doing a great deal of thinking. He still desired to have six children but was wary of what pregnancy was doing to his lovely wife. Evelyn had barely survived Alice, and this fourth one had her running ragged. Dare he risk her life with a fifth and sixth?
Asher had absolutely no problem taking advantage of his father's absent mindedness. This truly was the extent of his lonely nice point.
Meet Trace. The answer to Stuart's dilemma. He made up his mind that Evelyn would suffer child birth no more. There were plenty of good children out there in need of a warm and loving home. So young Trace was fetched from the very workhouse Stuart himself was raised in. (5 neat, 8 outgoing, 6 active, 3 serious, 3 grouchy... he'll fit in just fine)
"Welcome home son." "Thank you Sir." "It's Papa now. No more of this 'Sir' nonsense."
While Trace made an immediately connection with Stuart, he seemed to be adverse to his new brother. ...and vice versa
Despite his rough beginning, Stuart was determined that Trace would fit in with his siblings. For Stuart, there was nothing quite as important as family.
...And his efforts were rewarded. (I see Abby in the background telling Trace all about their father's obsession with fish. lol )
Trace began to find his niche and the Norrington's were that much closer to being complete. Evelyn reassured her husband that the children would become fast friends if left to their own devices.
Abigail continued to play the perfect little daughter by happily taking up her mother's household chores without being asked. So it was a calm and well rested Evelyn that went into her labor on a quiet winter's day. "I'll thank the heavens if I never have to do this again!"
And it was another lovely girl with her mother's hair and blue eyes, and her father's fair skin. "So it's been you kicking me all this time. I thought for certain only a boy could be so active."
Stuart was not so bothered by the birth of another daughter. He was first in line to welcome the new addition, a pleased smile on his face. The boys had roused themselves quickly to join their father in congratulations.
"What is all the fuss?" "We have a sister Abby. Where have you been?" "Making your bed Asher." "Abigail love, come meet you sister, Annie Winnefred Norrington. You must take a look at her, she could be your twin."
"Papa?" "Yes Trace, my boy." "Did that baby come from the work house too?" "Um..." Good luck fielding that question Stuart.
No Trace, but this one did. Meet the latest adoptee Lora. Originally Stuart had every intention of bringing home another boy to even out the household. But when he was looking around, he came upon this pale beauty with wide, scared eyes. She looked desperate for a home and he didn't have the heart to turn away. So Lora found herself part of the Norrington clan for which she was very grateful. Lora was on the quiet and bashful side. While she didn't mind a giggle or two (she wouldn't fit in otherwise) she preferred to sit quietly with a good book rather then run around. (4 sloppy, 4 shy, 4 lazy, 7 playful, 6 nice)
"Welcome to the madhouse little sister."
Lora immediately made herself at home by bonding with her siblings and being helpful. She never stepped a toe out of line. When she wasn't doing her chores or looking after her younger sister, Lora could be found concentrating on her studies.
She seemed desperate for the approval of her new family, always aiming to please. (I personally think she suffered from abandonment issues. her perfect behavior is clearly a result of her need to be loved)
Trace, too was finding his feet. Though far more subtle than Lora. He was forever grateful to Stuart for giving him a home and always welcomed his father back from work. He and Lora bonded quickly, both having a great love of chess. They could be sure to play at least one game a day together. (Trace is still wondering where babies come from)
And let's not forget Asher. The ideal son. Always looking to better himself in some way. He decided to study dance at his mother's insistence. Evelyn believed it was a mark of a true gentlemen to have an air of grace and be studied in some form of dance.
He was also a wonderful brother. Despite their age difference, Asher took quite a shine to baby Annie. The 'oops' of the family, she was oft forgotten in her nursery. But Asher never forgot to make Abby, the oldest girl with the most responsibility, feel special. Once upon a time, it had been just the two of them.
That winter he fulfilled Abigail's greatest wish... Ice skating in the park. While Abby marveled at the picturesque experience, Asher contemplated how he would make his fortune. Unfortunately, the life of a farmer's son was far too busy for an outside job. His ambitions would have to wait. Right now he was needed.
(Asher truly is the perfect son. his wants are always appropriate. fishing, catching butterflies and fireflies... he loves taking care of and looking after his younger siblings. those kids have no idea how fortunate they are. aside from the occasional noogie, Asher is a saint. he's put aside his own desires for those of his family. nary a want for a cell phone, hand held, job, first kiss... nothing. when he gets to college, I'm spoiling him rotten )
Back on the homestead Evelyn did her best to spread herself evenly between her children. But with six of them it wasn't easy. Fortunately, Annie was a well mannered baby in need of little attention. Evelyn wondered if her independent nature would continue in the future. Stuart was in his element. In fact, he focused less on promotions at work, in order to be with his large brood more. (I'm not kidding there. he never rolls the want to get promoted and it's like pulling teeth to make him skill. he just wants to stay home and play with his kids)
Around this time Asher began talking about traveling and the many adventures to be had in the world. He entertained his sisters with tales of animals they'd only read about. He promised that one day he would go to these places and bring back souvenirs for them all.
Trace preferred the logical things in life. He may not have been diligent with his homework but his good grades were well earned. ...As were perfect Lora's (this girl is a phenom! actually, Trace owes his grades to Lora doing his homework despite her being younger. Trace could hardly be dragged away from his chess board. Lora may not be a cleaning freak like Abby, or Trace for that matter, but she takes care of everything else. between she and Abby, the household runs pretty smoothly. Evelyn has quite a bit of time to catch up on her studying these days)
The rest of that winter was busy with snowball fights... birthdays... Welcome to toddlerhood Annie! She too favored a mess and would rather pull your hair while giggling like mad. She's definitely a Norrington. (1 sloppy, 7 outgoing, 6 active, 7 playful, 4 grouchy)
and more birthdays... "Happy birthday Alice!" Trace called out gleefully. Alice, like her older brother, had a most interesting mix of features. A bit plainer than her sisters, but she had something they lacked...
Alice was intriguing. She didn't take to cleaning, or playing violin or being extremely studious. Alice did her own thing. Quite like her mother, she shunned convention. Rebellious in a quiet and unoffensive way.
What is this? A complaint from the boy wonder?
Some things never change. "Perhaps I could go to University and study Art." (about this time I took a peak at Asher's lifetime want... Space Pirate! it's so perfect I don't think I'll have the heart to reroll him in college. my little adventurer. he certainly will find a way to make his fortune. I so heart you Asher)
There was something about little Annie that always caught my interest. She was quite pleasant and never failed to make her family members smile. Yet, she had a darker side... an untapped knack for trouble. I knew from the beginning that Annie would break the mold.
And the years passed quickly with six children running around the house. Trace remained the most serious Norrington, but Abby, the little mother hen, always went out of her way to draw him into conversation. Asher's mind was now ever more on higher education. Abby was also one of the few who could drag perfect little Lora out of her angelic shell. The sisters got on like a house on fire, having so much in common. They both desired to grow up and be model young ladies and marry well. Alice, on the other hand, shared little interest in her giggling older sisters. She was loathe to join them for a round of 'Mary Mack'. A rousing game of tag was right up her alley.
And of course Abby indulged her younger sister and made compromises. She could always been seen outside playing with Alice. "I believe we shall have ourselves a fine snowman when we are through Alice. A defender of the home." "Tis unfortunate we couldn't find him a sturdy pair of horns." "Horns?! Whatever for?" "I do believe they would make him a most fearful defender." "Honestly Alice, the things you say are scandalous."
See something of interest Miss Belinda Lestrade? (that's Brandi to the rest of you) "I find it most unfortunate that Mrs. Norrington chose to spend her life as a breeding mare to that dreadful man's zoo of children." Miss Lestrade! What a thing to say. The Norrington's are a very happy family. They may be poor, and yes Evelyn had the potential to do many other things, but they are content with the choices they've made. "But just look at their home... it's not even finished. I've heard all the children sleep in the same room!" Perhaps. Though I would hope you to be above such idle gossip. How would you feel if I were to tell you that it's been said, you're jealous Mr. Norrington failed to turn a fancy towards you when searching out a wife? "Why I never!" That's right, he never did. Now good day to you Miss Lestrade.
"Abby, who is that man that Papa is greeting? He has a decidedly wretched air about him." "Oh Alice, do not say wretch. And I believe him to be the headmaster of the new school for boys in town." "Headmaster?"
That's right. Headmaster. Young Asher finally voiced his ambitions to his parents. Unbeknownst to him, it had been decided long ago between Evelyn and Stuart, that their children have the best education they could afford. For years Stuart had been saving in order to provide each of his children with at least a year of University. Since Asher was the oldest boy, a large sum was set aside for his entire education. Both parents were more than happy to invite the Headmaster of the boys school over for dinner. dun dun DUN! What will the Headmaster think of the Norrington's humble dwelling? Will he make Asher's dreams of private tutoring come true? Will he be as impressed with the new indoor plumbing as I am? We'll find out next chapter. (thanks for reading. and as always thanks to all the great cc makers out there. especially MTS2 and All About Style)