The Bradford Legacy Iinterlude 2


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The Bradford Legacy Iinterlude 2

  1. 1. Hello again! One more detour before we get back to the main Bradford Legacy. After her twin got his own little story, I felt the need to give Phily her own interlude about her grand tour of SimEurope with her friend Meadow Thayer. Without further adieu, please enjoy Phily’s Grand Adventure: A Bradford Legacy Interlude.
  2. 2. Dear Mama and Papa, We have barely left the dock in Portsimouth Harbor, and I am missing you both already. Meadow and I are getting along very well, and I want to write and tell you both all about my tour so that it will seem that you are travelling with me.
  3. 3. The ship is so fancy that I am in near constant fear of breaking something. Meadow and I spend most of our days together exploring the ship. We even took a tour of the engine rooms, to see how the ship worked. It really is a marvel of technology, and I wish that you could see it, Papa. We take the air on the deck after breakfast, and then typically enjoy our afternoons in the grand salon, playing chess or enjoying the library. I have been perusing books about Simdon, SimParis, and SimVenice, trying to decide what sights I would like to see.
  4. 4. Meadow and I keep going back and forth on where we’ll go when we get to Simdon. I am very anxious to see the Natural History Museum, while Meadow can’t wait to get to some of the royal residences like Simpton Court. We nearly have our entire itinerary for Simland planned out. Papa, I had hoped that we might be able to get near to the central part of Simland, to see where Great- Grandfather John grew up, but it is not to be. Besides, Mr. Thayer tells me that many of the old family homes have been sold off, and no longer in the hands of their original families. I suppose it is for the best that we will not be going there; I would rather see Bradford Hall as it lives in my memories, from the stories that you have told me, as Grandpa Elias told you.
  5. 5. As the sun sets, we often spend time on the forward deck, awaiting the bell letting us know it’s time to dress for dinner. At that time, we retire to our cabin to put on our finery.
  6. 6. Mama, I am so glad that you insisted on the blue gown for me to wear. It seemed so formal in the little dress shop in Portsimouth, but here on the ship, it fits in perfectly. Some of the jewels that the ladies wear – well, let me just say that they’re probably worth more than our house. It is all I can do not to stare at them during dinner.
  7. 7. Dinner itself is always a grand affair. So many courses! Soup, salad, appetizer, dinner, and then dessert. I fear that I will have to have all my gowns let out before the voyage is over. Unfortunately, Mr. and Mrs. Thayer have spent most of the trip in their cabin. They have, as Meadow puts it, a touch of the mal de mer. It’s a very polite way of saying that they’ve been seasick. Please don’t think it’s improper, Mama, for Meadow and I to be in the dining room alone. We behave with the utmost of decorum, and always leave as soon as dessert is finished.
  8. 8. As the Thayers have been ill and unable to attend dinner, Captain Williams has been unable to join us (we do realize how improper it would be for a gentleman to dine with two unchaperoned ladies). He has, however, stopped by our tabled each evening, to make sure we are enjoying the voyage. He is a kind man, and in some ways he reminds me of you, Papa.
  9. 9. Meadow and I are sharing a cabin. Her parents are next door, and we share a bath. I am often asleep long before Meadow, as she is accustomed to town hours. The cabin is very nice, if somewhat small, and we really don’t spend much time there.
  10. 10. I will end this letter here. The ship will dock in Southsimpton tomorrow, morning, and I will post this letter there. I hope that you are all well. You have the list of hotels where we will be staying, so please write as often as you can. I will do the same, and keep you up on all our travels. Your loving daughter, Phily
  11. 11. Henri, We have been in Simland for a few months now, and I have neglected you horribly. I do hope that you are getting along well, and that Victor is doing well. Let me bring you up to date on what I’ve been doing so far. The day we arrived in Simdon, we got settled into our hotel. After a few weeks on the ship, we decided a walk in the park was in order. There was one not too far from the hotel, and it was so refreshing to walk and talk amongst the trees.
  12. 12. We enjoyed a lovely lunch in one of the cafés that lined the street near the park.
  13. 13. After lunch, we enjoyed a game of mahjong. I have never played it before, and it is fascinating. I’ll have to teach you when I get home.
  14. 14. I feel so lucky to be here, and with Meadow. She is the best of friends, and I will never be able to repay her for her kindness in bringing me along on this journey.
  15. 15. But enough of that! You will be wanting to hear of everything I’ve been up to these past months. Simdon is such a lovely city. I think my favorite part was Natural History Museum. You know how much I love to learn, so our visit was such a treat to me.
  16. 16. They have a display on polar bears, which apparently live in the very far north. Thank goodness, for they are fierce looking creatures!
  17. 17. Meadow preferred the penguin display. They really are adorable birds, and flightless! They swim. Perhaps I’ll be able to see that, someday.
  18. 18. We both enjoyed the bear displays. One was a black bear, much like the ones near home. The other was a panda bear, found in SimAsia. Meadow thought the pandas to be perfectly charming, and is determined to see one in person.
  19. 19. After a long day in the museum, we took a turn in the gardens, which were lovely. Fauna and flora from all over the world! It was one of the highlights of Simdon.
  20. 20. The day after that, we went out to visit Hatfield, which used to be the royal nursery palace (an entire palace as your nursery! How outrageous that seems to us commoners). It was a lovely palace, but I didn’t find it to be too interesting. I spent most of the visit outside, while Meadow and her parents marveled over the design and the priceless artifacts inside. Really, Henri, I think that I am horribly uncultured. I have no eye for artwork. I’m afraid of what will happen when we get to SimParis.
  21. 21. Simpton Court, however, was right up my alley. It was one of Henry VIII’s favorite palaces, and I can fully understand why. Such a lovely setting, and the grounds are marvelous.
  22. 22. We went all over the palace! The queens’ privy chamber, where she heard her prayers, was so beautiful.
  23. 23. One of the halls had portraits of Henry and all of his wives. After examining the late king’s portrait for some time, neither Meadow or I could understand how any woman would have wanted to marry him after how he treated his first wife.
  24. 24. The wives' portraits were lined up after his. Catherine of Aragon first, Anne Boleyn next, and Jane Seymour after. “Imagine putting aside the daughter of two of the most powerful monarchs in the world to marry a virtual nobody like Anne Boleyn,” commented Meadow. “Neither Catherine or Anne got a happy ending,” I said. “Catherine died in exile, and Anne beheaded for treason so Henry could marry Jane.” “She was probably the luckiest of his wives. She gave him a son, and he always remembered that.”
  25. 25. We moved a little further down to admire the portraits of Anna of Cleaves, Katherine Howard, and Catherine Parr. “Anna didn’t get such a bad deal either. Beloved as the king’s sister, and never having to marry.” Meadow laughed when I said that. “Too true. But little Katherine – she was too young and silly to be a queen, and she paid with her life. And then he married Catherine Parr so she could basically be a nursemaid.” Henri, I looked down the row of portraits and shuttered. Men can be such horrible creatures, can they not?
  26. 26. We looked at the great family portrait Henry commissioned. His son, Edward, and his long-dead wife Jane were front and center, while his daughters, Mary and Elizabeth, were pushed off to the side. “It’s so horrible,” Meadow said to me. “Catherine Parr was queen when he had this painting commissioned, and his daughters are relegated to the periphery.” “They’re girls,” I replied. “Society see us as second-class citizens.” “Well, Elizabeth certainly proved him wrong there,” she chuckled. “Really, Phily. You’re a suffragette at heart. You should take up the cause when we get home.” “Maybe I will.”
  27. 27. Henri, this has been a ridiculosly long letter. I hope it has proved to be a pleasant distraction to your day. I will write again soon. Your loving sister, Phily
  28. 28. Ma chère Mère et Père, I hope this letter finds you well. Let me tell you of our trip to SimFrance. We took the train out of King’s Cross to the coast where we caught a ship to Calais. The train station is massive; so much larger than Portsimouth Station.
  29. 29. The trains here are marvelous! Instead of mass seating, we got a private compartment for our party. It was so pleasant to converse and plan in a relatively quiet space. And they bring a trolley around with food! Really, Mama, SimEuropeans are quite civilized.
  30. 30. After crossing the Simlish Chanel to Calais, we took another train to SimParis. After an afternoon relaxing at our hotel, we awoke early the next morning to visit the Louvre, a former palace and one of the largest art museums anywhere.
  31. 31. Meadow is so fascinated by artwork, and I cannot help but tease her about it. I call her a snob, and she calls me a heathen. I am trying to be more cultured, but I don’t know if it will ever happen.
  32. 32. It is so hard, Mama, to look at a sculpture that has fallen apart with time, and still find it beautiful. Meadow marveled at an ancient SimGreek statue. It had lost its arms as the years went by. I imagine it must have been a sight while intact, but I could not see it. Papa, you understand, don’t you?
  33. 33. There are some works of art that I like better than others. One of the sculptures reminds me of the statue in the family cemetery.
  34. 34. And there was a painting that looked shockingly like the one in our study. I confess that it made me homesick, but just for a little while.
  35. 35. After the Louvre, we went to see the new Eifel Tower. Meadow prefers to walk, and as it was a lovely day, we did just that.
  36. 36. The SimParisans think it to be an eyesore, and I am somewhat inclined to agree with them. It seems so out of place with all the historic architecture. Perhaps there is some hope for me to become cultured after all, if I can see that modern doesn’t fit in SimParis.
  37. 37. The hotel we’re staying at is ridiculously luxurious. The salon is so fine,that I don’t want to sit on the chairs.
  38. 38. And Papa, they have these new inventions called an elevator! It’s a machine that brings you from one floor a building…
  39. 39. …up or down to another. The sensation does take some getting used to, but it is most useful, especially when one comes back from a shopping excursion with an armful of packages.
  40. 40. I hope that you and the rest of the family are well. Is there any word from Alex yet? Have he and Kaylynn found a homestead? If you have news, please write straight away. I haven’t heard anything, and I’m worried. I will write again soon. Your loving daughter, Phily
  41. 41. Alex, Alex, where are you? Have you settled in to Simta Fe yet? I desperately hope so, as I am in such a conundrum and I need your advice. We have just left SimParis, but something happened her and I must tell someone. You’ll understand. I know you will.
  42. 42. Meadow and I, and her parents, had tickets to the SimParis Opera. We got dressed in our best, and Meadow and I were perfectly silly as we waited for her parents to come fetch us from the room.
  43. 43. Alex, I wish that you could have been there to see the Opera House! It’s a magnificent building. It took my breath away as I walked up the front steps.
  44. 44. We walked through its halls to find our seats, a private box. Really, Alex, my head is getting turned by all this extravagance. I thought that we were a well-off family, but we’re practically paupers compared to the Thayers.
  45. 45. We took our seats, and prepared for the performance to begin.
  46. 46. I don’t know what opera we saw; it was all in Simtalian, and I didn’t understand word of it. But it was a love story, and the two main characters were mad for each other, and wanted nothing more than to be together.
  47. 47. All of a sudden, I couldn’t take it anymore. I excused myself from the box, and went down into the lobby. Meadow followed me, and demanded to know what was wrong. I had no idea what to tell her. These past days have been the most happy of my entire life, and I had finally begun to understand why.
  48. 48. Before I could answer, she took my hand. “Phily, I understand better than you think how you’re feeling. I care about you so much, and I’m struggling to understand how I can reconcile those feeling with what society expects of me.” I nodded, as my throat was choked up and I couldn’t form words. “And it’s so hard to watch other people be so public with their affections,” she continued.
  49. 49. “Oh, Meadow,” I sighed. “I think I’ve always loved you. I just never realized it until…” “Until you realized that there’s no other person you’d rather spend time with?” “Something like that.” I sighed. “What do we do now?” “We’re discrete. I think that Mother and Father suspect, but they won’t say anything. Your family…” “Mama and Papa can’t know, because they’ll tell Matthew. After seeing how he treated Alex and Kaylynn…well, he would never understand.” “So it will be our little secret. Come on, let’s go see the end of the opera.”
  50. 50. We did just that. As the actors took their final bow, Meadow slipped her hand into mine and squeezed. Alex, it was the first time in my life that I’ve felt truly happy. Am I wrong to pursue this, Alex? Please, tell me that as my brother, you understand. I cannot bear the thought of you disapproving of my actions. I do hope I hear from you soon. I miss you tremendously. Your loving sister, Phily
  51. 51. Dearest Mama and Papa, We have departed from SimParis and are headed south towards SimVenince, touring the SimFrench Riviera in the process. We are staying at a hotel that is an old chateau. It’s so charming.
  52. 52. I’m grateful to be here with Meadow – now that we’re out of the city, people don’t speak Simlish as much, and my SimFrench just makes people laugh. So Meadow does most of the parlez-vousing, as I’m coming to call it. Hopefully, my grasp of the language improves as we continue our travels.
  53. 53. The countryside is so lovely, I can barely describe it. Meadow and I take long walks to explore.
  54. 54. While here, we went to one of the many spas that have popped up. Mrs. Thayer has not been feeling well, and the doctors prescribed a trip to the hot springs. I had to say that I was looking forward to taking the waters.
  55. 55. While Mrs. Thayer enjoyed the hot springs, Mr. Thayer treated us to coffee. The SimFrench make it much stronger than we do, and I wasn’t used to the flavor. Even Meadow wanted to ask for sugar and cream, but her father said that part of the Grand Tour was experiencing the food and drink of the locals.
  56. 56. Meadow and I took the waters as well, though we didn’t drink them as the attendant advised. It is one thing to soak in a pool of hot mineral water; it is quite another to drink several cupfuls of it.
  57. 57. After a soak, Meadow announced that she was hungry. The spa had a restaurant, and Mr. and Mrs. Thayer allowed us our own table as they enjoyed a dinner for two. Heading the advice Mr. Thayer had given us earlier, we each decided to order something new. I ordered the escargot, and Meadow tried the duck a l’orange. We shared, and decided that both were excellent.
  58. 58. And for dessert, we tried the crepes suzette. I am so pleased with the cuisine I’m trying. I hope that I’ll be able to recreate some of these recipes for you when I get home.
  59. 59. We’ll be in Simtaly soon, and I can’t wait. My Simtalian is nearly as poor as my SimFrench, but I’m sure that I’ll manage. Mr. Thayer is quite fluent, and has promised to tutor me. I hope that everyone is well. Thank you for the crayons of Jefferson and Lizzie – they’re growing up so fast. Though I am having a wonderful time, there is a part of me that longs for home. Your loving daughter, Phily
  60. 60. Dearest Alex, Thank you so much for your letter! It met me here in SimVenice. I’m glad to hear that you and Katie are doing well. And that I’m an aunt. You must send me a sketch of Peter as soon as you’re able. I’ll talk to Mama and Papa, and maybe we can all come visit you when I get back to Simerica. SimVenice is lovely, but I think I prefer SimFrance. Mr. Thayer is fascinated by SimVenice, so I fear that we’ll be passing quite a bit of time here.
  61. 61. Still, it means that Meadow and I have more time to spend alone together. I’m glad to hear that you approve. Your comment about somehow knowing that Meadow and I were, or eventually would be, more than friends was very kind. I’m so glad that I have your support, and that I can confide in you, as I doubt that the family in Massimchusetts would understand.
  62. 62. It is fall here now, and quite rainy. But I don’t mind. Meadow and I are careful to have an umbrella with us at all times, but once and a while, when Mrs. Thayer isn’t looking, we like to enjoy the rain.
  63. 63. If possilbe, Meadow and I have become even closer. I worry what will happen when we return to Simerica, and if Papa will force me to marry. I don’t know if I could do that.
  64. 64. The other day, while we were walking over the Bridge of Sighs, Meadow had a surprise for me.
  65. 65. She gave me a diamond ring, just like we were any ordinary couple and could become betrothed. I only wish that it could be for real.
  66. 66. I have been so happy here in SimEurope, Alex, that I almost fear coming home. I don’t want this little bubble that we’ve been living in to burst. I hope that we’ll see each other real soon. I miss you so much. All my love, Phily
  67. 67. Dearest Henri, Oh, Henri! I just got the news. I’d say that I’m sorry, but I’m not. We’ll be headed for Simerica as fast as we can. I know that you’d tell me to stay and enjoy the remainder of my trip, but it would look odd if I didn’t come rushing home when my sister was recently widowed.
  68. 68. Meadow and I are both very distraught about leaving SimEurope early, even though we have already seen much of what we set out to see. Besides, Mrs. Thayer is not doing well, and she wishes to go home, and this gives her a good excuse to do so.
  69. 69. When I got Papa’s letter, with word of Professor Hutchins’ death, I admit that I cried. Not for him, but because I must leave this place that I have learned to love so much.
  70. 70. Meadow is almost as upset to leave as I am, and we have been comforting each other as best we can. I have much to tell you, but will do so when I see you in a few short weeks. I hope that you’ll understand what I have to say. After all, sisters are forever.
  71. 71. I will end this so that I can finish packing my trunks. As soon as I land in Portsimouth, I’m heading straight for your house. We’ll be taking a ship from Southsimpton again, and it will take us about a week to get back to Simland from Simtaly. Take care, Henri, and give Victor my love. Your loving sister, Phily
  72. 72. Alex, By now, I’m sure that you heard that our sister Henri is finally free from her husband’s torments. Though I’m not sad about his loss, I have done the proper thing and donned mourning for my brother-in-law. Meadow has even put on half-mourning, so that I don’t feel so alone. We boarded the ship about a week ago, and I’ll post this letter as soon as we dock. It will be good to be back on Simerican soil once again.
  73. 73. It was very hard to get onto the ship and put back on the façade that I have been able to keep dropped for so long. The freedom to be who I am in SimEurope has been wonderful.
  74. 74. Still, Meadow tells me not to worry. So I don’t. Her parents have no plans of forcing her to marry, and I plan to live with Henri when I get back.
  75. 75. The voyage home has been very different. As I’m in mourning, I’ve pretty much kept to the cabin. We haven’t even had dinner in the dining room. Mrs. Thayer says it’s proper for me to be in semi-seclusion.
  76. 76. I got sick of my confinement, and snuck down to the aft deck one night. I sat down, and gazed up at the stars. Alex, I was dreading going home and having to be the person that everyone wants me to be, instead of the person that I truly am.
  77. 77. It was there that Meadow found me, lost in my own thoughts. “I’m worried too, you know. I can’t imagine not seeing you every day.” “It’s so horrible that we can’t be together as we want, just because society frowns upon it.”
  78. 78. “What if no one knew?” Meadow whispered. “What do you mean?” “What if we were to make a promise to love one another, just as a couple does during a wedding?” “But Meadow, it’s not allowed.” “I’m not talking about announcing it to the world. I’m talking about you and me, promising to love each other for the rest of our lives. What do you say, Phily? Will you marry me?” I smiled. “Of course I will, Meadow. I love you more than anything.”
  79. 79. We exchanged the same vows that you and Katie did at your wedding. It felt wonderful to thumb our noses at society and their constraints.
  80. 80. Our marriage, if we can even call it that, is our little secret, and Meadow knows that I am writing to you to share the news. It has been too long since we saw each other, Alex. We have to see each other soon. All my love, Phily
  81. 81. Dear Diary, Though no one else will acknowledge it, I became Phily Thayer tonight. It is the most incredible feeling to call myself that. I only wish I could shout it from the rooftops.
  82. 82. I know that I always swore that I would never get married, but I just hadn’t met the right person. I love Meadow so much. I’m a very lucky woman to have found her. I dread the docking tomorrow, when I have to pretend that Meadow and I are nothing more than close friends. But I know that we will survive somehow. Phily
  83. 83. ************************************************************************************************************************* And that is Phily and Meadow’s grand tour. I hope you enjoyed! Next up, we get back to our regularly scheduled legacy. Thank you very much for reading. Please leave comment on the thread at Until next time! I used a tremendous amount of CC to make SimEurope. I’d like to thank the following creators for their amazing lots (all can be found on MTS): The SS Majestic SimParis bacon164 for the MiniTanic, docked version pegasaus for the Palais Garnier Black0rchid for the Le fleurs (du mal) HOTEL Simdon and Simland V1ND1CARE for the Musée du Louvre ash3sandgh0sts for Hatfield Revisited en7en for La Tour Eiffel Tatiana_Dokuchic for Henry VIII’s Hampton Court jon119 for the Star Collection IV: Hotel Chateau Mont Vert **** StephSim for Victorian London Part I: Natural History Museum and King’s Cross Station SimVenice Anubis360 for London’s Rain Park Black0rchid for the Venice Hotel lordtiko for the The Bridge Of Sighs, Venice
  84. 84. Just a few pics that I wanted to include. Yes, I broke down and the them get engaged and married. Meadow’s had the want forever, but when Phily rolled the “Get Engaged to Meadow” want, I caved. They are such a lovely couple. I can deny them NOTHING.
  85. 85. Thomas! Alex! What are you doing in the south of SimFrance?