babyjosephine: (teenaged bruising)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
Some point in 1957

It was eleven--no, it was closer to midnight than to eleven--and Alice was so furious she couldn't see straight. Her finger shook in the rotary dial and her mind was so scattered that she chose the wrong number twice before remembering that she was dialing America and needed a few extra numbers to have it go through.

She was dialing America (and sniffing hard--sniffing with fury) because Allen Carey was an insufferable prick with a horrible upbringing and a stupid face and he had ruined her day, ruined her year, ruined her life, and she would never ever forgive him. She would total all of his cars for as long as he chose to have them. She would chase him with whatever cars she owned next. She would haunt him like a ghost. He was the worst person in existence and if he knew any of her school friends well, she'd have started spreading rumors already.

Violet and Mallory had endured hours of ranting already, but not yet today. Mallory was busy. Violet was busier. They had good boyfriends who weren't twats.

Alice sat down on the far side of her bed and stared at the wall as the phone rang.
babyburlesk: (red ribbon)
[personal profile] babyburlesk
Early May, 1927. Isabella has been gone from the circus for about three weeks.

Dear Ian,

Ian I miss you a lot. I think about you lots as well. New York is affle big and I went to every place! I got lots of dresses and I got to go to Cony Iland and sing a song there and every one was happy. I think you woud like Cony Iland becase there was magic there and forchin tellers and hot dogs (they are not dogs). Tomoro I get to go to the show I am doing and practise.

Well the biggest thing that happend is Mister Love (that is my manager) made me do it with him even thou I did’nt want to I wanted to with you first but he made me with him. I hop your not mad case I did’nt mean to. I am a little sad I think but do’nt worry I am okay it just hurt.

Mister Love is very strange. I liked him when Mister Hank was here becase he is not as happy now. He is grumpy but not like Bradley he is grumpy and then he gets mad. I want to go back sometimes case I do’nt think Mister Love likes me. He said he did before but now I do’nt think so.

Well he is going to come back so I got to say bye now but I will say more later OK?

Love,
Iz
littlejazzbaby: (a key)
[personal profile] littlejazzbaby
February 10th, 1933. Cape Town, South Africa.

February 10th. In four days, though you couldn't really count the fourth, Isabella was going to be married. For a week, guests had slowly arrived from around the world, most of them strangers to her, invited by her future mother-in-law. Royalty, aristocracy, tweed and lace. Hands she was happy to shake, cheeks she was happy to kiss, but intimidation she couldn't shake. Almost nine years of consistent presence in the spotlight had given Isabella near immunity from shyness and nervousness and second guessing. Her reputation was no longer as questionable as her behavior; she was considered witty, charismatic, and professional.

But Betsy Fitzwilliam and her plans had reduced Isabella to a state of paranoia that she was powerless to understand. Weddings were beyond her, both in function and operation. She had been to a few now, and learned the stereotypes, but her ignorance meant that she had not been the one in charge of planning. While she picked the dress and was given some input on decor and allowed to invite everyone she wished (as she tended to know celebrities, and Betsy was not discouraging about celebrity), the rest of it was out of her hands.

As the date grew nearer, she grew more confused, wondering what would be expected of her. There was a rehearsal in three days (or two, if the fourth wasn't to be counted). Isabella could dance and sing for crowds as large as a thousand or more; could walk nude in front of complete strangers. She could even be photographed in the midst of sexual acts. But what she couldn't do was predict what a wedding would require, and it was overwhelming.

Betsy, though about nine inches shorter than Isabella, managed to be frightening. She was a hard woman to please, and highly critical of her son's choice in women. Isabella's American nature and career on the stage did not impress her, no matter how rich Isabella supposedly was.

The mansion, however, was crawling with people. )
babyburlesk: (Default)
[personal profile] babyburlesk
14 July, 1925. Circus has been touring since the start of April and has been in Edinburgh for a week.

July meant rain or sun, and the week had been spotty. The week had also been spent outside Edinburgh, in an area of green that some called a field but Hank called the worst landscape he ever had to set a tent upon. Indeed, most of the roustabouts had agreed with him, swearing so much and so vociferously that the youngest performers had to be ushered away to tour the city while the work was done.

It was the first time the Brooks Spectacular had gone out of England. Isabel, who now found herself responding to two versions of her name and billed as Isabella, was fascinated by the crooked architecture and the towering castles. They toured as much as they dared, at least until the three terrors, and John in particular, attempted to break into a tomb and got everyone in trouble.

The week was doubly interesting due to the amount of times Isabel heard mention of a birthday. Her birthday was today, in fact—a thing she had never cared about or noticed in the years before now. Birthdays were a measure of age, and not so extraordinary as to warrant a day of delights. After all, it was not so special and unique to have a birthday, if you managed to be born.

So Isabel was of a certain opinion about her birthday and it was that the 14th of July couldn’t possibly be any more exciting now than it had been thirteen years before... )
[identity profile] halfaustere.livejournal.com
[Just before Robert's final coma, while he's already becoming largely catatonic. 2002.]

Robert's handwriting (dried tears underneath it, not above it) was almost entirely unintelligible, words barely pressed into the page, ink spilled everywhere as it seemed his hands had been shaking so he was unable to make anything but a mess – a mess of his mind spilled everywhere as much as the ink.

Tuesday, 26 March, Volume MMII: I fear this may be the last thing I ever write. )

Alice - G

Jun. 25th, 2009 02:51 am
babyjosephine: (Default)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
Sunday, 21st August, 1983. Andy had died on the 19th.

Grief, it turned out, provided options, though all tended to provide what felt like a bat to the face. In some cases, the pain was angry. In some, the pain was crippling. In others, the pain created hallucinations that turned the world into a dream.

Alice wasn’t sure how it was attacking her, as three days earlier she had never been happier in all of her life. It was far to fall, and she was still falling. Maybe it would hit her soon, and maybe then everything would make sense. Why her father had to die the day she discovered she was pregnant. Why her mother wouldn’t wake up. Why Charlie had to split his time between watching his mother commit a slow suicide and visiting his youngest child in a hospital three hours away.

She was in her room, now, though there were no answers to be found in the dusty toys and clothes that were organized as though Alice had only just moved out. )
babyjosephine: (raincoat)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
May 2002

Alice was sitting in traffic. Heavy traffic, stocked with holidaymakers and elderly women dragging their husbands out for the first real month of stately home tours. Heavy traffic over the first sunny weekend since the previous autumn. And Alice was stuck behind four rows of cars jammed behind a red light, inhaling exhaust and exhaling frustration, on her way to work, sick from the chemotherapy. Her hands were shaking on the wheel, though after a half hour of trying to complete what should have been a ten minute drive, she couldn’t be sure if it was effects of the treatment or the onset of a breakdown. Either would have been welcome, just to have the excuse of ringing an ambulance and getting out of the maze.

If an ambulance could get into the maze to begin with.

Another minute ticked by. The green light came and went. One row of cars was knocked off. Alice was feeling dizzy from the sun shining into her eyes. She hadn’t brought sunglasses, and there was a lingering shadow of a headache that had plagued her all weekend now threatening to fall across her eyes and blind her.

She sighed, elbow grinding into the window sill, airconditioning blasting as much as it could at the lowest setting. Direct sunlight and black, leather seats were cooking her where she sat, melting her legs, confined in trousers, to the fabric.

Flicking grey hair out of her eyes, she sighed again and contemplated blasting her horn until the road expanded or the cars parted. )
[identity profile] likesuns.livejournal.com
[Early September of 1996. I stole Teddy in the next to last paragraph, sorry Shannon. :(]

Tess may have only been eight, but that didn't stop it from being completely inappropriate for her to do things like steal other people's jewelry. It was a Saturday, and everyone was home, and so it was harder than usual for Anna to throw her sister out of her room – when their parents weren't there, when she at her worldly thirteen was responsible for her younger siblings, she could literally throw her sister out of her room, or at least drag her, which was more normal.

Today, she had to scold her instead, and that alone was risking parents hearing. She didn't know what her parents were doing; her father wasn't drawing (drafting, drawing, as far as Anna was concerned he drew) and her mother wasn't in the hall to immediately hear her, but they might have been around. They weren't together, she didn't think, which would at least slow them down, and so it gave her a chance to make an impact.

"Put that down!" she yelled at her younger sister, who was happily going through Anna's jewelry box. On Anna's bed. "Just because I'm not in here doesn't mean you can help yourself!"

Tess looked up at her, eyes wide, and dropped the necklace she'd been holding.  )
babyjosephine: (Default)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
Early autumn 2002

Today had not been a very good day and there were hours yet still before tomorrow would banish it away, and some hours more after that before Alice was likely to fall asleep.

For the first time in what would one day be a year (though she dreaded the day it happened), it wasn’t her mind ruining her day, but her body. Or rather, the things put in her body to chase other things away. There was a scar she didn’t have to worry about hiding, as no soul had seen her undressed since Robert left her—no soul except one doctor after another, but she didn’t count those doctors. They saw her as an old woman when she stepped into their office.

No, no one had seen her undressed since Robert left her, and no one would ever see her undressed again. )
[identity profile] lindt.livejournal.com
May 2, 2003.

Fabian was in hell.

Well, not literally. Fabian was really climbing the stairs to his mother's relatively new flat for maybe the fourth time ever, at most, trying not to think about what he was about to say. About what he had to say to her, because who else was he going to say it to, and how was he going to hide it?

He didn't have anyone else to confide in. They may have been slightly estranged since his father's passing, but his mother had always been his rock. They were close. He relied on her, even when she kept secrets from him -- it was always to protect him from bad news, Fabian understood that.

But this was bad news he wanted to protect her from. And he couldn't. )
[identity profile] halfaustere.livejournal.com
April 12, 1962.

Robert's primary fear was that it wouldn't be perfect.

This as a fear, he thought as Colin's driver steered the old Mercedes limo toward the Fitzwilliam estate, was both surprisingly grounded and utterly ridiculous. Of course it wouldn't be perfect – nothing was perfect. Nothing except perhaps for Alice. His intent. He wanted everything for her to be perfect – that was why he was careful, too, to dress in a way that was impeccable without being overly formal. Careful to get a car that would make her smile. Careful to be sure, with Isabella's help, that the restaurant was perfect.

They did, in fact, rent the entire thing out. No one else would be there except for waiters and Robert and his hopeful lady love. The way it wouldn't be perfect, though, that would be if it didn't quite work. Alice had been reticent to accept.

And she might not like her gift.

"What're you so worried about?" the driver – Robert confessed, in secret, to Dawn that he'd forgotten the man's name and she'd laughed and hadn't told him – asked as he stopped the car, got out to help Robert with his door. "I mean, she loves you, right? She must love you for all this, sir."

Robert shook his head a little. "I'm not sure."

And he took off his hat – a different hat, a proper dress hat that was the same navy blue as the rest of his suit – and held it to his chest, and walked up to the door.

Pulling the bell wasn't nearly as terrifying this time as it had been before. )
[identity profile] halfaustere.livejournal.com
April 1, 1962

Outside the door of the Fitzwilliam Estate in Corsham, Robert Ellingsworth Capio (M.D.) was standing and staring at the pull of the bell. Staring, and thinking. Taking an assessment of what was going on.

Mentally talking to himself.

Inside, Charlie Fitzwilliam was chasing his younger sister Alice around the foyer. Robert didn't know that, but he did know he kept hearing screaming. It wasn't quite passing through the layer of thought currently taking up most of the space, though – if he'd realized they were Alice's screams, maybe he would have actually gotten the nerve to go indoors more quickly, in the very high off-chance she was in danger in her own home.

Danger would put off what he was about to do more. It wasn't like he wanted to put it off, either, not really – he wanted to make sure it was all right. He wanted to fix things. He wanted – he wanted Alice to be his, truth be told, and he needed to do this to make it right. )
babyjosephine: (A determined young thing)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
End of February. 1962.

"All I'm saying," Alice was saying, "is that a bit of ketamine in a glass of water wouldn't really hurt anyone and it would be bloody hilarious! You could bring a video recorder, even. Daddy's got one I could lend you!"

(It was a very warm day for so late in February. Temperatures had jumped quite randomly out of nowhere and suddenly felt like spring, though the stuffy man on television said they were due for cold weather again in a day or so. To take advantage of the situation, Alice, as well as Robert, Dawn, Mikey, and, of course, Sully, were out in one of the fields by Alice's house, where it was warmest, and a bit off their heads.)

"Isn't ketamine for animals?" was Sully's take, looking thoughtfully between Alice and Dawn, who was, in fact, a chemist.

Robert was looking thoughtfully between them... )
[identity profile] halfaustere.livejournal.com
[Last week of April, 1959.]

"Well," Michael said, leaning backward in his chair, "at least it's almost a holiday."

"Holiday weekend." Sully, for his part, was grim about the entire idea. It was only a weekend and then they'd be back on the grind again. "We only get a single Monday off. It being nice weather doesn't help either so don't try it!"

They were sitting in New Hunt's House Library, trying to finish a multitude of projects. Mikey didn't really belong in New Hunt's, seeing as how he wasn't studying medicine, but that didn't stop him from being there anyway. His friends were there. They were glad to see him.

"At least we aren't staying here," Robert offered, as what might've been minor consolation.

"We aren't?"

"No, I think we'll spend the weekend in the castle." Robert's grin turned somewhat cocky. Proud. Maybe even daring.

"The castle –" Sully spluttered, nearly overturning his water. "There'll be a thousand strong bloody people there! May Day parades and whatnot and how are we supposed to drive that far and back in a weekend?"

"We could take a helicopter," joked Michael.

"Exactly!" said Robert brightly. "Mikey's got it."

''Oh, you're joking,'' Sully muttered, knowing they weren't. )
babyjosephine: (Default)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
Early January of 1962.

Alice had finished what might have been lunch had any of them (them being Vi and Mallory and Alice) actually eaten. All it really was, was an hour of irritating everyone around them at a little London cafe by laughing very loudly at things that weren't even funny. There was also Alice's first participation in a Robert discussion with any interest, but they had disliked her continual lack of enthusiasm (she still pretended to be less interested than she was).

So Alice left when the other two had to return to work, which was the hospital right near their chosen lunch spot, and decided to go shopping before driving home.

Only a mere three minutes later, though, there was a voice behind her. Actually, there was a person behind her – many people, even – but one voice was louder than the rest, female, with tinges of a Northumberland accent, and somewhat familiar.

'Even in winter days that hair stands out – Alice!' )
babyjosephine: (A determined young thing)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
scribbled somewhat messily (and hurriedly) near the back of Robert's current journal, in March 1962, before they were dating, and interrupted by Robert reappearing, hence the lone 'p' at the end

Hello, Robert!

I was thinking about you last night before I fell asleep, which was a good decision because I had a lovely dream about you once I had. You weren’t wearing your hat, although I was. And that’s all I was wearing, mostly because you weren’t wearing anything, either, and I stole your hat off the floor. I rather think you liked it, though, because the hat was knocked off fairly quickly and I found my way onto your lap. You put me there, actually. I’m rather glad that dreams haven’t got neighbours, as they would have really hated the noise.

Have a good day once you find this!

xxx
Alice

PS: You’re blushing now. I haven’t even said the word but you’re blushing.

PPS: I like having sex dreams about you!

PPPS: Now you’re really blushing.

PPPS: It would be better to actually have sex with you.

P
babyjosephine: (Default)
[personal profile] babyjosephine
Early August 2007

Another one of those days. Those days had been every day for just over five years, so Alice wasn’t surprised that today was patterned after yesterday and yesterday was patterned after the day before. If you put all the pieces together, her life had stopped making a quilt.

She was half-way in the door when she realized she had meant to go to the market to get eggs, having used the last two that morning at breakfast.

“Damn it,” Alice murmured to herself, pulling her key out of the lock and kneeing the door open enough for her to slip inside. She didn’t bother locking it again as she took the stairs up to the first floor, which was bright with the late afternoon sun filtering through the giant terrace windows. She set her briefcase on the kitchen counter and knocked off her shoes. Wiggling her toes in her nylons, she headed upstairs to her bedroom, peeling her jacket off as she went. That it was a pleasant enough day, weather-wise, was at least a benefit of having to go out again. She had been looking forward to a bath, however, after a very long day.

She untwisted her hair from its tight knot at the back of her head... )

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