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Fern-hunting parties became popular, allowing young women to get outside in a seemingly innocuous pursuit with less rigid oversight and chaperoning than they saw in parlors and drawing rooms. They may have even had the occasional romantic meetup with a similarly fern-impassioned beau. — Bree


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Issue #176 - Society Wives You Should Avoid
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It's surprising how many normally-outlandish explanations for a woman's disappearance from society seem perfectly reasonable or Mrs. Hannah Pettigrew! The Mysterious Case of the Missing Mrs. Pettigrew
The circumstances surrounding Mr. Thom Pettigrew's marriage to his wife, Mrs. Hannah Pettigrew (née Echelon) were far from typical; in actuality, "atypical" may have been the only appropriate word to describe them! Many of our readers will remember the Echelon human trafficking scandal of 1885, in which Mrs. Pettigrew's own father was found to have been guilty of involvement in a human trafficking ring prior to his demise.

Much of society expected to Echelon family to live in ruin following the seizure of family assets, but it seemed the daughter of the late and disgraced Mr. Echelon seemed to find herself the light at the end of the dark tunnel: a husband in famous quidditch sponsor and entrepreneur Mr. Thom Pettigrew! Their blooming romance (which seems the only viable reason for the marriage, as there was little Mr. Pettigrew could have gained from the match!) left many of us here at Witch Weekly scratching our heads.

In the time since, the circumstances of their sudden and unexpected romance has proved less confusing than the circumstances of their marriage — if one could be inclined to believe such a thing! It's now well-known that Mr. and Mrs. Pettigrew now live apart, with Mr. Pettigrew having left his wife at their countryside estate while he lives in Hogsmeade. And not to mention the failed pregnancy she suffered early in 1887 (which some may speculate played a role in their separate living arrangements!)

But what could have led the seemingly in love couple to such a tragic downfall? It doesn't take much speculation to come up with a few answers:
  1. Mrs. Pettigrew inherited her father's proclivity towards crime! Perhaps an ailing marriage with her husband prompted her to pursue illegal means to end her own pregnancy — surely such a thing would have angered her husband!
  2. The least scandalous of the reasons could merely be that Mr. Thom Pettigrew has suffered socially due to his connection with his wife, and now has regrets. It's easy to believe — we would certainly have regrets, too!
  3. An affair on Mrs. Pettigrew's part led her husband (likely with one of his own friends) led to him falling out of love with her. It's not too difficult to believe; it happens to sorry couples every now and then!
Whatever might have happened, one thing is clear: Mrs. Pettigrew hasn't been seen in quite at society events in quite a while, which is concerning considering her marriage to one of the social scene's hottest hosts! No one can deny that there's not something going on, but whatever that is has yet to be confirmed!
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How Long Will Your Marriage Last?
When one marries, one assumes they will remain married to that individual for the rest of their life. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Our marvelous little quiz can help you predict your marital lot in life!
1. Would you ever take up an occupation?

a. Never! Charitable work maybe, but that's not employment.

b. A ladylike occupation before marriage is all right.

c. No, I think that would be far too tiring.

d. I shan't give up my occupation, not even for my husband!

2. Do you take regular exercise?

a. Only of the ladylike variety.

b. Yes, in hearty moderation; overexertion is worse than no exertion.

c. Does needlework count?

d. I enjoy a brisk walk to and from my place of work every day.

3. Your husband has come home very late from work, what do you do?

a. Welcome him home and see to it that his every need is cared for - what else is a wife for?

b. Greet him cordially and leave him to it.

c. Remain as I am, he probably doesn't want to be fussed over.

d. Nothing, I'm not home from work yet.

4. You've been told not to host a dinner party, what is your response?

a. It is obviously with good reason and I respect that it doesn't suit. Perhaps another day.

b. I shall try to be diplomatic about it and aim to change his mind but I won't push the issue.

c. I wasn't really feeling up to it anyway...

d. I don't need permission anyway.
5. Do you take an interest in politics?

a. Politics? What's that?

b. Privately, yes. At least when something important is happening that may affect me.

c. Politics give me a headache, although I usually have a headache before politics are mentioned.

d. Definitely! I relish an opportunity to talk politics and once I start I don't stop!


6. Do you like quidditch?

a. Honestly, when it doesn't bore me I'm appalled by the brutality.

b. My husband enjoys it and so I make an effort to seem pleased by it.

c. I fainted at the last quidditch match I attended.

d. I played at school and tried out for the Holyhead Harpies.


7. What is your ideal husband?

a. A handsome, respectable gentleman of good character and standing in society.

b. Someone respectable and financially secure.

c. A man who will choose me for his wife.

d. One who will let me do as I please.

Results:
Mostly A's: you will have a long and happy marriage, spousal health permitting.
Mostly B's: you will outlive your first husband and later remarry. You may be widowed more than once but you shall lead a fulfilling life.
Mostly C's: your first husband will outlive you. Perhaps consider seeing a healer.
Mostly D's: if you somehow avoid spinsterhood then you are headed for an ugly divorce. Change your ways if you do not wish to reap what you are currently sowing!


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Society Wives You Should Avoid
Sometimes when you get married, it's hard to know which women you should befriend and which you should stay away from. Here are a few it's best to steer clear from!

Mrs. Aamiya Power married her husband right after his mother died, and was supposedly transformed into a child right after the wedding. Seems odd, right? Besides that, her husband's failure to win the Ministry likely makes her awkward at parties. Avoid.

Mrs. Ophelia Devine seems like a try-hard. Hear us out on this: has always cared about throwing events, was pulled from Hogwarts early for suspicious reasons, and yet married one of wizarding Britain's most eligible purebloods. With pureblood society to deal with, she may get very irritatingly needy as time goes forward.

Mrs. Emma Macmillan is clearly hated by someone, as we have it on good authority that there's something wrong with each and every one of her children. The oldest? Sickly. The middle? Word has it he cannot hear. The youngest? A redhead. Clearly Mrs. Macmillan has been cursed with bad luck, and you don't want to catch it!

Mrs. Elsbeth Lupin is vexing to us in that she took Mr. Leon Lupin off the market, and is probably smug about it. In addition, she's related to Mr. August Echelon and Mrs. Hannah Pettigrew, which is a bad sign in that both of them are socially awkward. Mrs. Lupin is vivacious, but does she know her social graces? Definitely not.

Mrs. Antigone Lestrange seems to be only two or so steps away from being a shut-in. She also had twins, which is, like Mrs. Macmillan's children, a sign of bad luck. And never mind that her husband's father was a mass-murderer!

If you stay away from these five women, you'll probably have a better time at parties.
Mrs. Lestrange ought to get out more.

Mrs. Lupin: probably strange.
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Missed Connections
Older, Attractive Healer at Hogsmeade Hospital

I was your patient last month. We shared some intellectually stimulating conversations about moon calves and bowtruckles. You mentioned that you were a widow. Though I am much younger than yourself, I would greatly enjoy getting to know you better and starting up a friendship - or possibly more. Please owl back with what my injury was so that we can continue to get to know one another.
Criminal Who Stole My Broomstick

I had visited my sister on Cauldron Corner and left my broomstick outside the door so as not to bring dirt into the house. You snatched it and flew away - all I could see was your back. You were wearing red. You won’t get away with this! I’ve alerted the authorities and they are investigating!
Professional Quidditch Player at the Ministry Last Month

You were busy and we didn’t speak. We made eye contact several times. I am employed there and did not have it in me to introduce myself and ask if I could get an autograph. If you see this, please address it to “Manny” and send it to the office you were in! They’ll make sure to get it to me.
Star Crossed Lovers of 1860

We have not spoken for years but I still think about you. We shared a birthday and almost wed once, but situations in life did not allow us to be together. I have been widowed these past few years and heard that you are recently widowed as well. I hope to discover if our connection is still as strong as it once was. Owl me if you would like to see me. You know how to find me.
Progressive Blonde Man at the Ministry Open House

I did not think to introduce myself and you did not offer your name. You had forward thinking opinions that I enjoyed immensely. You were a breath of fresh air. I think I’m in love with you. Please ask me to be your wife so that we can change the world together. I will be at the restaurant we both agreed was our favorite on Sunday. Come find me.
Woman Shopping at BBB Last Week

We made eye contact through the window. You looked sad. I wanted to say hello and see if you needed to chat, but was running late for my shift and did not have time to do so. Please let me know that you alright. If not, I am here if you need a friend. Leave a note at the BBB for me. I’ll find it.


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