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Catherine Smith for Percival Adlard Jr..
The peppiest of widows~
It was a pity he wasn't a woman, so then he might have had a chance of seducing his friend and marrying into his pocket, as it happened in the scandalous, poorly written novels that Christobal sometimes painted covers for. Christobal Vainart in Jackie & Wilson
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Remember, Remember
Not a unicorn, then, but the thunderbird she described felt, in his vague knowledge of such exotic beasts, just as exemplary a creature. “And quite the magnificent mascot, I’m sure,” Evander agreed, glad that his asking had not backfired.

That said, he hadn’t the faintest idea what one’s placement in Thunderbird said about someone’s virtues or desires any more than he knew what being a Pukwudgie might mean for someone. Perhaps the ability to create storms - thunder, lightning - was some kind of clue? (If she were... tempestuous, in some way, Evander resolved that he could not see it in her, and if the thought of storms was some sign of a - passionate nature? - well, he could probably forgive that too.) And perhaps it made sense, then, that she liked fireworks so.

She sounded proud of her house, in any case, and seemed to have as much surety in her character. “And I suppose you are to leave me wondering what being in that house says about you?” Evander said, with the twitch of a smile at the corner of his mouth, as if the thought of being left guessing was any sort of comfort to him. He had a great deal to work on, without that: he didn’t even yet know her name!

"Oh indeed!" Caroline replied coyfully, pretending she wouldn't enlighten him. Although in truth she felt that the meaning of each Illvermony house wasn't quite captured by it's definition that way the Hogwarts houses were. At least not in the near and tidy sense the British preferred. Caroline paused for a moment, long enough to make Mr. Darrow thing she indeed would leave him guessing and move on to the next topic, before explaining, "Thunderbird represents the soul. Our houses sort us rather less by personality that what aspect of us we value. Pukwudgie, for instance represents the heart and Horned Serpant the mind." At least that was the best way she could explain it. Then there were the stereotypes of each house, but where would she be if she explained it all at once?

The fireworks had ended by now and the crowd was starting to return to the warmth inside, moving gently around them. Including Caroline's chaperone, an old friend of the family who had kindly agreed to help. Instead of returning inside, however, she approached Caroline's, saying in a low voice, "Caroline, your brother is looking for you." Caroline nodded and looked back at Mr. Darrow, "It was wonderful to see you again Mr. Darrow, I do hope I shall see you again soon." She admitted in a way more coy than forward. "But for now it appears I must take my leave." She gave him a charming smile with a curtsey and made her way into the crowd following her chaperon.

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Amazing MJ set!
She did him the favour of explaining, although, if Evander were to be perfectly honest, the explanation - the whole odd American system - made very little sense. The heart, the mind; yes, perhaps one could get away with those. But whatever he was supposed to make of Thunderbird house, and the “soul”, Evander hadn’t the foggiest. What did valuing one’s “soul” even mean?

Even if she had stayed, he wasn’t sure he would have asked any further. Seemed almost better to let it lie a mystery, rather than wade into discussion of souls. As Evander grappled with such a foreign notion, though, the young lady was taking her leave, offering all manner of platitudes and niceties he would have clung to if he had not been struck by the increasing panic that he still did not know her name. What if he never found her again, and had no way to? Or worse, what if he did meet her again and had to stumble through another conversation without knowing?!

But then he digested the last crumb of the conversation, and the untimely interruption.

Aha, Caroline! There was some mercy in the world, then.

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