Richard Armitage in The Crucible trailer

Exclusive: The Hobbit actor takes to the big screen again in screenings of the Old Vic’s five-star play

By Kat Brown    8:35AM GMT 29 Oct 2014

The witching hour approaches for much-anticipated cinema screenings of the Old Vic’s staging of The Crucible – starting with the trailer, which you can see first here.

The theatre’s sold-out production received glowing reviews when it played this summer, with The Hobbit actor Richard Armitage taking the lead as Arthur Miller’s fallen hero, John Proctor.

Director Yaël Farber took Miller’s American play, which looks at the McCarthy era witch hunts through the lens of the Salem witch trials, and had the cast play it with Yorkshire accents to five-star acclaim, including from The Telegraph.

In his review of The Crucible, theatre critic Charles Spencer said the production was “electrifying” and had “the intensity of a thriller”.

Armitage recently announced the screenings in a video, which featured a clip of the play.


Northmen – A Viking Saga

A band of Vikings are stranded behind enemy lines on the coast of Alba as their longboat goes down in a dreadful storm. Their only chance of survival is to find a path to the Viking settlement, Danelag, traversing an unfamiliar and hostile land they have never known. The journey becomes a race for their lives when the King of Alba sends his most feared mercenaries after them. But when the Vikings meet a kind Christian Monk who preaches with his sword, the hunters become the hunted as the Vikings set deadly traps, mercilessly decimating their pursuers one by one, culminating in a final and deadly encounter.


USA March 2015
URO Oct. 2014

Northmen - A Viking Saga (2014)


Marco Polo – Netflix December 12

Marco Polo, Netflix’s grandest show, Release Date, Cast, Plot and Spoilers: Featuring the Court of Kublai Khan
Read more:

Kara Michelle First Posted: Sep 29, 2014 08:01 AM EDT


Marco Polo, Netflix’s grandest show, Release Date, Cast, Plot and Spoilers: Featuring the Court of Kublai Khan

Marco Polo Netflix release date is set this December 12, 2014. It has been reported that this could be the grandest and biggest show Netflix have to offer so far. It starts off its first season with ten episodes and pretty much go from there. Marco Polo Netflix series will be about an epic action adventure filled with sexual intrigue, martial arts, horseback battles and more.

Marco Polo Netflix cast include the newcomer Lorenzo Richelmy as Marco together with Zhu Zhu, Joan Chen (Empress Chabi), Benedict Wong (Kublai Khan), Remy Hill, Olivia Cheng and many more. They will be filming on a fifty-acre studio built from a cleared jungle that was transformed to look like Kublai Khan’s thirteenth-century capital.

According to the show’s producer Harvey Weinstein “It’s a giant adventure. The only thing on TV that matches it, production-scale wise is ‘Game of Thrones'” We can already guess how much the studio have spent for each episode with that remark alone.

Although Netflix has over fifty million subscribers worldwide, they cannot leverage yet the appeal their upcoming series is to have with their audience. Still, they consider it a good move into building brand awareness for possible Asian expansion. This is with the story mostly being filmed in Malaysia and other parts of Asia.

Even with the silence of Netflix about the plot of this series, we can already assume that a father-son dynamics is to play a core part in the story line. If you are interested to find out more details about the show, you may visit Marco Polo Netflix IMDB page.


Margaret with the Red Book pt 9

Margaret with the Red Book
Margaret with the Red Book

A John Thornton / Margaret Hale Fantasy Novel

Download PDF of this book for $3.00 US – Paypal

Margaret dropped the note into her lap, feeling astounded at his words. Katie was right, he did sound sincere. As bad as the rape had been to her and the changes it would bring to her life, she did not think she had the heart to not hear him out. He seemed to be in misery over his actions and was looking for forgiveness. For a noble, Margaret thought, that was a brave concession. Was one of their lot ever known to apologize? Margaret called Katie to her room.

“Katie, I think I feel as you do. I shall meet him but it must be where someone doesn’t see me. How can we do this privately?” Margaret asked.

“Hoping you would come to this conclusion I worked out a plan on my long ride home. Just leave it to me. How about two in the afternoon?”

“No time really feels good to me but that shall be fine,” said Margaret, wondering if she really was doing what was best for both of them. “Would you like to read the letter?”

“Yes, I would if you do not mind. And then I have a couple of letters to write. Find Tawl and tell him to be ready at 1:30 in the afternoon tomorrow, shall you dear. Oh, not this instant,” Katie replied seeing Margaret rise from her cot. “Let me read this first.”

Margaret watched as Katie read the note, occasionally nodding her head in an affirmative way. “Yes, dear, this is exactly how I felt when speaking to him. He is devastated, but as a Lord he cannot appear too weak about anything. He is giving up his Noble pride to come find you. I think he’s serious. Why else post a headline like he did?”

“Yes, that is true. I have no fine dress to wear.”

“They are all over this house, do not worry.”


Dawn was just breaking when Katie heard voices at the front of her house. She went to the dining room window and peaked out at the small crowd of journalists. She had to get them away before she and Margaret left for their destination. She stepped out on the porch to have her say. Immediately, the questions came flying at her. She raised her hands to silence them. Margaret and some of the girls were already awake and peaking out the windows, too.

“Please quiet down and I shall speak my piece. I shall not answer any questions.” She began. “As you all noticed or wrote in the headlines of yesterday’s paper, Lord Robert Howsham is seeking to find a former acquaintance. He lost track of her over a year ago due to her moving. In trying to trace the Lady, he came upon my name as being associated with the family many years ago and found I lived in Milton. After reading the headlines, I sent him a letter stating that maybe I could help him. I spoke with his Lordship last night and told him where I thought she could be located. He certainly has no connection with me or my girls that work here. I do not know if he shall have success finding her. That is all I am going to say and that is all I know. Good day.”

Katie closed the door to yelling journalists who were not satisfied with her answer. Seeing Margaret standing there with her hands over her face, Katie went to comfort her.

“I am sorry for all the trouble I am causing you.”

“Causing me? Causing you, dear. I shall reap rewards from this advertisement. Please do not worry about me. Have you found a dress?”

“Yes, Kat had a very nice proper frock without being too fancy. My appearance shall be fine if I can stop shaking.”

“Do not worry. I shall be with you until he is ready to say his words. He and I shall exchange coaches, and he shall see you in our coach. Tawl shall be in the box, I shall be in the other carriage with his driver and his guards shall be at the front gate entrance to a mansion of a client who is abroad. The house is shut-up, but I wanted a place that was fenced and gated just in case we are followed.”

“Oh, Katie, you could not have done any better. I shall be glad when this day is behind me. I do think I shall feel a bit better when I have heard his words.


Margaret seemed to pace most of the morning away; her mind only on the meeting this afternoon. The front of the house finally cleared of inquisitive people and journalists. She wondered what she would say when he apologized, she did not know yet. She probably would not know it until he said them. She was not sure if she could go all the way and forgive him for ruining her life. She wondered what her life would have been like after a loss of innocence and still financially solvent. How would that have played out when a man wanted to woo her? Would she have to admit that up front, wait until there were serious sensual feelings or never accept a gentleman’s advances at all, even if she had strong feelings for him? If she had kept her innocence and yet was poor, was that much better? She felt she had very little hope in making a good marriage. She could only blame Lord Robert for part of that. As low as her situation was now, she knew not to heap all the blame on him. It was just coincidence that the two huge misfortunes in her life happened so close together.

The clock struck one and Katie called to Margaret, “Are you near ready, dear?”

“Yes, I am ready.”

Katie walked in with a veiled bonnet. “Here, I want you to wear this while we are riding in the coach. And when we leave the house, you are to duck down so it looks like I am the only one in the carriage. How do you feel, dear, except nervous, which is apparent? Do you know what you are going to say?”

“No, I do not know what I shall say,” Margaret said with a look of panic on her face.

“That’s good. Do not rehearse anything. Listen and then let your mind or your heart rule your decision. I know this is a big chunk of your misfortune in life and it shall probably be the last time you ever get to face it like this. Your conscience shall be your guide. Margaret, you should also realize that the way in which you lost your innocence shall not matter to a lot of men. If they are mature in their thinking, it shall matter not that you come to them without your virtue. You are not a whore and should not be perceived as one to a man that shall fall in love with you. Loss of virtue is not quite the stigma that it once was. Your biggest misfortune is what happened through the death of your brother and father and the loss of all your inheritance. Still you can make your way in life. I know I have offered you work here and I shall be glad of having it, but I do not look for you to be wanting to do that forever. You can indeed be here forever if you wish it but I want you to know that I do not count on it for your life. More than anything, I want you to find happiness wherever it is. Even if you can find a job that you think you really could like and find a small little apartment, if it made you happy, it would make me happy.”

“Oh, Katie, I do not know what to say.” Margaret began to weep. Somehow that set her free from the worry she would be there forever.”

Tawl pulled the carriage around back so they could enter it undetected. He knew his destination but did not know why. Often he did not know why, but handing Miss Hale in with a veiled bonnet made him curious. Next came Miss Leeds to enter the coach and he then returned to his box and reined his horses toward the main street. Margaret was resting her head in Katie’s lap until they were sure they were not being followed.

“Margaret, you are going to be all right. You can sit up, dear.”

“I think I know that. He cannot do anymore harm. I have only seen his face for a couple minutes, so I haven’t had some evil vision that has haunted me. I shall be polite, mature and listen.”

After leaving the main Milton downtown, it was another 20 minutes to the estate that Katie had picked. There was still no one behind them. Before entering the long road past the guarded gates, Tawl stopped and jumped down to speak with Katie.

“Miss Leeds, there are guards at the gate and I see another carriage waiting far ahead. Do you want me to proceed?”

“Yes, Tawl. His Lordship Howsham shall exit his coach and come to ours to speak with Miss Hale. I shall wait in his coach, while they speak. You might do well to stand at the front of the horses and keep them gentle rather than sitting above the talking couple.”

“Yes, Miss.”

Tawl reined his horses up to the guards and they were let through the gate. Margaret was visibly shaking but removed her hat and veil.

“Take some deep breaths, girl.” Katie turned to Margaret, kissed her on the cheek, and wished her luck.

Tawl approached the circular pathway and decided to go the opposite way so that the horses were facing each other. He did not know why; it just seemed precautionary. Looking at the coach he could tell it was of Nobility with a crest on the door. He gently pulled his team to a stop and jumped down to hand out Miss Leeds.

As Miss Leeds got out, she whispered to Tawl,” Do not forget to bow when he approaches you and when he is ready to leave.”

“Got it,” said Tawl.

Lord Robert was already out of his coach and walking toward Miss Leeds as she was being handed out. He stopped, tipped his head and kissed her hand, saying “Thank you for all of your help, Miss Leads.”

Miss Leeds curtsied and went on her way to the other coach. As his Lordship approached, Tawl bowed and held the door open. Lord Robert entered and stared at Margaret, as Tawl closed the door and walked to the front of the coach. Tawl saw Miss Leeds being handed in by the other driver.








The Passing Bells – BBC One, Nov 03, 2014

Marking the centenary of World War One, the five-part series sees the conflict of the unfold through the eyes of two very ordinary young men.

The Passing Bells was filmed in Poland and is written by Tony Jordan (EastEnders, Hustle, Life on Mars).

Paddy Gibson (What Richard Did) and Jack Lowden (The Tunnel) star as Thomas and Michael, two young men for whom the war has little mercy, no matter which side they might be fighting for. Over five chronological years, The Passing Bells follows their lives, as they grow up, lose friends and find love amid the horrors of the war. Back home, their families and loved ones anxiously await news from the front.

The cast also includes Charles Furness, Brian Fletcher, Wilf Scolding, Hubert Burton, Felix Auer, Ben McGregor, Mark Burghagen and Matthew Aubrey.

The Passing Bells begins on BBC One next month.

The Passing Bells 2014 (BBC One)


Ecritoire 2

Dearest, loveliest Meg – Part Thirty



Chapter Thirty

Even when a stab of remorse pierced my heart, I could not, for the world, have stopped myself from reading Douglas’ diary. The thoroughly feminine urge of a woman, to delve deep into the secrets of the man she loved, washed over me. I wanted to know my Douglas and everything that was in his life.

This year’s diary’s first entries in January were about his stay with his cousin on the isle of Jamaica and reports about the tobacco plantation. I rapidly browsed through them, but the entries made little sense to me. Every now and then an entry appeared in black ink while the reports were in blue. Those entries were in some kind of code; there was always a sum of money, usually about two pounds, and initials, some of them recurring and others new. I could not figure out what they meant.

The pattern stayed the same until February when Douglas made a note of a letter from his solicitors, announcing Sir Matthew’s death. From then on, he began preparing for his journey home:


Made an agreement with Captain Whitaker of “The Valiant Maiden”. She sails for Bristol in a fortnight and I plan to be on board. Cousin John and I are settling our business as I will not be back soon. He gave me the handsome sum of 1250 pounds, which I will need, once I am back in England. God only knows in what state I will find Watcombe Manor.

                Had a row with Regalia. She wants me to take her to England but John refuses to make her a free woman. Shall miss her. She was a good girl and gave me much pleasure. Could not take her with me since she is as black as ebony. I tried to explain it to her. Said I had barely enough money to keep me alive, let alone the two of us. Poor girl, she wept her heart out.


                Regalia, I thought. That was something I had to ask Douglas about. Had she been his mistress or was she just a prostitute he visited? I was a bit taken aback. This was certainly one side of my future husband I did not know. Was this what men did when they had no wife of their own? Or when they needed to lie with a woman and they did not have enough love from their wives? Would Douglas do this after we married? The thought was appalling! Again I realised I did not know much of life or men – a sudden sorrow pierced my heart.


The next entrance that drew my attention was made on April 25th:


Father’s lawyers again told me what I already knew – I must marry before August 22th or I will not inherit. What I did not know was that Phineas Wilkinson now lives at Watcombe Manor. Apparently, he has taken residence there when I left for Jamaica. Father never wrote me about that. I wonder why.

Yet, I can understand his need to have his heir under his roof and become acquainted with him.

Blast! If only Christina were still alive! I would have married her in an instant, provided of course, she was still free.

Oh, Christina … I never encountered anyone like her after I left for the Caribbean, though I tried hard enough! How well I recall my deep distress when I realised I could not give my heart again to anyone. Christina imprisoned it for the rest of my miserable life.

There have been a few affairs which gave me pleasure but nothing more. No attachment, only relief. That is why I was drawn to Regalia. She accepted me as her lover without asking for anything. I  paid her handsomely for her services and pretended not to see the hurt in her eyes. I liked Regalia but I did not love her. Love, for me, is forever forbidden.


Dear God! How lonesome Douglas must have been all these years! And how much he must have loved Christina ! That thought burned my heart like a brand.

No, Margaret, stop it! What nonsense! Douglas loves me now. He proved that on numerous occasions during the few weeks I was with him. With determination, I continued my reading:


                Moving to Devonshire today. Will take Jack with me, for he has nowhere else to go and I have grown fond of the boy. He is smart, witty and loyal. Could be the best friend I ever had. Oh, the irony!


April 30th, I saw. The next entrances were scarce. Mostly, they reported on how he had fitted the house and how he had to juggle his finances in order to pay his bills. May was uneventful. He visited Wilkinson and was received very coolly. He attended some parties in Torquay but found himself thoroughly rebuffed. Now, we knew that had been the Bernards’ work. I flipped the pages to the beginning of  June until I found what I was looking for.


June 4th. Had a most interesting experience today. Someone shot me and an angel came to my rescue. Her name is Margaret Dashwood, my dainty damsel. Margaret, Meg … Meggie. So beautiful and lively! She actually bullied me into letting her care for me and she did not listen to anything I said about her reputation. With the patience of an angel, she took care of my wound and brought me home. She stayed with me until the healing woman came. I had to banish her with my most stern attitude. Even then, she was very reluctant to go. But she had to. I am poison for dainty damsels.


An angel! He called me a bloody angel! Drat!

In my recollection, I had not behaved in a very angelic way, at least I had not wished to do so. How is it that no matter how much we try to present ourselves, people always seem to see the opposite side of us? I continued to read:


                June 8th. Feeling like bloody hell! My shoulder aches like the blazes and my spirits are as low as they come! The gypsy woman has come to look at the wound and she said all was fine and healing splendidly. Would that she could also make my spirits heal!

Oddly enough, I find myself being besieged by some strange mood changes – feeling black as the devil at one time and exhilarated with joy the next. The exhilaration usually comes when I think of Miss Margaret Dashwood, my dainty damsel, which is stupid, of course. She is barely out of the schoolroom and still very pure.

I do not understand myself in this. Except, of course, if this strange attraction is caused by the fact that I have never bedded a virgin and am now relishing the thought of it. Blast!


Oh, my sweet Douglas … so he was attracted to me from the start, at least physically. I would say it was a good start then. Physical attraction, and the actions that come with it, are a good start for any marriage.


June 29th. I am doomed. I have fallen for Meg and it took me nearly a month before it finally dawned on me. She came here tonight, half naked and confused and upset and … I did not know what to do; I just wanted to pick her up and take her to bed. I could not, though. My heart turned to water when I saw her distress. I did not trust myself to even touch her or take her in my arms, so I tried being cool and distant. I sent her home though my heart broke when I saw her leave in the curricle with Jack Twinkler. I think I love her.


Reading Douglas’ confession of love started a glow deep down inside me, and I swallowed. So he had loved me since that night, or perhaps even earlier? It seemed that both our feelings had risen and grown from the first day we met. And I, in my foolish inexperienced way, had had no inkling of that …

The study door opened to let Raleigh in. He bowed and solemnly announced a visitor.

“Mrs Dashwood of Barton Cottage, Miss!”

Margaret with the Red Book pt 8

Margaret with the Red Book
Margaret with the Red Book

A John Thornton / Margaret Hale Fantasy Novel

Download PDF of this book for $3.00 US – Paypal

As John climbed into Nicholas’ coach, Nicholas said, “I bet we are going Lord hunting. Was not that some headline today? Have you ever heard of Miss something Hale?”

“I think her name is Margaret. This whole mystery is intriguing. I have reserved a table because I think they shall be crowded tonight.”

Nicholas laughed. He was anxious for the evening to unfold. “This feels as if we are going to the theater to watch a play. What could a noble want with anyone who lives here?”

“With our growth, it is hard to know everyone as we once did. Still . . . I think we should know if we had people of that caliber here. What do you say, Nicholas, shall he be old or young?”

“I am going to say old. If he is looking for a single woman, he’s probably reaching out to a runaway daughter.”

“I do not know about a daughter, but I am going to say old, too. A Lord doesn’t really tell you his nobility rank. Is he a Baron, an Earl? I wonder how many are in his party. Yes, I must say that I am more than a little intrigued. I am just hoping we get a chance to see him dining tonight. We might have to eat there all week,” John laughed. “I can always ask Benson to give us some details.”


“Good evening your Lordship,” Benson bowed. I have both your tables ready as requested. Please follow me.” Benson walked with his head high as the crowded dining room looked on as London’s parade of the latest fashions passed them by. “Your Lordship, can I bring you the wine menu?”

“No, thank you. Just bring us several iced bottles of your very finest champagne.” The Lord’s group consisted of three other men, assuredly guards dressed as gentlemen slid into the half circle booth. Lord Robert knew he was causing a bit of a stir in this mill town.

Benson returned, escorting three waiters with champagne in iced holders. “Can I get you anything else at this time, your Lordship?” Benson asked.

“No, we’ll eat later. I am expecting someone, I know not who, to meet me here this evening. If anyone asks for me I want you to ask them this one question. If they answer correctly, escort them to my table. My men shall then move to the adjoining table. The question you are to ask is this, ‘What was the name of the building?’ If they answer, ‘Hanover House’ bring them to my table. Thank you, Benson. That shall be all for now.”

Benson bowed his way away from the table and hurried toward the dining room entrance, wanting only himself to greet the incoming customers.


“Looks like we were both wrong, John. He’s a young one; probably as cocky as they come.”

“Have you noticed the room is full, yet there is a table beside them that is empty? It would seem to me as if they are expecting someone or wanted as much privacy as they could get in here. They have no one on the other side. Benson often offers me that table when I bring a lady here.”

“Well, do you not smell good,” Nicholas laughed and so did John.

John looked across the room, raising his eyebrows as it seemed Benson was leading Miss Leeds to the Lordship’s table. “Well, there’s something you shall not see often,” said John.

“What is it? What are you looking at? Who is that woman being introduced to the Lord?” Nicholas could hardly stutter out his questions as the curtain rose.

“That, Mr. Higgins, is Miss Leeds. This is most mysterious.”

“John, I know you must be having one over on me. Who is she really?”

“I am telling you. She is Miss Leeds. I told you have I have been there only a couple weeks ago. That is her. I wonder what she has to do with this, Miss Hale.”

It seemed the entire room had their eyes fixed on the company of his Lordship. Not many people would know who she was, but the rumor would circle the room in a hurry by someone who did. John watched passively not nearly as intent as Nicholas seemed to be. He knew his Lordship was not meeting Miss Hale and wondered why.


“Your Lordship. I am Katherine Leeds, representing Miss Margaret Hale. I am sorry to say that she was in a traumatized state when I left her today. Psychologically, and physically, she is damaged goods. You have ruined her life, I believe, your Lordship.” Katie paused, waiting for some denial or outburst, but none came.

“Miss Leeds,” Lord Robert began as he filled her glass with champagne, “I have searched a whole year to find Miss Hale. I eventually was told that she went to live with her governess that she had as a child. Is that you?”

“Yes, it is.”

You were the most difficult to track down but finally you were located in this town, although I did not know your name; only the town name. That is why I placed the ad in the newspaper, hoping to catch your or Miss Hale’s eye. I have made this search and this journey completely voluntary in order to apologize to Miss Hale. Miss Hale’s life is not the only one that I have damaged. We shall both have to live with my totally unpardonable action a year ago. With my title, it shall soon be forgotten or of little consequence by others but it shall never be forgotten by Miss Hale or by myself and never be felt of little consequence, quite the contrary. I have found it hard to live with myself knowing what I have caused. I know that Nobles get away with a lot and I shall be no exception, but it was brought home to me that very night how rude and callous a lot we are. I have vowed since that night, not to be one of the sheep. I want to rise above our hideous reputations and do right. All of that cannot start without my apology to Miss Hale.


“He sure is talking a lot to Miss Leeds,” Nicholas noted. For a while the whole room was watching them, now it is down to polite glancing. The Lord is probably used to people staring at him but Miss Leeds seems to be holding her own. She is sitting up straight and never wavers at looking straight into his eyes. It looks as if she is giving him no purchase.”

“You are right, Nicholas. She is standing firm and I must admit; I was a little intimidated when she interviewed me. If this Miss Hale asked her to intercede, she sure picked a good person. It appears the Lord is handing her a note, obviously for the missing Miss Hale. I do not know the names of all the girls that work there, but I do not remember hearing a Margaret mentioned at either time I was there.”


“Miss Leeds, I shall be here another two days. Should Miss Hale read this note,” he said, handing it over to Katie, “and feels I am sincere and could find it in her heart to meet with me, just once, I would be eternally grateful. Any word from her would be welcome.”

“Your Lordship, I personally feel that the words you have spoken to me tonight are sincere and I shall tell that to Miss Hale and give her your note. Either she or I shall contact you sometime tomorrow with whatever words that shall be said. I must admit I came her ready to do battle no matter who you were but have found a rather pathetic man looking for redemption. I hope you can be forgiven, but I do not know what is in Miss Hale’s heart and mind. If there is nothing else, I shall leave you to your dinner.”

“Yes, I believe I have explained myself, more than I had planned and there is nothing to add. Thank Miss Hale for at least allowing you to hear me out.”

His Lordship rose as Miss Leeds did and bowed to her, taking her hand and lightly kissing the top of it, in true nobility style. “Good evening, Miss Leeds.”

“Good evening, Your Lordship,” said Katie as she turned and walked away to a room full of eyes on her.


John could see that Benson was being hailed all over the room, undoubtedly being asked questions. John knew him well enough to know of his confidential nature and he would not be telling any tales. “It looks like the best part of the show is over, Nicholas. Shall we order?”

“I hope one day to find this Miss Hale and unravel this mystery that somehow weaves the madam of a sophisticated brothel into the quandary.”


As Katie was handed into her carriage by Tawl, she told him to drive around a bit until he was sure they were not being followed. Her ten minute ride turned into over an hour. She assumed it must be the newspaper people wanting something to write tomorrow. She expected her business to go up in the next week.

Lord Robert’s men returned to his table telling him that the woman he met with was a madam of a very sophisticated brothel. Somehow he felt worse hearing that. Had his actions reduced this young vibrant finishing school woman to that and impacted her life to such depths from which she could never recover, he wondered. If it had, he would restore her to a more modest and independent living state. She would want for nothing. What else could he do?


Waiting nervously for Katie to return, Margaret kept herself busy beginning her book. She felt the first chapter should be a biography of her life from birth until her arrival in a brothel. Since she was living a hardship as were many of the girls through no fault of their own, she wanted her reader to know her credentials for writing a book such as this.

Margaret heard Katie finally arrive home. Her nerves were frayed into knots. If she felt this was something sincere, really sincere, maybe she could put a lot of this behind her. She would forever have the stigma of not being innocent but the harsh violent painful memories may hopefully subside. She wanted to feel comfortable around men, but Lord Robert and her uncle did exactly the opposite. She thought she had met her first nice gentlemen in Trevor but he now seemed swept away and would never return to a damaged woman. It seemed all young men wanted to be the first in a girl’s life but hardly gave it thought when they moved on to the next challenge. Again, Margaret chastised herself for lumping all men into one.

Katie entered Margaret’s little room along with a couple girls behind her, who were not engaged at this hour. Margaret looked up at Katie trying to judge the expression on her face. There was none.

“Margaret, do you want to know of our conversation before or after you read his note to you?” Katie turned to the door to see who was clinging to the entrance and then looked back at Margaret, asking with her eyes how she felt about them listening.

“Let them stay. Tell me about his Lordship.” Margaret said with some disgust in her tone.

“Margaret, I have come to know and read people better than most. I was impressed and sorry for Lord Robert. I started out telling him how he had ruined your life and he did not deny anything. He knows full well what he’s done to your life and his. Although, his behavior shall be excused eventually, he shall never excuse himself. He wants to be a better man and a better Noble and he says that can only began with you. He has searched for you for over a year. He knows his action is unpardonable and reprehensible and he doesn’t expect forgiveness, but he would very much like to apologize to you in person. He shall be leaving the day after tomorrow. To be quite honest, and I told him so, he looks to be a pitiful man looking for redemption. I think he is quite sincere and ashamed of himself. Now . . . you read the letter and let me know what you decide.

Katie and the girls left the room, closing the door behind them. Margaret sat thinking about Katie’s words while she fiddled with the seal on the note. All her life, she had always trusted her governess and she should have no doubts now. Maybe this was her chance to get past the tragedy in her life and feel good again. She was sure this would be the only opportunity if it was sincere as Katie thought. Margaret finally snapped the impressive waxed seal and began to read.


Miss Hale,

 It is hard to begin a note to apologize for the enormous impact that I have made on your life with my indefensible and unforgivable behavior that night at Hanover House. No words can be enough to tell you how sorry I am. Even though I was ‘in my cups’ and knew not what I was doing, I can take no excuse. My actions have damaged your life, and I shall have to live with that all my life as difficult as it is. That shall forever be my penance for my behavior.

I have sought you out for a year to tell you of my great sorrow for what I did to you. When I was sober enough to know all, I immediately wanted to come to you, but Trevor would not allow me near you. He was right. The timing would not have seemed sincere enough. That night, I also ruined two good friendships, lost the respect of my class mates and embarrassed my family to a high decree.

I have not been encouraged by anyone other than myself to seek you out. I shall be in Milton tomorrow and shall hope you can reconsider giving me a few private moments to speak to you personally.

                              Forever in your debt,   L. Robert H.

Biggest Sherlock Holmes Exhibition in Over 60 Years Opens in London

The biggest exhibition in decades. (Museum of London)

Unfortunately, we’ve still got a ways to go until the next season of Sherlock airs. To tide us over, luckily, the Museum of London is opening its most comprehensive exhibition to date on the famed detective in over 60 years on Friday (October 17).

In addition to other rare original artifacts, the “Genesis of Sherlock Holmes” section of the exhibition will feature Sir Arthur Conan Doyle‘s notebook, the very one that contains the first few lines ever written of a Sherlock Holmes story. Conan Doyle used the notebook between 1885 and 1889 while practicing medicine in Swansea, Wales, and brainstormed an initial storyline in it: “The terrified woman rushing up to a cabman.” He then titled it “A Tangled Skein,” only to cross it out and replace it with the now-iconic “A Study in Scarlet.”

Conan Doyle's original notes. (Museum of London)

Along with it, visitors will also get a peek at more of Conan Doyle’s notes, including a page that refers to one “Sherrinford Holmes” and “Ormond Sacker,” later re-named as the iconic Sherlock Holmes and John Watson, respectively.

Another section, titled “The London of Sherlock Holmes,” does just what it says on the tin, clues visitors into what the city looked like in Sherlock’s time with paintings, maps, prints, drawings, and photographs.

However, Benedict Cumberbatch fans might be more interested in the “Many Sides of Sherlock Holmes” section, which will display the quintessential dapper Belstaff coat that Cumberbatch wears in the series. If your interests run more towards the loungewear variety, the exhibit is also displaying his Derek Rose dressing gown. Unfortunately, no word on a feature for the infamous sheet that Cumberbatch drapes around himself while visiting Buckingham Palace in “A Scandal in Belgravia.”

Cumberbatch in his now-iconic coat. (BBC)

And, finally, it wouldn’t be a Sherlock Holmes exhibition if we didn’t acknowledge his continuing presence in culture and society in some way. The “Immortal Sherlock Holmes” portion of the exhibition reflects upon his longevity, paying special attention to how the character has been reinterpreted and adapted, hence the exhibition’s title, Sherlock Holmes: The Man Who Never Lived and Will Never Die.

The exhibition is set to run from October 17 to April 15, giving ample time for Sherlockians to make a pilgrimage and get their fill of everything there is to know about Conan Doyle’s creation.

(Museum of London)

~ Remembering Times Forgotten through Period Drama ~