His Dark Materials Nov 4

‘HIS DARK MATERIALS’
STARTS WEAVING TONIGHT!
It starts tomorrow on HBO for USA audience

It is here, spylings, it is finally here, the premiere of the small screen television series adaptation of Philip Pullman‘s epic saga HIS DARK MATERIALS hits BBC tonight and then HBO tomorrow evening, November 4th! I can’t say I’m overly thrilled, there is something deeply unappealing about this cast for me, but I know most of you will not agree, so I will leave you to enjoy it tonight with today’s spotlight on the main characters!

The Eight Part Saga
tells the story of Lyra, who lives in Jordan College, Oxford. Placed there at the request of her Uncle, Lord Asriel, she lives a sheltered life amongst the

The series will start tonight on BBC oNE

scholars and college staff while under the watchful protection of The Master and Librarian Scholar Charles. When the glamorous Mrs Coulter enters Lyra’s life she embarks upon a dangerous journey of discovery from Oxford to London. Here she meets Father Macphail, Lord Boreal and journalist Adele Starminster at a glittering society party where she first hears about the sinister General Oblation Board. Lyra is subsequently thrown into the nomadic world of the boat dwelling Gyptians who take her North in her quest. Once in the North she meets charismatic aeronaut and adventurer Lee Scoresby who joins them on their epic journey and who becomes one of Lyra’s closest allies.

Dafne Keen is Lyra Belacqua

A young orphan raised by the scholars of Jordan College, Oxford, Lyra’s never happier than roaming the city with her friends – but revelations about

Due to kids growing fast, Daphne Keen already shot the second season of the series, sixteen episodes in total so far! We will see first eight this year

her true heritage will take her on a dangerous journey, where her talent with the future predicting alethiometer will be put to the ultimate test. Her dæmon, Pantalaimon, has yet to settle in one form.

James McAvoy is Lord Asriel

A fierce and formidable man from an aristocratic background, Lord

Helen McRory lends her voice to James McAvoy’s Stelmaria snow leopard

Asriel plans a momentous scientific expedition that could bring serious repercussions down on Lyra. His dæmon, Stelmaria, takes the form of a Snow Leopard.

Ruth Wilson is Mrs Coulter

The mesmerizing and elegant Mrs Coulter enchants Lyra, but

Ruth Wilson is evil and very secretive Mrs Coulter

proves to have a dark side when her true schemes are revealed. Her dæmon takes the form of a golden monkey.

Lin-Manuel Miranda is Lee Scoresby

A Texan aeronaut and adventurer, Scoresby finds himself pulled into

Lin Manuel Miranda plays an adventurer who helps Lira

Lyra’s adventure when he’s hired to transport her across the north. His dæmon, Hester, takes the form of an Arctic Hare.

Ruta Gedmintas is Serafina Pekkala

The clan queen of the witches of Lake Enara, Serafina forms a close

Ruta Gedmintas plays the queen of witches

bond with Lyra as she helps her on her journey. Her dæmon is a snow goose called Kaisa.

Will Keen is Father MacPhail

MacPhail is the president of the Consistorial Court of Discipline, an

Will Keen is also the real life father of Daphne Keen!

important part of the Church, and he has designs to track down Lyra or have her assassinated. His dæmon is a lizard.

 

The Aeronauts Dec 6 USA

PREMIUM SPOTLIGHT ON THE AERONAUTS PERIOD SET ADVENTURE WITH EDDIE REDMAYNE, FELICITY JONES, VINCENT PEREZ, TOM COURTENAY, ANNE REID

   ‘THE AERONAUTS’ 
AIM HIGH REACH FOR THE SKY
The movie hits Amazon Prime around Christmas

The two of them starred together for the first time in The Theory of Everything five years ago and both Eddie Redmayneand Felicity Joneswere nominated for Oscars that year for their roles in that one, and now they are working together in THE AERONAUTS but it is safe to say this one won’t be in the running for Academy Awards. It is ready, though, to premier November 4th in United Kingdom, and then from December 6th in USA and December 20th on Amazon Prime, following daredevil pilot Amelia Wren and weather scientist James Glaisher who find themselves in an epic fight for survival while attempting to make discoveries in a gas balloon.

  Inspired By True Events
In 1862, daredevil balloon pilot Amelia Wren (Felicity Jones) teams up with pioneering meteorologist James Glaisher (Eddie Redmayne) to advance human knowledge of the weather and fly higher than anyone in

This is the second time Redmayne and Jones are starring together

history. While breaking records and advancing scientific discovery, their voyage to the very edge of existence helps the unlikely pair find their place in the world they have left far below them. But they face physical and emotional challenges in the thin air, as the ascent becomes a fight for survival.

Erased For Being A Man?

Although James Glaisher was the real historical person, Amelia Wren is a fictional character who replaces his real life assistant  Henry Tracey Coxwell with a female version. Wonder what would feminists have to say on

The film is based on Richard Holmes book Falling Upwards: How We Took To The Air

that? They say the aim was to inspire girls that they can go on adventures too, but if that did not really happen isn’t it a despicable case of fabricating history for the sake of modern agenda in which a real life hero Coxwell gets totally

The movie was directed by Tom Harper

erased just because he wasn’t a female? While portraying Glaisher, Eddie Redmayne has a serious ankle injury and had to wear a cast! With Tom Harper from BBC’s War and Peace directing, the cast also includes Tom Courtenay and Anne Reid as James’ parents, Vincent Perez as Amelia’s husband.

Posted by DEZMOND

 

Mr Thornton Takes a Wife – Part Fifty-Three

Chapter 53 – Ever Recurring List Items: Housekeeping and Infirmary

 

From that day on, Margaret kept her promise to her family very faithfully.

She still performed the many duties she had imposed upon herself but she was careful not to overdo. In this she counted on the strong hands of Crispin and Justin, her two “wheelchair bearers”, as she called them. Those trustworthy, very patient men, strong of arms and cheerful of mind, carried her all day long wherever she wanted to go.

“Where to first, Mrs T?” Crispin would ask, as they presented themselves each morning in her parlour.

“Kitchen, Mr Crispin!”, Margaret would reply and settle herself firmly into her wheelchair.

John had, from the very first day, spotted that the chair might be a trifle unsafe. The risk of Margaret toppling out of it if the bearers should tilt the contraption a bit too much, had immediately come to his attention. So John, practical as ever, fitted out the chair with a seat belt of his own design. This was one of his own belts but padded with cotton waste as to not hurt Margaret’s body. She was very heavy now, at 33 weeks and the month of May three weeks old.

The first day of Margaret’s new way of doing her job, John had not left her side. He had very scrupulously observed all Crispin’s and Justin’s doings, criticized their actions whenever he saw a flaw in them and copiously sprinkled them with advise as how to improve their work. Justin, a quiet, patient man, had only smiled benignly at this but Crispin, being of a more feisty nature, had reacted frequently against the Master’s interferences. Margaret had to bid John to withdraw, at the end. John resigned himself to do so, as soon as he saw that his wife was becoming nervous under the constant bickering between him and Crispin. Reluctantly, however.

 

Margaret’s household staff now consisted of five members, all of them living in.

There was, of course, the faithful Adelaide Dixon, who was now housekeeper of the Thornton’s household. Directly under her was Mrs Ursula Pennywater, the widow of the former overseer at Marlborough Mills. She and her husband had been childless and Mrs Pennywater had come to work as a cook for Hannah when her husband died. Dixon had become great friends with Cook and they often spent their leisure hours together, reading or talking.

Annie Babcock, the upstairs maid, was a lively girl of twenty-two, whose father and brothers worked at the mill. She had a younger sister of twelve, Dottie, who worked as a scullery maid under Mrs Pennywater.

Last there was the laundry maid, Jenny Hawkins, who had only recently come to the household. She was eighteen and her parents and five brothers all worked for John at the mill.

These were the people Margaret conferred with at the beginning of each day.

There were meals to be decided on, the smooth running of the household to be discussed and the many other tasks to be carried out. It usually took half of the morning.

 

After that, Justin and Crispin carried and wheeled their mistress to the Infirmary, situated in one of the halls of Marlborough Mills. The sick and the weak amongst the workers and their families had a special place in Margaret’s heart. She was seriously planning to increase her efforts in that field after the babies would be born.

The vast space of the hall was divided into smaller spaces by wooden partitions. Each ward had their own supervising female attendant watching over the smooth running of them. These women were not real nurses. England, in the nineteenth century, had not yet training schools to that goal. It was only in that same year of 1853, that Florence Nightingale began her own training in Paris. It would not be before 1899, when the Council of Nurses was formed, that a proper training was established.

So, Margaret’s women were virtually untrained, but eager to learn and hard workers. They all received a financial reward for their work which enabled them to bring in a little money for their families.

There were, in total, eight wards, in which four types of illnesses were cared for, each with separate spaces for men and women. One was for various injuries and fractures acquired during working hours at the mill. Those were fairly frequent, so much so that Nicholas Higgins was seriously thinking of installing a committee for the improvement of safety on the premises of the mill.

A second ward provided for the sick children, boys and girls separated, of course. Another space was solely preserved for women who recently gave birth. Here mothers and their babies were properly cared for and they were allowed to bring their young children with them when there was no one to take care of them at home. A fourth ward was destined specifically for lung diseases, such as ‘brown lung disease’ or byssinosis, or in popular terms ‘fluff on the lungs’. This was the illness that caused the death of Margaret’s friend, Bessy Higgins, two years ago.

It was a vile disease, causing the sick person a great many discomforts, such as chest tightness and subsequently breathing difficulties, wheezing and coughing. The patient suffered a narrowing of the trachea in the lungs, lung scarring and, eventually death from infection or respiratory failure. There was, unfortunately not a great thing to be done for those patients. Nurses could only try to make them more comfortable.

 

John would always try to be at Margaret’s side when she visited the Infirmary.

He knew all too well how appalled she was on seeing the suffering of her dear patients. His Margaret had a soft and tender heart for those with a lower station in life who suffered from it. It was one of the things Margaret had taught him. Before he met her, John had not known, or not wanted to know, about the life conditions of his workers and their families.

So, he was always with his wife on moments like this. He worried, he simply did. About Margaret and his unborn babies.

Dracula series – BBC / Netflix

GRUESOME TRAILER FOR BBC’S AND NETFLX EPIC NEW DRACULA SERIES HAS BEEN UNLEASHED!

   ‘DRACULA’ TRAILER
FOR SCARY NEW BBC SERIES
I did not expect this one to be so disgustingly graphic, but it is: BBC has released the first gruesome trailer for their new DRACULA series which will

Dracula is an upcoming television series developed by Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat, based on the novel of the same name by Bram Stoker. The series is being developed for broadcast and release on BBC One and Netflix, and will consist of three episodes. Claes Bang is set to star as the title character.

Claes Bang takes the lead role of Count Dracula

also air on Netflix. Claes Bang plays the count himself next to always lovely John Heffernan as Jonathan HarkerJoanna Scanlan, Dolly Wells,

John Heffernan plays Jonathan Harker in the series

Morfydd Clark, Lujza Richter, Jonathan Aris, Sacha Dhawan, Nathan Stewart Jarrett, Catherine Schell, Youssef Kerkour, Clive Russell and Mark Gatiss!

Drac VS Victorian London
The series, which was shot in Orava Castle in Slovakia, is set in Transylvania in 1897, where the blood drinking Count Vlad is drawing his

The series will air on BBC sometime next winter

plans against Victorian London. As the producers say, hell has a new boss! Netflix will air the three 90 minute episode saga around the world with BBC airing it in UK and Ireland this winter!

Harriet 2019 – Nov 1

Based on the thrilling and inspirational life of an iconic American freedom fighter, HARRIET tells the extraordinary tale of Harriet Tubman’s escape from slavery and transformation into one of America’s greatest heroes. Her courage, ingenuity, and tenacity freed hundreds of slaves and changed the course of history.

 

It is based on the life of abolitionist Harriet Tubman, who escaped slavery and led hundreds of enslaved people to freedom on the Underground Railroad.

 

 

 

 

The Noble Coachman Chapter 4

Chapter 4
Kidnapped

 

Arriving at Blevins Manor, Kip watched Sir Blevins escort a young woman to his coach. He jumped to the ground to meet her.

“Kip, this is my niece, Lady Lucy Blevins, who is staying with us for the season. I trust you to see that she arrives at the ball and is escorted into the hall. There she is to meet her cousin.”

“Sir, I will see to it that she is delivered safely. Am I to wait?”

Sir Blevins looked at his niece, wondering if she had further plans.

“Uncle, if this driver would not mind waiting an hour, I would appreciate that. I may not wish to stay. Otherwise, Lilly said her driver would return me here.”

“Very well. Kip, you will wait for one hour.”

“Yes, Uncle,” Lucy said with a sigh of relief. “Thank you.”

“Yes, Sir. Understood.”

Kip assisted her into the coach and was on his way. Upon arrival, he did not feel comfortable leaving her at the door with only the ball footman. She would be alone, once out of the coach. He pulled under the covered entrance; the event footman opened his coach door and exited Lucy Blevins. Kip jumped down, against protocol, and walked her inside the door.

“Miss, you are inside the door as your uncle instructed, but I feel uneasy with you here alone. I will park my team and return until your cousin arrives.”

“I believe I am asking too much of you, sir.”

“You would be doing me the service of not worrying about you. May I?”

“Yes, all right. Kip, is it?”

“Yes, Miss. One minute.”

Kip pulled the coach to a vacant spot, handed the reins to another driver friend and told him to tether the team, he would be back.

Kip approached Miss Blevins at the entrance into the hall.

“This is most kind of you, Kip.”

“It is my honor.”

“Oh, you certainly don’t mean that,” she smiled as they entered the foyer.

“I do, Miss. This is not just a courtesy.”

“I see. Well, it is more than generous, I should say.”

“You should say exceedingly little to me. I am but a driver.”

“I sense more to you than a driver. I cannot quite place it.” Lucy Blevins scanned the faces of all she could see. Her cousin was not there. “I am sorry you feel as if you have to wait. I do not see her.”

“Would you like to walk further into the actual ballroom?”

“Lilly said she would be by the doors.”

“Very well, Miss.”

“I see you are dressed in tails. Do you always drive in such evening elegance?”

“No, Miss. Only on particular occasions such as this.”

“I suppose I will allow you to walk with me into the ballroom, so I can see for myself if she is here.”

“If you wish it. I could stand at the hall entrance and keep an eye on you. Whichever you prefer.”

“I do not know anyone here. She was going to introduce me. Yes, I would appreciate it if you walked with me. At least, you do not look like a peacock.”

Kip chuckled, which caused her to smile.

As they entered the room, Lucy Blevins slipped her arm through his, surprising him. He accepted the honor and walked as the gentleman he was. It felt lovely to have a woman at his side. More than a year had passed since he was in the company of a fashionable lady.

“Kip, you look quite comfortable walking among the classes.” She smiled.

“I believe it to be my charm and good looks that help me pass for your lot.”

Lucy laughed. “My lot? As in upper society? If you only knew!”

“Are we both passing ourselves off as highborn types? How are we doing?”

“You are full of humor. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that I am a social climber, but I do belong to the more common side of the family. I think my cousin is being kind to me.”

“Could your cousin think, ‘I should ask little Lucy out. She will never meet eligible men any other way’?”

“In my mind, that is what it feels like. That is why I asked uncle to allow you to remain another hour. I genuinely feel out of place.”

“May I have this dance?”

“Kip!”

“Sorry. The music made me forget myself.” I must be more careful. That just slipped out.”

Lucy was being overwhelmed with this driver in tails. He was amusing her immensely.

“Do you happen to see your cousin?”

“I do not, but I cannot see across the floor.”

Kip faced her and placed his arm in the middle of her back, took her hand and waltzed her to the other side. “Here we are – the other side. Does this help?”

“Who are you? Has my cousin planned this whole evening? Are you the gentleman she wanted to introduce to me but felt I would run away? She slips you to me on a silver platter?”

“Brass, Miss. I would be slipped to you on a brass platter. I do think I shall put that on my calling cards. Being a gentlemen escort is rather appealing. It looks like I am quite proficient at it. What do you think?”

“I cannot believe the liberties you are taking if you truly are a driver. You are too amusing.”

“Now, you see; you have begun me to think that I could sweep you off your feet. You would be flattered. I would be honored, and it would be all innocent fun.”

“Will you kiss me goodnight, too?”

“Miss, you are not nearly ready for my fervid attention.” Kip kept his composure with a decidedly staid look while Lucy Blevins’s eyes twinkled with delight.”

“There she is! Lilly sees me.”

“Miss, you have been charming. I will wait outside until the appointed time. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to regale you.”

“I thoroughly was that I must say. Thank you. I still have a feeling I will not stay.”

“I will be waiting if that becomes your decision. Good evening.”

“Goodnight, Kip.”

Kip bowed to her approaching cousin and left the area.

“Lucy, who was that handsome gentleman?”

“I do not think I will tell you, Lilly.”

“I have not seen him before. Here, I was going to introduce you to my gentleman’s friend, and you found someone.”

“Would you believe; he is my driver tonight?”

“No, I would not believe you. Coachmen do not come that handsome. And how many of them wear tails and walk ballroom floors?”

“You haven’t even seen the coach. I am living a fairy tale; I think.”

“Have you had any wine, yet?”

“No, but I feel as if I have.”

“Come. Let us find our gentlemen who were just behind me. I’m afraid I scurried over when I saw you.”

Miss Lucy Blevins was pulled merrily along by her hand toward two other guests.

Kip returned to his team and, as usual, found drivers milling around his horses and coach. Other drivers were looking to see what he was doing differently to attract more riders.

“Whom did you drive tonight?” Marc questioned.

“A Miss Lucy Blevins, cousin to someone named Lilly. She is a niece of Sir Blevins.”

“Dunno her, mate. Is she young and beautiful?”

“Yes, and quite.”

Kip took the wheel spoke to reach under the lid of his bench seat and pulled out a brush. He began raking one of his horse’s long mane and tail. “Are the other apostles here, tonight?”

“Mathew is across the way. Lucas is still expected, and I think Jonathan has another ball.”

This was the world he was coming to love. The camaraderie was always good fellowship. They spent many hours together and relied on one another. All of them were like a team of brothers. They were gentlemen drivers with souls of gold. He could never thank them for pulling him through some terribly rough emotional times that he had hidden from them after his sister’s murder.

Matthew approached the pair and patted down the other horse which was not being brushed. “Evening, gents. Is this Warrior or Soldier? I can never tell them apart even in the daylight.”

“That is Soldier. The three of us were rescuers late today. A woman came running to the coach, fleeing from a man. It appeared the young lady did not want to marry him, and they had had a heated discussion.”

“Do you know who she is?”

“No, I know where she lives, which I will not speak, but she was visiting near Hampstead.”

“Did you know the man?” asked Marc.

“No. I did go back later to see if there was a name on the house but there was not. In a few days, I will return to the young lady’s home and see how she is. I believe you are jealous of me, dear friends. Who among us does not enjoy the benefits of driving a young woman who is alone?”

“You keep telling us that, but no one seems to have your flair.”

“I have no flair, mates. I love women, as we all do. They are quite helpless against any man. You’re a hard lot, you chaps,” he laughed. “Anyone bring cards, Willy?”

#

It was nearing ten in the evening when Kip saw Miss Blevins exit the front entrance. He quickly scurried to meet her.

“Are you out for the air, or can I be of assistance?”

“I would like to leave, but not return home just yet. I feel quite shaken with my cousin and her guests. I think something is wrong.”

“I hope there is nothing amiss. Where may I drive you?”

“I know little of London. Can you choose a place for you and me to sit and talk? I do not mean privately; you understand.”

“Miss, are you quite certain? It is not my place to be a companion or socialize.”

“I do understand that. I had enjoyed your company before my gentleman was introduced to me. Is there no proper place?”

“Yes, there are benches in front of the courthouse. It is quite a public area, even at this time of night. If you wait here, I will bring the coach.”

“No matter. I will walk with you. Will you be shamed in front of the other drivers?”

“They may take to teasing me, but I will be admired,” he smiled.

Lucy felt her own smile return.

“Shall we go, miss?” Kip extended his arm, mostly because it was dark, and where he was headed was wheel-rutted.

The drivers moved away from Kip’s coach as he, and the lady appeared to head towards them. He purposely did not look in their direction as he handed Miss Blevins into his coach. Kip stepped on the wheel peg and lifted himself onto his bench. His fellow drivers were huddled together watching intently since he had brought her there on his arm.

Kip wasn’t sure what he was doing. He had done what he could to dissuade her, which failed. They arrived at the courthouse without much ado. There were the gas street lights and a dozen lighted windows in the Court House. He parked his team on the main street and attended Miss Blevins to a bench.

“You will sit with me, will you not?”

“Yes, Miss. Did you not enjoy your evening tonight?”

“It isn’t that which has me upset. It is my cousin Lilly.”

“Miss, this is not my business. Although whatever you say to me will remain private, reconsider that you are talking to a coachman. Perhaps, you should discuss this with a family member.”

“I am not sure what to do. I believe she is being coerced into something or blackmailed.”

Kip found his seat on the bench. This was far and away never the troubles he thought her cousin could be experiencing. “What makes you think that, Miss Blevins?”

“Twice she and her gentleman seemed to be having harsh words while they danced. I saw her frowning and shaking her head. She returned with watery eyes one time. The two of them kept taking short walks onto the back veranda. The gentleman who was with me observed that I noticed something was amiss. He became overly attentive to me at that time.”

“You do not think it was lovers quarrel?

“As they neared the table, returning from the veranda, I faintly heard her say, ‘I do not think I will do that.’”

“That could be a reply to any number of topics.”

“She and I are not all that close for her to openly confide in me. They wanted to leave early. I told them I would prefer to go home, so I left to find you. I did not want to stay with the friend, and he seemed anxious to go with them.”

“Do you know if they were taking her home?”

“No, I don’t, Kip,” Miss Blevins said as she leaned against his shoulder and began to weep.

Kip was not making any progress stemming the flow of her tears or her grip on him. “I feel you should be home explaining your observations to your uncle. He may have thoughts on this unusual situation. One woman and two men in a coach could signal … umm … improprieties.”

“Yes, I am sure you are right.”

“Splendid. Let us depart.”

Kip pulled his coach to the front of the dwelling where he had started. Miss Blevins was stepping out before he could reach her.

“I will walk with you to the door. Do you wish me to enter?”

“Yes. I will go find uncle.”

“Indeed, Miss.”

Lucy found her uncle, who was in his dressing robe and asked him to come speak with the driver. As the two walked towards Kip at the entrance, Lucy told him what had transpired during the ball.

“Good evening, Kip. What’s this Lucy is trying to tell me?”

Kip, clasping his hands behind his back, began his narration of events as he knew them, which was less than what Miss Blevins had told him. He mentioned he would have conversations with the other drivers.

“Please, wait until I dress. Kip, I’d like you to drive me to Lilly’s home. She is my sister’s niece. I wish to be comforted in the fact that she is home.”

As Sir Blevins left for upstairs, Miss Blevins approached him, took one of his hands, and kissed it. “Kip, I do not know how to thank you.”

“Miss Blevins, this type of gratitude is not expected nor earned. Please know your place.”

Lucy looked into his green eyes intently, “I think I do know my place.”

Kip felt the undeniable pleasure sweep over him, but all he could see was a black-haired cherub sitting atop a coach bench.

“Miss, you are charming and quite endearing but do not let your imagination take hold. This may be a serious situation. My help does not require payment. I desire that you refrain from complimenting me. You are putting me at a disadvantage, which is hard to resist. I am but a man as well as a coachman.”

“I am quite aware of that,” Lucy smiled.

Leonardo Da Vinci TV Series

LEONARDO DA VINCI TV SERIES

TV and movie world have never been overly original, so why should we be surprised that another epic TV saga on famous painter LEONARDO da Vinci is in works just a few years after legendary Da Vinci’s Demons. The new series will be produced by Frank Spotnitz who gave us Medici Masters of Florence and they already have the lead star: Poldark’s Aidan Turner will portray Italian Renaissance genius whose many creative talents included painting, sculpture, architecture, science, mathematics and engineering, starting from when he was a young man. The new series will give life to a young Leonardo and not the old man with a beard we all are used to see. He too had a first job, he too had a master… he too had frustrations and failures. Each episode will focus on one of da Vinci’s masterpieces, inventions or projects as a means of capturing the man behind the creative genius.

Mr Thornton Takes a Wife – Part Fifty-Two

Chapter 52 – A Trustworthy Family

“Ah!”, Nicholas exclaimed, “I knew this was going to stir him out of his whining!”

“Whining? I am not at all whining. I’m just aghast that you … Good God, Nicholas, it’s just … the completeness of this list only emphasizes its enormous importance! We must indeed do all this to keep Margaret safe and the babies to be born healthy. Thank you, my friend, thank you all. Now, what will be my part on this list? I see you have not rounded it out yet?”

Nicholas, under Hannah’s gaze full of concern for her son, placed his hand on John’s shoulder.

“You, my friend, have the most difficult task of all. You must convince our Margaret that there is only one rule for her to obey: she needs to rest as much as she can. You, John, must be the most vigilant of all because you are her husband and you are close to her. Now, listen, what I have in mind.”

 

At breakfast the next morning, Margaret was presented with a full delegation of friends and family.

Her husband, eyes shining with mirth, did the talking.

“My dearest, we need you to listen to what we have to say. First of all, we all love you dearly, Margaret. Look at us all, here we are, your servants, all of us.”

Margaret’s gaze went around the company and rested for a while upon them all, one by one.

There was Mary, her very best friend and co-worker, smiling shyly at her, and Dixon, her faithful servant and friend, her ruddy face beaming with affection. There was Dr Donaldson, tall and trustworthy, nodding reassuringly at her. There were Nicholas and Hannah, hand in hand, towers of strength, both of them. And then, there was John …

Tall frame and broad shoulders erect but eyes sparkling with love, so deeply it brought tears into her eyes. She reached out for him and he instantly came and took her into his arms. He kissed her on the top of her head and lifted her face to his.

“Margaret, my love …”

His voice broke as he continued.

“You are the most precious person in all our lives now. We want you to be safe and whole so please, listen to us?”

He led her to the settee and sat her down gently.

Nicholas handed her the List, as it would be called from now on and, after the first shock of surprise, Margaret began perusing it attentively. Her eyes gradually widened as she began to comprehend what was written down in so many details.

“But … but, John, Nicholas, am I to be … in bed … all the time, then? How could I possibly supervise all these projects when I am not there? I do want to rest, surely, but how could I if I am not allowed to be bodily present?”

John saw tears in her beautiful blue eyes and he squeezed her shoulder in support.

“Be calm, my love, Nicholas has it all covered.”

Indeed, the big union man smiled broadly and clapped his hands. Two sturdy fellows came in, one of them pushing the most comfortable wheel chair ever seen!

“Margaret, this is Crispin.”

The man in question was about thirty, at least six three and very massively built. His dark eyes shone with humour and his broad, ruddy face beamed with affability. He bowed to Margaret and said, in a deep bass voice:

“At your service, Ma’am, all day long!”

“And this,” Nicholas went on, “is Justin.”

Same built and height, but Justin was fair-haired and had beautiful hazel eyes which had a touch of shyness in them.

“Your humble servant, Ma’am, at your beck and call.”

His voice was soft and deep, as if he wasn’t used to much talking.

Margaret was extremely puzzled. She liked the two men instantly but she did not understand why they were here. Nicholas explained.

“From now on, my dear young lady,” he said in a mock stern voice, “you are not going anywhere but in that wheel chair. Crispin and Justin here are your attendants. They will wheel you around the mill yard and the house, even up the stairs, whenever and wherever you want to go. Have I your word that you will employ them as intended?”

“Margaret?”, John chimed in, eyes serious.

They all stared sternly at her, even in a very immovable fashion, as if they would not take ‘no’ for an answer. Margaret quickly pondered all that was laid before her. They were right, of course, and they were brilliant! This ‘List’ made it possible for her to be everywhere she wanted to be and her two attendants would provide her with the means to do so without endangering her babies and her health.

 

She let her gaze wander to all those loving faces and answered:

“Dear friends, thank you for your love and concern. Yes, I will do as you suggest and follow my ‘List’ faithfully. With the support of all of you, I am sure nothing can go wrong.”

Foundation

Apple has just found lead stars for its TV series adaptation of Isaac Asimov‘s famous sf classic FOUNDATION

The ten episode series will be toplined by Lee Pace and Jared Harris in a story about a band of exiles who discover that the only way to save the Galactic Empire from destruction is to defy it. As Deadline reports, Lee Pace will portray Brother Day, the current Emperor of the Galaxy, while Jared Harris will play Hari Seldon, a mathematical genius who predicts the demise of the empire. David Goyer (Da Vinci’s Demons) is serving as the show runner and executive producer as well. This comes after rumours that Apple has already invested close to $250 million into their sf series

 

SEE which launches their streaming service next week and has the second season already ordered!

 

Lee Place will rule the Galaxy in the new series

 

 

The Crown – S3 Trailer and new cast members Nov 17

‘The Crown’ latest trailer reveals first look at Season 3’s all-new cast

Netflix has released a full trailer for the upcoming third season of The Crown.

The award-winning period drama series about the reign of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom is finally back next month.

Season 3 will see the entire cast being replaced by older actors as The Crown moves further into the second half of the 20th Century.

The Favourite star Olivia Colman is taking over the role of Elizabeth from Claire Foy, who played the Queen in the first two seasons.

Following a recent teaser clip introducing Colman, this new exciting two-minute preview features the first look at Tobias Menzies (Outlander) as Prince Philip, Josh O’Connor (Larry in The Durrells) as Prince Charles, and Helena Bonham Carter (Harry Potter) as Princess Margaret.

They’ll be joined by Emerald Fennell (Patsy in Call the Midwife) as Charles’ future wife Camilla, Charles Dance (Game of Thrones) as Lord Louis Mountbatten, and Jason Watkins (A Very English Scandal) as Prime Minister Harold Wilson.

Watch the trailer:

10 brand new episodes will be available to watch from Sunday 17th November exclusively on Netflix.

The official synopsis for Season 3 reads: “Times change. Duty endures. As Queen Elizabeth II (Olivia Colman) faces a rapidly changing Britain, her family continues to struggle against the needs of the monarchy and the wants of their fracturing personal lives.”

Season 4 is already filming in England right now and we now know who’ll be playing Princess Diana and who’s been cast as Margaret Thatcher.

 

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