Open Pups and Pomps
It had been his first outing to London in such a very long time! The highlight of which had been the shop window he had passed with Colette - displayed in a basket were the most novel and adorable of puppies. They were the sort of herding breed that was common for Welsh sheep farmers. How quaint! There had not been a hound in the castle since his childhood - old Bedfordshire, his father's bloodhound, named for a friend he had lost during wartime; far more traditional a breed. However, he could not be pulled away from that window, and was nearly intent to buy all five of them were it not for the level-headed reasoning of his wife. 

Kelvin held now the singular dog in question on his lap, as he sat at the table the footmen had brought out into the middle of the garden just outside of the hedge maze. There was a nip in the air that not even hot tea could keep at bay for long. But the sun still shone, and he had to obey the doctor's orders; make use of its prevalence for as long as one can in the waning months of the year.

The entire family, Muzurans included, were invited to sit for luncheon. It might not do for old Ned to venture out for long, but surely the girls would attend. 

The pup, who he had named Bernini, after the Italian sculptor, was very oddly shaped - her legs were short and fat and her ears had only just begun to stand upright and more so on one side than the other. He had never seen a herding dog up close. The 'Cor-gee' as the man in the shop had called them. She was fast asleep after running about in the grass. He did hope he might see her play with Brandt's dog soon. It was more exciting to him than anything he might wish to see in Julienne or René. But no one, especially Colette, need know about that.
The chill in the air was good, it made her feel alive, and she believed it was good for her skin if not overdone. Colette knew to enjoy the day as it was so rare to have a day outside like this, Kelvin especially! The lady looked over at her husband while her fingers rhythmically smoothed the fur down on the head of the dog in her lap. He was looking happier since the seance, and while she would not remember such an event, she was happy it did him well. She felt like maybe she had a husband again, which would certainly do well for Julienne.

Her eyes moved to scan over the yard, certain her child was at play with the sister to the dog she now held. While letting her husband get one of the strange small dogs, she'd found her own and managed to logically explain why she should have two. Certainly Julienne would like one to play with and the Cavalier King Charles was a more superior dog for a lady than the strange stubbly thing her husband fell in love with.

Her fingers moved again between the ears over the head and smiled. Her dog was very calm while the other played with her daughter. She let out a soft laugh, and turned to Kel.

"This was a good idea, I'm glad we came out today. It is a chance for you to get some fresh air, though take care to not over do it. "Her fingers reached out to rest on his hand for a moment. It could have been seen as a show of affection, but more importantly it was a reminder. She was there, for him. She was there, not a ghost from his past, and he needed to remember that.
René was sitting at the table, pulling his collar tighter around his neck as the nip in the air disturbed him. How he longed for the warmer climes of France. No tropical paradise, but some slighter proximity to the equator surely was better for the health. He'd be chilled in through the bone and retire an old man at twenty five at this rate. Especially if it were he who the mantle of Madswitte fell upon. But he was plotting. That day need not come...

He slurped his tea quickly before it went cold, and would admit only to himself that the puppies were charming. But he'd let Julienne do the petting. He would seize the chance himself at a more private time. Dogs didn't tattle, after all.

"Yes, do take care, Kelvin." He said flatly, never caving to calling him 'father', nor could he lower himself to call him 'lordship'. He was an acquaintance, at most. That would do for now.

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