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 Life is not A Fairytale, [Owen]
Rosalia Finnigan
 Posted: Nov 12 2011, 10:07 PM
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"You will have very little choice in the matter," Rosalia sighed as she leaned back into the lounging chair, toying with the ornate metal along the edge of it, uninterested. "There will be a good number of suitors, I suppose, given how wealthy our family is, but I doubt there will be more than a few viable options. Marriage is practical business, contrary to what these stories of yours seem to indicate. . ."

Foolish girl. She seemed to have all sorts of foolish ideas in her head. It was no wonder, really, considering how she was treated-- by her father, in particular.

"You chose Father, didn't you?" her daughter asked plainly, looking down at the floor of the sitting room rather than at her mother.

"Do look at me when you're speaking to me, Ophelia," Rosalia said with some amount of frustration, neglecting to look at the girl herself. "In a way I did choose him, but if he had not been the obvious choice, I think my consent would hardly have been of importance in the matter. My parents would have forbidden the marriage if he had not been suitable."

Ophelia frowned slightly. "What is suitable, then?"

Rosalia looked at her with narrowed eyes. "For you, or for myself?"

It was an important distinction to make. They were not the same, no matter how much the girl looked like her mother, no matter what her name was, and no matter what people might say.

"For you, I suppose," the girl answered, somewhat timid as she glanced up at her mother's eyes before looking to the fabric of the woman's blue-colored skirt.

"I required a man with great wealth, a spotless reputation, and handsome looks, dear. Your father's family is very wealthy, he is not known for acting inappropriately, and he certainly isn't disfigured," Rosalia explained bluntly. "His faults were not enough to make his wealth inconsequential." Wealth was clearly the priority. With a dismissive wave of her hand, she sighed, "He was suitable."

Suitable was a nice word for what Owen was, she thought. He would do. He had to-- marriage wasn't something one could just wiggle out of once her husband turned out to be an absolute pain and a bore.

Ophelia seemed displeased with the explanation, it seemed. That sparkle in her eyes was gone now, and there was a certain tension in that tiny body of hers, but Rosalia ignored it. The girl needed not to be coddled so much. . .
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Owen Finnigan
 Posted: Nov 13 2011, 10:15 AM
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"Who is suitable?" asked Owen as he walked into the room with a smile on his face, only to have it increase greatly in strength as his eyes and on his lips when he saw that Ophelia was present and in on the conversation. It pleased him greatly to see her, of course, and it pleased him even more to see her talking to her mother. A young girl such as herself was in great need of a mother, especially as she would soon leave childhood and step into adolescence.

There was no conceit in his intentions: he worried for his daughter more than he worried for himself. She was the light of his eyes and the flutter in his heart and never had he felt so about any single person.

"What are we talking about?" he enforced, walking up to the armchair Ophelia was occupying and, plucking her up and hugging her, settled himself on it and her on his lap, her lithe pale hands wrapping themselves around his neck. It was hard not to smile proudly at that, for there he was, in the centre of his universe.
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Rosalia Finnigan
 Posted: Nov 14 2011, 11:46 AM
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Rosalia didn't rush to acknowledge her darling husband as he entered. Instead, she busied herself with the studying of her nails. There wasn't any dirt or grime under them, of course-- they were always well-groomed and rarely broke-- but at the moment, she seemed particularly interested in their perfection.

It wasn't until Owen spoke his second question that she bothered to say, "The wonders of marriage." There was no attempt to sound interested in the topic of conversation. Instead she very deliberately sighed the words as if exhausted, and as she finally looked to Owen, she pressed her lips together to form that barely contained look of displeasure that often decorated her features.

"I was just informing your daughter about how matches are made," she explained further, wondering what nonsense was about to spill forth from her husband's ridiculous mouth.
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Owen Finnigan
 Posted: Nov 15 2011, 07:54 PM
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"Oh?" Owen soberly asked, looking at Ophelia interestedly. She didn't look particularly happy about the conversation, but, then again, it wasn't a particularly interesting subject, he thought, for a child such as her. "A rather tedious subject, my dear, don't you think?"
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Rosalia Finnigan
 Posted: Nov 21 2011, 12:19 PM
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"Your daughter brought it up, dear," Rosalia explained. "I would sooner discuss the place of bustles in a woman's wardrobe, but I thought I ought to indulge her curious mind."

Talking about Ophelia's subjects of conversation with her and answering her questions seemed to be a way to gain some favor points, even if she did eventually upset the girl with her . . . bluntness. It would be easier to argue that the girl was being overly sensitive than it would be to argue that the girl deserved to be ignored.

"I think I have answered her questions quite thoroughly, though. No need to continue on that topic," she added, waving a hand dismissively.

She did not want to think or talk about marriage with her husband in the room. This was supposed to be her quiet, relaxing time of lying down and clearing her mind. . . not discussing her least favorite subject with her husband and daughter. Now she was tense and fighting the urge to frown. Unfortunately, she had excused herself with a 'headache' too recently to use that tactic again.

She was stuck there, avoiding the sight of Ophelia and Darling Owen as if it might cause her pain.
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Owen Finnigan
 Posted: Nov 21 2011, 01:04 PM
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"Rosalia, my love, are you feeling alright? Is it another headache?" Owen quipped, noticing her less-than-friendly tone and expression. "You poor thing. I shall have the doctor come by again."

Ophelia soured at this, looking concernedly at her mother. It was impossibly disheartening to see her so loving of everyone around her. In a way, Owen wanted to protect her from everything bad and hurtful in the world, but he could not admit it -- neither to himself nor his little angel -- that one of those was Rosalia.

He therefore put a loving hand on her head and brought it to his chest, with warmth.

"Daddy..." the girl murmured, as if transfixed. "I don't understand..."

"What, my angel?" Her questions were often... quite disarming. Owen feared them above all others.

"What makes a match suitable, then?"
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Rosalia Finnigan
 Posted: Nov 28 2011, 05:25 PM
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Rosalia's small, ultimately unpleasant sort of smile at her husband's words had her looking like she had just bitten into a lemon. She didn't dare respond to him verbally, sensing his disdainful sort of sarcasm- subtle and perhaps cowardly, though it was. Instead she relaxed herself and got to looking so very uninterested in him and his daughter, now that Ophelia seemed to be occupied.

Her eyes closed and she began to look quite calm, but then the child asked a question that caught her attention. "Money and a reputation, dear," she sighed sweetly. "Both parts of a pair must be equal in both . . . or one should hope to be matched with someone who has more money or an even more stunning reputation, whether that reputation reflects the person's character truthfully or not." She waved a lazy hand dismissively, as if exhausted. "A suitable match maintains one's social standing or improves it. It's very simple, really."
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Owen Finnigan
 Posted: Dec 4 2011, 08:20 PM
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Owen rolled his eyes a bit at that, though he couldn't say he completely disagreed. His wife was completely right, but partly due to causality. "Ophelia," he lovingly started, pushing her hair out of her eyes with the joy only a father could feel.

She looked up at her mother and, before her father could form his thoughts, she said: "I think a marriage should also rely on trust and support. Like how father is always caring of us. If I were to choose someone, I would choose someone whom I'd know would love me." Ophelia glanced at her father with a small, serene smile and he felt his knees weaken.
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Rosalia Finnigan
 Posted: Dec 8 2011, 03:52 PM
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Rosalia was almost starting to feel guilty for raising a child that was so unbearably naive and incapable of understanding even the fundamentals of marriage. She was a girl. If girls were supposed to focus on anything, it was marriage, and Ophelia had her head up in the clouds where no decent suitors would ever be found.

It was Rosalia's maternal duty to bring her daughter back down to Earth, she thought. Convincing her of the realities of marriage would be easier than convincing her that her father wasn't nearly as good at taking care of people as she seemed to think. So, that would be the matter to settle first.

"You cannot know if a man is ever going to love you or for how long," she said dryly. "You marry for security. Affection is an occasional bonus, sweetheart-- something that may last a day or a week or a few years, come with time or never occur at all. It is very unpredictable, and it certainly isn't necessary."

Rosalia knew enough women who had been in love when they first married only to hate their husbands a year or two later. She knew women who didn't learn to properly enjoy their husbands until a few years into their marriage, too. Then there were the dozens of women who never really liked their husbands at all but got along just fine.

. . . and then there was her own example, which was so very delightful for conversation with a little girl who didn't understand the first thing about this.

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Owen Finnigan
 Posted: Feb 9 2012, 07:49 AM
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It bothered him to hear Rosalia say that, mostly because he wanted his daughter to see the best of life, not the worst.

Ophelia studied her mother with earnest, her eyes becoming thoughtful.

"Of course," Owen intervened, carefully, "there are many a love. Your mother is talking about the more common kind, angel." He gazed at Rosalia with a half-smile, sad, but contained. "While it is the number one reason for marriage, another kind of love trumps it, though it is far rarer. It is the kind that often comes later in life, and is born from familiarity and respect, I would say."
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Rosalia Finnigan
 Posted: Mar 24 2012, 11:26 PM
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Or stupidity and lust.

Rosalia surprised herself somewhat with her ability to refrain from speaking those words aloud. Her only response initially was a flat stare at her husband. She was, much to her dismay, feeling conversationally cornered and very much stuck. Had her daughter not been present, she would have just said precisely what came to mind. She would have been completely honest, to the point of being off-putting. Unfortunately, Ophelia was very much present and likely to draw far too many conclusions from the words being spoken.

Not wanting to risk upsetting her daughter to some unmanageable degree, Rosalia said, "I suppose you are right." Owen was speaking the truth to some degree. Turning her attention to Ophelia, she explained, "There are different types of love. The most common tend to be forms of infatuation, but there is a sort of love that can come with familiarity, and trust, perhaps. . . The trust that one develops from being with someone long enough to know that person won't suddenly get bored or find someone better to love, for example."

Men, especially, seemed to be fond of getting bored with women they supposedly loved and going off to find another.

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Owen Finnigan
 Posted: Mar 30 2012, 09:31 PM
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Owen found himself slightly impatient just by listening to her.

"Come on, Ophelia. Let's go for a walk. It's about to snow!" With a grin, he picked her up and put her over his shoulders. There was too much giggling to allow for protest and he gave Rosalia a wink, turned on his toes and walked right out of that room. Boredom. That was a ridiculous thought.
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Rosalia Finnigan
 Posted: May 8 2012, 02:38 PM
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That wink he tossed her way made her want to poke his stupid eye right out of his head. He was a man-child-- a big, stupid, lying, fickle man-child. It was absolutely repulsive and beyond worthy of a sickened look from his wife, she thought. Rosalia was not at all amused, and she certainly wasn't going to encourage Owen's sweeping up his daughter to go walk out in the cold.

He would probably fill the girl's head with all kinds of foolish, romantic notions and let the winter air make her ill yet again. Then he would just baby her until she was well while his wife had to see to the house and look after the girl whenever he was out. . .

Content to keep herself from catching a cold, Rosalia went back to examining the metal at the edge of the chair as she continued to lounge there, relaxing her bitter expression.

At least Owen and Ophelia being out would make the house more peaceful . . .
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