Windy Tales – my version…amazed

This is my version of “Windy Tales”   http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=3447

It’s just a part of my collection. I am not a pro on photography and I was on a plane going home so the shots are not as defined as I’d like them to be.

I love how these clouds shift shapes and shades. From the cauliflower heads to the waves of the sea. Snow white cotton balls here and there, like the back of a lamb flock that’s moving forward. I also thought of cotton candies.

I felt like a kid wanting to run around, jump from cloud to cloud, and even swim the vast sea of fluffiness.

Forum Life

I heard a lot about forums and stuff but never tried to visit or join one. I have this site where I read stuff, it has forums and members, I was hesitant at first but after visiting the site for Two months I decided to get registered, free registration actually.  Fixed up my profile, posted pictures, sketches, joined groups and started visiting the forums. I found myself posting replies to the games and got hooked. Then I started to have friends, spending the usual reading time (online) with them chatting, exchanging stories and opinions on stuff, comments and reviews. I then got myself so involved in their “personal lives” yet always having the benefit of the doubt. Is he/she telling the truth? I really found most of my so-called online friends truthful but there are still people who’d make up stories after stories. Some I even received emails from their personal accounts, even knew their real names and their life stories. We get to share a lot of things in their “real world” too. But when I visit other threads where they also post, I get to see the other side of the mask, their mask…how they perceive things, how open-minded they are and who they really are…I guess it’s all in the matter of what you want others to see you as…or what you want to tell others, what you want to share with them…the real life or the forum life. So the question is right now…which side of ME have I really shown them?

Chapter 8: Revelations

Confused and nowhere to go, that is how I am now. It is very agonizing , how I came to this point of my life. There is nothing left for me, no reason to live and continue this journey called life. Before I have everything that I could wish for and easily dispose off things, now in a blink of an eye I’m reduced to nothing. I used to wear lovely couture dresses, shoes and bags. Young women my age envy me for my beauty, fame and fortune. Graceful, elegant and seductive, I am Valerie Blanc, from a noble family in France and the Princess of Tango – the renowned Blue Rose Tango. I guess you can say that I have experience a great loss in love that I can express the Tango’s real emotion exquisitely. I have enchanted many men through my Tango. But that is now my past as I ended up destitute and now seeking refuge under this bridge away from the prying eyes.

“Wake up, Princess your carriage awaits you.”  jolted by harsh hands and their mocking laughter, they blindfolded me and dragged me. I guess it took me an hour or so being  dragged and driven to nowhere I guess. The next thing I saw was a blinding light and Alec’s angelic face then I passed out again. The dreams continued to haunt me, I kept seeing daddy, Claudette, Charlie and Monsieur Duncan. I kept chasing them as the scenes from my childhood to my wedding day flash back. Then a sudden soft comforting voice called my name, “Valerie, are you alright? Everything will be fine from now on cheri.” I know that familiar voice, when I opened my eyes I saw Alec sitting beside me in the bed holding my hands. “I guess you are having a bad dream again cheri, you kept mumbling and grunting in your sleep. You are safe now, the doctors came earlier and gave you these dextrose and medications, plus a bit of sedative, you should rest now Valerie, I promise I won’t leave you. ” then I passed out again. I woke up a bit refreshed and rested the next day, Alec was really there beside me and attended to my needs then I slept again for the day. On the third day I woke up by mid-day and surprised to see Alec extracting my blood. “So you became a doctor now?” I smiled. Alec kissed me on the forehead and said “Hello there, sleeping beauty, you’ve been in and out for 3 days, I guess you are feeling better now, you can even smile sweetly at me. I’ve done all extractions from you and I even inserted this dextrose on you, we’ll just finish that bottle and off it goes. I want to take care of you first hand and make sure nothing happens again.”

It took me a 10 days to fully recover, now that I have my strength back, I can go out and catch some fresh air. Alec brought me to the gazebo where my favorite breakfast awaits, croissant, freshly squeezed orange juice, diced tropical fruits and brewed coffee. After breakfast Alec and I had our very first long talk since I came back.

“I have so many things to tell you cheri, which may answer most of your questions.” he led me to our comfy Cleopatra chairs and started talking. “When your father had his first heart attack he contacted me immediately and asked me to help him run the empire, discretely of course, I was also given the power to run Le Blanc in the absence of the heir. He also  knew that there was a plot to overrun his place as the president by the board of directors, I was also leading a team who investigates that matter. And when your father died I was pulling all the strings for you and Monsieur Duncan in the empire, but when he died I devoted myself and the team in nailing the board of directors. The day you got kidnapped was the day they were almost caught, I was in the midst of an agreement,  the seven board of directors, who were really pulling the strings for the overtake and Monsieur Duncan’s death and all those threats you received, when their goons took you as assurance and tie my hands for any entrapment they thought  I was planing.” Alec reached over to me and checked my pulse out of impulse. “Are you okay cheri? Do you have any questions? Do you still want me to continue or should we rest first?”  I smiled and assured Alec I was fine and I wanted to hear more. “Okay. My team searched for you for 3 days and 3 nights and on the 4th day just before you were to be brought back to Cannes, my team intercepted those bad guys and brought you back to me, where I raced back as soon as I sealed the agreement from the board of directors, I had the three directors signed a confession implicating the other seven directors being the masterminds of the mishaps and most of the fund loses since the past 8 years.”  I looked at Alec and smiled, “So that’s what you’ve been up to those times and you don’t know how great it felt when I saw your face after that blinding light that day. I had a recurring dream for that three scary nights, alone and cold, I kept seeing my childhood until my wedding in flashes, I saw daddy, Claudette, Charlie and Monsieur Duncan, then the dream would usually end up with me in rag clothes and under a bridge alone and shivering just like a pauper in the streets. I guess it was because I was not fed for three days and nights not even a single drop of water grazed my lips, but since that is all in the past now and I am really grateful that you kept you promise to daddy and cared for the empire and me, you never left my side since I came back, I know daddy and Claudette is looking at us and happy of what you are sacrificing for me and Le Blanc. I just wish Charlie is also here with us.” I blinked back the tears that were starting to blur my vision. “And lastly, Bruce called me this morning and said that they found Charlie’s plane in the Congo and are on their way back to London, he will be treated at the mansion, the private jet will be sent for you in four days.” I embraced Alec. “This is great Alec, won’t you come with me?” “Cheri, as much as I’d want to I can’t I need to make sure that the trial goes smoothly and I also need to put the empire back on its feet and prepare it for the time you’ll be managing it. But Bruce also mentioned that Charles did not receive any severe injuries except for an amnesia, but they are not sure about what degree it is yet.” When Alec saw the concern in my eyes he embraced me tighter and whispered words of encouragement and wisdom. “Now I think it’s time for you to rest in your room, get all the strength and energy you’ll be needing for the flight back to London. For the remaining days here in France, I’ll make sure to treat the princess as a queen and give you all the best that you want and need, I made arrangements at the office, I’ll stay with you till you return to Charlie.”

Chapter 6 : Blue Rose Wedding

I was staring at my reflection, the make up emphasized my eyes, it complimented well with my baroque gown in medieval renaissance Tudor dress design, the black velvet and gold brocade. Claudette loosely tied my hair in a bun with loose tendrils. Today’s the day, I’m going to walk down that aisle and exchange promises to Charlie. Up until now, I’m still getting used to the fact that I’m going to be Madame Graham and will be living in Notting hill mansion. wasn’t it just a month ago I turned 18, got engaged and now this. I could not believe it either when Charlie took me to London as an engagement gift for a week. He even invited Claudette and Alec to stay with us in his mansion at Notting hill. I was like in a dream, free to travel around London by day and by night the four of us will dance till we drop at The Crypt. I learned a lot from Charlie, he loves dancing so much it’s like a contagious illness that spreads all over the body down to the next person. From day 1 to-day 4, Charlie never left my side, but on the 5th day he was suddenly called back to New York to sign one of his biggest project leaving the three of us to continue our London escapade of course Bruce was there tagging along, well actually guarding me and my every move but Charlie returned the following day. On the seventh day, our last day,Charlie and Claudette went to the city and talked with the wedding planner and her teams of men and women in charge of my wedding and soon to be Claudette’s. On the other hand Alec and I stayed in our own rooms at the mansion. As I checked on Alec whom I’ve heard was now coming down with a fever the incident happened. He pulled me to his bed as I checked for his temperature and suddenly kissed me aggressively as his hands explored my body at the same time. It was such a suffocating kiss, it was like drowning in the warmth and the passion, I did everything I could to get out of his grip but in the end I ended up kissing him back, then the kisses started to taste very sweet then suddenly he stopped moving, Alec passed out apparently from his high fever. When Charlie and Claudette came home that night, Alec’s fever came down already but leaving the air of awkwardness. I could not put myself to face Claudette and Alec now, luckily Charlie and I returned to France that night leaving the two and that incident behind. I know it was all because of his fever and nothing else. Then a sudden knock at my door jolted me back to reality. “Ready?!” It was Claudette. “Valerie, you look so beautiful! Everyone is waiting.” We descended the stairs and went out my villa, as we took the secret path towards the Blue Rose garden where the ceremony will take place I suddenly stopped and embraced Claudette. “You know how much I love you, you are like a sister to me, you’re my only best friend and now as you look so alluring in that lovely Japanese kimono marching as my bridesmaid, you make me feel so relaxed and envious.” She started laughing, “Silly girl, so you wanted to wear the kimono after all. Hahaha, and to think that you deliberately planned everyone’s attire today. Anyway, kidding aside, I am really happy for you. Just like me you found the man who will truly make you happy. I will be seeing you more often now since you two will be living in London. Now let’s get going.” Claudette guided me towards daddy and went to her place in line. “You look so beautiful your mother would’ve been so happy and proud. You are my one and only treasure, my  family, after your mother died you were all that matters to me that’s why I worked hard to build an empire for you my sweet. Now that my little princes found a man who will love you and put your happiness first I can finally rest. Though I’m sad to give you away in marriage, I’m happy for you.” Then my father embraced me warmly and kissed my forehead as tears began to swell.  As I walked down the Blue Rose garden aisle, I can’t help but remember my childhood days and the 31 days I’ve known Charlie.

As we exchanged vows in poetry, we exchanges poesy rings bearing the message a vila mon coeur gardi li mo – here is my heart guard it well accompanied  by a Sapphire oval ring.  After the ceremony, we all went inside the main hall where a four-layered black and white cake sits in  the middle of the long buffet table. It was delicately assembled, the cake was a combination of carrot, almond, chocolate fudge and ginger spice flavors.  and was topped with a small bouquet of  Blue roses. The food was in Western and Eastern cuisine that also includes my favorite French delicacies. Everything went so grand and smoothly, We danced Tango, Rumba, Salsa and Waltz till our feet hurt. It was such an overwhelming experience for me. The next day both Charlie and I bid daddy au revoir, we will now be living as married couple at his mansion in Notting hill after our 3 weeks Asian honeymoon tour.

Manhwa follower

Been reading, actually following volumes of Manga from all genres and I have almost finished most of them so now I am actually into Korean Manhwa, Hwang Mi Ri and Han Yu Rang though on the same genre it somehow keeps me busy and gives me backgrounds on some writing styles. Now I’m checking out Hyun Ju Suh. What’s the most interesting manga/manhwa/manhua you’ve read?

Chapter 4 : Débutant

As expected from my father my birthday is like one of the Queen’s banquets. Among the families and relatives that I really don’t know were my father’s business associates and their sons of course. This début will be meaningless for my father if I would not end up with a great offer. Having a very hard time with my elaborate gown as I been tagged along by my father from one party of old businessmen to another, introducing me to their sons and talking about the stocks and their business not really paying close attention to me. As I try to sneak away from the senseless chatter I found myself being hauled into another set of old men. “Merde! – damn.” I muttered under my breath. “Just smile and nod sweetie.” Jolted by a familiar deep husky male voice, I turn around and I saw the devil’s smile and my best friend standing before me. I politely excused myself from my group trying very hard to contain my excitement as I dragged the two outside. I took them to my rose garden, my Blue Rose garden which I’ve spent practically every free time that I am away from father. “Claudette! Alec! ” I almost shrieked as I hugged both of them. I thought you guys wouldn’t come, I thought you both forgot my birthday.” teary eyed I held them both. Then I composed myself and shot them questions after questions. “When did you arrived?”, “Why did you not even call or emailed me?”, “‘How are you two now?” ,”How was the Caribbean cruise?”, “So when is the wedding date?”, “Don’t tell me Claudette you’re pregnant already?” …I wanna be the first to know, the maid of honor and the godmother of your first child, you don’t know how happy I am right this minute, and I can’t even seem to stop talking.” We all laughed, Alec was the one who talked first, “I thought you won’t stop cheri! Sit down Mademoiselle first we came here to greet you a very happy 18th birthday, and of course, Claudette do you mind?” Claudette took my hand and said, ” We would like you to be our maid of honor four months from now, we will have our wedding in London.” I embraced Claudette as I looked at Alec and said, “I’d be honored you silly. But you both have to promise me one thing, no match-making please, I’ve been dealing with that for a month now, since I came back from London daddy kept me in tow in every business meeting and luncheons he had, introducing me into the business world and into countless husband candidates, and I am very sick and tired of it. Even tonight , my very own birthday turned into a grand match-making party.” Claudette took my hand and said earnestly, “You poor thing, I know your father only wanted what’s best for you.” I suddenly turned to Alec and glared at him, “I was expecting for a god-child as soon as you both arrived from that cruise, you disappoint me Monsieur Mowatt.” Alec laughed and stated mockingly, ” I beg your pardon madame Blanc, you sound like a grandmother eager for a grandchild, sorry to ruin your fantasy missy but we both agreed that we will wait for another year before we start our family.” we were chatting happily when the butler interrupted us, “Mademoiselle Blanc, forgive my rudeness but Monsieur Blanc request your presence in the hall.” I gave a disgusted face and told Alec and Claudette that I will have my little villa ready for them and that they should stay with me for rest of your trip.”I want to see photos and hear more of your stories tomorrow, we’ll have brunch by the garden.”  With that I left instructions with the butler for their luggage and food. As I went inside I immediately put on my façade, my mask, the polite, aristocratic figure of Valerie Blanc, that matches everyone inside.

It’s almost midnight and I was hoping to go back to my quarters, when I the last guest arrived. It was the son of the business tycoon daddy met in New York a couple of months ago, “Monsieur Charles Austen Graham” the butler announced. He strode gracefully towards me, kissed my hand and led me in the middle of the ballroom, instantly the orchestra played a tune where we danced the Argentine Tango. He led me with confidence and clear, precise execution, every step we made was synchronized. The manliness, the arrogance and the strength overflowed as I flawlessly swayed and turned, it was like being hypnotized by the music and by his radiance, he was like the movie actor Brad Pitt in the persona of Lestat, The Interview with the Vampire. The music ended with a powerful bang and as we walked towards my father who was aghast by what he saw if it wasn’t for the Monsieur I definitely would receive a piece of his mind. “Don’t worry about your father my dearest Valerie, I’ll deal with him. You danced so well I bet it was all thanks to your nightly escapade at The Crypt.” Then he laughed mockingly as he ushered me back to my father’s side. “That was quite a spectacle mademoiselle you may excuse yourself for the night, I will see you tomorrow at breakfast.” my father dismissed me with that, but to my surprise Monsieur Graham interrupted my leave with a shocking proposal, “Marry me and you can do whatever you wish Mademoiselle Blanc. Monsieur Blanc you know that I do not care about your empire for I have my own, established and continuously expanding. All I wish is to marry your lovely daughter and see her happy.” His hand snapped in the air and suddenly a gentleman brought a small box, where a big diamond ring glistened in front of me, he inserted the ring in my finger ” I will be back tomorrow night to discuss the details of the wedding but I must take my leave now, I have business to attend to in the morning. I bid you bonne nuit Mademoiselle Blanc.” He kissed my hand gently and bowed at my father then left us both speechless. Now that was a spectacle, the chattered started the minute Monsieur Graham left and a continuous “Congratulations” echoed across the ballroom and one by one the guests left leaving me still in shock. ” I better hurry back to my villa and tell Claudette what happened, I’m so confused. I’m engaged to a man I know nothing of and danced the most passionate and powerful Argentine Tango ever.” I started running towards the Blue Rose garden where a hidden path leads to my villa.

I saw Claudette with Alec sitting next to each other at my favorite wooden swing in the porch, their smiles vanished as they saw how miserable and disturbed I looked. “What happened in there sweetie you look distraught?” Alec reached his hand for mine and seated me in between them. “You wouldn’t believe what happened.” I raised my hand and showed them my engagement ring. “I danced the Argentine tango with a certain Monsieur Graham of New York, got proposed in front of everyone, got engaged without me answering yet and he left as soon as he placed this ring in my finger. I did not get the chance to decline, to get to ask why and how he knew about my trip to The Crypt and a lot of things in between. I’m so confused, I want to pack my bags and return to London with you both.” Claudette and Alec were now laughing softly, “I guess all we need to do now is to celebrate your birthday and instant engagement and plan what our next step is.” Alec lead us two inside and pour wine as Claudette and I sat comfortable in the den. My eyes caught a glimpse on Alec’s and a disturbing look and grin was across his face, the devil’s grin again, what’s with him all of a sudden? I thought to myself. We stayed up till 3am, talking about the endless possibilities on how my so-called fiancé found out ‘The Crypt” and what will I do when I see him again. My birthday ended the minute Monsieur Charles Austen Graham left and another chapter of my life starts to unfold as I face a new day…

Chapter 3 : Au revoir London

My vacation is almost over, I will be leaving London tomorrow leaving behind the most interesting and memorable days of my life. I never expected that I would enjoy this birthday vacation my father planned for me. Aside from the occasional afternoon tea parties and opera nights that I obediently attended with the les vieux (old folks), my nightly Tango escapades at The Crypt gave birth to the new “Valerie”, the Blue Rose of Tango. I will be leaving with a heavy heart, I will miss The Crypt, dancing Tango, the tea parties I got used to, and most especially I’ll miss my best friend – Claudette. “Penny for your thoughts cheri.” It was Alec with Claudette in tow. “We were looking everywhere for you, and to think of the least place you’d go. I thought you hate bars? Why are you sitting here alone cheri? ” Oh, you two love birds should not worry, I’m a big girl, in a month’s time I’d be of legal age. Come!, let’s celebrate, I don’t want my last day here at London be gloomy.” I stood up and took my glass of champagne and ushered the two at a vacant table. glancing briefly to the bartender, “une bouteille de champagne s’il vous plaît monsieur .” I poured them as graceful as I can, and declared a toast. “To you two lovebirds, may you both live happily every after and to my last day here at London.” We all held our glasses up. “santé!” “cheers!”. Okay drink up guys, we are off to The Crypt for my last Tango.

We spent all our energy dancing and drinking at The Crypt and went back to my hotel suite by midnight and stayed up till 4am recounting our days together and the adventure we three shared. By noon my bags were all packed and Claudette’s too, she will be living with Alec from now on. We had lunch in my suite and continued our stories like every minute is precious that we need to make the best of our time together. I was holding back my tears, for 10 year I spent every waking hour with my best friend, my sister, my confidante, my Claudette, now she will leave my side and be with Alec, but I am happy for her. One last afternoon tea for us, when I’m back in France this will no longer be included in my daily routine. I went straight to the airport where a private jet awaits me, when the limousine fetched me at the hotel by 6pm,leaving Alec and Claudette at the lobby. I don’t want farewells, I’m not good at it. I hate to see Claudette cry and let her see me cry, I know she will just worry. As the jet took off I remembered how happy Claudette was when Alec proposed to her the night we won the contest. Claudette just came in from The Crypt with Alec’s friends, Alec and I were talking at my sitting room. He was so passionate on proposing to Claudette that night that he bought a diamond ring the day before the contest and was intensely asking me things about Claudette. I knew from the first day we started practicing that Alec had a thing for Claudette and that she too was very attracted to this guy, though I know both were just thinking of me. Claudette immediately said YES to Alec and shared a very passionate kiss forgetting that I was still there. I know they will love my surprise engagement gift.

“I’m so happy Alec, I can’t believe this is real.” Claudette was unpacking her clothes when she discovered and envelope with both their names in my handwriting. When she opened it she cried instantly as she held my favorite locket, in it was a photo of us two and an inscription that says “ma sœur bien-aimée”  – my beloved sister, also enclosed in that envelope was a round trip ticket to a Caribbean cruise and a note that states: “To the two most important people in my life and for a new beginning. I love you both. till then! Valerie” Alec embraced me warmly as the tears ran down my cheeks. “Alec, I miss her already, she is the only family I ever had since I was 7 years old and now she will be alone. I feel so guilty.” Alec dried my tears and said, “Don’t cry my love, I understand, but you also now have me as your family and it was also thanks to her that we met. We will soon see her again, we’ll visit her at her birthday, in France I promise!” Then the two shared a passionate kiss.

“I’m glad I took the evening fight, tomorrow when I wake up I’d be the old dutiful heiress once again, always in Monsieur  Blanc‘s tow, showcased as a priceless commodity ready for exchanged if the price is right. But I bet all I’ll see are the old folks’ arrogant, snobbish, irritating, money-loving businessmen sons that will just treat me as a bond, a living currency that ties them to my father’s empire… oh well, I guess my nightmare will now start…better brace myself…but before that it’s au revoir London, au revoir Blue Rose…till we all meet again – soon.”