The Gypsies and The Other Realm-Chapter 12
Upon arrival, at the village of West Yorkshire, a group of, gaelic young men arrived on horseback to greet them. A young man, about the size of Brutus, that wore a brown leather vest and brown chaps slid out of a simple smooth brown leather saddle, that sat on a handsome dunn colored horse, with a dark mane and tail, and extended his hand out to, greet Valentino.
He then introduced himself as Badger, his surname being that of his father, Seán Mor Ó Súilleabháin Mariska, Livia, peeked through the heavy curtain and immediately thought he was quite handsome, with his long blonde mane of curly hair, green eyes , and freckles that rested across the nose of his face.
Badger, explained that he was Szofi’s brother. He then gracefully introduced the rest of the men that rode with him by name. They were kin to Szofi, being brothers and cousins of the family. She noticed his deep pronounced voice and, gaelic accent when he spoke. All of the men that accompanied him were striking in appearance, they were all blonde haired and green eyed, their hairstyles were cut in different lengths, but they all had brilliant hues of red and gold strands, that glistened in the sunlight. They were all uncustomarily, large young men, by her standards, they were taller and more stout, than her brother, Brutus.
After they finished their introductions, the band of gaelic gypsies, escorted them to the family farm. When they arrived a group of women were led from the farmhouse down a pebbled path, to the road where the wagon train, had come to a halt, by Valentino’s long, time friend, Seán Mor Ó Súilleabháin. Valentino, greeted his friend and disembarked from the caravan, to shake his hand and give him a hug.
A robust, portly woman, joined Sean, at his side and was introduced as his wife, Patsy. She was fair haired and had large bones to carry her enormous weight. Viktoria, slid off the bench of the caravan and joined Victor, standing at his side. Patsy, welcomed, Viktoria, to her home in her feminine gaelic accent, and then proceeded to smooth out and unruffle, Viktoria’s, skirt, it had bunched up from the long ride.Patsy, then took her by the hand and walked her around, introducing herself and her family.
The women that had stood behind her were introduced as daughters, sisters and nieces. They were all tall in stature, and large boned women, some were slender and some overweight. The women wore a variety of hair styles. Some of the women, wore pony tails, braids, and pigtails, while some wore short and long haircuts with colorful scarves pulled over their hair and the ends tied at the neck, under their chin.
Most of the women had eyes that were a hazel color, switching from green to blue hues, depending on the direction they were standing toward the light of the sun. They all wore layers and layers of colorful clothing, no make-up and large gold hoop earrings and gold chains adorned their ears and neck. They wore bangle bracelets of gold in a variety of sizes and styles, around their wrists. Mariska, wondered which one would be, Szofi, Brutus;s, intended wife.
It was explained that it was customary in their tribe, to keep the bride hidden, from her intended husband to be, and the groom’s family, until the unveiling by the groom, at the wedding. Mariska, was disappointed by this announcement, as she so wanted to meet her and get to know her before the wedding.
Seán Mor Ó Súilleabháin, was a large heavy set man, with a loud booming voice. He wore several colored bandanas around his balding head, he had a round freckled face, and was a high spirited friendly man. He asked the gypsy pony scouts, after meeting and talking with them to please lead the wagon train, up the road and behind the farmhouse.
Around, and in back of the farmhouse, there would be a large lake, where they could unhitch the wagons, and the tribe could camp there. There was a large fenced in pasture, next to the lake where the livestock could be released, a livery stable to accommodate their horses, and shower stalls, sinks and outhouses to attend their personal needs.
The whole tribe was overwhelmed at the view across the lake, Rugged, majestic mountains jutted up to meet the skyline. The lake was extremely large, and the frontline trees of the forest met the lake on the other side. A small stream trickled in through the pasture, emptying into the lake. The pasture had little clumps of different colored flowers, growing everywhere.
Brutus, Raj and Stefan were astounded by the beauty of this place. Mariska and the other children disembarked from the caravan, inhaling the fresh air, and taking in the breathtaking views.
Badger,appeared riding his Dunn colored horse, and pointed out the showers and outhouses, that were available for their use by the livery stables. Mariska, took the twins Rudolpho and Robin, by their small hands, and began walking toward the outhouses. Livia, Violet, Rosalie and, Lilith followed.
Badger, rode alongside the small group as they walked. He spoke to Mariska first, smiling and saying,” I don’t believe we have all met, I am Szofi’s brother, Badger.” Mariska, was a little shy, as she introduced her family members, and their relationship to, Brutus.
Badger, seemed quite taken by, Livia’s beauty, and engaged in conversation with her more than the others, as they walked along toward the outhouses.. Livia, always attracted attention from the tribe boys and it was not uncommon for them to follow her around like lovesick pups. Livia was not oblivious to them, she actually enjoyed their attentions. Badger, was a little older, and she was a little more flirty and giggly with him, than, Mariska, had ever seen her before. She thought to herself, that Livia, may be encountering her first crush.
Badger stayed with the group, until they were done with their business, and then invited them all to the farmhouse to join his family for dinner. Valentino, Viktoria, Brutus, Raj and Stefan were already at the farmhouse along with several of the other tribe members, and their families.
There were a few steps that led up to a wooden deck patio, that reached from one end of the farmhouse to the other end. There were long simple wooden tables and chairs set up to eat at. Some people were already seated, and eating. The children entered, the large farmhouse with Badger at the lead, through, glass pane doors. They entered into a giant kitchen, with lots of cupboards, counters, ceramic sinks and food being prepared on hot stoves and served by some of the women, Mariska, had seen earlier.
Badger, led them into the dining room to a long table that was decorated with baskets of flowers, nuts and fruits that,Viktoria, and her friends had made on the journey and offered, Szofi's family.
The table was stocked with meats, vegetables, sauces, gravies, breads, and desserts of all kinds. They had sparkling crystal glass dishes stacked, and crystal glasses. There were beautiful, engraved ladles, tongs and spoons, in or laid out next to large ceramic bowls, and plates full with food.
There were many sets of tin silverware, with designs etched into them, a family emblem probably, Mariska was thinking.The silverware sets were rolled tightly into cotton cloth napkins.
Crystal glass pitchers of water, juice and cow milk,were set up on a long wooden table that ran alongside a dining room wall, next to the table. There was also, a bar set up in the room, with brandies,whiskeys, liqueurs, and glass bottles of wine, for the adults.
Patsy, encouraged the group to help themselves and take a plate out onto the front or back patio to eat. They chose to sit with their families on the front deck.
The view on the front patio was just as amazing as the view in the back. The farmland stretched out for miles in front of them. There were fields of cotton, straw, hay, gardens of vegetables, and orchards of fruit trees.Directly in front of the patio was a large grassy area with hedges and flower beds. There were vines of grapes, honeysuckle and jasmine that framed the farmhouse.
Mariska and Violet, were particularly interested in a garden that had little faerie huts, flowers and a waterfall built of rocks. Patsy, noticed the girls interest and asked one of her daughters, Maerie, to take Mariska and her friend, Violet, down to the faerie garden, for a closer look, after they had finished their meal.
Maerie, was close in age to the girls, she was 16 years old. Maerie, was very down to earth,slender in build and had a mane of long curly blonde hair. Maerie, introduced herself as one of Szofi’s, younger sisters, and admitted to Mariska and Violet, that it was not fair, that Szofi, had to be hidden away until the unveiling at her wedding. Maerie, told the girls, Szofi, was in her room, preparing for the wedding with women relatives. She would be going through pre-marital rituals,council and blessings all evening.
Maerie, admitted that the faerie garden, had been Szofi’s, idea and together they had constructed the garden, hoping to entice faeries to come live there.Unfortunately neither one of them had ever even seen a glimpse of a faerie, and they had completed the garden almost five years ago. Mariska, and Violet, instantly liked. Maerie, and were sure that they would like, Szofi, if she was as nice as, Maerie.
When, they had finished their meal, they went with, Maerie, down to the faerie garden. The garden was a magical place and each little room in the faerie palace had been eloquently decorated. There were several mushroom shaped, faerie huts, a tiny flower garden, a waterfall that rolled off of ceramic leaves, into a small pond.There was a tree for humming birds, to nest in, and then collect pollen at will, from the flowers. Butterflies morphed from caterpillars, inside a tree stump hollowed out with a mossy flower garden inside.
The sky was getting dark, and the colorful sunset was sinking below the horizon, when Selena and Jupiter, flew in, Maerie, got so excited at seeing her first faerie, she started clapping her hands and dancing around, blinking her eyes, in disbelief. When she finally calmed down, Selena, introduced herself,
Selena, was quick to point out a few things in the faerie garden, that could be changed, so that the garden might attract some faeries, to live there.The direction of the sun on certain huts, that could be shaded, and some grass patches to graze miniature animals in.
Maerie, thoughtfully said she could make those changes, and then sweetly, asked, Selena, if she could introduce her to some of her faerie friends, it would be a wonderful, send off and wedding gift for Szofi. Selena, agreed.
Selena, sprinkled faerie dust on the garden, and instantly a tribe of faeries, joined her in the garden. The tribe explored the garden together, and told, Selena to tell, Maerie, and Szofi, that they would be happy to inhabit the faerie garden, provided they were nurtured properly and taken care of exclusively by, Maerie.
Maerie was ecstatic when she received the news that they would be staying, and quickly introduced herself and promised to take very good care of them. She asked them what they liked to eat and then promptly went inside to fetch a meal for them.
Patsy, thought her girl was acting a little queer, this evening, since she had been hanging out with, Brutus’s sister and friend. Maerie, seemed very, anxious and excited, about something. Lately she had been kind of down in the dumps at the prospect of, Szofi, getting married and moving away. Patsy, decided that whatever had cheered her up was not worth questioning her over…but still…
Brutus, Raj, and Stefan, had built a campfire, down close to the lake. Many of the young men in Valentinos, tribe, had gathered to toast Brutus, on his upcoming marriage.Badger, and the young men in his family also joined them. They brought along spirits to drink, and snacks to eat later. It was tradition to keep the groom up all night, and then in the morning, he would go through premarital rituals, council and blessings with the elders.
He would be allowed to take a nap to refresh himself, in the morning, before the wedding. Then he could bathe and get dressed tomorrow afternoon. The wedding was planned, for late afternoon.
Valentino, Viktoria and many of the other adults spent the rest of the evening inside the lavish farmhouse, in the elaborately decorated mahogany living room, discussing wedding plans, and the politics of England, and what kind of atmosphere to expect at market, when they arrived in Sheffield, in a few days. Sean, offered his sons and nephews as escorts and chaperones, in case they had any troubles entering the village or staying there. Sean’s family was well known and respected, and at the very least these young men, might be able to scout out some suitable buyers, for their livestock and horses.
Sean felt that the tradesmen, of the tribe would be well received, as the villagers, would be looking for a new supply of handmade items and their services would be in demand. Sheffield had grown in population, this last year, quite abruptly, with families moving in from all over the country to find work.
New housing and buildings had been being constructed, this past year at a fast pace, and clothing designers, clay workers, brick layers, mill workers, carpenters, leather crafters, metal workers and other tradesmen, would be in high demand, to help them complete their projects.
The womens herbal medicines, soaps, perfumes and jams had been well received at the, Ó Súilleabháin, household, and Sean and Patsy agreed, that their special talent would be widely received, by the English.women of prominence in the village.
The night was moving forward and it was getting late, so many of the adults, excused themselves, and went off to their caravans and vardos for a good night’s sleep. Tomorrow would be a long day.
The children were tucked away in their bunks when they arrived, sound asleep. Viktoria, silently wondered if, Mariska, had introduced, Maerie, to her faerie friend.She had seemed kind of giddy and anxious, after spending time with them in the faerie garden.