Shakespeare wrote that Juliet would say:
“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet.”
Name her doll – I have tried for years but cannot find the right name, I think you might know it?
the story and info you need for inspirations are below
Monday 23rd April T is for Travel (Part of the A-Z April 2012 Challenge)
HER FIRST journey had been as a newborn baby strapped against her fathers chest under the voluminous drab cassock he wore as a disguise. Apparently she did not cry or made a sound but sleep contentedly lulled by his warmth and the steady beat of his heart. Her French grandmother was most surprised when her only son arrived back from England, in the dark of night. He ripped off the cape to reveal his baby daughter. His eyes filed with tears as he recounted the death of his wife and the desperate flight from England.
Her next journey involved a late night departure from that very grandmother. Rugged up in a thick cape and clutching her much-loved doll Grandmere said she must not lose…
(this doll has had about 8 names so far. She is significant in the story. Here is your chance to name her. But keep reading…)
Traveling with Mademoiselle Cherie and Monsieur Gustave, Granméres most faithful and trusted retainers she arrived at Le Harve in time to board a sailing ship. Once in England they bundled into an awaiting coach and the child slept until she was shaken awake by Mademoiselle Cherie now speaking English. Apparently they were in Liverpool.
Several months later she shared an offensive little cabin with the servants who now demanded she call them by different names. They forbade her from speaking to any other passengers, in ant language, and hearing the threat in their voices she obeyed. This however did not stop her from listening to others when on deck. She soon discovered she was traveling to America. When she demanded answers she was slapped and discovered her escorts were now her captors. ‘You will never see your grandmother or France again’
‘Papa will find me’ she asserted.
The women cackled a foul laugh and grabbed her by the hair.
‘Your darling Papa will not come for you, he is dead! Why do you think your grandmother sent you away with us?’
A Rough year in descending poverty culminated with the murder of George/Gustav at the train station in New York. By the woman’s deception the little girl found herself on a train alone and not knowing where she was headed.
In the middle of the night she was woken and marched with other children and placed aboard a paddle steamer. She was given bread and some milk and a blanket.
Maybe 2 days later, she was not sure of the time and certainly had lost all sense of direction, the children were led to a covered wagon. Although a few seemed to stay behind in the little village with some farmers.
After 2 more stops and more children being left behind she found herself lifted onto a crowded buck-board. She was at the very rear and the road or track was very bumpy.
Many children were crying and squabbles began to break out. It rained and they had no shelter. The driver seemed to be drunk and would regularly swig from a bottle. He had a stash of bottles under his seat.
Days later an argument broke out between the bigger children in the rear of the buck board. She tried to keep out of it, hugging her dolly tight.
It had become too much for them all. All unwanted. All rejected. With no possessions and no hope. All afraid, frightened, tired and hungry. A bigger girl suddenly turned on the little girl and spotted her doll. ‘Why should you have a doll when we have nothing?’ she lunged forward and tore the dolly away from the hands so weak and desperate to hold on.
‘Ohh She’s mine Granmére said I must keep her with me always. She is the last thing…’ tears began to fill her eyes ‘Please, please….’
‘I have nothing so why should you?’ the girls jolted as the wheels went over a rock ‘you have to be like us and have nothing’ Another major jolt and the bigger girl dropped the doll over the side as she tried to stop herself from falling.
Our little girl screams and tries to catch….(the dolls name)
‘Stop screaming’ suddenly the big girl felt angry and she lunged at the smaller girl ‘If you want your dolly, go get her’ and using all her strength she pushed the smaller girl up over the edge and out of the buck-board’ The other children watched in horror and screamed to the driver. He turned and swore at them in such a way as to render them silent. The buck-board lumbered westward.
Now dear reader….
I need your help. This Doll was given by Granmére to the child for what was to be her last birthday in Paris. The night after her father is arrested at the Sorbonne (where is a some-what controversial Professor) her Grandmother comes to her with the doll and tells the child she is going on a journey and that under no circumstances is she to be separated from the doll. She repeats her instruction in England and French. She then asks the child to repeat the instructions.Which she does adding a promise to obey.
The doll has had many names but nothing has clicked. I think it needs to be a French name but it occurs to me it might be Italian.
It is Paris, France 1848 late winter. Grandmere is wealthy, so the doll may be expensive. But not necessarily.
Please leave your suggestions in a comment below.
If you are on Pinterest search therein and add a URL link to the image of what you think the doll would look like. Or Pin from another source and add that. Remember this is fiction so you can be creative, but hey no Barbie’s or the like.
This is me on Pinterest. You can add @JaneinAustralia to draw my attention to your pinning the image, but please put the URL in your comment. This part is just for fun.
I have a Board dedicated to ‘The Avalon Journals’
As a little incentive if I choose the name you suggest I will send you an as yet unshared chapter, ‘A String of Pearls’ fridge magnet and some chocolate. If you are in the Northern Hemisphere I will arrange for my USA or UK assistant to send it.
If more than one person submits the name I will have Miss 4 draw a number from a hat or a similar vessel.
The winners efforts will be listed in the acknowledgements when ‘The Avalon Journals’ are prepared for publication.
I look forward to your ideas.