CAROLYN'S COMPOSITIONS

February 24, 2009

Compagnie du Scioto Meeting at Cafe le Procope (Novel #3B)


CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

COMPAGNIE DU SCIOTO MEETING AT CAFÉ LE PROCOPE: Novel #3B

 

 

To read the first part of this post click on: Compagnie du Scioto Meeting at Café le Procope: Novel #3A

   “This coffee is superb,” Jean-Jacques said, standing up to greet them, and, tilting his head almost inaudibly said, “and this table is in a spot where we can talk with some privacy of the matter before us.”
    As the men as they settled down, making certain the stranger was between them, Jean-Jacques asked   “How was the trip from Alencon?” Then he took his seat, all the while eyeing the stranger before him.
     “This is Richard,” Charles said softly to Jean-Jacques while not quite looking at him. “He heard about the American lands, how they offer the opportunity to have a French settlement in the new land, and is quite interested. I brought him with me so he can hear more about our plans.”
     The man, not quite looking up, shook his head, as a confirmation of Charles’ words. There was something quite appealing in his gesture, something familiar to Jean-Jacques, something he couldn’t quite put his finger on.
     “Are you sure he should be here?” Although Jean-Jacques asked Charles this question with his eyes, Charles understood and nodded.
     The group’s tension eased as they ate and drank, and Jean-Jacque continued the debate about Sciotomania, all the while eyeing Richard, his almost dainty mannerisms, the furtive way he sat, crouched down in his chair as if he wanted to hide away from the others at the table, yet the subtle signs of interest in the discussion. Although he had not spoken a word, Jean-Jacques knew he was having a difficult time holding back.
     It was as he was staring at Richard that he caught Richard’s eyes. Suddenly Jean-Jacque knew who “he” was. His eyes could belong to no other than Madame Rosalie Bacler, his good friend and distant relative, Madame. She had been inquiring of him information on the American lands in Ohio, and was excited about their possibilities. But to have the nerve to disguise herself so that she could attend this meeting! That daring could only come from a woman determined, a woman who knew what she wanted and was used to getting her way. No matter by what means.
    As always, he found himself caught in Madame’s spell. His fondness for her never dissipated, even though she had had a child with his closest romantic rival, his cousin, Marquis John Anthony Gonhands Magel Dela Val.
   Both Jean-Jacques and John had were enamored with Madame in the earlier days, but she always chose John over him, creating a competitive and ill-feeling between the two men. Time had healed these wounds. Jean-Jacques recognized that part of her choice was due to the fact of their relationship, although it was distant, and John now trusted Jean-Jacques to look after his wife and their daughter during the times his regiment was called to foreign lands. John was busy with the affairs of the Regiment de Bourbonnais, so couldn’t be present this evening.
   Jean-Jacques kept his discovery to himself as Madame picked up several pamphlets while he tried to recover by waving for more chocolate coffee. Madame remained discreet, but knew that, while Jean-Jacques was on to her, he would doubtless not reveal her.
     The Ohio land deals Madame had been hearing about intrigued her. She saw in them
an investment opportunity that would help reclaim the vast sums of money she and John lost through his military ventures as commander of his regiment in the American Revolution.
    Like thousands of both American and French military men, he had yet to receive payment for fighting in that war. Their funds were currently in jeopardy. The revolution was on here in France. Many French citizens were escaping to America. With a child to protect and the hopefulness of the Scioto land, she and John were also considering leaving.
     Within a year of his 1783 return to France, he and Madame celebrated the birth of their daughter, Saraphine Angelique Joseph. Although they had not wed, they allowed others to believe they were married.
    Then John lost the last vestiges of his remaining fortune by donating much of it to the government, which collected the funds to distribute from the Second Estate throughout the Third Estate.
   John saw investing in the Scioto lands as more than payment for his American Revolutionary War service—it was an opportunity to remove Madame and Saraphine from the ravages of the French Revolution.
      Madame’s interest in the Scioto lands increased exponentially as Joel and Jean-Jacques told glowing tales of America—its freedom, its land, its people. She knew from the stories John had told her about the new country’s richness and the loyal friends he’d made during his five years in America, that he especially esteemed von Berckel, the Netherlands ambassador to the United States, and he yearned to start life anew in the country he’d helped defend. If only she could speak out at this meeting! Yet, women were not allowed in cafes, and should she reveal her gender she would be tossed out, not able to even hear the conversation of the men at her table.
     As the evening came to a close, she was even more determined to go to America. But how? she wondered. As she rose to leave with Charles and Louis, she dared glance at Jean-Jacques. What his eyes expressed as they met hers was a deep admiration for a woman so determined that she had dared dress as a man in order to enter the café. He wondered what she would do next to further her purpose.
 

ADDITIONAL READING:
Novel Segments---
A 1786 MEETING IN VERMONT (Novel #1)
THE OHIO COMPANY AND SCIOTO ASSOCIATES LAND PURCHASES (Novel #2)
Compagnie du Scioto Meeting at Café le Procope: Novel #3A

Other—

WRITER’S CALLS FOR SUBMISSIONS, COMPETITIONS & EVENTS: Feb. 20, 2009

BEANERY WRITERS NEWSLETTER (BWN) VOL. 2 ISSUE 2 FEB.1, 2009

A Singapore Pine Tree & Kampong Buangkok, Singapore

LEAF-PEEPING: Autumn Leaves

LIZZIE BORDEN—A REENACTMENT

LOBSTER-TALES

LOGGING IN MAINE AND ON THE PERU-BRAZILLIAN BORDER

NORTHERN BAYBERRY YIELDS READY-MADE CANDLES

Moose, Goose, Deer

PENNSYLVANIA WEDDING, (LAMOINE) MAINE ROOTS

THE PENOBSCOT NARROWS BRIDGE AND OBSERVATORY

THE SPECTACULAR PENOBSCOT RIVER A Natural Wonder in Maine: Part 1

THE SPECTACULAR PENOBSCOT RIVER A Natural Wonder in Maine: Part 2

SNAPSHOT ENCOUNTERS: Brief Meetings with People #4

VOICES OF WILDERNESS: PEACE MEETING

SITE LINKS:

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www.carolyncholland.wordpress.com

www.beanerywriters.wordpress.com/

www.carolyncholland.wordpress.com

www.barbarapurbaugh.com

www.pennwriters.com

ellenspain.com

1 Comment »

  1. […] Compagnie du Scioto Meeting at Café le Procope: Novel #3A , Compagnie du Scioto Meeting at Cafe le Procope (Novel #3B) […]

    Pingback by Why Opt to Study a Year in France? | Carolyn's Online Magazine — March 13, 2015 @ 1:45 am | Reply


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