[identity profile] copperbadge.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] originalsam_backup


PICTURED: At left, first returning Expatriate Gregory Anderson is greeted by sister Elizabeth Jackson and family as he disembarks from the HMS Racecourse in Sydney. At right, Mr. Jack Baker and Miss Purva de la Fitte speak with leaders from the newly-formed Association for the International Advancement of Engineering and representatives of several automobile manufacturers. Center, Murra Fields and William Libris (MP - Canberra), with representatives of Colonial and Koori Joint Parliament, ceremonially welcome newly appointed British Ambassador to Australia Ellis Graveworthy.


That evening, after all the lumos had been taken and the journalists satisfied with quotes, Ellis sank into a deep couch in the reception room of the suite the Sydney Grand Hotel had offered him and accepted the drink Jack passed him.

"How long will you stay in Australia, Mr. Baker?" Anderson's sister asked, from the table where they'd been sitting and speaking quietly for the last half hour. Ellis didn't begrudge the man a little time to catch up with his family; after weeks of conferences and politics with Anderson in London and months spent sharing a stateroom with him on the more sedate steamer journey back to Australia, he felt inclined to be generous.

"Not too long," Jack said, glancing at Purva, who was studying the bookcase, looking for new reading material. She glanced back and smiled. "Purva and I are taking the airship to America, as soon as it's ready. I'd like to refit the propellers with an auto engine, but if it doesn't work we can always buy coal."

"You have to stay at least a few weeks, Jack," Murra said, settling on the arm of Ellis's chair. He reached up and ran his fingers down the small of her back, hidden from view of the others. She twisted, giving him a smile.

"Well, yeah, I mean -- if I do refit the airship it'll be at least a month," Jack agreed. "And the AIAE -- what a mouthful -- needs help getting off the ground. But I can't just please you anymore, you know. I have Purva to think of."

"Oh, you usually please me," Purva answered, while Murra laughed. "Mr. Anderson, we can find you an Australian bride, I think? Something in the air, I am sure of it."

"I shudder to think, de la Fitte," Anderson said with a smile. "Besides, I'm sure you all have much more important work to do."

"As do you," Ellis reminded him.

"Nonsense. You're the Ambassador. I'm just a lowly lieutenant in your office. We're expected to skive off and live immorally. You know," Anderson said to his sister, "He's never been my boss before."

"I'm sure he'll keep you in line," she answered, and his reply was interrupted by a knock on the door. Anderson's nieces ran into the room in their nightdresses, shouting and laughing. They demanded kisses goodnight from Miss Fields and Mama, and then begged Uncle to put them to bed with a story.

"Nothing that breaks the Crown Secrets Act," Ellis called, as Anderson took them by the hands to lead them away.

"Mr. Graveworthy's a bore," they heard Anderson say to the girls as they walked down the hallway.

Mrs. Jackson stood, smoothing her dress. "I should go make sure they don't pester him. He's a lovely man but he's not very used to children, I think..."

"We should go too," Jack added, as Purva took a book off the shelf and tucked it under one arm. "The Harrison automobile company's holding a reception for me tomorrow, and I was promised a look at their new engine."

"Don't sign anything," Ellis said.

"Thank you, Ambassador," Jack replied mockingly. Purva took his elbow, shooting Murra a knowing look. "Onward to adventure! And Engineering!" he called, as they left.

"So," Murra said, as he moved over so she could slip down into the corner of the couch. "I hear you're a diplomat now."

"Never believe it," he answered. "I'm gathering inspiration for my next novel, that's all."

"I suspected as much. You're not a very good writer, you know," she teased.

"Well, I'm still practicing," he said, settling an arm around her shoulders. "How are you, Murra?"

"Tired. Still settling in, still learning things. Happy to see you," she said softly. "You?"

"Eager to hear all the things you've done since I've been away. The trip here was excessively boring. Not a single pirate or a crash on a storm-tossed beach."

"Probably just as well." She leaned sideways and kissed him, then let her forehead rest against his. He allowed himself a rare moment of quiet, of peace; God knew he probably wouldn't have much of either in the near future.

Not that he minded -- they had so much good work to do, and she was here.

"Welcome to Australia, Ambassador," Murra said, and Ellis laughed.


Author's Note:

I just wanted to say a quick thank-you to everyone who's been reading along and commenting. If you haven't yet gotten to comment but still want to, please feel free -- I'll be in edits for a while and I can incorporate them as I go.

As ever, I can't do this without my readers, and wouldn't even want to try. Thanks, all. :)

Date: 2012-05-15 05:15 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

That's all. I know you asked for criticism, but this is fabulous and I would buy the heck out of it as is. :)

Date: 2012-05-15 06:44 pm (UTC)
wintercreek: Silhouette of a person with an umbrella under a multi-colored rain with the text "starshowers." ([misc] starshowers)
From: [personal profile] wintercreek
Lovely. A deft ending - gives the feeling of wrapping up plot threads without dragging or exhaustively detailing everyone's future, two traps that epilogues often fall into. Bravo, Sam!

Date: 2012-05-15 08:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nakki.livejournal.com
Great wrap up! And more touching then the paper clippings but still conveyed the same info =)

I would say maybe a slight clarification on how long the travelling took. Jack and Purva clearly came on the airship, but they must of arrived well in advance of Ellis and Anderson. A couple weeks in London for Jack to recover and Ellis and Anderson to sort everything out before getting on the steamer to Australia. And Jack probably left around the same time. I believe it was 6 weeks to get to Australia via airship? So Jack must have been in Australia for greater then 2 weeks by the final scene.

Which is all to say I think you should add a "more" to this line "You have to stay at least a few *more* weeks, Jack," Murra said =D

I love this story so much. I was worried when you were talking about how much you were cutting since so much of what made this fantastic was the details, but this really was a much better version of the book. And I can't wait to get a copy so that I finally have somewhere to store all the crazy doodles and equations I've made of airships in the past couple weeks =D

Date: 2012-05-16 03:14 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lil-fangirl.livejournal.com
I love these characters so much, I have since the first time since I read the first draft, and they still make me go gooey. The ending is sweet and brilliant and I cant work out how you cut so much out. I last read it about two years but nothing jumps out at me that was in that draft but isn't in this. It still feel likes the same story without being quite such an effort to read.

Well done and thanks for an amazing read

Date: 2012-05-16 06:36 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hi, I've never talked to you before. I tried to write this comment on your personal dreamwidth journal but it wouldn't let me. Just finished reading Stealing Harry and a few of the Tales from the River House, and I'm flabbergasted. I hope someone is paying you to use your incredible skill with words on something you deserve.

I haven't even been involved in fandom in years, but I'm grateful that there are fans out there like you who understand what Harry Potter and its characters are about, and what they mean to everyone who reads your fiction. thank you for your writing.

Date: 2012-05-16 07:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] belgianqueen.livejournal.com
A triumphant ending to a great story. Congratulations.

Date: 2012-05-16 06:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jkivela.livejournal.com
Thanks for including us, very fun and exciting!

Date: 2012-05-18 03:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] maeritrae.livejournal.com
As everyone is saying, a lovely ending to a lovely story. ♥

You know," Anderson said to his sister, "He's never been my boss before." Lowercase h in he's.

Date: 2012-05-19 03:51 am (UTC)
msilverstar: (corset)
From: [personal profile] msilverstar
Very satisfying!

Date: 2012-05-19 09:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] twirlynoodle.livejournal.com
YAAAAAAAAAAAY! [one-woman standing ovation]

But it is my job to nitpick, so I have this:

Ellis sank into a deep couch in the reception room of the suite the Sydney Grand Hotel had offered him

I feel a bit like I’m drowning in prepositional phrases here – perhaps streamline?

months spent sharing a stateroom with him on the more sedate steamer journey back to Australia

My only frame of reference here is what I’ve picked up from Scott research, but it is my impression that steamers were, at least by 1910, a demonstrably faster way of travelling than by sailing ship, unless perhaps that ship were a clipper of some sort. Granted the Terra Nova might not be the best yardstick for comparison as she was a whaler and went slowly even when she was under steam ... but when the main expedition crew left Cardiff in June, Scott stayed behind to do some fundraising, then took a steamer down to Cape Town and got there first, by a safe margin if I recall. Pretty much all middle-upper class passenger service was in steamers by this point, and I’m sure speed (and dependability) had a lot to do with that.

I’m not even sure why I bring this up, now – obviously any mode of transit is going to be sedate in comparison to the airship, and I haven’t done the research but I am ready to believe it would take over a month to get from England to Australia by steamer. But there you go. I guess I’m just in the habit of mouthing off, now. :)

"Nonsense. You're the Ambassador. I'm just a lowly lieutenant in your office. We're expected to skive off and live immorally. You know," Anderson said to his sister, "He's never been my boss before."

I love Anderson.

NOW I GET TO GO DO CHOOOORES! slightly less enthusiastic YAAAAAAAAAAAY!

Date: 2012-06-07 04:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ozisim.livejournal.com
Brain says that it should be the Canberra Times, or the Sydney Morning Herald.
(Yes I know that this story is AU, but it still made me twitch.)

And I'm a bit confused as to why they are suddenly in Sydney for the epilogue... Or is the Sydney Grand Hotel in Canberra? None of the previous story happened in Sydney, I'm confused.

I enjoyed this. I was afraid to read it the first time around, but I'm glad I changed my mind.
Edited Date: 2012-06-07 05:03 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-06-20 02:52 am (UTC)
ext_13504: Kara Thrace, Starbuck, BSG (Default)
From: [identity profile] unicornvamp3z.livejournal.com
:D i so love this book, and i can't wait to get a hard copy! i remember reading it for the first time when you were originally writing it, and it has lost none of its magic. this time around, since i was familiar with the characters, i was in love with the book as a whole a lot more. i love the twist of clare being koori, and i think her relationship with ellis develops really well. the epilogue is pitch perfect, too.
i haven't read charitable getting (college happened and i stopped reading most things that didn't pertain to class and keeping my life together) but i'm gonna head over to lulu and order a copy.
anyway, thank you for the story, sam!

Date: 2012-07-24 12:37 am (UTC)
ext_14419: the mouse that wants Arthur's brain (tea)
From: [identity profile] derien.livejournal.com
Awesome! Now add back in everything you cut, because I'm sure this could stand to be longer and more detailed. ;)

Date: 2014-02-09 04:55 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
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Date: 2015-01-19 11:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reerypompocky.livejournal.com
на главной вверху


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