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    Belle Shellten

    Player: Aloris
    Contact: PM here. G-Chat: aloris007(a)gmail.com

    [Public Application]
    Character Name: Adabella “Belle” Durand Shellten, Former Queen of Tuneric, Mother of the King
    Character Age: 41
    Gender: Female
    Birthdate: January 2nd, 175
    Current Location: Hebron
    House: Durand by birth, Shellten by marriage

    Banner Appearance:



    House Description: House Durand

    House Durand is a proud house, nestled in the city of White Coast. They’ve been around for a very long time and are well established in the port city and are well-known throughout Tuneric. Considering they were instrumental in the re-establishment of the Shellten monarchy, the Durand’s take their position in White Coast as a very real means of protection on the Tuneric water front.

    House Durand’s main source of income is derived from the taxes levied on products moving in and out of the port. Being staunch supporters of the Shellten monarchy, House Durand is usually the first to advise Hebron of new people or products that might pass through their jurisdiction.

    Denizens of House Durand pray to many gods, most notably Moreesa, Ruzbin, Swaren, Iubita and Vifor. They participate heavily in Washing Day and usually travel as a whole to Hebron to participate in Ruzbin’s Tournament. House Durand has, in the past, proudly produced Champions of Ruzbin. It is not uncommon for the head of House Durand to send envoys to represent their house at feasts and celebrations for other gods and goddesses as well.

    Even though House Durand is prominent on land, they are also well-known as seafarers. They have a fleet of ships, most of which are chartered out to merchants and explorers, with House Durand earning commissions off of anything sold or discovered. There are three ships in the fleet specifically reserved as cruise ships for the Durand’s and their guests. These ships have spared no expense and offer the finest quality of room and board that can be found on a ship.

    House Description: House Shellten

    House Shellten has produced four generations of kings, the original being Reginald Shellten, and have ruled honorably for a little more than a century. From the very beginning of history, the Shellten family has proved dedicated to preserving the rightful family line as well as the legacy of the true kings and queens of Tuneric.

    House Shellten is known for restoring the rightful ruler to the throne of Tuneric and purging their lands of cultists who threatened to destroy the progress that King Cecil had made in an effort to set Tuneric back to rights. Though Edmund Shellten was made Lord Protector for his efforts, four generations later, the name Shellten became known as the ruling family.

    House Shellten is situated in Hebron, the capital of Tuneric. From there, the ruling family administers land rights and collections of taxes to and from its subjects. Furthermore, they keep and house the largest military in Tuneric, allocating the troops across the land if and when necessary. In times of peace, the military is generally used as security detail in and around the main castle, Hebron and the surrounding roads.

    Just recently, due to visitors from over the oceans, House Shellten has taken a keen interest in the exploration beyond the waters. They wish to extend invitations throughout the land to those willing to adventure across open waters in the pursuit of knowledge and trade.

    Castle: Chambord

    Played By/Face Claim:

    Lauren Graham

              

    Appearance:

    Adabella, better known as Belle or Lady Belle to her closest peers and late husband, is strikingly beautiful for a lady of her age. Stark blue eyes and black hair serve as a perfect contrast against the milky white color of her skin. Belle prefers to wear dresses of light fabric, such as silks that flounce when she walks or dances.

    When riding, the former queen sports a split riding skirt that’s so full, it’s next to impossible to tell that it’s not a true skirt, and a billowing linen shirt with long sleeves and a collar. Black gloves and sable boots complete the ensemble and on sunny days, Belle dons a wider-brimmed hat of pressed felt that tied just beneath her chin. She’s never been a fan of the sun’s rays blasting in her eyes.

    Personality:

    Belle has an incredible thirst for life. She loves to be involved in any and all things, and being former queen of Tuneric, it’s not too hard. She’s known to smile even through the rainiest of days...even though tears pour down her cheeks. Belle tries to see the bright side of things all the time, but even she is human and sometimes being a realist overrides her desires to be an optimist.

    Belle loves her children dearly and wishes the best for them all. She pushes them to know more, to learn more, to excel in everything they do. She gives them constant encouragement and prays to the gods and goddesses for their success daily. She also raised her nephew as her own son and ensured he was educated and taught alongside his cousin.

    Being very devout, Belle attends almost every ceremony, festival and ritual the gods and goddesses offer in Tuneric. She believes herself to be a role model for every wife in Tuneric and does her best to lead by example.

    Additionally, Belle heads up the Ladies Companion of the Order. She revels in this position, where she is simply known as Dame Belle by the other members, and enjoys organizing, throwing and hosting galas of all kinds. Dame Belle has been known to host festivals on behalf of Swaren Day, Ruzbin’s Tournament Day, the Dawn of the Year, the Festivals of Harvest, Iubita’s Celebration, Carnival of Vopsa, and the Jubilee of Jaynara.

    The former queen is a sucker for animals, more particularly dogs and horses. Weather permitting, Belle enjoys a ride in the countryside, usually flanked by an armed escort and her loyal dog, Riley.

    History:

    Adabella was the first child born to Lord Guy and Lady Margaret Durand. She enjoyed a rich, happy childhood that involved swimming with her brothers at the beach, horseback riding and playing with her dogs. Sometimes she’d even swim with her dogs and play with the horses and her brothers instead. Belle was fearless when it came to horseback riding on the beach and even her brothers would sometimes have a hard time keeping up with her. She had to be good to compete with an all-boy sibling group and normally, Belle dressed in the same clothes as her brothers. The only thing that set her apart was a brimmed straw hat strapped to her head and tied just under her chin.

    But as all good things, her days of running like a hellion on the beach were over. Her father, Lord Guy, put a quick end to the days of childhood and her mother, Margaret, began to avidly groom Adabella, transforming her into a lady, keeping her indoors and out of the sun. Within the course of two home-bound years, the Durand brothers didn’t even recognize their sister anymore, she’d become so quiet and almost demure....almost. Naturally, Belle still had her moments, but not in public anymore.

    Eventually, her father, Lord Guy, sent her as an envoy with her brother Eric and uncle Aaron to Hebron to observe the Carnival of Vopsa on behalf of House Durand. While there, Adabella caught the eye of the young crown prince, Aramis Shellten. Belle was only sixteen at the time. Aramis was already in his early twenties.

    Theirs was a whirlwind romance, akin to a fairy tale. Prince Aramis brought Belle to the Shellten castle, introducing her as Lady Durand where she managed to leave a lasting impression on the then king and queen. Belle also attended Vopsa’s Masquerade Ball, with her face covered entirely by a mask. Yet, prince Aramis had managed to pick her out of even that crowd, mask and all.

    When Carnival week finally came to a close, Belle knew it was time to say good bye. But Aramis had no intentions of letting her go all too easily. With promises of sending letters, prince Aramis gave Belle a pendant of brilliant tanzanite, which glimmered violet in the rays of the sun. Belle was sad to leave Hebron, even though the prince saw them off. She was so saddened in fact, that she preferred to ride in the coach, drawing the curtains tight for the entire trip.

    Upon arriving back in White Coast, Margaret knew immediately that her daughter was not the same person. Only after Eric and Aaron spilled the beans, Margaret asked Belle what had happened during Carnival week. Of course Belle exploded with stories of Aramis and how funny and charming he was and how they’d had so much fun that whole week and how nice the queen and the king were and how she wanted to go back to Hebron. Margaret was enthralled to hear who Belle was smitten with and made haste to speak with her husband about it.

    Time marched on and true to his word, Aramis sent letters with a royal courier, who would wait for her response before traveling back to Hebron. This went on for two months.

    Washing Day finally rolled around and Belle went down to the beach with the rest of House Durand to pay homage to Moreesa and her generous giving from the ocean. Being modest, Belle entered the water fully clothed in dark silks, up to her hips, dunking herself entirely under water to get her hair wet as well. When she rose from the water, Belle was surprised to find none other than prince Aramis standing next to her. Shocked, needless to say, the words wouldn’t come to her lips as she merely stood smiling and giggling like a foolish school girl for a few moments.

    As prince Aramis escorted her from the waters and back to Cape Castle, the masses at the beach exploded in gossip about the prince’s arrival. But they would all have to wait to find out the motives for Aramis’ trip. That evening at dinner, it became clear as House Durand was propositioned by House Shellten in the form of a marriage alliance.

    Lord Guy readily accepted the alliance of House Shellten by the marriage of his daughter Adabella and prince Aramis and dinner suddenly became strangely awkward for Belle as she realized what this all truly meant. The chapter in her life at White Coast was soon to conclude and a new chapter in Hebron would start. But she didn’t want to think on what she was to leave behind, and instead welcomed the new change. Even without Belle’s approval, their wedding date had been set for May first of the following year, which had been announced at dinner. Apparently her father and Aramis had been scheming without her knowledge.

    Aramis soon returned to Hebron and the whole island of Tuneric now knew he was no longer an eligible bachelor. The letters between the betrotheds continued until Belle packed her belongings and was escorted to Hebron under Shellten guards the following year in April 192.

    True to the alliance, prince Aramis and lady Adabella were wed on May 1, 192. Belle couldn’t be happier and the following year, their first child was born, a daughter. A few years after that, the royal couple welcomed their first son. Only two years thereafter the last child was born. Belle continued to conceive but every pregnancy after her last daughter resulted in a miscarriage or a still-birth.

    As time moved on, Belle’s brother, Eric, now head of House Durand, sent a message, requesting their nephew, Guy, be allowed to stay in Hebron, and perhaps serve as a page. Belle immediately accepted and informed her brother to send Guy at once so she could undertake his education as well in academics while he learned the art of weaponry from the Master at Arms.

    Guy arrived as a young lad and Belle was happy to see that her son and nephew became fast friends. She wasn’t too happy to see how much mischief the two boys managed to find on their own. Regardless, Guy became a permanent fixture in the castle, and Belle ensured he received the same education as her son and daughters.

    The queen held on to the hope of having just one more child....until that fateful feast. Welcoming visitors from across the oceans, the strangers came with salted, exotic meats and decadent wines from far away destinations. House Shellten opened their doors in hopes of establishing diplomatic relations with the new people. The visitors insisted that their goods be designated for the feast as well, to be shared by all at the tables.

    Slightly suspicious, Belle ensured the royal food taster sampled every bit of the fare and wine offering in the kitchens before the feast started. When it seemed all was well, the queen approved the food for serving to the feast hall. However, she’d been far too busy to actually sit down and eat, and instead Belle found herself drinking the wine of the visitors as she played gracious hostess about the hall, dancing and ensuring everybody enjoyed themselves.

    King Aramis, however, had ingested an entire small bird with the wine of the visitors. The king danced along side his wife and insisted the visitors remain at the castle for the evening, considering it was much too dark to travel. The visitors accepted the invitation.

    Later that night, after the feasting had finished, king Aramis became ill to his stomach, vomiting multiple times. Alarmed, Belle ordered the overseas visitors detained, pending the king’s welfare. The diplomats were seized as they slept in their beds and all of them were dragged down to the dungeons and locked up. Belle knew they were responsible and only wondered how many others would fall ill. Unfortunately, king Aramis never recovered enough to step out of bed again and on the ninth day, he passed from the world of the living.

    Adabella was distraught and almost inconsolable. Her life had abruptly morphed from fairytale perfection to an ugly, stark and austere reality. She remained in the bedroom with Aramis’ body, unwilling to allow anybody to take him from her. Finally, after a week, her son managed to convince her to let go, and the king was removed and properly buried. Several more members from the royal family also perished as a result of the apparent poisoning. Belle sought vengeance, appealing to her son who would now be king, in hopes that he would dispatch the traitors immediately with a signed death warrant.

    Writing Sample:

    Belle stood on the beach with hundreds of other people. It was Washing Day and they were here to pay homage to Moreesa for her wonderful and generous gifts...food from the sea, fair weather to sail, protection from storms and a myriad of other daily blessings that seemed to slip her mind.

    Eric stood beside her and Hector beside him. Darien, still young, had been relegated to the nanny’s care, though he fought bitterly. Belle smiled at her younger brothers and her eyes focused along the beach to the clergy. A priest, naked as the day he was born, already stood waist deep in the water, arms raised high, the gentle rolling waves lapped at his hips and backside, threatening to expose his nudity should he say a wrong word or displease Moreesa in any way.

    The priestess on the beach, a bit more modest and covered over her most private parts by mere scraps of leather, stood on the beach before the crowds, her arms also raised. Led by the priest, they sang songs of praises to Moreesa. Belle knew the songs well, but instead she only whispered the words.

    This day had Moreesa’s blessing written all over it. The sky, deep blue and without a blemish, yielded a gentle breeze to cool them from the sweltering summer sun. The sea seemed to glimmer with Moreesa’s smile and the waves were abnormally small and uneventful, not even bothering to crash as they neared the shore. It was strangely quiet without the waves crashing.

    Belle, dressed in her black silk gown and wide-brimmed straw hat, remained barefoot. Her toes dug into the hot sand, seeking the cooler layers. Hector fidgeted stepping lightly between his two feet. Eric copied her and dug in as well, remaining still as the priestess started to wade into the water, her singing continued.

    As the rest of the worshipers moved forward, so did the Durand children. Belle thought to grab Hector’s hand, but the waves were so docile today that any undercurrent should be nonexistent. Instead, she gave her brothers their freedom and concentrated on herself and her worshiping and pleasing the goddess.

    Wading into the water, Belle stopped at hip-depth. She would go no further as she raised her arms and sang praises to the goddess aloud now. Nobody was around her, or so she thought and Belle bent her knees, allowing herself to slowly slide into the water, cooling her body from the powerful heat of the sun’s rays. Closing her eyes, she submerged herself entirely, hat and all. Belle remained beneath the surface, hearing splashes about her as the more immature worshipers threw themselves into the water.

    She pulled the hat from her head, feeling hair flare about her head as she stayed for a few seconds longer. Finally Belle found her footing and rose, the salty water dripping off her skin in tiny rivulets. A small, fleeting thought in the back of her mind prompted her to turn around and look for Hector, to ensure he came out just fine.

    ...Who was that? Right behind her...? Belle had to look again. By the gods! It was none other than Aramis! How had he gotten here? What was he doing here? She giggled lightly, covering her mouth with her soggy straw hat. Everybody was staring at them. Well, everybody except her little brothers. Hector caught her attention splashing in the water with Eric closer to the beach. With those two being fools, Belle simply stood and giggled for a few seconds more before Aramis stepped forth and took her hand.

    “Lady Durand,” he whispered, gently kissing the back of her hand. By the gods, even the priest and priestess had stopped singing and were staring. Regardless, Belle hadn’t even noticed anymore.

    “Prince Aramis, it’s such a wonderfully shocking surprise to see you again,” Belle replied, speech finally coming to her as she lowered her hat and smiled.

    “May I escort you to Cape Castle?” he inquired, placing her hand upon his arm as he turned to go back to the beach.

    “I’d be delighted,” Belle answered, placing her soggy hat atop her hair and grabbing skirts with her free hand, pulling them up so they wouldn’t cling, soaking wet, to her legs and trip her.

    Family Genealogy:

    Shellten (Birth Year)
    -Jeremy Shellten -- Daniella Evermane
         -Desmond Shellten
         -Jasper Shellten
         -Reginald Shellten -- Eleanor Mae Day
              -Abraham Shellten -- Flourence Ashby
                   -Aramis Shellten – Adabella Durand (175)
                        -Princess Shellten (194)
                        -Cailen Darius Shellten (196)
                        -Veronica Elizabeth Marie Shellten (199)
                   -Tannis Shellten -- Jayne Minster
                        -Female Cousin Shellten
                        -Male Cousin Shellten
                   -Nanelle Shellten
              -Donall Shellten -- Sylvia Blackbane
                   -Davon Shellten -- Dolores Kettleton
                        -Female Cousin Shellten
                        -Female Cousin Shellten
                   -Elspeth Shellten

    Durand (Birth Year)

    -Theodor Durand (94) -- Kaylee Thurmond(99)
         -Penelope Durand (118) -- Daniel Walden (113)
         -Henry Durand (121) -- Jocelyn Kade (123)
         -Talbot Durand (124) -- Laurie Gartens (129)
         -Camden Durand (128) -- Odette Ryan (130)
              -Guy Durand (151) -- Margaret Vaughan(155)
                   -Adabella Durand (175) – Aramis Shellten (?)
                        -Princess Shellten (194)
                        -Cailen Darius Shellten (196)
                        -Veronica Elizabeth Marie Shellten (199)
                   -Eric Durand (177) – Lucette Taylor(178)
                        -Austin Durand
                        -Camden Durand
                        -Celina Durand
                   -Hector Durand (179) – Georgina Bennett (180)
                        -Guy Durand (?)
                        -Daughter Durand (?)
                        -Daughter Durand (?)
                   -Darien Durand (?) -- Unnamed Wife (?)**
              -Aaron Durand (155) -- Tatania Ayers (159)
                   -Lawrence Durand (176) -- Samantha Holland (179)**
                        -Female Cousin Durand (?)
                        -Female Cousin Durand (?)
                        -Male Cousin Durand (?)
                   -Ashley Durand (?) -- Unnamed Husband (?)**

    **These branches are open to expansion.
    Last edited by Belle Shellten; 07-25-2012 at 01:06 AM.

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