The Islamophobic incident began after McLellan’s friend allowed the woman to cut her in the check-out line after noticing she was in a hurry, he explained in a Facebook post.
According to the comedian, before his friend started recording, the woman began speaking ill of another Muslim woman, who was wearing the niqab, or face veil, at the store. The woman asked McLellan’s friend why she didn’t wear the niqab as well.
When McLellan’s friend responded by saying it was a choice, the non-Muslim woman didn’t believe her and decided to lecture her about women’s rights in Islam. Read more (5/8/17)
REPUBLICAN SENATOR TILLIS OF NORTH CAROLINA HAS SAID ONCE AGAIN HE IS ON THE FENCE AND WANTS TO HEAR FROM CONSTITUENTS.
PLEASE only call if you are from North Carolina.
Make sure to give your name and zip code, and you can just say something as simple as “I’m calling to oppose Betsy DeVos’ nomination for secretary of education. I do not think she is qualified and am concerned.”
Here are the numbers:
(919) 856-4630 - does not have a direct voicemail to the Senator if no one answers (202) 224-6342 - the Senator’s direct office, as well as voicemail. I just called and left a message, so the voicemail isn’t full yet. You can also choose if you want to hear back from him.
WHETHER OR NOT YOU LIVE IN NC, PLEASE BOOST THIS FOR ANYONE FROM NC TO SEE.
Laurens and Hamilton hit it off. Hamilton showed a strong attachment to the South Carolinian that he never demonstrated even to the woman he later married. When Laurens was absent, Lafayette filled his place in Hamilton’s affections. The three wrote gushy letters to each other. Hamilton routinely addressed Laurens as “my dear” and vowed his “love.”
David A. Clary, Adopted Son: Washington, Lafayette and the Friendship that Saved the Revolution
Hi! I really like your writing and was wondering if you could do a hurt/comfort type thing where Neil runs away and Andrew has to find him?
Hey! So, a million years later… I hope you like this. It might be a bit lacking on the comfort because this prompt ate my heart *cries*
Neil’s expensive running shoes hit the pavement with satisfying slaps. He’s reached his peak stride and every movement is effortless, his breaths come easily and his heart is ticking at a steady rate. He would never admit it to the others but the natural high from the flood of endorphins is what keeps him moving, even after regular practices and training. Every member of the team has a coping mechanism or two, Neil just happens to have one that is healthy, one that stems from a lifetime spent on the run and the necessity to be fast.
The neighborhood is familiar, one he’s run through almost every day since he first picked this route over a year ago. He was cold when he started the run, the early December chill biting through his sweats and light running jacket and T-shirt, but now he’s warmed up enough that he’s breaking a sweat. Cars pass by, slow. No one is out walking or running at this hour, it’s too early and too cold for the native South Carolinians. But Neil was born and raised in Baltimore, he’s had to endure hours out in the freezing cold, plus he’s lived in some other places, farther north, where the winters lasted for endless months of ice and snow.
Neil takes a right, heading down a narrow side street that runs behind a row of off-campus apartments. He’s not really thinking about anything, just enjoying the burn in his muscles, the rhythmic inhale and exhale of his breaths, when his phone rings.
The tone gives away the caller. Neil didn’t go to the trouble of picking a song, he simply picked the most ominous pre-programmed ringtone and left it, dreading the day he would hear it.
Ducking behind a large oak tree Neil pulls the phone from the pocket of his jacket. His fingers tremble as he stares at the name. It’s been nearly six months since they last communicated. He flips the phone open, holding it to his ear; he covers his mouth with his other hand, trying to silence his breathing.
Neil doesn’t gasp, doesn’t react. You knew this was coming. You knew.
“Are you exercising? You sound out of breath.”
He would stop breathing if he could.
It’s a warning that won’t be repeated.
“Yes,” Neil replies, taking slow, quiet breaths. “I was running.”
He crouches down on the cracked sidewalk, weight balanced on the balls of his feet, ready to run, ready to move. He needs to go, the urge is so overwhelming that he has to close his eyes and focus all his thought on the voice at the other end to keep from taking off.
“My men have been keeping tabs on you. Our mutual agreement is progressing well.” A pause. Neil hears swallowing, the delicate clink of ice in a glass. “You have winter break coming up.”
The silence stretches until Neil realizes that he is meant to speak.
“Yes.” It’s barely a whisper. He’s losing it, fast. The sooner the call is over the sooner he can—Neil doesn’t even know. It feels like someone is stepping on his chest.
“You will come to me.” There is no room for negotiation or argument. There is no acceptable answer other than an affirmative.
“Understood.” It hurts. It hurts. It hurts.
“Good. My assistant will be in touch with the details.” Neil waits, his self-control unraveling by the second. “Take care, Nathaniel.”
The call ends and Neil’s up and running. He pulls the back of the phone open, the thin plastic backing clatters to the pavement, followed by the thunk of the battery hitting the sidewalk. Neil is on autopilot, running another drill that his mother instilled in him. His nails scrabble with the SIM card and he tosses it down the storm drain. The phone gets chucked into someone’s trashcan.
He’s only a few miles away from a decent sized gas station where he can get a ride to one of the major interstates, 20 or 26 or 77. His internal map of the east coast opens up and he weighs the options; he still shies away from Baltimore, from northern cities where the devil he knows lurks. The pull to travel south kicks in, hardwired like a migratory instinct.
At no point during his exodus does Neil stop and think about what—who—he is leaving behind, he doesn’t stop to examine why he’s running. Every step of the way he hears Ichirou’s voice and the cold possession that laced every polite word. You will come to me. He’s running on impulse, he’s running blind, he’s running, he’s running, he’s running—
Andrew gets the call after midnight. He is not in a good place, has not been in a good place since Neil failed to return from his run. Before the panic set in he was calm, able to methodically check Neil’s usual spots, then he contacted Wymack and Abby when Neil did not turn up for his classes. Once lunchtime hit Andrew had met his limit for staying calm and the Foxes were sent on a campus-wide, then town-wide, search for Neil. Andrew followed Neil’s running route and found the pieces of the phone, though he didn’t find the phone itself. Standing there, in the empty space behind the apartments, clutching a fucking cell phone battery… it was almost worse than Baltimore. It was worse because this time Neil had chosen to run. And Andrew didn’t know if he would come back.
“I fucked up.”
Neil sounds exhausted and empty and broken and—
“Andrew. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry, I want to come home. I want to explain—”
“Where are you.” Andrew doesn’t want to hear another word, not like this, over the phone with Neil gasping like he can’t breath. Andrew’s anger feels too enormous for this conversation but he tamps it down.
“At your house.” Andrew checks his phone; the number is for the landline at the Columbia house. He had recognized it, of course, when the call came in but he had been too distracted to know what it meant. “I had the key with me. When I left…” Neil sobs once; Andrew shuts his eyes, squeezing his hand into a tight fist. “I want to come home.”
Andrew can’t speak. He wants to yell, to throw all the fucking harshness and recriminations and fear at Neil but he doesn’t. Instead he throws the phone at the wall, the impact hard enough to shatter the phone, to knock a dent in the dry wall.
“Andrew?” Nicky stands in the doorway, hugging himself, his eyes huge and watchful.
“He’s in Columbia.” Andrew collects his wallet and keys, grabs a jacket and Neil’s duffle bag, prepped and packed for a fast exit. “He’s fine.” The word comes out caustic and even as he says it Andrew knows that it’s not the truth. If Neil had been fine he would never have run, if Neil had been fine he wouldn’t be sobbing and begging on the phone. Neil Josten had stopped being a rabbit. Neil Josten had stopped being afraid. Yet some habits and patterns were difficult to unlearn and if anyone understood that it was Andrew.
“We’ll be back tomorrow,” Andrew tells Nicky as he slides out the door, “maybe.”
Neil sits on the couch for hours, waiting for Andrew. He doesn’t trust his body to stay put once he sets it in motion. He isn’t sure how he ended up at the house. Maybe it was the familiar press of the key against his palm, or the way his heart had surged when he saw Columbia on the signs heading south. He had walked for miles from the truck stop to the house. He was exhausted and hungry but felt too unsteady to even raid he fridge. He wanted Andrew. He wanted to know that he could be forgiven, that he could come back, that he hadn’t broken the something that kept the two of them together.
The house is pitch dark and cold when Andrew arrives. Neil sees the headlights through the windows, hears the familiar sound of the car door slamming shut, the quiet rasp of the key unlocking the front door. And he can’t stay still any longer. He’s on his feet, limping and then running, not away but to—straight into Andrew.
Andrew catches him, his strong arms wrapping around Neil, trapping him. Neil doesn’t—can’t—he collapses against Andrew and it’s like the tears won’t fucking stop, even when he coughs, trying to bring himself under control because it’s so pathetic, when did he get so pathetic?
“Neil.” Andrew’s voice is a growl, low and deep, full of emotions that Neil can’t possibly untangle. “Breathe.”
Neil’s arms hang at his sides, hands fisted tight so he won’t touch, won’t grab. He’s trembling, or maybe Andrew is.
“I want to go home,” Neil manages to say. He hates how broken he sounds; he hates the desperation crawling up his throat.
Andrew takes Neil’s hand, presses the key into it, his other hand holding onto the back of Neil’s neck. The faint glow from the automatic porch light illuminates the side of Andrew’s face, showing the hard line of his jaw, the tight set of his mouth and a brief, warm flash in his hazel eyes.
“You are home,” Andrew answers.
It could have been worse. Andrew lies next to Neil on the bed and smokes another cigarette. Neil’s passed out, curled up at his side, looking beat. Andrew taps ash into the ashtray and exhales, watching the smoke drift towards the ceiling. The house has warmed up a bit since he turned on the heat but he still shivers, sweat drying cool on his skin.
It could have been so much worse. Neil could have kept running and Andrew knows that he never would have found him, none of them would, not even Ichirou Moriyama. The name has a bitter tang. Neil told him what Ichirou had said, what he had demanded. Perhaps, at another time, it wouldn’t have bothered Neil as much. But they were nearing the one-year anniversary of Andrew being sent to Easthaven, of Neil going to Evermore, horrible times for both of them. Andrew knows enough about his own triggers to understand where Neil is coming from, to understand how a convergence of circumstances had overwhelmed his rational mind and sent him panicking, running.
It could have been worse. Andrew stubs out the cigarette and burrows under the covers, making sure to leave space between him and Neil. He doesn’t turn off the bedside lamp; he doesn’t take his eyes off the man lying beside him. Neil is still and quiet and Andrew lets that calm wash over him, lets it ease the turmoil that continues to twist him up inside. He came back, he stayed. Andrew pulls the covers over Neil’s shoulders and studies the scars on Neil’s cheek. It could have been worse.
[FYI: inspirational/mood songs for this fic are ZVVL by Chvrches and The Race by Thirty Seconds to Mars]
A group calling itself the South Carolina Secessionist Party erected a large Confederate flag next to the Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville, South Carolina, where two games in the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament were being played on Sunday.
The display — which was up from roughly 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. — added a sour note to the day’s festivities, which included a stunning upset victory by the University of South Carolina over the Duke.
Demonstrators saod they were waving the flag to show off their heritage and to protest the state’s failure to preserve the banner in a museum.
“It’s a piece of our heritage,” James Bessenger, chairman of the South Carolina Secessionist Party, told WYFF. “Twenty-five thousand South Carolinians died in defense of that flag, and 250,000 southerners.”
“It’s unfortunate, but it’s America,” South Carolina head coach Frank Martin said of the display after his game, according to USA Today. Read more (3/20/17 1:42 PM)
Not an ask but just a bit of kudos, I am really diggin "Tales from the Past". I'm very curious to see if Claire thinks it all a big coincidence and how Uncle Lamb will react to all of the info they find? Thank you for the lovely writing.
Scotland was unlike anything I had ever seen before. The land was an unbelievable shade of green and more beautiful than I could have ever imagined. The image I had of my witch and whisky maker family fit perfectly within this landscape. The rolling hills leading to towering mountains, and the glistening lakes reflecting the scenery around them gave the air of magic and endless possibilities. The deeper into the Highlands we travelled, the easier it was to see how the Scots, and my Scots in particular, transitioned and settled in the mountains of North Carolina. There was a familiarity between the two, but whereas Scotland felt old and full of legends, the North Carolinian mountains had an air of youthful mystery in comparison.
“Are we there yet, Uncle?” I asked as yet another town flashed beyond the car windows.
“Not yet my dear. We’ll be there in no time at all, just enjoy the scenery. Maybe you could come up with your own legend by the time we get to our destination!” He cheered then went back to humming a nameless tune.
I sighed and looked longingly out the window. I just wanted to be there, I wanted to see their home and find out more. “Are we going to Broch Morda and Lallybroch?” I asked not five seconds later.
“No, Claire.” Uncle Lamb said with authority. “We’re headed to a town called Inverness. My correspondent who can trace their lineage back to Lallybroch itself lives there. She’s more than willing to tell her family stories and that of her husband’s as well.”
“Fine.” I grumbled, “I still wish we were going straight to Lallybroch. Something is pulling me in that direction, we need to go there.”
“Patience my dear, we will get there, just after we’ve heard what these Murray’s have to say.” Lamb winked.
Inverness was beautiful, tucked away at the top of Loch Ness I could see the appeal and history all around, but I was restless.
“How long do we have to be here?”
“Long enough,” He laughed guiding me towards the door. “I thought you wanted to hear the legends?”
I groaned, “I do but I want to go see Lallybroch more!”
“Let’s see what they have to say first. We’ll need their story to help further our investigation, despite your curious insistence!” Uncle Lamb cut me off before I could speak further.
“Fine,” I murmured into my arm that rested on the door. My excitement crushed for a moment.
The countryside blurred by until the faintest idea of a town sprung up in spires and stone.
“Inverness?” I asked looking to at Uncle Lamb. He grinned and nodded, weaving our way through the streets to the tea room where the mysterious Murray’s awaited our arrival.
“Here we are, m’dear!” Lamb exclaimed throwing the car door open. “Would you get my satchel from the boot? We may need to take photographs and extra pens and paper! You never know what all they’ll have or have to say!”
His excitement was contagious and I felt my own lift to a nervous bubble. I still longed to see the fabled home, but deep down I knew I needed to hear what the Murray’s had to say.
“Are you Quentin Lambert?” A tall and lanky man with jet black hair and gray eyes asked as he approached our car.
“That I am! You must be Alexander Murray,” Lamb greeted, clasping the man’s hand.
Mr. Murray chuckled and nodded. “Aye, and this is my sister Jennifer.” He gestured to short girl with the same black hair and gray eyes.
“We’ve already got a kettle on, please join us inside.” Her smile was kind, but wary.
“Claire! Don’t forget the books!” Uncle Lamb called from over his shoulder absentmindedly as he entered the quaint stone building.
I took a moment to breathe in my surroundings. The bustle of people and their cars contrasting against the ancient stone buildings. If I closed my eyes and blocked out the modern sounds I could believe I was there when it all began. I could feel the clean Scottish air as it wrapped itself around me and those on the streets, smell the the roasting meats from taverns and hearth fires as well as fresh bannocks and bread, and I could imagine the sounds of wagon wheels and horse’s hooves on cobble and splattering mud. My imagination took me to a world where I could imagine my whisky making Scot walking down the street, and with a swish of a kilt he was gone.
“Miss Beauchamp?” I jumped, startled, my eyes flying open as the pack fell to the street. “Och, sorry. I dinna mean to give ye such a fright. Yer uncle was asking for ye. I came to fetch ye inside.”
My cheeks reddened from getting caught in my fantasy. The real world felt foreign and distant compared to where my mind had just held me. I slowly retrieved Uncle Lamb’s bag and followed Jennifer Murray inside.
“Claire! Claire! There you are, what kept you? No matter, you really must hear what young Mr. Murray has told me about his family! There was a tale that originated from a great uncle of sorts, and that very uncle could be the James Fraser we are striving to find! But I’m very much more fascinated in this enthralling tale of a cave, espionage and freedom! Please, come sit. Sit and listen!” Lamb managed to get all of this out in a single breath, his face red, but eyes alight with excitement. I noticed his hands were already ink-stained and smudged, his left worst of all.
“Breathe Uncle.” I said, laying a hand to his shoulder. “I’m sure Mr. Murray doesn’t wish to recount the tale again.”
“I dinna mind at all! Would ye like some tea before I start?” Alexander Murray gestured to the barely touched tray of tea and shortbread.
“Yes, thankyou.” I replied, pouring my own cup and grabbing a biscuit.
“As I was telling your very enthusiastic Uncle, my family has many tales and legends as does most here in the highlands. But one, we can go so far to say, is one of the more famous ones.” he said lowering his voice with a wink. “This one legend was said to be the Laird of Broch Tuarach during the uprising of Prince Tearlach in 1745. It’s said that the Laird was spared at the battle of Culloden or most likely escaped the clutches of the British and fled back to his homeland. His hair was a fiery red, easily spotted and gave him little chances to hide. My–” he paused and then gestured to his sister, “–our great-great-great grandmother was this Laird’s sister. She hid him in a priest hole that her recently dead sister-in-law had told her to build. You see the Laird’s wife was a Sassenach and a faerie.
“The folk in the highlands were wary of her and her healing abilities, even though the laird loved her more than life. She was among those caught in the crossfire of Culloden. The Laird being so distraught had nearly given up the will to live and when he was well enough to stand, decided to hide in the hillside to better protect his family.”
“Och! You’re tellin it wrong Sawny!” Jennifer interrupted.
“Och aye? Am I? Weel why dinna you tell it then and let me save my voice!” he said and smugly crossed his arms and legs into a relaxed position.
“I will then!” She settled herself deep into her chair.
“As my brother said, our great-great-great grandmother was the sister to the Laird who became legend, and it is from her that we get our story. Before the days of Culloden and the blackened soul of Prince Tearlach set this bonnie nation into strife, the Murray’s and Fraser’s lived peacefully on the estate. The young Laird had taken a faerie to wife, but all that knew her well enough said she was kinder than of any fae, and that she loved the Laird and his family to the ends of time. It was when she caught a vision of great strife and suffering for her beloved’s people, she told her good sister to plant crops that would yield a great amount, and prepare hidden storages including a priest’s hole under the kitchen cellar. The fae and her husband rushed out to protect the people and try to stop the horror she had seen from coming to fruition.
“They had earned the trust of Prince Tearlach, and made their way into his inner council. Night after night, day after day, the Laird tried to convince the Prince of his doomed cause, but to no avail. The horror still approached and overcame the people of this good nation. Killing thousands, destroying homes and the highland culture at it’s roots. The faerie wife, so distraught at the destruction of her adopted home, begged for her people to save the Scots, to turn back time and not let it happen, but they didna answer. Instead, it’s said she curled up on a faerie hill just outside Inverness and died of a broken heart. Unable to save her beloved nor her new people, and the old ones wouldnae have her back.
“However, the Laird did survive! He made his way home to Broch Tuarach where his sister tended to his physical wounds, but nothing could take away the pain he felt at the death of his wife. He hid for months in the priest’s hole, listening to raid after raid from the British soldiers and he could have it no more. He was too much of a danger to his family, and he couldna bear to lose another part of his heart. One night, he hid himself deep into the caves of the hills that surrounded his property with naught but a dun bonnet to his name. Just far enough that he would pose no danger, but close enough that if he was needed, he could be called upon. For seven years he hid by himself in the caves, coming out at night, clad in brown from head to toe, hiding the flames of his hair under bonnet and cloak of night to deliver fresh meat of his kills to his people and family.
“The Laird’s most faithful servant would risk his life week after week to bring the Laird fresh ale, clothes, and news of the town and of his family when the laird could not make his way down the mountain. On a day, not unlike today, where the sun shone high and the temperature mild, the servant raced up the hill bringing his lairdship fresh supplies, only to be stopped by a wicked cluster of British soldiers. They accused the lad of stealing and chopped his hand off for his crimes, then stole the Laird’s supplies for their own gain. Outraged the Laird tended the lad as best he could in the cave before taking him to the estate for proper healing. It was then the Laird decided that his time in the caves were at an end. He had to stand, he needed to fight the cruelty and oppression being imposed on his people.
“Seven years since the uprising, and there was still a traitor’s reward for the Laird. The laird asked his brother-in-law to turn himself in, grab the stirling reward and feed the family and people he could no longer protect.”
Jennifer stood up and went to the window. I blinked trying to come back to the world around me. The tale she had spun so vivid in my mind, like that was the true reality and not this tea parlour.
“What happened to him? The Laird?” I asked, desperate to hear more.
She turned, the light a halo around her silhouette, “The Dun Bonnet Laird went to prison to save his family. If you go back to our family’s ancestral home and speak to the locals they may tell you of him in a different way, the story altering from family to family. But one thing is for sure, they say on the old fire feasts, ye can see the Dun Bonnet standing at the mouth of his cave, keeping his vigil for all who are under his protection.”
This post is a compilation of the information I have gathered about the Laurens-Kinloch relationship, their subsequent “breakup,” and their post-breakup interactions. This was honestly one of my favorite posts to research and write. It’s a long one, but I promise you that it’s worth your time (there are some quotes that rival that Hamilton-Laurens correspondence in terms of affection). Some of the quotes I have in this post are from transcripts sent to me by Massey and are generally not publicly accessible. If anyone wants me to post the whole transcripts of the letters, just let me know, and I’d be happy to oblige.
I’ll be at Ultimate Comics in Raleigh, NC this Saturday, May 6, for FREE COMIC BOOK DAY! If you’re a comics fan, or a new reader who is curious, FCBD is a GREAT way to check out comics for literally no investment. And you’ll get to see me writing Rick and Morty, and you can meet my sweet baboo colorist, @katyfarina, her dashing gentleman friend @riansygh, and my pal @princelesscomic! It’s an embarrassment of North Carolinian comics riches.
“Did you enjoy talking with Mrs. McNeil? She has two centuries of stories and ties to these mountains and before that, she said her family is of Scottish origin! Can you imagine?” Lamb shook his head in delight. “Scotland isn’t so unlike these Carolinian mountains. I bet her ancestors felt very much at home here. And the stories she was able to tell! Did you hear her recount the story of when this entire ridge went to war for one woman? The legend is that the woman still lives in the cave we’re headed to! How fascinating it is! I do hope we are able to find something left of importance from the original settlers here. And I think—”
Uncle Lamb rambled on as we trudged the two miles up into the mountains to the cave he was set on finding. The entire journey, the knife seemed to burn in my pocket. I couldn’t stop from touching the handle or patting my side to feel it there, safe and sound.
“Here we are! Look at this Claire! It seems this could have once been a storage area.” Lamb flitted from side to side, buzzing with the excitement of a child at play.
“Yes! Yes! Oh my dear Claire! I found something, truly! Yes!”
Rolling my eyes with a smile, I followed back to where he was in the cave. “What is it, Uncle?”
“A cask of, what I believe to be, whiskey! This looks like it has survived the centuries. There’s no tell tale smell of a distillery for miles. We’ve found part of Mrs. McNeil’s legend! Seems the witch did live here or somewhere abouts. Perhaps her husband was a whiskey maker.”
Rolling the barrel carefully out into the light, Uncle Lamb examined everything from the lack of rotting on the barrel rungs to the style in which it was sealed and crafted.
“I thought the old woman said that she wasn’t a witch, but a healer who lived here?”
“Is that what she told you?” Lamb questioned, not looking up from his journal. “My dear, a female healer in those days was almost always considered a witch! The fact there isn’t a prominent story of a witch burning on this mountain is incredibly rare.”
“I just don’t think the woman was a witch.” My thumb stroked the handle of the knife as I said this.
Uncle Lamb twisted the barrel for a different angle in his sketches and unearthed a carving.
“Uncle!” I gasped, pulling the knife from my pocket and holding it up to the side of the barrel. “Look! Look!” I pointed frantically between the knife’s carved initials and the letters carved on the side of the whiskey cask.
Mde by: Jms. AMM Fraser, Fraser’s Ridge, Smer Btch 1778
His eyes went wide, going back and forth from the knife in my hand to the rung with the carved signature. The closer we began to examine the cask the more indentations were found all over the bottom section of the barrel, each scratched out when the barrel was obviously reused.
Jms. Fraser had the most, followed by a CE Fraser, F.Fraser, M. Fraser, R.Mac, B.Mac, and a GermJem FraMac dating back as far as the 1760s. I wanted to know who these people were. What were their actual names instead of just the partial names and initials.
“Uncle, I bet this Jms. Fraser is the one who made this knife for the CE Fraser! Are there records we can find to find out who these people are and where they came from?” I asked, more enthusiastically than expected.
Laughing, Uncle Lamb put a hand on my shoulder. “I’ve never seen you so excited before my dear! Yes, yes I’m sure we can find some records and if these are the original settlers we may even find something leading us back to Scotland!”
“Uncle,” I laughed. “You’re probably one of the only Englishmen who finds it exciting and wants to go to Scotland!”
The local library was open the following day and I was bouncing with excitement. I couldn’t wait to search and look for the Fraser’s who created the knife—which was a heavy weight in my pocket—and what happened to them.
“Come on, Uncle!” I cried as Lamb slowly meandered around the coffee shop around the corner from the library.
“Patience, my dear!” he chuckled, before finally settling on a chair with his newspaper. “It’ll be good for you to wait and enjoy the satisfaction of finding your answers.”
I groaned, flopping down into the chair beside him. “But I want to go now! I need to know what happened to them. I just… I have to know!”
Uncle Lamb quirked an eyebrow at me and grinned.
“Let’s go then,” he said, tucking the paper under his arm and placing his pipe back into his satchel.
The resources were minimal and dusty.
My heart sank as I saw the menial books containing records.
“Fraser, you said?” the clerk asked, lazily.
“Yes!” I bounced, hoping she’d pull a volume or two out for us to see.
“This way then.” She pointed towards a door I hadn’t noticed before. “The Fraser’s were one of the founding families of this area. We don’t have quite the extensive research that the state would have or even city hall, but we do have ledgers and sanctions tucked away. Be sure to put anything you touch back the way you found it.” She eyed us from behind her coke-bottle glasses. “We take pride in our collections and do not wish to lose anything.”
“You’ll have no problem from us, my dear,” Lamb reassured her, ushering me inside.
I spun in a circle taking it all in. It was a small room, no bigger than the bathroom at the hotel, but from ceiling to floor were bookshelves covered in old leather bound books. The one spot that wasn’t covered was a small window on the northern wall, just enough light to illuminate the room without direct exposure to the precious books inside.
“Well love, have at it! Let’s find your Fraser’s!”
The books all had some descendant or mention of a Fraser family, but was it my Fraser family? I didn’t know. An hour into our search, I finally found a James Fraser.
“Uncle!” I called. “Look here! James MacKenzie Fraser,” I read aloud, “Do you think this is him? The man who made the knife and the whisky cask?”
“I do believe it may very well be. Let’s see what else we can find on him, yes?” Uncle Lamb’s eyes twinkled in excitement as he pulled another musty ledger forward intent on the search.
This is one thing about Uncle Lamb and his hair-brained adventures that I love; when he’s found something interesting, he never gives up on discovering the person or item’s full history. The library in rural North Carolina, did not do much to help us find more of Mr. Fraser’s past. It lead us on a chase through the entire state and up the eastern seaboard of the United States. James Fraser was mentioned countless times as a man working for the state and as a wanted man. Army enlistments, battles fought at, and even public hearings where he made himself enemies, but not one ledger or book recounted where his tale originated, or that of his wife. At least that was until we found an old recounting from Lord Tyron.
‘...On the 12th Day of August, I granted a man pardon and land in the wilds of the western most part of the colony. Mr. James MacKenzie Fraser and wife Claire of Broch Morda, Scotland, will be in the King’s Service and hereby exempt of taxes laid on the land while in the service.’
Today, June 28th, we South Carolinians celebrate Carolina Day, which is to commemorate the victory of the Patriots at the Battle of Sullivan’s Island on this day in 1776. One of the first major victories of the Revolutionary War. Those brave men in that small palmetto tree made fort, and the men on the beaches, fought off the British and won. I am so proud to say my 6th great grandfather, Peter Hubbard, was among the men who fought on the island that day. The fort was later renamed Fort Moultrie after Colonel William Moultrie, who commanded the troops at the fort. Huzzah!!
I have just been perusing your last kind Letter, which fortunately for me has no date, (for I should be asham’d to mark the Length of my Silence_) and am very happy to find that you are pursuing a Plan of Study, in which I am engaged as far as my necessary Attention to the particular Laws of one Country will permit_ it is the noblest Employment of the Mind, and what our Country particularly requires of her Sons at this juncture_
I supposed that you have had satisfactory Answers long since, to all those Questions of Intelligence in your Letter_ the last Packet brought over Lady William Campbell and her Family. She informs us that the Carolinians have given a thorough Repair to Fort Johnston, have erected a New Battery on Sullivans Island, which if you recollect, is opposite, have emptied the Town of all valuable Moveables, and dispersed their Wives and Children as they found it convenient in different Parts of the Country_ that they are determined to make the best Defense in their power, in case any Troops should be sent against them, and that her only Doubts on this head, are whether the Men of Property who seem to be firm and resolute, will be supported by the lower Class_ my Letters, one from Doctor Garden and the other from my Father, are very short_ not a word of Public Intelligence in either_
G. Britain has now collected all the Strength which she can consistently with Policy spare from home, which joined to considerable foreign Aid, she thinks will be sufficient to bring us into Subjection_ whether they will succeed or no depends upon the degrees of Virtue and Unanimity which the Americans are possess’d of_ if they are so great as we are taught to expect, all that the Mother Country can do will prove ineffectual_ the Destruction of the Sea Port Towns, or the greatest Part of them, and the Landing of Troops either under Cover of Men of War, or upon some defenceless shore of so vast a Continent, can scarcely be prevented; Britain may destroy our Riches, but what are these to Americans when set in competition with that Liberty for which they nobly sacrifice their Lives_ the Troops will not dare to penetrate the Country_ of what avail will it be to England that her Troops should here and there have footing upon an uncultivated Coast; cut off from Sustenance and Necessaries of every kind, but such as shall be sent them from home_ that her Ships mann’d and victualled at a vast expence, should now and then seize an American Straggler endeavouring to force a Trade_ is this the End to be answer’d, by such mighty preparations and such an immense addition to the national Debt_ and how long will they be able to continue it?_
the Americans have already Sacrificed their Luxuries, and many of them have gone farther, the longer They live in a frugal temperate manner & the longer they are accustomed to Arms_ the more will they despise Affluence and its Incidents, the more will they prize Liberty and the better able will they be to repulse their Enemies_ I should not be surprized if like Pelasgus and his followers they should retire to barren Rocks, sooner than yield_ and I should glory to be one of their Number_ In Men there must be always powerful Motives to produce great Actions_ if this Struggle continues America will abound with great Characters_ otherwise by our Trade with the Mother Country, consequent Riches and Introduction of her Luxuries, we should soon have advanced from Infancy, to the Corruption of an old and ruin’d State, without ever having had any intermediate Maturity_
You blame your Countrymen in many things, and so must every Man who is not utterly blinded by party_ _ prejudice_ but tell me my Dear Friend whether in a Dispute of this Nature, where the passions have been so much raised, Men can avoid falling into frequent Errors; considering the Provocation, consider the great and glorious Object for which we contend_ and tell me whether Men can be as considerate & moderate as they might be, were the Stake less [torn] By-Standers will undoubtedly see where Passion has taken [torn] of Policy, where the Liberty which is meant to be establsih’d has suffer’d a temporary Infringement_ but this has been invariably the Case in popular Struggles, and Slight Evils must be endured that greater Good may come_ Our Poverty, and Loss of Trade I shall never regret, provided we can establish, either in union with Gr. Britain, or without her, such a form of Government. as will best conduce to the good of the whole_
I think we did not use to agree exactly in our political Sentiments, my Turn was rather more Republican than yours when we used to converse together at Geneve, and unless you have changed, we are still at variance in our Sentiments_ but there is one Thing I am persuaded from your Humanity and Love of Justice you will grant me_ I think we Americans at least in the Southern Colonies, cannot contend with a good Grace, for Liberty, until we shall have enfranchised our Slaves_ how can we whose Jealousy has been alarm’d more at the Name of Oppression sometimes than at the Reality, reconcile to our Spirited Assertions of the Rights of Mankind, the galling abject of Slavery of our Negroes_ I could talk much with you my Dear Friend upon this Subject, and I know your generous Soul would despise and sacrifice Interest to establish the Happiness of so large a Part of the Inhabitants of our Soil_ if as some pretend, but I am persuaded more thro’ interest, than from Conviction, the Culture of the Ground with us cannot be carried on without African slaves, Let us fly it as a hateful Country_ and say ubi Libertas ibi Patria_ You and I may differ my Dear Kinloch in our political Sentiments but I shall always love you from the Knowledge I have of your Heart. It has not fall’n in my way […] tho’ the Question of Charters you see, is not intirely laid aside_ I wish I could send you a Pamphlet lately publish’d by Doctor Price_ perhaps I may shortly have an Opportunity_ Adieu
John Laurens to Francis Kinloch, in a letter dated April 12, 1776
Transcription provided by Greg Massey. The bracketed ellipsis in the last paragraph indicates a part of the letter that survives but was cut off in the transcription I was provided.
John parked outside the apartment, sitting in the car and staring into space for a long while. It had been a long day and he was tired, sore, and not ready to deal with anyone yet. Not even his sister Mary.
This stone pedestal is not a monument to lives lost in the Civil War. It is not a monument to the poor farmers who opposed the rich man’s war and died in it anyway. It is not a monument honoring those whose counties seceded from their states and supported the Union. It is not a monument to the boys who left home and took up arms against their state’s misguided government. It is not a monument to the thousands upon thousands of slaves killed over hundreds of years or to any of those black southerners who died fighting for their freedom.
It is much simpler than that.
It is for the boys in the gray uniforms, and only for them.
It was erected to make a statement that they and their descendants were the only true North Carolinians, and the only ones who would be welcome in the courthouse behind it. It reinforced the Jim Crow laws of the same time, 40 years after the end of the war, and it has continued to do so until now.
Monuments are always weapons in the power struggle of ideas. That is their purpose; it is never to be simply tombstones or historical records. They can unite, and they can divide. And they do so deliberately.
Perhaps you don’t see it that way. You might see the monument as a simple marker people built to honor their fathers or grandfathers, and it is that, too. But it is foremost a weapon, just like all monuments and flags can be, and it has worked as one for almost 100 years.
The Boykin Spaniel is considered one of the best field and family dogs to be bred. They were bred by South Carolinians in the 1900’s who desired a mid size retriever ideal for duck and turkey hunting. The first reported Boykin began as a stray in Spartanburg whose name was “Dumpy” and owner was Alexander L. White. White took the pup home and noticed its desire to retrieve. Dumpy was sent to White’s hunting partner, Whit Boykin who trained the dog to become a superb turkey and waterfowl retriever. Dumpy became the foundation stock for the Boykin Spaniel and a breed was born. Today, Boykins can be found across the nation filling duck blinds, dove fields and family beds.
Chapters: 1/1 Fandom: Guardians of the Galaxy (Movies) Rating: Teen And Up Audiences Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply Relationships: Kraglin Obfonteri/Yondu Udonta, Peter Quill & Yondu Udonta Characters: Kraglin Obfonteri, Yondu Udonta, Peter Quill, Mantis (Marvel), Nebula (Marvel), Gamora (Marvel), Guardians of the Galaxy Team Additional Tags: Fix-It of Sorts, Yondu Lives, Kraglin-centric, Ravager Family Feels, Rebuilding the Ravagers, Family Bonding Summary: “Ain’t gone more than six months without needing your old man to bail you out of some kind of trouble.”
Yondu and Kraglin live in the now, rebuild their crew, and save the galaxy by virtue of being one okay dad and one very tolerant partner.
Author Notes: Back at it again writing in a completely different fandom. I am still very emotional about the back half of GotG2. For my best friend and beta @goddamnrey who cosplayed as Starlord this weekend and @write-like-an-american who made an excellent Kraglin at the same time (and has kept the Kragdu ship afloat for years). I’m a North Carolinian so any Ravager dialect I throw in is largely based on how I hear my family and the folk round here talk. Scavenger mechanic Barish based off of this beautiful idea from a lovely anon of write-like-an-american’s.