Tuesday, 8 December 2015

LADY ANN'S DISGRACE: The Story So Far

Well as you can see, I'm determined to get back to my three day regular postings and that means the new Lady Ann novel will be starting again (sorry for the delay there).

Before we jump in, here's a bit of an overview of what has gone on before. Hopefully it will remind long term readers about what they've read and give new readers a chance to jump on.

Lady Ann's Holiday is still available on Amazon and Lady Ann's Folly will be released as soon as I can edit and expand it.

Enjoy...

What has Gone on Before

Being the story in brief that is more intricately told in the novels Lady Ann’s Holiday and Lady Ann’s Folly.



Lady Ann’s Holiday

In the spring of 1908, in the Yorkshire village of Griply, Lady Ann Neville, eldest daughter of the Earl, Lord Howard Neville and his wife Elizabeth, found herself being forced to visit London to be paired up with yet another unsuitable suitor. Ann didn’t want to go but as fortune would have it, she obtained the means to avoid the trip when she happened upon a pendant with the mystical power to switch two people’s bodies.

Ann made the dubious decision to trade places with Burt Harper, the dim-witted stable hand who tended her horse. Burt was sent off to London in her place feeling very bewildered and Ann remained in Yorkshire with a note giving her two weeks holiday from Burt’s job and plenty of money to spend.

Burt had long been in love with Ann from afar and he willingly went on with the charade, doing his best to fit in and pretend to be the real Ann. This came easier than he had expected as the pendant continued to work its magic long after the swap. Burt took on more and more of Ann’s ways and mode of speech until there was little to distinguish him from the original lady. He, or rather she, even started thinking of herself as Ann.

Meanwhile in the country, Ann found herself in the opposite position. The more that time passed, the more she found herself acting like a Yorkshire clod. Her accent became base and lowborn and even her intelligence and education slipped away. Soon she had lost all her refinement, carousing with the other peasants and frittering her money away. Her self-image began to shift as well until she, or rather he, saw himself as a lower class oike and identified fully as being Burt.

The new Ann in London met the man the original Ann had been intended for, but rather than pushing him away, this new Ann found herself falling in love. When the original planned two weeks were up, the new Ann decided to extend her stay in the capital so that she could pursue this new courtship, despite feeling guilty about trapping the former Ann in her place.

And in Yorkshire, the new Burt really was trapped. He was forced to work as a stable hand, shovelling dung and grooming the horses as well as numerous other pitiful labouring tasks. Worse, his personality continued to shift and he became fawning and obsequious to his betters, rushing round eager to please them. He even started taking on memories of his new life and, in desperation at his predicament, even started fantasising that he might remain that way – such was the hopelessness of his position.

In desperation, Burt made a gambit to retrieve the pendant from Ann’s bedroom, but was caught in the act by Hattie, Ann’s sister. Exposed, Burt was dragged down to the village square by the Earl and flogged then thrown in gaol. He was put on trial and put at risk of many years imprisonment.

In London, the new Ann’s courtship ended with a proposal of marriage and Ann eagerly accepted. Lord Richard Hurley, her suitor, seemed the ideal husband, but almost immediately he showed signs of being cold and distant now that he had obtained her promise.

Burt’s trial began with dire portents of Burt’s future, but at the last minute, the Earl decided to have him released on advice, via telephone, from the new Ann who was soon to return home. This required a substantial bribe to the magistrate, but though Howard Neville achieved his goal and Burt’s release, it got him in trouble.

Chastised by a local MP and very embarrassed, Howard laid the blame at Hattie’s door, chastising her severely. She, after all, was the one who had accused Burt in the first place. Howard made his daughter’s life miserable, leaving her fuming and wishing she could get back at him.

With Burt released, he gratefully accepted the return to his life as a servant. Even that was better than prison. When Ann returned finally it was in doubt whether he would even accept a return to his former life. Both Ann and Burt deliberated over whether to swap back. Ann had grown accustomed to being a titled lady and Burt was so obsequious now he was willing to do anything to ingratiate himself with his beautiful mistress.

In the end, after some conflict in which Burt professed his love for her, Burt and Ann reached an accord. The former Ann would remain a man and a commoner, ill-educated and dim, while the former Burt would hold onto the life of a cultured lady.

But Ann had been exposed to more of Richard’s coldness and she missed the promiscuity of her old life. As Lady Ann’s Holiday came to a close she was left questioning her decision and fantasising about a different switch – not to become Burt again, but to swap places with Mavis, Burt busty, bar-wench girlfriend. She didn’t want to stay that way forever but she longed to have her wicked way with the virile man and she had inherited the original Ann’s rather reckless behaviour.



Lady Ann’s Folly

With her reckless plan in mind, Lady Ann invited Mavis up to Griply Hall’s nearby holiday cottage. There, she persuaded the girl to a secret short-term trade. Ann became Mavis and spent a lovely couple of hours getting her pleasure from Burt who remained unaware of this new swap.

Things didn’t continue to go as smoothly though because Ann’s mischievous sister, Hattie, discovered Mavis in the holiday cottage and found out the truth. She allowed Mavis to take her sister’s place in the manor and when Ann returned she found herself trapped in the body of a common serving girl.

Richard planned to take his fiancĂ©e with him to Nockton Vale to meet his mother and, eager to make the most of her opportunity, Mavis pushed for a rapid departure. Ann tried to prevent the body thief from leaving on the train but was unable to. Mavis escaped in Lady Ann’s body, leaving the former Ann in hers and forced to take on the life of a humble barmaid.

The new Ann and former Mavis arrived in Nockton Vale in the East Midlands and set out to secure her new position, but Lillian, her future mother-in-law seems even colder than her son and more conniving. It seems that Mavis may have a challenge ahead of her if she wants to maintain any kind of power in her potential marriage to Lord Hurley.

Hattie had meanwhile taken possession of the magical pendant and she had plans of her own to take revenge on her parents. The Earl had blamed her for the debacle surrounding Burt’s trial and her mother had supported him. Hattie’s uncle’s family were visiting and they had just employed a new maid named Nellie. These events presented her with some ideas.

Hattie hatched a complicated plan and then set herself the task of carrying it out. By the time she was finished, her father, Howard, was trapped in the body of the new maid, Nellie. Elizabeth, his wife, was stuck as a four year old boy called Reggie, her nephew and son of the domineering Uncle Patrick. Nellie was temporarily using Hattie’s own body and Hattie had taken the place of her father.

Now a pitiful maid, Howard was forced to do his new duties. Hattie had made the body swap while he slept so he had no idea how it had happened. This left him questioning reality and wondering if he had really been a man before, especially as his voice and character started to become more like a servile wench. When he tried to challenge the new Earl, really his daughter in disguise, he was chastised severely and locked in the cellar.

Hattie’s plan had also made her mother be none the wiser to her true identity. Now stuck as a four year old boy, Elizabeth found herself being spanked whenever she tried to explain what had happened to her new parents. Like her former husband, she was forced to keep her head down and pretend that she really was Reggie, just to avoid being punished again!

While that was going on, Reggie had assumed her former place as lady of the manor, but his immaturity posed Hattie a problem and risked exposing her plan to everyone. To resolve this, Hattie made him write a hundred times that he was really the Countess and should behave appropriately. This caused the acceleration of the mental changes and helped him quickly assume many of the manure feminine qualities of the true Elizabeth.

Meanwhile in the stables, Burt was questioning his decision to remain a servant but he decided he had to make the best of it and his entire happiness hinged on his future with Mavis. He begins planning a wedding proposal but when conflict comes between them it makes him question even more the decision he has made in remaining a man.

At the centre of this ever more complicated tangle stands Hattie. She has achieved all her goals but in order to do that she has been forced to take on the identity of her father, the Lord Howard Neville, a man in his late fifties with a bald head and a thick silver moustache. She saw it only as a means to an end but in fact she has come to enjoy the sense of authority she has gained. Being a man is strange but becoming her father has allowed her to start seeing things as he would. The true Earl was a domineering misogynist and with the pendant’s mental changes ticking on, Hattie is seeing life more and more as he would, accepting the inferiority of women and seeing men as the more important sex. She still plans to change back into her own body in twenty four hours but it remains to be seen how much another full day as her father will affect her state of mind. Maybe she will take on his personality a little too much...

But that isn’t the development that threatens to change the course of this tale for everyone. It is the lowly Nellie, now in the body of Lady Hattie, who may prove to be a catalyst to new and shocking developments, for she seems determined to keep her new social position as a titled lady, and she knows where the pendant is hidden!





15 comments:

  1. Conflict between Burt and Mavis. Is that Book 2 or 3.

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    Replies
    1. Well spotted. That's going to be in the published version of Lady Ann's Folly.

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    2. ... along with numerous other new scenes.

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  2. Loys & lots of great news here, the most important is that you're much better. & also we will hopefully see a twice a week chapter. I can't wait to see how the stories develop - espcially how the would be Dahlia tricks or convinces the real D to under go surgery & assume M's awful life While the real M become Dahlia, the super model with her career resumed.
    Also of course how the new would be lady H manages to stay that way & who ends up as who. LOL!
    COntinue to get better Emma.

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  3. OOPS also a question you've mentioned fromtime to time adding dome 'missing' chapters to CLEANER where M has lessons in makeup up & modeling & deportman & clothes etc. Will will be seeing these here are in the finished book?

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    Replies
    1. In the finished book for extra Cleaner content (and Lady Ann).

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  4. Did we reach the end of Folly?

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  5. Can't wait .don't push yourself go at your own pace and don't over do things.glad to have you back

    Rob

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    Replies
    1. Glad to be back. I can't promise to keep things up yet but I'm trying.

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  6. Her self-image began to shift as well until (s)he, or rather (s)he, saw [him]self as a lower class oike and identified fully as being Burt.

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