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Melodies of the Heart: The Renaissance Fair (1)

The Scarborough Renaissance Festival was one of the largest renaissance fairs in Erehwon. Located in the district of Ashen the fair covered an around one hundred and seventy acres. The fair by tradition opens on Victoria Day and closes on Labor Day.

Melodies of the Heart : The Birthday Wish (5)

Jane took the offered towel from Katherine and smiled as he tried to clear some of the icings away from his face, fingers and from the front of his dress. Josephine helped by bringing out a wet rag that was used to get most of the remaining icing and a little from his dress. Susan, once she finished laughing guided Jane over to the table where the presents where kept, while she darted into the kitchen to fetch a broom and a dustpan. She started to clean up the mess while Josephine handed out the gifts.

Jamie in Cartoon Land (2)

You could almost cut the tension in the room with a butter knife. The last hour and a half had been the most intense, soul-crushing, mind-numbing one of my life. Once I had arrived, I had found myself surrounded by nurses and more than a few doctors. The doctors and nurses wasted no time in rushing me back to the exam rooms. And they wasted no time in drawing blood, X-Ray’s were ordered and they finally poked an IV tube in my arm. And they started me on drips. I don’t really know, once the IV was put in, everything became quite sluggish.

Melodies of the Heart : The Birthday Wish (4)

Once James had finished his bath, Josephine dressed him in the yellow and pink party dress, styled his hair and even applied a thin coating of lip gloss to his lips. Once he was dressed, she stepped back and nodded her approval as she watched the boy look down and blush. Her smile only grew as the boy turned upon his heel and peered into the mirror of the bathroom.

Melodies of the Heart : The Birthday Wish (3)

James took a deep breath as he reached under his covered and took hold of his phone. He then pressed a button and fell back down into the pillow. It was Saturday, and he wanted to sleep in. It was also his birthday, but he cared little about that. The only thing he wanted to do today was sleep and maybe level up his farm tools on ‘Magical Musical’ the latest title in a long series of farming slash slice of life games. Maybe if he was lucky, he could get a blue feather and propose to that cute rancher.

Melodies of the Heart : The Birthday Wish (2)

Sunday afternoon, after services, was the time set aside for the women of the foster home to sit down and enjoy a little afternoon tea and unwind from the week and get ready for another one. Sunday was considered a day of rest in the Forest Home, some of the children attend services either at the local Catholic, Episcopal or Methodist Churches. It was those three that supported the foster home with donations of either money or canned goods, but mostly money as cold hard cash was the sinew that kept the house running day to day, month to month and year to year.

Melodies of the Heart : The Birthday Wish (1)

Jane Caked.png

James was your average, not so average preteen. For one he lived in a foster home with a dozen of other tweens and teens. The home, was more like one big extended family, with the owners taking on the role of mother and father. While the supporting staff often acted as aunts and uncles. The older teens acted like big sisters and brothers to the younger ones and in some cases even mentored the younger ones.

Jamie in Cartoon Land (1)

Time seemed to slow down, really it seemed to grind to a halt. As the minutes ticked by, the fever seemed to get worse, the pain in my belly grew more intense and small beads of sweat started to form on my forehead. Each time I opened my eyes the room started to spin around and around and around. And what worried me the most was in one of the chairs of the room there appeared a shadow. The shadow looked like me, we’ll a version of me before I started taking steps to become Jamie.

Its Halloween Jamie Potter (4)

The first period was oddly peaceful. Nobody really seemed to bother me much. The second period a few people made passing comments about what happened. Those comments passed over my head, the third period, was when I caught hell. Hell as in my whole world seemed to fall apart. I’d been feeling on edge all morning, and my fight with my sister on the way to school had been bothering me all day. But halfway through my history lesson, my head felt heavy and I felt very weak all of a sudden. I soldiered on though.

Its Halloween Jamie Potter (3)

I woke up a little late the following morning. The sound of mom hammering on my bedroom door jarred me from my sleep. It took only a brief glance down at my phone to tell me why my mom was hammering on my bedroom door. I had overslept by a good half hour and was now running behind. Going into panic mode, I jumped out of bed, threw on a school blouse, slipped on a pair of panties, slipped on a skirt and forced on some socks and laced up my shoes.

Its Halloween Jamie Potter (2)

I could feel my heart beating like a jack-hammer as I followed closely behind Heather as she guided me through the front door and down the brick paved walkway. The bricks that paved the walkway cooled my feet. A large crowd had also gathered in front of our house, the cobblestone street seemed to be filled with costumed clad people who gathered around the tank that seemed a grander version of the tank used in the yearly “Hostage Exchange”.

The New Life of Jamie Sarah Potter (7)

Once I reached the alter, a acolyte wearing a black cassock and white surplice approached me and offered me a hug. I was shocked at first, till I noticed the acolyte had shoulder length brown hair and baby blue eyes and a soft heart shaped face, I could place the face but not the name, then when she spoke I knew who it was.

The New Life of Jamie Sarah Potter (5)

The lunchroom was filled to the brim with people, lunch today was watery chili, stale bread, warm milk and something that looked like a brownie. A rumor was going around school that Mr. Henderson had been fired, it seemed his outburst this morning had ruffled a few feathers. I considered that a small victory. I was about to finish off my watery chili when much to my surprise Joan appeared and sat her tray down in front of me.

The New Life of Jamie Sarah Potter (4)

My schedule for the year had remained the same. And so, according to that schedule as soon as I dropped the paper off at the office, I was to report to my first period class. That being “Natural Science”. And as expected Mr. Henderson stood there in the classroom waiting for me. He wore a different suit this time, instead of the fading gray suit, he wore a dark charcoal suit. What remained of his gray, thinning hair had been brushed over the best he could to hide the big bald spot. The lingering smell of Old Spice aftershave, tobacco and coffee hung around him like a blinding fog.

The New Life of Jamie Sarah Potter (3)

I was released from the hospital early the next morning. Daddy took us all out to eat at the newly opened McDonalds, and I was treated to a twenty piece chicken nugget. Now before I go any further let me say something. Benton is undergoing something of a growth period. In the last few months, two new businesses have open the first one is a McDonalds, the second is a Pizza Hut. Both are located downtown.

Madeline Makes Peace (4)

The Marian Chapel attached to St. Mary’s Episcopal Church was dark, it was always kept dark. The chapel was a small square room, instead of rows of pews, chairs with kneelers provided a place for the faithful to sit during the rare times the room was used. The chapel was only used for Morning Prayer and evening prayer. And on certain feast-days chief among those was ‘All Saints Day’ a set aside by the church to honor the dead and pray for those souls trapped between Heaven and Hell.

Madeline Makes Peace (3)

We soon reached the grave. The wind was starting to rise now and one could feel the cold touch of winter upon its breath. Linda placed her flowers first and then I did and we both then just stood there, standing to shoulder to shoulder if you will. As I peered toward the flowers, resting upon the frost covered ground, my mind wandered back to those ghostly visions of mom. Taking a deep breath, I quickly made a mental note to pay our local Episcopal church a visit.

Madeline Makes Peace (2)

Once we reached the car. We noticed another car pulling up into the parking lot. Once the other car was parked. The door opened and a woman with flaming red hair stepped out from the driver's side. And from the other side, a girl around my age did as well. The women with flaming red hair was the first to speak.

Madeline Makes Peace (1)

Ebenezer is a small crossroad’s community, located in the hill country of Mississippi. The hamlet can boost of around one hundred or so families, two small churches and two general stores and one carwash. If you your traveling down route fourteen and take a right at the crossroad’s and travel say a quarter of the mile more. You will find on the left-hand side of the road a small country church. The church is a boxed wooden church that looks like something straight from the history books. Behind the church is a small graveyard.

More Adventures of Madeline Brewer (6)

The gymnasium of Benton AG High was filled to the rafters with people. The noise of three hundred people, all shouting and cheering and hooting was deafening, factor in chants, calls, and cheers from the cheerleaders and the background music blaring from two speakers. And we’ll I could barely hear myself think. In the center of the gym, between the two basketball courts, there was a large plastic sheet, that was roughly the size of my bedroom floor. Sitting in the center of the sheet and in the center of the sheet, there was an old three-legged stool.

The New Life of Jamie Sarah Potter (2)

The morning sun chased away the strange dream. As soon as I opened my eyes, I noticed the IV bag was now empty and standing at the bedrail was mom and dad. Standing beside mom and dad where the two people from the day before. And beside them stood Linda?! Linda was dressed in a pale blue dress. Her hands were folded in front of her and her black hair was tied back and styled with a pale blue boy. Her eyes were firmly fixed on the ground.

More Adventures of Madeline Brewer (5)

In eighteen seventy-six a group of leading Yazoo County businessmen and planters came together to talk about the recovery of Yazoo County. The war between the states had ended with the southern armies being defeated in the field and the south ravaged and burned by Union forces. Yazoo County was a shell of its former self. The varies plantations sat in ruins, weeds grew where cotton once thrived. The levees, that held back the floodwaters had been broken by attaching union forces.

The Trial of Jamie Sarah Potter (4)

The Headmaster took a deep breath and peered toward me for a very long minute. Finally, he turned his attention toward Linda then he turned his attention toward Lily. After three minutes of silence, he pushed his seat back and stood up.

“What happens... Over the course of homecoming, does not reflect the values of the school. But I feel we should put that all behind us, don’t you all agree. I think I’ll let this matter rest.” He paused and walked over to nearby happen... he stood in front of the window, is back turned to us and his arms folded behind his back.

The Trial of Jamie Sarah Potter (3)

The Headmaster peered at me for a good long minute before leaning back in his chair. He shifted his eyes around the room and finally brought them back to me. A ghost of a smile formed upon the bowl of his lips as he folded his hands on the desk and leaned int.

The Trial of Jamie Sarah Potter (2)

The minute I reached the office, the office secretary, greeted with a small smile. She was an older woman, her iron-gray hair was pulled back in a tight bun. Her outfit, a white button down blouse, tucked into the waistline of a black skirt was free of wrinkles and dust. White stockings and black dress shoes rounded out the outfit. And as she stood upon the old wooden desk, her hands folded upon the clean, highly polished surface. She fixed me with a look.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (12)

I blinked and blinked again, had Lily really just called my name out? Taking a deep breath I peered toward Ben, smiled and leaned over and kissed him on the cheek. I then started to walk toward the stage. Where Lily stood, I was halfway there when I felt somebody reach over and pull me to the side. As I turned around to see who had graphed me and I was greeted with Linda peering at me.

More Adventures of Madeline Brewer (4)

As asked, I filled out the form and returned it early the next morning. The whole day passed in me taking notes, talking with a friend and catching up with the newest drama. You know your average school day. Around mid-afternoon, a student who belonged to the 4H club returned saying the Benton PTA Board had approved my request and informed me to wear a nice dress, but not too nice. Again the rumor mill started to turn, this time the rumor centered on the going ones at the old Lomond Farm.

More Adventures of Madeline Brewer (3)

The following day was really just your average day. Notes where taken in most of the classes, homework was handed in. The roll was taken, and the school's rumor mill started to turn more and more about who was doing what and who was seeing who and who was going to fight who after school. You know, your average southern day. Not that any of that concerned me, I had to keep my shoulders hunched over an open notebook and my nose buried in a textbook. The daily drama did not concern me... And the only time I ever tuned into the rumor mill was when I was the subject of the rumor.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (11)

Once Joan and I finished our little talk, I kind of started to look for Ben. Once more I had to wade through the crowds of people, somewhere dancing and others where chatting, boys flirted with girls and girls flirted with boys. All in all, it was your average dance. Finally a few minutes of searching, I found Ben by the refreshment table. He offered me a small smile as he passed me the paper cup.

“Have a nice talk with Joan?” He asked as he raised his paper cup to his lips and closing his eyes he took a small sip of the punch.

More Adventures of Madeline Brewer (2)

Johannes Malt Shop was a Benton mainstay, located on a few doors down from “Ginger Evens Bakery” and only a quarter mile from the towns only supermarket in town “Sunflower: Food store” it the main hang out for the tweens and teens all year round. And to honesty, really everybody stopped here to get a quick snack. There hamburgers, where to die for, and their milkshakes were the best around. Thick and creamy.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (10)

The gymnasium was filled to the brim with people. Colorful streamers hung down from the ceiling, romantic music filled the air with a loud tempo. Toward the back, there stood at least two dozen men, all dressed in coat and ties. Each one refused to look each other in the eyes as they shifted their weight from one foot to the other. Some played with the cuffs of there suits, other kept playing with there watches. Others just stood there, their arms folded over there chest and their eyes firmly glued to the dance floor. No doubt they were passing around small brown bottles of bourbon around.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (9)

I was guided into the bathroom of the gym and scrubbed clean. I had every inch of me scrubbed and scrubbed, I had my hair washed and rewashed. It took around two good, hot showers to clean every trace of slop from my hair, skin and personal area. The warm water felt so good too. My whole world became a vision of colors, as the smells from the shampoo, body wash and lotions filled the air. Once I was “Clean” I was ordered to dry off with a warm towel. Once I was dry, they ordered me to lotion up, something about making my skin shimmer. It was all very confusing.

More Adventures of Madeline Brewer (1)


Thanksgiving follows Halloween. While Halloween is all about the spooks, Thanksgiving is more about family and sharing the fruits of the earth. It was also the time of year people start playing Christmas music and every shop puts up a tiny Christmas village in there display windows. And considering that was in the south, I think the fake flakes of snow that piled high on the display tables, is the closest thing we’ll ever see to a “White Christmas”.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (8)

The minute I stepped inside the tank, was the minute I heard a metallic click. I was now enclosed in this thing, trapped. Taking a deep breath I looked up and noticed a few drops of green slime starting to seep down from above me. Katie, the head cheerleader from Manchester Academy was grinning ear to ear as she walked over to the left side of the tank. Wrapping her fingers around the chain she peered at me and in a menacing tone of voice whisper to me.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (7)

The bleachers on both sides of the field where filled to the brim with people. The whole school had turned out, with dozens of people waving small flags that had the school’s mascot on them. The cheerleaders where busy whipping the crowds into a frizzy. And thereby the side, My eyes firmly fixed upon the strawberry blonde girl being lead to our side of the field by three Manchester cheerleaders. Lily, Joan, and Mindy were there. The three talked with the other three and finally, Joan escorted the girl from Manchester over to a waiting table where our homecoming court sat.

Madeline's Saturday Detention (3)

I only had to wait a few seconds before the sharp sting to the paddle cracking across my backside flooded into my bottom. The first stroke of the paddle took my breath away and caused the tiny hairs on my arms to stand straight up. Coughing, I crooked out.

“One Ma’am,” I said as took a deep breath and waited for the next one. I did not need to wait long for the second one either for soon the paddle cracked my bottom again. Sending another wave of sting rolling into my bottom. The second strike once again took my breath away, but I forced myself to count again. “Two ma’am.”

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (6)

Once the shockwaves from Linda’s little outburst settled down. Lily reached over and took me by the hand and guided me toward the bathroom. While the other cheerleaders scattered, each one having last minute chores that needed be done before the big show. Her hand wrapped around mine, she pulled me into the staff bathroom. She handed me the gym bag, I blinked and unzipped the bag and there in the bag was the old cheerleading uniform I first wore.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (5)

Nothing really happen after that. The weekend came and passed, with me spending the weekend as Jamie. Since I had little pocket money, and my sister was likewise broke, we spent the better part of Saturday and Sunday doing extra chores around the house to earn some extra coins. Sunday afternoon, when we finally knocked off, the whole house had been cleaned from top to bottom, swept, mopped and dusted. We even tackled the corners and baseboards. I’m proud to say the whole thing shinned like new money.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (4)

With daddies money in hand. Mom, Lily and I headed to Johannes Malt Shop, Benton favorite and only mom and pop burger joint. Once we walked through the door, the smell of beef patties being grilled on a open flame hit us like a ton of bricks. Once we were inside, mom guided Lily and I toward a table. Once we were seated a women around Lily age appeared. She had honey blonde hair and deep blue eyes. She smiled toward each of us and placed a small paper menu down upon the table.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (3)

Lily did my hair and makeup. She wanted to do more, but the chime of the front door filled the air. Mom and dad were home early it seemed. Lily blinked and stood me up, and took me by the hand and guided me down the hallway and then down the stairwell and finally we reached the foyer. And there in the doorway stood mom and dad, see mom and dad worked together, my family was.. I guess you would call us bourgeoisie. We owned and operated a store in downtown Benton ‘Potter Mercantile’. It was among the oldest businesses in operation. And my sister and I attend Benton Academy.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (2)

That afternoon, as I peered toward the glowing computer screen of my laptop. Wrecking my brain for ideas and lead ins for the rp post I was working on. I noticed the door of my bedroom open and there in the doorway stood my older sister. She had changed out of her school uniform and into something more casual. A pair of jeans and short sleeve shirt that had the logo of a popular girls band written across it. She stood there, eyeing me for a minute before she moved into my bedroom.

The Adventure of Jamie Potter (1)

It was the week before homecoming. All of Benton Academy was in full swing, the school was bustling with activity. It seemed every club, no matter there social ranking was doing something to contributed to the festive air filling the hallways. The football players where kings of the school, having just handed St. Katherine’s Episcopal Academy a crushing defeat. If the football players where the kings of the school, then the cheerleader’s where princess. If the cheerleader where princesses that made my sister chief-princess because she was the captain of the varsity cheerleaders.

Madeline's Saturday Detention (1)


The weekend before thanksgiving, found me trotting down the sidewalk through the predawn darkness. Benton was undergoing something of a Indian summer, along with the rest of central Mississippi. The hard killing frost of late October, had been replaced with warm, almost early spring weather.

Its Halloween Madeline!

The leafs on the trees had turned from green to orange and brown. The last of the soybeans and cotton was being harvest and the air was starting to become cooler. Pumpkins where starting to appear in the produce department of Sunflower, and sweaters, long skirts and leggings where starting to replace tank tops, sundresses and bikini bottoms.

The Adventures of Madeline Brewer (8)

The steaks I’d brought from Sunflower turned out to be perfect and my sister had seasoned and charbroiled them to perfection. We rarely ate steak, but tonight my sister wanted to celebrate. Celebrate what I have no idea, I did know she been working around the clock this week. Some crops where coming in on the farm and that required the hiring of extra field hands. Those crops where in now and had already been sold and a check for them deposited into the farm account. That much I knew from the small bits and pieces from over hearing my sister talking to some of her friends.


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