The following story and its preceeding chapters will be unadulterated Mush fluff. I hope you enjoy.

Chapter 1: Adele

Adele von Tussle offered a gloved hand to the new butler of the house and gracefully stepped out of the carriage, careful not to dirty her new shoes. Her father had put down a full $50 on them, but she didn't seem to think he even cared. Maybe he hadn't even picked them out, but had one of her old maids or nannies do it for him. After all, he was so incredibly busy these he had always been. There was never time for Adele in his schedule and she was used to being brushed aside.

"These steamer trunks go in Miss Adele's room." her aunt told the black porters in her thick German accent.

Adele tossed her flaxen colored curl and looked more closely at the men. Adele had grown up her entire life in a stuffed up aristocratic castle in Germany. She didn't have much exposure to people outside her class besides servants and nannies. She had been shipped to live with her aunt in New York City to attend a "fine school for girls" as her father put it. Adele knew it was only a way to get her out of the house, for even though the girl was devastatingly pretty, there was something about her that made her father cringe and look away when he saw her, something she never understood.

"Come on Adele, don't stare at the help." her aunt chided her, pulling her arm closer to the entrance of the grand home she owned.

She couldn't help herself. She had never seen black people before. Adele had read about them in books and found their plight rather curious, but she had never seen one in the flesh. She couldn't help but marvel at their skin tone and the curls that stood atop their heads.

"Adele! I said come along child!" her aunt told her severely once again in German.

Adele nodded and daintily stepped across a puddle that had gathered in the brick before her aunt's estate.

Her aunt led her briskly through her home, decorated with the usual expensive artwork, grand piano, clocks as expensive as an entire house. The quick tour ended in Adele's new bedroom where the curious black men had laid her three steamer trunks. Her new bedroom was a little smaller than her one at home, but she expected it now that she was living in the city and not the country any longer. The theme of it was baby blue and white, with a soaring canopy above the bed and frills and lace everywhere the eye could see.

"I'll see that Maisy gets your dresses hung up as quickly as possible." her aunt told the exhausted looking young thing.

'What a tragic life she's led,' her aunt thought to herself surveying young Adele. 'At only fifteen she's cast three thousand miles from her father because poor Henry can't bear to see her everyday. She's a constant reminder of who he's lost and a constant reminder that more days keep flowing by, seperating him even further from his dear one.'

Adele nodded at her aunt, exhausted from her three thousand mile journey. The three weeks of travel had ceased here and she was glad to have a warm bed and be able to look out and see actual land and people and not the constant wave of the ocean.

"After Maisy puts your things in, she'll draw a bath for you. After that you'll be expected to read or entertain yourself quietly up here until you fall asleep. Breakfast is served promptly at 8AM in the dining room. You are not a child anymore, I won't have you taking meals by yourself any longer the way your father insists."

Her aunt nodded swiftly and hugged the child awkwardly before imploring Maisy, the comical Irish maid, to quick slacking about and hang up Adele's dresses with care. Truth be told, her aunt hadn't seen Adele since the child was seven and not been around children very much, much less teenagers. She didn't know what to do with Adele or how she should be treated. She reasoned the girl had been left alone enough in her life and knew how to get by in that way. Anyhow, in a year Adele would "come out" to society and no doubt the flower of a girl would be married off before she finished high school. Then her aunt wouldn't have to worry her head about her young charge any longer.

After Maisy unpacked Adele's dresses and she'd had her bath, Adele put on her favorite flannel nightgown. She didn't care that it was in the middle of summer and she ought to opt for her thin cotton dress. This flannel nightgown had always been her favorite. When she was six, she wore it, even though it was much too big and her nanny joked that she looked like she was drowning in it. Now, at 15, the sleeves which had once drowned her small hands were up to her forearms and the hem of the gown up to her calves. It was familiar.

Too tired to read any, Adele climbed into her new bed and found it surprisingly comfortable. She liked down feathered blankets and pillows most of all and wondered if her aunt had known. She doubted it. She didn't think anyone even knew which color she prefered best.

After blowing out the lamp that sat on her night stand, Adele rolled over onto her side and let the sounds of the city flow into her room with the warm summer breeze. She didn't know if she could sleep, what with all the shouting coming from street level.

"Damned peasants." She sighed as she tried to muffle out the sound somehow.

'Like it or not, this is your new home,' she told herself. 'Get used to it.'