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Welcome back to Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday, weekly Sunday hops where writers share 8–10 sentences from a book or WIP. This week’s snippet comes right after last week’s, when soon-to-be-Empress Arkadiya arrived at Yelagin Palace, on St. Petersburg’s Yelagin Island, to discuss the style of her wedding dress with her future sister-in-law Tatyana. Arkadiya has just entered the dining hall.

Tatyana was known as a clotheshorse, someone on whom all clothes looked good. She loved fashion, and was quite good at making her own clothes, and clothes for other people. In her lifetime, she was the most famous and popular of the Tsar’s daughters, both for her nursing work and her exotic, regal beauty. Those who saw her in person said she had the natural look of a princess, someone whom still photographs can’t do justice to.

Tatyana was dressed just as regally and elegantly as she’d been at the measurement session, in a floor-length silk evergreen dress, with elbow-length sleeves, a somewhat defined silhouette, beading, and ruffles.  Her fashionably short hair was framed by an intricately beaded white satin bandeau, which Arkadiya suspected used diamonds.  In comparison to the plethora of jewelry Arkadiya expected all Imperial women to wear, her only jewelry were a simple string of delicate pink pearls, French hook onyx earrings, and her wedding and engagement rings.  The two little girls were dressed in indigo sailor dresses, and the boy wore a matching sailor suit.

“Welcome to our humble home,” Tatyana greeted her effusively. “These are my surviving children.  Pavel recently turned ten, Varvara’s eight, and Galina’s two and a half.”

“I’ll be nine in January,” Varvara said. “I’m eight and three-quarters, not just turned eight.  Galya’s also two and three-quarters, not two and a half.”

10 thoughts on “WeWriWa—Tatyana and her children

  1. She seems a bit intimidating, but I love the response of her daughter when it comes to their ages!

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  2. Children say the darnedest things! They want to get ages correct down to the day and minute if they could. That’s not changed at all. Loved the description of Tatyana’s dress! Very vivid.

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  3. Just curious: would a mother say “my surviving children” when introducing them to other children? Loved the child’s correcting her age. Cute.

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