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Fri Mar 7th, 2014 @ 6:55pm

Clarice Darling

Name Clarice Emma Darling

Position NPC

Character Information

Gender Female
Age 19

Physical Appearance

Height 5'6"
Weight 140 lbs
Hair Color Blonde
Eye Color Brown
Physical Description Blonde hair cut in a short bob, wide brown eyes, thin, shapely figure. Usually dressed in designer clothes right on down to the shoes and jewelry. Never with a hair out of place. Never wears white after Labor Day.

Family & Friends

Significant Other Benjamin Hawthorne Shooter IV - 25, fiance
Children None - Yet
Father James Edgar Darling
Mother Mariah Clara (Rotherbridge) Darling
Brother(s) Edward "Eddy" Gabriel Darling - 21
Sebastian Louis Hart - 28, brother-in-law
Sister(s) Cynthia “Cindy” Grace Hart - 23
Other Family Gabriel Edward Rotherbridge (uncle - deceased)
Celia Marie Lynds-Rotherbridge (aunt - deceased)
Jana Lindsey Rotherbridge - 14, cousin*
Gabriel Edward Rotherbridge, Jr. - 12, cousin*
Cole Martin Rotherbridge - 10, cousin*

*Came to live with the Starlings after their parents died in a car accident

Personality & Traits

General Overview Force of nature. She knows what she wants, when she wants it. Known as a bimbette, with no brain and nice boobs, but one you don't want to mess with... ever, if at all.

Around her true friends, she's kind and strong, and more like Sandra Bullock than Paris Hilton. Does not feel the need to show her true self to those she feels would not appreciate it. Which eliminates most of Texas society.
Strengths & Weaknesses Strengths: Confidence (almost arrogance, except it's true), dignity, poise... everything a good Texas girl should have. She's got it. Including intelligence and biting wit.

Weakness: On the surface. Underneath, she feels she might not measure up if she shows her true colors. Uses her clothing to cover up her feelings, and is often cutting if someone makes her mad. Insecurities call for mascara. And lip liner. And eye liner. And blush. And maybe even stilettos. But never push-up bras. Those are tacky. Go a size smaller instead.
Ambitions To marry her sweetheart and finish her Economics degree. Gotta earn Daddy's money. And get great deals at all the best stores.

Seriously, Clarice wants to be happy. Ben makes her happy. She's not sure she wants to go into Economics, but even so much as suggesting something like Social Work would make her mother break out in hives. So she doesn't.
Hobbies & Interests Make up. Cross-stitch. Shopping. Reading the Bible. Church choir. Shopping. Wedding planning. Cocktail parties. Did I mention shopping?

A search of her room would turn up a couple cowboy romances (Benjamin runs the family ranch), a bag of clothes to discreetly give to Goodwill when no one's looking, and a few pamphlets to volunteer at battered women's and homeless shelters. Philanthropy, according to her mother, is best done through the pocketbook, not your own two hands. Unless you alert the media first.
Languages Texan, English (they're two different things, sweetie), French, and some Spanish only Ben knows about. :)

Personal History Clarice Emma Darling was born to James and Mariah Darling, two people in the high stratosphere of Dallas society, the baby of the family and loved and cosseted and spoiled from the day she was born.

Secretly, she hates two of those things. Guess which two.

Clarice has been sheltered her whole life, held back when she would have run, and not allowed to do anything the boys were doing. If she had been born into a different family, she would have been a tomboy. Plain and simple. Unfortunately, fate landed her here.

Why, Fate? Why?

Instead, from the age of five, when she first heard someone refer to her as spoiled, she's acted the part. She's done absolutely everything to make the general public believe she was just as spoiled as they thought she was. A bit of revenge, as it were.

The Gillies sisters changed that.

Oh, she was still spoiled rotten in front of everyone else. But Gemma, Claree and Rison know her better than that, after walking into the bathroom and watching her demolish, then reform her outfit during fifth-grade formal, complete with erasing all sign of tears from her face before walking back out. Her fortitude and penchant for systematic destruction impressed them, and soon after she became an unofficial ‘sister.’ They were christened The Fearsome Foursome when they walked into homeroom the first day of seventh grade in color-coded matching outfits.

In case you're wondering, Clarice was always pink. Pink is her signature color.

This continued all through junior high. Any boy that got anywhere near her was systematically assessed, categorized and ignored if they didn't meet the right criteria. This would happen to nearly every boy, as no one could hold up to such high standards. Clarice was very careful not to wind up with someone like her father.

Sophmore year, she found and fell for Benjamin Hawthorne Shooter IV.

Benjamin Shooter had actually been six years her senior, and she first saw him on the cattle ranch his great-grand-daddy started. At first, he didn't notice her. She was all knees and elbows and fifteen-year-old with the new clear braces she never let anyone but her 'sisters' get close enough to see. She'd never been more off her feet in her life. Not that she let anyone see it.

Benjamin did.

Her big moment was when she was learning to ride a horse. She'd really been trying to impress Benjamin at the time, and it had backfired in a big way. She wound up on her rear in the dust with half the field trip laughing at her, and she'd run away to the most discrete restroom she could find. It was the taproom for cowboys, but no one from her academy would find her in there while she dusted dirt from her bottom.

But guess who did?

Ben found her sniffing, slightly bloody, embarrassed and blushing in the taproom, curled up in the corner like a fool as she tried to figure out how she could go back out there and face everyone with a torn linen skirt. She looked at her worst. It was no wonder the man of her dreams found her at that exact moment. It had to be Karma.

Karma was kind.

Benjamin helped her to her feet, and got her cleaned up. They talked, and she found herself saying things to him that she'd never told another soul. They'd bonded over her injuries that day and became good friends. Then he gave her a bobby pin and she made herself presentable enough to go back to the group.

Who would not forget the incident for the next three days. Would have been three weeks, but Clarice lost her patience and no one felt safe after that.

Their romance would blossom from their friendship as she got older. In shades and shades of gray. Slowly. Excruciatingly so. Ben once told her that he would have seriously pursued her earlier, but he teased that she didn't have a figure until she was 17. It had, of course, been a joke but that comment had earned him the punishment of going shopping with her for a whole day while he was in town.

It was a just punishment. At least until she went near Victoria's Secret. Then Ben had called it overkill and took her out for barbecue.

So she could save face over not having a date, she'd declared Prom a 'bore' and spent the night on a hay ride under the summer moon, trying to get Ben to kiss her. Or hold her hand. She would have settled for that. She didn't like being a fool over a man, but he had managed to check every single one of her boxes. Her pursuit of Benjamin was well-known, and there were many that had pitied him. What Clarice wanted, she eventually got.

What they didn’t know was while he checked all her boxes, he also pushed all of her buttons.

Benjamin had always been the perfect gentleman. Never so much as a hint that he was interested all through high school. He was her 'escort' to her sister's wedding, but that was hardly romantic as her parents had bookended them. And writing letters during the school year to 'a special girl’: that might have been romantic except he always signed with just his name and never ‘love.’. Then his insisting that her *family* come to his ranch during the summer. Ostensensibly, it was to teach her (and her sister and brother) how to ride, But he always seemed to give her more attention... when she fell off her horse. Which she did, at least once a week.

It was subtle. Real subtle.

Her 18th birthday happened over her 3rd summer at Ben's ranch, which he now ran with his daddy's blessing. She'd just graduated from high school, and was going to go to Texas A & M in the fall (she was *not* going to be a Longhorn, thank you). Unbeknownst to her, before he went near her, Ben talked to her parents. With her being so young, he wanted to make sure they approved. Fortunately, he didn't have to fight very hard; they'd gotten to know him and where he came from and couldn't think of a better match for their 'strong-willed' daughter. She needed someone as 'earthy' as Ben to 'straighten her out.'

They clearly knew they had the right man, but for the wrong reasons.

Ben took her out on their first date that Friday. They talked, and he revealed that she seemed like the best thing to come out of Dallas in a while. They shared a kiss under a wide oak near the guest cabins that night. The moon was covered in clouds, but nothing about her relationship with Ben had been perfect thus far and she'd given up on the idea of it. He ran her back to her family's cabin before the rain started and she watched from the inlaid window as he got drenched in the downpour, running back to the main house.

At least she didn't suffer alone.

Unfortunately, their trip was cut short when they found out that Uncle Gabe and Aunt Celi had been in a car accident. They'd both been killed, but their children all survived. Clarice had watched Ben in her rearview mirror as they drove away to pick up Jana, Gabe Jr. and Cole from child services.

Family was, of course, above all. Like reputation and image.

Clarice heard precious little from her cowboy for the next couple weeks while the kids got settled in. It seemed like she and Ben were destined to live without each other until it was time for her to head to the dorms. Her parents had led her to believe they were going to let a driver take her, and she'd been upset about that, since they'd personally taken both of her older siblings themselves, but she couldn't stand against the three new orphans in her home, so she'd gone outside when it was time. The covered pick up that the help was putting her bags into was an outrage... until she saw the driver beside it.

She'd always thought running to one's love was cliche, but she still ran and jumped into straight into Ben's arms.

They would be engaged by Christmas. Snowed into an abandoned bunkhouse. With only Jana to witness the moment. The surly teenager hadn’t brought anything to the party but a bad attitude, but she’d been that way since she’d come to live with that, so that wasn’t unexpected.

With any luck, they'd be married before the Great and Dreadful Day of the Lord.

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