In my first six or seven books, I let my heroes give my heroines a wide assortment of jewelry. Rubies, sapphires, diamonds, opals, gold.
Not until I was writing my Spindle Cove books did any of this fictional jewelry result in any heavy-duty hinting to Mr. Dare around traditional gift giving times like Christmas, my birthday, or our anniversary. I mean, I’m sure it would be nice to have a big rope of rubies like the one I wrote Jeremy giving Lucy in Goddess of the Hunt, but I don’t know where I’d wear the thing. My wedding ring aside, I’m just not much of a precious gemstone girl.
But then I started writing a geologist heroine, Minerva Highwood (to appear in the forthcoming A Week to be Wicked). Minerva’s not much of a precious gemstone girl, either–but she’s an interesting gem, mineral, and fossil girl. And of all my heroines, Minerva’s the one who has added to my personal jewelry collection.
It started with this pendant, which I happened across at last year’s RT Convention. When I saw it, I knew I just had to have it.
Isn’t it beautiful? It’s the halved shell of a fossilized sea creature called an ammonite. Minerva studies ammonites. She’s so fascinated by their symmetry, she’s embroidered her bed linens with this pattern. (And yes, said bed linens see some action in the book, if you know what I mean. If the primeval sea snail’s a rockin’…)
And this year, as I’ve been working on A Lady by Midnight, the third Spindle Cove book, I’ve grown fascinated with blue john, a unique kind of fluorite found only in a few particular caverns in Derbyshire. They started mining it in the 18th century, so it’s found in quite a bit of Georgian jewelry.
For this, I broke out the heavy duty hinting. Mr. Dare might have ordered a one-of-a-kind pendant for me from a jeweler in England and had it airmailed… And I might have already signed for the package. But of course I can’t open it yet, and they’ve taken it off the website, so I can’t even find a picture! Here’s a similar one.
So there you go. Diamonds and rubies not so much. Fossilized sea snails and rare fluorite – yes, please! I’m weird like that.
If you could ask Santa (or the Romance Hero of Your Choice) for any piece of fictional jewelry to have in real life, what would you like to have? Do you have any pieces in your personal collection that have special literary or historical or personal significance?