Astila calls a friend of his who works at the Smithsonian . He tells him he has some very special clothes he would like to be restored. So he makes an appointment to take the clothes to him. Luckily Aisling was able to get all of the clothes back from the cousins. He gets Sam to take him in his truck. They pack all of the trunks including the under garments into the truck. Going to meet his friend at the museum is going to be both fun and a head ache. Luckily he got permission to park where the employees does. Once at the museum he gives Chris a call. Within a few minutes several guys are coming to help him bring in the trunks. Going in through the employee entrance straight to Chris's office. There his team begins unpacking the trunks. They were amazed at how well taken care of they were. Looking at the wedding clothes Chris told him they would start by gently hand washing them in a mild soap. That sometimes that is all it takes. He inquired how he came by such a wonderful find. That these pieces were in better shape than many of the museums.
"They belong to my wife we found them in a closet in her house. The house dates back to pre revolution. It was a saloon /rest stop. Turned private home. It has been in her family for generations. " He told him about Onacona's teepee and water drum. As well as the clothes. He explained that her family was Cherokee,Irish,Spanish,Dutch,English and German. That some of her family came ancestors were actually related in some way to the royal family in England. Chris is like a child in a candy store around these kinds of things. His team are all a flutter when they open the trunk with undergarments. The lace and corsets were very ornate. The pantaloons were of the softest muslin. They noticed that every box had dried herbs in them. One of the assistants asked what they were. Astila informed them it was the purple was lavender. Inside the sachets are cloves ,rosemary ,mint,thyme. The small wooden chips are cedar. That they were placed in the trunks to keep bugs out and the fabric that was lined inside the trucks and clothes was raw spun cotton.
Chris takes a closer look at the worth gown the beads are a mixture of clear crystal and pearls. He gets his diamond tester out to be certain and there are a few rough cut diamonds as well. He looks at Astila you know this gown is priceless. Women could pay thousands for a worth gown . Now days it would be millions. They hear a squeal of delight coming from a female assistant. Astila smiles and tells him she must have found the shoes. There in her hands are a pair of rhinestone shoes . Chris looks at Astila and asks him if his wife would be willing to donate the clothes to the museum. Astila laughs at him and shakes his head nope.
"She wants these clothes cleaned so we can have them for our Thanksgiving wedding . We had an Irish hand fasting and she wore the green and lace dress for it. For our Christian wedding she wants to us to wear these clothes. Though a few of the brides maids wore a couple of them for our hand fasting . They want to wear them again for that. So what do you think can they be cleaned up for our wedding?" He looks at his friend hopefully.
" you know the dress isn't as yellowed as you think. In those days they did not just wear white. It may be the color it's meant to be. We will restore them and I will give you a call when they are ready. Tell your wife it's going to cost her though. I expect my team and I to get invitations to the wedding. I also want to have an exhibit with these clothes for just a few months. I promise they will be safe. " Astila shakes his hand and tells him.
"As far as the wedding goes absolutely but I can't promise she will let them out of her sight for long. " with that they leave for the team to get started. On the way home Sam decides to talk to Astila about Debra being so angry over Aisling having so much and her receiving so little.
"You know the other day when aunt Norma gave Aisling the necklace Debra went home in a fit. She is upset that Aisling has so many things now that have so much value where she has none. I don't know if it's because of the twins that she is being so jealous or if she is really resentful of Aisling. Even aunt Norma yelled at her for being so petty. I don't know what to do if she finds out how much those dresses are worth. She may just lose it."
" I don't understand why she would be that way. These things were in Aisling's house so why would they not belong to her. I mean each child was given things from their parents. Her and her brother were. They never had to work for them. Aisling worked to pay the house ,the funeral,and all of the debts left behind. She worked to pay for her education. How much more should she have to give them. Would she have been happy if everything was worthless. That Aisling only got the junk. Nothing of value. I like your wife but I do not like how she expects Aisling to just hand everything over to her. How she expected her to just drop everything when asked. That will not be something that will happen once we are married. She will have a life of her own. " Sam can hear the frustration in his voice.
"Before she knew anything of value was in those closets she never cared . She just assumed they they were just rags that belonged to the elders. She never even wanted to go into the other closets before aunt Jin wanted to see them. She just assumed that it was junk like what was in hers. When she found her cubby it was filled with these odd shaped rocks and stone arrows. She put them in the attic and used the cubby for her stuff. She was so upset when she saw the way everyone gushed over those old clothes. " Astila listens to Sam vent not interrupting him. It never dawned on him that Aisling's siblings and cousins could be jealous of her. Then he remembered that John and the commander both made a point of telling everyone that they had no rights to anything. That Aisling bought the house and property fair and square. That anything found on it was hers. He thinks he needs some clarification on a few things
"John's wife does she always put a monetary value on everything. I heard her telling Debra after the hand fasting that the dresses should be worth something. That each of the cousins should be allowed to choose. Why did none of the other family move into the house and take it over?"
Sam gives him a quick glance.
"Yeah she is very materialistic. When Aisling folks died she wanted to make them sell the house and split it between all of them including the elders. Though John and Steve would have none of it. Neither would Charlotte their sister. She said that her sister had given up her house to move in with the parents. They pay for all of the upkeep as well as any loans or bills that came up. They would get the house. I mean they put in over fifty grand to repair the floors. The three siblings were adamant . She was miffed because she knew they could get a lot for it. Enough for them to not have any bills at all. Then when they started asking about the closets no one wanted anything they just felt it was a pile of junk. So everything stayed as it was. You know she took pictures of everything except what's was in the closets and took those pictures to an antique dealer to see if anything of value was in there. The items he pointed out that had some she took and left the rest. That's why John says they are owed nothing. Then when Aisling's parents passed she tried again and the uncles stepped in again to tell her to back off that everything was Aisling's. That if Debra or Josh wanted something they could have whatever was not Aisling's. No one wanted anything. Josh got all of the bows and guns . Debra got what she wanted at that time. As soon as she heard that some of the things had real value more than what she got. She now wants Aisling to sell it all and divide it between all of the family. I personally don't think that's fair. That is what she is trying to convince everyone. " by the time they finished their discussion they were close to home. Sam dropped off Astila and headed home.