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Leon Mege sapphire ring

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
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I'm SO confused.
The sapphire ring could have sold for 6-7k easily on consignment... Even via private sale, if you're willing to wait for someone who is looking for that sort of piece.
2k is insanity - it is not representative of fair pricing for that ring, even preloved (which yours is not).
The new mount, whilst lovely, is worth much less than the completed ring... And is made for a sizable stone and therefore has some height, which IIRC was your fundamental objection to your initial SB...
 

mamadelmar

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Sep 7, 2011
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I don’t think the sapphire ring was worth $6-7k, based on the estimates I got.

The mount is indeed far too high for me, which is why I won’t be keeping it.
 
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mamadelmar

Shiny_Rock
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Whoa - wait. You ended up selling a 10K diamond and ended up with two empty settings. Is this correct?
I’m so heartbroken for you.
He should of returned your diamond and sent you a bill for his time. He can sell his sapphire ring so he isn’t losing.
I don’t know how he can think that is ok.
Yes, that is correct. I was a dunce and truly hope others learn from my mistake. It is incredibly heartbreaking.
 

yssie

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I don’t think the sapphire ring was worth $6-7k, based on the estimates I got.

The mount is indeed far too high for me, which is why I won’t be keeping it.
So you're selling this new mount - the one with no centerstone that you just received?
 

mamadelmar

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Sep 7, 2011
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Yes, I think so. It’s gorgeous, but it’s too high for me. I’ve learned the hard way that the only way I can wear rings (and keep them on) is if they’re set low. This was from a ring he had in stock, which is why he agreed to it.

Would I prefer my original diamond? Absolutely! I wish I could go back in time and undo this disaster.
 
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pearaffair

Ideal_Rock
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Yes, I think so. It’s gorgeous, but it’s too high for me. I’ve learned the hard way that the only way I can wear rings (and keep them on) is if they’re set low. This was from a ring he had in stock, which is why he agreed to it.

Would I prefer my original diamond? Absolutely! I wish I could go back in time and undo this disaster.
I hope some good karma is on its way to you because this is a rotten deal you got. I wonder how Leon can sleep at night.

Sending you wishes for good vibes, good health, and better days to come. <3
 

mrs-b

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I think we've gone from bad to much worse here, @mamadelmar. A finished platinum ring with a high quality sapphire and substantial diamond detail would have sold for at *least* 5k. You now have a setting for a large princess cut diamond - not all that popular at the moment - so now to sell it, you need a person with that exact diamond size and shape. The setting looks like it needs a large center, too, meaning you've limited your market to people who can afford large diamonds. If you can sell it (and that will be a tough ask), I very much doubt you'll get more than about 2k for it.

I really wish you'd posted about this option, mamadelmar - I think we all would have done our darnedest to talk you out of it. :(sad
 

yssie

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I‘m having a really hard time faulting Leon for the way this story is progressing.

@mamadelmar, you’re making the financial hit you’re taking worse with every decision you’re making. I strongly suggest that you STOP before you do anything more.

Your stone is currently worth around $10k retail. In any scenario besides perhaps a trade-up with your original vendor, you can expect to recoup at best 70-80% of current retail. That puts an optimistic $8k dollar figure on your diamond. A trade is a less desirable scenario for any vendor, so the lower end of that estimate - 70%, or $7k, is more realistic.

Per the GIA, the sapphire you got from Leon is heated, origin Madagascar. Madagascar material is well-reputed. Here’s a comp, $3500 retail - it’s slightly heavier, but yours
(1) has origin on the GIA report (Gemfix summary says Ceylon but the GIA does not), and
(2) has better colour than the Gemfix stone.

Would Leon have charged you $4500 for the mount, had you come in sans trade in? Maybe. Probably not. But a pricetag of $3000-3500 I would easily believe. Mount plus stone puts you at $6500-7000... This is, objectively, an equitable trade-in outcome.

The reality is that if you don’t take aesthetics into account, you were not fleeced on the original trade. Those in this thread who are saying otherwise - discussion of Leon’s popularity aside, I recommend a review of the math.

I do note a surprising degree of carelessness on both sides in this transaction, given the amount of money involved - the trade paperwork that you posted lists your diamond as 1.32ct, but it’s 1.38 per GIA report.

I realize that you got quotes of under $2k for the sapphire ring. However, the fact is that this is not representative of what you could have sold for - had you been willing to put more time and effort into the sale, you would have more than doubled that takehome. In fact I’m confident you would have tripled it. Again, the stone alone is worth somewhere in the realm of $3500 retail, and the ring is brand new!

I completely fail to understand why you traded this option in for an empty mount that, whilst beautiful, is worth so much less. Mounts command next to nothing on the preloved market to begin with. Mounts with pave are difficult to size, restricting your pool of potential buyers. Mounts with halos have very tight stone size and shape restrictions, further restricting your buyer pool.

At this point the only rotten deals are the ones you yourself are now making, and the only lessons to learn are those you’re now deciding to put yourself through.

Again, if you’re looking for help minimizing your financial loss, please just ask us for help before doing anything else. Many on this forum are well-versed in selling preloved jewellery.
 
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Nikki1415

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I'll be honest, this thread has been giving me anxiety from the start and it's gotten worse. I just don't understand the logic behind the trade because a lot of people would've been interested in a complete ring versus a mount that was not custom made for a specific stone (especially at that price).
 

Acinom

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10,103
I agree with the above posters...
Would it be to late to exchange again to the sapphire ring. Beautiful sapphires are in high demand and it’s a finished ring!!!
Not many will have a diamond that happens to fit in that empty Leon setting.
 

Bron357

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4,338
@mamadelmar
1. Can you husband phone Leon and spin a yarn. Like you’re having a full on meltdown /breakdown over this whole affair and could he please just send back the darn sapphire ring and we‘ll send back the lovely mount that was swapped so you will stop crying.
2. Contact DK and beg nicely (he and Amy ARE lovely) and ask if he can Improve the setting for a modest outlay on your behalf?
3. Tell me what size MM round gem goes into your Sebastian setting and I’ll rummage through the gem haul. Wont be a diamond but if I have something it will be free!
 

Beautiful-disaster

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Messages
103
I‘m having a really hard time faulting Leon for the way this story is progressing.

@mamadelmar, you’re making the financial hit you’re taking worse with every decision you’re making. I strongly suggest that you STOP before you do anything more.

Your stone is currently worth around $10k retail. In any scenario besides perhaps a trade-up with your original vendor, you can expect to recoup at best 70-80% of current retail. That puts an optimistic $8k dollar figure on your diamond. A trade is a less desirable scenario for any vendor, so the lower end of that estimate - 70%, or $7k, is more realistic.

Per the GIA, the sapphire you got from Leon is heated, origin Madagascar. Madagascar material is well-reputed. Here’s a comp, $3500 retail - it’s slightly heavier, but yours
(1) has origin on the GIA report (Gemfix summary says Ceylon but the GIA does not), and
(2) has better colour than the Gemfix stone.

Would Leon have charged you $4500 for the mount, had you come in sans trade in? Maybe. Probably not. But a pricetag of $3000-3500 I would easily believe. Mount plus stone puts you at $6500-7000... This is, objectively, an equitable trade-in outcome.

The reality is that if you don’t take aesthetics into account, you were not fleeced on the original trade. Those in this thread who are saying otherwise - discussion of Leon’s popularity aside, I recommend a review of the math.

I do note a surprising degree of carelessness on both sides in this transaction, given the amount of money involved - the trade paperwork that you posted lists your diamond as 1.32ct, but it’s 1.38 per GIA report.

I realize that you got quotes of under $2k for the sapphire ring. However, the fact is that this is not representative of what you could have sold for - had you been willing to put more time and effort into the sale, you would have more than doubled that takehome. In fact I’m confident you would have tripled it. Again, the stone alone is worth somewhere in the realm of $3500 retail, and the ring is brand new!

I completely fail to understand why you traded this option in for an empty mount that, whilst beautiful, is worth so much less. Mounts command next to nothing on the preloved market to begin with. Mounts with pave are difficult to size, restricting your pool of potential buyers. Mounts with halos have very tight stone size and shape restrictions, further restricting your buyer pool.

At this point the only rotten deals are the ones you yourself are now making, and the only lessons to learn are those you’re now deciding to put yourself through.

Again, if you’re looking for help minimizing your financial loss, please just ask us for help before doing anything else. Many on this forum are well-versed in selling preloved jewellery.
To be fair he didn’t live up to his side of the bargain in the first place as that sapphire ring is not what was discussed and ordered on the job sheet.

I’m also going to assume that he is the one making the offers here - not her - so he is the one offering the bad deals. It’s not her fault for taking it - that’s victim blaming.
Why not just return the diamond to her, keep and sell his new sapphire ring he has said is valued at $14,000 and just send her a bill for his bench work? It’s almost like once he got her diamond he stopped caring if she was happy or not.
 

lissyflo

Brilliant_Rock
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To be fair he didn’t live up to his side of the bargain in the first place as that sapphire ring is not what was discussed and ordered on the job sheet.

I’m also going to assume that he is the one making the offers here - not her - so he is the one offering the bad deals. It’s not her fault for taking it - that’s victim blaming.
Why not just return the diamond to her, keep and sell his new sapphire ring he has said is valued at $14,000 and just send her a bill for his bench work? It’s almost like once he got her diamond he stopped caring if she was happy or not.
I respectfully disagree re: victim blaming. We all have a responsibility to assess our own options in life. OP has done her own research and seemed happy when she posted that the mount represented better value to her than the sapphire ring. It seems highly unlikely to be the case, but if that’s her assessment based on her independent research then I don’t see how it’s Leon’s fault.

He’s also unlikely to have the original diamond - with the lead time for a custom ring to be made, that stone must have been traded in months ago. Why should a vendor keep a stone (tying up their cash in it and affecting their liquidity) on the off chance that a customer isn’t happy months down the line? Regret is part of the risk with a trade in. If you’re not happy to take that risk, finance a new ring by other means.

Don’t get me wrong, LM definitely hasn’t covered himself in glory with this one, but there also seem to be parts of the story that may be missing or lapses in judgement on OP’s part.
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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36,205
Gosh, I’m so sorry @mamadelmar :(

Just read the rest of your thread and I’m very sorry Leon behaved like this. I’m sorry you couldn’t get your original stone back. I’m sorry for the whole mess.

To put it in perspective though. You made your decision so time to move on and forward. This might not be what others would do but this is your situation and no one else is living it.

You’re ok. Your DH is ok and hopefully your loved ones are also well.

This is just a *thing* and your well being (emotional and physical) is much more critical. Don’t let this eat away at you any longer. Yes, it’s upsetting but keeping perspective about it...just let it go.

Sending you lots of good thoughts and gentle hugs. And I hope eventually you find the ring of your dreams.
 

pearaffair

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My goldsmith is the kind of guy that when he saw a lady selling her 14k gold bangle on Facebook marketplace for $50 he offered her his real rates (89% of Gold’s market price) because he explained to her that that’s what it was worth. I’m so used to industry professionals looking out for their customers.
OP, I don’t blame you for the choices you’ve made. But I do agree with others that moving on ASAP will be the best course of action.
 
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yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
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To be fair he didn’t live up to his side of the bargain in the first place as that sapphire ring is not what was discussed and ordered on the job sheet.

I’m also going to assume that he is the one making the offers here - not her - so he is the one offering the bad deals. It’s not her fault for taking it - that’s victim blaming.
Why not just return the diamond to her, keep and sell his new sapphire ring he has said is valued at $14,000 and just send her a bill for his bench work? It’s almost like once he got her diamond he stopped caring if she was happy or not.
We have no idea who’s making offers to whom. Best not to make assumptions. My post was based entirely on what OP has told us about the transaction and what she’s posted.

As others have said, he most likely doesn’t have the diamond any more. Even if he did, how many vendors do we ever hold to a “trade in for custom work with a takebacks for regrets clause” expectation?

The original trade was fair from a dollars standpoint. This assertion is incorrect: The completed sapphire ring reflects all details on the work order. The problem is that the details on the work order don’t reflect what OP actually wanted. There were many opportunities on both sides to nip the ensuing aesthetics dissatisfaction in the bud, that neither party took. In fact, clearly neither party was particularly careful about the even the original terms of trade. A long time ago Leon made an old poster @CharmyPoo a ring that deviated from his work order; she pointed it out and he remade it to spec no questions asked - the words on the SOW are critical in any contract with any vendor of any type. What is a fair and viable “I’m sorry you’re unhappy” standard in this scenario? In my opinion having him remake the mount and splitting labour and materials would have been reasonable, given that there was negligence on both sides - was this ever proposed as a solution? We don’t know.

Also remember that we are immediately post-COVID. Remember that Leon is in NYC. Remember than Leon continued to pay personnel through the NYC shutdown, which lasted longer than anywhere else, whilst income intake dropped to zero. He may not have reserves for large “above and beyond” financial gestures like you’re suggesting. He might. I don’t know, I’m merely stating the possibility.

Inflated appraisals are the industry standard, unfortunately. You’ll get this sort of inflation from pretty much every vendor who is popular on this board. I concur, that’s not a good thing.
 
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mrs-b

Ideal_Rock
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Just as an aside, I'd love to hear who told you the sapphire ring would sell for less than 2k. Was it a jeweler who might have been willing to take it off your hands, by any chance?

I'd be very interested to hear what those same people think this new setting would sell for.
 

nala

Ideal_Rock
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Oct 23, 2011
Messages
4,149
@mamadelmar
1. Can you husband phone Leon and spin a yarn. Like you’re having a full on meltdown /breakdown over this whole affair and could he please just send back the darn sapphire ring and we‘ll send back the lovely mount that was swapped so you will stop crying.
2. Contact DK and beg nicely (he and Amy ARE lovely) and ask if he can Improve the setting for a modest outlay on your behalf?
3. Tell me what size MM round gem goes into your Sebastian setting and I’ll rummage through the gem haul. Wont be a diamond but if I have something it will be free!
Please do this!!!
 

mrs-b

Ideal_Rock
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Messages
7,402
I agree with @seaurchin's comment above.

@mamadelmar, I am SO sorry this blew up for you! What a pain in the neck! And it must be making you miserable. :(sad

I really hope things settle down for you - specially in your head. Don't beat yourself up about this; seriously, if it's the worst thing you ever do, you'll be a damn fine person in my book!

{{{{HUGS}}}}
 

MollyMalone

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Jun 2, 2013
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3,129
* * *
Also remember that we are immediately post-COVID. Remember that Leon is in NYC. Remember than Leon continued to pay personnel through the NYC shutdown, which lasted longer than anywhere else, whilst income intake dropped to zero. He may not have reserves for large “above and beyond” financial gestures like you’re suggesting. He might. I don’t know, I’m merely stating the possibility.
* * *
Actually, we taxpayers paid Leon's employees (and I'm guessing Leon himself since Leon Mege, Inc. operates as a S corporation) & subsidized the showroom-workshop rent and utilities. Leon Mege, Inc. received a Payroll Protection Program loan for $150,000 - $300,000 (the Small Business Administration's PPP database categories are not super-precise).

Presumably, LM Inc used the PPP loan monies for wages/salaries, its rent and utilities -- thereby qualifying for outright forgiveness, releasing LM Inc.from paying back the loan. Even if not all the monies loaned were used for those purposes, LM Inc. has 2 years to pay back the unforgiven amount at an annual interest rate of just 1%.

Wishing you all the very best, @mamadelmar , as you move forward! (I also would like to express my regrets to you for some of the comments in this thread.)
 

LightBright

Brilliant_Rock
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Mar 11, 2013
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737
The ring arrived today after a month of very unpleasant discussions with Leon. I am conflict-averse and had really hoped we could have respectful dialogue to find a mutually agreeable solution. The discussions turned into a terrible dance in which he would appear to be on the verge of offering a solution, but then would pull back. His tone would become pugnacious and he’d accuse me of being insulting. I’ve never actually dealt with someone quite like him and found it incredibly stressful, especially as I had come to him based on my enormous respect for him as a craftsman (which I told him repeatedly).

I won’t belabor all the details about our conversations except to say that I think he is rather myopic and focused on his immediate profit. Had he agreed to a mutually beneficial arrangement, it would have engendered so much goodwill and I would have happily purchased from him again in the future. I will also say that over the course of our discussions, I learned that he is not nearly the stickler for quality that he once was.

Originally, I thought I’d bring the ring to another jeweler to engrave or somehow revise once I’m able to do so. But now, I have to say that just looking at it gives me a stress stomachache (and up till now, I’d always associated jewelry with pleasure). This whole episode left such a bitter taste in my mouth. This was the most foolish thing I’ve done in a long time (and unfortunately, with the most valuable piece of jewelry I had!).

I don’t know whether I ought to try to sell it (perhaps along with my Barier setting) to fund the purchase of a pre-loved ring or if I should approach a vintage jewelry vendor about an exchange?

Some posters asked about the work order so I’m sharing it. It was too vague. Learn from my mistake! I’m also sharing Leon’s appraisal, which seems a bit high to me. 81618338-B4E7-4F62-B500-6599F962D09E.jpeg 31BC92E4-F8B9-4352-AE63-1CC5C8334271.jpeg 1E68B636-B96B-4627-B983-D22F761ED91B.jpeg E9302D03-110E-4767-B32D-7D65430760A3.jpeg BF3E9721-2FF8-42CD-B78F-C4A5CD19F0CA.jpeg CC9E0650-1C84-4646-B8D1-DCDFB67E9460.jpeg
Just chiming in. I look at the profile of this “Leon Mege” ring and see from the profile photo that the cathedral setting is actually not symmetrical! The gaps under the cathedral arms are both unfinished (rough inside) not the same size, basically an uneven look. I’m really puzzled. This seems like the worst bench job I’ve ever seen for Leon Mege. Not to mention that the design isn’t typically graceful. I’m puzzled and sorry for you.hz
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Actually, we taxpayers paid Leon's employees (and I'm guessing Leon himself since Leon Mege, Inc. operates as a S corporation) & subsidized the showroom-workshop rent and utilities. Leon Mege, Inc. received a Payroll Protection Program loan for $150,000 - $300,000 (the Small Business Administration's PPP database categories are not super-precise).

Presumably, LM Inc used the PPP loan monies for wages/salaries, its rent and utilities -- thereby qualifying for outright forgiveness, releasing LM Inc.from paying back the loan. Even if not all the monies loaned were used for those purposes, LM Inc. has 2 years to pay back the unforgiven amount at an annual interest rate of just 1%.

Wishing you all the very best, @mamadelmar , as you move forward! (I also would like to express my regrets to you for some of the comments in this thread.)
Thanks for this information @MollyMalone, I did not know how these loans worked. I very much hope he, and other small businesses that received these loans, pull through whatever our economy does next.

Mamadelmar, feel free to reach out on PS for help selling either piece. A number of us have sold pieces in these cost ranges, through various media, and we're more than happy to help with appraiser recommendations, consignment vendor introductions, listing photography and writeup, sale/trade WO/contract review, etc. We can help you get top dollar for the sapphire ring, if you decide to pursue @Bron357's excellent suggestion, or the empty mount - top dollar will be much higher for the former.
 
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annagene12

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Sep 13, 2019
Messages
431
Sometimes it is hard to know what questions to ask if you are inexperienced, how to collect the right diligence to make informed choices when you don't know what you don't know, and when to trust vendors (alternately, when not to). The beauty of PS, is that no one is financially motivated by one outcome over another.

I would operate under assumption that only you, OP, have your own best interests at heart in the matter here as it regards LM (separating out any other individuals, like your DH).

This forum is full of very nice, knowledgeable people who can hopefully help coach you through future decisions, or at the very least, equip you with the knowledge to confidently decide that their suggestions might not be the best option for you, which is okay! Only you know your own preferences best. If this setting you traded for was the setting of your dreams and you wanted to be unburdened with the sapphire ring because of the emotions surrounding it, fine. But if you are looking to make the most financially prudent choice, I think floating ideas past this forum is not a bad idea. I imagine the anxiety surrounding this whole mess is quite intense and makes decision-making a challenge.

I hope you find peace with all of this and I imagine you've already been given the best suggestions that you could have asked for.

Good luck.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
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55,806
I am a little confused, because she said:

"Things took a marginally better turn. Leon agreed to take the ring back in exchange for one of his settings *without* a keystone."

It sounds like to me that she traded the sapphire ring in for the princess cut halo setting. I wonder if that was a returned setting or one someone turned down, because he wouldn't ever make a halo setting without a center stone.

I do wish that you had asked us, because I do think you might have gotten $4-5k for the sapphire ring (especially if you had it engraved), and I think the halo ring will be very hard to sell at all. Someone likely would have to have a square gemstone custom cut to fit, and they'd have to like that setting. I think it will be hard to sell for $2k.
 

Sunstorm

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This entire story is leaving me with my mouth hanging open. I am almost crying for OP. OP you should really listen to this forum for advice and enlist the help of someone firm and rational, maybe your husband? I think this story keeps turning worse and worse. There has to be a solution! Do not give up!
 

luckyblackcat

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May 24, 2016
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@mamadelmar, I’m so sorry you’re going through this. I don’t think anyone outside of the situation can fully understand what you’ve been through but it sounds stressful and traumatic. I think the first thing you should do is take up @Bron357 ’s incredibly generous offer of a free gem from her personal collection, so that you can enjoy something given out of pure kindness from a supportive community. Then, you should ask for help finding a gem for the LM setting and sell it off as a whole ring ASAP. I hope you can put the bad experience behind you soon.
 
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