Home of the Bluestocking Belles

Because history is fun and love is worth working for

Author: Jude Knight (Page 1 of 2)

Gossip makes the march go faster

In the 18th and early 19th centuries, soldiers’ wives were the army support crew, scavenging for food, mending and washing clothes, nursing the wounded, and even working alongside the men.

“Thought you’d be with the wounded, Maggie,” Becky Watson said, trying but failing to keep the glee from her tone. Maggie Palmer had been lauding her extra income and increased status over the other women since she’d won the coveted nursing position, and Becky was not the only one to rejoice in her downfall.

Maggie glared at the girl who rode her donkey twenty yards in front of them. Fifteen years old, newly married, and taking up the duties of the real doctor, her father, who had collapsed with an apoplexy on the day she married Melville.

Lady Melville didn’t notice Maggie. All her attention was on the cart carrying those fit enough to be dragged along with the regiment to their winter quarters, her father among them. For the moment, she was the closest the regiment had to a regimental surgeon. 

“Wash, wash, wash. And every bucket needing to be carried from the river and heated over the fire. I washed this morning, I told her, and I’ll be damned if I wash again. And changing the sheets every day, and all that rubbish. Thinks she’s so much better than us just because she managed to snare a baronet.”

“Captain Brownlie always makes the nurses wash,” Becky pointed out. She’d been appointed nurse herself until little Freddie was born, but Captain Brownlie wouldn’t have women with children in the hospital quarters.

She hoisted the toddler higher onto her hip and kept trudging. The women had left camp as soon as possible after first light, and had been walking for an hour. They’d be another seven on the road. Becky could do with Lady Melville’s donkey, and that was a fact.

Maggie hadn’t finished complaining. “She isn’t her father. She’s not an officer, or even a proper doctor. She has no right to order me around.”

This charming painting purports to record a moment in history, when a child with a French regiment was put on the tomb of a knight to sleep, out of the way of a fight, covered by his father’s jacket.

Maggie was a fool. As long as the Colonel backed Lady Melville’s commands—as he had when Maggie went bleating to him with her complaints—the lady had every right to order the nurses about.

But all the wives knew Maggie was bitter because her former services to Lieutenant Sir Gervase Melville had stopped when he suddenly up and married. And Becky would bet her best iron pot that Maggie did a lot more for him than cooking and cleaning. Mind you, Lieutenant Melville didn’t confine himself to regimental widows like Maggie. He had dipped his toes in a lot of other soldiers’ bedrolls, as well as the local bits of fluff who came out to serve the regiment wherever it camped.

Swiving locals would be frowned on, but tupping the wives of his soldiers was worse. Mind you, it would be the woman who paid if anyone spoke out of turn. She’d be drummed out of the regiment and lucky if she was given the passage home. And the Lieutenant would get a rap on the knuckles.

“I’m going to tell the Lieutenant,” Maggie declared. “He’ll make her take me back.”

Becky stopped to move Freddie to the other hip, then hurried to catch up. “Don’t make trouble for her, Maggie. She has it hard enough. You know what he’s like.”

None of the wives believed the poor girl had suddenly started tripping over tent pegs and bumping into corners. Melville had been horrified when forced to marry the doctor’s daughter, and Melville in a temper was a nasty man.

But Maggie was obdurant. “Serves her right. She made her bed when she seduced him. She’ll just have to lie in it.”

Becky shook her head. No point in arguing. Maggie had her mind made up, but Becky didn’t believe Lady Melville seduced the baronet. Not her. As nice and as ladylike as the Colonel’s wife, who Becky had served as maid back when she first married Watson, while the regiment was still in England.

In any case, anyone with eyes would know it hadn’t been Melville that the doctor’s daughter wanted.

Becky sighed. She was a happily married woman, and a mother. But even she could see the appeal of Captain Alexander Redepenning. It was over now, of course. Lady Melville had made her choice and was stuck with it.

And how it happened, Becky couldn’t fathom.

“Yes. That’ll do. Gervase will help me.” Maggie slid her eyes sideways to see the effect of her use of the baronet’s personal name.

Suddenly sick of the other woman’s nastiness, Becky decided to take a stand. “Watson says the Colonel’s wife has come over to join him in winter quarters. Used to be her maid, I did, and she still has a fondness for me.”

“Not as fond as the Lieutenant is of me,” Maggie smirked.

“Yes, well, that’s the point, isn’t it. The Colonel will want her to check that the camp followers are,” Becky quoted the oft-repeated demand of the regimental regulations: “sober, industrious, and of good character. Don’t worry about it, Maggie Palmer. If they find out what you’ve done with the Lieutenant, you’d likely get your passage home. If the Colonel is in a good mood.”

Maggie frowned. “Are you threatening me?”

Becky shrugged. “Take it how you will. But leave Lady Melville alone.”

 

Their marriage is a fiction. Their enemies are all too real.

Ella survived an abusive and philandering husband, in-laws who hate her, and public scorn. But she’s not sure she will survive love. It is too late to guard her heart from the man forced to pretend he has married such a disreputable widow, but at least she will not burden him with feelings he can never return.

Alex understands his supposed wife never wishes to remarry. And if she had chosen to wed, it would not have been to him. He should have wooed her when he was whole, when he could have had her love, not her pity. But it is too late now. She looks at him and sees a broken man. Perhaps she will learn to bear him.

In their masquerade of a marriage, Ella and Alex soon discover they are more well-matched than they expected. But then the couple’s blossoming trust is ripped apart by a malicious enemy. Two lost souls must together face the demons of their past to save their lives and give their love a future.

Jude Knight’s book pageSmashwords # iBooks # Barnes and NobleAmazon US

Hearts and Hope at Hollystone Hall

Sam Clemens, proprietor of The Teatime Tattler, bought the stablemaster another mug of dark bitter, his fifth by Sam’s count. It was a powerful brew, and Sam was still nursing his second. He wanted to keep his own wits, and befuddle those of his companion. Bellowes must have a head of pure oak, for he was still upright and coherent, though he was speaking a bit more loudly and gesturing wildly to punctuate his points.

“Not a beauty, not by our measure,” he was saying. “The head was too small and the back too long. But a magnificent beast, for all that. And what that there viscount could do with him! You’d not believe it, and that’s a fact.”

Viscount? The matter was in some dispute, since the man in question was the offspring of a ducal heir and a foreign woman, the marriage (if it happened at all) taking place in some place high in the mountains at the rear end of the Persian empire.

Bellowes would be of little use if he could not be persuaded to talk about anything but horses.

“I’m surprised the Haverfords invited Lord Elfingham,” Sam said. “It’s no secret that His Grace is behind the move to have his father’s marriage declared invalid.”

“As to that, he arrived unexpected,” Bellowes declared. “His horse came up lame, he said. Good trick that. He was courting one of the Belvoir ladies, and that’s the truth. Clever horse, like I told you.”

Not back to the horse again! Sam thought quickly. “He wasn’t the only unexpected arrival, I heard. You’d see them all, in the stables.”

“That I do. That I do. Let me see. There was the young Hebrew. Nice fellow. Turned up bright and early on one post horse, leading another. He came a courting too, by all accounts. Them up at the house say he’d been on a mission for the Duke of Wellington himself! Think of that. Well, he had his own mission at Hollystone Hall.”

Yes, Sam had heard about that. Some relative of Baumann the banker, and Baumann’s daughter was a guest at the party.

“And young Lord Jonathan, of course. He was only here for a couple of days, though, and then he and Lord Aldridge ordered the carriage, and took off for London. And Lady Sophia Belvoir went with them! A nice lady like that. Who’d have thought it.”

“House parties can be scandalous places,” Sam suggested, hoping Bellowes would confirm with some more gossip.

But Bellowes shook his head, saying staunchly, “Not parties run by the duchess. A lot of billing and cooing, mind you. But no hanky-panky. Let me see. We had Lord Nicholas Lacey exchanging a kiss for a big donation to Her Grace’s charity. That’s what the party was for, you understand. To raise money for education.” He shook his head again, more slowly this time. “Though what women need with an education I don’t know.”

Sam responded with a neutral sound that Bellowes could take as he liked, and Bellowes continued.

“His brother-in-law, too. Mr Durand was here with his betrothed, and they seemed like a fine couple. I got to know the young ladies a little, Lord Lacey’s daughter and Mr Durand’s. They used to come down with the other schoolroom chits to feed the horses. That oriental? Gentle as a lamb.”

Sam leapt in before Bellowes could return to the horse. “You had a wedding, I’m told.”

“That we did. An earl and an actress, if you can believe it!”

Sam, who had seen Miss Halfpenny on the stage, could easily believe that the reclusive Earl of Somerton was besotted, but marriage? Society was shocked, but rumour had it that the two most concerned were blissfully happy.

“His cousin wasn’t best pleased. Took off early, he did. Just as well, too, because we’d not have had room for the Woodville coach or Lord Stanton. They arrived just in time for the ball on the last night, though they’d been expected right at the beginning.”

Sam could smell a story, could all but taste it, but no one was talking. Lord Stanton, his sister Miss Lockhart, and his stepmother had left London together, as had Miss Woodville and her brother. Lady Stanton had arrived at the party at the beginning, Lord Stanton had later appeared on his own. Miss Lockhart had not only come with the Woodvilles, she was actually married to Mr Woodville. He would keep digging. Someone must know what had happened.

“Two weeks of romance,” he commented.

Bellowes eyes were drooping, but he opened them again. “That they were, and the servants’ hall abuzz with our own.” He chuckled. “The French chef and the duchess’s cousin. Who’d have thought it?” With that, he toppled forward onto the table, and in moments was snoring. Sam would get no more out of him tonight.

Mr Bellowes is talking about characters and stories from the anthology Holly and Hopeful Hearts. You can read the blurbs for each story here, and get the buy links. Furthermore, the collection is on special this month for only 99c, which is pretty good for 680 pages of fiction!

•*☆Holly & Hopeful Hearts is a RONE nominee☆*•

PLEASE VOTE!!
The Bluestocking Belles were thrilled to learn Holly and Hopeful Hearts became a RONE nominee with InD’Tale Magazine. Voting begins for the Anthology category from April 24th – April 30th but you have to be signed in to the website to vote at www.indtale.com. It is easy to register, and you won’t be sorry—it is a great little magazine.

The Bluestocking Belles would sincerely appreciate your support by voting for our box set since this round is reader based. Starting Monday after you sign in you can vote here: http://www.indtale.com/2017-rone-awards-week-two

Thank you for your support from the Bluestocking Belles.

Scandal at the Chipping Niddwick Assembly

Dear Editor

Let me start by saying that I abhor gossip, and despise scandal-mongers above all things. However, I cannot fail to comment on the recent events at would should have been a decorous event in support of an excellent charity. As a good Christian gentleman, I am well aware that we gentry have a duty to set an example to the lesser sort, and part of that duty is to castigate outrageous behaviour on the part of those who should know better.

I speak, Sir, about the recent Whitsunweek Assembly at Chipping Niddwick. The committee who organised the event did us proud. Imagine the delight of our young ladies when not one by two earls attended the affair, both single gentlemen. A baron and viscount were also in attendance, with their respective wives. Such illustrious company for a small country town.

Or so we thought.

Before the night was out, all of them would show their true colours.

The younger of the two earls was observed in seclusion with the baroness (in circumstances that would have demanded the parson’s noose had the lady not already been married). It should have come as not surprise; both Lord S. and Lady Cgm. are often lampooned in printers windows in London for their outrageous behaviour. We regret that they brought their London ways to our virtuous town.

Meanwhile, Lord Cgm. was on a venture of his own, attempting to set up an assignation with a married lady who, we are told, rebuffed him. Lord Cgm. does not, as a rule, show an interest in married ladies, preferring much younger girls, to the extent that no parent will allow their daughter to take service in his house, and Lady Cgm. has to fetch her maids from the orphan asylums of Bristol and Bath.

The other earl. Lord Chby. returned from Canada claiming to be a widower, though rumour has it that his first wife, if the union was in fact blessed by the church, was a native woman. Fortunately for his esteemed name and title, the woman died several years agoand her brats with her.

We saw no signs of grieving last night, since Lord Chby. brought with him a woman (we do not consider her a lady) who could only be his mistress, given the heat with which he regarded her all evening. Mrs. H. is known in this community, and has until now been trusted despite her mysterious appearance here six years ago. Now questions are being asked about the resemblance between her daughter and Lord Chby.

Finally, a cousin of Lord Chby. caused a stir in an invalid’s chair, and inadvertently uncovered the clay feet of the last of our cast of peers. Major A. R., injured in the line of duty, was not content to merely watch the dancing from the sidelines, but insisted on joining in. When his chair collapsed under the unaccustomed exertion of the dance, its maker proclaimed herself. Imagine our shock when we discovered she was none other that Lady A., viscountess of Lord A.

I have, honoured Sir, ignored rumours that Lord A. has made his money from trade. His father was a much respected rider to hounds, though he did marry down. Apparently, the son takes after his father in his low taste in spouses and his mother in his prediliction for activities unbecoming to a gentleman.

Sir, I am advised that the committee thought long and hard before allowing Assembly tickets to be sold to anyone who could raise the price, fearing to lower the tone of the event by letting in the lower sort. May I suggest that next year they raise the tone of the event by excluding the higher sort.

I remain, Sir, your obedient servant,

Sir A. P-H. Bart.

A Raging Madness, the second book in the Golden Redepennings series, will be released in May

The Assembly at Chipping Niddwick is the highlight of the social calendar in my book Farewell to Kindness. If you want to know what Lord Selby did with the Bad Baroness, Lady Carrington, what Mia Redepenning told Lord Carrington, and whether or not Lord Chirbury succeeded in seducing Anne Haverstock, all the answers are in that book.

Revealed in Mist discloses why Lord Selby is hiding out in the country. (The investigation in Revealed in Mist and the one in Farewell to Kindness dovetail.) The young viscount and his lady who first appeared in my imagination at this assembly, demanded to have their story told in the book that became Candle’s Christmas Chair. And Major Alex Redepenning will reappear as hero of A Raging Madness, where we will finally find out how he got injured.

A new cover, so hot off the press it isn’t in the eretailers yet.

Hidden from the earl who hunts them, Anne and her sisters have been accepted into the heart of a tiny rural village. Until another earl comes visiting.

Rede lives to avenge the deaths of his wife and children. After three long years of searching, he is closing in on the ruthless villains who gave the orders, and he does not hope to survive the final encounter.

Until he meets Anne. As their inconvenient attraction grows, a series of near fatal attacks draws them together and drives them apart. When their desperate enemies combine forces, Anne and Rede must trust one another to survive.

Buy links:

Kobo * iBooks * Barnes & Noble * Smashwords * Amazon Kindle

The Secretary’s Secret

Sebastian Beringer covered his notes with one arm, trying to do so in a way that would not draw fire from his angry employer. If need be, he would claim he was writing a love letter. The Merry Marquis, whose love affairs were legendary, would surely not snoop further.

On no account could he allow the man to know that he was actually writing his second article for the Teatime Tattler; not when it was the first article that had Lord Aldridge pacing the length of the study with quick, angry strides, ranting about ingratitude and charging Bas with finding out who on the crew of his sailing yacht was a cursed spy.

“You will not believe what this low-life scum wrote,” Aldridge fumed.

Bas could quote it word for word, having worked over it again and again in spare minutes, and read it six times in its splendid printed form in The Teatime Tattler. The extra money that Mr Clemens was paying would come in handy, though Lord Aldridge paid well. But the glory of being in print!

Not, of course, that he could ever claim it. That would be career suicide for a private secretary, whose job was to keep secrets. Possibly, as angry as his employer was, bodily suicide as well.

He was not quite sure what had the man in such a taking. Surely nothing in the article would come as a surprise to the London reader, already inured to scandal from the Merry Marquis and his brother, Lord Jonathan Grenford?

After all, it was a mere two paragraphs, about a yacht trip and a mysterious woman.

During his recent excursion to the ducal estate at Margate, the M.M., accompanied by his younger brother Lord J. G., sailed Lord A.’s private yacht to the southern coast of Essex, where they left it for several days.

Of what purpose was this voyage, our reader may ask? This correspondent was not in the brothers’ confidence, but can disclose that a certain woman’s name was mentioned several times. Who, you may wonder, is Antonia? And what is she to the M.M.? What, indeed, is she to Lord J.?

To find out the brothers’ destination and the identity of Antonia, read Jude Knight’s Revealed in Mist. And see below the blurb for an excerpt.

Revealed in Mist

Prue’s job is to uncover secrets, but she hides a few of her own. When she is framed for murder and cast into Newgate, her one-time lover comes to her rescue. Will revealing what she knows help in their hunt for blackmailers, traitors, and murderers? Or threaten all she holds dear?

Enquiry agent David solves problems for the ton, but will never be one of them. When his latest case includes his legitimate half-brothers as well as the lover who left him months ago, he finds the past and the circumstances of his birth difficult to ignore. Danger to Prue makes it impossible.

#~*~^~*~#

Smashwords: http://bit.ly/2dBfNGq

iBooks: http://apple.co/2dVsHPq

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/2dCsbCg

Amazon (print): http://amzn.to/2hmIqHk

Amazon (ebook): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N7HI8IA/

Excerpt

David joined Gren and Aldridge for dinner in a private parlour Aldridge hired.

“We need to return to Margate,” Aldridge said. “His Grace said Jon was to go there and stay. I tried to leave him behind, but you know what Jon’s like. He sticks worse than a burr.”

Gren made a rude gesture. “Aldridge only let me come because he needed someone to crew the yacht,” he told David.

Aldridge just grinned. “I have a crew. And you were not much use draped over the rail puking, Jon.”

“You sailed from Margate?” David asked. “Clever.”

“Yes, to Ipswich. His Grace’s spies at the castle will think we are on a pleasure cruise for a few days. It’s good the days are getting longer. We sailed at first light yesterday, then rode all day to get here. We can make it back again by tomorrow, late afternoon, if we change horses regularly.”

A succession of maids carried in dinner: a roasted bird, a leg of lamb, and a stew, with a variety of side dishes.

“The claret is acceptable,” Aldridge decided, and they talked about food and wine till the last maid left the room, blushing and dimpling at Gren.

“I think she likes me,” he told Aldridge and David.

“Do they not all like you, Gren?” David asked with a sardonic smile.

“I expect she likes your coin,” Aldridge suggested.

Donating to a worthy cause

Dorothea looked around the private sitting room of Lady Georgiana Winderfield. Even being here was something of a miracle. To think that four months ago…

‘It is in the past, Miss Berryman,” Mr Milford would remind her, were he here. But of course the past was the point of her visit; the reason for her being invited to take tea with Lady Grace and her sister-in-law Lady Sutton.

“Georgie. There you are. I want to have a word with you. Oh. Grace. You’re here, too.” Lord Sutton barged into the room without knocking, ignoring Dorothea and addressing his two nearest female relatives. “Grace make Georgie see she cannot go on like this. Father won’t have it.”

Lady Georgiana turned to her visitor. “Miss Berryman, I do not believe you are acquainted with my brother. Sutton, Miss Dorothea Berryman.”

Dorothea, not without some trepidation, met Sutton’s gaze, her face carefully bland. Not that she expected him to recognise her. Not without the paint and the powder. Not with her hair returned to its natural brown and her clothing designed for dignity and discretion rather than seduction. Considerably more clothing than she had worn at the beginning of her last encounter with Lord Sutton.

The manners drilled into his lordship in the nursery surfaced long enough for him to bow briefly and mutter, “Miss Berryman. Charmed.” Then he returned to his grievance.

“Just look at it.” The wave of his encompassed the dozens of portraits on the mantelpiece and the walls either side of the fireplace. Every one showed the courtesan known as Lily Diamond. All were draped in black.

“It is pathetic, Georgie. You are making a laughing stock of yourself, and us.” Sutton was pacing too and fro, thumping a fist into his hand. “People are making the most outrageous of suggestions. Bad enough you even knew the woman. But to mourn her as if she were a friend? You have to stop it.”

“Lillian was my friend, Sutton. I am not interested in the opinions of those who considered her beneath them, though they were perfectly willing to partake of her charms.”

“Georgie!” Sutton cast a shocked glance Dorothea’s way. “You must forgive my sister, Miss Berryman. Her humours are unbalanced,  I fear. Georgie, you cannot discuss women like that. It is not seemly.”

Dorothea had seen Lord Sutton being very unseemly indeed, back when she had been called Fanny and had been commanded to entertain him. She managed to keep her face bland.

“Sutton, may I suggest we continue this conversation at a later time,” Lady Sutton said. “Miss Berryman is here to interest us in her charitable work.”

“Yes, Lord Sutton,” some imp prompted her to say. “I am hopeful of providing work for gentlewomen in need of some means of support. Perhaps you would care to make a donation?”

“I am sorry to interrupt, Miss Berryman.” Sutton allowed his indignation to spoil his apology. “Shouldn’t air our linen in public, but the damned woman was a bird of paradise!”

“Sutton!” His wife and sister chorused their disapproval of his language, and he flushed.

“Beg pardon,” he mumbled. “Better put me down for fifty guineas.” The thought of his own generosity buoyed him, and he bowed himself out of the room.

Lady Georgiana grinned broadly. “Well done, Miss Berryman. Your first donation. But please, continue your story. You were telling us about how Mr Wakefield and Miss Virtue paid your debt so that you could be released from the brothel.”

“Yes,” Lady Sutton agreed. “Please finish your story, and then tell us how we can help you to rescue some more damned birds of paradise.”

Dorothea is a minor character in Revealed in Mist. See the story for more about who murdered Lily Diamond, what Lady Georgie had to do with it, and the part Dorothea plays in supporting David and Prue to solve several interlocked mysteries.

Prue’s job is to uncover secrets, but she hides a few of her own. When she is framed for murder and cast into Newgate, her one-time lover comes to her rescue. Will revealing what she knows help in their hunt for blackmailers, traitors, and murderers? Or threaten all she holds dear?

Enquiry agent David solves problems for the ton, but will never be one of them. When his latest case includes his legitimate half-brothers as well as the lover who left him months ago, he finds the past and the circumstances of his birth difficult to ignore. Danger to Prue makes it impossible.

 

Smashwords: http://bit.ly/2dBfNGq

iBooks: http://apple.co/2dVsHPq

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/2dCsbCg

Amazon (print): http://amzn.to/2hmIqHk

Amazon (ebook): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N7HI8IA/

Extract

“Fanny, show my young friend a good time, eh?” Talbot commanded, and David followed her to one of the rooms.

He had a better use for the bed than the exercise Talbot imagined. He was beginning to feel the loss of a night’s sleep.

“Don’t bother,” he told the prostitute, as she began to unbutton her blouse. “When were the sheets last changed?”

“Maybe three days.” She looked uncertainly at the bed and back at him. “How do you want me then?”

David explained. “What I’d like you to do is sit in the chair over there and wake me in half an hour. Before we leave this room, I’ll give you double what I gave your bawd. And when we get back out there, you’ll pretend to everyone, especially my friend, that we’ve coupled.”

The prostitute frowned. “You’ll pay me. Just to sleep in the bed.”

“On the bed, but yes. Miss Fanny… or is it Miss Frances…? You’re very desirable, but I’m very, very tired, and I’d rather nobody knew…”

She nodded. “It’s Dorothea, really. But Old Hatchet-Face, who owns the place, she said that was not a good name for a whore.”

“Do you have a way to tell the hour, Miss Dorothea?” He’d removed his coat, but he laid it on the bed and stretched out beside it. No point in putting temptation in the woman’s way. He’d wake in an instant if she approached the bed to check his pockets.

She nodded. “I can hear the clock tower down the street. It chimes the quarters. It’ll be just on the half I wake you.”

“Good. Thank you.” His nose wrinkled, but he’d slept in places more rank. Willing his body to relax, he closed his eyes, and Mist was suddenly there stretched beside him. No. He was here to sleep, not to fantasise about the only woman he desired.

“Mister? Mr. Walker?” He woke to the woman’s whisper. “It’s been half an hour.”

Yes. The half was still chiming. Half an hour was not enough, but it took the edge off his weariness. He’d cope.

In the main sitting area, Dorothea poured him a glass of wine and perched on the arm of his chair, leaning against him while he waited for Talbot. Her silence money safely in the pocket she had tied to her waist under her skirt, she had obviously decided to throw herself fully into her part.

Talbot arrived some minutes later, buttoning his breeches. His companion was smiling admiringly up at him, but David caught the contemptuous grimace she passed to her companions behind Talbot’s back.

“That’s the ticket,” Talbot said to David, grinning at the way Dorothea was draped over him. “Can’t get enough of you here, can they? They should pay us for servicing them. Hah! That’s a good one. They should pay us, eh?” And he slapped the bottom of his companion with expansive glee.

“You want another round, Walker? Or what about an exotic dance? I know a place where the girls…” he gestured expansively, shaping improbably curvaceous shapes in the air.

“That sounds very exciting, Sir,” David said, back to being suitably grateful. “Is it a place we could get something to eat, Sir? All that exercise…”

“Good lad. Worked up an appetite, eh? Oh, to be young again. Come on, then, lad. The night is young. We’ll stop at a coffee house and then go on to Sultan’s Palace.”

David saluted Dorothea with a kiss on the cheek and received a warm smile in return. “Best half hour I ever spent in this place,” she told him loudly, “and that’s the truth.”

Page 1 of 2

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén