The Art of Deception
or Pride and Extreme Prejudice
This week continues a spy story set in late Georgian England, the year before Trafalgar. Last time Sally and her fiance met a strangely assertive maid in the Avonside garden (which I should call the parade). The maid didn’t leave, and she had good reasons not to.
“Didn’t you hear me; you may go; please go; now.”
Instead of leaving, the maid stood her ground and said, “Sally, Don’t you recognize me?”
“Alice, what are you doing in that get up?”
“I can’t stay long; I’m desperately sorry for last night.”
“You should be; that was rude; have you grown so above us?”
“No, it’s just, I’m tracking a French spy and you nearly gave the game away.”
“A spy, how exciting; isn’t it exciting Robert?” Sally’s eyes glowed at the idea.
Mr Mapleton said, “I suppose it is; too dashed exciting for me.”
“In any case,” Alice continued, “before I leave, you both have my best wishes; seeing you last night together, I can’t imagine a better match – for either of you.”
My apologies for creative punctuation.
Still working on a cover idea – hard even though I’m a dashed good photographer (if I say so myself).
The militia (Shown here in Gilray’s cartoon “repel all invaders”) will soon make an appearance. Great Britain is on a war-footing with that Corsican monster just miles away over the channel. Mind you the monster would have said kilometres, and his ‘Million man’ army was significantly smaller than a million soldiers (about 100,000 strong). Whatever Napoleon was, and he was many things (mostly bad), he was a master of publicity.
Nearly all the men in England were enrolled in their local militias – but the militias were not anywhere as well organized or skilled as the regulars. Jane Austen’s villain Mr Wickham would have fit right in with them. How he would fare when promoted to the regulars was another question.
Gilray’s cartoon shows typical upper class condescension (in the modern meaning) about the rest of the country. The sorry-looking militia men are all tradesmen (a cobbler, a mason, a painter (Gilray himself?), a tailor, a barber), and they’re led by a baker.
Frankenkitty is available.
What happens when teenagers get to play with Dr Frankenstein’s lab notebooks, a few odd chemicals and a great big whopping coil? Mayhem, and possibly an invitation to the Transylvanian Neuroscience Summer School.
Like poor Cecelia, ” The Curious Profession of Dr Craven” is back from the dead.
I’ve released a sweet regency romance, Miss DeVere This is a fun read.