The Art of Deception
or Pride and Extreme Prejudice
This week continues a spy story set in late Georgian England, the year before Trafalgar. In the last installment, Lord Grey met with both Roderick and Alice. Lady Grey has brought her daughter and Alice to pay a social call on Roderick. We meet with Thomas and his wife again.
Once inside, it was clear that the work on opening up the house had only just begun; Holland covers were on almost all of the furniture and the front parlour hung with dusty cobwebs, “Massa’s in back; Thomas and I cleared out the dining parlour.”
Lord Roderick, apparently was listening, “Hannah,” he called from deep within the building, “I’m not ‘Massa’, I’m Roderick, Lord Fitzpatrick.”
“Yes, Massa, Lord Fitzpatrick is in the parlour, if you’d follow.”
She led them to a small room, away from the noise of the street and conveniently lit only by windows that opened onto the garden; It was comfortably furnished; clearly, a quiet place to remove to when the strain of life in London required a short break.
Roderick rose from his seat when the women entered the room, “Lady Grey,” he bowed, “Miss Grey and Miss Green; enchanted to see you again.”
Lady Grey was frosty, “That was the most unusual of receptions – have we met?”
“Five years ago, before I was posted to Washington, to keep an eye on those damned rebellious colonists.”
“And you’ve only just returned?”
“As you can see … apparently I met your niece in Bristol.”
My apologies for creative punctuation.
Nothing under the sun is new. The late Georgian/Early Regency was a time fraught with fearsome change and political turmoil.
This Gilray cartoon from 1791 shows William Pitt taming Catherine II of Russia, one of her advisors and the King of Prussia. She had tried to interfere with internal affairs in various parts of Europe and the Middle East. Pitt is shown as Petruchio (e.g. ‘Little Rock’ or more figuratively ‘Clod hopper’) from Shakespeare. He’s joined by other members of his government as Don Quixote and Sancho Panza. A mixed metaphor to say the least. King George III, descending on his way into madness after the loss of his American colonies (other than Canada), is kissing the horse’s tail. It could be worse.
Still working on a cover idea – hard even though I’m a dashed good photographer (if I say so myself). That and editing the manuscript to put more description/reaction into it. (not to mention a few thousand words).
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.