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Two For The Road, Thursday Morning, The Red Lion Inn

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John had changed his plans a bit.

Originally he had thought to go to the major property but that it turned out would take several days worth of travel there and back. He intended to now visit a 'lodge' in the county of Surrey which was well with the five mile distance he had judged they could travel that day. Realistically the coach he had hired with two horses would only be able to travel for two hours before needing to be rested. He knew that coaching inn's abounded so he was not worried about that. In fact he fully intended to take advantage of one or two. Since this property was not overly large or so he assumed by its description in the paperwork he had been given he was confident that today would be another opportunity to enjoy the Lady's charms.

He had awoken early and broke his fast on bread cheese and beer.

From his window he saw clearly that the morning mist was intending to cling and despite it being April the air held a chill which would mean he needed to make sure that Anne Elizabeth was well bundled up and kept warm. He had borrowed a wool clock from his sister who had asked the reasonings but had handed it over. That her brother now had a woman she had guessed but it was his business and she would not interfere unless it should turn serious then naturally she would have to step in.

He was dressed and ready and went down to make sure that the coachman was there and the things he had asked for from the Inn Keeper were also ready.


*(placeholder for John and Anne E)


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A young woman approached John, whom he might recognize as Anne-Elisabeth’s maidservant Bess. “Lord Silverbridge,” she greeted him with a curtsy. “My mistress asked me to deliver this note to you.” Reaching into her pocket, she pulled out a folded piece of parchment and handed it to him. “I have been instructed to wait for your response.”


The note was written in Anne-Elisabeth’s no-nonsense handwriting.



My dearest John,


I have been looking forward to accompanying you to your estate, but I am afraid that I must cancel. I think the kitten is sick. She threw up on my bed last night. I don’t feel comfortable leaving her with my servants and it would be unwise to bring her with me. And so I must stay and take care of her. If it is not urgent that you go today, perhaps you would like to join me. She is your kitten too.


With fondness,


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He took the offered note and opened it reading it quickly. His first thought was I am being stood up for a CAT but then he had to smile for she had had written the truth of it.

"Wait here." He instructed her and took the stairs two at a time to reach his room. Once inside he took up a quill and penned his reply on her note 

You are full of surprises yet I can not ask for you to abandon such a frail and sick creature. What are you feeding it - warm milk with some bread is best - and now you have made me worry so I shall have no choice but to come to you later this evening and see for myself that all is well. I shall postpone our outing but shall expect you to make it up to me. Expect me by eight of the clock. I shall be hungry. Make of that what you will.


He folded it and then went to where a candle burned and tipped it so some wax fell on it to keep it closed then left to return to her maid.

"Deliver this back and tell your Lady not to worry."

He reached into his coat pocket and took out a few coins settling them into her hand and sent her on her way.

That he was also a bit annoyed he had not allowed to show. He was not used to being brushed off by a woman for such a reason. He would have to teach her a lesson later   .......

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Anne-Elisabeth was sitting in the drawing room with the sleeping kitten on her lap when Bess returned and handed her note back to her, sealed with candle wax. After breaking the seal and reading it, she smiled. Apparently, John still had to visit his estate but he would join her later.


Though she believed she knew what he meant by being hungry, she had her cook prepare a meal full of Barbadian dishes. Shortly before eight, everything was ready for him, including Anne-Elisabeth herself. The kitten seemed to be fine now, chasing its tail and dashing back and forth across the drawing room.


Whatever they winded up doing, she anticipated a lovely evening.

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