Tuesday, June 4, 2013
Mr. Punch of Belgrave Square, Chapter 335
The Queen's Plan
"Well, Mr. Donnan?" Robert asked.
"I done what you asked o' me, Doctor...oh, pardon me, Your Lordship." Johnny replied.
"I'm very pleased to know it." Robert nodded his approval. "Was Orpha suspicious?"
"At first, aye." Johnny nodded. "See, though, her pride won out. She liked thinkin' that she won over me. She liked thinkin' I needed her even after all she done me wrong. It didn't take long, only a few moments before she was boastin'. Though I must say, she sickens me, the very sight of her with her prideful face and smug look. And the way she waves around that stump o' hers. But, I just picture poor Finlay, all bloated with drownin' as he was. That poor lad I treated so poor in life and could do nothin' for in death. I see his face over hers and it makes me want to see this through as ya planned it."
"When do you begin your work there?" Mr. Punch asked, trying to speak a little more formally with Johnny.
"Your Grace, I already done. The American woman already sent me out on an errand. That's how I'm able to be here."
"You gotta be careful." Punch shook his head. "No one must see you come here."
"I know it."
"Lord Colinshire has devised a way for you to send messages to us." Punch continued.
"There's a loose brick in the mews just by our stables. I've marked it with a small 'x' in chalk. You can leave notes for us there and we shall do the same." Robert explained. "Do it in the night when you're sure that no one from Hamish House is viewing you. This way, we will be able to give you your instructions."
"Very well, Your Lordship. Only my writin' ain't so very good." Johnny agreed.
"Not to worry. Mr. Donnan. We shall manage." Robert answered.
"For now," Punch began, "you shouldn't stay here long."
"I know it, Your Grace."
"And, if Orpha does become suspicious, you must alert us immediately." Punch continued.
"I will." Johnny nodded. He paused and frowned.
"What's troubling you?" Robert asked.
"The child. Whatever it is."
"It's actually two babies which formed together before birth." Robert explained.
"Looks terrible sick."
"They do." Punch nodded.
"Looks like they don't feed it right."
"I know for a fact that they don't, Mr. Donnan." Robert replied.
"What of the girl?" Punch asked.
"I didn't see her. Aye, not a trace. The American mentioned that there was another child in the house, but that she would take care of her."
"Want me to find her, Your Grace?"
"If you can without attractin' attention to yourself." Punch answered. "Mr. Donnan, it's a dangerous household."
"I know it."
"We're most pleased and impressed that you've agreed to do this." Robert said.
"I'm happy to. Aye, if it'll do some to help make up for all the wickedness I brought to the Earth."
"Does Her Ladyship know that I'm doin' this?" Johnny asked hopefully.
"She does." Robert replied.
"And, she's thankful." Punch added. "Still, she does not wish to see you."
"I understand." Johnny looked down.
"You'd best get back to your errand. Ulrika Rittenhouse does not enjoy waiting." Robert advised.
"I'm sure she don't." Johnny put on his cap. He shook his head.
"Yes?" Punch asked.
"You say this plan was devised by Her Majesty?"
"At Her Majesty's suggestion." Robert answered.
"Aye." Johnny smiled. "Fancy me doin' something the Queen herself thought. Ain't it somethin'?"
"It is, Mr. Donnan." Punch smiled.
"Life is full o' surprises." Johnny answered.
"That it is." Punch chuckled. "That it is."
Did you miss Chapters 1-334 of Mr. Punch of Belgrave Square? If so, you can read them here. Come back tomorrow for Chapter 336.