A Royal Pain (A Royal Spyness Mystery)
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1930s London. Poor Lady Georgiana-thirty-fourth in line to the throne-has nothing to serve her Bavarian princess houseguest, even though the Queen of England has requested that she entertain her. Then there's the matter of the body in the bookshop and the princess's unwitting involvement with the Communist party. It's enough to drive a girl mad.
interview a new maid.” “What happened to your other maid?” the baroness asked. “Where has she gone? I thought she was good.” “Good, but unreliable,” I said. “She went out on Saturday night and didn’t turn up again. So I took your advice and decided I had to let her go.” She nodded. “Gut. One must be firm at all times with servants.” “So if you will excuse me, I need to interview her replacement. Maybe you would like to take a tour of the National Gallery. There are fine paintings there, I
the nearest doorway, then stopped when I recognized the voice. “I know it’s dashed early, but I had to talk to her ladyship before the police show up on her doorstep. Would you tell her it’s Gussie? Gussie Gormsley.” I reappeared. “Hello, Gussie. I’m afraid you’re too late. The police beat you to it.” “Well, that’s a bally nuisance,” he said. “I didn’t like to wake you and I’d no idea they’d show up at the crack of dawn. No sense of propriety, those fellows. They were dashed rude last night
the stairs ahead of Lady Georgiana.” “The victim was lying in one of the side alcoves where the lighting was very poor,” Chief Inspector Burnall went on. “So I wonder how you happened to discover the body so soon after you went upstairs. You did say that you came upon it almost immediately, didn’t you?” “She discovered it because the knife was left lying on the floor. The princess kicked it, wondered what it was, and picked it up. Then she looked beyond and saw something lying there that proved
He caught up with me and grabbed my arm. For a moment I thought he was going to embrace me, but then he said, “You can’t go inside like that.” “Like what?” “Well, for one thing you have grass stains on your back, and for another, you have bits of underwear sticking out from your dress. Ah yes, I see. Your brassiere has mysteriously become unlatched. Allow me to—” “Absolutely not,” I said. “I’ll manage.” “You can’t go back in there with bits sticking out. Stand still.” I shivered involuntarily
things,” I said. “But I could swear it was he, and he had a young woman on his arm. A very attractive young woman.” “Ah well,” Belinda said with a sigh. “Men like Darcy are not known for their spaniel-like devotion, and I’m sure he has healthy appetites.” “I suppose you’re right,” I said and sat for the rest of the cab ride in deepest gloom. It seemed that my stupid reticence had robbed me of my chance with Darcy. Did I really want him? I asked myself. He was Irish, Catholic, penniless,