Lord John and the Private Matter (Lord John Grey)
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
The year is 1757. On a clear morning in mid-June, Lord John Grey emerges from London’s Beefsteak Club, his mind in turmoil. A nobleman and a high-ranking officer in His Majesty’s army, Grey has just witnessed something shocking. But his efforts to avoid a scandal that might destroy his family are interrupted by something still more urgent: The Crown appoints him to investigate the brutal murder of a comrade-in-arms who may have been a traitor. Obliged to pursue two inquiries at once, Major Grey finds himself ensnared in a web of treachery and betrayal that touches every stratum of English society—and threatens all he holds dear. From the bawdy houses of London’s night world to the stately drawing rooms of the nobility, Lord John pursues the elusive trails of a vanishing footman and a woman in green velvet, who may hold the key to everything—or nothing.
meeting Quarry, who never wore anything else in public. “Got to do a widow’s walk later,” Stubbs replied, looking resigned. “No time to go back for a change.” “Oh? Who’s dead?” A widow’s walk was an official visit, paid to the family of a recently deceased member of the regiment, to offer condolences and make inquiry as to the widow’s welfare. In the case of an enlisted man, such a visit might include the handing over of a small amount of cash contributed by the man’s intimates and immediate
both a motive for O’Connell’s treachery—if he had been a traitor—and an avenue by which he might have disposed of the Calais information. But Greek … that argued for Stokes Père having been a sailor, perhaps. Likely merchant seaman rather than naval, if he’d brought home a foreign wife. Yes, he rather thought the Stokes family would bear looking into. Seafaring ran in families, and while his observations had necessarily been cursory under the circumstances, he thought that one or two of the men
these engines, admiring the artistry of it—which was remarkably detailed, even to the turgid veins visible upon the surface of the bronze—when she came back, a large jug clasped to her bosom. “Oh, is that what ye like?” she asked, nodding at the object in his hand. His mouth opened, but fortunately no words emerged. He dropped the heavy object, which struck him painfully in the thigh before hitting the carpeted floor with a thump. Nessie finished pouring two fresh glasses of wine and took a
years her senior; it would be not merely unusual, but most remarkable, if he had not had several mistresses. Men of your age do have affaires, after all.” Her lashes lowered briefly in delicate reference to the hushed-up scandal that had sent him to Ardsmuir. “I could hope that his marriage would cause him to abandon any such irregular liaisons, but if it does not …” She shrugged, her shoulders sloping in sudden tiredness. “I trust he will be discreet.” For the first time, it occurred to Grey
“However, for your name to be entangled in the matter is clearly a serious concern.” Trevelyan gave a small grunt, settling back a little. “Any fool can bandy a man’s name—many do, God knows. I should not have thought you so credulous, John.” Grey took a sip of sherry, resisting the urge to respond to the insult. “I should have thought, sir, that you would at once be aroused to make inquiry—should you be quite innocent of the matter.” Trevelyan uttered a short laugh. “Oh, I am aroused, I