Some people are just fond of stirring up trouble, I suppose.  Heaven knows I try to keep an open mind and a warm heart for everyone who crosses Thornfield Hall’s threshold but every so often, we get company that tries my dedication to being a proper Christian.

Mr. Rochester and I were quite excited to meet a lady from Southern England who, word had it, had really gotten around; pilgrimages, we were told.  Well, I suspect she invigorated more than her spiritual soul on these jaunts.  I was astonished to learn she had been married no less than 5 times.  (I told Naomi this Alisoun from Bath made her look like an amateur.)  She sauntered in here in her blazing red dress and made herself right at home.  As she breezed past me, she dropped that anvil she was wearing on her head in poor Grace’s waiting hands, causing Grace to fall into the potted palm under its weight.  She couldn’t be bothered to see to Grace’s well being as she noticed Mr. Rochester straight away; she fluttered her lashes so much, she caused a draft.  Apparently she fancies herself something of a magician when it comes to lace.  She kept holding up her collar and inviting him to come in closer for a better look: “Oh, look at this knot here, Mr. Rochester, it is a particularly difficult one.”  “Why, Mr. Rochester, if you see here, there is a small pattern of a dove.”  He’s blind, you Scarlet Twit!

Becoming overly fond of Thornfield and its furnishings, Mrs. I-Married-My-Husband’s-Pallbearer asked Mr. Rochester if he wouldn’t mind showing her the rest of the manor. I kept in step behind them, suspecting she had designs on more than just what curtains hung in the Library.  She had so much swing in her step; I got motion sickness just watching her walk.  She nattered on the entire time we walked the grounds.  Mr. Rochester and I came away with very dissimilar impressions of her.  I don’t care what he says; I can’t imagine that woman holds anything back.

When we finally returned to the sitting room, Ms. Gapped-Tooth lisped that she had a tale to tell.  I, politely, reminded her we had just listened to about forty of her tales and how was it possible for her to have any breath left?  She caught my attention by saying it was a good Arthurian story and I do love Arthurian stories.  Oh my stars.  Clearly Ms. I-Ride-Astride and I took different history classes in school.  Well, Mr. Rochester just ate up her little ditty.  I told him if he might want to remember the last girl he betrothed that transformed after marriage; that shut his gaping maw.

Seeing she was not going to get past me, she made up some nonsense about needing to check on her precious Jankyn and climbed atop her stead, bunching up her skirts so all of Britain could see her bank account.  Needless to say, if that brazen harlot shows her lacework around these parts again, I will grind her barley into mulch!


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