My plan revisited

B’ham Hall August 23rd 1851

I have capitalised on Josiah’s new enthusiasm for enterprise by asking him again about my school. He was much less dismissive than when he had the gout that time, and even ruffled my hair as I was telling him of my plans. He did not say yes, but he also did not say no. For him, that is a sign he may yet bend to my wishes.

I have to write to Boo to tell her that Josiah will not hear of the Girl being dismissed. I confess I cannot tell what is the truth of the matter. Boo insists the Girl made a violent gesture towards her but the Girl denies this vigorously. She is adamant that Boo has misinterpreted her honest attempt to cuddle Little Bradstone. She says she would never dream of making inappropriate physical contact with a house guest – which is a relief of sorts – and that she simply could not resist wanting to touch the baby. She seems in earnest but I must admit that having subjected myself to her attempts at hairdressing I can understand why Boo felt she was being attacked. Quite how I am to pacify her without sacrificing the Girl I do not know. Perhaps I will sacrifice myself….

I must also respond to that man from Clacton before the month is out. I shall have to devise a cunning method of reclaiming my brooch without giving him so much as a single penny for it. How tiresome this business is – my head is spinning with the deceptions I must weave.

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