"I'm standing in this evening. My parents run this hotel. I'm
Priscilla Halburton-Smythe. Our maître d' is off sick."
She handed him a large menu and said, "Your waiter will be along in a
minute. Would you like a drink?"
"No thanks. I'll order wine with the meal."
He watched Priscilla as she walked away. What a figure! And that
beautiful bell of golden hair that framed her face! There was a
remoteness about her which quickened his senses.
He made his meal last, watching while the other diners gradually
finished theirs, hoping all the time for another few words with the
His back was to the window. At one point, he had an uneasy feeling of
being watched. He turned round quickly, but there was no one there.
Priscilla at last came into the dining room and approached him.
"Would you like anything else?"
"I would like you to join me for a coffee."
Priscilla looked amused. "I've just been hearing about you. You're
Jock Fleming." She sat in a chair opposite him.
"Are you always here?" asked Jock.
"I work in London. I came up yesterday on holiday. I usually fill in
for any of the missing staff when I'm here. It's a duty holiday to see
my parents, and I find it can get a bit boring if I have nothing to do."
"I'd like to take you out one evening," said Jock. "Just friends," he
added quickly, suddenly noticing she was wearing an engagement ring.
"Where is your fiancé?"
"So what do you say? What about tomorrow night at that Italian
"All right," said Priscilla with a laugh. "What time?"
"Eight o'clock suit you?"
"Fine. Now I'd better go and see how they're getting on clearing up
Outside, Effie scuttled off from her observation post in the bushes
opposite the dining room. Who was that woman? Perhaps she was Jock's
agent. She would need to find out.
Research shows that 90% of Americans value public libraries(Dec 11 2013) According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, about 90% of Americans aged 16 and older said that the closing of their local public library would have an...