This is a continuation of a serial story from this art journal.
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Part4: Comyn Interestes
Speake not to men outside of your ken,
Lest they forgete theyre place,
And lead ye to thoughts
Unbecoming in a maid.
But take up thy work.
A needle well-placed in a piece of fruite
Has ofte distracted me from thoughts ill-suited to a ladye.
Pithy Sayings of Lady Margaret Hoby
The man plucked a semblance of a bass run on the lute. I wondered if the guy worked this gallery regularly. A sneaky look from under my lashes told me that his name was ‘William Sainsbury’. Talk about a classic British name! It sounded like one the re-enactors made up for their character names at the Elizabethan Springtyme Feste back home. Come to think of it, his name-
“Are you a musician then?”
The guy certainly knew how to get me going. It wasn’t long before he’d heard a fair amount of the story of my career, hobbies, education, family life and what I was doing in London for the summer. Any opportunity to do all the talking makes me TOTALLY happy. I suppose I’m not the first person who gets a kick out of having a member of the opposite sex hang on their every word.
I got so caught up in discussing my interest in music, sewing, antique instruments and fabrics with William, that the voice booming over the announcement system to inform us that the museum was closing in fifteen minutes almost made my drop my iPad.
Quickly he drew a business card out of his pocket. “I’d love to hear more about your plans for the summer. Maybe even-”
I was studying the red thread work on the small case, from which he’d taken the museum card. “Hey I know the woman who made that!”
The embroidery on the little receptacle was a characteristic pattern, and one that I’d seen many times. My sister’s best friend, Jacquie Fitzcannon, had originally designed the pattern of pansies that meandered around a background of diamonds. They sold quite well at her booth. I reached out and stopped the hand that was putting the card-holder back in his pocket.
“Have you been to the springtime feste? Well you must have been! When were you in California?”
“I worked there this year,” he laughed. “demonstrating sheep sheering and cheese making. Jacquie traded me that case in turn for ten pounds of unripened cheddar.”
“I’m surprised I didn’t meet you there. I was playing in the strolling musicians group. Are you going back next year?”
An odd tremor seemed to cross his face. I realized later that he had ignored my question.
“I tell you what, there’s a pub just around the corner called “Her Grace’s Garters”. A lot of the staff goes after work. That researcher who specializes in blackwork embroidery goes quite often. Do you want to join us?”
The guy was obviously safe, not only did he work for the V&A, he knew Jacquie well enough to trade cheddar for embroidery.
Was there really ever any question of my NOT showing up at The Garters?
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