Lady Anne and the Menacing Mystic by Victoria Hamilton (Lady Anne Addison Mysteries, Book 4)
English | 2020| Mystery/Thriller | ePUB | 2.9 MB
While in Bath preparing for her upcoming marriage to Lord Darkefell, Lady Anne learns of a profoundly accurate mystic working in town whose uncanny predictions have stunned the gullible and the skeptical alike. Certain there’s a harmless rational explanation for the medium’s supposed otherworldly abilities, Anne’s tolerance turns to defiance when the seer’s dark pronouncements begin having a decidedly harmful affect on her friends-and a troubled local vicar takes his own life.
Convinced that the woman is orchestrating a devious scheme, Anne begins to suspect that she’s working in league with a shrewd newcomer who’s attached himself to many of the town’s wealthy widowers. As she navigates the swirling rumors of Bath society to confirm her suspicions and unmask the charlatans for what they are, she discovers that the treacherous conspirators are plotting to make her own future very dark-and very short-lived . . .
Anne watched her mother’s friend, a woman of average height, face lightly lined with wrinkles, but still with a fine figure. Mrs. Clary Basenstoke had been a widow for many years. How nice that she had a new love interest!
The lady self-consciously fanned herself and smiled. “Alfred has become quite fashionable and has a wide acquaintance, even though he has been here in Bath only a couple of months. He met Mr. Smythe through a friend, I understand, and so introduced him to me at the Assembly Rooms.”
“You do appear quite . . . elevated, Clary. I have not seen you so happy for many a year,” Lady Harecross stated with satisfaction.
“I should be perfectly happy, if only Roger had not taken against poor Alfred. It does disturb my household.”
Anne firmed her lips in a grimace to keep from uttering a biting remark; she had known Mrs. Basenstoke’s son, Roger, for years and had never liked him. He was presumptuous and conceited, she thought, with the outward aspect of a gentleman and the soul of a scapegrace. If Roger disapproved of this vicar, Mrs. Basenstoke’s nephew, Mr. Alfred Lonsdale, then Anne approved of the gentleman on principle.
“His great friend Mr. Bertram Birkenhead has offered Alfred a room, should he need it, but I do not wish—”
“Oh, I know the Birkenheads!” Anne exclaimed, setting down her refreshed bowl of tea and looking over to the two older women. “I have known Alethea Birkenhead for ten years or more.”
“Is that so?” Mrs. Basenstoke said, smiling over at Anne.
“We went to school together. Her husband, Bertram—Bertie to most of us—has become my good friend too, since they wed.”
“You should not use a gentleman’s given name, no matter how friendly,” her mother stated. “It’s vulgar and common. Bertie is a name for a rag-and-bone man, not a gentleman.”