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By Anne Dean

ISBN-10: 0749040459

ISBN-13: 9780749040451

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For here are the two Crockford sisters, who are no more than some kind of third cousins to the Harman-Footes of Madderstone, but they must walk their visitor, Penelope, two miles across the fields to see the Grey Nun. Well, not perhaps quite her, for she cannot of course be relied upon to be always at home to morning callers – but at least the ruins in which she is reputed to appear. I said to Penelope, when I was invited to accompany them, ‘It is not enough, you know, that we should entertain you with parties and visits while you are here in Badleigh.

And within a few hundred yards of one another. It seems so very improbable that they should be random occurrences coming together only by chance. But I cannot come at any explanation which might join the two together. Nor can I escape the feeling that there was something wrong – no, not wrong exactly, perhaps I should rather say strange – about the discovery of the bones. I keep remembering that moment when the captain and I first saw the commotion down beside the lake and I feel as if there was something decidedly odd … A knocking on the house door stilled Dido’s pen.

Miss Kent,’ she continued earnestly, ‘you have not yet told me what your opinion is of this sad accident. ’ ‘My opinion …’ Dido hesitated, for she found that she must consider the events again before she could give an answer deserving of the compliment. Everything that had intervened: the bringing of Penelope to the house, the terrible suspense they had all been in while they awaited the surgeon’s pronouncement, the writing of a hurried note to be sent express to Mrs Nolan, Penelope’s guardian; all these things were already confusing and weakening her recollection of the terrible moments in the abbey ruins.

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A Woman of Consequence by Anne Dean

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