‘I detect that this woman has been around death – two, three, four times!’
That startled me. The deaths associated with the Staplefords were all too public knowledge, but Madam Arcana had counted my own private bereavement in her total.
‘I do know a little of what I speak,’ she said to me with a twinkle. Then she turned to Richenda, ‘You see, the spirits are more comfortable around those who have been nearly involved in the demise of others. They become, if you will, guardians of the gateway.’
Euphemia, the disowned granddaughter of an Earl, is working unhappily as a housekeeper for Bertram Stapleford at his ill advised new property, when the dramatic collapse of the kitchen floor sends her back to where it all began, Stapleford House. A visiting mystic disrupts the Staplefords unleasing old family rumours. Euphemia finds herself playing second fiddle to Bertram’s new love, Beatrice Wilton, as she launches a project to investigate the new aslyums.
It is not long before Euphemia realizes that not only does Beatrice have her unscrupulous sights set on Bertram, but that her enterprises may be about to put them all in very great danger. A besotted Bertram will not listen, so once more she turns to the handsome Butler, Rory for aid. Then a midnight attacker strikes at the heart of Stapleford Hall and the stakes are suddenly all too high.
As usual Euphemia only has her quick wits and that defence of all virtuous young ladies to defend herself, her scream.
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