Eliza - Did he notice?

James and I had just begun to make our way outside when Alexandra suddenly appeared at my elbow, saying that she had something important to tell me and dragging me away. 

As she dragged me away, I said "'What was that about Alexandra?  He's not stupid, he could guess that something strange was going on."

Alexandra explained that she had something important to tell her, and I stated I had something to tell her so we quickly found a corner. It wasn't until we were ensconced in that corner, eyes peering about to make sure no one was looking while appearing to be the best of chums, that I suddenly clicked on the name she had called me. 

"You called me Eliza," I said, keeping my voice low.

The colour seemed to drain from Alexandra's face. "Perhaps he didn't hear. I hope he didn't hear. I'm sorry Eliza, I completely forgot to use your alias,"

"Yes well maybe he didn't hear," I said, though not convincingly. My heart was hoping he didn't notice the different name as my mind was trying to find some way to explain it away. "But from now on it has to be Olivia. I can't go by Eliza here."

Alexandra nodded, still looking pale. I gave a giggle which seemed to shock her, but would make us appear to be too ladies simply gossiping at court. Which is what we had to appear to be. 

Looking more like a gossiping court lady after my giggle, Alexandra leaned in close. "I heard something today. There's some kind of weapon their making, some kind of power that they have to light."

I gave a quick gasp, then nodded. "One of the officers mentioned something of a secret weapon. But oh, we don't know enough yet. Alexandra we need to find out more. And we can't chat here much longer. I'll send an invitation to the palace for you to call on me for tea and we'll talk then."

Alexandra nodded before offering another apology.  "I'm sorry I used the wrong name Olivia," she whispered. 

I nodded. "Nothing we can do now about it. Maybe he didn't notice, but if he did I'll try to explain it away. Now smile and giggle Alexandra." I ordered

She did as told and I giggled as well. "Oh he truly does tell the funniest stories dear Alexandra. You were so lucky to be asked to dance by him," I said loud enough for others to hear as we walked back towards the rest of the crowd.

Rebecca suddenly seemed to appear before us. "And what are you two gossiping about?" she asked, her voice warm while her eyes were cold. 

"Oh Alexandra was asked to dance by the most handsome man. And he told the most amusing stories. I am so jealous. If only a man like that would ask me to dance," I said lightly, almost dreamily. 

"Oh I don't know Olivia. You seem to have attracted some attention of your own," Rebecca divulged, waving in the direction of where James was now standing, seeming to watch our gathering. Once more I wondered if he had noticed the name Alexandra had called me. 

"Yes but none as more suitors than you Rebecca. You are truly shining tonight. I love what your maid has done with your hair, it really brings out you eyes," I complimented, and Alexandra was quick to agree.

"Oh yes it does doesn't it?" Rebecca replied, preening in the attention, suspicion about our gossiping forgotten.


The End

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