Walter E. Drake
"I depart tomorrow," I sipped casually from my glass. "It should be a fine ride if the weather stays such as it is. Only if it were not so wretchedly frigid."
"So this....Sir Grey...," my companion, Edward Fatch, inquired, adjusting his own cup in his hand. "...he has no sons as heirs? You are the closest?"
"Yes, it seems so," I answered. "He only has an unmarried daughter, and supposedly he and my father were quite close, so naturally I am to be the heir. I am some distant nephew to this man, somehow."
Fetch looked at him thoughtfully, "Sounds like Crompton will be quite an asset for you, Drake."
I laughed, "With my fortunes, the roof will be caved in, it will flood each rain, and, if anything, the place will be devoid of taste and the girl will be ugly."
"It could turn out well. Even if it does need improvements, I am sure you could do well by it. And who knows, this Miss. Grey may be quite lovely."
"If it is as you say, it will be a complete package prepared for me. A tasteful home and a beautiful wife, all in one, all waiting for me in Crompton."
"It would almost be an act of courtesy toward Sir Grey, and an offering of such kindness to the girl," said Fatch. "Obviously she is very attached to her home and would enjoy keeping it, and by marrying her you would allow her to do so."
I looked to him, contemplative, "Too true." Setting aside my glass, I took the paper in my hands, giving him a sidelong glance and a doubtful grin. "We'll see, Fatch...we'll see."