Marguerite pulled off the road and up the long gravel driveway that led to the Broken Oaks mansion and mentally berated her father once again at the assignment he’d given her once he’d found out that Nanette Passebon was in residence in Honfleur. He knew well she didn’t care for the alchemist, but amused him to send her to make manners with the woman.
The vampiress sighed and put the automobile into park after pulling up in front of the decrepit looking home. Whatever her wishes, a command from the Lord of House Dufoix was something that could not be disobeyed if she wanted to keep her head attached to her shoulders. Not that it was likely her father would be that
angry with her, but it was also a small thing to risk the anger over as well. The thought lingered in her mind as she made her way up the battered brick walkway and pressed the doorbell to summon the butler, smoothing out any wrinkles in her dress as she waited.
Nanette had never considered herself an actress; that sort was never much for company or conversation, in her estimation. But spending days on end playing the part of the charming and sweet country doctor was putting her alongside Sarah Bernhardt. Her morning had been filled with snot-nosed little brats called off from school with little more than a late spring cold, and the afternoon had brought decrepit old men and woman whose rheumatism was acting up and whose internal plumbing wasn’t doing much of anything at all. Finally the evening had come, and she had closed up shop, smiling a saccharine smile and nodding to those patients she passed on her drive home.
Finally, she was alone, and the play-acting could end.
For all the peeling paint and overgrown acres surrounding the exterior of the old plantation home, the interior was just that much more extravagant. Nanette had spared little cost in making Broken Oaks suitable to her tastes before moving in. She sat quietly with one of several newspapers brought to her daily from New Orleans and took her evening coffee - a bit of a commonality but a comfortable vice nonetheless - on an antique settee in the formal parlor. The old butler who stood at attention beside the door flinched slightly when the doorbell rang and looked to his mistress for instruction; she raised her eyes from her paper only long enough to wave him towards the front hall and the door beyond.( An Unexpected Visit )