January 3, 1890

Mr. Stephen McTavish
32 Wilton Crescent
London SW1

Dear Snouts,

The Mopsies and I have arrived safely in Munich, Bavaria, which is a smaller kingdom within the Prussian Empire. We had a little rough weather over the Alps. Though it is only a three-hour voyage, Captain Hollys sent one of his engineers with me should I need assistance, but as it turned out, I did not. The girls acquitted themselves very well despite being buffeted about by winds, the effects of which on our poor Lizzie delicacy forbids me to elaborate.

A pigeon arrived giving us landing instructions at Count von Zeppelin’s private airfield at Schloss Schwanenburg. The airfield forms part of an enormous park with a lake populated by the swans for which the palace is named. The palace itself is a fantasy of baroque and Hungarian architecture—quite fanciful for those of us used to the white paint and discreet colors of the drawing rooms of Belgravia. The count has graciously given the girls and me our own small suite of rooms overlooking the park (and, consequently, Athena in the distance). You may have noticed that Rosie is missing. I might have known that the girls would once again smuggle her aboard. We were barely on the ground when she had a contretemps with one of the swans beside the lake; I fear she has finally met her match, as their reach is much longer than hers.

Tomorrow we go to the Lycee des Jeunes Filles to register the girls. They must write a set of examinations to determine whether they will go into the first form, or be sent down to the primary school to complete their preparatory work. Lizzie is already in tears about it. Maggie seems calmer, but I fear it is the calm before the storm. Once they are settled with pencils and examination papers, I am not allowed in the room, so I will take the opportunity to present myself to the Dean of Women at the university, following which I must be fitted for uniforms and collect my books.

You will have begun your employment with the Morton Glass Works yesterday. How is it? Remember, you are to listen and learn as much as you can. I think your plan to introduce Cowboy Poker games in the canteen is a clever one—not so that you can relieve them of their wages—these are working men and no doubt have families to feed—but rather to disturb their concentration and focus on their duties. You may find ways, like a burr upon the stockings, of rising in the ranks quickly, to the point that your real purpose there may be put into motion.

Do give my best regards to Mrs. Morven and Granny Protheroe, and tell Lewis that Maggie and I are deeply interested to know how the remaining chickens are getting on in the smaller garden at Wilton Crescent.

I remain,

Yours affectionately,

Claire Trevelyan

3 thoughts on “January 3, 1890”

  1. Rachel RatliffRachel Ratliff

    Can’t wait to see what the “real purpose” for Snouts’s employment may entail…

  2. Eric ForbesEric Forbes

    So awesome i cant wait for print!

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