"Let's bow our heads and pray for newly departed Miss. Eliza Howard for her contributations to this world. She will be greatly missed. Miss. Lorena will indeed, find a great seat in Heaven waiting for her. Amen."
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New York Harbor, 1889. Crowds of curious onlookers gathered at the mouth of the Hudson River. Some craned their necks forward to see what the hustle and bustle was all about. Others walked past hurriedly without a second glance. In such a industrious area, it was easy to go unnoticed. And that's exactly how she got away.
Nobody noticed the pretty woman in the wide brimmed hat that covered most of her face frantically searching the waters for something. Even if someone had, they would've assumed she had dropped a handkerchief or something. No one would ever have guess the true intentions of her visit.
By the time the sun had risen to midday, an entire section of the riverbank had been blocked off by the police. Boats with the infamous Potsey logo patrolled the churning waters of the river. Large, thickly woven nets were being plunged into the water and quickly brought back up; as if hoping to retrieve a lost item that had deeply embedded itself into the muck.
At half past three, a shout came out from one of the police boats. One of the nets had entrapped something; a female human body, decked in a tight-fitting red dress. A glistering garnet hung from her neck. Tangled black hair; once silky and shiny, was now knotted with seaweed and algae. Miraculously, her one of her high heeled shoes had stayed on. The other was lost in the river.
"Quick, get her body on the boat and take it to the station!"
The policemen worked with quick efficiency and transported the body onto the boat, then land. Their main focus was on the drowned victim; not the bystanders.
"Sorry, excuse me Ma'am.," one of the younger officers said as he almost ran into the lady.
"Oh, it's quite alright," she tittered, but made no show to move.
"Yes, we're in a bit of a hurry. So if you'll move out of the way, it'll be greatly appreciated..."
The lady stepped aside and let the men pass. They had put the body on a stretcher and covered it with a large piece of cloth.
"Excuse me Sir, but what has happened?" she asked one of the remaining officers who was taking down the police tape.
"An anonymous man came earlier, saying that he saw something mysterious in the river. Police came to investigate and as you can see, a body was found."
"How terrible!" the lady cried. "I assume it's going to go to the station to be identified?"
"That's what we're hoping for Ma'am."
"Could it have been a murder?"
"We don't know yet. Our main focus is on identifying the body; then the cause of this unfortunate death."
"Hm, well, alright. Thank you for telling me."
The officer tipped his hat in farewell and watched the woman leave. His thoughts were so preoccupied that he failed to realize he hadn't even seen the lady's face, despite the fact that he just carried on a short, but exposing conversation with her.
The lady, on the other hand, was extremely happy with the days turnout. Everything had gone according to plan. Pulling the hat even lower, she proceded down the riverbank for another half-mile to her awaiting carriage.
"How was your stroll mi'lady?" the driver asked when he saw his mistress approach. He jumped down from his seat and bowed.
"Quite nice," she replied pleasantly as he helped her onto the carriage.
The driver shut the door and jumped back up onto the seat. With a flick of his whip, the snow white stallions began trotting home.
The lady took out her handmirror and checked her reflection. In reality, she was checking for any followers. After all, the greatest of spies had met their demise that way; from a lack of perspicacious observation skills.
However, even she, the keenest of observers, had failed to notice the one person who had been watching the whole time.