Chapter XV

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The post was a small little place filled with newspapers and advertisements and when I walked in my unfamiliar face made people look and speculate.

"Good morning," I said walking up the lady at the balcony.

"Good morning miss," she smiled.

"Um I would like to post a letter to London on Stanley Hall's account please," I took the letter from my purse and placed it on her hand.

"Oh so you are one of the maids at Stanley Hall?"

"Yes," I smiled.

"I'm Mrs. Justine, it's quite something huh? Seeing someone from Stanley Hall out and about here for once."

"Right the master does not stay here often."

"No he does not, and the staff comes and goes every spring like ghosts in the night."

"Ghosts," I chuckled dismissing the talk.

"Right ya' wouldn't know about that."

"About what? Ghosts?"

"Yes but it's just an old town story for the kids, nothing to it."

"What old town story?" I went against my willing conscience to remain an outsider to silly stories but the torment was too real and I had to make some clear connection to that locked room.

"Well they just say Mr. Howard don't stay here because the ghost of a woman chases him away and he's only the keeper of the Hall for her, so she can live there peacefully while he's away."

"A woman?"

"Yes a woman, a jealous secret ghostly wife just like in Jane Eyre," and when she mentioned the comparison I all but laughed, the post lady probably read too many novels.

"Right."

"What do you say to that? True or false?" Though I wanted to contradict her there were no certainties, and the circumstances pointed to her story being truer than my logic wanted it to be.

"I would like to know if you know anyone willing to train a girl to be a lady's maid?"

"Well Mrs. Hall for one, she was a lady's maid once upon a time, isn't she still the housekeeper of Stanley Hall?"

"She is yes but anyone else?"

"Uh I can look around for ya' what is yer name?"

"Alice Stewart."

"Alright well next Sunday I should have some news and now I got to close the post I only opened for two customers who asked me back in church, I do not really work on Sundays, it's the Lord's day after all."

"Right and thank you Mrs. Justine, I will look in on Sunday then," I left a little something on the balcony.

"See you then Miss Alice Stewart," she pocketed it.

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