The reflection in the mirror smiled back at her as Alexandra sat at her dressing table. She felt exhilarated as she picked up her hairbrush to smooth the tangles in her dark hair. On her bed she could see her dress and petticoats soiled with Jeremy's blood. They would have to be hidden, she reflected, no one must ever know that Jeremy had not left as planned. A sudden knock on the door sent her scurrying to hide the dress. "Who is it?" she called as she stuffed the garments into the coffer at the foot of her bed.

"It's Kate." Came the muffled reply thru the closed door, "I came to see if you needed help to dress for dinner. It will be ready shortly."

"Come in Kate." She answered as she quickly closed the trunk and sat on the rounded top. Alexandra instructed her quickly; least the girl have any questions of her missing garments, "Please, lay out a dress suitable for dinner, I'll be right there." She glanced over at the window. The drapes were drawn and she stepped over to open them and the windows beyond. She took a deep breath of the evening air cleansed by storm. "How long since the rain stopped?" she asked.

"Several hours I think." She replied, then pulled a blue dress from the armoire, "Will this be all right?"

"That'll be fine Kate." She said not even turning from the window. She setting sun was beginning to break through igniting a red fire across the clouds. "Will you please let my brother know I'll be down soon."

Kate laid the dress out on the bed, and a moment later Alexandria heard the door quietly close behind her. With a sigh, she turned and stepped over to the bed to dress for dinner.