The weather has been remarkably mild though rainy this winter. Leaden skys and thick choking fogs in the city have exerted their own level of depression on the soul, however, and as the holiday season approaches everyone who can is looking for ways to escape the ancient capital and spend the festivities in the countryside where the air is clean and the company gregarious. For the struggling author who is fighting writer’s block and hoping against hope for a new idea for a story, the unexpected invitation to spend the season at Leatherby Hall in Wiltshire with an old school friend is an irrisistable temptation.
How long it has been since our school girl days at Winchester Academy. I’ve read both of your delicious novels, and I was hoping against hope that you could find time to spend a few days with me down here at Leatherby Hall at Christmas time. Brian has plans to spend time with his stuffy old friends, talking about ancient history over and over again, and it positively makes me want to scream it’s so boring.
I have few friends in the area, and I would be so grateful if you could come. I don’t want you to do it out of pity, we really do put on a grand show with village fetes and stuff. There’s even hunting, so bring your riding gear with you, if you wish — or you can borrow some of mine. Brian has a shoot planned as well at the end of the year, if you can stay that long, and he gave me a lovely Italian gun for my birthday last year that you’re welcome to use.
Do say you’ll come. It will be such fun. We’ll have adventures together, as we did at school.
You’re old friend
Jane Hardaway Leatherby