Tuesday, 2 October 2018

Agnes Shepherd's Rejected Cream Cakes

Agnes Shepherd's Rejected Cream Cakes: Object Post 111

I've been putting these significant object posts into categories in my files. There's a category for food and one for weapons. I wonder which category this post should go in?

Source? They were made in the kitchen at Anna’s Own.
Significance? Agnes’ rejection of them was the culmination of her campaign against Bridget Kelly
Fate? Bridget threw them at her
Author’s inspiration? Encountering people who are never satisfied
From: Anna's Own 

“Her ladyship requires something fresher. With cream.” Savagely mimicking Agnes’ affected tones, Bridget began piling freshly-baked cream cake onto the plate.

Bridget Kelly had suffered from Agnes Shepherd’s spite when they were at school. Now acting as waitress in her mother’s teashop, Anna’s Own, Bridget was apprehensive when she saw Agnes enter along with her friend, Miss Browning. At first Agnes appeared not to recognise her old adversary but then she did and reverted to her childhood spite, refusing to make a selection, changing her mind and ordering things not on the bill of fare. After replacing a perfectly clean cup, and having Agnes complain of the service and the food, Bridget had to return to the kitchen yet again because Agnes…

…put  aside her untouched plate of sponge fingers with a delicate grimace.
 “Yes, I fear these are a trifle dry, Bridget. Have you something fresher? With cream, perhaps?”
Bridget delivered the cream cakes.

Your cream cakes, Miss,” said Bridget.
 Agnes clucked her tongue and began to draw on her gloves. “Such a pity,” she said. “I fear we do not have the time to taste them just now. The service was so slow we have quite over-stayed ourselves and I fear Papa will be anxious.”

Bridget had been pushed too far.

Are you quite sure you will not stay to try the cream cake you ordered, Agnes?” she asked.
 “Quite sure,” said Agnes indifferently. “Although from the condition of your skirts it would appear that you have found the time to do so! Really, Bridget, I know you may be only a serving maid, but is there any necessity for you to look such a slattern?”
 All the colour drained from Bridget’s cheeks, leaving the dusting of freckles like nutmeg on rice pudding. Decisively, she picked up one of the rejected cakes, pulled it apart, and threw it at Agnes. She followed it with another, and another.
 And my hands not shaking at all! she thought with icy wonder.

Since Agnes was not only a young lady of consequence but the daughter of Sam Shepherd who had invested in Anna’s Own, Bridget’s few moments of satisfaction came with a heavy price.


Sally is Sally Odgers; author, anthologist and reader. You can find you way into her maze of websites and blogs via the portal here.(Sally is me, by the way.)

The goal for 2017 was to write a post a day profiling the background behind one of my books; how it came to be written, what it's about, and any things of note that happened along the way. 2017 is well behind us, but I ran out of year before running out of books. As of June 2018 I STILL hadn't run out of books, but many of those still to come are MIA by which I mean I don't have copies and remember little about them. There are more new books in the pipeline, and I'm certainly showcasing those, but in between times, I'm profiling some of my characters, places, objects and themes. Thank you so much to everyone who's come along on this journey so far!

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