Margaret Gets a New Recruit
Millie placed the serving dish on the white linen.
Margaret smiled. Edmund frowned.
“What is this, Margaret?”
“What day has my family always eaten pot roast?”
“Sunday,” Margaret calmly answered, filling her plate with juicy meat, savory carrots, nicely browned potatoes and onions.
“Tuesday is lamb chops.”
“Well, it’s time for a change. We both love pot roast, so why wait until Sunday?” Margaret happily helped herself to seconds. After a slight hesitation, Edmund joined her. He had to admit the Tuesday pot roast was a special treat. Why not? He secretly admired his new bride’s tendency to disregard age-old traditions.
Millie finally cleared the table and brought in their favourite raspberry tarts.
“No pudding?” Edmund was starting to appreciate the unexpected.
“A topsy-turvy day!” Margaret’s voice bubbled with laughter.
“Upset established routines,” Margaret had told the ladies. “Introduce variety and change.”
Edmund noticed something different about Margaret this evening.
“New dress?” He was proud of her beauty and sense of style, happy he could provide her with food, a home, lovely clothes.
“Three new dresses, actually. One for me and two for my less fortunate friends.”
Edmund stared at her. But again, why not? It wouldn’t hurt him to help struggling women. He had more money than he would ever need, and he loved making Margaret happy.
“Notice the colors?”
She stood up, turning this way and that to show off the white dress with its rows of delicate ruffles down the back and tucks down the front. Each ruffle was tinged in purple, each tuck displayed a fold of green.
“Suffragette colors, Edmund.”
“Wear the colors. Feel your strength. Women can accomplish anything,” Margaret encouraged her ladies.
“No!” Here he must draw the line. “Those lawbreaking, window-smashing harpies …”
“Not my troops, Edmund. We’re committed to peaceful changes. But we need your help!”
Edmund and his cronies made the laws. He looked thoughtful.
“Financial autonomy. Education. Running for office. Voting. Not much to ask, Edmund.”
“You know, my dear, I need a new cravat. White, green and purple would look good on me.”