“Harley! I am quite serious! I’ve no time for your nonsense! Leave now!”
“Hobbs, old chap, don’t get your mohair in a fluff. I’ve done nothing seriously wrong, to speak of, and I must say I am hurt at the inference that I’ve only come to escape some unpleasant situation. Besides, you’ve nothing to fear. I’ll not embarrass you or reveal anything to compromise your situation here.”
“That is the most truthful statement I've heard. You will not compromise anything here because you are leaving, NOW!”
The rattling of carriage wheels coming up the drive alerted Hobbs of the Bearton’s arrival. Realizing he hadn’t time to deal with his brother he acquiesced.
“Very well Harley, go downstairs and we will chat over a pot of tea.”
“I knew you’d come round ole brother bear of mine. By the way, where do you keep the honey?”
“NO HONEY! Just wait downstairs and I’ll be there shortly.”
“Fine, no need to get huffy.”
Harley started for the back stairs when he heard Hobbs open the front door, greeting the Beartons.
Peeking from the hallway, Harley beheld the most beautiful creature he had ever seen.
Her shimmering white fur and sparkling eyes infiltrated his very soul.
“Miss Georgianna, Mr. Steerforth, welcome home. I hope the ball was a great success.”
“Indeed it was Hobbs, thank you. It’s a bit chilly outside so a pot of tea would be nice, please.”
“Of course, sir.”
Hobbs hurried from the room to the kitchen downstairs; however, when he entered it was empty. His fur bristled and his heart palpitated within his chest.
“Where on earth did that blasted bear go now?” he mumbled to himself.