One Summer In France – Episode 62

Libby woke early the morning of her birthday and lay in bed for a few moments, planning her day.

There were beds to make, canapés for tonight’s party to organise, salads and side dishes to be made, champagne bottles to be placed in the fridge and meat to be marinated for the barbecue, along with all the usual chores to do.

Lucas had promised to pop in some time during the day and set up his music system ready for the party. He’d also been talking about bringing some fairy lights to thread through the trees.

Libby smiled to herself, thinking about Lucas. Over the summer their lives had definitely become more and more entwined, almost without her realising. It was good having a man in her life again, especially someone as special as Lucas.

Flinging back the duvet, Libby got up. One of the things she must do this weekend was to talk to Chloe while she was here, to see how she felt about Lucas – whether it would be a problem for her if their friendship became something deeper.

Agnes arrived unexpectedly mid-morning clutching a jar of delicate rose petal jam and some lavender Marseille soap which she handed to Libby.

“These are just presents I thought you’d like from our holiday. They are not for your birthday,” she explained earnestly. “We’ll bring that with us this evening.”

“Thank you,” Libby said, sniffing the soap. “This smells wonderful. Did you have a good time?”

Agnes nodded.

“It was amazing. And we’ve come back to hear that Isabelle’s offer on the house she viewed before we left has been accepted.”

“Brilliant,” Libby said. “I am so pleased things are working out well for her.”

“Is Evie around?” Agnes asked.

“I think she went out earlier. Did you want to see her?”

Agnes shook her head.

“Non.” She hesitated before continuing. “Has she told you yet what she does in Paris? Only I don’t think Evie Patem is her real name. I think she’s that missing ballerina Suzette Shelby.”

Libby sighed inwardly. Her promise to Suzette not to break her confidence was foremost in her mind.

“Why do you think that?”

“The photograph of Suzette in a newspaper saying she was still missing,” Agnes said. “Next time I see her I’m going to ask her.”

“If she is Suzette Shelby, don’t you think she called herself Evie for a reason – to have some privacy?” Libby said. “She’s not hurting anyone by having a pseudonym. Perhaps she’ll tell us herself one day. Anyway, I like her whatever her name.”

Agnes looked at her.

“You don’t seem surprised. In fact, it’s almost as if you already knew.”

Libby bit her lip. There was no way she was going to break her promise to Suzette and confirm to Agnes that she was indeed Suzette.



Margaret Scott

Margaret is a sub-editor within the Production Team on the "Friend". Her main job is to work on the stories and make sure the magazine leaves us in its best possible guise. When not doing that, however, she either has her head buried in the old “Friend” volumes or is out and about giving talks or going on Warner trips (fab!). She hates cheese.