Henderson Family Portrait

There were two things that annoyed Miss Felicity Henderson. Actually, that’s not strictly speaking true, many things annoyed Miss Felicity Henderson. There were two things that sent her apoplectic.

The first thing was being conned. Now, one would imagine that the daughter of the patriarch of one of the largest crime families in London would know every trick in the book and would be somehow impossible to fool, but you would be wrong. As it happened, everyone that Miss Henderson knew as she was growing up was extremely aware that she was the daughter of the patriarch of one of the largest crime families in London and was extremely careful to never, ever give the impression that they might be trying anything untoward. Whilst bad things might sometimes happen to good people, bad things always happened to people who crossed the Hendersons no matter what their moral character. Those bad things tended to involve impromptu surgery and that was often before a visit to a hospital. 

When Miss Henderson had decided to make her own way in the world she had been initially surprised at just how duplicitous humanity was, especially to young ladies. The kindly philanthropist with the warm smile and the wandering hands, the handsome young man with expensive tastes and the well-educated employer who somehow couldn’t count her wages correctly. She had come across them all, and whilst she was certain she wanted no support from her family, she was not without means to extract recompense by herself. What galled her was not that she might be somehow harmed, for that was a near impossibility, but at the sheer effrontery of people that thought she might be gulled. And it was all the worse if they were right. So she had developed what she hoped was excellent judgement as to the character of others and woe betide the others if she was proved wrong.

The second thing that was almost guaranteed to send Miss Henderson into a righteous and frankly often violent fury was when someone she considered under her wing was harmed. Miss Henderson had kept a sense of expanded family from her youth and had tended to extend that to her friends, people she was employed by and occasionally complete strangers she met who seemed on their uppers. Miss Henderson would travel a thousand miles to help someone she considered in her protection, possibly to find the perpetrator of the injustice and beat them senseless.

All of which explains what happened next outside the Hotel Raoul. Miss Henderson had had some niggling doubts about the policeman that had been allegedly protecting them, but had ignored her better judgement and dismissed it as prejudice. However, she had very clearly seen Pee-Air make a signal to someone when Sir John had opened the door. That someone had then run down the street and very definitely exchanged a glance with Pierre before disappearing into the door with Sir John. That meant that Pierre was, at a minimum, keeping secrets from them and far more likely in cahoots with their tormentors.

And so, immediately after Sir John and then Bisset entered the door, Miss Felicity Henderson hit the policeman known as Pierre very, very hard.


Family Portrait

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