“Selah Harrison? Goodness, what trouble have you managed to get yourself into now?” John Hancock’s wide smile and laughter were enough for me to know he was well acquainted with this Miss Harrison.
“What makes you think I am in trouble?”
I turned to see that Selah had taken a defensive stance to match her tone.
“You have this lad steaming more than a kettle of tea, and your brow is furrowed like a farmer’s field. Now, tell me, what mischief have you made?”
Selah glanced toward me. I crossed my arms. I was not going to offer an explanation for her behavior. She would have to tell him of her rudeness herself.
She pointed an accusing finger. “He is threatening to go to my master and give a bad report of me.”
Hancock sighed. He seemed to have dealt with this fiery lady before. “And what did you do to warrant this threat?”
The girl had the decency to blush as she recalled her words. Her gaze dropped to the ground, and her voice became quiet. “I asked him if he was here for tea.”
“Here for tea? I do not understand.”
The young woman said nothing.
I felt compelled to say something. “The first time I met this woman was at the Lion and Lamb tavern. I ordered tea, which offended her for some mysterious reason.”
Her head jerked up and she glared at me once again. “If it had been Dutch tea, I would not have minded, but the Lion and Lamb carries English tea. I thought you might care more for your countrymen.” The fire was back in her eyes.
John Hancock let out another sigh. “Selah, one of these days you will end up in trouble or the gaol because of that tongue of yours; trouble from which Josiah Quincy and all his law skills, and me with all my wealth, cannot extricate you. You had better apologize to this young man, and think twice before confronting a gentleman again, especially one who is unknown to you.”
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