Mrs. Thornton gets home from work stressed out and exhausted, but decides to go on to Cafe Birdsong anyhow and deals with the increasing number of butterflies in her stomach as she realizes her neighbor in no. 413 has arranged the entire evening so she can enjoy good music in the company of his nearest and dearest...
To get totally caught up on The Posture of Innocence, here are the prologue, day 1, day 2, day 3, day 3.5, day 4, day 4.5, day 5, day 5.5, day 6, day 7, day 7.5, day 8, day 9, day 9.5, day 10, day 10.5, day 11, day 11.5, day 12, day 12.5, day 13, day 13.5, day 14, day 15, day 16, day 16.5, day 17, day 18, day 19, day 19.5, day 20, day 20.5, day 21, day 22, day 22.5, day 23, day 23.5, day 24, day 24.5, day 25, day 25.5, day 26, day 26.5, day 27, day 27.5, day 28, day 28.5, day 29, day 29.5, day 30, day 30.5, day 31, day 31.5, day 32, day 32.5, day 33, day 33.5, day 34, day 34.5, day 35, day 35.5, day 36, day 36.5, day 37, day 37.5, day 38, day 38.5, day 39, day 39.5, day 40, day 40.5, day 41, day 41.5, day 42, day 42.5, day 43, day 44, day 44.5, day 45, day 46, day 46.33, day 46.67, and day 47!
Mrs. Magdalena Thornton had gotten off at 5, had gone home to find her cousin Mrs. Margie Bell already dressed for their VIP evening at Club Birdsong, and had thus remembered they were going to see Tricolor Sounds that night. She had felt so frightened and so exhausted from dealing closely with Lieutenant Deadwood she had forgotten, and thought about telling her cousin she didn't feel well and so to go without her. Instead, she bucked up, smiled, ate a little bit – her stomach was flip-flopping and it was more than the lieutenant, she realized – and she and her Cousin Margie left for Club Birdsong at 6:00pm.
“Hey, neighbors!” said George Curry from Rosewood Apartments no. 345 just as soon he saw Mrs. Thornton and Mrs. Bell.
Turns out dozens of their neighbors had turned out: John and Gary of Tricolor Sounds had been their neighbors all along, and had pooled their resources, with their new third man, to give tickets to their neighbors.
“Oh, that's what's going on!” Mrs. Thornton said.
“I wonder if anybody got Captain Lee a ticket, and if he could just unbend enough to enjoy an evening like this,” Mrs. Bell said.
At that moment, Mrs. Thornton realized why her stomach was full of butterflies … exactly one neighbor of hers from the Rosewood Apartments had access to her desk at work, and he was a White man who could play his banjo, guitar, and mandolin any way he wanted...
The butterflies had baby butterflies when Mrs. Thornton and Mrs. Bell got to their table, which seated five, and found a very old but sprightly couple sitting there with a younger relative … they all were reminiscent in features and speech to the man in apartment no. 413. Horace Fitzhugh, Linda, and Hopkins … Mrs. Thornton could guess the last name, making the H.F. Lee at the table the grandfather and Linda the grandmother who had raised the H.F. Lee about to appear on the stage, and Hopkins the uncle or the cousin … and suddenly she realized that she had just been introduced to the key members of the family of the man she loved – and he had arranged it.
All that said: they were all early and had a grand time together, the elder Lees and Mrs. Thornton and Mrs. Bell, including Mrs. Bell hitting it off with Hopkins Lee, who also was quite handsome and more outgoing than his shy cousin Henry. Horace and Linda Lee smiled indulgently on all that, but focused their attention on Mrs. Thornton, who, despite her whole stomach trying to fly away, decided to rise to the occasion. She had faced down Lieutenant Deadwood to assist Captain Lee in his work … what would be too much to gain the man himself, especially since clearly he had set before her a wide-open door?