Mail Order Bride: The Victorian Orphan Girl
Copyright 2014 Helen Keating
“You there! Get back here!”
Beatrice panted even though she was barely trotting away from the policeman wielding a baton. She stuffed the pilfered roll into her mouth as she urged her weak legs to carry her a little faster. Beatrice knew the bit of bread wouldn’t grant her instant strength or speed. It wouldn’t even sustain her until the next meal she was able to scrape together.
However, she’d needed something. Anything. In addition, she thought she’d been discreet. It was just a little roll, after all. No one was going to miss it.
“I see you!” the policeman bellowed, making Beatrice jump, but it was hard for him to slip through the crowd of people she was darting through. Ever so often, it paid to be as slight as she was — even if it was symptom of not having enough to eat.
She finally managed to chew and swallow the roll, wondering if the small dent it made in her hunger would be worth it. She willed herself onward, ducking through one alley and another, counting on the fact that getting caught up in the crowd would slow the policeman, make him lose sight of her for just a few precious seconds.