Mercier x Betty British Raj AU
Calcutta, 1902. The word ‘dance’ comes to mind, their own choreography of gazes exchanged across the room, brushes of hands and half-spoken confessions. They orbit around each other, destined never to collide it seems; Mercier is upper class, Betty is a governess. And he’s spying on the family whose children she swore to protect.
But in this foreign land of spices and silk, of golden gods and lush forests, where cultural norms clash and wane, even destinies must yield to desire.
Word count: 3.4k
Beta: @fadewithfury <3
You don’t need to have seen either show.
3 | Meeting
Douglas Wigram grumbled as his pen kept slipping from his pudgy hand. Mercier peered at him over his two months-old Le Figaro (news travelled slowly to India).
“Something the matter, Wigram?”
“You French and your bloody paperwork.”
Mercier chuckled, he was starting to enjoy Wigram’s company— unfortunately. He went back to reading about the relations between president Émile Loubet and the new king, Edward VII.
“How long will it take?” Wigram asked.
“It depends on how fast you can write.”
“No, I mean, the payment.” He blotted his large, sunburnt forehead with an handkerchief.
“I don’t know, I am only in charge of diplomatic relations,” Mercier replied. He wanted to ask if he had financial troubles, but couldn’t do it so bluntly.
Lord Wigram wanted to rekindle his business relationship with the French, unaware that Mercier knew all about the people he’d defrauded in Bombay. If Douglas was experiencing money problems, he might be tempted to pull the same tricks he had back then. However, Mercier had yet to find concrete evidence of ill intentions.
Mercier turned the question of financial troubles in his mind to find a tactful formulation, but footsteps in the hall distracted him.