Denys took his breakfast in the kitchen with the staff at the Forrester mansion.
Six days a week he was expected to join them at the long board in the kitchen; the housekeeping staff, the kitchen staff, the groundskeeper and Nils Samuelson, the ever present butler and leader of their coterie.
Denys was not hungry in the morning.
He would sip a cup of black coffee, eat a soft roll made from white flour, smeared with butter and sprinkled with cocoa powder.
He listed as the cooks and the maids chattered among themselves, he waited attentively for Nils to give them the plan of the day.
The Forrester household was organized like a military unit, and Nils was there captain.
This morning was like any other that had come and gone in the two years that he had been employed at the mansion.
He woke up before dawn, opened the windows in the small room above the garage, and listened to the sound of the early morning, as he looked out over the railroad yards north of the the long ridge that stretched across the West side of Saint Anthony, on top of which the Forrester mansion was built and held the most prominent position.
He did his daily calisthenics.
He washed himself, smoothed out his livery, polished the buttons on his uniform, his belt buckle and boots. He brushed his black cap and oiled the bill.
He was ready to begin his day.
Nils informed the staff the Colonel would be interviewing a young man for a position in his organization later in the morning.
He listened while the household staff were given instructions to make up the guest room for him, with the expectation that he might be staying with household for a length of time.
Nils locked eyes with Denys as he gave the staff the details of what the room would require; a blotter and pens, a typewriter and paper, miscellaneous items to outfit an office, some for comfort, some for utility.
Denys could not help but have a feeling of jealousy as he listened to Nils issue his instructions.
Who was this young man? He thought to himself. Just who was this guy we were rolling out the carpet for?