And so it was that on this particular day in early March 1867, Griselda, or Grace as she then was, went out with her new best (and only) friend, Sarah, who had said that Grace could call her by her 'pet name' of Sally, for the short walk from Drury Lane to Oxford Street; this being her first exploration of London, Grace was all eyes and ears at the bustle and hustle of the grand metropolis and she marvelled at how well-known her guide was, for it seemed as if everyone – well, more accurately, every man – doffed his hat and smiled at her as they passed, saying "hello, my dear," and "my, you are looking bonny this morning," and at last Grace could hold her tongue no longer; "Sally," said she, "everyone knows you, how do you have so many friends, why, at home I do not know a quarter or an eighth or a sixteenth of that number, and could count my actual friends on the fingers of one hand, how is it?" and Sally laughed, "why, everyone knows me, from the Duke to Lord Rosebery, for I'm Miss Sarah Siddons from Bow!" and then leaning confidentially closer to her young accomplice, "in truth, I know none of them, not their names nor their occupations, nor their residences, they may be big in The City, in Politick, or in the Nobility, and even in the Church, and I dare say, many of them will have been to my rooms, have felt me, kissed me and frigged or fucked me, for the world is full of men who like to spend their time and money on me, oh, I call them 'friends' but in truth they are customers, and I am a Theatre, a Music Hall, a Pleasure Garden for their entertainment and amusement; and Lawks! have I not seen more than one look at you as they address me, for they are Men of the World, who can spot a Virgin at a hundred paces, and they all lust for her, and may in time have her, but if you are wise and follow my instructions, without great need for soul-searching, Perry will be the first to introduce you to those particular and most exquisite pleasures that many others will come to pay their respects to – and handsomely, in gold coin; but here we are," she said with a sigh of pleasure, as they entered a vast cathedral of a place, filled with light and colour and scents and shining colours of every hue, "this is John Lewis's shop." whispered Sally, "he only opened it a couple of years ago and like many of his customers, I followed him here after he left Peter Robinson's; the quality of his fabrics and designs is top-hole and you won't find better in the whole of London," and then she murmured softly into Grace's shell-like ear, "and he likes nothing better than being hands-on, despite the number of staff he employs, when he's in. he will measure every inch of a pretty women and ensure a snug fit of every garment she purchases," and she nodded towards a young man, with a tape measure hanging around his neck; "good morning, Mister Lewis, how pleased I am that you are her today, are you free?" and he returned the greeting, with a warm smile, "good morning to you, Miss Siddons, and to your young friend, yes, I'm free – let me guess, she is your new Maid, and you wish her to be dressed for service and play? am I correct?" and Sally laughed, "as ever, Mister Lewis, you have an eye that misses nothing," and he blushed, which immediately stirred a liking in Grace for this young man; Lewis quickly took charge, guiding them through what might to an outsider have seemed like a jumble-sale, with fabrics and stuffings and braids and tassels and accessories of every kind, piled high and overflowing on chests and counters and rails, and Grace saw leathers and tweeds and cambrics and silks and satins all intermingled with no seeming sense of order or location, yet as they followed the draper, she noticed him pause and pick up a bolt of silk here, a swatch of brocade there, a roll of ribbon and a basket of pears, together with stockings, garters, and an armfull of undergarments; at last he stopped and indicated that Grace and Sally should precede him into a room lit bright with gas-mantles and there he laid his collection on a work-table and drew a heavy curtain across the doorway; now he stood and seemed to study Grace with a scrutiny which made her feel her imperfections, but he smiled and said: "relax, my dear, you have nothing to fear." and turned to Sally: "a glass of Madeira to warm you both on this winter day?" and clapped his hands, at which a young woman dressed in black-and-white entered and at a nod from her employer, took a wine bottle from a cupboard, and glasses, and poured the ladies a glass of amber liquid which, when Grace took her first sip, spread a warmth through her body and relaxed her; sitting on the chaise behind them, Grace and Sally listened as the outfitter explained to Grace the process by which she would be measured and assessed and the selection of her new garments would be made up: "I always start with a clean canvas, so if you would care to disrobe, I will begin," and she glanced nervously at Sally, for never had she undressed before a man; "tush, Gracie, think of Mister Lewis as a Doctor, who clothes our bodies and makes us fit to live our lives, just as a medical doctor sorts out what's beneath the skin. Mister Lewis works from the skin outwards, is that not right, Mister Lewis?" and he nodded, "very well put, Miss Siddons, with the addition that I consider the Outfitter's Art to be a syncretism of anatomy, poetry, music and dance, utilising the framework, the posture and the symmetry of each individual lady, together with her state of mind, of being, whether young and exuberant or more. shall we say, between the crests and sloughs of middlescence, in short: her dress should represent her soul, as the Artist captures the essence in a portrait, so the Outfitter displays it in a dress; but do reassure your young friend, Miss Siddons, I will not expose her to public gaze yet, and that you will remain throughout for propriety's sake," and Grace submitted, removing all of her clothes which were laid on a small table at the back, until she stood perfectly naked before the professional gaze of the proprietor of this vast emporium; and it was just at that very moment that the curtain, shielding them from without, was suddenly flung aside and a handsome gentleman stood there, smiling at the sight, "why Sally, I was right, it is you, good morning Mister Lewis, and who is this young beauty?" and Lewis standing before Grace and the intruder, said: "why Sir Peveril, I must ask you to withdraw, you are well aware of the rules and the complete discretion of the Ladies' Fitting Rooms, you do not even enter when Lady MacFarlane is within," and the man managed to look deep into Grace's eyes as she stood naked behind the Draper, "I trust I will see you anon, fair lady, dressed or undressed," and with a wink at Sally, withdrew, and left the trio in a still agitated state: "I do apologise, Mesdames," said Mister Lewis, "such an intrusion has never happened before, and most certainly will never happen again, I will punish my Assistant who should be standing guard outside," but Grace pleaded with him, "please sir, do not punish her on my account," and Sarah also remonstrated, "nor mine, I pray you, Mister Lewis, for Sir Peveril is a good friend of mine and meant nothing untoward, merely to confirm that it was I he saw enter here," and Lewis stood thoughtfully and said: "as you wish, dear ladies, but I promise that it will never be permitted to happen again, the Fitting Room is sacrosanct and that must be honoured, and now, if you would care for another glass of Madeira, my dears, you have nothing more to fear and we shall commence with the delicate task of making accurate measurements of this young lady." and so they did.