Grayson's companion, Sir John Russell, crossed his arms. He was just as tall as Grayson with salt and pepper hair around the temples and weary brown eyes, made so by the exertion of day-to-day politics.
"Yes, I'm the prime minister and this is Earl Swinton. Why are you here at the palace?"
Alice paused, pursing her lips, and tried to quickly think of an explanation. Then her eyes lit up. "I'm here to see Prince Albert."
Sir John raised an eyebrow. "Really? What business do you have with him?"
"I'm here to discuss an exhibit for the Great Exhibition he's planning."
"Um, no doubt it's a fashion exhibit," said Sir John.
Alice beamed from ear to ear. "Why, yes, it is."
From the playful look in Alice's eyes, Grayson couldn't help but wonder if Alice was serious about her reply.
"Well, I will help you. Swinton, take this young lady to one of the reception rooms while I meet with the prince's secretary."
"Of course, Sir John," said Grayson. He turned his full attention onto Alice. "Come with me, Miss Windsor."