What beautiful aristocratic ward of the Duke of Althorn was seen in the company of Lord Claven, son of the viscount? The chandeliers in the ballroom flickered in waves on the decorated ceiling casting undulating shadows against the walls as he danced her through the French doors and on to the terrace. Out of sight, but not out of hearing, this reporter heard him say, “It’s such a crush in there. I thought you’d appreciate a breath of fresh air.”
Through my quizzing glass, I saw the gentleman, and I use the word lightly, place her back against the rock wall, and station himself in front of her, enclosing the woman in a vise-lock embrace. “You are breathtaking in candlelight.”
I overheard the lady in question protest in a loud voice. “What do you think you’re doing? Do you speak such words to every woman you lure away in the dark?” She pushed him back. Her sardonic laugh was one intended to insult, not inflame his untoward ardor.
“Most likely, it usually entices ladies to explore.”
“That’s probably the most honest admission you’ve made tonight. Don’t come closer. I warn you.”
“Honesty only goes so far, when I want to do so much more. I know you have a fondness for that…bastard.” He hesitated.
“Don’t go there,” she cautioned the lord.
“We all know what Thorn is. He’s had the good fortune to have a high placed aristocrat accept him.”
Her words were loud and clear. “I warn you, Claven. I pack a wicked punch.”
“I know he’s trained you in horsemanship. Perhaps he has trained you in other areas too? Like kissing?”
I brought my monocle closer to see her face. Her lips moved quickly and apparently in anger. “I now prefer to return to the ball.” She attempted to move away.
“No,” he said. His voice was gruff to be sure.
“Kindly remove your body from my path.”
Horrors, the gentleman refused to move!
“You lured me here, my darling.” Now he pinned her against the wall.
I could see that she held her reticule between them.
“You have a vivid imagination.” She attempted to move again. “All right then,” and quicker than quick, she sent her fist to his cheek.
Caught unaware, he stumbled to the side, his hand upon his jaw.
I then saw her walk by him with a grin. “Thank you.” The sound of her voice echoed a small triumph. “You can thank Thorn Wick, the duke’s son, for teaching me fisticuffs. Come near me again, and I’ll plaster your face against a wall.”
She exited in a rush and straightened her gown only to run into Mr. Wick. With a casual attitude, she said, “You did teach me the art of boxing. I merely employed that education to accomplish my purpose.”
And what did he answer? “Indeed it appears you did. I’ll have to discipline him, I see.”
What has our Regency world come to when a lady is not safe with a lord?
Arthur Spectator, Senior reporter, Teatime Traveler
About the Book
After three years in England, Thorn Wick, the duke’s bastard son, perfectly flawed, still fights for acceptance in his father’s world as a renowned Argamak Turk horse trainer. Just when he starts to believe in fairy tales, another obstacle looms to thwart his plans: on a dangerous mission to Barbados, Thorn is stunned when secrets are revealed about his mother. Will he exact revenge for the foul deed?
Alicia Montgomery, ward of the duke, is in love with Thorn. Strong willed and adventurous, she determines she can convince him to admit his feelings. But the reality of loving Thorn too much almost destroys her.
Can Alicia quell Thorn’s demons and prove love can pave the way to their happiness to fulfill their destiny?
A Regency Romance with an Element of Suspense
About the Author
From a humble beginning in Newark, New Jersey, a short stay at a convent in Morristown, N.J. at the age of fourteen, Sandra Masters retired from a fantastic career for a play broadcasting company in Carlsbad, California, and settled in the rural foothills of the Sierras of Yosemite National Park with her husband, Ron, and two dogs, Silky and Sophie. She traded in the Board Rooms for the Ballrooms of the Regency Era and never looked back.
She wrote her first book at the age of thirteen and since then she’s always traveled with pen and notebook for her writing experiences. It’s been the journey of ten thousand miles with a few steps left to go. She deemed it a pleasure to leave the corporate world behind decades later.
Nothing she expected, but everything she desired. Her business card lists her occupation as Living The Dream.