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A chance meeting on purpose

Aldridge looked around the unfamiliar room of a club patronised by the son and heir of the Duke of Sudbury. He soon spotted the distinctive white-blonde head of hair. Glenaire was dining alone at a table set apart from the others. Aldridge strolled over, catching up a chair on his way.

“Good evening, Glenaire. Would company go amiss?” It was a comedy they enacted for the audience. Glenaire had offered this as a meeting place when Aldridge asked for a private conversation.

Glenaire looked up from the pamphlet on which he focused to the neglect of his plate. “It would be my pleasure.” He hooked a finger at a passing footman. “A place setting for Lord Aldridge.”

As the footman hurried away, Glenaire went straight to the point. “Forgive if I’m assuming, Aldridge, but I gather this is about your family matter.”

Aldridge grimaced. “In a sense, Glenaire, though it touches on your particular interests. Let me be blunt. My ‘family matter’ as you call it is out of my hands and into those of men like your esteemed father. I shall need to trust they make the right decision, for what else can I do? Meanwhile, I am doing my best to contain the mischief my own progenitor can cause, as quietly as possible, for my mother’s sake and the sake of the duchy.”

Glenaire’s somber expression deepened. Unlike Aldridge, Glenaire had withdrawn from affairs of the Sudbury duchy and thrown himself into government, becoming highly influential in foreign affairs. His sharp disagreement with the duke his father made working together impossible and, unlike Haverford, the Duke of Sudbury remained very much in control. He understood, however, the frustration of watching his family heritage poorly managed while lacking power to intervene.

The footman arrived to serve a bowl of rich oyster soup. Aldridge thanked him with a smile, and took his first sip while waiting for the man to leave. “With your sister supporting this event my mother is sponsoring, I take it we shall be seeing you at the auction?”

“Of course,” Glenaire agreed. “Chadbourn and I have been working on similar issues for a few years. I will support the ladies’ efforts any way I can.”

“I was somewhat surprised to see your sister at Haverford House and joining in the committee’s activities. My impression has been she prefers to remain in Oxfordshire.”

Glenaire shook his head. “Georgiana is much too much a recluse. One worries. I urged her to come down for a few weeks while our parents are not in town.” A small movement at the corner of his lips hinted at amusement. “Your mother recruited her rather quickly. Now she has moved to Chadbourn House. She and the earl’s sister Lady Flora are partners in this cause.”

Aldridge grinned. “Chadbourn already has a special interest in the Society’s cause. The Chadbourn House servants are an interesting lot.”  (Chadbourn recruited many of his servants from among disabled veterans and war widows.)

The footman finished pouring the wine to go with the soup course, and left. Aldridge leant forward and lowered his voice. “Glenaire, I’ll get straight to the point. It has come to my attention that a certain crime lord in the London slums has smuggling interests, and that the implications may touch on the security of the King’s realm. If… and I pose the question hypothetically… if a prominent Devon landowner gave safe haven to such criminals, and someone presented the government with information about the places and times of meeting, could the landowner’s name be kept out of it? The family would, of course, guarantee to deal with the matter in their own way. Indeed, steps are already being taken.”

Glenaire nodded. “Ah, but the government would have a strong interest in assisting the family in this matter. Confidentially, Aldridge we both know there are smugglers one winks at (your boyhood shows that) and ones that mean us harm. I assume these are the latter and can ensure the full force of the border enforcement—riding officers and military aid if it came to that. Unless, of course, you prefer I keep them out of it.”

Aldridge frowned. “It’s a tricky matter, Glenaire. It needs to be handled by someone with a bit of discretion. Yes, running with the smugglers in Devon is almost a rite of passage for Haverford sons. My brother and I both did it when we were schoolboys, and I still know some of the men I met then. They wouldn’t touch these London thugs with an extremely long barge pole.”

He looked down at his soup spoon, but it was clear his mind was far away. “I can’t stand by and let a man’s second childhood, and his resentment of a romantic rivalry from before I was born, put England at risk. But I don’t want — can I be blunt? — I don’t want the fool attained for treason, either.”

“Are we back to a “family” matter?” Glenaire asked.

Aldridge nodded, cautiously. “Hypothetical, again? Imagine a man whose excesses have rotted his brain, and who has always thought he was one step up from God. If he needed to pay a villain for an assassination attempt, and the payment demanded was free use of smuggler sanctuaries, would his conscience bother him, do you think?”

Glenaire leaned forward. “I think it would not bother him one whit.” He bit his lip, choosing words cautiously. “Let’s assume, hypothetically, a prominent individual has so taken leave of his senses as to put his duchy, locale or indeed England at risk. Dear God! He must be stopped.”

“Agreed.” Aldridge spread his lips in a travesty of a grin, as if Glenaire had said something amusing. “At any cost, Glenaire. Any cost. But I’m selfish enough to wish to limit the cost to something I can afford to pay.”

 “Care for the impact of such a thing on a mother and her wards — not to mention the wellbeing of the duchy — is not selfish. No one gains by the scandal of a trial for treason. With the cooperation of close individuals — his heir for example — the man in question might be dealt with quietly. Some sort of confinement could be arranged. Do you anticipate difficulty from his peers? A duke for example, hypothetically?”

Another nod. This one more emphatic. “Indeed. A duke whose own heir might be very close to you.”

“Precisely. I have little influence with my father,” Glenaire acknowledged, “but this… no, I don’t suppose you want him to know about this.”

Aldridge inclined his head. “I am grateful for your understanding. He is not the only man on the panel for the Competence Hearing, so I do not despair of an appropriate outcome. If not — I have servants loyal to me. Something will be contrived.”

“A positive outcome there would make all this easier. You may be sure the Regent will agree with a finding in favour of the truth,” Glenaire assured his fellow heir, then his brows shot up. “One thing, Aldridge. You said, ‘an assassination attempt…’ but you don’t name the victim. Surely not the Regent! A high ranking official? We’ll need to organize protection.”

Aldridge responded with a wry quirk of the eyebrows. “The man in question has his own very efficient protection. You will have heard of the footpad attack more than a year back on the town carriage of a certain duke? Five of twelve scoundrels left dead in the streets? The next two attempts have been kept quiet, but have resulted in a similar body count.”

“Ah,” Glenaire said knowingly. “A man with a private army perhaps?”

A small smile. “No noble is permitted a private army, Glenaire. This personage has only the number of retainers permitted by law. That they are unusually skilled, men and women alike, is to their advantage in this case.  I am not concerned for their safety and wellbeing. Though for all their prowess, if this Devil’s Acre fellow is allowed to continue, he might get lucky.”

Aldridge opened his jacket and pulled a slim package from an inside pocket. “A report from David Wakefield, the investigator. Use it as you need to, Glenaire.”

Glenaire accepted it and put it away in his own jacket. “Thank you for the warning. I’ll send the support the hypothetical heir needs, alert certain influential individuals. Ah yes, and speak to you again at the ladies’ auction. Our sisters will insist on it.”

 Aldridge laughed. “I expect it to cost me a pretty penny, one way and another. My mother tells me it is my duty to purchase the baskets of any lady who may be left behind. I trust I can content myself with driving up the bids of others.”

Glenaire allowed himself a slightly broader smile. “I fear I lack your patience for the latter but I’ll try to do my duty by the first.”

“One must have patience to be a success with the ladies, Glenaire.” Aldridge smiled warmly at the footman who replaced his soup bowl with a plate of roasted beef and finely cooked vegetables. “Thank you. Will you see the doorman and fetch the bottle I left with him? Glenaire? May I treat you to a fine Italian red?”

***

The event the Duchess of Haverford is organising, and some of the other matters touched on in this discussion between Jude’s Marquis of Aldridge and Caroline’s Marquess of Glenaire, are featured in Fire & Frost, due for publication on 4 February. Click on the link to find out more about five wonderful stories, set in the winter of 1813-14, when the weather was so cold the Thames froze over, and all five stories converge at the Frost Fair.
And come back to check out the tour around the Belles’ blogs on release day your own personal guided tour of five Frost Fair booths, with a large helping of scandal and five micro stories written just for the blog tour. (The link will be added when the tour opens.)

The Sad Fate of Chunee

Editorial comment from S. Clemens

No one in London can be unfamiliar with the circumstances of the death of one of our most beloved and renowned citizens, the elephant Chunee, who Wednesday last met his fatal end at the Exeter Change in such a barbarous manner that many were moved to write letters on his behalf. The Tattler has learned the identity of one lady of quality, whose letter we reprint here. While we must applaud the lady’s sentiments on behalf of this noble creature, we must also wonder if so outspoken a young woman as Lady Emily Radstock will ever find a husband among the gentry and nobility of England. Rumor has it that she is one of the financial backers of Sir Arthur Broome’s Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Sir Arthur currently resides in Marshalsea Prison for debt.

Chunee

Sir:

The facts in the death of Chunee are so well known as to need no recounting. Thousands in London have seen the prints of his cruel slaughter. His agony at the hands of those on whom he long depended for his sustenance and whose pockets were lined with the proceeds of exhibiting him to the public is indefensible.

His handlers’ inability to consider his needs and to foresee a time when distress of body and spirit would render him a danger to himself and others and to plan accordingly for his care and ultimately for his end brings into question the fitness of human persons for keeping any wild animals in captivity, confined against their nature in cages, to be stared at by the masses with no freedom to act in accord with the promptings of their natures.

It is time to close the Exeter Change and all similar institutions whose indifference to the well-being of their charges is a stain on the honor of our city.

I am, Sir, your obedient servant,

E. Radstock

About the Book: The Spy’s Guide to Seduction

Weeks from her twenty-ninth birthday, Lady Emily Radstock receives from her mother a little blue book, The Husband Hunter’s Guide to London. Outraged at her mother’s attempt to push her out of the nest, Emily declares she’ll marry the first imbecile she meets. Overhearing the beautiful heiress, Baronet Sir Ajax Lynley, newest gentleman spy in the Pantheon Club, takes her at her word. From the moment their engagement begins, Emily finds herself intrigued by her fiancé, a man who encourages her daring and who offers a most seductive partnership in spy-catching. When mounting danger and an uncanny echo of his painful past lead Lynley to abandon the partnership, Emily has to put aside the hurt and humiliation of a missing fiancé to save her partner in spying and seduction. A 2019 Library Journal Top Pick in Romance.

Barnes and Noble

Amazon

About the Author

Kate Moore taught English lit to generations of high school students, who are now her Facebook friends, while she not-so-secretly penned Romances. In Kate’s stories an undeniable mutual attraction brings honorable, edgy loners and warm, practical women into a circle of love in Regency England or contemporary California. A Golden Heart, Golden Crown, and Book Buyers Best award winner and three-time RITA finalist, Kate lives north of San Francisco with her surfer husband, their yellow Lab, toys for visiting grandkids, and miles of crowded bookshelves.

Kate@KateMooreAuthor.com

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Danger for Her Grace of H.?

What propriety is possible with women whose heads are filled with nothing but men? Can charity improve flawed character?

Dear Mr. Clemens,

I have it on very good authority that the reputations of some of the supposed ladies, who are members of the The Ladies’ Society for the Care of the Widows and Orphans of Fallen Heroes and the Children of Wounded Veterans would not bear close scrutiny. Her Grace of H, whose generosity is well known is being taken advantage of by females as scandalous as that jade, Miss M. P. C. It is all well and good for Her Grace to sponsor the woman’s employment as almoner at the Benevolent Paupers of the Apostles Hospital, where Miss C will only encounter persons of as low an order as herself. But to foist her upon society as part of the group organizing Her Grace’s latest charity ball is by far too much. Bad enough that the good folk of the ton must tolerate, those sisters, Misses M. and J. G. because of their relationship to the M of A. Now Her Grace is elevating a woman of Miss C.’s repute to the heights of society by association with the likes of  Lady T. M., sister to the reculsive Duke of E , who is involved in this charitable effort. Her ladyship is young and can be forgiven a small error in judgement. However, Her Grace cannot have considered the impact that associating with such dubious women will have on an impressionable and high-spirited young lady such as the Duke of E’s sister. Since Her Grace is always most kind and generous, her continued support of the likes of Miss C can only be a detriment to any charitable effort. What will come of those efforts of Her Grace when Miss C shows her true colors and steals every penny, like the dishonorable strumpet she is. I beg of you sir, and your good readers, encourage Her Grace of H. not to tolerate any association with Miss C. on the part of any members of the The Ladies’ Society for the Care of the Widows and Orphans of Fallen Heroes and the Children of Wounded Veterans.

With kind regards and concern for the welfare of our young ladies,

D. Cummins.

Dear Readers,

We publish this letter in the interests of fair play and welcome any epistles countering the concerns of its author. We cannot help but wonder if the concerned “D. Cummins.” might be a relative of the Miss C. mentioned in the letter. Perhaps a relative who has benefitted from the young woman’s difficulties and would prefer to see her banished from society rather than reformed. We are well acquainted with Her Grace of H’s kindness and wisdom. She is an unlikely dupe, so we welcome any response either in support or in opposition to the concerns noted in the letter above.

Sincerely

S. Clemens, Editor and Publisher

Learn more about the ‘scandalous’ Miss C. and other protege’s of the Duchess of Haverford in the Bluestocking Belles’ boxset Fire & Frost.

The ladies of London, led by the indomitable Duchess of Haverford plot a campaign to feed the hungry, care for the fallen—and bring the neglectful Parliament to heel. Their campaign involves strategy, persuasion, and a wee bit of fun. Pamphlets are all well and good, but auctioning a lady’s company along with her basket of delicious treats is bound to get more attention. When the Thames freezes over, the ladies take to the ice at the Frost Fair. With handsome gentlemen at hand, what could be better for their purposes than a little Fire & Frost?

The Agent and the Lady

Your Teatime Tattler once again has the pleasure of receiving scandalous news from afar, this about a notorious Pinkerton agent.

Dear Mr. Clemens,

You may not be able to print this scandalous story. I am reporting to you an event that has horrified my friends and me! Miss Lydia Wood was seen in the company of a man, Mr. Jake Hunter, in a saloon for commoners. To make matters more appalling, she wore a scandalous dress that exposed her ankles and a bit of her… appendages. His dress presented him as a riverboat gambler. This was not to a costume ball, Mr. Clemens, but a night on the town. She even sang in the saloon!

Miss Woods said she and Mr. Hunter are agents of the Pinkerton Detective Agency’s Denver, Colorado, office. I hesitate to call her remarks into question. Nevertheless, have you ever heard of a woman Pinkerton detective? You can understand why I am dismayed beyond words!

Pinkerton Agency Reward Poster

The two rushed off to some ridiculous place called Hole-in-the-Wall, Wyoming, to chase after robbers. Don’t you agree that a woman going to a place where robbers congregate is outrageous? Miss Wood is from a prominent Kansas family and knows society’s rules. I am surprised she would act so boldly in public. I pity her poor parents, who must be distressed at their daughter’s choices. You may remember Miss Wood was left at the altar two years ago by this same Mr. Hunter. She said they are now in a marriage of convenience for this assignment. If that is true, her parents know nothing of the arrangement.

As I learn more of this distressing affair, kind sir, I shall keep you informed further.

Miss Lilith Black

About the Book

AN AGENT FOR LYDIA, Pinkerton Matchmaker Series #56

When Lydia Wood is left at the altar, she believes something beyond her groom’s control has happened. Two years with no word have hardened her heart. She has to get away from her parents’ constant urging her to choose an acceptable husband and wed. Becoming a Pinkerton agent suits her plans.

Pinkerton Agent Jake Hunter has recovered from injuries that put him in a coma and a long convalescence. He realizes Lydia would have been injured had she been with him. To protect her, he vows to distance himself from the one person who means the world to him. 

When they are paired for an investigation of robbers they must follow the trail to a dangerous hangout of men on the run. Can the two successfully pull off their charade and capture the robbers and their stor will this trip confirm Jake’s worst fears?

An Excerpt

Lydia gazed out the train window at Wyoming’s desert landscape, recalling how terrified she’d been last night in the saloon. The man who’d wanted to take her upstairs was huge and smelled as if he hadn’t bathed in months. He carried a bottle of whiskey in one hand, some of which he had spilled on his shirt.

Thank goodness she had her gun and her knife. Would her little gun have stopped such a large man? With any luck she’d never have to learn the answer.

Forcing herself not to snuggle up to Jake for comfort had been almost impossible. His presence reassured her. He’d had several years experience at Pinkerton’s and knew how to deflect and defeat combatants.

An older couple sat in the seats facing theirs. Lydia avoided eye contact with the prune-faced woman across from her. The woman had snubbed her and Jake as if they carried leprosy. 

Prune-face ceased staring long enough to tug on her husband’s sleeve and whisper, “Horace, doesn’t he look like the man on that wanted poster we saw in Cheyenne?”

Horace frowned at her. “Hush, Mattie.”

Did those two think she and Jake couldn’t hear them?

Lydia gestured to the window. “I’ve never seen so much sand and scrubby bushes. Barren as it is, it emanates a serene beauty.”

 “Wait until you see where we’re headed. I’ve heard it’s picturesque as well.” Jake flashed his bone-melting grin.

No, thank you, she couldn’t weaken now. She’d had the vaccination for that grin’s affect. Too bad the inoculation hadn’t proven very effective.

About the Author

Through a crazy twist of fate, Caroline Clemmons was not born on a Texas ranch. To compensate for this illogical error, she writes about handsome cowboys, feisty ranch women, and scheming villains in a tiny office her family calls her pink cave. She and her Hero live in North Central Texas cowboy country where they ride herd on their dog and three rescued indoor cats as well as providing nourishment outdoors for squirrels, birds, and other critters.

The over fifty titles she has created in her pink cave have made her an Amazon bestselling author and won several awards. She writes sweet to sensual romances about the West, both historical and contemporary as well as time travel and mystery. Her series include The Kincaids, McClintocks, Stone Mountain Texas, Bride Brigade, Texas Time Travel, Texas Caprock Tales, Loving A Rancher, and Pearson Grove as well as numerous single titles and contributions to multi-author sets. When she’s not writing, she loves spending time with her family, reading her friends’ books, lunching with friends, browsing antique malls, checking Facebook, and taking the occasional nap.

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A Wager Between Siblings

Lord Roland de Wolfe burst into his sister’s bedchamber, sword drawn to meet whatever peril she was facing. A frown quickly marred his brow to see her calmly sitting by the fire reading a book.

“You said ’twas urgent,” he muttered placing the blade in the scabbard strapped to his side. “I thought mayhap you were in danger.”

Livinia gave a light laugh. “I am perfectly fine.” She pointed to his attire or lack thereof. “You could have at least put on a tunic. Obviously, I interrupted your bath with my summons.”

“Aye, you did, among other things,” he replied with a sly grin, not that his sister needed to know of the woman waiting for him back in his own chamber. “What was of such import that it could not wait ’til the morn?”

“I have an idea that could be of mutual benefit to us. A wager if you would care to take a chance,” she said with sparkling eyes. She reached over for a cup and took a sip. “Are you game?”

His eyes narrowed as he pondered her. Livinia had always been mischievous in her youth. In the past, Roland had been more than willing to be an accomplice for whatever she had in mind as long as no one was hurt in her games. She was used to getting her way and Roland supposed he was much to blame since he had been left to raise her.

He came to sit opposite her, leaning his forearms on his legs. “What did you have in mind, my dear?”

“Our cousin Catherine arrived this morn. She brings with her Sir Charles…”

“Nay!”

“… along with her husband’s sister, Lady Freya,” Livinia continued with a smirk.

His brow rose. Now his sister had his attention. Roland knew of his Livinia’s infatuation with Sir Charles since she was a young girl. He had hoped she had outgrown those feelings but apparently not. “Laird Douglas has a sister?”

“Aye, he does, and he has brought her with them to Wolverhampton. I was introduced to them a short while ago, although I am expected to return to the great hall shortly.”

“Go on,” Roland said sitting back in his chair as he began tapping the wooden arms with his fingertips.

“You worm your way into Lady Freya’s affections. I do not care how you do it, only that it drives a wedge between the woman and Sir Charles,” Livinia answered.

“How exactly do you know Charles cares for the woman and why does this matter to you?”

“I am not blind, Roland. Suffice to say I would like to see just how far we can push them, tear them apart, or bring them together. I only care to make Charles suffer a bit for not returning my affections in our youth,” she lifted her nose a bit higher causing Roland to laugh at her antics.

“What is in it for me?” he said mockingly. He just may enjoy this challenge if only to see what depths his sister might go to try and finally win Sir Charles.

“Why, you get the company of a lovely young woman who no doubt has a hefty dowry that could be yours if you play this game right. Have you not said that we both should marry soon to replenish your coffers?”

“And you finally get Charles.” He let his comment fill the space between them ’til he watched Livinia shrug.

“That is the whole point of this, Roland. Are you in?”

“This seems like an easy bet to make with you, sister. You will fail, of course, and would never be happy with Charles as your husband. If he and Lady Freya ended up as husband and wife, our wager will be that you agree to marry the man of my choosing. Agreed?” he smirked knowing Livinia would agree before she thought out her plan in greater detail. Generally, she could charm anyone to bend to her will, Charles being the exception.

“Agreed!” she said clapping her hands.

“’Tis a wager then.” Roland stood and bent down to place a kiss on her sister’s cheek. “Now if you will excuse me, I shall see to making myself presentable.” He also needed to get rid of the woman currently waiting for him in his chamber. As he left Livinia, he began mentally composing a list of eligible noblemen whom he might consider worthy enough to marry his sister.


This is an original piece with secondary characters from Belle Sherry Ewing’s novella, To Love An English Knight: De Wolfe Pack Connected World, that released today. Read on to learn more about her medieval romance.

Excerpt:

Sir Charles de Grey read the missive he held from Wolverhampton Castle a second time. Disbelief changed to anger, filling his soul that perchance the outcome may have been different had he been with Lady Catherine’s brother and his family. But, nay… he was Catherine’s guardsman, sworn to protect her. He knew his duty to her and what was required of him. She may have been born Catherine de Wolfe, but she was now the lady of Berwyck.

Knowing the heartbreak this would cause Lady Catherine, Charles knew he must quickly locate her husband so he could reveal the news from the missive. Charles would like nothing better than to crush the parchment beneath his feet than to deliver such horrible news to someone he cared for.

He gave a heavy sigh as he left the stable area after seeing the runner was sent to the kitchens to fill his belly after his trip. Memories flitted unbidden across his mind, and he shook his head remembering how he had once been in love with Lady Catherine. Aye! ’Twas foolish on his part he knew, but the months he had been at Berwyck had dispelled such feelings. She was happy in her marriage to the Lord of Berwyck. Thankfully, Charles and Douglas fell into a common accord to keep the lady safe at all costs. Her happiness was all that mattered. Charles’s heart would mend one day, or so he supposed.

As he came into the inner bailey, he saw a flash of fabric as a woman ran behind the healer’s hut. A hint of a grin lit his face. Lady Freya, the laird’s sister, had been a bit of an annoyance when he had first met her while traveling to Caen. When he had first captured the woman who had been following him through camp, he had thought her one of the whores who tended to show up at such events. ’Twas hardly his fault for the mistake.

Fire had blazed in her blue-green eyes, and for the briefest moment when their lips touched, he was reminded how long it had been since he had a woman beneath him. His fingers had skimmed her brown hair with blonde streaks lightened from the sun. She was beautiful, but at the time, his heart had been clouded by another.

She had continued to shadow him throughout their time at the tournament and even on their travels to Berwyck last year. He had strange feelings for the young woman who could be no more than a score of years. Considering he had been thrown into Berwyck’s dungeon because of the jealousy she felt toward Lady Catherine, he supposed he could forgive. She was young and sometimes foolish. Charles’s heart had become bitter from the ordeal, and the wound that Catherine loved another was part to blame.

As he neared the hut, she came around the corner carrying a basket as though she had not a care in the world. Her eyes sparkled when they met his while she hummed a merry tune. But this was no time to tarry with whatever antics she was up to today. He must find Douglas without haste.

“Sir Charles,” she called out. She offered him a smile, and he gave the briefest nod of his head. “’Tis a lovely morn, is it not?”

He was momentarily startled by her comment when he looked about at the cloudy sky above. “I suppose if you care for the possibility of rain,” he murmured.

“I love the rain. ’Tis fun tae dance in. Have ye never tried it?”

“I have hardly had time for such amusement. Your brother keeps us busy with our training. Once it rains, I am too busy trying to keep upright from slipping in the mud.”

“Ye should make the effort sometime. Ye might enjoy it as long as ye have the right partner.” She fell into step with him when he continued on his way toward the keep.

To Love An English Knight:
De Wolfe Pack Connected World
By Sherry Ewing
$0.99 or #FREE in Kindle Unlimited

Can a chance encounter lead to love?

Sir Charles de Grey is in turmoil. He cannot forget the Scottish lass he kissed in Caen, but her jealous spite toward the lady he was sworn to guard infuriated him. Living at Berwyck Castle, he is torn between his desire for Lady Freya and his need to rebuke her sometimes reckless behavior. Leaving her almost tears him apart, but it might give him time to recover some balance.

Lady Freya of Clan MacLaren didn’t expect to become blinded by love until she became quickly besotted on first seeing the English knight in Caen. How quickly everything fell apart when she defies him! Even worse, when he begins to show signs of returning her feelings, he receives a message from home that will tear them apart. Defying him again may put an end to any chance they may have together, but what other choice does she have when he leaves her?

Can the fragile love they found blossom into something more or will circumstances beyond their control continue to provoke behavior that keeps them apart?

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About Bluestocking Belle Sherry Ewing:

Sherry Ewing picked up her first historical romance when she was a teenager and has been hooked ever since. A bestselling author, she writes historical and time travel romances to awaken the soul one heart at a time. When not writing, she can be found in the San Francisco area at her day job as an Information Technology Specialist.

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