With all that experience to inform it, perhaps a kiss should be enjoyable. Practise does make perfect after all. Still, the heat and breathlessness and sudden, frightening urgency of it—well, that wasn't proper. No, that part could not be proper. Which was, of course, why respectable young women did not go off alone with gentlemen and get themselves kissed. What started as a lovely kiss was bound to turn into something else, something that led to ruination.
It was humiliating to admit even to herself that she'd been—at least at the moment—willing to risk such ruin. She flushed at the memory. Pride, not regard for her virtue, had stopped her. She was afraid they'd be caught and forced to wed. Yes, Mr. Trevelyan did make her think wicked thoughts, and yes, he was very attractive, and yes, his kisses were lovely. But as a husband—one who'd resent and hate her for entrapping him, who'd humiliate her with his mistresses—he was out of the question. How careless of him to begin it in the first place, to think only of amusing himself, and leave her to worry about the consequences.
But why not? Hadn't she behaved like a common lightskirt?
What was wrong with her anyhow? Was she wicked? Was she infatuated with him? Or was it only that he was so skilled a seducer? Yes, that must be it. She was the innocent victim of his wiles. While the innocent victim of Basil Trevelyan's wiles was staring obliviously at Miss Austen's book, Mr. Trevelyan himself had been having a highly agreeable conversation with Mr. Weston of Bond Street.
Basil was just finishing his business with the tailor when Lord Arden sauntered in. The marquess's enthusiastic greeting caused Basil to look at him suspiciously. While their families were intimate, and the two young men had grown up together and caroused and gambled together, they were rather too much alike to trust each other overmuch. Thus, no real intimacy had evolved between them despite many opportunities.
In a very few minutes, the mystery was solved. Every rogue remaining in London must have sensed her presence in their midst, just as experienced hounds would sniff out a fox. Basil pretended to think very hard. Of course you know who I mean, is this some sort of family secret? Your aunt refuses to be at home to me, and Maria won't say a word, only tells me I might come to dinner tonight and perhaps the young lady will be there. You must tell me who the mysterious beauty is. Arden's reputation was worse even than Basil's.
The marquess had both enormous wealth and exalted rank and took full advantage of the privileges attached thereunto. Not, certainly, that Basil could have expected an invitation. Lord Deverell, Isabella's father, was hardly likely to welcome into his home the young man who'd threatened his wife's reputation and his daughter's future. Obviously, I dare not describe her to anyone and invite rivals.
Not, of course, that there's anyone in town at this time of year. Still, I expect she will be there tonight. Maria can't be as conscienceless as all that. Come now, you must give me a clue. Is she a relation? Part French, maybe? Lived abroad most of her life?
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Our tastes have always been remarkably like. Still, you must know she's not your type—not at all. Your aunt's standing guard, after all.
No slip of the shoulder in this case, I'm afraid. Actually, she's put it into my mind.
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You know that my Respected Parent has been growling at me the last decade at least to be married and get heirs. He's been throwing that insufferable Honoria Crofton-Ash at me this age. Fortunately, my mother believes that a young man must sow his wild oats. Though she was across the street, stepping out of the dressmaker's, your aunt hurried her into the carriage as though all the demons of Hell were after them. Well, I can only thank my lucky stars I obliged my sister by taking her into town.
It's the greatest piece of good luck. He'd only glimpsed Miss Ashmore from across the street and promptly decided to take possession, as if she were a handsome stickpin he'd taken a fancy to at Rundell and Bridge's. What a coxcomb he was! Still, Basil only looked amused as he answered, "But you don't even know her yet, Will. I wouldn't count it good luck so soon.
Suppose you find she's ill-natured? It's completely impossible. And even if she is—why, I fancy I might find ways to put her in better temper. Basil, however, only answered amiably, "Pray, my lord, do not enlighten me on your methods. You must consider my delicate sensibilities. Oh, you are droll, Trev. Not changed a bit after all this time. And what have you been doing with yourself—what is it? How time flies.
(VIDEO Review) The English Witch (Trevelyan Family Book 2) | BOOMSbeat
But come. Though I can't take you to dinner—being so agreeably engaged elsewhere—I will have a glass or two with you and you must tell me about these heroics of yours. Not Sir Charles's daughter? Surely that walking piece of antiquity had not produced this Incomparable? Not having expected quite so sudden or so intense an assault, Alexandra was momentarily disarmed. However, having never been easily melted—well, perhaps with one exception—she was able, quickly enough, to school her features into a polite smile before turning to be introduced to someone else.
It was a small group. The latter was Henry Latham's eldest daughter. While civilities were being exchanged, Alexandra tried to sort out what Aunt Clem had told her about the Deverells and their affairs. Lady Deverell had been secretly married to Harry Deverell some thirty years ago. Not long after, Harry had drowned, and the then-pregnant Maria had married Matt Latham, Henry's brother. Only Harry hadn't drowned, after all.
The English Witch: Trevelyan Family, Book 2 (Unabridged)
Three years ago, he'd resurrected himself and come back to England to claim his title and reclaim his wife and daughter. The other half, apparently, had decided that Harry was two people: the one who'd drowned nearly thirty years ago, and the one who was now a fair-haired, handsome man in his early fifties and very much alive.
Or the sight of a happy couple being showered with confetti and good wishes.
Now the most exciting new names in romantic fiction - and the bestselling author w She never expects to desire the arrogant, amoral cad. And when Dai Nine years earlier, lovely Leila Beaumont's criminal father died mysteriously. And now her cruel, profligate husband has been murdered -- with innocent Leila suspected of the crime. Determined to uncover the truth, no matter how unpleasant, the beaut Secretly determined to avenge her father's death, she is forced to travel with a handsome English wastrel through a har How dare the brazen Lord Julian Brandon kiss her when he knew full well the man she was to marry was in the next room!
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