Welcome back to Sweet Saturday Sample! All excerpts here are rated PG-13 or milder. Today I’m continuing to post from the second book in my House of Pleasure series, Only Marriage Will Do, set in Georgian London.
I’m going to be out most of Saturday, but never fear! As soon as I get home in the evening, I will be hopping around the sweet samples!
Seems to be a little mystery afoot here. Amiable has stepped in to rescue a damsel in distress and to his amazement the damsel–who he’s never seen before–is calling him husband and introducing him as the Earl of Manning (who, if you may recall, is Katarina’s brother from Only Scandal Will Do and a friend of Amiable’s). Amiable is a tad confused.
Amiable was just able to stop his jaw from dropping open. What the hell was this all about? Was this woman actually married to Jack Fitzwilliam? Despite his confusion he picked up his cue, bowed to the man and said simply, “My lord.” He shot a questioning look at his “wife” whose smile was still somewhat strained.
“Philippe and I were betrothed for a short time last year, my dear. Before the scandal.” Her eyes blazed angrily at St. Cyr, who had the grace to look discomfited.
“That was none of my doing, Juliet. My father broke the betrothal, not I.” The impassioned words, uttered in English with a cultured French accent, did not sway the lady in the least.
“But you did not fight for me, Philippe. Not a single protest. The servants who returned told me so. Did you think they did not know?” Juliet’s eyes narrowed, light sarcasm in her voice. “You must be unaware of how much talk there is below stairs. But then, you were always unaware of everything except what pleased your father. And when it no longer pleased him for you to marry me, you were no longer aware that I existed.”
“Juliet! That is not true.” St. Cyr’s hand drifted out, as though he would take hers. Amiable pulled her toward him and glared at the shorter man. “I thought of nothing but you, cherie, the whole long year we have been apart.”
Amiable allowed his face to become surly. “That is hardly your concern now, my lord. The lady is my wife and however much you may regret losing her, I must ask you to refrain from such statements of affection lest it become a matter of honor.” The threat in his voice was real. By God, if he had to face this popinjay in a duel he would do it. It hardly mattered anymore that he did not know the lady. His dislike for St. Cyr was more than ample reason to meet the man.
A superior sneer raised the Frenchman’s upper lip. “Oh, but it certainly is my concern, my lord. I have the prior claim to dear Juliet. In fact, I must insist that you remove your hands from my wife immediately!”
“Your wife?” Amiable managed to merely scowl at the Frenchman, but he sent a curious look toward the young woman who stood beside him.
“I am not your wife, Philippe. You must stop saying that!” Juliet’s voice rose again, her anger obvious. But Amiable noted that tears also threatened. Every protective instinct raced forward, bent on shielding his “wife” from more distress.
Don’t you just love a KISA? (Knight in Shining Armor) LOL
Hope you enjoyed a little more of Only Marriage Will Do. Stop by SSS tomorrow for more from Only Scandal Will Do. And today be sure to click here to visit more Sweet Samples.