He suspected it was this that his father worried about, that one day he might want this love that had the power to ruin him. Rubbish. What sort of fool would he be to allow an intangible idea to inflict havoc with his life?
“Love has a way of creeping upon you when it is least expected,” the old earl said with a probing stare. “You must be on your guard at all times.”
“Truly? Based on your ramblings, I believe it can strike with the ferocity of lightning and thunder, and I’ve wondered why you’ve bothered to caution me against something that will come at me without warning,” he rejoined.
His father scowled.
It was difficult to explain to the man before him that he did not hunger for any particular connection. He wasn’t seeking love. Nor was he running from it. He was just not. . . interested. “I’ve far more important things to occupy my mind than an attachment with a lady…even the one I intend to marry.”
Such as your impending death and the dark hole it will leave. And situating my family for a life of happiness and prosperity.
His father appeared contemplative for a while, and Hugh’s gut tightened at the way he stared at him.
“What is it?”
“It cannot be her.”
The words fell between them, a fiery arrow piercing his affected calm, and an unexpected tension mounted in Hugh. He did not have to ask for clarity as to who the “her” belonged to. He had entered his private study only this morning to see his father reading the letters and words that had been indelibly seared onto Hugh’s memory.
Her–the lady who had been bold enough to berate his actions in advertising for a wife. The one who had responded to each of his eleven letters over the course of several weeks. The one who made him anticipate seeing that rider racing up the lanes of his home, black coat flapping behind him as another of her replies was delivered. The missives enlivened his days, and he slept with the sometimes caustic, other times lonely, then curious words rolling through his mind.
It had been a matter of honor that he’d not used a devious tactic to uncover her identity. She wanted to remain a mystery, and it was important to him that he honor that request. Many times, he had fiercely suppressed the need to set his man of affairs to find out exactly to whom his responses were delivered.
The first tones of her letters had implied the quill had been dipped in acid, so fiery and scathing her words had been. Something had changed over the course of their interchanges, an odd friendship of sorts, if he could dare to label it as such. But he looked forward to those letters even when she queried if he had found his wife in her dry, mocking, and often amused tone.
What did she look like? What did she sound like. . . and what could she possibly taste like? Sweet or tart like her words?
(C) Stacy Reid, Entangled Amara, 2020. Reprinted with permission from the publisher.
When Hugh Winthrop, the future Marquess of Albury, decides to advertise for a wife in the London paper, he never expected an anonymous response from a woman who matches him wit for wit. Their back-and-forth letters on the true nature of love, something they disagree on wholeheartedly, leave him shocked—and intrigued. But then the woman he’s been corresponding with shows up on his doorstep, enticingly beautiful and offering a marriage of convenience in exchange for his protection…
Lady Phoebe Maitland expected to marry for love and nothing else, until the man she gave her trust betrayed her. The more intrigued she becomes by the mysterious and devastatingly handsome Hugh, however, the more she realizes he’s holding back from opening his heart due to long-held secrets she struggles to understand. As passion flares wickedly between them, their marriage bed is quick to heat up. But when Phoebe’s past threatens to destroy the fragile bond they’ve formed, even a budding belief in love might not be enough to save them.
Romance Historical [Entangled: Amara, On Sale: September 14, 2020, e-Book, ISBN: 9781649370525 / eISBN: 9781649370525]
About Stacy Reid
Stacy is an avid reader of novels with a deep passion for writing. She especially loves romance and adores writing about people falling in love. Stacy lives a lot in the worlds she creates and actively speaks to her characters (out loud). She has a warrior way, never give up on her dreams. When Stacy is not writing, she spends a copious amount of time drooling over Rick Grimes from Walking Dead, watching Japanese anime and playing video games with her love, Dusean Nelson.