A Lord’s Desperate Love
A Historical Romance Story
The fog had finally lifted and sun glowed through the parlour window. Its brightness reminded Violet of her breakfast parlour at home. The windows there always caught the morning sunlight. But that was her old house, and her old life. It was no longer home.
The sunlight made her restless, calling her outside. She’d never done so little in her life.
After the last few days of loneliness and boredom, she was willing to admit how much she missed the parties and the people – as well as Geoff. Yet once the child came, she would be fine. She was not worried that this was a life sentence. It was merely adjusting from the old to the new. But there were three more months before the child would come.
Anxiety and impatience rattled through her nerves, battling. She wished the child here and yet, she did not. She was afraid of becoming a mother… She had no idea how to be a mother… But she longed to be one… Her fingers spread across the rise of the bump in her stomach slipping over her muslin dress as if comforting the child to tell it, it was loved.
“Janet, I think I shall go for a walk.” Violet spoke to her maid, putting down the book she’d been reading. It had failed to hold her attention, she’d merely read the same page thrice.
“Did you wish me to accompany you, Ma’am?”
“Not today, Janet. Just fetch my bonnet and cloak.” She felt too much like weeping. Besides, this was a small village and she was a widow, no one would care if she walked alone. After all she was Mrs Mayer here, not Lady Rimes.
Her fingers settled on her stomach as she walked to the window and looked out, stroking the taut convex curve before falling away. The street outside was busy. People were hurrying about their business. She wished for somewhere or someone to hurry to.
Violet turned. Janet held up her cloak and settled it on Violet’s shoulders. Violet tied the tapes in a bow, then took her bonnet from Janet’s hands and put it on. As she tied the ribbons, she was suddenly disoriented.
It was so strange to be wearing all this black, only a few weeks ago she’d persuaded Jane to give hers up, and now here Violet was masking herself, hiding behind it – lying.
Oh she was feeling melancholy today and this ill mood would do the child no good. She would walk and breathe in some fresh air and enjoy the prettiness of her new surroundings and force her heart to be glad again.
She took her gloves from Janet and slipped them on. “Thank you.” Then she nodded and turned to leave. Janet hurried to open the door and held it as Violet walked out.
The sunshine immediately touched her face, warming her skin a little. The autumn day was chilly, but now the fog had gone, in the sunlight, it was not harshly cold.
The summer had been long this year, and hot. She’d spent several hours of it walking with Jane. She wished Jane were here.
A time they’d walked in Hyde Park came to mind. They’d seen Barrington’s niece. Mary was a pretty little thing.
Suspecting her own condition but denying it wholeheartedly at the time, Violet had been enchanted. It was the first moment she had let herself accept the possibility and hope.
She thought of Jane as she walked about the village, peering into the bakers and milliners shop windows, and then wandering on; smiling at anyone who smiled at her, and greeting them if they spoke. She didn’t know many people yet, bar her neighbours. If she’d have been in London now, she would have called on friends. But she was not in London.
If only Jane had not married Barrington, Violet could have asked Jane to visit and she would have come. But Violet could hardly ask Jane to keep the secret from Barrington, he was Geoff’s close friend. Her friendship with Jane was another casualty of this muddle. She could neither write nor ask her to come and none of Violet’s other friends could be trusted to keep a secret.
Isolation settled on Violet’s shoulders like a second cloak as she walked on through the people busy shopping in the market square, away from the inns. She sought somewhere silent to sulk and suffer her heartache.
This was so foolish. She’d made this choice for good reason. Her hand touched her stomach. It was not her way to mope. She forced a smile and tried to lighten the mood in her heart, walking on down a side street. Then she turned left at the narrow cobbled ford which crossed to a row of cottages on the far side. She looked at the stepping-stones but instead decided to turn left and carry-on up the hill where the cottages grew sparser.
Violet laughed suddenly, remembering how she’d accused Barrington of toying with Jane. Barrington would laugh now if he saw how far Violet had tumbled from her pedestal.
Reaching a wooden gate at the entrance of a field, where a deep cart rut was cut in the meadow, from hundreds of loads and horses passing through over centuries of use, Violet leaned her elbows on the top bar and looked out across the long grass.
Another wash of pain and misery swept over her in a wave as she thought of Geoff.
A Lord’s Desperate Love is the story of two of the secondary characters from the 2nd book in the Marlow Intrigues Series
~ ‘The Passionate Love of a Rake’.
The true story of a courtesan, who inspired The Illicit Love of a Courtesan, which I’ve been telling every Sunday, will continue alongside this.
Jane Lark is a writer of authentic, passionate and emotional Historical and New Adult Romance stories, and the author of a No.1 bestselling Historical Romance novel in America, ‘The Illicit Love of a Courtesan’.
Click here to find out more about Jane’s books, and see Jane’s website www.janelark.co.uk to learn more about Jane. Or click ‘like’ on Jane’s Facebook page to see photo’s and learn historical facts from the Georgian, Regency and Victorian eras, which Jane publishes there. You can also follow Jane on twitter at @janelark