A #free short story… I’ll be telling it here, and it can also now be downloaded from Amazon.
© Copyright Jane Lark; Publishing rights owned by Harper Impulse; Harper Collins UK
Capturing the Earl’s Love
A Historical Romance story
Lord Morton, Rupert – she could not get used to calling him by his given name – was in the breakfast room when Meredith entered, as was Rowena.
She moved to take her seat at the end of the table, opposite where Rupert sat, but he beckoned her forwards, as he’d done yesterday morning.
“Sit here, Meredith.”
He’d only left her an hour ago, after making love to her a third time.
Oh, it might not have been love, but it felt like love. He looked at her and touched her with such adoration when they were in bed.
He’d woken her in the middle of the night, and moved over her. That time had been a precious, very slow, languorous coupling. Then this morning he’d drawn her on top of him.
She was soft and warm inside, and her senses still tingled with the intimate pleasure he’d given her just recently.
But did the bridge stand between them again now, here? It had not an hour ago.
His hand beckoned her again and he smiled.
Her heart flooding with emotion, she walked forward. She loved him so much, all she wished for was that he would love her in return; or at least like her.
When she reached him, he caught hold of her hand and then kissed her fingers before encouraging her to sit.
Her heart thumped and her breath caught in her chest as she did. His kiss, on her fingers, had been gentle. It had felt like adoration, as his love-making had. She knew she was blushing. She would make him happy. She would do her best to be all he wished.
When she looked up, Rowena was staring.
Rowena did not.
“I thought I would take you out today, Meredith. What would you say to a drive out of London to an inn I know near Windsor? We might walk a little way along the river afterward.”
Rowena’s head spun to face her brother.
Meredith’s cheeks heated as she looked at him, too, and met his hazel gaze. It shone gold in the morning light.
“We must get to know one another better.”
Her heart swelling with joy, she nodded.
“Good.” He looked at Rowena then. “Will you join us?”
“No. I’ll stay here and go out with Ellen instead.”
“Very well. I will leave you to eat then, Meredith, and order my phaeton made ready.”
Once he’d gone, Meredith faced Rowena. “Please come?”
“So you have me to shelter behind? No. You must face the situation you created.” Rowena’s voice was bitter.
“I want you to come, because you are my friend, and I do not like—”
“Friends do not trap one another’s brothers.” Rowena stood.
A knock struck the open door. Owens, the butler, stood there. “Lady Rowena?”
“I have a message for you. Lord Kendrick sent a boy to say he will call for you in an hour, my Lady.”
Meredith’s gaze spun from the butler, to her friend. Rowena was blushing now. “Rowena?”
“Thank you, Owens.” After dismissing the butler, Rowena then glanced about the footmen in the room. “You may all go.”
Meredith stood as the footmen filed out. “Rowena?” she said again, once the men had gone.
“You are not to judge, and you are not to say a thing to Rupert. You’re going out. He won’t know.”
“Is this wise, though? Where are you going?”
Rowena’s chin tipped up. “Lord Kendrick asked if I would meet his children. I said I would. He is bringing the two eldest and a groom. We are going to Green Park and we will have a picnic there. It is nothing inappropriate.”
“You should tell Rupert and ask your cousin’s wife to accompany you.”
“No, Rupert would make a fuss and I cannot speak openly if Ellen is there. I am not going to be alone with Lord Kendrick.”
“Rowena, it is not sensible. Shall I stay, and come with you? I wou—”
“I like him, Meredith. I wish to spend some time with him. You of all people should understand…”
“I did not trick Rupert with deliberation, Rowena. I sought your friendship because you were kind to me, and I like you. I care for you, and I fell in love with Rupert. Do nothing foolish, Rowena… I shall stay here…”
“Do you regret what you did to Rupert?” Rowena asked suddenly as they stood with the table between them, her gaze holding Meredith’s.
“No.” Meredith did not, not now she thought he might learn to love her. “I am going to make him happy, Rowena. I promise.”
Rowena sighed. “Very well, I will give you a chance to prove your affection for him, but you must give me a chance to explore my own for Lord Kendrick—”
“It is not the same, Rowena. He is—”
“Caring and kind, and I like him.”
“Say nothing to Rupert,” Rowena said, before turning away, and then she left the room, hurrying off, giving Meredith no chance for further argument.
Capturing The Earl’s Love is the story of two of the secondary characters from the 1st book in
the Marlow Intrigues Series
‘The Illicit Love of a Courtesan’
To read the full Marlow Intrigues series, you can start anywhere, but this is the actual order
The Lost Love of Soldier ~ The Prequel
#1.5 Capturing The Love of an Earl ~ This Free Novella
and, yes, there are more to come 🙂
Go to the index
- the story of the real courtesan who inspired The Illicit Love of a Courtesan,
- another free short story, about characters from book #2, A Lord’s Scandalous Love,
- the prequel excerpts for book #3 The Scandalous Love of a Duke
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
Jane’s books can be ordered from most booksellers in paperback