A Lord’s Desperate Love Part Two ~ A Historical Romance Story

Part one

Part Two

Lord Geoffrey Sparks dropped the door knocker thrice more. It hit the brass plaque with a heavy ring.

Bloody hell. Why was her butler not answering?

“Violet!” he shouted through the door, hoping no one else in the street was awake. Damnation. Why was she shutting him out all of a sudden? He had not seen her for three nights, and he’d done the rounds of every damned venue.

She had not been out.

He’d called one afternoon too, to be told she was not at home.

He rapped the knocker again.

It might be two in the morning but he was not going until he’d spoken to her. “Violet!”

He’d sent her four messages and received no reply.

Why the hell had she gone cold on him? They’d been thick for weeks. He’d slept here most nights for the last four.

He hammered the knocker once more. “Violet!”

He’d probably had too much to drink, but it was the brandy which had given him the courage to come and make a spectacle of himself. He felt like such a bloody fool, falling for her so heavily if she had just been playing games.

But he hadn’t thought she was playing games. They’d grown comfortable. He’d thought a true companionship had developed between them. She’d trusted him more and more in the last weeks, leaning on him for support when her closest friend had gone missing a couple of weeks ago.

For Heaven’s sake, she had accused Barrington, whom her friend, Jane, had just married, of being a threat to Jane, of potentially breaking her heart, and now Violet was breaking his.

Why would she suddenly throw him off like this? Was there someone else?

In the past he knew she’d flitted between men. He’d shared a few casual liaisons with her over the year before they’d stepped into the new territory of a proper affair.

He’d been one of many then, and it hadn’t bothered him, but once he’d got to know her better, he’d wanted to keep her for himself. They’d spent hours and hours together over the summer and he’d swear she’d been with no one else.

So why now? Why had it changed?

“Selford! Violet! I am not going away, so open the bloody door!” He thrust the knocker against the wood again, yelling to her butler.

Finally, he heard movement inside, and a moment later there was the scrape of bolts and locks shifting.

He held his breath, his right hand slipping from the knocker and closing into a fist.

What would he say when he saw her? What would he do? Cry? Plead? Is that what this woman had brought him to?

God, Barrington would laugh his head off when he learned of this. While Barrington had found happiness, Geoff had been discarded.

It was pitiful.

He gritted his teeth as the door opened and then he faced Selford, who held the door open only a few inches and looked through the gap. “Lady Rimes is not at home, sir”

Was she not, or was she in bed with someone?

Geoff pushed the door wider and forced the man back as he stepped in.

Shock petrified Selford’s face for a moment as he lifted a hand to warn Geoffrey back. “My Lord.”

“Is she upstairs?” The hall span a little, Geoffrey had definitely had too much to drink.

“No, sir, Lady Rimes has left town.”

“Left town, do you think me a fool, Selford? The knocker is still in place!” He thrust his arm out to indicate the open door behind him. It would have been removed if she’d left.

“Because Lady Rimes wished it so, sir, she wished no one to note her absence.”

A frown furrowed Geoff’s brow. That did not make sense.

He moved then, walking past Selford, convinced she was hiding upstairs.

Perhaps she was with another man.

Geoff raced upstairs as the butler called him back, and then ran along the hall, taking-in nothing but the fact he had to find her.

He burst into her rooms, thrusting the door aside. The curtains were open, he’d been so angry he hadn’t even noticed from outside.

He strode through the sitting room, calling, “Violet! Violet!” expecting her to answer even though it was obvious she was not there.

“Violet,” he said again as he entered her bedchamber.

The bed was empty, though the room still carried the invading scent of her perfume. There were not even any sheets on it. He walked to the wardrobe and opened it. That was empty too. He went to the drawers and pulled the top one open, then the one below it and the one below that. They were all empty.

Why had she gone? Why had she said nothing? Not even goodbye. She’d not even sent a note to say it was over.

He sat on the bed, letting the scents in the room overwhelm him. Where the hell had she gone? And why had she gone without him?

A cough rang from the chamber door, and Geoffrey realised his head was in his hands; with his elbows on his knees, he’d covered his face. He felt like weeping. He did not weep; he stood and looked at Selford.

“Where has she gone?”

“I do not know, sir. I was only told she has gone to the country.”

“Where in the country?”

“Honestly, I do not know, my Lord.”

“Does she own any property outside of London?”

“No, sir.”

“Has she gone to a friend’s?”

The butler stepped forward and lifted a hand as if, if it were appropriate, he might touch Geoffrey’s arm, of course he did not.

“I’m sorry, sir. I can give you no more details. Lady Rimes quite specifically did not tell me where she has gone. It was very clear her ladyship did not wish her absence nor her whereabouts, disclosed.”

“What?” What on earth was going on? “Selford?”

“Honestly, sir, I have no idea where her ladyship is, and you cannot stay here….”

~

This is the  story of two of the characters from the 2nd book in the Marlow Intrigues Series ~ The Passionate Love of a Rake.

The true story 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.

See below on the side bar for details of Jane’s books, and 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

A Lord’s Desperate Love Part One ~ A Historical Romance Story

I am going to start telling my next historical story right here, in parts. If you have read The Passionate Love of a Rake, then you will recognize the characters… 😀

Part One

Looking from the window of the dingy hotel room, Lady Violet Rimes gathered her courage. She knew what the physician was about to say. She could not quite believe she had trapped herself in this dreadful muddle. She was a grown woman, a widow who knew the way of the world and she had always been cautious before, but this time…

“I presume, Ma’am, you know you are with child?”

“How far gone? When is it due?” Her bleeding had stopped weeks ago, though she’d pretended it was not happening. She had spent the last weeks half hoping it was true and half wishing it were not.

“I would think February, Ma’am.”

February? It was already October.

The physician hesitated. “I know of… If you… There is a woman who can help with such things –”

“No.” She wanted the child. She had wanted a child by her husband. But none had come. Since then unless she’d married again, caution was the only choice. She’d avoided conception as best she could. But now fate had made her choice she was neither going to give up the child or allow it to be condemned by scandal. She would keep the child. It was her life which must change.

“No, thank you. I will manage.” She faced him, the heat of a blush creeping over her skin as she remembered how he’d examined her alone in this room, moments before. He’d left her to straighten her clothing and then returned to share his judgement. He must have surmised she had no husband, and her voice probably labelled her as wealthy, even though she’d taken a dress from her maid’s closet, to help hide the fact.

This whole thing made her feel sordid and guilty. She’d been hiding her condition from the world for weeks and now she was hiding herself.

Violet’s heart raced as she looked at the doctor as though he could provide an alternative answer, but she must find her own answer. She felt cold inside, in her stomach and in her limbs, but yet her heart was warm, with longing. I am with child.

Her heartbeat pounded in her ears. How could she be a mother? “Thank you, Dr Rivers, but, no,” she said with more control, “I do not wish for any help, not in that way. I will have the child. Is it healthy?”

“Everything seems well –”

“Thank you,” she said again, picking up her reticule.

After she’d paid him, he left.

Her fingers shook as she tied the ribbons of her bonnet.  Oh how ridiculous. She was known for her confidence. Her gaze spun about the inn room she’d hired. She’d thought it better to see the physician on neutral ground, so no one could see her enter his offices, nor see him enter her home. But it only made the whole thing seem sordid, but why should she feel ashamed. She was glad, warmth seeped from her heart into her limbs as an ache stretching from her middle into her breast.

I am with child.

As she left the room, closing the door behind her, she thought of her friend Jane, and longed for her company. Jane had only recently left London, and yesterday Violet had seen an announcement in the paper advising Jane had married again. She’d married the man who had been chasing her all summer. Violet imagined Jane happy. But the picture of Jane’s happiness only made envy twist like the pain of a cruel dagger in Violet’s stomach. She’d never expected to marry again. But what would she do now?

Go away. She had to. She was already showing. Options spun in a whorl in her head. She must leave London. Go somewhere no one knew her and not come back. She must live there and begin a new life.

Geoff. His hazel eyes, glittering at her with laughter, appeared in her mind’s eye. At least he had not noticed how rotund her figure had become. He should have noticed. She had noticed. But perhaps he had not dared to comment.

She stepped from the bottom step of the stairs within the inn, and deliberately did not look left or right, fearing she might see someone she knew. Instead she crossed the entrance hall in a hurry and went out into the street. It was very wrong to be walking alone without a maid, but then she was dressed as a servant, and the poke bonnet hid her face.

Her heart cried out for the man who usually walked with her. Geoff.

She was going to miss him. She loved him. A tight knot tied in her stomach, and a clenching feeling gripped about her heart.

She hurried along the street, unsure whether it was best to merely walk home or try to stop a hackney carriage. Which would encourage more outrage, if she was seen entering her house? She would walk, she needed the exercise to absorb her restless thoughts, and perhaps by the time she reached home, some inspiration would have come and she’d know what on earth to do.

When she crossed the street, Geoff’s smile came to mind. She missed the solidity of his arm to grip.

Male company, within a bed and without, had been her obsession for the last few years. She’d slept with numerous men since her husband had passed. So many she’d lost count. But Lord Geoffrey Sparks had become far more than pleasure. He was necessity. Yet she had to leave him behind now. For their child’s sake. He would not wish a woman like her as his wife. He was a third son and she was seven years his senior, though he thought her only three. What they’d had, had been merely entertainment to him too. She knew how offspring of liaisons like theirs were managed. He would expect her to hand the child to some poor woman to foster. Well, Violet would have none of that. He would not even know of the child.

If only she had not been fool enough to fall in love.

 ~

Don’t worry Harriette Wilson’s story, the true story of a courtesan is going to continue along side this! Next part of that tomorrow.

Jane Lark is a writer of authentic, passionate and emotional Historical and New Adult Romance stories.

See below on the side bar for details of Jane’s books, and 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