Welcome to another First Kiss Friday. Today’s guest is my dear friend Caroline Warfield who is sharing an excerpt from her novella Lord Ethan’s Courage found in our box set Fire & Frost. Happy reading, my lovelies, and enjoy!
Unlike the heroes of the other stories in Fire & Frost, Ethan isn’t able to actually bid on Flora’s time and her basket in the ladies’ charity auction due to illness. He sends his brother as surrogate. He does, however, have a surprise for her.
She took a step back, arms akimbo and flashed him stern frown. “Is that all you want to say? ‘Call on me?’ Where is your courage when I need it?”
He came closer to her. “I have no right to say more, but if you can be patient…”
Flo heaved a sigh of exasperation and closed the distance between them, grabbing his shoulders, and meeting his lips with her impatient ones. After a heartbeat he returned the kiss with an achingly tender one, using his damaged arm to pull her close while he feathered his graceful fingers across her cheek.
“Much better,” she sighed against his neck, “But know this. I can wait out my mourning and your illness, but do not ask me to be patient.” She spat each of the last words out one by one. “I am not a patient woman when I know what I want, Ethan Alcott, and I want you.”
He kissed her again, this time deeply, passionately, possessively. When she moaned and pulled him closer, he pulled back, tipping his forehead onto hers. “Your brother believes you deserve a Season. I agree. If you still want this in a year…”
“God save me from men and their honor,” she muttered into his cravat.
About the Story
When Flora Landrum’s family is thrown into mourning and her brother loses himself in his new duties as earl, she refuses to be shunted off to her sister’s household under the eye of her vile brother-in-law. If the new earl can take time from his problems to do charity work for returning veterans, so can Flora, even if she has to sneak behind his back to visit some unsavory neighborhoods.
Lord Ethan Alcott lost his desire to live after the horrors of the peninsular war. The courage that enabled him to lead men into battle and drove him to charge into the rioting in its aftermath to save innocents failed him when he woke up on a troopship, just one wounded man among many. He was content to sit among the most wretched in an alley waiting for death until the day an innocent young lady stormed bravely among them determined to alleviate what suffering she could. She ought not be there and honor bound him to find her family and tell them so.
Flora might be insulted by the interference, but she isn’t about to let him sink back into misery. Ethan has a new battle on his hands, one for his life.
Fire & Frost:
A Bluestocking Belles Collection
In a winter so cold the Thames freezes over, five couples venture onto the ice in pursuit of love to warm their hearts.
Love unexpected, rekindled, or brand new—even one that’s a whack on the side of the head—heats up the frigid winter. After weeks of fog and cold, all five stories converge on the ice at the 1814 Frost Fair when the ladies’ campaign to help the wounded and unemployed veterans of the Napoleonic wars culminates in a charity auction that shocks the high sticklers of the ton.
In their 2020 collection, join the Bluestocking Belles and their heroes and heroines as The Ladies’ Society For The Care of the Widows and Orphans of Fallen Heroes and the Children of Wounded Veterans pursues justice, charity, and soul-searing romance.
Celebrate Valentine’s Day 2020 with five interconnected Regency romances.
About the Author
Award winning author Caroline Warfield has been many things: traveler, librarian, poet, raiser of children, bird watcher, Internet and Web services manager, conference speaker, indexer, tech writer, genealogist—even a nun. She reckons she is on at least her third act, happily working in an office surrounded by windows where she lets her characters lead her to adventures in England and the far-flung corners of the British Empire. She nudges them to explore the riskiest territory of all, the human heart.
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