The Reasons For Marriage
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Content to care for her beloved father, Lenore Lester, who is completely disinterested in marriage, disguises her beauty until the dashing Duke of Eversleigh sees through her clever facade and vows to win her heart. Reprint.
covered dishes on the sideboard. The talk revolved around possible excursions to fill the afternoon. The gentlemen had already decided on an inspection of the Hall’s closer coverts while the morning air was still crisp. Hovering by the laden side-table, Lenore kept a watchful eye on her charges, ensuring that the younger, less confident ladies encountered no difficulties. Thus far, no contretemps had marred the pleasantry; her hopes were rising that, despite her brothers’ inventiveness, the week
father’s guests. In honour of the ball, she had allowed her maid to dress her hair high, with large soft curls falling in drifts about her ears and throat. Her lustring sack of magenta silk glowed richly, cream lace filling in the expanse from its square neckline to the base of her throat, her long sleeves fashioned from the same material. She hoped the gown would underline her status; tonight she had every intention of courting the title of ape-leader. Jack was waiting for her, strikingly
firm idea of what had transpired between His Grace and her father—until she had the facts in her hands, she would be wise to reserve judgement. And, despite all the shocking revelations of the day before, she still did not know why His Grace of Eversleigh was so set on marrying her. All of which left her in a very uncertain state. Lenore grimaced, then unfolded the note. “I’ll wait for you in the library,” was all he had written. Her lips twisting in self-mockery, Lenore laid the note aside,
hard to wring that concession from the Lester men; only their inability to give him an assurance that Lenore would not appear in London in pinafores had forced them to accede to his odd request. Unconvinced that he was not engaged in some sleight of hand but unable to see any motive beyond his obvious wish to get their marriage over and done with, an unsurprising reaction given that he had been driven to the altar as it were, Lenore sighed. Slanting him a glance from beneath her lashes, she saw
of relief, Lenore let the huge head slip from her grasp. She glanced at her husband—and realised her relief was premature. His lips were a thin line; his grey eyes glinted steel. He was furious and only just succeeding in keeping his tongue between his teeth. A cold vice closed about her heart. Lenore turned away as Lord Newington reached her. “I say, Lady Eversleigh! Damned courageous and all that—but dangerous, m’dear—want to watch out for such beasts, y’know.” “Precisely my thoughts,” Jason