Finally, the moment we’ve all been waiting for has arrived.
Deceiving the Earl has made it to your e-reader. If it hasn’t, then perhaps you should consider picking up a copy.
Barnes and Noble
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My last newsletter featured the first look at Adele and Christopher. So today, I’m offering you a more intimate glance into their book. It’s one of my favorite scenes featuring Christopher teaching Adele to waltz. I hope you enjoy it.
“Lord Dorrington has requested your presence in the parlor, Anne,” he said.
“Another lesson.” She sighed dusting her hands on her apron and then removing the garment. “What is it today, Jameson? Introductions? Conversational etiquette?”
“Dancing, I believe.” His lips quirked up in an amused smile. “One of your favorites, if I am not mistaken.”
Adele could not stop the smile from gracing her lips. Dancing had always been one of her favorite activities, second to reading. As she ascended the stairs, a small bounce in her step lightened her heart. He wished to teach her to dance, did he? Well, he would be surprised how quickly she learned. In fact, he might learn a few things from her during this lesson.
The thought of being his dance partner created flutters of excitement in her chest. She wished for nothing more than to lose herself in the music, in the movements.
She entered the parlor and noted all the furniture had been arranged to give them adequate space to dance.
Lord Dorrington stood before a Victrola, arranging a disk on the machine.
“You summoned me, my lord?” she asked by way of announcing her presence.
He glanced over his shoulder. “Yes, I believe there are a few more details we must practice before the ball.” He lowered the arm of the machine and the room filled with sweet, familiar music.
Almost without prompting, Adele felt her body begin to sway with the melody. A waltz. How delightful. She caught herself before he turned around.
When he did, he approached her. “Have you ever danced before, Anne?”
“Once or twice,” she lied.
He offered his hand in invitation. “Would you care to dance?”
“Nothing would delight me more,” she replied with a demure nod and took his hand.
Lord Dorrington drew her into his arms. Their bodies aligned perfectly creating a balance between them. She drew her stance tight, keeping her arms solid, her left hand pressed against his shoulder while her other lay clasped in his.
The heat rose between them as he led her into the dance. He took his time, attempting to guide her in the basic motions. Alas, her body would not be denied as the music infused with her soul. The lessons she savored so long ago came back with a simple turn on the dance floor.
Adele closed her eyes, allowing him to lead, but also allowing the steps to arise from her memories. She savored the music and the dance. With every pass, she found her heart growing lighter as well as her steps.
“I believe you lied to me, Anne.” Lord Dorrington’s voice interrupted her moment of bliss.
Her eyes snapped open, meeting his curious yet pointed expression. “Whatever do you mean?”
“You dance better than I do,” he said with a lopsided smile. “How many times have you waltzed before?” His gaze dropped to her lips, then back again to her eyes.
“A few,” she admitted in part. Truth be told, the waltz had always been her favorite dance to practice, even if she never had the opportunity to dance in a social setting before.
Together, they continued the dance, but the lesson became lost along the way. With their bodies moving to the music, their gazes fused, Anne realized how much she enjoyed this moment. She committed every detail to memory. Her first true waltz, and with Lord Dorrington.
Adele marveled at how far she had come. From distrusting to disinterested to disarmed. Lord Dorrington enlightened her to a great many things it seemed.
His grip tightened on her waist as they spun faster, attempting to match the tempo in perfect synchronization. Everywhere his body pressed against hers heated with a delicious friction. She longed to lean against him fully, to feel his warmth seep into her.
Her gaze dropped to his mouth. The softness of his lips contrasted with the sharp angles of his face. Lord Dorrington, with all his dark, brooding features and isolated eccentricities, cut a fine and quite handsome gentleman.
“Why have you not married?” Adele asked, regretting the question as it fell from her lips.
A pang of sadness pierced his eyes before he replied. “Marriage requires intimacy.” He paused. “Who would want a broken man?”
“I believe we are all broken in some way,” Adele responded, her voice gentle.
He glanced away for a moment before meeting her gaze with his own. Lord Dorrington smiled.
Adele quelled the nervous flutter in her stomach. Lord have mercy, but her heart could not take the ache any longer. Why did he affect her so?
His grip on her waist tightened, drawing her closer. Their steps slowed until it became a calm sway in the midst of the storm of attraction brewing between them.
“You are a strange little bird,” Lord Dorrington said in awe. “Somehow I feel a connection to you in ways I cannot comprehend. You quite baffle me.”
“Your compliment leaves me speechless.” She batted her lashes and smiled.
He spun her, shaking the simpering debutante from her display. He leaned close, his lips nearly brushing her ear. “You are far too clever to play coy, Anne.”
Saints above, she would have melted or run from the room, but his arms held her fast. Every fiber of her being protested and craved his proximity, his touch. Adele dared hope for more, even though her rational mind told her to push him away.
She pulled back enough to gaze into his eyes, dark and deep like the sea at midnight. How she longed to brush the wayward lock of hair back away from his face. His handsome face betrayed his desire, and yet she saw the hesitation in every breath he took.
He could have stolen her soul in that instant, and she would have relinquished it without a single solitary regret. Adele dared not speak for fear of shattering the fragile sacred moment.
*sigh* This scene makes my heart flutter. I wish I had someone to waltz with me. My poor husband has two left feet when it comes to dancing. Although bless him, he does try.
Thank you for all the support and encouragement. I appreciate everything you’ve done for me.
Until we meet again, may your bookshelves be full and your hearts even more so.
All my love,