Ella, the heroine of my latest book, His Lordship’s Mate, has recently met a wolf in a forest. Nobody believed her, since wolves have not been seen in England for centuries, so naturally, she is shunned. Desperate to prove her story, she’s gone back to the woods to find proof. This time, she meets a man….
Ella liked his voice. The sonorous low tones didn’t boom in her ear or make her quake. “Do you believe me? Nobody believes me. I’m not a liar. I saw a wolf. I came to find its tracks and proof of what I say.”
The stranger smiled. “There will be no tracks. The rain came last night and whatever marks the animals left will be washed away.”
“Oh.” She’d not thought of the rain, even though she’d heard it thunder down during the night. Aware of their close proximity, she stood and smoothed down her skirt.
He rose, towering above her. He wore a plain coat, dirt had splattered his creased breeches, and his boots were caked in mud. The top buttons of his white shirt were undone, and without a necktie, the lack of formal apparel exposed his throat and the apex of his collarbones. Quite why it made her flush must be due to the rare sight of a man’s bare neck and breastbone—what a sheltered life she’d led. Was he a gentleman? He’d spoken like an educated man and she’d detected a soft accent.
“You’re trespassing, you do know that?” he informed her.
“So are you then, since these woods belong to Lord Powell,” she countered, gaining confidence. “I’m Ella Bailey, daughter of Sir William Bailey of Edgton.”
“It is my pleasure to have your acquaintance.” He bowed and when he rose, he raked his hair off his face and targeted his sharp eyes straight at her, as if he were staring down the barrel of a gun. “What are you going to do now, Miss Bailey?”
His line of questions, given their lack of familiarity, would normally be inappropriate, but the stranger had a presence that compelled her to treat him with respect and honesty. “I… don’t know,” she confessed. “I have no money, no means to find a decent husband.”
He pursed his thin lips and scratched his chin. “I’ll escort you back to Standford House. From there I will arrange for you to go home.”
“I have no carriage. I must wait upon one of the earl’s relatives to depart and take me home. I doubt they will help me anyway. They despise me for causing trouble.”
“I will have a rider go for one of my coaches. The earl will provide a groom.” He spoke with absolute certainty and an authority born out of experience. “Come, Miss Bailey.”
She hesitated—a hint of the vulnerability that exposed her frailty and the risk she took once again in trusting a man. “I can’t possibly let you. I don’t even know your name.”
The man slowly turned to face her. “Why, you already know my name.”
“I do?” she retorted, peering closely at his features.
“I was at Standford on Friday night.”
“You were?” she gaped in disbelief. He might have been, but she’d been playing nursemaid to her intoxicated father, then had left early. She’d missed being introduced to most of the extra guests who had attended on that Friday. His delay in answering her question infuriated her. “Your name, sir. Do not tease me.”
He cleared his throat and tucked his hands behind his coattails. “My name, young lady, is Lord Powell. Gethin Powell of Grendle Hall.”
“Lord… Powell,” she stuttered, staring about her at the trees. “Then this is your land.”
“My land,” he repeated. “And it seems I have a vicious wolf roaming on it.”
Eighteen-year-old Ella Bailey knows that if she is to have any hope of a good match, she must marry quickly before her father completes the ruin of her family’s fortune and good name with his wanton living. Her situation is made worse when a wealthy viscount expresses interest in her hand and she accepts his invitation to a party, only to have the supposed gentleman first seek to seduce her and then attempt to force himself on her.
After his efforts to despoil her are thwarted, the spiteful cad does his utmost to slander Ella’s character with scandalous accusations. With her reputation in tatters and nowhere else to turn, Ella seeks solace in the arms of the enigmatic Gethin Powell, a rich, handsome lord known for his lack of concern for the expectations of high society.
Gethin takes a strong interest in Ella, but he makes it abundantly clear that he is a man who expects to be obeyed in all things. Living under his roof as his woman will mean submitting to his authority, surrendering her body to his desires, and baring her bottom for his stern chastisement whenever he deems it necessary.
Ella soon discovers that Gethin’s sexual appetites are both fierce and insatiable, but as he thoroughly lays claim to her naked, blushing body, she is deeply ashamed to find herself hungering for more. But even as their passion for each other grows deeper, an old and powerful secret waits to come to light. When Ella learns the truth about Gethin, will it tear her away from the man who has taken her as his mate?
Publisher’s Note: His Lordship’s Mate is an erotic romance novel that includes spankings, sexual scenes, anal play, elements of BDSM, and more. If such material offends you, please don’t buy this book.
Enjoy some more wipsters here.