Sunday, April 6, 2014

Historical Romance Excerpt ~ Charming the Duke

Matilda and the Duke are caught!

 It all supported her notion that the glasses, brown dresses, and scruffy boots separated the chaff from the wheat. Those that deemed her worthy enough to speak to when dressed that way, and those that chose this evening to address her. The Duke had apparently noticed her gown.
Thornsby stared at her as if in a trance. She wondered what was going through his mind. “Don’t make Altry to be any more the cad than you, Thornsby. You’ve never noticed me either. Unless to insult me.”
His eye twitched. “That is untrue.”
“Far from it,” Matilda said.
“Don’t presume to know what is in my mind,” Thornsby said and grabbed Matilda’s bare shoulders.
The moment was charged with sparks, shooting through the air, connecting him to her. Matilda felt, well, she didn’t know what she felt. Fluttery and female. Angry. Aware. The touch of his fingertips drifted down her arms leaving her hands numb. Her voice came out barely above a whisper.
“What is on your mind then?” she asked.
“I’m thinking of kissing you, Miss Sheldon.”
Matilda batted her lashes. “Is it the dress?”
Thornsby touched his lips to hers. A feather’s touch. He inched back to gaze over her face. “I don’t know. But I don’t think so.”
His breath was warm on her cheeks. She’d never been this close to a man before. She could see the lines around his mouth and the bristle of his beard. He touched his lips to hers again.
“What do you imagine it is?” Matilda whispered into his mouth.
Thornsby slipped his hand around her waist and pulled her close. He tilted her head up with his finger. “I haven’t a clue,” he said. Then he kissed her. Really kissed her.

* * *
Matilda’s lips were open and guileless. Her skin was smooth and warm where he held her chin, and she draped her arms over his shoulders. Thornsby turned his head and sunk his tongue into her mouth.  She sighed and went soft in his arms. He ran his knuckles down her neck and lower still to the curve of her breast. He knew from experience this was no casual kiss. This was a lover’s kiss, a prelude to a bedding.
Thornsby released Matilda’s lips and opened his eyes. Her eyes were still closed and her cheeks rosy and her mouth in a lover’s pout. He was still breathing hard, but his blood was beginning to return to his brain.
What had he done? Why had he ignored Millicent and hurried to keep the wren from backing off a step? Couldn’t fathom why he’d asked her to dance or been so damn angry when Altry stared at her like a tasty, innocent morsel. And what on earth had possessed him to drag her into a dark room without a chaperone. Thornsby’s head flew up when the door banged open.


No comments: