Welcome to the 2017 A to Z Blog Challenge. During the month of April, Chrys N. Jay shares snippets from friend’s books, and takes a peek at love.
Today, for ‘L’, Lindsay Downs stops by to share an excerpt from his regency romance, Love at First Sight.
Shunned by most the ladies of the ton, in particularly those of marriageable age not to mention many of the gentlemen Oliver, Viscount Oxfordshire retired to his estate. There he bred, raised and trained the best horses in all of England.
An unexpected visit from the Earl and Countess of Rosewood upsets his life when they invited him to join them in London. Reluctantly he accepted warning them that no lady would give him a second look.
At a dinner party held by his sister Oliver meets Lady Patience. As their affections for each other grow, so do veiled and not so veiled threats.
With several former rakehells and their wives it is decided they all retire to the country estate of her parent’s the Earl and Countess of Langnash. There they organize an impromptu house party. During the event the wives of the rakehells inform Lady Patience of a most unusual tradition.
Excerpt- Love at First Sight
Once the music ended he bowed to her curtsey, assisted her up, and, with her hand settled on his arm, guided her to the settees set aside for her and the other ladies. Never having been in a situation such as this, he wasn’t sure where his place was. He saw that Warren, Nash, and Justin were standing behind their wives. Oliver stepped around and took his place, resting his hand lightly on Patience’s shoulder.
“This way we may keep an eye out for any gentlemen who might wish to dance with our wives. We are very protective of them in this type of situation which they greatly appreciate,” Nash explained.
“And we tend to be the same way outside of social settings as our husbands tend to get into mischief at times,” Amelia chimed in.
“Not to mention, as you will plainly notice, we make sure our friends remain safe from intruders. For example, Viscount Clifton who is attempting to make his way here,” Warren said.
Under his hand, Oliver could sense his Patience’s shoulder tense. This told him she was aware of the man’s approach. He leaned over.
“Fear not, for he won’t do anything without causing a stir, and I’m here to protect you,” he whispered.
“I know and thank you.”
No sooner had she spoken than the man stepped up.
“My dear Patience…” was all he managed to say before being interrupted.
“Sir, you have never been introduced to Lady Patience. As such, you have never been given permission to use any form of endearment to her. Apologize at once then be gone from our sight,” Oliver demanded.
“I am Viscount Clifton, and who might you be, you crippled upstart?”
“Viscount Oxfordshire and Lady Patience’s escort. Unlike you, who will always remain a viscount, someday I will be Earl of Condiff. Now depart before I call for footmen to remove you,” he ordered.
Oliver could sense Patience attempt to rise, and for the briefest of moments considered not allowing her to, then changed his mind. He removed his hand from her shoulder.
She stood. “The viscount does have a slight disability, but he is more of a gentleman than you could ever be.” She retook her seat.
With a hidden smile, Oliver studied the man as he huffed and puffed, most likely in an attempt to come up with a reply. Oliver then noticed two burly footmen step up behind the viscount.
When the man didn’t move, Oliver nodded to the footmen, who took the viscount by the arms and easily removed him. He was more than pleased when they took the man out of the ballroom via the main staircase. That permitted everyone to witness his undignified departure.
“Dearest friend, shall we go to the ladies’ retiring room so you may collect yourself and thoughts,” Ida asked.
Oliver started to come around to the front to help her stand, but a hand stopped him. Turning his head to Warren, who shook his head, Oliver then understood this was a ladies’ thing and not to get involved. He was amazed when not only Ida but Prudence and Amelia stood and accompany Patience away as well.
I’ve been an avid reader ever since I was old enough to hold a red leather bound first edition copy of Sir Walter Scott’s The Lady of the Lake in my lap.
So it only seemed natural at some point in my life I take up pen and paper to start writing. Over time my skills slightly improved which I attribute to my English teachers.
My breakthrough came about in the mid 1970’s when I read a historical romance written by Sergeanne Golon, Angelique. This French husband and wife team opened my eyes to the real world of fiction. Stories about romance, beautiful damsels, handsome heroes and plots which kept me hooked. Of course, being a man, I had to keep my reading hidden from others as that wasn’t appropriate reading for men.
With this new found appreciation of the written word I took up other books and devoured them as a starving person would a plate of food. I them attempted to write again. I still wasn’t satisfied so I put it aside for years as other events entered my life.
Finally, in the early years of the new millennium I tried again to write and once again met with limited success. At least now I was able to get past the first page or two. Then, in 2006 a life changing event brought me back to my love, I took a job as a security officer. This allowed me plenty of time to read different genres.
My favourite was regency. As I poured through everyone I could get my hands on I knew this could be something I wanted to attempt.
Since 2012 when my debut regency romantic suspense released I was hooked and have, except for a few contemporaries, focused on this genre.
Since 2012 I’ve lived in central Texas. I’m also a member of Romance Writers of America and the Austin, TX chapter.
Where you can find me-
Facebook Pages- http://tinyurl.com/nresq5j
Lindsay Downs-Romance Author- http://tinyurl.com/kvfz468