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 ‘A’, Lindsay Downs stops by to share an excerpt from his regency romance, A Christmas Wedding.
A Christmas Wedding
Soon after being introduced to Lady Ida Lord Warren learns that someone is apparently stalking her. The purpose at first is unclear.
With Ida and her parents attending the Duchess of Fenwick annual Christmas Eve ball Warren decides he must be present to continue courting the young lady, who he is falling in love with.
When events in London become too dangerous for Ida it is recommended they, with other former rakehells and wives, retire to the Fenwick estate.
Hostilities break out between Warren and his older brother, Nash, Marquis of Renfield which is settled on the field of honor too much laughter by some.
When Mr. Godfrey, the threat to Ida and Warren’s happiness, is seen in the village take extra care in protecting Ida.
Two bodies are found. Finally, the villain is found and brought to justice allowing Ida and Warren to marry as they wish.
Excerpt- A Christmas Wedding
For Warren to write his man was a normal task as he did so every few months, considering the number of estates scattered throughout England under his protection. With his letter penned and added to the others, he started to accept a whiskey but changed his mind.
“Thank you, Tony, but no. I’d rather not, but ring for Fielding for coffee. Considering the deaths, I’m just not in the mood.”
“I don’t understand,” Tony spoke.
“Simply put, right now I need a clear head to catch the murderer, and having even a few sips of whiskey won’t help.”
“I agree, son, so I’ll ring for the butler to have a tray and cups sent up,” Thomas declared.
While waiting for the tray to be delivered Warren glanced to his brother then back to his father. He took in a breath then let it out slowly before addressing the duke.
“Sir, as we all know, a year ago this Christmas eve Nash and Amelia married. Having spoken with him and he’s in agreement father can you appeal to the Archbishop of Canterbury for a special license?”
“Son, Nash told me of your intention before he departed London so I arranged for His Holiness to issue you one.”
Angered, Warren bolted to his feet and stormed over to Nash.
“Brother, I told you that in confidence, and you have betrayed my faith and trust in you. For your failure to keep this between us I am calling you out. We shall meet on the field of honor at sunrise tomorrow. Name your second as I choose Rainer if he will stand my stead?”
“Gentlemen, I will not tolerate a duel especially when the ladies might witness such an event,” the duke demanded.
“Thomas, trust me when I say nothing untoward will happen, except one of the participant’s ego will be bruised. Warren had learned what Nash did, speaking with you so Tony, who will be his second, and I have devised a plan to humiliate both. In short, and to keep the weapon of choice a secret, the loser has to clean the winner’s horse’s stall for the duration of the house party,” Rainer said.
“Then, gentlemen, might I suggest we retire to our suites to dress for dinner. After which, I’m sure we can prevail upon several of the ladies to play the pianoforte,” the duke declared.
Later, during a waltz played by Augusta on the pianoforte, Warren glanced down to see puzzlement in Ida’s eyes. “What’s bothering you? You and Nash don’t, for whatever reason, seem to suddenly get along. I do hope it’s not to do with the murderer.”
“Trust me, my dear, it doesn’t but what will happen on the morrow. On that I’m afraid I can’t say any more.”
When the evening was called by the duchess, Ida allowed Warren to escort her to her suite door.
“Are you sure you don’t wish to tell me what’s been bothering you?” she inquired, then not getting a reply slipped into her suite.
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 their local chapter.
Where you can find me-
Facebook Pages- http://tinyurl.com/nresq5j
Lindsay Downs-Romance Author- http://tinyurl.com/kvfz468