To Win a Viscount
(Daughters of Amhurst #2) Author:Frances Fowlkes Genre:Historical Romance
England, 1820.To gain a certain marquess’s notice, Lady Albina Beauchamp aims to win the derby. What she hadn’t planned for is the price handsome Mr. Edmund White asks in payment to train her to race: each lesson for a kiss. A first place finish isn't the only thing worth racing for Lady Albina Beauchamp is in love with the Marquess of Satterfield. Unfortunately, his only interest is in horses, and doesn’t know she exists. But when the marquess confesses he will bestow his undying admiration on the jockey racing the winning horse at Emberton Derby, Albina sets out to win his affections by training to race. Mr. Edmund White is a master groomsmen for the Earl of Amhurst in line for a viscountcy, should he abandon his passion for horses and become a respectable sheep owner. But horses are his love--until he meets Lady Albina and her silly notions of racing. When she affirms she will enter the derby with or without his assistance, Edmund not only instructs his student in racing, but seduction as well.
For Albina, a first place finish isn’t the only thing at stake. She must decide whether to take her place in society...or follow her heart and love a groom.
“My lady.” Mr. White’s exasperated voice called from behind her. “I only seek to help you.”
Albina turned around, her chin lifted, her plaited hair licking past her arm. “Then do so, Mr. White. Tell me how to correct my form without insulting me. Unless you cannot. In which case, I shall seek out assistance elsewhere.”
He ran up to her and took hold of her hand, pulling her into his chest. Her hat fell to the ground as she crumpled against him, her right hand gripping his arm to steady herself. A thick, hard, and solid arm. Heavens.
He lowered his head, his mouth mere inches from hers. “Your head should be flush with the horse’s.” His words were breathy and low, spoken in a rich tenor she could hardly hear over the hammering of her heart.
“My head,” she whispered. Her thoughts were no longer on her form, but the pair of lips hovering over hers.
“Place it alongside the mare’s, low and even, as though you see and hear as one.”
“See and hear as one,” she repeated, her voice far throatier than it ought to be.
“And your legs,” he continued, “should be tight against her sides.” His hands fell to her outer thighs. With a slight push, he clamped her legs around his. “Like this.” God in heaven. She couldn’t think. At least not of anything beyond the pair of hands resting on her thighs. She gave a slight nod and licked her lips.
He inhaled, an audible, sharp intake of breath. His hands should not have been anywhere on her person. No gentleman would hold her thus, with such bold possession. But Mr. White was not a gentleman. He was a groom.
And she was, for the first time, glad for it. A heady rush of excitement coursed through her.
“Is that all?” she whispered. “My head and legs?”
Slow and sensual, his lips curled. “Your bottom.” His hands slipped to her backside and cupped her supple flesh through the thin leather of her breeches. “It needs to be held high in the air.”
“M-m-my, my bottom,” she stuttered, lapsing into a mode of speech most often associated with her sister, Henrietta. “Must b-b-be higher,” she ended on a gasp.
Her breath caught, his fingers burning on her bottom as though they were on fire. No man had ever dared, never imagined to place his hands upon her…certainly not the marquess, who, as a titled peer, would respect the rules of decorum and treat her as a lady. As he ought.
Yet…she could not deny the surge of pleasure rushing through her at Mr. White’s forwardness. His blatant disregard for propriety was intoxicating. A shot of rebellion that echoed her own. Her rule-breaking, however, was limited to assuming the appearance of the opposite sex. A simple portrayal. A minor deception, though it was quickly becoming more. She had allowed him to kiss her yesterday. Today…today she was allowing him a firm grasp of her bottom. And what’s more, enjoying every second of it.
After viewing her all-time favorite love story, “Anne of Green Gables”, at the impressionable age of ten, Frances Fowlkes has been obsessed with affable boy-next door heroes, red-heads, and romance stories with lots of “highfaluting mumbo jumbo” written within their pages. It only seems natural then that she married the boy who used to pull on her curls in her high school English class, had not one, but THREE red-headed boys, and penned multiple love stories with bits of flowery prose. When not writing, Frances loves spending time with her family, fangirling, and planning her next vacation. Frances Fowlkes, originally a northern mid-westerner, now lives in the southeast with her ardent hero of a husband, three playful and rambunctious boys, and one spoiled standard poodle. A self-professed Anglophile and summa cum laude graduate of LeTourneau University, Frances Fowlkes combines her passion for happily-ever-afters with her interests in both American and English histories.