Awakening a Lord’s Desires (Preview)

Chapter One

Kent, 1811, June

Miss Caroline Turner loved the color green. It made her feel fresh and revitalised, as if there was nothing wrong with the world. An English summer was so full of green that it made her heart happy, even if there was little else to be happy about. She walked along her usual path, basket in hand. With a hand over her eyes, she looked up to the bright blue sky with a smile. Her horse was tied to a tree trunk not far off, and the mare munched happily on the fresh green grass. To her, this was true freedom, out from under the constraints that held her back in the confines of her home. 

It was a rare sunny day, even though it was still morning, and Caroline meant to enjoy it. Mrs Winters, the family cook, had tried to deny her the chance to get out of doors to collect herbs, but Caroline would not be stopped. 

It is the only time I have to live and breathe as I see fit. 

“Your stepmother will have my head if she finds out that I’ve let you out, on your own, when anyone could come ’round, decent young lady as you are. What about the scoundrels and gypsies that wander about these parts?” Mrs Winters had said. 

“If you think my stepmother cares a whit about what happens to me, then you have it wrong,” Caroline replied in a dry tone. 

Mrs Winters had eventually agreed, and Caroline had had to work hard not to leap out of doors into the sunshine with her basket as she went to find her horse. That morning, she wore a simple day dress and boots, and her hair was tied back with a strip of cloth. The only reason her stepmother, Baroness Penelope Wentworth, wished to keep Caroline indoors was so that she did not embarrass her in front of their neighbours. She did not wish for said neighbours, who were also out at their estates in the Kentish countryside, to be scandalized by Caroline and all her “indecorous” ways, as Penelope would call them. 

With a sigh, Caroline held tight to her basket and kept her eyes along the edge of the meadow and the woods. Mrs Winters had begun to create a garden in the back of the house, but she was not a skilled gardener, and so things hadn’t grown as she’d hoped. Caroline was thankful for that, for it meant that she was able to search out of doors for those herbs that were missing, allowing herself to breathe and to stretch her legs. At the same time, she could let her mind wander, dreaming about a life far, far away from Kent; far, far away from London. Where she could be just as scandalous as she wished. 

“Ah, here we are,” she whispered to herself, spying a rosemary plant alongside tall meadow grass. 

With a smile, she knelt down, putting her basket on the grass beside her. She reached into it to remove a knife, and she cut the rosemary stems, laying them gently into her basket.

“That should be enough, I think,” she continued speaking to herself. “Mrs Winters’ potatoes will be delicious this eve.” 

Standing, she brushed the dirt from the knees of her dress and frowned when she saw a stain. She closed her eyes with a sigh, hoping she would not come across her stepmother when she returned to the house. Penelope would take at least five minutes to scold her harshly for her lack of decorum, thinking that she looked as if she’d been tupped in the woods, for only women such as that dirtied their skirts. 

If only I had been. 

The thought came to her unbidden, and she blushed. 

If her stepmother would mention such a thing, Caroline would reply as she usually did. “No one is around the woods, Penelope, for they do not like them. People who come to stay nearby prefer the larger main road for their rides.” 

That was what she liked about this dirt path, especially. She could be on her own, do anything she pleased, and she could think her own thoughts without her stepmother attempting to command her. When she leaned down to pick up her basket again, she heard the sound of hooves on the soft ground. 

“Oh no! Beauty better not have gotten loose!” she cried to herself, and then, picking up her skirts, she raced back the way she’d come. 

But then she realised the hooves were coming from behind her. Turning, she gasped when she saw a horse and rider barreling her way, and just before they came to trample her, she jumped out of the way into the edge of the woods. A sharp pain struck her head, but she kept low and out of sight as she tried to assess her other injuries. 

She heard the rider yell and the horse slowed, the rider jumping down onto the dirt road. Caroline’s heart raced. She had heard of young ladies being ravished in the woods, when out on their own. Mostly from frightening tales in the newspapers, ladies’ magazines, or bookshops, but she’d never imagined that something like that could really happen. And not on such a bright, sunshiny day. 

Her one hand was on her head, where she’d struck a tree trunk, but she still lay on the ground in the grass at the foot of the tree, wondering if she should stand and run or stay where she was, hoping she remained hidden from the rider himself. She closed her eyes when she heard the footsteps coming nearer. And she was just about to scream when she felt a touch on her arm.  

“Dear God! Forgive me, miss! I did not see you. Are you quite well?” 

Caroline turned to look up at the soft, kind voice. Her blue eyes met a pair of striking hazel ones, paired with a handsome, striking smile. 

“Oh,” she replied, unable to think of anything more sensible than that as he helped her to her feet. 

She swallowed as he bent his head to catch her gaze. He was very tall and broad, with dark brown wavy hair that made him look rather roguish, indeed. But it was his eyes that spoke of kindness and care. Her cheeks warmed at the mere handsome sight of him, and her heart had begun to flutter foolishly. 

“Are you well, miss?” he asked again, frowning at her. 

“Y-yes,” she said unsteadily. “I am well.” 

But despite her hitting her head, Caroline wasn’t so sure. For she had seen that pair of eyes and that dashing smile somewhere else—in her dreams. 

Chapter Two

Lord Charles Spencer was worried that he’d hurt an innocent young woman so badly she could no longer form words. Or rather, full sentences. His gloved hand pressed against her arm, and she stared at him for at least five seconds, her beautiful blue eyes wide. Her golden curls were in disarray, and if he was not so very concerned for her welfare, he might dwell more on the fact that he’d come across the most delightful and beautiful creature of his acquaintance. 

An odd rush of lust coursed through him, and he tried to ignore it. It had been a long time since he’d felt such a thing upon first meeting someone. 

“Y-yes,” she eventually replied, and he sighed with relief. 

“Thank God. Truly, you must forgive me. I was riding far too hard and in too distracted a manner.” He lifted a hand to point to his horse when he saw the young woman wince and put a hand to her head. “Oh no, you are not well. You have hit your head?” 

“Yes, I believe so,” she managed to say slowly. 

“Please, let me look at the injury,” he beseeched, and he turned to the side so that he could better look at where she had just pressed her hand. 

Being so close to her only made the lust worse, but he tamped it down. He was meant to make sure he was not a villain, to play the hero in rescuing the damsel. When she removed her hand, he saw nothing, only that slight swelling had begun. 

“There is no blood, but you will have to put cold cloths on it when you return home, if you can manage it.” 

“Yes, sir, I will.” She put her hand there again, and he stepped back, clearing his throat. His heart was racing. “Please, do not trouble yourself. I am very well, only a bit surprised.” She gave him a brief smile and pulled her hand away from her head. 

“Well, that is good. I’m afraid I never expect anyone out on these paths, so out of the way as they are, and I was so lost in thought. I have learned my lesson now, though. I shall be more careful in future.” 

He wanted to roll his eyes at himself for speaking so hastily. 

She will likely think me mad. 

He smiled at her, and she flushed a little pink. His hands were still on her arms, and they were standing close, far closer than was proper for a gentleman and a lady. She tensed under his touch, and he immediately stepped back, letting his arms fall to his sides. He cleared his throat and apologised once more. He wore gloves, and yet the heat of her body underneath his fingertips remained. He clenched his fists to be rid of it. 

“I should introduce myself,” he said. “My name is Lord Charles Spencer. My father is the Marquess of Queensberry. At long last, I have come to visit the country estate in Kent.” He bowed. 

“Oh,” she replied in that soft, lovely way she had done so before. With a smile, she curtsied. “My name is Miss Caroline Turner, daughter of the Baron of Wentworth. Our estate is just there.” She pointed behind her. “I too am quite unused to seeing people here in the morning, and so I was not expecting anyone.” 

Charles put his hands behind his back. The desire to reach out and touch her again was so strong, but he did not wish to scare her yet again. A young lady, with a titled father, out on her own, looking as if she was a young servant girl out with a basket. It was most unusual. Now that his concern had passed, he was fully able to focus on just how lovely she was, her golden hair nearly pulled out of her tie, curls framing her face. Her eyes sparkled, and her lips were a lovely pink, both seductive and strangely innocent at the same time. His eyes were drawn there, for her lips were slightly parted, and the sight of them made his mouth dry. What was it about this young woman that made his blood hum in his ears, his every sense become attuned to her and her alone? She was not like any young lady he had ever seen before, and she was certainly not like any young noble lady he’d ever met in London. 

She blushed, and he realised that he’d been staring. Like a bloody fool. She will think me a wolf come to collect its prey. 

Her hand went to her hair, and she quickly apologised. “I was only leaving the house to collect a few herbs for our cook. She often lets me, and I enjoy the walk and the sunshine.” She began to adjust her hair, and he tried to assure her. 

“All is well. There is no need for explanation.” He rubbed at an itchy place behind his neck. “But you may have to get used to seeing me out in these woods on these paths in the months to come. I have come here to relax after the Season, along with my good friend, and so I will be riding in the mornings. The estate is normally vacant, but I was in need of… respite.” He smiled to cover up his sudden nervousness. 

He had never been nervous in front of a beautiful woman for as long as he could remember. In fact, he’d often been rather bored, especially in the last months of the Season, when young women had been paraded in front of him, one after the other, his mother practically desperate to find him a bride. No one had ever incited such lust in him, and never so quickly. 

But this woman with her large innocent eyes, and the way she looked at him so purely, made him feel a little uneasy. As if she could see right to the heart of him. As if she felt the same string of attraction between them and, like him, did not quite know what to do about it. 

“Of course. We are all in need of respite after the Season,” she teased. “Well, I should return home.” She knelt down to pick up her basket. “Cook will be wondering where I’ve run off to.” 

“Certainly.” Together, they emerged from the woods and walked to his horse. “May I escort you? It would certainly not be gentlemanly of me if I did not walk you back to your home.” 

“Oh, no, thank you.” She curtsied. “My horse is just there, and I will ride on my own. Thank you, My Lord. Perhaps we shall see each other again.” 

Charles stood next to his horse, patting the side. “Yes, I am certain we will.” 

She smiled back at him and, with a sparkle in her eye, walked away. Charles put a hand to his chest. Yes, he most certainly wanted to see her again.

“Awakening a Lord’s Desires” is an Amazon Best-Selling novel, check it out here!

In the serene countryside, Miss Caroline Turner seeks solace from the stifling judgment of her stepmother. As the daughter of the Baron of Wentworth, her London Season has been a whirlwind of obligations and expectations, but the countryside offers her a respite where she can leave it all behind. Yet, when a chance encounter with an errant horse and rider nearly puts her life in danger, a new set of problems unfolds before her. Little does she know that this unexpected incident would lead to a life-altering encounter with a man who will kindle a flame of unwavering desire within her.

Can a fleeting moment in the countryside turn into a passionate connection that will forever alter the course of her life?

Shackled by his mother’s demands, Lord Charles Spencer yearns to escape to his family’s country abode, far from London’s clamor. When he finally escapes the pressure of the Season to seek refuge in nature, he stumbles upon a mysterious woman in the woods, and his life takes an unexpected turn. The passionate encounter with this modern-day Cinderella sparks feelings he never knew existed, and her allure captivates his soul.

Will he have the courage to follow his heart and let this tempting Lady into his life?

As the lush countryside weaves its spell, their attraction deepens into an intoxicating dance of lust and passion. With each challenge they overcome, their love blossoms to new heights, shredding the barriers guarding their hearts. However, their idyllic world is threatened when the scheming nephew of Caroline’s stepmother arrives. Will Charles and Caroline forge a future untainted by deceitful guardians, cunning relatives, and the shallow confines of status-driven unions?

“Awakening a Lord’s Desires” is a historical romance novel of approximately 60,000 words. No cheating, no cliffhangers, and a guaranteed happily ever after.

Get your copy from Amazon!

One thought on “Awakening a Lord’s Desires (Preview)”

  1. Hello there, my dearest readers! I hope you enjoyed this little treat and can’t wait to read the rest of this fiery romance! Caroline and Charles’ story is one you won’t want to miss! I will be waiting for your first impressions here. Thank you! 📚❤️‍🔥

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