Oiye was near to miserable. Oiye can drive a coach to an inch, oiye can. The man shook his head sadly. With a regretful sigh, he dropped it in a shimmering pile on a long marble table. He polished it with his palm, then tucked it away. James winked at Herberts.
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Chapter 11 The rain came with a vengeance. That… Chapter 14 That was just her luck…for the first time in four… Chapter 15 Verena awoke the next morning to the feel of a… Chapter 16 Verena struggled. No light… Chapter 22 Brandon slowly came awake the next morning, aware first of… Chapter 23 Brand struggled to believe the scene before him.
Wycham—the traitor. John is a very sensual man. Whenever he looks at me, I get the most delicious shivers right down to my toes, just as if—Oh!
I forgot I was talking to you. Damn it, what is Devon doing in my dreams? Devon was an annoyance when Brandon was awake. During sleep, he was a positive menace. Devon shook him again. But there was no swaying Devon. Brandon started to lift his head, but the pounding behind his temples made him think better of it. I need my pistol. Brandon hated mornings. They were filled with annoyingly cheerful people who liked to aggravate other, more important individuals who needed extra sleep to make up for the fact that they had not slept the night before.
His throat felt like the bottom of a salt barrel—scratchy and dry. And that was just the beginning of his complaints; his head ached, his stomach roiled, and the inside of his mouth tasted like chalk. He had a vague memory of the night before. Of a beautiful woman with reddish gold hair and a card game where the stakes had gone from guineas to articles of clothing to other, far more stimulating wagers. Celeste was perfect for him in every way—beautiful, intelligent, talented in bed, and married to someone else.
No man could ask for more. Except Brandon. And that was the problem. No matter how much Brandon enjoyed a dalliance, within two weeks he inevitably found himself looking for a new challenge.
The sad truth was that every amusement of late had seemed flat. Brandon was living beneath a horrible pall—a feeling that somehow, some way, he was missing out on something important. What maudlin nonsense.
Brandy apparently had the unfortunate side effect of making one mawkish. Brandon lifted his aching head and forced his lids to rise. Blinding light pierced his eyes. He groaned, and then groped blindly for the half-finished glass of brandy that rested beside his bed. He gulped it down, his throat stinging as he thunked the glass back on the stand. Brandon wiped his mouth with the back of his hand and turned to squint over his shoulder. Truthfully, of all his brothers, Brand was closest to his half-brother.
And he had a sharp wit that always made Brandon grin. Not now, of course. No one could smile at this time of the morning. Brand eyed his half-brother blearily. Brandon rubbed his temples. The oldest, he ruled the family fortune, his life and those of the younger members of the St. John family with an iron fist. As the next oldest in line, Brandon should have been deeply involved in the family financial endeavors.
Thus it was that at the genteel age of twenty-two, when most of his friends were drinking and whoring their way through London, Brandon had collected what money he could and purchased two ill-kempt estates outside of Shropeshire.
That had been many years ago and the estates were now merged into one, a very productive and profitable venture providing Brandon with an astonishing income. John accounts, a fact that had infuriated Marcus even more. Not that Brandon cared. But now, with the work complete and his fortune even more secure, Brandon found that he was a little…bored, a feeling that had lingered and grown over the ensuing months and years. He sighed restlessly and glanced at Marcus.
It smells of a French whorehouse. He should have known they would make things difficult. He lifted himself on his elbow and pointed to the door. Poole answered. He informed us you were asleep. Then we came here. He glanced at the door. I know you wished to see us set Brandon afire. A rakehell of the worst sort, Bridgeton had proven to be a doting husband and devoted father. It was difficult to maintain a healthy hatred for a man who treated your sister as if she were made of glass, but Brandon did his best.
He pushed himself into a sitting position and tossed the sheet aside. Devon shook his head. For good measure, he even stretched mightily though he had to keep one hand on the bedrail to remain upright.
The whole world seemed to swirl before his eyes. Devon trailed behind, stopping when he reached the doorway. He tilted his head to one side, his blue eyes sparkling with mischief. She has been talking quite freely you know, hinting that the two of you might become more than friends. We have nothing more than a brief dalliance. Everyone knows her husband has one foot in the grave—has for years. Leave, Devon. Unless you want me lounging naked during the entire meeting.
I was just trying to help. Brandon raked his hair from his face. Devon was a fool. The St. Johns were targets for every matchmaking mama in town. Over the years, Brandon had watched as woman after woman had set their cap for either him or one of his brothers. At first, it had been an amusement. But then, after a while, it became an annoyance.
Now Brandon found it a deadly bore. He wanted nothing to do with a needy woman, one who saw him merely as an end to a means. When he married, it would be to a woman of substance and breeding, one with as many funds to her name as he had to his. Poole entered the room, a letter and a tall glass with a yellow mixture resting atop a tray.
Brand eyed the glass sullenly. Poole took the glass and replaced it on the tray. Poole set the tray to one side and picked up the letter. Brandon opened the letter.
John, I must see you. This is very important. Oh no, sir. I was already awake when they arrived. However, I am sorry you were disturbed. I tried to stop them, but it was impossible. He smoothed the sleeve of his new coat with a faint appreciation. He felt far more human now and quite capable of dealing with his brothers.
And—no, wait. John talisman ring. You told me to hide it and never admit where it was. Find a pin and a ribbon, too. He dug among the watch fobs a moment then withdrew a small silver circlet.
Confessions of a Scoundrel by Karen Hawkins - PDF free download eBook
Shelves: romance-historical , read , own-a-copy So next up with the Talisman ring is Brandon St. John and no little ring is going to get him tied in knots or tie the knot with any lady. He is after all strictly a two week love and leave them type of guy. Then he is on to greener bored-but-married-society ladies, it is his motto. But Chase his beloved younger brother has got himself in a mess and about to pop the question to a lady of questionable nature. A Ms Verena Westforth has managed to get Chase so worked up, he has a special license in his pocket, so Brandon with the backing of all his brothers will go forth and pay her off. After all a fast lady like her is always looking for a quick quid to ensure her way of life.
Confessions of a Scoundrel
The St. John talisman ring will find their one true love. Now that the ring rests in the pocket of renowned scoundrel Brandon St. John, the dashing rake must decide whether it is a blessing…or a curse. Never has the irresistible rogue, Brandon St. John, pursued a woman with more fervor—but his ardent suit of Lady Verena Westforth has a different purpose. The delectable blond lovely is indeed enticing, but Brandon suspects her of hiding a valuable missive that he has sworn to recover.
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John talisman ring will find their one true love. Now that the ring rests in the pocket of renowned scoundrel Brandon St. John, the dashing rake must decide whether it is a blessing…or a curse. Never has the irresistible rogue, Brandon St. And now an extraordinary man has entered her life…at the worst possible time! But is he a needed friend or a foe in alluring disguise…and will she be able to prove to him that love is their true destiny? This time is necessary for searching and sorting links.