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Exclusive: Historical Hookups by Eileen Dreyer

In celebration of historical releases from Forever, they set up a group blog tour of their authors.  The task for the author was to create a 500-600 word short based on the criteria set out by the author’s fans.  We asked to publish Eileen Dreyer’s piece.


Her short must include the following elements:

  • A young heiress heroine who is a mysterious brunette.
  • A titled gentleman hero whose usual expression is a dark scowl.
  • This couple has never met before.
  • The scene takes place in a bedroom.

I thought Dreyer did a pretty fantastic job.



Miss Felicity’s Dilemma

It was Miss Felicity Chambers’s considered opinion that more time needed to be spent cleaning beneath beds. She came to this conclusion when the urge to sneeze overtook her as she crouched under the bed of her host, her heart pounding and her eyes squeezed shut.

“You haven’t seen her?” a voice rumbled above her.

“I’ve been looking for you,” answered the sultry tones of a woman.

A very sultry woman. Felicity wished she had the knack for sounding so interesting. Sadly, she merely sounded like the new teacher of piano and deportment she was. Well, that she had been before the surprise correspondence from the man who was standing four feet from her twitching nose. Flint, Lord Bracken.

Flint, Felicity thought with a scowl. What kind of self-respecting duke named his son after quartz? Shouldn’t his name be Reginald, or maybe Cyril?

But then, from the sound of his voice, she doubted he resembled a Cyril of any kind.

“It was my father’s request,” he was saying. “Bring the chit here and tell her of the bequest.”

Felicity almost bumped her head on the underside of the bed. Bequest? What was he talking about. Who would leave her anything? She had no one but the other teachers at the academy. She had never even heard of the Brackens before the messenger arrived. And since she’d been in this mausoleum, she’d only seen the servants.

If she’d seen anyone else in the last four days, she might not have begun searching rooms for evidence of why she was here. She might have stayed out of this room in particular.

“Once I find her,” he was saying, his voice now a purr that seemed to thrum right through her, “you and I can continue our…explorations.”

A pair of pink satin slippers came into view. Felicity closed her eyes until she finally heard the door close.

“Aren’t you growing cramped under there?” Lord Bracken suddenly asked.

Felicity’s eyes flew open to find an upside down face where the boots had been. Her heart dropped like a stone.

“No,” she said, sounding oddly composed. “I am quite petite. But you really should have someone sweep under here. The dust bunnies are the size of wolfhounds.”

He reached a hand under the bed. She took it and gasped. Something hot shot through her. A bolt of lightning, she swore. He drew her out, helping her to stand. She brushed off her sensible gray kerseymere dress and tidied her hair.

“Do you always hide under beds?” There was humor in his voice.

She looked up, and forgot what she was going to say. She forgot her name. He was beautiful. Chiseled and broad-shouldered, blue-eyed and smiling, his hair a deep tumbled russet. Hard and sharp as quartz.

Suddenly his name wasn’t so funny.

You’re Miss Chambers?” he demanded, looking as dumbstruck as she felt. “My father has better taste than I gave him credit for. I’m particularly fond of brunettes.”

“Your father?”

“Why, yes. He’s the one who demanded I marry you.”


Eileen Dreyer’s upcoming book Once a Rake will be released on October 29, 2103 and is available for pre order now.

Author website * Author Newsletter

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Janine
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 10:24:04

    That is a lovely piece of writing. I like that even though, as stipulated, it takes place in a bedroom, the author didn’t rush her characters into sex.

  2. Jenna
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 11:56:13

    I’m really intrigued! If only this was an actual novel I would jump on it in a heartbeat.

  3. Lynnd
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 12:23:20

    @Jenna: Me too!

  4. PhoebeC
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 13:01:40

    Wow, this is a fantastic scene. So well done.

  5. Lil
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 13:30:58

    I only wish this were a full book.
    In a short piece like this, you can see how really good this author is, and how much she can pack into 500 words. The criteria seem to be asking for cliches, and she avoids them beautifully.

  6. Carolyne
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 14:47:23

    Great idea for a blog tour and a great snippet of prose! It absolutely makes me want to read more by the author. What fun :)

  7. EGS
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 15:20:47

    Man, I want to read more. Maybe this could become inspiration for something longer? Maybe?

    Although I’m a little disappointed that the choices ended up so very Romancelandia standard. I voted for the pairing of a working class hero and an intriguing widow.

  8. Jessica
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 15:39:17

    I want to read more, too! Thanks for sharing and pointing me in the direction of a new author to try

  9. Eileen Dreyer
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 15:45:04

    Thank you all! This was really fun to do(although I’m with you, EGS. Especially since I’ve just been rereading Carla Kelly). As for continuing the story, it certainly isn’t out of the question. I’ve developed quite a partiality for Felicity.

  10. Demi
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 16:22:36

    I really enjoyed the snippet and would continue reading, if only it were a novel already :)

  11. Susan/DC
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 16:32:27

    To paraphrase Oliver Twist, “Please ma’am, may I have some more?” Not sure the term dust bunnies was used in 19th C Britain, but the author definitely gets points for setting the scene in a bedroom yet keeping it otherwise chaste. I very much liked Felicity’s response when asked if she was cramped under the bed, as I do like heroines who manage to be both smart and funny when found in otherwise undignified situations. And now I’m on tenterhooks wondering why Lord Bracken’s father wanted them to marry.

    P.S. In one of those odd coincidences of timing, I bought Ms. Dreyer’s most recent book earlier this afternoon even before reading this snippet.

  12. bamaclm
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 16:58:33

    Fingers crossed this story will get finished. I already love both the characters and marriage of convenience is my favorite troupe.

  13. Kaetrin
    Oct 08, 2013 @ 22:27:56

    Add me as another who’d be happy to read a complete novel about this couple. I loved it.

  14. Susan
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 02:18:11

    Yep, add my name to the “Please Make This a Full-length Book” petition. This was wonderful.

  15. Caz
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 08:35:25

    Terrific job! It just goes to show what a talented author can do with a limited word count :)

    Add me to the list of those who’d happily read a whole book about Felicity and Bracken.

  16. Kim
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 10:28:34

    I want the rest of this, please.

  17. EGS
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 13:53:45

    Also, I forgot to add that I loved the dig about his name being Flint – so many Romancelandia 19th century dukes/marquesses/earls/etc have such 21st century sounding names with no one batting an eye.

  18. Samantha
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 15:20:03

    I don’t even care for historicals and I would read about Felicity.

  19. Margie Messina
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 17:13:24

    WOW! I want to read more, please continue the story. ;)

  20. cleo
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 17:46:58

    Wow. What a great blog tour idea. I love this short.

    I recently figured out that Eileen Dreyer also writes as Kathleen Korbel, and therefore wrote one of my favorite categories ever – A Soldier’s Heart. I think I have to try one of her historicals. Any recs for a good one to start with?

  21. Exclusive: Historical Hookups by Jennifer Heymore
    Dec 02, 2013 @ 10:02:05

    […] create a 500-600 word short based on the criteria set out by the author’s fans.  We published Eileen Dreyer’s piece last time and requested Jennifer Haymore for this go […]

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