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.”
“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.