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A Dangerous Beauty

A steamy regency romance

Carolinne's always been mystified by her effect on men. They've pursued her since she reached her teens. She loves only one man, but a dark secret prevents her from wedding her truelove. Brokenhearted, she allows her aunt to persuade her into marrying his much older brother, heir to an earldom. Lord Develon is obsessed with her beauty, but when she fails to show the affection he expects, he makes vile use of her.

Insanely jealous of his younger brother, the earl plots to get an heir, even inviting his coterie of peers to use her, vowing to accept any male babe which arrives as his successor. Deeply depressed, she builds an emotional wall around her soul.

But her brother and her former sweetheart discover her injuries and conspire to attack Carolinne's husband. He's permanently crippled. Though he can no longer maltreat her, her life becomes a prolonged, grey routine of mourning her lover's death at Waterloo, caring for her spouse, and trying to keep their finances balanced. Lord Develon, though physically unable to attack her, uses his tongue as a weapon, especially when she taunts him with her freedom.

Knowing he's near death, he summons his heir: haughty, wealthy Frayne Winterlake and schemes with him to seduce Carolinne and get her with child before he dies--a child who will legally pass as Develon's. Uninterested in succeeding to earldom, Frayne agrees to cooperate. He believes the gossip about her wild lifestyle,and is convinced Carolinne has rejected his best friend to marry a title. His opinion of her is very low, but her unearthly loveliness intrigues him.

She desperately desires a baby. Though quite aware of his contempt, she agrees to her husband's counter-plot and attempts to lure Frayne into her bed. Though suspicious of his caressing ways, she's determined to discover the sexual passion she's never experienced. With the help of her faithful, knowledgeable maid, she succeeds.

But Lord Develon reveals his double plot just before he dies; Frayne is enraged at her betrayal, and threatens to incarcerate her in the country, seize her baby and never allow her to see it again. Fearful of yielding to Frayne's charms, Carolinne resolves to flee, and after the funeral, she and her attendants disappear.

A frantic Frayne realizes he loves her. He searches over three continents for four long years before he locates her--and she wants nothing to do with him. She's married and the mother of a son, precisely of the right age to be Frayne's child. Then a member of group who helped her husband mistreat her appears. Lord Rewdon threatens her with papers her husband left, accusing her of murdering him. He demands she become his mistress. Now strong and and confident, she fights him off until he draws a pistol. Who should she protect, her crippled husband or her former lover?

How to Buy

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