Lies, lust and happiness.
This blog began as a conversation I had with my friend who is also my hairdresser. When I arrived to have my hair trimmed my friend said, “Come on Daisy, cheer me up and tell me about lies, lust and happiness.”
I pondered for a minute or two and said, “You should read my new book, A Gentleman’s Folly. All those things are in it.” Our conversation continued and I decided to put some of my thoughts prompted by it here.
Trust and truth are a vital component for love to bloom, but it takes time for them to evolve in a relationship. When both partners instinctively with-hold the truth or offer outright lies, as is seen in A Gentleman’s Folly, their relationship heads for trouble.
Lust, always a strong motivator, dominates this couple, but not merely lust for sex. Their desire for fortune, security and acceptance in society pushes both partners into actions neither understands.
True happiness can only be gained with an understanding of self and a generosity of spirit. Katherine and Charles both make a journey of discovery that takes them far apart before they meet again in one last hope for happiness in the darkness of the West Wycombe caves.
This is my first full length historical romance and has given me chance to hone my research skills to create an 18th century back-drop to the story of this couple. From my initial visit to the West Wycombe caves which prompted the idea of the story, to all the research into the 18th century, visits to venues with 18th century decor or furniture to help me get a feel for the period, this story has evolved and grown. I enjoyed every minute of writing ‘A Gentleman’s Folly’ and hope readers will enjoy the story too.
She ignored him as he approached. He could hardly insult her further.
“I did not refuse you, but you must understand my surprise.” He caught her wrist, his grip a gentle one she’d no hope to dislodge. “Tell me, who is the man who has left you in such straights?”
“I can’t tell you. I am oath sworn not to speak of the secrets of the order to outsiders. It’s not the way here.”
He shook his head and grimaced as he let her wrist go. “It’s also not the way for a man of honor to act when he’s spent his seed and fathered a child.”
Hell, he must simply think her a trollop, and he’d want no more of her. Why hadn’t she done as Chloe had warned and, despite Medmenham tradition, kept her tongue still on this when it mattered most?
Still he observed her closely, and she gave a sigh. “Here, Mr. Leverret, those of us who worship in the temple do so freely, unchained of all constraints. If we desire, we love. If we love, we bear any consequences the gods might send us. Our ways are not those of others.”
“Freely? Unconstrained?” His expression grew quizzical. “A fine notion, but it leaves you in a poor state.”
“No, you don’t understand. I’m well-cared for by the monastery.”
“’Tis but another name for the group of gentlemen who come here,” she tried to explain. “I truly can’t say more, for you’re not in the order.”
“I’m not making myself clear.” She twined her fingers, suddenly conscious of how an outsider might see the situation, and each word she spoke made things worse.
“No, you misunderstand. Nothing like that.”
He glanced back toward the path they’d strolled, his lips pursed. “Are you poxed?”
Her free hand swept up before she could stop herself, and her open palm connected hard with his cheek.
He caught her wrist on the downswing and stilled her from twisting away. A ruddy print flushed on his skin. “Lady, lovely as you are, if I’m to wed you, even if only in name, I wish to know.”
This post first appeared on the Nuthouse Scribblers blog in 2013