Today's excerpt is from Love's Sorrow, Means of Mercy #1, by Terri Rochenski.
We hope you enjoy today's tease!
The sound of the front door closing and male voices drifted through the drawing room’s open entryway.
“It sounds as though the Scot has finally arrived,” Samuel said.
Joanna had shared little about her husband’s friend other than he was beyond affluent. In my vivid imagination, I envisioned him an older, stuffy man who looked down upon those less fortunate than him. Upon meeting Mr. Hall and Mr. Dixon, I expected Mr. MacKay would be unsightly as well. Perhaps a wart on his bulbous nose—maybe bulging eyes. At least a bald head covered with beads of sweat. Certainly, his girth would match his height.
“Mr. MacKay,” Wells announced to the room.
Standing with the other ladies, I turned.
With self-assurance and confidence in every step, the black-haired gentleman I dreamed of strode through the door. The blood drained from my face, but hastened to return and flush my cheeks. My heart abandoned its desire to beat within the constraints of my tight corset and my mind melted into nothingness.
He bid greeting to everyone in turn, shaking the men’s hands and kissing the women’s. It seemed an eternity before his chiselled face moved towards me.
My knees knocked as I turned dumb as a washtub.
“Mr. MacKay, I’d like to introduce to you my cousin, Miss Anne Tearle, just arrived from the Black Country.”
I barely heard Joanna’s voice through the ringing in my ears as recognition lit within his eyes.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Miss Tearle.” Thick lashed black eyes looked into my soul and right down to my toes.
All ten of them tingled.
“H-How do you do?” I managed to squeak out.
He took my gloved hand and touched it to his lips. My gulp sounded loud in my own ears, and heat coursed through me.
“I am pleasantly surprised,” he murmured, his warm gaze—one I didn’t comprehend—searching my face. A sudden smile flashed perfect white teeth, and he pivoted away to join the men.
My lungs sucked in air tinted with a hint of spice.