on October 21, 2013
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Desperate to protect her father from trial and death, Genevieve breaks off her engagement with Christian Amesbury and marries a blackmailer. After a year of marriage, she flees her husband's violent domination only to have fate bring her back to Christian. Just when she thinks she's started a new life of safety and solitude, her husband tracks her down, stalks her, and threatens everyone she loves.
Still brokenhearted over Genevieve's betrayal a year ago, Christian can't believe she's come back into his life--and worse, that she's done it on the anniversary of his brother's death, a death that haunts him. Though tempted to throw her back into the river where he found her, he can't leave her at the mercy of the terrifying man she married.
When her husband torments Genevieve and puts the Amesbury family in danger, Christian will do anything to protect those he loves...anything except give Genevieve another chance to break his heart.
Genevieve turned to Wickburgh who watched her exchange with her father in cold amusement. “Again I ask you; do you swear that this will be the last demand you make upon my father for your silence?”
Papa took a step toward her. “No, Genevieve.”
Wickburgh ignored him. “Yes. I give you my word as a gentleman.”
Finding strength in her decision, she stood. “Not acceptable. I will hold this letter in my hand while the ceremony takes place, and then I will burn it myself.”
Wickburgh sputtered. “How dare you imply that my word isn’t good enough!”
“You’re a blackmailer. I have no reason to trust your word.”
His face darkened and his eyes narrowed into snake-like slits. He drew near enough to touch her and hissed in her ear, “I always keep my promise. You will soon learn that.” A smile grotesquely twisted his mouth. “I look forward to breaking that annoyingly willful spirit.”
Cold fear bolted down her spine and chilled her blood. But she refused to reveal her fear. Instead, she stuck out her chin.
Louder, he said, “Very well, you will hold the letter, and the moment the wedding is finalized, you may keep it or burn it or whatever you wish. I will say nothing of this to anyone. And you will be mine.”
“Then we have an agreement.” Her heart shriveled.
“Do not do this, daughter, I pray you,” Papa said.
Genevieve stood resolute and spoke with a calm she didn’t feel. “You have taken care of me all my life. It’s time I take care of you and Mama.”
His expression crumpled. Tears filled his eyes and he looked away, but his hand gripped hers. “You’ve always taken care of us, of the servants, the tenants ….” he smiled briefly, “every fallen sparrow. But this … I fear you will rue this day.”
She feared the same, but this was her moment to take care of them in the best possible way. “If you and Mama are safe, it will be worth it.”
Wickburgh gestured to the door. “Come. We shall marry at once.”
The blood rushed out of Genevieve’s face and she broke out into a cold sweat. “Now? But we need to have the banns read—”
“I have a special license.” Wickburgh pulled a paper from his pocket.
Papa took it from Wickburgh and read it. His jaw hardened and he nodded. “It’s genuine.” He met her gaze with tortured eyes. “Jenny … are you sure about this?”
She kissed his cheek, although she couldn’t quite look him in the eye. “Yes, Papa.”
He cleared his throat and pressed a kiss to her brow.
Wickburgh made an impatient sound. “Come, come. The vicar is due to arrive at my house at precisely three o’clock, which is …” he took out his pocket watch and looked at it, “in less than an hour.”
Heaven help her. She turned to Wickburgh and tried to look patient and reasonable when she really wanted to plot his demise. She folded together shaking hands. “I need time to pack my things.”
He let out a long-suffering sigh. “Take only what you need for overnight. The rest can be sent later.”
Overnight. She’d be spending the night with this man. As his wife. She swallowed hard to keep her stomach in place. But there was nothing to do but go through with it.
Genevieve returned to her room to write a letter to Christian. A letter designed to break his heart.
An extraordinary family of Regency heroes, all different, all about to meet their match.
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What’s next for Donna Hatch?
Currently, I am working on the rough draft of Book 5 of the Rogue Hearts series. It is not yet titled, but it is about Margaret, the eldest of this misbegotten bunch. She is accused of murdering her jerk of a husband and then fleeing. One of Grant’s Bow Street friends, Conner Jackson, has hunted her down to bring her to justice. Or so he thinks.
Coming August, 2018, Timeless Regency Collection: Wedding Wagers
Three wagers. Three couples. Three chances at Love. Let the bets begin.
From the publisher of the USA TODAY bestselling & #1 Amazon bestselling Timeless Romance Anthology series in Regency Romance, comes…
Featuring bestselling authors Donna Hatch, Heather B. Moore, and Michele Paige Holmes.