“To me you are stardust sprinkled across a night sky, forever in my dreams, but out of my reach.”
“You asked me once if I would still love you when your lips were puckered with age and your eyes were
faded. I can assure you that I will still love you when I have only the strength (and the scant teeth) left to
gum those puckered lips. I shall love you when your bones are sharp enough to pierce my fragile flesh. I
shall love you when the light in my own eyes fades for good and yours is the last sweet face I see.
Because I am and ever shall be…”
“Before, you were only a dream. Now you're a dream come true”
“Perhaps the two of us simply got off on the wrong foot, my lord.
You seem to have received the mistaken impression that I came to Fairchild Park to make your life more
“The words ’a living hell’ have come to mind more than once since your arrival.”
She blew out a gusty sigh. “Contrary to what you may believe, I took this position so I could bring more
ease to your life.”
“Just when were you planning to start?”
“I see a man," she said softly. "A man with the roar of cannons still ringing in his ears. A man bloodied by life, but not beaten. A man with a scar that draws his mouth into a frown when he might actually long to smile.”
“I hope you don’t mind the intrusion,” she said. “I thought we’d air out your chambers while you were
downstairs at breakfast.”
“We?” he repeated ominously, wondering just how many witnesses there were going to be to her
“Do you know what the best thing about getting my sight back will be?” he asked softly.
“No,” she replied, all of the bravado gone from her voice.
Straightening, he took one step toward her, then another. She refused to give ground until he was almost
on top of her. Feeling the air shift as she retreated, he clumsily flanked her until their positions were
reversed and she was the one backing toward the door. “Some might believe it would be the joy of
watching the sun dip below a lavender horizon at the end of a perfect summer day.”
When he heard her back come up against the door, he splayed one palm against the thick mahogany
behind her. “Others might judge it to be perusing the velvety petals of a ruby red rose…”—leaning
forward until he felt the warm tickle of her breath against his face, he deepened his voice to a smoky
caress—“or gazing tenderly into the eyes of a beautiful woman. But I can promise you, Miss Wickersham, that all of those pleasures will pale in comparison to the sheer unmitigated joy of being rid
“You removed my spectacles!”
A disbelieving snort of laughter escaped him. “The way you’re taking on, you’d have thought I removed
Samantha clutched at the high-necked bodice of her homely bottle-green day dress. “How do I know
Silence hung between them, thicker than the heated air. Then his smoky voice dipped into low and
dangerous territory. “If I had removed your clothing, Miss Wickersham, I can assure you it would have
been worth waking up for.”
“Nursemaid, you mean? Someone who can sing me to sleep at bedtime, spoon
porridge into my mouth, and wipe my”—he hesitated just long enough to make both servants cringe with
dread—“chinif I dribble?”
“I haven’t the voice for lullabies and I’m sure you’re perfectly capable of wiping your own…chin, ”
“Not since the serpent
approached Eve in the Garden had a woman been so tempted by forbidden fruit.”
“My lord! We thought you were
taking an afternoon nap!”
“Sorry to disappoint you,” the earl of Sheffield drawled, his voice muffled by the rug. “Someone must
have forgotten to tuck me into my cradle.”
“There is none so blind as he who will not see.”
“As he shook off his servant’s grip and staggered heavily to his feet, the sunlight streaming through the outside door struck him full in the face.
A fresh scar, still red and angry, bisected the corner of his left eye and descended down his cheek in a jagged lightning bolt, drawing the skin around it taut. It had once been an angel’s face with the sort of masculine beauty reserved only for princes and seraphim.”
“To Fate, a fickle mistress whose sense of justice is exceeded only by her sense of humor.”
“Life ... is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
“Experience often repeated, truly bitter experience, had taught him long ago that with decent people, especially Moscow people -- always slow to move and irresolute -- every intimacy, which at first so agreeably diversifies life and appears a light and charming adventure, inevitably grows into a regular problem of extreme intricacy, and in the long run the situation becomes unbearable. But at every fresh meeting with an interesting woman this experience seemed to slip out of his memory, and he was eager for life, and everything seemed simple and amusing.”
“Maybe I'll trust him to fight my monsters while I sleep. Maybe I don't have a choice.
His voice is fierce in my ear. "You're mine now, Cat. Don't you dare die on me.”
“Don't give up before you even try.”
“If a penny can bring luck and a dime can grant a wish, how come my eleven cents hasn’t bought me what I need.”
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