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Quick Reads

Quick Reads

8 Book Bundle!

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If you choose to receive a soul mark on your thirteenth birthday, somewhere in the world, your soulmate, whoever they are, will receive the same mark. But they are not always happy about it... Meet Your Mark, one of 4 books in the Unusual Tales collection

Letters between literature's greatest lovers throughout their marriage... Besotted

Three very different outcomes to Lydia Bennet's infamous elopement... The Elopement Project

 

Read these books if you like:

  • Heroes that get it just right after getting it so wrong
  • Laughing until your sides hurt
  • Flirting that restores your faith in men
  • Kisses that make your toes curl
  • Swoon-worthy heroes
  • Heroines who get the job done
  • Epic set-downs
  • Enough intrigue to keep you turning the page

 

This Bundle Includes:

☑️ Letter Interrupted

☑️ Foolish Games

☑️ Uncertain Endeavor

☑️ Besotted

☑️ The Peculiar Talent of Miss Elizabeth Bennet

☑️ Think of Me

☑️ Meet Your Mark

☑️ Cursed

 

Chapter 1 Look Inside

Darcy
London, Spring 1811
I hate parties. I hate the noise, and the overwhelming odors, and the false smiles. Why did I allow Fitzwilliam to drag me here? I did not want to go out, but he showed up at Darcy House begging me to accompany him. There was a young lady he was interested in and he wished for my opinion of her.
I could not turn him away. I would have done anyone else, but Fitzwilliam is like a brother to me, and after the protection he has afforded me over the years, I would be an ungrateful cad to deny him something so simple.
I followed my cousin through the throng of people, doing my best to ignore the avarice that bombarded me as I walked past.
“…as if he owned the room! It is not as if he has a title. Damn cheek…”
“…would be perfectly natural were I to sit near him and start a conversation…”
“…I could tug my gown a little lower to draw his eye…”
“…Pemberley! Ten thousand a year!”
“…might be willing to invest with me…”
“…perhaps if he were in his cups, he might lose at cards and then…”
“…we danced last week! Why has he not called?”
“…he could slip in after the household was abed. I imagine he is quite…”
It was endless. The men wanted my money and the women wanted me. Or rather, would take me to get to my money. A handful wanted me for my person, which had been flattering when I was younger, but as the years went on, invitations from lonely widows and lonelier wives made me feel cheap and base, regardless of whether or not I accepted them.
“This way, Darcy,” called Fitzwilliam.
I nodded and moved closer to my cousin, his steady presence always a balm to my overstimulated senses.
“Lady Elvira, may I present my cousin, Fitzwilliam Darcy of Pemberley?”
I bowed, she curtsied, and we talked for a time. Her emotions seemed very tightly contained. Some might call her cold, but I had learned that people who felt thus were very strong and guarded. Some were the sort you would not want to get into a dispute with for they would never concede and never compromise. In others it concealed some dark secret, or a deep pain they could not acknowledge. Occasionally, those with immense self-control exuded the same energy, but it came with a feeling of dignity and safety, and Lady Elvira did not excite either feeling in me.
We eventually left her presence and Fitzwilliam looked to me expectantly. “Well?”
“She is not for you, Fitz.”
He sighed.
“Besides that she is rather guarded and I suspect stubborn, her thoughts were not what you should wish in a potential bride.” I would not tell my cousin that she had wondered if I would take a liking to her as I was the greater prize between the two of us, and what she could do to capture my notice.
Fitzwilliam looked at me shrewdly for a moment, but he knew I would not tell him if I had made up my mind not to, and no amount of scowling or cajoling would convince me.
“Very well. It was only an idea.”
I grasped his shoulder in support. “The right lady will come along, Fitzwilliam. Have faith.”
He scoffed. “In what? Your ability to sense emotions and read minds? Or my lack of independent fortune?”
I gave him a dark look and he returned it with an expression that spoke eloquently of his lack of concern. Thankfully we were in a crowded room where one could barely hear oneself speak, and no one was standing near us. But he knew I did not like my gift to be spoken of in public.
Gift. Ha!
I had ceased thinking of it as such a long time ago. Sensing the feelings of those around me could make any dinner party excruciating, and hearing the thoughts of others—only those pertaining to myself, which I did not always feel was a good thing—often left me exhausted and taciturn.
Why must everyone be thinking so often? And ladies were the worst of all! They were always thinking about one thing or another. I could not hear every thought, but the way they dipped in and out of thoughts about myself, their energy moving from calm to worried to excited and back to serenity was dizzying.
Was it any wonder I had few friends?

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