Lord Kendrick’s Obligation

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He wants a lady of quality on his arm, a mistress in his bed, and a princess to pamper.

When the time’s right. When he’s ready. When he finds her. But not yet. Lord Anthony Kendrick has obligations he fulfills daily but there is one he has yet to address; finding a wife and begetting heirs. All in due time. Without warning, he discovers the very woman he has been waiting for in his drawing room, and she needs what he can offer – if he were ready and if she were to agree.

Lady Genevieve Jacobson does not want to marry now, if ever. Her relatives disagree and pressure her to accept the offer of a man thirty years her senior. As the eldest, she is obligated to marry before her sister does. Ginny refuses to comply. Suddenly her freedom and her very life are at stake. She must make some dangerous choices if she is to have any say in her future happiness.

When Kendrick finds Ginny has taken matters in her own hands and put herself in mortal danger, he decides the time is right to claim her. Even if she doesn’t agree.

This is book four in the Lords and Little Ladies series but can be enjoyed independently.

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Sample Chapter

Eaton Cross Estate: September 1818


Genevieve Jacobson and her sister Grace sat across from their hostess, Eliza Kendrick, who appeared to be holding her own version of court for silly young ladies of quality. Grace Jacobson and the other young ladies were eighteen. Genevieve, two and twenty, came as a chaperone to her sister, in place of her typical maid, because Ginny had to get away from her relatives’ need to find her a husband. She was so tired of being grilled before and after a social gathering to see if she had found a man to turn her head. She wanted nothing more to do with it.

“Please let’s not discuss marriage prospects for at least a little while. I am weary to death of the subject,” requested Genevieve.

“Yes, Uncle has suddenly decided we both need husbands, and he refuses to consider me before Genevieve is set,” moaned Grace.

“I haven’t been worth his time for ages. Why he now believes he must dedicate an inordinate amount of his energies to my marriage prospects, I’ve no idea. It would be my fondest desire if he would lose interest soon.”

The four other young women in the room smiled.

“I had no idea Lord Boardman would take such an interest. I’m sorry, Ginny.”

Ginny sighed as it took the girls off on a tangent about the adults in their lives. Ginny continued thinking about her dilemma. It wasn’t the worst of the issue. The worst was the fact that she felt they were choosing for her.  Lord Boardman’s old friend had lost his wife nearly two years ago and recently, the elderly man was making inappropriate overtures towards her. It made her skin crawl. She had told her aunt who said she was mistaken and if she weren’t, maybe she should consider his attentions as a prelude for an offer of marriage.

“But Aunt, the man is sixty if he is a day!”

Her aunt shrugged. “I don’t believe he has reached that age yet. It certainly does not take away his ability to keep you in comfort, my dear. In fact, quite the opposite and physically, you will not have to put up with the energies of a younger man. Believe me, there are benefits to that.”

“I’d rather go back home to my brother.”

“Surely he will soon marry, and you would be in the way of his new wife.”

Genevieve knew her brother would not care if she came to live with him but she didn’t want to put a strain on an upcoming new marriage if he was indeed considering a wife. It was the first she’d heard of it. She wished again that women were not put to so much pressure to marry well and be happy with their lot, whatever it was. She pulled herself from the doldrums to smile at the two women as they giggled and teased each other between short bouts of proper behavior. Today, there was no doubt that the addition of two more young women, the Kent sisters, added to the gaiety.

Genevieve dared not join in fully because one must show the utmost in decorum while engaging in visitations. Besides, she needed the practice. She wasn’t as frivolous as the younger women; that simply wasn’t her personality, although sometimes she wished it were. She wasn’t pompous but stayed well within society’s good graces when called upon to do so. It was paramount to continuing in their envied circles and therefore must be borne with perseverance, if not complete agreement. Had she ever been so carefree? She sighed. She must have been but ever since her uncle had become impatient with her lack of accepting offers, life had grown difficult, to say the least.

The truth was, a woman must eventually marry no matter one’s personal desires to remain single. Genevieve privately sighed again. She’d gladly become someone’s wife if she could gain autonomy without censure. She had a secret desire she dare not entertain. Husbands, so she had observed, were more into censure than indulgence. Pity. She dreamed of a man, confident, stern and yet indulgent. Someone who would allow cuddling. And one who smelled nice. A little smile surfaced as she imagined such a husband. Lately, she had compiled a mental list of agreeable unattached possibilities, but none turned her head. She would keep her eyes and ears open, but the field was narrowing considerably.

“Ginny, do you think Aunt and Uncle would allow us to go to London with Eliza?”

“With Eliza and whom?”

“Well, her entourage of course,” said Grace.

Ginny sighed at the vision of sitting sandwiched between two giggling, over-indulged young women instead of finding her own entertainment. London might not be a bad idea though. There was plenty to distract oneself and it would be out from under her relatives’ critical eye.

“Why, I think it might be a possibility if we were properly escorted.” The young women squealed their excitement. “When are you going, Eliza?”

“Would a sennight be enough preparation time? I imagine Kendrick would escort us if we ask.”

“Yes. I’ll request permission,” said Genevieve.

Talk of Kendrick sparked a new subject with the younger ladies. Turning her attention to the Kent sisters, it seemed they were allowed to chaperone themselves and it even appeared they were comfortable agreeing without permission. Genevieve wondered at the lax control by their parentage with two such silly girls. It was possible they were deemed old enough to chaperone each other but their behavior today would belie that thought.

“Eliza is your brother Kendrick at home or is he still in London?” asked the elder Kent sister.

“Yes, do tell. We haven’t seen his handsome face in ages,” asked Grace in a mock swooning tone.

“Did I not tell you? He is to be arriving today. This very afternoon, in fact, with his friends in tow, I imagine.”

“Are his eyes still vibrant blue?” asked Miss Kent the younger.

“Yes, and his hair, still thick and dark?” asked Grace.

“Don’t be ridiculous. One does not change features in a short period of time,” said Eliza, clearly wanting to dismiss her sibling.

“Is he much older than you, Eliza?” asked Genevieve nonchalantly before sipping her tea.

Eliza sighed. “Eight years and he treats me as a child. The people he surrounds himself with, Mother said, was as though they were yet in need of parenting. Father laughed and said that Kendrick was often the leader of the group. He wouldn’t be surprised if his future daughter-in-law aspired to return to childhood so Kendrick could take care of her.”

It was quiet as the girls sipped their refreshment. Genevieve wanted to pose another question but was reticent.

Grace felt obviously more comfortable asking. “What does that mean, exactly?”

Eliza shrugged. “Mother says she has yet to see a woman he would want to wed. Something about a respectable lady and loving wife. Submissive but with a bit of spirit. Don’t ask me what that means for I have not a clue. My brother wouldn’t take kindly to a naughty wife, of that I am sure.”

Genevieve didn’t know either, but she was suddenly intrigued.

She wanted a man who cared to set her straight if she did something silly or unsafe. Not that she planned on doing such a thing, but it would at least alert her to his watching over her. One who enjoyed her intelligence and wasn’t intimidated nor angered by it. A man who read and who would enjoy traveling sometimes. There were so many things one needed to consider when choosing a husband. A man who would simply talk to her about mundane things as well as important issues. Except for finding a husband, she was largely ignored by the world. Genevieve was not abused in any way, but she was lonely and at times longed for someone to encourage her to make thoughtful choices.

She wished for a loving man like Thayer. He knew everything her cousin did and allowed very little naughtiness, but good fun was always dealt with indulgently. If a woman had that type of husband, one would care about things such as safety and health. The only area her relatives had recently become interested in was pushing for acceptance of marriage proposals. That she could not get up enough interest to diligently attend.

Now she told herself that as an adult, it mattered little that she was usually an afterthought in others’ lives. At least that’s what she told herself. Unlike the typical lady of her class, she was looking for a life of substance, not only leisure. Lady Boardman and Grace were the types of women who could pull off that meaningless existence with poise.

“I have a coat ordered for me and another warm sweater for the winter in a dark pink cashmere. What about you?” One of the Kent girls asked the others.

Genevieve let the conversations fade from her hearing because she couldn’t have cared less. She wanted more out of her days than fashion bragging and brainless chatter. She wanted fire, passion, robustness in life. She’d daresay, were she pressed, that she loved the idea of a strong, forceful male who ruled his home and properties with dignity and strength but not cruelty. Even his wife, if he showed enough gentle mercy, would surely want that for herself. She would want that. She had been told on numerous occasions that marriage was a contract with a devised expectation, however, that result had nothing to do with a woman’s deepest desires. She was told often she should not expect love, only the exchanging of position and goods because wives were chattel.

It was a cold assumption, surely. And the act of congress was to be a type of violence visited on the female although not of devastating proportions. She was to expect it for without enduring the marriage bed, there would be no heirs. However, her cousin Annalise ‘Anna’ Thayer told her it was not always the case. She loved her husband, and he loved her, making submitting to him easy. Congress was a taste of heaven. Genevieve didn’t know why, but the look of faraway joys in her cousin’s face convinced her of the possibility.

“Ginny, could you be mother?” Her sister’s words broke through her reverie.

“I imagine that duty would fall to our hostess. Eliza?”

“Oh, please, Ginny, I find that such a bore.”

“I’ve asked you to stop calling me by my childhood name. I am quite grown. I shall oblige and pour today, but you must know that in your own house, it is often a task that will fall to you.”

“Precisely why you should do it, being the eldest here. Besides, I don’t care to do it before I must. If you pour, I will try harder to call you Genevieve.”

Genevieve nodded her agreement. “Only because I enjoy serving tea, not because you need any more coddling.”

Genevieve was happy to serve because it made your guests feel welcome and she enjoyed knowing she did that for others. It was one of the reasons having her own home was important to her. There were so many mundane obligations in one’s life, Ginny was happy to indulge in small pleasures.

After pouring, she leaned back in her seat, doing her best to ignore the nonsense of the privileged younger women. She took the opportunity to think about the future. Ginny wished to spend some time without obligations, like her earliest childhood when her papa pampered her often and his stern teachings could bring her to tears. Like Anna had with her husband.

Looking at Grace and her friends, she knew it was only a childish dream. She was not to be one of the frivolous women of leisure nor did she want that, but to be taken care of as though she were cherished, yes, that she might enjoy. She wasn’t any grand beauty although she was comely and should be able to find a husband who suited her well enough. Assuming she truly knew what that would look like.

Her own childhood had been cut short by her mother’s untimely death. Something Genevieve had accepted at the time but now she realized how much the loss of her mother had really changed her life. Her father, being a man with many responsibilities and mourning the loss of his beloved wife, was rarely around after that. No more pampering or chastisements. He didn’t balk at putting the household obligations on his ten-year-old daughter if he even knew he did it.

Over the years, the housekeeper taught Genevieve what she needed to know to carry on as hostess, creating such a yearning in her to be the lady of her own house, master of her own destiny, that she jumped at any chance when it presented to further that goal. Control was power in her eyes. By the time she was sixteen, she was the lady of the house indeed, on an official basis. Her father had begun to deny any young man who tipped his hat in her direction for fear of losing her assistance. Of course, she was too young anyway but soon she would be of a proper age.

Unfortunately, the cruel hand of fate interfered in her plans when a carriage accident killed her father that spring, and while her brother at seventeen could take over the home with help from the managers, he could not take on his sisters. Their maternal aunt and her husband, Lord and Lady Boardman, were to complete the girls’ raising and find them husbands. Thus today’s issues.

“Ginny, what is the theme of the party tomorrow evening?”

“I believe the invitation said, ‘The Hunt’.”

One of the other young ladies tittered. Ginny hated when girls did that. “So, shall we go as the hunter or the hunted?”

Unladylike though it was, Genevieve rolled her eyes. These girls were as bad as a group of randy young men. They had gentlemen on the brain, in every way a typical young lady did when in pursuit of a mate. She must be the only woman on earth who would prefer to forgo marriage for a time. She wanted to travel. She sighed with her unrealistic expectations.

Unfortunately, her time may have run out. If her uncle and aunt had their way, she would be married within the month. Ginny had been able to refuse to this point claiming the offerings were all less than adequate possibilities. These days, however, rather than being impatient, her uncle had become cross at her responses, demanding Ginny make a choice, or he would. Maybe she could leave Grace, now that she was grown, and return to Jacob’s Wood.

Genevieve looked up at a slight movement in her peripheral vision and found herself staring into a face full of amusement. The striking good looks of the gentleman gave her pause, creating a flutter in her belly. He seemed at ease, so not a stranger to the house. If she wasn’t mistaken, it was Lord Kendrick, Eliza’s brother. She was acquainted with him, but it had been several years since she had seen more than the back of him. He’d grown broader, his carriage was more mature. He was even more handsome than she’d remembered.

His hands drew her attention as they slowly crossed over his chest. Strong slender fingers folded under his arms giving him a casual appearance she envied. He gave the air of being in perfect control of his environment, something she had rarely experienced. She imagined women seldom did. He certainly gave the appearance that he was master of all he surveyed. Heat crept up her neck and infused her cheeks.

Would he master a woman with strength or skill? Both? She blushed at her thoughts, not even knowing what that could look like. Her belly and her lady bits seemed more informed than her brain. Suddenly, his stare bored into her, seeking her soul. Her breath seemed to be sucked from her body. She shivered. He smiled. And to be honest, she had no idea how to react to that.

As the girls peppered her with questions, she saw his brow rise in a query. He was listening to her responses as well. A nervous twinge raced through her.

“What shall you dress as, Ginny?” Grace asked.

“Remember, you promised to call me Genevieve. I thought to go as Artemis.”

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Kendrick settle against the doorframe. It was obvious he intended to hear the result of this part of the conversation and it was equally obvious at how rude eavesdropping was and yet he intended to continue. It was his home and she could say nothing. A little part of her liked that he listened. She told herself she was scandalized, but that was a lie.

Grace uttered a distressed squeal. “Oh, say you won’t! She was the huntress who did not wish to marry. You cannot give that message to the gentlemen.”

Ginny sighed. “I would prefer that message to be broadcast so I may disabuse any hunter that I am waiting to be slain. I don’t wish for anyone to mistake my intent nor be deceived into thinking I am in the market for a husband, for I am not.”

Eliza shook her head. “But that won’t do, Genevieve. If you don’t choose, your uncle will be pressed to choose for you.”

Genevieve sighed. “I know. Aunt will fill the house with men of all ages. That would be worse than declaring my desires. Although I do have enough money to be quite happy alone, I doubt I will be left to it.”

Grace shook her head. “I fear you are right. Have you forgotten that you must marry to obtain that money?”

“I haven’t forgotten. How dreadful on so many fronts. The first being if I marry, the release of my money only passes through my hands, figuratively speaking, to continue to my husband without so much as a by your leave. As though men are so superior that women need to purchase from them the privilege of marriage. It also indicates that she is too mindless to be able to handle her own funds appropriately. The amount of dowry, which is always thought to be the sum total of the woman’s wealth, isn’t even hers until she can legally pass it to another. No man would accept such dreadful treatment.” She could hear the bitterness in her own voice.

“Well, I suppose you could wait until you’re thirty-five. That’s when it will be released to you without prejudice,” offered Grace.

“Yes, I fear I may need to use it before then. I could go and live with Robert and he would not begrudge my spinsterhood.”

“I don’t want the burden of taking care of my dowry. I would prefer my husband to handle all of those affairs,” declared Eliza. The other girls chimed in their thoughts on the matter.

Genevieve simply shook her head. There was a slightly amused sound from the door where Kendrick still stood. She had forgotten him for a moment. When she looked in his direction again, he’d straightened, allowing the merest of smiles to ghost across his lips. The look they exchanged was searching, intense, and it captured her as no other had. He inclined his head slightly, placed his finger to his lips and was gone, closing the door silently behind him. The man was incredibly arrogant.

Kendrick was certainly a mysterious man, and she wanted to explore him further. If he came to the party and if he thought the idea of her dressing as Artemis was entertaining, she would definitely follow through with a newly hatched plan of further inquiry. The girls were discussing clothing again.

The girls had missed the eavesdropper due to their constant chatter. Even so, they quickly bored with the conversation and were off on another well-worn tangent by the time Genevieve refocused on them. Grace, comfortable in the middle of the chatter, was the daughter her aunt never had. Lady Boardman had been eager to finish raising the girls, teaching them etiquette and poise and all manner of things a young woman of substance was to have, Genevieve fell short in her aunt’s eyes. Grace, who had been twelve, positively flourished, much to her aunt’s delight.

“How many parties are going this week, sister?” asked Grace.

“Two. I’m growing quite weary of parties. I need a break before the Christmas season.”

She smiled at the younger women’s horrified gasps. Yes, she was much more mature than these young women. While the girls were never formally introduced into society due to her aunt not wanting to be bothered, the number of parties and balls they were invited to more than made up for it. While in London, it was rare that one was not a guest or hosting one’s own events. She had made a number of acquaintances.

After three years, their brother, Lord Robert Jacobson, called to say he was ready to take the girls home, but their uncle had said not to bother. Ginny had considered going home but had not wished to leave Grace just yet and now it was likely too late. Robert would find a wife soon as he was the last in the line and obligations were to be met.

When Genevieve stopped woolgathering and listened to the conversation, she found the girls whispering. Time to get some air before she cut the visit short. The girls were up to some mischief if they were whispering. She hoped she was not brought into it. She simply wasn’t in the mood.

“I’m taking a turn in the garden. Would anyone wish to join me?” The girls looked to Eliza.

“No, it’s too cold today. You go ahead.” The other girls nodded in agreement with their hostess.

“Right. I shan’t be too long, dears.”

Genevieve hesitated when she thought of the brisk air and almost went to retrieve her cloak, but she didn’t expect to be out long, so her long sleeves would have to suffice. Besides, she was still a bit flushed from Lord Kendrick’s arrival. She exited through the drawing room door and immediately felt a smile grow. It was clean and fresh outside and she often spent long hours outdoors. The weather didn’t daunt her, and she always felt invigorated afterward.

She wandered close to the house and enjoyed the fall foliage that was well kept. She was preoccupied in her thoughts of Lord Kendrick. He was a handsome gentleman. Did he have his eye on a certain someone? She frowned. Likely not as Eliza would have known and told her companions. He was taller than she remembered and seemed more solid than a few years ago.

“What has you so disturbed, Lady Jacobson?”

Startled, Genevieve squealed in protest, her hand went to her bosom. “Oh, Lord Kendrick, you frightened me. It was not good of you, sir.” Her chastisement firm.

Kendrick stared at her hand on her chest before raising his eyes to hers. “My deepest apologies. I thought you heard me approach. I made sufficient noise.” His apology sounded a bit like scolding. “One must be aware of one’s environ, milady.”

“I was deep in thought as one often is when taking a walk.” Her response had a hint of censure in answer to his scolding.

“I believe you are trying to best me. It is not polite.” One couldn’t miss the twinkle in his eye and the twitch of his lips.

“I am merely mimicking your mannerisms, milord. As a visitor in your home, I would take my cues from you.”

“Touché,” he said with a nod and the hint of a smile. “I believe we are well enough known to each other that you can safely call me Kendrick when we are informal.”

“Kendrick then. Thank you. And I am Genevieve.”

He nodded his agreement. “Not Ginny then?”

“No, I am trying to add maturity to my presentation. Ginny negates that outcome.”

“I’m not sure I agree but it is your name. What were your thoughts earlier?”

“Nothing really. I’m to decide on a mate regardless of my own personal desires and it has me quite flummoxed.” What she had disclosed made her eyes widen. He never faltered.

“Indeed. I thought that the expectation of all young ladies.”

“Expectation, yes. Desire, not always. I am not one who desires it. You see, I have considered those who have wandered into my sphere but have found them inadequate for my personal needs. They are too old, too young, too immature, too light in the pockets or too under their parent’s thumb. But there was one characteristic they all seemed to share; they were boring. I believe I deserve entertainment if I must endure all else.” What had come over her to disclose such personal things to a man she only knew as an acquaintance?

He unsuccessfully stifled a smile. “I see. What if it is you who has caused the problem? What if it is you who does not see the benefit of the men’s character and thereby are misjudging them?”

“That is a rather presumptuous thing to say to a guest, sir.”

“Not at all. I’m being realistic. And you are not my guest as much as Eliza’s, therefore, I am under little obligation to hold my tongue. Truth should always be allowed a voice.”

“I see. Spoken like a true man without thought to others. Whose truth do you speak? You are indeed a most exceptional example of why I have not chosen a man to marry.”

He stepped closer. “Were I to ask for your hand, Lady Genevieve, I have no doubt you would accept my offer. And if I offered marriage, I would have all of you: mind, body, and soul.”

Genevieve sucked her lip between her teeth. Kendrick reached out and gently pulled it back out. “Don’t bite your lip. There are many other things more appropriate for you to nibble on and one day I may show you what to do with those lips that will bring us both pleasure.”

“I must go, sir.”

“Running away, little one? Very well, I’ll not stop you this time. But rest assured that when you’re ready, I’ll not allow you to scamper and hide.” As though deciding he had raised her temperature enough, he took a step back. “Do you require anything? I see you are without an outer cloak. That was an unfortunate choice. Naughty, in fact. Take mine. I’m not out here long.”

“Oh, no! I appreciate the gesture but I’m soon returning inside as well. I’m not chilled.”

Kendrick studied Genevieve for a moment, touching her arm lightly before answering. “Very well, but you will return inside the moment you feel the cold, understood? I won’t have a visitor catch their death while in my home.”

Ginny laughed nervously. “I’m not sure even a powerful man such as yourself can control that, milord.”

“Possibly not but if your illness is due to lack of adequate clothing, you shall have me to answer to and that won’t be a pleasant meeting.” His voice lowered. “Mind my words, Genevieve. You would not want to tempt the consequences if you do not behave.” Kendrick did not wait for her to respond. He turned on his heel and strolled away.

What was that about, she wondered. He teased, offered friendship, and then what, pulled at her deepest feelings and then threatened her? No, ordered, he ordered her to go in if she felt cold. No man, save her uncle and her father, had ever dared demand Genevieve do anything. Even her brother, once she was an adult, did not try to force her to bend to his will, not that there were many opportunities but still, he had respected her enough to use other methods to get his requests met. She was so confused about the encounter, she wandered further than she had intended and found herself near a shed, the first of several outbuildings dotting the near landscape. Turning to go back as she had been gone long enough and was feeling the chill now, she heard a tiny sound that seemed to come from overhead.

Looking around she heard it again. Then she caught a movement. A distressed kitten if she wasn’t mistaken. Looking harder, she found the bit of fluff up in the tree obviously too frightened to get down and too far up for Ginny to simply reach up and lift him down. What to do? It was obvious the little mite was not getting down on his own. Cats usually came down on their own, but it was a kitten and he might stay up there a while, possibly days. He would become frail and fall. A small thing like that, weakened by then, might not land properly if he even could at this age and would be killed. No, she had to help him.

She searched for a barrel or something similar and all she was able to find close at hand was a stump used to chop wood on and an old plow well dug into the ground. Gauging the height of each aide and then the roof and the tree limb that held the kitten, she imagined, if she pulled her skirts into her belted middle, she would be able to go from the stump to the crossbar on the plow to the shed roof and finally to the tree limb.

Calculating the distances one last time, she hitched her skirts and began the climb. It wasn’t as easy as she had hoped and it had been a number of years since she had climbed more than the library ladder or a staircase, and the kitten climbed higher in his distress, but she persevered and finally made her destination. The kitten was not happy about his predicament or her saving him from it.

“Do not be ungrateful, you little rascal, or I shall leave you here.”

She slowly inched down and back over the limb to the shed roof. It was easier to climb up than it seemed it would be climbing down. Why she wasn’t quite sure, but it was at least partly because of a squirming kitten that was doing its best to claw her to shreds. Finally, deciding the shed was low enough to drop the kitten onto its roof, she did just that. The little mite quickly leaped to the stump and was scuttering off while Ginny watched from her precarious spot on the limb.

As she tried to mimic the kitten’s agile moves, she nearly fell from the tree, shocked by someone yelling at her. “What the bloody hell are you doing, woman? Don’t move!”

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4 reviews for Lord Kendrick’s Obligation

  1. Redrabbitt

    The fourth story in the Lords and Little Ladies series will read well as a stand-alone and will have people from the previous stories. It will bring two people who each have chose to delay marriage, but fate will play a different hand—is this a marriage of convenience or love? The story will have Lady Genevieve Jacobson and Lord Kendrick becoming better acquainted—and start thinking more of each other—and eventually lead to marriage. But there is so much more to the story.

    The Jacobson sister, Ginny, and Grace have been living with their Aunt and Uncle Boardman since the death of both of their parents. Their brother Robert came into the title, and while Ginny was of age, Grace was only twelve. They will live with Lord and Lady Boardman but thinks have changed, and he is trying to force Ginny into a marriage with Lord Ralston, a man many decades older than her. She doesn’t want marriage; she wants independence.

    Lord Kendrick knows he will have to find a wife, but he wants a special kind of marriage, to a woman who can be Lady Kendrick but also one who could be his special little lady to his Papa. He is beginning to doubt that will happen and will marry, have his heir and spare, and live away from his wife. But, meeting Ginny gives him hope.

    The plot will have Lord Kendrick and Ginny meeting up when she is at his home with her sister, Grace, visiting his sister, Eliza. There is something that intrigues him about her. When he sees her outside, he will chastise and warn her—and then when she puts herself in harm’s way, he will spank her. Has he truly found a special little lady by the way she reacts?

    “If I offer marriage, I would have all of you: mind, body, and soul. Mind my words, Genevieve. You would not want to tempt consequences if you do not behave.”

    “A man who could excite her passions while actually loving her was Ginny’s private dream. She imagined it to be a pipe dream.”

    “Papas do not lie, and they always do as they say. Enjoying being a little lady and occasionally having a papa to do what papas are supposed to do, is nothing to be ashamed of but to be fully cognizant of, and it is something to keep between the two participants.”

    The story will have plenty of mystery, suspense, passion, angst, secrets, misunderstandings, and plans to thwart her Uncle. It will involve a marriage between two people who have the same wishes and desires and great chemistry together. Kendrick and Ginny enjoy marriage, spankings, and he knows just how to handle her inner child as well as the passionate woman.

    “When I claim you, I became the owner of your sweetness and tartness. When I say you are mine, I mean all of you, my lady Genevieve, my mistress Ginny, and my little lady Evie. As such, in every aspect of your life, you are my responsibility.”

    The story has the good, the bad, and the misunderstandings that lead to angst, confusion, and disobedience. It will have Kendrick proving to Ginny that he will come for her, protect her and that he is human and makes mistakes, but he expects her obedience to keep her safe. For once in her adult life, she has someone else that is there for her, no matter what. He will love her, give her pleasure, but also discipline her—she is his special lady.

    “I love you, my lady of quality, my bedchamber mistress and my little lady. I love you, my wife, and I ask that you please forgive this stupid man’s ignorance and cruel disregard for your feelings and needs.”

  2. BlueDiamond

    I enjoy reading historical romances, and I love how this author gives detailed descriptions of the time period especially social norms for women. It’s incredible to think about how sheltered women were in the 1800s and what was deemed acceptable behavior. One false move, and an unruly lady could find herself married off or banned from society.

    Genevieve has quite a modern way of thinking, and she is determined to make a go of it without the confines of marriage. That is until her uncle, who serves as her guardian, insists she needs a husband and has promised her hand to an old friend of his, a very old friend who is decades older than she.

    Can Lord Kendrick rescue Ginny from a most unfortunate circumstance?

    Lord Kendrick takes his obligations to Genevieve very seriously. Turns out, Kendrick seems to know Ginny better than she knows herself. He quickly establishes rules and consequences to make sure their marriage runs smoothly before the vows are even exchanged.

    It is easy to get lost in this wonderfully erotic story of how Kendrick’s rules affect his wife. She easily falls for his charming ways and can quickly go from being Genevieve, the lady of the manor, to sometimes the role of Ginny, to the best role of all, being Kendrick’s Little Evie.

  3. Marybeth

    This is book four of the Lords and Little Ladies series. You do not need to read the first three, but it does help. Genevieve (or Ginny or Evie) needs help. She does not want to marry her uncle’s choice, but needs to find a replacement. Enter Lord Anthony Kendrick, or just Kendrick (or Papa). He wants all of Ginny’s sides. Lady Genevieve while in public at balls and such, Ginny when she is being a hoyden and Evie when she is a Little. This is an excellent addition to the series.

  4. Margaret

    I enjoyed reading all the different elements in this story. It’s very interesting. All the characters are very well done, real and rounded. The relationship between Lord Kenrick and Lady Genevieve is complex and evolving, it’s at the heart of this story. There are plenty of hot spicy sexy scenes and some spankings. It easily reads as a standalone. I have read the others in this series and hope that there are lots more to it. I voluntarily read an advanced reader copy of this book and I very highly recommend it. This is a full, enjoyable and interesting story that I loved.

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