Below is a piece of music that Georgiana might have had in her music room since Ludwig van Beethoven completed Moonlight Sonata in 1801. This version of that sonata happened to be included on a CD that I picked up recently at a thrift store and has been playing in the background during part of my writing time this past week.
Phyllo GP. “Moonlight Sonata – Dan Gibson [Beethoven].” YouTube, YouTube, 14 Sept. 2012, youtu.be/FIVn7hmnfmc.
While my blog might have sat idle this past week, my fingers have not. I had a great week of writing, even after taking time off for Thanksgiving. There are perhaps a few projects that are not as far along as I would like them to be, but the short pause was refreshing. As of today, the blog is returning to its regular posting schedule, and, as promised, a new story, Confounding Caroline, will begin posting this Thursday.
If you look in the Thursday’s Three Hundred section, you will see that it is currently empty. That is because I have removed With the Colonel’s Help as I move down my publication checklist and get the book ready for release in just a couple of weeks. I had hoped to get a short preorder set up, but it’s not looking promising. However, the publication date of October 26 for the ebook version looks to be on schedule with the print version to follow shortly thereafter.
I was also able to complete the first draft of Becoming Entangled, the sequel to Unravelling Mr. Darcy. I will share an excerpt from that below. I expect this story to be published by the end of November — maybe in time for American Thanksgiving. We shall see.
I have started a brand new story called Two Days before Christmas, which features a spunky Georgiana whose Christmas wish is to see her brother happy even if it means doing some meddling. I am just a few thousand words into that one and would like one more week with it before sharing any excerpts. Of course, that means you will get a peek at that next Monday.
But for now, here is
AN EXCERPT from Becoming Entangled:[Warning: this piece is from near the end of the book. Therefore, read at your own risk.]
Anne snuggled into the corner of the carriage, a blanket wrapped around her and another folded to use as a pillow against the wall of the vehicle. Her head was sore, her stomach was only slightly settled from the toast and tea, and it felt as if someone were wiggling a feather inside her throat. Therefore, although she longed to sit and talk with Alistair and his interesting friend, sleep would be a welcome way to spend the trip to London. She would likely need to feel more lively and less like a wrung out old rag when facing her mother. She shook her head. If only there were some way to avoid her mother.
“Are you comfortable?” Alistair asked.
Anne smiled at him. “As comfortable as one can be sleeping in a carriage.”
“You could put your feet up. I am certain Al would not be opposed to allowing them to rest on his legs,” Ralston suggested from the other side of the carriage.
Anne raised a disapproving brow. “It would not be proper. I promise you, Mr. Ralston, that I do know how to behave appropriately.” Her lips twitched as she lifted her feet and placed them on Alistair’s legs. “I do not always choose to do as I should, however.”
Ralston chuckled. “So it would seem, and please call me Jack. We shall nearly be related, after all, since Alistair and I are as close as brothers.”
“You do not mind?” Anne questioned Alistair as he placed a hand on her lower leg.
He shook his head. “Not at all.”
Anne turned back to Jack. “If I had a sister, you could marry her and then you would be brothers.” She straightened her blankets and gave a little cough.
“Are you well?” There was concern in Alistair’s voice.
“I am just in need of some rest,” Anne assured him as she settled back and closed her eyes. It was lovely to be travelling with Alistair. Sitting in a carriage with Mr. Conrad had not been as pleasant and relaxing as it was with Alistair and his friend. It was too bad she did not have a sister. Jack seemed to be a fine fellow to whom she would not be opposed to being related. Her eyes popped open. “I have a cousin.”
“Beg pardon?” Jack looked up from the paper he had acquired at the inn.
“Georgiana Darcy,” Anne clarified. “She is nearly old enough to court. You could marry her and then you and Alistair could be cousins. It might not be as good as being brothers, but it would be something.”
“That,” said Jack with a pleased smile, “is a very good idea. I think I shall take you up on it.”
Alistair shook his head and rolled his eyes at his friend as Anne, seemingly satisfied and rather pleased with herself from the look on her face, closed her eyes once again. He had not considered what might happen once Anne and Jack met. Anne was full of ideas and desire to see them completed, and Jack was full of energy and all too eager to take on a task — any task that might prove profitable and diverting. Alistair ran his hand up and down Anne’s leg from knee to ankle and back. He suspected that from henceforth his life would be anything but dull.
Anne slept for the entirety of the journey to town. She stirred slightly when they had stopped for the horses, but she had not woken. She had coughed three times, however, causing Alistair to become concerned that there was an issue brewing that would require more than a few hours of sleep in a carriage to cure. Anne’s constitution was not as robust as some, and when she became ill, it always started with a cough that would often settle for some time in her lungs.
“How do you feel?” he asked as the carriage slowed, and Anne stretched and yawned while waking.
“I –” she squeaked, her hand flying to her throat. “My throat is sore.” It took a great deal of effort to force the whispered words out of her mouth. “My voice –“
“Shhh,” Alistair said. “Does anything else hurt?”
Anne shook her head.
“No aching muscles? No headache?”
Again she shook her head.
“Lean toward me,” he instructed. He placed his lips lightly on her forehead. “You are warmer than you should be. Have you been out in the damp air?”
Anne bit her lip and nodded. “Mornings,” she whispered.
He sighed and shook his head. “Part of your plan, no doubt.”
“You know that damp air is not good for you, Anne,” Alistair scolded gently.
Ralston chuckled. “If I did not know better, I would think the two of you were already an old married couple.”
“Keep the blanket wrapped around you,” Alistair instructed as the carriage door opened, ignoring his friend’s comment. “There is no use having you get chilled again.”
Anne did keep the blanket wrapped around her shoulders as best she could while descending from the carriage. However, as her feet touched the ground, Alistair pulled the blanket more firmly around her and then scooped her into his arms.
“I can walk,” she whispered.
“And I have wanted you in my arms since I saw you at the inn,” he whispered back before placing a chaste kiss on her forehead. “Let me keep you here for a while.”