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Regency Romantic Suspense Excerpts

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The Foolish Man - Excerpt from 'A Code of the Heart'

Stunned by his abrupt manner, and his obvious rejection, Amelia stood in shock and watc

A Code of the Heart by Jacki Delecki

hed Derrick walk away. What a striking figure he cut in his formal clothes. In black and white, he looked formidable and aloof, and more appealing. But she knew his soft and caring side, and she would’ve chosen a waistcoat with spring colors of gold or green for him.

All the young debutantes and married women watched him make his way with his forceful stride across the crowded ballroom.

Her feelings were reeling. Why had he treated her so cold and distant? She had gotten use to his intense stares and his enticing smiles. He seemed to be both hurt and angry. Aunt Euphemia had referred to better times.

Whatever had distressed him, he showed no inclination to talk to her. And what had he said to her after Aunt Euphemia left? “Congratulations…” Awareness dawned. He had witnessed Michael and her together and concluded that she still cared about Michael. Was that the reason for his hasty departure and his rejection of her?

She needed to talk with him, explain that she was finally clear about her feelings for Michael. But how could she explain to the foolish man when he wasn’t going to listen? She had to find a way to make him listen. She also needed his help in rescuing Elodie.

She’d wait for a

break after his dance with Lady Rowley. Why had his aunt arranged for him to dance with the flirtatious widow? Derrick didn’t seem to mind the crude cut of the dress or the way her wobbly breasts jiggled. In fact, his eyes hadn’t left Lady Rowley’s very voluptuous bosom the entire time they danced.

Her face burned to watch his obvious attraction and the woman’s blatant flirtation. The lady had feigned ignorance of the turn in the dance, allowing herself to bump against him, so he had to catch her from stumbling, affording him a perfect view down her dress. Derrick smiled at the lady in appreciation. Jealousy and anger formed a molten mix of hurt.

Just then Derrick looked up at her, as if he knew she was blazing with jealousy. He gave her a cold smile, filled with a grim satisfaction. The look scalded her. Why was he angry with her? He was the one flaunting himself with Lady Rowley.

Secret Rendezvous

A Christmas Code by Jacki DeleckiThe door to the conservatory squeaked open pouring light into the room. She jumped behind the Palmaceae. Her heart accelerated wildly. She waited, her ears drumming with the silence.

“Gwyneth?”

Ash’s whispered voice was a balm to her shattered nerves.

She stepped out from the plant. “Ash, I’m here.”

He walked toward her. His strong profile and confident walk made her want to run into his arms, but she controlled the impulse.

“Why are you hiding?” He asked in a teasing tone.

“Why were you late?” She didn’t like the idea that he’d found her frightened at their first secret rendezvous.

“Late?” He placed one hand on his hip, his tone sardonic. “I didn’t realize I was late.”

“Never mind. I’m unsettled after my fall.”

He stepped closer to inspect her carefully, his light eyes moving over her body. “Did you trip?”

She wasn’t quick to get mad, but she felt the anger slowly moving up her spine. Cord and Ash had tormented her relentlessly about her clumsiness when she was a young girl. “First of all, I didn’t trip as you suspect. And I wasn’t clumsy as a girl. I always tried to impress you with my daring feats. And I accomplished my deeds despite growing almost as tall as Cord in one year.”

Ash snorted, which only added fuel to the burning fire of her displeasure.

“Honey, you’re not that tall.”

His endearment went a long way in appeasing her. “Did you just see Lady Charolois in the hallway?”

“No. I didn’t see anyone.”

“She just ran out of the door at the same time someone knocked me down.”

“Someone knocked you down?” Ash pulled a pistol from beneath his waistcoat and scanned the room. He moved closer to her. “Are you hurt?”

“I’m fine, just shocked.”

“Which way did he go?”

“I’m sure he left through the garden door when I was getting up from the floor.”

“Did you recognize him?”

“No. When I was struggling to stand up, I heard the door open and saw Lady Charolois running out of the door.”

“Let me take you to your room then I’ll come back here to look around.” Ash took her by the elbow and led her toward the door.

“I’m not going to my room. I’ll go with you.” She pulled away from his arm.

He took her arm again and led her to the hallway. “You’re not going anywhere, but back to your room. You could’ve been hurt…”

She looked down the hallway and behind her before she whispered, “I’m fine. You said I could be part of this mission.”

All About Kissing - Excerpt from 'A Code of Love'

Excerpt from A Code of Love

Gus pounced as Henrietta rose from her knees, the task of weeding the flower beds complete. Henrietta teetered but the impact of the four-stone Labrador couldn’t be stopped. She fell backward on her heels, giving Gus the perfect position to lick her face. His wet kiss landed squarely on her lips and was followed by a full frontal assault. Her shrieks encouraged Gus to intensify his slobbery affection.

“Gus, you kiss better than the gentlemen of the ton.” She stood, brushing the paw marks from her pale yellow muslin dress.

“You never told me that you kissed a lot of men.” Edward came down the steps. Her younger brother never appeared to be listening, but it was like him to hear her slightly risqué comment.

“I was joking, and a gentleman would never ask a lady whom she has been kissing.”

“Why were Michael and his friends laughing about Lady Hawksley’s lips?” Edward asked.

Henrietta was going to wring their older brother’s neck for being indiscreet about the voracious widow in front of Edward. “I’ll let Michael explain what he and his friends were discussing.”

“I knew you weren’t going to tell me anything. Michael is in France and isn’t going to be home for at least four or five years.”

With his round baby cheeks and the golden Harcourt hair, Edward looked like a cherub in a Raphael painting. Leaning over, she tousled his hair. “I’m sure Michael will be home before you’re twelve years old and will answer all your questions.”

She had definite plans for educating Edward on the relationship between women and men, to shatter the male balderdash that women needed to be protected and thus excluded from the workings of the real world. With Michael’s departure to France for intelligence work, the management of the entire household fell on her shoulders.

Edward chased Gus over the grass and behind a tree. The dog came then waited for Edward to give chase again. The boy and dog ran circles around the giant oak.

Watching their enthusiastic play, she felt a deep longing for something she couldn’t identify. When Edward and Gus came to a halt near her, she hugged her younger brother. “I’ll tell you about kissing. It’s delightful when you’re kissing someone you care about, like your younger brother or your dog.”

“Hen, I’m not talking about that kind of kissing.” Edward, appearing to have no interest in the conversation, drew away and threw a stick to Gus.

“Kissing between women and men is exactly like kissing between families, a sign of mutual affection between people who care about and respect each other.” She shook her gardening gloves, carefully choosing her words. “Women want to know men respect them for their minds, their wit, who they really are, before they share their affection.”

Why was she thinking of a man whose kisses wouldn’t be the least respectful?