The Accidental Wedding
Has Keira made the worst mistake of her life? Unemployed Keira Callahan decides to try her luck at the casino before delving back into job hunting. As she walks through the casino, she bumps into the most handsome man she’s ever seen. When he asks her to dinner, she doesn’t hesitate. As she learns Cade Tyndale’s story—he needs to wed or lose his British estate, her impulsive nature rears up and she agrees to marry him and move to England for one year. What does she have to lose except her heart to the impossibly handsome Earl of Barrett?
Cade held out his hand. “Would you care for a nightcap?”
She slipped her hand in his, and an immediate warmth spread through her body. “Yes. I would love to.” They left the dining room and made their way to the library. While he was pouring their drinks, she asked, “Are things always so tense with Edward?”
Cade handed her a brandy. “I’m afraid so.”
“I’m sure my presence has not helped,” she said, taking a sip of the brandy.
“Believe me, you’re not at fault here. My brother and I have had a complicated relationship since we were children. I was the heir, and he was the spare. He didn’t take kindly to being the second son once he was old enough to realize what role he played in our family. My father ignored him as a boy, and he’s never grown out of his jealousy. Do not concern yourself with it. I can handle Edward.”
“Besides staying as far away from Edward as possible, is there anything I can do to ease some of the hostility he has for me?”
Cade shook his head. “I’m afraid not. Edward will not relent and has had his solicitors busy trying to undo our marriage.”
Keira knew her alarm showed on her face. “He has? Will he succeed?”
Cade put his glass down on the side table and pulled her into his arms. “Please don’t be alarmed. He will not succeed,” he said.
Being in his arms felt so right. Keira sighed. “I just hate the thought of Edward being so nasty to you.”
Cade lifted her chin. “That’s very sweet of you,” he said, brushing his lips against hers.
His lips were soft and inviting. Desire scorched through her, leaving her breathless. She let him take the glass from her and stepped closer to him, pressing her body to his. Her curves fit perfectly against his solid muscles.
His hand caressed her cheek, and she moaned with pleasure. “Have I told you lately how beautiful you are?” he whispered.
Keira’s lips parted, and Cade deepened their kiss, setting her heart on fire. This wasn’t part of their deal, although there was nothing in the contract that said they needed to avoid all physical contact. This was want she wanted. This and much, much more. Her body was on fire, and she longed to know what it would be like to lie next to him. To have his hand trail up her body. To feel him fill her completely.
As if reading her mind, Cade abruptly broke contact and stepped back. “I’ve overstepped the boundaries of our agreement. Please excuse me,” he said, stalking from the room.
Keira stood speechless, staring at his retreating back. She missed the warmth of his body, and without it, she felt adrift. One minute, he was kissing her senseless, and in the next, he was gone. What had just happened? She did not want any boundaries between them. She craved his touch and thought he felt the same, but how could she convince Cade that she welcomed his kisses without being too forward?
She picked up her brandy and drank its contents in one gulp, letting the liquid burn down her throat. Anything was better than feeling the sting of Cade’s rejection. A silent tear trailed down her cheek. For one magical moment, everything had been perfect. Then he was gone.
Keira heard Elizabeth calling for her brother. She swiped the tear from her face as Elizabeth walked into the library. “Oh, I thought Cade was here.”
“He just left,” Keira said, trying to keep her voice steady. She wasn’t fooling anyone, especially not Elizabeth.
Elizabeth moved to her side, a look of concern on her face. “Hey, what’s wrong? Why are you crying?”
“It’s nothing. Really. I’m fine.”
“You don’t look fine. Did you and Cade argue?”
Keira shook her head. “The exact opposite,” she whispered.
“He kissed you?”
Keira couldn’t hold back the tears. “And then he couldn’t get away from me fast enough.”
Elizabeth wrapped her arm around Keira’s shoulders. “Hey, don’t cry. Everything will work out. I know it will. You and Cade are made for each other.”
Keira wasn’t sure she believed Elizabeth. But there was nothing more to do tonight. Cade was gone, and she didn’t want anyone else to see her misery. “I guess I’m more tired than I realized. Please excuse me. Good night, Elizabeth.”
Elizabeth nodded. “Good night.”
Once inside her bedroom, Keira let her tears fall freely. She looked at the connecting door to Cade’s suite and felt a deep longing. She wanted to knock on the door, feel his strong arms around her, and kiss his lips once more, but she didn’t think she could endure another rejection tonight.
A soft knock startled her until she realized it was the hall door and not the door that led to her husband’s suite. She swiped the tears from her cheeks. “Enter.”
“Lady Barrett, do you wish to retire?” Kent asked, walking into Keira’s bedroom.
“I thought I’d read a bit first,” Keira said.
“Of course. Would you care to change?”
“No. Not quite yet. I can handle it from here. Please enjoy the rest of your evening.”
Kent hesitated a moment before answering. “As you wish, Lady Barrett. I shall see you in the morning.”
“Thank you, Kent. Good evening.”
Keira went into her dressing room and took off her dress. It had had the desired effect on Cade but had captured his attention only for a moment. He had kissed her with such passion, and then he left her. She slipped on a soft silk nightgown and flopped onto the bed. What was she going to do now? Should she explain to Cade that she wanted more in their relationship? Would he be agreeable to a real marriage? Or would she leave England with a broken heart?
What makes this book a must-read and/or what inspired you to write this story:
I love writing romances with a happily ever after ending with a bit of fairytale thrown in.
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Debra writes sweet romance in contemporary romance and historical romance. She enjoys telling stories and has been pouring out her passion for romance since her teenage years. Debra lives in New England with her husband and one very exhausted kitty.
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