Devon saw Sarah sitting on the bench where he had first saw her two weeks ago. His heart was racing and he felt dizzy again. Devon gave his head a quick shake then walked over to the back of the bench. He crouched down behind her, off to her side. He was unsure of how to start the conversation. What am I to say to her? Sorry I can’t love you, but I still want to kiss you.
Devon smiled. "I believe it was your own feet." Sarah giggled loudly.
She jolted her head back from the force of the slam. Sarah stood outside Devon’s door for at least a full minute before turning and going to her own room. She entered her room and plopped down at her dressing table. Sarah looked at herself in the mirror. Leaves and twigs peered out at her through her hair. She looked a wreck and she didn’t care.
“I want to dance every dance with you.” His body was inches away from her. Landon lingered for much longer than he should have waiting for Brook's response.
She smiled sweetly at him. “Do you not like your feet?”
Landon chuckled. “Brook, you may step on them all night long. They are at your disposal.”
Everyone took their seats in the carriage and they were off to the ball. When they arrived, Sarah was thrilled to see the ballroom was not nearly as crowded as she thought it was going to be. She did not care for crowded places and had hoped the ballroom would not be this evening. Sarah squeezed Brook’s hand tight as Brook returned it with her own. They were so very excited. Brook had never seen such a large room before. Sarah pointed out the sweet table and commented on how pretty it looked. Too pretty to eat Brook had told her back.
Landon led the three women to a spot in the corner with four chairs next to the sweet table. He turned to Grams and said, “We cannot have you go the evening without your sweets, my mini muffin.”
Grams let out a loud giggle, which had drawn some attention, and said, “There is nothing mini about me my love. God bless you for the sweets though.”
Landon laughed and said, “To me, you could not be any more perfect.” He then bowed and kissed her gloved hand.
He then turned to Brook and said, “My I have the first dance?”
“Yes. Thank you Landon.” Brook felt her cheeks grow warm. She was so relieved he had asked her. Everyone will be watching for the first dance and she is out of practice.
Sarah sat next to Grams facing the ballroom. Over the next twenty minutes Grams, Brook, and Sarah watched the crowds as they moved about the room. The band then cued for the next dance to start in ten minutes. Grams informed the girls, they strung their instruments, when the music is about to start.
Brook was studying her dance card when she was aware of a male figure in front of her. Brook gazed up to see Landon standing before her. He held out his hand to her without uttering a word to her. Everything her would have said to her was in his eyes. Brook rose to her feet without breaking their heated stare.
Landon led her to the edge of the dance floor. He could feel her hand was trembling on his arm. “You dance very well Brook. There is no need for you to be nervous.” He smiled at her warmly. “Let me lead this time though.”
Brook laughed. “I will try, although I have to admit, I like to be in control.”
Landon raised his eyebrow. “Sometimes that is not a bad thing, except on the dance floor.” Landon gave her his wicked smile that always worked to bring a blush out on the ladies.
Brook gave him a sideways glance, then said, “I could see how you would think your devilish charm works on some woman. I presume they are young women?” She then turned and looked straight ahead with a grin across her face. “Perhaps I may be the wrong choice for you. I see a group of younger ladies in the corner over there.”
Landon said nothing in return. He stood there feeling the need to shut her up with lips. She was sassy and he liked that about her. Women do not tend to challenge him this way. The music started and Landon grabbed hold of her and swirled Brook onto the dance floor with strength and demanding need for her to submit to his lead. He intended to remind her who was in control right now.
Brook followed his lead, and it looked to everyone else that, Brook and Landon had danced together often. They moved blending with one another without flaw. Landon’s moves were sharp and sudden, full of turns as he held her tight. Brook did not fumble or miss step, she moved on his cue. He held her closer than he knew he was supposed to and he didn’t care.
Her skin felt hot under his touch. Landon was handsome and Brook could only dream of dancing with a man who looked the way he does. This truly was a magical night for Brook.
In the corner, a man approached Grams and Sarah. “Lady Wilsbee, how are you this evening?” The man then bowed perfectly. “I observed you as I entered the room and desired to pay you a visit.”
“I am quite well Duke Wellington. I am honored you thought to greet me. May I introduce you to Lady Mcmay?”
The Duke bowed to Sarah. She stood and curtsied in return. Sarah noticed he had quickly glanced at her chest. He smiled at her as if he was not sorry nor regretful for it.
“May I beg a seat beside you Lady Mcmay?”
“Yes Of course, please do sit down,” Sarah said. She did not intend to make a scene out of respect for Grams. Sarah did not want this man looking down her dress so she turned slightly towards Grams. With her back at an angle to him, she felt more comfortable, besides she wanted to keep an eye out for Devon.
The three of them talked until they were approached by Landon and Brook. The Duke stood up and offered Brook his seat next to Sarah. Grams introduced Brook, as he then bowed and kissed her hand. The Duke turned to Landon and said his greetings to him. They had known one another for a while and began talking of politics and what not.
Sarah leaned into Brook telling her of her displeasure of the Duke. Brook eyed him up and down. Both the women were use to having to deal with men treating them as an object.
After thirty minutes or so, the Duke turned to Sarah and said, “I shall like to ask you for the next dance Lady Mcmay?”
Sarah suddenly felt flushed. “Thank you Duke Wellington, but I.”
Grams butted in, “She would be delighted to Duke. Sarah had not danced yet you see and I would very much enjoy seeing you two spin about the floor.” Grams then turned to Sarah and said, “Do not worry yourself about leaving me, my dear. Go and have some fun.”
Sarah smiled up at the Duke and said, “I would be honored then Duke,” seeing that she really had no choice.
“Very well then, I shall return shortly with some refreshments for everyone and we shall dance.” The Duke then left.
Sarah watched him until he was out of earshot. She turned to Grams to see her grinning. “I did not care to dance with him Grams.” She whispered.
“And why not?” Grams turned her head back and forth scanning the ballroom. “I do not see Devon here with us, do you? The Duke is a charming enough fellow and it wouldn’t kill you to broaden your horizons, shall we say.”
Sarah could not believe Grams had just said that to her. “It was still my choice.” Sarah said softly.
“My dear, go and enjoy yourself tonight and tomorrow will always be another day. There is no harm in dancing my dear child. Life is for living, not for sitting in corners with old women, you are far too young for that.”
Landon cleared his throat as the Duke was coming up to their group.
The Duke approached and he brought another man with him. He introduced him to everyone. Landon had heard of this Deerfield Earl fellow and he was a rude man with a lack of respect for women. The man has a reputation for chasing all kinds of women and leaving them when they discover they are with his child. He was glad Devon was not here, he would never tolerate this man in his presence and a scene would surely erupt because of it.
The music started and Sarah rose to her feet. The Earl turned to Brook and asked her for a dance.
Landon stepped in front of the man and said, “Her dance card is full. “ He took Brook’s hand and led her to the dance floor again.
“Why did you do that Landon?” Brook was confused.
“Do you not remember what I had said to you earlier? I told you I wanted to dance every dance with you.”
“I thought you were asking Landon, as you should be.” Brook narrowed her eyes at him.
“Well I’m not. I'm telling you. Besides he is not the kind of man you should be dancing with tonight or any other night.” He led Brook into the waltz.”
Landon took Brook in his arms and she could feel heat coming off him. He gazed deep into her eyes and made her flush. Brook felt herself soften in his arms. She wanted to memorize everything about this night. The music, the delicious foods and sweets, the atmosphere of it all, but mostly dancing with him. She felt as if he were trying to make this night perfect for her. He was covering her with all of his attention. Dance after dance and then bring her sweets. She felt spoiled by his adoring consideration towards her.
Sarah was swirling around the dance floor with the Duke. She was not enjoying herself with his hands on her. They made small conversation at first. He was staring at her neck and then down to her chest. He was obviously attracted to her, which made Sarah feel more uncomfortable. He did not try to hide his expressions of desire for her, let alone where his gazes were falling on her body. She wished she had not said what she did to Devon. He should be the one holding her right now.
As they turned, Sarah caught a glimpse of Devon standing next to Grams starring at her in the arms of the Duke. This caused Sarah to fumble and step on the Duke’s foot. She wanted to immediately run to him. To be able to stand next to him and feel safe within his presence from the predator that held her now.
“Oh my apologies Duke Wellington.”
“No need to apologize Lady Sarah, I have another one I can use,” referring to his foot.
Sarah should have laughed at that, but Devon looked very angry. She was wondering if he intended to cause a scene. That would at least free her from this man’s prying eyes on her. She had secretly hoped Devon would do something.
The dance ended and the Duke escorted Sarah back to Grams and the others. Sarah looked at Devon and smiled at him. Devon glared at her with a miffed look. She felt her face deepen with color. The last thing she intended was to upset him further, especial after what she had said to him that morning. If she could just get him alone, she would explain that it was not her wish to dance with Duke Wellington. Sarah moved closer to Devon’s side waiting for the right time to speak to him.
“Lord Price, it is good to see you again.” The Duke said to him.
Devon was very polite and greeted him back. “How is your sister? Is she in attendance tonight?”
“She is very well, thank you. In fact, she was asking of you, I believe she is hoping for a dance with you. I do believe she had heard you would be attending the ball this evening and changed her mind about coming tonight.”
“I shall have to see if I might find her.” Devon turned and said, “Won’t you please excuse me for a moment.” He gave Sarah a quick glare and walked away with the Duke.
Sarah was on the verge of tears. She felt her chest begin to tighten. “Dev wait.” He ignored her.
“My dear he is with his drink right now. I have no clue where the boy has been but he smells of it.” Grams said to her.
Sarah turned to her and said, “Alright then, two can play this game.” Sarah walked over to the man with the tray of drinks and brought him back to the group. “You can set them down here, thank you.”
“The whole tray my Lady?” There had to of been ten to twelve drinks on the tray.
“Yes the whole tray!” Sarah spat out at him.
The man set the tray down and walked away.
She sat down and started to drink a glass of champagne. As quickly as she had picked it up, she had then made it disappear. Sarah put the empty glass down and took another one.
“Well you only have ten more to go Sarah.” Landon teased her. He went to go to take one and she slapped his hand away. Landon started laughing.
“If you are going to continue to poke fun at me, I wish you to leave. If your intention is to put on a smile and have a drink with me, then I invite your company.” Sarah said to him. She then threw him a glare. “I have every intention of taking Grams wise advise. The evening is young and so am I.”
Sarah then finished off the second glass and went to take the third. Landon gently placed his hand over hers and said, “You should pace yourself, otherwise your next dance partner may be wearing all the champagne you have just drank.” He then smiled at her.
Sarah picked up the glass anyway and drank it all. The bubbles were tickling her nose and she wiggled it and laughed. “I love champagne, don’t you Brook?”
“I do on occasion a glass or two.” Brook looked up to Landon. He shrugged his shoulders at her.
The music chimed to alert the crowd the next dance was about to begin. The Duke and Devon approached as Sarah had finished drinking her forth glass.
“I would like to introduce Lady Isabella Wellington, my sister.” The Duke said.
Sarah stood up a little too quickly as the champagne rushed to her head. She grabbed for Landon beside her to steady herself. Landon took her hand and looped it through his arm, without anyone noticing other than Devon and Brook.
Sarah starred at the woman. She was not at all impressed by her beauty. So what if she was tall with big stunning brown eyes and thick curly black hair. She wasn’t Devon’s type. At least Sarah did not think she was. Maybe it was Sarah who was not, Devon’s type. Sarah then began to wonder how Devon and this woman, who looked as if she had fallen off a cloud in heaven, knew each other. Had he made love to her and touched her the way he would not touch Sarah? Has this woman seen him naked? Did she touch Devon the way Sarah had? Sarah’s face was visible frowning at the woman. Was she going to try to steal the man she loved?
Devon noticed Sarah’s expression and he looked to Landon. He smiled at Devon and casually pointed to the four empty glasses on the table. Devon glanced back up to Landon and mouthed the word, “All?” Landon still grinning, shook his head yes slowly. Devon pinched his lips together and gazed at Sarah who was still glaring at Isabella across from her.
“Lady Mcmay, would you care to dance with me again?” The Duke asked her.
Sarah looked over to him and said, “I shall like that very much.”
Landon stepped in front of Sarah momentarily and whispered something to the Duke. He then stepped back and handed Sarah off to him.
The Duke smiled widely and said to Landon, “I can handle that.” He then turned his gaze to Sarah and said, “Are you ready Lady Sarah?” His eyes moved to her chest again and Devon caught it.
Sarah stepped forward. “I am more than ready, Duke” She gave him a seductive smile as she batted her long eyelashes at him.
What the hell was she doing? Devon felt his hand begin to twitch. He took Isabella and led the way to the dance area. He looked into her big brown eyes then gazed at Sarah. Devon felt nothing for the woman he was holding. Yes, they had a past but, she was not Sarah. The feelings one has during an affair are not love. An affair is just a moment of attraction between two people and nothing more. If it were more, then the two having it, would commit and remain faithful to one another. Devon was never able to see his children in this woman, as Eli had put it. Sarah...he did. The Duke was holding the woman he loved and Devon was pist.
Sarah threw her head back at what the Duke had just said to her. This caused her body to fall forward as her chest smashed into his. She did not care any longer that he was starring down at her chest. She was trying very hard not to step on his feet and she was not succeeding at it.
Devon watched them intently while staying close to them.
“Why are you not dancing with her Devon?” Isabella asked him.
Devon quickly looked to her. He realized he was being rude. “I am sorry Isabella for neglecting you.”
“You are being rude but, you did not answer my question. I have never witnessed you acting this way for a woman before. The way you gaze at her is beautiful.”
Devon said, “It is complicated. We had an argument this morning and have to seen one another till now.”
Isabella smiled up at him. “Love is always what you make it to be Devon. You should go to her.”
As she said that, the music ended. Devon escorted Isabella back to the place they had all been sitting. Brook and Landon arrived and Brook took a seat next to Grams, who was now sitting with another older woman. Landon found a few more chairs for their growing group.
Grams made introductions between Brook, Isabella, Landon, and Lady Wilcox. The women began to carry on about the evening and the scandals Lady Wilcox had discovered. It was a few minutes before Devon had recognized Sarah and the Duke were not among the group.
“Where is Sarah?” he asked Landon harshly.
Landon glanced around at everyone who sat in front of them and then said, “I do not know.”
“I believe I saw her going up to the terrace with Duke Wellington.” Grams said and then smiled at Devon. “At least someone is showing interest in the poor girl. A woman does not spend hours preparing for a night out only to be ignored by the one she cares for.”
Devon did not finish listing to Grams as he left and headed for the stairs that led to the terrace. His heart was pounding in his ears. If he was kissing her, he would kill him. Devon reached the top step as he heard Sarah’s laugh. She sounded flirtatious and careless.
The terrace was empty except for the Duke and Sarah. Devon stood in the doorway behind them. He then slipped off to the side, in the shadows. He felt himself begin to feel lightheaded again. He shook it off and remained focused on them.
Sarah had her back to Devon and was leaning slightly forward on her forearms on top of the stone ledge of the railing. The Duke was more or less facing Devon as he starred at the side of Sarah’s face.
“Can I ask you something Lady Sarah?” The Duke said.
“Yes you may.” Sarah said to him. She was still gazing up to the stary sky above them.
“How is it you are not someone’s wife? A beautiful woman such as your self should have already been married.” His voice was smooth.
Devon was grinding his teeth together.
“I had thought I did not want to marry and then I had met someone but, he does not feel the same way for me.” Sarah said sounding a little sad.
“Well then he is a fool.” The Duke said with a smile. Leaning in even closer he said, "Fools will always be fools Sarah, so let him."
Devon’s body was beginning to shake. He was a fool and he knew the Duke was right.
“I do not want to be alone,” Sarah said to him softly. “I desire a large family to fill my home with love and laughter.”
“Perhaps until the right man comes along, you should consider taking a lover.” His voice was deep and sultry.
Sarah let out a small giggle and then turned to face him. The bubbles from the champagne were now in her head. She felt free and silly. She tilted her head up to him and smiled. "I do not know yet how to be someone's lover Duke Wellington."
“Would you like to be someone’s lover Sarah? Their mistress of passion and desire?" Slowly with every word he was leaning closer to her. "Do you want to be seduced Sarah?” He placed the tips of his fingers under Sarah's chin and tilted it up towards his lips. The Duke was close too close now.
“One inch closer to her and you are going off the side of the balcony Duke.” Devon’s voice was low with an intentional fierce tone. His body was visibly shaking. His breath was short and heavy with rage.
The Duke and Sarah turned their heads and saw Devon standing right next to them. Sarah jumped back and the Duke stepped back a few steps holding his hands up in front of him. He heard Devon’s tone more than his words and well understood, Devon was serious.
Sarah turned to him with her hand on her hip and said, “Why would you care how close he is to me?”
Devon ignored her and took Sarah in his arms throwing her over his shoulder. He began walking with her down the stairs, which caused a huge scene as Sarah was shouting for him to put her down.
Landon looked to Grams and said, “I saw this one coming.”
Grams giggled as she said, “It’s about time.”
Devon approached them with Sarah still over his shoulder. “I am taking the carriage and I will send it back for all of you.”
“I am going to stay with Lady Wilcox and Landon will see to it Brook makes it home safe, so that is not necessary my boy.”
Sarah shouted from behind Devon's back loud enough for the entire room to hear, “Someone tell him to put me down!” The music stopped and the room fell silent. Sarah let out a loud grunt in frustration and then screamed, “Damn it Devon!”
Sarah threw open the door and fell flat on her back when her sleeve caught on the handle of the door. She hit the ground with a loud thud.
Devon jumped down and nearly landed on top of her. “My God, Sarah are you alright?” His voice was filled with panic.
“I am fine. Do not touch me.” Sarah pushed herself up on her hands.
“Are you hurt? Don’t move, let me help you.” Devon put his hands on her arms.
Sarah swatted them away hard. “I said do not touch me Devon! Go away and leave me alone, you are good at that.” She pushed herself to her feet and went inside.
Devon caught up to her in the entry. He could see she was still under the effects of the champagne somewhat. “Sarah wait. I want to talk to you.”
Sarah kept walking down the hallway to the drawing room.
“Stop damn it!” Devon screamed at her with frustration.
She was startled by the strength of his voice. Sarah remained still with her back to him. The click of his shoes on the wood floor caused her heart to begin to race.
As he drew closer to her he said, “There is something I have been wanting to tell you.”
Sarah closed her eyes and took in a deep breath. With her back still to him she said, “What is it Devon?”
“You do not have to marry a stranger Sarah.” Devon’s voice was soft.
“Why is that?” Sarah asked. Her body grew tense as she waited for his answer.
Devon took a moment then said, “Landon has discovered your father’s will on the estate and he left everything to you.”
With Sarah’s eyes still closed she said, “And?”
Devon paused to answer her then said, “Well this means your uncle owns none of it. You are a rich woman. You and Grams do not need to find a suitor now.” Devon felt himself growing warm. That was not what he had intended to say to her.
Sarah’s eyes flew open and without even thinking, she turned around and slapped him hard across the cheek.
He did not move. Devon knew he deserved it. He saw nothing but a deep hurt and despair in Sarah’s green eyes. He realized that he had just broken her heart. The fear of loving her and maybe one day losing her was paralyzing for him.
Sarah’s tears began to stream down her face. “You dragged me away from the ball to tell me this? I was having a perfectly wonderful time with the Duke, who shows interest in me and you go and make a big scene, causing what is sure to be a scandal, to say this to me?” Sarah wiped her tears that were rapidly falling. “You are ruining me Devon. What will people think about what you have just done? Everyone saw it. The worst part is, you do not even care. People will say you are my jealous lover and I will be ruined. I wish I had not been in the park that day. I wish I had never met you Devon . . . ever.”
She turned and started to walk away. Sarah could no longer hold in the pain that was crushing her heart and she started to cry loudly. She had not cried like this since her father’s death, to her, this is what it felt like, a death. He truly did not want her and she had convinced herself he had. What she thought was, had never really been.
Devon was starring at her as she walked away from him, bracing herself against the wall as she walked along the hallway. As he listened to her began to cry hard, his heart shot out a deep pain throughout his chest. Devon placed his hand over his chest and let out a, “Um.”
Sarah without warning collapsed to the floor. Devon ran to her side. Sarah pushed him away. She was crying so hard she was unable to form words, she just shook her head no. Devon knelt behind her as she stumbled to her feet and held the panels of the wall for support.
He had never heard someone cry so hard before. Devon listened to her gasps for a breath between her moans of pain. He heard the sounds came from deep inside her and it was killing him.
Devon reached out for her and placed his hands on her shoulders. Sarah turned to him and managed to say, “Don’t please.”
He did not recognize her. She was grief-stricken. It was difficult for him to look at her. What was he doing to her?
Sarah continued to walk backwards into Devon’s study. Devon walked forward and took her in his arms as she began to fall over a chair. “Sarah.” His tone was worrisome.
“Devon please, you are tearing me apart.” Sarah pleaded with him through her deep sobbing tears. “L-let me go.”
Devon gazed into her eyes and whispered, “I love you Sarah.” His own voice was shaking as he began to realize how much the woman he held in his arms meant to him. “Be my wife and end my torment Sarah. I will never be able to live without you.” Devon wiped away her tears and said softly to her, “You are everything to me, my Sarah.”
Sarah crumpled in his arms. Devon picked her up and placed her on the chaise lounge. He sat next to her. As Devon gazed into her eyes, he found himself leaning towards her. Then he kissed her as if he would not live if he had not. Sarah kissed him back just as intense. She was still crying fairly hard.
Devon climbed on top of her and laid himself between her legs. “Promise me you will never leave me Sarah.” He said through their kiss.
“N-never.” Sarah whispered. She took a deep breath in.
Devon cupped her cheek with his hands and said, “Please stop crying.”
Devon kissed her deeply with passion. A feeling he had been holding back from for too long. His need to be with her was powerful. His body shook from the forcefully clear love he held for her.
He pushed himself onto her hard and Sarah let out a moan. He repeated the motion again as he began to rock with her gently.
Sarah could feel his entire body shaking as he held her in his arms. She was trembling just as much. She felt Devon reach around and try to undo her buttons on her gown. After a few moments, she felt the dress rip open down her back.
“I will buy you a hundred new ones but, this one has to come off now.” Devon said with a heavy need in his voice.
Sarah began to giggle as it broke the tension. Devon started laughing and said, “I am sorry. I cannot deal with a thousand of tiny buttons at this moment. Your new dress will have very large buttons on them.”
Her giggle turned to laughter. “I could also walk around naked if that is easiest for you?”
Devon began to kiss her neck as he said, “I do not think Richards will approve of that, but we can try.”
Devon pulled her dress down over her shoulders moving it past her beasts. Devon left her dress where it was as he then went to take off her shoes. Next went one of her stockings. Devon reached up and slowly peeled down the other one. He moved his hand up under her dress and pulled away Sarah’s undergarments, tossing them to the floor.
He sat up kneeling at her feet and he took off his coat and then unbuttoned his shirt. Sarah watched him slowly remove layers of his clothing. Devon smiled as he watched her watch him. He had thought about this moment so many times over the past few weeks. It almost didn’t feel real. He saw Sarah bite up her bottom lip, which always drove him nuts.
Devon quickly fell to her, holding his weight from her and hovered over her lips with his. “If I could eat your lip I would.”
Sarah smiled. “Why would you ever want to eat my lip Lord Price?”
Devon grazed his lips against her bottom lip, them whispered, “Because from the moment I first saw you bit up your bottom lip, it drove me crazy with desire for you. How is that for a reason Mrs. Price?”
Sarah kissed him with all the happiness in her heart.
“How do you think Sarah Price sounds to you?” Her smile was enough of an answer for him and he kissed her bottom lip that he loved so much.
He began pushing away the dress until it feel to the floor. Devon took the sight of her in for a moment. “God, you truly are lovely Sarah. You are more then I had imagined you to be.”
“You thought of me?” Sarah asked.
Devon kissed her shoulder as he said, “You consumed my every thought.” Moving down to her breast, he placed his lips gently over her nipple and said, “I nearly went mad.” Devon sucked her in and squeezed her breast. Releasing her from his mouth he said, “You have no idea what I thought about doing to these beautifully full breasts that taunted me daily.” Devon took her up again and Sarah let out a deep moan as she arch up towards him.
More than anything, Devon wanted to make her moan with pleasure and he intended to do whatever it took for her to make louder noises. Every one of her short gasps and deep breaths of delight turned him on further.
Devon moved to Sarah’s other breast teasing it with his tongue playfully. Sarah could not help it; she grabbed his hair pulling him closer to her. He reached down and moved her legs open to him. She immediately made an “Oh,” sound as he pushed up on her naked body. His pants were still on but she could feel his desire for her through his pants. He was firm and long.
Taking her deeper into his mouth, he kneaded her other breast with a firm grip. Devon pressed her breasts together as he ran his tongue over and around both of her nipples.
“Dev.” Sarah moaned to him.
Devon nibbled her slightly and she grabbed his head with pleasure and surprise at what he was doing with her body. He then released her from his hot moist mouth. Devon gazed up to her. Sarah’s eyes were closed and her head was back. He watched as she licked her lips.
A smile broke out across his face and he began trailing his tongue down over her belly. Devon made his way to her hip and ran his lips around to the side of her thigh. He could see her hands grabbing up the material of the chaise lounge she lay on.
Devon continued passing across the top of her thigh. First the outside and then moving to the inside of her mid thigh. He proceeded up her inner thigh. Devon paused over the middle of her as she was spread wide open for him. His breath was hot across her moist skin that longed to be touched. He let his mouth hover over her as he listened to her begin to pant with need.
He slowly moved to her other thigh as he trailed his tongue everywhere, except for where Sarah most desired him to go. After torturing her for a few more minutes, Devon ran his lips to the top area where her leg stopped. He again paused as he let his breath caress her gently.
Devon moved his lips softly against her velvety moist skin. He heard Sarah take in a loud deep breath and hold it. She was so tender under his tongue as he spread her open. Sarah was trembling with a yearning for more of him. He ran his tongue up until he hit the right spot. Sarah jarred up and Devon grabbed her and held her hips down.
Moving slowly he brought her into his mouth and gently began to suck her in, every part of her. Sarah let out a loud gasp. Devon then placed his finger at her opening and traced around it. She was already very wet. He slid just the tip of his finger inside her.
“Devon!” Sarah half moan and half shouted. “Oh my God you have to stop. I can’t take this Dev.” Sarah begged him.
He slid his finger in deeper and then back out, moving so slowly. Devon worked his finger in and out until he could go no further. He began to move faster. Sarah moaned with a crazy need for release. Her body was tight and she was overwhelmed with longing for Devon to fill her more.
Devon removed his finger and slid his tongue inside her wildly. Sarah’s body tensed as she was beginning to peak. He held her hips down hard against the chaise and she screamed out his name.
When she came down Devon quickly removed his pants and laid himself on top of her. He positioned himself at her opening and then kissed her hard. He felt himself slid into her.
Moving slow, he was careful not to push too hard or fast. Sarah was digging her fingertips into his shoulders. Devon made a another push and reached her even deeper inside.
He held himself there for a moment allowing her to get use to his size.
“Are you alright?” He asked.
“You are not going to get any bigger are you?” She asked.
Devon said, “No.”
“Then I will be ok,” Sarah said.
Devon chuckled slightly. “You have just said what every man wants to her a woman tell him.”
“What, that he is too big for her.” Sarah said and then giggled.
He answered yes and then kissed her. As he moved in and out of her, Sarah's breathing grew heavy. Devon reached down and pulled her leg up higher. He slowly pushed in deeper. Sarah grabbed the sides of his hips and let out a, “Ohm,” of surprise. She had thought he was not going to get any bigger.
“Dev, you got bigger,” Sarah said.
“I was not inside you all the way.” Devon said as he kissed her neck.
“Are you now?” Sarah asked.
“Almost.” Devon replied as he pushed a little deeper.
“You are too big Dev!” Sarah moaned.
Devon knew it was too much for her on her first time and he pulled back. “I am sorry Sarah. Did I hurt you?” Devon was looking in her eyes.
Sarah wanted to say yes, but she smiled and shook her head no. “I am alright.”
Devon could see she was lying. “You have to tell me if I am hurting you Sarah.”
“ok then, yes it does hurt.” Sarah lowered her eyes to his chest. She felt foolish. Her lower lip began to quiver. She wanted to please him and now she thought she would not be able too.
“Sarah there is nothing wrong with you. Hay, look at me. You are perfect. I do not have to go inside that deep yet, alright.”
“You will not feel good if you don’t though. I am not right for you. We do not fit together.”
Devon saw a tear falling down her cheek. “That is not true Sarah. It will take time for us to fit together. It never happens the first or even the second or up to the fifth time. Do you hear me?”
She shook her head and he leaned down and kissed her hard. Devon started to move again. He was careful not to push to deep against her inside.
He pulled out of her and rolled Sarah on top of him. “You can control how much of me you want in you.”
Sarah was surprised. “I can, how?” Her voice was filled with excitement.
Devon leaned up and kissed her as he said, “Take me in your hand and slid me inside you, but go slow at first.”
Sarah placed her hand on him and put him at her opening. She pushed down on him slowly. She could not believe how different he felt. Sarah liked this better.
Devon took her breast into his mouth and sucked with force. Sarah slid the rest of the way down on him and moaned deep at the pleasure of him filling her. He grabbed her hips and slid her across the top of him, showing her she did not have to only go one way.
“Oh this feels so good,” Sarah said. She began to move slow while pushing against him harder. “Dev, Oh Dev, I am going to.”
Devon could not hold out any longer. She was moaning and panting as her breasts rubbing against his chest and he began to release himself inside her at the same time her body gave into it's need. He stiffened and she tightened for one another, until they were done.
Sarah lay on top of him out of breath and exhausted. Devon wrapped his arms around her and whispered, “I love you Mrs. Price.”
She lifted her head and gazed into his eyes and said, “I love you Mr. Price.” She then smiled.
Devon rolled them over so she was under him. He reached down and grabbed his shirt. He pulled himself out of her and placed his shirt there. “Hold this here for a few minutes.”
Sarah understood what he was talking about and she tucked it under herself.
Devon got up and went to the couch for a blanket for them. He walked back to Sarah and lay back down next to her, covering them both with the blanket.
“How long shall our engagement be?” Sarah asked as she curled her back into the front of him.
“Do you want an engagement because I don’t?” Devon said and kissed her neck.
Sarah squirmed as she giggled. “It will take time to obtain a license, will it not?”
“I already have one for us.”
“You do? When did you get one?” Sarah was shocked by the delightful news.
“I went after our argument and got one this morning.”
“But I don’t understand you were upset with me. When had you decided you wanted me as your wife?” Sarah asked.
“Honestly the first night you were here, if I am truly honest with myself, but I decided this morning I could not live without you as my wife for one more day. When you were pounding on my bedroom door and I opened the door naked, I could see it in your eyes you felt the same way for me.” Devon kissed her and then pulled back. “I am sorry for hurting you Sarah. I have never felt this way before and I-”
Sarah stopped him with her lips. She broke their kiss and said, “I would have waited my whole life to hear you say that, Dev.”
Devon thought he could not love her more than he already did. She had just made his heart leap again. “I am the luckiest man alive.”
“Yes you are Mr. Price.”
Richards came and sat down next to them in a club chair. “Landon is going to search for Devon.”
“How could they have any rights to take her like that? She is not safe Richards,” Brook said.
“We will bring her back shortly; do not worry either of you,” Richards said. He tried to remain strong in front of them. Secretly inside, he was terrified she would be shipped off before they had a chance to get her back. Lester knows a lot of bad people in many places. Anyone of them would do his bidding for the right amount of shillings.
As everyone waited, minutes turned into an hour and an hour turned into two, then three. The tension in the room was thick. Landon had come back long ago and had been out two more times with no successful results. He had no idea where the hell Devon had gone. Landon was able to locate where Eli lived and left an urgent note with the butler for Devon or Eli. The only thing that was needed to secure Sarah’s freedom was the original will.
Brook lept to her feet and said, “Someone is coming down the drive.”She pointed out the window.
“It is not Devon,” Landon said with disappointment in his voice.
The man’s knock on the large wooden double doors echoed throughout the house three times. Richards answered the door and the man handed him a note. Richards stood in the entryway and opened it. The note was in his brother’s handwriting.
Grams, Brook, and Landon heard Richards voice as he shouted, “Oh dear God!” Everyone ran into the entryway where Richards stood by the still open front door.
“What is it Richards?” Grams asked. The look on his face terrified her.
“It is from my brother who works for Lord Mcmay. Sarah is locked in the cellar with Collins and he says she needs help now. He goes on to say the staff is crying because of.” Richards stopped reading. He didn’t want to say it out loud to anyone.
“Why are they crying Richards?” Grams demanded.
Richards gazed to the three of them standing with waited breath for him to finish. “Because of Sarah’s pleading sounds of whimpering and screams for Collins to stop. There is more but I will not read it in front of the women.” Richards looked to Landon and said, “We need to do something now.”
“What is it you need to do Richards?” Devon asked as he stood in the doorway smiling.
Grams threw herself on Devon and began talking and sobbing in his arms. Devon could not understand a word she was saying. He wrapped his arms around her. “Grams whatever has you so upset?”
“Mcmay has taken Sarah,” Landon said.
Devon felt his heart pound and his stomach drop. “When?”
Richards said, “Hours ago. This is a note I just received from my brother.”He handed it to Devon.
Everyone watched Devon’s face as he read it. They saw his hands begin to tremble. Devon dropped the note and ran out the door.
Landon followed him and Richards said to Grams, “We will need towels, water and a doctor.” Then he left and headed to the stable following Devon and Landon.
The men rode fast and hard. It had begun to rain an hour ago and the wind had now started to pick up. It took them twenty minutes to get to Lord Mcmay’s estate. Upon arriving, Landon dismounted first and began to pound on the wooden doors. Richards joined Landon in front of the doors. Devon walked up, without waiting for someone to answer, opened the door and walked right in.
Richards brother Edwards, was hobbling towards them as quickly as he could manage. “Mcmay left a long time ago and Collins is in the kitchen with two of his friends.” He said.
“Where is Sarah?” Devon demanded.
“She is locked in the basement Sir. Collins has the only key.” He pointed down the hallway. “Sarah was calling for you Sir. I have not heard any sound from her since right before Collins came up from the cellar and I fear the worst.”
Devon and Landon stormed towards the kitchen just as Collins and his two buddies were coming out. Devon hit Collins square in the face and knocked him out cold. Landon beat the tar out of the other two men in a matter of thirty seconds with Richards’s help.
Devon found the key and opened the basement door. “Sarah!” He shouted as he ran down the stairs. The further he moved down the stone steps, the dimmer it became. The dam odor engulfed the space. The air felt cool and damp. He went to the left and hit a dead end. “Sarah where are you?” Devon turned back as he went the other way and followed the stone hallway around as it curved. “Sarah!” His voice was despite and cracking. His entire body was shaking. Devon was terrified as to what he might find.
“I should have been home with her. If I had, none of this would have happened. Where are you Sarah? God help me please. Sarah!”
As the curve of the stonewall ended, he stopped dead in his tracks as he saw her. He was petrified to move, to know if she was alive. Devon ran to the corner of the small room where Sarah was chained to the wall, hanging by her arms. A single torch in the opposite corner, light the small musty room.
Devon picked up her head gently to check her breathing. She was badly beaten and covered in her own blood. He could not hear any sounds coming from her. “Richards!” Devon screamed as loud as he could.“Oh God Sarah no. Please breath for me sweet heart. Richards!”Devon’s voice was horrifying to hear.
Richards and Landon came up next to him. Landon removed his coat and handed it to Richards as he looked away. Richards used it to cover Sarah’s bare chest.
Richards said, “Devon go find the key for these chains.”
“She is not breathing. Help me, she needs to breathe. Richards do something please. You have to save her for me please. I can’t live without her.” Devon was beginning to lose it.
“Landon he is going into shock. Sit him down and find me the bloody key.”Richards tone was stern and calm.
Landon left as he ran from the room. Devon sat on a stool next to Sarah’s lifeless body dangling by her wrists wrapped in rusty chains. He stared at the blood dripping from her face that had already stained her soft blond hair. She did not look like his Sarah. Devon followed a drip of blood as it fell from her chin to the floor. A large puddle had already formed at her feet. He looked back to her hair that was stained dark red, almost brown-black. His gaze moved down and to see her clothing torn away from her body.
Richards checked her breathing and it was shallow. “She is breathing Devon. We will get her out of here and take her home but you need to get a hold of yourself. I will need your help. Devon! Look at me.”
Devon tore his eyes away from Sarah. “Richards I…I love her so much.”
“I know Devon.” Richards did not know what else to say to him. He wanted nothing more than to give his promise that Sarah was going to be fine…but he couldn’t. He knew that Sarah's life was most likely going to parish before night's end.
Richards’s brother came down with a sheet to wrap her in. Devon stood up and pulled the coat from Sarah. He saw close-up what Collins had done to her body.
Richards handed Devon the sheet and said, “Put this on her Devon.”Richards watched as Devon was not responding. Richards grabbed Devon and slapped him across the face. “If you are not going to help her then leave!” Richards needed Devon to remain focused.
Devon looked down at the sheet in his hands and started to wrap it around Sarah’s body. His hands were shaking so hard he could barely form a fist to work with the material.
Richards then handed Devon a large glass of scotch and said, “Drink this it will help calm your nerves son.” He was keeping his composure, he had to, Devon was in no condition to help anyone. He had caught a glance of what that man had done to her. In Richards’s opinion, this so called man was not human.
Devon chugged down the scotch Richards had given him quickly. Staring into his empty glass he realized he was going to kill Collins. He was going to strangle the breath out of another human being without remorse. Devon knew he could live with it. He knew it was wrong and he didn’t care.
Landon came back with tools in his hands. “Mcmay has the key. We can use these to break through the chains.”
“Good thinking Landon,” Richards said as he took a set of tools from Landon.
Devon stepped forward and said, “I will do it Richards.”
Richards nodded handing him the ax.
“Why is there a puddle of blood at her feet behind her?” Landon asked.
Richards pulled back the sheet and saw a stab wound in her side. “She has been stabbed. You two get to work and I will apply pressure to the wound. You need to work quickly.” Richards bunched up the material and began pressing on the wound.
Devon and Landon hit the chains to break them apart. After ten minutes, Richards pulled his hands away from Sarah’s wound and checked it. The bleeding had not stopped yet, although it had slowed some. He reached up and checked her pulse and then her breathing. “We really need to hurry gentlemen if you could please.” Honestly the smell of Sarah’s blood mix with the musty scent of the cellar was getting to him. The deafening clanking from the ax striking the chains was not helping him with his queezy feeling.
After another ten minutes Landon broke threw his first. Sarah’s body slummed down as Richards caught her. Devon within a minute had broken threw the other chain.
Devon took her up into his arms and headed for the stairs. Outside a carriage was waiting for him. He turned to Richards. “You take the horses and Collins.”
Devon sat on the seat with Sarah in his arms. He was still applying firm pressure to Sarah’s wound on her side. Devon could feel her blood seeping down his leg. She felt cold and her body was so limp. Devon pulled back the sheet wrapped around her bloody body. He was horrified as he gazed at all the gashes and bite marks that covered her. He put the sheet back around her and held her tight against him as he began to tremble again. “I am so sorry Sarah. I should have never left this morning. I have failed you and I have failed your father. I am no hero for you.” Devon opened his eyes and gazed down at her legs resting on the seat. He saw the pink trim of the dress he had bought for her and had sent home to her. He felt his fist clench the wet sheet wrapped around her. Devon imagined how pretty she must have looked in it. He moved his eyes back to her swollen bruised face and kissed her forehead. He did not even recognize her. “Don’t leave me Sarah,” he whispered.
When the carriage pulled up, Landon and Richards were waiting at the front steps for him. Devon carried Sarah’s pale limp body into the house. As he passed by Grams and Brook in the entry, the two women gasped and Grams let out a painful cry as she reached for Sarah’s hand dangling in the air.
Brook gazed down at the trail of blood that was following Devon. She did not want Grams to see it, so she looked to Richards to take her. Richards gazed down and understood what Brook had saw. After Richards took Grams in the drawing room, Brook found some rags and a pail for water in the kitchen and started wiping up Sarah’s blood with a scrub brush as she then blooded it with the rags. She could her Grams crying over the sound of the bristles against the thick rug.
Landon knelt down beside her and took a rag. He soaked it in the water and began to wipe as well. He looked over to Brook after a few minutes and saw her tears falling to the floor. He dropped his rag in the pail and took hers out of her trembling hands. Landon pulled her to her knees and hugged her tight.
Brook felt her body soften in his arms. It felt so good to be held in his strong embrace, she felt safe. Brook had been holding in the whole day’s events and she could feel it starting to surface. She tried to push it back down until Landon’s hand ran threw the back of her hair and he started to rub her back. Those simple motions opened a floodgate. Brook wrapped her arms around his neck and cried hard as she let it all come out in his arms.
Landon didn’t say anything to her, he just held her tight. He knew she had tried to be so strong for Sarah earlier that day. He recognized she was the rock in the group and always kept her composure for everyone around her. Right now, she needed someone to be that for her and he wanted to be that someone for her.
Brook slowly pulled back from him and said, “I am sorry.”
Landon took a handkerchief out of his coat pocket and handed it to her as he said, “I possibly needed that more than you did to be honest.”
Brook finished wiping her face and smiled as she looked up to him. Landon felt himself lean into her and kiss her gently. She felt soft in his arms and her breath was sweet tasting.
Brook kissed him back. She felt an over whelming sense of comfort in him kissing her. Brook let herself relax into his strong arms. For a brief moment she let everything just melt away. His hands closed around her waist and pulled her closer.
The kiss lasted less than twenty seconds, as a voice from the drawing room caused them to stop. Landon still was hovering close to her lips and he brushed them gently with his. Brook’s eyes were closed and she felt like she was floating.
“I don’t want to stop,” Landon said to her softy with his lips still grazing hers.
They heard Richards voice near the doorway and moved slightly away from one another. Brook picked her rag back up and continued to wipe. Landon gazed down at her profile, as he was trying to figure out what just happened and why he had chosen that moment to kiss her.
Devon opened the door and called to Brook. “The doctor needs some assistance.” Devon walked closer to her and explained that he was not married to Sarah and was not allowed to remain in the room past this point. Brook listened and then disappeared into the room.
Landon was scrubbing the floor as Devon looked down to his friend. He grabbed a rag and helped.
Richards approached them from behind. “You two should not be doing that.”
Landon said, “I don’t mind it is giving me something to do.”
There was a knock at the door behind them that drew their attention. Richards walked over and answered it. It was the officers from earlier. Richards escorted them in and over to Devon, who was still wiping the floor from Sarah’s blood.
“What has happened here?” The round short man in charged asked.
“This did not happen here. It happened at Mcmay’s. Sarah, the woman you dragged out of here pleading for you not too, was beaten and tortured and this is her blood,” Landon shouted at him.
Where is she? I want to see her?” the man said.
Richards said, “I will notify the doctor of your request, wait here.”Richards came back and said, “He will need a few minutes. He needs to finish closing her stab wound.” Then Richards walked away leaving the man standing there.
Devon and Landon did not say a another word to the officer standing next to them. Landon noticed the man start to tap his foot on the rug by Devon’s hand. “I’m sorry Sir. Are we keeping you from something more important…like a round pastry perhaps?”
The officer immediately looked to Landon and said, “I beg your pardon?”
Devon said, “I think what my friend was trying to say was, you seem impatient about something. Now if you care to keep your foot attached to your ankle…Well I suggest you stop tapping it in our faces, officer.”
At the moment he planned to reply to Devon, the doctor called for him. The short round man waddled away and into the room behind the door where Sarah was lying. Devon and Landon finished cleaning and went to the drawing room to join the others. Landon walked to the bar and poured a round of drinks.
Grams saw Devon’s shirt and started to cry all over again. Devon looked down and realized his white shirt was no longer white. He removed his coat and then worked on his shirt. “Damn buttons,” he mumbled to himself.
The officer and the doctor entered the room a second later. Both of them approached Devon and the room grew silent.
“We will track down Mcmay and this Collins fellow. My men and I will question them to see what has happened.”
“Collins is in my stable and Mcmay I believe is at a card game,” Devon said. He then looked to the doctor.
“I have stopped her bleeding but she has lost a tremendous amount of blood Lord Price. Her face has a few broken bones and quite a few of her ribs are broke. That would explain why her breathing was so shallow when she was chained to the wall.” The doctor removed his glasses. “Sarah has what might possibly be a severe head injury. Right now, it is hard for me to discern the extent of the damage that has been done to her. She has a lot of swelling and when that begins to subside, I will be able to give you a better diagnosis. I have stitched up many areas and the bite wounds she sustained will heel in time… if she survives. I am truly sorry. I wish I was able to do more for her and you Lord Price.”
Devon shook his head in understanding to what the doctor was telling him.“We are all grateful for everything you have done.”
“Lord Price, it is my belief that this estate should prepare for the strong possibility that lady Mcmay will not make it till the morning Sir.”The doctor pinched his lips together as he heard the gasps and cries coming from behind Devon.
Devon looked down to the floor. “Is there no hope for her?”
The doctor placed his hand onto Devon’s shoulder and said, “Son, if you are not close with our lord, then now would be the moment to call upon him and introduce yourself.”
Devon looked to him. “I see.”
The silence of the room was shook alive by a thunderous pounding on the front door. Richards rose to go and open it but whoever was on the other side of it, just barged threw and into the room.
“You had no right to enter my house and take what does not belong to you.”Mcmay was walking towards Devon and pointing his finger at him.“Where is the little chit?”
Devon lunged foreword after him as he pushed past the officers. He wrapped his hands around Mcmay’s throat and tackled him to the ground. “You bloody bastard! How could you?” He squeezed so hard he thought his hands were going to break. Devon wanted to watch this man die. He wanted to make him suffer. Every man in the room used all their strength to pull Devon from Mcmay.
After Mcmay was free from Devon’s grip and up on his feet again, he said,“She needed to know her place. Collins was kind enough to assist me with that.” Mcmay gave Devon a wide evil grin as he narrowed his eyes at him as well.
Landon reached out a punched Mcmay in his throat hard. Mcmay fell against the side table and smashed threw it with Landon landing on top of him. Landon went to draw up his arm and hit Brook in the mouth with his elbow. Landon had not even noticed. Brook quietly left the room to sit with Sarah. She could not stand anymore of this insanity.
“Landon James stop!” Grams shouted in a stern motherly tone. As Landon looked to Grams, Mcmay hit him in the eye knocking him off his body. The officers abruptly stepped in to take Landon’s arms. One of the officers locked him in cuffs.
Grams stepped foreword addressing the chubby Captain, “You remove those shacklings without haste.”
“With all due respect Lady Wilsbee, they will remain in place until everyone in this room gains some resemblance of composer. Now, I will go and have an interview with Lord Mcmay while the rest of you remain still…and silent.”
Mcmay cleared his sore throat and attempted to shout, “These people have no rights to her,” he said as he was coughing. “I am taking her back with me right now.”
“You cannot move her. I will not allow it,” the doctor said with disbelief filling his voice.
“I can do what I wish withher,” Mcmay said and then turned to Devon and finished his sentence, “And toher.”
Richards hit Mcmay in the back of the head with a poker for the fire. Mcmay fell to the ground flat on his face.
The officer shouted, “Bloody hell, have all of you gone mad?”
“Yes we have. Did you see her face and the state of her body? I assume not, because if you had, then you would not be asking us that,”Grams said to the officer.
Mcmay stumbled to his feet. “I want her removed now,” he said while holding the back of his head. “And I want this man arrested,” he pointed to Richards.
The officer looked to Devon and said, “My hands are tied on this Sir. I have to allow it, he is her charge.”
Devon took a step forward and said, “She is to be my wife tomorrow. If you attempt to go anywhere near her, I will kill you and anyone else who tries after you.”
Mcmay started laughing and said, “I will not give consent for the marriage.”
Devon said, “You have no authority over her. I have found Benjamin’s original will. You drew up a fake one and now you will hang for attempted murder.”
“Prove it Price. I want to see this will.” Mcmay challenge him.
Devon looked to the officer and said, “A friend of mine is holding it safe for me. As soon as I can reach him I will give you all the proof you need.”
The officer ran his hand through his hair then said, “I am sorry. If you do not have it right now, I cannot help you Lord Price.”
“He has it right here.” Eli handed it to the officer.
Devon was shocked to see him. Eli smiled and said, “I have been sitting in the corner with Grams for an hour.”
“I am glad you are here.” Devon grabbed him and shook his hand. Eli patted his back. “I am too, my friend.” Eli released him. “Landon had left an urgent note with James my butler and I came straight here without haste.”
The officer called for his men outside the room and had them take Mcmay and Collins away. “You have my deepest sympathy regarding Lady Mcmay and do wish an acute recovery. I will be in touch.” Then he left.
Devon walked over to Grams who was sitting on the sofa. He keeled down so he was eye level with her and said, “I had wanted to tell you about our engagement differently and celebrate with you. I am sorry it was delivered to you in this manner Grams.”
She smiled at him and said, “I do not care of that my boy. I knew last night at the ball you were going to ask for her hand. Any man who makes that much of an ass of himself, has to love the woman draped over his shoulder. Go and be with your future wife Devon. She needs you.”
Devon kissed her and then left the room to his study where Sarah was. Devon quietly knocked on the door and then opened it. He saw Brook sitting by her side. “Do you mind if I come in Brook?”
“Not at all Devon.” Brook stood up to leave.
“You do not have to leave,” Devon said to her.
“I want to Devon. She needs you to be with her.” Brook smiled weakly at him.
“Are you alright Brook?” Devon asked her.
“I will be alright when I know Sarah will be.”
“I cannot lose her Brook. She is my everything and I love her.” Devon gazed at Sarah.
Brook put her hand on his arm and said, “She looked beautiful in the dress you sent for her. Interesting choice of buttons.” She chuckled.
Devon smiled. Brook looked to him and said, “I have never known a woman to love a man as much as she loves you Devon. I truly believe for that reason alone, she will not let go.”
“Did she talk about me to you?” he asked her.
Brook said, “She didn’t have to. Anyone could see it when you were in the room with her. We had been talking earlier this day and she said something I thought you might want to know.” Brook waited for Devon to look to her. “She had told me she would have never thought she would be able to find a man as amazing as her father was. Sarah said you were perfect in every way possible to her. She referred to you as her hero. Knight and shining charmer is what she called you.”
Devon smiled at Brook but he really wanted to cry. He was no hero or anything else to her. Brook said good-bye and left. Devon sat quietly next to Sarah. He did not care how she was going to be or look later on, he just wanted her to wake up and say his name. Devon remained by her side watching her breathe and on occasion saw the twitching of her fingers.
When Brook left the room, Landon was waiting outside the door.
“Devon is in with Sarah.”
“I know. I was standing out here waiting for you. Are you all right? I want you to come and eat something Brook.” Landon said softly.
“Thank you but I do not feel much like eating now.” Brook said to him without making any eye contact.
They began to walk down the hallway together. Landon said, “I shall get you some tea. Will you drink some tea for me at least?”
“I can get the tea Landon,” Brook said.
“No I will get the tea, you go sit down.” His voice was slightly soft with an undertone of direction to it.
Brook did not argue with him and sat down. She noticed the blood on her dress. She would need to go and change soon but she was so tired. In a few minutes, she told herself. The room was quiet, as everyone had moved to the dining room for dinner, although she was sure they really weren't in the mood for food either. Brook put her feet up on the sofa after she removed her shoes. She laid back and it finally hit her how drained she truly felt.
Landon returned with a maid carrying Brook’s tea and found her asleep on the sofa. He had the maid put the tray down and he sat in a chair next to Brook. Landon watched her chest rise and fall as her breaths slowed and deepened with her slumber she was falling into. He closed his eyes and let his head fall back against the chair.
Brook was unsure how much time had passed when she awoke. Gazing to the chair next to her, she saw Landon in what looked to her to be a very uncomfortable position. He was sitting on his hands behind him. She reached over and placed her hand on his knee. “Landon,” she whispered.
Landon woke and saw Brook leaning over in front of him. “Hello Red.”
Brook smiled and sat back down. “I haven’t heard that one before. You are so cleaver and creative with your choice of words. Women must simply fall to your feet with whit like that.” She gave him a quick glance as she poured some tea for them.
“Oh you are very Irish Brook O’Brien. Your mouth is as fiery as your hair seems to be.” Landon gave her a sideways smirk.
“Would you be talking with me if it weren’t?” Brook saw Landon’s smile widen. “I thought not.” She reached over and placed a small scope of sugar in both the tea cups. “Sarah has awoken slightly. The doctor said that is a great sign. Devon has not left her side.”
“I would suspect not, knowing Devon. I believe she will recover fully Brook.”
Brook gazed to him and said, “She is talking somewhat and she knows who everyone is so far. The memory of tonight is gone though.”
“Would you want her to remember?” Landon asked.
“No, it is just that her memory from the entire last week is gone as well. Sarah does not remember Devon asking her to be his wife.”
“Well, look at it this way Brook. At least Devon will know what her answer will be when he asked this time around, right.”
Brook started laughing softly. “I suppose you’re right.” She held out the cup of tea for Landon. After a moment, he still had not taken it from her. Brook glanced at him and saw a smile on his face. “Is this amusing to you that I am holding out tea for you?”
“No that is only half of what is amusing about this.”
Brook put the tea down in front of him. “I my questioning if I dare ask you why Landon.”
“Oh do ask because I think you shall find it possible more amusing than I”
Brook shook her head and said, “Alright then. What is so amusing?”
Landon sat back a little more comfortable and said, “You see my Red, you are holding out a cup of tea for a man whom you assume can take the tea from you.”
“You are not making any sense Landon.”
“The whole thing makes perfect sense, Red,” Landon said,
“It does not and stop calling me Red.” Brook picked up her tea and sipped it carefully. She thought for a moment about what he was saying. She quickly looked at him.
Landon smiled again at her. “Ah, you are more cleaver than I thought,”he said.
“What? Landon no.” Brook burst out into laughter.
Grams entered the room and brought with her the aroma of mini muffins with blueberries. “What is so funny Brook?”
Brook just shook her head. She was laughing too hard to answer her at that moment.
Grams sat down next to Brook. “Good gracious my child, breathe.”
Landon said, “You will soon be laughing as well. In all the fuss over Mcmay and Collins the officers forgot something of theirs.”
Grams leaned foreword and asked, “What was it?”
Brook shouted out, “Their cuffs on Landon!”
“Oh heavens no.” Grams began laughing with Brook.
Landon stood up. “I see neither of you plans to offer me a lick of aid.”
Grams stood up and announced she was going to fetch Richards. Landon started to follow her out of the room.
“Wait, I can undo them for you Landon,” Brook said. She pulled a hairpin from her hair and walked over to him…still giggling of course.
“I told you it would be more amusing to you.”
Brook said, “I do apologize but how could you not remember to say something?” She began to work on the cuffs.
“Honestly, I was wondering where you had gone. I did not see you and I…I was wondering.” He felt Brook pause for a second with the cuffs. Just then he heard a snap.
“Oh no,” Brook whispered.