Winner of a Golden Rose as Best Historical Romance 2008

A painted eye miniature, a keepsake of your lover during the Regency era

on Love Romances and More

Nominated for a Cupid & Psyche award

for excellence in romantic fantasy fiction by The Romance Studio


by Ann Tracy Marr

This is a short excerpt, but it tells so much about Lord Brinston -- especially the last line.


Laughing. She was on the terrace, leaning against the wall by an open window, filled with hilarity. The legendary Guinevere could not have presented a prettier picture.

Brinston watched Martha, aware of her every breath. He couldn't help but smile at the infectious levity. He could see his brother Michael with his beloved through the window. That silly Maria must have done or said something to make Martha laugh so. But when she pulled a handkerchief from her sleeve and wiped her eyes, it shook him to his soul. Just so did the duchess leak tears when she was filled with mirth.

It was then he realized how much Martha resembled his adored mother. Brinston could almost feel his heart tightening. They were silken bonds, those bands clenching around his heart, not painful in the least. A man could get used to them, which was a good thing. They didn't feel like they were going to dissolve any time soon.

He heard the echo of his father's words. "I couldn't resist the way she laughed." It was always said with a chuckle and an underlying honesty that couldn't be doubted. It was why his father had married his mother. They were devoted to each other, but it all started with her laugh.

Everyone, including Brinston himself, joked at how much the son resembled the father. He stared at the sky, silently begging Merlin to have pity on him.

© 2008 Ann Tracy Marr