People do the strangest things to avoid housework when sometimes it would be easier just do it. This New Year, I heard a perfect example of this during a radio phone in. The caller, a man, had called the radio show to boast about how he'd avoided taking the Christmas decorations down. I had to turn the volume up because the man was whispering. Why was he whispering? Because, he was hiding in the attic and didn't want his family to hear him. And what were his family doing? Taking the decorations down!
It turns out not only was this man lazy, but he'd gone to extreme lengths to avoid a little work. When his wife asked him to help take the tree lights down, he'd made an excuse about needing something from the supermarket. He'd driven to the local store, parked the car in their car park and returned home on foot. He'd then crept into the house via the back door, run upstairs and got into the attic without anyone realizing, where he sat listening to the radio and making phone calls whilst his wife and children worked downstairs.
As the radio presenter pointed out: what happens if one of your wife's friends hears you? Well, I hope they did and he gets his come-uppance.
Of course, this man was being bone idle, but we sometimes avoid situations because we are frightened or wary of the consequences. In my latest release, "Hope's Betrayal", our hero is a naval man, Captain George Huntley and he is unused to feeling emotion. With his growing love for an unsuitable woman, Hope Tyler, who happens to be his prisoner, instead of facing up to his emotions Captain Huntley requests a reposting and in effect runs away?
But all actions have consequences and just as the man on the radio can't live in the roof forever, Huntley must return home when seriously injured on active service. And just as the man-in-the-roof must eventually face his wife, so Huntley once more comes face to face with the woman he loves, as in the excerpt below:
In a pain-induced nightmare where he travelled forever and yet got nowhere, George lost track of time. He lapsed in and out of consciousness. Sometimes he woke in daylight, other times in darkness, but always the coach bumping and grinding onward on the home journey. In his own way, Charles was a comfort, regaling George's more lucid hours with gossip from the Ton, tales of who was bedding whom and who had gambled away an inheritance. From the most part George listened through a haze, focusing on his brother's voice and trying not to faint.
From his hair roots to toe nails, every inch of Huntley's body hurt. His colleagues feted him a hero, for shielding Adams, but given the location of his injuries Huntley didn’t feel heroic, more like humiliated. Worse still, as if the indignity wasn’t enough with every bump in the road the searing pain in his shattered buttock and thigh, made it difficult to sit.
There was a subtle change in the air; a freshness sweeping in off the sea. Overhead, gulls screeched as they wheeled higher and higher on the currents. The light changed, becoming somehow brighter, almost blue-tinged and more dazzling. Through the haze of discomfort, George roused himself to look out of the window. He saw the sweep of a familiar hill, dotted with sheep. He gripped the ledge, wondering if he might make it home after all, watching with impatience as the hills subsided and became open fields.
"Not far to go now." Charles exuded suave boredom. "Ready to face mother?"
George grimaced. "I'd rather tackle the damn smugglers."
Charles examined his finger nails. "Well, there are compensations."
"The delightful Miss Tyler. No wonder you kept quiet about her. She's a gem and placated mother wonderfully, when news of your condition broke."
George shifted uncomfortably. The mention of Miss Tyler's name sent an unwanted excitement fizzing through his guts. When first injured, in a laudanum induced haze dreams of her as an angelic vision, had haunted him. As he resisted death's pull, it was Hope he wanted by his bedside, to hold her hand and feel her soothing touch on his forehead. In his darkest hour, he had believed one word of comfort from her and he would die at peace with the world.
But he hadn’t died, and as the days passed he had plenty of time to consider Miss Tyler's roll in events. From the moment he'd chased her on the beach, fate had been set in motion. If she didn’t smuggle, he wouldn’t have caught her. If she hadn’t wormed her way into his affections then he wouldn’t have been reposted…and he wouldn’t have organized that particular patrol, he wouldn’t have shot and killed a man…. There was no doubt; Hope was the author of his downfall.
Grace Elliot leads a double life as a veterinarian by day and author of historical romance by night. Grace believes intelligent people need to read romance as an antidote to the modern world. As an avid reader of historicals she turned to writing as a release from the emotionally draining side of veterinary work.
Grace lives near
and is addicted to cats. The Elliot household consists of five cats, two
teenage sons, one husband, a guinea pig - and the latest addition - a bearded
One wild, winter's night two worlds collide.
Known for his ruthless efficiency, Captain George Huntley is sent to stamp out smuggling on the south coast of England. On a night raid, the Captain captures a smuggler, but finds his troubles are just beginning when the lad turns out to be a lass, Hope Tyler.
With Hope as bait, the Captain sets a trap to catch the rest of the gang. But in a battle of wills, with his reputation at stake, George Huntley starts to respect feisty, independent Hope. Challenged by her sea-green eyes and stubborn loyalty Huntley now faces a new threat - his growing attraction to a sworn enemy. But a love where either Hope betrays her own kind, or Captain Huntley is court-marshaled, is not an easy destiny to follow.