She tilted her face up, careful to keep her lips from quite touching his. “I think this is dangerously close to looking like a compromising position, your majesty.”
“I don’t think so.” He shook his head, barely moving side to side.
“No?” she whispered.
He dropped her hand, slipping his other arm around her just below his other hand. He pulled her flat against him. “I think this would look much more like a compromising position.”
She raised her eyebrows, meeting his eyes steadily. “I didn’t know I asked for an example.”
He slid his hands down her silk dress lightly, following the slight curves of her figure. “You are a very beautiful woman, Adela.”
“Perhaps I share that with—”
He kissed her, holding her tight to his chest.
She let him for a moment, enjoying the feeling of his hard body against hers before she pulled back, doing her best to look admonishing. “Your majesty, I’m engaged.”
“And?” he asked, eyes still on her lips.
“And that means this is completely improper.”
He bent, leaving his mouth nearly touching hers. “You don’t seem to be pushing me away.”
“It’s still improper.”
“Doesn’t feel that way to me.” He shifted her against him, sliding a hand further down her back, pressing her hips into him.
She leaned back. “I have a feeling Lord Auborn would not share that particular view, your majesty.”
He raised an eyebrow. “You’d really rather have Auborn than me?”
“I’d rather be respectfully married than end up being the king’s bed warmer for a night,” she said, adding as an afterthought, “your majesty.”
“Why not both?” he asked.
“Something tells me that having improper relations with you would ruin my prospects with Lord Auborn, your majesty,” she said. “He does not seem to be a particularly forgiving man in that aspect.”
“I could make it up to him, I’m sure.”
“I’m the daughter of a poor baron, your majesty. I can’t risk what prospects I have because I would like…” she cut herself off, pretending she hadn’t always intended to say it.
He smiled, prompted, “You would like…?”
She met his eyes, held them. “It doesn’t especially matter now, does it?”
“Oh, I think it does.”
“Your majesty.” Adela finally pushed herself back an inch, the chair behind her stopping any true retreat. “I’m sure there are more than enough women in your dining hall right now who would be willing to make you feel better for the night.”
“And they’ll all expect something from me.”
“You think I won’t?” She cocked an eyebrow.
“I think you understand what it’s like to lose a parent.”
She snorted. “Yes, but I don’t believe I ever used that excuse to try to get someone into my bed.”
Adela Tilden has always been more ambitious than her station in life might allow. A minor nobleman’s daughter on a failing barony, Adela’s prospects seem dire outside of marrying well-off. When Adela catches the eye of the crown prince, Edward, however, well-off doesn’t seem to be a problem. Thrown into a world of politics and intrigue, Adela might have found all the excitement she ever wanted—if she can manage to leave her past behind.
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Genre – Alternate Historical Fiction
Rating – PG-13
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