Now she must assure herself that he was none the worse for it, dear boy. That dear boy, Alexander Henry Grantham, Viscount Sheridan, was in his twenty-eighth year, and he was as kindly cooperative of his godmother's second study of his person as he had been her first. This inspection was nothing new. He had been all of five the first time he was aware of it.
On that occasion Lady Rivendale had swept into the nursery, his own mother a few steps in her wake, and made an extraordinary fuss over him. There had been comments about the unfortunate darkening of his hair, from toffee brown to bittersweet chocolate. And was there nothing anyone could do about the cowlick that surely pointed due north like a compass needle? His eyes, she also noted as she raised his chin, had lost every hint that they might be green or hazel and now were as deeply brown as his hair.
Why was he so pale?
There was also a critique of the shape of his nose, which was pronounced as substantial as an eagle's beak by his godmother and aquiline by his mother. She said nothing about his mouth, which he remembered thinking was a kindness, for surely his lower lip had been quivering by then. Still, he stood there and accepted it, watching her gravely from eyes that she had already pronounced too large for his thin face. She liked the way he stood, though, and complimented him on his soldier's bearing. For a long time afterward Sherry had thought the "us" he was hugging were the soft twin pillows of her breasts.
Of course he did. How could he refuse a woman with such important breasts? She would disappear for months, sometimes years, then announce herself without advance notice or invitation. She was always welcome. Presents arrived at odd times, never for the usual celebratory reasons like birthdays or Christmas, but simply because she thought of him. Later, when his younger sister reached the great age of six and exchanged the nursery for the schoolroom, Lady Rivendale proclaimed this also made her of interest and showered her with attentions that had been formerly reserved for him.
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He did not mind overmuch. His godmother was in every way generous with her affections.
The more she gave of herself, the more she seemed to have to give. For proof of this, he had only to think of the visit she made to Eton in the month following the death of his parents. A great-uncle on his mother's side was now guardian to him and his sister, but the charge lay heavily on his shoulders, more burden than privilege, and he gratefully surrendered all duties to Lady Rivendale when she applied for them. At the funeral service he had been overheard to say, "Deuced irresponsible of Sheridan and my niece to die with their children yet to be raised.
What am I to do with the two brats? Oh, it is a simple enough thing with the lad. He is at Eton at least, and his future is set. But the girl? I can get nothing from her save tears. When Lady Rivendale arrived at Eton, she had his sister in tow. It was one of the few times she did not inspect his person before enveloping him in her plump arms and plumper breasts; it was also the first time he was called Sherry. Viscount Sheridan. His father's title, now his, but somehow uniquely his. No one had ever call his father Sherry, not even the dauntless Lady Rivendale.
On the occasion of that visit she had announced they would be family now, and she said it with such practicality that Sherry and his sister never questioned the good sense of it. Kearns says the frock coat will be repaired to its former fit; the trousers have already been surrendered to the ragpicker. Sherry blinked. He should not have been surprised by the remark, for Lady Rivendale always spoke her mind. Most often it was a refreshing discourse.
He found, however, when the subject was his backside the notion of such plain speaking was rather alarming. No, you must not take offense, for none was meant.
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Lady Rivendale smiled deeply. She loved his wry tone. Sherry might be a tad high in the instep, but at least he had the good sense to know it.
Tis the Season to Be Sinful
Sherry regarded her gravely. Clapping her hands together smartly as she laughed, her ladyship sat back comfortably on the settee. That is perfectly splendid. Now, what of your companion? I suppose she emerged unscathed. Save For Later. Create a List. Summary The Season For Surprises. Read on the Scribd mobile app Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere. Start your free 30 days. Page 1 of 1. Close Dialog Are you sure?
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Also remove everything in this list from your library. Emmanuel simply rolled his eyes. Lady Edric inhaled sharply. It does not matter.
But I informed Lady Gefferton of what happened to you. Was she not scandalized that you expected her daughter to shackle herself to one such as I?
She met you and she saw that you are a good man who would make a great husband to her daughter. Lady Edric deliberately misunderstood. However, even for her, this was going too far. It was only his love for her, and his knowledge that everything she did, she thought was for his own good, that stopped him from becoming extremely angry. I shall just let it all play itself out and when it ends in disaster, then Aunt Helen will have learned her lesson.
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Emmanuel sat back with a sigh. Diana was not surprised that Isabella was still on the subject of her prospective husband. This had been going on for three days now, and nothing she said seemed to reassure the girl. Perhaps you can read to him. Diana sighed tiredly, getting to her feet. All right?