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Monday Puzzler > Monday Puzzler - June 13, 2016

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message 1: by Cheri (new)

Cheri (cvenable16) | 136 comments One moment she was admiring the lavender-lined path snaking around the castle—the long, grayish-purple sprigs bouncing up and down as heavy bees collected their fragrant pollen—and in the next she was jumping about like a madwoman because one of those pesky little creatures found its way under and up her gown.

“A bee. A bee. There’s a bee,” Heroine cried in a frantic whisper, rushing about.

“Where?” her stepmother spun about, looking. “There’s no bee.”

“Under my gown,” Heroine cried, flapping at her skirts. “It’ll sting me.”

“Well—then let it,” her stepmother said through gritted teeth. “Better to stand still and comport yourself as a lady than to flail about like a loon.”

“Are you jesting?” Heroine asked in disbelief, shaking and swatting her gown as she crossed the lawn. “The last time I was stung, my hand remained swollen, red, and painful for five days. There isn’t a salve in existence to save me.”

“Stand still so I can help you,” her friend urged, following Heroine.

“The F’s are looking at us,” her stepmother whined, trailing behind them. She looked over her shoulder. “And following us.”

“I say, young lady!” Lord F called out. “What is the matter?”

Her stepmother, the baroness smiled tightly. “Not a thing, my lord.” She whipped around, growling through her teeth. “Heroine, I demand you stop this instant.”

And Heroine did—directly at the top of a gentle slope.

“Wait, wait…” She stood perfectly still for the barest of a second. “I think…it’s gone.” A sigh of relief poured out of her. “It is.” Her shoulders easing down, she turned around, only now noticing how the lawn slanted sharply to a large pond. “Well, it’s a good thing I didn’t fa—Yeeow!” An acute jab stabbed her left buttock.

She whipped around, swatting at her bottom, then mistakenly stepped on her hem. And then she fell, or rather, rolled, directly into the lake.

Her stepmother screamed. Her friend gasped. And Heroine, dragging herself out of the knee-deep water, tossed herself upon the grassy bank and broke into a laugh.

“Oh, Heroine!” her friend skidded down the hill. “Are you all right?”

“Yes, yes, I’m fine,” Heroine sputtered, wiping at a swag of hair that had fallen into her eyes. “C-Cold. But f-fine. At least the water wasn’t very deep over here.”

“I should have known you’d do something like this,” her stepmother hissed. “You clumsy cow.”

“I’ll get help,” her friend said in a quiet voice, throwing a disapproving glare at the baroness.

Heroine looked up, noticing the small crowd forming on the crest of the slope. The F twins smirked down their noses at her—though she had to admit they had no choice, as they were standing above her. And their father, the ruddy-faced Lord F, blinked at her as if she were a newly discovered bug specimen.

Standing, Heroine gathered handfuls of sopping fabric in her hands and began to ring herself out. She looked up from her task to see a young footman start down the hill. He took one look at the front of her gown and turned on his heel. “If—If you’d like, miss,” he said with his back to her, “I’ll fetch a blanket.” And then he took off running.

“Thank you,” Heroine replied, a question in her eyes. She wondered what made the servant so uncomfortable. Of course, it probably wasn’t every day that a silly woman jumped in their pond. Or…she looked down. The water had plastered the gown to her skin, making the pale blue fabric appear wholly see-through. Each rib bone, each breast, was shockingly visible in startling detail to anyone who would care to notice.

Wrapping an arm across her chest for modesty’s sake, she began to trudge up the hill, her sopping skirts clinging to her thighs and hampering her progress.

She realized that any normal young lady would be perfectly mortified to have fallen in a pond after such dramatics in front of a half-dozen people. And really, she expected to be more embarrassed tomorrow than she felt right now. But somehow she couldn’t summon the humiliation. Maybe it was because she didn’t care what these people thought. Or perhaps it was because after an exhausting ride in a carriage for four days with her stepmother and her wealth of criticisms, the splash in the pond felt downright revitalizing. Or maybe…she wasn’t surprised. From an early age she had accepted the fact that things just happened to her. Yes. That was it. Now if she hadn’t fallen into the pond, that would have been a surprise.

She stopped short when a rather large-sized pair of polished Hessians came into view.

Her gaze traveled up the length of the man’s legs, from his knees to his athletically toned thighs covered in fawn-colored breeches—which were sinfully snug—and stopped somewhere around his lean hips and flat stomach.

“Why is it, Miss Heroine,” came a familiar deep voice, “that every time I meet you, you’re quite damp and speckled with mud?”

Never the one to be shy, Heroine raised her head to meet Hero’s beautiful stare, which promptly stunned her to silence. He was so remarkably handsome. How in the world did his acquaintances manage to concentrate on anything in his presence? She couldn’t say anything. Her mouth just opened and shut like a fish. She probably smelled like one too, now that she thought of it.

After a moment longer than she would have liked, she managed a wobbly smile. But the effect she hoped it had on him was ruined when the same wet swag of hair fell again, covering her face. He chuckled softly, smoothing it out of the way for her.

She had half expected to see him here, as he was related to the (Hero’s last name) and they were certainly going to invite more than the potential brides and their families to even out the numbers, but she would have preferred he didn’t observe her so…so soggy.

His eyes sparkled with suppressed laughter. “What exactly was the problem, dear lady?” He crossed his arms over his chest. “Was there a problem? Or did you just feel like going for a swim?”

“Y-Yes—I mean no. There was a bee.”


message 2: by Leigh-Ayn (new)

Leigh-Ayn | 1153 comments Haha that sounds brilliant hahaha
There was a bee!! Hehehe
Oh my can't wait to see which book this is so I can read it!


message 3: by Manda (new)

Manda Collins (manda_collins) | 1895 comments Mod
Bees in historical romance never fail to make me think of Anthony Bridgerton. Which is a good thing:) Curious to know what this is.


message 4: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Hill | 487 comments That sounds like me (: looking forward to it, im pretty sure I've never read it


Aly is so frigging bored | 857 comments Mod
I think I've read this :)


message 6: by Priya (new)

Priya (priyachennareddy) Manda its the same with me too! Any mention of bee, I would be thinking about Anthony.

This one sounds interesting. I will wait for the reveal.


message 7: by Calila (new)

Calila Manda wrote: "Bees in historical romance never fail to make me think of Anthony Bridgerton. Which is a good thing:) Curious to know what this is."

Same!


Stacey is Sassy (staceyissassy) | 1249 comments This sounds wonderful. I can't wait for the reveal :-) ♥


message 9: by Daniellegn (new)

Daniellegn | 212 comments it seems familiar but I'm not sure. sounds very fun, though


message 10: by Manda (new)

Manda Collins (manda_collins) | 1895 comments Mod
Glad I'm not the only one re: Anthony B and bees :)


message 11: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Hill | 487 comments Manda before I even read your comment I thought the same thing lol!


message 12: by Stacey is Sassy (new)

Stacey is Sassy (staceyissassy) | 1249 comments Me too Manda. I think there was another book I've read with a bee sting in it but for the life of me, I can't think of it.


message 13: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Hill | 487 comments Stacey - I think there is a Grace Burrowes book where a lady dies while having lemonade with the heroine?? Buuuut don't quote me on that!


message 14: by Stacey is Sassy (new)

Stacey is Sassy (staceyissassy) | 1249 comments Rachel wrote: "Stacey - I think there is a Grace Burrowes book where a lady dies while having lemonade with the heroine?? Buuuut don't quote me on that!"

I've read a couple of Grace Burrowes books, maybe that was it? Too many books...

Not complaining ;) ♥


message 15: by Dls (new)

Dls | 2080 comments Mod
I haven't read this. The lavender makes me think of s couple other books (Judith ivory's the Beast, Sherry Thomas' Ravishing the Heiress).


message 16: by Irisheyes (new)

Irisheyes | 892 comments I haven't a clue!


message 17: by Leigh-Ayn (new)

Leigh-Ayn | 1153 comments Hahha I thought the same thing too Manda!


message 18: by Marita (new)

Marita (bluestockingandproud) | 43 comments @Stacey I swear there are a couple of bee-related scenes in Lisa Kleypas' Mine Till Midnight because of Amelia Hathaway's debilitating fear of them

As for the puzzler, I didn't immediately think of Anthony but I felt like the whole scene had a very Bridgerton-esque feel to it :)


message 19: by Stacey is Sassy (new)

Stacey is Sassy (staceyissassy) | 1249 comments Marita wrote: "@Stacey I swear there are a couple of bee-related scenes in Lisa Kleypas' Mine Till Midnight because of Amelia Hathaway's debilitating fear of them

As for the puzzler, I didn't immediately think o..."


It could have been L K's. I know that Anthony's stuck with me for a long time after reading it. You just can't comprehend the loss. It still makes me sad :/ ♥


message 20: by Amber (new)

Amber | 161 comments This sounds great. I can't wait to read it. I though the same as most of you ladies, felt very Bridgerton. I also thought of the Hathaway's. It this novel is anything like those it'll be brilliant.


message 21: by Nicole (new)

Nicole (nikanne) | 222 comments Me too Manda! I immediately thought of Anthony Bridgerton.

Sounds like this will be a great read!


message 22: by Cheri (new)

Cheri (cvenable16) | 136 comments Bees too also make me think of Anthony Birdgerton :) This however is from At the Bride Hunt Ball by Olivia Parker. Loved this series!


Aly is so frigging bored | 857 comments Mod
Nailed it!


message 24: by Leigh-Ayn (new)

Leigh-Ayn | 1153 comments I was sneaky and found it using Google!!!! What an awesome fun read!!!! Good one!!!


message 25: by Stacey is Sassy (new)

Stacey is Sassy (staceyissassy) | 1249 comments I'm going to buy it today and hopefully read it soon. Lots of really high ratings for this one. Thanks for sharing :-) ♥


message 26: by Phoenix77 (new)

Phoenix77 | 346 comments I loved this series! I wonder what happened to Olivia Parker since she seems to have disappeared after the third book was released. Her author website hints of a fourth book in the works but that was updated over a year ago.


Aly is so frigging bored | 857 comments Mod
Phoenix77 wrote: "I loved this series! I wonder what happened to Olivia Parker since she seems to have disappeared after the third book was released. Her author website hints of a fourth book in the works but that w..."

I wanted to ask the same thing. I really liked her writing style and hoped she'll publish more :(


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Books mentioned in this topic

At the Bride Hunt Ball (other topics)

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Olivia Parker (other topics)