Elijah Banks cannot allow his childhood friend to continue to be shamed this way. It's been almost an hour past the time when the wedding was to start, and that bounder still hasn't shown up. Unable to sit still a second longer, Elijah does the only thing that seems logical from where he stands: kidnap the bride and marry her himself in order to escape this scandal with one far more forgiving for a young lady's reputation.
The only trouble is, she has a secret...but so does he; hers is big...but his is bigger.
“Nobody has to know he jilted you,” he said, reaching forward to push the hair sweeping across her forehead behind her ear.
“No,” he corrected. “All they know for sure is a wedding is not currently taking place. What they don't know is if it was the groom who jilted the bride or the bride who jilted the groom.”
Amelia eyed him curiously. “No, I'm fairly certain they all know it was the groom who jilted the bride. My mother and father are both out there.”
“Yes, and they are doing a wonderful job acting as if they're waiting for
their daughter's wedding to take place.”
“Acting?” she said, her eyes narrowing in on him.
“Acting,” he confirmed. “See, your mother is sitting in her pew, dabbing her eyes with a handkerchief while your father is pacing a hole in the wooden platform just outside the front door of the church. Both are playing their roles perfectly, giving off the illusion to the rest of the guests that they are just waiting for the wedding to begin any moment.”
“Which seems to be less likely to happen as the minutes pass.”
“Exactly,” Elijah agreed. “Which is why you need to act now before someone discovers your game.”
He nodded once. “Yes, madam, your game.” He picked up her petite hand and wrapped his fingers around it. “I'm not as dimwitted as the rest of them. I see what's really going on here.”
“At least you do, because I have no idea what you're talking about.”
He ignored her. “I almost fell for it, too.”
“Fell for what?” she burst out in hysteria, presumably due to her current situation, lacing her voice.
“You're jilting your groom,” he said evenly, meeting her eyes.
A shadow crossed her face and she cleared her throat. Twice. “What are you suggesting?”
“I'm not suggesting anything. I'm just merely making mention of the fact that the wedding has yet to begin, and both the bride and the groom have yet to be seen. How does a guest such as myself truly know whether it was the bride or the groom who didn't come today? How do I—a random guest—know that the bride and groom were not so in love with the other they could hardly wait another day and decided to elope?”
“All right, well, perhaps that scenario isn't very believable, but the other very well could be possible.” He took a deep breath. “Amelia, listen to me, I know you're a very strong young lady and you come from a very important family; but none of that will matter come tomorrow when this is all over the scandal sheets.”
“I know,” she said with a swallow.
“Then see the sense in what I'm saying and marry me.”
Rose will be awarding a $100 gift card to Amazon.com to a randomly drawn commenter during this tour and her Reviews Tour.
April 8: Romantic Historical Lovers
April 9: Once Upon A Book
April 10: Tiffany Talks Books
April 11: Sharing Links and Wisdom
April 12: Erzabet's Enchantments
April 15: Coffee and A Book Anytime
April 16: My Devotional Thoughts
April 17: Words of Wisdom from The Scarf Princess
April 19: Romancing the Book
April 19: STOP 2 Bunny's Review
Author Bio and Links:
USA Today Bestselling Author of ten unusually unusual historical romances that have been known to include scarred heroes, feisty heroines, marriage-producing scandals, far too much scheming, naughty literature and always a sweet happily-ever-after. When not escaping to another world via reading or writing a book, she spends her time chasing two young boys around the house, being haunted by wild animals, or sitting on the swing in the backyard where she has to use her arms as shields to deflect projectiles AKA: balls, water balloons, sticks, pinecones,
and anything else one of them picks up to hurl at his brother who just happens to be hiding behind her.