By Georgette Heyer

On the eve of conflict, passions are working high...

"A tremendous achievement...vivid, actual, dramatic...the description of Waterloo is magnificent."―DAILY MAIL

"My favourite ancient novelist."―MARGARET DRABBLE

IN THE summer time OF 1815, with Napolean Bonaparte marching down from the north, Brussels is a whirlwind of events, balls and soirees. within the swirling social scene surrounding the Duke of Wellington and his noble aides de camp, not anyone draws extra cognizance than the gorgeous, outrageous younger widow girl Barbara Childe. On their first assembly, speeding Colonel Charles Audley proposes to her, yet even their betrothal does not calm her wild habit. ultimately, with the conflict of Waterloo raging simply miles away, civilians fleeing and the wounded pouring again into town, woman Barbara discovers the place her middle particularly lies, and prefer a real noblewoman, she rises to the get together, and to the calls for of affection, existence and war...

"Wonderful characters, based, witty writing, perfect
period aspect, and rapturously romantic. Georgette Heyer
achieves what the remainder of us merely aspire to."―KATIE FFORDE

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The unforeseen can't be typical. ’ ‘Was it unforeseen? I had now not idea that attainable. ’ ‘Certainly. on the finish of every week i would count on you to claim simply that, yet you've gotten acknowledged it inside ten mins of constructing my acquaintance, and so have taken my breath away. cross on: i admire to be shocked. ’ ‘That is all,’ stated the Colonel. back she solid him that contemplating look. ‘You are very smart, or extremely simple. that's it? ’ ‘I haven’t a notion,’ responded the Colonel. ‘Ah! is that this strategy—from a employees officer? ’ ‘No, it's the fact. ’ ‘But, my pal, you're brilliant! you'll subsequent be making me a suggestion! ’ He nodded. She observed the twinkle in his eye and replied to it. ‘Let us sit. I don’t care to bop any further. who're you? ’ He pressured her to proceed dancing the size of the room, after which led her off the ground to the doorway doorways, and during them into the 1st antechamber. ‘My identify is Charles Audley; my military rank lieutenant-colonel; my regimental rank, significant. What else shall I let you know? ’ She interrupted him. ‘Audley . . . Oh, i've got it! you're Worth’s brother. Why did the Prince current you to me? ’ ‘Because I requested him to. That used to be my in simple terms procedure. ’ She sat down upon a sofa opposed to the wall, and with a circulate of her hand invited him to take his position beside her. He did so, and after a second she acknowledged along with her unusual, boyish curtness: ‘I imagine I by no means observed you earlier than this night, did I? ’ ‘Never. i've been hired within the Peninsula, and later in Paris and Vienna. yet i've got a bit the benefit of you. You, I daresay, had by no means heard of me prior to, yet I had heard of you. ’ ‘That’s horrid! ’ she acknowledged fast. ‘Why? ’ ‘Oh! humans by no means say great issues approximately me. What have you ever been informed? ’ ‘That you have been attractive. ’ ‘And? ’ ‘And disastrous. ’ ‘I don’t brain that, yet will not be you're taking care? ’ ‘You are forgetting that i'm a soldier, and for this reason inured to dangers. ’ She laughed. ‘You’ve a confoundedly prepared tongue! Come, take me again into the ballroom: my recognition won’t stand all this sitting approximately in antechambers, i will be able to let you know. ’ He rose immediately, yet acknowledged: ‘I ask yourself why you selected to inform me that? ’ She too used to be on her toes; she needed to lookup to satisfy his eyes, yet just a little. ‘You don’t love it, do you? ’ ‘No. I don’t. ’ ‘Nevertheless, it's the fact. I play reasonable, you spot. ’ He checked out her for a second, part smiling, then raised his head, and held up a finger. ‘Listen! have you learnt that waltz they're enjoying? it's been the fad in Vienna. Will you dance with me back? ’ A colour of admiration got here into her eyes; she acknowledged appreciatively: ‘The deuce take it! I believe—yes, i feel that was once a snub! yet you want to no longer snub me! ’ He became in the direction of her, and took either palms in a powerful clasp. ‘Don’t converse in poor health of your self, and that i won’t. There! ’ He raised her fingers one after one other to his lips, and flippantly kissed them. ‘My dance, i believe, woman Barbara? ’ They went again into the ballroom; the Colonel’s arm encircled that supple waist; a gloved hand lay gentle as a feather on his shoulder; Barbara murmured: ‘You waltz charmingly, Colonel.

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