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Georgiana and Jordan

Georgiana and Jordan

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Published by Etta
A short unfinished love story...
A short unfinished love story...

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Published by: Etta on Nov 04, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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10/21/2011

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Chapter 1
 Hawthorne Mansion, Danbury, England. 1816.
George Ashton stared out her window into the pouring rain. She sighed, longing for thecomfort of her horse, Thane. In her current mood, she would very well have gone out for a ride just to get away from that horrid crow that she was cursed to call Aunt. Having justreturned from finishing school, of which she was most certainly finished, she wasshocked - no horrified to find her home under the control of that tyrant, Aunt Eileen. Her father, whom she had always preferred at a distance, had let her aunt take over anddespite George’s attempts to get him to force her aunt off the throne, he seemed contentto let her rule and add his own two pence when necessary. George had never been particularly fond of her father and he had always returned the sentiment. He had wanted a boy and had never hid that fact from his daughter. At first George listened to her mother and tried to be the best daughter he could have in the hopes that he would realize that shewas as fine as any male. But when her mother died, George, at the age of seven, stoppedtrying. It was futile and she took comfort in the fact that one day she would leaveHawthorne for good. Finishing school was merely a temporary escape route. She detestedit but, with her only other choice being her home, it had been no choice at all. Somedayshe would get married and leave for wherever her husband’s home was. She wasn’topposed to marriage, the right marriage; a marriage where both parties were in agreementand she would be regarded as a partner not an elevated servant.A sharp pain pulled her out of her reflections and caused her to look down in disgust atthe needle work her aunt had ordered (and her father had agreed!) her to do in order to“improve herself”. A drop of blood formed where the needle had pricked her and in amoment of defiance she smeared it across a half completed swan. Standing up, she smiledgrimly and placed her work on the seat; hopefully her aunt would discover it, since sheseemed to find sneaking into other people’s rooms an amusing sport. When she lookedout the window it was to discover that the rain had stopped. Every leaf glistened and beckoned her outside. Eager to acquiesce she picked up her riding crop which lay on her  bed. She took in her clothing and shrugged; in her opinion she was ready for a ride in breeches, a white cotton shirt and sturdy black boots. She wore the breeches more to defyand scandalize her aunt than anything. She flicked a glance at a jacket she had thrownover a chair but rejected the idea and instead unpinned her hair and ran her fingersthrough the long black tresses with a silent apology to her maid, Ruth. After all
in for a penny, in for a pound 
; if she was going to look like a hoyden then she might as well do it properly. Regarding herself in the mirror on her vanity, she grinned; she really looked awild thing.She left her room, made her way down the hallway then crept towards the stairs whereshe stopped and listened. She didn’t fear a confrontation with her aunt but then again if she could avoid it, why bother. Hearing nothing she continued down the stairs and, takingthe back entrance out, emerged in the dense forest that formed a semi-circle around themanor. She followed the path leading to the stables, enjoying the aromatic smell of wettrees. Leaving the cover of the green tunnel, she entered the stable and was surprised to
 
not see anyone there. She had expected at least one of the grooms and had been certainshe would see little Nicolas, the chief groom’s son, who could not ordinarily be separatedfrom the horses. Shrugging her wonder off George headed for Thane’s stall. The groomscalled her ‘The Goddess’ and George agreed; the beautiful beast was snow white frommane to tail with a black flame on her forehead. At the moment Thane was nuzzling her  pocket in which lay an apple which George had picked up on her way out. With a smile,George held the apple out, saying, “I knew you’d like that, smart girl.” The horse took theapple from her hand and crunched it contentedly. She ran her fingers through the horse’smane then, opening the stall, entered and set about saddling her. After which she ledThane out of the stable, mounted and urged her into a slow trot towards the woods whichacted as a boundary between Hawthorne and Chesterfield. Feeling Thane’s restlessness,she let the horse gather speed and go into a full blown gallop. Trees whizzed by andrabbits scampered in the underbrush as Thane flew over the ground at an amazing speed,winding through the woods. George was just imagining how wonderful it would be tocontinue at that pace forever with the wind tearing at her hair, tossing it wildly, when aloud bang came. Thane stopped so suddenly, George was nearly thrown over her head.The sound came again and George realized what it was; someone very close was using agun.Dismounting, she looped Thane’s rein around a sturdy oak, waited a minute, whisperingcomforting words in her ear with the hope that she would stand quietly, and struck outtowards Chesterfield where she suspected the sounds had come from. As she walked, arage was building up in her; she hated being scared and she hated surprises and the ideathat someone, who she would bet was trespassing, had managed to do both to her irkedher and as she reached the clearing, fueled her into yelling out at the three men she saw.“What in the bloody hell do you think you’re doing!?”They all turned in her direction obviously startled. Two of them were on horses and heldrifles while the other was operating some sort of catapult. The one on the roan was one toturn heads, with auburn hair and sparkling blue eyes, the other on a magnificent black stallion, was…she couldn’t call him merely handsome - although she grudgingly allowedhim that - it seemed such a small description. On his horse he sat tall and proud, lean andsuperbly fit. His jaw was firm and well carved, his nose straight. The breeze lightlyruffled his hair which was blue-black and beneath equally dark brows, surprising grayeyes observed her with thinly veiled annoyance. George was momentarily distracted butthe aggressive virility and uncompromising authority that he seemed to exude brought her anger back into boil. How dare the man sit there looking so arrogant when he and hisfriends were obviously prowlers of some sort!? She tossed her locks over her head, prepared to brow beat them into contrition when Gray-eyes asked in a voice laced withcondescension.“Who are you?”
 
She bristled at his tone and assumed a haughty look which would have sent a lesser manscurrying. Gray-eyes met her stare with a supercilious eyebrow raised and almost forcedher to look away as she snapped.“Miss Georgina Ashton.”She had put in enough arrogance and impatience into her words to distinguish herself astheir better but they didn’t seemed impressed and instead rode forward and circled her like wolves would a rabbit. Auburn hair seemed to find the whole thing exceedinglyfunny, much to George’s disgust, and asked in laughter tinged voice.“Would it be too much to ask why you’re here Miss Ashton?”George heard the patronizing tone and felt her hackles rise; she itched to wipe the grin off his face; perhaps a bloodied nose would do the trick. “I am here, sirs, because you seemto be under the impression that this land is open to everyone. Now if you and your companion,” she nodded towards the third man who she couldn’t distinguish but whoseemed to be avidly watching the by-play, “value your freedom then I suggest you leavethe premises. Now.” The men exchanged looks and then Gray-eyes said, “You seem to beunder some misconception, Lady Georgina. You see, this land belongs to me and if youare extremely lucky I will refrain from pressing charges against you for trespassing.” Hiseyes had raked over her contemptuously when he’d said the word ‘lady’ implying that hedidn’t think her one and George felt her face heat up as she said more to herself than toeither of them.“This land is your land.”The realization of what she had just done hit her in the stomach and she valiantly prayedfor the earth to open up and swallow her.Chapter 2George looked up; one of them had spoken. It was Auburn hair and he said, “Perhaps youare lost, dear lady and I could take you home.” Then he stopped with a smile that Georgewas sure could stop hearts, not hers of course. “I forget my manners. Roger Haverford atyour service.” He gave a bow in the saddle then as though as an after thought. “Earl of Wynding.” It was on the tip of her tongue to say it was a pleasure to make hisacquaintance when the ridiculousness of it hit her and stilled her tongue. Instead sheimpaled Roger Haverford with a look to freeze the Thames. He was not daunted andcontinued with. “I would hate myself thoroughly if I were to allow a damsel in distress towander unattended. At this point even Gray-eyes rolled his fascinating orbs at the sky andthe hilarity of it had George struggling to hold back her laughter as she informed Roger that there would be no need at all to escort her home for she lived just beyond the woods.This elicited another look between them and had George wondering, irritated, if theywere in some way telepathic. “On the contrary, Miss Ashton, there is every need to do sosince you seem to not have a mount, I feel honor bound to take you back on mine.”

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