Taken from the 18th of September 1805 edition of The Gazette1, London
From the desk of Miss Anna Felan, writer of the gossip column “Noble News”
Our dear readers know that what we print concerning certain members of the ton, many based on rumors, are often proved true. This story is no different, no matter how preposterous it may seem. I had the honor of interviewing Miss Julia Wallace, the eldest daughter of the well-respected Baron Wallace, concerning rumors that she and the Duke of Elmhurst are romantically involved.
Miss Felan: Miss Wallace, is it true that when you and His Grace first met, he accosted you? That must have left you feeling extremely vulnerable.
Miss Wallace: That is not completely true. You see, I was on my way to Mrs. Rutley’s office—she’s the headmistress of the school, but I’m sure you were already aware of that fact. Regardless, when I went to knock on the door, it opened, and the duke ran right into me. If he had not grabbed me by the waist, I would’ve landed on the floor on my backside for sure.”
Editor’s note – At this point, Miss Wallace’s cheeks resembled a pair of ripe tomatoes.
Miss Wallace continued: I’m sure his intentions were pure. They had to be, did they not?”
Miss Felan: I’m not here to judge a gentleman’s motives, Miss Wallace. Though I think we can both agree that his hands had surely not helped themselves.
Editor’s note – After this comment, Miss Wallace quickly drank an entire glass of water without taking a single breath.
Miss Felan: Let’s move on. What concerns me more are the rumors that he accused you of stealing a family heirloom. A pocket watch, I believe? Is it true that your headmistress punished you by forcing you into his company?
Editor’s note – Miss Wallace remained silent for so long, I considered concluding the interview right there and then. She responded to the question, however, before I was forced to do so.
Miss Wallace: It’s all true. But there is far more to the story than what you’ve been led to believe. Many factors were at play that day. Those close to the duke—and I shan’t mention any names, so please don’t ask—they wished to harm him. I sought to help him but found myself… enamored with him to the point that I was willing to… Well, we can just leave it at that.
Miss Felan: Please, do tell, Miss Wallace. What were you willing to do?
Editor’s note – She refused to respond, unfortunately for us, so I moved to another important topic.
Miss Felan: I understand you carry a deep secret. Can you tell us what that is?
Miss Wallace smiled and replied, “Well, I certainly cannot reveal any secrets, but perhaps you will settle for a wonderful tale of suspicion, trickery, and love…”
Miss Julia Wallace’s romance is one for the ages, but the journey to love is not an easy one. Her story can be found in Duke of Madness, Book One in the sweet Sisterhood of Secrets series by USA Today bestselling author Jennifer Monroe.
- This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, brands, media, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner.
Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental. ↩︎