Lady Katherine Drummond plays by society’s rules, even after the Ton turns on her. Shunned by her peers, she keeps up appearances by day but allows her true self out in the privacy of The Market. There, in the arms of one man, she comes alive. So much so, she signs a contract to be his for six months. Despite never having seen his face and knowing him only as Sir, she fears losing her heart to the man who breaks through her defenses. Lord Raymond Tarkenton, the Earl of Heathington, despises being one of the most sought after bachelors of the Ton. He could never ask a woman of his circle to submit to his sexual needs, and a mistress would never be an option. For now, one masked woman at The Market holds his undivided attention. When he realizes that his masked lover and Lady Katherine Drummond are one and the same, he must find a way to convince her that they are bound together by more than the straps at her wrists and the contract they signed. He must reveal himself and his love to her. But will she accept him for more than a sexual escape.
“Why is it you were compelled to make me wait when you were aware I was here and ready? This is not how we should start this arrangement.”
“I was delayed.” She met his gaze, hers teamed with desire, hope, defiance, and perhaps even a tinge of fear. Mostly promising reactions, the defiance would need to be addressed.
“You will of course be punished.” He paused. “When I am ready.”
“Yes, Sir.” Her eyes lit up with his pronouncement.
“Not when you are, and it is clear you are.” Yes, Kat was the exact woman he needed in his bed. She fit him, was a perfect foil for him, for his base compulsion. No. He must be caught up in the moment. She was no more than a desirable woman.
He sat next to her on the bed and caressed the outer edge of one breast. “It was good of you to tell me the truth, Kat. You must always tell me the truth, just as I will always tell you the truth. Do you understand?”
“I will always be honest with you, Sir.” Surprise flitted across her features as the truth of her vow rang through her words and warmed him.
“Do you trust me, Kat?” Curiosity got the better of him.
She hesitated, her thoughts whirling like crazy behind her beautiful eyes. “No.” She finally responded and dropped her gaze. He stopped caressing her soft flesh.
Trepidation reared its head before logic squashed the anomaly. His pulse thrummed through his veins. “And yet you let me restrain you. Perhaps you trust me more than you think?”
She glanced up at him. “Maybe a little.”