My dear sister has fled into the night rather than marry a rake like the Duke of Temberlay. There’s a reason why he’s known as Devil—several in fact! Without this marriage, my family faces poverty, and I will be forced to seek employment to support my mother and two small sisters. I am considering a desperate course of action, Annabelle—taking my sister’s place at the altar. By the time Temberlay discovers I’m an imposter, things will, ahem, have gone too far for an annulment. I’m willing—just to save my family of course, not because he’s the handsomest man alive, and a duke, and a war hero with a fortune.
Do I dare to marry him, Annabelle? Waiting breathlessly for your advice!
Lady Marguerite Lynton from How To Deceive A Duke by Lecia Cornwall
Dear Lady Marguerite,
I am also breathlessly awaiting my advice for that is quite the quandary you are in! If you must seek employment, do join me, Lady Brandon, Lady Roxbury and Lady Wycliff and become one of The London Weekly’s infamous Writing Girls. However, we hardly compare to a devilish duke, who is a wealthy war hero to boot!
The part of me that reads romantic novels says Yes! Marry him in secret! But my practical side encourages you to make your feelings plain and propose to him (that alone is scandalous!). In seeking a compromise, I spoke to my friend, Lady Charlotte Brandon, who is a notorious schemer (famously of Three Schemes and a Scandal) but her suggestion included highway robbery, assorted disguises and all sorts of scandalous behavior taking place in the dead of the night.
Above all, I encourage you to live daringly and courageously, for I have recently discovered that the whole world opens up if you do.
Annabelle from Seducing Mr. Knightly
Reprinted with permission from The London Weekly
Question: If you were in Lady Marguerite’s situation, would you marry the duke?