The seventh and last novella in the “Skirmish & Scandal” series was released on Amazon yesterday, a day early! That is certainly better than a day late! What better way to end this novella series than with C. P. Odom’s book? We are happy to have Colin’s novella, Skirmish & Scandal, for which the series is the namesake, available for your reading pleasure.
Skirmish & Scandal Blurb
Astounding! Mr. Darcy’s baited hook is for Elizabeth Bennet!
In the Regency era, surface appearances of politeness and civility often conceal more intense and hostile activity. More than one wealthy or noble family of seemingly sterling reputation is torn apart and sometimes all but exterminated by savage intra-family feuds.
That situation unexpectedly confronts Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet in Skirmish and Scandal when Darcy’s interest in Elizabeth as a future mistress of Pemberley becomes known to Lady Catherine de Bourgh and her noble Matlock relations. Determined to prevent an affront to the reputation of their aristocratic clan, the most prominent members of the family gather with Lady Catherine to confront Darcy and force him to choose a more suitable wife. The resulting conflict and its aftermath involve furious arguments, abduction, pursuit, and personal clashes that narrowly avert meetings on the field of honour.
How can such emotionally intense and seemingly insurmountable personal conflicts between the couple result in an amorous resolution?
Wow! It sounds like Darcy is in for quite a confrontation! How will he handle this interference? Ooh, I cannot wait for you to read it and find out! It is delicious!
The following excerpt is from the beginning of the first chapter. Colonel Fitzwilliam finds Darcy in the billiards room at Rosings, and an interesting conversation ensues.
Thursday, April 14, 1812
Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam heard the familiar click of billiard balls when he entered his aunt’s house. The rather strange conversation with Miss Bennet was still on his mind, and he knew of no others in the residence who played billiards than his cousin, so he turned into the game room to find Darcy playing himself.
“Looking for a game, Cuz?” Fitzwilliam asked, his teeth flashing white against his heavily tanned face. “Or would you rather remain sunk in stolid and sombre introspection?”
Darcy looked up dourly, but Fitzwilliam’s smile only broadened. “None of that now. By this time, you should know I am immune to the famous ‘Darcy Glare.’ So, do you want a game or not?”
“Suit yourself,” Darcy said tartly. “You rack.”
Fitzwilliam chuckled as he gathered the balls into the rack, expertly rolled it into position so all the balls touched, and whipped the rack off with flair. Darcy snorted to himself in fond amusement. Richard does most things with flair—plays billiards, rides horses, commands troops…and chases women. Beautiful, striking women, but, alas, not wealthy women. That is most unfortunate since he has no fortune and often overspends his allowance from his father.
While his cousin selected a cue, Darcy broke the balls. He achieved nothing and stepped aside to let his cousin take his shot. After a moment, he looked up to find Fitzwilliam staring at him with a pensive gaze.
“Is something the matter, Richard?” Darcy said rather snappishly. His humour was not in a pleasant state, mostly because he was trying to make a long-delayed decision and having heavy weather of it. The conflicting arguments bounced around his mind, and he simply did not know what he should do.
“Perhaps,” Fitzwilliam said slowly. “I had a conversation with the charming Miss Bennet today as we walked, and her reaction was puzzling. Since the matter concerns you, I thought I should mention it.”
“A conversation?” Darcy’s heart jumped at the thought of Elizabeth asking questions about him.
She must wonder why I have not yet made my addresses. She cannot be in doubt of my interest. My attentions have been too marked to be misunderstood. But the fault is mine. Why can I not make up my mind?
“Yes, and I believe it concerns your friend Bingley.”
“Bingley?” Darcy was now both confused and agitated, wondering what questions Elizabeth might have been asking about Bingley.
“Part of it concerns him since Miss Bennet mentioned him and made light of your friendship, implying that he was dependent on you. I came to your defence, pointing out the manner in which you saved him from an imprudent marriage.”
Darcy was so stricken by Fitzwilliam’s words that he suddenly had to sit down, his head in his hands as he barely managed to avoid dropping his cue. Fitzwilliam was stunned by this untoward behaviour by his usually imperturbable cousin and took the loosely held cue from Darcy’s fingers.
“I am dreadfully sorry,” he said. “Did I say something I should not have?”
It was a few moments before Darcy looked up and said listlessly, “Not intentionally, but it is a sensitive topic. I did intervene with Bingley, but there was no way for you to know that the woman involved was Miss Elizabeth’s elder sister. The two of them are exceedingly close.”
“Damnation!” Fitzwilliam joined his cousin in abruptly seating himself. “That explains the part I did not understand. She asked about your reasons for intervening, and when I said there had been strong objections against the lady, she appeared to become very upset and changed the subject. I did not think more of it, but now I feel dreadful. I really stuck my oar in it.”
Don’t you just love that last sentence! I laughed when I read it, and yes, I totally agree.
The scene from this excerpt will continue tomorrow, Monday, at Babblings of a Bookworm. There will be two more excerpts at the next two blog visits, Tuesday and Wednesday. Follow along, plus enter to win your own copy at each blog stop.
Babblings of a Bookworm
So Little Time…
There are two giveaways – one from the author, C. P. Odom and one from Meryton Press. Both are international and will end at midnight, Thursday, the 11th of November. Leave a comment to be entered.
C. P. Odom Giveaway
One pair of Pride & Prejudice socks
One Pride & Prejudice pouch/purse
One Jane Austen engraved wooden bookmark
Meryton Press Giveaway
Two eBooks of Skirmish & Scandal
As already mentioned, each blog stop, Monday through Wednesday, will also be giving away an eBook. We hope you will join us.
Meryton Press and our authors have enjoyed the “Skirmish & Scandal” Series. We hope you have had as much fun with these short novellas as we have had. Thanks to all of you who have supported the authors and their wonderful stories! We appreciate you, our readers, more than words can say.
Other Books by C. P. Odom
Coming next year: “Georgiana’s Friend” and “A Chance Eavesdropping”