Sophia moved swiftly along the
perimeter of the ballroom, focused on fleeing. Escape. She had to
escape. When she reached the French windows, she grasped the curved brass
handle and opened the paned glass panel just enough to slip outside. A gust of
unseasonably chilly air, heavy with the threat of rain, swirled around her,
pebbling her skin, but she barely noticed the discomfort.
Heart pounding, she anxiously peered back into the ballroom, her staccato
breaths fogging the glass. Dread seized her when she noted Ian no longer stood
under the archway leading into the ballroom, but then she spied the back of a
dark head standing on the far side of the room, near the punch bowl. The man’s
height identified him as Ian and Sophia sucked in a quick breath of relief.
Thank God. Now she just needed to circle around to the front of the mansion
then request her carriage be brought around. She cursed the delay that would
entail, but at least she’d escaped the ballroom undetected. And once ensconced
inside her vehicle, with the velvet curtains drawn, she’d be safe.
She turned. And froze at the sight of the snowy cravat mere inches from her
“Going somewhere, Sophia?” Ian’s husky voice, rich with the flavor of Scotland,
filled the darkness between them.
And with a sinking heart Sophia knew, that with those three simple words,
everything she’d tried to escape had found her.