The Secrets of a Scoundrel

The Secrets of a Scoundrel Read Online Free PDF Page B

Book: The Secrets of a Scoundrel Read Online Free PDF
Author: Gaelen Foley
Tags: Fiction, Regency, Historical Romance
seat.
    He looked startled by the question and blurted out, “I have a choice?”
    Gin paused, feeling another unexpected pang of compassion. “Actually, why don’t you take them both,” she mumbled. “I don’t have much of an appetite today.”
    As the coach rolled into motion once more, Nick asked to start with the beef stew. She reached into the hamper the innkeeper had prepared and carefully gave him the bowl of stew and a spoon. His chains clanked as he took the precious substance in his hands.
    “This goes with it.” She handed him a light, fluffy dinner roll. He took it reverently; she watched, bemused, as he lifted it to his nose and inhaled the buttery smell of it as though it were some rare perfume.
    He squeezed it between his fingers gently, savoring the texture.
    Gin smiled and wished she had bought more. Poor man. Slowly, he looked over at her, wordless thanks in his dark, soulful eyes. She held his gaze; he didn’t need to say it aloud. Then she looked away to let the starved lone wolf eat in peace.
    Unfortunately, it soon became clear that it was difficult for him attempting to eat soup in a moving carriage while wearing heavy iron manacles.
    Gin did not dare offend his pride by offering to help him, but when calamity struck and a particularly large pothole sent the dinner roll flying out of his hand, he let out a vile curse.
    She raised a brow.
    He mumbled, “Sorry.”
    She brought up her hand and showed him that she had caught the dinner roll in her hand before it fell. She gave it back to him, then decided to move closer, crossing the carriage to sit beside instead of across from him. “Why don’t you let me . . .”
    He watched her every move as she took the bowl of stew from him, along with the spoon.
    “You could unchain me,” he pointed out in a low tone.
    She just looked at him. Then she filled up the spoon and fed him a mouthful of the stew. He accepted it, staring into her eyes all the while. She proceeded to feed him.
    But the intimacy of this act soon had her squirming and casting about for some way to dispel the climbing tension between them.
    “So,” she started in an idle tone, “what about this bullet you took for the Regent?”
    He snorted. “Oh, yes. I am one heroic son of a bitch.”
    She looked at him in surprise. “Such language in front of lady.”
    “Is that what you are?” he challenged her with a taunting gleam in his eyes. “Traipsing into a dungeon to buy a traitor’s freedom isn’t exactly delicate behavior.”
    “You’re not a traitor.”
    “Well, they didn’t put me in that cell for being a saint, love. And you weren’t even chaperoned.”
    “Unless we count this.” She lifted the hem of her gown just high enough to pull her pistol out of its garter holster. She gave the black barrel of it a kiss.
    Nick grinned. “I think I’m in love.”
    She flicked a playful scowl at him, her lashes bristling. “Don’t annoy me, or I can always find another cell to put you in.” He gawked at her stockinged leg as she put her gun back away. “There’s always room in the kennel where I keep my hounds, and if they won’t share, I’m sure I find an extra chicken crate.”
    “Lady, I have been called many things, but never chicken.”
    “Obviously not. You slapped the entire Order across the face, then stepped in front of a bullet to save the life of a man I wager you don’t even respect. Why?” she prompted in a confidential tone, glancing into his eyes. “Why did you take that bullet for the Regent?”
    “What makes you think I did it for him? I’m a selfish bastard. Didn’t you read that in my file? I did it to save my own neck, of course. Put me back in the Order’s good graces.”
    She considered his answer for a moment, then shook her head. “No. Here’s a better use for that mouth of yours than telling lies.” She fed him another mouthful of beef stew, leaning closer.
    As she did so, she could feel his raging sensual interest—and her own
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