If you follow the blog, you know that I’m considering some changes to the way my story flows, especially concerning the world in which my story takes place. While I am not starting over completely, I am reworking what I already have. Today, I reworked the prologue, which involved some of the new rules of my alternate reality. Because of this, I am sharing the old prologue with you. I do hope you enjoy!
With this prologue, I will introduce to you the character of Lady Eleanor Hadleigh, Countess of Hadleigh. Widow of Lord Arthur Samuel Fisher, the Earl of Hadleigh. Some of the addresses are wrong in this part, but that’s what editing is for, eh?
Hadleigh, Suffolk, Britain
23 September, 1799
“I truly am sorry my lady, but you must see that this request is highly unusual,” the lawyer stated as he shifted nervously in the worn leather chair in front of the earl’s massive oak desk. His dirty, graying hair fell over eyes widened in shock at the thought of working for the person in front of him.
“Yes, perhaps it is. Nevertheless, it will be done. Whether you help me, or whether another lawyer helps resolve this issue; well, it matters very little to me. The Rigsby Firm has earned a lot of money from this family, but that does not mean I am forced to continue this relationship. I will get my way in this.” Seated behind the desk that had been her husband’s, the dowager Countess of Hadleigh set her icy gaze upon the older gentleman, knowing he would soon look away. She had perfected that glare at the knees of her father, one of the most feared dukes in the land; mimicry was just one of those innate abilities she had always had.
“But they are bastards, your grace. And all girls,” the last bit was said with a shudder, as if the innocent children had asked for either condition. As soon as the words were out of his mouth, John Rigsby wished he could inhale them, erase them from the very air. The air that now crackled with anger.
“Ah yes, there is that, they are bastards, John, and female bastards at that. Neither of which matter in the slightest. Those children are in danger. Will you be helping me, or no?” This was asked as the dowager countess gracefully stood up, the bulge of her stomach not hindering her in anyway.
“From the information I have received, the only danger to those children is you,” John Rigsby was not sure what suddenly gave him the nerve to speak so rudely to the woman ushering him from her home, but his spine was suddenly erect, and he looked her straight in the eye.
Not so much as a blink. Not a twinge. There was absolutely nothing in the amber eyes staring at him. No embarrassment, no anger; no emotion of any kind.
“Your information is flawed, Mr. Rigsby. Archibald Wilkins will be here Tuesday next. If you do not wish to sully your hands by working for a female, then consider our relationship severed as of now. If however, you wish to continue working for the Hadleigh family, bring me the papers and those children tomorrow morning.” With that command, Eleanor Hadleigh swept from the room, nodding an indication to show the attorney out to a passing footman.