To what purpose? I asked.
We’re going to us it as a light bit of marketing for your next book, said they.
Well, okay. I like challenges. I like deadlines (let’s be honest. I can’t produce without a hot deadline). I went about my business until about twenty minutes before that one arrived. And then, out of the blue, the first line came to me:
It was Miss Felicity Chambers’ considered opinion that more time needed to be spent cleaning beneath beds.
Hmmm, I thought. That’s promising. Definitely light, right in my historical period as far as atmosphere, and easy to explain why (she is, of course, hiding under a bed). I wrote the page, it turned out to be even more fun than I’d thought, and then put it aside to concentrate on the full-length Drake’s Rakes historical romance I was finishing, TWICE TEMPTED.
But Felicity Chambers would not leave me alone. She belonged nowhere in the bible I’d put together about my gentleman spies and their prospective mates. The tone of her story was far lighter than anything I’d been writing, and it seemed she wasn’t going to share any of her love-making. Her story was sweet, in fact, which has never been my forte. Short and sweet and light.
So I worked on it for myself, especially during this last three years when life has interfered to the point where the regular voices in my head went silent.
My Drakes seemed to be hiding. But Felicity would not leave me alone. Like most of my favorite characters, she nudged and prodded and whispered to me as I was falling asleep until I had no choice but write down her story.
She isn’t a fashion queen. She isn’t nobility, at least not legally. She is, in fact, the newest instructor of piano and deportment at Miss Manville’s Academy for Superior Girls. Which makes the summons to the home of a duke all the more confusing. What is she doing there? Who wanted her to come? Why?
Before she gets her complete answer, she is insulted, shot at, and set loose on a terrified horse. She is introduced to Lord Flynt Bracken (named after incendiary rocks and prickly bushes, as Felicity tells him) and given an opportunity that seems to be too good to be true. She just has to stay long enough to find out if it is.
Here’s the best part (at least for me). As I was writing Felicity’s story, I realized that she had found her way into the world of Drake’s Rakes after all. And so, in between the 5th and 6th books of my 9 book Drake’s Rakes series, TWICE TEMPTED and the book I’m currently calling THE CHRISTMAS BOOK WITH A THREE IN IT, Felicity has popped up as the short before the next story.