My story in Ink & Incantation is called "Ruthless Hearts." It's set in the same world as my series, Shadows & Starlight, but decades in the past. See what Bellaton was like and how some of the characters from The Botanist's Game and Rule of Shadows came to be...You can read it as a standalone or continue further into the series.
🌹 A Teaser from Ruthless Hearts 🌹
Enora had never been more bored in her life.
Well, that wasn’t exactly true. She had been precisely this bored every Saturday since her eleventh birthday—the age when her mother had begun to demand her attendance at society events.
Today, they were attending a private luncheon at the estate of Lady Sylvia Rockwell. The three of them sat around an elegantly dressed table with a full tea service.
Enora’s mother beamed across the table at the other woman. Her hair was coiffed, not a strand out of place. “Enora has the highest grades in her class. She’s doing especially well in finance and literature,” she bragged.
Enora fought the urge to roll her eyes. Such kind words were rare when she and her mother were alone. No, that time was reserved for lectures on Enora’s duty to her family and society at large. Often, the lectures were followed by list-making and goal setting to ensure Enora would excel above her peers.
It didn’t matter how high her grades were or how many leaderships positions she earned. Nothing she did was ever good enough.
Lady Rockwell returned a smile. “Oh, how lovely. My Peter also enjoys reading though I must admit it’s often military strategy. I suppose he takes after his father.” She laughed into her lace-gloved hand.
“An excellent role model,” Enora’s mother bolstered.
It was painfully clear why they were all here. Lady Rockwell’s son, Peter, was twenty-years-old. Enora would be eighteen in two months. This was political matchmaking. She wondered when the military strategy reading Peter would arrive. Perhaps not until a second meeting but one could never be sure.
It had been two dreadfully dull hours of vapid conversation, and she’d do almost anything for a respite. Peter be damned. She sighed over her teacup.