Spurred by her need to find her brother Jamie, a need which became more desperate by the hour, Agatha had packed a trunk and bought a ticket on the next coach leaving her estate of Appleby for London. Her servants had aided her escape, and she knew they would keep her whereabouts hidden for as long as possible.
It wouldn't do for Repulsive Reggie to find her before she found her brother. She'd be forced back to Appleby and to the altar with all the speed of Reggie's thwarted ambitions.
"Marrying" Mortimer had simply made the journey easier. No one questioned a married woman's morality in traveling alone, not in wartime with so many husbands gone.
When she had been inspired to investigate the Chelsea Hospital in London for news of dear Jamie, it had been her married status that had allowed her in, and enabled her to care for the wounded.
Still, creating an alias to travel under and presenting the world with an actual false husband were entirely different kettles of flounder.
"Hello, love. 'Ere I am."
Pulled back to the present, Agatha looked up...and up...to see one of the handsomest men she had ever laid eyes on.
Jamie's trousers fit the fellow a bit too closely about the hips, although not excessively so for the current fashion. Rather too much so for Agatha's peace of mind, however.
She yanked her gaze from dangerous ground and followed the rest of the transformation upward.
Jamie's snowy shirt and dark-green waistcoat gave no reason for dismay, but the morning coat...oh my. While the cut across the shoulders was quite fine and the nipped waist fit perfectly, the cobalt color gave far too much emphasis to those twinkling blue eyes.
His cravat was only loosely tied round his collar in a way rather more suited to a pirate than a gentleman, showing a bit too much of strong brown throat. A lethal combination indeed.
She was attracted to a chimneysweep. How unthinkably inappropriate of her. Not to mention inconvenient. Really, was there no end to the obstacles in her path?