An Excerpt from “Mr. Nash’s Wedding Ghost” by Emmy Z. Madrigal

A new book is out!

Meant to Be Mystified!
MYSTIFIEDCover
And here is an excerpt from my story:

Mr. Nash’s Wedding Ghost

by Emmy Z. Madrigal

Lady Mercy Harrington hummed happily as she adjusted the flower arrangement in the hall at Denwood Manor. She wanted everything to be perfect for her best friend’s wedding weekend. Although Mercy had no control over the ever-present rain, thanks to the estate’s conservatory, she could be sure the inside bespoke of flowers and love. Cecelia Montague and her betrothed, Grayson Nash, would arrive any moment and Mercy could hardly contain her excitement.

Arms from behind wrapped around her waist and her husband’s body pressed up against her back.

“Are you rearranging the flowers again, love?” His deep voice sent a ripple of pleasure through her. He kissed her neck and it did even more to excite her.

“Alex, we should have guests any moment.”

“What does one have servants for if not…”

The sound of horse hooves and a barouche coming up the drive stopped him mid-sentence.

“Is that they?” Mercy arched to look out the window.

“It is Nash,” Alexander said in a disappointed tone.

“You don’t wish to see your friend?” Mercy turned to her husband, placing her hands on his lapels and looking up at him.

“I’d much rather see you, and in our room upstairs, where I can see much more than what polite society would allow.”

“Shh…” Mercy placed a finger over her husband’s lips. He scowled, but she stood on her tiptoes and whispered in his ear. “Save this talk for tonight, for I’m sure to be exhausted from the wedding preparations and can retire early.”

A low growl emitted from Alexander and his gaze fixed on her with anticipation. He kissed her once and unwillingly let her go as she left to meet the coach.

By the time Mercy made it to the porch, Mr. Nash had exited his carriage and with the aid of an umbrella, helped a young girl out of the carriage.

“Lady Harrington, allow me to introduce my niece Miss Lucy, lately of Surrey.” Mr. Nash led the young girl up the stairs to Mercy’s side.

“A pleasure Miss Lucy, you may call me Mercy.” They curtsied to one another.

“Thank you.” Miss Lucy blushed when Mercy spoke to her. She looked to be just a year from her season and as shy as young ladies not yet out tended to be.

“Why don’t you go on into the sitting room? There are tea and cakes for your refreshment.”

“Thank you,” Miss Lucy said and went inside.

“I’m dreadfully sorry to bring an alternate without warning,” Mr. Nash said. “My late wife’s mother suddenly took ill and my brother-in-law asked if she could come to the wedding in his stead. I could hardly say no.”

“No trouble at all. I’ll just make sure her room is switched to one a little more comfortable for a girl her age.”

“You have my undying gratitude,” Mr. Nash said.

Mercy gave a petite curtsy as her husband called out behind her.

“Nash!” Alexander greeted his friend as he entered the foyer.

“Harrington, old boy, how do you do?”

“Very well, and you?”

“I’ll be glad when this weekend is over and I can begin my life again.”

Alexander chuckled, slapping Mr. Nash on the back.

“Brandy, then?”

“Aye.”

Mercy smiled as the men disappeared down the hall to the study. She was glad to finally see a smile from Alexander’s friend. What a happy weekend it would be.

***

Settling in his room, Nash placed his valise onto the dresser top and his ring knocked against the mahogany. That had been happening an awful lot since he had asked Cecelia’s father for her hand in marriage. It wasn’t his wedding ring. That had gone in the attic chest some time ago with the rest of his deceased wife’s things. Yet, the ring in question might mean more to his late wife than the wedding band, bought without thought at a jeweler in Bath. The ring he wore was a symbol of their understanding and connection before they were married.

He removed the ring and inspected the face. The greyhound ring his wife had given him—symbolizing his family crest—bore no damage. It was well made and he wore it without notice most of the time, but the last few weeks it had caught on every stray thread, knocked against every door frame, and even had him caught in his horse’s reins once—with his gloves on no less! Was it trying to tell him something? No matter if it was, he was going to tell it something.

“I’m sorry, dear,” he spoke aloud despite his voice cracking with emotion. “But it’s time I’ve said goodbye and welcomed a new love.”

A knock came to the door.

“Mr. Nash?” a servant called.

“Yes?”

“The Montague’s coach approaches.”

“Thank you, I’ll be right down.” He placed the ring to his lips, giving it a final kiss, before putting it in an inside pocket of his valise and leaving his room.

***

She hadn’t seen him in so long, it was a dream come true. She’d disappeared from his life as quickly as he had from hers. Where she’d been all this time, heaven knows. All she could think of was the funeral and how strong he’d been, standing so erect in his crisp, black suit. Grief surrounded him like a dark cloud, but those who didn’t know him would only see his stern expression. She knew him as no one else did and could sense the sadness from within, although no tears were shed in public.

 And now, he was marrying again. She should be happy for him, but all she could feel was betrayal. No. She wouldn’t allow herself to hate him. She adored him beyond all others but perhaps she could linger and inspect his new bride. Someone had to look out for him.

***READ MORE HERE>>>>>>Meant to Be Mystified!


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