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K.J. Jackson

Earl of Destiny, A Lords of Fate Novel 2, (EBOOK)

Earl of Destiny, A Lords of Fate Novel 2, (EBOOK)

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⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ More than 2,100 five star reviews on Amazon and Goodreads

Steamy Historical Regency Romance

Life as a backdrop has its rewards.
Miss Brianna Silverton not only prefers life in the background—she depends on it. It makes it far easier to decide upon a proper husband for her younger sister, plus, it keeps her rooted as the spinster she is determined to be. She has secrets to hide, and she isn’t about to let another man touch her—never again.

He knew it the very moment he saw her.
A constant wanderer, the Earl of Luhaunt,Sebastian Rallager, never paused in one place for long. Not until the moment he saw Brianna across a crowded ballroom floor. Instinct had never failed Sebastian, and he knew it instantly—she was his. Now he just had to convince her of that fact.

Fate always finds a way.
Just as Sebastian begins to see that staying in one place might be exactly what he had been searching for, secrets of the past loom. Because Brianna is not only hiding herself from the world, she is hiding secrets that cannot see the light of day. Secrets that could destroy her, and the one man determined to love her.

The Lords of Fate: steamy historical regency romance featuring strong women, undeniable men, and hold your breath adventure. Each is a stand-alone story, and can be read individually in any order.

Or you can find Earl of Destiny on these retailers in ebook or paperback:
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{ Prologue }

Norfolk, England
November, 1820


The one word reverberated through her body.

Past the pain.

Past the blood pooling around her foot.

She strained to lift her head, forcing herself to crack her eyelids.


Impossible, what had just happened.

Her love. What he had said to her. What he had done to her.

“Stupid girl—you are nothing—nothing more than a plaything.”

She gasped for breath, focusing through the tears clouding her vision.

Her father.

His body was still there. Limp. Not the slightest shift of his limbs, of his head, from when she had closed her eyes to the horror. The blood spread—spread and soaked into the stone just below his neck.

She couldn’t even go to him, couldn’t even see if he was truly dead, or if he could be helped. The ropes around her wrists, around her ankles were far too tight, far too secure.

She knew that after hours of trying to escape.

A scream ripped through the dank bowels of the abbey. It should be her own voice, but it wasn’t.

Slowly, her mind molasses, she turned her head to the sound.

Her sister stood at the door. Screaming. Again and again and again.


Please let him be gone. Please let him have disappeared. He couldn’t take her sister too. Not her sister.

She tried to open her mouth, to tell her sister it would all be well. To tell her to shut her eyes. To tell her to leave. To quiet her screams.

But she couldn’t make her own mouth move. Couldn’t make her head move. She had no way to make that happen. Not after this. Not after losing everything. Not after her own stupidity.

Her father dead.

And the one man she had loved—body and soul—gone.


And he took his knife with him.

{ Chapter 1 }

London, England
June, 1822

His back against the mahogany wainscoting, Sebastian Rallager, fourteenth Earl of Luhaunt, wedged himself along the wall behind Lord Crungel.

Crungel’s girth would serve him well—Sebastian would be mostly hidden from view of the evening’s last desperate bids of matchmaking mamas.

Sipping claret, he focused past the crush of couples comically attempting to dance with nary a space to step. His gaze landed on Miss Silverton’s brown dress camouflaging her into the dark wainscoting.

Standing on the opposite end of the ballroom, her back against the wall, she blatantly ignored the gentleman talking into her left ear. Miss Silverton’s eyes were trained, as always, on her laughing sister in the middle of the dance floor.

The man leaned closer to Miss Silverton’s head, apparently thinking he could get her attention if he talked louder.

Sebastian smirked. The poor bastard.

For a fortnight he had studied this scene. Everything about Miss Silverton screamed that she did not want to be approached. Did not want to be talked to. Did not want to entertain the slightest bit of attention from the opposite sex.

From the drab brown dress with a neckline choking her well above her clavicle, to her light brown hair tightly pulled back in the most severe bun he had ever seen.

She had appeared at every ball, every dinner, and every party exactly the same—her dress never changed, her hair never altered, her light blue eyes never veered from her sister.

It was a shame that none of that could stop the hopeful fools. And Sebastian had come to pity them and their hope, because no amount of steely coolness could hide Miss Silverton’s inherent beauty, no matter all she did to deny its existence.

The man next to her stopped talking, perplexed, and looked out to the dance floor. With a shrug and not another word to her, he moved away, shaking his head.

Sebastian took another sip, watching Miss Silverton’s shoulders relax ever so slightly. It was subtle, but he had learned to pick up on the tiniest movements her body made—a must, because absolutely everything about her was incredibly controlled.

“You stayed longer in town than I had imagined you would, Seb.” Rowen Lockton, the Duke of Letson, settled himself next to Sebastian at the wall, wine in his hand. “More than a fortnight—this is the longest stretch of time I have ever known you to willingly stay in one place.”

His friend scanned the crowd. “And not only have you stayed here in London, but you have been attending function after function. Your mother is well? Nothing is amiss?”

“My mother?” Sebastian’s eyes flickered to the duke and then back to Miss Silverton. “No, she is the same as always.”

The duke’s eyes trailed out into the sea of people, trying to pinpoint what Sebastian watched. “Then you must finally be pondering a wife?”

Sebastian squelched his own reaction and looked at his friend. “Why do you say that?”

“Why else attend these blasted things?”

“To be reminded of what I like to avoid.” Sebastian turned to the duke, his shoulder bumping into the fleshy back of Lord Crungel. “I assume that to mean you have had enough of the season, Rowe?”

“I would happily be up at Notlund right now.” The duke tilted his head in the direction of his duchess across the room. “But my wife had other plans for our two charges. This is all the younger one wanted—a season—and Wynne adores them and wanted to make it happen for them.”

“It can be a bugger, having a wife you want to make happy?”

“Yes.” The duke shrugged. “But the good outweighs any of the drudgery. So pick wisely when you do finally come to it, my friend. At least tonight is the end of it.”

“This is your last function in London? Are you back to Notlund soon? I had planned to be up there in a week or so as I have some business with those Berber fillies and their new residence.”

“Lord Granger will be coming for them? He has been more than anxious.”

“Yes. And I believe he intends to bring his third cousin. I have not met him, but the man is interested in several of our studs. He wants to assess them, so it will be good for you to meet him as well.”

“I warn you, it will not be the usual peace at Notlund.” The duke’s forefinger swept around the room.  “This madness is to follow us, on a smaller scale, of course—or so I have been promised. Wynne and the Silverton sisters have concocted a full summer of visitors—all of the top suitors from the season will be clunking through the estate.”

Sebastian sighed, shaking his head with a feigned frown. “That is unfortunate.” He sipped his claret as his attention went back to the crush. “But Notlund is large, so I am sure I can stay out of the fray.”

Sebastian’s eyes landed on Miss Silverton once more, now chatting with the duchess. She looked parched, as she always did at this point in the night. Miss Silverton did not drink spirits of any kind, no matter how many bubbling glasses were set into her hands.

He smiled. Once at Notlund, he would have to explore that fact more deeply.

Only a week away. One week, and he could set his plan in motion.

He had hidden his prior knowledge from Rowen, but Sebastian already knew about the many suitors to visit Notlund—who was coming and when—as he had sunken to spying on his own best friend, rather than being upfront about his plan.

But he couldn’t let Rowen be privy to his scheme just yet.

Not if his plan was to work.


Leaning back on the dark blue squabs of the open-air carriage, Brianna Silverton looked down at her younger sister. They had just escaped the final strained chords of the string quartet at the ball, and Brianna sighed in relief. She was almost—mercifully—done with the debacle that had become her life.

No longer filtered through the glow of candles in the ballroom, the bright morning sun burned through the London haze, showing just how foxed her sister truly was. Bleary blue eyes closing, Lily sank awkwardly into the corner of the carriage, dead to the world.

At least she wasn’t throwing up this time.

Brianna reached over and shifted her sister’s arm from the awkward angle it had landed, setting it gently across her sister’s stomach.

She had been beyond mortified the first time Lily had thrown up in the Duke of Letson’s carriage. The coachman had politely cleaned up after them and had continued to do so the three subsequent times it had happened.

After the fifth time, though, the duke had requested that Brianna take her sister to and from the soirées in the open-air carriage, as long as weather permitted. As polite as the duke had been in asking, it was in that moment that Brianna realized what true mortification really was.

Since then, Brianna had gotten adept at recognizing the moment before Lily upheaved. And she had also figured out how to drape her sister outside a moving carriage—safely—so Lily could retch in the cleanest manner possible.

The horses jerked forth, and Brianna removed her gloves, staring at her sister’s mouth, waiting for the twisting lips and quickened breath—the surest sign the ride home would not be pleasant.

A few minutes passed, and Lily remained asleep, heart-shaped lips still. A small grace.

Brianna allowed herself to relax slightly, letting the muscles in her neck stretch back and forth as she let down her tight shoulders. Standing all night, vigilant over her sister, did nothing but put aches into her back and throbs down her left leg.

It had been a particularly trying night, this last ball of the season. The desperate had become exceptionally daring, fraying the edges of politeness. Brianna was a spinster—a companion—and it annoyed her to no end how often men thought they could still ask for an introduction—still talk to her.

She had enough running madcap through her mind to stop and converse with them.

But it was almost over—she just had to last another three months through the summer. Three more months of politeness, of watching her sister’s every move.

Three months to determine which one of the final three suitors would be the appropriate one for her sister.

They hid it well, these men, but Brianna knew all of them drooled over Lily’s dowry. She had thought to give her sister the best chance of finding a worthwhile husband when she had declared herself a spinster and combined her dowry with Lily’s.

It had taken some machinations with the solicitor, but since she was in control of the Silverton estate, the man had done as Brianna had asked. It had effectively doubled Lily’s dowry, but now Brianna was second-guessing the wisdom of that decision.

Thank goodness the duke had convinced her not to add more into it, as she had planned.

The coachman turned left onto the block of the duke’s townhouse.

Brianna poked her sister. A grumble, but no open eyes.

She poked her again. Nothing.

With a sigh, Brianna slid her arm behind Lily’s back, the blue silk of her sister’s gown soft on her forearm. She set her other arm in front of Lily, pulling her upright.

At least the next three months at Notlund, the Duke of Letson’s estate in Yorkshire, would give her a slight reprieve from the constant hovering over Lily. Give her a chance to breathe.

In the two months they had spent at Notlund before the season began, Brianna had grown to love several of the young mares in the duke’s expansive stables. Grown to love the far-reaching estate and the wide-open stretches where she could set her mounts to flying fast.

She had come to depend on those rides to keep her sane and had missed them bitterly in London.

Hopefully, the rides would allow her some precious quiet away from Lily to focus—focus on determining the right husband for her sister.

There wasn’t anything more important.

For she wasn’t about to ruin her sister’s life. Not as she had done to her own.

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