Today I am so pleased to welcome S.A. Meade to Joyfully Jay. S.A. has come to talk to us about her latest release, Darkness at Endersley. She has also brought along an exclusive excerpt and a copy to give away. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
The second book in the ‘Endersley Papers’ series is released today. It’s a little different from the first book ‘Lord of Endersley’. For starters, it’s set entirely in England, unlike its predecessor and unlike the next two books in the series. I found it difficult to write because I’m a bit of a softy and I hate to hurt anyone in my stories. But I did. And I still find it difficult!
Many, many thanks to Joyfully Jay for letting me play on her blog today. 🙂 Here’s a non-threatening snippet from ‘Darkness at Endersley’.
The finished painting rested on the easel. I stared at it, warmed by the sunlight that slid through the open windows of the nursery. Wyndham stood to one side, arms folded across his chest. I didn’t need to steal a glance at him to know that he watched me while I studied his handiwork.
He’d framed Endersley in summer greenery, the oaks rising in a deep green cloud beyond the house. The paddock at the front was dappled gold with sunlight and the soft violet shadows were so carefully rendered that they appeared to shift as if moved by a breeze. The ancient stone walls shone with a pale, silvery light of their own, beneath creeping tendrils of dark ivy.
“It’s perfect.” I couldn’t think of anything else to say.
Wyndham smiled. “I’m glad you like it.”
“I love it. Jacob will love it.” The joy of the moment was diminished by the knowledge that Wyndham now had no reason to remain at Endersley.
“Good.” His arms dropped to his side. “I suppose I should tidy my things away.”
I looked at him full of wishes I couldn’t articulate. “I’ll be sorry to see you go.”
“I’m sorry to be leaving.”
The words remained unspoken. I touched the painting—the lower right hand corner where he’d scrawled his name. We’d brushed that kiss beneath the carpet and carried on as if it had never happened, as if we never wanted to tear each other’s clothes off.
“I wish you weren’t leaving.”
“Don’t…please.” Wyndham’s voice echoed my own longing. “Don’t speak of it.”
I walked towards the door. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said anything. You’ll leave and I can breathe a sigh of relief that I never gave into temptation.”
I turned around.
Wyndham breached the few short feet between us and took my face between his hands. “Don’t think I don’t want you because I do. Don’t think that I’ll ever stop wanting you because I won’t.” His lips covered mine while his fingers spread across my cheeks.
I slid my arms around his waist and he pressed close with a soft moan. The room fell into breathless silence broken only by birdsong and the whisper of the breeze shifting through the parted curtains. For those few moments I could pretend that we had the right to a future beyond that snatched embrace.
Wyndham wound his fingers through my hair and paused, breathing hard. “We shouldn’t even be doing this.”
“No.” I stepped back and caught my breath. “I’m glad we did.”
His thumbs drifted across my skin. “Joshua—”
I placed a finger on his lips and closed my eyes. “We have this moment.”
“It’ll never be enough.” Wyndham’s words were weighted with a sigh. “As long as I live, it’ll never be enough.” His hands fell away. “I’d better go and pack my things.”
I remained where he left me, his footsteps receding as he walked to the door.
“I won’t forget you, Joshua.” The door opened with a mild creak and closed more firmly, leaving me with the painting and the sunlight and nothing else.
Joshua thought he’d left his past behind, but there’s something in the darkness at Endersley…
Joshua Endersley is glad to leave a broken engagement and his sordid desires behind in London and claim his inheritance on the rolling downs of Wiltshire. What he doesn’t need is temptation in the form of artist, Daniel Wyndham, to remind him of all he wanted to forget.
Joshua finds Daniel impossible to resist and the two men embark on a passionate affair that draws them ever closer. Joshua believes that he can find happiness and live his life the way he wants to in the peace and seclusion of Endersley.
But nothing good can last forever. The very remoteness and solitude that Joshua loves about Endersley turns against him—the darkness at Endersley is deeper and more dangerous than he could have ever imagined.
S A Meade lives in Wiltshire, in a very nice village. By day she works as a freelance editor and by night, she writes, if not distracted by ‘Almost Human’, ‘Deadliest Catch’ and food pr0n.
S.A. has brought a copy of Darkness at Endersley to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Tuesday, July 15th at 11:59 pm EST.
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