Authors: Barbara Cartland
FOLLOW YOUR HEART
Copyright Â© 2005 by Cartland Promotions
First published on the internet in 2005 by
The characters and situations in this book are entirely imaginary and bear no relation to any real person or actual happening.
This book is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, resold, hired out or otherwise circulated without the publisher's prior consent.
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She forced herself to dress in one of her loveliest gowns. In fact it was the prettiest she had bought to wear in London before she was able to come and live in the country.
She had not been invited to a ball or party important enough to wear it so it had languished in her wardrobe and never been seen.
Now as she pulled it on she wished she was going to a glamorous ball in London where she might meet the Prince Charming of her dreams. A man who would love the same things she loved and understand what she felt about life.
'We would both know the moment we met,' she pondered, 'that we were meant for each other.'
She looked at her reflection in the mirror as she dreamed on.
'There would be no need for words as my heart would reach out towards his heart. After that it would only be a question of how soon we told each other of our love.'
But it was just a dream.
Barbara Cartland was the most prolific bestselling author in the history of the world. She was frequently in the Guinness Book of Records for writing more books in a year than any other living author. In fact her most amazing literary feat was when her publishers asked for more Barbara Cartland romances, she doubled her output from 10 books a year to over 20 books a year, when she was 77.
She went on writing continuously at this rate for 20 years and wrote her last book at the age of 97, thus completing 400 books between the ages of 77 and 97.
Her publishers finally could not keep up with this phenomenal output, so at her death she left 160 unpublished manuscripts, something again that no other author has ever achieved.
Now the exciting news is that these 160 original unpublished Barbara Cartland books are ready for publication and they will be published by Barbaracartland.com exclusively on the internet, as the web is the best possible way to reach so many Barbara Cartland readers around the world.
The 160 books will be published monthly and will be numbered in sequence.
The series is called the Pink Collection as a tribute to Barbara Cartland whose favourite colour was pink and it became very much her trademark over the years.
The Barbara Cartland Pink Collection is published only on the internet. Log on to
to find out how you can purchase the books monthly as they are published, and take out a subscription that will ensure that all subsequent editions are delivered to you by mail order to your home.
If you do not have access to a computer you can write for information about the Pink Collection to the following address :
Barbara Cartland.com Ltd.
240 High Road,
Telephone & fax: +44 (0)20 8863 2520
Barbara Cartland, who sadly died in May 2000 at the grand age of ninety eight, remains one of the world's most famous romantic novelists.Â With worldwide sales of over one billion, her outstanding 723 books have been translated into thirty six different languages, to be enjoyed by readers of romance globally.
Writing her first book âJigsaw' at the age of 21, Barbara became an immediate bestseller. Â Building upon this initial success, she wrote continuously throughout her life, producing bestsellers for an astonishing 76 years. Â In addition to Barbara Cartland's legion of fans in the UK and across Europe, her books have always been immensely popular in the USA.Â In 1976 she achieved the unprecedented feat of having books at numbers 1 & 2 in the prestigious B. Dalton Bookseller bestsellers list.
Although she is often referred to as the âQueen of Romance', Barbara Cartland also wrote several historical biographies, six autobiographies and numerous theatrical plays as well as books on life, love, health and cookery. Â Becoming one of Britain's most popular media personalities and dressed in her trademark pink, Barbara spoke on radio and television about social and political issues, as well as making many public appearances.
In 1991 she became a Dame of the Order of the British Empire for her contribution to literature and her work for humanitarian and charitable causes.
Known for her glamour, style, and vitality Barbara Cartland became a legend in her own lifetime. Â Best remembered for her wonderful romantic novels and loved by millions of readers worldwide, her books remain treasured for their heroic heroes, plucky heroines and traditional values.Â But above all, it was Barbara Cartland's overriding belief in the positive power of love to help, heal and improve the quality of life for everyone that made her truly unique.
“Throughout my entire life I have always followed my heart and I can truthfully say that my heart was right every single time.”
Riding back through the woods, Della was thinking just how lucky she was.
She adored the countryside and the woods in spring held a fascination that was irresistible.
She found there was for her a special magic, which seemed more intense than anything that happened in the everyday world outside.
She could not explain it to herself.
As she was an only child she had never had anyone to share her thoughts with.
Her parents, who were now both dead, had been so content with each other that although they adored their daughter, she could not enter into their world of love.
After her father was killed fighting in the Sudan, Della and her mother had kept house for his brother in London. He was Lord Lainden, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in the British Government.
He therefore spent a great deal of time abroad and was delighted to have his sisterâinâlaw and her small daughter keep, as he said, his âhouse warm'.
A year ago Della's mother had died of pneumonia during a very cold winter. She had been happy to go, as she wanted to be at peace with her husband.
Della had felt very lonely without her. However, there had already been even more changes during the year.
Her uncle decided it was time for him to retire as he found continually making journeys across the Continent very exhausting. Thereafter he had been made a Peer so that he could join the House of Lords, which he attended occasionally, but he was really content just to move to the country.
It was where he had always felt he belonged and to Della, who accompanied him, it was a joy beyond words because she could ride.
She had inherited a passion for horses from her father, and been allowed to ride in Rotten Row, but it was not the same as being able to gallop over the countryside where they were living now.
Lord Lainden had, in fact, been very lucky, as he had shared a great friendship whilst he was Secretary of State with the Duke of Marchwood. They had been at the same school together but had drifted apart.
The Duke had come into his title and a certain amount of land in France and he therefore found his old friend very useful.
When Lord Lainden wished to retire the Duke had offered him a house on his estate in Hampshire and with the house went a hundred acres of land.
As the Duke had made the price very low, in fact almost a gift, Lord Lainden was extremely grateful.
Della found life in the country was marvellous! The Duke told her uncle that she could help exercise his horses and ride over his estate which extended for several thousand acres.
At just over eighteen years old Della should have been making her curtsy to Queen Victoria at the Royal Court in Windsor.
She should also be attending the balls and other entertainments arranged for
She had, however, refused her uncle's suggestion to go back to London.
“I could easily find you a chaperone, Della,” he had persisted. “There are always Society women who are hard-up and therefore prepared to chaperone
Della did not speak and he continued,
“They are usually either orphaned, as you are, or their parents for some reason or another cannot look after them.”
“I want to stay in the country, Uncle Edward,” Della had replied. “I have never been so happy as I am now, riding all the wonderful horses His Grace keeps in his stables.”
She gave a little laugh before adding,
“I can assure you that they are far more amusing than any of the young men who ask me to dance!”
Lord Lainden chuckled, as he too wanted to remain in the country with Della.
He was determined to make his garden the most outstanding in the County, and there was a stream running through his estate where he could fish for trout.
It was certainly a change after the hurlyâburly of diplomacy and the endless travelling which had occupied his life as Secretary of State.
He found it a joy to take life leisurely and not to have a dozen appointments waiting for him every day.
He also enjoyed the company of his niece as he realised she was exceptionally intelligent. Because they had been in London she had been well educated at one of the fashionable Seminaries for young gentlewomen.
On his clear insistence she had been taught a large number of languages and because he was in politics, Della took a real interest in what was happening both at home and abroad.
She enjoyed all their discussions enormously and actually when Lord Lainden was talking to his niece he often thought he might have been discussing the same subject with a Cabinet Minister.
This morning after breakfast the grooms from the Duke's house â Wood Hall â had brought her three horses.
She was to choose which one she preferred for her morning ride. They were all new stallions in the Duke's stables and the Head Groom was anxious to try them out with a sidesaddle.
Della had a long conversation with him about the three horses and finally she chose a bay, which seemed more spirited than the other two.
“I knows you can 'andle 'im, Miss Della,” said the Head Groom. “At the same time I thinks it'd be a mistake for you to jump 'im till you be more acquainted, so to speak.”
“I am sure I shall soon be. But of course you are right, Grayer, and I will not take him over any jumps until you tell me I can do so.”
Grayer, who had been with the Duke for many years, smiled at her.
He knew she was an exceptional rider and yet she always had the courtesy to consult him and listen to his opinion. As he had said to his wife,
“Be more than I can say for them stuckâup ladies what comes to the 'all and thinks they knows better than them as lives in the country.”
As this was an old grievance his wife had merely laughed. Yet she was well aware that Miss Della had âa way with her' that pleased all the servants with whom she came into contact.
Della galloped her chosen stallion, called Samson, until he had settled down to a comfortable trot.
Then, as time was moving on, she had taken him into the woods. Now he obeyed her by trotting slowly and she enjoyed seeing the small rabbits scuttling ahead on the mossy paths, and the red squirrels climbing up the trees.
The birds were singing overhead and she thought the leaves on the trees were swaying gently to the songs they sang.
âHow could anything be lovelier?' she asked herself. Then as she was passing through an opening in the wood she saw something unexpected.