Read My Dearest Enemy Online

Authors: Connie Brockway

My Dearest Enemy

 

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My Dearest Enemy
By
Connie Brockway
Contents

Chapter One
Chapter Two
Chapter Three
Chapter Four
Chapter Five
Chapter Six
Chapter Seven
Chapter Eight
Chapter Nine
Chapter Ten
Chapter Eleven
Chapter Twelve
Chapter Thirteen
Chapter Fourteen
Chapter Fifteen
Chapter Sixteen
Chapter Seventeen
Chapter Eighteen
Chapter Nineteen
Chapter Twenty
Chapter Twenty-one
Chapter Twenty-two
Chapter Twenty-three
Chapter Twenty-four
Chapter Twenty-five
Chapter Twenty-six
Chapter Twenty-seven
Chapter Twenty-eigh
Epilogue

HIGH PRAISE FOR

CONNIE BROCKWAY'S

PREVIOUS NOVELS

 

ALL THROUGH THE NIGHT

 

"A SEXY, SOPHISTICATED CAT-AND-MOUSE TALE… With plenty of frankly titillating role reversal, the intense focus on hunter and prey makes for unflagging sexual tension in this dark drama."


Minneapolis Star Tribune

 

"EVERYTHING WORKS IN THIS CAT-AND-MOUSE TALE—there is excitement, chemistry, obsession, and best of all, a tortured romance… Intricately plotted, with highly inventive lead characters." —
Publishers Weekly

 

"Connie Brockway cements her place among the ranks of the finest romance writers with a deep and emotionally taut story. This keeper plays on your heartstrings and clings to your mind long after the end."


Romantic Times

 

"A WONDERFUL TALE OF INTRIGUE, PASSION, AND HAPPY ENDINGS… THIS BOOK IS A KEEPER!" —
Old Book Barn Gazette

 

"For readers who like a compelling story with complex, fascinating characters and sexual tension that will have you breathing deeply,
All Through the Night
is definitely a must read."—
The Romance Reader On-Line

AS YOU DESIRE

 

"Romance with strength, wit, and intelligence. Connie Brockway delivers!"


New York Times
bestselling author Tami Hoag

 

"Priceless! A jewel of a love story in a fascinating setting.
As You Desire
will turn its fortunate finders into avid Brockway keepers—and seekers!"

—Kathleen Eagle

 

"Erudite and witty, Connie Brockway's fast-paced humor delights and entertains. I loved it!"

—Pamela Morsi

 

A DANGEROUS MAN

"A winner! Everything readers want in a romance and more. She writes the kind of romance I love."

—Amanda Quick

 

"Connie Brockway's delightful characters and emotional story will surely captivate readers. Her refreshing, dynamic characters and the heartfelt emotions she portrays are what make
A Dangerous Man
special."


Romantic Times

 

"Fresh, innovative, and instantly captivating."

—Catherine Anderson, author of
Annie's Song

"DON'T TOUCH HER. DON'T TOUCH HER. FOR GOD'S SAKE, DO NOT TOUCH HER!"

 

This was his only coherent thought, an increasingly frantic litany, as her lips burned beneath his.

Suddenly her eyelids snapped open. With a sound of utter horror her lips broke free. "Oh, my Lord!"

She jerked away, tumbling off the rail and landing flat on her back. He followed her, vaulting over the stile and standing above her as she stared wild-eyed up at him.

"I didn't touch you!" he shouted.

"I know that!" she shouted back, and began thrashing about, trying to get upright.

In her frenzy her skirt hiked high above her knees, displaying lace-trimmed undergarments—Lily Bede, lace? Pins flew from her head and a cascade of gleaming black corkscrew curls fell around her neck and shoulders in an inky fantasy of abandonment.

"You might want to fix your—petticoats," he whispered.

She hitched up her chin and looked him squarely in the eye. Fascinated, he waited to see what she would do next…

Dell Books by Connie Brockway

 

A DANGEROUS MAN

AS YOU DESIRE

ALL THROUGH THE NIGHT

MY DEAREST ENEMY

McCLAIREN'S ISLE: THE PASSIONATE ONE

McCLAIREN'S ISLE: THE RECKLESS ONE

McCLAIREN'S ISLE: THE RAVISHING ONE

Published by Dell Publishing

a division of Random House, Inc.

1540 Broadway

New York, New York 10036

 

This novel is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

 

If you purchased this book without a cover you should be aware that this book is stolen property. It was reported as "unsold and destroyed" to the publisher and neither the author nor the publisher has received any payment for this "stripped book."

 

Copyright © 1998 by Connie Brockway

 

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without the written permission of the Publisher, except where permitted by law.

 

The trademark Dell* is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark [email protected]

ISBN: 0-440-22375-X

 

Printed in the United States of America @

Published simultaneously in Canada

 

August 1998

 

10 9 8 7 6 5 4

 

OPM

Acknowledgments

 

As always, this book is the result of kind people taking an interest and helping me out with the facts and the fancy. Thank you, Chandra Tauer and Rachel Brockway for describing, in graphic detail, what it feels like to have an asthma attack. Thank you, Maggie Crawford, for editing and polishing. Your talents are much appreciated. Thank you, Damaris Rowland, my wonderful and wonderfully supportive agent. As always, my gratitude to the trolls for providing me fodder. And most of all, thank you, Jennifer Suarino, Lily's model—only infinitely prettier and twice as smart.

Chapter One

 

The news of Horatio Algernon Thorne's death came accompanied by a letter from him.

 

Avery James Thorne March 1, 1887

Bloomsbury, London

 

Avery,

 

My physicians tell me I haven't long to live and that I should put my affairs in order. This I intend to do. By ensuring this letter arrives in your hand before the reading of my will I do you the favor of forewarning you of its contents. You may thank my sense of familial obligation for this courtesy, a sensibility with which you apparently have little experience.

You have probably assumed that upon my death and as your cousin Bernard's only living male relative you would become his guardian. You are mistaken and I will now tell you why.

First and foremost, you are too like your father. In spite

of my best efforts to correct your temperamental similarity to him, you have remained irresponsible as well as willful, and combative. These last two qualities may have stood you in good stead had you been robust and hearty, as I was in my youth, and might have made you a leader of men. But physically you are a poor specimen and no man willingly takes orders from a weakling.

I judge you would be a dangerous example to Bernard, particularly at this point in his life when he shows the same unfortunate inclination toward physical feebleness. Do not think I do not remember the many times you used your illness as an excuse to lie abed in the school's infirmary, or the letters you had your tutors write asking that you be released early from terms on account of your wretched weakness. You would be too likely to molly-coddle Bernard and as the heir to a great fortune he must overcome this tendency.

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