Germany can prevent a second Coronavirus wave: health minister Wales to impose two-week deep firebreak: 'everyone must stay at home'

I don’t ask him why he’s at my door or what he wants to talk about. I just start with the question that’s been bothering me the most. Why do you get so many phone calls? He’s always answering his phone, no matter what he’s in the middle of. It’s actually kind of rude.

Cecilia knew that marriage to her cousin was the sensible choice. If Thomas did die, she would be able to remain at her beloved childhood home. She could pass it along to her children.But oh dear God, those children would also be Horace’s children, and the thought of lying with that man . . . Nay, the thought of living with that man . . .

She couldn’t do it. Marswell wasn’t worth it.Still, her situation was tenuous. Horace couldn’t actually force her to accept his suit, but he could make her life very uncomfortable, and he was right about one thing—she couldn’t remain at Marswell indefinitely without a chaperone. She was of age—barely, at twenty-two—and her friends and neighbors would give her some leeway given her circumstances, but a young woman on her own was an invitation for gossip. If Cecilia had a care for her reputation, she was going to have to leave.The irony was enough to make her want to scream. She was preserving her good name by taking off by herself across an ocean. All she had to do was make sure no one in Derbyshire knew about it.

But Thomas was her older brother, her protector, her closest friend. For him she would make a journey that even she knew was reckless, possibly fruitless. Men died of infection far more often than they did of battlefield injury. She knew her brother might be gone by the time she reached New York.She just hadn’t expected him to be literally gone.

It was during this maelstrom of frustration and helplessness that she heard of Edward’s injury. Driven by a burning need to help someone, she had marched herself to the hospital. If she could not tend to her brother, by God, she would tend to her brother’s best friend. This voyage to the New World would not be for nothing.

The hospital turned out to be a church that had been taken over by the British Army, which was strange enough, but when she asked to see Edward, she was told in no uncertain terms that she was not welcome. Captain Rokesby was an officer, a rather sharp-nosed sentry informed her. He was the son of an earl, and far too important for visitors of the plebian variety.I think I’m all disinfected now, he said, sounding amused.

With a jerky nod, she set the cotton pad aside and reached for a Band-Aid. But her hands were shaking and she couldn’t open the damn thing.His fingers gently took it from hers. Quickly and efficiently, he opened it and put it on himself. All better, he said and quirked a brow. Unless . . .

You changed your mind about kissing it all better?That she wanted to do just that kept her from rolling her eyes again.