By Mary Balogh
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Extra resources for A Matter of Class
Guilt was a horrible feeling, and she was staring it in the face when she glanced at her mother. Apprehension was just as bad. What now? Was the carriage ready at the door to bear her off into outer darkness? “Well, miss,” her father said, stepping inside the room and seeming to half fill it with his tall, imposing figure. When he frowned, his great hooked nose made him look even more like a bird of prey than usual. ” Her mother nodded and dabbed at a spilled-over tear with one index finger. Annabelle said nothing.
You will marry into gentility, Reginald,” he said. “Even into nobility. You are handsome enough, God knows, having had the good fortune to take after your mother’s side of the family instead of mine. ” As well as standing to inherit the whole of his father’s vast fortune, Reggie was the sort-of owner of Willows End, a sizable home and estate in Hampshire, a sort-of gift on his twenty-first birthday four years ago. Exclusive ownership was to pass to him on his thirtieth birthday or on his wedding day, whichever came first.
He was immaculately tailored and elegant. He spoke with the refined accent of a gentleman. And his face, faultlessly handsome, was set in an expression that seemed halfway between amusement and contempt. How dare he! ” He did not bother to lower his voice or disguise the fact that the idea had not been his. “Yes,” she said, gazing at him disdainfully. If he was going to look at her that way, then she was going to look back at him this way. “And yet,” he said, “only a week ago you were so determined to marry someone else that you ran off with him.