Good day, gentle readers of Nineteenteen! I am Lady Amelia, daughter of the Marquess of Wesworth, and I have the great privilege of interviewing my new friend, Miss Hollingsford, for your edification. Ruby is the heroine of Regina Scott's new book, The Wife Campaign. We met at a house party hosted by the Earl of Danning . . .
Ruby: Actually, he didn't host it, as we learned. His valet had the audacity to invite us to Fern Lodge. I knew there was something I liked about Peter Quimby.
Lady Amelia: Yes, of course. But I think we should start by telling our readers a little more about you, dear Ruby.
Ruby, with an airy wave: Why on earth would they want to know about me? I'm the daughter of a jeweler, a self-made man, I might add. Born and raised in London. Hair too red and eyes too green to be considered a classic beauty. What else is there to say?
Lady Amelia: I don't think you're doing yourself justice. From what I've learned, there's a great deal more to Ruby Hollingsford.
Ruby, frowning: Such as?
Lady Amelia, counting on her fingers: Kindness, bravery, an outstanding sense of style . . .
Ruby, patting her stylish feathered bonnet: True.
Lady Amelia: Loyalty, intellect . . .
Ruby, holding up both hands: Stop right there! If there's an intellect in the group attending the house party, it's Henrietta Stokely-Trent. She's the one everyone calls a bluestocking.
Lady Amelia: Yes, she is quite well read and knowledgeable. But you were the one who first realized that someone was out to harm Lord Danning.
Ruby: That's because I'm naturally suspicious of aristocrats. My opinion of you all was fairly low, until I became better acquainted with you, Amelia.
Lady Amelia, blushing: Thank you, but I think perhaps it was your closer acquaintance with Lord Danning that made you begin to see the aristocracy differently.
Ruby: Perhaps. Whit is so unrelentingly honorable! And handsome. And sweet. And have you seen him when he plunges into that stream after a trout? I've never seen such grace, such fire, such determination.
Lady Amelia: You admire him. Admit it.
Ruby: Fine. I admire him. But you know it will go no further. What earl marries a Cit? And why would I want to spend my life having to toady up to all his friends and relatives? Or worse, have them condescend to me. I would either go mad or take the pistol out of my reticule and shoot someone.
Lady Amelia: That's right! You're also a crack shot, and you know how to box. I will note that on my list of accomplishments and be certain not to omit them next time.
Ruby, eying her: You truly are a dear soul, Amelia. I hope you have better luck finding the right man, someone you can love and who will love you for who you are, not because you're your father's daughter.
Lady Amelia, dropping her gaze: I don't believe such a man exists.
Ruby, nudging her: Come now, what about Lord Hascot? He might be the finest horseman in all of Britain, but he had eyes for no one but you when we visited his horse farm with Whit a few days ago.
Lady Amelia, blushing again: I think perhaps that's a story for another time.
Indeed it is. Look for Lady Amelia's story, The Husband Campaign, in April 2014. In the meantime, you can find Ruby's story in The Wife Campaign, available at fine stores online or near you.