His Hour (Barbara Cartland's Library of Love)
Duckbacks; Abridged edition (November 1, 1980)
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Excerpt: ...well be. To him the geography of the world meant different places for sport. India represented tigers and elephants. It had no towns or histories that mattered, it had jungles and forests. Africa said lions. Austria, chamois-and Russia, bears! Women were either sisters, or old friends and jolly comrades-like Tamara. Or they came under the category of sport. A lesser sport, to be indulged in when the rarer beasts were not obtainable for his gun-but still sport! He found himself in a delightful milieu. The prospect of certain bears in the near future-a dear old friend to frolic with in the immediate present, and the problematic joys of a possible affair to be indulged in meanwhile. No wonder he was in the best of spirits, and when Tamara, without arrière pensée, took the empty place at his side, he bent over her and filled her plate with the thinnest ham he had been able to cut, with all the apparent air of a devoted lover. And if she had looked up she would have seen that the Prince suddenly had begun to watch her with a fierceness in his eyes. "This is a jolly place," Jack Courtray said. He had just the faintest lisp, which sounded rather attractive, and Tamara, after the storms and emotions of the past few days, found a distinct pleasure and rest in his obviousness. It is an ill wind which blows no one any good, for presently the Prince turned and devoted himself to Tatiane Shébanoff. She was quite the prettiest of all this little clique, petite and fair and sweet. Divorced from a brute of a husband a year or so ago, and now married to an elderly Prince. And she loved Gritzko with passion, and while she was silent about it, her many friends told him so. For his part he remained unconcerned, and sometimes troubled himself about her, and sometimes not. And so the evening wore on, and apparently it had no distinct sign that it was to be one of the finger-posts of fate. When all had finished supper, they moved back into another great room....