Behind The Raven Mask
by Cherime MacFarlane
Excerpt, A triangle with no love in any direction.
Vanessa took a cup of coffee from the steward. Toying with it, she was paying minimal attention to Mr. Wilkins. The mining engineer continued on with his boring monologue, regarding the science of extracting gold from the earth.
His methods didn't matter, he could go about it any way he chose, as long as she was able to get her share.
At the moment, she was more interested in the Count. She had been close enough to the newlyweds to have heard the whole treacle tale. It would be entertaining to blurt out the truth and watch the fun.
Two very good reasons existed for reining in her first impulse. She could have need of a powerful friend in Alaska Territory, if her plans were to succeed. A powerful enemy was the wrong thing to acquire at this juncture.
Vanessa's second reason was a physical one, she wished to finish what she and Dmitri had started.
Vanessa watched covertly, as they left the salon. Dmitri gently held Camille's arm, to steady her against the slight rolling of the ship. The couple appeared to be lovebirds. Vanessa smiled at the sweet picture they made.
Before the voyage was over, she intended to speak with Bressoff alone. She and Dmitri could yet seal their friendship with a kiss. His child bride be damned! Vanessa wanted the man and fully intended to satisfy her desire at one point or another.
Marriage might have been a consideration, but was not essential to her plans. In fact, marriage to such a man could be much too confining for her taste. She wanted her independence. Vanessa O'Hare was going to call the shots from here on. Her desire for the Count was simply physical and the devil could take his bride, for all she cared.
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