He wiped his face with a handkerchief and forced a smile.
She eyed him from head to toe, curiosity sparking in her eyes. “You’re not so bad-looking for an old man, Mr. Fowler.”
That was the nicest thing anyone had said to him all day! Even more surprising was that she called him by name rather than using some form of address like sir or mister—something he would expect any servant or shopgirl to do but definitely not someone like Miss Liddell who was clearly trying hard to be friendly toward him. “I can see why you admire your father so much, young lady; he is quite dashing on horseback as well as inside the house where it matters most. You look very fetching yourself today; I don’t think I have ever seen you wearing such attractive colors before—a lovely shade of lilac with ruby sapphires at your ears and around your throat…and how pretty those new boots are! Do they really come up high enough? You will certainly catch every man’s eye if you walk down these streets looking this way! But please remember what I told you about drawing attention to yourself when out riding: Your appearance should not encourage men unnecessarily without first informing them of their intentions over tea at five o‘clock sharp tomorrow evening after church service…. Otherwise they may take advantage of you before then and risk ruining everything that has taken us