The Fortune Hunter 3 (Pages 89 – 106)

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Bay is getting bolder and bolder around Charlotte.

As soon as he returns from his meeting with the earl of Spencer, he rushes to find Charlotte, who is in the nursery, developing her photographs. She shows him the photograph she took of him and his horse, and at some point she mentions Augusta and her disapproval of him, but Charlotte hints that she won’t take advice from anyone. Bay then kisses her on the cheeks, and then on the lips, and Charlotte responds wholeheartedly. They have to break the kiss when her brother appears. Once again Fred expresses his disapproval of Charlotte being alone with Bay and his opinion of the man, but Charlotte disregards his words, stating that she will marry whoever she wants, and she will only have to obey him several months more, and then she will be able to do whatever she wants. Fred reminds her that he was named her guardian and decides about the money until she is twenty-five, but Charlotte says she doesn’t care about the money. Fred points out that Bay is a man of expensive tastes and he wouldn’t want her without her fortune.

At dinner time Charlotte and Bay are placed at separate extremes of the table, and Bay becomes the topic of discussion when he mentions the meeting with Spencer, and Lord Crewe guesses that he will be a pilot for the Empress. Everybody at the table is very curious about the Empress and jealous of Bay’s privilege. After dinner they all retire to the living room, and this time nobody stops Bay from being close to Charlotte. He stands behind her as she sits on the sofa, and they keep whispering to each other and Bay goes as far as caressing her neck, something he can do discreetly. The moment is also broken when Augusta realises that Charlotte and Bay are together and she asks her to play the piano.

The relationship between Charlotte and Bay is sweet, but I am afraid that she is naive and gullible. We know that Bay likes Charlotte, and as long as he is good to her, I’ll root for her, but I am afraid she might get hurt. The encounter with the Empress will definitely have consequences, and I’m afraid for Charlotte.

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