"Captain Dunbar," she whispered, gazing into his eyes, "Jean Desbrosses has proposed marriage."
His breath drew in, hard and sharp, as if she'd struck a knife between his ribs.
"Oh, Jenny," he whispered.
"Cornelia says I would be a fool not to – and – and – I'm sure my Uncle Stephen will be very angry, maybe Grandfather van Cortlandt, too – if I refuse."
"Do as your heart tells you, not your head. Don't let them force you, Jenny." He spoke softly, but she heard it loud and clear--a plea from his young heart.
She lifted a hand, and, yearning, trembling, caressed his thin cheek. He caught her wrist, pressed his lips against the pulse beating there.
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