The Duke And I

The Duke And I

By:  Mjay  Completed
Language: English
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*COMPLETED*She was wild, brave and Intelligent. She wants nothing more than being free and finding love.He was strong willed, passionate and sees women as burden and betrayers.Cassy, known as a wildflower was forced to pretend to be her brother and travel to England as the Duke of Eastland ward. With their parents both dead, the duke of Eastland was to care for them until they are of matured age.But, what happens when her brother fled to travel through the sea? Cassy saw it as a chance for her to also change her fate. Rather than going to the convent, she decided to pretend to be her brother.But, everything changes when a month later, the duke realizes she was a woman and not the man he thought she was? To make matters worst, what happens when he began liking her?

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60 chapters
One
"You will become the English Duke's ward!" The words, spoken several hours ago, still rung in Jonathan’s ear. Master Nicholas had gone, and since then he’d strolled out into the garden, where he found it best to dwell on his thoughts. Of course, this would happen to them. He’d been expecting it ever since they heard the news, pitiful as it were. It was just like their parents to stroll off on a doomed voyage and leave their children behind to the mercy of the world. He would never forget the wail of despair from Cassandra when the letter arrived. A bit melodramatic, truth be told, but one could forgive her for being so suddenly struck by grief. The barrister certainly didn’t see things that way. “I don’t see what all the fuss is about, really,” he’d said with a pompous air which made Jonathan wish he could punch the soggy old man right across the face. “These things happen, of course,” he’d said. “As terrible as it is, one mustn’t dwell on them too much. And now, we must discuss t
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Two
Cassy was much too happy to leave the ship finally. It wasn’t just the constant swaying motion which sickened her, nor was it the loud rumble of the engine right next to her quarters which kept her awake at night. It was the constant attention of a certain Miss Theresa which bothered her. Innocent as the young maiden was, she had taken a liking to Lord Levington ever since she happened to fall into his arms at dinner. Literally. Cassy had strolled clumsily into the hall, beige carpets and patterned wallpaper all over. Poor lady Theresa had tripped over her dress just then, and Cassy had fortunately been standing right next to her at the exact moment, thankfully reaching out to steady her before she toppled to the floor. Flustered, lady Theresa had looked up at the handsome Lord and fallen in love instantly, unusual as it may seem. "Thank you, kind sir," she’d said breathlessly. "I owe you my life.""I would hardly say that," Cassy replied in a voice that caused lady Theresa's br
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Three
"Lord Levington! Lord Levington!"Cassy groaned, shoving her head under the pillow. Then she realized with painful swiftness where she was and who she was supposed to be, and jerked out from under the coverlet and the fat pillow and blinked at the strange man approaching the canopied bed where she slept. Gray light filtered in through tall windows with drapes pulled."I'm awake," she croaked, keeping the coverlet up to her chin as the valet approached the bed with a look of a man intent upon assisting. "I don't like to be helped with my morning duties!" Cassy snapped gruffly, hoping he would be daunted by her fierce expression. He was.The valet bowed his head and murmured, "His grace expects you in the morning room, my lord. Shall I lay out your clothes for the day?"Cassy nodded, "Yes. Several layers of clothing, please," she said at the faintly surprised look on the valet's face. "I find England very cool." ‘And his grace far too perceptive’ she added silently. Her bosom may not hav
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Four
After Sheldon had left her alone in the study however, with the lunch tray and the rain still pelting the mullioned windows, Cassy surrendered to gloom. Her fate would be the same, no matter what her brother did. Jonathan was assured of a place when and if he wound up in England, but she would be superfluous. An unwanted sister destined to remain on the fringes of life. There would be no place for her here, that much was certain.Her only hope was to carry off her deception until her eighteenth birthday. As stipulated by her father's will, she would at least inherit a small legacy and be able to avoid being trapped in an unnecessary and quite frankly undignified marriage. It didn’t matter that the duke was younger than she’d expected. Much younger, in fact. The fact remained that he was a prickly fellow with an inflated sense of self. Perhaps Sheldon had it wrong when he said the Duke likes to keep to himself. Most likely, he avoided people because no one wanted to suffer his presence
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Five
Waking uncomfortably early, Cassy gazed up at the canopy over her bed and dreaded the coming day. What precious little sleep she’d managed the night before had failed in making her feel even marginally relaxed. Gray light pressed through the painted windows, and she realized that Gabriel must have already drawn the drapes, which meant he would be returning any moment to help her dress. That moved her to action and she flung herself from the bed and toward the dressing room.With the dressing room door softly shut, she shed her nightshirt and dressed quickly. Turning in front of the long mirror to look at her appearance with an anxious eye, she noted the faint bluish shadows beneath her eyes and sighed. Thus, all in all, her masquerade was virtually unrecognizable. Even Jonathan could not recognize her for a few moments. Her hair was darker now, then it was white, long and pulled up into a demure chignon. Despite her efforts to keep her curls tamed, they waved in unruly stands in a sho
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Six
Sunday, obviously, was not one of those days. It began early, with Sheldon bringing her the information that his Grace expected her to be downstairs within half an hour, dressed and ready for services in the village church."The church?" Cassy was hesitant. "Yes, my lord," he added with a second bow. "The church. I’m sure you must have passed it on your way up here. Everyone goes there for service, even the Duke’s neighbors.""Neighbors?" As far as she could tell, Eastland manor stretched for hundreds of yards, and she hadn’t seen any fence to indicate a separation from another property. "The old Viscount has lived right next to the manor for several years now," Sheldon said, in that slow manner that told Cassy he secretly thought her slow-witted. For all his faults though, he hid it well. Church didn't sound bad at all, though Cassy did wonder sleepily why it began so early. She'd always enjoyed the sermons at the old church near Hampton road, even with its broken panes and cobwebs
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Seven
"En garde!"Gripping her epee tightly, Cassy flexed her knees and lifted her left arm in the air as her instructor, M. Fournier, had taught her. Her throat closed with nervous apprehension as the small, wiry Frenchman assumed the first position. Sunlight streamed through the tall windows of the ballroom, glittering on the blade of the slender epee she clutched in her right hand. It seemed to sparkle with deadly intent."No, no," he said in a despondent manner. "You are holding the blade wrong." Because of his high, nasal accent, it sounded like he had said, "None, none. Hue are olding ze blade wrong."A large mat had been spread on the floor in the ballroom where she received her fencing lessons, and the instructor had inked a mark on its surface to indicate where she was to stand. Cassy tried to keep her stockinged feet near the mark and concentrate on M. Fournier at the same time.This was her first lesson, and she wore cork told on the blunt end of her blade, as well as a mask and p
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Eight
Eastland found himself in a towering rage as he strode toward the manor with heavy footsteps, each one heavier and more pronounced than the last. His brows were knitted in annoyance, and he screamed at the doorman when he took half a second too long to open the door. He growled at the steward when he entered his study as well, when the fool had the audacity to ask if anything was wrong with him. "Get out!" He pointed to the door with a fire in his eyes that caused the young lad to take off in a split second. Fuming, Henry sat at his table, surrounded in a cloud of his own contempt. Since when did he allow himself to be irritated past the point of self control by anyone? Not to talk of the foolish boy who couldn’t seem to do anything right. He cursed lightly as he strode to the window, unable to sit still while he anger continued to boil within him. Levington just had such a vulnerable, female look about him. His shy, wide blue eyes, and the way his lashes lowered whenever he though
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Nine
"You're a fidgety boy, aren't you?" The Dowager Duchess of Eastland remarked, impaling Cassy with a steely glare."I'm sorry, your grace," she muttered and stared glumly down at her untouched dinner plate. Footmen were still serving a variety of meats from salmon to mutton, along with an astonishing array of vegetables, sausages, pickles, and creamed dishes to tempt the appetite. Across the table, numerous conversations flew in all directions, most too confusing for her to understand."Don't apologise," Eastland's Aunt said in a stern voice. "It's a sign of weakness."Cassy glanced up at the jewelled, rather portly woman with a surprised look, and nodded. "Yes, your grace.""And don't be so mealy-mouthed." The duchess snapped. "Where's your spirit?"A rush of resentment washed through her, and Cassy's eyes glittered as she said evenly, "I've been made to understand that spirit is not as important as obedience, your grace. If it offends you, it does not offend the duke.""I see," the do
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Ten
Cassy watched with mounting horror as Sir Geoffrey walked into the dining hall with an innocent smile on his face. Behind him walked Colin, handsome as ever, his smile a lazy one. Cassy felt her chest tighten at the sight of him, and the entire hall suddenly felt much too small. "No need for the warm welcome," sir Geoffrey said as he stopped right next to the duke. "We just thought we'd swing by since it appears that we didn't receive an invitation."Eastland flexed his fingers slowly, his rage mounting slowly. Cassy could see the irritation in his eyes, and she could tell that he'd deliberately refused to invite the viscount. "Sir Geoffrey," the duchess said with an exaggerated friendliness, "forgive my oversight. I had assumed that, being my nephew’s nearest neighbor, he would have invited you personally. Invitations were sent out to guests who were far away, and I was careless in my assumptions. Forgive my mistake.""I think nothing of it, your grace," sir Geoffrey said with a flo
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