When He Was Wicked
by Julia Quinn
Published by Avon
Book # 6 in the Bridgerton series
Everything was so much simpler... when he was wicked.
In every life there is a turning point. A moment so tremendous, so sharp and breathtaking, that one knows one's life will never be the same. For Michael Stirling, London's most infamous rake, that moment came the first time he laid eyes on Francesca Bridgerton.
After a lifetime of chasing women, of smiling slyly as they chased him, of allowing himself to be caught but never permitting his heart to become engaged, he took one look at Francesca Bridgerton and fell so fast and hard into love it was a wonder he managed to remain standing. Unfortunately for Michael, however, Francesca's surname was to remain Bridgerton for only a mere thirty-six hours longer—the occasion of their meeting was, lamentably, a supper celebrating her imminent wedding to his cousin.
But that was then... Now Michael is the earl and Francesca is free, but still she thinks of him as nothing other than her dear friend and confidant. Michael dares not speak to her of his love... until one dangerous night, when she steps innocently into his arms, and passion proves stronger than even the most wicked of secrets...
RATED: 18+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Steamy Historical-Romance Hot
When He Was Wicked by Julia Quinn is the sixth book in the Bridgerton series, and centers around Francesca Bridgerton, and Michael Stirling. Michael falls head over heels in love with Francesca the very night he meets her. The problem - she is marrying his cousin that weekend. But now - Francesca is a widow, and Michael is the earl. Michael keeps his feelings hidden, not daring to tempt himself with taking his cousin's wife, when he already feels like he is taking his place in everything else. That is until one single moment, when passion overtakes them.
I freaking LOVED this book. Did it make me cry? Yup. Did it make me laugh? That it did. Did I swoon over the romance and fantastic passionate sex? Hell yes. I wasn't sure what I was expecting when I started this book. Francesca has always been a quiet member of the family, so you start off not really knowing her. It didn't take me long to fall for these characters, or this story. I lost sleep because I needed to keep reading to the very last page. I enjoyed that Francesca was different from her family. More quiet, and fiercely independent. And Michael ... oh man. I'm melting from how hot his character is. Their chemistry with one another is, in my eyes, the best of the series so far.
And wow ... the sex in this book is intense and definitely wicked. I loved it!
I thought Eloise's story was my favorite, but I think Francesca squeezed by for first place. This story broke my heart, and put it together again. Swoon
Michael taking Francesca for a walk
Michael charming Violet
Violet and Francesca's talk
Michael telling Francesca about how he has Malaria, and Francesca taking care of her.
Francesca telling John's mom that she is looking for a husband, and her supporting Francesca in that.
Colin telling Michael he should just marry Francesca
Michael saving Francesca from Sir Geoffrey
Their first kiss.
Colin convincing Michael to go after Francesca
Um, that dirty talk, and Francesca and Michael having sex for the first time in the drawing room
Francesca. In. Charge.
Michael and Francesca marrying.
Francesca panicking about Michael falling ill, and her yelling at God
Francesca talking to John at his grave, tell him that she fell in love, and coming to accept that John would have been happy that his two favorite people found each other.
The letter Janet wrote to Michael in the epilogue
Where to Buy
Francesca: "Tell me about something wicked, then. Something John would not approve of."
Michael: "I'm afraid I've done nothing wicked this week."
Francesca: "You? Impossible."
Michael: "It's only Tuesday."
Francesca: "John would never worry over me."
Michael: "I know. It's the only reason I tease you."
Michael: "I must go. I've much to do."
Francesca: "You've nothing to do, and you know it. You just wish to be wicked."
Michael: "It's an admirable pastime."
Violet: "Please do call me Violet. It's well past time that you did."
Michael: "Oh, I couldn't."
Violet: "I insist, Michael. And I'm certain you're already aware that I usually get my way."
Michael: "I don't know if I can kiss the hand of a Violet. It seems rather scandalously intimate, don't you think?"
Violet: "Don't you dare stop."
Michael: "Tongues will wag."
Violet: "I believe my reputation can withstand it."
Michael: "Ah, but can mine."
Violet: "You are a rascal."
Michael: "It serves me well."
Michael: "I can't explain it, but nothing tastes quite like tea in England."
Violet: "The quality of the water, do you think?"
He smiled stealthily.
Michael: "The quality of the woman pouring."
Violet: "You, my lord, need a wife. Immediately."
Michael: "Oh, really? And why is that?"
Violet: "Because in your present state. you are clearly a danger to unmarried women everywhere."
He couldn't resist one last flirtation
Michael: "I hope you are including yourself in those ranks, Violet."
Francesca: "Are you flirting with my mother?"
Francesca: "Don't you dare try your usual tricks on me. I know exactly how you operate. You always pretend that nothing matters, that water rolls off your back -"
Michael: "It does roll off my back. Yours as well. Simple science, really."
Francesca: "We will get through this."
He nodded, and then he closed his eyes.
Michael: "It's better with you here."
It wasn't her hair, that rich, lush wave of chestnut that he was rarely so privileged as to see down. And it wasn't even her eyes, so radiantly blue that men had been moved to write poetry - much, Michael recalled, to John's everlasting amusement. It wasn't even in the shape of her face or the structure of her bones; if t hat were the case, he'd have been obsessed with the loveliness of all the Bridgerton girls; such peas in a pod they were, at least on the outside.
It was something in the way she moved.
Something in the way she breathed.
Something in the way she merely was.
And he didn't think he was ever going to get over it.
Francesca: "I swear, Michael, you make the most annoying deathly ill patient I have ever met."
Michael: "I live to entertain you!"
Francesca: "I'm going to kill her."
Hyacinth: "Who are you talking to?"
Francesca: "God. And I do believe I have been given divine leave to murder you."
Hyacinth: "Hmmph. If it was that easy, I'd have asked permission to eliminate half the ton years ago."
Violet: "Oh, Francesca! There you are."
Hyacinth: "Francesca was just about to kill me."
Violet: "Excellent timing on my part, then."
Francesca: "Mother, you really should have stopped at seven.
Violet: "Children, you mean? Sometimes I do wonder."
Violet just smiled at her.
Hyacinth: "It took her eight tries to get it right."
Francesca: "She thinks that we are conducting an affair."
Michael: "After only a week back in London. I'm faster than I imagined."
Michael: "I suppose I should g et ready for your mother's visit. It shouldn't be too much of a problem."
Francesca: "But you look terrible."
Michael: "I knew there was a reason I loved you so well. One really needn't worry about falling into the sin of vanity with you about."
Michael: "Am I to get no reprieve?"
Helen: "Of course you are. You did, in fact. Last week. We called it malaria."
Michael: "And here I was looking forward to health."
Janet: "Do I wish you were still married to my son? Of course. Do I want you to spend the rest of your life married to his memory? Of course not. You are a daughter to me, Francesca. I want you to be happy."
Michael: "A man would have to be a fool not to want to marry you."
Good God, didn't any of them have an original thought in his head? Forget that everyone made mention of her eyes; at the very least one of them could have had the creativity to compare them to something other than the water or the sky.
Michael snorted with disgust. Anyone who took the time to really look at Francesca's eyes would have realized that they were quite their own color.
As if the sky could even compare.
Francesca: "How did you know I was in the garden? Were you watching me?"
His lips curved, not quite into a smile, not even into the beginnings of a smile.
Michael: "I'm always watching you."
Michael: "She might say no."
Colin: "She might. In fact, she probably will. Women often do, the first time you ask."
Michael: "And how many times have you proposed marriage?"
Colin: "Just once, actually. This afternoon, as a matter or fact."
Michael: "I beg your pardon?"
Colin: "Indeed. Thought it was about time, although I suppose honesty is owed here, so I should probably admit that she did not force me to ask twice. If it makes you feel any better, however, it did take several minutes to wheedle the yes out of her."
And he, who had slept with countless women, suddenly realized that he'd been nothing but a green boy
Because it had never been like this.
That had been his body. This was his soul.
Good God, it figured he'd look for her. Couldn't a man be counted on to behave like a cad when it truly mattered?
Michael: "Sadly, not said in the same tones I heard from you last night."
She smacked him.
Michael: "I deserved that."
Michael: "I believe I asked you to marry me."
Francesca: "No, you didn't. You informed me that you believed we should be married and then proceeded to explain why."
Michael: "Is that so? How remiss of me."
Francesca: "Don't take that as an invitation to make your proposal right now."
Michael: "You'd have me waste this fabulously romantic moment?"
Michael: "I'm not a gentle pony. I promise you, you will have to work to keep your seat."
Francesca: "What is this?"
Michael: "I call them flowers."
Francesca: "No, what is this?"
Michael: "The gesture, you mean? Why, I'm courting you."
Her lips parted.
Michael: "Is it such a surprise?"
After all that had passed between them?
Michael: "You deserve no less."
Michael: "Why? Why? It's because I love you, damn me to hell. Because I've always loved you. Because I loved you when you were with John, and I loved you when I was in India, and God only knows I don't deserve you, but I love you, anyway."
Michael: "If you want to finish, you'll have to do so as the Countess of Kilmartin."
Francesca: "I am the Countess of Kilmartin."
Michael: "You'll have to do it as my Countess of Kilmartin. Shall I get your coat?"
Michael: "excellent choice. Will you wait here, or accompany me to the hall?"
She pried her teeth apart to say
Francesca: "I'll come out of the hall."
He took her arm and guided her to the door, leaning down to murmur
Michael: "Eager little thing, aren't we?"
Francesca: "Just get my coat."
Francesca: "I love you. I love you. I love you."
Michael: "You don't have to - "
Francesca: "No, I do. I have to say it. I have to tell you. I love you. I do. I love you so much."
Michael: "I didn't mean that you didn't need to say it, just that you didn't have to repeat it."
She laughed at that, even as the tears kept flowing, and both of their bodies shook.
Michael: "You have to say it. If you feel it, then you have to say it. I'm a greedy bastard, and I want it all."
Francesca: "I love you."
Michael: "I have no idea what I did to deserve you."
Francesca: "You didn't have to do anything. You just had to be."
Janet: I hope you will not think me self-important when I offer you my blessing. And I hope you will not think me foolish when I also extend my thanks. Thank you, Michael, for letting my son lover her first.
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