“Ash,” Max choked out and patted the Viscount’s arm in the unspoken way of surrendering to a more capable opponent. “I love Georgiana.”
“You love her!”
With a bitter laugh, he released his grip and stepped back. Max coughed as much-needed air made its way into his lungs. With a sound of disgust, Ashton turned to leave. When he reached the door, he stopped abruptly and faced Max.
“You are a hypocrite and a fraud. A deceiver of the worst kind.” His voice vibrated with anger. “You may love your horse, or your newest vest, but you do not love my cousin.”
“I do love her,” Max reiterated and straightened to his full height, his bruised pride smarting over the idea that Ash believed he loved only inanimate objects. “My recent behavior is unacceptable” – the Viscount snorted indelicately – “however, if Georgiana is willing to look beyond this and forgive, I ask that you follow her lead. All I can do is prove my words with action.”
“There is a story in the Bible where the Lord caused the sun to stand still. You need a miracle of that magnitude to earn back my cousin’s trust. To earn back ALL our trust.”
For the first time Max felt a hint of a smile. Could this be the sign he’d prayed for? A strange peace settled about his heart, something he hadn’t felt in months.
“You and I both know that if God can make the sun and moon stand still, He can soften the heart of the sweetest woman ever created. I will do my part and the Almighty will do His.”
“Then, if you plan to stand on prayer alone, you’d better ask God to give Elizabeth a heart full of forgiveness. She is the one you should fear the most.”
“The list of those I’ve hurt is long and I’m well aware this task is difficult. I’ve loved your cousin for many years, but allowed anger and pride to dictate my actions.”
Ash reached for the door handle and then paused.
“Adborough,” he said, without turning around. “It’s been a long time since I thought God held any interest in the affairs of man. If you manage to earn back the love and respect of our family and friends, I may have to revisit my long-held doubts.”
“Then it’s imperative that I succeed.”
The Viscount half turned and held Max’s gaze. “I almost hope you do.”Do you think Max can earn Georgiana's trust and should he fear the wrath of Elizabeth Darcy, as intimated by the Viscount? We're nearing the end of our story. At least five or six more chapters and then off to editing!