Rufus Pride lost his brothers to the Great War, his parents to the Naples Scourge, and he's on the verge of losing his cottage, his ponies, and everything else he cares about. Everyone knows his magic is powerful, but no one trusts him, not anymore. When he saves Ferry's charge from a cranky pony on market day, she offers the first kind words he's heard in months.
Ferry Wright became a governess in rural England as a last resort after she refused to marry the man her parents chose for her. Six months later, she's (mostly) figured out how to manage her charges and can finally explore the nearby village and the forest around it. Rufus is everything her family would hate, but he loves and understands the New Forest in a way that enchants her. She'll gladly learn anything he's willing to teach.
When a smuggler needs his raw power to handle a rare shipment, Rufus can't resist the chance to make enough money to change his life forever. He has hope for the first time in years until the curiousity of the local lord and a completely inadequate magical education threaten the only home he's ever known and any possible future with Ferry.More info →
Lord Geoffrey Carillon is well-known as a pleasant and harmless sort of man.
On the surface, he's recovered from the Great War, taking his role as Lord of Ytene seriously when he's not seen at any number of house parties, concerts, and balls. When an inquiry agency needs his particular talents to help investigate a mysterious and highly addictive golden drink, he's happy to lend a hand.
Lizzie Penhallow wants the simple things.
Her sister's health and safety, enough food on the table, and enough income to pay the bills and keep their house in Cornwall. But after her uncle and father were lost on an expedition, she's had a difficult time getting anyone to hire her. This position with the agency is her last chance to find work she's actually good at. She has no time for distractions.
There's just one problem.
Lord Carillon has the access she needs to keep an eye on her sister and to help her new employer solve a complicated and deadly problem. She can work with that. There's no choice. Even if it involves house parties around the British Isles, and some quite suggestive dancing.
Join Carillon and Lizzie in 1924 as they investigate the mysterious goldwasser drink in Goblin Fruit.More info →
Proserpina Gates thought she had a straightforward research question.
A widowed bookseller keeping things running on her own, Pross has taken on a research project to help ends meet. All she wants to do is help her client discover the truth about the stories of a hidden hoard on the family estate in Norfolk. But the Research Society has changed, and the only person who shows any interest in helping her is Ibis Ward.
And he's rather prickly about it.
Ibis knows that his colleagues don't care for him.
He's not their sort at all, especially since he's both half-Egyptian and competent at research. His life has taught him to expect that and nothing more. Instead, he spends his time using his fluency with hieroglyphs, his archaeological skills, and his gifts for magic to translate and describe objects in the Petrie Collection.
Despite himself, he's intrigued when Pross comes to him for help. As it becomes clear that there's more going on, he finds himself trusting her more than he has trusted anyone in years.
Together, they are drawn into a web of magic, mystery, and those who would use magic and power for their own ends.More info →
Giles Lefton has an excellent life. He enjoys his mathematics, his teaching at the University, and his cryptography assignments.
When a manor missing for centuries suddenly reappears in the middle of Oxfordshire, Giles is glad to take on the project. Figuring out magical puzzles and patterns is one of his specialities, after all. Blinded during the Great War, he knows he needs an assistant to help. One who meets his standards.
Kate Davies can be relied on to do her duty without complaint.
A full member of Albion's Guard, she is glad to serve where she is assigned. While she is glad the Great War is over, she quietly misses the greater range of duties she had while so many men were overseas. Now limited to portal duty and seeing to minor scuffles about the local river traffic, she isn't sure what to make of her new assignment. Or the fact she keeps failing at what Major Lefton expects of her.
Together, Kate and Giles tumble into a maze of historical investigation, obscure folklore, and more than a touch of magics neither of them understand.More info →
Laura Penhallow thought she was accepting an invitation for a pleasant house party on a remote island off the coast of Cornwall. It was a chance for her to get to know Galen Amberly and his family better and enjoy the sea air. Laura wasn't sure about Madam Amberly's plans to marry her son off, but she could use a weekend away, doing something to keep busy after her older sister goes off on a belated honeymoon.
Galen knows he needs to step up and help his family. His older brother was badly injured during the Great War, and can't take over running the family's estates and businesses. His mother will keep introducing him to people, and arranging parties on their remote island estate, but at least Laura seems pleasant enough. (And Galen's best friend, Martin, is around to make up the numbers for dinner and Saturday's grand party.)
Laura and Galen both know how this dance goes, and what is expected of them. When two guests of Galen's father, an American brother and sister, arrive without much warning, none of them are sure what to expect. The plans for the gathering go sideway, forcing the three young people to work together to solve a locked room murder mystery.
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