Stranded with His Runaway Bride Read Online Julieanne Howells

Categories Genre: Romance Tags Authors:
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Total pages in book: 63
Estimated words: 59680 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 298(@200wpm)___ 239(@250wpm)___ 199(@300wpm)
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The key to the prince and princess saying “I do”? Letting passion reign supreme! Julieanne Howells captivates in this forced-proximity romance.

She ran from their wedding…
But can’t escape their attraction!
Prince Leo’s cold upbringing ensured love was out of his reach. He doesn’t think twice about agreeing to the political union his family has always coveted. Until Princess Violetta disappears on their wedding day…

Surrendering her power to a man is unacceptable to Violetta—even if that man sets her alight with a single glance! But when Leo tracks her down and they are stranded together, he’s not the enemy she first thought… Her independence is nonnegotiable. Yet a temporary alliance could be more pleasurable than Violetta ever imagined!

FULL BOOK START HERE:

CHAPTER ONE

THE CATHEDRAL OF St Peter’s was looking its baroque best. Decked out in floral displays so spectacular they were upstaged only by the guests in all their wedding finery. Half the crowned heads of Europe were sitting in the congregation. Joined by presidents, prime ministers and, of course, all the senior officials of the principality of Grimentz. There to see its ruler wed.

So for His Serene Highness Prince Leopold Friedrich von Frohburg, waiting in the sacristy for proceedings to begin, his cousin’s whispered message was not what he wanted to hear.

‘It appears your blushing bride has fled.’

Leo swirled from the mirror where he’d been submitting to the last adjustments of his perfectionist valet.

‘Although—’ Seb added casually, and entirely at odds with the gravity of the situation ‘—it would be more accurate to say disappeared. Because one minute Princess Violetta was in her room at the castle and then, poof...’ He snapped his fingers in the air for effect. ‘Gone.’

Leo glared at his cousin. Prince Sebastien von Frohburg was the only person on the planet he truly trusted, which meant he allowed him informalities he’d tolerate from no one else. But this was definitely not the time for any of them.

‘A young woman in her wedding dress, and wearing our priceless Elisabetha tiara, I might add, has simply vanished?’

Seb shrugged. ‘That about sums it up, yes.’

‘Who the hell allowed that to happen?’

His cousin slanted him a look. ‘Er...well, that would be you, Leo, wouldn’t it?’

Leo ignored the implication.

Get to know this one, Seb had begged him. Woo her...don’t take the chance.

But he’d been reassured that this Della Torre sister was different. Biddable. Willing. Decorous. And certainly, at the few joint functions they’d attended, her hand had been cool and steady in his while she’d played the part of consort-to-be flawlessly.

Better than the last. The elder sister who’d run off with her bodyguard—a bodyguard!—a month before she was due to fulfil her decade-long engagement to marry him, a prince, and monarch of the oldest and richest principality in Europe. Where was the comparison?

The shame, of course, had all been attached to her family. He and his father had made sure of it. No woman could be allowed to sully the great name of von Frohburg. Especially not a Della Torre one. They’d been a thorn in the side of the von Frohburgs for four hundred years.

Their grand duchy sat opposite Grimentz, separated by only a thin stretch of water. With no males to inherit, once Leo wed the female about to become the next grand duchess, her little state would rejoin his.

A bloodless reunification after centuries of bitter waiting.

For that prize Leo was ambitious enough to risk another go at marrying into the family. Despite the elder sister’s rebellious streak.

Violetta, the younger daughter, her uncle and regent, had assured him, had been carefully raised and would never do such a thing.

No female had ever been allowed to rule the duchy in her own right, and none of the officials were keen to try that now. The Della Torres had approached his father fifteen years ago. Once it became clear the grand duke and his wife would have no male heir.

Leo hadn’t seen the need to get to know the second daughter any better, other than at the handful of official functions they’d attended together as a betrothed couple. He’d gone through all the relevant groundwork when he’d been engaged to her sister. He knew the key players, the role she had in her duchy. Her uncle had been involved in the first negotiations anyway and he was still in place. It was essentially just a matter of replacing one sister with the other in the existing arrangements. All the requisite background checks revealed a female who’d led a quiet and blameless life.

Leo liked the fact she’d appeared bland and undemanding at their few meetings. It boded well for a businesslike union with no complications: like romantic expectations on the girl’s part. Or, heaven help him, emotions. Life had long since taught him to be done with all that. While she wasn’t a beauty like her sister, he was confident he’d be able to do his duty in bed and get the son and heir he needed. The future of his country and his people depended on him.


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