We are friends. This is what friends do to one another.
Who would have thought I could be so terrifying? Daphne murmured, thinking of all the men who thought of her as a jolly good friend and nothing more. How wonderful.Simon stared at her as if she were insane, then muttered, I'm not even going to question that statement.
Daphne ignored his comment. Should we set our plan into action?Simon planted his hands on his hips and reassessed the scene. Nigel was trying to rise to his feet, but it didn't appear, to Simon's eye at least, that he was going to find success anytime in the near future. Still, he was probably lucid enough to make trouble, and certainly lucid enough to make noise, which he was doing. Quite well, actually.Oh, Daphne. I luff you so much, Daffery. Nigel managed to raise himself to his knees, weaving around as he shuffled toward Daphne, looking rather like a sotted churchgoer attempting to pray. Please marry me, Duffne. You have to.
Buck up, man, Simon grunted, grabbing him by the collar. This is getting embarrassing. He turned to Daphne. I'm going to have to take him outside now. We can't leave him here in the hall. He's liable to start moaning like a sickened cow—I rather thought he'd already started, Daphne said.
Simon felt one corner of his mouth twist up in a reluctant smile. Daphne Bridgerton might be a marriageable female and thus a disaster waiting to happen for any man in his position, but she was certainly a good sport.
She was, it occurred to him in a rather bizarre moment of clarity, the sort of person he'd probably call friend if she were a man.Well, she said with a rather dainty shrug of her shoulders, I've been warned about you.
This was really too much. By whom? he demanded.She stared at him as if he were an imbecile. By everyone.
That, my d— He felt something suspiciously like a stammer coming on, and so he took a deep breath to steady his tongue. He'd become a master at this kind of control. All she would see was a man who looked as if he were trying to keep his temper in check. And considering the direction of their conversation, that image could not seem terribly far-fetched.My dear Miss Bridgerton, Simon said, starting anew in a more even and controlled tone, I find that difficult to believe.