Without me she’d have a completely different life. She’d have probably gone to college and got married, not been disowned by her parents. Well, yeah. Hello. Without me in your life you’d have no humor or love. You’d be a sad, sad woman.
He didn’t buy it but it wasn’t his business.Willa inhaled a deep breath. It’s getting late. I should go.
Dance with me first.I’m serious.Her eyes widened and she sent a startled look to the dance floor. If you think I suck at darts, you should see me on the dance floor. I’m a really bad dancer.
She rolled her eyes. Like I’m supposed to believe you’re bad at anything.He flashed a smile. How will you know unless you give me a shot?
That’s one thing I really shouldn’t do.
Chicken? he asked softly.Your boots look very practical, the captain said, looking at her with a combination of amusement and curiosity.
Not as practical as yours, she said, with an eye toward what were surely custom-made tall boots. Such well-crafted footwear did not come cheap. In fact, all of the captain’s attire was exquisitely made. Privateering must be more lucrative than she’d imagined. Either that or Captain James came from a lot of money.But that didn’t seem realistic. He was certainly wellborn, but Poppy doubted his family was rich. If they were, why on earth would he have gone into trade? And such a trade. There was nothing respectable about his profession. She could not even imagine her parents’ reaction if one of her brothers had done the same.
Her mother would have died of shame. Not literally, of course, but she would have declared her death by shame often enough that Poppy would have feared her own demise by repetitive aural torture.And yet, Poppy could not see anything within the captain that warranted such disappointment. True, she did not know the nature or extent of his business dealings, but she saw the way he treated his men—or at least Billy and Brown and Green. She saw the way he treated her, and she could not help but think of all the so-called gentlemen of London—the ones she was supposed to adore and admire and want to marry. She thought of all the cutting remarks, the cruelty and unkindness they displayed toward the men and women who worked for them.