The Major's Wife - Page 77

Her somber silence helped. Gave him time to let his anger renew itself. In reality what waited at their destination did all that. He led her to the train station and noted her surprise when he boarded beside her and settled in for the ride.

Later, when the train whistle blew, announcing they’d arrived in Richmond, Seth held strong. An army major was used to being ruthless and unsympathetic. Meeting her gaze with one as cold as he felt, he said, “Welcome home, Millie.”

One attempt was all she made, asked if she could explain things again. Seth told her there was nothing she could say that he wanted to hear.

Her stiff stance and cold silence when he knocked on the door of her father’s house had him keeping his hand balled into a fist, and he forced his mind to remain set on facing her sister. Rosemary. His wife. The thought was enough to make his anger simmer.

The woman who pulled the door open had him wondering how he’d ever, for even a moment, confused the two sisters. Rosemary was just as he remembered. There was a touch of beauty there, but it was hidden beneath an aura of self-importance so sinister and thick it couldn’t be cut with a sword. She frowned, pulling dark brows over her frigid eyes as she glanced from him to Millie.

“It’s about time you got home,” she snapped, before turning to him with eyelashes batting and a slight curtsy. “Thank you, sir, for seeing my sister home.”

Millie let out a groan like he’d never heard as she stepped across the threshold. “You must have forgotten what he looks like, Rosemary,” she said. “This is your husband, Major Seth Parker.”

“My hus—” The glare Rosemary cast Millie hadn’t completely left her face when she turned back to him, but she soon concealed it. “Of course I remember. Seth, do come in. I’m assuming you discovered how Millie ran off. Pretending to be me.” She pulled her hand from where she’d flattened it near her throat and fluttered it toward her sister. “Millie, get us a drink. Some bourbon perhaps?” she asked him with an expectant gaze.

“Get it yourself,” Millie answered, walking toward a black woman who’d appeared on the far side of the entranceway.

“Why, you little...” Rosemary seethed, spinning around as if to chase her sister.

Seth grabbed her arm. He had nothing to say to her, yet had to speak in order to complete the mission. “I have papers for you to sign.”

Chin up, nose in the air, Rosemary said, “Oh, yes, our divorce. I’ve been reconsidering that.”

She looked nothing like her sister. Not even their voices sounded alike. “I haven’t.” Still holding her arm with one hand, he used the other to reach beneath his jacket and pull the envelope out of his shirt pocket. “Matter of fact, I had a new set of papers drawn up this morning.”

Batting her lashes again, as if that was supposed to make her look more attractive, which it didn’t, she let out a long sigh. “Do come in, Seth,” she said. “So we can talk.”

“No.” He pulled her onto the porch. “There’s a table right here you can use to pen your name.”

“I’m not sign—”

“Yes, you are,” he said. “Or I’ll take you to court. Pull in every man you’ve been with since you were thirteen.”

“Thirteen!”

“Yes, behind the carriage house. I believe his name—”

“Shut up,” she seethed. “How dare you...”

“Oh, I dare,” he insisted.

“I’ll have you know I have money. I could take you to court and—”

“And what? Explain you had another man’s baby while married to me?”

Her features contorted. “Why, that little snit. How dare she tell you my private business.”

“Who? Millie? She didn’t tell me.” Gritting his teeth, Seth added, “She didn’t tell me anything.” He pulled the papers out of the envelope and flattened them on the table next to a rocking chair.

“Oh, you just magically know everything about my life?”

“You’re a general’s daughter. The army knows everything about you,” he said, not wanting to implicate Martin Clark, for a reason Seth had yet to discern. Maybe because the man had told him everything he wanted to know about Rosemary when he’d found him sitting in the foyer of the hotel last night—though Clark had refused to utter a word about Millie.

Pulling out a pen, Seth handed it to Rosemary. “Sign.”

She glared at him, lips pouted and arms folded across her chest. “No.”

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