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What the deuce [4/5, late afternoon]


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Brooke did not trust that his corrective action with his son was the end of it. There were two parties involved, and he knew he had to take measures to ensure that the succubus stopped toying with his son.


So he found himself at Whitehall, waiting patiently as York did business. Those that thought the Duke was only busy with pleasure had it all wrong. There were many hard hours of work in a day, ensuring all his estates ran well, corresponding with supporters and talking about securing new places for them. Even though he had no office to run, York was the heir and he prepared for the day that he might be forced to take over. He should have everything in place by then. The Duke was sitting amidst several large piles of paper, with reports about a variety of people.


James had just allowed George to finish a report, when it was announced that Lord Brooke begged an audience. The family St. Leger had been loyal to the Stuarts for several generations and Brooke himself was one of those very respected old Catholics. The Earl was admitted to his office.


After a round of drinks and some pleasantries, Brooke raised a delicate issue. "Your Highness, I must apologize, profoundly, for my son. He's young, and entirely daft, alas, it is my failing. I have taken corrective measures to ensure he's focused upon other things."


"Your son?" York raised an eyebrow "Lord Beverley.." He was a little slow on the uptake.


"I am afraid he took up a passion that was neither wise, nor his place," Brooke sighed mournfully "He is my son and heir, yet he has allowed himself to be seduced to libertine quarters. As you can imagine my wife is beside herself, and I myself cannot allow him to continue in this vine. However, the powers of seduction of Lady O"Roarke are famed, so I'm afraid he fell from grace."


Heather. Now this was embarrassing. York didn't like being confronted with the mischief of his mistress, especially as that mischief did not concern him. She should have a thought of other matters right now.


"When was this?" the Duke demanded to know.


"Last Monday," Brooke supplied.


Now York's brows knitted deeply. The timing, what the deuce! His temper rose. "Rest assured, Lord Brooke, that I shall remind the lady of proper decorum," he grumbled "You should not have to worry about your heir."


"Your Highness has my gratitude," Brooke bowed deeply as he took his leave.

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