Asher's Dilemma

Sold by Harlequin
Free sample

Ever since he awoke one day on the floor of his workshop with a brain-splitting headache, Asher Quigley has been haunted by fleeting visions of a beautiful woman everywhere he looks—a woman he's sure he knows, but can't recall. In spite of this he has finished his most wondrous invention yet, one that will literally make history: a time machine. But before he can complete his exacting calculations a bizarre accident causes the device to be activated, with him inside! He awakes to find himself in his lab, eight months in the past, and suddenly he remembers her…

Asher knows that something in the near future causes Minerva Lambkin, the woman who turned down his marriage proposal, to be erased from existence. And he's sure it has something to do with his device. Alone in a familiar world where he doesn't belong, he'll have to find a way to destroy the time machine to save the woman he loves from extinction. Even if that means erasing his own future.

33,000 words
Read more
Collapse

About the author

England, 1870s

In the witching hour of the night Asher Quigley fell out of bed, sweating profusely, his head thrumming from a thousand drumbeats. The treacly August heat pressed down on his heaving chest. He'd fallen asleep fully clothed, and now his shirt and britches were soaked through and clinging to his skin. Groaning, he pulled himself to his feet and kneaded his forehead.

God's teeth! It wasn't just his head that ached. His entire body felt as if he'd gone thirty rounds with a bare-knuckled pugilist. Staggering to the wash stand, he emptied the pitcher over himself, but the tepid water did little to revive him. He shook his head, trying to clear the cobwebs of the dream he'd just started awake from. A week ago he'd collapsed in his workshop and woken up with the most debilitating migraine he'd ever experienced. Since then his every night had been dogged by the same fevered dreams of oppression and pain.

Lifting his head from the basin, he caught sight of his pallid reflection in the mirror above...and a glimpse of someone else, a young woman with fair hair and eyes of cerulean blue, drifting through the shadows behind him.

He whipped round, but she was gone. As always.

For the past week it seemed he'd seen her everywhere--walking down a crowded street, riding by in an omnibus, sailing down the Thames on a ferry, and now even in his own bedchamber. Everywhere out of nowhere he caught glimpses of her slender figure and oval face, causing him to start in surprise and pleasure. And every time he saw her, he opened his mouth to call out her name. He knew he knew her name. It was on the tip of his tongue but somehow he couldn't form the sound. And every time she disappeared before he could get any closer, leaving him inexplicably bereft.

Now she had begun to invade his dreams too, like tonight, when she had beamed a smile at him which had flooded him with sunshine. In his dream he'd run towards her, lured by her mermaid hair and dimpled smile, but she had disappeared into a thick mist. And then she reappeared. Only it wasn't her this time. This woman was fair-haired and blue-eyed too, but it wasn't her. This was someone serpentine and sinister, someone who made him back away, his skin crawling with animosity.

That was when he'd jerked awake to find himself a tangled mess, punching at his pillows.

Who was this enticing young woman who tormented him day and night? In his bones he knew she was of vital importance to him, so why the devil couldn't he remember her?

Zounds! If he didn't take more care, he'd start sounding like an addle-pated mystic. That would never do. He was Asher Quigley, the renowned inventor who revered science and technology above religion, much to his clergyman father's continued disapproval. He did not put stock in visions and dreams, even if these nightly visitations were more disturbing than any opium-fuelled delirium. He must be coming down with an ague. That would explain the headaches, the muscular pains, the nocturnal sweats. He was just working too hard, that was all.

Frustrated, he flung open his bedroom window and sucked the thick night air deep into his lungs. From his window he could see the bulky outline of his workshop at the bottom of his garden. On the horizon, sheet lightning flickered like distant explosions. Bruised, swollen clouds all but obscured the waning moon. All was sullenly quiet down below, the padlocks on the doors of the workshop undisturbed.

Read more
Collapse
Loading...

Additional Information

Publisher
Harlequin
Read more
Collapse
Published on
Jan 7, 2013
Read more
Collapse
Pages
91
Read more
Collapse
ISBN
9781426894886
Read more
Collapse
Read more
Collapse
Read more
Collapse
Language
English
Read more
Collapse
Genres
Fiction / Romance / Historical / General
Fiction / Science Fiction / Steampunk
Read more
Collapse
Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
Read more
Collapse
Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
Read more
Collapse
Eligible for Family Library

Reading information

Smartphones and Tablets

Install the Google Play Books app for Android and iPad/iPhone. It syncs automatically with your account and allows you to read online or offline wherever you are.

Laptops and Computers

You can read books purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.

eReaders and other devices

To read on e-ink devices like the Sony eReader or Barnes & Noble Nook, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Please follow the detailed Help center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.
©2019 GoogleSite Terms of ServicePrivacyDevelopersArtistsAbout Google|Location: United StatesLanguage: English
By purchasing this item, you are transacting with Google Payments and agreeing to the Google Payments Terms of Service and Privacy Notice.