Chasing the Texas Windby Mary C. Findley
Vienta by Mary C. Findley
Hamilton Jessup appears to live a quiet life as a government clerk. Recollections of his days as a soldier in Texas' historic battles against Santa Ana only mar his peace a little. Celebrating a birthday with an old friend and resisting one more effort by Dan Costain to persuade him to read the Bible hardly disturb his ordinary life
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Vienta by Mary C. Findley
Hamilton Jessup appears to live a quiet life as a government clerk. Recollections of his days as a soldier in Texas' historic battles against Santa Ana only mar his peace a little. Celebrating a birthday with an old friend and resisting one more effort by Dan Costain to persuade him to read the Bible hardly disturb his ordinary life. But an invitation to a dinner party at the palatial home of celebrity singer Maeve Collinswood changes everything. Ham enters into a sham marriage arrangement and Maeve pays his mysterious debts.
In return she demands that he give her respectability and ignore her frequent disappearances and the inescapable conclusion that she is doing something dangerous and needs help. But Ham has secrets of his own, including the loss of his best friend and the puzzle of Mexico's "endgame scenario " that he must solve or risk the loss of everything he loves. Ham's growing love for Maeve and his discovery that their secrets are connected in incredible ways plunges both of them into a race to outwit Mexican General Ampudio's ruthless Lieutenant Chaco and stop the supply of arms to Mexico's fight against the freedom of Texas.
from Part One, between June, 1844 and March, 1845
"I wanted to lay your concerns to rest, ma'am," Ham drawled. "It was kind of you to call Doctor Evans, and I apologize for being generally impossible to live with. "
Maeve looked at him in astonishment. "Doctor Evans said you were feverish, and you seemed to be in pain. Hamilton, what happened last night?"
"Last night, ma'am?" Ham seemed to be thinking hard. "Would you believe me if I told you Nat Grover drugged our punch and hired someone to try to kill us?"
"What?" Maeve stood up. "How can you stand there and speak such a lot of nonsense? Why do you hate Mr. Grover so much? What has he done to you?"
Ham took a deep breath. "Well then," he said in a low voice,"Since that's how you respond, you got a bit faint and I got a bit thirsty and I sent you home and went out and wet my whistle. "
Maeve appeared to be studying him. "You were drunk, and suffered from a hangover," Maeve summarized finally.
"In essence, that is what must have occurred," Ham replied. "Since Mr. Grover is sacrosanct from my unprovable accusations. "
"Hamilton?" Maeve said suddenly.
"Yes, ma'am?" Ham asked.
"The story you told about Goliad," Maeve said, looking pained,"Was it some sort of alcoholic raving or did you tell a true tale?"
Ham looked away. "A true tale, ma'am," he said. "I could never be intoxicated enough to show so much disrespect to the memory of that event as to fabricate a tale about it. "
"Thank you," Maeve said.
- Mary C. Findley
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