Chapter One: The incorrigible Henrietta HealyFebruary 1824
The Countess of Walrafen -- who in a long-ago life had been known as Cecilia Markham-Sands -- was newly possessed of a most fashionable villa in Park Crescent. Mr. Nash's latest spurt of architectural genious boasted every modern convenience, including flushing lavatories, an elegantly stuccoed facade, and pale yellow paint so sumptuously applied it looked like butter running down the walls.
There was nothing of the old or the venerated about Park Crescent, though the earldom of Walrafen was both. In fact, to her ladyship's way of thinking, the Walrafen title...