“What? You’re not joining us, my lord?” Helene sputtered. She cast a desperate glance at Count von Schnitzer and offered a grimace for a smile. “But I assured Otto, as the highest ranking peer in attendance, he’d have your undivided attention.”
“I’m sorry to disappoint you,” Roark’s focus moved to include the count, “but I’ll be escorting Miss Ferguson.”
Helene’s eyes narrowed, and she pursed her lips, casting Adaira a dismissive look. “Is she another soul you feel the need to rescue? You are far too kind, my lord. Did I detect a limp when she tripped on the stairs?”
She tossed a hostile glance Adaira’s way. “I cannot quite tell what kind they are as she’s hiding behind her parasol, but I’m certain there are marks of some sort on her face. Pox perhaps?”
Roark choked on an oath. Was Helene serious?
She reclined against the velvet squabs in triumph, satisfaction curving her lovely mouth. “That’s it isn’t it? You pity the girl. Come now, it’s admirable to be sure, but you alone cannot save all the wretches of the world.”
Roark eyed her. She’d kept this side of her nature well-hidden. Until now.
She smiled an invitation, desire sparkling in her sky blue eyes. “Though, I do find a compassionate man very attractive.”
It would seem Helene wasn’t as sweet-tempered and amiable as she’d affected for all these months. Just as well he’d already decided to terminate their association before this weekend ended.
“On the contrary, there’s absolutely nothing amiss with Miss Ferguson,” Roark said.