Melissa Lamb and her cousin Ernestine are at the centre of the Wild Young Bohemians, an exclusive dining club at Oxford for the beautiful and ambitious. Melissa is in the grip of an obsession. Ernestine, however, mild and practical, does not see through Melissa's ruthless determination to restore her derelict family mansion - a Gothic legacy of lust, greed and death, with a spectacular secret that has slept for a hundred years.
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Dear Husband, she said, actually imitating me. I know what you are going to say. I always know what you are going to say. I know all the things you ever can or ever do say. She paused for a moment, and then added in a firm voice, looking me straight in the eyes, By heart. ' For the Major and his wife Edelgard, the idea of a holiday touring…
Melissa will let nothing stand in her way - until a vengeful stranger enters their magic circle. But he is only a catalyst: the seed of evil is already sown.