She linked her hands together to stop them trembling. Prince Raschid ibn Saud al Azarin was about to arrive. She turned away from the view. Maggie was swiftly joined by twelve-year-old Joan and four-year-old Elaine, who had not a clue what the excitement was about but was determined not to be left out of it.
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She linked her hands together to stop them trembling. Prince Raschid ibn Saud al Azarin was about to arrive. She turned away from the view. Maggie was swiftly joined by twelve-year-old Joan and four-year-old Elaine, who had not a clue what the excitement was about but was determined not to be left out of it. The window-seat was a tight squeeze for the three of them, each craning their necks for a better view.
In an effort to to calm her nerves, Polly breathed in slowly. What her sisters were finding so fascinating was sheer purgatory for her.
Could this be real? This was England in the eighties, an era of female liberation. How could she possibly be on the brink of an arranged marriage to a complete stranger?
But she was. Those must be the colours of the Dhareini royal family. Guiltily biting her lower lip, Maggie watched her sister sink down into one of the shabby nursery armchairs, covering her face briefly with her spread hands.
Polly flinched visibly. Her temples were pounding with the nagging beat of a tension that no amount of painkillers would put to flight. The morning had crawled past. Hardly anybody had talked over the lunch table. The door slammed.
Ashamed of her over-emotional behaviour, Polly pushed an unsteady hand through the silvery blonde curls falling untidily over her brow and wiped at her wet eyes. Thirty-odd years ago Ernest Barrington had been a youthful diplomat attached to an embassy in one of the Gulf States. During his years in the Middle East he had spent his leave exploring neighbouring countries.
On one such trip he had ventured into the wilds of Dharein in Southern Arabia, a country still torn by the fierce feuds of warring tribes and relatively little more civilised than it had been a century earlier. There he had recovered his strength, and shortly before his departure he had been honoured by an invitation to join a royal hunting party.
Out in the desert an assassination attempt had been made on his royal host. The details of that shocking episode were somewhat blurred.
Shorn of extras, the most basic version ran that, seeing a rifle glinting in the sunlight, Ernest had thrown himself in front of the King and dragged him to the ground, suffering a minor head wound in the process. But it was obviously the highest honour the King could think to offer.
An Arabian Courtship
Shelves: , hplandia , justsorta-huh , nice-people-i-am-sure , the-tropy-of-the-tropiest This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Re An Arabian Courtship - Lynne Graham is back with her second foray into HPlandia, a sheikhy lurve story that starts with an arranged marriage. The book opens with the h meeting the H for the first time and he epitomizes every stereotype of the Middle East by explaining that the h will never be allowed to go out without covering, he will only use her as a convenience in bed and she will not be associating with other people. Essentially the H is telling her she will be living in purdah if she marries him.