Itâ€™s wonderful to be back on Fresh Fiction!! Last time I visited, I talked
about my muse. Well, she was out while I was writing ENTICING MISS
EUGENIE VILLARET, book 5 in The Marriage Game.
Although I live in St. Thomas, where the book is set, finding any information
between the end of the Napoleonic war and the mid-19th century is difficult to
say the least. The pirates had, for the most part ceased to be active and life
had become a lot calmer. During the war, England had twice taken possession of
the Danish West Indies, but gave it back in 1815. In 1816 St. Thomas had one of
the few protected deep water harbors in the Caribbean. It was made a free-port
and had attracted a number of different nationalities. It wasnâ€™t until the
middle of the century, when the island was hit with a triple whammy, hurricane,
disease, and the advent of steamer ships, that it lost its position of power.
Believe it or not, most people living here had no idea of that it had been a
As I was pouring over really old books with a friend, a refrain kept repeating
itâ€™s self in my head. â€śSt. Thomas is a salubrious island.â€ť Hmm.
So I asked my friend, â€śKatina, did St. Thomas ever have a reputation of being
healthier than the other islands?â€ť
â€śOf course not,â€ť she responded, and went on to tell me about the triple whammy.
Several minutes later, I ran across a passage in one of the books stating that
St. Thomas had been known for being the healthy island. My muse refrained from
telling me I told you so, but she was very smug.
Because England had ended the slave trade, there was a great deal of tension
between the Danish and British islands. The Danes would smuggle slaves into
places like Tortola. There were also those that helped free slaves. Since I had
some slaves I had to get to safety, I went searching for the best island to
relocate them. Once again my muse started to speak: â€śThe British West Indies.â€ť
Well, after spending hours studying the manumissions laws for all the islands,
sure enough she was right. Every other island required documents proving freeman
status. In the British islands, all one had to do was get there.
Iâ€™ll leave you with a short excerpt and a question. Do you ever get feelings
that turn out to be spot on?
An hour later, Will clasped the older manâ€™s hand. â€śI hope I see you before
youâ€™re on your way again.â€ť
â€śIâ€™ll make a point of it.â€ť Black gave Will a sly wink. â€śSir. Youâ€™ll find a
tailor on Main Street, what the Danes call Dronningens Gade, as well as most
everything else youâ€™ll need.â€ť
â€śIs there a printer there as well?â€ť Even if he only used his assumed identity
for a short time, calling cards would be necessary.
â€śYesâ€ťâ€”the captain noddedâ€”â€śjust down from the tailor. Gentlemen, enjoy your stay.
It was a pleasure having you onboard. Perhaps weâ€™ll make the return trip in the
Will tipped his hat. â€śThank you, Captain, for all your help.â€ť
Captain Black indicated a woman garbed in a colorful skirt leaning against the
door of a building. â€śA word to the wise. St. Thomas has a reputation for being
the healthy island, but that doesnâ€™t apply to the brothels.â€ť
â€śGood of you to warn us.â€ť After over four weeks a sea, Will was definitely in
need of female companionship, but his tastes ran more to widows than members of
the impure. Heâ€™d never had any trouble finding willing women, even when heâ€™d
used the name Munford.
6 comments posted.
So exciting to see a Regency set in an exotic locale like St. Thomas! Hope to visit
(Julia Tagan 9:27am August 13, 2014)
Hi Peggy, I'm so glad you plan to read it!! As to the big hit, from our lips to God's ears!
(Ella Quinn 1:54pm August 14, 2014)
I suppose they wouldn't have pronounced it the French way, so I can understand why you'd prefer Jeanne. Thank you for coming by.
(Ella Quinn 1:55pm August 14, 2014)