Lucinda doesn't care that she is close to being "on the shelf"; she has more serious pursuits in mind. She enjoys the friendship she and James share over their love of photography, but she leaves dreams of romance to silly young ladies like her sister. James does manage to find a match for Lucinda, and his efforts to get them together are about to succeed...until James comes to the distressing realization that he doesn't want Lucinda in anyone's arms but his own.
“You are trying to joke your way out of this. Although I heartily approve of the tactic, I shall not allow you to do it.”
He launched into his favorite waltz. After a brief hesitation, Lucinda joined in.
“Enjoy the music, Lucinda. Feel it, in your bones.” He reached again for her hand, feeling a burst of pleasure as it slipped easily into his.
They were moving now, tracing a small circle in the center of the room. She kept her eyes fixed on his. Her lips parted slightly, her front teeth briefly tugging at her bottom lip in an artless gesture that was undeniably appealing.
Lucinda appeared completely transported by the dance. Her mouth opened to a smile and a small sigh escaped her. And that’s when a thought crossed his mind that was more dangerous than any yet: Lucinda is beautiful. Not just pleasant, or passingly pretty. From her soul to her soft brown hair, inside and out, she was the most beautiful woman he had ever known . . .