If you scroll down, you’ll see today’s little contest -- ask me an interview question and I’ll answer it. (Although, you know, I reserve the right to save it for my next post if it’s gonna be a long or a good story!)
Meanwhile, let’s pick up the interview where we left off.
If I could “do” one person from the Regency period, who would it be?
An obvious answer is Byron. By all reports, the guy was quite the playboy. One would presume he also knew his way around. Wouldn’t it be marvelous to be in a villa near Geneva with the Shelleys and Byron? ... Exercising in the fresh air, pontificating literature and writing by roaring fires and being well-bedded at night.
The only woman to complain of his lovemaking was his wife -- for unspecified reasons that the gossips of the day just boiled over speculating about. And Caroline Lamb’s saying that he was mad, bad and dangerous to know is enticing -- but it’s an accurate description of the woman herself. The poor woman found herself locked away because Byron bored of her (although I seem to recall some discussion that she had a few curls loose).
Anyway. In my heart of hearts (or lust of lusts), the one Regency man I’d do in a heartbeat would be the Duke of Wellington.
Yeah, I know. Totally unavailable. (Assuming for the moment that he’s not approximately 150 years dead.) But isn’t it the unavailable ones that you want most of all?
He’s unavailable in that he ragged on his brothers for having affairs, although I think his disgust had more to do that they aired their dirty linen in public. (His older brother ended up marrying his mistress if I remember right. Feel free to correct me. My many Wellington biogs are all downstairs and I don’t want to disturb the doggies.)
If the gossips are right, he wasn’t immune to females either, despite his estranged marriage. At the Congress of Vienna, he was linked with the opera singer Grassini. In Brussels, Lady Paget remarked that he kept company with some disreputable women. And of course, in his later years, Mrs. Arthbutnot. (I’m sure I’ve spelled that wrong.)
But give him to me young and virile, the “alpha” leader on the eve of battle, when tomorrow’s breaths may be his last.... *sigh* Let’s face it. Wellington wouldn’t have put up with that sighing rot for a millisecond.
And that’s the other attractive thing about him. That crisp upper lip, the inscrutable veddy English air. These authentic hallmarks of unavailability are just soo enticing.
It makes me want to see his facade crumble and reveal the vulnerable human underneath. And have that unguarded expression be all mine, baby.
Gods, where is that tea...
Ahem. I think I have to stop writing about rakes in my books and write about a stiff hero instead.
(No, no, not that kind of stiff. The stiff upper lip kind. Get your mind out of the gutter!)