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A summer evening's chance encounter throws together two people of opposite social class who, despite a natural mutual attraction, should never have met. Kathryn Fitzpatrick is a lady, the daughter of a much-respected gentleman. The Fitzpatricks are loved and revered throughout English society, yet Kathryn has never conformed. She is impulsive, ruled by her heart. When she meets Duncan Brown, a lowly gardener on her father's estate, a special love is ignited. He understands and admires her. Before long an affair develops, a forbidden affair of love, passion and lust, totally unacceptable to Kathryn's family. Her life begins to spiral out of control.Her family deem her capricious ways to be a burden and her mother sees marriage as the only solution. Her elder brother Richard arranges for her to marry Mr Jonathan Lockland, a powerful gentleman of strong will who is adored by many. He seems perfect to keep Kathryn in check.Unspeakable secrets, hidden scandals, blackmail and dark passions convolute and Kathryn's life is manipulated for selfish gain. Kathryn struggles to find some happiness. Yet when Richard is found dying he sends for Kathryn and discloses how she has been deceived. Now she must fight for the man she deeply loves, and tell him all, but it is not an easy journey.