The Salamanca Drum Author:Dorothy Eden The blood of heroes beats in spirited Matilda Duncastle's veins. Born to one of Britain's legendary military families, Matilda was a direct scion of empire. And ever in her heightened imagination, she heard the rat-a-tat of the Duncastles' most precious heirloom, the Salamanca Drum -- the drum the had sounded to lead one of the Duke ... more »of Wellington's regiment into war.
Nestled deep in the Somerset countryside, Matilda's stately home, Sanctuary, was a memorial to those fiery, dedicated Duncastles. Its walls displayed their portraits in full regimental regalia; its Death Room housed their trophies -- the faded, battle stained colors, the tarnished sabers, the broken lances -- Matilda Duncastle's legacy of valor and steel.
For Matilda was Duncastle to the core. Hers was the regal bearing, the elegance, the blazing auburn hair -- and, above all, hers was the towering, implacable Duncastle pride. Her single sorrow was that she had not been born a son. But if no drums would sound to lead her into battle, then her heroism would be quite another kind -- by making a marriage of convenience with the wealthy banker Joshua Webb, who had paid her father's gambling debts and saved her beloved Sanctuary, Matilda would breed a new generation of young lions to carry on the Duncastle traditions. No matter that Joshua intended his sons for business, Matilda would lure them back with dreams of military glory. No matter that her daughters yearned for gentler pastimes, Matilda knew her dreams for them all...knew her combination of resistless will and Duncastle charm would prevail. After all, hadn't it always?« less