When her chaise is damaged in an accident, beautiful young Lady Athina Ling has no choice but to stay at a nearby inn while awaiting its repair. There she is appalled to hear the screams of a young boy who is being savagely beaten by the “gentleman” who appears to be his guardian. After going to the child’s rescue, Athina discovers that he is the nephew of the Marquis of Rockingham whose estate neighbours her own – and that he is heir to a fortune.Seeing the child’s savage wounds, the Marquis agrees to help Athina protect him – but he also needs her help with a problem of his own. Namely that he must become engaged to be married before the Queen will allow him to take up an important position. So, to protect the boy, Athina agrees to a pretend engagement to the Marquis. But the threat is far worse than either imagined. As they strive together to save the boy from his murderous uncle, they begin to realise that their engagement is no longer a pretence and that, in fact, this is love!