Rose Light

Genre: Historical, Dark Gothic Fairy Tale, m/f non-traditional Romance, Novella (R-18)

Although this book was published in the romance genre it’s a retold fairy tale and not always pleasant. I hope to find a new outlet for it when I can get around to re-editing the work.


A Rose ready to bloom…

One day, a young woman, Rose Light, attends her mother’s grave in order to place a single flower upon the headstone — a lily for a Lily. This seemingly depressing deed is, in fact, a moment of sweetness in Rose’s gloomy existence. Could it be that her mother’s spirit looks over her, for this simple act is going to lead to a most fortuitous event.

Rose cooks and cleans for the rest of the family in the poor home in which they reside. When she isn’t running errands, she has her hands full taking care of her aging father. Life looks dismal and, unlike her sisters, Rose has no prospects of marrying to better her position. Not until she meets John Bennett…

When they met, she chastised him, was down right rude to him, so why has he tracked her down to the poverty-stricken area of Cheapside? Why does he look at her with that gleam in his eye and why does he look pleased, when taking his leave, at the sight of her unshod feet?

It hardly matters. Her stepmother has her eye on John for one of her other daughters, and they have more worldly experience. How can Rose possibly compete? Of course, maybe they aren’t even in the running. If so, what is it about Rose that has attracted John? Why does this man think he has found just the right woman and believe all she needs is the right stimulation to make her bloom?

Take one wicked stepmother and two older, conniving sisters, and you may think you’ve heard this tale before. You haven’t — not this way. Let Rose Light tell you her story…

Read an Excerpt…

This page has one excerpt rated PG, suitable for most.


Take one wicked stepmother and two older, conniving sisters, and you may think you’ve heard this tale before. You haven’t — not this way. Let Rose Light tell you her story…


“I am sorry to hear that the man of the house is ill yet I am amazed, madam, for it is hardly as though we speak of the same person.”

A smile twitched at the corners of Rose’s mouth and she did all she could to pull her expression into one of calm deliberation. Having cleared the dishes, she now turned back to the table, and moving around the end of it, she approached their guest. Both Margaret and John watched her progress. Pulling out a vacant seat, she sat sideways upon it and faced her visitor.

At the end of the table, Margaret’s skin had taken on a peculiar pallor. John no longer looked to the stepmother. His gaze was all for Rose.

Crying out in horror, Margaret exclaimed, “My girl, whatever do you think you are doing?”

Ignoring her, Rose placed one hand calmly over the other in her lap and spoke directly to John Bennett. “Kind sir, though it amazes me that you found my location so quickly, I am sure you have your resources and will not waste time as to enquiring of them. While I thank you for the graciousness of your visit, I did merely speak my mind. I fail to see how that could have had such an affect on you as to cause you to lend yourself to such an extreme avenue.”

Margaret gasped as though suffering some apoplexy. “My girl! Sir, I do apologise.”

John lifted a hand and waved it as though dismissing the apology. He spoke to Rose. “Upon contemplation of your words I changed my mind and chose another course. If I had not done so, it might have directed my life upon another path entirely, one that would have led to my abject misery. What may have seemed a mere trifle to you was a severe grievance to me, yet one I needed to face directly.”

Rose mimicked his earlier smile, compressing her lips then breaking it off before speaking, “I assure you it was no trifle. My feelings were quite indignant at the time and remain so. However, tell me, do you often require strangers in the street to help you with life-altering decisions? Do you have no true friends to advise you?”

For a moment, he looked quite nonplussed, while in the background, Margaret positively snuffled in consternation. Then John Bennett burst out laughing. The laughter infused his face and he took on the appearance of a much younger man. Rose found this face attractive. John spoke to the stepmother without looking at her, which Rose also liked.

“Why, madam,” John chortled, “I can see how you feel your stepdaughter is headstrong. and why in certain circles you may find this vexing. but I assure you, she is delightful.” Rising from the table, he placed his hat upon his head and then retaining hold of the brim, he first bowed to Rose and then to Margaret. “I must take my leave of you, however, if both of you fine ladies will permit me, I should like to call another day.”

Saying nothing, Rose offered an incline of her head. Margaret stood. “Thank you, kind sir. We should be delighted to receive you. Show him to the door, my girl.”

Rose did so, hovering as he turned to say goodnight once more. He paused and she watched his gaze flicker over her from her head down to her feet. In the evening light, no doubt he saw how poor a garment she wore even compared to those of her stepmother and the sisters. When his gaze reached her feet, it lingered. For the first time, Rose felt touched by horror. She wore no shoes. Glancing up into his face, rather than disgust, she saw he looked pleased by the sight of her naked feet. His smile was even more curious.

© Sharon Maria Bidwell, all rights reserved.


Ten good reasons to read Rose Light:

  1. It demonstrates how you can find love in the most unlikely places.
  2. It gives you a feel of ‘old’ London.
  3. It gives men a good reason to buy the woman they love roses.
  4. It shows you how to prepare pork for dinner.
  5. It shows you how to deal with unexpected guests.
  6. You can enjoy a picnic without all the hassle of preparing it.
  7. It shows you what to do with your feet besides walking.
  8. It teaches you how to enjoy the great outdoors.
  9. It tells you how to seduce Prince Charming.
  10. It shows you Prince Charming isn’t always the man you were expecting.

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