He needs to secure her hand in marriage. She only wants to secure his rejection.
Charlotte Beaumont has managed to avoid holy matrimony for five seasons, but this year, her father has given her an ultimatum: pick a husband or he'll pick one for her. Charlotte refuses to settle for one of the greedy gentlemen lining up for her dowry. There's only one man she’d consider, but the ton's newest duke has made his disinterest abundantly clear.
Simon Hamilton, Duke of Stanton, received his late brother's massive debt along with his title. He needs a wife—and quick. The answer to his problems arrives when an older, wealthy gentleman offers to pay off Simon's financier in exchange for marrying the man's daughter—a beautiful but brazen woman whose mere presence raises Simon’s defenses and compels him to act like a pompous ass.
Knowing her father won’t allow her to reject the duke, Charlotte sets out to get him to reject her. He takes it all in stride, and she’s unsure what to make of the unflappable peer. Charlotte’s lack of refinement shocks Simon, but with less than a month before his debt comes due, he has no choice but to see the arrangement through.
Their opposing aims cannot extinguish the passion flaming between them, and Charlotte soon realizes the thing she never thought she wanted might just be the only thing she needs.