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Horrified when her beloved dog, Rufus, is caught in a cruel snare while out walking in the estate of Arrow Castle, local Parson's daughter Shenda is at first relieved when a handsome stranger comes to poor Rufus's rescue and then at once she is abashed and confused when he claims a kiss – Shenda's very first – as his reward. But then she is told that her father has been killed by a savage bull and that she must leave the family's Vicarage forthwith. Penniless Shenda is obliged to take a job at Arrow Castle as a seamstress, where she stumbles across a letter from one of Napoleon Bonaparte's spies to Society beauty Lucille Gratton, 'the most beautiful Lady in England', who is staying at The Castle. Reporting the discovery to the Earl, she finds that he is no other than her 'gentleman stranger' and just as she realises that she is falling in love with the heroic Earl of Arrow, she is embroiled in a counter-espionage plot that puts her young life – and her love for the Earl – in deadly peril.