Guest Post | May Wedding by Ellie Thomas

Today, we have Ellie Thomas back on the blog 🥳 She’s here to tell us about her latest story, May Wedding, which is released today! Welcome, Ellie!

May Wedding FB Promo 4

Thanks so much, Ofelia, for having me as your guest again! I’m Ellie, and I write MM Historical Romance novellas. I’m popping in today to chat about my new story May Wedding, currently in the 20% off new release sale at JMS Books until May 12th.
May Wedding is the sixth book in my Regency romp Twelve Letters series featuring an ensemble cast. After a digression in book 5, The Misfit, which introduced a new couple, Luc and Harry, May Wedding resumes with our established couples of Jo Everett and Daniel Walters, Captain Ben Harding and Dr Edward Stephens and Nathan Brooks and the Hon. Percy Havilland.
This story focuses on the weddings of the title. In the 21st century, although weddings have become big business and can be increasingly elaborate, society’s attitude to marriage in the main has become more relaxed than two centuries ago. Also, it’s become increasingly acceptable for some long-term couples, straight, gay or non-binary, to choose to remain unmarried.
Although heterosexual marriage was pretty much socially compulsory in Regency times, in practice, there were all sorts of less formal living arrangements where people adapted to their different circumstances. And, of course, until very recently, lesbian and gay marriage was not an option.
In May Wedding, I was interested to explore my characters’ attitudes to marriage. The story begins with the grand society wedding of one of Percy’s beloved younger sisters. This includes all the financial formalities of a dowry and allowances, choosing the most fashionable church for the ceremony and the headache of finding a venue for the wedding breakfast that embarrassing relatives can’t gatecrash.
In some ways, much of the organisation resembles a modern wedding, worrying about seating arrangements or the pros and cons of inviting awkward guests. But there are essential differences. Unless you’re enough of a celebrity to have a pre-nuptial agreement, the financial element is far less formal these days, as both partners usually have jobs and their own incomes. Women had very few legal rights in Regency times, so Percy’s efforts for his sister’s financial protection are understandably important.
For the couples in my ensemble, however devoted the relationship, marriage was out of the question. Even living together was fraught with difficulty unless you were wealthy and influential enough to flout draconian laws.
But, then as now, people are people, and although some find the idea of marriage unappealing, for others, it is meaningful. When one of my couples decide to stage their own informal ceremony, it was interesting to explore the attitudes in their tightly bonded group. Some members are excited and enthusiastic to help, whereas others go along with the plans without understanding what all the fuss is about.
It was fun to plan two contrasting weddings, one completely conventional and the other totally informal and gauge the emotional reactions of everyone involved in their May wedding.

May Wedding

mayweddingSome of the gentlemen who meet weekly for supper at The Golden Lion in London’s St. James’ are preoccupied with the prospect of matrimony.
The Honourable Percy Havilland is at full organisational pelt for his sister’s triumphant society marriage, ably backed by his friends. His frequent stress-induced outbursts are endured by his ever-patient lover, Nathan.
Percy has mixed feelings about the upcoming nuptials, the sorrow at losing one of his precious sisters balanced by the opportunity of exhibiting his exquisite good taste to make this the wedding of the Season.
His friend Jo Everett reacts differently to the wedding, desiring an equivalent opportunity to mark his enduring love for Daniel Walters.
Will Percy manage to survive the wedding without falling out irreparably with Nathan? And might Jo and Daniel discover they have the support of their close circle to celebrate their own special day?


Nathan, more than anyone, comprehended how much Percy agonised over relinquishing his sister. Partly because Percy no longer practiced caution with Nathan where his feelings were concerned. But also because his lover bore the brunt of Percy’s feverish exertions for the wedding.

Percy recalled when they were in Nathan’s private sitting room in his great house off Leicester Square, during a rare hour together before Percy returned to Little Chelsea to accompany his sisters to an evening’s revels. Nathan sat in his favourite Chesterfield armchair while Percy paced before him in a manner that Nathan remarked reminded him of a caged tiger.

When holding forth at great length on selecting the exact shade of soft pink for the bridesmaids’ dresses, Percy started to argue with Nathan, despite the gentleman’s indifference to whether the ladies should wear muslin or sackcloth.

Instead of justifiably losing his temper with Percy in this wildly unreasonable mood, Nathan said, “Come here,” and patted his thighs encouragingly. After a brief hesitation, while formulating a heated debate between the virtues of a bright peach hue or a subtle shade of apricot, Percy rather sulkily sat on Nathan’s lap, holding himself stiffly.

“That’s better,” Nathan said, pulling him close. All Percy’s nervous tension started to dissolve as he breathed in Nathan’s familiar Bay Rum cologne, listened to the steady rhythm of his breath, and felt the warmth and strength of his body that Percy relied on and frequently enjoyed.

“Whatever you choose,” Nathan opined, “will be perfect, not only in tribute to your excellent taste but because of your insurmountable care.”

At this disarming statement, rather than bristling, Percy found himself weeping copiously on Nathan’s broad shoulder while his paramour patiently stroked his back and kissed his neck between reassuring endearments.

Needless to say, that had not been the only circumstance when Percy had relieved his raw nerves on Nathan. The degree of toleration Nathan exhibited on account of Percy’s mental and emotional strain in the run-up to the wedding had resulted in far fewer spats than was their habit.

On the odd stolen night in Nathan’s bed during the Season, Percy lay wrapped in his strong arms, momentarily soothed and protected from all his fears, demands, and struggles. He didn’t know how he would have survived the headlong months of Araminta’s betrothal without Nathan’s support and even managed to admit that once or twice.

With a rush of affection and gratitude, Percy raised a grin and his glass in a private toast. Nathan’s frown disappeared, replaced by an answering smile as he emulated the gesture. Percy presumed that when the last slice of cake was consumed, and they all gathered on the front steps of the house to wave off the bride and bridegroom, he would feel a discreet touch on his shoulder, or a hand briefly grasping his waist, Nathan’s way of showing solidarity.

Naturally, after the splendid formality of the Seymours’ hospitality, Percy’s wider family and even a few friends might convene at Little Chelsea for a dish of tea or something stronger to discuss the joyoyus event. But after Simeon and Cordelia departed to collect Harriet and bestow a similar rehash of events with a new audience in Emma, Percy idly wondered if he could excuse himself for the afternoon and decamp to Leicester Square.

He had caught that brief heated flash of interest when Nathan first laid eyes on Percy in church, delectable in tight-fitting dove grey. It seemed only fair to allow Nathan to appreciate Percy’s new clothing behind closed doors and slowly remove every layer. After being such a faithful knight during the wedding campaign, tolerating the worst of Percy’s barbs and inconsistencies, Nathan deserved a leisurely reward.

Also, losing himself in the intense, deliberate, and mind-numbing loving that only Nathan could give, Percy could glory in the achievement of the nuptials without dwelling too much on the lack of Araminta at home.

Anticipating such a sweet release, Percy put his glass on the table and ran an elegant middle finger around the rim before dipping it in the fizzing liquid. As he raised the digit to his lips, he looked directly at Nathan, allowing the promise of a flash of tongue as he delicately sucked on his fingertip.

Nathan adroitly responded to a remark from his near neighbour, only a faint flush of colour on his cheekbones betraying his response to Percy’s teasing. I’ll pay for that later, Percy thought with a pleasurable squirm.

Book links:

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Ellie Thomas lives by the sea. She comes from a teaching background and goes for long seaside walks where she daydreams about history. She is a voracious reader especially about anything historical. She mainly writes historical gay romance.

Ellie also writes historical erotic romance as L. E. Thomas.


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