A cold finger laid its icy touch on Julia and ran down the length of her spine. “How did it happen?”
“He’s said to have been run through by the very man who made that mark on the door. A Mr. Cameron. Scottish fellow he was, back in…” Mrs. Hensley pursed her thin lips, blue eyes distant. “Ah, yes, 1806. Some fuss over a woman.”
“How dreadful. What about Mr. Cameron?”
“The friend of a neighbor, I believe. He escaped and was never found. No justice was ever done in the matter.”
Julia hesitated, then asked, “And the woman?”
“Heartbroken, poor thing. She returned to England. She was a guest of the Wentworth family and greatly enamored of Cole. All the young ladies were, but he had a particular fascination with this girl.”
“Why was she so special?”
“Apart from her legendary beauty? She had an angelic quality about her. Or so the story goes.”
An irrational jealousy twanged a jarring note in Julia. In the space of a few short minutes she’d fallen in love with the man in the portrait—typical of her impractical nature and unlikely to advance her nonexistent love life. And yet, she couldn’t help plunging into this sweet madness.
She tore her eyes from the painting. “Do you recall the lady’s name?”
Mrs. Hensley gave a little laugh. She tapped a finger to her furrowed forehead. “Isn’t that odd? It was Julia something…hmmmm.”
Was Mrs. Hensley teasing her? She had to know.
“I’ve got it. Julia Maury,” the guide continued and arched graying brows. “You’re from England, aren’t you, Miss Morrow? Tread with care here, my girl. We don’t want you stirring up any ghosts. Foxleigh has enough already.”
“No,” Julia said, reaching out to the dresser to steady herself. Without meaning to, she suspected she’d already stirred up some force beyond her understanding.
A man spoke from the hall. “Charlotte, I need to speak to you about the new staff. Ah—I see she’s arrived.”
Julia startled at the low, uncannily familiar voice and whirled around to find none other than Cole Wentworth poised in the doorway. Her jaw dropped and she stared up at him.