Joseph never claimed to be a good person. He'd completely rejected society's hypocritical morals that allowed men of his rank and wealth to do whatever they pleased but condemned the women who fell for their charms while they cheated on their hated spouses. He hadn't meant to let his jaded view of the world taint his reaction to her innocent surprise. Luckily for him, she was kind and forgiving. He likely didn't deserve her, but Joseph was too greedy to care really. He would lavish her with as much attention and love as he did jewels and other pretty possessions. If he had his way, she'd never want for anything again, even if he was blocked from marrying her.
He had a dim view of marriage as he did most institutions of the ton. Marriages in the ton were rarely love matches and even those seemed to sour in the toxic environment. Joseph didn't want to make her as miserable as the lords who's bad behavior had driven their wives to men like him out of boredom and resentment. So perhaps going a bit mad when she got upset over something she wasn't accustomed to had been a bad start. He would try to do better, trust her more. "You're so generous with me, darling," he murmured against her hair as she fell into his arms as if there was no place she'd rather be. "I'll try to be better and trust you more. I will happily share my world with you. Nothing would make me happier than if we could share it as our world."
His world was no place for a shy, proper lady, but he thought Lottie would find his friends, the people he chose to consort with instead forced to by station, as charming and interesting as he did. He looked forward to her fresh perspective on everything, even if he did worry about her inexperience. Her parents had clearly kept her too isolated. Poor dear, it made him want to show her the world and he'd likely overwhelm her trying, but she deserved to know more than she'd been allowed before coming to London.
She'd been hesitant and shy last night as he gently eased her into intimacy, but this morning she had no such qualms, giggling happily as he touched and kissed her. Her sweet promise only fired his blood more. "Always," he agreed. While he couldn't rightfully promise he'd be completely faithful to her, the way she had responded to his lovemaking would certainly make it easier to do so. He certainly didn't want anyone else as much as he desired her.
As much as he wanted to just pin her to the wall and tease and fuck her right there, her legs had been unsteady earlier. It was probably best to take her back to his bed. Until Joseph knew his mother's answer about marriage, they had to keep up the barest hint of propriety. Having them over at his house for one night would raise a few eyebrows, but excuses could be made. The rest of their moments would have to be stolen here and there, so Joseph planned to make the most of the brief time they could spend together intimately. Once they were engaged or it became clear his mother wouldn't relent, there would be more freedom. It wasn't as if the rumors he was bedding Lottie hadn't started the day they met. Either way, she was now his and he'd never let her go. Or likely be able to completely restrain himself around her. Luckily, there were always plenty of nookies and crannies to have private moments in.
'"Come back to bed with me," he murmured as he reluctantly pulled his hands from her breasts. "I want youto be comfortable while I make up for my bad behavior." He caught her hands and tugged her back into the bedroom. "Love you so much," he whispered against her lips as he drew her closer to him for a kiss.