Charlotte Stuart is an heiress who's been betrayed by the false love of a fortune hunter before. Ridiculed by Paris society for her mistake, she vows never to fall victim to the weakness of love again. Driven back to England by the collapse of the Peace of Amiens, she enters London society and meets Lord Edward Woodcliff, a handsome Viscount in straightened circumstances. Falling for Edward means risking being humiliated again.
Edward has come to London to find a wife. Made leery of marriage by his father’s disastrous second marriage, Edward feigns poverty in order to find a woman who loves him and not his wealth. He loses his heart to the independent and spirited Charlotte, but her fear of being betrayed, and his hesitation to make a matrimonial mistake, prove difficult to overcome.
All seems hopeless until Edward challenges Charlotte to a wager. If he wins, he gains her hand in marriage. If he loses, then Charlotte is free of him. Charlotte accepts the wager only to lose her hand and her heart to Edward. Now Charlotte must put aside her fears of being betrayed by love long enough to let Edward into her life and admit he is the man of her dreams.