As one of the bastards born to the Stirling court, Sorley the Hawk has never known his mother or father. It’s a burning quest he has devoted himself to uncovering at any cost. But as a roguish warrior who serves at the pleasure of the King, his prowess-both on the battlefield and in his bedchamber-is legendary. So when a flame-haired Highland lass sneaks into his quarters with a tantalizing proposition, he can’t resist taking her up on her offer .
Lady Mirabelle MacLaren will do anything to keep from marrying her odious suitor, even sully her own good name. And who better to despoil her than his sworn enemy, the one they call “Hawk?” As they set about the enjoyable task of ruining her reputation, Hawk and Mirabelle soon learn that rebellion never tasted so sweet.
“I will dance with you.” She laced her fingers with his, squeezing lightly. “If it pleases you?
Sorley nodded, not trusting himself to speak. She looked at him with her great blue eyes, holding his gaze as if partnering him in the dance was the most natural thing for her to do.
He was certain he’d never seen her before.
Her accent told him why.
She spoke with a soft and pleasing lilt, the musical sweetness of the Highlands flowing in her voice. He also noted that her eyes weren’t just blue, but lavender-blue. And despite the brightness of her hair and her fair, creamy skin, she was graced with exceptionally long, black eyelashes. Though still tender in years, likely close to his own age, she already possessed the power to hold any man’s heart in the palm of her hand.
His own heart beat wildly, the rest of the hall, the dancers and the bright ring of torches, fading away. Nothing existed except the racing of his pulse and the flame-haired lass with the beautiful eyes. Her honeyed voice and dazzling smile.
She lit the hall as if a thousand suns had descended into their midst.
Sorley lifted her hand to his mouth and kissed her palm. He remembered too late that, because she was surely chaste, he should have touched his lips to the air above her knuckles, no more. Yet she didn’t pull away. The warmth in her eyes remained, her face even softening as if she’d enjoyed his attentions.
“I am Mirabelle.” Her sweet voice made his pulse leap.
About Sue-Ellen Welfonder
Sue-Ellen Welfonder is a Scotophile whose burning wish to make frequent trips to the land of her dreams led her to a twenty-year career with the airlines.
Now a full-time writer, she’s quick to admit that she much prefers wielding a pen to pushing tea and coffee. She makes annual visits to Scotland, insisting they are a necessity, as each trip gives her inspiration for new books.
Proud of her own Hebridean ancestry, she belongs to two clan societies: the MacFie Clan Society and the Clan MacAlpine Society. In addition to Scotland, her greatest passions are medieval history, the paranormal, and dogs. She never watches television, loves haggis, and writes at a 450-year-old desk that once stood in a Bavarian castle.
Sue-Ellen is married and currently resides with her husband and Jack Russell terrier in Florida.
Edmund MacGregor will do anything to save Scotland from English rule-even kidnap Lady Amelia Bell for ransom. As the daughter of a duke and the chancellor’s betrothed, she’s the perfect pawn in this game. But from the moment he first lays eyes on his spirited captive, he can’t resist stealing a kiss.
Lady Amelia’s duty is to marry well, but that hasn’t stopped her from fantasizing about true love. So when a sexy Scot appears in her home, she’s beguiled. When he kidnaps her, she’s furious. Yet as Edmund introduces her to a world of passion beyond her wildest dreams, can she leave her family behind for this handsome Highlander? And will Edmund risk the only true home he’s ever known to capture the heart of this lovely lass?
“I’ll stop at nothing to protect ye.”
Her eyes searched his, looking for something he hoped she found. “And what have I done to earn such a champion?” she whispered on parted lips.
“’Tis nothing ye’ve done, Amelia, and it can never be undone.” He bent to kiss her again. She fell back on the bed, taking him along with fistfuls of his shirt in her hands.
Feeling her beneath him made him hard as steel. He wanted her, throbbed for her, and he was tempted to tear away the two flimsy layers of wool between them, spread her wide, and sink deep.
But she was untried and untouched. And though every nerve ending on his body burned for her, ached to be her first, he didn’t want her to regret anything.
“I fear if I take ye, I won’t let anyone else ever do so.” It was a statement of truth that pained him as it left his lips.
“And I fear,” she whispered into his hair as he bent his head to her throat, “that if ye take me, I will never be satisfied with anyone else.”
About Paula Quinn
New York Times bestselling author Paula Quinn lives in New York with her three beautiful children, three over-protective chihuahuas, and a loud umbrella cockatoo. She loves to read romance and science fiction and has been writing since she was eleven. She loves all things medieval, but it is her love for Scotland that pulls at her heartstrings.