She won’t be tamed.
A fiery, unconventional Scot, Adaira Ferguson wears breeches, swears, and has no more desire to marry than she does to follow society’s dictates of appropriate behavior. She trusts no man with the secret she desperately protects.
He can’t forget.
Haunted by his past, Roark, The Earl of Clarendon, rigidly adheres to propriety, holding himself and those around him to the highest standards, no matter the cost. Betrayed once, he’s guarded and leery of all women.
Mistaking Roark for a known spy, Adaira imprisons him. Infuriated, he vows vengeance. Realizing her error, she’s appalled and releases him, but he’s not satisfied with his freedom. Roark is determined to transform Adaira from an ill-mannered hoyden to a lady of refinement.
He succeeds only to discover, he preferred the free-spirited Scottish lass who first captured his heart.
Fionn stretched his neck over his stall door and showing his teeth in a horsey grin, whinnied a welcome. Adaira chuckled. “Missed me, have you?”
She propped the parasol against the wall, then hurried to him. Wrapping her arms around his neck, she whispered, “I’ve missed you too. Forgive me for neglecting you. I’ve made a muddled mess of things, my friend.”
To her right another horse blew a hefty expanse of air before poking its head over the stall in greeting. Adaira ran a practiced eye over the beast. Not one of hers.
“Well, hello. Who are you, my lovely?” She smoothed a hand over the big mare’s satiny neck, coming to an abrupt halt and gasping when her fingers encountered a hardened scar. Adaira peered around the horse’s head. Even in the muted light she could see the rope-like scar encircling the mare’s neck.
“My God, you poor thing!”
Fionn, nuzzled the mare. Was she coming into season?
“You became a father again mere weeks ago. Behave yourself. She’s not part of your harem, you rogue.” She caressed his silky neck, then kissed his muzzle. “I’m going to miss you.”
Tears threatened. He shifted restlessly. “I know. You want to gallop across the moors. I wish we could. I’m not permitted to ride you at present.”
She laid her head against his. “Everything has changed. I have to wear gowns now, even when I ride.”
Tears spilled over the rims of her eyes, streaming down her cheeks. “And, I have to use a sidesaddle. You’ll not like it, I’m afraid. I won’t either.”
Contemptible tears. She wiped at her eyes with her fingers. She’d no handkerchief with her. It was still on the floor in her bedchamber. “We’ll never race across the meadows, ventre a terre, belly to ground, again. It’s unladylike.”
She gave up trying to stifle her tears. Clinging to Fionn, she gave way to the grief ripping at her heart. “Nothing will ever be the same,” she sobbed. “I’ve made a powerful enemy, and he’s determined to destroy me.”
Strong arms turned her into a masculine embrace. “Not destroy—subdue a trifle.”
About the Author
Award winning, Amazon best-selling, and multi-published historical romance author, Collette Cameron, has a BS in Liberal Studies and a Master’s in Teaching. A Pacific Northwest Native, Collette’s been married for thirty years, has three amazing adult children, and five dachshunds. Collette loves a good joke, inspirational quotes, flowers, the beach, trivia, birds, shabby chic, and Cadbury Chocolate. You’ll always find dogs, birds, quirky—sometimes naughty—humor, and a dash of inspiration in her novels. Her motto for life? You can’t have too much chocolate, too many hugs, or too many flowers. She’s thinking about adding shoes to that list.