Can a Scots-Irish woman terrified of warriors fall in love with her Shawnee captor?
Taken captive by a Shawnee war party wasn’t how Charity Edmondson hoped to escape an unwanted marriage. Nor did Shawnee warrior Wicomechee expect to find the treasure promised by his grandfather’s vision in the unpredictable red-headed girl.
George III’s English Red-Coats, unprincipled colonial militia, prejudice and jealousy are not the only enemies Charity and Wicomechee will face before they can hope for a peaceful life. The greatest obstacle to happiness is in their own hearts.
As they struggle through bleak mountains and cold weather, facing wild nature and wilder men, Wicomechee and Charity must learn to trust each other.
A scream ripped from Charity’s throat. She grabbed up a stout stick and spun around. Shaking the loose mane from her eyes, she brandished her makeshift weapon. “Stay back!”
He arched one black brow. “You think to strike me with that?”
Before she heaved another ragged breath, he snatched it away. “What now?” he challenged.
She lunged, pushing against his rock-hard chest—like trying to dislodge an anvil. She dug in her heels and struggled to knock him off balance and down the slope. Not a prudent move. She’d unwittingly placed herself in his hands.
He snapped unyielding arms around her. “I have you.”
She twisted, shrieking, in his steely grasp, kicking at his rooted legs and grinding her feet into the earth. The fragrance of spearmint charged the air. How ironic to die surrounded by such sweet scent.
Gripping her tightly, he forced her down to the leafy ground in a press of hard muscle and heated skin. His gleaming black hair spilled over her face as he pinned her thrashing arms. “Stop fighting me.”
“I’ll fight to the end!”
He straddled her and stilled her pummeling legs. “For your life? Have I tomahawk or knife in my hand?”
She gaped up at him, her breath rasping in her throat. Whether he spoke in bemusement or annoyance, she couldn’t tell from his controlled expression, but the weapons remained at his side. And he wouldn’t waste gunpowder and a lead ball on her when he could so easily kill her with a single blow.
“You’ll let me live?” she gulped in short bursts.
“Did I not say you will come with me?”
She searched his eyes for signs of malice and saw none, only a keen watchfulness. Her stomach churned as he clasped her wrists with one hand and reached toward his waist.
A spasm shuddered through her. Had he only been tormenting her? Was he—even now—drawing his knife?
She squeezed her eyes shut, moaning, against the cruel blade. But no fatal kiss of steel met her throat. Instead, firm, warm fingers lightly stroked her cheek.
“I have no wish to do you harm. You are my captive.”
She opened her eyes in breathless tension. There it was again, that piercing gaze. If she hadn’t already been winded, one glance from him would have robbed her of air. She inhaled his scent, both intimidating and strangely compelling.
Her panting eased. “What will you do?” she asked hoarsely.
“Slow you. You run like peshikthe, the deer.”
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About the Author
Married to my high school sweetheart, I live on a farm in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia surrounded by my children, grandbabies, and assorted animals. An avid gardener, my love of herbs and heirloom plants figures into my work. The rich history of Virginia, the Native Americans and the people who journeyed here from far beyond her borders are at the heart of my inspiration. In addition to American settings, I also write historical and time travel romances set in the British Isles, and nonfiction about gardening, herbal lore, and country life.
For more on me, my blog is the happening place: http://bethtrissel.wordpress.com/