Excerpt from Chapter Four
Laying a gnarled hand on Karin’s arm, Neeley said, “You haven’t got a mind of your own. Leastways, not one you’ll own up to.”
“It’s the God honest truth, lass, and high time these hardheaded McNeals gave you a bit more rein. They’ve kept you on a tight lead far too long, and in the dark.”
“What are you on about now?”
That pensive look returned to Neeley’s pale blue gaze. “You’ll see. And I shan’t be surprised if Mister McCray has a hand in showing you the way.”
Not if Karin had any say in the matter. She could only think the mounting years had addled Neeley’s good sense. As to her own fleeting reason, she simply must recover it.
Draping her wine-colored cloak around her shoulders, she accompanied the irksome woman into the main room. As Neeley said, most of the folks who’d spent the night had gone home to their chores. A handful of men sat on chairs and stools near hearth, their easy conversation punctuated by low laughter.
In search of one in particular, Karin swept her eyes over the relaxed group. She noted Kyle Brewster, an ardent admirer, and settled on the man she had no intention of offering more than a civil exchange—Jack McCray. He sipped coffee from a mug and glanced around as she walked in.
Her stomach lurched and it suddenly seemed she stood too near the hearth. If only he wouldn’t look at her as though he saw her bare-naked soul. She couldn’t drag her captive stare away.
Jack appeared far more handsome than a man recovering from injury ought to, or any man for that matter. She admired the white shirt tucked into fawn britches that fitted his muscled thighs and long legs. His riding boots were Joseph’s second best pair, polished to a high gloss, and added an elegant touch.
In the space of a night, he’d transformed from rugged frontiersman to country gentleman. The snowy linen set off his browned skin and loose chestnut hair. Lighter streaks shone among the darker hues she hadn’t noticed in the night and she liked the way his hair fell around his broad shoulders. She liked him, all of him, far too well, she realized with a shooting quiver through her midriff.
She was in a great deal of trouble.~
The Bearwalker’s Daughter is a historical romance novel interwoven with an intriguing paranormal thread, set among the clannish Scots in the mist-shrouded Alleghenies. The story is similar to others of mine with a colonial frontier flavor (Red Bird’s Song, Through the Fire, The Lady and the Warrior) and also features Native American characters. My passion for the past, and some of the accounts I’ve come across while researching my early American ancestors and the Shawnee Indians, is at the heart of the inspiration behind this novel.
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