Published by Lyrical Press on August 16th 2016
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
“Diana Cosby is superbly talented.”—Cathy Maxwell, New York Times bestselling author
A betrothal neither wants . . . a passion neither can resist.
When the English murder Lady Katherine Calbraith’s family, she refuses their demands to wed an English noble to retain her home. Avalon Castle is her birthright, one she’s determined to keep. After Katherine’s daring escape, she’s stunned when Scotland’s king agrees to allow her to return to Avalon, but under the protection of Sir Stephan MacQuistan . . . as the knight’s wife. To reclaim her heritage, Katherine agrees. She accepts her married fate, certain that regardless of the caliber of the man, Stephan may earn her trust, but he’ll never win her love.
One of the Knights Templar, Stephan desires no bride, only vengeance for a family lost and a legacy stolen. A profound twist of fate tears apart the Brotherhood he loves, but offers him an opportunity to reclaim his legacy—Avalon Castle. Except to procure his childhood home along with a place to store Templar treasures, he must wed the unsuspecting daughter of the man who killed his family. To settle old scores, Stephan agrees, aware Katherine is merely a means to an end.
The passion that arises between them is as dangerous as it is unexpected. When mortal enemies find themselves locked in love’s embrace, Stephan and Katherine must reconsider their mission and everything they once thought to be true . . . Praise for the novels of Diana Cosby
“Cosby gives you it all—passion, danger, lush history and a touch of magic. Excellent reading.”—Hannah Howell, New York Times bestselling author
“A sexy new voice in historical romance. Scottish historicals have a bright new star."—Sandra Hill, USA Today bestselling author
“Diana Cosby writes wonderful historical romance!”—Susan King
“I am familiar with the towering cliffs, the treacherous currents, along with the near-impenetrable defenses.” He crossed his arms over his chest. “There is naught you can say that will change my mind.”
He couldna forbid her now! Screams of battle assaulted her mind, the English noble’s brutality as he’d forced her to witness her parents’ deaths and, after, ordered her locked within her chamber until she agreed to wed. Except, as had the English lord, her sovereign underestimated her. “Along with being aware that hidden catacombs lie beneath Avalon, I know of a secret passage into the castle.”
Interest flickered in the king’s eyes, as if he were weighing the truth of her declaration. “Your father informed me of the catacombs, but I wasna aware of a secret passage.”
“Aye. However,” she continued, mindful of her boldness, even risking his incarcerating her in the dungeon by her next words, “I willna reveal the location of the tunnel’s entry unless I am allowed to return with the assaulting force.”
The Bruce’s eyes widened at her defiance. On a sharp hiss, he lowered his hands and stepped closer, towering over her. “You dare to make demands of your king?”
“Nay, Your Grace,” Katherine breathed, “I–I only wish to help. I am skilled with a sword.”
“You will remain here!”
Her heart dropped. ’Twas a risk to push him, but she was desperate. Who wouldna be after the gruesome events she’d witnessed? “I know I speak out of turn. It wasna my intention to usurp your authority.” At his hesitation, she pushed on, her words spilling out. “I am loyal to you, I swear it, but Avalon Castle is my home; ’tis all I know,” she rasped, her words trembling with grief. “If necessary, for my home and my country, I shall sacrifice my life.”
He glared at her. “You are but a wee lass.”
“Mayhap.” She drew herself up to her full height. “But one who fights with the fury of a thousand warriors!”
For a long moment he studied her. Then his mouth twisted into a wry smile. “If I agree to let you return, you will comply with my wishes?”
“Aye, Your Grace, anything.”
The king nodded. “At first light you will depart with a seasoned force to recapture Avalon Castle.”
Relief swept through her. A smile trembled on her mouth. “Your Grace, I—”
“But,” he continued, “for your protection, before you go, you must agree to wed the knight who leads the attacking force.”
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