Welcome to Week Eleven of our Medieval Monday Fall blogs featuring Nature excerpts. In this round, each author is hosting her own book. Here is a look at my novella, A Winter Knight. Week Six! I can’t believe time is going so quickly!
THE SET UP
It’s December. A snowstorm is sweeping the land when a lone mount loaded with ladies clothing wanders through his gates. Sir Nicholas has been tasked with setting a dilapidated manor to rights, and he’s in no mood to play hero. But he can’t in all good conscience leave a helpless female stranded. So into the frigid night he rides.
(For easy access to authors taking part in this round of Medieval Monday tales, visit the Medieval Romance Lovers Facebook page. Authors will post their blog links there. You can also find us on Twitter at #MedMonFall20 .)
“Here’s a fur for th’ lady.” A young voice came from the vicinity of her shoulder. She didn’t recognize it from anyone at her grandfather’s keep. A delicious warmth settled below her knees.
“My thanks, Tom.”
She certainly didn’t know that deep, raspy voice. She shivered at the comfort it brought. Praise the saints. Perhaps she wasn’t back at Tipton Castle after all.
“I believe our guest is awake.” The deep voice bathed her in a different kind of warmth. “Lady?”
Exerting a truly exhausting effort, Clare lifted her scratchy eyelids. A circle of men’s faces stared down. Pushing his way through the various elbows lining the circle, a lad peered at her. He gasped and ducked back, holding up two fingers to ward off the evil eye.
“What’s wrong with ye, boy?” grumbled one of the men.
“Her eyes,” the youth babbled. “Bloody. Blood eyes. Evil eyes.”
“Be calm, lad,” came the deep rasp. “The cold got to her eyes and made them red, just like your hands got red when you didn’t keep them covered today. Once she’s warm, the red will go away.”
The small face popped over the edge again. “Sorry, Lady.”
He’s running from his past; she’s running from her future. But on a snowy winter night, they find each other and the surprising gift of love.
Sir Nicholas has given up on marriage. These days he’s content to captain his friend’s troops and avoid entanglements—until one winter night when he rescues a half-frozen woman from a snowstorm. Her irrepressible spirit and kindness to others reminds him that all ladies aren’t like his former intended, who wed his brother while Nick was on crusade. But he can’t open his heart to Lady Clare. She’s bound to another, and Nick won’t forfeit his honor. Even if she were free, he has nothing to offer but love, and this lady deserves everything.
Lady Clare’s dying grandfather has arranged her betrothal, but the arrival of the man she’s to wed sends her fleeing into a snowstorm. Injured when her horse stumbles, she’s rescued by a mysterious knight. She recovers at his run-down manor, safe at last—until her betrothed tracks her down two days before Christmas. Trapped at home with the wedding imminent, she longs for the winter knight she’s come to love.
Only a miracle can bring Clare and Nick together. But at Christmas, anything is possible.