Tuesday, 8 January 2013
The Rebel's Promise - Extract 3
My historical romance, THE REBEL'S PROMISE, set in the Georgian era during the Jacobite rebellion of 1745/46, will be published by Front Porch Romance in February 2013.
It is December 1745. Rosie Delacourt rescues a Jacobite rebel from certain death and a passionate attachment blossoms. But Jack is wanted for treason and must flee the country. Believing he has been killed in battle at Culloden, Rosie is forced into a distasteful betrothal. When Jack returns, he is unable to hide the anguish he feels at her betrayal … and Rosie dare not risk telling him the truth.
Dark images came back to him through a disjointed fog. His was a restless spirit which needed – nay, demanded – action, and he had eagerly accompanied the party of seventy highlanders sent to protect the bridge so that the prince might cross to commence his triumphant march on London. It was quiet – unknown to them, events in Derby were already shaping the prince’s retreat – and, tired after the long ride south, he had dozed in a small copse, wrapped in his cloak as he tried to ignore the freezing ground. When he woke suddenly it was to find a young redcoat standing over him, sword in hand. Springing to his feet, he had been unaware that another soldier stood atop a small incline, just a few paces away. The impact of the shot threw him down the slope towards the riverbank. The king’s soldiers were prevented from pursuing him and finishing him off by a small but ferocious party of the prince’s highlanders who, alerted by the gunshot, rushed to his aid. A couple of these gruff men, clad in the tartan which proclaimed their clan, had stolen a horse, placed him upon it and slapped the steed’s scrawny flanks, sending it scurrying away from the skirmish.
The face of a young woman intruded into these memories, soothing him and causing the horrors to recede. Her hair was dark as midnight and fell in shining ringlets about her shoulders. Concern shone in the luminous depths of her grey eyes as she studies his face. His vision had clear, creamy skin with a light dusting of freckles across her dainty, upturned nose and the most inviting, delectable, cherry ripe lips he had ever seen. Even in his dream, the delicate, soothing scent of flowers hung about her. He could not hear the words she spoke but her voice unaccountable reassured him. She wanted him to do something, but he was not sure what it was. He knew he must wake from his nightmares of violence, pain and fear so that he could find out.
© Jane Godman