Book Feature: The Highlander's Triumph by Eliza Knight
He was a warrior fighting for Scottish freedom. She was his enemy’s mistress. Laird Brandon Sinclair has given his life to the Scottish cause. Swearing fealty to Robert the Bruce, he will stop at nothing to see oppression end. Lady Mariana wants nothing more than to break free of the tyrannical hold the English king has on her. When he sends her to Scotland with a message for the rebels, instead of obeying his orders, she finds herself submitting to her desires. After one sizzling, life-altering night, Brandon and Mariana must part ways. But Mariana has no intention of betraying her heart again. And Brandon is determined to get her back. Stealing Longshank’s secrets felt like victory, but taking his woman will be this Highlander’s ultimate triumph.
Nearing spring, 1298 Highlands, Scotland
SMOKE filled Laird Brandon Sinclair’s lungs as he rode on horseback with his men toward the north of Kinterloch Village.
High above the wooden wall, flames burst in hungry orange licks. A vengeful fire that would turn everything in its path to ash. The late afternoon sky was already overcast, but the smoke of the blaze made it nearly black.
No villagers ran from the fire. No animals screamed. The chaos that should be erupting with the flames was non-existent—as if deserted. But he knew it couldn’t be. The people, the animals, were either trapped or had managed to get out from a different gate.
The Scottish troops’ fearless leader, William Wallace, had already charged through the front gates into the inferno as if he were a man with a death wish. He’d ordered Brandon and his men to check the north side for survivors. Brandon’s cousin, Ronan Sutherland, had taken his warriors to the west side near the loch.
Far from his castle and lands in the north of the Highlands, Brandon had traveled to Eilean Donan the month prior to help his cousins Daniel Murray and Ronan along with William Wallace and Robert the Bruce in the war against the English. But it seemed now it wasn’t only the English they were fighting—but traitor Scots too.
A loud crash reverberated through the air as another building collapsed behind the wall. A rush of heat surged his way, and a cloud of dark smoke billowed into the sky, in stark contrast to the world around them, a peaceful, beautiful place with lush pine trees and gorse bushes, even in winter. Hell set in the middle of heaven.
Doubt darkened his mood. There would be no survivors. Not in a raging inferno like this—one that rivaled Hades. He shook his head and spurred his horse forward. His chestnut colored warhorse, Checkmate, pounded the earth with his massive hooves.
If only they’d been able to get to the village before Laird Ross—traitor to all Scots and their ancestors. The damned bastard had defected to the English, and since doing so, had laid a path of destruction across the Highlands. There wasn’t a man Brandon knew that hadn’t been affected by Ross’ treachery. Hell, it seemed like the man was on a mission to make enemies with everyone of true Scottish heart.
Brandon’s thoughts were cut midway when they rounded the burning wall on the north side.
“Halt!” he shouted to his men, reining in Checkmate.
A woman burst through the wooden gate, exposing the interior angry flaming village. Hair black as a midnight sky, skin covered in soot. Her dark green gown was covered by a singed, once high-quality, wool cloak. She tripped, falling onto her hands and knees, coughing, yet she did not stop. The lass crawled forward, every move beleaguered in her attempt to escape the flaming village.
Without a thought, Brandon jumped from Checkmate, and ran toward her.
Eliza Knight is a USA Today Bestselling and award-winning author of sizzling historical romance and time-travel erotic romance. Under the name E. Knight, she pens riveting historical fiction. She runs the award-winning blog, History Undressed. When not reading, writing and researching, she likes to cuddle up in front of a warm fire with her own knight in shining armor. Connect with her at http://www.elizaknight.com or http://www.historyundressed.com. You can sign up for her newsletter at http://eepurl.com/CSFFD. Follow her on social media at: