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After losing his family in the Scottish Clearances, Harry Wallace becomes infamous for his clever revenge on the ruling English upper class, but his success can last only so long. With the shadow of a noose hanging over him, he barely escapes with his life and sails for British North America and a town he’s heard of but never seen.
In New Brunswick, Maggie Fowler needs a champion, someone willing to fight for the home and holdings she and her seven stepchildren are trying to defend against a murderous, power-hungry enemy who has already killed the children’s father. Will footloose, devil-may-care Highland Harry meet her needs?
He sat savoring another wee dram. God knew he needed it. He’d just been proposed to by the stepmother of seven children with mills, a farm, and an apparently dangerous enemy threatening her and her family. The widow of a fellow Highlander, a woman—together with her children—he was duty bound to help and protect.
In the flickering firelight he walked to the door of her bedroom and peered in through the space she’d left open to allow heat from the hearth to enter. In the wide bed, her shining chestnut hair adorning the pillow, Maggie slept, long eyelashes spread out over creamy cheeks. In her arms she cradled the golden-haired cherub named Eppie. On a rug on the floor beside them, Pig woke, looked up at him with strangely knowing eyes, grunted, then lowered her head and went back to sleep. What was a man to do with such a rare and unexpected family?
He wandered back to the hearth, put a hand on the shelf above it, and stood staring down into the flames. Wind shrieked around the corners and snow buffeted the windows, but inside the log house, protected from the storm, he let a warm, secure feeling settle over him, a warm and secure feeling he hadn’t experienced at night since he’d been a lad in his father’s croft cottage during a blizzard much like this one. The ambience was seductive but perhaps false. After all, the family had a dangerous enemy.
He banked the fire for the night, then glanced back toward the bedroom where Maggie slept. Beautiful, unassuming Maggie. What would the future hold for her and the children if he decided not to stay?
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