The Highlander’s Heiress
Castle Brides, #2
Formerly titled Highlander’s Hope
She’s a strong-willed heiress. He’s a powerful lord with a secret. Tempers and passion collide.
Yvette Stapleton has no need for a husband. Ever. Possessed of a fortune, she’s determined to forge her own future without matrimony’s confining bonds. Besides, she’s yet to meet a man who doesn’t find her wealth more alluring than her. Until she meets Ewan, the Viscount Sethwick, that is.
Ewan, also Laird McTavish of Craiglocky Keep, has one last mission before resigning his position as a covert agent: to oust a War Office traitor. He’ll stop at nothing to succeed. Except exploit Yvette, the vixen who captured his interest months ago.
As peril mounts, they flee to Scotland, the only place Ewan is confident he can keep Yvette safe. However, on the journey, dangerous circumstances force them into assuming the role of a married couple. Incensed upon discovering the marriage is legal under Scottish law, Yvette is determined to have the union annulled. But Ewan’s just as resolute she’ll remain his wife…
Contains adult content and language.
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“I heartily recommend this book to romantic readers and adventurous ones, too. I rate it five stars but wish I could make it more. It is a wonderful book.” ★★★★★ ~The Romance Reviews Top Pick
“From beginning to end, this novel is absolutely marvelous!” ★★★★★ ~My Book Addiction
“This story has wonderful imagery, characters you will enjoy and enough suspense to make for an exciting read.” ★★★★★ ~My Reading Obsession
“I loved this story! Highlander’s Hope is an engaging read that I couldn’t put down!” ★★★★★ ~So Little Time Blog
“With it’s compelling characters, an enticing mystery, and an emotional romance, Highlander’s Hope is truly terrific from beginning to end.” ★★★★★ ~Lusty Penguin Reviews
“Highlander’s Hope is an engaging read that I couldn’t put down! This Regency romance is full of action and smoldering romance.” ★★★★★ ~Candy So Little Time Reviews
“5 stars because it deserved it. A wonderful love story. It had a great start, as it was interesting from beginning and stayed that way to the end.” ★★★★★ ~Colleen
“Fabulous, loving romance. One that makes you want to continue reading about the rest of the family. You know what I mean. I really must see if there’s a sequel to the series. Join me.” ★★★★★ ~Luv Lee Lorraine
“Loved it. Loved it. Loved it. I finished this in one sitting, and for me that is the hallmark of a good book. Ms. Cameron is my new favorite romance author. Highly recommended.” ★★★★★ ~Yvonne Griffen
“Full of laugh out loud humour, adventure, villains, intrigue, and of course, romance!” ★★★★★ ~Grammy H
Boston, Massachusetts, April 1817
“Make haste, Yvette. The coach is readied.”
“I know, Pippa.”
Yvette and her aged nurse scurried around Yvette’s bedchamber quickly packing her valise with the barest essentials.
Yvette swept one last look around the room she’d occupied for the past two years, then donned the woolen cloak Pippa held. Bulging bag in hand, Pippa right behind her, Yvette hastened down the corridor.
They met the rest of household at the bottom of the staircase, their dear faces tense, but resolute.
“Everyone knows what to do?” Fairchild—the butler and long-time family friend—met each of their gazes in turn, received confirming nods from everyone. “Very well, then. Let’s be about it.”
“Wait!” Yvette cried softly, hugging him. “Thank you, I. . .”
The butler encircled her in a fond, fatherly hug and kissed the top of her head. “I know, Evvy.”
She offered the others a brave, if somewhat tremulous smile. How could she bear leaving them? She’d no choice. Edgar’s abduction attempt tonight, after his previous effort to ravish her, forced this desperate flight. He continued to elude the authorities, and even armed guards hadn’t been able to prevent his sneaking into the manor.
“Evvy, we must hurry. The ship sails within the hour.” Josiah Fairchild’s voice rang with concern as he speared his twin an uneasy glance.
Yvette dropped to her knees. She wrapped her arms around her spaniels’ necks and buried her face in their soft, dappled fur. “I’ll miss you so much, my sweet friends.”
“Evvy, you have to go. Now,” Isaiah, the other twin, urged. “Edgar may be watching the manor.”
She nodded as he helped her to her feet. After hugging him, she took a deep breath and squared her shoulders. “I’m ready.”
A flaxen-haired maid, snugly wrapped in Yvette’s cloak, and Isaiah slipped out the front entrance where a coach awaited them. They’d offered to act as decoys so she could escape.
Blinking away scorching tears, Yvette rushed to the back of the darkened house. Once there, she embraced a distraught Pippa.
“I’ll pray for your safety, Evvy. It’ll be but a few short weeks until we meet again in England,” managed her long-time nurse through her tear-clogged throat.
Attired in a farmer’s rough garb, a dirty hat low on his head, Josiah grasped Yvette’s arm and led her to the waiting cart. She crawled in and, sucking in a steadying breath, lay down. After placing her stuffed valise beside her, he covered her with a tarp. A moment later, something soft dropped onto her.
Josiah spread it about, concealing her.
The cart dipped and creaked as he climbed onto the seat. And then, with a small jolt, it lurched forward, spiriting her to freedom.
Several minutes passed before they arrived at their destination, and the vehicle rolled to a slow stop. An instant later, the crisp sea breeze whipped across Yvette’s face as Josiah assisted her down. Hiding in the buildings’ shadows, they edged along the wharf. Yvette feared they’d be stopped at any moment—that Edgar or his henchmen would discover their ruse.
“There she is,” Josiah whispered, pointing at a ship.
Hood raised, Yvette cautiously stepped forward and peered up at the Atlantic Star. Holding her fear in check, she drew in a deep, fortifying breath. She turned and clasped Josiah tightly. “I’ll miss you.”
“And I you, minx.” He tweaked her nose affectionately. “Now go.”
Chin tilted courageously, she crossed the dock and boarded the waiting ship.
In those long moments before night fully yielded her assiduous watch and dawn gradually roused to full awareness, Yvette stood at the ship’s rail. Her posture tense and gaze keen, she searched the flickering, shifting shadows along the murky waterfront.
The Atlantic Star silently slipped past the other moored ships, including the Peaceful Wind—the ship she was supposed to sail on in two weeks—and glided away from Boston’s harbor.
Out to the open sea. To safety.