Candace McAvoy is trapped in the past and about to get stuck with marriage she doesn't want. Being rescued by a tall, dark stranger has its advantages but she might just be jumping from the frying pan into the fire. What's in it for him?
She stopped short before running headlong into a third man. “Where do you think you are going, wife mine?” he asked, the corners of his mouth turning up in a slow smile.
Candace stepped backward, two steps for each one he took until she found herself surrounded.
“Nathan Granger. What brings you out of your hidey-hole?” Jamie asked, amused to see the intruder Lynsdale would surely determine was unwelcome. Jamie knew of a grudge between them but not the particulars.
“You cannot marry her.” The stranger ignored Jamie’s comment in favor of his own announcement. He grasped Candace’s wrist, ignoring her attempt to free herself.
“Why is that?” Lynsdale demanded. “Are you saying you have a prior claim on her?”
“I am saying exactly that. We were handfasted this last fortnight, for a year and a day. There is no undoing what was promised before witnesses.” He had the right of it, the strongest claim. In spite of Candace’s subtle tugging to get free, he refused to relinquish his hold on her.
Jamie snickered. “I never thought of you as the kind to take a wife, whether handfasted or in a kirk.”
When Nathan’s words finally penetrated Candace’s brain she looked up at the man she thought might have arrived to rescue her. “What are you saying?”
“Are you so daft you’ve forgotten your promise? You wound me.” The hurt expression on his features failed to reach his eyes.
“Must you always demand the last word be yours?”
Candace’s jaw fell open while she stared up into his deep blue eyes. No one ever spoke to her in that manner or tone.
Hooking a finger under her chin he gently eased her jaw upward until her mouth was firmly shut. “Close your mouth, woman. Not another word.” He whispered the warning in her ear and backed away, but not before he’d left a kiss on the sensitive skin just behind her earlobe. He smiled at her shiver and stepped back, a look of arrogant satisfaction on his face.