Spellbound and Seduced! Excerpt and Giveaway
My new novella, Spellbound and Seduced, is set in the Scottish Highlands over Christmas in 1822. Laurence Connaught is heir to a remote Scottish castle and has come north to see his inheritance when he is caught in a snowstorm. Jura Mcnair is a witch. A two-hundred-year-old curse promises that any man she loves is doomed to an early death. Determined to break the cycle, Jura lives alone and untouched until she rescues Laurence. The two are beguiled by passion and bewtiched by their feelings for each other, but unless they find a way to break the curse there can be no happy ending for them.
The story opens with the burning of Jura’s ancestress two hundred years before, and as with most of my paranormal tales, it has at its heart a combination of Scottish history and folklore. There’s a long tradition of fey wives (herbalists who often have a ‘gift’) in the Highlands which continues to this day –fortunately, we stopped burning them at the stake in the early 18th Century!
Spellbound and Seduced is a Christmas story with lots of cold snow, hot sex, and a few spells along the way to Jura and Laurence’s special Christmas feel-good happy ever after.
Excerpt from Spellbound and Seduced
Jura handed him a glass. “Drink this. It will ease your headache. It’s whisky and a tincture of herbs, perfectly harmless.”
“Uisge beatha,” he said, trying to ignore the curve of her breasts which were on a level with his chin, the way her bare leg brushed his. “Water of life. My mother taught me that.” He took another sip, and then another. The drink did not seem to be having the soporific effect that spirits usually had on him. Instead he felt over-sensitised and at the same time light-headed, reckless. He stretched to place the whisky glass on the floor, and his knuckles grazed the slope of Jura’s bottom. Her hair tickled his skin. He could not resist wrapping a thick auburn tress of silken hair around his hand. “You are the most beautiful woman I have ever set eyes on, do you know that? I’m still not quite sure you’re real.”
“That’s strange, because I was just thinking that you must have walked out of my dreams,” Jura replied. Her heart was racing. Her voice was no more than a whisper. She did not think of resisting. She did not even remind herself that there would be no harm.
“I’d like to be in your dreams,” Lawrence said, slipping his arm around her waist, pulling her to him, trapping her between his knees, “but I can think of an even better place I’d like to be.”
His slow, seductive smile was captivating. Jura had had no idea that temptation could be so delightful, wispy as spun sugar, heady as whisky and just as potent. Intoxicating. She leaned her hands on his shoulders, curling her fingers into the warmth of his skin beneath the fine cambric of his shirt. “Where?” she asked, quite mesmerised, unaware that her mouth was tugged into a smile just as sensual as his. “Where is it you want to be, Lawrence?”
“Oh!” Her knees gave way. She sank to the floor, unbelievably aroused by his words.
“I’ve shocked you.”
Jura shook her head. His legs cradled her waist. “Not shocked. Only….” She trailed her fingers along his leather-clad flanks. She tilted up her head to meet those blue, blue eyes. “Tell me. More.”
Lawrence caught his breath. Her smile was smoky. It stoked the fire which raged in his gut. He pulled her closer, burying his hand in the silken mass of her hair, inhaling the scent of her as he placed his mouth right next to her ear. “I want to taste you. I want to breathe you in. I want to feel your skin on mine. I want you to sheath me.” His thumb found the sensitive spot at her nape. Her breath was warm on his cheek. Her heart beat faster than his, he could feel it, through the bodice of her dress. He licked the lobe of her ear, tasted the skin behind it. “I want all of you. Me inside you. You inside me.” He was astonished by his own words, spoken without thinking, yet spoken with utter conviction. “Say you want me in the same way. Skin to skin. Flesh to flesh. Say it, Jura,” he said, urgent now.
“I want you. Skin to skin. Flesh to flesh.” She spoke without hesitation. She heard the words, breathy, as if she had been running, as if someone else was speaking them, with no thought for the consequences.
©2011 Marguerite Kaye
Spellbound and Seduced is available now in ebook form from Harlequin Historical Undone! It will be released in the UK as an ebook in January, and will be available in the print anthology, A Sinful Regency Christmas, next year. You can read the witch-burning scene and find out about all my other books on my website.
I hope you like. And if you want to read the full story, I’m giving away a copy of the ebook here. Just leave a comment with your email if its not on your profile to enter.
The following restrictions apply:
The coupon has to be used by 31 Decembery
It can only be used on the eHarlequin site
It is valid only for people in North America.