It’s the final week of our ‘first encounter’ excerpts. Hopefully you’ve been reading this blog each week to discover who I’ve been hosting and where you can find Roger and Lucy’s story. I’m ending the theme with a final excerpt from Redeeming the Rogue Knight.
‘Give me more wine, Lucy Carew,’ the injured man demanded, reaching for the bottle. Lucy picked it up, then paused before handing it over and took a sip herself. It did little to calm her nerves. The man drained the bottle, spilling a good measure down his face and neck. Lucy wrinkled her nose in disgust. Her mattress would reek of wine—though if it survived without blood being spilled on it that would be a wonder in itself. Gripping the dagger, she bent over the bed to do as she had been bidden. Her hands trembled and she hesitated, drawing her hand back from the cloth.
‘Have you never undressed a man before?’ the man asked with a leer.
‘Never with a knife,’ Lucy answered curtly.
‘I thought a pretty dove who can kiss like you did must know her way around a bed.’
His voice was mocking and Lucy flushed with anger. Voices of condemnation pressed down on her, whispering names that set her cheeks aflame with shame. The voices were right though, weren’t they? Otherwise why would her body have responded in the basest way possible to the uninvited touch of his lips?
She held his gaze, noticing his eyes were increasingly unfocused and the colour was leaving his cheeks once more. He would most likely pass out again, if not from his injury then from the wine he had drunk. She bent over to widen the hole around the arrow at the front and back. The evil-looking tip was crusted with blood, as was his clothing, and her stomach heaved.
The cloak was thick, but the dagger blade was sharp and it came away without too much work. She dropped it down between the bed and wall. Beneath the cloak the man wore a sleeveless padded jerkin, laced at the front. By some fortune the arrow had missed this, piercing his flesh where arm joined body, and the garment was intact. The jerkin was the colour of oak and the cloak was of good quality. Lucy wondered for the first time who he was. She unlaced the jerkin, aware all the time of the man’s eyes upon her.
I do hope you’ve enjoyed the excerpts. If you want to find out what happens next you can buy a copy here.