The Great Pick Up Line
Take it away Alyson!
She clicked her nails on her cup and looked into the fire. He missed the intensity of her gaze on him.
“So you’ll stay until just before the first snowfall, then?” she asked.
“Sounds like you wouldnae want to be trapped here o’er winter.”
“I doona know, Amber. At this point, I just want to catch Murray.” He leaned forward in his chair so his fingers touched her knees. “And I want to be with you.”
“Until winter,” she insisted.
“I have to get back. I canna leave my own clan for too long.”
She nodded. Then picked up her cup and walked in a stilted fashion back to the kitchen.
“When you leave, I willna be able to tell you things.”
He rose and stared at her back, the tension thrumming in his veins. “Nay, but you can write to me.”
“Then I will have told you everything. What about the things you are to understand even though I tell you naught?”
He frowned in confusion. “That doesn’t make sense. How can I understand something if you doona tell me? Are you worried someone may find the letters?”
“Nay. I’m worried I’ll lose something far more important.”
He raised his hands, palms up. “Lose what? Amber, what do you mean?”
“Isla said a man could understand the things I say even if I doona use words. I said it sounded like witchcraft, but all I have to do is look at her and Alban to know it’s possible.”
“That he can read minds?”
“That something sacred can be formed between a man and a woman. Something divine.”
He crossed the room and placed his hands on her shoulders, drawing her back against him.
“I can show you divine, Amber.”
She turned her head to the side, resting her cheek on his chest, and inhaled. “I’m sure you can. I keep imaging your hands and mouth on me…”
“As do I, believe me—”
“…but I doona think it would be enough.”
His fingers squeezed tight, and he forced himself to ease up. But it was hard to let go—he felt her slipping away, possibly further away than she’d been since they met.
“So you want me to marry you, then?” he asked. “Because I doona e’er plan to marry. Be verra clear on that. And I doona want bairns, either.”
“I’m not asking for that.”
“Then what are you asking?”
“I doona know. Divine possibility.”
He released her and turned around, shoving his hands through his hair.
“I thought you were different.”
“Why? Because I curse? Or I’m not afraid to get my hands bloody? I know lots of lasses who do those things.”
“Nay, because you ne’er seem to care what people think of you.”
“’Tis not about what other people think of me. ’Tis what I think about myself.”
He walked to the hearth and leaned on it. “So is that it, then? Have you decided against me?”
“I doona know, Lachlan. I think… I think I care about you, which complicates things.”
He turned to look at her, the blood thudding slowly in his ears. “Are you saying you love me?”
“Nay. I doona know you well enough to love you, do I? But…you make me laugh, and while you annoy me, ’tis not in the same way the other men annoy me. Understand?”
“Not in the least. Should I be pleased that my level of annoyance is different from the other men that dog your heels?”
“You should be whate’er you like. ’Tis not my job to placate you.”
“I didn’t ask you to placate me. Bloody, aggravating woman!”
“Nay, you just asked me for everything else and expect to give naught in return!”
He pinched the bridge of his nose with his thumb and forefinger. Why was this so difficult? He’d ne’er had such trouble with a woman before.
Highland Conquest by Alyson McLayne
HE WAS LOOKING FOR VENGEANCE
INSTEAD HE FOUND HER
Laird Lachlan MacKay never planned on leading his clan, but when his older brother was murdered, he was left with no choice. His vow to avenge his brother has led him to the MacPherson clan—and their bewitching healer, Amber.
Amber MacPherson is desperate. Dressed as a boy to escape her clan’s treacherous leader, she runs right into Lachlan—who orders her detained. At first she causes him nothing but frustration, especially when she blackmails him into helping her clan. But when she’s threatened by the same man who murdered his brother, Lachlan will do whatever it takes to keep her safe—and by his side.
About Alyson McLayne
Alyson McLayne is a mom of twins and an award-winning writer of contemporary, historical and paranormal romance. She’s also a dog lover and cat servant with a serious stash of dark chocolate. After getting her degree in theater at the University of Alberta, she promptly moved to the west coast where she worked in film for several years and met her prop master husband. Please drop by for a visit at www.alysonmclayne.com and look her up on Facebook (www.facebook.com/AlysonMcLayne) or Twitter (@AlysonMcLayne).
Alyson McLayne has graciously offered one paperback copy of Highland Promise, the first book in the Sons of Gregor MacLeod series to one lucky US/Canada winner. To enter, leave a comment below for Alyson!