Today I have an excerpt from Her Banished Knight’s Redemption by Melissa Oliver.
A lady’s need for protection
A knight’s chance for redemption
Exiled Knight William Geraint answers only to himself. Yet, a mission to find and reunite lost heiress Lady Isabel de Clancey with her family is Will’s chance to finally atone for the torment of his past. With every rushed mile, their intense attraction becomes dangerously thrilling. He swore to protect Isabel not seduce her, but their desire for each other could threaten the redemption he’s worked so hard to achieve…
Lady Isabel de Clancey and her escort, Sir William Geraint have been travelling through Aquitaine to get to the port of La Rochelle, so that they can eventually make their way back to England. Isabel wakes after a fretful night in the middle of the woods.
Isabel awoke from a restless night’s sleep the following day, irascible and with what Will had predicted—an almighty headache. God, but it hurt just opening one of her eyes. She screwed them shut again and felt splinters of shooting pain. She rubbed her forehead and eyes gently, trying to coax them to open.
‘Good morning,’ the pleasant voice that could only belong to William Geraint rumbled nearby.
The back of her throat felt parched and scratchy, so when she opened her mouth to return his greeting, she croaked, instead. Well, it wasn’t as though she could embarrass herself any more than she already had.
Isabel sat up gingerly as Will passed her his flagon.
‘Drink this. It may help,’ he said with a little amusement in his voice.
She nodded her thanks, refusing to meet his gaze, before taking small sips, feeling the restorative cool water slip down her throat.
‘If you feel up to it, Lady Isabel, there is a stream, yonder, where you can wash.’
That made her turn her head, wincing as she faced him. But, of course, she was back to being Lady Isabel de Clancey, wasn’t she? And of course it was this very moment that the events from the previous evening were slowly tumbling back into her very sore head.
‘How are you feeling?’ Will’s blue eyes glittered as he stood watching her, leaning against the bark of a tree.
Mortified, disconcerted, unsettled.
Isabel felt a twinge of guilt at putting both of them in danger the previous evening, but she hadn’t anticipated that it would happen so soon after leaving St Jean de Cole. She should have known better, though. And she should also have known better than to have such humiliating notions in her head about the man standing opposite her. Thank goodness she hadn’t acted upon her impulses last night as it would have turned out to be even more embarrassing then it had.
‘I feel as though someone has taken a hammer to my head, but otherwise I’ll live—’ she grimaced ‘—thanks to you. I’m incredibly grateful to you and I am also, once again, in your debt.’
He shook his head, his lips pressed into a thin line. ‘You don’t owe me anything, my lady.’
‘Apart from my life,’ she said, meeting his eyes.
Melissa Oliver is from south-west London where she writes historical romance novels. She lives with her lovely husband and daughters, who share her passion for decrepit, old castles, palaces and all things historical.
Melissa is the WINNER of The Romantic Novelist Association’s Joan Hessayon Award for new writers 2020 for her debut, The Rebel Heiress and the Knight – Book 1 Notorious Knights.