I am thrilled to share details of my latest release on the Lady Scribes Blog this week. In Forsaking the Prize, think seafaring tarzan meets a proper regency widow. Fun, flirtation and mischief ensue. The novel is the second in my Wild Randall’s series and brings closure to two specific storylines involving sisters Mercy and Blythe.
Abducted at fourteen and sent away to sea, rough and ready sailor Tobias Randall endured exile and cruelty only to have his plans for revenge crumble. He may have made a terrible first impression upon his return to Romsey Abbey, but he has a plan to reclaim his place—he’ll marry quickly and marry a woman of wealth. Yet the perils of life at sea are nothing compared to the danger of attempting polite conversation with a proper lady.
Blythe, Lady Venables, may be revered as a faithful, proper widow, but a cruel misunderstanding has placed her sanity in doubt. Determined to clear her name, she forms an uneasy truce with the wildest Randall of all, Tobias—a man shamelessly willing to seduce her—to uncover the mystery plaguing Romsey Abbey. With doubts and fears against them, Tobias and Blythe each venture into uncharted territory – love and scandal.
Mr. Randall winced. “Leopold locked me in as well. I’m a prisoner, too.”
“Forgive me if I do not believe you.” Blythe lifted her chin. “Since you have the ability to escape your confinement I suggest you take yourself away.”
His lips twisted into a smile that Blythe didn’t trust. “But what happens if I am becalmed in your presence. A man like me has little opportunity to visit such an alluring lady’s bedchamber.”
Blythe set her hands to her hips. “Let me make one thing clear to you, Mr. Randall. Your glib tongue won’t work with me. I think you an utter scoundrel. A man not to be trusted and if you were not so abnormally sized, and I a lady, I would have you thrown head first from the window.”
“Abnormally sized? Lady Venables, have you been peeking at my rudder?” He gestured to his groin and chuckled. Blythe recoiled and bumped into the wall. His expression turned serious in an instant. He drew so close that Blythe could discern his shadowed eyes were brown, shot through with a bright shade of amber. “I can assure you that the ladies have never complained about my size before. In fact, they quite often beg me to return to port.”
Blythe amended her earlier description of Tobias Randall. He was a rude, vulgar-tongued pirate with a penchant for grandiose self-flattery. Given the unguarded way he spoke, he would bring disgrace upon Mercy and the Duke of Romsey within a day, if it hadn’t happened already. She glared, determined to make her disgust plain. “Then the ladies were desperate women indeed. Were you the only man to choose from after years without? Now, get out.”
He blinked slowly. As he opened his eyes again, he shifted his body closer until he stood inches from her chest. He radiated so much heat that her own skin grew warm with embarrassment. It had been a long time since a man had stood this close to her and caused such a reaction. The last to do so had been her late husband. Although the action would suggest she feared him, she slid along the wall.
He tilted his head to the side and he studied her. “Not mad,” he whispered. “Just very, very, unfriendly. Don’t worry. I’m not drunk enough to bed you without causing myself considerable pain. My rudder would likely suffer injury should I dare to dock at your port. Splinters, you know.”
Blythe gaped. How dare he say such a thing to a lady!
Before she could stop him, he brushed his finger beneath her chin. She snapped her mouth shut. Then, to her shock, he vaulted out the window, one large hand locked on the window frame, and dangled there, twenty feet above ground. He poked his head back inside the room momentarily. “Try not to miss me too much, B.”
The bounder. The cad. How dare he think to shorten her name to just an initial? She wouldn’t stand for it a moment longer. Blythe hurried to lock the window so he couldn’t come back inside. She really didn’t give a fig if he fell to his death.
To celebrate the release, I’m giving away two digital editions. To enter please leave a (meaningful) comment along with your email address. Winners will be drawn Sunday (Australian EST) and announced on the post and our contest page. Good luck.