The Devil of Kilmartin
"A truly magical Scottish romance, The Devil of Kilmartin is sure to sweep the readers off their collective feet and draw them into the mystical glens and greenery of the beautiful Scottish countryside! Unreservedly charming and absolutely riveting!"
—The Road to Romance
"Weaving passion, honor, intrigue and a touch of the paranormal...Ms. Wittig has secured a place of honor on my 'must read' list."
—Escape to Romance Reviews
"Writing with the same passion that drives her characters, Wittig is certain to keep you turning the pages."
—Donna Kauffman, USA Today bestselling author
"I cannot believe we are able to get this type of quality story for such a small price! I just wish her stories could go on forever, the last page comes way too fast for me."
—Kindlefan, Amazon.com review
In the dark of night, Elena of Lamont must flee her home after her father's death to escape the brutal clansman determined to satisfy his lust for power—and for her. But as the captivating beauty runs from one dangerous man she finds herself landing in the arms of another, one whose passionate embrace offers perils of its own... As the chief of the Lachlan clan, Symon MacLachlan vows to protect the fiery-haired lass whose gentle touch relieves the demons clawing at his soul. Despite her fierce denials, he is certain Elena is the legendary Lamont healer—and certain that he must have her for his own. Desperate for her soothing caress—and unable to quell the desire burning inside him—Symon is compelled to lure Elena into marriage. But will he be able to win the love of the tender enchantress who has stolen his heart?
Book Excerpt from The Devil of Kilmartin:
Southwestern Highlands, Scotland
Southwestern Highlands, Scotland
Anger, pain, and grief fueled Elena Lamont's growing despair as she searched the torchlit chamber for the body of her cousin Ian. He was her last hope. He should be here, somewhere amongst the half score of her kinsmen lying bloodied on the rush-strewn floor. She shuddered as she moved between the pain-racked men. 'Twas an all too familiar sight since their chief, her father, had disappeared.
She saw a hand raised slightly and rushed to Ian, sinking to her knees at his side. The rough wool of her oldest gown quickly soaked up a pool of his blood. His face was gray, his eyes glassy.
"I see you did not parry fast enough again," she said, keeping her voice light as she carefully pulled a piece of bloody linen away from his chest. "The Devil will not deal so lightly with you next time." She swallowed a gasp as she revealed the pink-tinged bone of his ribs.
"Do not worry over me, lass," Ian said. "'Tis too much this time."
"Shush, Ian. Save your breath. 'Tis for sure you'll be needing it when Isobel finds you've been hurt yet again." Blood oozed from the gash. "'Tis not so bad as the last time," she said, not daring to look him in the face.
As gently as she could manage with trembling hands, she tore his blood-crusted tunic further to expose more of his chest. She prayed that this time she could hold herself away from the pain. It was a daily prayer for her, and it had yet to be answered.
"Lay very still." She rubbed her hands together, warming them, calming herself, calling forth the healing gift she held within her.
She placed her hands gently around the wound.
Pain leapt from Ian, burned up her fingers, scrabbled around her arms, and settled its claws in her ribs. The first flash was a shock, but Elena knew she mustn't let it stop her. Nothing must stop her from saving Ian's life.
With great effort she ignored the mirrored pain and willed the healing heat out through her hands and into the man beside her. After a dozen breaths the pain began to ease. Elena relaxed slightly, rolling her shoulders as she once again gathered the heat. After another dozen breaths the wound began to close. She concentrated, determined to heal this man.
Without Ian their missing chief's arrogant, overbearing champion, Dougal of Dunmore, would surely take control of the dispirited clan and declare himself their leader. The result would only be more of what she struggled with this day. Blood and death, for Dougal cast destruction about him wherever he went, and all in the name of power.
Elena could not let that happen. Wise, caring Ian had always been her father's choice to follow him.
Without Ian's leadership all was lost for their clan.
Just as the blood flow ceased from Ian's wound and Elena fought to mend the flesh, Dougal roughly pulled her away from her cousin.
"Why do you waste your skill on this one? He will not survive." Elena glared at him, repulsed by the glint of glee in his eyes. "Save yourself for those who may rise to fight again."
Elena looked away, trying to calm the surge of anger and fear she felt whenever this man was near. Before she could take even one breath, Dougal shoved her toward another injured warrior.
"I need them all on their feet by first light."
Elena glanced back at her cousin. His breathing was even, though his skin still held the pallor of much blood loss. At least he would lose no more this night.
Candles sputtered and were replaced by silent clanswomen as Elena worked her way through the crowded room, healing each hurt, small and great. By the fifth man Elena could no longer focus on anything save stopping the pain assaulting her. By the tenth man she could barely stand, so great was her fatigue. By the twelfth man, and the last, Dougal had to cuff her repeatedly to keep her alert and focused on the task at hand.
When the last man was healed, Elena could not rise to her feet. If it weren't for the bloody gore that covered the rush-strewn floor she would have curled up right where she sat and slept for days.
But Dougal hauled her to her feet once more, turning her to face him. She had to look down at him, into mud-brown eyes that held no gentleness, only a lust for power, and some other even more ominous fire. She had never been able to name the fire she saw there, but she knew it did not bode well for those around him. It certainly had not so far.
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