Capturing A Highland Knight

BOOK: Capturing A Highland Knight
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Capturing a Highland Knight

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright © 2011 Fatima Hyman

 

 

 

 

 

 

This book is dedicated to my father who was my biggest supporter.  I love and miss you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 1

Scottish Highlands, 1809

 

Derek MacDougal awoke and ran his hands over his face.  He felt the familiar pangs of a hangover developing in his head.  He grimaced and turned onto his side.  His hand came in contact with the soft mound of a pert breast.  He smiled.  He remembered the wild night he had with Eilidh.  Her soft pliant body stirred as he ran his hands over her supple curves.

Eilidh’s eyes opened and she smiled at him.  He pulled her into his embrace and covered her breast with his mouth.  Her soft cry made him smile and he suckled until she called out.  He felt his groin stir and come to attention.  He moved to cover her and pushed her into the mattress.

He kissed her neck and her shoulders.  Her hair smelled a little like the ale they had consumed last night.  He ran his hand down her stomach to her waiting heat.  He slipped a finger between her folds and felt that she was ready, as she always was for him.  He wrapped his hand around his penis and positioned it to penetrate.  Eilidh’s breaths were coming in small pants.  As he began pushing into her heat, the door banged open.

He cursed and Eilidh squeaked.

“Get up!” he heard the familiar voice demand.  He chuckled.

“Good morning, Megan,” he said and flopped onto his back.  Eilidh, with her eyes round, tried to cover herself with the sheet.

“Get up and get to yer work!  Ye should have been up long ago!  Up! Up!” Megan said as she pulled the sheet back uncovering Eilidh and Derek.

Derek chuckled again as Eilidh tried to keep herself covered.  She jumped from the bed and grabbed her clothes from the floor where they’d been tossed.  Derek watched her with amusement in his eyes. 

“If I find ye thus again, ye will be punished,” Megan said to her as she exited Derek’s room.

“Aye,” Eilidh said.  She gave Derek a sultry look before the door closed behind her.

“And ye,” Megan said turning to Derek.

Derek sighed.  He knew what was coming.  He had heard it a thousand times before.  Not only from Megan, but also from his brothers and parents.  He rolled over on his stomach and pulled the sheet up over his buttocks.

Megan did not continue.  He raised his head to look at her.  She was shaking her head at him and picking his discarded clothing from the floor. 

Megan had been with the MacDougals since Derek’s oldest brother, Jace, was a bairn. She came straight from her parents’ cottage and never left.  She had never married and had children of her own, so she treated them like her sons. 

Derek watched her move her bulk around his chamber with a frown on her face and mumbling under her breath.  He caught a few words she was saying as she passed by his bed; words like “lazy”, “randy”, and “goat”.  He stirred and turned back over on his back.

“Ye best be getting up.  Jace says that they will be leaving shortly for Bondlach.”

Derek groaned.  He sat up and ran his fingers through his blonde hair.  It was almost white.  All three brothers had the same coloring which they inherited from their mother; blonde hair and startling grey eyes.

He unfolded his six foot frame from the bed, careless of his nude state.  Megan had seen him nude many times.  He went over to the wash basin and splashed water on his face.

Megan looked Derek over.  He was a very fine man.  Muscles rippled all over his body in the right places.  If she was years younger, she would probably be as susceptible as every other young woman at Dunkirk.  But she also knew a little of what made Derek.  Being so close to the boys had gotten her inside information on them all, and she knew that what Derek really needed was a wife.  But he resisted, and had been resisting for years.  He seemed to be content to just rut around like a wild beast.

Derek pulled on his kilt and shirt and strapped his claymore to his back.  He stuck a dirk in his left boot and strode from his chamber with Megan on his heels.

When Derek reached the hall, he was met by his father who was sitting at the head of the table nursing some ale.  He looked up as Derek sat at the table.

“’Tis about time ye rise,” he growled at him.

Laird Breac MacDougal was a formidable force.  At five and forty, he was still fit and able to lead his men.  He stood an inch shy of Derek’s six foot frame, but he was broader in the shoulders.  His dark brown hair was infused with a peppering of gray hair, but he was still considered a handsome man.

His face darkened as he looked at his son.  He knew Derek had been with one of the maids last night, namely Eilidh.  It made him angry to think that Derek was rutting his way through the keep servants.

“Good morning, Da,” Derek mumbled.  He knew by the look on his father’s face that he was displeased with him.

             
Derek took a deep breath.  He waited for his father to say something to him about his life of debauchery.  He was surprised when Laird Breac talked of something else.

“Ye, along with Jace, Aster, and Colm, are going straight to court after we leave Tobias’ wedding.  We’ve received word this morning that he requires our assistance in some matter or other.”

Derek looked at his father with narrowed eyes.  Since Scotland and England united, the MacDougals had pledged their fealty to the ruling monarchs, as had most of the clans of the highlands.  Derek wondered what King George could possibly require of them.  There had been no uprisings since the two countries were united.

“What matter does he want with us?”

“I doona ken.  The messenger said that King George has been acting…differently lately.  He has been called “The Mad King” because of his erratic behavior of late.  It is said that his son, the Prince Regent, may take over for him soon, but I canna believe it.  The king seemed fit and hale the last time I attended court,” Laird Breac replied taking another drink from his tankard.

“That was over a year ago, Da,” Aster said as he joined them at the trestle table.

Aster was the second son of Laird Breac.  Like Derek, he had their mother’s blonde hair and grey eyes.  He was the same height and build as Laird Breac, although a little leaner.

Derek studied the easy manner of his brother.  They shared the same pastime, except Aster was more circumspect.  Although Aster had enjoyed Eilidh’s and some of the other women’s charms, Derek had her more often.  Derek suspected that Aster had his eye on one of the daughters of the village.

“Aye, exactly my point.  There couldnae be any truth to the rumors.”

“Weel, we will see when we get to court,” Aster said taking a tankard from a servant girl.  She gave him a blatant invitation with her smile, but Aster did not seem to notice.  Derek’s mouth quirked.  His brother’s heart seemed already to be occupied to the exclusion of all other women.  He did not envy him.

  “We will see what?” Jace, the oldest, asked when he sat down beside Derek.

Jace was taller than all of them at six foot two inches.  He was lean with broad shoulders.  He also had blonde hair and grey eyes.  His eyes were a little darker than his brothers’.

“What the mad king wants with us,” Derek replied.  He took a long drink from the tankard Eilidh placed in front of him.  Unlike Aster, Derek noticed her invitation.  He smiled showing his straight white teeth.

“Weel, we leave for Bondlach now.  Derek get yerself together so that we may leave,” Laird Breac said.  He stood up.

Derek’s eyes followed Eilidh as she went toward the kitchens.  She turned and looked over her shoulder at him.  He felt his groin stir at the memory of what they had been interrupted doing this morning. 

“Ye can go on ahead.  I will catch up to ye,” Derek mumbled as he stood and walked from the table.  He crooked his finger at Eilidh and headed for his chamber.

Laird Breac growled and left the hall.  Jace and Aster followed him out, smiling.

 

§

 

Derek finished belting his kilt and watched as Eilidh pulled her arisaid over her head.  A small smile played around his lips.  The rest of his family would be long gone by now.  He had spent the better part of the morning in Eilidh’s capable arms.  It was nearing noon now.  If he rode hard enough, he may be able to catch up with his clan the next day.

Derek walked over to where Eilidh was tying up her hair.  Eilidh had been warming his bed for over a year now.  Although he did avail of some of the other women, Eilidh was his favorite.  She had long black hair and lightly tanned skin.  She was small, her head only reaching the middle of his chest, but she was lusciously endowed in the right places with full breasts and curvaceous hips.  She was a vixen in bed, and she was always ready and willing.

Eilidh smiled as Derek approached her.  Her heart skipped a beat.  He was so handsome and gentle as a lover.  She had felt herself falling in love with him long ago, that’s why she never denied him.  She knew that he availed himself of some of the other women, but she knew that he preferred her.  It was she who he came to the most often.  In her heart of hearts, she felt that he must have some deep down feelings for her.  She secretly hoped that he would declare himself and marry her.

He grabbed her roughly into his arms and seared her with a kiss.  When he came up for air, he gave her a pat on her bottom and strode from the room.  Eilidh smiled.  That kiss confirmed what she hoped.  She felt that soon he would be exclusively hers.

“Hurry back,” she called after him.

Derek left through the hall and went to the stable.  He had heard Eilidh’s words, but they meant nothing to him.  His horse, Charger, was already saddled and waiting for him.  He patted him on the neck and vaulted easily into the saddle.  Without a backward glance, he rode through the gates of the keep.  He did not notice Eilidh watching him from the doorway.

The air was filled with the scent of the heather on the moor.  The land the MacDougals owned was beautiful.  Derek let his eyes rove over the lush fields and glens of Dunkirk.   Everyone worked to make Dunkirk prosperous.  Derek glanced back at the keep.  Its formidable white walls rose high over the keep wall.  Generations of MacDougals had lived in Dunkirk, and each generation had added something new to its structure.  Derek’s father had added the moat around the wall and a tower.

Derek’s eyes clouded over.  Although he loved Dunkirk and being here with his family, he sometimes wanted his own keep.  He had fought alongside his father and brothers for many years to defend Dunkirk from their enemies, but he wanted a keep of his own to defend.  Being the third son of the laird, his only recourse would be to marry an heiress.  The thought slightly sickened Derek.  He enjoyed his bachelorhood and the freedom it entailed. 

Derek had been betrothed once to the daughter of a neighboring clan.  Una had been quite beautiful and upon their marriage, Derek would have been laird of their clan once her father died.  On their wedding day, Derek had gone out to the gardens for a morning stroll.  Although he had no real deep feelings for Una, he felt that they would get on well together.  She was sweet natured and kind, or so he thought until he found her and one of her father’s retainers locked in a heated embrace in the garden. Una was in her wedding gown.   His anger had exploded and he grabbed the retainer by the front of his tunic, lifting his feet from the ground, and smashed him in the face.  Blood squirted from his nose as Derek let him go and he sank to the ground.  He heard Una’s scream from behind him and rounded on her.  The shock in her eyes turned to fear when she saw the cold steel in his grey eyes.  He grabbed her by her arm none too gently, not caring if he hurt her, and drug her to her father.  He demanded she tell her father what happened and threw her at his feet.  He strode out and packed his belongings and left.

After riding hard for a while, he slowed down and realized that, oddly, he hadn’t felt anything but anger at being made a fool of.  Since then, he had only used women for his pleasure.  He had no use for them outside of the bedroom.  Therefore, he had Eilidh.  She knew that her body was all he wanted from her.

              Derek lifted his face towards the sky and closed his eyes to let the sun warm his face. It was almost midday.  He would stop and take a rest.  He was nearing a small river that ran through MacDougal property.  He opened his eyes and saw a carrion bird flying overhead.  He frowned.  There must be an injured and dying animal nearby.  He turned his horse to head towards the river.  He felt his stomach begin to growl and smiled to himself.  Megan had packed him a sack full of food.  His mouth watered just thinking about it.  He had forgone breakfast for a hunger of a different kind.

             
Derek tethered his horse near the river and untied the sack from his saddle. He glanced back up at the carrion bird.  It seemed to have lowered its flight.  The animal must be dead.  He pulled off his claymore and sat down to eat some of the bread and cheese Megan had packed.  He would leave the cold chicken for later.

As he ate, he looked out over the river.  He remembered a time when he could not sit idly by this very river.  All of the clans seemed to have been fighting each other, just as the English had wanted.  But after a while, they realized that and decided it was best that they unite instead of fight.  At first, the cease fire between the clans had been sparse and tentative.  Derek’s great-grandfather, Laird Gerard, had tried to lead such an initiative before.  The MacDougals were the most feared and powerful clan in the highlands.  Many of the other lairds had seen the wisdom of their plan, and had readily joined them.  But there had been some who had balked at unification because Laird Gerard had been ruthless and hated by many.  A few of those clans were still not aligned
with the other clans, but they were not stupid enough to try to come against them.

BOOK: Capturing A Highland Knight
3.06Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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