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Authors: On Highland Hill

Kara Griffin - Gunn Guardsmen

 

 

 

 

 

On A Highland Hill

 

 

KARA GRIFFIN

ON A HIGHLAND HILL

All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2013 Kara Griffin

 

Cover Photo © 2013 All rights reserved - used with permission.

 

This book may not be reproduced, transmitted, or stored in whole or in part by any means, including graphic, electronic, or mechanical without the express written consent of the publisher except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.

 

This book contains adult material, reader discretion advised

 

 

 

DEDICATION

 

 

To one of my dearest friends, Christy Gissendaner Mann,

for her endearing support and friendship all these many years

 

 

Table of contents:

PROLOGUE

CHAPTER ONE

CHAPTER TWO

CHAPTER THREE

CHAPTER FOUR

CHAPTER FIVE

CHAPTER SIX

CHAPTER SEVEN

CHAPTER EIGHT

CHAPTER NINE

CHAPTER TEN

CHAPTER ELEVEN

CHAPTER TWELVE

CHAPTER THIRTEEN

CHAPTER FOURTEEN

CHAPTER FIFTEEN

CHAPTER SIXTEEN

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

CHAPTER NINETEEN

CHAPTER TWENTY

CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE

CHAPTER TWENTY-TWO

CHAPTER TWENTY-THREE

CHAPTER TWENTY-FOUR

CHAPTER TWENTY-FIVE

CHAPTER TWENTY-SIX

 

 

OTHER HISTORICAL TITLES

BY KARA GRIFFIN

 

WARRIOR’S PLEDGE

CLAIMED BY A CHARMER

LASS’ VALOR

ONE & ONLY

 

SCI-FI ROMANCES

COSMIC HEARTS

COSMIC CHEMISTRY

COSMIC CHAOS

 

 

PRAISE FOR KARA GRIFFIN’S HISTORICALS

 

ONE AND ONLY
- I just finished this book ten minutes ago and I'm still smiling. Wonderful. Absolutely wonderful. ... This story has so many truly fantastic scenes. Oh, the days of men of honor, governed by loyalty, duty, and chivalry. And to top it off, they are all strapping warriors wrapped in the Gunn plaid. Need I say more? This author writes truly wonderful historical romances.

Past Romance, Amazon - 5 Star

 

WARRIOR’S PLEDGE
is a touching story of two people who, after never having known love or happiness in their lives, learn to trust and to love, which in the end, gives them more happiness than they’d ever known existed. Don’t miss this touching tale. It is a definite keeper.

Karen H. - The Romance Studio

 

What I enjoyed about
CLAIMED BY A CHARMER
is it’s a story about finding the one person who makes you feel more alive than any other on the planet. The struggling relationship between Isabel and Douglas is passionate, amusing and the essence of true romance. They are both strong characters who have met their match and have to learn how to compromise in order to be together. Claimed by a Charmer also reinforces the fact that you can’t hide who you really are. That the one who loves you, loves you for who you are and not what you believed they want you to be. Claimed by a Charmer is charming, sweet and an enjoyable romantic read.

Janet - Fallen Angel Reviews

 

Ms. Griffin’s story
LASS’ VALOR
was impossible to put down. Her characters popped off the pages. The dialogue held me while not overpowering me with the Highland brogue and still grounded me within the time-period. The conflict between all the characters was strong and believable, adding richness to the setting. Definitely a historical not to be missed by Ms. Griffin’s fans or lovers of Highlander tales.

Kimber  - Coffee Time Romance

 

 

ON A HIGHLAND HILL

 

They were destined to meet, but they never expected to fall in love…

 

His tormented soul

 

Kenneth McInnish, guardsman for the powerful Gunn Clan, is not prepared for the tender devotion from the lass his clan steals from the king. Tricked into marrying her, he decides to make the best of it. But it’s her kisses that win him over to the fact that he just might enjoy being wedded. Beneath Kenneth’s wounded heart lies a protector. But Elisa is more than capable of taking care of herself. The only place he’s sure of himself with her is at night when he shares the most passionate experiences of his life.

 

Her giving nature

 

Elisa always thought she’d wed the ruthless warrior who abducted her. When she finds out the truth behind her abduction and is mercifully rescued, she is forced to wed for her protection. She chooses the warrior whose soul needs saving the most. Everything she does to aid him goes awry and puts him in a worse position. Faced with the possibility of endangering his clan, she risks her own safety to save him.

 

Their dangerous encounter

 

When Kenneth learns of the trickery which caused him to marry her, and forces him to confront his demons, he’s not sure how to handle it or her. She’s everything he never knew he could have. As they aid all those around them, can they save each other and find the love they both need and desire?

 

 

PROLOGUE

 

 

McInnish Clan Holding

Highlands, Scotland

1215

 

 

The old lady limped into the darkened cottage of the wisest woman in the clan. It was said if anyone wanted to know anything, she was the one who foretold of certain futures. A brisk wind blew the door closed behind her, sending the cottage into obscurity. She heard the bustle of the seer, but she could not see well as it was too dark within.

The old lady’s heart thumped madly for she knew she had to get answers. She avoided coming here because she wasn’t sure she wanted to hear disheartening news.

“Come, sit, and I shall tell all. I expected you.”

She did as she was bid and noticed the glow from a small candle alit on the table near the dim hearth. Why the seer had no fire lit on such a windswept chilly night, the lady didn’t discern nor could she ask. She set her misshaped stick beside her, the only crutch she would use as she had long since been unable to walk on her own.

“You come seeking answers?”

“Aye, I hope ‘tis noble news and not ill?” As she sat waiting, she watched with expectant nerves.

The seer became still and quiet. Her long white hair blew from unknown wind, and her glowing bright eyes looked at her with a bemused gaze. “Firstly, you shall hear of my forsooth … then I shall tell you about the McInnish. For that is why you have come seeking my guidance.”

“I am gladdened to learn anything you say,” the lady said exuberantly, hoping for good tidings.

“Sad events will happen before the one to lead the clan returns. Deaths and such woe, I see. The laird’s son who you believe to be the heir will be taken from the McInnish.”

Her hopes dashed. “You mean … he shall die?” The lady frowned at the thought of the heir being lost to them, for they hadn’t much time before her husband’s demise, which is why she sought the wise guidance of the seer. Though her husband’s sons were her stepsons, she cared for them and considered them her own.

“Aye, the eldest shall not exist long enough to lead the McInnish clan and shall perish before the laird, your husband. The other shall be hesitant to take his place, but a lass is the key to the younger McInnish’s heart and only she will bring about the clan’s forbearance of him and his acceptance of his title.”

“When shall he come?” the lady asked. “We haven’t much time before my dearest departs.”

“Events must happen before the younger one can return. Return he shall, on a night when you least expect. He will show himself and take the mighty position as his father wills.”

“I must tell my husband for he will be gladdened to know our clan will bode well when he departs. He shall be dispirited by this news, but at least a McInnish will lead our people. My husband won’t say he is worried but he is. I cannot allow him to meet his maker without knowing such tidings. He will at least be at peace.” The lady began to rise but slowly sat back when the seer motioned her to wait.

“The lass who comes is crucial to the McInnish’s happiness, och the lass will have help. For the Red Lady will aid her and she will not be alone in her endeavor.”

“Is the lass to be the McInnish bride?”

The seer closed her eyes waved her hands over the candle which flickered and sent light to the farthest part of the cottage. She moaned. “Ah poor lass, for she only wants to be loved and needed. But the one doesn’t want any help from anyone and prefers to be alone. She will have a hard time convincing him.”

“How long do we have?”

The seer took a deep breath and then spit on the table. She used her curved nail and scratched through it before dripping a bit of candle wax, mixing it with the liquid. She stared at it for several moments. The old lady was afraid to interrupt her thoughts and remained silent and patient.

“Events are already taking place. Much time will pass before he comes and the clan will be destitute and sorely in need of his leadership.”

“We cannot wait that long, we could perish before his return,” the lady said dolefully, sadly realizing the woe that would befall her clan.

“You have no choice, for it will be as I foretold.”

 

 

CHAPTER ONE

 

 

MacQuarrie Clan Holding

Highlands, Scotland

1215

 

 

A cold wind whipped past the mourners as they stood beside the four gravesites. The sea’s wrath at the atrocities blew the hale and encased the land with its fury. There, on a stone pedestal, lay sheathed in the finest linen, Alexander’s lady. Strife over the western lands caused great skirmishes and rivalries, especially between his father the king, and Domhnall mac Raghnaill, who held the western lands. Domhnall’s role in the deaths was evident in that he’d heard Alexander was on his way to parlay with him. The man was impatient and had not awaited the negotiations.

Though Alexander’s visitation was primarily to suggest Domhnall abdicate his desire for the crown of Norway and to hold the lands to which he would be greatly rewarded. The price would be high but well worth it. Tensions rose and Alexander knew his father, the present King of Scotland, wanted peace. Alexander had even offered to be the emissary for this mission in hopes of winning his father’s favor. It occurred to him that Domhnall didn’t much care for his father’s desires and it was apparent he didn’t want to take part in any discussions. Nor did he care for rewards. Domhnall didn’t consider death of the innocent a consequence of his actions, as long as the message was delivered. Indeed it was.

“King of the Isles, my arse,” Alexander muttered under his breath for the sake of anyone overhearing. His hand gripped the hilt of his sword with such force his knuckles burned. A will to use his sword to enact retribution came to him as his ire increased. For this day, Domhnall became his sworn enemy.

Upon their meeting, the future king and heir to the succession of Scotland, Alexander, swore their love to be unmatched and never to be unrequited.
Mauri
. Her glistening hair, spun from the beams of sunlight, shown through the linen and caused many of the grievers to weep quieted sobs. Hers was a life taken too soon and for such an ignoble purpose. A knot of emotion rose in his throat, for the life he envisioned with her would never be.

A beautiful soul one never beheld until Mauri smiled at them with lips so soft and sweet, and eyes as gentle as an early morning sunbeam. He recalled how her bright eyes showed love and tenderness. Life with Mauri would have proven to be the fairest, and she would have made him an honest, passionate king. Even at such a tender age, he realized she was the woman he was destined to be with, the woman fated to be his queen.

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