It’s always nice to put a face to your characters when writing a story, and I’m happy to give you the faces and some stats of my latest characters in THE HIGHLANDER’S REWARD!
Hero: Magnus Sutherland – Laird of Sutherland.
Stats: 6’4, muscular, tan from the outdoors, sandy colored hair with a hint of red, dark piercing green eyes. Resides at Dunrobin castle.
When I imagined Magnus, actor Chris Hemsworth often came to mind.
Heroine: Lady Arbella de Mowbray of England
Stats: 5’6, lithe, long blonde, blue eyes. Traveling from England to regrettably marry and live in Scotland under orders from the King.
Actress Amanda Seyfried kept coming to mind when I pictured Arbella. She has such perfect skin, large blue eyes and beautiful shiny hair.
About the book…
She belonged to another… But was destined to be his…
Lady Arbella de Mowbray abhors the idea of marrying an English noble occupying Scotland. When she arrives in Stirling, she is thrown into the midst of a full battle between the Scots and the English. Besieged by rebels, she is whisked from her horse by a Highland warrior who promises her safety. But when he kisses her, she fears she's more in danger of losing herself.
The last thing Magnus Sutherland wants is to marry the beautiful English lass he saved. As the laird of his clan, he has a responsibility to his clan and allies. But when Arbella is attacked by one of his own men, he determines the only way to keep her safe is to make her his. A decision that promises to be extremely satisfying.
Magnus brings Arbella to his home of Dunrobin Castle in the Highlands. And that’s where the trouble begins… Their countries are at war and they should be each other’s enemy. Neither one considered their mock marriage would grow into a deeply passionate love. What’s more, they were both unhappily betrothed and those who've been scorned are out for revenge. Can their new found love keep them together or will their enemies tear them apart?
THE HIGHLANDER’S REWARD, 2012 ©Eliza Knight
An ear-piercing whistle cracked the air. The rebels parted, opening a path. Panting, she had only a moment to catch sight of a behemoth of a man thundering toward her on a great black horse. She’d never seen a horse so large. Nor a man. Goliath himself had come to end her life.
He barreled toward her, his pace not slowing and she kicked her mount to turn in the opposite direction but the rebels held her in place.
He was closer now. Maybe even a leader of these rebels. He too was covered in filth, his eyes wild, light hair flying grabbing the wind as he rode hard, lips curling into a snarl. As he drew closer she saw that his eyes were a brilliant green, like fresh spring grass and new leaves covered in dew. Arbella had never seen such a color. An odd contrast to the grime on his chiseled cheekbones and rough-looking beard. She never expected to see beauty on a demon. Her breath caught and her lungs refused to function. Arbella could not look away. She was amazed, yet frightened by the sight of him. He was from the stuff of fairy tales—not the ones with a happy ending she reminded herself.
Dizziness took over. This must be God’s way of saving her. She would faint before he trampled her with his monster horse.
But that was not the way of it. Instead he swooped in on her, grasped her by the waist and yanked her from her horse. He settled her on his solid lap, still galloping hard as he turned in a circle and headed over the bridge. Arbella bounced wildly in his arms, not sure if she should be more terrified of the man who’d stolen her or the threat of falling from his humongous mount.
Then she knew. The devil would toss her into the river to drown. Although she could swim, but the deep river water was surely freezing and her muscles would tense up refusing to work. Her gown would fill with water and act as a weight dragging her down to the bottom to her death.
Arbella tried to pull from his arms, but he only held her tighter in his steel-like grip. Thick with muscle, his thighs were hard and warm beneath her bottom, his arm heavy, solid against her waist.
“Sit still,” he growled with a deep burr against her ear, his breath tickling her neck.
She slapped her hand on the spot, not understanding why her flesh tingled. She squeezed her eyes shut, willing it all away.
The sound of the horse’s hooves clopping on wood gave way to a softer, squishier pound. They were on marsh grass. Arbella opened her eyes wide. He hadn’t dumped her in the river. From behind she heard a whistle, but she couldn’t see who followed.
“Where are you taking me?” she asked, her voice sounding surprisingly strong for how weak she felt inside.
Safety? The demon had saved her? In truth, God had an unconventional way of answering prayers.