New Years Resolutions
I actually do this. Seriously. Years ago, I had these two young sons and like most moms out there, I was faced with the challenge of finding outlets for their energy. We ended up at a local Tae Kwon Do studio. Fast forward to now and I am still a student there myself. Master Kim has taught me some very important life lessons, one of which is that dreams don’t come true…Goals are achieved. So every year, I make out my list of goals and the steps I need to take to put myself on the path of success.
First up this year- Recovery. Mother Nature dealt me a low blow this last year that ended with surgery. I intend to return to martial arts training and sword training. I want to take tests in both sports. My strength really suffered during my recovery period, so I am working toward rebuilding it.
Second- Helping my younger son gain entrance to Paramedic School. Yes, it’s his education but the adult world is touch to take on. I am helping him navigate the mountain of paperwork he needs to shuffle.
Last- Leave the continent I live on and visit a different one.
So that’s my list. I hope everyone is out there….filling the new year with wonderful memories.
BOOK BLURB: Fierce Highland war chief seeks comely lass for fun, frolic, and marriage.
In the throes of fierce clan wars, the Queen’s Regent tricks the children of two feuding lairds into a desperate choice: marry or die. The union—however reluctant—of a MacPherson and a Robertson could end three generations of hostilities between the two families.
Ailis Robertson wanted a husband, not a savage. But she is rocked by the intense passion she feels for Bhaic—who is likewise taken aback by the fierce jealousy he experiences when he sees Ailis speaking with other men. Is it possible for fierce enemies to become ardent lovers?
Marcus MacPherson is every inch the fearsome Highlander. He’s used to men averting their eyes and women cowering before him. He thinks he’ll eventually settle down with a nice, obedient bride. Instead, he gets Helen Grant… Stubborn as the day is long, fearless and dedicated to raising as much hell as possible, Helen is definitely going to challenge Marcus. And challenge him some more. And then some.
It’s anyone’s guess who’ll win this battle of the heart…
Have you made any resolutions of your own this year?
ONE print copy of Highland Vixen
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“I never wanted yer blood.”
He choked on a chuckle. “So hitting me with that pitcher was.…just a.…what, lass?”
The memory made her smile. “A reminder. Of manners. Ye were acting like a whoremaster, lining yer men up like that and setting them on me.”
“Ah.” He made a low sound in the back of his throat. “Maybe I deserved it at that.”
“Ye disagree with me.” She shrugged. “Men and women often do.”
He nodded, the motion sending a soft sensation through her belly. She looked away, feeling like something very private had just been exposed to him.
“Ye’ve been serving in the kitchens.”
It wasn’t really a question, but it did give her something to sink her attention into that didn’t allow her to feel uncertain. When it came to her circumstances at MacPherson Castle, she was very, very sure how she felt.
“Servants are paid.” Helen leaned back against the stone wall and felt its rough edges against her scalp. “I assure ye, I was not.”
His expression tightened, surprising her so that she returned her gaze to his.
“Ye should no’ have hid from me. I would have righted yer circumstances if I’d known ye were being treated unfairly.”
“I did nae hide.” She pushed at him. “Get up.”
Marcus didn’t move for a moment, giving her a steady look that dared her to force him. Helen felt her eyes narrow. “Well then, ye want to play the part of me devoted suitor, completely at me beck and call…”
He made a rather male sound before he was twisting and sat up next to her. Which gave her the chance to laugh at his expense. “Ye have more than yer share of pride, and that’s a fact.”
“As do ye, Helen.”
She shifted and stood, moving away from him. She’d only taken a quick glance at the blood staining her chemise. It would serve its purpose. That should have been what her thoughts settled on, but all she ended up doing was dwelling upon what he’d said and the way her sex felt so very sensitive. As though she was eager for him to touch her.
“I never saw ye in the hall. Little wonder ye did nae find the MacPhersons’ castle to be a fine place. Ye did nae gave it a chance. Me father makes sure there is fine music and good drink in the evenings. He is nae an overly stern laird. Ye should nae have stayed away, nursing yer pride.” His tone was kinder than she’d heard from him before. It declared a level of sincerity that sent a little twist of excitement through her.
Yet it also needled her pride.
“Nursing me pride?” She turned on him. “I was working because I was nae a MacPherson, so was nae due any free time to indulge in comforts. I toiled more hours than there was sunlight, and if I made the mistake of resting me head on the table and was discovered, I got a taste of the rod being laid across me back. The blasted thing leaves welts. Ye brought me there, it was no’ me place to go whining to ye.”
She’d seen his disapproval before. Been the recipient time and again, but now she witnessed it crossing his face on her behalf. It unsettled her, leaving little seeds of doubt about just how guilty he was.
“Duana is more of a bitch than I seem to have noticed.”
Helen scoffed at the Head of House’s name. “She is hardly alone. What did ye expect when ye dropped me off the back of yer horse and swore ye’d burn me father’s house to the ground if I strayed?”
“I certainly did nae thought she was working ye like a slave,” he answered. “Ye have never had any difficulty speaking yer mind to me, Helen. Admit ye were holding on to yer pride.”
His point was valid. He was the War Chief, his day full of pressing matters that affected many, and she was but one person.
“If I was, ye can nae fault me, seeing as it was the only thing I had left to call me own,” she shot back. “Ye stole me in me house shoes. It was a mighty cold winter, I can tell ye.”
And she didn’t like thinking about it. Helen pulled her knees up and leaned against the stone wall, closing her eyes in some vain hope that sleep might arrive and still her thoughts. Was she expecting him to have a personal interest in her? Yes. She had to admit it was so. Still, she couldn’t seem to reconcile herself to cooling her temper, in spite of knowing she was not making much sense.
Well, at least that brought her back to a place she knew very well. When it came to Marcus, she had more impulses than sense. Better to bite her lip and keep the shame of it to herself.
AUTHOR BIO: Mary Wine has written over twenty novels that take her readers from the pages of history to the far reaches of space. Recent winner of a 2008 EPPIE Award for erotic western romance, her book LET ME LOVE YOU was quoted “Not to be missed…” by Lora Leigh, New York Times best-selling author.
When she’s not abusing a laptop, she spends time with her sewing machines…all of them! Making historical garments is her second passion. From corsets and knickers to court dresses of Elizabeth I, the most expensive clothes she owns are hundreds of years out of date. She’s also an active student of martial arts, having earned the rank of second degree black belt.