To Tempt a Knight starts a new series for me based on a group of men in Scottish history know as Robert the Bruce’s special guard. These men were the best of the best, specially-trained in the military arts, and handpicked by the Bruce himself. They made up an elite group of warriors known as the Brotherhood of the Scottish Templars. These Templars, who were loyal to their king, went on a crusade for him after he died.
Their mission, to cut the Bruce’s heart from his chest and take it to the Holy Land for burial in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre as their king requested. They never made it to the Holy Land. They were forced into a battle with the Moors and were destroyed. Five of the ten Templars lived through that battle, but hundreds of their men died. The Brotherhood of the Scottish Templars series focuses on three of these men who survived this battle and returned home to put the pieces of their lives back together.
But along with exploring how to a man comes back to life after such a failure, I decided to throw a little “Templar Treasure” lore into the mix. No one knows for certain what happened to the treasure after to Templars were disbanded and charged with heresy. Evidence suggests the treasure could have been smuggled into Scotland and hidden there. Which is why each book in the series focuses on a different artifact that has been associated over the centuries with the Templars and their secret treasure.
In the pages of To Tempt a Knight, the hero, William Keith must protect not only the Spear of Destiny, but the daughter of the treasure’s previous guardian.
The Spear of Destiny, also known as the Longinus Spear, or the Holy Lance. This artifact has quite an amazing history behind it. It is the spear thrust into Christ’s side during his crucifixion. The legend of the Spear is that whoever posses it will have great success over their enemies. Some of the notable men and the one woman who are said to have possessed the Spear at one time include: Boadicea; Herod the Great; St. Maurice of the Theban Legion; Constantine the Great; Theodosius; Alaric; Theodoric; Justinian; Charles Martel; Charlemagne the Great; Heinrich I; and Adolf Hitler.
To Tempt a Knight is a fast-paced romantic adventure. One I hope you’ll enjoy reading snippet from:
A primitive jolt of desire rocked William as he gazed down at Siobhan. Sweet Mary, he groaned silently. The blood pounded in his veins and quickened in his loins to a point he had never experienced before. He’d lost himself all right. He’d lost himself, body and soul, in the feel of her body next to his.
Firelight flickered across her red hair and gilded the softness of her alabaster skin. When had the sun vanished from the sky? He hadn’t noticed light or dark, nothing but the woman who stood not two paces from him.
He wanted to reach out to her, to shatter the tension between them and end this madness. Surely, once he tasted her, his senses would return to normal and they could move forward with their journey.
His thoughts stopped him. You’re a monk. And with that designation comes certain responsibilities. William clenched his jaw, fighting desire. He had dedicated himself to something other than the concerns of mortal men.
He felt very mortal at the moment, and vulnerable to the desires of men. Suddenly, the question he usually asked himself in times of great fear sprung forward in his mind. What’s the worst that can happen?
William clung to the question like a lifeline. The worst might be that he’d want more than a sampling of what Siobhan had to offer. The worst might be that he’d be forced to recant his vows, to leave the Templars, to take up a secular life. Or worse yet, that God might turn his back on him.
Never had he been so tempted to turn away from his vows. He took a step closer, reminding himself that God would forgive his failings. He forgave all men their imperfections. William swallowed roughly as he moved closer. Her delicate fragrance filled his senses. Forbidden or not, he wanted her.
“Siobhan,” he whispered her name. He could feel the warmth of her against his chest, yet they did not touch. He lifted the end of her damp plait where it hung across her shoulder and curled it around his finger. Slowly, slowly, he increased the pull. Not hurting her, simply drawing her forward until her hips touched his.
He toyed with the single strand of hair at the end of her plait that she’d used to hold the whole tight. His thumb brushed the end backwards and forward until it gave under his gentle caress.
He could not stop the low groan that came from his chest when the ends of her hair came free. He worked the plait apart, higher and higher. “You should let your hair go free.” He kept his manner light, but he couldn’t hide the desire that deepened his tone.
A shiver moved through her as he continued. With each fraction of an inch he moved up the length of her hair, unplaiting it, he drew her closer. Her breasts brushed his chest. He brought the fall of her hair up to his mouth. He brushed the silken texture against his lips.
He let it fall back against her neck and followed it down, pressing the softest of kisses to her hair and the flesh of her shoulder beneath. Her skin was exquisitely soft, and he lingered there, unable to pull away.
She shuddered at the contact. “William, we should not,” she whispered.
"I know.” His body pulsed and ached as he shifted his gaze from her to the pool beyond them. Mist crept across the moonlit waters and a whisper of a gentle breeze chased through the silver-backed leaves overhead. “Everything in my head says nay, but you here in my arms feels right.” His voice was shaking, and shivers ran down his limbs.
She pulled him closer.
He buried his face in her hair and drew in the soft scent of heather that lingered there. He felt the curve of her body against his. All the blood in his body ran erotic, beating with longing, with the need to not just take her, but possess her as his own
She wanted that too, he could feel it in the beat of her heart against his chest, feel the ripening of her breasts where they pressed against him.
Being near her without possessing her was pure hell. The emotions that drove them to this moment, the force of their passion was a gift given freely by the Maker above. They had every right to explore that gift. He was only a man, and man was flawed. He knew what his sins were. He knew what his judgment would be. And he found he didn’t care what it cost him.
He wanted to lose himself, to put an end to his self-imposed isolation with the woman in his arms. He was always alone, had wanted to be alone, until she came along. He held her tighter. “Tell me if you want to stop,” he breathed as the flame inside him burned ever brighter. He would use that fire within himself to incite her, to please her, and make a world where only he and Siobhan existed as they became one flesh.
I hope you’ve enjoyed a peek inside To Tempt a Knight as much as I’ve enjoyed sharing it with you.
What kind of hero captures your heart? Do you enjoy the wounded hero, or does something else warm your heart instead?
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