In His Own Words . . .
My name is Angela Johnson and I write sexy historical romance novels. My debut novel, Vow of Seduction, was released in the fall of 2009, and my stand alone sequel to that is Vow of Deception. It arrived in bookstores on November 2nd.
In my blog today, I'm introducing you to Sir Rand Montague, the hero in Vow of Deception. I'll let him speak in his own words so you'll get to know him best. I hope you enjoy.
* * * * * *
Ayleston Castle, County Chester
In the year of our Lord Twelve Hundred and Seventy-Eight
Sixth year in reign of Edward I
I, Sir Rand Montague, was born in the countryside of Bordeaux, on the wine estate of Chateau Montague. My natal day was August 19, in the year of our Lord Twelve Hundred and Forty-Nine.
As I scratch these words upon parchment, I am sitting before the open window of my bedchamber. A gentle spring breeze sweeps the scent of bluebells into the room. Jubilant, tinkling laughter, pricks my ears, and draws my gaze to the garden below. Rose, standing beside her son in a profusion of red, blue, and yellow flowers, bends down to whisper in his ear. Five summers old now, Jason giggles and covers his eyes with his hands. Rose darts away, past a cherry tree, disappearing from view.
Jason counts aloud, "One, Two, Three, Four, Five," then drops his hands, and with a mischievous giggle, chases after his Mama. "I know where you're hiding Mama," Jason calls out, his voice fading as his little legs churn up dust, charging unerringly down the same path Rose just took.
A grin cracks my face, an urge to run down to the garden and join in their play tugs at my heart. But I wish to record my memories.
I was born into a proud, aristocratic family in the Duchy of Gascony. My father was Gascon and my mother was English. She was the illegitimate daughter of Earl Richard of Cornwall, brother to King Henry III of England. My mother's dowry included vast acreage of vineyards along the Garonne River, and in St Emilion and the Graves. I had a twin sister, Juliana. Many a day, we would escape our nursemaid to run wild in the vineyards, cavorting with the tenant children on the muddy riverbank or in the gravelly soil of the fields.
Father was rarely in residence as he preferred the town house in Bordeaux. Juliana and I did not miss him. He was a hateful, abusive man who despised us because we were a reminder of his forced marriage. In father's hatred, he constantly lashed out calling us worthless, inbred mongrels, because our blood was tainted by grandmother’s lowly servant origins.
I was very protective of Juliana, who was kind and sensitive. I tried to shield her from the worse of father's abuse. Ethereal, with gray green eyes and pale blond hair, she was a less robust miniature of myself. We sought solace in our companionship and were inseparable.
Then, when I was ten and two, Juliana died. It was my idea to go to the river that summer day. As we were playing near the riverbank, Juliana lost her footing and was swept out to deeper waters. I jumped in to rescue her, but she tugged me underwater. I choked. I couldn't breathe. So I let Juliana go to save myself. I should have died that day instead. It was my duty to protect her, but I was careless and inattentive. Cowardly.
A year after Juliana's death, mother died in a stable fire while trying to rescue me. Father seized the opportunity to get rid of me, and I was sent to foster as a squire with my grandfather in England. I was not the first born son so I was not eligible to inherit the Montague estates, unless my older brother died without legitimate issue. Therefore, I had to acquire my own fortune, either by becoming a knight, or joining the Church.
So I became a knight, and met my best friend Sir Alex de Beaumont, and later, his younger sister Rose.
Rose was a small and delicate child whose laughter filled the vaulted Great Hall of Briand Castle. I wanted to bask in her warmth and zest for life, perhaps because she was so sweet and innocent, just like my sister, when she was alive.
But I still carried a lot of guilt over Juliana's death, and it made me afraid to care too much.
More years passed and I remember the moment my feelings for Rose began to alter. Alex and I had returned to Briand Castle for a brief visit. The moment we dismounted our horses, a girlish squeal rang out and echoed off the stone walls, drowning out the jangle of horse tack. Rose burst through the castle door, hopped down the steps, and raced toward us. Her bright blue eyes shone with joy. The sun glinted in her hair like a blaze of red, gold, and copper silk streamers. When she laughed her breasts swelled, small yet perfectly formed, against the shimmery silk of her surcoate. Her wide grin shot strait to my heart like the bolt of a crossbow.
In that moment, I realized Rose was no longer a little girl. She was pure and seductive; a real woman. Though at the time, I did not allow myself to imagine my feelings went any deeper than natural masculine appreciation for a beautiful woman. For anyone I had ever loved seemed cursed to die. So I never intended to marry.
* * * * * * *
(Rand sets his goose quill aside for more intriguing endeavors.)
Hi all! . . . Angela here again.
Terra, thanks so much for inviting me to Yankee Romance Reviews Blog. I hope your readers enjoyed this revealing look at the hero of Vow of Deception . . . “In His Own Words".
Angela’s questions to start the comments are: What is your favorite historical time period and setting? Are there any settings or time-periods you think publishers are ignoring? . . . Or others you'd like to see more of?
One lucky commenter will win their choice of either, VOW OF DECEPTION, or VOW OF SEDUCTION…Winners choice.
----------------Angela loves to hear from readers.
Please contact her at her website, or if you wish to learn more about her and read book excerpts go to http://angelajohnsonauthor.com
To sign up for a chance to win a $50 Susan G. Komen for the Cure Visa gift card, go to http://angelajohnsonauthor.com/contest.html
Or visit her at her Facebook fan page http://www.facebook.com/posted.php?id=1533132640#!/pages/Angela-Johnson-Author/107353814770