Moonlight on My Mind (Second Sons)
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To ruin a man's life once takes a regrettable mistake. To do so twice takes a woman like Julianne Baxter.
Eleven months ago, Julianne's statement to the authorities wrongly implicated Patrick, the new Earl of Haversham, in his older brother's death. The chit is as much trouble as her red hair suggests, and just as captivating. Now she has impetuously tracked him to the wilds of Scotland, insisting that he return home to face a murder charge and save his family from ruin. A clandestine wedding may be the only way to save her reputation—and his neck from the hangman's noose.
Julianne has no objection to the match. More and more she's convinced of Patrick's innocence, though when it comes to igniting her passions, the man is all too guilty. And if they can only clear his name, a marriage made in haste could bring about the most extraordinary pleasure . . .
throat. By the devil . . . his father. Gone. The title in question. The estate in the balance. As if summoned by his inner turmoil, Patrick’s friends James MacKenzie and David Cameron strode through the door, jostling and joking and sliding about. They threw themselves into the chairs opposite him. “Heard you carried off Reverend Ramsey’s dog to surgery this afternoon,” MacKenzie said with cheerful deviltry. He eyed Patrick’s glass and signaled for the serving girl to bring him one of the
steps ahead of her brain that day. And he certainly didn’t look like a man who was happily contemplating a vow to honor and cherish her. If there had been only the matter of her reputation to consider, his scowl would have been enough to convince her that such a plan was foolhardy, at best. Truly, she cared less for her reputation than ought to be prudent—hadn’t she come to Scotland without chaperone or permission, well knowing the risks she was taking? No, her reputation was not the reason she
this piece of it doesn’t matter, when it feels as though it taints everything we touch. How can you kiss me in this way, when by rights you ought to hate me for what I have done to your family?” His mind wanted to wrap around her words like a greedy vine. Once, he would have given up his soul to hear her say such a thing—preferably in front of a magistrate. But given her timing, the confession seemed more of an irritation than a balm. She was such a contradiction in his head that it hurt to sort
incited, but it at least provided him the excuse to resist succumbing to the temptation. “What are you doing out here in the dark, Julianne?” She’d not even brought a light with her to trek across Summersby’s darkened paths. Then again, was he really surprised? This was Julianne, after all. Planning and forethought were sorely lacking in his wife’s arsenal of life skills. “I came to find you.” Her voice cut through the night like the sweetest of blades. He studied her, trying to sort out what
right gown does not exist among the hundred or so you have stuffed into my wardrobe?” he asked dryly. “Our wardrobe.” She turned and smiled far too sweetly, a swath of blue silk clutched in her hands. “And no matter how many gowns I may own, none are appropriate. I need mourning gowns, not ball gowns.” Her smile softened into something warmer, and marginally more real. “It is the way it is done, Patrick. It will be expected of your wife.” He stared at her a moment, struck again by that earlier