The Warrior's Prize : his bartered bride: A Medieval Historical Romance (Wedding the Heiress Book 1)

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In the years after the death of the hero king Henry V England is no country for lovers. The Plantagenet wolf pack, those restless, rapacious descendants of Edward III scheme and conspire without respite. As yet their plots and fierce rivalries only presage the open warfare to come between York and Lancaster, but the foreboding and menace is frighteningly real for those unfortunate enough to be caught up in it.

For none more so than a young noblewoman unlucky enough to be heiress to a patrimony which rivals the lands of the Royal Dukes themselves. Whose childhood memories of how far men will stoop to acquire land and power haunt her still. She may be under the protection of the widowed Queen, Katherine of Valois, but Elizabeth Hawley has no illusions how fragile that protection is.

So Elizabeth can be forgiven if she uses the frivolities of the court and the company of her dogs and horses to keep her anxieties at bay. And even absolved if she allows loyalty to her mistress to draw her into the intrigues of the Queen. Displacement activity perhaps, but infinitely preferable to simply waiting to learn her fate.

Into this milieu erupts Sir Richard Saxton, a man who had found his metier in the savage fighting of the Hundred Years War in France, where the only maiden he was like to encounter was the one the French called Jeanne de Arc, Maid of Orleans. Richard is taciturn, scarred by his war service, but not immune to grace and beauty, particularly in the form of the richly endowed and spirited Lady Elizabeth Hawley. Moreover he is a man in search of his fortune, for his war service has not been rewarded by grants of land.

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