North of the Danelaw, 954 AD
A Heart Broken ~ Known for her healing skills, Kerstin, the Witch of Moere, is torn from the arms of her betrothed and forced into marriage with Jonas, her family's mortal enemy. Believing herself in love with another man, Kerstin cannot deny the fierce passion Jonas ignites within her, nor the awakening of feelings she has never known before.
A Heart Tormented ~ A warrior of duty, Jonas will honor the king's demand and wed the woman accused of murdering his elder brother. As Jonas faces Kerstin's wrath, the golden warrior longs for peace and love, but doubts these yearnings will ever become a reality. Yet, when he weds Kerstin, he finds his carefully guarded heart is overcome by desire and she alone can heal his broken soul.
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Now Kerstin saw her chance! She could flee, with Jonas in no condition to pursue her. She would race back and the king could do nothing to stop her from marrying Elezer. She took a step, then stopped. Guilt nibbled at her, holding her in place.
Jonas would die if she left him and the king might hold her responsible. Though she offered to tend his wound, Jonas refused. Surely the king wouldn't blame her if Jonas died.
But she had given her pledge and promised her loyalty. Even resenting him, she couldn't stand by and let Jonas suffer. If she ran away, her people would be doomed and hate her for it. She might have Elezer, yet nothing else. Not even her honor.
Jonas's shadowed face paled in the dim light. Kneeling beside him, she cursed him as she tried once more to awaken him. A rock dug into his chin and she brushed it away. He looked so handsome, so innocent in sleep. So controlling when awake. She had never known such a man.
Should she run for help? He was so big, she didn't think she could move him even if she wanted to. Bending low, she placed her lips against his ear and whispered. "Do you want to die, Jonas? If you lie here like a big ox, I will flee to Elezer. Is that what you want?"
Jonas moved and a murmur of disapproval came from his lips. He lay still again and Kerstin persisted in her efforts, unable to resist taunting him. "I'll give myself to Elezer if you die. Do you want me to give birth to his son, or yours?"
Rage rumbled from within Jonas's chest and he rolled onto his back. In the shafts of moonlight, Kerstin saw his eyes open and spit flame as he glared at her.
"Perhaps I will beat you after all, woman."