Welcome to another First Kiss Friday. It’s my pleasure to welcome back my friend, Jennae Vale and her excerpt from, A Long Forgotten Time – Book Seven of The Thistle & Hive Series. Her covers are just stunning, aren’t they? We hope you enjoy this glimpse into Jennae’s world. Happy reading!
Brenna awoke with a start. There was a man in her bed and she was touching him!
“Is everything alright? Did you have a bad dream?” Zeke asked, concern evident in his voice.
“I’m fine. I’m just not used to sharing me bed. I forgot ye were here.” She rolled away from him and sat up. “Is this what it’s like to be married?”
“I wouldn’t know, but I imagine it’s a lot more than just sleeping with someone.”
“Aye. Ye’re right.” The thoughts and feelings she was having were very conflicted. Although she enjoyed the feel of Zeke’s chest beneath her cheek and it had caused her to experience an odd sensation in her belly, she was embarrassed to have found herself in such a vulnerable position. She didn’t want Zeke to think she needed him for anything more than her escape from Castle Treun. “We should rise. We can begin our journey to Breaghacraig as soon as we’re ready.”
“What’s your hurry?” Zeke teased. “Are you afraid they’ll make us stay?” A crooked grin lit his face, flustering her and causing her belly to do flip flops.
“Nae. Of course not. Greer will be saddling our horses and packing our bags for us.”
“She really doesn’t like you, does she?”
“Nae. This castle has always been mine to manage. ’Tis me… ’Twas me home.” She hated the fact that she was being driven out of the only home she’d ever known, but she had a new life awaiting her and it was time to say goodbye to this one. “Greer wants to be in charge and having me here has been a threat to her.”
“You could say the same.”
“What do ye mean?”
“I think you were threatened by her presence as well.”
Brenna could feel the anger welling up within her. “How would ye know that? Ye’ve only been here a few days. Ye should nae judge,” she yelled.
“Okay. Okay. Calm down. I wasn’t trying to insult you. It’s just that… Look, I know she’s been pretty awful to you, but I also think you felt as if you’d been replaced and had no value because of it.”
Brenna didn’t speak. He was right, but she wasn’t about to let him know that. She began to get out of the bed, but Zeke grabbed her hand and held her there, rubbing his thumb across it, soothing her, but also stirring something else within her. She gazed at their hands, and felt a warmth that confused her. As Zeke continued to hold her hand, she looked into his eyes and saw sincerity. He really was trying to help her, but why? No one in her life had ever done anything like this for her and it only muddled things all the more in her head.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you.” He looked at her with a funny, sad expression. “Our first fight as a married couple,” he chuckled.
“Aye. I dinnae believe it will be the last.”
“Brenna, I’ll try not to say things that upset you, but I’d appreciate it if you’d tell me when I do instead of being angry with me.”
“Why? We’ll only be together for a few more days and then ye can be on yer way.” She wanted to be angry with him. It would make their time together easier on her. She couldn’t allow herself to have thoughts and feelings about this man that would only hurt her when they parted ways.
“Those few days can be one of two things… heaven or hell. Your choice.”
“Me choice? What do ye mean by that?”
“I mean. You can choose to get along with me or not. I’ve already decided to be more careful with my words, but I’m not perfect.”
He was giving her a choice. She wasn’t used to making decisions for herself. “Alright. I prefer heaven.”
He released her hand and she felt regret that he had. Zeke had touched her with his words and his respect for her. It was best to get out of bed and put some space between them. She had to remember this was only temporary. The best thing she could do right now was ignore the man in her bed. The man who made her feel things she did not want to feel. There was no time to think about that now, though. She had to get her things together so they could be on their way. Zeke stayed in bed and watched her as she gathered the few belongings she wished to take along with her. She paused momentarily as she picked up the doll her aunt had made her. She thought about leaving it behind, but found that she couldn’t. It meant too much to her. It was the only good memory she’d be taking along and so she quickly stuffed it into her bag. When she was done she turned to look at him. He is verra handsome. And unlike her Da, he didn’t seem to yell about everything. She would do her best to be pleasant around him.
“I’m ready to go, but ye are still abed. It seems I’ve married a lazy man,” she teased. Do ye nae need to pack yer belongings?”
“The few belongings I have are ready to go. Watching you buzzing from one end of the room to the other has exhausted me. I think I need to sleep more.” He lay down and put a pillow over his head.
Brenna picked up the other pillow and slammed him with it. He didn’t move. She tried again and this time he threw the pillow off his head and grabbing her wrestled her down to the bed. She wriggled and squirmed beneath him as she became aware that something hard and long was poking her in the belly. Both arms were accounted for and it didn’t feel like a leg. She froze in place, gazing up into a chiseled face and soft blue eyes. Those eyes were gazing down into hers with the same intensity she was feeling. Without thinking, Brenna pulled his head down to hers and kissed him right on the lips. She had only an instant to regret it before he kissed her back and kissed her again and again. Kisses so sweet she never wanted them to stop.
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Jennae Vale is a bestselling author of romance with a touch of magic. As a history buff from an early age, Jennae often found herself day-dreaming in history class – wondering what it would be like to live in the places and time periods she was learning about. Writing time travel romance has given her an opportunity to take those daydreams and turn them into stories to share with readers everywhere.
Originally from the Boston area, Jennae now lives in the San Francisco Bay area, where some of her characters also reside. When Jennae isn’t writing, she enjoys spending time with her family and her pets, and daydreaming, of course.