He has something to prove
Captain Caleb Frobisher, hedonistic youngest son of a seafaring dynasty, wants to be taken seriously. Seizing the next leg of the covert mission his brothers are pursuing, he acts decisively and effectively in securing the mission’s objectives. But responsibility has taken root, and he remains in the jungle to ensure the mission’s ultimate goal.
She will risk everything
Katherine Fortescue fled a life of poverty and came to Freetown as a governess, only to be kidnapped and forced to oversee the child workforce at a mine. Guarded by well-armed, well-trained mercenaries, the captives have lost all hope of escape. Then Katherine meets a handsome man—a captain—and he brings the sweet promise of rescue.
Together they will face the future
The sadistic mercenary who runs the mine has other plans, but Caleb’s true strength lies in extracting advantage from adversity, and through the clashes that follow, he becomes the leader he was always destined to be. The sort of man Katherine can trust—with her body, with her life. With her love.
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John told me at breakfast that he doesn’t know how much longer he can drag his heels over opening up the second tunnel.”
Katherine Fortescue glanced at her companion, Harriet Frazier; the pair of them had elected to stretch their legs in a stroll around the mining compound during their midmorning break from their work in the cleaning shed.
Of course, the real purpose of their stroll was to facilitate communication; while they walked, they could talk freely, with no one likely to overhear their exchanges.
The “John” to whom Harriet referred was her sweetheart, Captain John Dixon, the erstwhile army engineer who had been the first of their company to be kidnapped from Freetown. When Dixon had refused the mercenary leader Dubois’s invitation to plan and implement the opening of a mine to exploit a newly discovered pipe of diamonds for unnamed backers, Dubois had merely smiled coldly—and the next thing Dixon had known, Harriet had joined him in his captivity.
The threats against Harriet that Dubois had used to force Dixon to acquiesce to his demands were, quite simply, unspeakable. Harriet carried a fine scar on her cheek that Dixon still regarded with sorrow and remembered horror. But Harriet bore the mark with pride. In her eyes—indeed, in the eyes of all the captives now there—Dixon had only done what he’d had to, what he’d been forced to do to ensure he and Harriet survived.
And he and all of them continued in that vein, using that as their touchstone; if they didn’t survive, they couldn’t escape.
Despite their carefully cultivated appearance of being resigned to their lot, every man, woman, and child of their company had banded together, and all were unswervingly committed to escape.
Escape first; retribution could come later.
Katherine had long grown accustomed to keeping her features composed; she and Harriet maintained unconcerned, outwardly unperturbed expressions as they paced slowly around the well-worn clockwise circuit that would take them from the cleaning shed, where they worked at chipping heavy concretions of ore from the rough diamonds extracted from the mine that had eventually been constructed, past the eastern end of the long, central, main barracks building in which Dubois and his band of mercenaries worked and slept when they weren’t on guard, either at the gates of the compound, pacing the perimeter, escorting groups of captives to fetch water from the nearby lake, or perched in the high tower that stood at that end of the long building.
Shading her eyes, Katherine glanced up at the pair of mercenaries on lookout duty in the tower. “Given how our output from the shed has been dwindling,” she murmured, “I can—sadly—see John’s point.” She glanced at Harriet. “Let’s meet tonight and see how the others feel. There’s only so long we can put Dubois off without damaging our own position.”
Follow the Tour
Monday, June 27th: Reading Reality
Tuesday, June 28th: From the TBR Pile – excerpt
Wednesday, June 29th: The Sassy Bookster – excerpt
Friday, July 1st: A Chick Who Reads
Monday, July 4th: Bewitched Bookworms
Tuesday, July 5th: A Bookaholic Swede – excerpt
Wednesday, July 6th: The Maiden’s Court
Friday, July 8th: Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews
Tuesday, July 12th: Becky on Books
Wednesday, July 13th: A Holland Reads
Thursday, July 14th: Books a la Mode – excerpt
Friday, July 15th: What I’m Reading
Monday, July 18th: Broken Teepee – excerpt
Monday, July 18th: Buried Under Romance – excerpt and review
Tuesday, July 19th: Beverages and Books
Wednesday, July 20th: Diary of a Stay At Home Mom
Thursday, July 21st: Black ‘n Gold Girls Book Reviews
Friday, July 22nd: Moonlight Rendezvous
Monday, July 25th: The Romance Dish
Tuesday, July 26th: The Reading Wench
Thanks for featuring this excerpt for the tour!