“I guess this is the part where I need to offer you my hand in marriage,” Zane offered with no enthusiasm.
“Oh, do not sound so sincere with your offer, you make a girl’s heart go all a flutter,” Skye responded in sarcasm.
“Ah hell,” Zane growled as he rose and paced to the stream. He stood on unknown ground with this woman. She didn’t follow the rules the other women in his life followed, but then he never met another lady like her before. They were all simpering fools who stroked his ego to earn a spot in his bed. This woman would never stroke his ego, nor did she care if she had a spot. Oh, they had made love the previous evening, but from where he stood, he didn’t think it affected her the way it affected him. He would have to take a different direction with her.
As he watched her, he only imagined her stretched out on her back amongst the heather and making love to her in the open glen. He sensed if he tried, her men would surround him to run their swords through him. He needed to focus on getting himself freed from the bonds keeping him here in this godforsaken place.
Did he think I expected an offer of marriage, to him of all men? He was a traitor to his friends and country. Why she felt a strong attraction to him, was beyond her. The last gentleman she desired to be tied to, would be him. She learned everything about him from her connections in London. The ultimate ladies’ man who seduced a different woman into his bed each evening. While his taste usually ran to the widows of the ton, there was the occasional bride who wanted to cuckold her husband, but he never touched the innocent debutantes. Their mamas always chased him, but he always ran the opposite way. He avoided the marriage trap like the plague. Why would she want to shackle herself to a man opposed to the marriage union? She never expected to marry; if she did she wanted the same union she witnessed between Logan and Isobel. She wanted their kind of love. And Earl Zane Maxwell was incapable of love. At least with her anyway; because she recognized his love for another woman. Even though that woman passed him over for his friend. Well she wouldn't tie herself to a man who held unrequited love for another.
“Take it easy Maxwell. Last night was nice, but not nice enough to marry over.”
Nice? What they shared was nice? It was earth shattering for him. Did she not experience what he felt? He watched her as she spoke those meaningless words. She wouldn’t meet his eyes. She lied. What she felt was more than nice, and he would prove it to her.
“The offer is on the table, nonetheless.”
“Well you may remove it, it will not be necessary. I have no wish to marry and from where you stand it's not an offer you should make to any lady.”
“And why not?”
“Because you shall be returned to Shears soon. And the only thing he was planning, was your death.”
“I thought we agreed to work together.”
“That was before.”
“Before I received a message this morning.”
“What message would that be?”
“It is of no concern of yours.”
“If it pertains to me, then it is most definitely my concern.”
“You are not to be trusted, My Lord.”