Highlander Healed (Courageous Highland Hearts #3) Read Online Jayne Castel

Categories Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance Tags Authors: Series: Courageous Highland Hearts Series by Jayne Castel
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Total pages in book: 83
Estimated words: 77889 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 389(@200wpm)___ 312(@250wpm)___ 260(@300wpm)
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Only one woman could help him heal from the wounds of the past. A laird, his chatelaine, and a love that conquers all.
Jean Munro wishes she were pretty and charming like her sisters—but that hasn’t stopped her from developing an infatuation with a man who has sworn off love.

Robin Mackay has developed a hard and bitter shell. Three years have passed since he suffered a terrible betrayal by his wife and brother. Robin is haunted by their treachery.
Deciding to take fate into her own hands, Jean applies for the role of chatelaine in Robin’s broch. Against his better judgment, the laird agrees—and the two begin a dance as old as time.
Jean learns there is more to the object of her desire than she realized, while Robin begins to wonder if the walls he has built around his heart are strong enough to withstand one small, determined woman.
But starting again after such betrayal is never easy. Can Robin truly put his past behind him and learn to trust again?

Full Book:

“For there to be betrayal,

there would have to

have been trust first.”

—Suzanne Collins

1

FORTUNE FAVORS THE BOLD

Castle Varrich

Strathnaver, Scotland

Samhuinn, 1438

“FORTUNE FAVORS THE bold.”

Repeating the words under her breath, and trying to ignore the nerves twisting her guts, Jean Munro drew in a deep breath and gathered her courage. The time for meekness, for lingering in the shadows, was over.

Tonight, she would be brave.

Eilidh was off getting them some roasted chestnuts. Now was her moment to move. Squaring her shoulders, Jean set off toward where Robin Mackay, laird of Melness, stood.

Weaving her way through the crowd of revelers guised as angels, devils, wulvers, and selkies, Jean kept her gaze upon the man standing alone on the far side of the bonfire.

The chieftain wasn’t in costume tonight. Standing apart from the revelers, he watched the dancing flames of the Samhuinn bonfire, which burned upon the hill before the gates of Castle Varrich. His handsome face, set in harsh lines that made him appear older than his years, didn’t shift from watching the fire.

Jean’s stride faltered. The laird didn’t look like he welcomed company.

She glanced down then at the guise she’d donned for the festivity. Like her sister Eilidh, she was dressed as a fairy—in a long cream-colored shift with wings made of linen stretched over willow wands, a crown of flowers about her head. But unlike her younger sister—who would have looked good even in a sack—Jean felt self-conscious and a trifle silly.

Wiping her damp palms upon her shift, she pressed on. “Fortune favors the bold,” she whispered to herself once more.

Lord, she hoped so. She’d longed for Robin Mackay from afar for months now—an unrequited yearning that was slowly driving her mad.

Drawing up next to the chieftain, Jean plastered a bright smile on her face, in an attempt to mask her nervousness. “Good eve, Mackay,” she greeted him, raising her voice to be heard over the whooping of the revelers, and the wail of the accompanying Highland pipe. “It’s a pleasure to see ye.”

The laird of Melness started slightly, as if he really had been leagues away, and turned. His features softened when his hazel gaze alighted upon her.

“Greetings, Lady Jean.” He inclined his head then. “That’s a bonny guise ye are wearing.”

Jean swallowed, as the urge to tell him she felt uncomfortable and foolish in this garb reared up. However, she managed to quash it. Her stepmother, Laila, had once told her that a woman mustn’t put herself down in front of a man she wanted. “If ye don’t think ye are desirable, how will he, lass?”

That advice checked her now, even if her cheeks warmed. “Thank ye,” she murmured. “Eilidh insisted we both dress up as fairies this year.”

His mouth lifted just a little at the corners, although his gaze remained somber. “I can’t recall the last time I donned a guise for Samhuinn.”

Indeed, Jean remembered that he hadn’t worn one the year before. Robin Mackay of Melness cut a solitary figure, yet he always came to Castle Varrich for the fire festivals and meetings, at the clan-chief’s invitation. And whenever he did, Jean had made a point of talking to him.

He wasn’t an easy man to draw into conversation, yet he was well-mannered enough not to ignore her attempts. And after a few stilted exchanges, he’d responded to her. They’d had some wonderful talks over the past months—exchanges that she relived, word for word, afterward.

Jean’s stomach fluttered as anxiety overtook her. She longed to see more than polite reserve upon this man’s face. She’d tried to get him to dance with her once—at her sister Neave and John’s wedding—but he’d made it clear he wouldn’t. It had taken a lot to ask him, for she wasn’t an overly confident dancer herself at the best of times. His refusal had stung.

“How are things at Melness?” she asked when a pause stretched out between them. It was always like this with Robin. If she didn’t make conversation, the man would happily remain silent. Having grown up with three chatty sisters, Jean wasn’t comfortable with long silences.


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