Read Sapphire - Book 2 Online

Authors: Elizabeth Rose

Tags: #historical, #medieval, #series romance, #medieval romance, #medieval historical romance, #daughters of the dagger series, #elizabeth rose novels

Sapphire - Book 2 (4 page)

BOOK: Sapphire - Book 2
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The door opened and a whore and a drunkard
stood there watching them for a mere moment. She didn’t care and
the knight atop her didn’t seem to notice. She lifted her hips to
his and screamed out as she reached her peak. The couple
disappeared and closed the door behind them.

He was holding out for her, she was sure of
it. And he kept going until she’d screamed out yet again. She
wanted more. She couldn’t get enough and didn’t understand it at
all.

He then rolled to the bottom, pulling her to
the top. Sapphire felt so free without his restricting weight upon
her and her hips moved in a new rhythm altogether. She watched his
eyes squeezed close as her loose hair hung around him. She almost
felt like an animal the way she used him for her own needs, cooing
and purring like she’d never done before. She’d risen to her height
yet again before he totally let loose. He rolled back atop her and
had his way.

She felt him then. The full length of his
male hardness. And as he growled out his pleasure she felt she’d
indeed pleased him as much as he’d pleased her. He exploded inside
her, causing her to become even more excited, though she didn’t
think it possible. She’d now take with her a part of him to dream
about when she returned to the castle. She may not even know the
man’s name nor may she ever see him again, but still he was in her.
He would occupy the wonderful memories she’d have for the rest of
her life.

The man collapsed beside her and fell
instantly into a slumber. She, herself, felt like she wanted to
stay there in his arms and wake in the morning to do it all again
but knew she couldn’t. Dugald would be looking for her out in the
stable and be worried, wondering if he’d done the right thing by
leaving her.

She slipped from the man’s embrace and
planted a kiss upon his forehead.

“Thank you,” she whispered and hurriedly
dressed. “You’ve given me something no one has ever given me
before.”

When she opened the door to leave she heard
the deep timbre of the man’s groggy voice from the bed in the
darkened room.

“Lark. Where are you going? I haven’t paid
you yet.”

She smiled and answered. “Oh yes you have.
More than you’ll ever know,” and closed the door behind her.

Chapter 2

 

Roe Sexton rolled over in the bed and
smelled the alluring essence of the woman that he’d joined with
last night. The morning sunlight blared in the open shutters of the
upstairs room of the pub, and he squinted his eyes and rolled back
the other way.

Lark, she’d said her name was. He’d been
away for over a year now, but remembered no commoner with this name
in his father’s village. He then remembered she’d told him she
wasn’t from around these parts. He’d have to ask the innkeeper
Auley O'Conner where he could find this girl. The sweet taste of
her still clung to his lips and the smell of roses permeated the
stale bed linens. Her long mahogany hair had been so shiny and
clean and her eyes such a bright blue that he couldn’t stop
thinking of her.

He rolled over toward the pillow she’d laid
her head upon and buried his face within it, groaning at the feel
of need throbbing once again below his waist. He had to have her
again. He’d never been so satisfied with a woman and he’d never
known a whore who’d been so clean and refreshing. She’d told him
she wasn’t a whore but he knew better. Any girl that entered the
Bucket of Blood, save the innkeeper’s daughter, knew what they were
getting into before hand. She’d called herself a lady. Hah. No lady
would ever set foot anywhere near such a place. If she did, she
certainly would never be called a lady again.

His hand slid under the pillow as he
sprawled out over the bed. He stopped suddenly when his fingers
brushed across an object. He pulled it out and adjusted his gaze.
It was a small golden brooch used to pin close a mantle. It was
embellished with a crest upon it. He wondered if it belonged to
Lark. He sat up in bed and inspected the brooch closer, his vision
still blurry from sleep. ’Twas gold, he was sure of it. And ’twas a
woman’s piece of jewelry. The only women who graced the Bucket of
Blood were poor. This belonged to someone with money.

He raked his fingers through his long
tangled hair and then smoothed down his mustache in thought. He
jumped from the bed naked and walked over to the window to inspect
it in the light. He could see it better now, and he didn’t like
what he saw. ’Twas the crest of a deer, its antlers wrapped in
vines, its hoof upon a fallen bear.

It was his crest! His father’s crest. What
in God’s name was going on here and how the hell did this whore get
a hold of a brooch with his crest on it? Something wasn’t right,
and he was going to find out what.

He splashed the cold water from the basin
onto his face, reveling in the way it shocked him and brought him
back to life. He’d been away too long and he had a nagging feeling
in his gut that he should have come home sooner.

As a vassal of the king, he’d only been
expected to serve forty days service to the king per year, but in
times of war it was determined as needed. For the past year he’d
been traveling at the king’s son’s side. He followed the Black
Prince as he’d tried to instill fear and doubt into the minds of
the French that King John the Good could not protect them. And so
they’d pillaged, plundered and burned their way from Bordeaux
through the Pyrenees to Toulouse, then back through Carcassonne and
Narbonne til they once again resided in Bordeaux. And though he
didn’t feel good about the ways of war, he was proud to say he was
part of the victory that took place in Poitiers.

He’d been amongst the army that was
outnumbered six to one, when the Black Prince’s archers rose in
fame to help win the battle and enable the capture of King John and
his son.

But he tired of fighting and was home now.
And he knew he needed to once again be aware of all that went on in
Rye.

He hurriedly pulled on his clothes and boots
and strapped his scabbard to his waist. He then held his sword up
high to glitter in the sunlight that streamed into the room from
the window. This sword had been his grandfather’s. The sword that
saved his grandfather’s life many times during the Crusades and was
the only reason Roe was home now instead of dead on the field with
crows pecking out his eyes. His father had given it to him when he
left and Roe had felt wrong in taking it. He had a feeling his
father needed it now, and he only hoped he wasn’t too late.

Roe made his way down the stairs, his head
throbbing all the while. On his journey home he’d celebrated
heartily upon the ship, celebrating their victory as they made
their way over the channel and back home to Rye.

The Bucket of Blood was to be his last stop
before returning to see his beloved mother and also his father. He
could have made it to his father’s castle last night but wanted to
be fresh when he saw him again. He’d had a quarrel with him before
he left, not wanting his father’s brother, Henry to make residence
at Castle Rye. He didn’t like, nor did he trust the man. He only
hoped now he could make amends with his father and hopefully
convince him to send Henry on his way, if he hadn’t already
left.

“Auley?” Roe called out to the innkeeper as
he pulled up a stool and sat near the drink board. The man was
nowhere to be seen. “Auley, where are you?”

Roe rubbed his hands over his face, trying
his best to wake up while he waited for him. Tired of waiting, Roe
got to his feet, making his way behind the counter and pouring
himself a mug of ale. He surveyed the condition the pub was in from
the celebrating last night. He’d have to make sure to slip the
innkeeper a few extra coins to make up for the shambles caused by
his men. Auley never was one for cleanliness, tho, and for all Roe
knew, it could have looked this way since he’d left.

After Auley’s wife left him and moved to
Dublin, his life seemed to go downhill. Actually, the woman was
never his wife since she was a whore who worked for him, and even
after she got pregnant, they’d never married. She birthed the child
and left it with him, as she wanted naught to do with it. And Auley
raised the child by himself. If it wasn’t for that daughter of his,
Roe was sure Auley would have crumbled years ago.

He raised the mug to his lips and turned
back toward the empty pub. Erin, Auley’s daughter, was standing
there watching him, but turned her head away quickly to clean a
table when he glanced in her direction.

“Erin?” he asked, picking up his mug and
walking toward her.

“Aye, milord.” She didn’t turn to
acknowledge him. Something was amiss. She was a young, blond girl
with small features but a large smile.

“’Tis been a while since I’ve seen you. Turn
and face me.”

She did so reluctantly, but kept her eyes
toward the floor. He’d known Erin since she was a child. She’d
never been afraid to look at him before. She was like a sister to
him. The sister he never had. He’d had a younger brother, Richard,
but he died from the plague that raged across the entire nation
eight years ago, taking with it nearly half the population. But
surely in his absence of just over a year, Erin couldn't have
changed to this extent.

“What possesses you?” he asked. “Cannot you
bear to gaze upon my ugly face?”

She smiled slightly and he felt better. He’d
always had the ability to make her smile. He reached out and with
his finger raised her chin to see her face. Her eyes opened wide in
fear and she turned away but not before he could notice the purple
bruise staining her cheek.

“God’s eyes, what happened to you?”

“’Twas ’er lover.” Auley answered as he
descended the stairs. He was a smaller man in stature with light
curly hair and bushy brows. Behind him followed a whore whom Roe
had been with himself once or twice. She winked at him and
disappeared into the back room.

“Her lover?” Roe couldn’t believe little
Erin had a lover. True, that at her age, most noble girls were
already married, but the commoners normally couldn’t afford
marriage until they were much older. Still, one didn’t need to be
married to enjoy an occasional romp in bed. He looked back toward
her and realized he’d mistaken her for a girl when she really was a
young woman. Her breasts were trussed up in her bodice and her hips
now had a new curve he hadn’t noticed before. She’d grown from a
girl into a woman in a matter of a year’s time. Or perhaps he’d
just not noticed, as he always thought of Erin as a child.

“That’s right, ’er lover,” Auley repeated.
“The fickle stable boy who comes from Castle Rye.”

“My father’s stable boy? Tell me which so I
can have him flogged for his behavior upon my return. I will not
tolerate a man lifting a fist to hurt any woman.”

“Nay!” cried out Erin. Her father’s eyes
bore into her and she stopped from saying more.

“The boy’s name is Dugald,” said Auley. “’E
has the nerve to come in ’ere with his own whore to begin with. Yet
I didn’t say a word, m’lord, knowing ’e came from yer demesne. But
when ’e then saw ta bed my own daughter right out in the hay of the
stable – ”

“Dugald? With a whore of his own?” Roe just
laughed and took a swig of ale. Dugald was just a lean boy with no
experience at all when he left Rye. He couldn’t see the boy even
knowing what to do with a whore, let alone attract one. And to beat
his fist into a young girl’s face? Not like the Dugald he
remembered. Things were definitely different than when he left, and
he didn’t like it at all.

“I’ll handle this matter.” Roe drained the
mug and set it on a table. He pulled a coin from his pouch and laid
it next to it, then added a few more to the pile. He’d done well
with the spoils of war and didn’t mind helping out the
innkeeper.

“Nay, milord,” begged Erin. “Please don't
hurt him.”

Her father’s eyes bore into her again and
with a shake of his head he silenced her. She liked Dugald. Roe
could see that. She wanted to protect him. He didn't understand any
of this, but things would change now that he’d returned.

“I’ll just speak with the boy,” he answered,
and Erin seemed relieved. “But who is this whore of whom you speak
with which he travels?”

Auley stepped forward, giving his daughter a
slight shove, aiming her toward the back room.

“She’s the whore you bedded last eve,
milord.”

Roe’s heart beat faster at the mention of
Lark. He’d find out just exactly who she was now. Mayhap Auley knew
where to find her.

“What do you know about her, Auley?”

“Naught, milord. Only that she’s -
different. I don’t even know ’er name or from where she comes.”

“Different? How so?”

Auley picked up a rag and swiped it over the
counter. “She covers up with that cloak while the rest of the
whores are taking clothes off.”

“Where can I find her?” Roe needed to
know.

“Don’t know, milord.”

Roe felt his blood stir just thinking about
last night. He hadn’t had his fill of the woman yet. He had to see
her again. She held some sort of power over him and he couldn’t
explain it. She’d attracted him like a bee to a flower. He had to
know more about her.

“I’ll just ask Dugald,” he told him. “I’m on
my way now to my father’s castle. Mayhap my father will even know
the whore of which you speak.”

Auley stopped wiping the counter and twisted
the rag in his hands. His brow was furrowed and lines creased his
forehead.

“I don’t think yer father will be able te
help ye, milord.”

“Why not?” Roe felt his stomach clench even
before Auley answered. He knew something was wrong, as he could
feel it deep inside himself. He prayed his father hadn’t taken ill
again to one of his spells. If his father had been ill while he’d
been away he would feel badly.

BOOK: Sapphire - Book 2
2.09Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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