~The Set Up~

When a condemned man is on the verge of hanging, a desperate young woman bargains her most prized possession to ‘buy’ his freedom in exchange for marrying he and helping her with her silver mine.  Both quickly realize that getting married was the easy part, but being man and wife, was going to be a lot more challenging for them both…

~The Excerpt~

Fascinated, Natty watched the graceful strokes of her husband’s muscles glinting against the water. He looked almost magical, gleaming in the night. In a few minutes, he’d be up to the shore.

When he’d nearly made her side of the creek, Natty stood up. At first, she thought he didn’t see her. She watched as he drug himself up the gentle slope. He was breathing hard from his exercise; his movements slow and lumbering. He looked like a dark beast arising from the water.

“What are you doing, Natalie?” He asked between gasps.

“I came out for a swim,” she told him calmly. “Seems like a nice night for it, stars should be out soon.” As she talked, Natty unbuttoned her shirt, slow and deliberate, holding him there with her gaze like some fairytale witch casting a spell.

“Natty, please,” he said in a low moan. “You don’t know what you’re doing to me!”

“I’m just getting ready for a swim.” When she finally undid the last button, she heard a low rumble come from him. Urged on by the guttural sound, she stepped closer, pulling the garment off of her shoulders and letting it fall to the ground. For the first time in her life, she revealed her naked body to man. A distant part of her mind said she should be ashamed to flaunt herself, but she could no longer control the desire she felt for Cole. Another part of her mind answered back, after all, by law, they were man and wife.

“Please,” he whispered. “If you don’t stop this now, we can’t turn back.” In spite of his protests, he moved a step closer. “For God’s sake, Natty. I’m not that strong!”