Today’s excerpt is from HER WICKED SIN, the first book in my Sins of Salem series of Salem witch trials historical romance. (Whew…that was a mouthful!) If you didn’t know Puritans could be sexy, brace yourself…it’s about to get hot in here!
The excerpt immediately follows the blurb, which is here in case you’d like to meet the characters before getting to know them a bit more intimately. 🙂
Her Wicked Sin | A Sins of Salem Novel (#1)
SALEM, MA 1692
On a moonless night, he rides into the winter forest on his beast as black as midnight….
Dashing stranger, Henry Dunham, comes to Salem on a mysterious errand, but is thrown from his horse in the dead of night and rescued by the local Puritan midwife, Lydia Colson.
Haunted by her past, Lydia is running from her own dark secrets, avoiding intrusive questions by pretending her dead husband is simply…away. But when she and Henry are caught in a compromising situation, one punishable by Puritan law, he saves her from scandal by claiming to be her errant spouse…and claiming her bed.
Forced to fake a marriage, Lydia and Henry find their passion overwhelming and their vows a little too real. As their lies become truths, a witch hunt closes in on Lydia, threatening not only their burgeoning love, but her life.
Her Wicked Sin | Excerpt
Lydia nodded before she lost the nerve, for the knot in her stomach surely sensed more than she. Henry was a most handsome man—rakish in appearance, but with a gentleman’s charm—and certainly virile as she could attest from her observations of the night prior. The mere thought of his fulfillment left her hot and weak, though her body responded with strength and a deep ache.
His russet eyes had darkened, though she blamed not the waning light of day. The fire roared, tending well the pottage and casting bountiful, dancing coloration in the modest room. And there, as if the most routine of activities, stood a man—her husband—with his strong, supple fingers removing her coats as if he had been born to do that very thing.
Once he’d relieved her from the burdens of her outer layers, they were both cast into stillness. The crack and bend of the fire could not equal the trumpet of her heart.
She was his wife. And for the first time in her life, thoughts of her matrimonial duty filled her not with fear or tumult, but with a kind of burning desire that made her revisit the innocence of girlhood. His hesitance made him neither confident nor timid, but rather a gentleman. Though he could rightfully claim her body as he had her hand, he withheld—whether or not for consideration of her past hurts, it mattered not. He, stranger and husband, put her first.
He stepped forward, lessening the gap between them to half an arm’s length. “May I?”
She knew not what he asked, but nodded her permission. And so he reached for her bonnet, untied the strings, and cast the garment aside.
“When we join,” he said, “I shall be humbled to see your beauty in its most natural state.” His words came from calm, though something passionate simmered very near his surface as he reached to untie her hair, then arranged it loose about her face. He leaned forward, closing the small distance between them, and pressed his cheek to hers, breathing deeply.
The sensation of his early beard hairs against her softer cheek brought forth a rampant want. Never had she fired so hotly nor been treated with such tenderness. Though she wanted not to rush the moment, his every attention left her watery with an unfamiliar strength of desire—one she desperately hoped he would fulfill.
Summoning every bold bit of her nature, she sought with both hands his doublet and began working the fasteners.
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ABOUT SARAH BALLANCE
Sarah Ballance is a multi-published author of contemporary, historical, and supernatural romance and romantic suspense. She’s been married to her own romantic hero for what he calls a “long, long time” (and no, he’ll never hear the end of saying that). Together they have six children … and clearly too much time on their hands. She currently writes for Entangled and has upcoming releases from both Entangled and Samhain Publishing. Click here to see other posts by Sarah Ballance.