High Warrior by Kathryn Le Veque

Book 1 in the High Warriors of Rohan

A big Irish knight, much beloved by his English men, faces his biggest challenge when an injury nearly claims his life… and his confidence as a warrior.

The man known as the “High Warrior” is an Irish knight with an English overlord. Sir Bric MacRohan serves the House of de Winter in the dark times following the Anarchy.

Once the most aggressive, all-powerful knight in the realm, a great injury forces Bric to realize that he is, indeed, mortal. Though he recovers from the injury, it changes how he commands his men and how he handles himself in battle. Mentally, his is far more injured than he is, physically.

Enter Lady Eiselle de Gael. The daughter of a bastard of the Earls of East Anglia, Ellison is used as a pawn by her ambitious father to secure an alliance with de Winter. She is forced to marry de Winter’s greatest knight in an unhappy circumstance.

But what she never expected was how much she would come to love him.

When the greatest swordsman that England has ever seen lays down his weapon due to battle fatigue, it’s up to Eiselle and those who love Bric to help the man regain his confidence as a warrior, and to once again do what he was born to do. Men like Christopher de Lohr… David de Lohr… and many more recognizable knights from Le Veque's Medieval world all pull together to help Bric recover what he has lost… himself.

Medieval Romance has never been so emotional – or so romantic – as Bric and Eiselle discover the true power of their love.

(Note: This book is also related to the House of de Winter series and includes characters from the de Lohr Dynasty and Lords of de Royans series. Also note that it is a full length book, not 18 pages as indicated)

Read an Excerpt:

The enormous man astride the silver charger waved a big arm at the team, startling the horses into a jerky gallop. “Get them moving! Into the castle!”

Eiselle yelped as she ended up on the floor of the carriage, bounced around like a child’s ball in the midst of a frenzied game. She finally got a grip on the seat and pulled herself back onto the bench, holding on for dear life. But her grip on the seat wasn’t enough as the carriage charged dangerously over the road and in through the great gatehouse of Narborough. She ended up on her arse, bounced around mercilessly.

A rapid stop came almost as abruptly as the blinding acceleration. Eiselle bumped against the wall of the cab as it lurched to a halt. Ill, and somewhat terrified, she barely had time to collect herself when the carriage door flew open and an enormous figure stood in its place. Jolted by the shock of the door nearly being ripped off its hinges, Eiselle gazed into the open doorway with a mixture of anxiety and outrage.

A man with silver eyes stood there, looking steadily upon her. Dressed in full armor, including a helm that covered most of his face, he looked ready for battle. Sprawled on her bottom in a most unladylike position, Eiselle realized that there was no way to save a very crude introduction. Blowing a stray lock of hair from her eyes, she thought, perhaps, a witty word might salvage the situation. But when she opened her mouth to speak, all that came out was a belch better suited to a drunken barmaid.

Riiiiiiiiiiiiipppppppp…

It was a shockingly wet sound. The man with the silver eyes stared at her, his surprise evident. But he did nothing more than lift an eyebrow.

“Greetings to you as well, my lady,” he said in his thick Irish accent. “Welcome to Narborough Castle. Are you Lady Eiselle?”

“I am.”

“I am Bric MacRohan.”

If I had a dagger, I would use it on myself, Eiselle thought, feeling her cheeks flush bright red as she realized who the man was. MacRohan in the flesh! Grasping at the last shreds of composure, she pushed her hair out of her eyes and tried to find her footing.

“My apologies, my lord,” she said as primly as she could manage. “It has been a rough trip and I… I am afraid that I’ve not handled it well.”

Bric did nothing more than hold a hand out to her. Gathering her skirts, Eiselle put her small hand into his massive one. It was warm and strong. With surprising gentleness, he assisted her from the cab.

The ground was still rolling a bit as Eiselle tried to regain her equilibrium. Bric moved to the back of the cab, snapping orders to the soldiers that were unloading her baggage from the rear. More baggage was on a small wagon that had followed from her home and Bric moved towards the wagon to make sure that it, too, was cleared.

Kerchief to her mouth to prevent any more horrifying gas from escaping, Eiselle was fixed on her future husband, understandably curious about him. He was tall, but more than that, he was just plain big – enormous arms, thick legs, and big hands. All embarrassment aside, he was something to watch; beneath the helm, she could see a square jaw and a hint of a long, straight nose. One of the knights who had accompanied her from her home of Hadleigh House said something to him and she caught a brief flash of a smile with straight, white teeth. But it was all she saw before he closed his lips again and snapped more orders to the men around him.

Eiselle took a deep breath, calming her rolling stomach as she continued to watch the man she had come to marry. He took one of her traveling cases from a soldier on the bed of the wagon and handled it easily. Eiselle knew how much those trunks weighed and it was no easy feat to sling them around as he was. As her stomach calmed and her composure began to return, she could already see that MacRohan was a man who commanded respect.

She wondered seriously what he looked like with his helm removed.

Bric suddenly turned in her direction and his eyes fixed on her. Startled that she was caught staring at him, Eiselle quickly lowered her gaze and looked at her feet. She heard his footfalls as he drew near.

“Forgive me for not tending to you right away,” Bric said, his heavy brogue quiet. “I was attempting to unload your baggage, but I suppose I should have unloaded you first. I am sure you would like to rest.”

Eiselle dared to look up at him, startled anew when their eyes met. There was an odd jolt to the event; it was the first time she had beheld the man at close range and she felt a strange buzzing sensation in her head. It was rather curious, exciting even. But her embarrassment also returned, so very embarrassed at her ghastly behavior since their introduction.

She could only imagine what he must think of her.

“I do not wish to rest at the moment, my lord,” she said, still fixated on his eyes, so blue that they were literally silver. “If you please, I wish to speak with you.”

Bric’s eyebrows flickered with curiosity, then agreement. “As you wish,” he said. Then, he went to take her by the elbow but awkwardly stopped. “Do you wish to speak here?”

He seemed rather ill at ease, as if he wasn’t sure how to behave around her. This big, confident knight seemed to be uncomfortable and it made Eiselle feel a little less embarrassed about their rude introduction.