Heloise dreams of a love-match to a noble knight, even though her marriage is for her grim uncle, the Lord de Tulley, to arrange. She knows that one of the knights in service to her uncle could hold her heart captive forever, but pragmatic Tulley is dismissive of such whimsy. He speaks of legacies and defenses, of practicalities that leave Heloise cold. She hopes to persuade him to her view, but when Tulley is healed by Lothair the Viking, an imposing and silent warrior who terrifies Heloise, her marriage is arranged to him against her will. She vows to win her way, no matter what the price—to herself, Tulley or Lothair.
A warrior and a healer, Lothair is accustomed to being caught between objectives. Still, experience has not prepared him for the temptation of Lady Heloise, the beautiful niece of his overlord. The maiden’s very presence steals his wits and renders him mute, while her barest glance fills his heart with wild yearning. Lothair has only his name and his honor to offer, which cannot be enough for an heiress, a beauty and a treasure like Heloise. Lothair knows that his charming rogue of a comrade desires Heloise only for her fortune, but is powerless to intervene—until the Lord de Tulley chooses practical Lothair as his heir and husband of lovely Heloise. The maiden pledges defiance, which a less resolute man might consider a bad portent. Lothair is undeterred. Can he prove himself worthy of the affection of his reluctant bride, or is he doomed to watch as his comrade breaks the lady’s heart?