The Lover

Free The Lover by Nicole Jordan

Book: The Lover by Nicole Jordan Read Free Book Online
Authors: Nicole Jordan
reply to be a high compliment. “I should like to speak to the McLaren, if I may.”
    Averting his gaze uncomfortably, John equivocated. “I fear the laird is indisposed at present.”
    “Indisposed? But I saw him below just a short while ago…”
    She glanced briefly out the window, just in time to see a young woman garbed in a white apron slip inside the same outbuilding Niall had entered.
    Her jaw hardening for an instant, Sabrina forced herself to take a calming breath to control her vexation. It was not only that her betrothed chose to conduct his amorous affairs directly under her nose; she could make no demands on him before they were even wed. It was his gall in leaving her to cool her heels while he did it!
    “Forgive me, John McLaren,” she said with a dryness bordering on the acerbic. “I seem to have chosen an inappropriate time to call. Pray tell the laird when next you see him that I am most anxious to discuss the particulars of the wedding arrangements with him.”
    It took every ounce of restraint Sabrina possessed to calmly take her leave from the Highlander and make her way down to the yard outside.
    Asking a bewildered Geordie to wait for her then—and ordering a disappointed Rab to stay—Sabrina left her guardians to march across the yard to the building where Niall and the young woman had disappeared.
    It came as no surprise to hear the sound of feminine laughter issuing from within or, when she rapped lightly, to hear a rich and familiar voice bid entrance.
    Sabrina had scarcely taken a step inside, however, when she halted abruptly at the brazen sight that greeted her. Upon the cot, in a state of complete undress, Niall McLaren reclined with his back to the wall. The lass sitting beside him at least was gowned, but she was leaning over him solicitously, one hand resting on his bare chest.
    Niall looked up, a look of annoyance hardening his stubble-shadowed jaw.
    “F-Forgive me,” Sabrina stammered. “I did not realize…I never…”
    He sighed in resignation. “Now that you’ve intruded, you may as well stay.” He gave the serving lass a pat on her well-curved hip. “That will be all, Jean,” he murmured, his voice a husky drawl. “We will resume this later.”
    With a glance at Sabrina, the young woman rose and made a curtsy. “As ye wish, milord.”
    “Oh, and Jean, bring refreshment for Mistress Duncan, if you please.”
    Too flustered to countermand the request, Sabrina merely stepped aside. Jean brushed past her, leaving her alone with her host.
    He was a breathtaking man, she thought distractedly as her eyes adjusted to the muted light. Freed of its queue, his hair fell in silken disarray, emphasizing the corded width of his shoulders. His broad, bronzed chest was lightly furred with ebony down that whorled lower in a sensual motif, narrowing over his flat, hard stomach…Sabrina’s gaze faltered momentarily.
    He was not totally naked, she realized with relief. A tartan plaid lay strategically draped across his narrow hips. Below the cloth stretched long, powerful bare legs built of well-honed muscle and dusted with hair. Sinewed and hard, he gave an unmistakable impression of raw strength.
    The shock of it, the absolute beauty of him, was a jolt to her senses.
    “Did no one ever tell you it is impolite to stare, mistress?”
    Sabrina’s cheeks heated with bright color, and it was all she could do to stand her ground instead of turning tail. Niall McLaren’s near nakedness was distinctly unnerving—and the libertine knew it full well, to judge by the dancing light in his blue eyes.
    “How may I be of service, mistress?” he queried, his gaze amused and knowing.
    “I came to…pay you a visit,” she replied unevenly, trying to marshal her scattered wits.
    “So I see.”
    “Did you not receive my message asking you to call?”
    “I regret I was engaged and was unable to spare the time.”
    “So I see,” Sabrina echoed tartly, glancing pointedly at his disheveled

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