Fighting for a Highland Lass – Extended Epilogue

Fighting for a Highland Lass


The Earl’s house
July 1785


“Oh, no, Angus, don’t eat that!” Anne cried, laughing. Her great green dress rustled as she hurried across the sunny courtyard toward where her youngest son, Angus, was experimenting with putting gravel in his mouth. He was two, a chubby, healthy little boy with black hair and a cheeky smile, and a curiosity that was forever getting him into trouble.


“God, ye leave them alone for a moment…” muttered Anne as she swung the baby up onto her shoulder. He squealed in a mixture of protest and delight.


“Lizzie!” Anne called. “Lizzie! Where are ye? I thought I told ye tae watch yer brother!”


From the direction of the corridor, a tall girl appeared, wiping her mouth surreptitiously. Elizabeth was Anne and Thorvald’s eldest daughter at twelve years, nearly thirteen now. She looked more like Thorvald than Anne, and she looked guilty and rebellious as she came round the corner.


“Sorry, mother,” she said, looking anything but sorry. Anne had to smile. That rebellious look was so familiar. She wondered if she would even tell her daughter just who she looked like the most. Perhaps. In time.


The truth was that Lizzie looked like her great-uncle, Neil Gow-Sinclair when she scowled. In the twelve years that had passed since those days, Anne had grown and changed, but some things did not leave quickly, and others she was happy to keep. Her sword-fighting instincts had not left her, though she rarely practised, being content to let Thorvald oversee the training of guardsmen and the reporting from the military ships. She had no interest in fighting, and in truth, the age of the swordsman was quickly passing. These days, massed ranks of line infantry marched in the revolutionary wars on the continent, and the cannon and the mortar were kings of warfare there, but aside from the trouble with bandits now and again on the mainland, and the odd Norse privateer opportunist in Orcadian waters, all was peaceful.


She had grown her hair out, too, and now wore in hanging in artful braids down her back more often than not.


“Look after yer brother like I asked now, will ye?” said Anne distractedly, and little Lizzie made a show of sulking.


“Yes, mother,” she huffed and pouted, but Anne observed with keen pleasure how, when the girl forgot to show a sulky face for her mother, she took little Angus’ hand with genuine affection, leading him over to the flowerbeds which graced the southern edge of the courtyard.


There was a brisk wind, as always in Orkney, but this courtyard was sheltered on three sides, allowing the sun to shine in and warm the stones. It was one of Anne’s favourite places to spend time with the children. She had nannies and nurses, of course, but she had never become entirely comfortable with having folk serve her, and in the matter of her children, she retained fierce independence.


“If old Nan Howden down in Stromness can handle nine on her own, then I’m sure I can handle three,” she had told Thorvald irritably some months ago when he had again suggested that they get another woman in to help her. And she could handle them. More than that, they were her pride and joy, exhausting as they were.


Lizzie and Angus were now absorbed in some play in the flowerbeds, and Anne smiled to see how Lizzie tenderly but firmly stopped her little brother from eating things that he shouldn’t, instead distracting him by teaching him the names of flowers. She said the name and pointed to the plant, and he repeated the name in a soft voice after her, squealing with delight when she complimented him and praised him, and got him to do another one.


Beyond her children and the flowerbed, the town of Kirkwall lay stretched around the vast bulk of the cathedral. This house was built on higher ground overlooking the town. It was, in fact, the house that Sir Magnus Bain had made his own during the years of his life. The chapel he had built was still there, and they kept his mother’s gravestone clear, but the chapel itself was little used. Worship happened in the Cathedral in Kirkwall, though the Church handled religious observance and little else these days. Thorvald had grown into his inheritance under the tutelage of Iain Grant and Earl William, the latter of whom now spent more time at home and less on Orkney, and seemed now to be leaning on his young protégé than the other way round. They were a close family, with William being Godfather to Anne and Thorvald’s older two children.


The middle child, and their only son so far, was nine, and he was at present out with his father, following him on his rounds of inspection in the town and the surrounding villages; Thorvald made a point of keeping in regular contact with the farmers and fisherfolk of the surrounding countryside, and the small folk thrived under this system. It meant that they were able to take any issues directly to him, and more often than not, he saw to it that their concerns were dealt with appropriately, and without unnecessary delay. Anne privately thought that he spent too much time in this duty, and would be better overseeing the more significant element of his responsibilities, but Thorvald was content to leave accounts and grain ledgers to clerks from day to day, taking a day or two each month to hear about everything in-depth. He was keen to involve his son in all of these things, and Anne did not object, though she did wonder if it was all making the lad too serious for a nine-year-old.


When she had been that age… but she shook her head. That was no comparison. She had sat down in her chair in the courtyard, but heard a commotion further inside the house, and stood, calling to the children.


“Lizzie, that’s yer father back! Bring Angus along, now, please.”


“Ugh, father,” said Lizzie, pulling a face. “Are you going to kiss him again?”


“I certainly am!” said Anne laughing, as her daughter made disgusted noises behind her, and little Angus made “ugh” noises in imitation of his sister.


Thorvald came into the warm central hall of the big, sprawling, comfortable house, smelling of the clean outdoors. He caught her in his arms and kissed her soundly, and she, to her embarrassment, let out a girlish squeal of delight as he squeezed her around the hips. Twelve years and three children had done absolutely nothing to diminish their appetite for one another; their obvious physical attraction to each other, and their unashamed displays of public affection scandalised and titillated the small folk, and made them all the more beloved.


“Ugh,” said Lizzie, and “Ugh,” echoed little Angus, giggling as his sister laughed at him.


“What’s this?” asked Thorvald with a smile. He was a big man still, in his early thirties now, but he had filled out around the shoulders and the waist even as she had. They both enjoyed the food and wine that were the perks of their position, and there was nothing wrong with that, so long as they made sure that those less fortunate than them did not go hungry while they ate.


“Ye are always kissing!” exclaimed Lizzie in disgust.


“Kissing!” said Angus.


“Come along, Angus,” said Lizzie haughtily. “Let’s go tae the kitchen and see if the cook has anything for us to eat.”


She shot her mother a look, but Anne smiled and let her go.


“Raisins!” she heard Angus exclaim as they made their way off down the corridor toward the kitchens.


“Where is Rognvald?” she asked, looking for her nine-year-old son. They had named him Rognvald after the Bishop whose largesse had furnished Thorvald with his Earldom, but also because it was an excellent Orkney name, and the people would appreciate that in a man who would one day be their Earl.


“I fear he has gone tae the kitchens too,” said Thorvald. “He was hungry. He did well today. It was a long day. I let him go.”


“The cook spoils them,” she said, not really meaning it.


“Well, ye will know all about that,” said Thorvald. She glared at him.


“Oh, give over,” he said. “Ye know I can do nothing with him. If ye want him tae stop feeding the children sweetmeats and pastries ye will have tae talk tae him yerself.”


She laughed. “He is good with them,” she said.


“That he is,” Thorvald agreed.


Their cook, an ancient man, named Peter, was notable in Orkney for his dark skin, as well as for his skill with the children. He was also notable for his mysterious past, but no one asked him about it. In fact, old Peter was the only link which Anne had kept with her past life. Those had been heard years for both of them, watching the captain they admired descend into drink and madness, and they were both happy to let those past times lie. While the rest of Neil’s crew had been sent south, some wanted for other crimes, there were several whom Anne had managed to obtain pardons for. Peter was one of these. All the others who were given the opportunity, fled, never to be heard from again, but Peter chose to stay with her. They never talked about the old times, but Anne had never forgotten that on that fateful night when she had helped Thorvald escape from the tower all those years ago, Peter had caught her in the act and had let her go instead of raising the alarm. Nowadays, he did what he wished to do, pottering in the kitchens and directing the other cooks. He was also the most famous person with the children.


“If they are with Peter, then I suspect we have a good hour tae ourselves before they come looking for us again,” said Thorvald.


“Oh, aye,” said Anne laughing, “I think ye are right.”


Thorvald looked at her thoughtfully.


“I need tae get changed out of these clothes,” he said solemnly. “Do ye fancy joining me?”


Laughing, they ran together up the corridor toward their private rooms.


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  • This was a very enjoyable book the characters were cute sassy strong. The young couple made my heart smile and how the people on at the end I guess treated them so finally made me smile

  • Loved how the story evolved and kept you guessing. A very human and heart warming adventure from start to finish.

  • What a fantastic story.wanted to keep reading till the end.It had many twists and turns.And what a great couple they were.A must read for those that like Kenna Kendrick Books.

  • Good story. Not sure why the Earl would have given Anne to his cousin especially if he thought he was her Dad or did I misread that?

  • I truely enjoyed this story, seems well written, read in 2 days, could wait to see where all these twists and turns were headed

  • It was a great story. Would like to know more about Alice. Also need some clarification… She said that their middle child was their only son but they also have Angus. I also would have chosen a different title like Fighting for a Highland love since Anne was doing a lot of the fighting, lol. But it was a great book. I left a 5 star rating on Amazon.

  • I really enjoyed the love story between Anne & Thorvald – interesting how he was kidnapped & she rescued him….and the people in their lives that they met on the way!

  • This was one I couldn’t put down. It was a love story with a lot of action. The epiloge
    made the story complete. Well done !

  • I loved this book it was written so well keeping all the different story lines in way I was so surprised the new Bishop was the one Behind it all.

  • Loved this story. The perfect blend of romance, adventure and mystery. The way the characters lives turned out to be intertwined was great.

  • Loved the book. All the twist and turns and all characters converging at the same time in the end was nail biting for sure. Good job

  • I really loved how this book went and the surprise that Sir Magnus wasn’t the enemy and fought to save Ann and Vagnald. Well done.

    • Thank you my dear Marilynn! I’m really happy that you enjoyed it. Sir Magnus is one of my favorite characters ever <3

  • Loved Thorvald and Anne, she was fierce like Wonderwoman. He was clueless, but sweet. He had to grow up fast and was able to stand with Anne to fight for his freedom. Best Scottish romance I’ve read lately. Keep up the fabulous writing.

  • Another wonderful story from Kenna! I enjoyed this story and ty for telling us about Thorvald and Anne’s children! I loved the story line of Anne helping to kidnap Thorvald then Anne helping him to escape! Great story line!

  • I’d give this book five stars. The characters had personalities and the story was not a copy cat of other highland tales. Excellent!

  • Lots of adventure. I enjoyed the twists and turns of this story. Kept you reading. One of my favorites.

  • This one had many twists and turns. I never expected who the true villain was, but knew Father Hallam was not completely innocent. I also wondered by Earl William did not tell Anne who he truly was to her. It was a great story. I was confused in the extended when I understood you to say Anne had only one son when she had two. Your style of writing is very similar to Fiona Faris and at first I thought you two were the same person. Are you by chance related? Your writing has less grammar/spelling errors then hers, but you both have the gift of a great & believable story content in all your books. I look forward to the next one.

    • Thank you very much, my lovely Elaine, for your kind words! I am so glad you liked it. And to answer your question reagrding Fiona, she has been a dear friend and a wonderful mentor throughout my writing journey. You wouldn’t believe how much she has helped me to achieve my dreams and make them come true! ?

  • A great bending ,twisting story keeps you turning the page. Characters are great interesting in reveal of lives.
    Another good story! Thanks

  • I read this book over the course of 2 days. So many twists and turns, and the timing of events had me at the edge of my seat. I enjoyed the descriptions of the people, weather, landscape and the fighting scenes. I felt like I was there with Anne and Thorvald. Great story, a pleasure to read.

  • I enjoyed the pirate story. Excellent characters. Beautiful love story. I still miss knowing about Callan and Tara. I wish I knew more about them . They had a beautiful love story. Could you maybe write a book about their children?

  • The middle son and their only child but they have a son named Angus … did I miss something. HOWEVER I loved this story and love reading your books lots happening with twists and turns thankyou for a great read.

  • I thoroughly enjoyed the story of Anne and Thorvald. It was very well written and hard to put down as the story kept drawing you in!

  • I have everyone of your stories in this series but this story was my favorite! It was hard to put down and very exciting! I loved all of them! You are an excellent writer!

  • I enjoyed the book. There were parts that confused me, but I got through it. I love your writings. I will miss your books, the prices are going from $.99 to $ 2.99. I won’t be able to afford them. I will look for the $.99 sent ones.

    • Thank you very much for your honest review and your kind words, my dear Linda Mae <3. Please stay alert, because soon there will be an openning for ARC readers.

  • Very good read. Like ups and downs, and twist and turns that keeps you from putting the book down. Keep writing!!

  • This is my favorite out of the series. I love them all but the way this story progressed felt so natural and grew organically. Even small side characters jump out of the pages since the setting, passion and humor are woven into every detail.

  • This has been a favourite read for me. I read the whole story in one day. Just couldn’t put it down. The intrigue and fear of what was going to happen to Anne and Thorvald kept me glued to the story. An excellent and really well written tale.

  • I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I loved young Anne’s spirit from the beginning. A true match when she found Thorvald and helped him escape from her pirate uncle. A terrific story line tying it all together beautifully.

  • Another splendid story from the pen of Kenna Kendrick. So many different characters each adding to the suspense of the story. You will enjoy the plot and you will have trouble putting the book down.

  • I have read many highland romance stories, but this one has been the best of them all!!,
    I LOVE the main characters and their love for each other and the intertwining of the others for good or bad, especially the intimacy between the main characters! Thank you so much for your creativity and the ability to bring a story to life

  • You need a new proof reader. The story was wonderful with several surprises but several times I caught errors with wrong names. Also in the extended version you stated Anne had a two year old names Angus and we deal paragraphs later you state her middle child and only son was with his father. A proof reader should have caught that. Loved that Magnus Bain actually ended up being a good guy.

  • Kenna, I have read many of your books, enjoying the storyline and characters in each one. Your stories contain exciting characters and adventures. Thank you.
    Once again, my issue is with the proofreading. What a joy reading your books would be if that was properly addressed.

    • Thank you so much for your warm and honest words, dear Susan! I’m happy you enjoyed the story! ❤️

  • I enjoyed this book because it shows that people can make changes in their lives, also that there is good and bad in all religions

    • Thank you so much for your kind words, my dear Lady Dee! I’m so glad you enjoyed the story! ❤️

  • I think I loved this one the best so far. The adventure, the mystery and all of the characters from the other books coming together to solve a mystery years in the making. It was a very satisfying journey that had many twists and turns. I hated that the large, proud and honorable Sir Magnus had to die in the end. But he went out in a victorious and blazing glory which was how he would have wanted it.

  • I really enjoyed this story. It was exciting and suspenseful . I hardly wanted to put it down. I love how Anne and Thorvald were able to help each other escape her bad Uncle. I wish her real father had told her the truth of her parentage. Thanks and keep writing wonderful stories..

  • Another brilliant story that’s me read the three books in the series couldn’t
    stop reading them till they were finished

  • Really nice story that had me up in the wee hours to finish. I really liked the storyline and characters.

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