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The Scottish Prisoner

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The Scottish Prisoner

Lord John Grey Series, Book 3
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Includes a preview of the new novel in the Outlander series.London, 1760. For Jamie Fraser, paroled prisoner-of-war in the remote Lake District, life could be worse: He's not cutting sugar cane in the...
Includes a preview of the new novel in the Outlander series.London, 1760. For Jamie Fraser, paroled prisoner-of-war in the remote Lake District, life could be worse: He's not cutting sugar cane in the...
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Description-
  • Includes a preview of the new novel in the Outlander series.

    London, 1760. For Jamie Fraser, paroled prisoner-of-war in the remote Lake District, life could be worse: He's not cutting sugar cane in the West Indies, and he's close enough to the son he cannot claim as his own. But Jamie Fraser's quiet existence is coming apart at the seams, interrupted first by dreams of his lost wife, then by the appearance of Tobias Quinn, an erstwhile comrade from the Rising.

    Like many of the Jacobites who aren't dead or in prison, Quinn still lives and breathes for the Cause. His latest plan involves an ancient relic that will rally the Irish. Jamie is having none of it--he's sworn off politics, fighting, and war. Until Lord John Grey shows up with a summons that will take him away from everything he loves--again.

    Lord John Grey--aristocrat, soldier, and occasional spy--finds himself in possession of a packet of explosive documents that exposes a damning case of corruption against a British officer. But they also hint at a more insidious danger. Time is of the essence as the investigation leads to Ireland, with a baffling message left in "Erse," the tongue favored by Scottish Highlanders. Lord John, who oversaw Jacobite prisoners when he was governor of Ardsmiur prison, thinks Jamie may be able to translate--but will he agree to do it?

    Soon Lord John and Jamie are unwilling companions on the road to Ireland, a country whose dark castles hold dreadful secrets, and whose bogs hide the bones of the dead. A captivating return to the world Diana Gabaldon created in her Outlander and Lord John series, The Scottish Prisoner is another masterpiece of epic history, wicked deceit, and scores that can only be settled in blood.

    From the Hardcover edition.

Excerpts-
  • Chapter One

    He could find it now; had waked with his fist wrapped round it and desire shuddering and twitching over his skin like a cloud of midges. The dream was wrapped just as tightly round his mind, but he knew it would fray in seconds, shredded by the snores and farts of the other grooms. He needed her, needed to spill himself with the feel of her touch still on him.

    Hanks stirred in his sleep, chuckled loudly, said something incoherent, and fell back into the void, murmuring, "Bugger, bugger, bugger . . ."

    Jamie said something similar under his breath in the Gaelic and flung back his blanket. Damn the cold.

    He made his way down the ladder into the half-­warm, horse-­smelling fug of the barn, nearly falling in his haste, ignoring a splinter in his bare foot. He hesitated in the dark, still urgent. The horses wouldn't care, but if they noticed him, they'd make enough noise, perhaps, to wake the others.

    Wind struck the barn and went booming round the roof. A strong chilly draft with a scent of snow stirred the somnolence, and two or three of the horses shifted, grunting and whickering. Overhead, a murmured " 'ugger" drifted down, accompanied by the sound of someone turning over and pulling the blanket up round his ears, defying reality.

    Claire was still with him, vivid in his mind, solid in his hands. He could imagine that he smelled her hair in the scent of fresh hay. The memory of her mouth, those sharp white teeth . . . He rubbed his nipple, hard and itching beneath his shirt, and swallowed.

    His eyes were long accustomed to the dark; he found the ­vacant loose box at the end of the row and leaned against its boards, cock already in his fist, body and mind yearning for his lost wife.

    He'd have made it last if he could, but he was fearful lest the dream go altogether, and he surged into the memory, groaning. His knees gave way in the aftermath and he slid slowly down the boards of the box into the loose piled hay, shirt rucked round his thighs and his heart pounding like a kettledrum.

    Lord, that she might be safe was his last conscious thought. She and the child.

    p[

    He plunged at once into a sleep so deep and luxurious that when a hand shook him by the shoulder, he didn't spring to his feet but merely stirred sluggishly, momentarily befuddled by the prickle of hay on his bare legs. His instincts came back to life in sudden alarm and he flung himself over, getting his feet under him in the same motion that put his back against the wall of the loose box.

    There was a gasp from the small form in the shadows before him, and he classified it as feminine just in time to restrain himself from reflexive violence.

    "Who's that?" he demanded. He spoke low, his voice hoarse with sleep, and the form swayed back a little farther, exhibiting dubiousness.

    He was in no mood for foolishness and shot out a hand, grabbing her by the arm. She squealed like a pig and he let go as though she were red-­hot, cursing himself mentally as he heard the startled grunts and rustlings of his fellow grooms overhead.

    "What the devil's that?" Crusoe demanded, in a voice like a clogged pipe. Jamie heard him clear his throat and spit thickly into his half-­filled pot, then bellow down the ladder, "Who's there?"

    The shadowy form was making wild motions, beseeching him to be silent. The horses were half awake, snorting with mild confusion but not panicked; they were used to Crusoe shouting in the night. He did it whenever he had the money to buy drink, waking from nightmares in a cold sweat, shrieking at his demons.

    Jamie rubbed a hand over his face, trying to think. If Crusoe and...

About the Author-
  • Diana Gabaldon is the New York Times bestselling author of the wildly popular Outlander novels--Outlander, Dragonfly in Amber, Voyager, Drums of Autumn, The Fiery Cross, A Breath of Snow and Ashes (for which she won a Quill Award and the Corine International Book Prize), and An Echo in the Bone--as well as one work of nonfiction, The Outlandish Companion; the Outlander graphic novel The Exile; and the bestselling series featuring Lord John Grey, a character she introduced in her Outlander series. She lives in Scottsdale, Arizona.

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    Random House Publishing Group
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