Thanks to Sherry or sharing her blog with me.
Today, I’m interviewing the hero of my recent release, THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP. To show my appreciation to her readers, **I’ll be giving away an ebook of THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP to one person who comments on this post.
Those who read the first two Kincaid books have already met Storm Kincaid, half brother of Pearl from THE MOST UNSUITABLE WIFE...
and Sarah from THE MOST UNSUITABLE HUSBAND.
Now this half-Cherokee/half-Caucasian man has his own story.
The tall, handsome man comes in and sits across from me. His dark hair and tanned skin do look more Cherokee than white, but his eyes are amazing. Purplish-blue, they are the most alluring eyes I’ve seen. He nods politely, the way Western men do, and removes his Stetson. His hand-tooled boots are polished and his black twill trousers are neatly pressed. A blue shirt compliments his wonderful eyes. What a handsome man.
Welcome, Storm. Thank you for coming by to talk to readers. Tell us about your childhood.
He leans forward and shifts in his chair uncomfortably, as if he doesn’t enjoy talking about himself.
“For reasons I won’t take time to explain here, my mom left me with my half-sister Pearl when I was four. I lived in Pipers Hollow, Tennessee until I was fourteen. That’s when Pearl married Drake Kincaid. That sure was a lucky day for me—for Pearl, too, and all of us living her. Drake took us to Kincaid Springs, Texas. We had some trouble, of course, but things worked out, and Drake adopted Sarah and me.”
Did you like your new home or get homesick?
A wide smile creases his face.
“I loved working with Drake on his ranch. I missed my grandfather, Tom Black Bear, but Drake said I could visit Grandfather any time I wanted. Grandfather had taught me about tracking and hunting food. Drake took over and taught me how to get along in the white world. I’m sure lucky to have both men in my life. Don’t get me wrong, Pearl taught me a lot, too. I’m a lucky man.”
What do you do for a living now?
“I have a ranch near that of Drake and Pearl. Our sister Sarah and her husband live in town. Kincaids are a large family, and we have kin all over Kincaid County. All over Texas, now that I think about it.”
How did you meet Rena?
Storm thumps his hat against his leg.
“Killers murdered my best friend and his pregnant wife. I wanted to take off and kill them, but Drake and Grandpa stopped me. Grandpa secured a temporary appointment as a Federal Marshal so I could round up those killers legally. Waiting was hard, but Grandpa works fast as a telegraph, and I only lost a day.
“I set out as soon as the appointment came and rode after those killers. When I saw smoke, I rode in. I found the barn and house burning with all the livestock slaughtered. An elderly man lay dead in the dirt. He’d been beaten and tortured, but I didn’t see a woman. I sensed one, though. Sure enough, she was hiding in the durndest place you ever saw. She spoke good English, but with a thick German accent. She’d come from Bavaria, imagine that. And she alternated between sad and angry. The stubborn woman said she was going to kill at least one of the men responsible.”
Is that how she came to be riding with you?
A frown mars his handsome brow.
“Women. I tried to talk her out of it. Figured I’d leave her in town until I regained her valuables. Planned to give her some money and a letter to my family—you know, in case I couldn’t come back. My family would have welcomed her. But that Rena is one obstinate woman. Said she was going after those men whether I let her come with me or not. I reckoned she’d be safer with me than riding all alone.”
Of course she would, but that must have been hard on both of you.
“We had us quite a ride, let me tell you. Since we traveled together, we decided to tell folks we were married so they wouldn’t think Rena a loose woman. Bad enough she wore men’s trousers. On that trip, we battled flooded rivers, dust storms, killers, and each other. Along the way, we rescued three orphans from a burning cabin. If you have kids, you know how much they change your life and how they cause unexpected events to happen.
“One setback after another plagued us, but we persevered. Rena even wired my sister Pearl to come help out when my wound became infected and the doc wanted to amputate my leg. Can you imagine a rancher with only one leg? I can tell you, getting back to my ranch was pure relief. Ranch work is hard, but seemed like a vacation after our troublesome ride across Central and North Central Texas.”
Sounds like you had a complicated chase.
“That we did, but I believe you’ll enjoy Rena’s and my story. That is, if you enjoy western historical romance with plenty of action, mystery, and adventure thrown in. Here’s an excerpt from the story our first day on the road:
She emerged from the brush straightening her trousers and shoving her pistol back into her waistband. “Where do you think those men are going?”
“Indian Territory. They’ll steal all they can before they reach the Red River and leave no survivors to identify them. They’re selling off the stolen stock along the way, so that will slow them some.” He wondered if she knew how to use the gun.
“But I saw their faces.”
He sent her what he hoped was a frightening stare. “If they knew that, you’d be dead for sure.”
She shivered, but glared at him. “Do not think to frighten me. I will do everything I can to kill these men and reclaim my gold and my mother’s locket. It is not that I care about the jewelry that once belonged to Abram’s wife. But to him, it meant a great deal, and I want it because he gave it to me.”
Storm wanted to shake her. Not that he hadn’t lived all his life with stubborn women. At least his oldest sister Pearl made sense. He’d worried about shy Sarah, especially when she’d appeared head over heels with a con man. Now that Sarah and Nate were married, she had life figured out. Nate had surprised everyone, even himself. Storm suppressed a smile and worked up his anger again at his traveling companion.
“We can be in Llano by nightfall. We’ll get a couple of rooms there and you can rest.”
She shot him a suspicious glare. “You think to abandon me in that town. If we stay somewhere, we will be in the same room so I can watch you.”
Shocked, Storm wondered what he could do with this woman. “We wouldn’t be allowed to stay in a decent hotel. You want to sleep over a saloon? Besides that, folks will be shocked when they see you in those trousers. You want people to think you’re a fallen woman?”
With her chin raised, she placed her hands on her hips. “I am a good woman. You can tell them we are married and I wear britches to ride more easily.” She held up her hand and wiggled her fingers. “I have a wedding band, see?”
He raised his hands and backed up a step. “Oh, no. I’m not even pretending to be married. If I were ready to marry, which I’m not, I’d pick a woman who knew when to let a man do his job.”
“Ha, and when I recover my dowry, I will marry a man who knows a woman can do as much as a man.”
He swept a formal bow. “And when you marry, will you be wearing the lovely gown you now wear?”
She appeared angry enough to use that Colt on him. “You are wrong to…to talk so. I do not have the English words to tell you what I think, but do not try to leave me behind. If you do, I will go after the men alone.”
Disgusted, Storm stomped over and retrieved the horses. “Then let’s go.”
They rode into Llano in late afternoon. Since they arrived mid week, the town appeared peaceful and quiet. Storm spotted a hotel by the livery he remembered.
“If you’re determined to stick to me like glue, let’s stable the horses.”
At the stable, she staggered when she dismounted and he thought she might fall. He grabbed her arms. “Steady. You’re not used to riding so long.”
“Ja, my legs do not work so well. Do not worry, I will be fine in a minute.”
She remained quiet while he dealt with the hostler and insured his rifle and saddle would be safe. He threw his saddlebags over his shoulder and retrieved the two pillowcases and box he’d tied to the saddle pommel. They ambled the block toward the hotel.
He indicated a mercantile. “Just what we need. After we get our room, let’s head for that store before it closes. You probably need to replace a few things that burned.” When she glared at him. “I’ll give you the money, all right? I don’t want folks thinking my wife runs around in men’s clothes. If anyone gets nosy, tell them you lost your bag crossing a river.”
She sniffed and sashayed as if she wore a ball gown instead of ill-fitting men’s trousers. “I will keep track and repay you when I kill those men.”
THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP is available at:
Look for the next Kincaid novel, GABE, in February 2014.
About the Author
Caroline Clemmons is an Amazon bestselling author of historical and contemporary western romances whose books have garnered numerous awards. Her most recent novel, THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP, is a poignant tale of tender redemption. A frequent speaker at conferences and seminars, she has taught workshops on characterization, point of view, and layering a novel.
Caroline is a member of Romance Writers of America, Dallas Area Romance Authors, Yellow Rose Romance Writers, and Hearts Through History Romance Writers. Her latest publications include the acclaimed historical Men of Stone Mountain series: BRAZOS BRIDE, HIGH STAKES BRIDE, and BLUEBONNET BRIDE.
Caroline and her husband live in the heart of Texas cowboy country with their menagerie of rescued pets. When she’s not indulging her passion for writing, Caroline enjoys reading, travel, antiquing, genealogy, painting, and getting together with friends. Find her on her blog, website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Pinterest.
Thanks again to Sherry for letting me share her blog, and thanks to readers for stopping by!