Multi-published Author of American Indian Historical Romances, KAREN KAY, aka GEN BAILEY, has been praised by reviewers and fans alike for bringing insights into the everyday life of the American Indian culture of the past. As Reviewer, Suzanne Tucker, once wrote, “Ms. Kay never fails to capture the pride, the passion and the spirit of the American Indian… As in each and every one of her mesmerizing Indian stories, we’re moved beyond words. We feel more, we understand better, we love deeper. They are healing stories of hope, of tenderness, of forgiveness, of great beauty and awe.”
KAREN KAY, whose great grandmother was a Choctaw Indian, is honored to be able to write about the American Indian culture.
“With the power of romance, I hope to bring about an awareness of the American Indian’s concept of honor, and what it meant to them to live as free men and free women. There are some things that should never be forgotten.”
She Steals My Breath (The Medicine Man Book 1)
Her Beauty Takes His Breath Away… Only She Can Restore It
Eagle Heart of the Blackfoot Nation has not come to the trading post, Fort Union, to trade, but to find his missing brother. The medicine man has never seen a white woman, but, when she walks into the room, her beauty literally steals his breath.
Laylah McIntosh has assets besides beauty that make her valuable to her father, the fort's trader: her skill with numbers, her photographic memory, and her knowledge of the sign language used by all the tribes. But, when she’s injured and caught in a fierce blizzard, it is Eagle Heart, alone, who rescues her.
Forced into each other's company, their attraction deepens. But a union between them is forbidden in both their worlds.
Can their love find a way to survive? Or will their differences separate them forever?
Warning: Sensuous romance and a love written in the stars could cause a gal to go West in search of love and adventure.
Fort Union Trading Post
The Eastern Montana Territory
"I tell you true, there is such a creature as a white woman. I have seen her here this very day."
Eagle Heart cast a doubtful glance at Gray Falcon, his napí, friend. "A white woman here?" he asked. "What you say cannot be so. All the tribes are speaking the same words about the white man: he has no women. In all these years we have known this man, we have never seen his women."
"Ha'! I do not lie, my friend. I saw her here. Today. Come with me to the trading room. You will see her, too."
"I am not interested," replied Eagle Heart. "But, tell me, does she have long hair on her upper lip and chin, as well as all over her body, like the white man? Does she smell as bad as all white men do? And, is her hair dirty and greasy from failing to bathe? Saa, I do not wish to see this creature. I might lose the contents of my stomach."
"I will not tell you any detail about her, my friend. Come and look at her and decide for yourself if she has all these features you speak of."
Eagle Heart shook his head. "I do not wish to witness the ugliness of this white woman. It might spoil the image of a woman's beauty for me. Besides, I must make inquiries about my brother since, as you know, this is the only reason I have made the long journey to the white man's fort."
"Napi, my friend, it will take but a moment to come and look at the woman. Then go your own way."
Eagle Heart sighed. Truly, he was not interested. However, if taking a glimpse at this being would appease his young friend, he would do it. And so, he found himself saying, "Okí, let us go so I might look at this ugly and smelly creature."
"Áa, yes…this is a good plan." Gray Falcon smiled.
"Okí. Shall I hold my breath so I do not have to smell her stench?"
"Perhaps, my friend. Perhaps."
The trading room was busy this day in early October, the season when the leaves turn yellow. With a quick glance around the room, Eagle Heart memorized the details of this place. These included a long counter for trading where a large buffalo hide had been spread upon it; there were several beaver belts, mink, and even raccoon furs which had been shoved to the side. A large book, with many of the white man's papers, lay open on the counter.
On wooden shelves behind the trader were stacks of many more furs and neatly folded woolen blankets. Off to the side of the counter were mounted moose horns, and these were holding up pots, pans, and various items of clothing: belts and hats, moccasins, and a few fur-lined jackets. Kegs of liquor stood upright on the highest shelves in the room, out of easy reach.
Robes and furs could be traded here for guns, but no guns of any description were on display. Perhaps they had been put out of sight purposely.
At present, there were three Blackfoot men standing at the counter, quietly bargaining with the trader, Larpenteur, over the price of their furs, while seven Indians from an enemy tribe, the Crows, and ten Indian men from another foe, the Assiniboines, lounged against the cottonwood logs that were used for the walls of the room.
Eagle Heart took a deep breath at the same moment he realized the room did not stink. Instead, it was scented with the aroma of trees, logs, and the distinctive fragrances of autumn leaves. Certainly, he didn't notice there was much unusual this day, and there was no white woman he could bear witness to. But, giving his friend his due, he decided to wait.
Looking around the room, he noticed Gray Falcon had positioned himself so he was leaning against a far wall, directly across from the table used for trading. Eagle Heart joined him there, and, leaning back, crossed his arms in front of his chest, prepared to wait.
Unexpectedly, the delightful sound of a feminine laugh filled the air. He frowned, surprised, for the voice was pretty.
And, then he saw her: she had slipped into the trading center from a room in back and was standing behind the trader, Larpenteur. When she moved slightly, Eagle Heart caught a glance of bouncing brown curls with a hint of gold within them. And, those locks were shimmering against a very pretty face. She laughed again and took a few steps around the clerk, a smile still affixed to her lovely countenance. She was glancing up at Larpenteur, and Eagle Heart experienced a startling reaction: he forgot to breathe. She was that beautiful.
Her figure was slim and small, her profile showing off a perfect nose that turned up slightly at the end. Her eyelashes were long and brown, and her eyes were a brilliant color of green. Her cheeks were rosy, and her full lips were still smiling. The brown color of her hair, with gold intertwined, was of a shade he had never before seen on a woman until this moment, and the length of it fell down her back in luscious curls. And, he saw not a single hair on her face.
Eagle Heart tried to breathe in. He couldn't. She had literally stolen his breath away.
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