Authors: S.R. Roddy
“Tash, you do
realize you’re wearing the MacKay colors don’t you?” This from Cameron the
youngest who always liked to shorten her already short nickname. He brought new
meaning to the word annoying.
Cameron was a
year younger than her, but acted more like a child than an adult most days. The
shortest of the three brothers at 5’10” he seemed a giant to her 5’2’ and he
loved to use it to his advantage. He had always been the more perverted of the
brothers, standing close to a girl until he was almost touching, then looking
down into her blouse. She had caught on to his tricks years ago and he knew
better than to get to close to her if he wanted to keep what was between his
legs happy. With his sandy brown hair and laughing blue eyes he left most women
in a melted heap on the ground, but not her. When he smiled and flashed those
two dimples on his cheeks she would just roll her eyes. He had always seemed to
think of her as a challenge, she just wanted him to go away.
“You boys seem
to forget that I descend from the MacKay’s myself on my great grandmother’s
side of the family. The Arisaid and badge belonged to her, gifts from her
husband in honor a heritage she was always proud of.” There that should put
them in their place a bit, and stop that possessive look that had come into
Malcolm’s stormy eyes.
Cameron, Malcolm was less of a playboy. He still liked women, a lot, but he was
more selective and very discrete. He had darker hair, almost black, with
streaks of red in it that warned of his volatile temper. His eyes were gray
with flecks of blue in their depths. Standing at 6’ he enjoyed intimidating
others, but when he smiled and his single dimple peeked out at you, a person
could forget for just a moment what an ass he was. She was no exception, that
single dimple always seemed to surprise her and turned her brain to mush, at
least until he opened his mouth again. He had wanted Tasha as his own since
they were children, but she had no interest in someone who would bully others
if they even smiled in her direction. He had always been a possessive child and
that had not changed much as he grew into an adult. He was a few years older
than her, but never seemed to grow out of the obsession he had towards her.
mischievous look that crossed Cameron’s face warned Tasha he was about to say
something completely obnoxious. “Oh sweetheart we haven’t forgotten a thing
about you. The real question is… Do you want a little more MacKay in you?”
I assume?” She hadn’t meant to say it, but the comment had
just slipped out of her lips without a thought. God, she knew it was stupid to
respond. He would just see it as a sign of interest.
tried, all be it unsuccessfully, to swallow his laughter over Cameron’s
statement and my not so subtle insult, his older brother Ian looked pissed. She
really hoped that dimple didn’t peek out at her, she needed all her wits about
her around these men. “Watch your damn mouth!” He proceeded to smack Cameron in
the back of the head as he held his arm out to me. “I’m really sorry for both
of my brother’s less than stellar behavior… they can’t seem to help it. Maybe
it stems from the fact they were both born in a barn… literally.”
She took Ian’s
arm allowing him to escort her into the barn. “You’re not to blame for their
bad manners. No worries… I mostly try to ignore the two of them.”
Of the three
brothers he was the sweetest, she had always had a secret crush on him, but
never allowed herself the luxury of following through with it. At 6’2” he was
the tallest of the brothers, with jet black hair and golden eyes that seemed to
draw you in. If you looked long enough a person could see the green flecks that
danced in their depths. He was the more serious of the brothers, always doing
the right and responsible thing. Tasha always believed he had a noble heart,
but he always seemed to be walking around with the weight of the world on his
shoulders. She could see how having the responsibility of the family ranch at a
young age could do that to him, but at the same time it saddened her.
years older than them he had always been the one to watch over the other kids.
While some boys would consider it an annoyance he took it as a challenge and
enjoyed every minute of it. She could remember his laughter and natural
playfulness. He had one dimple just like Malcolm, but when he was younger it
was always there on his face because he was always smiling. Ian never had any
hidden surprises to knock you on your butt, he laid it all out in the open for
the world to see.
It had always
made Tasha want to be close to him. As a child she never left his side,
constantly clinging to him and he never seemed to mind. Then one day when he
was a senior in high school his dad died in an accident. It seemed to change
him over night. There were no more easy smiles or constant laughter. He took to
his responsibilities like the man he was born to be, but at the same time it
had taken all the joy out of him.
He softly ran
his fingers along her hand as she held his arm. A thrill went through her, his
touch was exciting, but yet comforting at the same time. “I’m still sorry… you
deserve to be treated better than that. How about I make it up to you by being
your escort for the night?”
stop the smile that lit her face at his request. She knew what an honor he had just
given her. Ian never escorted women to any function. He was very careful about
not giving the reporters ammo against his family. Just as he was aware she
never allowed anyone to escort her for the same reasons. “I would be honored
kind sir.” She couldn’t resist the very proper curtsy.
He lifted her
hand to his lips as he bowed gallantly over it. “The pleasure is all mine my
dear.” He responded with a playful wink and that very elusive smile that was so
charming before placing her hand back on his arm and escorting her into the
crowd. A blush crept across her cheeks as she noticed his dimple winking at her
for the first time in years.
was turning out to be even more of a success than Tasha had ever hoped for. Ian
MacKay had set up a silent auction, which had been a complete surprise to her.
The proceeds of which had put them way over the top of what they had needed.
The way the community had banded together for the children brought tears to her
eyes. Tasha knew in her heart that if anything happened to her the town would
finally step up to the plate and do the right thing by these children. Some may
not realize it yet, but those orphans were the heart of this town and had been
for over a decade.
Ian had been a
charming companion, but at some point duty had called them both in separate
directions causing them to eventually leave each others company and mingle with
their guests alone. Within the last hour she had slowly drifted toward the open
barn doors. The heavy mist had begun to roll in giving the fields the added
spookiness the evening deserved. As she stood watching the night shroud itself
in mystery something drew her attention to the edge of the woods. A sound or
maybe it was a movement at the edge of the trees she didn’t know which, but
before she realized it Tasha had walked nearly to the edge of the fields, only
feet from the woods. A familiar looking man stood in the shadows watching her.
Tasha knew she
should be afraid, but oddly she wasn’t. Instead something compelled her to step
closer to this mysterious man. “Ian?” Tasha asked confused, but even as she
asked the question she knew this wasn’t Ian. Though he looked similar in many
ways he was several inches taller than Ian and his build was burlier, with
broader shoulders, his hair slightly longer.
surprise a man she had only ever seen in her dreams stepped out of the shadows.
“Och lass, I have been waiting sae long for ye tae come tae me once more.”
How could she
ever have mistaken this man for Ian? He had a much more rugged face, like life
had been harder on him than the privilege Ian had come from. Though he sported
the MacKay colors of old, he wore a bonnet on his head in deep blue with the
clan badge sewn to it, as well as another made of gold pinned to his plaid. Both
of which proclaimed him clan chieftain. The shock of seeing her dream man in
reality had left her slightly dazed.
They were only
inches apart now, and she was looking into the greenest eyes she had ever seen.
They reminded her of the forest in late spring when the leaves had fully
bloomed. His fingers caressed down her cheek. “Nay lass, I am Tavish, Tavish
MacKay clan chieftain.” He began to grumble under his breath in a language she
didn’t recognize at first. “Ye would think ma dream woman would ken who I was. Ye
ken me by scent the other day in the forest. Sandalwood, leather and forest….
those were yer words.” Putting his hands on her hips he pulled her closer to
Then it hit
her like a ton of bricks. Gaelic, he was speaking Gaelic. “How… you… you can’t
be real.” Her hesitant words did nothing to stop her from meeting his lips half
way when he bent to kiss her. Her world exploded in a dizzying array of colors
as their lips met and they began to explore each other’s depths.
slightly away he began a slow path along her cheek before whispering in her
ear. “Every night ye have come tae me in ma dreams, but this is the first time we
have actually been allowed tae touch and speak tae each other. Ye feel sae soft
and warm…. sae real. How can this be?”
“Not true… it
was you that day in the forest touching me… I know it was.”
No matter how
crazy it sounded this man was real, but not real. How could this be? Tasha
began to rack her brain for answers and as the fog of sensual desire began to
lift it hit her. She remembered reading recently about the many pagan holidays
associated with mystical events. The autumn equinox was sometime in September
if she remembered right.”Tonight is officially the first day of fall…. that has
to be it.”
to shake his head. “What do ye mean fall? I doona understand yer use of the
“Oh, of course
not… it’s, umm… you would recognize the name autumn equinox better probably.”
“Are ye a
ghostie then lass?” He asked curiously the look of doubt that crossed his face
making it obvious he didn’t really believe she was.
back slightly to shake her head. “No I think you are though…. but you feel… so
real.” The last words were whispered as she leaned in to kiss a long his naked
“Nay lass…” He
denied vehemently. “I assure ye I am verra real.” He swore before lifting her
face to his once more. His lips touched hers in an all consuming kiss that
turned her insides to molten fire. A sweep of his tongue, the gentle tug of his
teeth on her lips, she yielded to the passion which consumed them both.
stopped to take a breath Tavish continued the conversation as if he was
unaffected by all that was happening. “The equinox explains tae night, but nae
the past few months and all the dreams. Something else is at work here…
something mystical most definitely, but nae just the mystery of this night.”
horrible thought jumped into her mind without a thought she blurted it out. “If
you’re like a great-great-great grandfather or something don’t tell me…. cause
that would really creep me out.”
laughed half growled before pulling her closer and whispering against her lips.
“Lass… ye talk sae strange I barely understand most of what ye are saying… but
the sound of yer voice… och lass I could listen tae ye speak all night. It
warms ma blood and soothes ma soul like nothing else has in years.” Well that
answered her question of whether or not he was moved by her touch as she had
been by his. Then he was pulling her tighter into his arms and kissing her once
more. An all consuming kiss of possession that ignited the blood.
God what she
wouldn’t give to be possessed by this man for all times. This must be a dream,
but it seems so real… he felt so real. She groaned loudly as she forced herself
to pull away from his embrace. Something wasn’t right and she needed answers.
“How can you be real? Where did you come from?”
“That is a
strange question lass.” He looked at her with confusion clouding his eyes. “We
are in Scotland... how do ye nae ken where ye are?”
She shook her
head in the negative. “No… we are at my neighbors home… you didn’t even get the
continent right. This is America… not Scotland.”
“What trick is
this? I have read the reports on Amerigo Vespucci’s findings and have heard the
rumors that they would call those new lands America after him, but the people
that inhabit those lands doona speak any form of English. I ken of their darker
skin and their savage nature… ye doona fit either description lass. What ye say
is impossible. These woods behind me are on ma land in Scotland… just on the
other side of these dense trees is the great MacKay stronghold.”
A look of
confusion and anxiety crossed her face. He was either a psycho or he was
telling the truth… but how could that be? Well she thought he was a ghost at
first… why did it bother her more that he was from a different place? Looking
at him more closely another thought filtered into her mind… if he was from a
different place…. She had been having dreams of this man for months, but
everything around him had appeared as something out of a historical novel. Was
it possible he might be from a different time as well? Before she could lose
her nerve she blurted out her question. “What year is it?”
“Why it is
1501 lass… did ye hit yer head?” The look of concern that crossed his handsome
face as he began to inspect her head for some unknown injury was endearing and
at the same time she had a strong desire to laugh.
the lump in her throat. Could what he was saying be true? How could it be? It
wasn’t possible for a man from Scotland in the year 1501 to be transported to
this time. Yet here he was standing in before her. How could she deny that now?
Despite all her misgivings oddly she believed him. Another thought crossed her
mind… if what he was saying was true… and she was finally beginning to believe
it was… then he really was a ghost of sorts. She was making out with a man that
was half a century old… the idea may sound gross, but the act felt oh so good.