Hannah Dawson never expected to be attacked by Yankee deserters where she lives in the Tennessee Smokey Mountains…but she never imagined she’d be forced to marry the Yankee officer that saves her either.
When Lieutenant Lane Peterson, of the Union Army rescues a Tennessee belle and is injured in the process he is surprised when Hannah takes him in and nurses him back to health. Unable to keep his hands from exploring her tempting body, Lane finds himself in a compromising position and before he knows it he is standing as a reluctant groom for a shot gun wedding. As soon as his wounds heal, Lane plans to head north, find the first Union Army camp he comes to and get his marriage to the Southerner annulled. But Mother Nature and fate have plans of their own. Snowed in for the winter, Lane and Hannah find a passion that will not be denied North and South of the Mason-Dixon Line.
Frank looked incredulous. “What were you thinking climbing into bed with a total stranger? He could be a Yankee,” he said with disgust, and Hannah watched as Lane’s hand clenched into a fist, holding the blanket in place around his hips. “Alice, get the wagon and the sheriff. This man took advantage of Hannah, and by God, he’s going to pay.”
Hannah’s eyes widened in horror. “Frank, no. He’s not a Yankee and he…he…he…” Her wild gaze turned on Lane, but he said nothing. Her mind raced for an answer, any answer that would save him from going to jail and being discovered for who he was. A Yankee. She didn’t know why, but she couldn’t bear the thought of him going to a prison camp. Or worse...killed. She twisted her hands nervously and turned back to Frank. “He’s...he’s my fiancé from...from Virginia,” she blurted finally.
Lane looked at her as if she’d lost her mind. Frank and Alice gasped loudly. “What? When did this happen?” Frank stared hard at Lane. “How did this happen,” he demanded.
Hannah had no idea, and she looked to Lane too, hoping he’d have the answers. He stared at her through narrowed eyes, then turned his gaze to Frank. A slow Southern accent that would make any true Southerner proud spilled from his lips. “I’m Lane Peterson, from Richmond. I’ve been stealing medical supplies from the Union army for the last three and half years and getting them to our boys as quick as I can. I met this lovely lady a year ago, running through with supplies, and ever since, I’ve tried passing through this way as much as the war would allow me until I finally asked her to marry me.”
Frank turned on Hannah, looking furious, his cane scrapping loudly against the hardwood floor. Alice looked positively perplexed, her hands covering her heart. “Why didn’t you tell us about your engagement?”
Hannah shrugged. “I don’t know.” Which she really didn’t and needed a good excuse and quick. “With the war and not knowing how things would turn out, we agreed to wait to tell our family after it was over.” She looked toward Lane, her voice rising in panic as she motioned toward him. “His family doesn’t even know.” At least that part was truth. His family knew nothing about what happened here.
Frank clutched his gun and continued to glare at Lane. “What were you doing in bed together with your hands all over Hannah?”
Lane sighed. He looked so sincere when he answered she almost swore he meant it. “I’m sorry, I lost control of my sensibilities as a gentleman. I would never have taken advantage of Hannah, and I do intend to marry her,” he paused, then added the last statement that would save them both, “as soon as the war is over, of course.”
Frank shook his head. “No. You’ll marry her now."