Druid's Daughter

Druid's Daughter by Jean Hart Stewart

Book: Druid's Daughter by Jean Hart Stewart Read Free Book Online
Authors: Jean Hart Stewart
    “Don’t mind Ambrose, please. He knows everything I’m about
to say.” Her voice sounded constrained and unnatural and Devon suspected she
was thinking of how best to frame her next words. He had no doubt she meant to tell
him a story he didn’t want to hear. He didn’t care about her past, he loved her
and wanted her. Well, he would listen and then shoot down whatever argument she
mistakenly thought relevant. Knowing Viviane, she could never have been
    He sat in the large chair she motioned him to and leaned
back. Viviane always had flowers in almost every room in the house. For some
reason he didn’t understand roses made him sneeze and he appreciated she’d
noticed and massed an unusual arrangement of snapdragons and daisies in a low
bowl. His future wife possessed talents in many respects.
    “Go ahead, my dear. I’ll listen to whatever you want to say
and then we’ll plan our wedding date. I’m not about to give up because of
whatever silly sin you think you must confess. But go ahead.”
    Crossing his legs at the ankles, he hoped he appeared
perfectly at ease although he most certainly was not. He dreaded the next few
    Viviane seated herself beside him, pulling a chair close
enough she could hold his hand. Ambrose watched her, but didn’t follow to her
    “I need to touch you for courage.” Her nervous laugh
revealed a true hesitancy. “I think I must start when I was sixteen and was far
along in my training for a Druid priestess. On Beltane, which is the celebration
of the summer solstice, a priest persuaded me the Goddess ordained I lie with
him, that my virginity was fated to be a gift to her through him. You might
know there can be a commingling of many initiates at that time, but never
unless the priestess or novitiate wishes it. Never, ever, can it be a matter of
false representation.”
    She drew a deep breath and he started to reach for her, but
she waved him away.
    “I became pregnant, from that one night. When I told the
High Priestess she was incensed, not at me for being pregnant, but for the
deception played on me. Druids revere life and while in your world I would be a
fallen woman, I was not to the High Priestess or to the Druids. I was not
chastised or ostracized in any way. A new daughter is always especially welcome
to them for training.”
    Randall was rigid with anger. “And him?”
    “He was dismissed from the Druid community. Druids despise
falsehood in any form. I do not know what happened to him nor do I care.”
    She took a deep breath and continued. “When a girl was born
to me I knew one thing, I didn’t want to continue my training. The Druids would
gladly have given her to be fostered and then taken into their teaching. I
wanted to raise her myself. I named her Morgan after Morgan La Fay the
enchantress, Merlin the magician’s enchantress. I took the name McAfee as the
closest I dared come to La Fay. She is well named. My Morgan enchanted me from
the moment I saw her.”
    Randall knew he must conquer his fury. When he thought he
had himself in control as he leaned toward Viviane, who sat in silence. Only a
slight twisting of her hands betrayed her distress at finally revealing her
    “My dearest love, please don’t go on. I can tell this is
difficult for you.” Randall took one hand and pressed it firmly in both of his.
    “No.” Viviane’s sigh came from deep in her chest. “I’m
almost done.”
    She took a long breath. “I left the Druids and became a
servant. My training for a priestess didn’t extend to teaching me to earn a
living. I only took work if Morgan could be with me. After about six years I
became housekeeper and then secretary to Lord Sinclair. He loved Morgan and
begged me to marry him and let him adopt her. He had a large library and we
were both given full rein. When he died he left me a good deal of money and I
bought a place in the country plus this townhouse. But I have never lain with
any other man

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