From the Author
The only real person mentioned in this story is John Fortin, a merchant who traded with Bordeaux in the late 1290s. He might have been generous enough to allow others to invest in his ventures, but whether he did or not, the wine trade out of Bristol flourished from this period onward and was a great opportunity for those with the finances available to make their fortunes.
A few inspirations helped me get into Will and Eleanor's minds. This quote by Giacomo Casanova was one: "A girl who is pretty and good, and as virtuous as you please, ought not to take it ill that a man, carried away by her charms, should set himself to the task of making their conquest."
"Thunder Road" by Bruce Springsteen was also playing in"the background when I wrote, and on the journey to and from work while I did a lot of my thinking.
For readers wishing to search online for locations, or visit them, Eleanor's house is heavily modeled on St. Michael's Mount, but also owes some influence to Lindisfarne Castle on Holy Island. Sir Edgar's fortified house is based on Ightham Mote in Kent and Stokesay Castle in Shropshire."
From the Inside Flap
He took a step away from Eleanor and turned his back on her. She opened her mouth to ask what he meant, but with a speed that took her by surprise, William twisted the sword about his wrist and spun round.
Before Eleanor could react, William had the sword held full at arm's length, pointing at her breast. The tip was barely a hand's breadth from touching her dress. The words died on Eleanor's lips and the only sound that came out of her mouth was a soft whimper. Her head jerked up in shock and she discovered William watching her intently, his face fiercer and more determined than she had ever seen him look."