"Samantha Young is master storyteller, skilfully weaving an enemies-to-lovers romance into a suspense crime mystery with a satisfying dose of family drama, all set against the majestic Scottish Highlands...This book is an electrifying and emotional rollercoaster you'll want to ride forever."Sarah Smith
Author of Faker and Simmer Down
"Absolutely breath-taking! As soon as I picked up Here With Me I couldn't put it down. This book has everything I love in a story: mystery, suspense, great dialogue, and of course the kind of steamy romance that will keep you hooked."L.H. Cosway
Bestselling Author of the Hearts Series
“Brimming with tantalizing tension and thrilling action, Here With Me is the perfect unputdownable combination of suspense, sensuality, and Scotland. When Lachlan and Robyn’s smoldering hatred sparks into something more, their passion practically blazes on the page. And the emotional buildup leads to an ending that is both shocking and utterly satisfying—I cannot wait for the next one!”Libby Hubscher
Author of Meet Me in Paradise
"Samantha Young weaves together gorgeous prose, beautifully unique characters, and a love story that won't leave you long after you've finished. One of my favorite books I've read this year and a must-read for romance fans!"Catherine Cowles
Author of the Sutter Lake Series
Settled in the tranquil remoteness of the Scottish Highlands, Ardnoch Estate caters to the rich and famous. It is as unattainable and as mysterious as its owner—ex-Hollywood leading man Lachlan Adair—and it's poised on the edge of a dark scandal.
After narrowly escaping death, police officer Robyn Penhaligon leaves behind her life in Boston in search of some answers. Starting with Mac Galbraith, the Scottish father who abandoned her to pursue his career in private security. To re-connect with Mac, Robyn will finally meet a man she’s long resented. Lachlan Adair. Hostility instantly brews between Robyn and Lachlan. She thinks the head of the Adair family is high-handed and self-important. And finding closure with Mac is proving more difficult than she ever imagined. Robyn would sooner leave Ardnoch, but when she discovers Mac is embroiled in a threat against the Adairs and the exclusive members of the estate, she finds she’s not yet ready to give up on her father.
Determined to ensure Mac’s safety, Robyn investigates the disturbing crimes at Ardnoch, forcing her and Lachlan to spend time together. Soon it becomes clear a searing attraction exists beneath their animosity, and temptation leads them down a perilous path.
While they discover they are connected by something far more addictive than passion, Lachlan cannot let go of his grip on a painful past: a past that will destroy his future … if the insidious presence of an enemy lurking in the shadows of Ardnoch doesn’t do the job first.
Release date: May 11, 2021
Publisher: Samantha Young
Print pages: 506
Reader says this book is...: emotionally riveting (1) great world-building (1) happily ever after (1) sex scenes (1) strong heroine (1) thought-provoking (1)
Content advisory: explicit language; sexual content
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Here With Me
One year ago
The rain lashed our patrol car as we sipped our coffees, waiting for a crackle on the radio.
I was enjoying the peaceful lull created by the sounds of raindrops on metal when a pop of color in the overwhelming gray beyond my window caught my attention.
On the sidewalk, a woman in a navy coat, one hand holding a black umbrella, the other a leash, was halted by the dog on the end of it. From here, it looked like a Lab. The dog wore a bright red raincoat. And he’d sat his ass down on the sidewalk as if to say, “I’m done with this shit. Make it stop.”
I laughed under my breath as the woman gesticulated wildly, as if to reply, “What the hell do you want me to do about it?”
Her arms thrown wide, head bent toward the dog staring back up at her, became a snapshot in my head. I wished I had my camera. I’d use a wide aperture and my 150mm lens to blur out the gray, movement-filled background and focus on the woman and her stubborn dog.
“Jaz thinks you should dump Mark.” My partner, Autry Davis, yanked me out of the mental photography processing in my head.
Smirking at the comment, I ignored the uneasiness that accompanied it. “Oh, Jaz thinks that?”
Jasmine “Jaz” Davis was pretty outspoken, but Autry had made it clear he didn’t like my boyfriend Mark from the moment he’d met him.
“Sure does.” Autry stared out the window at the passing traffic. We were parked on Maverick Square in East Boston, near a bakery we both liked. They did good coffees. And Boston creams. Not that we were trying to live up to the cop cliché. We allowed ourselves a Boston cream once a week. It was our treat. “She thinks he thinks what he does is more important than what you do and that he never prioritizes you.”
That did sound like something Jaz would say.
Mark was a prosecutor and very good at his job. His success was appealing because I found hardworking guys sexy. But lately he’d been pushing me to make a change. He thought I should work my way up, apply to become a sergeant detective and then move up to lieutenant.
He didn’t understand I didn’t want that because he was the most driven son of a bitch I’d ever met. Like I said, that was hot until he tried to make me into someone I wasn’t.
“Well, you can tell Jaz I’m breaking up with him.”
Autry tried not to look too happy about that and failed. “Yeah?”
“Yeah. He’s too much like hard work.”
“Not that I want to talk you out of dumping the guy, but you do realize relationships are hard work. Right?”
I snorted. “Says the man with the wife and kids he adores.”
“Doesn’t mean it isn’t hard work.”
“I know that. But you’ve got to want to work hard at it, and I don’t want to with Mark. Last weekend, he blew up at me for buying a fish-eye lens for my camera. Told me an expensive ‘hobby’ was a waste of my mediocre income, and he wasn’t about to indulge me in a pastime.” My skin flushed hot with anger at the reminder. I’d emotionally and verbally shut him out ever since.
“He said what?” Autry frowned. “Yeah, you need to dump his ass, pronto. Shit, can you imagine Jaz if I tried to condescend to her like that? He’s lucky he’s dealing with you and not my woman. He wouldn’t have come out of it alive. And I’m not telling her what you just told me, ’cause he still might not. Damn, Penhaligon. Life is too short for that bullshit.”
“The sex is pretty good, though.” I said it mostly to be funny. No sex was worth being with a guy who made me feel small and unimportant.
Autry cut me a warning look. “Don’t want to hear it.”
I laughed under my breath and sipped my coffee.
Straight out of the academy at twenty-one, I was introduced to Autry Davis, my beat partner. A tall, good-looking man seven years my senior with a quick sense of humor and a warmth that could melt even the coldest soul. I’d developed a crush on the man. A crush that soon faded into friendship and trust. Especially when I met his wife Jaz and their two young daughters, Asia and Jada. In the last six years, the Davises had welcomed me into their family. Autry now was like an older brother. Like any brother, he didn’t want to hear about his little sister’s sex life.
And like any little sister, I deliberately ignored his pleas to stop torturing him with the details.
“I mean, there’s room for improvement, but he’s definitely better at it than Axel.” Axel was the guy before Mark. A musician. Self-involved. Selfish in bed. And out of it. When I was sick with a bad head cold, he didn’t opt to check in on me or offer to buy me groceries so I could stay in bed. Nope. He disappeared and said he wouldn’t be back until I was well again. Jaz and Autry took care of me. Axel didn’t come back when I was well again because I told him not to. Mark wasn’t that giving in bed either, to be fair, but at least with him, I reached climax.
“I can’t hear you.” Autry scowled out the window. “I am no longer in the car. I am someplace where the world is good and right and the Celtics are winning the season.”
“So the land of make-believe, then?”
“Don’t you come at the Celtics.”
I chuckled, opening my mouth to continue teasing him when the radio crackled.
“Domestic disturbance. Lexington Street, apartment 302B. Neighbor called it in.”
Autry reached for the radio. “Gold 1-67. Three minutes out.”
I’d already started the engine and was swinging the car into traffic.
“What do you think it is this time?” I asked.
“You always guess that.”
“Because I’m nearly always right.”
“Last time you were wrong.”
“What was last time?”
“Oh, Davis, you’re getting old,” I teased. “Girlfriend found out boyfriend had gambled all her savings. She beat the shit out of him.”
“Oh yeah. That was a nasty one. That man will never be able to have children after what she did to him.”
Unfortunately, probably true. I winced at the memory.
Only a few minutes later, we pulled up to the apartment building on the corner of Lexington. It had the same architecture as all the buildings in this part of Boston—narrow with wooden shingle siding. This one was painted white years ago and was in dire need of a repaint. It had two entrances, one for the downstairs apartment and the other for the upstairs. A woman in bright yellow pajamas, her hair covered with a matching bandana, stood outside the first-floor apartment door. She approached us as we got out of the car.
“They’ve been yelling up there for the last thirty minutes, and then I heard things crashing and she started screaming and crying.” The neighbor looked shaken. “He’s shiesty as fuck, that one. Think he’s into drugs. Thought I better call it in.”
I gave her a reassuring smile and was about to speak when a terrified shriek sounded from above. Autry hurried to the door. Turning back to the neighbor, I ordered, “Please return to your apartment, ma’am.”
As I watched her do this, Autry banged on the door to the upstairs apartment. “Boston PD, open up!”
An angry male voice could be heard yelling obscenities upstairs. I caught “fucking bitch” in among the rambling, followed by loud sobbing broken by intermittent, garbled screaming.
Autry looked at me, face grim, and my hand went to my holster.
He turned the handle on the front door and it opened.
As we moved into the cramped hall, to the stairs leading steeply up to the next floor, I followed Autry and took out my gun. The occupants of the apartment no doubt couldn’t hear us over their argument. As we climbed the stairs, it became apparent, from what I could make out, that this altercation was about drugs. He seemed to think she was skimming money off the top while selling his product. Not an average domestic disturbance call after all.
I steeled myself.
The stairs led to a hallway with two doorways opposite each other. We peeked in one and saw it was the bedroom; it appeared empty. Then we moved just beyond the door into the other, which took us into a small kitchen/living space. The place was trashed. Coffee table on its side, TV smashed, photographs falling out of broken frames and glass littered in their midst. A stool at the mini breakfast bar lay on its side.
A young woman huddled on the sofa, face streaked with mascara, fear in her liquid eyes as she stared up at a tall, skinny guy who held a handgun in her face.
We raised our guns.
“Boston PD. Lower your weapon,” Autry demanded.
The man looked at us without doing as warned. He scowled. “What the fuck are you fuckin’ bastards doing here? This ain’t your business. Did that nosy cunt downstairs call the cops?”
His pupils were dilated, his speech slurred.
The guy was high.
This situation just got better and better.
I repeated, “Sir, lower your weapon.”
“If you do not lower your weapon, it will be construed as a threat and I will shoot you,” Autry warned.
“I didn’t understand half that shit.” The gun wavered dangerously in his hand.
“Davis,” I murmured and turned my head ever so slightly to look up at my partner—
Movement flashed in my peripheral. Adrenaline shot through me as another guy came charging into the room, handgun raised and pointed at Autry’s back, finger on the trigger.
There was no time for anything but to move in front of my partner.
To shield him.
With threats front and back, I had no choice but to fire at the threat from behind. Two gunshots sounded, louder than a clap of thunder above the building. The sound ricocheted through my head at almost the same time that the sharp, burning sensation ripped through my chest.
Another bang. Another burn. And another.
I slumped into Autry as more gunfire sounded above my head.
There was noise. Groaning. Screaming.
Autry’s voice calmly telling me I would be okay.
“Three people with gunshot wounds. We got an officer down. She’s been shot multiple times. I need ambulances to 302B Lexington Street.”
The pain in my chest seemed to spread through my whole body as I felt pressure on my wounds. “Shit, Robyn, shit,” Autry murmured in my ear. “Why, why?”
I understood what he asked.
I wanted to answer, but I couldn’t make my lips move, and there was something wrong with my vision. Black shadows crept around the edges, growing thicker and faster.
“Stay with me, Robbie. Stay with me.”
I wanted to.
I wanted to reach out and grip tight to him and not let go.
But my body and mind felt disconnected, my mind pulling me farther and farther away …
For once, I wasn’t thinking about my camera or the scenery or the perfect shot. Amazing, really, when I was in one of the most beautiful places I’d ever been in my life.
Yet, it was difficult to see it right now when I was minutes away from meeting my father.
A man I hadn’t seen since I was fourteen years old.
People called the nervous flutters in their stomach butterflies. Butterflies didn’t cut it. Surely butterflies were when you were excited-nervous? What was happening in my gut right now made me feel physically ill. Even my knees shook.
And I hated that my birth father, Mac Galbraith, had that power over me.
I got out of my rental and forced my shoulders back, taking a deep breath as I strode down the gravel driveway toward the enormous security gates built into brick pillars. Those pillars flowed into a tall wall. On the other side of the gate, the drive continued, fading into the darkness of the woodland that shadowed its edges.
As I grew closer, I searched for a call button or cameras. Nothing. Stopping at the gate, I gave them a shake, but they were made of solid iron and immovable. Eyes narrowing, I searched beyond into the trees, trying to listen past the chirping of birds and the rustle of leaves in the wind.
A slight whirring to my left drew my attention, and I caught the light glancing off the movement of a lens. Ducking my head to look closer, I saw the security camera camouflaged in a tree.
I saluted the camera with two fingers off my forehead to let whoever was behind it know I’d seen them.
Now all I could do was wait.
Just what my nerves needed.
I turned, leaned against the gate, and crossed my arms and legs in a deliberate pose that said, “I’m not going anywhere until someone comes out here.”
Not even a few minutes later, I heard an engine and the kick of gravel. Pushing off the gate, I turned and watched the black Range Rover with its tinted windows approach from the other side.
My nerves rose to the fore with a vengeance.
Why oh why did my father have to be head of security at one of the most prestigious members-only clubs in the world?
Because of Lachlan Adair.
Jealousy and resentment that I hated I felt burned in the back of my throat. Ignoring the sensation, I crossed my arms over my chest and tried to look nonchalant as the Range Rover stopped. The driver door opened, and a man wearing black pants, a black shirt, and a leather jacket approached the gate.
I noted the little wire in his ear.
He was security.
But he was not my father.
“Madam, this is private property,” the guy said in a Scottish brogue much like Mac’s.
“I know.” I stared him down through the gate bars. “I’m here to see my father.”
“I’m afraid only members and staff are allowed entrance onto the estate. I’ll have to ask you to return to your vehicle and leave.”
Like I could give a rat’s ass that Ardnoch Castle and Estate was home to actors and movie and TV industry types who paid a fortune in annual fees just to say they were a member. “My name is Robyn Penhaligon. My father is Mac Galbraith. Could you let him know I’m here?”
The security guard was good—he didn’t betray his reaction to this news. “Do you have identification?”
Knowing they’d ask for it, I’d stuck my driver’s license in the ass pocket of my jeans. I whipped it out and handed it over.
“One second, please.” The guy returned to the vehicle and opened the driver’s door. He got in without closing it, and I heard him murmuring.
While his conversation with whoever went on, I returned to my car to get the sweater I’d thrown in the back seat. I’d been too hot with nerves when I’d left the hotel, but the chilled spring air now made me shiver.
A few minutes later, the guy returned to the gate. “Ms. Penhaligon, I must ask you to hand over any recording devices you have on your person, including any smartphones.”
“Nonmembers are not allowed onto the estate with recording devices. This ensures the privacy of our guests.”
“Right.” At least that meant Daddy Dearest didn’t intend to turn me away.
A little part of me almost wished he had.
I grabbed my phone out of my car, glad I’d had the sense to leave my camera in my room. I trusted no one with my baby.
“Is that everything?”
“Please return to your vehicle. The gates will open momentarily, and you will follow me onto the estate.”
I nodded and got back into my rented SUV. A four-by-four had seemed like the right choice for spending time in the Highlands, and this one was affordable. Deciding to fly to Scotland without booking a return ticket gave my savings account serious palpitations. I had to be careful with my money while I was here.
As soon as the security guy couldn’t see my face anymore, I let out a shaky exhale and waited for the gates to open. While I did this, the guy turned the Range Rover around and drove up the gravel drive to give the gates room. They swung inward seconds later, and I drove forward.
The driveway led through woodlands for what felt like forever before the trees disappeared to reveal grass for miles around a mammoth building in the distance. Flags were situated throughout the rolling plains of the estate—a golf course. Tiny distant figures could be seen playing.
Eyes back on Ardnoch Castle, I sucked in another breath.
I’d never felt more out of place.
It was a feeling I was used to when it came to Mac.
I never felt a part of his world.
He’d never let me.
The castle was a rambling, castellated mansion, six stories tall and about two hundred years old. I knew from my research that while it was the club’s main building, there were several buildings throughout the twelve-thousand acre estate, including permanent residences members paid exorbitant amounts to own. According to Google, the estate sat on the coast of Ardnoch and was home to pine forests (which I could attest to), rolling plains (again, saw that), heather moors (really wanted to see those), and golden beaches (really, really wanted to see those). While I wasn’t sure how this visit with my father would go, I kind of hoped it went well enough for a tour of the estate.
Even if I did feel like a fish out of water.
As I followed the Range Rover up to the castle, I mused over the security here in general. While there was a great big gate and walls at the main entrance, how did they ensure members privacy when there were twelve thousand acres to manage?
Something to ask Dear Old Dad if we ever got past the awkward, “Why didn’t you love me enough to stay in my life, leaving me with rampant abandonment issues that have impacted me to almost fatal levels?”
There went my stomach again, roiling like a ship caught in a storm.
“Jesus Christ,” I whispered as I pushed open the driver’s door. The castle was like Downton Abbey on steroids. There were turrets, and a flag of the St. Andrew’s Cross flew from one of the parapets. Columns supported a mini-crenellated roof over an elaborate portico that housed double iron doors.
As I got out, the wind blew my ponytail in my face and battered through my sweater. It was much windier here without the protection of the trees. And it had an icy nip that surprised me, considering it was almost April. The smell of saltwater hung in the air despite the fact the castle sat two miles inland.
I loved the air here. Crisp and fresh. It filled me with energy.
Neck craned, I stared up at the flag and heard the creak of the iron doors opening. A man wearing a traditional butler’s uniform, including white gloves, stepped out as if to greet me.
But then he was halted by the appearance of another man.
Drawing a breath, I stepped out from behind the driver’s door and closed it, forcing myself to look at the very tall, broad-shouldered figure heading my way.
A mixture of overwhelming emotions flooded me as I recognized the man. He wore a tailored gray suit that didn’t quite civilize him. His thick, salt-and-pepper hair needed a trim and curled at his nape. His cheeks were unshaven.
He appeared to be in his late thirties but I knew him to be forty-four years old.
Expression neutral, he strode toward me with determination. As he drew closer, I realized how much I looked like my father. His hair was darker. But I had his face shape and his eyes.
Those were definitely my eyes. The same light brown around the pupil, striations of gray and green bleeding into the brown from the edges of the iris.
Mom always said at least my father had given me something good.
Mac Galbraith stared at me stonily. That bland countenance disappeared as he swallowed hard. “Robyn?”
“Mac.” I held out my hand to shake his.
He stared at it for a second as if not quite sure what to do.
Manners compelled him to shake it finally. He squeezed my hand before seeming reluctant to release me. The action caused a complex response I hadn’t expected. Tears threatened, and I glanced away, as if casual, unaffected. Staring at the castle, I said, blasé, “This is some place you have here.”
“It’s not mine,” he replied. “It’s Lachlan’s. The Adairs.”
Yeah, like I didn’t already know that. There was that awful resentment again. I forced myself to look at my father. “I guess you’re wondering why I’m here.”
“Aye. Not that it isn’t a nice surprise.”
I narrowed my gaze, trying to discern the truth in his statement. “It’s not something I can just blurt out on the driveway of a castle with a man I barely know hovering at my back.” I referred to Security Guy who was still with us.
“Sorry about that. Protocol.”
I nodded. I knew all about protocol.
“You’d know all about that,” Mac said, as if plucking the words from my head. “Last I heard, you were a police officer.”
He looked pleased about this. As if it connected us. I hated that it did. After all, he’d been a cop once too. But so was my stepfather, Seth Penhaligon. “Family business, I guess,” I replied. “Wanted to be like my old man, Seth.” When I was 16, I’d decided to change my name legally from Galbraith to Penhaligon. After two years of no contact with Mac, I’d wanted to sever our connection as well as have the same name as the family who were in my life daily.
While Mac was very good at hiding his reaction, there was a flicker of something in his eyes that suggested I’d hit a sore spot.
“I’m not a cop anymore.”
“Like I said, I don’t want to chat on a driveway. I know this place doesn’t cater to riffraff, so can you get away?”
Mac frowned. “My daughter isn’t riffraff. Come inside. We’ll talk and then I’ll give you a tour.”
I thumbed over my shoulder. “Is this guy going to babysit us the whole time?”
Mac glanced at his colleague. “Jock, why don’t you take the vehicle back to the mews and return to your duties.”
“Shall we?” Mac said to me, gesturing to the castle entrance.
“Isn’t there a servants’ entrance that would be more suited to my position?”
“There’s a delivery entrance, but we’re usually prepared for those packages.” He shot me a sardonic look and walked toward the castle.
“What about my car?”
“It’s fine there. We’ll move it later if we need to.”
I studied the back of Mac’s head as he strode in front of me. My father had to be around six feet four and was physically fit. He made an intimidating figure. At forty-four, he had the physique of a man half his age. He looked great. Ruggedly handsome. Successful. He didn’t look old enough to be my father. But for a kid who got his older girlfriend pregnant when he was only sixteen, he’d done okay for himself.
But I guess a person could when they went out into the world to succeed by sacrificing their relationship with their child.
So lost in my thoughts, it took a second for my surroundings to hit me.
I stopped just inside the door and gaped.
Yeah, I definitely felt like a fish out of water.
“Wakefield, this is my daughter Robyn.” Mac stopped next to the guy in uniform. “Robyn, this is Wakefield, the butler at Ardnoch.”
A butler. Of course. “Nice to meet you.”
The butler bowed his head, expression stoic. “Welcome to Ardnoch Estate, miss.”
I nodded vaguely, my attention returning to the space beyond us as we stepped inside.
“Impressive, aye?” Mac said, grinning at my expression.
It was mammoth.
Polished parquet flooring underfoot made it appear even more so. The décor was traditional and screamed Scottish opulence. The grandest staircase I’d ever seen descended before me, fitted with a red-and-gray tartan wool runner. It led to a landing where three floor-to-ceiling stained glass windows spilled light down it. Then it branched off at either side, twin staircases leading to the floor above, which I could partially see from the galleried balconies at either end of the reception hall. A fire burned in the huge hearth on the wall adjacent to the entrance and opposite the staircase. The smell of burning wood accentuated the coziness the interior designer had managed to pull off despite the dark, wood-paneled walls and ceiling. Tiffany lamps scattered throughout on end tables gave the space a warm glow.
Opposite the fire sat two matching suede-and-fabric buttoned sofas with a coffee table in between. More light spilled into the hall from large openings that led to other rooms on this floor. I could hear the rise and fall of conversation in the distance beyond.
In one of those doorways appeared a man as tall as my father. He paused at the sight of us and then made his way across the humongous reception hall.
As he drew closer, I recognized him.
Millions of people across the world knew this guy’s face.
Wearing a fitted, black cashmere sweater that caressed his muscular physique and black dress pants, the man wore casual chic beautifully. He had the body and swagger that fashion magazines loved in their Hollywood actors.
And that’s what he’d once been.
An A-list Hollywood actor.
Normal women would swoon at his dark blond handsomeness, his lovely blue eyes and brooding mouth, the short, almost dark brown beard. While obviously good-looking, there was a rough edge to his masculine beauty that made his face substantially more appealing. And he was well known for the wicked twinkle in his eyes. From what I could tell, he hadn’t been a bad actor either, although typecast in mostly action movies.
I didn’t swoon as he approached.
I was nervous, but not because his charisma and fame intimidated me.
Beneath my calm facade, I held a deep reserve of resentment toward this guy. It wasn’t his fault. Not really. But this was the man my father abandoned me in favor of.
When Lachlan Adair broke out in Hollywood at twenty-one with a huge action blockbuster, he hired my father as part of his private security. Perhaps it was that they were both Scots that drew them together. I wouldn’t know. I only knew they became close. So close, Mac went everywhere Lachlan did, even if that meant missing out on my teen years. My birthdays. Graduation. And then they moved back to Scotland when Lachlan retired to turn a family-owned estate into this exclusive, members-only resort.
Mac was head of security and lived in the village.
“I heard you had a visitor,” Lachlan said. His attention moved beyond us and he addressed the butler. “Wakefield, there seems to be a problem with a guest in the Duchess’s Suite. Would you mind assisting?”
The butler strode past us. “Right away, sir.” He disappeared up the grand staircase, moving with efficient speed without looking like he was in a hurry.
Adair focused his stony gaze on me even as he addressed my father. “Mac, it seems an introduction is in order.”
“Lachlan, this is my daughter, Robyn. Robyn, this is Lachlan Adair.”
Neither of us reached for the other’s hand. Awkward tension fell between us.
I didn’t know what his problem with me was.
I wasn’t the one who’d stolen his father.
“I know who he is,” I said, unimpressed.
Lachlan’s eyes narrowed ever so slightly. “I’ve heard a lot about you. It seems strange to have been in Mac’s life for almost twenty years and never have met his daughter.”
“Yeah, that tends to happen when a father abandons his kid to follow an actor around the world.” I didn’t dare look at my father. Despite my complicated feelings, I hadn’t come here to attack him. There was a small part of me that understood why Mac hadn’t been around.
“Excuse me?” Adair’s tone had a dangerous quietness to it.
I ignored him and turned to my father. “Can we have some privacy?”
“Of course,” Adair answered. “Forgive me for intruding.” He gave Mac a look of concern. “Just wanted to make sure everything was okay here?”
Mac nodded, his expression guarded. “If you would prefer us to go off the estate, we can.”
“Don’t be daft.” Adair took a step back. “Give Ms. Penhaligon a tour.”
Did he just emphasize my surname?
For a moment, Mac pressed his lips together in a tight line and seemed to give Adair a warning glance. The lord of the castle lifted his hands in a gesture of surrender and without looking at me, turned on his heel and walked away.
Overall, he’d been as rude to me as I was to him.
But I had an excuse for my rudeness, even if it was unfair to blame him for my father’s actions.
What had I ever done to Lachlan Adair?
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