She found him on the beach. His clothes spoke of wealth, his hands told of work, but it was the scars on his face that told Nan who the man before her was, Sir William Horton, the resident Hero of Ashford. He was the richest man in five counties and a well known bastard. Rumors of very kind were whispered about Ashford’s infamous Black Knight, his all encompassing cruelty, his frozen heart, the twisted means by which he found pleasure. Every creature in Ashford knew to give him a wide berth, to keep a wagging tongue still, and eyes trained anywhere but on him when he came into view. So when Nan found him and was neither distant, silent nor looking anywhere but directly at him, Ashford’s Black Knight began to stumble over the oddity of this girl. Her fearlessness, her honesty, her intelligence, even her unassuming beauty held him captivated. But how could a simple beggar girl be so many things? Who was this woman that held his attention, or more importantly who had she been before coming to Ashford?