A Lady by Midnight (Spindle Cove #3) by Tessa Dare
All I can say is...clever Kate!
Kate is a long lost daughter of the deceased Marquess of Drewe and the daughter of a tenant farmer. Orphaned at the age of 4, Lady Katherine Gramercy ended being a lone happy kid. Twenty year later she is found by not only her possible family but the man that saved her life and virtue.
Corporal Thorne hasn't had an easy childhood and for that reason he doesn't find he is suitable company let alone a romantic or otherwise match. He has a past that he doesn't want her to know but the unfortunate bite of a snake doesn't give him a choice in the end.
Once Katie knows of Samuel's past she doesn't see him as the cold hearted man he wanted her to see, but the loving child he couldn't be. And that was all she needed to force him to see himself as she saw him.
There is duels of honor, sacrifice and fighting of conscience what more can I ask for!!
"A dangerous thought visited him, sinking talons into his mind.
He could stay with her.
Not in a tawdry way, he told himself. Just as her protector. He could find a damned place for her to sit down, as a start. He could see that she had food and drink and warm blankets. He could stand watch while she slept and make certain nothing disturbed her. He could be there when she woke.
After all these months of frustrated longing, maybe that would be enough.
"Good heavens." She took a sudden step back.
"What is it?"
Her gaze dropped and she swallowed hard. "Some part of you is moving"