Ashes in the Wind Author:Kathleen E. Woodiwiss Disguised as a ragged, dirty-faced boy, lovely Alaina MacGaren flees the Yankee troops ravaging her plantation and makes her way by riverboat to New Orleans, hoping to build refuge with her only surviving kin. Her waifish appearance attracts the compassion of a handsome Yankee surgeon, Captain Cole Latimer, who gives the "lad" a job as... more » a hospital orderly. Little does he know that beneath the boy's clothes is a beautiful young woman whose destiny is deliciously and dangerously linked with his!
Once in New Orleans, Alaina's spoiled cousin, Roberta, takes a fancy to the Captain, and Alaina, seething with anger at the "bluebellies" who killed her parents and destroyed her home, is disgusted by her cousin's posturings. Yet it is Alaina who saves the Captain's life when he is attacked on the road one night and left for dead. Filled with mixed emotions, she brings him home, and he, delirious and convinced he is in a brothel, tenderly but forcefully takes her to bed!
Afterwards. Alaina runs off in confusion, and when Cole awakens, it is the conniving Roberta he finds beside him -- and honorably marries, though he cannot understand why the passions of his new bride are so different from his memory of that first, wonderous night! Just as Cole discovers Alaina's true identity and realizes that she was the delicious hoyden who shared his bed. Alaina flees, accused of ambushing a Union Army pay wagon -- a price placed on her head!
Alaina and Cole's passionate story sweeps from the gracious old-world elegance of New Orleans through the great war-torn plantations of the South to the raw beauty of the Minnesota woodlands, where finally, in the ashes of their old lives, they discover glowing embers of a spirited new love.« less