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A bitter man, pirate Jack Shadow Stirling cares for little but his ship and his crew. But disaster strikes the Golden Orion. Driven leagues off course in a storm his men begin dropping like flies from typhus. Forced to anchor in a bay on the West Africa coast to see to his men and mend damage to the hull, Jack and three of his crew go in search of fresh water and meat to shore up their dwindling supplies. What he finds surprises him. An English lady whom he likens to a rare orchid, is treating the sick from a nearby village, while her botanist brother, Alexander Bromley, searches for specimens.
Startled by pirates invading her small camp, Lydia Bromley snatches up her pistol and aims it at the tall dark-haired handsome devil who leads them. Unfazed, he grins at her and warns her that should she shoot him with a muff pistol, she would fail to kill him. But he would be annoyed.
Thus begins a journey where Lydia discovers love and romance she’d thought denied her.