Adam slung his jacket over his shoulder as he tramped through the fields by the river, the farm behind him. It had taken longer than expected to finish his evening chores at the stable, and now the setting sun bathed everything in a golden light. Despite his sleepless night, he didn’t feel tired. Now and again, he would pause and breathe deeply of the pure air of the countryside, savouring the unaccustomed silence. There was a spring in his step. He felt more alive than he ever had in the city. Even working with the horses was new and exciting.And everywhere he looked, there were the makings of a picture, he reflected, as he paused to watch the stately progress of two swans on the glassy river.Approaching the Grange, his spirits fell. The place felt like a fortress, large, square and uncompromising, with its entrance secured by massive iron gates set into a high stone wall. Remembering that he’d have to find the servants’ entrance, Adam followed the wall round to the back of the house. There was a wooden gate set into it, and to his surprise it opened at his touch.He stood for a moment or two, amazed at the expanse of the garden and the sheer size of the house. His heart sank as he faced the reality that Constance Tarrant-Smyth and Adam Gray belonged to worlds so far apart that bridging the chasm between them must surely prove impossible. Then he remembered Josh’s words.“There are no rules where love’s concerned.”He put on his jacket, straightened his shoulders and went towards the back door. As he did, it flew open and Kirsty careered down the garden path towards him.“Adam! My, I’m right glad to see ye!” She took his arm and they walked as far as the back door, Kirsty talking all the while, her words tumbling into a torrent as she gave her brother all her news.“Come intae the kitchen. Mrs Butchart’s awa’ for the night, and it’ll be empty.” She glanced at him. “Will I tell Miss Constance ye’re here?”Adam shook his head.“No. Time enough.” He fought to quell the longing to see her. “And I won’t come in, Kirsty. Remember what Constance said about her mama no followers.”“But ye’re my brother!” Kirsty was bewildered.He shook his head again.“Best to wait.”She didn’t argue, instead showing him her favourite seat in the rose arbour. They sat there for a while, exchanging news and making plans for the summer.“You can come over to the cottage on your afternoon off.” Adam smiled. “Josh and the others will be right glad to see you.”They talked on as the light faded and the moon rose, unaware that they were being observed. From upstairs in her room Constance had spied him, standing uncertainly just inside the back gate. In the distance, she hadn’t recognised him at first, seeing simply a tall, broad-shouldered figure, blond hair ruffled by the breeze. As she watched, he had put on his jacket and tried to smooth down his hair before coming down the gravel path. She had gasped. It couldn’t be! Then, as Kirsty rushed to embrace him, Constance had known for sure that it was Adam.She had fought against the impulse to rush downstairs. This was Kirsty’s time with her brother a precious time, not to be interrupted. Besides, what if Mama recovered from her latest headache and came down, demanding explanations?So Constance watched from the window until the two figures disappeared in the direction of the rose garden. Then she splashed her burning face with water from the ewer, and took up her hairbrush.“It’s getting dark, Kirsty. I’ll have to go,” Adam said, as a summer moon rose and drifted lazily across the sky.His sister walked with him as far as the back gate. As he hesitated there, a familiar voice spoke.“Adam.” He turned, and there was Constance, smiling up at him. “I’ll away, then.” Kirsty withdrew and left the two of them standing there in the moonlight.Nothing was said. Constance slipped her hand into Adam’s. As she did this, he drew her to him and kissed her for the first time, then held her in his arms, his face buried in her hair . . .Time stood still until she looked up at him, her eyes shining.“Did you mean that?” “I did,” was all he said, before kissing her again.