The Falls of Erith
1305 A.D. – Being descended from great, though disgraced family, can be a greater curse than most. As a direct descendent of Simon de Montfort, Lady Gray de Montfort Serroux has lived her life with the axe of shame hanging over her head. Because of this, her marriage matches were limited and she wed a dishonorable man who widowed her when he was murdered in a gambling game.
Left with a young daughter to support, Gray and her daughter and her mother have been living in poverty. But now her daughter is approaching marriageable age and Gray’s conniving, haughty mother plots to marry the girl to the first wealthy man who offers for her hand. Meanwhile, an army of mercenaries seeks shelter at Gray’s crumbling castle. Their leader, Sir Braxton de Nerra, is a knight bannerette.
Not sworn to a single liege, he travels with his mercenaries and has accumulated a good deal of wealth fighting other people’s battles. Taken with the beautiful Lady Gray even as the lady’s mother tries to force the granddaughter upon him, Braxton finds himself drawn into the desperate life they lead at the Castle Erith. As Braxton and Gray fall in love, Gray’s mother, the evil Constance, continues to wreak havoc, now aimed at the man who so desperately loves her daughter. Braxton realizes that he must fight back against the woman for what he knows is right and just, and an bizarre battle ensues between the two. Constance is finally exiled from Erith for her treachery but not before she has committed one final act of betrayal; because of Constance’s lies, the mighty earldom of Gloucester is now angry with Braxton and focuses its war machine on the mighty mercenary. Braxton fights for his new home, his new family, and is finally forced into the ultimate act of self-sacrifice to save those he loves.