Hero Swap: A Scene from Eye of the Beholder (Gavin Blackheart takes Dave Larson’s Place)

Ever wonder, “What would that book be like if someone else was the hero?” Well, that’s what I’m doing in this post.  🙂

I’m taking one scene from His Reluctant Lady, His Abducted Bride, and Eye of the Beholder and I’m going to swap heroes.  I’ll be using their personalities to see how things would be different.  I’ll be doing this for a couple weeks.  During or after that time, I’ll give Dave Larson, Christopher Robinson, and Gavin Blackheart a chance to give their thoughts on this swap.  While the men wanted to keep their heroines, I decided to make it much more interesting.  The men will have to interact with the other guy’s heroine.

This week, we’re going to look at a scene from Eye of the Beholder.  I’ll use Gavin Blackheart in today’s post.  The scene I’m doing today is based off this one I posted in Sunday’s post.

I'm ready for battle.

I’m ready for battle.

Three days later after supper, Susannah was ready to foal.  Gavin road his horse into the barn, ready to help her.

Mary ran into the barn after him, almost dropping the clean towels she was holding.  “What are you doing?”

He glanced at her and gave her one of his confident smiles.  “I’m going to help you deliver the foal.”

“But you can’t have your horse in here, and you can’t wear those clothes.”

He glanced at his battle attire.  “I wear this when I’m ready for action.”

She sighed.  “You’ve never delivered a foal before, have you?”

“Nope.  Can’t say I have.” He slid off his horse.  “But I figure it can’t be too hard.  Dave Larson does it.”

“Unless you’ve been taught how to do it properly, it’s harder than it looks.  The mare is struggling because the foal is stuck, and you can’t just drag it out of her.”

“So, you’ll give me instructions and I’ll follow them.”

She hesitated but finally nodded.  “Alright.  I’ll do that.  But first, you have to get rid of your horse and take off all that battle gear.  Dave does this without his shirt on.”

Winking at her, he said, “If you want to see me without my shirt, just say so, sweetie.”

She groaned.  “The reason I told you to take your shirt off was because if you don’t, you’ll get the birthing fluid all over your chest.”

“Sure,” he replied with a slight chuckle.

With a shake of her head, she grabbed the horse’s bridle.  “I’ll tell you what.  I’ll take your horse to the pasture while you get ready.” Before he could respond, she left with the horse.

Once he removed everything but his pants and boots, he went over to the stall where the horse was laying on clean straw.  He went over to the mare and patted her belly.  “Don’t worry.  We’ll get that foal out safe and sound in no time.”

The horse snorted her reply.

“Everyone’s a critic,” he replied in amusement.  Noting Mary had returned, he asked, “What do I do first?”

“Wash your arms with soap and water.”

He grinned at her.  “You like your men with that ‘just came out of the water’ look?”

She gasped.  “I don’t know who you think you are, but I’m married to Dave, not you.  You’re only here because of the hero swap.  The reason you’re supposed to wash up is for the health of the mare and foal.”

“This would be more fun is Sandy was here,” he commented as he washed up.

“This isn’t supposed to be fun.  This is a serious scene.  We want the mare and foal to be alive and healthy at the end of it.”

“You stress out too much.  Ruth won’t let the horses die.” He returned to the stall and looked over at her.  “Now what do I do?”

Mary led him through the process and he followed her instructions, careful to do everything exactly as she told him to.  When the head and shoulders appeared, she told him to back up so he did.

“They have it from here,” Mary told him.

As he expected, the foal’s upper body emerged on its own.  It stopped when its hips were at the threshold of entering the world.  Before long, the foal’s hind hooves left the womb and the animal rested against its mother’s belly.  Satisfied, he returned to the bucket of water and dipped the soap into it.

“What did you think?” she asked as he washed up.

“It wasn’t too bad.   This wasn’t the most exciting scene in your book, but it was good enough for what Dave wanted, I guess.”

“Oh?  And what scene would you have picked?”

“I would have picked the scene where Neil abducted you because then I’d take my horse, hopped on the train, and gotten you back myself.  You don’t know hot and sexy until you’ve been rescued by a knight in shining armor.  And I’ll tell you another thing,” he added as he dried himself off.  “I wouldn’t have let Neil get away with it either.  He would have been put in jail where he belonged.”

“But if we had done that, then Neil never would have gotten his second chance in His Redeeming Bride.”

He shrugged.  “I guess you and I will have to differ on that plot point.”

“You, of all characters, should understand how important it is to get a second chance.”

“Yeah, but in my case, I was the good guy.  It was the author who misunderstood me.” He grabbed his battle gear.  “It was an honor to deliver the foal with your help, my lady.” He bowed and left the barn.

About Ruth Ann Nordin

Ruth Ann Nordin mainly writes historical western romances and Regencies. From time to time, she branches out to other genres, but her first love is historical romance. She lives in Omaha, Nebraska with her husband and a couple of children. To find out more about her books, go to https://ruthannnordinsbooks.wordpress.com/.
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