Cast out in disgrace from the family estate, dashing young Sir Gervase Escot was drawn towards the great castle at Malling. For there lived the much-courted beauty, Lady Elaine, to whom Gervase was once to have been betrothed. Rescuing a young girl from robbers, Gervase discovered that she was Elaine's sister, the Lady Beata - a rebellious girl pledged from birth to the church, taking with her an enormous dowry to redeem her father's pride. Would Gervase ever be able to reveal his true identity to Beata? Could the power of his love - or the deadly skill of his sword - save Beata from the celibate life she dreaded?