Past Prologue

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In this thrilling short story, from the anthology MatchUp (2017), bestselling authors Diana Gabaldon and Steve Berry—along with their popular series characters Jamie Fraser and Cotton Malone—team up for the first time ever.

Cotton Malone is visiting Ardsmuir Castle in Scotland for a rare book sale. The locale is steeped in history, having once, long ago, served as a prison. When one of the priceless books being offered for sale goes missing, Cotton heads after it and unexpectantly finds himself drawn into a dangerous world 250 years in the past. Is it all a dream? An illusion? Something simply happening within his own mind?

Or is the fantastical journey real?

Cotton’s life will depend on the answer.



“Be prepared for a little magic.”
— Herald-Dispatch