She wanted him. Her sister married him.
Tara Thornton hasn’t spoken to her sister in two years, ever since Azure married the man of Tara’s dreams. Tired of the rift, Azure invites her to take a Mediterranean cruise on a friend’s yacht and, bowing to family pressure, Tara accepts.
Forced to be in close proximity with the man she still desires, Tara is thrown into confusion. The presence of celebrity theme park owner Liam Wilder and the reality of his marriage to Azure send Tara into a tailspin and, in an attempt to regain control, she responds to the advances of hot fellow guest Ryan Hyde, while determined to feel no affection for him.
But Ryan has a way of getting under her skin, and Tara’s plan to get closer to Liam is rapidly losing its importance as Ryan begins to break down her defences. Can she let go of Liam, let Ryan into her heart…and tell Azure the real reason for her silence?
Reader Advisory: This book contains scenes of spanking and light BDSM.
“Well hey, Golden Girl,” drawled someone with an American-accented voice behind her. “What did that punchbag ever do to you?”
Tara paused mid-punch then turned slowly, swallowing her automatically poisonous response. Well, it called me Golden Girl, actually…
The smirking owner of the voice was standing in the open doorway to the weights room, leaning casually on the door frame, hands thrust into the pockets of his tracksuit pants. A dark vee of sweat was outlined on his white T-shirt, and his tanned face bore that post-workout glow that Tara knew so well. The image of a black tuxedo, towering height and green eyes immediately flashed to mind.
This was the Sugiyamas’ accountant.
“Ryan, isn’t it? The number-cruncher.” Golden Girl, indeed.
If Ryan was at all offended, his smile was unaffected. Pushing himself off the door frame, he crossed the room and held out one hand to shake.
“You remembered.” A brief flicker of satisfaction crossed his face as Tara was forced to look up at him. “Ryan Hyde. And you’re our military expert, right? Which corps?”
Tara allowed him a slightly warmer smile for his choice of epithet.
“Same as Azure?”
“No. Azure was Air Corps.”
“And then she quit to get married.” Ryan was still holding her hand, his eyes watching for any reaction. “So if you got m—”
“No, I wouldn’t.” Tara had heard this question many, many times before and had her response honed to perfection. “It’s not hard to balance the two.” She took advantage of Ryan’s moment of surprise to retrieve her hand, suppressing the urge to wipe it on her shirt. Suddenly the conversation seemed very tiring.
Whether her feelings had shown in her face or the abundance of sweat had suddenly dawned on him, Ryan seemed to share her need to call a halt.
“I’m glad to hear it. And on that note, I’m going to take a shower. Maybe I’ll see you later.” He was already moving away, pausing only to pick up a bag inside the weights room doorway before glancing back at her as if expecting a friendly goodbye.
Relieved at her reprieve, Tara found herself smiling far more brightly than she had intended. Immediately she saw that look in his eyes again, that spark from last night when he had thought that she was staring at him.
When she had been trying not to look at…him.
Turning back to face her on his way into the male shower room, Ryan paused to ask, “Do you plan to work out every day?”
“Yup,” Tara answered casually. “Always do.”
His eyes glinted. “Looking forward to it.”
Then the door banged shut behind him, leaving Tara to grab her bag and go for the fastest shower of her life.
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I first started writing seriously when my tutor on a creative writing course pointed me towards the Romantic Novelists’ Association and their New Writers’ Scheme. Thanks to them, my debut novel “The Hand He Dealt” was accepted by Total-e-Bound in 2011 and was nominated for the Joan Hessayon Award for 2012. I haven’t stopped writing since.
Last year my short story “I Like It Wet” was included in “Smut by the Sea”, my paranormal novella “I Heard Your Voice” was released in October as part of Total-e-Bound’s “Haunted By You” anthology, and my short story “Assume the Position” was accepted for “Campus Sexploits 3” with Naughty Nights Press. This year I have two shorts, “Ready for Him” and “Sleepwalker”, up for release later in the year and also my Clandestine Classic which will be out in September.
When I’m not writing, I love to read historical fiction and non-fiction as well as anything paranormal. I love to sing, watch horror movies and go to rock concerts. I also have two cats who like to hide all day and then destroy the house at night.