I recently completed and submitted my thirtieth book. I'm celebrating by offering a taste from each one. Seduced Into the Greek's Worldis the last in a four book series about three brothers and a sister. All of the titles are listed below the excerpt, if you prefer to read in order.Enjoy!
I lovedSeduced Into The Greek's Worldfor a few reasons. First, the heroine is Canadian. I really do need to write more of those because I always have fun with it. Maybe I should write a Canadian hero... ? Hmm. But I digress.
I also love that Natalie is a single mom, away on a special project for work. It's a job she had to fight for, which rings true for me because women are often overlooked for promotions, etc. The prevailing belief is that they have too many commitments at home so it's more practical to not even bother asking, offering, or accommodating. Just get a man to do it. So unfair.
Finally, I love that she owns her sexuality. Having an affair while she's away is more of a fantasy than a goal, but she likes the idea that she is on vacation from responsibility. (Don't we all have that fantasy sometimes?) She had her daughter very young and, until she lands in Paris, hasn't felt as though she could have an affair. This is a chance to reinvent herself, or at least see who she might have been if she hadn't become pregnant out of high school.
Then she does have an affair and Demitri seems like everything a woman could want--except he's really a bit of a mess in a tycoon's bespoke clothing. Also, he doesn't know she has a child, so that's news when he finds out.
I'm sorry, but I'm trying to keep these Safe For Work so I skipped the love scene and here is the next morning. She works for him, so they really shouldn't have done the deed, but now he's had a taste, he wants more.
~ * ~
“I don’t know what you’re saying.”
He frowned. “Do you want it in French? I’m saying that I’ve never tried to hide the fact that I’m seeing a woman, and I don’t like it. Don’t expect me to be good at it.”
“We’re seeing each other?” Her ears rang with a repetition of the phrase, trying to make sense of it.
“Having an affair, then. Whatever you want to call it.” He shrugged his big shoulders, the movement jerky and dismissive.
“Is that what you call it? I mean, do you even do that? See women more than once?”
“Not often,” he allowed, not flinching from her bewildered stare, utterly unfazed at being called a philanderer. “But you said you wanted an affair while you were here, and last night was good.” His eyes narrowed a fraction. “Very good. Wasn’t it?”
Her heart seemed to break through the thin skin of her throat, pounding in a state of painful vulnerability under his challenge. His statement was nothing so insecure as a request for confirmation. He knew damned well he’d rocked her world and given the intensity of his gaze, he was one feminine sigh of surrender from doing it again.
“Is there any chance you’ll quit your job so we can do this in the open?” he asked gruffly.
“I… What? Ha!” The sound escaped her in a burst of disbelief as her consciousness landed firmly back on the hard floor.
She looked around, taking in weird details of his office that she couldn’t have known if she was dreaming, like a slanted drafting table with a big scratch pad splashed with various streaks of color, a white board scrawled with uneven boxes and illegible labels, a wall strung with threads, magazine clippings pinned along them. The shelves held dozens of odd items from water bottles to smart phone cases to beach balls, all wearing the Makricosta logos.
“Have I got this right? Are you seriously asking me to make a permanent change to my life for something temporary? That’s not a demand for commitment,” she rushed to add, holding up a forestalling hand. “I’m just saying, do you hear yourself?”
She almost added, I’m a mom, but it really didn’t fit with the way she’d behaved last night and only made her more self-conscious with what was happening now. Especially because there was a small part of her that thought, in another life… She would never, ever wish away her daughter, but a wistful desire to see what might have been had underpinned all her very sound reasons for taking this assignment in France.
And here was the answer. This is what she could be: an independent woman who was carefree enough to take up a man’s exceedingly frivolous offer of… What was he even suggesting?
“How would that even work?” she quizzed with bemusement. “I’d quit my job and you’d set me up somewhere, pay my bills?”
He barely moved, just offered a cool nod of assent. “You’d travel with me if I required it.”
“Oh, my God.” She’d been joking. Ridiculing the suggestion.
A gush of icy cheapness went through her as she absorbed the full impact of the scenario. This was what happened when you thought the grass was greener on the neighbor’s lawn. Turned out it was actually an overflow of the septic tank.
She headed for the door.
Before she could turn the knob, his hand was over the crack, his body looming next to hers in a radiation of heat and crackling male energy.
“Why does that offend you? I want to see you again and not on the sly. Whatever the obstacles are, I want to remove them.”
She glared over her shoulder, trying to hang on to her insulted indignation, but he was so obviously uncomfortable it gave her pause. Her senses took a hit of his male energy at the same time, flooding her with memories of how yummy it had felt to be stroked and possessed and drawn into shared climax. Her breathing changed and so did his.
“Why?” she demanded. There were thousands of other women out there. He should know. He’d bedded most of them. Was he running out? Was that what motivated him to chase her?
“You know why. We didn’t even make it to the bed, for God’s sake.”
Do not think he’s calling you exceptional, Natalie. She had never been at the top of any kind of list, not even Most Reliable. She was straight-up, middle-of-the-road, work-hard-for-second-place stock.
But he was staring at her mouth like a kid at the penny candy window, making her lips tingle and her insides twist in anticipation. She shook her head in disbelief, but he took it as refusal.
“Damn it, Natalie!” He shoved back from the door, crossing the room in a few steps, then swinging around to confront her. “Why the hell not?”
The feminist in her said, I don’t have to have a reason, but she was so astonished by his reaction she could only speak the truth.
“Demitri, I don’t do this. Forgive me for being lousy at this, but I don’t go home with men. I thought…” She winced inwardly, not wanting to sound like she was okay with a one-night stand. It made her sound as cheap as he was treating her. “I had this vision of getting away and being someone different, maybe having a fling since I haven’t…” No. She would not admit it had been years. “Being away from home allowed me to behave in a way I wouldn’t normally, but I can’t continue doing it,” she asserted. “Last night was just…”
What? An opportunity? An experiment? A much needed climb back into the saddle of a horse she’d learned the hard way was expensive and ornery?
“It was a fantasy,” she said, repeating what she’d told him last night. “One that shouldn’t have played out, but I did it and now I’m awake and it’s time to be sensible.”