A hot Miami night. A glittering gala. And a gorgeous billionaire wants to spirit her away. This might be a fantasy for most women, but not Diana Hobbes. She’s at a charity event representing the nonprofit adoption agency she has poured her heart and soul into. And despite the hot body, easy charm and luxury ride of playboy Marcus Stanfield, Diana has nothing in common with him.
Marcus is unaccustomed to having women refuse him. So he is surprised by Diana’s brush-off – and intrigued. Angelically kind and devilishly sexy, Diana is worth more than a little effort…so an epic seduction campaign begins. Lavish evenings, small touches, and grand gestures all say “I want you.” The desire is mutual, the tension maddening. But which will Diana ultimately choose: holding back… or giving in?
Excerpt from Chapter One
Marcus Stanfield walked into the party already looking for the exits. On a Saturday night in Miami, he’d much rather be on his boat or partying with friends than bleeding away the night at a charity ball he had had no real interest in attending. The music was calm and laid back, acceptable jazz that blended into the background while Miami business professionals and philanthropists wove through the crowd in their formal dinner wear—black tie and tails, cocktail dresses, diamonds dripping from necks and wrists.
As Marcus glanced over the crowd, he heard the sound of a woman’s laughter, husky and low, from nearby.
The woman’s laughter was rich and deep, with a hint of naughtiness. A combination that drew him like a bee to honey. His ears latched on to the laughter while his eyes tracked the room for the source of the sound. Soon he found it.
Two women stood together. One was still laughing, her head thrown back, a hand propped up on her hip. She was slender and pretty, light-skinned with wavy black hair down to the middle of her back.
But, inexplicably, it was the woman standing next to her that drew and kept Marcus’s attention. She had dark skin, angelic features, and straightened hair pulled back in an elegant French roll. Even from across the room, he sensed her innocence. While her friend was dressed in a purple satin dress that caught her at mid-thigh and clung to her slender but generously proportioned body, this woman wore ice blue.
She smiled faintly at something her friend said, her full mouth tilting up at the corners with mild amusement. Marcus looked back at the friend with her killer body, white teeth and long hair that fell in thick waves over her luscious breasts. She was definitely more his type, a woman who would want him for his money, and never anything else. The safe type.
But the woman in blue was who he wanted.
“Good evening, ladies.” Marcus approached them with his charming smile firmly in place.
The laughing woman gave him a considering glance, a quick but thorough evaluation of what he was wearing, how he looked, what he was worth.
“Good evening.” She greeted him with a predatory smile. “You’re Marcus, right?”
“I am,” he said. “A pleasure to meet you.”
The woman he wanted treated him like he was intruding on their conversation. She was even more beguiling up close. Not traditionally beautiful but exquisitely made with her large eyes, wide mouth and narrow chin.
“I’m Trish,” the long-haired one said, offering her hand to shake. “And this is my best friend, Diana.” She nudged her friend, as if encouraging her to be nice to Marcus.
Diana extended her hand in greeting. “Marcus.” Her voice was carefully neutral.
“Don’t say my name like that,” he said with a grin. “So formal. Especially when I came over here intending to ask you to dance with me.”
A frown settled on her angelic face. “I don’t dance.”
“She’d love to.” Trish smiled even wider to make up for Diana’s lack of welcome, then nudged her friend again, this time directly into Marcus’s arms. “Enjoy, honey!”
Marcus took Diana’s arm and led her to the dance floor where they were playing Marvin Gaye’s “Got to Give it Up.”
“Thank you for dancing with me,” he said.
She looked up at him, her eyes large and serious behind a veil of thick lashes. Her narrow chin jutted out.
“You know very well I didn’t agree to dance with you,” she said. Her full mouth glistened dark red under the lights.
“You don’t strike me as a woman who’d let herself be talked into something she didn’t want to do,” he murmured as they moved to the beat of the song. “Whatever small part of you wanted to come with me, I’m grateful for it.” He smiled, strangely charmed by her coolness. Her reaction to him was completely different from what he usually got from women.
At his look, Diana pursed her lips, the lines of her face softening. “I’m sorry. It’s just been a long day. Everyone here seems to think just because I work for a non-profit, that means I’m going to whore myself out to the one with the biggest bank account.”
Damn. She was definitely not his type at all. With other women , he knew what they wanted, and they knew what he could give. Sex for money: a transparent transaction. But he didn’t want to let Diana go yet.
“If it makes you feel any better, you don’t have to whore yourself out to me at all.” Marcus dipped his hips close to hers as they moved to the music, then pulled back. “All I want is a dance.”
She looked at him with a hint of doubt in her sparkling brown eyes. “A dance is all you really want?”
Marcus smiled. “For now.” He spun her around to the rhythm of the song, then pulled her back seamlessly into his arms. “Later I was thinking of trying to tempt you with dinner, maybe a late night walk on the beach.”
The corner of her mouth twitched. “I’ve already eaten, and I try to avoid the beach at night.”
“Why is that?”
She looked at him with a pointed rise of an eyebrow. “Sharks.”
( Continued… )
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Meet the Author
Born in Jamaica, Lindsay Evans currently lives in Atlanta, GA. She loves good food and romance and would happily travel to the ends of the earth for both. She currently writes sensual love stories for Harlequin Kimani. Find out more at http://www.LindsayEvansWrites.com.