The new year is almost upon us...a time for new beginnings. But sometimes in order to go forward, you must go backwards first. ;-)
EXCERPT (The Prince's Christmas Vow):
The head of Prince's security detail approached him. Demetrius held up a finger to pause the interview. The bodyguard leaned over and whispered in his ear. “It’s a Ms. Sarris. She has a pass and she says she works here. Should we let her through?”
“Oh, look.” Ms. Russo’s face lit up. Too late. She’d caught sight of Zoe. The reporter’s eyes sparkled as though she’d been given a special treat. “Isn’t that the interior designer, Zoe Sarris?”
Before answering the reporter, Demetrius gave an affirmative yet reluctant nod to his man to allow Zoe to join them. That woman certainly did have bad timing—first when she walked out on him just hours after saying “I do”—and now. How did she do it?
He could feel the reporter’s gaze on him. He cleared his throat. “Yes, it’s Miss Sarris.”
“I wonder what she’s doing here?” The reporter sent him a speculative look. “Did you arrange this?”
He resisted the urge to frown at the reporter’s fishing expedition as well as the fact that his estranged wife was about to crash his very important interview. “No. It appears she’s here to work. We’ve been lucky enough to obtain Ms. Sarris’s exclusive services to create a welcoming yet relaxing environment for the future residents of Residenza del Rosa.”
“And what features will it provide?”
“This long-term care home will be able to accommodate different levels of care from assisted living to skilled nursing.”
“And Ms. Sarris is here to make this mansion into the beauty it once was?”
“We’re hoping she’ll be able to take what is here and give it a fresh feel.”
“I’m sure she will. Is Miss Sarris signed on for the other buildings in the revitalization project?”
“Not at this point. We want to see how this first building goes and then we’ll reevaluate, figuring out what works and what doesn’t.”
Ms. Russo nodded in understanding. “How splendid that she can join us and give our viewers an idea of what she has in mind for the place. I’ve seen her work before and it’s fantastic. In fact, we can do before and after shoots of the mansion, both inside and out, with your permission of course.”
“That sounds like a good idea.”
Demetrius followed Ms. Russo’s gaze to the woman in question. Zoe’s clothing choice was nothing out of the ordinary, a short black skirt and a pink blouse. But on her, it looked fantastic as it nestled her curves perfectly—curves that he still knew by memory. She lifted her black sunglasses and then shook out her long dark curls before resting her shades atop her head like a hairband.
No matter what had gone down between them, there was no denying the obvious—she was a knockout. He should glance away—check his phone—continue the interview—anything but continue to stare at her.
Her legs were long, toned and tan. He couldn’t have turned away even if he’d have tried, which he had no inclination to do. It’d been months since he’d laid eyes on her. Visions of her in his dreams didn’t count—they couldn’t hold a candle to the real thing.
Zoe moved one strappy black high heel in front of the other. The classic ZZ Top song “Legs” started playing in his head. This girl definitely knew her strongest attributes and she worked them—no wonder he’d fallen for her hard and fast. Was it possible that she was even more gorgeous now than she had been when they’d met more than a year ago?
“It’s warm standing here in the sun. Perhaps we should move to the shade.” Ms. Russo signaled to her cameraman to take a break. “Prince Demetrius, are you all right?”
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A PRINCESS BY CHRISTMAS (Twin Princes of Mirraccino, bk 1):
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