green eyes alive with anticipation and interest. Her hair was pulled back in its usual long single plait and she again wore the long cotton clothing which he wassure hid such a gorgeous, curvaceous figure. Still, the image she presented right now was…captivating. Didn’t she have any idea just how stunning she was?
‘He was out cold for a good thirty seconds,’ Melissa said, grinning at her brother.
‘And there we have it. Embarrassment is complete.’ Everyone laughed and Dex took a little bow. ‘Thank you both very much. You may go now,’ he announced.
Joss patted Melissa’s shoulders. ‘We’re being dismissed. Let’s go.’
‘Oh, right.’ Melissa stood.
‘It’s been such a hectic week, we’ve hardly had two moments alone together,’ Joss said by way of parting.
Before Iris could open her mouth and ask them both to stay, so she didn’t end up out here alone with Dex, both Melissa and Joss had disappeared through the rear sliding door into Melissa’s apartment.
Almost instantly, the atmosphere between the two who were left outside started to become uncomfortable. Iris had made sure that she hadn’t been alone with Dex since they’d walked around at the fair last weekend. Spending time with him, one on one, only brought more awareness of just how good-looking the man really was. She didn’t want to like him. She didn’t want to be attracted to him and one way to avoid such a thing was never to be alone with him.
Now here they were, sitting outside beneath a cloudless starry sky. Both, she presumed, slightly touched by the effects of alcohol and yet both completely alert to the other person. It was an odd sensation but even without looking at him Iris could feel him breathing, could sense the rise and fall of his chest, could feel his presence surrounding her.
‘So…’ Dex was first to break the silence. ‘Good week?’
‘Yes. Thank you. How about yours?’
Dex leaned back in the chair and considered it for amoment. ‘Let’s see, I’ve done a busy clinic every day, had three emergencies come in for A and E care, managed to talk Melissa into doing my house calls for me, annoyed Joss, teased Bub and proposed to a beautiful woman. All in all…a pretty average week.’
He stretched his arms up above his head, the cotton T-shirt he wore rising up slightly, the waistband of his shorts dipping slightly, leaving Iris with a glimpse of firm, muscled torso. A smattering of dark hair swirled around his navel and she found it difficult to avert her gaze. The last man she’d had such an overwhelming attraction to had ended up being her husband, so the only thing she could do was to ignore whatever it was she felt for her new colleague and never allow it to overwhelm her!
She forced herself to look away, turning her head and lifting her eyes to look out at where the land met the horizon, the tops of trees in silhouette. It was very relaxing. The wine had also been relaxing. What was annoying her now was the man beside her, who was still twisting from side to side, his arms still above his head, his body still on display for her to see.
‘So an average week for you includes proposing to someone?’
Dex’s answer was to chuckle and the sound washed over her, soothing some of those jagged nerves. He was trying to be nice, she knew that, and he couldn’t know of the unwanted feelings he was stirring up within her.
He moaned as he stretched and then lowered his arms. ‘Man, my shoulders are tight. How are yours?’
Iris was surprised by the question and accidentally broke her resolve to not look at him. ‘Fine.’
‘Pity. I was hoping if yours were tight, too, we could help each other out.’ He looked at her and grinned. ‘You know…sort of an I’ll massage your shoulders if you massage mine kind of deal. Purely platonic. Purely professional. I just have knots in my trapezius I can’t reach.’
Iris bristled. The last thing she wanted was to be touched—byanyone. ‘Well, my muscles
Jennifer Denys, Susan Laine