Her Brooding Italian Surgeon

Her Brooding Italian Surgeon by Fiona Lowe Read Free Book Online

Book: Her Brooding Italian Surgeon by Fiona Lowe Read Free Book Online
Authors: Fiona Lowe
his magnetic pull—the one that called for her to lean against his arm and lay her head on his broad shoulder. But she knew only too well that men like Leo Costa were like the foxglove plant. Pretty to look at but potentially life-threatening, and the last thing her heart needed again was life-support.
    She sipped her tea, trying hard to ignore the delicious tingling on her skin and the fluttering in her stomach that sitting so close to him had activated. Warrior Abbie raised her sword across the shield. She could do this. She could sit here for a few minutes and make polite conversation because, come midnight, Leo Costa would leave her hospital. The emergency wasover and they’d resolved the issue of Maria’s care. She couldn’t imagine him staying in Bandarra very long before Melbourne called him home, and with his departure the status quo of Bandarra Base and her much-coveted quiet life would be restored. Yes, everything would return to normal. She smiled and breathed out a long, slow, satisfying breath.
    Leo sipped his tea, watching Abbie holding her cup close to her chest as if it were some sort of protective guard. An unusual cosy feeling of well-being floated through him—something he never experienced when he was in Bandarra. Could an apology really have that effect? Apparently so. He’d always prided himself on being fair and he hadn’t given Abbie the same consideration. He let the odd feeling settle over him. Today had been incredible. Not just the excitement of the ‘seat-of-your-pants’ surgery but working alongside Abbie. She had an air of self-containment that intrigued him. Those eyes intrigued him.
    She stared at her shapely ankles, which rested again on the coffee table, and sighed. ‘I could live without the todays of this world. We were lucky to have your expertise. Thanks.’
    He was used to gushing praise but the plain appreciation had an unambiguous authenticity which he appreciated. ‘I’m just glad I was here. These days I mostly do elective surgery, although I’m on the trauma roster at Melbourne City. Thankfully, I’m not always needed.’
    She turned her head to look at him and understanding wove across her face, joining her cute sun-kissed freckles. ‘But there’s nothing quite like the buzz of a good save.’
    He grinned. ‘Yeah, but you can’t actually go around wishing accidents on people or saying stuff like that or you sound macabre.’
    She chuckled. ‘You’re a surgeon; it’s a given.’
    He tried to look affronted but instead he joined in with hertinkling laughter. Abbie McFarlane had a straight-shooting delivery style that was as refreshing as it was unusual. He realised with a thud that apart from his immediate family, not many people spoke their mind to him any more.
    She returned her gaze to her feet and he fought the urge to caress her jaw with his fingers and tilt her head back towards him so he could look into her eyes. He wanted to dive into those eyes which had stared back at him so many times today from over the top of a surgical mask, expressing everything from fear to joy.
    Instead, he breathed in deeply, letting her intoxicating scent of fresh berries roll through him.
    â€˜So is this a flying visit to Bandarra?’
    His libido crashed and burned as the familiar Bandarra-induced agitation spiralled through him. ‘Yesterday I would have said yes. I usually fly in and fly out because I’m frantic in Melbourne.’
    You keep telling yourself that’s the reason. It’s served you well for years. He shut his mind against the eminently reasonable voice he’d been silencing for almost as long. ‘Nonna’s CVA gave me a wake-up call and I want to spend a bit of time with her.’
    As if in slow motion, she moved her gaze from her feet to his face, her irises widening into a reflective pool. ‘Meaning?’
    â€˜I’ve asked my secretary to set

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