Pages of Passion

Pages of Passion by Dara Girard Read Free Book Online

Book: Pages of Passion by Dara Girard Read Free Book Online
Authors: Dara Girard
Tags: Fiction
remembered staring up at the night sky once Arlene had left him alone and making the sign of the cross, thanking God for his good fortune. He’d finally figured out how to get under her hard shell. She was a nurturer and he was going to use that weakness to his advantage.
    Michael couldn’t believe his luck. He never suspected that of her, not from the profile he’d gotten. But he was creating a profile of his own. She had a tough exterior that hid an inner tenderness. It was obvious that she’d been hurt before and that’s why she kept people at a distance, but she’d held him close in the taxicab. He sighed with pleasure at the memory. He thought aboutthe sensual feel of velvet against his skin when he’d rested his head on her lap while riding back to the ship, her warm fingers as they flitted across his chest as she helped him while he was in bed and her soft body as she leaned over him to adjust his pillows. He would have preferred resting his head on her chest. He’d had to resist reaching up to touch her.
    No, she wasn’t what he’d expected. His smile quickly vanished. That was the problem. All the information he’d received about Arlene Webster didn’t fit—she was petite and strong but also a bit of an airhead. That had to be an act. Arlene was no ditz. She was smart and very sweet and, surprisingly, a little shy. Michael could sense her awareness of him and her hesitation. Harris’s women usually didn’t hesitate and they were easy to read. He liked his women simple so he could easily manipulate them.
    From what he’d observed, Arlene wasn’t easy to manipulate. Something else was going on. Harris must have changed his “type” to throw them off.
    Michael sighed. He thought this was going to be a dull assignment, as they usually were. He charmed a specific target and got all the information he wanted, but this was different. Somehow he knew it wouldn’t be easy. It certainly wouldn’t be dull. He was going to have to keep a closer eye on Arlene and he knew that he was going to enjoy every minute of it. He’d never had anyone look after him. He was used to being on his own. He hadn’t expected to wake up and find her there.
    And she hadn’t been sitting quietly by his bedside. She had been pacing his room with untapped energy.At that moment he could imagine putting that energy to good use. Michael felt his body respond to the thought and shook his head. No, that wasn’t why he was here. No matter how tempting she was—and she certainly was tempting—he was on a job. But he planned to enjoy keeping her company.
    Of course, he knew he couldn’t enjoy it too much. She belonged to another man and he had enough troubles already.
    She shouldn’t call him. Noreen stared at the phone the next morning trying to come up with all the reasons to leave Michael Vaughn alone. She had gotten his full name when she’d registered him. He was probably fine. She had to stop worrying. Arlene wouldn’t worry. He was just bruised—he would heal. He was healthy and didn’t need her to harass him. No, she didn’t need to call him. Of course, she could stop by the sick bay on her way to the banquet hall just to make sure he was okay. Perhaps he needed help with his breakfast or something else.
    Noreen shook her head. No, she shouldn’t think that way. He was probably doing very well without her. If he needed help he could call someone. There were nurses. She took a deep breath. She was supposed to be Arlene and Arlene would go to breakfast and not think about him again, at least not until he was better. Arlene liked her men handsome and strong. Not stretched out on a bed, aching with pain. The thought of him in any type of discomfort started her worrying again, but she brushed it aside.
    Noreen changed into a soft violet-colored blouse and a tight rayon skirt that she had been able to lengthen a bit by taking out the hem. She looked nothing like she did last night. The dramatic makeup she had worn had been

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