Soliman, Wendy - The Name of the Game (BookStrand Publishing Romance)

Soliman, Wendy - The Name of the Game (BookStrand Publishing Romance) by Wendy Soliman Read Free Book Online

Book: Soliman, Wendy - The Name of the Game (BookStrand Publishing Romance) by Wendy Soliman Read Free Book Online
Authors: Wendy Soliman
    “Yes,” she said decisively. “Loved.”
    “You can turn your feelings off just like that?”
    “I would have done anything for you,” she said, ignoring the question. “But you wife effectively killed that love off yesterday when she showed me what an idiot I’ve been.” Ashley sighed. “Perhaps I should be grateful to her?”
    Matt groaned, fixing her with a gaze of naked longing. “You don’t know the half of it, but you will, soon. I promise you, we’ll eventually be together, just as we planned.”
    “And the baby? We just pretend it doesn’t exist, I suppose.” She offered him an icy glare. “You don’t know me at all, Matt. If you did, you’d realize that there’re many things I’m capable of forgiving, but treating an innocent child like an insignificant inconvenience definitely isn’t one of them.” She moved into the hall, compelling him to follow her, and opened the door. “Good night,” she said, anticipating that he’d try to touch her and moving out of range before he could.
    It was only after he’d left, and she was fighting back the tears, determined not to shed any more on a lost cause, that she noticed the package he’d left for her on the side table. In the midst of their fight, she’d forgotten to return it to him. It was undoubtedly a jewellery box, and Ashley tried not to imagine how she’d have felt, had things been different. In all their time together, Matt’s gifts to her had been impersonal. He favored flowers, perfume, lingerie—the usual safe things that a man, lacking originality, tended to buy for a woman. But this time?
    Furious with herself for even thinking about it, she threw it unopened into the nearest drawer and slammed it shut.

Chapter Four

    “No, it can’t wait. What part of we need it now don’t you understand? Just sort it!” Ashley slammed her phone down. “Bloody incompetent idiot,” she muttered.
    “Problem?” Martin’s head appeared over the partitioning.
    “Nothing more than usual. Sorry, was I shouting?”
    Martin flashed a brief smile. “Just a bit.” His smiled faded as quickly as it had appeared and was replaced with an expression of concern. “Actually, in case you didn’t realize it, you’ve done a lot of shouting this week. It’s not like you. Are you okay?”
    No, she bloody well wasn’t okay. The week had been living hell, and Ashley felt completely wiped out.
    “Sorry,” she said. “I’ve got a lot on my mind.”
    “Wanna grab a pint at lunchtime and talk about it?”
    The one thing Ashley was absolutely certainty about was that she didn’t want to talk about it, especially not to any of her colleagues. Not even Martin.
    “Best not,” she said, “thanks all the same.” She indicated her cluttered desk with her hands. “I’ve got a ton of stuff to get through.”
    “Sure, no worries.”
    He looked a bit wounded by the brush-off, making Ashley feel guilty for being short with him when he was only trying to help. She didn’t want to hurt his feelings—he was a good friend to her—but her emotions were still too raw to risk talking about personal things to anyone right now. Whoever decreed that time was a great healer must live on a different planet. She’d buried herself in her work, but the pain just refused to go away, her mind flashing back to what might have been with every glimpse she caught of Matt.
    He continued to flit, almost on a daily basis, between Reigate and Southampton. Mercifully, she saw him only as he dashed through the office or if they happened to be in the same meeting—never on a one-to-one basis. Whenever their paths did cross, he looked increasingly drawn. She knew what stress he was living under and ached to share his burden. In spite of the way he’d lied to her, she’d been blindsided by the love she felt for him, and there didn’t seem to be a damned thing she could do about it.
    Negotiations for the amalgamation had picked up pace, and the

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