Strangers in the Desert

Strangers in the Desert by Lynn Raye Harris Read Free Book Online

Book: Strangers in the Desert by Lynn Raye Harris Read Free Book Online
Authors: Lynn Raye Harris
her neck, back up the other side to the opposite cheek. Rivulets of flame trailed in their wake. Her skin prickled with heat, cooled and then heated again.
    Her lips parted, her tongue darting out to moisten them. His gaze sharpened, followed the motion.
    “You had it all, Isabella,” he said softly, so very softly. “A wealthy husband, a child and the possibility of more. But it wasn’t enough for you.
We
weren’t enough for you. Tell me why I would ever give you that chance again.”
    She swallowed. His eyes were full of emotion, though she wasn’t sure which emotion.
    A thought struck her like a lightning bolt. She could hardly believe it was possible, considering how he’d told her they’d barely known one another, but what if it was? What if it explained everything?
    “Were you …” She swallowed again. “Were you in love with me? Is that why you’re so angry?”
    He looked surprised. But then he shook his head slowly, his eyes mocking her. “Not at all. It was you who loved me.”
    She stiffened beneath his touch, that soft stroking of her skin that she shouldn’t be allowing and yet couldn’t seem to pull away from. “How do you know that?”
    This time the expression on his face was one of pity. “Because you told me so.”
    “I don’t believe you,” she said automatically. If she’d been in love with this man, wouldn’t she have known it? Wouldn’t she feel some sort of connection even now, even with her memory damaged?
    “Believe what you wish, Isabella. It does not change the truth.” His hand dropped away. She wanted to protest, wanted to ask him to keep touching her, but she did not. “And yet it was a lie, wasn’t it? Because if you had loved me—loved us—you would not have run away.”
    “This is very convenient for you,” she said, her soul aching. “If I protest or disagree, you simply tell me that I did this terrible thing, knowing I cannot argue with you. Knowing that I don’t remember what truly happened.” She put her fists on her hips and glared at him. “How do I know you weren’t involved? What if everything
you
say is a lie?”
    “There was a time long ago in Jahfar,” he said, “when calling me a liar would have got you a death sentence.”
    “Well, thank God we live in enlightened times!” she snorted.
    Behind Adan, another flight attendant had stopped with one foot in the air as if she had been arrested in motion. She pivoted and started to walk away.
    “Oh, for God’s sake,” Isabella exploded. “Why does everyone tiptoe around you like you’re about to chop off their heads?”
    She hurried past Adan and caught up with the woman. “If you wish to speak to him, please come do so.”
    The girl bowed her head. “His Excellency is busy. I will come another time.”
    Isabella’s blood boiled. She’d had it with his high-handedness, and she didn’t care if he was the prince of the universe. People had jobs to do, and they couldn’t do it with him carrying on like a wounded lion.
    “You wished to ask if we wanted drinks? Food?”
    “Drinks, Your Highness.”
    Isabella was taken aback at the title and almost corrected the girl.
    Until she remembered. She
was
a princess, at least for the moment, and though the staff hadn’t seemed to know it when she’d boarded, they certainly knew so now that she and Adan had been arguing so loudly.
    “I would like water with lemon, please.” She turned to look at Adan, who was still glowering in the same spot. “Your Worship, would you like anything to drink?”
    She thought she saw his jaw grinding. “No.”
    “Very well.” She turned back to the girl. “I’ll just have that water, then.”
    “Yes, Your Highness.” She dipped into a curtsey and was gone, hurrying toward the galley at double speed.
    “I don’t know how you live with yourself,” Isabellasaid. “Terrorizing women, demanding obedience and glaring at everything in sight. Wouldn’t you like, just once, for someone to
want
to talk to you

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