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Island Fling with Dr. Christianopolis

Written by Tina Beckett

When Rylee Emerson’s husband surprises her with a luxury Mediterranean cruise, it promises to be the holiday of a lifetime… Until he leaves her before they even set sail! After the loss of their son, their relationship had never been the same. Now Rylee must face the future alone. But will the arrival of gorgeous Greek doc Matthias Christianopolis, and his proposal of a fake island fling be just what she needs to move on for good…?

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Chapter One

The cruise ship’s anchor dropped, hitting bottom with a jolt that made her teeth clink together. But that was no more than the jolt her husband had given her ten days earlier.

Rylee Emerson rested her forearms on the rail and leaned over to examine the rocky coastline a short distance away, as staff secured the ship, preparing to let its passengers disembark in groups. Mythelios, one of lesser known of the Cyclades group of islands, was gorgeous, more beautiful than she could have imagined. And she was here. The trip of a lifetime. She wasn’t going to waste one second of it on past regrets.

Chet had booked a Greek cruise for their tenth anniversary. “Part of a new start for both of us.” He’d kissed her neck and turned her to face her bedroom mirror, hands splayed across her lower belly. He smiled at her in the reflection. “I’ve waited to surprise you with this for months.”

“You have?” She wasn’t sure if the surprise was the cruise or this sudden display of affection.

Moments later, he’d pressed her to that mirror and made love to her with an intensity that also surprised her.

Those surprises just kept on coming.

Their marriage had been up and down for the past couple of years, so much so that he often slept on the couch downstairs. But for the cruise, he’d wanted things to be different. The sudden change in him had been shocking. And welcome.

Maybe this really was a time of new beginnings. God knew she’d had enough heartache to last a lifetime.

The trip had meant she’d had to juggle her work schedule, asking some of her partners to oversee her patients while she was gone, but it had been worth it. A week of sunning herself on a hot Greek Island—what could be better?—before she had to get back on the boat, enjoy the rest of the cruise and then make her way back home.

How long had it been since she’d been able to do…nothing?

“Oh wait, I forgot my hat!”

She hurried back to their room and opened the door, glancing at Chet’s suitcase, before going to the closet and grabbing the straw brimmed hat she’d bought in Athens. White and floppy, it kept the sun at bay, and she loved the way it made her feel. Light and casual, like she didn’t have a care in the world.

And right now. She didn’t.

Chet had carried their suitcases onboard, laughing over the ridiculous amount of clothes she’d brought.

“We’re going to be gone for two weeks. What if I can’t find a washing machine?”

“Life’s an adventure, didn’t you know?”

She did now.

Exhausted from the whirlwind rush to get things ready, she’d decided to rest in the room, while Chet went to explore the ship. An hour later she woke up, surprised that her husband hadn’t yet come back. She texted him, then unpacked her suitcase. Her message went unanswered. As did the next six. That was when she got worried.

Finding a steward, she asked the best way to locate her husband.

“I can page him. What’s his name?”

“Chet Emerson.”

Glancing through some sort of list, he frowned, his finger tracking across a line. One that had a bold red slash running through it.

“I’m sorry, ma’am. He seems to have disembarked before we left port.”

She laughed. “There has to be some mistake.”

The worst thing had been the pity. Only there’d been no mistake.

Chet had gotten off the ship, leaving nothing behind but his suitcase…

And her.

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About the author

Being the product of a Navy upbringing, it has always felt natural to ...

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Tina Beckett

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