He was here.
A decadent shiver coursed through Amelie Hayford as her avid gaze tracked the second Quayson son across the vast terrace to the bar. She watched him reach for a bottle and pour a drink, imagining those long, elegant fingers of his caressing her skin, much like she had for weeks now, ever since their night in the club. But it went further back than that. She’d been pining for glimpses of him since she’d returned from England and first caught sight of him while she’d been dropping off her sister at the Quayson mansion.
He hadn’t seen her then, had been too absorbed in the tablet he’d been using while lounging by the pool.
But that impact of first sight, after two years of being away studying at university, had been intensely electric. The nightclub interaction had merely cinched things for her.
He’d been all she’d thought about in the last three weeks.
She’d thought about him as she’d dressed for the party tonight, every stitch of clothing on her body picked with Atu in mind.
The feminist part of her cringed at the thought of prettying herself up for a man, but the teenage girl with a crush had turned into a woman who knew her mind. That woman raised her chin in challenge at the idea of going against her own desires.
She wanted to look beautiful tonight. Granted, she paled in comparison to the stunning heiresses and supermodel types prancing about here tonight, but…
She squared her shoulders. She would make Atu Quayson take notice of her. Even if she had to strip naked in the middle of the party to get his attention.
Why that image didn’t bother her as much as it should have indicated how far gone she was. She stared into her drink. The second one of the evening.
She’d told the bartender to make it weak, but she suspected he hadn’t heeded her instruction. No matter.
Her feelings about Atu had been deeply entrenched in her long before an ounce of alcohol had hit her system—
Her thoughts fled as she raised her glass and met his electric gaze.
He was magnificent.
Even in full brooding mode he was a sight to behold. And not just because his bespoke silk suit clung in all the right places. Not because his coarse black hair and that designer stubble he sported gleamed under the lights, lending him a vitality her fingers itched to explore.
The clothes were just window dressing for the majesty of the man beneath.
A man who carried himself like a god, his belief in his masculinity oozing from every pore with the kind of confidence she wished she could emulate to the smallest degree.
One eyebrow slowly lifted and Amelie realised she’d been gaping at him for the better part of a minute.
Once upon a time, she would’ve cowered, cringed with embarrassment and probably hightailed it behind the nearest pillar. But perhaps those moments on the dance floor and the drive up the hills in his car hadn’t been a total waste after all.
Because she didn’t cower. Didn’t allow herself a moment of doubt as she took one step. Then another.
Didn’t stop until she stood in front of the man who brought colour into her life. Who made her feel alive.
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