“That’s wonderful,” Lina said eventually. If she were thinking about getting married and having children, it was only because Carver had just given her the news about a precious little girl being born. Not because she regretted not dating Carver. That had never been an option. For so long he was her best friend, and when he’d asked her to the prom, she’d taken that as a friendly gesture as well. Until they danced that night, when his touch had made her feel something different than anything she’d ever experienced with a guy before.
“It is,” Carver said.
The next moments passed in silence, during which time Lina thought about her life since leaving Temptation. She was leasing a great condo just a few blocks from Central Park, and last summer she’d vacationed in Australia. The year before that she’d gone to the Maldives. Work travel took her to the biggest and most popular fashion cities in the world. She attended high-fashion runway shows and parties with politicians, movie stars and musicians, all while wearing designer clothes and shoes. Her life was everything she’d ever wanted. She had no regrets.
As if he’d known what she was thinking, Carver stopped and reached for her hands. There was an instant zing that shot straight through her, confirming what she’d thought might happen moments ago. That haze of sexual awareness she’d felt all those years ago was amplified. Confusion filled her mind as she struggled to find the words that would make this all seem normal.
The way Carver was looking at her said he knew it wasn’t normal, without her saying a word.
“You’re not wearing a wedding ring,” he said, his thumb rubbing over the bare finger of her left hand.
After staring down at her hand in his, she shook her head and reached for his left hand. “Neither are you.”
“Why do you think that is?” he asked.
Lina shrugged, refusing to acknowledge the uptick in her pulse or the jittery feeling circling in the pit of her stomach.
“I think this is fate, Lina. Us meeting up again like this—I think it was meant to be.”
Her head was shaking before the words had fully formed in her mind. He’d said something similar the night he’d brought her home after the prom. She hadn’t wanted to hear it then because it meant all that she knew and loved would change. Hearing him repeat that “meant to be” phrase again now, when her life was so perfect, caused the same problem. Believing for one minute that she was meant to be with Carver meant she’d have to choose between her life in New York or his life in Temptation.
And she’d made that choice already. She wasn’t prepared to do it again.
Log in or create an account to read the next chapter of "Picture Perfect Temptation"
Every month we select a new title from one of our authors so that you can discover new stories, locations and genres for free.