Sally was paralysed, her body one swirling pool of desire as she was held by the intensity of Ben’s gaze. All her resolve melted away. What harm was a kiss? They couldn’t live with all this tension between them. Why not ease it?
Because for Sally it had always been Ben. That was why his desertion had cut so deep, why she hadn’t been able to bring herself to date anyone else—a mixture of distrusting her instincts and that no one else had ever measured up.
‘Ben,’ she half whispered and his grip tightened on her hand, his keen gaze searching hers. Clearly whatever he saw there gave him the answer he sought as he bent his head to hers.
His kiss was everything she remembered, sure and oh so sweet, and the years fled as she sank into it, into him. Pulling him close, luxuriating in the feel of him under her hands, pulling at his shirt, his belt, wriggling free of her clothes as they half fell onto the sofa, wrapped so tightly together, she didn’t know where she ended and he began.
At some point they left the sofa for the bedroom. Sally finally fell asleep entwined with him only to wake and find herself alone once again. She sat up, her skin still tingling from kisses and caresses, her body aching in places that hadn’t ached since she was nineteen.
She showered and went to collect Alice, but her daughter was already up, bedding thrown back, her pyjamas discarded on the floor. Sally headed into the main dining room to find her, only to halt as she found herself critically assessed by a pair of cold dark eyes. It took a heart-stopping moment to realise there were other, friendlier faces in the room.
‘Sally.’ Ben looked tense. ‘I would like you to meet my mother, the dowager countess, and my sisters, Octavia and Allegra. Everyone, this is Sally.’
‘Nice to meet you.’
Breakfast was laid out but her appetite had deserted her. Luckily Alice didn’t seem to have noticed the tension and was tucking into her eggs. Sally poured herself a coffee and took a seat at the table next to Alice.
‘So, Sally, how long are you staying?’ Octavia asked.
‘Just until tomorrow. Alice starts school again on Tuesday.’
‘But I hope you’ll both consider this a second home,’ Ben said easily as he helped himself to more toast. ‘The nursery feels a little out of the way, so decide which rooms you want and we’ll discuss redecoration.’
The air chilled and the dowager countess’s lips thinned. ‘Do you really think that’s wise? You need to be thinking about marriage, Bennett. Installing your mistress and love child at Askett Hall will give out entirely the wrong message.’
Before Sally could react, Allegra had jumped to her feet. ‘Come on, Alice, do you want to show me your room, and then I’ll take you to the stables? Nice to meet you, Sally. I hope we get a chance to have a proper chat later.’
Sally managed a nod, her heart thumping, her temples pounding. All she wanted was to go home and to keep her daughter safe. They didn’t belong here; she had been a fool to come.
Log in or create an account to read the next chapter of "Single Mum to Countess"
Every month we select a new title from one of our authors so that you can discover new stories, locations and genres for free.