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Reunited on Wedding Island

Written by Sophie Pembroke

Chapter Thirteen

Haven wasn’t entirely sure what sort of answer she’d expected from Miles, but she hadn’t expected him to give it quite as much thought as he did.

“I guess… I saw you and him about to tumble over that cliff—”

“I’d hardly call it a cliff,” Haven interjected. “More of a slope.”

Miles gave her a small smile. “I promise you, to that little boy it was a cliff. It was the end of the world, and he was terrified.”

He stepped off the end of the path, onto the beach itself, then turned back to Haven, where she stood a little higher, on one of the many rocks she hadn’t fallen onto. Then, without warning, he put his hands on her waist and lifted her, effortlessly, down to the sand.

Haven very carefully ignored the heat that his hands against her skin—even through her thin tank top—generated. He might not be the self-absorbed, vain actor who judged everyone on appearances she’d assumed he was the night of their blind date, but he was still Miles Jackson, film star. That way lay unwanted celebrity—and possibly madness. She needed to remember that.

But she couldn’t stop herself questioning his answer.

“Did you… You sound like you’re talking from experience there.”

Miles let go of her waist as if she were a knife-edge. “I had a stepfather. One of the not great sorts.”

Haven blinked as she tried to figure out the connection. The only thing she could think of was… “What, he…he held you over a cliff?”

“Probably just a slope,” Miles admitted. “But I was only eight, and it felt like—” He broke off suddenly, and Haven realised, belatedly, how painful a memory this must be for him. And how intimate.

“Like the end of the world,” she murmured, and he nodded.

Well. None of that had shown up in any of his gossip magazine interviews. Not that she read them. Often.

Haven took a deep breath as she processed the realisation that nothing about Miles was as she’d assumed. Just like nothing about her was how everyone else assumed.

Really, after a life of being judged based purely on her family and her failure to follow them into show business, she should know better than to judge others.

Turning abruptly, her sneakers digging into the sand, she faced Miles and held out her hand.

Miles raised an eyebrow. “I think we’ve already met, you know.”

“No, I don’t think we have,” Haven said. “But I’m starting to think we should. From scratch.”

“Forget the date and the daring rescue?” Miles asked. “And start fresh?”

“Exactly. No assumptions, no prejudices, nothing at all. We accept we don’t know each other.”

“And we try to learn?”

“If you like.” Haven concentrated on not letting her hand shake as Miles stared at it. She hadn’t really considered what she’d do if he said no.

But he didn’t. His warm hand filled hers, and he shook firmly. “Okay.”

Haven beamed up at him. “Hi. I’m Haven.”

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Sophie Pembroke

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