And just for my blog readers, a little excerpt:
Pulling the curtain aside, Lilli stepped through, onto the tiled mosaic floor. The sun was softer here, filtered by the silk drapes fluttering at the edges of the terrace. The sun shone through the silk, casting shadows in red and gold everywhere.
At first all she could see was his silhouette against the sun, the shifting colors of the silk playing over his skin. He was long and lean, resting on the raised edge of a pool of water, a tiered fountain making music from the center of the pool. He was shirtless, and she could make out the rounded curve of wide shoulders, strong, muscular arms.
She swallowed hard.
“I am Rajan.”
A deep voice, edged with a soft, husky tone, and an accent that was English and exotic all at the same time. She took another step forward, and the glare of the sun moved into shadow, revealing him to her.
Long, dark hair curling to just below his shoulders framed a face that was all chiseled planes, softened by the lush curve of his mouth as he smiled at her. Teeth so white and perfect. Dazzling. His eyes were dark, nearly black. Skin the color of dark honey, and so smooth. Touchable. She flexed her fingers.
He rose to his feet, every motion graceful, and towered over her five foot four frame. She felt small, delicate in his presence. He moved toward her, one hand outstretched. “You must be Lillian.”
“Lilli, please.” Why was her throat so dry? He was only a man.
But no, that was a lie. He was the most spectacularly beautiful man she had ever seen. Far too perfect for her. But her skin was alive, tingling, simply looking at him.
In a moment he was in front of her, that smile making her light-headed as her blood rushed through her veins. She had to look beyond him for a moment, to the view of the rugged, dusky gray mountains like paper cutouts against the backdrop of stark blue sky. She had to catch her breath.
Her breath went right out of her when he touched her hand. Like fire. Like electricity on her skin. Was it only her nerves that were making her react like this?
“Come and sit by the water with me. It’s cool out here.”
His fingers folded around hers and her skin went hot beneath his touch as she followed him across the terrace. She couldn’t speak, could barely think. She’d never been so stunned by the mere presence of another person in her life.
He led her to the edge of the marble pool. The water was blue, sparkling. She watched the play of it in the fountain in the center. Someone had placed handfuls of flower petals there, and they danced as the water moved.
Then his hand was on her chin, lifting her face so she was forced to look into those glittering black eyes.
“Don’t look away, Lilli. I want to see you. And you need to see me, to know me. We’re going to become very close during our time together. You musn’t be afraid.”
She blinked up at him. “I’m not. I’m just...you’re a little larger than life.”
He smiled at her, the corners of that lush mouth lifting a little. His mouth was too beautiful when he smiled. And she was going to touch it. To kiss him.
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