She stirred the olive in her cocktail. To stay, or to go? An image of Alexander slid into her woozy brain, the corner of his mouth turned up in that take-the-piss smile, and those blue, blue eyes that seemed to get darker when he looked at her. His strong hands, with their promise of so much pleasure... Warmth filled the pit of her stomach. If only he were there right now. She could have her job, the horses, and Alexander.
Her thought-path stuttered as she tried to picture him in South Africa, uprooted from Draymere, disrupting her flat with his unsettling presence. Her body stirred at the recall of his, but her mind lurched from doubt to question. Would he leave Draymere for her? Would she really want him to? Why was she going back? Had he been faithful?
Hettie forced herself upright. She wouldn’t let those thoughts take hold again.
The room swayed around her as she teetered haphazardly towards the dance floor, edging her slight frame through the press of people. Cynthia’s group was easy to find, and their wild abandon was tempting. The throng of bodies thrust her forwards. She felt a buzz of recklessness.
Fuck it. Tonight she was going to party and enjoy herself. She still had three days before she had to go back to the UK, to Draymere, to Alexander. She allowed herself to be swallowed into a masculine hug. Her eyes flickered over the man’s familiar face. Bugger, she must be pissed. She couldn’t remember his name.
‘Hello, gorgeous.’ He smiled down at her.
His breath tickled her neck, and his hands warmed the skin through the silk of her top. She breathed in his woody aftershave, the heady aroma of man. His stubble was coarse on her cheek. She tilted into his chest.
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