The Billionaire Bodyguard(4)

By: Sharon Kendrick

His face was chiselled—all hard and lean angles—which seemed at odds with the lush, sensual curve of his upper lip. In the low light she couldn’t make out the colour of his slanting eyes, but she could appreciate the feathery forest of lashes which gave them such an enigmatic look, and she had been modelling for long enough to know that cheekbones like that were rare.

He was, quite simply, gorgeous.

Jay noted the dilation of her eyes with something approaching wry amusement and then put it out of his mind. This was business, not pleasure—and even if it had been he wasn’t into spoiled, pretty girls who expected everyone to jump when they spoke.

‘So we could stay here all night,’ he said pleasantly. ‘Keep the engine running and wait until morning and hope it gets better.’

Spend the night in the car? ‘Are you serious?’

‘Completely.’ He would keep awake quite easily—he had had a lifetime’s experience of waiting for the first faint glow of a winter dawn.

There was something so unequivocal about that one clipped-out word that Keri began to realise that he meant it. But surely there was something they could do? This was England, for heaven’s sake—not the Rocky Mountains!

‘We must be able to phone for help.’ She began to fish around in her handbag. ‘I have a mobile here somewhere.’

His own was snug in his pocket—did she really think he hadn’t thought of that? ‘Sure, go ahead,’ he murmured. ‘Call the emergency services and tell them we’re in trouble.’

She knew just from the tone of his voice that there would be no signal, but stubborn pride made her jab at the buttons with frustration coupled with rising panic.

‘No luck?’ he questioned sardonically.

Her hand was shaking, but she put the phone back in her handbag with as much dignity as possible. ‘So we really are stuck,’ she said flatly.

‘Looks like it.’ Her eyes looked huge and dark, all wide and appealing in her pale, heart-shaped face—designed by nature to provoke protectiveness in a man. And nature was a funny thing, he mused—a nose, two eyes and a mouth could be arranged in such a way to transform a face from the ordinary into the exquisite. Luck of the draw, like so much else in life. ‘Listen,’ he drawled, ‘I thought I could make out a building a little way back. It makes far more sense to head for that. I’ll go and investigate.’

The thought of being left here all alone made her feel even worse. What if he disappeared into the cold and snowy night and never came back again? What if someone came along? It wasn’t much of a contest, but on balance she’d probably be much safer with him than staying here without him. He might be a little lacking in the respect department, but at least he seemed to know what he was doing. ‘No, I don’t want you leaving me here,’ she said. ‘I’m coming with you.’

His eyes flickered over her leather boots. They were good, soft, waterproof leather, but heels like that weren’t made for walking. And neither, by the look of it, was she. He raised his eyebrows. ‘Not exactly dressed for it, are you?’

‘Well, I wasn’t expecting to have to go for a hike!’

His eyes narrowed. ‘Ever skied?’

Keri laughed. ‘With my job? You’re kidding—skiing is classified as a dangerous sport and therefore frowned on.’

Pretty restrictive job, he thought. ‘Well, you’re sure you’re up to it?’

‘I can manage,’ she said stubbornly.

He supposed that there was no choice but to let her try. ‘You’ll have to—because there’s no way I’m carrying you.’ His eyes mocked her again as he saw her lips part, and he realised that he was lying. Of course he would carry her, just the way he had been conditioned to do. Men would walk miles across any terrain for a woman who looked like that. ‘Button up your coat,’ he said roughly. ‘And put your gloves back on.’

She opened her mouth to ask him to please stop addressing her as he would an idiot, but something about the set of his mouth told her that the dynamics had subtly changed and he was no longer just the driver. It was indefinable but unmistakable from his body language that suddenly he was in charge. And she wasn’t used to that either.

‘Hat?’ he drawled.

She shook her head and he reached in the glove compartment for a beanie and handed it to her.

‘Put your hair up,’ he instructed. ‘And then put this on.’

‘Won’t you need it yourself?’

‘You need it more,’ he stated. ‘You’re a woman.’

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