“Lindsay,” Zach prompted.

“He seems to have a particular interest in her rear end.”


She gave a short cackle. “I’m not naive.”

“I never thought you were.”

“You young people didn’t invent premarital sex, you know.”

Okay, Zach wasn’t going anywhere near that conversation. “Dancing,” he responded decisively and carried on into the house.

“Kaitlin,” he called as he approached the two women huddled together on one of the sofas, their noses in one album and another dozen stacked on a table in front of them.

She glanced up.

“Downstairs,” he instructed, pointing the way. “We’re going to dance.”

She blinked back at him in incomprehension.

He grinned at her surprise and strode closer, linking her arm and swooping her to her feet.

“Ginny’s matchmaking,” he whispered as they made their way to the wide, curved staircase. “I’ve been instructed to snag you as a partner so Dylan will ask Lindsay.”

“She’s very sweet,” Kaitlin disclosed, sorting her feet out underneath herself.

“They’re a family of plotters,” said Zach.

“Yeah? Well, you’re a fine one to talk.”

Zach couldn’t disagree.

They reached the bottom of the stairs, and the huge party room widened out in front of them.

“Wow,” said Kaitlin, stepping across the polished, hardwood floor, moving between the pillars to gaze at the bank of glass doors that opened to the patio, the pool and the manicured lawn. She tipped her head back to take in the high ceiling with its twinkling star lights. She put her arms out, twirled around and grinned like a six-year-old.

Not that she looked anything remotely like a child.

She wore sexy, high-heeled sandals and a pair of snug black pants. They were topped with a metallic thread tank that shimmered under the lights. While she moved, she reached up, raking her loose hair back with her fingers. It shone, and she shone, and he couldn’t wait to hold her in his arms.

A member of the staff was working the sound system, and strains of “Stardust” came up to flow around them from a dozen speakers.

Ginny, Dylan and Lindsay arrived, laughing and joking as they spilled onto the polished floor.

“You need a partner, Auntie,” Dylan declared, snagging her hand. It was obvious to Zach that Dylan knew exactly what his aunt was up to.

“Oh, don’t you be silly,” a blushing Ginny said, then slapped his hand away. “I’m far too old to dance.”

Zach moved toward Kaitlin. She was definitely the one he’d be dancing with tonight. He took her easily into his arms, and moved them both to the music, swirling them away from the others.

“It’s been a while since we did this,” he murmured, as her body settled tentatively against his.

“And the last time didn’t end so well,” she pointed out. But she picked up the rhythm and ever so slowly relaxed into his lead as he stepped them toward the bank of windows.

“It could have ended better,” he agreed. It could have ended with her in his bed. It should have ended that way.

He pulled back and glanced down at her beautiful face. Why hadn’t it ended that way?

“Ginny said she was your grandmother’s best friend when they were girls.”

Zach nodded his concurrence. “Back then, my grandmother Sadie was the caretaker’s daughter.”

Kaitlin relaxed a little more. “Ginny said Sadie grew up here, married here and died here. All on this island.”

Zach chuckled at the misleading description of Sadie’s life. “They did let her off once in a while.”

“Those are some really deep roots.”

“I guess they are.”

“Yours are even deeper.”

“I suppose,” he told her absently, more interested in paying attention to the way she molded against him than in talking about his family history.

She’d relaxed completely now. Her head was tucked against his shoulder, one arm around his back, their hands clasped and drawn inward, while her legs brushed his with every step.

As the song moved on, she eased closer. Their thighs met snugly together, her smooth belly and soft breasts plastered against him. Her heat seeped into his body, and he could smell the subtle scent of her perfume. It had to be her regular brand, because he remembered it from Vegas, from the yacht, from his office.

The song ended, but the sound of Count Basie immediately came up. “It Could Happen to You.” Ginny obviously wasn’t giving Dylan any opportunity to escape her planned romantic web with Lindsay.

Fine with Zach. Wild horses couldn’t pull him away from Kaitlin.

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