‘That would be good.’
They sounded as if they were ironing out the details of a business merger—which was, Margo supposed, essentially what they were doing. If Leo wanted their marriage to be businesslike, then she supposed he wouldn’t mind his sisters knowing it.
‘Leo hasn’t told us anything about you,’ Xanthe said after a few moments of strained silence, when all Margo did was toy with her food and stare at her plate. ‘Where are you from?’
She looked up and met Xanthe’s speculative gaze with what she hoped was a friendly smile. ‘I lived in Paris.’
‘I love Paris!’
Ava jumped in quickly, and Margo wondered if the sisters would actually be welcoming towards her after all.
‘It must have been very hard to leave.’
Margo glanced at Leo, whose face was as bland as ever. ‘A bit,’ she allowed, ‘but I have other things to think about now.’
She rested one hand on her small bump, which unintentionally but effectively silenced all conversation. Both Xanthe and Ava excused themselves a few minutes later, leaving Leo and Margo alone with about an acre of polished mahogany between them.
‘I’m sorry things seem a bit awkward,’ Leo said after a moment. ‘They’ll come to accept you in time.’
‘Maybe,’ Margo allowed. ‘I don’t suppose it really matters.’
‘Doesn’t it? This is your home now, Margo. My family is your family. I want you to feel a part of things. I want you to be a part of things.’
‘I know.’ She toyed with a piece of melon and then laid down her fork. ‘I’ll hold up my end of the bargain, Leo.’
To her surprise he threw his napkin down and rose from the table. ‘I don’t want to talk about bargains,’ he said. ‘Let me know when you are ready to begin the tour. I’ll be in my study.’
Mystified, Margo watched him stride out of the dining room. She’d annoyed him, obviously, but she didn’t know how or why. Sighing, feeling the day stretching out in front of her would be very long indeed, she ate a bit of yogurt and nibbled on a pastry before rising herself and going to find Leo.
He’d told her he would be in the study, but she couldn’t remember where it was—although she certainly recalled the interview she’d had in there just two days ago. She pressed a hand to her forehead, amazed at how much had changed in such a short time. Her whole life had been upended.
After opening and closing a few doors that led to various impressive reception rooms, she finally found the study. Leo sat behind the desk, one hand driving through his hair, rumpling it in a way that would have made him seem endearing if he hadn’t had such a scowl on his face.
Margo knocked on the already open door and Leo looked up. His face cleared, but only just.
‘Did you eat something?’
‘A bit. I’m fine.’
He hesitated, then said, ‘Things will get better. As you settle in.’
‘I hope so. Although I’m not sure what you want sometimes, Leo. You almost seemed angry back there, talking about our marriage as a bargain, and yet you’re the one who said you wanted to keep it businesslike.’ The words spilled out of her, even though she hadn’t intended to say them.
‘I know,’ Leo said, and drummed his fingers on the desktop.
Margo waited for him to elaborate but he didn’t.
‘I just want us to be on the same page,’ she said quietly. ‘Whatever page that is.’
‘I think it will take time to decide what page that is,’ he said finally. ‘But in the meantime we can deal with practical matters.’ He nodded towards her jeans and jumper. ‘You need clothes and toiletries. We can order some things online, or go into Amfissa—’
‘I’d like to get my things from Paris,’ Margo answered. ‘I’ll need to speak to people at work, put my apartment on the market.’
‘There’s no need to sell your apartment. I can certainly afford to keep it, and it might be nice for us to have a permanent place in Paris.’
She blinked, surprised by his generosity. It was a far cry from the conditions he’d given her the last time they’d been in this room. ‘Are you—are you sure?’
‘Yes. Why shouldn’t we keep it?’ He stared at her for a moment and then said, his voice gaining an edge, ‘Not everything about our marriage has to be a sacrifice, Margo.’
‘I didn’t mean it like that—’
‘No? Sometimes when you look at me you seem as if you’re steeling yourself.’ He rose from the desk, shrugging on his suit jacket. ‘It seems strange that it is so difficult for you to spend time with me now when we had two years together. But perhaps when you said you were planning to end it you spoke the truth, whether there was another man or not.’