Beauty in the Billionaire's Bed - Page 72

He felt euphoric, adrift with love. The need to find her and declare his feelings rose up inside him and he half turned, his body filling with lightness.

And then he stopped.

He couldn’t do it.

He couldn’t do that to Frankie—not if he loved her.

Suddenly he was terrified, almost breathless with the fear that he would give in. Terrified of what would happen if he did.

Because he knew what would happen.

He knew Frankie.

She would leap wholeheartedly, loving him, trusting him to catch her...

But her trust would be misplaced. He couldn’t trust himself not to fail, and if he failed he would hurt her more than he was already going to have to hurt her. And he was going to hurt her. It was the only way, even though the thought of doing so tore his heart in two.

* * *

‘Would you like another cup of coffee?’

Glancing up at Constance, Frankie shook her head. ‘I’m fine. But could you leave the pot?’

Arlo would want one. When he returned. She glanced over at the doorway, wondering who had called him. Not work. He would have ignored it.

He had ignored it—for her.

Her heart squeezed. He had put his life on hold for her and showed her how to live again. He had held her and comforted her and filled her with his strength—metaphorically and literally.

Look at this morning. Arlo had still been inside her, his arms anchoring her to his body, and her love for him had been so complete, so devastating, that the room had started to spin and she hadn’t been able to see him clearly.

Not that it mattered. He was so familiar to her now that even if she closed her eyes she

could see every minute detail of his appearance.

Her fingers trembled against the handle of her coffee cup. He was so beautiful, and the lines on his face and the scars all over his body didn’t diminish that beauty—they just made his beauty unique. More than unique. It was essential. He was essential to her now. She needed him more than she needed her next breath. He was everything. Her always and her for ever.

Only she couldn’t tell Arlo that.

That wasn’t what he’d signed up for and no alteration in her feelings could change that. She was already out of her depth, but at least there was still a way back to shore. She couldn’t allow herself to get in any deeper. She couldn’t let herself care even more for Arlo than she did. Not when she knew what it felt like to lose someone you loved. She couldn’t go through that again.

Her pulse skipped. And she didn’t need to. He had acknowledged that what they shared was different...special.

‘It’s never been like this for me before.’

Those had been his exact words, and right now that was enough.

‘Anyway, I’ll talk to you soon.’

She glanced up. It was Arlo. He was still on the phone, and as she looked at him, he pointed at it.

‘Yes, I’ll hand you over to her now.’ He held out his phone. ‘It’s Johnny. He wants to talk to you.’

‘Johnny—oh, my goodness! How’s it going? I can’t believe you’re actually going to be in a film!’ she gushed.

Johnny laughed. ‘Don’t blink or you’ll miss me. I think one of the palm trees is on screen longer than I am.’

It was strange, hearing his laugh. A week ago it would have left her feeling weak. Now, though, she felt nothing except a kind of sisterly affection.

Tags: Louise Fuller Billionaire Romance
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