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‘Or what?’

‘I call for the police, and tell them you’re holding me against my will?’

Tino held her stare. ‘On Stellamaris, I am the police.’

‘Well, I’m happy for you. Now will you call for a taxi to take me to the guest house, or do I have to make that call?’

Seizing her arm, he marched her down the corridor towards his study. When they got inside, he slammed the door and stood with his back to it. ‘Would you mind telling me what all this is about?’ His angry gesture encompassed every inch of Lisa, from her beautifully coiffed hair to her shell-pink toenails peeping out of the glamorous sandals, and before she could answer he added, ‘Did you have to make such a show of yourself in front of all those men?’

‘Are you jealous, Tino?’

‘Jealous? Of a tramp?’

Her stinging blow caught him full on the face, shooting his head back. He stared at her in total disbelief, nursing his chin.

Lisa could hardly believe what she had done. She hated violence of any sort. She despised it. And now she had sunk to the lowest level possible. It didn’t matter that Tino thoroughly deserved it; nothing would ever excuse such a loss of control. ‘I should never have done that.’

‘You pack quite a punch.’ He nursed his chin.

‘That was unforgivable.’ She had never lost control before, not even to the extent where she had cursed at someone. She didn’t know herself any more, and she didn’t like the person she had become.

‘I’m sorry too.’

She looked at him.

‘I shouldn’t have called you those names.’

They were apologising to each other? What was happening? They had plumbed the extremes of emotion together, and now the carefully controlled Tino Zagorakis was bending towards the equally unyielding Lisa Bond?

‘Stay on.’

‘What?’ Now she was astonished.

‘Stay on at the Villa Aphrodite until Friday, as we agreed. We haven’t finished our discussions yet—and this is a big place, Lisa. I’ll keep out of your way; you keep out of mine.’

If there had only been business between them, that would have made perfect sense… And there was only business between them, Lisa reminded herself. Tino had just made that clear. So, why couldn’t she stay?

But where had it all gone? Where had all the passion and tenderness gone? If this was the life expectancy of the average love affair, she could do without them. She should have known the closeness between them was only an illusion. As Jack Bond had said when he’d thrown earth on her mother’s coffin: ‘Any woman who expects too much out of life is destined to be disappointed.’


WHEN she woke the next morning Lisa lay in bed propped up on pillows, staring at the sea, knowing she would never be able to look at the ocean again without thinking about the day she spent on Tino’s boat…

For that one short day they had been so close… Thinking that would last was as foolish as expecting the morning mist to hang around. They were both far too sensible to get close to anyone. She had just been swept away by the madness that affected many women from cold northern climes—she had seen another way of life, another type of man, and imagined that she could slip easily into his world.

Hearing a tap on the door, she slid out of bed. Grabbing a robe, she hurried to find the same friendly young maid standing outside.

‘Would you like to take breakfast on your balcony again this morning, Thespinis Bond?’

Lisa hesitated. Why should she be confined to barracks? She had reached an accommodation with Tino. There was no reason why she shouldn’t go down for breakfast. There were still a few points she wanted to discuss with him off the record before their teams joined them later. ‘Would it be any trouble to you if I had my breakfast downstairs, Maria?’

‘No trouble at all, Thespinis Bond. I will set a place for you on the patio right away.’

Another new outfit! It couldn’t be helped, Lisa thought as she checked her appearance in the mirror. She would pay back Tino for everything she had worn, and then perhaps negotiate directly with the boutiques for the other clothes and accessories. Everything was so beautiful, it was hard to let any of it go.

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