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“Alright!” I said, throwing up my arms. “I’m done here. I can handle being leered at, but low-rent pickup lines are where I draw the line. Excuse me.”

Without another word, I slipped away from Stavros and started back toward the table.

“Hey, come on, American princess!” he said. “Give me another chance!”

The men might’ve been crappy, but the bar was perfect. The place was south of where we were staying, a town called Loutraki equidistant between the resort and Corinth. The bar was outdoors, lights strung over top of us that blended with the stars above, the hush of the waves on the sand, gentle music playing that mingled with the low din of conversation. The food was wonderful—dates and spanakopita and meze platters. And, just like everywhere else in Greece, it seemed, the view was magical. Corinth was to the south, its lights glittering on the water creating a mesmerizing glow.

My group was seated at a table on the other side of the bar, about a dozen of us in total, all from different parts of the globe. Colette was among them, of course, her eyes on me as I approached. The rest of the group was in the middle of a conversation about our studies.

“What is going on?” Colette asked as I slid into my seat and quickly took a sip of my cocktail. “Why did you stop talking to him?”

“Because he was staring at my tits like it was no big deal and totally grossing me out.”

Colette laughed. “That is the point of a dress like that, you know. And when a man stares at you, that means he’s interested.”

“Maybe so. The question is whether I’m interested back.”

Colette, a knowing smile on her face, sat back and glanced over my shoulder.

“Either way, I do not think he is going to be drowning his sorrows over your rejection.”

She nodded, and I looked back to see that Stavros hadn’t wasted any time moving on to the next unattached woman—a young blonde who appeared to be even less interested in his come-ons than I had been.

“That is the thing about Greek men,” Colette said. “They are not, ahh…” she glanced aside, trying to find the right word, “…dissuadedfrom the pursuit.”

I laughed. “You’re right about that. Sometimes I think that American men can be a little too over sensitive when it comes to stuff like this. But the alternative doesn’t seem too much better.”

Colette raised an eyebrow. “American men are timid with women?”

“They can be. Then again, the guys in my school’s classic department aren’t exactly the epitome of masculinity. I swear, they’re either staring at you from across the room or drunk and all over you like a puppy.”

Colette laughed. “Can you blame them? You aretres belle, Georgia. And you are also very successful. That can intimidate men who are not man enough to go after what they want.”

“Is that what I’m looking for?” I asked. “A guy who goes after whatever catches his eye?” I shook my head, realizing the answer. “No, that’s what D-bags like Stavros are, and that’s not exactly a turn-on. Hm, or maybe it’s a guy who'skind ofshy but who also doesn’t need five shots of Wild Turkey just to get the nerve to come talk to me.”

Another laugh from Colette. “You know, sometimes I think that you are, as they say, well, there is a French expression… ‘ton intelligence te perdra’.”

I tried to remember the little bit of French that I knew. “My intelligence will lose me?”

She chuckled and leaned in, placing her hand on my shoulder. “‘You are too damn smart for your own good, would be the translation.’ You are thinking too much about this, Georgia. You arebrilliante, but when it comes to matters of the heart, you should let your heart do the talking, not your brain. Or, if you’re not looking for love, simply allow another part of your body to do the thinking.” She flicked her eyes down between my legs, making me laugh.

“Alright, I get it.”

“If you do not now, you will in time. But for now, just relax and have a drink, or two, or three, and see where the night takes you,oui?”

With that, she rose, drink in hand, and joined the crowd dancing in front of the DJ booth. Part of me wanted to go with her, to lose myself in the dancing and music. But there was too much on my mind.

Was Colette right? Did I think too damn much for my own good? And would it end up biting me in the ass when it came to my love life? I glanced over at the rest of the group. There’d been enough gossip to go around for me to know that just about everyone there had hooked up withsomeone, be they a local or even someone else in the group. Colette had been no exception, and I looked up to see that she had already found her man for the night, a tall, handsome Greek guy with long, black hair and model good looks.

I sighed. I loved being in Greece, but part of me was ready to get home, to start my new life in Colorado.

I took a sip of my drink, feeling more and more ready to pack it in for the night.

That is, until I saw him.

He stepped through the doors of the bar; tall and slim but strong, with olive skin and thick, dark chocolate-colored hair slicked high and back. He had chiseled features, with a thick, short beard and dark, hunter’s eyes. The black Henley shirt he wore clung to his body revealing his muscular build. His hard expression exuded confidence and a clear sign that he was no one to be messed with.

And he was looking right at me.

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