The final of today's features for Romy Sommer is an excerpt from her latest book The Trouble with Mojitos.
Turquoise blue waters. Sandy white beaches. Mojitos...
Film location scout Kenzie Cole has found herself in paradise. Working in the Caribbean for a week is just what she needs to escape the long line of exes in her closet. Though the last thing she expects is to be picked up at the resort bar by a disgraced former Prince!
Luckily for Kenzie, exile is suiting the man formerly known as Prince Fredrik very well. And it’s not long before his rugged, pirate charm is proving hard to resist.
But Rik’s been spending his time in paradise exorcising demons of his own and he has danger written all over him. If Kenzie was sensible she’d run a mile instead of lose herself to lust - although, they do say sometimes you have to get lost before you can be found....
“A mojito, please.”
Kenzie sagged against the bar counter, not caring that her order sounded desperate or
her body language suggested impatience. She needed alcohol, and she needed it now.
The benefit of an empty bar was that the drink came reassuringly quickly, poured from an ice cold jug ready and waiting, and complete with swizzle stick and paper parasol. She ditched both and tossed the drink back.
“Rough day?” The dreadlocked bar tender leaned on the scarred wooden counter.
“You don’t know the half of it.”
“Want to talk about it?”
“Thanks, but I didn’t come here to talk.” She’d done enough of that all day. Talk, talk, talk, and still nothing to show for it. Now she understood how used car salesmen felt. Used. It was enough to drive a girl to drink. Or at least to the resort’s beach bar, since hitting the mini-bar in her hotel room was just too sad to contemplate.
She didn’t drink alone. For that matter, she didn’t usually drink. Not these days. Beyond the thatched cabana, the sky flamed every shade of pink and orange imaginable as the sun set over the white sand and surf. But here inside the bar was dark, shadowy and strangely comforting after a day of white-hot heat.
“She’ll have another.”
She turned to the wryly amused voice, and wished she hadn’t as she spotted the dark figure at the shadowy end of the long bar. Great. The resident barfly, no doubt. As if she needed another reason to hate this resort, this island, and the whole stinking Caribbean.
“I can order my own drinks, thank you.”
The shadowed figure shrugged and turned his attention back to his own drink. “Suit yourself.”
What was it with the men in this place? Didn’t think a woman could order her own drinks, didn’t think a woman could do business, wouldn’t even give her the time of day. She ground her teeth, the effects of the first drink not quite enough to blur the edges of her mood.
“I’d like another, please.”
She ignored the deep-throated chuckle down the other end of the bar as the barman removed her glass to re-fill it.
The second drink followed the first a little more slowly, and this time she took a moment to savour it. Now she felt better.
But she was still screwed.
Neil had known it when he sent her out here. He’d known she’d be stone-walled, he knew he’d set her an impossible task, and still he’d sent her. He’d expected her to fail. Perhaps even wanted her to fail.
There were days when her past seemed very far behind her. And then there were days like today, when it seemed she’d never escape the follies of her youth.
“That’s the spirit.” The stranger at the other end of the bar slid from his bar stool, out of the shadows and into the yellow lamplight.
In another time and place he might have looked gorgeous, but in low-slung jeans that had seen better days, black long-sleeved tee, with hair in drastic need of a cut, several days’ worth of beard, and darkly glittering eyes, he was devastating.
Pirate devastating. Bad boy devastating.
Kenzie swallowed. Double great.