A Reason For Marriage (Harlequin Presents, No 1041) by Penny Jordan

By Penny Jordan

It has been six years seeing that Jamie walked in on her lover, Jake Brierton, in mattress with one other woman--and walked correct again out that door and out of his lifestyles. yet even supposing Jamie has spent years engaged on her profitable adorning enterprise, she's by no means been in a position to absolutely exorcise Jake from her brain. he's, finally, her stepbrother.... whilst her stepdad turns into sick, Jamie is reunited with Jake on their manner domestic for Christmas. She is surprised while Jake proposes marriage--a marriage designed to make their family members satisfied. but if the rite is over, and their honeymoon in a comfortable Swiss chalet starts, Jamie wonders what sort of marriage she's destined to have with the guy who as soon as broke her heart...and may perhaps simply do it back!

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Although she had not seen it when they made love, looking back now she recognised that there had always been an edge of constraint in the way he touched her, a faint holding back, which she suspected now came from the fact that he had doubtless found her inexperience something of a trial. At the time she had not been aware of this, giving herself to him with a blissful joy that recognised nothing other than the unbelievable fact that he loved her. The merest touch of his fingers against her skin had been enough to set her alight with pleasure and happiness, and in her innocence she had thought it was the same for him, that the reason he had made love to her was that like her, he simply couldn't wait to consummate their love.

Blankly she looked into his face. His mouth was hard and compressed, his eyes shadowed. His hair, thick and densely black, looked as though it needed cutting. He looked tired, she recognised, momentarily stepping outside the magnetism that always held her so much in thrall and seeing him simply as another vulnerable human being. He had released her now and impulsively she wanted to reach out and touch him, to smooth away the frown creasing his fore head, and then bitterness overtook compassion.

She was going to be cool and indifferent to him. She had to be. " Beth's eye; opened wide as she studied her cousin's appearance enviously admiring the way the silk jersey clung to Jamie's supple body. " she complainec ruefully. " "If you are that's how I like you," Richard told his wife, coming into the kitchen behind Jamie, and going over to give Beth a quick kiss. " "Well, you can thank Jamie. She's taken charge of tonight's meal," Beth told him. Jamie knew there would be eight of them altogether: Jake and his girlfriend, the local doctor and his wife, and her brother, who was apparently staying with them following a road accident, Jamie herself and Beth and Richard.

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