The Billionaire's Paradise (Sexy Billionaires)By: Victoria Davies
Well, she was sure as hell thinking about it now.
Those incredible eyes moved over her from the tips of her toes to the top of her head, and the appreciation she saw shining from them warmed her in a way that had nothing to do with the tropical climate.
Leaving his bags by reception, he strode forward without taking his eyes from hers.
Run, her mind urged.
Stay, her body purred.
Not that she was one to flee a confrontation. She’d stared down scarier men than Hayden Wexton. Of course, those men hadn’t seen her stark naked, but still.
Fighting back the butterflies, she waited for him to close the distance between them.
“Avery,” he said, stopping before her.
She did her best not to shiver as the sound of his voice rolled over her—the same voice that haunted her dreams, whisperings naughty words in her ear as his skin pressed against hers.
“It’s been too long.” He brushed his lips lightly against her cheek in greeting.
Don’t lean in, she cautioned herself even as her traitorous body was more than willing to enjoy his touch.
“Mr. Wexton.” She greeted him, striving to pull her professional persona around her like armor.
There was no missing the amusement in his expressive eyes. “I think we’re well beyond the need for formality.”
“You’re my boss,” she pointed out.
A slow smile curved his lips. “Wyatt hired you. I’m just an innocent tourist hoping to enjoy some surf and sand.” His gaze shifted to Karen. “Karen, nice to see you again.”
“Likewise,” her friend said, her gaze darting back and forth between them.
“What brings you to the island?” Avery asked.
He waved his arm at the lobby around them. “It’s my hotel.”
“And your visit just happened to coincide with my contract? What a shocking coincidence.”
“Must be fate.”
“Or your VP told you I’d accepted this job.”
Hayden grinned unrepentantly. “That, too.”
Be strong. Don’t fall for his charm. Or at least, not again.
“Just to be clear,” she said, taking a step back, “I’m here for work.”
“Excellent. This hotel was one of our best earners, but the last few quarters have seen it take quite the beating. We’re relying on you to get to the bottom of it.”
She arched a brow. “Are you here to look over our shoulders?”
“Maybe I just needed a vacation.”
“Your whole life is a vacation.”
He pressed a hand to his heart in fake pain. “You are so cruel to me.”
She couldn’t help rolling her eyes. “Please. Five bucks says you were eating caviar in bed with some actress last week. Am I wrong?”
Something flashed through his eyes before his easy smile slid back into place. “Hate to break it to you, but my social calendar has been rather lean these past few weeks. Must have been something else on my mind.”
“Okay,” Karen said, drawing out the word. “I’m going to go check on some super real and suddenly pressing details and let you guys catch up. Avery, remember we’ve got that meeting coming up.”
“I will,” she said, not looking away from Hayden as Karen disappeared as fast as she could. Some chaperone she was.
Hayden watched her go, amusement in his gaze, before turning his attention back to Avery.
“I meant it, you know. You left an impression.”
Danger, Will Robinson. Don’t get sucked in.
In the years she’d known him, he’d never gone very long between his cookie-cutter girlfriends. The idea that he hadn’t tried to replace her with someone new was laughable.
But then again, for all his faults, he’d never lied to her.
“Why are you really here, Hayden?” she asked, her voice low.
His eyes darkened, dipping to her lips before returning to meet her gaze. “You know the answer to that.”
“I’m not interested in being another notch in your bedpost.” She winced and added, “Again.”
He took a step closer, invading her space as she breathed in his cologne. “Why?”
She looked up. Even in her heels, she had to tip back her head to accommodate his height. “I don’t make mistakes twice.”