Prince Nadir's Secret Heir(10)

By: Michelle Conder


IMOGEN SLICKED HER tongue across her dry lips, her heart pounding towards a heart attack as Nadir led her towards the car.

To talk, he said. But was that really what he wanted? And why was he so angry with her about Nadeena?

Every instinct in her body warned her that she shouldn’t go with him but really she wasn’t afraid of Nadir. And, despite his hostile manner, it wasn’t as if he would want to have anything to do with Nadeena in the long run.

In truth, he probably just wanted to make sure she wasn’t going to go to the press with news of his indiscretion. Her stomach turned. That was the most likely scenario here. That and to ensure that she wasn’t going to make any financial demands on him in the future. Maybe he’d even offer to set up a trust fund for Nadeena. If he did, she wouldn’t take it. She would provide for her daughter herself. Nadeena need never know that her father hadn’t loved her enough to want her in his life.

Unable to stop herself, her eyes ran over his face. He was still the most ruggedly attractive man she had ever laid eyes on, with thick black hair that fell in long layers, olive skin and an aquiline nose that perfectly offset a square jaw that always looked as if it was in need of a shave. And his mouth. Surely that had been fashioned by Ishtar because it could look either surly or sexy depending on his mood.

Currently, he wasn’t in a good one. But okay, she would be rational. Talk to him. Answer his banal questions. Reassure him that she wanted nothing from him. ‘Fine. I can give you a few minutes.’

He didn’t answer and warning bells clanged loudly inside her head again as the car door was smoothly opened by a burly chauffer. Then a waft of deliciously cool air hit her and she bent her head and manoeuvred inside as best she could with Nadeena still strapped to her chest.

‘Wouldn’t you be better taking that thing off?’

His gruff question came from the opposite seat and Imogen momentarily lost her train of thought as his masculine scent enveloped her. ‘That thing is a sling and no, I can’t. Not without waking her.’

‘So wake her.’

‘Not a good idea. Don’t you know you should never wake a sleeping baby?’

His slight hesitation was loaded. ‘How would I?’

Cold censure laced every word and she had to force her eyes to remain connected to his. Nadeena really did have his eyes, she thought absurdly. Lucky her. ‘So I’m here.’ She let out a pent-up breath. ‘So talk.’

‘This is not a conversation for a limousine.’ Nadir made a motion with his hand and said something in rapid-fire...Italian? Greek? Before Imogen knew it, the car was in motion.

‘Wait. Where are we going?’

Nadir’s eyes snagged with hers and the heat from his gaze made her go still all over. His eyes drifted over her face with insolent slowness and sexual awareness turned her mouth as dry as dust.

Determined not to be so weakened by him again that she turned into a puppet on a string, she forced air in and out of her lungs in a steady stream. But the act took up every ounce of her concentration so when he informed her that they were going to his apartment it took longer than it should have for his words to take hold.

‘Your apartment? No.’ She shook her head. ‘You’ve misunderstood me. I meant a few minutes here. In the car. And it’s illegal to drive with an infant not strapped into a proper baby carrier.’

Nadir leaned forward and spoke to his driver again and instantly the big car slowed.

‘My apartment is close by. And it is you who has misunderstood me, Imogen. We have to talk and a few minutes isn’t even going to cover the first topic.’

Imogen narrowed her eyes. ‘I don’t see why. I did what you wanted fourteen months ago and disappeared from your sight so I don’t understand what you want with me now.’

His sculptured lips thinned into a grim line. ‘You did disappear, I’ll give you that. And you still haven’t told me her name.’

Her name? Imogen lowered her gaze to the safety of her daughter’s head. No way could she reveal her name. No way did she want to see this man who had once meant so much to her mock her for her sentimentality. Maybe even pity her. At the time she’d named her she’d been feeling particularly sorry for herself and hopelessly alone. The three-day blues they called the come down from the emotional high some women experienced after giving birth. Now she wished she’d named her Meredith or Jessica—or any name other than the one she had.

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