By:  Emma Swan  Completed
Language: English
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She'd break his self-control! Sasha Neville-Talbott’s cruel words at their last meeting, a few years back, had crushed the youthful passion out of Veronica Hart. Still ashamed by her teenage infatuation with him, Veronica knew it was important that Sasha understand they were now meeting on equal terms. She would do her utmost to play it cool and distant and let him know that all they shared now was a purely business relationship! Even if everything was different, even if she was acting tough, one simple glimpse of him let her know nothing had changed… Veronica's body still ached for his. Maybe Sasha would never come to love her, but still, she knew she'd do almost anything for just one night in his arms...

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Marena John Lambrou
Beautiful! So heart breaking for such stupid reasons but wonderful ending! Emma, you had me spellbound ’til the very end! Thank you
2023-12-08 08:35:09
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19.10.2023 love it so much..
2023-10-19 08:49:32
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Traci Williams
This may be one of my favorite E.S. story yet. Well developed characters, a great story arc. Loads of heart-breaking misunderstanding, and unrequited love. Who could ask for more? I mean, I could ask for more, and I do. I can’t wait to read the next book from E.S!
2023-05-30 18:58:04
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Chin Kee Quek
I always love Emma’s books. All her stories are so inspiring
2023-05-23 20:41:06
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Well written but the main character is a straight up nut job. Super off putting.
2022-08-19 08:35:21
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Melissa 😁
Such a cute book! Loved it!
2022-05-20 01:44:13
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just lovely!!! I'm in love with your books dear Author!!! thanks tons for these wonderful short stories!!!!...️
2022-04-04 10:53:23
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Beautiful love story with a happy ending. I loved it!!!
2022-01-13 18:14:53
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Fani M Szterenbuch
Awesome book! Love the story. Wish that was more into their lives together.
2022-01-01 12:42:37
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Alina Teodora Oprisan
Lovely story!
2021-12-03 15:09:43
29 Chapters
“What the hell are you doing, Veronica? What kind of sick game are you playing right now? Stop it!”          Sasha looked at her angrily as he removed her hands, releasing her fingers from his shirt where she had unconsciously curled them in her attempt to get him to listen to what she wanted to say, to understand that she was no longer a child, that she was now completely and totally a woman... A woman who was totally and completely in love with him and wanted to be his.“Sasha, trust me, I know what I’m doing… And this isn’t a sick game,” Veronica protested, her eyes starting to fill with anguished tears as he thrust her away. “Sasha, I want…”“Oh, I know exactly what you want, Veronica! Believe me, I know it quite well!” Sasha interrupted her savagely. “You want me to have sex with you. But right now, what I feel more like doing&hellip
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“You’re kidding, J.J. You didn’t...”          Veronica frowned as she studied the synopsis pinned to the front of the file her employer had just handed her. John-James Creed IV (the fourth), J.J for his friends, was the kind of eccentric billionaire who, by rights, only ought to have existed in fairytales… as a particularly genial and indulgent godfather, Veronica thought.          She had been introduced to him at a party to which she had been invited by some acquaintances of Henry, her stepbrother. She had only gone to the party because she had been feeling particularly lost and insignificant, having only recently moved to New York.          They had got chatting and John-James had begun to tell her about the trials and traumas he had experienced in running the huge wealthy Trust set up by his
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          Even so, she gave him an ironic look.“I’m just doing what I know the old man would have wanted me to do...” J.J. informed her loftily.“Really? By buying a decaying neoclassical pile in the middle of Derbyshire?” Veronica asked him dryly and started shaking her head.  “You’ll love it, Ronnie... I promise you!” he told her winningly and left the room leaving her alone with her thoughts.          Veronica was still tempted to run after J.J. and tell him that she was far too busy and that he would have to find someone else to take charge of this particular project, but her pride, the same pride that had kept her going, kept her head held high and her spirit strong through Sasha’s rejection of her and everything that had followed, refused to allow her to do so.     &n
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          Five miles or so before her ultimate destination, Veronica pulled the car she had hired at the airport over to the side of the road and switched off the engine. She did it not because she was unsure of where she was going, not even because she wanted to absorb the beauty of the Derbyshire countryside around her, magnificent though it was as it basked warmly in the mid-afternoon sunshine, devoid of any sign of human occupation apart from her own.          No… Unfortunately, the reason Veronica had stopped was that she had been significantly aware for the last few miles, not just of the slight dampness of her hands on the steering wheel but, even more betrayingly, of the increasing turmoil of her thoughts and the nervous butterflies churning her stomach.          When she finally met... confronted... Sasha, she wanted t
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          To her chagrin, Veronica recognized that it wasn’t only Sasha who had moved so much closer and that she was halfway towards the front door now instead of on the perimeter of the portico...          When had she moved...? And how? Without knowing what she was doing...? Sasha had always had that kind of effect on her... Had... All that was in the past now, she reminded herself fiercely.          And just to ensure that Sasha knew it too, Veronica held out her hand to him and, raising her voice slightly, smiled with cool authority as she greeted him.“Sasha, good! I’m glad you’re here. We can get straight down to work. I’ve studied the plans of the house, but I always find that it makes an enormous difference to actually walk over a property, so...”     
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“Mmm... You won’t have seen it as you drove in. It’s on the other side of the estate. I’m living there at the moment and I’ve arranged with Mrs. Elliott, who used to be my cousin’s housekeeper when he lived there, for a room to be prepared for you. J.J. mentioned that you’d probably be working here for a number of months and he and I agreed that in view of Elsinore’s distance from the nearest town, and the fact that he has warned me that you like to keep a very keen eye on the budgets, it makes sense for you to stay at the Rectory rather than waste time and money hunting around for alternative accommodation.” “Wow! Did you now? Still deciding on my behalf…” she whispered this last part more for herself than him. “Yes. Especially since it seems that there could be occasions when you might have to travel abroad to check on work you’ve set in progress at other Trust properties.”           Well, what he said made sense
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          They had covered the ground floor of the house, walked the length of the elegant gallery, with its windows overlooking the parkland and the distant vista of the Derbyshire hills, and were just inspecting the enormous ballroom which opened off it, when Veronica acknowledged inwardly that Sasha might have been right to advise her to wait until after she had rested to inspect the house.          Elsinore Hall’s rooms might not possess quite the vastness of the palazzo’s marble-floored rooms, nor the fading grandeur of the Prague palace, but Veronica had already lost count of the number of salons and ante-chambers they had walked through on the lower floor.          The gallery felt as though it stretched for miles, and as she studied the dusty wooden floor of the ballroom her heart sank at the thought of inspecting
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          Veronica was sitting upright now, ignoring the pounding pain in her head as she glared belligerently at Sasha.“You don’t know what you’re talking about! J.J. doesn’t... he isn’t...”          She stopped, shaking her head. How could she explain to Sasha of all people, about the thing that drove her, the memories and the fears? As a teenager, she had done so many foolish things and even let down the people who had loved and supported her.          Her involvement with Wayne was something she knew she would always regret. She hadn’t known at the time, of course, just what he was. In her innocent naiveté, Veronica had never guessed that he was anything other than someone who had bought a handful of recreational drugs to pass on to people at rave parties.  
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         Hard on the heels of the acute envy, Veronica had felt when she had first seen the exterior of the house came to a pang of sadness for its inner neglect. Oh, it was clean enough, if you discounted the air possessing a sharp, almost chemical smell that made Veronica wrinkle her nose a little, but it was a long, long way from the home she had so lovingly mentally created. She heard Sasha moving around in the hall behind her.“Let’s go… I’ll take you up to your room,” he told her. “Have you got something for your headache?”“Yes, I have, but they’re in my luggage… which is in my hire car… That you left behind…” Veronica told him grimly.          In the excitement of seeing the house, her headache had abated slightly, but now the strong smell in the hallway had made it return and… with interest. She
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          Sasha grimaced as he studied the very obviously cut-through pieces of fencing wire. This was no accident… Someone had quite definitely used wire cutters on them, which meant... The lambs which had been born early in the spring had all gone now, his breeding stock the only flock that remained.          And the deer roaming the home park was a tempting target for poachers. The last time he had seen Henry, the two of them had discussed the pros and cons of tagging their deer.          Like him, Henry had a small herd on his estate, but since their marriage, Mollie, his wife, had added a new strain to them in the shape of the same miniature deer that she had bred so successfully.          As Sasha glanced towards the line of bushes that separated the parkland from the main gardens to the H
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