Italian Billionaire's Unwanted Quadruplets(5)

By: Sophia Lynn


Above them, the loudspeakers came to life, announcing the beautiful mermaids of Santa Joan, calling them out by name. As the dozen women dropped into the water one by one, Luciano's belly tightened until he heard the man call out, "Amilla."

There she was, a pale streak cutting through the water with ease, coming to swim in formation with her sisters. All of the women were extremely talented to his inexperienced eye, but it was Amilla who drew his eye over and over again. There was a kind of poetry to her movements, and he remembered how strong she had been in the water, wrestling the little girl to the surface. She had been red-faced in the water, gasping and blowing as she’d hauled the girl to the side of the pool, but there had been something so beautifully vital about her that it felt as if he had given her a small piece of his soul in that moment.

I need to find her again, he decided. I need to speak with her. I need to have her.

In another time, he might have been shocked at his own possessiveness, but here, it only seemed right. There was something beautifully compelling about Amilla the Mermaid, and there was a part of him that would take nothing less than possessing her.

***

In the locker room, Pearl got plenty of hugs and cheers for saving the little girl, and she grinned, exhausted but happy. She was less pleased at the message on her phone from her booking agency, because it seemed that they never had good news, but for once, she was happy to be wrong.

"What's up?" asked Juana, raising her eyebrow.

"I'm out of here," Pearl said with a grin. "They got me a booking for Florida, and I can be on a flight tomorrow night. Good money, and it's a full month of work!"

"Good for you, getting outta this hellhole," Juana chortled, punching her lightly on the shoulder.

It was true. The resort was heaven for the people who could stay there, but for everyone else, it was a constant fight against management over work standards, schedules, pay and more.

No, she wasn't going to miss the resort, and everything that she loved about it could be found elsewhere.

She locked her tail up carefully in the provided locker, and in a surprisingly short amount of time, she was dressed in a thin camisole top with a sarong wrapped around her hips. She could pass for a college girl on break instead of a hotel employee, and that was the way she wanted it.

With her bag slung over her shoulder, Pearl dodged her way out of the locker rooms, and then took a roundabout route to get out of the resort itself. As she went, she could see Carson dressing down some poor waiter, and she shook her head. No, as beautiful as it was, she wasn't going to be sorry to see the last of the resort.

She had a bit of a harder moment when she glimpsed Luciano in the lobby. He was alone, without his laughing friends, and for a single, strange moment, she wanted to go to him. She had a strict policy against fraternizing with guests of the hotel, but she was on her way out. What harm could it do?

Pearl was even taking a step towards Luciano when she saw him wave down one of the waitresses. It was clear that he wasn't interested in the tray of cold drinks she had. Instead, he spoke to her earnestly, standing far closer than Pearl strictly thought he needed to.

Okay, Pearl, you're being ridiculous, she told herself. It's not like you have a claim on him at all. Literally all you did was save that little girl together.

She shook her head at her own foolishness, and then she felt even dumber when Luciano pressed something into the waitress's hand. His number, she decided, and before she could make a bigger fool out of herself, she turned and left the hotel.

***

Luciano groaned quietly to himself as the waitress turned away with his tip. She had said she would keep an ear out for anyone by the name of Amilla, but from the look on her face, he could tell she had no idea who he was talking about at all.

“Amilla, where are you?” he murmured, but he was beginning to realize what he should have understood from the first.

Given his status and the power he commanded, there weren't many women who were inclined to give him the brush-off, but there had been a few. Trust fate to make the most fascinating woman he had ever met one of them.

He knew he should give up. If a woman made it a point to be difficult to find, he owed it to her to let her go in peace. Every time he had that thought, however, he thought of the mermaid's bright green eyes, the lovely way her blonde hair curled to frame her sweet face. He was used to tall redheads, willowy brunettes, women who would never so much as leave the protective shade of a sun umbrella for fear of breaking a nail. He had never had much time to spend with a woman like the mermaid before, one who made her living not just with the beauty of her body but with its strength as well.