Forbidden Surrender(7)

By: Carole Mortimer


'At the club?' Eddie enquired, sitting the other side of her.

'No, in England. People keep thinking I'm someone else.'

'A pick-up!' he dismissed.



'No,' she shook her head. 'The first time it happened I thought that, but it happened again tonight, here, and both men thought I was the same person.' She shrugged her puzzlement.

Eddie put his arm about her shoulders. 'I refuse to believe there are two like you,' he smiled at her warmly. 'Nature couldn't have been that generous!'

Sara ignored the pointed show of possession, realising that Eddie was warning his friend off her. Not that she particularly minded, one man was complication enough for her stay here. 'It was all very odd, though. Still,' she dismissed it from her mind, 'it doesn't matter. Could we possibly leave now, Eddie? It's getting late, and Aunt Susan and Uncle Arthur seem to have taken to waiting up for me.'

They made their goodbyes to Pete, and Sara promised to get in touch with him if she ever decided to work in England.

'Lucky we ran into him,' Eddie remarked on the drive home. 'He can be an elusive man, impossible to find at times.'

Sara was preoccupied, unable to put the thought of the man at the casino out of her mind. He hadn't been the sort of individual you forgot in a hurry; his manner was forceful, his attractiveness mesmerising, animally sensual. Whoever Marie was she was a lucky girl to have had him for a lover.

'Eddie,' she bit her lip thoughtfully, 'tonight, at the club, there was a man called Dominic Thorne. Do you know him?'

He spluttered with laughter. 'You have to be joking! He's out of my league, love,' he added less scornfully.

'But you have heard of him?'



'Who hasn't?' he shrugged, halting the car outside the house. 'He has his finger in every business pie going, every one that's legal, that is. He and his partner;—well, his father's partner, actually, but the old man's dead now—they're in the millionaire class.'

'Is he married?' Sara made the query as casually as she could, not wanting to show her extreme interest in Eddie's answer.

'No,' he grinned. 'But he's going to be. He's done the

sensible thing, he's got himself engaged to his partner's daughter, Marie Lindlay.'

Sara swallowed hard. 'Marie . . .?'



'Mm. One day Dominic Thorne will have it all, all the business interests plus the lovely Marie.'

Sara was no longer listening to him. This Marie everyone kept confusing her with was actually going to marry Dominic Thorne. Surely he couldn't mistake another woman for the girl he was going to marry?





CHAPTER TWO



It was all a puzzle to Sara, one there seemed no answer to. She mentioned it to her aunt, but she dismissed it as a coincidence.

'But even her fiancé thought I was this other girl,' Sara frowned.

Her aunt shrugged. 'It was dark in there, it was probably just a case of mistaken identity.'

'It feels weird to be so like another person.'



'Maybe you aren't really,' Aunt Susan dismissed. 'As I said, the lighting probably wasn't very good in this club you went to. Mr Thorne's girl-friend probably has blonde hair too, and in a bad light maybe you do have a resemblance to this other girl. I should just forget about it, Sara.'

'I suppose so,' she sighed. 'Although it might be interesting to actually see this Marie Lindlay.'

'Is that her name?'



'Eddie says it is,' she nodded.



'I—Oh, damn!' Her aunt swore as she dropped a cup, watching in dismay as it smashed on the floor. 'One of my best set, too,' she tutted, bending down to pick up the pieces. 'I hope they're still making these, I'd like to buy a replacement for it.' She put the pieces in the bin.

'I'm sure they do.' Sara swept up the shattered fragments still scattered on the floor.

Her uncle came into the room. 'Did I hear a crash just now?'

'It's as well I hadn't fallen over,' his wife snapped. 'It took you long enough to get in here.'

He looked taken aback by this unexpected attack. 'I knew Sara was in here helping you wash up.' He frowned. 'It was only a crash, Susan, not a thump.'

'It's all right, Uncle Arthur,' Sara soothed. 'Aunt Susan's just broken one of her best china cups, and I'm afraid she's rather upset about it. Take her into the lounge and I'll make you both a nice cup of tea.'

He nodded. 'Come on, Susan. It was only a cup,' he chided as they went through to the lounge.

'It wasn't that, Arthur. It was—' The kitchen door closed, cutting off the rest of the conversation.

Poor Aunt Susan, the tea-set obviously meant a lot to her. It was rather lovely to look at, very delicately made, with an old-fashioned floral pattern. She would see if she could get a replacement this afternoon when she went shopping.

'Where's Eddie taking you tonight?' her uncle asked as she took their cups of tea into them.

'I'm not seeing him tonight.' She had turned down his invitation for this evening, deciding that three nights in a row was just too much. 'But he's taking me out for a drive tomorrow,' she added ruefully. Eddie had been adamant about seeing her again, and she had finally agreed to let him drive her to see some of the English countryside.