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Christmas Proposals [Secure eReader]
eBook by Carole Mortimer & Rebecca Winters & Marion Lennox

eBook Category: Romance
eBook Description: Three proposals ... beneath the mistletoe!.... "HER CHRISTMAS ROMEO" by Carole Mortimer: Italian executive Roberto Romeo seems very taken by his pretty sales assistant. So as the snow falls and the Christmas festivities begin, he sets about finding a new role for her...as his fiancee! "THE TYCOON'S CHRISTMAS ENGAGEMENT" by Rebecca Winters: Annie can scarcely believe it when her dynamic boss, Mitch Reynolds, bestows a kiss beneath the Christmas party mistletoe. Could the tycoon really be thinking about making Annie's Christmas dreams come true? "A BRIDE FOR CHRISTMAS" by Marion Lennox: After wealthy Guy Carver arrives in Australia to take over Jenny Westmere's wedding salon, he finds he has only one piece of business in mind: to make Jenny and her little boy his family--by Christmas!

eBook Publisher: Harlequin/Anthology
Fictionwise Release Date: November 2007


13 Reader Ratings:
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CHAPTER ONE

'HOLD the lift! Shoot, shoot, sh-ooot! Aargh!'

Her mad dash to get in the staff lift before the doors closed failing miserably, Juliette came to a frustrated stop. Except that she didn't. Stop, that was.

The three-inch stiletto heels on her knee-high boots, wet from the snow falling heavily outside, found no traction on the marble floor whatsoever, so that instead of stopping Juliette skidded unsteadily along the floor, an expression of complete panic on her face as she slid towards the closing metal doors of the lift, seeming to gain speed as she went.

In those brief few seconds—and she really couldn't have said how many—everything was happening in slow motion, her whole life flashing before her. And what a complete and utter disaster that was…

But at the very last second the lift doors miraculously stopped closing and began to open again—slowly, painfully slowly, but enough that she didn't hit solid metal after all, just fell into the lift instead.

Or at least she would have done, if one of the stiletto heels on her boots hadn't caught and stuck in the gap between the lift shaft and the lift itself, holding her foot immobile but hurling her torso forward.

The whole thing might—only might—have been funny.

If she hadn't had an audience to her comic turn.

But the man who seconds ago had stepped into the lift, and had obviously pressed the button to ascend, had unfortunately witnessed the whole incident.

And so it was, as Juliette hurtled into the lift headfirst, strong arms reached out to catch her. Which was very unfortunate for the man, because Juliette had instinctively thrust her umbrella out in front of her in an effort to regain her balance as she began to slide. Luckily for him, it had one of those stubby ends, rather than a pointy one, otherwise she would have skewered him with it.

'Are you okay?' he asked with concern, even as he steadied her into an upright position.

Did she look okay?

She had just hurtled across ten feet of marble at what had felt like the speed of sound—only to come to a bone-wrenching halt as the heel of her boot became stuck.

To make matters worse, she'd probably ruined her boots, and she'd only had them a week—a present to herself for having successfully completed a month of working at the job from hell. Because the lingerie department in this prestigious store, in the run-up to Christmas, certainly qualified as that! And, with 'just five more shopping days till Christmas', it only promised to get worse…

'Let's have a look at your boot,' the man murmured as he released her and bent down to inspect the damage, giving Juliette an uninterrupted view of the top of his head.

She hadn't been able to look at him before—at first because she'd been travelling too fast to focus on anything, and then because her embarrassment at having literally thrown herself into his arms had been too acute.

She didn't recognise the top of that dark head, the hair thick and ebony, but nevertheless she knew the man had to work at Romeo's, too. Otherwise he wouldn't have been getting into the staff lift in the first place. Probably one of the office bods from the sixth floor; they didn't socialise with the sales staff.

'It—seems—to—be—stuck,' the man muttered, his words interspersed with efforts to release the stiletto heel—and Juliette with it—from the hole it was trapped in.

Well, whoever he was, he certainly wasn't any rocket scientist, Juliette thought disgustedly as she glared down at him. She could have told him that much herself.

This had not been a good day so far, and it certainly wasn't getting any better.

And this man's fingers, as they encircled the slenderness of her ankle, weren't helping, either. His ringless hands were long and tapered, artistically so—not the sort of hands any red-blooded woman could ignore while she still had breath in her body.

He was probably ugly as sin, she decided self-mockingly. With her track record, how could it be any different? A university student who had lied about his age, knowing she didn't go out with younger men. Another man who'd turned out to be married with three young children. And another one who was gay and had just been using her to hide the fact from his family.

The man looked up. 'Perhaps if we were to remove the boot this might be a little easier…?'

No, he wasn't ugly. Sinfully good-looking might be a better way to put it perhaps!

That public-school voice didn't sound in the least foreign, but the man definitely had a Mediterranean look about him. His skin was dark and swarthy—only the deep blue of his eyes at variance with that olive colouring.

He raised dark brows as Juliette continued to stare down at him. 'The boot…?' he prompted.

Idiot, she chided herself ruefully. She had just done a good impression of an elephant trying to perform Swan Lake, and now she was caught up in the way he looked! While he probably thought she was a total klutz…

Which she undoubtedly was, Juliette accepted, feeling horribly self-conscious. Could today get any worse? Given the way her luck had going lately, the answer to that was yes, it certainly could!

'Of course.' She moved awkwardly to unzip the boot, stepping out of it to move into the lift—her hopalong performance making her look something like Quasimodo, she was sure.

Not that it particularly mattered how she appeared to this man, she decided now that she could get a better look at him. His suit was obviously expensively tailored, the black leather shoes hand-made and the white shirt definitely looked like silk.

Copyright © 2007 by Harlequin Books S.A.


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