Latin Lovers

By: Helen Bianchin

‘The tousled look suits you,’ Carlo teased as he placed the tray down onto the bedside pedestal. Her cheeks were softly flushed, her eyes slumberous, the dilated pupils making them seem too large for her face.

‘Hi.’ She made an attempt to pull the sheet a little higher, and incurred his husky laughter.

‘Your modesty is adorable, cara.’

‘Breakfast in bed,’ she murmured appreciatively. ‘You’ve excelled yourself.’

He lowered his head and bestowed an open-mouthed kiss to the edge of her throat, teased the tender skin with his teeth, then trailed a path to the gentle swell of her breast.

‘I aim to please.’

Oh, yes, he did that. She retained a very vivid memory of just how well he’d managed to please her. Not that it had been entirely one-sided... She’d managed to take him further towards the edge than before. One of these days... nights, she amended, she planned to tip him over and watch him free-fall.

‘Naturally, your mind is more on food than me at this point, hmm?’

Go much lower, and I won’t get to the food. ‘Of course,’ she offered demurely. ‘I’m going to need stamina to make it through the day.’

‘The bridal shower,’ he mused. His eyes met hers, and she regarded him solemnly.

‘Teresa wants the occasion to be memorable.’

Carlo sank down onto the bed. ‘There’s orange juice, and caffeine to kick-start the day.’

Together with toast, croissants, fruit preserve, cheese, wafer-thin slices of salami and prosciutto. A veritable feast.

Aysha slid up in the bed, paying careful attention to keep the sheet tucked beneath her arms, and took the glass of juice from Carlo’s extended hand. Next came the coffee, then a croissant with preserve, followed by a piece of toast folded in half over a layer of cheese and prosciutto.

‘More coffee?’

She hesitated, checked the time, then shook her head. ‘I said I’d be home around nine.’

Carlo stood to his feet and collected the tray. ‘I’ll take this downstairs.’

Ten minutes later she had showered, dressed and was ready to face the day. Light blue jeans sheathed her slim legs, hugged her hips, and she wore a fitted top that accentuated the delicate curve of her breasts.

She skirted the servery, reached up and planted a light kiss against the edge of his jaw. ‘Thanks for breakfast.’

He caught her close and slanted his mouth over hers with a possession that wreaked havoc with her equilibrium. Then he eased the pressure and brushed his lips over the swollen contours of her own, lingered at one corner, then gently released her.

‘I consider myself thanked.’

Her eyes felt too large, and she quickly blinked in an effort to clear her vision. That had been... ‘cataclysmic’ was a word that came immediately to mind. And passionate, definitely passionate.

Maybe she was beginning to scratch the surface of his control after all.

That thought stayed with her as she took the lift down to the underground car park, and during the few kilometres to her parents’ home.


AYSHA’S four bridesmaids were the first to arrive, followed by Gianna and a few of Teresa’s friends. Two aunts, three cousins, and a number of close friends.

There were beautifully wrapped gifts, much laughter, a little wine, some champagne, and the exchange of numerous anecdotes. Entertainment was provided by a gifted magician whose expertise in pulling at least a hundred scarves from his hat and jacket pockets had to be seen to be believed.

Coffee was served at three-thirty, and at four Teresa was summoned to the front door to accept the arrival of an unexpected guest.

The speed with which Lianna, Aysha’ chief bridesmaid, joined Teresa aroused suspicion, and there was much laughter as a good-looking young man entered the lounge.

‘You didn’t—’ Aysha began, and one look at Lianna, Arianne, Suzanne and Tessa was sufficient to determine that her four bridesmaids were as guilty as sin.

A portable tape-recorder was set on a coffee table, and when the music began he went into a series of choreographed movements as he began to strip.

It was a tastefully orchestrated act, as such acts went. The young man certainly had the frame, the body, the muscles to execute the traditional bump-and-grind routine.

‘You refused to let us give you a ladies’ night out, so we had to do something,’ Lianna confided with an impish grin as everyone began to leave.

‘Fiend,’ Aysha chastised with affectionate remonstrance. ‘Wait until it’s your turn.’

‘What’ll you do to top it, Aysha? Hire a group of male strippers?’

‘Don’t put thoughts into my head,’ she threatened direly.

The caterers tidied and cleaned up, then left fifteen minutes later, and Aysha crossed to the table where a selection of gifts were on display.

From the intensely practical to the highly decorative, they were all beautiful and reflected the giver’s personality. A smile curved her lips. Lianna’s gift of a male stripper had been the wackiest.

‘You had no idea of Lianna’s surprise?’ Teresa queried as she crossed to her side.

‘None,’ Aysha answered truthfully, and curved an arm around her mother’s waist. ‘Thanks, Mamma, for a lovely afternoon.’