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dtgtnp > The Donafrio Donor > 7: In Which She is a Pawn and the Queen
7: In Which She is a Pawn and the Queen

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"I'll race you."

"What? No, thanks. I've had a glass of wine and I can't –"

"You can't what? Swim?" Carlo propped himself up on the yellow-brick edge of the pool, most of his body immersed in the enticing azure water. "I can't say that I'm surprised."

"Excuse me?" I said, folding my arms across my chest as I glared down at him. "I am a very good swimmer, thank you very much. Co-captain of my secondary school's swim team, in fact."

"Really?" he smirked. "Tell me this, cara. Why have you spent the past three days gazing wistfully at the water if you were co-captain of a swimming team? Most women would have been naked in my pool the minute they got off the plane."

What had I been thinking about after the almost three-hour plane flight?

Oh yes, that's right: This was a huge mistake.

I'd known that Carlo was a ridiculously wealthy man but it hadn't sunk in until I'd asked which airline we'd be flying with and he'd casually replied, "Airline? No, cara mia, we're taking my jet." I'd spent the entire flight pretending to be extraordinarily engrossed in every little thing Mickey was doing while Carlo deliberately ignored me on his laptop.

"Carlo, I'm sorry I can't be like most women who probably just want to have sex in the pool with you," I said snidely, wondering why I'd even come outside when it was almost midnight and I should have been tucked away nicely in the queen-sized bed upstairs.

To watch him, another voice helpfully put in.

Carlo had the habit of doing the oddest things until the early hours. When he said he was an insomniac, he wasn't joking. The fact that I'd been given the bedroom directly beside his meant that I could hear every noise; every sound. He'd watch old Italian movies on his television, play soft music – if rap could be considered soft or music – go out for a swim or a walk, or sit in silence. It was disconcerting. Whenever his door opened, I'd hold my breath and – idiotically – hope against hope that he'd push my door open. It was unthinkable to even contemplate that I wanted his touch; that after Mickey fell into a content slumber in his cot beside me, I could yearn for Carlo to come and relieve my frustration. I'd had a pep talk with myself the minute we'd arrived at his enormous villa: No sex, Danielle. You should be wary of him. Question his intentions. Question every word that comes out his gifted mouth. Transform into a poetically asexual being.

But I didn't listen to myself.

He hadn't touched me in three days. Three fucking difficult days.

We'd talked – oh, we'd talked far too much – and we'd gone out and that was it. Carlo was intent on showing me the sensational side of Naples. The bay was gorgeous and Mickey enjoyed a few licks of Neapolitan ice-cream. After years of hearing about Mount Vesuvius, it was magical to catch a glimpse of it. The San Carlo Theatre was amazing. Carlo had gotten us the best seats to listen to a man who sounded suspiciously like Pavarotti. We'd eaten out at fancy restaurants. Neapolitan pizza was, quite frankly, the most orgasmic I'd ever tasted. I was slowly starting to understand how my taste buds had been deprived of good food and it was shocking.

That was all well and dandy but, much as I tried to fight it, what I really wanted was Carlo. In every way.

"You don't want to have sex in the pool with me?" asked Carlo, feigning astonishment. "My, how shocking. Water has always been such an aphrodisiac. I need to re-evaluate my life."

"Shut up," I muttered, kicking off my flops. "If you want a race, I'll give you a race."

"Grazie mille," he said, pushing away from the edge into a smooth backstroke.

I tugged my dress over my head, flinging it onto a chaise-longue behind me. I'd bought my bikini at Top Shop the year before and it had become a little constricting around my chest. I was acutely aware that my breasts w

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