The Greek's Acquisition
The Greek's Acquisition
When dealing with the devil… It’s taken years for the Dimitri-Kalakos-sized hole in Louise Frobisher’s heart to heal. Yet now she has to face him once again – she needs the ruthless magnate’s financial help…but absolutely nothing more! Be prepared to play with fire! Louise is offering the one thing Dimitri thought his money couldn’t buy: the Greek island that should be his!She thinks she can strike a bargain, but Dimitri knows there can only be one winner – and failure just isn’t in his vocabulary. He wants the island – and Louise back in his bed.“Another Chantelle Shaw masterpiece. All the magic ingredients of modern romance!” – Arpita, 63, Essex
She swallowed. ‘I should go.’ Her voice emerged as a tremulous whisper.
‘Why not stay?’
There must be a good reason. Probably dozens. But his sexy smile decimated her ability to think logically.
Dimitri’s voice thickened with desire. He did not understand what it was about this woman that made his body ache? All he knew was that Louise was like a fever in his blood, and the only cure was to possess her and find the sweet satiation his body craved.
He pulled her into his arms and his heart slammed against his ribs when he felt the tips of her nipples pressed against his chest. ‘I want to take you to bed and undress you, slowly. I want to lay you down and kiss every inch of you—,’ he whispered in her ear. ‘And then I want to take you and make you mine, and give you more pleasure than you’ve ever had with any other man.’
About the Author
CHANTELLE SHAW lives on the Kent coast, five minutes from the sea, and does much of her thinking about the characters in her books while walking on the beach. She’s been an avid reader from an early age. Her schoolfriends used to hide their books when she visited—but Chantelle would retreat into her own world, and still writes stories in her head all the time.
Chantelle has been blissfully married to her own tall, dark and very patient hero for over twenty years, and has six children. She began to read Mills & Boon
as a teenager, and throughout the years of being a stay-at-home mum to her brood found romantic fiction helped her to stay sane! She enjoys reading and writing about strong-willed, feisty women, and even stronger-willed sexy heroes. Chantelle is at her happiest when writing. She is particularly inspired while cooking dinner, which unfortunately results in a lot of culinary disasters! She also loves gardening, walking, and eating chocolate (followed by more walking!). Catch up with Chantelle’s latest news on her website: www.chantelleshaw.com
Recent titles by the same author:
BEHIND THE CASTELLO DOORS
A DANGEROUS INFATUATION
AFTER THE GREEK AFFAIR
THE ULTIMATE RISK
Did you know these are also available as eBooks? Visit www.millsandboon.co.uk
The Greek’s Acquisition
ATHENS at two-thirty on a summer’s afternoon baked beneath a cloudless sky. A heat haze shimmered above the steps leading to the entrance of Kalakos Shipping, and the glare from the sun seemed to set the office block’s bronzetinted glass windows aflame.
The automatic doors parted smoothly as Louise approached them. Inside, the décor was minimalist chic, and the air-conditioned atmosphere was as hushed as a cathedral. Her stiletto heels reverberated excruciatingly loudly on the black marble floor as she walked up to the desk.
The receptionist was as elegant as the surroundings, impeccably dressed, her face discreetly made up. Her smile was politely enquiring.
‘My name is Louise Frobisher. I’m here to see Dimitri Kalakos.’ Louise spoke in fluent Greek. One of the only good things to come from her nomadic childhood was that she had developed a flair for learning languages.
The receptionist glanced at the appointments diary on the desk and her expertly shaped brows drew together in a faint frown.
‘I’m sorry, but Mr Kalakos does not appear to have an appointment with you, Miss Frobisher.
Louise had planned for such a response. ‘My visit is on a personal, not a business matter. I assure you Mr Kalakos will be delighted to see me.’
The statement strained the truth thinner than an overstretched elastic band, she acknowledged. But she had gambled on the fact that Dimitri had a reputation as a playboy, and that with luck the reception staff would believe she was one of his—according to the gossip columns—numerous mistresses. That was the reason she was wearing a skirt several inches shorter than she had ever worn before, and killer heels that made her legs look as if they went on for ever.
She had left her hair loose for once, instead of bundling it into a knot on top of her head, and she was wearing more make-up than usual; the smoky grey shadow on her eyelids emphasised the deep blue of her eyes and her scarlet lipgloss matched exactly the colour of her skirt and jacket. The diamond fleur-de-lis pendant suspended on a fine gold chain around her neck had been her grandmother’s. It was the only piece of jewellery she owned, and she had chosen to wear it in the hope that if her grand-mère, Céline, was looking down on her she would send her good luck.
She had read somewhere that confidence tricksters were successful because they acted with absolute self-assurance. And so when the receptionist murmured that she would just check with Mr Kalakos’s PA, Louise laughed and tossed her blond curls over her shoulders as she strolled towards the lift. Many years ago she had visited Kalakos Shipping, when her mother had been Kostas Kalakos’s mistress, and she felt certain that Dimitri now occupied the luxurious office suite on the top floor of the building that had once been his father’s.
‘There’s no question that Dimitri will want to see me. And I promise you he won’t want us to be disturbed for quite a while,’ she drawled.
The receptionist stared at her uncertainly, but to Louise’s relief she made no further attempts to detain her. However, the moment the lift doors closed her bravado disappeared and she felt as awkward and unsure of herself as she had been at nineteen. She could recall as clearly as if it had happened yesterday the bitter confrontation that had taken place between her and Dimitri seven years ago, and the memory of his anger and her humiliation induced a churning sensation in the pit of her stomach.
The lift seemed horribly claustrophobic, but she took a deep breath and forced herself to stay calm. Dimitri represented her best hope of helping her mother, and it was vital she remained composed and in control of the emotions that had been see-sawing between apprehension and anticipation at the prospect of coming face to face with him again after all this time.
She should have expected that getting past his PA would prove to be far more difficult than the receptionist in the downstairs lobby. To give Aletha Pagnotis—her name was on the door of her office—due credit, she did phone through to her boss and relay Louise’s request for five minutes of his time.
The request was met with a blank refusal.
‘If you could tell me the reason for your visit, Miss Frobisher, then perhaps Mr Kalakos will reconsider his decision,’ the PA murmured, after half an hour had passed and she was no doubt as tired of having a stranger sitting in her office as Louise was tired of waiting.
Her reason for wanting to see Dimitri was too personal and too important to discuss with anyone but him, but it suddenly occurred to Louise that on Eirenne she had been known as Loulou—the nickname her mother always called her by. And because she had a different surname from Tina maybe Dimitri did not realise her identity.
His PA looked mystified as she double-checked the new message Louise asked her to give to her boss, but she duly disappeared into his office.
The aroma of freshly brewed coffee assailed Dimitri’s senses and told him without him having to check the platinum Rolex on his wrist that it was 3:00 p.m. His PA served him coffee at exactly the same time every afternoon. Aletha had been with him for five years, and she ensured that his office ran with the smooth efficiency of a well-oiled machine.
‘Efkharistó.’ He did not lift his eyes from the columns of figures on his computer screen, but he was aware of her setting the tray down on his desk. Subconsciously he listened for the faint click of the door to indicate that she had left the room.
The click did not come.
‘Dimitri—if I could have a word?’
Frowning at the unexpected interruption, he flicked his gaze from the financial report he was working on and glanced at his PA. ‘I asked not to be disturbed,’ he reminded her, impatience edging into his voice.
‘Yes, I’m sorry … but the young woman who arrived earlier and asked to see you is still here.’
He shrugged. ‘As I explained earlier, I don’t know Louise Frobisher. I’ve never heard of her before, and unless she can give a reason for her visit I suggest you call Security and have her escorted from the premises.’
Aletha Pagnotis read the warning signs that the head of Kalakos Shipping was becoming irritated. Nothing was more likely to trigger Dimitri’s temper than disruption to his routine. But running a billion-pound business empire must put huge demands on him, she conceded.
At thirty-three, Dimitri was one of the country’s most powerful businessmen. Even before he had taken up the reigns of Kalakos Shipping, after the death of his father, Dimitri had set up an internet company which specialised in selling designer goods to the rapidly expanding Asian market, and within only a few years he had become a self-made millionaire. His drive and determination were phenomenal, and his brilliance and ruthlessness in the boardroom legendary.
Aletha sometimes had the feeling that he was trying to prove something to his father, even though Kostas had been dead for three years. The rift between father and son had been public knowledge, and she had always thought it a pity that they had never resolved their differences.
Whatever was behind his motivation, Dimitri set himself a demanding work schedule, and paid his staff generous salaries to see to it that his life ran like clockwork. Ordinarily she would not have bothered him about a visitor who had turned up without an appointment and refused to explain why she wanted to see him. But beneath the Englishwoman Louise Frobisher’s quiet determination Aletha had sensed an air of desperation, which had prompted her to ignore Dimitri’s orders that he was not to be disturbed under any circumstances.