Romance on the Go ®
Lesley York, a divorced mother of two with a PhD in Fine Art, finds herself falling hard for the charm and charisma of Rafael Capello.
And love? Well, love has nothing to do with it. She’s making no plans for a future with Rafe. And besides, she’s ten years too old for him. What she needs from Rafe is physical fulfilment … in other words, sex, but without the romance or strings attached.
But Rafe wants more from Lesley than a fleeting romance. He thinks she’s sophisticated and stylish, and he’s developed an unexpected passion for one sexy mature lady in particular...
As the University goes into lockdown, can Rafe and Lesley find love amid the crisis of a pandemic?
“Wow! Now that is what I call hot!” Annie whispered.
Lesley York had just bought two takeaway coffees, and as she flipped the lid on her cup, hot steam and the aroma of freshly ground coffee beans teased her nostrils.
“I did warn you,” Lesley said.
Sat on a stone bench in the University’s campus courtyard, and huddled beneath the thick thermal padding of her coat, she took a sip of the scalding liquid.
“No, not the coffee. I mean him … over there.” Annie nudged her, almost making her spill her coffee.
Lesley followed Annie’s look across the courtyard and her gaze fell on Rafe Capello. She had to agree. Rafe was indeed a hunk of manhood. In fact, he was more than that. He was drop-dead gorgeous.
He had that dark, sultry Latino look most women fell for, and he was what her students would call fit. On the other hand, she would say he was just darn right sexy.
Annie giggled. “If he was to give me one of his sports massages, I wouldn’t refuse.”
Rafe’s specialty was sports, and as head of the University’s Sports Management department, he lectured on the subject. But Lesley doubted he would give massages. “Stand in line, girl. If anyone’s due for a rubdown, I am.” She laughed.
Lesley hoped it sounded like she was joking … but in reality, she wasn’t. And although she hadn’t told Annie that Rafe had already come on to her, she was seriously thinking about taking him up on his offer of a date. Only, she just hadn’t said yes to him … yet.
“You should go for it,” Annie said. “And if you don’t, I will.”
They watched as Rafe disappeared into the building that housed the swimming pool, and in unison, they both sighed with longing, and Lesley knew what she had to do.
The next morning, as dawn was breaking on the skyline, she cycled through the deserted, frost-coated streets of the city to reach her destination. There was a hushed silence around her, and having arrived at work, she noticed the campus courtyard was empty of life. In their halls of residence, students were still nestled beneath the warmth of their bedding, ignorant of the world awakening around them. And over in the main building, a shadowed outline of the night-watchman could be seen as he wandered corridors, switching on lights and unlocking doors in preparation for the start of another academic day.
Leaving her bike in the cycle rack outside, Lesley went to the side entrance where the door to the swimming pool and gym complex were. She punched in the security PIN, and shoving her hip against the door, she gained access and made her way to the locker rooms.
Having changed into a skimpy bathing suit that had once seen better days, she rinsed her body beneath the communal showers and made her way barefoot toward the edge of the pool. Without the protection of her bulky sweater and her long flowing skirt, she crossed her arms over her breasts, hoping to conceal the shortcomings of her figure.
As a mature woman of thirty-eight, she wasn’t the slender waif she’d once been. Her body, along with her mind and her outlook on life, had ripened.
Two teenage children, a PhD in Fine Art, and one acrimonious divorce later, and she had altered. Gone was the naïve dreamer of twenty years ago. In her place was a woman of calculated action. She thought before doing … except in the case of Rafe.
Against her better judgment, Lesley’s desire for Rafael Capello was ruling her head. She was falling hard for his charisma. And love? Well, love had nothing to do with her feelings for him. She wanted no commitments, and this time around, she was making no future plans.
What she felt for Rafe was a purely physical need, and it was something she was finding hard to resist. And then she saw him.
They had the huge indoor pool to themselves, and he was swimming in the fast lane, moving from one end to the other. As he skimmed across the surface of the water, plowing back and forth with such ferocious speed that a trail of white spray was left in his wake, a familiar heat of desire stirred inside her. She anticipated the forbidden dangers that lay ahead.
Finishing his lap at the deep end, Rafe climbed from the pool, and as he stood near the diving board with water dripping from his body, she had a chance to observe and admire his strong beauty. She watched, mesmerized, as he reached for a towel on a bench beside him and dried his face before draping the cloth nonchalantly over his shoulder.
Rafe was fit, muscular, and every woman’s dream. His dark hair was pushed back from his face and he had a broad expanse of chest that tapered down toward lean hips, while his well-defined thighs were a sight to be reckoned with. A chiseled physique declared him to be a perfect specimen of manhood, and unable to hold back, she let out a soft moan of longing.
Their eyes locked and her stomach flipped. She was venturing into the unknown, and it was too late to change her mind. She was in over her head.
“Come here.” He beckoned, inviting her to join him.
She laughed. “Give me a moment to get warmed up.”
Shaking off her inertia, she walked to the steel rungs at the shallow end of the pool and stepped down into the coolness of the water. She shivered. The clean scent of chlorine hit her nostrils. As she held on to the support bars, her teeth chattered and she allowed her body to grow accustomed to the sudden drop in temperature. Most mornings, she arrived for a swim and often encountered Rafe, but today was going to be different.
Pushing away from the bar, she kicked her feet and propelled herself forward. With smooth, steady strokes, her arms cut through the water as she swam toward the deep end of the pool.
She wasn’t a proficient swimmer. She was someone who could keep her head above water while she exercised. But by the way her heart was racing with excitement, she could have been an Olympic swimmer, swimming a fifteen-hundred-meter challenge.
Originally, she had intended to do another ten lengths before leaving the pool, but her plans were put on hold when she reached the end of her lane.
Rafe was waiting for her.
EVERNIGHT PUBLISHING ®
Copyright© 2021 Arabella Sheen
Cover Artist: Jay Aheer
Editor: Audrey Bobak
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
WARNING: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. No part of this book may be used or reproduced electronically or in print without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in reviews.
This is a work of fiction. All names, characters, and places are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
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About Arabella Sheen
|Arabella Sheen - Author|
Arabella Sheen is a British author of contemporary romance and likes nothing more than the challenge of starting a new novel with fresh ideas and inspiring characters.
One of the many things Arabella loves to do is to read. And when she’s not researching or writing about romance, she is either on her allotment sowing and planting with the seasons or she is curled on the sofa with a book, while pandering to the demands of her attention-seeking cat.
Having lived and worked in the Netherlands as a theatre nurse for nearly twenty years, she now lives in the south-west of England with her family.
Arabella hopes her readers have as much pleasure from her romance stories as she has in writing them.
Facebook Author: https://www.facebook.com/ArabellaSheenAuthor