Giorgio jogged along the broad path shaded by tall leafy elm trees. A  female jogger in black yoga pants and a pale lemon tank top with a red ponytail darted out from behind a bush and cut in front of him.

“Hey!” He dodged clumsily and came down on the side of his ankle. Yelping out a curse, he bent to feel his ankle. Not broken and not sprained, thank God.

“Sorry,” the woman said in a familiar American accent. “I didn’t see you. Are you all right?”

He straightened and gazed into very blue eyes slightly tilted up at the corners and fringed with dark brown lashes. And yes, freckles were scattered across that impudent nose.

“What are you doing here?” He planted his hands on his hips. “Is this another amazing coincidence?”

“I guess it is.” Wide-eyed, she jogged on the spot, as if not wanting to cool down. “I had no idea you ran here.”

Sure, and he had a villa he could sell her in a Bulgarian swamp. There was only one way she could have known where he would be at this time of day. Tina. “So, you like to run?”

“Love it.” She beamed and lifted her knees higher.

“Come on then, run with me.”

It was almost comical how fast her face fell. “Oh, but isn’t your ankle hurt? Shouldn’t you rest it? I think there’s a café up ahead.”

“No, it’s fine. Let’s go.” He set off, trying not to wince. He would pay for this later but it would be worth it to call her bluff. He smiled to himself at hearing her breathing audibly. “Am I going too fast for you?”

“Not…at…all.” Her cheeks were pink but there was a stubborn set to her chin.

His ankle had warmed up and wasn’t hurting so he picked up the pace. He couldn’t wait to see how she was going to get out of this. They emerged from the shaded avenue into full sun, their running shoes pounding out a steady rhythm.

“It’s getting warm,” she said, panting. Strands of damp red hair stuck to her temples.

He suppressed a grin. “If you’re tired, there’s a benchover there.”

“I’ll be all right. I just need to strip off.” Without missing a beat she pulled her tank top over her head. Luscious breasts curved high above a lime green and black bra that pushed her breasts up.

Giorgio almost fell over his own feet. Once again he stumbled to a halt and his tightening groin battled for a share of his body’s blood supply. He grabbed her hand and pulled her off the path. “What do you think you’re doing? You can’t run in your underwear.”

“This is a sports bra.” Her hair tie had come out and tousled locks fell around her flushed face.

“And I’m a horse’s ass. Don’t be ridiculous. You, you…jiggle with every step. This is a public park. People could see you.”

“There’s no one around but you.” Her blue eyes sparkled up at him and a cheeky grin tugged the corners of her red lips. “You’re staring pretty hard. You must be admiring the design. Nice, isn’t it? I made it myself.”

He didn’t know whether he wanted to laugh or to shake her. But she was right. He couldn’t take his eyes off her. Only a moment ago he’d been so sure he was winning the battle of wits and wills. “You’re impossible.”

All right. So Jack Thatcher has experienced deep, personal tragedy. Dr. Sienna Maxwell gets that. But how can the man drop out of life the way he has, pretending to be happy hosting fabulous dinner parties and puttering in his back shed? That's something she will never be able to understand. Because he's only pretending, right?
Sienna's a shoot-from-the-hip high achiever, who demands no less from everyone around her. Driven and determined to make her new medical practice--and everything she touches--a success, she wants a whole lot more from Jack than charm...and kisses. She wants nothing less than perfect.

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