MAD FOR YOU IN MADRID (Building Love #3)
Lori Cayne is in a tricky situation. Her public relations job has sent her to Spain for a project that is way over her head. Her task is to convince American tourists to stay at a Madrid hotel. Unfortunately, Lori knows little about public relations and even less about the hotel industry. Dealing with the client, however, will be the real challenge. Hotel magnate Daniel Vega is rich, uber-sexy, and the one-night stand that wasn’t. That’s because Lori had inadvertently stood him up before things got a chance to really heat up. Now Daniel wants nothing to do with her, personally or professionally.
Daniel Vega is none-too-pleased to learn that Lori will be handling his new hotel’s publicity campaign. Her flaky ways will be hell on his business, and on him. Yet shutting her out is hard to do when the woman is full of surprises and an even fuller heart. Her good nature makes her willing to do anything for anybody. When Daniel’s brother, Elias, asks Lori to be his fake-fiancée at an important event, Daniel is not surprised when Lori agrees. What he is surprised by is the pang of jealousy. Maybe Lori isn’t the only one with personal issues to work out. After all, if Daniel is truly the success he thinks he is, how can off-beat, business greenhorn Lori Cayne emotionally bring him to his knees?
When news of the fake engagement creates a scandal, both Lori’s company and Daniel’s world-wide enterprise may be damaged beyond repair. The damage done to their hearts, however, may be a whole lot worse.
Excerpt for MAD FOR YOU IN MADRID (Building Love #3)
Daniel’s head cocked to one side. “Is that your family’s business? A restaurant?”
“Oh, no,” Lori answered. “My family runs a public relations firm. When I was in college, I always worked elsewhere during summer breaks. To, well, you know . . .”
He smiled sympathetically. “I understand. I worked in my family’s business for many years.”
“It’s never easy, is it? How do you handle it?”
“I don’t. My solution was to leave and start my own company. Worked like a charm.”
“You made a good decision. Cheers.” She tapped her glass against his. “Here’s to survival. And to liquid courage.”
“How exactly did you tell your family you were leaving? I’d love inspiration.”
“Simple. I told them I was going off on my own. Not a bit of drama ensued.”
She felt a sharp sting from biting her lip. “That’s awesome. I don’t think I’d have such an easy time.”
He laughed. “I’m lying, of course. Extricating myself was quite the ordeal.”
Lori burst out laughing. “Should I doubt everything you say? Is your name even Daniel?”
“I would never kid about something as important as my name.”
“I see.” She grinned back at him. “A man who knows his own identity and isn’t afraid to flaunt it.” Heat rushed up to her cheeks. Was she flirting? Definitely. How the hell was she pulling it off? What’s in this drink anyway? A secret concoction of hormones and mojo? Maybe this was typical of how introductions could be—when she wasn’t under her mother’s ever-hovering shadow.
Lori fought off the memory of the last time she’d met an attractive man. Her mother had unexpectedly brought a potential new client around to her cubicle. Lori had been so nervous when she shook his hand, she knocked an entire cup of lukewarm coffee all over her white summer suit. The man’s beige blazer wasn’t neglected either. Horrified, she went to clean up the mess. Grabbing a napkin off the desk, she dabbed at his jacket. Unfortunately, she’s grabbed the napkin she had used for her doughnut. The man’s beige blazer shined from fresh grease. Twin stains of shame. “What the hell?” she had shouted, in full panic mode.
Her mother had frowned. “Maybe if you didn’t constantly eat at your desk, these things wouldn’t happen.”
“How is drinking coffee eating?” Lori protested. “Has coffee morphed into a solid somehow?”
Her mother’s eyes traveled to the stale, damp, jelly doughnut swimming on her desk next to the overturned coffee cup. Powdered sugar particles lay victim everywhere.
Lori had quickly shut her mouth. Her mother and the gorgeous man walked away. His expression, like the condition of his sports coat, grim. Mom’s agitation radiated throughout the firm for the rest of the day. When her mother revealed Lori’s mishap cost the firm the business, Lori’s expression darkened, too. The result, every time her mother brought in a potential new client, Lori did her best to duck out of the office.
Of course, hiding was nothing new. On the first day of kindergarten, Mom ran up to Lori’s new classmates, introducing Lori as if Lori were mute. The surprised children stared at them both until embarrassment truly rendered Lori dumb. No wonder she dreaded introductions like death.
Weirdly, the introduction to Daniel was so easy, and so enticing, Lori fell right into it. Answering his amicable greeting had been easier than opening her eyes to a beautiful bright morning. Luckily, there had been no time to dwell on his too-handsome, ultra-sexy exterior.
Given her introverted nature, the successful meeting with Daniel was an anomaly. Could an anomaly turn into an opportunity? She glanced around the ballroom in search of her mother.