Farley Kim is a Navy SEAL so he’s used to orders. He’s been ordered to New York by his beloved grandmother, where he finds her slowly recuperating from a near-fatal car accident. Natalia, her live-in nurse, isn’t Grandmother Kim’s usual pick for her grandson, but Farley can’t resist the sexy beauty who has taken such good care of the woman who brought him up. Nattie’s half in love with Farley from the stories his grandmother has told her during the long pain-filled nights. But when she sees him in person? He’s absolutely impossible to resist.
The elevator door opened just as Farley reached for the call button. A lovely woman, almost as tall as Farley and built—as his pal Jake would put it—like a brick shithouse, hustled out, grabbed his arm, and began dragging him toward Romeo’s small office tucked into the corner of the lobby.
The beauty, her eyes level on his, gave one quick glance at Romeo, who responded with a smile and, “It’s unlocked, Nattie. Sarah and Delores are safely watching their soaps in Madam Kim’s living room. They’ll call me and I’ll call you if she needs you.”
We’ll call if she needs you?
Farley took a deep breath, ready to stampede the woman Romeo called Nattie. And what in the hell kind of name was that for the most beautiful woman he’d ever seen? He wouldn’t do it, nor would he reach for her, not in front of Romeo who was, second only to his grandmother, the biggest gossip in New York.
He had already learned from the hours they’d spent on the phone that Natalia was as different from his grandmother’s usual choice for him as could be, but he hadn’t known what to expect. He certainly hadn’t expected this. Her face and body were as beautiful as her voice had been over the phone, her movements as careful and serene as her emails had been. When they first began speaking, Farley was tempted to ask her if she’d like to Skype, but he’d resisted because he wanted to see her for the first time in person.
Natalia tugged again at Farley’s arm.
“Come on,” she said. “I need to talk to you.”
Farley looked into her face and was yanked back to the here and now. Something was wrong; he could feel it. Was it worse than Natalia had told him over the phone? He resisted her pull, though his body wanted to follow her. “I need to see my grandmother.”
“She’s sleeping. She’s fine, I promise.”
“You told me that she wasn’t sleeping during the day anymore. What the fuck is going on?”
This time he ignored his instinctive aversion to touching a woman in anger and grabbed her arm, pulling her around to face him.
“Natalia. Tell me. Right now. What the fuck is going on? Has something happened you didn’t tell me about?”
His grandmother would kill him if she saw what he was doing or how he was speaking—especially to a woman—but he was bone-deep scared now. Even Iraq and Afghanistan hadn’t made him this frightened.
“Farley,” she said quietly, her brilliant blue eyes soft on his face. “Come into the office with me. I promise you she’s fine.”
She pulled his now unresisting body into the office, his mind still reeling, and pushed him onto the old sofa in the corner, then reached into the fridge for a bottle of water.
“Drink this,” she said, handing it to him and wrapping her other hand around his cold one. “Flying dehydrates you.”
He almost laughed at that. If anyone knew about the effects of flying on the body, it was an active duty Navy SEAL.
“Thanks.” He drained the bottle, then took a deep breath. “Please.”
Natalia patted the hand she still held. “She’s going to be fine. Probably another couple of months of rehab but God, she’s tough as nails. I didn’t think she’d make it…”
Farley’s heart stopped for a moment and he battled the anger that raced through him. Not at Natalia, not exactly, but… What the hell had his grandmother been doing? He’d inherited his inability to slow down, to stop when he needed to, from her. He’d be willing to bet that she’d been pushing too hard to be ready for his visit. No one could stop his grandmother when she got going. Not him. And, he was willing to bet, not Natalia, either.
He concentrated on the strength of Natalia’s hand on his and the fierce look in her blue eyes. “Tell me. Again. From the beginning.”
It didn’t matter that she’d told him everything over the phone, backing it up with copies of the medical reports and emails detailing her progress; Farley needed to look into Natalia’s eyes when she told him the story.