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A Time To Love by Barbara Delinsky - Romance>Contemporary
New York Times bestselling author Barbara Delinsky
It is the ultimate in luxury and privacy -- a villa nestled
Instead she ends up sharing her sensuous surroundings
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Arielle Pasteur stood, enchanted, a lone figure on the beach. Beneath her bare toes the play of the fine white sand was soft and alluring. The warmth of the afternoon sun caressed her with its golden glow, and she opened her arms to welcome it. The pale aqua roll of the surf mesmerized her with its rhythmic motion, gathering and breaking, then retreating to the darker depths of the ocean once more, taking with it, bit by bit, her fatigue and tension and replacing them with an incredible sense of peace.
Closing her eyes and tilting her head back, she reveled more deeply in the sensual masterpiece. The balmy tropical breeze fanned through her raven-black hair, drawing it back from her face with the gentleness of a whisper, tenderly baring her features to the healing flow of the trade winds. Each breath she took of the moist sea air brought growing relaxation through her slender limbs and shapely form.
Her pre-dawn waking on this day, the hassle of a sunrise takeoff, the long hours in flight from Boston, through Philadelphia, then on to this small Caribbean isle of St. Maarten -- all were happily cast to the tropic winds, relegated to the far reaches of memory as she greedily drank in the elixir of pleasure flowing freely all about her. In this moment of delight nothing mattered but that this exquisitely beautiful and secluded stretch of beach was hers, and hers alone, for the next four weeks. Nothing mattered but that the charming villa, high on the craggy hillside behind her, would be her haven for the days and nights of solitude and serenity she craved. Intuitively, she knew she had found the perfect spot to organize her thoughts and her photographs, to compile her work of the past five years into the book for which she'd been commissioned. Here she would relax and enjoy each day as it came, responsible to no one but herself, committed to no schedule but that which she chose to create. At her private whim she would sprinkle her hours with sun and surf, work and play. It would be a month of self-centered indulgence, and she had earned every last minute of it.
After a final deep breath of the fragrant air of paradise, she opened her eyes. Slowly, she walked the stretch of beach, a gleaming ribbon bounded on one side by the lava-gray of volcanic formations shaping the rugged cliff, and on the other by the clear aqua ruffle of the Caribbean waters. With each step her bare feet dipped into the softness of the sand. It was warm and pliant, capturing her, bidding her linger in its hold before moving on. She readily complied, for there was no reason to rush. Time was now her ally. With a contented sigh, she feasted on the beauty of her surroundings.
The sight was breathtaking! Azure skies speckled with the occasional fluffy cloud, misted gray-green peaks of neighboring isles far in the distance, the shimmering dance of sunlight on the emerald-blue of the waters -- it was magnificent, and it was hers!
A smile tickled her lips as she sank down on the sand, stretching her long, graceful legs before her toward the sea, propping herself up on straightened arms, now bare of the heavy winter attire she'd sported just this morning. Again she closed her eyes and cocked her face toward the sun, absorbing its warmth, willing its rays inward, then sighing with delight.
This was everything she wanted in a vacation, she mused with a tingle of excitement, directing a silent message of thanks to her brother, Michael, back in frosty New York City, who had first suggested this trip, then had found the villa through his own travel agent and had taken it on her behalf for the month.
A Time To LoveBy: Barbara Delinsky