Fresh on the heels of their disastrous date, Dr. Camille Lawson is none too pleased to find Dr. Wyatt Holladay darkening her doorstep. But a mystery ailment is claiming her patients—and just maybe the gorgeous doctor can help her get some answers. What should be a simple investigation of medical causes quickly reveals a very real threat. Someone is targeting Camille by killing her patients, one by one.
Surrounded by suspects and unable to convince the authorities crimes are being committed, Wyatt is the only person who can keep the infuriating beauty safe. With everything on the line, he must protect her reputation, her life...and her heart.
Camille Lawson swung open the door to the establishment and stepped inside. He was where the nurses at the hospital said he would be. Sitting at a small table, his drink halfway to his lips as he read the newspaper. For a second she watched him without him noticing her. Tall, lean, ridiculously handsome with ink-black hair that had a smattering of white at the temples.
The white hair should have made him look old. Instead it made him look dashing.
She wondered again if this was the stupidest idea she'd ever had, but she'd come this far.
Approaching the table, she set her briefcase on the chair opposite him as an announcement of her presence.
At first he looked surprised to see her. His expression quickly changed to smug. "Camille. What brings you to a place like this? I thought you disdained addicts."
"I do." She sniffed, then assessed what he was drinking. "I see you haven't kicked the habit."
"No intention to kick it. I like it too much."
"I don't have to tell you, enough of that will kill you."
"Nope." He took a deep gulp—to annoy her she knew. "I have a business matter I would like to address with you."
One eyebrow crooked. "This," he said with a deliberate pause, "should be interesting." He waved to the chair across from him in invitation and folded up his paper.
She shifted her briefcase to the floor and sat cautiously. It wasn't beyond him to do something silly such as kick the chair out from under her. Had they met when they were children, she had no doubt he would have taken pleasure in putting gum in her hair and giving her noogies.
He'd been that kind of boy. She was sure of it.
Taking a sterile wipe from her handbag she wiped the tabletop in front of her. It wasn't her habit to come to public drinking or eating establishments. They were infested with germs. On half washed glasses and utensils. On tables where people rested their hands and elbows. Even the smell of the place, which announced its purpose as soon as a person stepped through the door, made her queasy.
How many thirsty, needy people had passed through here today alone? How many of their individual germs had soaked into the fabrics and settled on the leather surfaces?
So many people. All of them carelessly touching everything around them...with their hands. She suppressed a shudder.
Having done all she could do with the surface, she put the wipe in an empty Ziploc bag, which she carried for such an occasion, and made a mental note to keep her hands in her lap as much as possible. She would have preferred to sit on a stool with no arms and less chance of contamination, but she didn't imagine he would be bothered enough to move to a different location. At least not for her.
Reaching for the files inside her case, she started with her pitch. "It's probably nothing. I don't even know why I'm here but—"
"Oh, no." He held his hand up to stop her. "If you came here to discuss business with me, we do it on my terms. You'll need a drink."
"You know I don't enjoy—"
"For me. For whatever it is you need from me," he corrected. "In the spirit of colleagues."
This was so typical of him. Doing anything he could to push her buttons. There was no spirit of colleagues. Not between them. Not after....She shook the painful memory from her head. For now, she needed him.
"Fine," she said through gritted teeth.
Wyatt held up a single finger and a girl in a green apron bustled over. "Can I get you something?"
In a fit of bravado Camille raised her chin. "I'll have what he's having."
"Nice," he murmured.
The waitress, who apparently knew his order, didn't bother to confirm what he was drinking.
"Can we get down to the matter at...