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Breathless In Love (The Maverick Billionaires #1)(4)

By´╝ÜBella Andre & Jennifer Skully

“Is that a kit car, too?” she asked, gesturing toward the Mercedes.

“No. It’s the real thing.”

Jeremy moved down the line, Harper following, her arms crossed. Her high-heeled shoes tapped on the concrete with every step, her hair shifting across her shoulders, the light from above catching the changing hues of blond.

“Oh man, a 1956 Jaguar XKSS.” Jeremy turned to smile brilliantly at Will. “BRG.”

“Right.” Will cocked a thumb at Harper. “Maybe you’d better tell your sister what that means.” He winked conspiratorially, while hoping Jeremy knew the answer. It wasn’t his intention to embarrass the boy.

Sure enough, he knew. “British racing green.” Jeremy’s voice echoed, overly loud in the hangar, from his excitement. With that, he sprinted down the center aisle, pointing as he went. “1968 Lamborghini Miura.” The gold tones of the car gleamed under the lights. “1954 Austin Healey 100S.” And finally to the last one. “1965 Stingray Coupe.”

Harper beamed. “He got them all right.” She was clearly proud, and Will experienced an ache under his ribcage that he hadn’t felt since his mother died when he was six.

They made him want in. In on their bond. In on the pride and adoration in Harper’s gaze.

Watching Harper and her brother together made him need things he hadn’t craved in thirty years. His father had bullied those cravings out of him.

Harper’s gaze was still on her brother, the light of some special emotion shining in her eyes, when he asked them both, “You want a ride?”


Harper froze. She’d known it was coming, but she’d expected the question about getting into one of Mr. Franconi’s cars from Jeremy. Not from the billionaire!

She had her excuses lined up. Mr. Franconi couldn’t possibly have time. He didn’t even know them and couldn’t be expected to let just anyone ride in one of his cars. She’d imagined the powerful businessman would readily agree with everything she said, likely because he’d be angling to get out of there and back to making more billions as soon as possible.

But now that he’d made the unexpected offer, though Jeremy was already jumping up and down shouting his glee, she couldn’t possibly take him up on it.

“Thank you for the lovely offer, Mr. Franconi, but Jeremy and I have already taken enough of your time.”

“Like I said, I’ve got all afternoon.” He smiled at her again. “And it’s Will.”

Sweet Lord, that man had a smile on him. It was cocky, sexy, and somehow sincere, all at the same time. He had to be aware of the effect it had on the female gender. She guessed he used it knowingly, undermining resistance, so that he could get whatever he wanted.

But why would he be using it on her?

“I don’t think—”

“Come on, Harper.” Jeremy gave her his best hangdog expression. “We want to go out in the fast car!”

“Yeah, come on, Harper.” Amusement laced the billionaire’s voice as he echoed her brother. Will’s gaze was deep, startlingly blue, like the Mediterranean ocean of his heritage. “We really do want to go out in the fast car.”

His hair was as dark as the devil, his features more handsome than a man with his wealth deserved. She’d half expected to be met today by a flock of Franconi Imports publicity reps. After all, she’d figured the slick, filthy-rich business owner giving his time to a young man like Jeremy would be a publicist’s goldmine.

Yet Will had come alone and was dressed casually in jeans and a dark T-shirt—one that emphasized his muscled biceps, but was as far from a five-thousand-dollar suit as anything could be.

Just as Jeremy had researched Will’s cars, Harper had researched the man himself. There was a great deal of information online about how he’d built his business, but very few details about his personal life or past.

None of her research had helped her understand why someone as wealthy and powerful as Will Franconi would even bother to answer Jeremy’s letter. The invitation to meet at his hangar had floored her. After all, he was a luxury importer—and she wasn’t even sure what that meant, exactly. How could a man make billions off luxury? And all his cars she’d seen profiled on the Hot Cars show Jeremy had made her watch smelled of money. Will was a collector of things, so she’d assumed he probably collected people, too…until he got tired of them.

But then she remembered the way he’d looked at her and Jeremy, with a longing that she didn’t quite understand, but felt all the same, right in the center of her chest where her heart was beating just a little too fast from nothing more than the look in his eyes.