Her Royal Bodyguard(9)By: Natasha Moore
“You must take this seriously. There is someone out there who wishes you harm. You can never forget that you could have been killed tonight.”
She nodded and leaned back against the seat. She didn’t want to think about it, but he was right. She could never forget.
“Are you all right, Your Highness?” he asked. “We have another hour or so to go.”
She swallowed. “I’m all right.” She rested her head back against the seat. “How long do you think we’ll have to be away from home?”
“Not long, I’m certain. Our security team is well-trained. They will discover who is behind this very soon.”
Angelina nodded. “I hope so.” She closed her eyes and inhaled. Thank goodness, she couldn’t smell the rank odor as strongly from the front seat. Up here, next to Rico, she could take in the dark, musky scent of him.
You must take this seriously. There is someone out there who wishes you harm. You can never forget that you could have been killed tonight.
What if she’d been killed in the kidnapping attempt tonight? Without thinking, she reached out and placed her hand on Rico’s wrist, his skin warm and alive to her touch. She’d spent her entire life being the good girl, the proper princess. What if she’d died tonight and never knew the pleasure shared between a man and a woman? What if she’d never had a chance to touch a man like this?
Rico glanced at her touch, then quickly turned his attention back to the road. He braked quickly when a small animal dashed across the road in front of them. Angelina knew she shouldn’t distract him, but she couldn’t take her hand away.
“What is it, Your Highness?”
“You can’t call me that when we reach Tuscora,” she said softly.
“Call you what?”
“Your Highness. You’re going to have to call me by my name.” She wanted to hear her name in that deep tone, coming from those lips.
“I can’t call you that, either,” he said wryly. “Everyone knows the princess’s name.”
“Oh. Of course, you are right.” She realized she still had her hand on his wrist and she reluctantly pulled away and dropped her hand into her lap.
“What are your other names?” Rico asked. “You must have several.”
“Yes. Two more. Concetta for my mother, but using the Queen’s name would not be a good idea, either. The other is Lucia, for my maternal grandmother. It is not as well-know, I am certain.”
“Lucia. Graceful light. Yes, I will call you Lucia.”
Foolishly, she thought that name sounded just as wonderful when he said it out loud. “How did we meet?” she asked next.
Men were clueless about some things. Like romance. Angelina had spent her life studying romance from afar. From books. Movies.
“People will ask. Your aunt will ask even if your uncle will not. We need a story of how we met.”
“You make up a story then,” he grumbled.
“All right. I work in a small bakery nearby,” Angelina said, remembering the story Mia told her of how the future queen of Stagatland was working in her father’s bakery when she met the handsome prince who was now king. “You stopped into the bakery every morning and we began to share little looks. Small smiles.”
She thought she saw a small smile on Rico’s lips but it was still too dark to tell for certain. “What do I buy?”
“Biscotti, of course. You like to nibble on them with your coffee.”
“I nibble?” The amusement was clear in his voice. Then, a little more sharply, he asked, “How do you know I drink coffee?”
“I see you and Vittorio with your steaming cups of coffee every morning. Don’t change the subject.”
“All right. I came into the bakery all the time to buy biscotti.”
“And to flirt with me.”
“Where did we go on our first date?”
She smiled at Rico’s groan. “We have to know where we went on our first date?” he asked.
“Of course. Another question your aunt is certain to ask.”
He was so clearly out of his comfort zone it made Angelina smile again. “If you walked into the bakery one morning, after weeks of veiled glances and little smiles, and you desired to see me away from my usual surroundings, to spend time together with no one else but you and me, where would you want to take me?”
“I would take you for a drive, like I am right now,” he said immediately. “It is difficult to find time alone otherwise. There seem to be people everywhere.”