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Julian gazed at Camille in her black dress with its crocheted look. It was sexy. An approving moan rumbled up his throat and he grabbed her hand, moving toward an inner wall inside the third floor salon. He glanced at her, winked and popped a wall panel open.
A soft gasp escaped her. “What the....”
“There are tunnels all over the estate.” He coaxed her inside. “We’ll make our escape through here.” It beat running into Papa, Claudette, or Madeleine in the hallways.
“Ooh, I feel like a spy.” She giggled as they enter the dimly lit tunnel.
Julian chuckled. “Yeah. A spy whose sanity depends on her escape.” He quickened his pace. He wasn’t the only one well-versed in these tunnel paths. The quicker they got outside and through the gardens, the better.
They hurried through corridors, descended steps cut into the ground and rounded corners, all in near-darkness. Camille tightened her grip on his hand.
“Don’t worry, Chéri. I know this place inside and out.”
“God, I hope so.” Her rich laughter wrapped him in amusement.
“We’re almost there,” he said in a low, husky voice.
After a few more feet and another curve to the left, Julian gave Camille a tug and pulled her closer before stopping to push his way through the outside exit.
The twilight of a setting sun filtered inside, casting a flattering glow over Camille. Her golden hair glistened like strands of lustrous glass, and he felt a ripple of excitement when her mouth curved into a tempting smile.
“What are the chances somebody’s going to be waiting for us out here?” she asked, and he got the feeling she was trying to be funny. And she would be, so long as she wasn’t right.
“I’ll let you know.” He checked the immediate area just outside the exit.
All clear. Good. Not that he was afraid to face them. But this was more fun. Sexy even. A faint light twinkling in her blue eyes told him she was just as excited.
Julian latched onto Camille’s hand. Joy bubbled over in her laughter as they raced along designated paths through the rose garden. Her happiness brought Julian a sense of satisfaction. It’d been a long time since he’d had this much fun.
Adrenaline sped through him, increasing ferociously when the tunneled gateway to the river came into view. Just as he’d arranged, a speedboat was waiting at water’s edge, ready to assist them in their escape.
Julian helped Camille before climbing aboard. The boat thundered to life and the engine’s vibrations roared through him, stimulating his adrenaline and his aspirations. He’d taken plenty of boat rides, and with a number of girls including Madeleine, but none had aroused him like this ride with Camille. Maybe it was just the thrill of the escape. Yes. That had to be the reason.
Camille sat on the seat next to him, perched in a model-like pose. Her legs, long and tanned, rose from red shoes and traveled seductively up until they disappeared underneath a black cocktail dress riding midway up her thighs. He liked the dress when they’d bought it in London, and he liked it now—especially now, as he envisioned slipping his hands beneath the fabric in an exploring fashion.
The boat charged down the winding river and a warm summer’s wind whipped Julian’s hair around wildly. Raking it back, he looked at Camille. Their gazes met, and a faint delicate flush glowed against her face.
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