Keyonna felt ridiculous, her hair packed up underneath a baseball cap concealing half of her face and dressed in her most disreputable jeans and sweatshirt. Stepping down from the plane, she glanced at Nick as he too made his way down, a pair of dark aviators shielding his eyes. Not much of a disguise, but it had been all they could come up with.
He took her arm once they got on the tarmac. “We could be lucky and not get spotted by a journalist looking to make a scoop with photos. But if we do get to bump into any of those infernal paparazzi, then remember; you had to travel ahead to Italy without me. I still had some business to finish up. And after a few weeks, I joined you. That’s all you need to say.”
Keyonna would have expected a ‘no comment’ answer more appropriate to any curious, nosy photographers or journalists. But then she really wasn’t used to any kind of publicity so Keyonna decided to listen to Nick’s advice on how to handle paparazzi. But at the back of her mind, she still couldn’t help the niggling doubts. Had she really gone to Italy alone to wait for him? Why would she have left on her honeymoon without her groom? And had she really had to wait five whole weeks before he finally managed to drag himself from his business concerns to join her?
Her parents and pals were not much help; they were just as vague saying they knew she’d left but hadn’t been aware of her plans. And Keyonna knew she’d always been the type to value her privacy and she didn’t really go about blabbing to people. To date no one even knew she’d been blackmailed into marrying Nick – except maybe her closest friend Natasha. Keyonna suddenly decided that the first chance she got, she was having a sit-down with her old girlfriend. If anyone could help her get to the bottom of this, Natasha could.
Keyonna truly wanted to trust Nick and believe he would always act in her best interest, but she couldn’t help thinking he only told her what he wanted her to believe.
“Hey,” Nick said, breaking into her thoughts and squeezing gently on her shoulder. She turned to him with a somewhat guilty smile, only just becoming aware of her surroundings. They were in the back of the limo which had picked them up from the airport, and Nick’s smile was far more relaxed now that they were free from any unwanted attention.
“You were far away,” he added, and brushed off her baseball cap, tucking a stray lock of hair behind her ear as he gazed down at her warmly. “That’s better. It should be a crime to hide those beautiful brown eyes.”
Keyonna gave Nick an answering smile of equal warmth, berating herself once again for doubting him for even a second. He obviously loved and cared for her...why would a few weeks cut out of her life mean anything, when she finally had all she needed right here?
Nick had once told her he’d never thought of love as criteria for marriage. Oh, she remembered that much. But look at them now. The situation was totally different now. She really shouldn’t care either way what had happened in the past, so long as they had each other, right?