When Laura's sister disappears in Milan, the most dangerous part of the search may be falling for the man who wants to help her…
A weekend in Milan with her student sister, Charlie, should be a welcome break in Laura's stressful life. When Charlie fails to meet her at the airport as arranged, Laura isn't too concerned at first. After all, her sister has always been impulsive and forgetful where she is cautious and thoughtful. But when she goes to Charlie's apartment, only for the landlady to tell her she hasn't seen Charlie for several days, Laura begins to worry something sinister has happened.
With the aid of Gianmario de Rossi, Charlie's personal tutor, begins to probe the mystery of Charlie's disappearance. But how much does the handsome, intelligent Gianmario know about what's really happened to Charlie, and by giving in to her impulse to have wild, passionate sex with him, is Laura being lured to a similar fate?
General Release Date: 7th February 2011
Linate Airport was shrouded in clouds as the plane began its final descent. The weather had been poor since we left Heathrow, the seat belt signs remaining on for the whole flight. I’d hoped for a glimpse of the Alps, snow-covered and majestic, as we passed over them. Instead I’d seen only heavy rain and heard fierce rumbles of thunder that buffeted the small plane. I wasn’t a nervous flyer, unlike the woman in the seat across the aisle, who’d clearly been terrified by every shudder and jolt, however minor. Still, I would be glad when we were on solid ground once more.
Travelling light is the sensible choice, I thought, hefting my backpack onto my shoulders as the cabin doors were opened, allowing us to disembark. It saved time waiting for my luggage to emerge on one of the carousels in the chaotic baggage reclaim area. Time I could instead spend catching up with Charlie. This would be the first occasion we’d been together since she moved to Milan to study, and I was looking forward to finding out how she was enjoying her new life.
Clearing passport control without any hold-ups, I walked through to the arrivals hall. People waited on the other side of low metal barriers, scanning every new face as it emerged. Some were liveried chauffeurs, clutching handwritten signs bearing the name of the passenger they’d come to collect. Others were clearly waiting for family or friends. I looked for Charlie’s familiar, freckled features in the crowd and failed to spot her.
I made a slow circuit of the area, checking to make sure Charlie wasn’t in any of the shops or killing time over a coffee in the landside caf�. She was nowhere to be seen. This didn’t worry me as much as it might. It certainly wasn’t unusual for her to be late. Intending to find out how far she was running behind schedule, I dialled her mobile. It was answered on the seventh ring by a recording that simply said, “Hi, this is Charlie. Leave a message.”
My reply was equally brief. “Charlie, this is your sister. We’ve landed. Let me know where you are, okay?”
Word Count: 14,169
Book Length: SHORT STORY
Elizabeth Coldwell is a multi-published author and editor whose stories have appeared in a number of best-selling anthologies. She has written novels in a variety of different genres, from paranormal to BDSM and contemporary romance. She is the former editor of the UK edition of Forum magazine and the proud winner of an International Leather Award. When she is not busy writing, she is an avid supporter of Rotherham United Football Club and can be regularly found on the terraces at weekends, cheering her boys to victory (hopefully!).
Find her online at The (Really) Naughty Corner, http://elizabethcoldwell.wordpress.com