This is Geli's story. She's the third and youngest of the Amery sisters (Elle - Tempted By Trouble; Sorrel - Anything But Vanilla) whose life has revolved around ice cream ever since the arrival of "Rosie", a pink ice cream van.
Geli - who went to art college - has gone to Italy to remind herself that life isn't all about ice cream. (Not that she escapes entirely!)
Things do not start well. It snowed - who knew? There's a stray kitten - nothing changes. And as for her lovely apartment...
Here's the moment when Geli first sees Dante Vettori...
A few people had turned when the door opened and the chatter died away until the only sound was the low thrum of a double bass.
The man standing at the bar, curious about what had caught everyone’s attention, half turned and anticipation whooshed off the scale in an atavistic charge of raw desire; instant, bone deep need for a man before you heard his voice, felt his touch, knew his name.
For a moment, while she remembered how to breathe, it felt as if someone had pressed the pause button on the scene, freezing the moment in soft focus. Muted colours reflected in polished steel, lights shimmering off the bottles and glasses behind the bar, her face reflected, ghost-like behind the advertisement on a mirror. And Mr Italy with his kiss-me mouth and come-to-bed eyes.
Forget the thick, dark hair and cheekbones sharp enough to write their own modelling contract, it was those chocolate dark eyes that held her transfixed. If they had been looking out of a tourist poster there would be a stampede to book holidays in Italy.
He straightened, drawing attention to the way his hair curled onto his neck, a pair of scandalously broad shoulders, strong wrists emerging from folded back cuffs.
‘Signora…’ he murmured, as he moved back a little to make room for her at the counter and oh, joy, his voice matched the face, the body.
She might have passed out for lack of oxygen at that moment but a tall, athletic-looking blonde placed a tiny cup of espresso in front of him before — apparently unaware that she was serving a god — turning to her.
‘Sta nevidanco? É brutto tempo.’
Flustered at being confronted with phrases that hadn’t featured so far on the Italian course she’d downloaded onto her iPod, she took the safe option and, having sucked in a snowflake that was clinging to her lip, she lowered her hood. The chatter gradually resumed and, finally getting a “move it” message through to her legs, she parked her suitcase and crossed to the bar.
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