He’d nearly forgotten how tedious these affairs could be. Almost always were. No hope for it though. Perhaps if he were lucky he’d come across someone he knew.
It didn’t take long before the heads of nearby women turned toward him. After all, Daniel mused, he was an earl. And a wealthy widowed one at that. No doubt the buzzing insects could almost taste him.
He turned away from the nearest crowd, looking for a place he might escape. The card room might be best. He took a few steps in that direction and then stopped.
Directly in front of him, only mere feet away, coming out of a long hallway…Aubrey St. Clair.
Daniel stood frozen in place. His mind blanked and he was unable to form a thought. At least one that made any sense.
He swallowed the lump forming in his throat.
Lord, he’s still as gorgeous as ever.
Merely handsome didn’t really cover Aubrey. Daniel wasn’t entirely sure gorgeous was enough. The same silky, dark brown tousled locks, the brown eyes darker than any eyes he’d ever seen, nearly black and so intense. Full lips…and dimples. The kind of sheer masculine beauty that would make every woman there desperate to make him hers. Daniel clenched his fists.
He hadn’t seen Aubrey since the night his father died, yet seeing him now affected him the way it always did. Daniel was rock-hard.
And there coming from the hallway mere moments behind Aubrey was Lady Whittington. Apparently the rumors were true. The two were lovers.
Daniel exhaled. He forced himself to turn his back to them, resisting the nearly unbearable urge to rub the spot on his chest where his heart beat painfully.
Why hadn’t he paid attention to those rumors when he accepted Lady Whittington’s invitation? Hell, it was even rumored that Aubrey fathered her children. Had he realized he would see Aubrey he would have stayed away. Or would he?
Daniel wondered if it was too late to escape. Could he now make his escape and pretend he never arrived? He closed his eyes. Aubrey had looked right at him. He didn’t miss the subtle widening of those intense eyes.
His already aching cock throbbed at the sound of Aubrey’s warm, deep voice. He was in trouble. Turning around, he faced him.
The man was sin walking and talking.
“Rothton,” Daniel said, proud his voice didn’t crack. He struggled desperately to keep his eyes from drifting to Aubrey’s lips. He’d tasted those lips.
“It’s been a long time,” Aubrey murmured. His gaze went somewhere over Daniel’s shoulder as though he couldn’t quite bring himself to look directly at him.
“Ten years.” Daniel swallowed. “You look…well.” Lame, he knew but he didn’t think Aubrey would appreciate him saying you look edible.