The Surgeon's Secret Baby (Kimani Romance)

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9780373862252: The Surgeon's Secret Baby (Kimani Romance)

Sensuality heals. Love cures.

Lia Taylor needs Thomas Bradshaw like she's never needed anyone before. The hunky, super-ambitious Head of Surgery at Hopewell General is the only one who can save her young son. Falling for the seductive surgeon is a prescription for trouble. But there's no cure for her smitten condition once Thomas brands her with his sensual touch.

The scion of a powerful family, Thomas has vowed to devote his life to healing others. Having an affair with the alluring computer wiz and single mother could cost the workaholic doc his career at the prominent, scandal-plagued Virginia hospital. Especially if his explosive secret gets out. But Thomas can't give Lia up. His diagnosis? A future together filled with all the love their hearts can hold...

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About the Author:

Ann Christopher is a full-time chauffeur for her two overscheduled children. She is also a wife, former lawyer, and decent cook.

She lives in Cincinnati and spends her time with her family. If you'd like to recommend a great book, share a recipe for homemade cake of any kind, or have a tip for getting your children to do what you say the first time you say it, Ann would love to hear from you through her Web site, www.AnnChristopher.com.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Accusing gazes followed Special Agent Lia Taylor through Hopewell General Hospital.

They burned twin laser holes in the back of her head as she toured the facility, which was so massive, foreign and overwhelming to her that she might as well have been dropped via parachute into Beijing or Abu Dhabi. Her first-day jitters intensified, threatening to cause an ulcer in the lining of her churning stomach.

How in God's name had she, an FBI systems analyst with an impeccable record, landed herself here, in this hospital and this predicament? How could this possibly work? When would she ever go back to life as she knew it?

Soon? Never?

She felt like a tiny little fish, so far out of water that she'd never make her way back to her pond again. It didn't help that the immortal words of Judy Garland's Dorothy Gale kept running through her overwrought brain:

Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore.

No one in the building seemed to speak her language—she caught snippets of conversation from passing personnel, which included incomprehensible phrases like, So, you 're thinking bowel disimpaction? Dude. I hope you're ready to glove up and dig in, and Did you finally get rid of that GOMER? and Negative appendix? Now what? She was sure she stuck out like a surgical clamp on a chest X-ray. Worse was the creeping certainty that people were staring and whispering as she passed, muttering darkly about the things she'd done and what she was:

Hacker.

Thief.

Criminal.

Or maybe those accusations were only in her mind. Man, she hoped so.

Picking up the pace, which was tricky because of her pencil skirt and black pumps, she hurried after her new boss, Germaine Dudley, M.D., chief of staff. He seemed determined to lose her in this labyrinth, possibly because if she disappeared forever into the depths of, say, nuclear medicine, he'd never have to deal with her again.

They would not be winning any popularity contests with each other, she and the good doctor. Oh, no. And while she might be imagining the disapproving glances of everyone else around her, his were the real deal.

"This is the back way into the E.R." Dr. Dudley reached out a weathered brown hand and smacked the wall switch plate, making the heavy metal doors whoosh open ahead of them. They strode into yet another nerve center—the hospital seemed to have dozens of them—where so many scrubs-and-Crocs-wearing people hustled by it was as though she'd stepped into Grand Central Station. "This is the easiest way to get here from the cafeteria, if you ever need to."

"Great."

He pointed. "The admissions desk is on the other side of that door. This is the nurses' station, of course."

"Of course," she murmured.

Without breaking stride, he shot her yet another narrow-eyed look over his shoulder, his lab coat flapping as though it, too, was irritated with her. "Am I boring you?"

"No," she said, and decided it was past time for her to grow a backbone where this man was concerned. He was not, after all, the Antichrist, even if he was in a position to make her life uncomfortable for a while, and they needed to get a few things straight. "But I can see you're not thrilled to be my tour guide, and I feel bad for taking you away from your real duties. Maybe someone else can show me the rest of the hospital...?"

The suggestion made him stop and snort with obvious disbelief. "Nice try, but I don't think it's a good idea for me to let you out of my sight. Do you? You might break into patient or employee records next. Why would you limit your hacking to the sperm-bank database?"

She'd earned that, yeah, but she didn't like hearing it said aloud, and she hated being under this pompous bastard's thumb. He may look something like Danny Glover, but he had none of the actor's warmth or, as far as she was concerned, humanity.

Hitching up her chin, she got in his face. Screw it. What was the worst that could happen? Being fired? Hauled in by the police? Whatever it was, it was a sunny day in the park compared to what she was already facing in her personal life.

"If I'm so untrustworthy, Doctor, then why don't you throw me out and call the police? I hate to hang around where I'm not wanted. In fact, why don't I just go?"

For emphasis, she took a step toward the nearest glowing Exit sign, and that brought Dudley to heel, just like she'd known it would. Putting a hand on her arm, he stopped her and lowered his voice. "I don't think so. I don't like you, and I think you're a criminal who should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, but this isn't about me. This is about what's best for Hopewell General, and the hospital—"

He caught himself with a grimace, but she already knew and took the opportunity to rub it in. Just a little.

"The hospital can't afford another scandal so soon, can it? Not after all that nasty publicity about your intern who was stealing narcotics from the hospital to support his habit." She tsked. "That was unfortunate, wasn't it?"

Dudley stilled, his face slowly hardening into stone. She waited.

"Allegedly stealing narcotics," he said finally, and she knew she'd won. This round, anyway.

"Right." Feeling cheerier by the second, she smiled. "Allegedly. Whatever. The bottom line is, I need you not to press charges, and you need me to build you a world-class security system to protect the hospital's computers. See? Win-win. So maybe we could work on not hating each other so much. What do you say?"

To her dismay, he continued to stare at her, but the vibe twisted and changed into something that made her skin crawl, especially when that slow gaze scraped down and over her body, as though he could see through her black suit to the parts of her body no man had seen in more years than she cared to count. Those brown eyes became thoughtful...considering...calculating. He was so obvious about it she could almost hear the clank of gears shifting in his devious little mind. It would have been funny except that she didn't have time for this kind of nonsense, not with—

No. She wouldn't think about that now. First things first.

"Maybe we could discuss this over dinner," he suggested, his voice as sleek and oily as a spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

"Hmm." She smiled sweetly, purely for the pleasure of seeing that flare of greedy lust in his expression right before she cut him off at the knees. "Just so you know, Doctor, I was the best shooter in my class at the academy, and I'm licensed to carry a concealed handgun with me wherever I go. Still want that dinner?"

His skin went pale around his frozen grin.

"Oh, well. Too bad. And please make sure to tell your wife that we've decided to keep our relationship on a professional level. I don't want her coming after me. Okay?"

Dudley goggled at her. "My wife?"

"Your wife" Lia jerked her head in the direction of a woman behind the nurse's station. Though she quickly tossed her fall of sleek black hair, lowered her head and made a show of flipping through a patient chart, the woman had been tracking Lia's interaction with Dudley since the second they came into view. She was about thirty-five-ish, Lia guessed, and would have been stunningly beautiful if she hadn't been giving Lia the Medusa stare for the last several minutes. "She seems to be the jealous type."

Looking bewildered, Dudley turned to see whom Lia was referring to and spied the woman, who shot him a quick glare. His expression cleared with sudden understanding that made his face brighten to a stunning magenta. Lia considered the color change a dead giveaway to some sort of questionable behavior between him and Ms. Attitude, but Dudley apparently imagined himself to be quite the player and was now giving Lia the wide-eyed, innocent act. Lia played along, just for kicks. If this idiot wanted to delude himself into thinking that FBI agents couldn't read people's body language, then who was she to disabuse him of that notion?

"That's not your wife?" she asked.

"Ah, no," Dudley said, clearing his throat. "She's, ah, Kayla Tsang. Head of nursing in E.R..."

"She seems very interested in our conversation."

"I don't know what you're talking about." Keeping his resolute gaze straight ahead, Dudley resumed his march around the nurse's station. "And I need to get back to the office."

Lia ducked her head, careful to keep her smile to herself. "My mistake."

Yeah, it was time to get cracking, and, amusing as the good doctor and his extracurricular activities were, they had nothing to do with Lia. Well, unless he tried to hit on Lia again; then she'd use what she suspected as leverage against him. But she didn't think it would come to that. Meanwhile, the sooner they got done with this ridiculous tour, the sooner she could get back to her new office and work on the security system, and the sooner she could return to the FBI after this leave of absence. They'd already wasted the better part of the morning.

"I'm just trying to understand what was going through your mind, Brown." A man's deep voice, low but hard-edged with annoyance, cut across the hubbub from the other side of the nurse's station. "Give me something to work with here."

Don't be nosy, Lia told herself, even though Dudley and everyone else, for that matter, were already glancing around and craning their necks like rubbernecking drivers on the highway. It's none of your business.

Her feet, unfortunately, didn't understand social niceties and were already slowing for a better look at the developing ass chewing. There was something compelling about that man's voice, something that caught her attenti...

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