Embracing You (The Rossi Family #3) Read Online Daphne Elliot

Categories Genre: Romance Tags Authors: Series: The Rossi Family Series by Daphne Elliot
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Total pages in book: 83
Estimated words: 76798 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 384(@200wpm)___ 307(@250wpm)___ 256(@300wpm)
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She offered me a deal I couldn’t refuse.
A little summer fling. Casual, no expectations… and a firm expiration date.

Samantha Sullivan and I have been best friends since childhood. Totally platonic. We had never crossed the line, not even once.
Until now.
Sam has been running away from our small town for nearly twenty years, but after receiving a life-changing diagnosis, she craves the comfort of home…and my arms.
She doesn’t want things to change, but I have loved her every single day I’ve known her, and now I’m addicted to her curves, her taste, and the feel of her skin.
She’s too used to running, and this fling may have a deadline, but we didn’t just cross the line, we smashed it to pieces.
She is my past, present, and future. And I’m not going anywhere.

FULL BOOK START HERE:

FOREWORD

This book deals with a very difficult and potentially triggering topic—breast cancer. Although it is a romance with an HEA, it includes significant detail about the heroine’s breast cancer journey. Her cancer is not terminal, it is Stage 2, and she recovers fully and gets a well-deserved HEA.

Sam is fictional. In creating her, I wanted to portray her experiences with cancer as accurately and authentically as possible. I am very grateful to have had many wonderful survivors who volunteered their time and opened their hearts to help me with the details.

Sam’s journey may look different from your journey or that of someone you love. Cancer touches us all differently, and although I strove to be as accurate as possible, no two experiences are the same.

PROLOGUE

GIO

2 Years Ago…

“Can you believe it’s been twenty years?” I asked.

“God, we are so old.” She giggled.

I straightened my shoulders. “Speak for yourself, I’m still quite young.” I gave her a saucy wink.

We swayed to the music as I admired the surroundings. The nineties theme was spot-on. Someone had DIY-ed a disco ball made of old CDs, and there was a Zach Morris cardboard cutout to take selfies with. As much as I generally avoided these types of events, I had to admit I was having fun. But that may have been more to do with my present dance partner.

“I hate to break it to you, but you have more than a few grays.” Sam reached up and ran her hands through my hair. It felt good—better than good. I secretly loved her hands on me. Not that I would ever admit to it. In fact, I was really, really good at hiding my attraction to Sam Sullivan.

It was Olympic level. I had been denying my feelings and desires for decades, and if I bothered to check, it would probably be a world record. On the surface, no one knew. My twin knew, but he knew everything about me. But to the rest of the world, I was Gio Rossi, sarcastic ladies’ man. Not Gio Rossi, sad-sack romantic who had been in love with his best friend since childhood.

And it was not as if I had been crying myself to sleep. I’d had plenty of relationships—some serious, some casual, and some for one night—and while they were great and all, no one ever held a candle to my Sam.

I had been telling myself for years that I just hadn’t met the right woman yet. That someday I would find the one and Sam would just be a pleasant, nostalgic memory.

But I was thirty-nine and it hadn’t happened yet.

It wasn’t as though I hadn’t been trying. I had dated and wooed women in several countries. I had been on dating apps. I had done the bar scene in my younger days, and I was not one to shy away from a good time. And I was a good time. But a temporary good time was all I was usually interested in.

I wanted something more. Something real. But it just hadn’t happened. And I was beginning to think it never would.

Sam looked beautiful tonight, wearing a silver wrap dress that hugged her curves perfectly. Her deep-auburn hair hung past her shoulders, and despite her makeup, I could still see the smattering of freckles across her nose.

She was always more of a tomboy growing up, but as an adult, Sam embraced dresses and makeup. Generally I couldn’t care less, but tonight it was distracting. And I wasn’t the only guy at our high school reunion who noticed. I had caught Steven Jones checking her out several times and sent many angry glares his way. He was already on his third divorce, and I still hadn’t forgiven him for how he treated her in high school.

Spending the evening at my twentieth high school reunion was not exactly my idea of a good time, but Sam had traveled all the way from Switzerland to make it. So throwing on a collared shirt and showing up was the least I could do. Sam lived in a world so far removed from Havenport, and we saw each other so infrequently that I would never pass up an opportunity to spend time with her. Plus, I knew all the creeps from high school would be all over her, so accompanying her just made sense. I lived here; I knew who had grown into an upstanding citizen and who was still an emotionally stunted narcissist.


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