Merger Of Fortunes. Peggy Moreland

Merger Of Fortunes - Peggy Moreland

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shape and form.

      But why would Case send her flowers?

      “Doesn’t matter,” she told herself sternly. What ever his reason, she wasn’t interested. Not in him. Not in the roses. Not in the adorable silver toad he’d chosen to send them in. She was tossing it all out. She wasn’t keeping a gift from Case Fortune.

      She stooped to gather the arrangement into her arms and moaned pitifully when she found herself looking into the jeweled eyes of the silver toad. How could she throw away a toad? It would be like tossing out a friend.

      Straightening, she snatched up the card and tore it into little pieces. She might keep the arrangement, but she wasn’t calling him. She didn’t care how much she liked yellow roses or how adorable she thought the silver toad vase, she was not calling Case Fortune. Not even to say thanks. Emily Post might have a heart attack over the slight, but etiquette be damned. Gina wasn’t calling Case, nor was she sending a polite note of thanks.

      She wanted nothing to do with Case Fortune.


      “Your personal taxi is here!”

      Busy packing her briefcase for her trip to New York, Gina glanced up to find Zoie, her neighbor from across the hall, entering her loft. Zoie was the only person Gina had entrusted with a key to her loft, an honor Zoie took full advantage of by coming and going as she pleased.

      Today Zoie had her hair spiked with purple mousse and, if Gina wasn’t mistaken, was sporting a new tattoo on the back of her hand.

      Shaking her head at her neighbor’s bizarre taste, Gina set her briefcase on the floor. “All ready. I just need to grab my rolling bag.”

      Zoie stopped short, her eyes going wide, as she got her first glimpse of the flowers that filled the room. “Girl, have you given up writing and opened a floral shop?”

      Grimacing, Gina shrugged on her coat. “No, but it looks like it, doesn’t it?”

      Zoie flicked a nail over a petal in a bouquet of forget-me-nots, then turned to Gina, her lips pursed in annoyance. “Obviously you’ve been holding out on me. Who’s the guy?”

      Gina shuddered at the mere thought of a relationship with Case. “Trust me, there is no guy.”

      Zoie spread her arms, indicating the flowers that filled every available space. “Then why all this?”

      Gina heaved a sigh. “I wish I knew. It started with the yellow roses over there,” she said pointing. “They were delivered on Monday. Tuesday morning I received the bucket of daisies. Later that day, the orchids arrived. Wednesday, the gladiolas and the basket of peonies. Yesterday the forget-me-nots and that tall palm plant in the corner.”

      “Nothing today?”

      She tipped her head toward the screen that partitioned her bedroom from the remainder of the loft. “In there. I ran out of room in here.”

      “The guy must be crazy in love with you. Get a load of these orchids, will you? This time of year these things cost a small fortune.”

      Gina grimaced at the word fortune. “Trust me. He can afford it. And he’s not in love with me. Heck, he doesn’t even know me!”

      “Mm-hmm,” Zoie hummed doubtfully.

      “It’s true, I swear. We met for the first time last Saturday at my booksigning.”

      Zoie clasped her hands together in a dramatic plea of supplication. “Please tell me he’s legal and not one of your adoring under-aged fans.”

      “Yes, Miss Drama Queen, he’s legal.”

      “Does he have a name?”

      “Case Fortune.”

      Zoie’s eyes shot wide. “The Case Fortune?”

      Irritated by her friend’s reaction, Gina scowled. “You make him sound like some kind of God or something.”

      “According to the society page, he is.”

      “Trust me, he’s not.”

      Zoie narrowed an eye. “I thought you said you didn’t know him.”

      “I don’t. But I know enough men like him to know what he’s like.”

      “And that would be…” Zoie prompted.

      “Heartless, selfish, driven.” She lifted a brow. “Need I go on?”

      “Unless I’m mistaken, those are the same personality traits I’ve heard you attribute to your father.”

      “Two peas in a pod.”

      “Come on, Gina,” Zoie groused. “Give the guy a break. Just because your father’s a jerk, doesn’t mean all men are.”

      Gina jutted her chin. “I never said they were.” She stooped and picked up her briefcase, signaling an end to the discussion. “We’d better go. With airport security being what it is, I don’t want to take a chance on being late and missing my flight.”

      Zoie grasped the handle of Gina’s rolling bag and pulled it behind her as she followed Gina to the door. “You haven’t forgotten that I’m going to Sully’s for a couple of days and won’t be here to pick you up when you return?”

      “I haven’t forgotten.”

      “So how are you going to get home?”

      “I’ll grab a cab.”

      Zoie bit back a smile as she stepped out into the hall. “You know, you could ask Case to pick you up. I’m sure he wouldn’t mind.”

      Gina huffed a breath. “I’d walk first.”

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