Ruthless Russian, Lost Innocence

Ruthless Russian, Lost Innocence
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The virgin’s awakeningViolinist Ella Stafford isn’t used to parties, so it’s little wonder she’s overwhelmed by brooding Russian Vadim Aleksandrov! The throbbing, raw attraction takes fragile English beauty Ella out of her depth… …and into his arms! Soon she finds herself sharing his Mediterranean villa, attending glamorous parties and showered with luxuries.Ella should feel elated. Yet there is darkness in Vadim’s past that even Ella’s virginal sweetness cannot penetrate. But will the baby she’s carrying force him to learn to love?

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‘I think it would be better if we kept last night as a one-off. I don’t want to have an affair with you…’ Ella faltered, flushing when Vadim’s piercing blue gaze settled thoughtfully on her face. She had the unnerving feeling that he could read the jumble of emotions whirling around her head.

‘Neither of us wants to be tied down in a relationship,’ she reminded him, despising herself for the way her heart-rate quickened when he dropped down onto the bed and wound a few strands of her hair around his fingers.

‘I agree,’ he said coolly. ‘But surely the very fact that we have no desire for a relationship makes us ideal candidates for an affair? There’s nothing to stop us being lovers. And besides,’ he murmured, his voice dropping to a deep, sensual tone that caressed her senses, ‘one night was not enough for either of us—was it, Ella?’

Chantelle Shaw lives on the Kent coast, five minutes from the sea, and does much of her thinking about the characters in her books while walking on the beach. She’s been an avid reader from an early age. Her schoolfriends used to hide their books when she visited—but Chantelle would retreat into her own world, and still writes stories in her head all the time. Chantelle has been blissfully married to her own tall, dark and very patient hero for over twenty years, and has six children. She began to read Mills & Boon® as a teenager, and throughout the years of being a stay-at-home mum to her brood found romantic fiction helped her to stay sane! She enjoys reading and writing about strong-willed, feisty women, and even stronger willed sexy heroes. Chantelle is at her happiest when writing. She is particularly inspired while cooking dinner, which unfortunately results in a lot of culinary disasters! She also loves gardening, walking, and eating chocolate (followed by more walking!). Catch up with Chantelle’s latest news on her website:

Ruthless Russian, Lost Innocence


Chantelle Shaw



The Louvre Auditorium—Paris

IT HAPPENED in an instant. A fleeting glance across the crowded auditorium of the Louvre and wham, Ella felt as though she had been struck by a lightning bolt.

The man was standing some distance away, surrounded by a group of seriously chic Frenchwomen who were all vying for his attention. Her first impression in those few heartstopping seconds when their eyes met was that he was tall, dark and devastatingly handsome—but when she tore her gaze from his piercing blue stare she instinctively added the word dangerous to the list.

Shaken by her reaction to a complete stranger, she stared down at her champagne glass, dismayed to find that her hands were trembling, and tried to concentrate on her conversation with a music journalist from the culture section of Paris Match.

‘The audience were enraptured by you tonight, Mademoiselle Stafford. Your performance of Prokofiev’s second violin concerto was truly outstanding.’

‘Thank you.’ Ella smiled faintly at the journalist, but she was still supremely conscious of the intense scrutiny of the man standing on the other side of the room, and it took all her willpower to resist turning her head. It was almost a relief when Marcus appeared at her side.

‘You know everyone’s saying a star has been born tonight?’ he greeted her excitedly. ‘You were bloody marvellous, Ella. I’ve just sneaked a preview of the review Stephen Hill is writing for The Times, and I quote—“Stafford’s passion and technical bravura are out of this world. Her musical brilliance is dazzling, and her performance tonight cements her place as one of the world’s top violinists.” Not bad, eh?’ Marcus could not hide his satisfaction. ‘Come on—you need to circulate. There are at least half a dozen other journalists who want to interview you.’

‘Actually, if you don’t mind, I’d really like to go back to the hotel.’

Marcus’s smile slipped when he realised that Ella was serious. ‘But this is your big night,’ he protested.

Ella bit her lip. ‘I realise that the party is an ideal opportunity for more publicity, but I’m tired. The concert was draining.’ Particularly when she’d spent the few hours before her solo performance ravaged by nerves, she thought ruefully. Music was her life, but the crippling stage fright she suffered every time she played in public was far from enjoyable, and sometimes she wondered if pursuing a career as a soloist was what she really wanted when it made her physically sick with fear.

‘You attracted an A-list audience tonight, and you can’t just disappear,’ Marcus argued. ‘I’ve seen at least two ministers from the French government, not to mention a Russian oligarch.’ He glanced over Ella’s shoulder and gave a low whistle. ‘Don’t look now, but Vadim Aleksandrov is heading this way.’

With a heavy sense of inevitability Ella turned her head a fraction, and felt her heart slam beneath her ribs when her eyes clashed once more with a startling blue gaze. The man was striding purposefully towards her, and she stared transfixed at the masculine beauty of his classically sculpted features and his jet-black hair swept back from his brow.

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