The Baby Doctor's Desire

Available in stores

Boon 2 in the London City General trilogy

 

Mills & Boon Medical Romance

February 2005

ISBN: 0263842886

 

Harlequin Medical Romance

April 2005

ISBN: 0373065019

Two doctors. . . one secret affair

When two very caring doctors cannot deny - but cannot let on - that they're attracted to each other, their only option is to have a secret affair! But for maternity consultant Kieran Bailey keeping his relationship with Dr Judith Powell private proves impossible. The hospital grapevine is rife in London City General, and if their secret is exposed the consequences will be huge! Can Kieran afford to let his feelings for this stunning but fiery redhead get in the way of his family responsibilities?

Also released in the UK as a hardback (December 2004, ISBN: 0263183947). Also released in Australia in paperback (March 2005, ISBN: 0733559441).

 


Behind the Book

The second book in the trilogy is set in a maternity unit.

Kieran's tall, dark and handsome - and terrified of commitment. So when he meets Judith, and discovers that she's a talented singer as well as a good doctor (not to mention being absolutely stunning), he's swept off his feet.

They agreed keep their affair secret, because Kieran's looking after his baby sister (and Judith is the one who discovers what the problem is) and doesn't want her to start panicking that he'll throw her out. But secrets have a nasty habit of blowing up in people's faces . . .

There's a lot of fun in this one. Let's just say it's the most unusual proposal scene I've ever written!

It's dedicated to Ali, my best local friend.

Kieran's mango and prawn salad is a great starter - or even a main course in summer.

Because of Judith's singing, this book has a soundtrack. You may never be able to listen to Dire Straits in the same way again . . . This is also the book for George Clooney fans, who may end up feeling very jealous of one of the midwives!

Read a Bit

CHAPTER ONE

'Tess, it's going to be OK. Really it is.'

'But Charlie's been sick over your new suit! And…' Tess broke into sobs.

Kieran held her close and stroked her hair. Why had his nephew had to bring his milk up over him today, of all days? After clearing up, Kieran was already ten minutes late for his shift - and he hadn't even left the house yet!

How to make a good impression on your first day as consultant. Not.

But his little sister didn't need to know that. After the junk life had thrown at her, this past month, she could do without the extra stress. Besides, big brothers were supposed to be protective, not needing a fuss made of themselves. He forced himself to breathe normally, and hoped Tess couldn't tell that he was only pretending to be calm. 'Hey. I'd better make tracks.'

'But your suit?'

'It's OK. I've sponged it off. And nobody's going to notice baby sick beneath my white coat. If they do . . .' He shrugged. 'I work on a maternity ward, remember. Babies are sick over us all the time.'

'Really?' Tess gazed at him from red, swollen eyes.

'Really.' He dropped a kiss on her forehead. 'Go and have a shower. Don't worry about Charlie; I've changed him and I've put the light show on in his cot and he's got his soft book and a teddy, so he'll be fine for a few minutes. You've got your mum and baby group this morning, haven't you?'

Tess made a face. 'It's going to be horrible. All they'll talk about is babies.'

'Course it won't be horrible. And yes, they'll talk about babies at first because that's what you've all got in common. But once you break the ice and get to know each other it'll be fine.' He pulled a face at her. 'Guess what? All they'll talk to me about this morning is babies, too.'

'Yes. I suppose.' She gave him a wobbly smile, and Kieran felt the tension in his stomach begin to uncoil again. She was going to be OK. He almost - almost - asked her if she'd try to remember to put the washing machine on. But that would start another discussion and he really, really didn't have time. It'd be quicker to do it himself, after his shift.

'See you later, kiddo. I'd better go,' he said.

The moment he was out of sight, he rang the hospital. He was patched through to the obstetric director's secretary and explained he'd been delayed but was on his way in.

And because he'd waited to make the call, he missed the next tube train and had to wait. Funny how his watch was working on a different timescale from the clock at the station: the second hand was racing round his watch, reminding him just how late he was going to be, but the station clock still insisted the next train would be in four minutes.

It seemed like for ever before he managed to get to London City General. He didn't bother waiting for the lifts. If they were anything like the ones at his old hospital, it'd be lunchtime before he started his shift. As it was . . .

He made it. Forty-five minutes late. Briefcase in locker, white coat on - hmm, he still smelled suspiciously of baby sick but never mind. Chances were, nobody would comment. Not to his face. And he could ignore anything said behind his back. He was old enough and tough enough.

He was on his way to the obstetric director's office when he saw her. The most beautiful woman he'd ever set eyes on. She was sitting on the edge of a desk talking to one of the midwives - she couldn't work in the maternity unit, then, or she'd be in the middle of a round or with one of the mums. She clearly wasn't pregnant and was wearing a white coat, so the odds were she was staff on a different ward. Paediatrics, most likely. She was tall - not far off six feet, he guessed - with legs up to her armpits. Her red hair was pinned back in a neat knot at her nape, but it would drop like silk to her shoulders if she loosened it. She had a beautiful clear, creamy complexion; blue eyes that crinkled at the corners as she smiled; and a mouth that made his knees go weak.

Even weaker when she threw her head back to laugh, and he saw the line of her throat. He wanted to stride over there, grab her and kiss a necklace round it.

Oh, hell. This was a complication he didn't need, right now. Until Tess was back on an even keel, he couldn't possibly think about a relationship. Or even lust after someone in secret. Tess needed help to sort her life out, and right now he was the only one who could give her that help.

Besides, the redhead had to be spoken for. No way could a woman that beautiful be single. And no way was he going to be responsible for breaking up a relationship. So he'd better keep his eyes to himself.

He shook himself, turned away from the redhead and knocked on the consultant's door.

'Ah, Mr Bailey. Come in,' Arabella Hunter said.

'I'm sorry I'm late, Miss Hunter,' he said. 'I'll stay late to make up the time.'

'At least you had the manners to call my secretary. I appreciate that.' She gestured to the chair in front of her desk. 'Sit down. And it's Bella. We work on first-name terms on this ward.'

'Bella,' he repeated dutifully.

'And you're Kieran, yes?'

He nodded.

'Good. I've rostered you with Judith Powell today - she's one of our registrars. She'll introduce you to everyone.' Bella rolled her eyes. 'I would have taken you round myself, but I've got a meeting with the Trust directors in five minutes. Jude'll look after you, though.'

'Powell?'

He only realised he'd spoken aloud when Bella nodded. 'Yes, she's Ben's daughter. She's a nice girl.'

Professor Ben Powell was the obstetric director at Hampstead Free - the hospital where Kieran had worked until last Friday.

'She didn't want to work for her father, so he had a word with me.'

Oh, great. His first day as consultant here, and he'd be working with a makeweight, a woman who'd got the job because of who her father was. So he'd be doing double the work here as well as at home.

He forced a smile to his face. 'I look forward to meeting her.'

'Come along, then.' Bella ushered him out of the office. And took him straight to the redhead, who was still chatting at the midwives' station.

'Jude, this is Kieran Bailey, our new consultant. Look after him for me, will you, sweetie?'

'Course I will, Bella.'

The gorgeous redhead - the one who was chatting, not working - was the professor's daughter?

She was going to be working with him?

She slid off the desk and Kieran discovered that she was just as tall as he'd guessed. Five feet eleven, so she barely had to tip her head back to look into his eyes. And her voice was incredibly sexy. Low, deep, a little husky. Like melted chocolate.

He definitely shouldn't have thought of that. Because now he had another image in his mind: himself, trailing melted chocolate across her creamy skin and then licking it off.

Stop it. You're a professional, not a sex-crazed lunatic, he reminded himself.

'Welcome to the ward.' Her eyelashes were long. And dark - which meant they were either dyed or mascaraed. But she didn't wear a scrap of any other make-up. Didn't need to.

Stop it. Focus.

'I'm Judith Powell - Jude to my friends.' She held her hand out.

He took it.

Hell and double hell.

Shaking hands was meant to be an ordinary, everyday occurrence. It wasn't supposed to feel as if an earthquake had just hit him. His skin wasn't supposed to tingle like this.

'Kieran Bailey.'

Stupid. She knew that already - Bella had told her his name. But, for the life of him, he couldn't think of anything else to say. His mind had gone completely blank, and his mouth felt as if he'd been eating sand. Anyone would think he was a teenager, not a well-balanced thirty-two-year-old.

'We usually do a ward round about now. So I'll introduce you to everyone as we go round, if that's OK?'

'That would be fine.'

Ur-r. Now he sounded stuffy and prim. But that was marginally better than what he really wanted to say. Which was along the lines of, Linen cupboard. You. Me. Now.

He'd never, ever done the chest-beating Tarzan-type thing. What was it about this woman that made him feel like that?

From the book The Baby Doctor's Desire by Kate Hardy.

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance
Publication Date: February 2005
ISBN: 0263842886
Copyright © 2005 by Pamela Brooks
® and ™ are trademarks of the publisher.
The edition published by arrangement with Harlequin Books S.A.
For more romance information surf to http://www.eHarlequin.com

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Reviews

From Cataromance: a spellbinding romantic tale about second chances, hope and true love which readers everywhere will adore! - 5stars

Kate Hardy once again excels herself in this unputdownable story which will delight romantic fiction fans everywhere. Her characters leap off the pages with readers rooting for Judith to get the happy ending she deserves whilst falling in love with Kieran as well as understanding him for his reasons for wanting to keep his relationship with Judith secret. Kate Hardy also manages the difficult task of making the secondary characters in her books seem well rounded and real - which is no mean feat in the short space allowed in category romance!

What they're saying on e-Harlequin

  • love Hardy’s writing. She creates believable stories and populates them with people who could be your neighbor, your co-worker or you best friend. She tackles some difficult topics and handles them well. What’s not to like?M/li>

Stories by Kate Hardy with maternity and neonatal settings

 

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