Dr Cinderella's Midnight Fling

Available in stores

Mills & Boon Medical Romance

Mar 2012

ISBN: 9780263891584

 

Harlequin Medical Romance

date: Mar 2012

ISBN: 9780373068265

Also released as:

  • UK hardback (Mar 2012, ISBN 9780263228632)
  • UK large print hardback (date and ISBN tbc)
  • Also released in Australian paperback (date and ISBN: tbc).

 


Behind the Book

I do like a good Cinderella story, and I have a bit of a soft spot for posh docs... and so we have Plain Jane meets James Bond (aka Jane and Ed).

Ed's brother is a bit of a risk-taker, and I found the perfect sport for him when I was walking on the beach with my family and these men hanging from big kites, wearing jet-packs, roared overhead. It looked huge fun, and I looked it up on the internet when we got home - it's powered paragliding.

I've dedicated it to my best friend, Fi - because Jane has a best friend who's almost as fabulous as mine.

Chapter One

'Cinderella, you are so going to the ball,' Sorcha said as Jane opened her front door.

Jane stared at her best friend. 'But I've only just got in from late shift.'

'Perfect timing, then.' Sorcha glanced at her watch. 'The taxi's going to be here in thirty minutes, so you don't have time to argue.'

'I don't have anything to wear.'

'Yes, you do. Right here. It's an unbirthday present from me because I saw it when I was in town and thought the colour was just perfect for you.' Sorcha waved a carrier bag at her. 'Go and have a shower and wash your hair. I'll dry it for you and do your make-up.'

'But -' Jane began, and then subsided. She knew from past experience that, once Sorcha was in full bossy mode, there was no stopping her.

'It's not as if you've got anything better to do tonight,' Sorcha added. 'And ironing and cleaning your bathroom don't count. You didn't go to a single one of the Christmas nights out, you're always switching your duty so you can avoid team nights out, and it's well past time you stopped letting Shaun ruin your life.'

Jane didn't have an answer for any of that. She knew it was all true.

Sorcha hugged her swiftly. 'I know he hurt you badly, Janey, but you can't hide behind work for the rest of your life. Look, I'm not telling you to go and have a wild fling with the first man you meet. Just come out with me tonight and enjoy yourself. Have some fun.'

Jane wrinkled her nose. 'There's a teensy problem. I don't actually have a ticket for the ball.' She'd given a donation toward the funds instead.

'Actually, you do have one. From Maddy and Theo, with their love - and she says if you say you can't accept it, then she'll accept a promise of babysitting one evening in return, but you're coming to the ball and that's final. And Theo echoed the lot.'

Jane knew when she was beaten. 'I can hardly argue with my boss,' she said wryly.

'Attagirl.' Sorcha smiled at her. 'You've got twenty-seven minutes. Go, go, go!'

By the time the taxi arrived, Jane hardly recognised herself. She normally kept her hair tied back in a ponytail at work, but Sorcha had blow-dried it into a sleek bob. Her make-up was light but still managed to emphasise her hazel eyes and make them sparkle. And the dress was the prettiest she'd ever seen, with a swishy skirt that made her feel light on her feet; it fitted as if it had been made to measure.

'Perfect,' Sorcha said with an approving nod. 'Let's go.'

***

'What do you mean, you can't make it?' Ed asked.

'I'm stuck in Suffolk,' George explained.

Ed's heart skipped a beat as a nasty thought hit him. 'Is Dad all right?'

'As far as I know. I'm not at the hall.'

'Uh-huh.' So there could only be one other reason why his older brother was standing him up, Ed thought. He'd had a better offer than a hospital charity ball. 'A girl,' he said with a sigh.

'No, actually. My car had a slight argument with a tree.'

'What? Are you all right?'

'I'm fine. Nobody's hurt, except the car. Stop fussing,' George said. 'Metal's easily fixed.'

'I'm a doctor. If you tell me you've crashed your car, of course I'm going to fuss,' Ed retorted.

'Honestly, I'm fine. Not a scratch on me - unlike my poor car. I'll be back in London later in the week. I'm just sorry I've let you down.'

'Just as long as you're really OK. What happened?'

'I took the corner a bit too fast,' George said cheerfully. 'But I've learned my lesson, so don't nag. I spent hours polishing that chrome to perfection. I'll be more careful in future.'

Ed could see exactly why his stepmother had begged him to talk some sense into his older brother. Not that he thought George would actually listen to him, but maybe some of Ed's seriousness and common sense would rub off on George and he'd steady down a bit. 'OK. I'll see you when you're back. Try not to break your neck.'

George just laughed. 'Have a good time tonight.'

Ed replaced the receiver and straightened his bow tie. Well, it wasn't the end of the world that he had to go to the ball on his own. It was a chance to meet some of his new colleagues and have some fun, as well as raising money for specialist equipment at the London Victoria.

He'd liked Theo Petrakis, the senior consultant, at their first meeting. And the photograph of the three little girls on his desk had sealed the deal: Theo was very clearly a family man. Just as Ed was, too; his decision to move back to London from Glasgow was less to do with being promoted and more to do with being nearer to his brother and his sisters. Prompted partly by a quiet phone call from Frances saying that George desperately needed someone to talk sense into him before he broke his neck doing some extreme sport or other.

That was Ed's slot in the family: the younger son of Lord Somers was the sensible, serious one who fixed things. George, the heir to the barony, dated a different gorgeous girl each week and would be the first one down a double black diamond ski run, making him a firm favourite with the paparazzi. And sometimes Ed really worried that his brother was going too far. Still. There was nothing he could do about it tonight. Once George was back in London, he'd take his brother out to dinner and see if he could talk him into calming down just enough to stop the rest of the family worrying themselves sick about him.

From the book Dr Cinderella's Midnight Fling by Kate Hardy.

Harlequin Mills & Boon Modern Heat
Publication Date: March 2012
ISBN: 9780263891584
Copyright © 2012 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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