Spanish Groom(12)

By: Lynne Graham

'Get in the car, Dixie!'

Having totally forgotten about Cesar Valverde while she pondered her woes, Dixie nearly died of fright. She glanced round and saw the flash car only feet away. Sticking her nose in the air, she prepared to cross the road to the bus stop.

' car,' Cesar framed as he climbed out, six foot three inches of towering bully.

'I don't have to do what you tell me any more!' Dixie flung chokily.

A policeman crossed the road. 'Is there some problem here?'

'Yes, this man won't leave me alone!* Dixie complained. 'I saw you kerb-crawling,' the policeman informed Cesar thinly. 'Are you aware that kerb-crawling is an offence?'

'This woman works for me, Officer,' Cesar drawled icily.

'Not any more, I don't!' Dixie protested. 'Why won't you just leave me alone?'

'I don't like the sound of this, sir.' The policeman appraised the opulent car and then the cut of Cesar's fabulous dark grey suit with deeply suspicious eyes.

'Look, that's my bus coming!' Dixie suddenly gasped.

'Settle the misunderstanding, Dixie,' Cesar commanded in a tone of icy warning.

'What misunderstanding?' she enquired in honest bewilderment

'This gentleman was kerb-crawling and employing threatening behaviour. I think we should all go back to the station and sort this out,' the policeman informed her as he radioed in the registration of Cesar's car.

Cesar looked at Dixie. Eyes like black ice daggers dug into her. It was like being hauled off her feet and dropped from a height She blinked, and then warm colour flooded her drawn cheeks. ' actually goodness, are you kidding?' she pressed in a strangled voice. 'He would sever bother me like that... I mean, he would never even look at me like that!'

'Then what was this gentleman doing?' the policeman asked wearily.

'He was offering me a lift home...and we had a slight difference of opinion,' Dixie mumbled, not looking at either man in her mortification. This policeman had genuinely suspected that Cesar Valverde had been kerb-crawling with an intent to...?

'And now she's going to get in my car and be sensible,' Cesar completed stonily.

Dixie slunk round the sports car and climbed in. 'It's not my fault that policeman thought you might've been making improper suggestions,' she muttered in hot-faced embarrassment 'Oh, don't worry about that. That wasn't what he was thinking. He thought I might be your pimp,' Cesar gritted not very levelly, half under his breath, his accented drawl alive with speaking undertones of raw incredulity.

Dixie nestled into the gloriously comfortable bucket seat and decided that silence was the better part of valour. Flash car, flash suit. In this particular area Cesar probably had looked suspicious.

'How dare you embarrass me like that?'

'I'm sorry, but you were annoying me,' she mumbled wearily.


He seemed to find that very difficult to understand. But then an enormous amount of boot-licking went on in Cesar Valverde's vicinity, Dixie reflected, struggling to smother a yawn.

People shouldn't worship idols, but they did. Expose the average human being to Cesar's intellectual brilliance, immense wealth and enormous power and influence, and they generally behaved in all sorts of undignified ways. They toadied, they talked a load of rubbish in an effort to impress, and went to ridiculous lengths to please and be remembered by him.

As for the women—that constant procession of gorgeous females who paraded through his life, Dixie reflected sleepily. Well, he had the concentration span of a toddler, always on the look-out for a new and better toy. And he invariably had a replacement lined up before he ditched her predecessor. But he was never available during working hours, and those women who tried to breach that boundary lasted the least time. Possessive behaviour was a surefire way to make Cesar stray.

Cesar shook her awake outside the building where she lived. 'As a rule, women do not fall asleep in my company’

'I don't fancy you,' Dixie mumbled, barely half awake, and then aghast at the sound of what she had just said.

'Then you won't develop any ambitious ideas while we're in Spain, will you?'

'I'm not going to Spain.' Then you can send Jasper cute "glad you're not here" postcards from prison.'

Dixie sat up, full wakefulness now established, and turned aghast eyes on him.

Cesar gave her a faint smile. 'It's your first offence, but who knows? Women often get weightier sentences than men when they transgress.'

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