She gets to know the boss.
funny about that?"
"You-Sam-I-don't-take-medicine-Bloom-you're on the pill?"
I scowled at him. "The pill's different."
He gave me a disbelieving look. "How exactly is it different?"
"The pill's not medicine-it's contraception," I protested, feeling my cheeks flame with heat again as he started to laugh. "Besides, they're tiny little things!"
"Still medicine," Drew retorted, shaking his head now. "Medicine you're taking every day. Medicine you don't even need to take. When you won't even pop a couple of paracetamol for a headache."
"It's not the same and you know it," I muttered, painfully aware of just how illogical that sounded. "You know why it's different."
"Oh, I know why you think it's different."
"It is different!" I wailed, wondering why the hell I'd even felt the need to tell him. "Taking the pill's not like taking painkillers. It's not like taking antibiotics. It won't..."
"Kill you?" Drew finished for me when I left the sentence hanging, no trace of laughter in his expression now. "You never read that little leaflet that comes in the packet, Sam? There's a list of side effects as long as your arm."
There was nothing I could say to that. Of course I'd read the leaflet-and I could probably quote the risks to him right now, chapter and verse. But that was the thing about having a phobia, wasn't it? All phobias were irrational. Though I figured I probably had more to fear than most. There was at least some foundation to my phobia; it wasn't like I had a morbid fear of earwigs or something.
"So." I watched as Drew flexed his fingers on the steering wheel, heard his slow intake then exhalation of breath. "When did you start taking the pill?"
"About a year ago."
He fired me another sideways glance. "When you were with Joe?"
I chewed my lip, embarrassed. "Yep."
"You were going to have sex with him?" Once again, his voice held a note of incredulity. "That tosser?"
"Well, I didn't, did I?" I reasoned, touched and infuriated in equal measure. "Fairly obviously. But he went on and on about it-just like you are now, actually," I added, getting in the dig. "And so I thought I'd better sort myself out with some protection. Just in case."
"Great. You were prepared to have sex with Joe Addison, but you won't even consider having sex with me," Drew murmured, the amusement in his tone softening the challenge of his words.
"But I didn't have sex with Joe Addison," I reminded him as we turned into Park Lane at last, a knot of anticipation tightening in my stomach when I glimpsed the hotel at the end of the road, floodlit and imposing. "And you can't say I haven't considered your kind offer."
"No," he conceded, steering the car into the car park and pulling straight into a space by the far wall. "No, you can't. And hey..." Putting on the handbrake, he turned to me with an evil grin. "I've got all night to change your mind."
His grin widened. "Come on, let's party," he said, unfastening my seatbelt. "The Regent Suite awaits."
"Oh my God." As the door closed behind the porter who'd carried our bags the whole ten yards from the lift and then had the cheek to hover for a tip, I spun around to see the expression on Drew's face, gratified to discover he looked as delightedly gobsmacked as I felt. "Would you look at this place? Would you just... look?"
I could hear him laughing as I kicked off my shoes then raced across the floor to the enormous bed dominating the room. "Oh. My. God!" And with a squeal, I took a flying leap right into the middle of it, landing amongst the lavishly-embroidered cushions there, a confection of Regency green and cream. "Drew!"
A second later, I found myself airborne, the force of Drew's landing at my side bouncing me several inches from the bed. "Wow," he pronounced with satisfaction, the bedding yielding indulgently beneath me as I returned to earth. "This is good. This is really good."
"And look-look!" With Drew still testing the springiness of the mattress, it was quite a struggle to sit up, but I'd never seen