THE TYCOON'S SON by Shawna Delacorte
Silhouette Desire #1157
Original Print Release: July 1998
eBook Reissue: July 2011
eBook ISBN: #978-1-459-26506-6
Available at: (do search for author name)
Available at: for Nook Books
Available at: for Kindle

Years melted away the moment Vicki Bingham gazed into piercing blue eyes and took in the very gorgeous -- very grown-up -- version of the boy she'd once loved. The rich boy who had deserted her after a magical night of exploring caresses and explosive kisses. The millionaire who was father to her teenage son... and hadn't a clue.

Or did he?

Because Wyatt Edwards had taken an uncanny interest in young Richie, and an even more unsettling interest in Vicki herself, the moment he'd return to town. He seemed to want answers -- and it was clear he wanted Vicki. But all that would surely change once this tycoon discovered the truth...


Read G-rated Excerpt inside front cover
Read Excerpt #1 (G-rated)
Read Excerpt #2 (G-rated)


Inside front cover:

"Here's to what has been and what is yet to be."

His words settled over her like a soft caress. He wrapped her in his embrace and snuggled back into the corner of the couch, pulling her with him.

"It's been a long time, Vicki. I've often wondered what happened to you, what you were doing... whether or not you were happy."

It was not what she had been expecting and she was not sure how to respond. "I was wondering the same thing about you."

Any further thoughts were put on hold when he claimed her mouth with all the passion he had been carrying inside him for the past fifteen years.

A soft moan escaped her lips. Things had gone too far. She could not stop what was happening even if she wanted to. If it was to be that they had only this one night together, then she wanted it to be enough to last her a lifetime.


G-excerpt #1 (first encounter after 15 years)

Each time a truck passed Vicki's door on the way up the hill it signaled that the moment she dreaded had moved that much closer. The construction phase of the remodeling had been completed a couple of days earlier. The landscapers had finished on schedule. Moving vans had been delivering both new items and things from a storage company for the past two days. There did not seem to be anything left... only the arrival of Wyatt Edwards.

The local gossip mill had pegged his arrival for the next day, which meant that she had less than twenty-four hours to prepare herself. She did not have any idea what she would say to Wyatt Edwards or what to expect from him. He had walked out on her fifteen years ago, left while she was away for the weekend so that he did not have to face her with his decision. She had been devastated. She could still hear Henry Edwards telling her that she had driven his son away with her constant demands for his attention, until he had not been able to take it any more.

She had not understood what Henry Edwards had meant at the time. In fact, she still did not understand. It was Wyatt who had been the aggressor, who had pursued her in spite of objections from both their families. She shook her head in an attempt to shove away the bad memories. It was ancient history and no longer relevant to her life. She had a son to take care of and he was more important to her than anything else.

Vicki went about her business for the rest of the day, making a valiant attempt to put the imminent arrival of Wyatt Edwards out of her mind.


Wyatt Edwards pulled his car to the side of the road and turned off the engine. Only five more miles to the Sea Cliff turnoff. It was the first time he had been back since his father's death ten years ago when he had inherited controlling interest in his father's worldwide industrial holdings. He still was not sure exactly what had prompted the decision, but it was too late to turn back now. He had already spent a great deal of money on making the old house livable and preparing an office wing. He planned to conduct most of his business from there, venturing into San Francisco to the corporate headquarters only a few days a month.

He looked out over the ocean, watching as the waves crashed against the rocks just offshore, then climbed out of his car and walked to the edge of the cliff. The small sandy cove below was the place where he and Vicki Dalton had made love for the first and only time. It had been an impetuous action following a beach party. The next day they both agreed that they had acted foolishly. It had been a very profound experience for him and had solidified in his mind just how much he loved her, even though he had never told her so.

Every minute of that night remained etched in his memory and the emotions associated with it had not diminished over the ensuing years. Even though it had been fifteen years since he had seen or talked to her, he had never been able to shake Vicki from his mind... or from his heart.

He clenched his jaw. Neither could he shake the pain of returning home from a last minute emergency business trip to South America to find she had moved away without leaving him so much as a note. Then, a month later, he had heard that she was married. It was a memory that still angered him as much as it had when he first heard about it -- and also filled him with sorrow for what might have been.

He picked up a rock and threw it as far out as he could, watching as it fell to the ocean below. He turned his back on the ocean view, but he could not turn his back on his memories. Finally he climbed into his car and continued down the highway.

He pulled his car into a parking space next to the post office entrance at the back of the general store. He needed to make arrangements for a post office box. He entered the building and looked around. No one was there. He walked through the connecting door to the market that occupied the front of the building.

Shock hit him smack in the face. He stopped dead in his tracks. It could not be. Vicki Dalton was standing behind the counter by the front door. It took him a few seconds to collect his wits and recover his composure. He stared at her, noting the way she bit at her lower lip. It was a nervous little habit that had always manifested itself whenever she was upset or worried about something. As he watched her, he felt a soft warmth flicker to life. She looked every bit as beautiful as the image had had carried in his mind all these years.

He quickly ducked out of sight. He certainly had not planned on this. He had been prepared for the unpleasant and awkward necessity of dealing with Willis Dalton, but not for the reality of seeing Vicki again. It was not too late; there was still time. She had not seen him yet. He could turn around and drive back to San Francisco. He drew a steadying breath. He needed to gather his wits about him. Then a surge of anger brought him back to reality.

No, he would not turn and run. She had disappeared from his life fifteen years ago and he had never known why. He clenched his jaw in renewed determination. He could not leave until he had confronted her and demanded an explanation. He wanted her to know exactly how much pain she had caused him -- how much pain he had been carrying all these years. He stepped back through the door into the market.


G-excerpt #2 (first kiss after 15 years)

Vicki locked up the market and went to her office in the back room of the post office. She had some paperwork to take care of before going home. She sat at the desk, turned on the lamp, and took the journal from the drawer.

"The front door was locked, but I saw the light and figured you were in the office."

Wyatt's voice startled her. She had not heard anyone come in through the post office. She was not sure quite what to say. "We're closed for the day. Unless you're just checking your post office box for mail, I'm afraid you'll have to come back some other time."

"I've already checked my mail." He walked into the office and sat on the edge of her desk, making himself at home without being invited.

Vicki leaned back in her chair in an attempt to put a little more distance between her and this man's very unsettling nearness. "Are you here about your special order? I talked to my distributor and all of your items will be here day after tomorrow. They usually deliver by ten o'clock in the morning, so anytime after that -- "

He grabbed her hand and pulled her up from the chair. "That's not why I'm here. I thought we could continue our discussion about your busy schedule. You claimed to be very busy tonight, so how about lunch tomorrow?"

Vicki worked her hand loose from his grasp and walked across the office. She bit at her lower lip as she turned things over in hr mind. Finally she turned around to face him. "If I have lunch with you this one time, will you stop pestering me?"

Wyatt slid off the edge of her desk, cocked his head, then took a couple of steps in her direction. "Pestering you? I didn't realize being invited to lunch was so bothersome for you. After all, we're old friends. I thought we had lots to talk about, all kinds of things to catch up on."

His tone and attitude spoke louder than his voice and she did not like them. He was making it very clear that he wanted to dredge up the past, and she still could not imagine why.

Then a new fear hit her. Perhaps he had found out about Richie.

Wyatt did not wait for a response. Once more, against his better judgment he pulled her into his arms. Before she could squirm out of his embrace, he captured her mouth with a kiss that at first was tentative, but quickly became demanding. Suddenly the past was very much alive. And all the old feelings came rushing back with a vengeance.

He had to know what happened between them, why she had walked away. How could something he thought was so perfect -- still seemed so perfect -- have fallen so completely apart without a single warning sign? He wanted the answers. He had dated other women -- lots of other women. He had even managed to become engaged for a few months before he broke it off. But no one had ever replaced Vicki in his heart. He had to know what went wrong the first time -- what had caused her to leave.

Wyatt had done it to her again. Vicki found herself completely under the spell of his magnetic sex appeal, combined with her very real feelings for him, even after all these years. As much as she intellectually knew that she had to break off the kiss and make him leave, she could not bring herself to do it. Somehow her arms ended up around his neck and her fingers threaded through his thick hair.

The kiss exploded with all the passion they had shared fifteen years ago. Wyatt skillfully maneuvered her toward the office couch, only a couple of steps away. A moment later they were half seated and half reclining... and fully entangled in each other's embrace.

He pulled her body tightly against his. Everything about her excited him more than he had anticipated and even more than his memory of their last time together. The silky quality of her hair, the creamy texture of her skin -- it was all so familiar yet at the same time enticingly new. He did not know about the practicality of them making love on the couch in her office, but practical matters were rapidly being shoved to the farthest corners of his consciousness. He slipped his tongue between her lips, reveling in the taste that he had once known so intimately.

Vicki's mind reeled with confusion. Her logic tried to tell her to keep her distance from him, but her long denied physical desires soared from the heady reality of his kiss. It was the type of kiss that could only lead to one thing and it was an eventuality that she had to prevent at all costs. Summoning up all her remaining inner strength, she managed to pull back from him enough to break the kiss.

"This... this is no good, Wyatt."

"It feels pretty good to me," he said, his words thick with his excitement.

"It has to stop right now." She pushed away as she attempted to calm her labored breathing.

He drew in a ragged breath. "Why?"