The ace photographer and the supermodel, they should have been a match made in heaven. Instead, they fought like the demons of hell.
Complicated, surly, and sexy, Manav Apte was probably the only photographer who resented his muse. From the day he’d seen her, there had been no other. Unfortunately, she was the one woman he could never have.
Passionate, talented, and gorgeous, Diana Severes refused to give the temperamental ass behind the camera the satisfaction of knowing he got under her skin. It was, however, impossible not to notice him or his glowering disapproval that trailed her everywhere she went.
Their dislike and distrust of each other is legendary in the fashion industry and yet, the sparks that fly when they come together for work are enough to light the sets on fire.
Will the Golden Girl of India’s fashion scene be able to see beyond his hatred to the love he’s desperately trying to mask? And will the country’s most talented photographer realise that his true talent lies not in what he views through his lens but what he sees through the filter of his heart?
Read an Excerpt from Twilight’s Temptation
We walked along the beach. Me in my shorts and black t-shirt, Diana in a glamorous white beach dress with lace trim. If there was ever a contrast competition, we’d win it hands down.
“Are you okay?” I asked her.
Diana shrugged. “I guess. That was unpleasant but necessary. I’ll get next steps in place as soon as we get back to Mumbai.”
“Will your family be okay with this?”
“My parents don’t get a say in my career decisions. My dad is ex-army and my mom is a teacher. They don’t understand how this world works anyway.” She sidestepped some dog shit on the beach, moving a little closer to me.
I itched to wrap an arm around her, pull her in for a hug and kiss her. Instead, I clenched my hands in my pockets, Adil’s words still echoing in my head.
“My brother, who is a typical tech nerd, wouldn’t bother to venture an opinion either. The only other person who would have understood was Andrew, the brother who died. He was the one who encouraged me to get into modelling and pursue my dreams.” Tears glimmered in her eyes, a stray one streaking across one golden hued cheek.
“And this was your dream? To be a model?”
She stared back towards the resort in the distance, her mind somewhere I couldn’t follow.
“I wanted the fame, the glamour and the money. I wanted to be independent. I wanted to be someone. Modeling gave me all of that and when my time ends, and it will end, we all know that, I have a backup plan in place for that too.”
I stared at her, seeing her, truly seeing her for the first time since I’d met her two years ago. She was so much more than that gorgeous face and bubbly personality that people mistook to be the entirety of her.
“I wanted to be a wildlife photographer,” I blurted out with all the finesse of a horny sixteen year old.
“You can still be one,” she smiled. “Just in addition to what you already do.”
“I work nonstop. I’d never be able to find the time,” I muttered.
“We can always find the time if it’s important enough to us. We make time when we want to.” She cupped my cheek and pressed a light kiss on to it.
She was right. We made time and space for what we wanted, for what was important to us. And in that moment, I knew… Diana was desperately important to me.
“Everything he said was true, you know,” I told her, shoving my hands deeper into my pockets to keep them from reaching for her.
“Everything I said was true too, Manav,” she smiled, sadly. “But what is your truth?”
What was my truth? It was buried under so many years of misery, pain, and heartache, would I recognize it even if I found it?
About the Author:
Shilpa Suraj wears many hats – corporate drone, homemaker, mother to a fabulous toddler and author.
An avid reader with an overactive imagination, Shilpa has weaved stories in her head since she was a child. Her previous stints at Google, in an ad agency and as an entrepreneur provide colour to her present day stories, both fiction and non-fiction.