"Mmm . . ." He almost said her name as he awoke, stopped himself just in time as his eyes opened and were greeted with the full cascade of Solange's red-gold hair.
An irrational anger rose up in him then. Solange was not Marise, not at all who he wanted at that moment. Solange was, quite literally, not the woman of his dreams.
But did Marise even truly exist?
Julian conjured up the smell of Marise's neck, the smoothness of the skin that covered her throat . . . She had to be real. Somewhere. Dreams were vivid, but not that vivid.
Where was she? Who was she, other than the woman who returned to him again and again in his sleep?
Beside him, Solange shifted, and the stab of guilt made Julian angry again. After all, it was easier and more efficient to be angry than to feel guilty for something he'd done in his dreams.
Something he hoped to do again.