Defiant Mistress, Ruthless MillionaireBy: Yvonne Lindsay
Callie allowed herself a smile. “Yes, always.”
Josh gave her a small nod. “Duly noted.”
They were eating their lunch, a light Thai green curry with fluffy jasmine rice and salad, when an alert sounded on Josh’s computer.
He buzzed the other man in and walked through to the main office to greet him. Callie placed her plate down on the coffee table in front of her and stood as they came into Josh’s office.
“Callie, I’d like you to meet Drew Grant. He’s head of IT here at Tremont Corp and what he doesn’t know on the subject isn’t worth knowing.”
High praise indeed from a man who had a reputation for demanding excellence. Callie reached out to shake Drew’s hand.
“Pleased to meet you.” She smiled.
“Welcome to Tremont Corp,” he replied with a smile that transformed his long, thin face from intensity to a warm friendliness.
“Drew, have some lunch with us, then you can get Callie into the system and run her through the basics of our programmes.”
Josh settled onto the couch right next to where Callie was sitting. If Callie hadn’t known better, she would have thought he was staking his claim against any potential interest from the other man. His knee brushed against the fabric of her pants and she surreptitiously inched away from the contact.
She was no man’s possession, no matter how powerful he thought he was or how much he’d agreed to pay her.
Once Drew had filled a plate and joined them, Josh asked him to explain the basics behind the systems the company used. Callie listened carefully, all the time hyperconscious of the man at her side. Josh said very little as Drew covered the practicalities of what she would be able to do on her computer. Despite their system being vastly different from that at Palmers, she knew she’d master it in no time and, in fact, she was eager to get started. An eagerness that was beginning to have more to do with her reaction to her proximity to her new boss, than a desire to work.
“We may as well get into it, then,” she said with what she hoped was sufficient professional eagerness, and she rose to take her plate over to the sideboard.
Instantly she felt the loss of his presence beside her. She pushed the sensation aside. He was a man, albeit a powerful one, but still just a man and she’d vowed long ago never to fall victim again to one man’s power over her.
“Good idea,” Josh agreed. “You all ready to go, Drew?”
“Ready as ever. Thanks for the lunch.”
As Callie and Drew left the inner sanctum of Josh’s office, she felt his eyes bore a hole in the back of her head. She clenched her hands into tight fists at her sides, determined not to reach up and scratch the itch left there. It was a relief to be out of his sight and settled at her desk.
By the time Drew left her, with a reassurance that he was only a phone call away, she felt more than able to tackle whatever Josh sent her way. How she would tackle her reaction to him was another matter entirely.
From the door to his inner office Josh watched Callie at work. She was totally absorbed in her task, her eyes never straying from the flat-screen monitor, her fingers flying over her keyboard as if they had minds of their own.
She wore her hair up in a tight twist, exposing the long slender curve of her neck, the gentle sweep of her jaw. Something hot and tight clenched low in his gut. Having her here was playing with fire—he’d sworn that he’d never indulge in an office romance the way his mother and father had—but Josh hadn’t got where he was today by playing it safe.
Her first week at Tremont Corporation had flown by, and now that they were at the end of week two his attraction to her had only grown more intense. He wasn’t going to ignore it any longer and rationalised that the hit to Palmers would be twofold when he and Callie became a couple, and he had no doubt they would. Not only had they lost a pivotal staff member but seeing her on his arm in the society pages would just be rubbing salt into the wound.
Josh cleared his throat and allowed a small smile of satisfaction to curl his lips as she startled and stopped what she was doing.
“Callie, I need you to attend a gallery opening and silent auction with me tonight. I hope you’re free.”