In Love With My Personal Assistant

By: Audrey Tolhouse

Thick, dark shades shielded her eyes from the peeping sun over various building tops, and also from accidentally meeting anyone’s stray eyes. She felt like she must have had an entire fifth of vodka last night and was paying for it heavily.

In truth, she only had two glasses of her favorite Sauvignon Blanc. She had canceled her lake experience with Andrew and hadn’t contacted anyone from the office all week. The last message she received from Andrew was a gentle reminder to take time and focus on some things concerning her future bag business. Goodness. She didn’t even have a name for it—but Andrew was still serious about her taking time to figure it out.

Maybe that’s why he stayed silent all weekend? She wasn’t sure. Two weeks wasn’t really a lot of time to get to know someone. They had been incredibly busy in the office during that time, but their short, intimate encounters if caught alone weren’t showing any signs of getting any cooler.

She learned that Andrew and Melone often held private meetings with current clients after she was done for the day. They talked ideas, ran numbers, and crunched figures. Winning Seogen really opened the doors for some ideas that Melone had been sitting on. Not even Jennifer had known about those plans.

Still, she didn’t know what any of it would mean if this thing with Melone didn’t go away. Her body shuddered suddenly at the thought. She had forbid herself from even thinking his name all weekend, but today, it was going to be unavoidable. He was her direct boss, after all. No one in the firm worked more closely than they did together and that thought only made Jennifer’s mind reel.

Within seconds, she was breathless and trembling. Did she have to tell him something? Her mind had yet to comprehend the magnitude of what he had revealed to her. All those years—all those nights she spent wondering if it would be her turn to slip into his life weren’t for naught. Apparently, there had really been something between them!

All of it made sense now, the ways she would catch James watching her, the little clues he had left—but then why hadn’t he ever made a move? Why was he going to propose to another woman? Did men do that kind of thing? Was it possible that a man would really sign his life away with someone else if he felt he could or shouldn’t have the girl he really wanted? That didn’t seem to fit with what Jennifer knew about men. Which, admittedly, she was starting to realize wasn’t that much at all.

But, she didn’t have much time to plan a detailed dissertation on the physiology of man. In less than thirty minutes, she’d be expected to give Melone the morning run down and for the first time since she had started working for him, it wasn’t already done.

“Jennifer?” A perky blonde called from behind a cabinet of a bistro sprinkled with other businessmen and women waiting at the pit stop on their morning commute to work. The people were nothing but blurs.

Jennifer gave a quick nod and moved to claim her morning fuel. She uttered a thank you, or something that was supposed to be a sign of gratitude, and pushed out the front doors with lift in her step.

About five minutes later, she stood in front of the building and took a deep breath. She wasn’t even close to being ready for this day. The only thing she could think that she had going for her at this moment was the fact that she was early. By the time she would get to her office, she would have at least 15 minutes to look over James’s calendar and refresh her memory on their weekly agenda. It seemed her mind had seen to do a data dump over the weekend with the bomb James dropped on her.

Jennifer bounced up the steps and didn’t even try to be amiable. She kept her shades on until she was in the elevator. Once out, she nodded once at the secretary and headed for her office. She was so thankful for that office now. It would give her a moment to think, breath, and regroup and get the game face together. Yes! The game face. It would save her and this damned day.

Reaching for the doorknob to the office, Jennifer turned and pushed. She didn’t think anything about the fact that the door was already unlocked. Her head was down. She saw the coat and bag rack to the left of the door and tossed her purse and over coat to it. Before she turned and shut the door, a chuckle stilled her heart.

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