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In Love With My Personal Assistant

By:Audrey Tolhouse

(Millionaire Romance, Contemporary Romance, Comedy Romance Book 2)

Chapter One

Game On

Declaring love for an employee is never a good idea. If that employee is  the personal assistant that has been at your beck and call for the past  five years while you completely took her for granted, well then,  suddenly, the phrase "bad idea" seems like a pale understatement in  retrospect.

Oh, don't forget to add in the fact that the declaration of love was  made after she already began a fledging relationship. Now you really  have a recipe for disaster. To make matters worse, that new love  interest in said personal assistant's life is actually the new investing  partner to a firm, which is rapidly pushing towards billionaire worth.

That, dear friends, was the situation of James Melone.

It didn't look good. At all. In fact, it was bad. But what could he say?  When James Melone rose and looked in the mirror each morning, he didn't  see what other people saw when they looked at themselves.

He was James Melone, and he got what he wanted-that's who he was and it  was what he did. People didn't dare tell him he couldn't have what he  set his sights on-and he wasn't even really that type of guy.

Was he a millionaire? Yes. And unlike Andrew Wiles, the newest and first  partner-ever-to Melone Group, he had to work for every cent and penny.  He earned a quarter of his worth from making timely investments in  fledging technological startups and day trading his subsequent profits  once his investment capital came vested and he could cash in.

His personal specialty, however, was in the technology aspect of the  future of business. He consulted with businesses on going statewide and  national with technology and innovation. He helped them break their own  records and soar for marks they didn't even realize were possible.

He opened a ton of doors that would have previously remained barred  shut-doors his clients couldn't even dream of knowing had even existed  until he was able to help them break through their own ceilings into the  larger playing field of their industry.

He was damned good at what he did-and Jennifer Rhodes only made him  better. It's funny. When you're a hardworking businessman building an  empire, you rarely stop to think about those helping you make it to the  top. You just do. You rise every day and fall every night having covered  miles of terrain with a single leap.

That's what he did. He wasn't on autopilot, but on overdrive for the  past three years. When he allowed himself to slack a bit, Jennifer had  pulled through and covered the workload like it was her mission to help  him succeed. And she did.

Of course, he was sure he could have gotten there without her help, but  they made a damned good team. She knew it too. The fact that she was  gorgeous was another benefit. But James had never been too keen on  office relationships.

He'd seen other friends go down that same trail and he had never been  convinced that it was a wise thing for him and Jennifer to explore; but,  that doesn't mean the thought never crossed his mind. It had, several  times, in fact. That's why he searched so readily for a steady  girlfriend to fill that emptiness in his life.

He had been close once or twice to acting on his feelings with Jennifer,  if he were being completely honest. Fear kept him in check though. He  had to refocus and keep his mind in the game.

When Jennifer first came to him, she was involved in some sort of spotty  relationship. It often left her depressed at work and a little  depressing to be around. He didn't understand why a raw beauty like her  would stay with someone who kept her upset most of the time.

Then again, when James thought of himself, he really couldn't answer  that question either. Isn't that what Katie, the last love of his life  had done? It wasn't all bad. Katie was an incredible woman-it was just  in all the opposite ways when compared to Jennifer.

Jennifer was a woman whose needs aligned with his own. He'd be lying if  he refused to believe that it didn't play a significant role in his  interest with Jennifer. It was an incredible feeling to have a member of  the opposite sex rooting for you like Jennifer had always done.

James didn't understand it. He wasn't some relationship psychologist. He  was just an alpha male who wasn't shy of going for what he wanted.

When he first decided to try the corporate castle thing, he had dabbled  with the idea of male assistants. To be frank, there was just too much  sausage in the atmosphere. Too much testosterone and posturing for  dominance. He didn't like to be tried, so the men were cut and the  female secretary's and assistants applied to the open positions.         



He had told himself from the beginning that he wouldn't get involved.  Not just with Jennifer, but with anyone. The communications department  head had her eyes set on Melone at one point. She wasn't as calm as  Jennifer, either, and made her intentions known.

It took strength, conviction, and a whole lot of self-control to make  that woman see a work affair just wasn't going to happen. In the end, he  referred her to a friend and had to let her go. James liked Jennifer  too much for that.

Maybe he took advantage of her gentle quality-he couldn't even be too  sure of that anymore now. All he knew is that he and Jennifer had always  had sparks and he had done his best to control his urges. Now he just  wasn't so sure that controlling them had been a good idea.

Things weren't working out at all like he had hoped. Granted, if he and  Katie had stayed together, he would have gotten married. Then what? He  wasn't the cheating type. He admired loyalty and demanded it from his  workers. It was only natural that he would hold himself to the same  standard; but his connection with Jennifer was real.

The sad truth was that if he had stayed with Katie, he had no way of  knowing how he would respond if Jennifer were to come on to him. Would  his commitment to loyalty remain steadfast? When he thought of Jennifer,  he saw curves, bust, hips, and ass. He actually knew the answer to that  question: hell no.

The only way he knew how to keep his emotions at bay was to simply focus  on work and ignore everything else. Now he knew he had just made the  biggest mistake of his life. He wasn't talking about never having told  Jennifer how he felt. That was the second greatest mistake. Partnering  with Andrew was the first.

He had to find a way to get that man out the picture so that Jennifer  could see the real him. That's why he finally did it-the jerk move that  had Jennifer really pissed at him: he told her how he had really felt.

Honestly, James wasn't sure what he was expecting when he told her the  truth. The glossy eyed stares and flushed cheeks he caught Jennifer with  at work were more than enough to tell him that she was more than  satisfied with Andrew in her life. He should have left it alone.

He had three years to make his move. And instead of telling Jennifer how  he felt, he pursued Katie. He couldn't have kicked himself harder in  the ass even if he tried.

So against his own professionalism, his vow to loyalty, and the good  faith of his newest partner, he committed a sure fire dick move and told  Jennifer the truth.

Her response? Well, since the one thing she said at that little  restaurant on N. Michigan St, was actually nothing. She had said  absolutely nothing to him unless it pertained directly to work. In fact,  that first day, she had completely avoided him and he had simply kept  his distance.

It was a new week now, and although he was normally used to hearing from  her throughout the weekend, the past two days had been entirely silent.  James Melone didn't like that. Remember, he was alpha and he didn't  take no so easily.

He stood in front of his bathroom mirror, running absurdly ahead of  schedule for the first time in years. It was his turn to surprise  Jennifer. He couldn't let this go. The more silent he remained, the more  of a risk he ran of losing Jennifer altogether. He didn't want that.

He could admit that he had been chicken shit before-he made a mistake.  That didn't mean he had to back down just because she was avoiding him.  If that were the case, James never would have acquired the type of  wealth he had. No. He was James-fucking-Malone for a reason damnit.

Chapter Two

Refuse to Dance

Jennifer lived close enough to the office where she could walk if she  wanted. Most days, she did. It worked out better to walk because then  she could get Melone's breakfast and her own on the way to work.

She wasn't going to be picking up something for Melone to eat this  morning, but she needed the few extra minutes on her short walk to clear  her mind. Late autumn breezes rushed through her hair, trying to help  jolt her from her memories, but nothing was working.

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.