Chapter One - Trouble
“Good job. Now swallow.”
I smirked at my phone lying on the bathroom counter while styling my hair back.
Looks like someone is having a good time.
“Blake?” I called.
“Yeah–oh,” He groaned.
My smirk deepened.
“We don’t have to discuss business while you’re in the middle of something.”
I heard some shuffling.
“Oh okay! We’ll talk la–wait.”
There was a long pause and I wondered if he was still on the line.
“What the hell, Sinclair!” He shouted from the other end.
I let out a laugh. “I’m serious, Andrews. You sound busy.”
“Damn right I am. Try feeding cereal to a toddler some day.”
“Oh. That’s what you’re doing?”
The alternative sounded better in my head.
Must’ve been my damned hormones. Still couldn’t get over last night’s debauchery.
Smudged red lips and hot steamy nights came to my mind instantly.
“Yeah right. That’s what I’m doing, Nick. Though I wouldn’t have minded what you were thinking, but not everyone has the best mornings.”
“Of course,” I chuckled.
Blake has been my best bud since middle school–after I saved him from a bunch of bullies. He was so thankful that he got me a large box of M&M’s.
I’ve had a mania for sweets since I was a kid.
“Whose toddler is that anyway?” I asked while walking out of the bathroom naked after my shower and slipping into the closet.
That’s one perk of living alone in a huge penthouse. I can roam around naked.
“Cousin Kyla is visiting.”
“And you’re babysitting?” I asked nonchalantly while buttoning my shirt and fixing my tie.
“Apparently,” He sighed. “Seeing Rebekah clearly sucks at completing a task.”
Rebekah was Blake’s little sister who thought I was a manwhore and hated me throughout high school or say, pretended to hate me.
Honestly, I think it was because she had a secret little crush on me. I mean, who can hate a face like that?
Plus she was pretty. I might have dated her if she wasn’t Blake’s sister–didn’t wanna ruin my friendship with him–because clearly, yeah I am a bit of a manwhore.
“Nick, I need to check some data before we bring in the shipment. But seeing that I can’t stop by at your office today, I have sent someone else to collect the files.”
“Okay. I’ll let Penny know.”
“The hot assistant?” I could hear the smirk in his voice.
“I don’t check my staff out.”
“Oh come on. You’re not completely oblivious to her flirting, are you?”
“Of course not. But she’s an employee, so no.”
I know better than to fuck an employee. In my initial months of working with dad at Sinclair Enterprises, I hooked up with my temporary secretary and messed a lot of things up.
Boy, do I remember dad kicking my ass!
“I think that rule needs to be changed before the manwhore runs out of his chicks and has to beg his secretary to date him.”
Yeah like that’s gonna happen.
I rolled my eyes. “Watch where the cereal is going, Andrews.”
He let out a laugh and finally hung up.
I quickly went downstairs to find Mrs. Hawkins, my 50 year old cook, setting breakfast on the dining table. She used to work at my parents’ mansion when I was a kid and I brought her along when I moved out.
As for my mom, she sucked at cooking. Let alone the part where I almost choked on the fumes when she burnt the dinner one night.
That was a funny day. Dad came back home to find the kitchen ceiling pitch black. After that, mom was banished from cooking anything at all.
“Good morning, Nick,” Mrs. Hawkins greeted me with a smile.
“Morning, Mrs. Hawkins,” I smiled back.
She had cooked my favourite. Cheese omelette and cinnamon pancakes.
I was halfway through my breakfast when my phone rang. An unknown number.
“Hi, baby,” A woman spoke in a seductive tone.
I stared back at the phone with a frown.
“Who is this?”
There was a long sigh and I almost missed her chuckle.
“Name’s Cassandra. Since you never asked last night.”
I was suddenly reminded of my brunette company from last night. I had been way too wasted to even ask her name when she threw herself at me in that club.
She was wearing a short black dress, and that’s all I remembered about her.
Maybe because I recalled admiring its soft material while taking it off her.
“I was too wasted to ask for a name,” I muttered.
“I know,” She spoke, followed by an obnoxious giggle causing me to cringe.
For some reason, giggles were one of my pet peeves. They annoyed me to the core.
“So, what are you doing tonight, Nick Sinclair?” I could hear the smirk in her voice.
“Sleeping,” I stated while shoving a piece of pancake in my mouth.
That was enough to penalize me with another fit of her annoying giggle. Chandler Bing got nothing on me.
How did she even get my number?
And then, I remembered her suddenly asking for my phone to make an emergency call last night.
What an idiot I am!
“I hate to say this but I was really disappointed when I found you gone in the morning. Seeing that I was looking forward to some early morning fun,” She whispered the last part huskily.
Now that, I wouldn’t have minded.
“Alright look, Cassandra. I’m running late for work-”
“And I saw your interview in the magazine last week, Nick. Didn’t imagine those pretty blue eyes would look as sexy in person.”
I should’ve been flattered but she was telling me nothing that I didn’t already know. And wasting my time.
“Thank you but I’m gonna have to hang up now,” Before she could say anything else, I hung up and resumed eating my breakfast.
My phone rang again.
I sighed and looked at the contact.
It was Trent from the technical team.
“Mr. Sinclair!” His voice was filled with panic.
“There’s a problem here at the office. Someone tried to break into Mr. Wilson’s office to steal the important database.”
“Yes, Sir. It was a woman. She also attacked your assistant Penny when she tried to stop her.”
“Shit! Is Penny alright?”
“No, Sir. We found her passed out. Ryan has taken her to the hospital. She probably fractured her leg.”
I frowned. “Who is that woman? I hope the cops are questioning her already.”
“N-No, Sir. We didn’t call the cops.”
“Why the hell not?” I snapped.
What the fuck is wrong with my staff?
“Because, Mr. Sinclair, she said...,” He trailed off.
“What did she say, Trent?” I gritted my teeth. Getting up and grabbing my blazer, I quickly called the elevators to get to the parking lot.
“That Mr. Blake Andrews sent her.”
“What?” I snapped.
“Yes, Sir. That’s why I haven’t told anyone else besides Ryan. Should I tell your father Mr. Alec Sinclair?”
“No! You did the right thing. Make sure the girl doesn’t slip away. I’ll be there as soon as I can.”
“That wouldn’t be a problem, Mr. Sinclair. She’s just sitting quietly in the waiting room. Almost like she’s scared.”
“That’s because she probably knows what’s coming her way,” I frowned and hung up.
What grudge could she possibly be holding against my company?
My bodyguard slash chauffeur Bruce was waiting in the parking lot and as I got into the car, my phone rang again.
It was Blake. I picked up.
“Nick, I can explain this.”
“You don’t have to, Blake. I don’t doubt you at all.”
“No! Of course you don’t. I know that. But I think there’s some misunderstanding. That girl is innocent.”
“Yeah innocent enough to steal some information that can be used against my company.”
“I don’t understand. I sent her for the shipment files. Remember I told you about that a while ago?”
“Yes, you did. But clearly, she had a different motive and soon enough, we’ll find out what it is.”
He sighed. “Look. I’m on my way to your office right now. Promise me you won’t go all Sherlock Holmes on her if you get there before me.”
“Why are you trying to defend her?”
“Because I know her.”
I pressed my lips into a thin line. “Who is she?”
“She’s an intern.”
“An intern?” I let out a laugh. “She’s been interning at your company for how long? A month? Take it from me, Blake. That’s not enough time to trust someone blindly.”
He sighed. “I’ve known her longer, Nick. For about three years now.”
“What?” I frowned in confusion. If Blake had been with a girl for that long, I would have known.
“Yes. She’s Rebekah’s college roommate.”
“Yeah. So don’t scare her, okay?”
“I’ll try not to. See you in my office,” Hanging up, I put my phone on silent and looked outside the window.
Blake was talking like she was a sensitive little kindergarten girl. And scare her? What was I? A monster?
He might have known this girl for a long time but that doesn’t oblige me to trust her.
Within the next few minutes, the car stopped right infront of the huge glass building, with the word Sinclair written in big gray letters.
I buttoned my gray blazer and walked into the lobby. A few employees greeted me before I entered the elevators.
I went to the topmost floor where my office was and found Trent waiting in the corridor.
“Where is she?”
“In the waiting room, Mr. Sinclair.”
“Send her to my office.”
My office was the farthest in the corridor and very secluded from the rest of the cubicles and cabins. Its layout was exactly like dad’s only on a different floor.
I walked towards the huge glass window behind the mahogany desk and looked outside at the skyscrapers.
There was a soft, almost inaudible knock on the door.
I walked over to my leather chair and leaned against it, watching the double doors open slowly.
What I first saw was her chestnut brown hair, falling over her shoulders, and then her flushed cheeks.
She couldn’t be a day older than 21. Her body was slim but not skinny.
For some reason, I found her non-exposing dressing quite appealing. A yellow mid thigh length A-line dress along with black stockings and some cheap black leather boots.
She stood there like an embarrassed little girl about to get punished for eating all her candy at once.
Her eyes were fixed on the floor and I frowned. She was scared.
Was it even possible for someone to look so innocent and hold a grudge?
Maybe Blake was right. It was all just a misunderstanding.
I almost opened my mouth to say something but her gaze slowly lifted up.
Deep brown eyes locked with mine. Somehow reminding me of warmth in a cozy little room amidst a storm.
Her soft pink lips parted and she uttered the mellowest voice I had ever heard.
And then, there was this really peculiar and unexpected thought in the back of my mind.
Here comes trouble.