Happiness is not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt
Following a few soft knocks, his office door opened to show his infatuated secretary.
“A woman who says she’s your fiancé is in reception asking to speak with you.”
Nicholas looked up from his computer and saw the wry smile on his secretary’s face. He didn’t show any emotion as to what that announcement did to him.
Women would try to do anything to get an audience with Nicholas, to get his attention. Jasmine his secretary, of almost three years, knew that the only thing that Nicholas was ever committed to was his work and ambitions, so having met a woman who demanded to see and introduced herself as his fiancé, was quite amusing. This was a step up from the many lines of “I’m pregnant and it’s Nicholas’ child” to “I’m his fiancé“.
’Tell Reception that she is allowed to come through,” he said with his deep accented voice.
His response caught her by surprise, for it wasn’t what she’d expected.
Nicholas didn’t bother to explain or respond to her question. He was finding it very hard not to fire this woman on the spot. He inhaled sharply to keep his cool and then return to re-immerse himself with the work he was doing on his computer.
Jasmine took that as her que, that she’d been dismissed. She turned on her heels, and left his office. Returning to her cubicle, she called downstairs to reception.
Nicholas’ wealth attracted many shallow women. Women who wanted him not just for his good looks but also for what he had in abundance. However, these women always wanted more than he could offer. When he had just accumulated his success, he was every-bit the playboy image that he presented to the media, but now he was starting to tire of that image and the women.
It was exactly those kind of situations, one of the main reasons, that had him changed his location from living in the states to returning home to the island where he could live in peace. Or so he thought.
He decided to focus more or less on his business development and ambitions; he was no longer fond of the women who threw themselves at him.
There was a time he’d enjoyed it, but not anymore.
Nicholas was also struggling from the hurt of losing the one woman he loved most who had walked away from him, yet again. No matter how many women he had slept with they just didn’t matter to him, neither did they compare to the one woman who had captured not just his attention but also his heart five years ago.
He closed his eyes briefly and braced himself for the coming moments.
He stood up from his large mahogany desk, moved over to the floor to ceiling glass window and looked out to the picturesque view of the beach and the islets down below in the ocean, not so very far away from the shore. The sun was blazing hot, shining in its majestic way from the clear blue sky. The soft late morning breeze gentle causing the branches to sway. The gentle waves crashed along the black and white sand beach then slowly return. It was mesmerizing and had a calming effect to his troubled thoughts.
It was the middle of summer - not that he paid much attention. His life was that of a busy magnate, always dressed in dark suits whatever the months, in air-conditioned comfort, working from behind a Mahogany desk.
He had always assumed that he and Steffie, after those few years they would meet up in Roseau - the place of their second meeting. It was also the main town of the island.
It was ironic, now that they come face to face again in this second town on the island, like their first meeting years ago, in Portsmouth at his office.
A small knock on his office door, made him aware and break from his reverie. He cleared his throat and called out ‘come in.’
He heard the gentle sound of the door opening, the soft footsteps along the soft plush carpeting, and when the soft footsteps stopped just a breathe away.
He slowly turned around, but stayed by the window.
Steffie stood before him.
She was wearing a simple brown maxi dress with a white cardigan covering the top. The dress hugged her curves with a gentle caress. Her black neck length hair worn in a neat ponytail at the back of her head. Her nude colored wedges sandals enhanced her light ebony skin toned legs.
He forced his gaze to travel all the way up past her lovely lips to her gorgeous brown eyes, which he always got lost. She looked a bit more mature than he had met her five years ago, but still not her age of twenty-seven. She could easily pass as an eighteen year old with her looks.
He broke eye contact with her, and gestured for her to take a seat.
She did so; slowly putting down her bag by her seat, and making her self-comfortable in the cushioned chair. He also took his seat behind his desk.
“You look well,” Nicholas said.
“I am well,” she responded.
“Are you working?” Nicholas asked.
“Yes, I am.” She nodded fighting the urge to roll her eyes at him. “I am a secretary.”
“Really?” He let his surprise show.
Steffie just let the question dissolve into the air. He was no longer a part of her life and she didn’t have to answer to him, but she did need to inform him of something.
She cleared her throat and cut to the chase before he asked her yet another question about her life.
“I’m not here to make small chit chat with you about my life, Nicholas.” She started. “I’m here because I need to tell you something. I believe it’s the right thing to do so i’m just going to tell you.”
He raised an eyebrow at her words, and found himself distracted by her intake of breath. She was nervous. However, about what, he didn’t know.
It was now more than a few years since he last seen her in person and he was drinking in the sight of her. She had grown into her slim body, which now filled with curves he hoped to explore one day soon.
Five years ago, she was slim twenty-one-year-old, shy and sweet. Well, from the very moment he met her he thought she was sweet. He smiled to himself.
However, she was no longer the child at age nineteen, whom he thought he knew for the past seven years, she was a young woman. He’d often wondered about her.
Her words cut through his straying thoughts.
“The land that you are about to purchase ruthlessly is mines, I would appreciate that you find somewhere else to purchase”
Of all the things, he was expecting to hear that was not it.
“How is it yours?”
“It’s been in my family for years, I’ve practically grown up on it.” She said matter of fact.
He studied her, she was even more beautiful from the last time he’d seen her. Although, from time to time they would correspond, he didn’t pay attention to any pictures of her. She’d walked back into his life all on her own and handed him a way of keeping her in it.
“I can’t do that, Steff, I was told that this land had an outstanding view and I want it.”
He could see that he was making her very uncomfortable, and very annoyed. He smiled. He was going to do all he can to have her, and he would have her. She just didn’t know it yet.
Suddenly his mind took on a flight of its own and thoughts started spinning. He imagined how she would look with her lips thoroughly kissed, her hair mussed, and the delighted sounds she would make. How her smooth slender fingers would curl in his hair and pulled him to her....
She said something but he missed it. He shook his thoughts away before he could continue down the path he was thinking and make himself more uncomfortable than he already. He was now spotting a hard on.
He shifted uncomfortable on his chair behind the desk.
“I said, I am not willing to sell, so get used to it. Find somewhere else!”
He let her words fall. He thought of the land she was referring to. It was a wonderful plot up in the farming area. The view was beautiful.
“You aren’t the one selling it to me, so I don’t see why you’re telling me that you’re not willing to sell.”
He saw her shifted uncomfortable in her chair. A sure sign that he had told her something she didn’t countered on.
“Why are you really here, Steff?”
“I’m here to try and talk you out of purchasing that land. But it seems I’m too late.”
She stood up and made way to leave. She was just extending her hand to the doorknob when he said.
“The land is already being processed, there’s not much you can do to stop it being sold.”
She nodded and walked out the door. However, not out his life.