Assisting His Assistant

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Chapter 13

CHAPTER 13

Violet


I hadn’t realized the stupid reports would take so long to complete. It took exactly three hours, and my mind was exhausted from the tedious work.

I had just completed the last report and finally sent it to Mr. Bolton. I double checked his itinerary. He had an executive dinner tonight at some fancy restaurant I couldn’t pronounce. I breathed out. It looked like I was safe for the rest of the evening. I massaged my neck and plumped on the soft bed, the Egyptian linen caressing my skin.

The last of the setting sun cascaded through the room, warming my bed in a blushing glow. I closed my eyes for a second. But the small rumble from my stomach urged me to get something to eat. Ice cream was not at all fulfilling.

I forced myself up and decided to take advantage of the hotel’s restaurant. I freshened up in the bathroom and re-tied my bun neatly and slipped on a new skirt, flats, and a floral shirt. I grasped my cell phone just in case and walked out of the hotel room.

I entered the vibrant restaurant and was pleasantly surprised. It was lively and busy for a Friday night. Guests unwinding from a long week. I breathed out in satisfaction.

Rounded tables were everywhere that seated people; I strained my neck trying to see if I could find an empty one. The hostess suggested I take a seat at the bar and a table will be provided first thing if available.

I walked to the crowded bar; a few people seated and drank their choice of drinks on my left side. A group of men huddled and laughing to my right. I took a seat on the high stools in the middle. A handsome barman came up to me.

“What’s your poison?” He smirked, making me feel quite shy.

I fixed my spectacles and glanced at the cocktail menu. “What do you recommend?” I asked politely, unsure of what to order.

“I recommend the Island Bomb,” he said. “It’s this hotel’s fiery cocktail.”

I raised my eyebrows. “Okay let’s go for that one.” I said slamming the menu on the table. What the hell! I don’t need to drive and I got the evening off.

The good-looking barman slid my cocktail towards me. It seemed harmless, the colors, red, blue and green swirling around. I grabbed hold of the cold tall glass.

The boisterous laughter to my right caught my attention. I looked to the men dressed all in suits and shook my head, they were probably talking about women.

I took a sip of my island drink. The strong tequila presence instantly chocked me, making me cough a few times. At the same time, one laughter stood out among the men in suits. It was deep and strong.

I suddenly recognized it.

Mr. Bolton’s.

I whipped my head to the right, and I could see him in between the cracks of space among the men huddled, that suddenly gave full view to my seat. He sat on the stool while three guys surrounded him, laughing, and talking casually.

I raised my eyebrows, wondering why he wasn’t at his executive dinner. Was it here at the hotel restaurant? Was I mistaken? I didn’t know. All I knew is that I had to get away, quickly and quietly. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen, as I turned my chair to stay out of view, a deep masculine voice called out.

“Harper?” Mr. Bolton said behind me.

I turned reluctantly; a small smile plastered on my face.

“Hey Mr. Bolton.” I gave an awkward wave. I hope he didn’t think I had to sit in my room all night and write reports or something.

He greeted the three men goodbye as they left the restaurant together. He looked relaxed, like his meetings were done for the day. He had black trousers with a navy-blue shirt, unbuttoned on top, both his sleeves rolled up with a glass of brown liquor in it. He turned his attention to me.

I held my breath on what he was about to say or prepared for him to scold me.

“I didn’t expect to see you here Harper. I thought you’ll be working on reports?” He said causally.

I knew it!

I shook my head. “No, I’m done with them. I sent it to you already.” Pleading my case.

He waved his hand, brushing it off. A waiter approached, escorting him to his table that was ready. Relief washed over me. He was probably waiting for a date, I thought. Good! That will distract him at least from breathing down my neck.

I turned back to my drink. Taking another much-needed gulp. The strong fruity liquid danced down my throat, waking me up.

“Harper!” I jumped and whirled around at his commanding tone.

Mr. Bolton was standing behind the waiter looking at me as if waiting. I frowned, did he need something again?

“Yes Mr. Bolton.” I said.

“C’mon, I don’t have all night. I’m starving. Let’s go.” He instructed.

Oh no date? Confused, I got off my seat reluctantly, grabbed my drink and followed him to the table. We were seated in the middle of the restaurant. The food menu was glued to my hand. I have never been casual with Mr. Bolton like this, and it felt completely awkward. I was stiff as a board and completely conscience of myself.

Mr. Bolton clearly noticed, because he addressed it.

“Ease up Harper. Jeez. It looks like you about to crack in half.” He grumbled.

I drank three more gulps of my rainbow cocktail. Mr. Bolton downed his Jack Daniels.

Mr. Bolton smirked as he relaxed in his chair. “You worked hard over these couple of months Harper. You deserve to unwind. My treat.” He said stretching out his arms. “And don’t worry, dinner tonight will be better than vanilla ice-cream.”

My eyes snapped to his green gaze, and I gulped. “I like vanilla ice-cream.” I protested. “I thought you’ll be at the executive dinner?”

“It got cancelled. Decided to have dinner here instead.”

“I’m actually shocked you not having a date with a Latin supermodel at this moment?” I boldly said. The alcohol making me too daring?

He smirked. “Well, I’m not in the mood for wining and dining right now.” He said smoothly.

We ordered our meals and Mr. Bolton ordered a bottle of red wine for the table. Clearly, he hadn’t realized how this island bomb was buzzing my head already. I sipped on it some more. The strawberry flavor bursting in my mouth, the tequila and some other strong liquor I couldn’t place tickled my throat. The haze drifted softly to my head.

It was utter bliss. I smiled like an idiot and giggled, feeling like a feather floating in the air.

Mr. Bolton raised his eyebrows. “Maybe we should get food in you?”

I nodded eagerly.

“So how do you find Bolt Investments? What’s your interests?” He sighed, raising a brow.

My head momentarily had clarity, a chance to speak about my ambitions to the boss. “The company is great. There’s a lot to learn and growth for opportunities.” I said eagerly. “That’s why I took this job.”

He stopped drinking his wine and studied me.

Oh sugar! I put my foot in it this time. I swallowed the rest of my drink, and pretended I didn’t say anything. It was horrible.

“I see, so you’re using me then?” He sounded serious.

Oh crap! I shook my head and poured myself a glass of red wine too.

“Oh, like I didn’t get this job in the first place, because I’m frumpy, badly-dressed... outdated and unnoticed!” I said brazenly. But touched my mouth the moment the frank words escaped from it.

Mr. Bolton examined me, his jaded eyes blazed and a smirk formed on his clean-shaven face. Like an idiot I smiled back.

“So, you heard the stories about my previous assistants then?” He asked.

“Who didn’t,” I said and immediately cleared my throat. I was getting way to testy now, this liquid courage was getting the better of me. My eyes glistened and I took off my spectacles not needing right now anyway.

He continued to stare at me, a glint in his penetrating eyes.

I gulped involuntary.

“I find you amusing Harper.” He confessed.

I scrunched my nose at the stupid comment. Who wants to be somebody’s comedian? Story of my life. Men find me too weird, too strange.

“You look different without your glasses.” He said.

The food finally came. Hot and smelling divine. I hadn’t realized what I had ordered and wanted anything meaty and greasy. My hungry stomach dictated it.

The smell of barbeque ribs smoldered up my nose. I inched my face closer and inhaled it in as I took a sip of the wine.

My head felt like butterflies dancing in the air in Spring and I wiggled myself on my seat. And began to munch on my fries greedily.

“Damn Harper, what are you, a fucking Viking?” Mr. Bolton teased.

I frowned and looked at his medium-rare sirloin steak with a side of roasted veggies and waved him off, not quite catching the last part of what he said. I accidently knocked over my napkin off the table. I slightly bent down wanting to pick it up, but long muscular arms went down and grabbed it first.

His clean-shaven face was close to mine, his expensive after shave melting my overloaded senses, sending me further into a high. I hummed internally, enjoying it. The dim light shadowed Mr. Bolton’s face, highlighting his strong features. My eyes felt hazy.

“Are you okay?” He asked his eyes furrowed. “You’re humming?”

I nodded. “Yip.” And instantly sat up straight.

Sugar! Did I really just hum out loud!? I took a glug of my wine. The band played in the corner of the restaurant, bringing a Latin rhythm to the place, making me tap my foot against the leg of the table.

Mr. Bolton looked at me with a side eye and smiled. I stared at him. What the hell does he want now? If he wanted me to take reports now, he’s got another thing coming!

“So, this is what you do when you tipsy?” He chuckled. I blew out a hard breath and continued to listen to the music swirling through my body.

“Do what?” I eventually asked while he continued to grin at me, with his brilliant perfect white teeth, and hypnotic smile. I almost understood why women melted in front of him. ALMOST!

“Is this your idea of foreplay?” He teased. My breath caught in my throat. What the hell was I doing? I sure wasn’t hell flirting! I don’t even know how to damn flirt!

“You like to play footsies then?” He asked in a low tone, his green eyes pierced into me, freezing me in place. Why on earth would he say that?

He smirked. Pleased with my reaction. “You’re bumping your foot against my leg.”

Let the earth open and swallow me whole!

“...and quite suggestively I might add.” He said not breaking his gaze.

Sugar! That was not the table leg. Jeez, the man’s got firm calves.

I politely and calmly uncrossed my leg and shifted my chair slightly away from Mr. Bolton. I couldn’t feel the full impact of my embarrassment and decided against drinking the wine further.

Mr. Bolton chuckled once more. “If you wanted to get to know me on a more personal level Harper, all you had to do is ask.” He teased.

I shook my head annoyed. “No thank you. I’ll probably be scared to ask about your life. Especially when it comes to your treatment of women.”

“Hey. The women I date know how I roll. I’m not attached to anybody.” He huffed and drank his wine.

I saw an old couple at the next table, they were engrossed in affectionate conversation. And I sighed, my face held lazily in the palm of my hand. Mr. Bolton looked in the direction of the couple, and scoffed.

“Don’t you want something like that one day. Growing old with someone. Sharing life with the love of your life?” I asked dreamingly.

My mind flashed to the IT guy from the office.

Jake.

A tingle stirred between my legs, forcing me to cross them again.

“Oh please. That’s probably not a fairy-tale. They probably went through life fighting with each other.” He snapped back.

“Of course, they probably had their moments. But isn’t that what it’s all about. Going through life with someone you can call mine. A man just for me.” I said looking at the couple.

“Who the hell you talking about?” He asked confused or intrigued?

I shook my head. “Just thinking out loud.

Mr. Bolton narrowed his eyes at me, his eyes questioning. “Since you got the love theory locked down. Tell me something Harper. When last did you date?”

I sighed and resumed to drink my wine again. I always hated this subject but decided to answer his question letting him know there were some people that didn’t need incessant dates in their lives.

“5 years ago, if you must know.” I answered.

I caught the flash of shock in his green eyes. His face turned serious. “And when last did you have sex?”

I gulped but couldn’t stop myself from answering his stupid question.

“5 years ago!” I blurted.

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