Little Lucy

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Summary

Twenty-four-year-old Lucia has properly improved her life from a miserable childhood that anchored her to the little girl inside. She's proud of the strides she's taken to put her past behind her and continue forward as a strong, independent woman. But when her boss, Tom Banner, stirs that restless little girl inside, she is determined to fight his affections and maintain the independence she's worked so hard for. Can Lucy defeat her darkest desires? Or will Tom properly best the little girl into submission?

Genre:
Romance / Erotica
Author:
Mazochistís
Status:
Ongoing
Chapters:
11
Rating:
4.7 13 reviews
Age Rating:
18+

Mr. Tom Banner

"Lucy, you're working too hard again."


A voice from behind startled me. I jerked in my seat, and my chin slipped from my palm where I had been trying to nap at my desk.


"Elliot," I grumbled, rubbing my puffy eyes as my panic-induced heart hammered fearfully in my chest. "Don't sneak up on me like that!" I complained, shooting one disgruntled glare before turning back to the stack of paperwork on the desk before me.


"If I'm not mistaken," Elliot grinned wickedly as he pulled a chair up beside mine. "Sleeping on the job is a major no-no."


"If I'm not mistaken, you're a major butt-head," I snapped, my eyes scanning the paperwork that sifted through my fingers.


"How long have you been here?" he sobered, his tone taking that parental edge that reminded me that it wasn't so long ago that I was in his care.


"I don't know," I muttered petulantly, my eyes freezing on an underlined date on one of my client's event contracts. Lifting a highlighter from the pencil cup on my desk, I uncapped the yellow marker and highlighted the incorrect date with a stern squeak across the paper.


"Lucy—"


"Elliot, I don't have a choice!" I argued, desperate to cut him off before the lecture began.


"You could ask me for help," he reasoned patiently.


"You're not in my department. President fart-breath would never allow it."


With a sigh of longing, my eyes darted up to the office with the glass walls where my boss stalked back and forth within while arguing with some unfortunate individual on the Bluetooth in his ear.


Elliot's eyes followed mine, staring with me for a moment before saying: "You're right. I'll go talk to him about cutting your hours," Elliot stood, his eyes dancing with mischief, and in three long strides, he was nearly out of arm's reach.


Overcome by panic, I launched myself from my seat and tackled the back of his legs. It wasn't my intention to bring the attention of the whole office down on our noisy clash of bodies, floor, and my neighboring desk mate's trash bin, but—that's exactly what we did.


"Shit," I hissed, scrambling to my feet beside Elliot who rose just as frantically while muttering obscenities under his breath and swearing to shave my head after work.


"Lucy, you've really done it this time. Look he's glaring daggers at us, and—no, don't you dare sit down like you didn't do anything wrong! Great, here he comes."


"Elliot, a moment please."


I heard that deep voice, bearing its constant tone of disapproval that he attacked everyone with, and a shiver raked uncomfortably down my spine. I peeked over my computer just in time to see Elliot following Mr. Banner into his office.


Ugh, that man, I thought to myself, pressing my fingers into my eyes as I groaned inwardly.


I worked so hard to paint a gruesome picture of my boss. Before coming into work each day, I pretended that was a short, stout, overweight, balding middle-aged man.


But the real view is much worse.


Releasing another sigh, I lifted my head ever so slightly so that I could watch the scolding Elliot received from behind the glass walls of that frigid office. It was like watching a silent movie; lips moving, arms waving, hands gesturing...but not a sound was heard.


Mr. Banner's disapproving eyes, like black coal, scorched into my friend as he spoke, and I felt my knees quake, and my heart thunder erratically in my chest.


Because the truth is... My boss is unequivocally beautiful.


Once my gaze was fixed on him, I couldn't tear it away.


Mr. Tom Banner—my terrible cross-to-bear Monday through Friday—with the charcoal eyes, nearly-black hair, intimidating height of hey-how's-the-weather-up-there, and that stern set of jaw that always bristled just a little five o'clock shadow...


Despite the classic attraction he projected, however, I thoroughly disliked him because he was such an up-tight, stiff, impossible to please, rolling in dough, look-but-don't-touch, beautiful specimen of pure muscle and man.


Oh, woe is me, I pouted, shaking such unwanted thoughts from my head. And then I froze, watching in horror as my beautiful Greek God of a boss flicked those burning eyes to mine.


In one fluid motion, I ducked behind the tall screen of my monitor.


Had Elliot ratted me out? No way! That slimy, two-faced, son of a—


"Lucia, could you join us, please?"


Cringing in total despair, I slowly rose from my chair.


"Yes, sir, " I answered without lifting my eyes to his. I smoothed my wrinkled skirt with trembling hands, and on unsteady feet, I passed my sympathetic desk-mates. Upon entering the frigid office with its squeaky-clean glass walls, I clasped my hands nervously in front of me, awaiting further instruction as Mr. Banner closed the door behind us.


"Please, sit."


I quietly did as I was told, silently sitting in the empty chair beside Elliot. I spared him one glance but only to glare at him for his absolute betrayal.


"Traitor," I hissed before professionally folding my hands in my lap. And then, as challenging as it was to meet his intimidating stare, I lifted my head and gave Mr. Banner my undivided attention.


"Ms. Lucia," Mr. Banner—God of all things good-looking and delicious—took a seat behind the large oak desk standing proudly opposite Elliot and me. Intertwining his fingers, he placed his hands on the desk. Then, leaning forward, his stern stare penetrated mine until I shivered beneath the intensity of his gaze.


"Mr. Lawrence," he continued, waving a hand at Elliot, "has informed me that your hours are taking a rather fatiguing toll on you."


Gasping, my hair whipped around my face at the high velocity in which I turned my head to gape incredulously at Elliot.


"It's not!" I nearly shrieked before composing myself and turning my attention back to Mr. Banner. "It's not," I repeated coolly. "I'm fine. I like the hours. I get paid more for overtime."


"I'm aware, I sign your paychecks," he answered with a quirk of one black eyebrow. I blushed feverishly while attempting to maintain my confident, unblinking stare.


"Please, take no offense, Ms. Lucia...but if you're dozing off at your desk, falling from your chair, and tripping your passing co-workers..."


Tripping passing co-workers?


"Elliot!" I gasped. "You sonofabi—"


"Ms. Lucia!" Mr. Tom Banner's voice rose as he disapprovingly snapped my name. I jumped in my seat, my guilty eyes sweeping from Elliot's to the stern, daring eyes of my wicked boss. "I'd advise you to keep a professional tone about yourself while you're in this office. Do you understand?"


My face burned.


"Yes, sir," I replied softly, feeling embarrassed and properly chastised as I lowered my eyes to the hands that I clenched fiercely in my lap.


"Good," he nodded once, firmly, before continuing. "Now, I will not adjust your hours."


Surprised, my head snapped up.


"I will, instead, allow you to open interviews for an assistant. You can narrow your candidates down to three, and then I will interview, and we can discuss and decide together who will be your number two. I expect," he continued sternly, "that your hours will drop with the help of another in your department. There will be no excuse for overtime. Is that clear?"


"Yes, sir," I replied, nodding ever-so-slightly to show my understanding. The way he spoke to me rendered me helpless to do anything but nod and tell him that I understood.


"Elliot," he continued, turning his attention to my former friend. "I appreciate your attention towards our newest team member. You may go back to your desk."


Elliot rose with a nod, buttoned his work blazer, and left the cold office, closing the door behind him.


"Lucy?"


My eyes found Mr. Banner's, and I tried to hide how much I enjoyed the sound of my less-formal first name on his lips.


"Please take no offense when I remind you that you are very young," he said, his voice considerably gentler than before. It had lost the stern edge of bossy professionalism and I felt my stiff posture relax ever so slightly. "I think most people your age assume that being young is a blessing—allowing you the opportunity to 'bounce back.'" He shook his head. "On the contrary, Lucy—being young means you still need your rest. You need to eat well, sleep well, and take care of yourself. And from the looks of it, that doesn't seem to be what you're doing, does it?" he asked, quirking that damned eyebrow again.


I felt my control slipping.


"No, sir," my little reply, barely audible to my own ears, sounded breathy and so... young.


How did he do that?


"How old are you, Lucy?"


"Twenty-four."


"Straight out of college?"


"Yes, sir."


"Right. Take care of yourself. Start interviewing tomorrow," he concluded with a nod; a final gesture that silently ordered me out of the office. I stood, and moved to the door. When he spoke again, my hand froze on the handle.


"And, Lucy?"


I turned.


"Please come to me if you're in need of anything."


And then he bestowed me with a rare smile. I nodded numbly before removing myself from the glass fortress that looked less intimidating now. I closed the door softly behind me and leaned into it.


What the hell just happened...? I must have hit my head when I crashed to the floor with Elliot... I would wake at any moment.


Gripping my head in one hand, I pushed off the door and made my way back to my desk where I took a seat before dropping my forehead onto the cold, brown surface. I took a moment to remind myself that Mr. Banner wasn't a heady combination of handsome and intimidating. He was just my stupid boss... an insanely successful businessman for his young age who commanded any room that he walked into...


He only allowed me two weeks to solve the problem of my schedule before he was calling me back into his office. Unfortunately, Mr. Banner's plan to alleviate some of my overtime didn't work. I didn't receive that many applicants for the position of assistant in the sales department, and the ones I did receive were underqualified, too young, or too old.


I felt that I was perfectly allowed to be picky in my hiring process. My job was to sign-on new clients before executing whatever event of theirs that required the use of our company. Whoever I hired would take a load of long wedding days, business retreats, and catering disasters. There needed to be a reasonable amount of experience in that.


When Mr. Banner called me into his office, his mouth was set in a firm line that told me that he was displeased. My stomach did a little flip as I stood and followed him back to his glass fortress of doom. I couldn't shake the feeling that I had done something wrong.


"Ms. Lucia," he began, and I resisted the urge to pout as I heard my full first name on his lips.


So, we were back to formalities.


"I'm growing impatient," he continued. "You've had two weeks to interview and narrow your candidates down for me, and while I understand your busy workload, I cannot shake the incessant feeling that you're being stubborn in your decision-making."


I sucked my lower lip into my mouth and chewed on it nervously. When his coal-black eyes flashed to my mouth, his face darkened. I slowly released the hold my teeth held on my bottom lip.


Surely my delay in hiring an assistant wasn't the reason behind his foul mood...? It seemed like such a minor thing compared to the whole messy empire he had to run daily.


"Well..." my voice escaped in a nervous squeak, and I watched his eyes gentle while he patiently waited for my explanation. "I just don't think I've found the right one yet, sir," I continued. "I'm not receiving the right kind of applicants. If I were to hire any of the applicants on my desk today, I would be training them for several weeks, if not more before they could possibly work on their own. I know that I won't have time to do that."


Mr. Tom Banner stared at me for one achingly long moment, his eyes scanning over my profile. I blushed beneath his scrutiny, knowing he was taking in my wrinkled blouse, frazzled hair, and dark circles beneath my eyes.


"And are you taking better care of yourself, Lucy?"


My heart did an excited little flip at the sound of my desired name on his lips.


Traitorous heart...


"Well, I—I—" I fidgeted in my seat, my hands nervously clutched in my lap. "I thought that wouldn't be entirely obtainable until I had the opportunity to find someone—"


"That was never the agreement," he interrupted, shaking his head disapprovingly as his mouth set back into its firm line. "I know for certain that you do not spend every waking moment of your time here. So, when you are home, I imagine you have time to properly eat? And rest? And..." his gaze drifted to my hair. "...bathe?"


"Well, I am here a lot, but to an extent, yes—"


"And, if I'm not mistaken, you don't bring lunch with you, hmm?" He quirked an eyebrow.


"Uhm," my voice shrunk and I felt as big as an ant.


"And when your coworkers leave for lunch at mid-day," he continued, "you do not accompany them."


"Well, I—"


"Lucy, I want you to listen very carefully to me." Mr. Tom Banner leaned forward in his seat and clasped his hands on the massive desk that stood between us. "While I cannot monitor your well-being at home, I can when you're here, under my surveillance from 8 AM to 5 PM, and I insist that you take better care of yourself. Starting tomorrow, you will bring lunch to work, and you will take an hour to yourself in the middle of each day, is that understood?"


I nodded, stunned, before immediately shifting to a nervous shake of my head. His eyebrows raised so I hastily explained: "I have a wedding tomorrow—I'll be at Harcourt Square all day."


"Then you'll find a quiet moment to stop, and see to your own needs."


I nodded my head, and murmured a contrite: "Yes, sir."


"Thank you," his voice gentled. The corners of his mouth lifted in a slight smile and I stilled in my seat at the sight of it, forgetting how to breathe.


At that moment, I wanted to give him what he wanted, which was that I take care of myself. I wanted to say yes again, and again, and again, just to receive that rare smile he bestowed upon me.


"Now, for the time being, I would like you to snag somebody from another department— preferably accounting or HR, as we have an abundance of those employees—to help you until you've decided on an applicant."


Recovering from his smile, I smiled appreciatively. "Thank you, sir. I know just who to ask."




***


"No, Lucy."


Elliot stabbed one merciless finger at me before turning back to the computer on his desk.


"Elliot!" I pleaded. "You owe me!"


"I do not! I did you a favor!"


"Ha! A favor? Captain Bossy Pants has been breathing down my neck ever since you ratted me out, you jerk!"


Several heads around us popped up from behind their computers to stare quizzingly at the girl who loudly insulted her colleague.


Grabbing my arm, Elliot dragged me down to the chair beside his.


"Lower your voice," he growled, and I squirmed at his displeasure. "Listen here, little brat," he spoke low as he held up one warning finger. "I am your superior. You can't use that tone with me in front of others. These idiots don't need to know that we're all chummy, okay?"


"So, in private, I can be a total pain in the ass, but at work, I have to be respectful," I confirmed with a cheeky grin.


"You always have to be respectful," Elliot sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose and shutting his eyes in an effort to calm his growing agitation. "Although I'd prefer it if you were less of a pain in the ass."


"I'll consider that. So, will you help me?"


"No."


"Elliot!" I whined, desperately grasping his arm in a fierce hug. "If you don't help me, I'll be stuck with stupid Susan or...or..." I wracked my brain for somebody worse than Susan. "Michael..."


Elliot's eyes flashed at the sound of that name, and he once again warned me with one finger just inches from my nose.


"No."


"If I have no one else to ask..."


"Lucia Marie..." he growled. "No."


I bounced up from my seat and darted out of arm's reach just as he made a wild swing for my elbow.


"Lucy!" he hissed furiously in an attempt to intimidate me whilst avoiding capturing the attention of the entire office.


"Hmm?" I smiled sweetly before twirling down the row of desks towards Elliot's arch-nemesis.


I've known Elliot since I was seventeen. We lived together while I finished high school, and then during college. I was alone, and in rough shape when he found me. Michael entered the picture a month after I moved in with Elliot, as his best friend who happened to be away during the time that Elliot found me.


Despite being almost eighteen, I was very young for my age, and behaved childishly. That's how I learned that Michael and Elliot wouldn't allow bad behavior as long as they were taking care of me—which they did. Without them, I'm not entirely sure I would be alive right now.


In the past, Elliot and Michael had taken a stern and guiding hand with me when needed, but since graduating college and getting my own place, I've worked hard to grow into a strong, independent woman.


It wasn't easy for them to see me grow out of their care, but I needed to feel like I could take care of myself.


Elliot didn't want me asking for Michael's help due to an on-and-off disagreement they had shared since my senior year of college—one they won't share with me.


"Lucy, don't you dare!" Elliot stood from his desk, ignoring the gossiping eyes around that soaked in every word between us.


"Hey, Michael?" I approached with my hands behind my back, ignoring Elliot pacing back and forth like a furious badger several desks down.


"Hey, beautiful," he charmed, his pleasantly surprised eyes smiling up at mine. "You never grace my corner of the office—what can I do for you?"


"Well," I leaned a hip into his desk, my fingers tapping idly. "Mr. Banner wants me to get a little help in my department until I hire an assistant. I was wondering..."


"No can do, sweetheart. I'm understaffed today."


"But I thought accounting had a surplus of employees," I whined, unable to fight the pout that appeared on my lips.


"We did until Brian's wife had a baby, and then Julie called out sick. She should be back Monday—maybe I can help then?"


"I won't need help Monday. I needed help today," I huffed, crossing my arms over my chest.


"Don't be a grump, little brat," Michael scolded gently, using the nickname Elliot had called me just minutes prior. "I take it Eli said no too?"


"Mhm." I nodded, chewing on my bottom lip. "But he's just being spiteful about it. He has no real reason."


"Want me to talk to him?" Michael grinned wickedly.


"Sure, go ahead and enter the lion's den. I'll stand on the sidelines and cheer for you."


Rubbing his chin, Michael peered around me and warily studied his friend who was still pacing, all but trembling with rage.


"Yeah, that's a fair point. I'll stay out of it," Michael sighed and offered an apologetic smile. "Sorry, kiddo."


"Meh..." I shrugged and waved off his apology.


Returning to my desk required me to pass Elliot's. In passing, he stopped me.


"Why don't you ever listen to me?"


"I need help from somebody," I grouched. "But you'll be pleased to know that he said no too!" I stomped away, oblivious to Mr. Banner's eyes following me all the way back to my desk.


When Mr. Banner removed himself from his office, I prepared myself for the: "so, who have you chosen to help you" question that I wasn't prepared for. But, instead of bee-lining straight down the walkway towards my desk, he looked somewhere towards the back corner of the office and crooked his finger at somebody.


Curiously, I peeked over my shoulder, and to my surprise, Michael was rising from his desk, and walking towards the front of the office. And then, to make matters even more concerning, he closed the distance between him and Elliot, patting at his shoulder until he had Elliot's attention, and then gesturing for him to follow.


Michael stopped beside Mr. Banner, and waited with him as Elliot rose from his chair, and then together, the three of them enclosed themselves behind the glass walls of that impenetrable ice castle.


What the hell?


I worked hard to convince myself that just because Mr. Banner pulled the two individuals I had just spoken with into his office for an ominously private chat—didn't necessarily mean it was about me.


Right?


For the duration of that mysterious meeting between my boss, and the two dearest people in my life; I studied vigilantly the quick words that formed on Mr. Banner's lips. I couldn't make out anything, but every so often, his eyes darted past the two gentlemen in his office and looked through the glass of his office walls and straight at me.


That convinced me that they were talking about me, but what about? Was he converting my friends to the dark side?


Feeling terribly uneasy, I stole a quick peek at my dainty blue wristwatch.


4:49 PM.


Brilliant. It was about time to leave.


Chewing nervously on my lip, I closed my email, logged out of the system, and organized the messy papers strewn across my desk. Another quick peek at my watch verified that three minutes had passed.


Cautiously, I raised my head just enough to see the men behind the glass walls of Mr. Banner's office grinning and patting each other on the backs as if they were congratulating each other in an awesome victory.


Fools.


I rolled my eyes.


It's five minutes 'til 5 PM. I'm leaving.


I gathered my purse, threw it over my shoulder, and stood in a half-slump-half-rise; creeping out of the office like the Hunchback of Notre Dame. As I slunk down the walkway, I cast several wary stares over my shoulder to ensure they hadn't seen me. After one final peek, I ducked behind the corridor that took me to the elevators.


They hadn't seen me leave. I breathed a sigh of relief.


The next time Mr. Banner looked up from his desk, he wouldn't find me sitting behind mine.

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