Scorned by the Boss [Secure]
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by Maureen Child
Description: Shipping tycoon Jefferson Lyon wasn't a man who took no for an answer--from anybody. So when his "faithful" secretary finally had enough of his difficult, demanding ways and quit, he followed her to the tropical resort where she was vacationing. There'd be no relaxing for Jefferson...he was playing at seduction in order to get Caitlyn back to work. But his ex-assistant was turning out to be more determined, and more desirable, than the arrogant millionaire had ever realized.
eBook Publisher: Harlequin/Silhouette Desire,
eBookwise Release Date: August 2007
58 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats [Secure - What's this?]: OEBFF Format (IMP) [330 KB]
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Caitlyn Monroe knocked once, then entered the lion's den.
She was prepared, like any good lion trainer, for whatever might be waiting for her. A furious, chained beast looking for something to chew on? Probably. A pussycat? Not likely. In the three years she'd worked for Jefferson Lyon she'd learned that the man was much more likely to be snarly and aggressive than accommodating.
Jefferson was used to getting his own way. In fact, he accepted nothing less. Which was what made him both an amazingly successful businessman and a sometimes pain-in-the-neck boss.
But this she was used to. Dealing with Jefferson's demands was normal. And after the jolt she'd had over the weekend, she was ready for the normal. The everyday. The routine. She appreciated the fact that she knew Jefferson Lyon. Knew what to expect and wouldn't be blindsided by something shattering coming out of nowhere.
No, thanks, she thought. She'd had enough of that Saturday night.
Her boss looked up when she entered, and just for a minute, Caitlyn allowed herself to appreciate the view. Jefferson's jaw was strong and square, his blue eyes piercing enough to see through any attempts at deception and his tawny hair cut and styled to lay fashionably at his collar. A modern-day pirate with less conscience, when it came to business, than Bluebeard.
Most of the people who worked for him walked a wide berth around the magnate. Just the sound of him coming down the halls was usually enough to send people scattering. He had the reputation of being a hard man. Not always fair about it, either. He didn't suffer fools easily and expected—demanded—perfection.
So far, Caitlyn had been able to provide it. She ran his office and most of his life with proficiency. As Jefferson Lyon's personal assistant, she was expected to hold her ground against his overpowering personality. Before she had come to work here, the man had gone through assistants every couple of months. But Caitlyn was the youngest of five children in her family and she was more than used to speaking up and making herself heard.
"What is it?" he snapped and lowered his gaze back to the sheaf of files strewn across his wide mahogany desk.
Situation normal, Caitlyn thought as she let her gaze slide around the huge office. The walls were painted a deep twilight-blue, and several paintings of Lyon ships at sea dotted the wide expanse. There were two plush leather sofas facing each other in front of a gas fireplace that was cold now and a conference table sat beside a wet bar on the other side of the room. Behind Jefferson's desk, floor-to-ceiling windows provided a gorgeous view of the harbor.
"And good morning to you, too," she said, not put off by the attitude. God knows she'd had plenty of time to adjust to it.
When she'd first started working for him, Caitlyn had foolishly thought that as his assistant, she would be sort of his partner. That they would have a working relationship that would be more than his issuing orders and her leaping to fulfill them.
Hadn't taken long to disabuse her of that notion.
Jefferson didn't have partners. He had employees. Thousands of them. And Caitlyn was simply one of the crowd. Still, it was a good job and she was good at it. Besides, she knew he'd be lost without her, even if he wasn't consciously aware of that little fact.
Walking across the room, she laid a single sheet of paper down on top of the files and waited for him to pick it up and study it. "Your attorneys faxed over the numbers on the Morgan shipping line. They say it looks like a good deal."
He glanced at her again and she saw a flash of interest. "I decide what looks like a good deal," he reminded her.
"Right." She bit her lip to keep from saying that if he hadn't wanted his attorneys' opinion, then why ask for it? It wouldn't do any good, and frankly, he wouldn't want to hear it. Jefferson Lyon made his own rules. He would listen to some opinions, true, but if he didn't agree with them, then he blew them off and did whatever he thought best.
She tapped the toe of her black high-heeled shoe against the plush ocean-blue carpet. While she waited, she looked past Jefferson at the sea stretching out for what seemed forever. Passenger liners vied with cargo ships at the busy harbor. Several of those cargo ships boasted the stylized bright red lion that was the Lyon shipping company's logo. Tugboats steered boats three times their size safely out to sea. Traffic streamed over the Vincent Thomas Bridge and sunlight glittered off the surface of the ocean like diamonds, winking.
Lyon Shipping operated out of San Pedro, California, right on top of one of the busiest harbors in the country. From here, Jefferson could turn around and look at his ships as they steamed in and out of the harbor. He could see the day-to-day workings on the docks—the heavy cranes, the dockworkers loading and offloading, the steady flow of ocean traffic that made him one of the most wealthy men in the world.
But Jefferson wasn't the type to turn and admire the scenery. Instead, he spent most of his time with his back to the window and his gaze fixed on spreadsheets.
"Is there something else?" he asked when she didn't leave.
She shifted her gaze to his and felt the same jolt she always did when those blue eyes of his made contact with hers. Instantly, she thought of the conversation she'd had with Peter, her now ex-fiancé, on Saturday night.
Copyright © 2007 by Maureen Child.