Episode 2 by C.A. Szarek
Holt was going to enjoy this.
Green eyes. Blonde hair full of natural waves. It was down, dancing around her shoulders. Rockin’ body. He didn’t even mind that she was inappropriately dressed for the acquisition meeting. Her white tank top was tight, stretched across her generous breasts. Her pale pink skirt was short, baring a hint of creamy thigh. She had rhinestones on her flip-flops and a bewildered expression on her beautiful face.
To be fair, Mr. Wright hadn’t told his people they’d be there this morning. That had enraged Holt when he’d realized the small, but successful manufactures’ employees would be blindsided.
He’d smooth things over, like he always did. No one was losing their jobs. He needed them, the experts in widgets for over thirty years. He’d be foolish to clean the place out.
Holt was more excited about this takeover than any of the others his company had done before. Because Betty Lou Smart worked here.
He was determined to have her in his bed again.
Her boss had called her a sure bet. According to the old man, she was a dream to work with, and ran the place.
Inappropriate thoughts dominated his mind. Holt had a damn good memory—of her screams when she came—and he was going to experience that again. Her body had trembled and her sex had clenched his. Like a glove. Like they were made for each other.
Someone cleared their throat and Holt had the uncharacteristic urge to jump. He and Betty Lou had been staring—at each other. He still had hold of her hand, so much smaller than his own, and his thumb had started to caress her soft skin of its own accord.
Holt ordered his fingers to release her, and forced his eyes to sweep the large room.
All eyes looked to him—as usual.
He smiled. Avoided Betty Lou’s gorgeous green gaze, too. “I’m glad everyone could join us this morning. As I was saying, there’s nothing to fear from Bastion Coastal Industries merging with Wright and Sons. This is an exciting opportunity for us all. I wanted to take this time to allay fears and answer questions. Our business plan is efficient and should make the transition as smooth as possible.” He turned things over to his business partner, Carina.
The willowy redhead could command a room as well as he could, and loved all eyes being on her.
Holt didn’t miss the glare she’d thrown his way when he’d kicked her out of the seat for Betty Lou, nor the look of mild contempt when he and his onetime lover had had their…moment.
He never should’ve slept with his partner. It’d been a one-time thing, too. She’d wanted more; he’d wanted to keep things professional.
Funny, he didn’t have that intention with Betty Lou Smart.
Carina’s portion of the meeting was all about bar and pie charts. Duties and job titles. Then they’d open things to questions.
Holt was prepared for everything. Even had the health insurance rep to answer the inevitable demands about medical benefits. Had the IRA people there, too. Pension and retirement were important, after all.
Problem was, he couldn’t concentrate on a damn thing, except the blonde woman sitting beside him.
Betty Lou was visibly uncomfortable. She fidgeted in the chair, avoided his gaze, and wasn’t paying attention to Carina’s speech. She tugged her skirt to her knees over and over, shifted her feet, crossed her legs, and uncrossed them several times.
Holt wanted to put his hands on her. Comfort her. Kiss her. He was driven to do so, in a way he’d never been before. He studied her profile.
A delicious pink color started at her neck and crept upward, spreading across her high cheekbones.
Oh yeah, she knew he watched her.
His cock twitched and he had to resettle in his chair.
“Mr. Bastion.” Carina’s tone suggested she’d called his name more than once.
Holt jolted to his feet. Had to swallow hard.
“Do you want to open things to questions?” Carina’s full mouth was a hard line, and she spoke through clenched teeth.
Holt was in trouble. Deep trouble.