“Take it.” Brianna gave a glass of water to Chloe and sat in front of her friend.
“Thanks” the brown-haired woman just said.
“What happened?” Brianna was worried. She had never seen her friend like that.
“I know why he’s giving all my duties to you. He didn’t give me a free day.”
After a long pause, Chloe looked at her friend. “It’s punishment.”
“Punishment? How come?” Brianna looked confused.
“He offered me a deal… and I didn’t accept it.” Chloe had her head down, feeling embarrassed.
“What kind of deal, Chloe?”
Brianna couldn’t imagine what her friend was about to tell her next.
“He wants to marry me. It would be a one year contract marriage.”
“Oh, f**k! And in exchange?”
“One million dollars.” Chloe simply said, looking at her friend.
Brianna widened her eyes even more, as if it was possible. Her mouth was half-open in surprise.
“Insane!” that was the only word that came out of Brianna’s mouth.
“Yeah, I know.” Chloe said, sadly. “What kind of girl does he take me for?”
After a few seconds, Brianna held Chloe’s hands on the table and said:
“This is not about you, honey. It’s all about him.” she paused. “I’m not defending him and I agree this deal is unfair, but if he offered you, it’s because he trusts you indeed.”
Chloe had never thought at that way. That situation would be a secret and secrets in the business world were worth millions.
Mr. Bailey should be in a tight spot. But Why? How? He was such a self-assured man. That kind of issue should not be a problem for him.
“How are feeling about it all?” Brianna sounded worried.
“I don’t know, Bri… I thought it only happened in movies, you know?”
“I’m sorry.” After long seconds in silence, Brianna asked cautiously: “Did you know his ex-fiancée is back in town?”
Chloe raised her head and faced her friend.
“Really?” her voice sounded more like a whisper.
Brianna nodded in agreement.
Chloe felt a burning in her stomach and she didn't know how to define her feelings at that moment. Jealous? Could it be possible?
“Brianna!” Mr. Bailey was standing at the entrance to the Coffee Room.
That voice made Chloe shiver. What the hell was he doing there?
She was not ready to face him yet so she just lowered her head. Her friend got up instantly.
“Yes, Mr. Bailey.”
“Come to my office now.” he just said but his eyes were on Chloe.
Brianna noticed that and left the room quickly.
“Is there a problem, Ms. Rodriguez?” Mr. Bailey asked roughly.
Chloe lifted her head and glanced at him listlessly.
“No, Sir.” there was sadness in her voice.
She got up and made her way to the exit. But Mr. Bailey was blocking the doorway.
When Chloe tried to pass through him, he held her waist and said gingerly on her ear:
“You can’t stay away from me, can you?”
Chloe was sad and confused but she couldn’t let him subdue her that way.
“Or it’s YOU that cannot stay away from me, Mr. Bailey?” Chloe challenged him with a glance.
She tried to walk away from him, but he pulled her by the wrist and pressed his lips to her neck. She shivered in response.
“See? You can’t resist me!” Mr. Bailey stated.
Her body was corresponding to all the touches of that naughty CEO, but Chloe was determined to fight that attraction.
“Leave me alone!” she said angrily while she pushed him away.
“Hum… I like this wild Chloe.” Mr, Bailey said sarcastically. “It will be interesting.”
Then he walked away, leaving a dizzy Chloe behind.
Chloe spent the next hours locked in her office. She didn’t have much to do since Mr. Bailey gave her duties to Brianna, so she allowed herself to think about that weird situation she was into.
“I can’t do it anymore!” Brianna entered the room suddenly. “How can you handle him? Oh Gosh!”
“What’s the matter?” Chloe was seated, watching her friend freaked out.
“It’s impossible to do my duties and yours! I didn’t have time to have lunch!”
“Sorry about that, Bri.” Chloe was feeling guilty. “Is there a way to help you without Mr. Bailey’s knowledge?”
“I don’t think… wait! We can try something.” Brianna said excitedly.
Both women spent some minutes devising a plan to let Chloe work as usual without bumping into Mr. Bailey.
“Perfect!” Brianna was happy, clapping her hands. “I need to go now, otherwise the devil will come to get my soul.”
They both laughed and Brianna left more excited.
Chloe thought about that kiss again. And all the intimidating situations Mr. Bailey was creating just to tease her.
Did he feel the same way she felt when their bodies were close enough to touch? That kiss was planned or just happened? The attraction was mutual?
So many questions without answers. Her internal conflict was only increasing and Chloe didn’t know how to deal with it. The only thing she knew was: her body wanted him.
How long could she avoid him?