It was an assignment she couldn't refuse. Ultracapable assistant Sally Gregg had to take care of her boss for one week. No phones. No computers. No stress. Not an easy task considering Vince Donnelly was a workaholic--a tyrant she had little use for outside the office.
Then the business tycoon decided seducing his secretary would be the ultimate way to pass the time....
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May 07, 2007
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Excerpt from The Texan's Business Proposition by Peggy Moreland
Now, this is the life, Sally Gregg thought to herself. Swaying palm trees, a private pool, a house with every amenity known to man.
She tipped her sunglasses down and craned her neck to peer at the structure behind her. Not just a house, she corrected. It was a friggin' mansion. Nestled in Houston's prestigious River Oaks subdivision and situated on two lush acres, the house rivaled its neighbors in both design and size.
Too bad the interior doesn't reflect the traditional style of the exterior, she thought with regret. She supposed the ultramodern design suited her boss, but the mix of chrome and black lacquer didn't do a thing for her.
Thankfully her boss had limited the changes he'd made after purchasing the house to the inside and had left the exterior and landscaping alone. As a result, the backyard was an oasis, as soothing to the soul as it was to the eye. A clever blend of French doors and floor-toceiling windows offered spectacular views of the pool and landscaped lawn beyond from inside the house.
Sure beats the heck out of the view of the parking lot from my apartment window, she thought with more than a little envy. With a sigh, she pushed her sunglasses back into place and settled on the lounge chair again.
But she'd have a house someday, she promised herself. Maybe not as large and grand as her boss's and definitely not one with a River Oaks address, but she'd have a home.
The only thing that kept her from having one now was money. Thanks to the generous salary her employer paid her and her own prudent lifestyle, she was steadily chipping away at that particular roadblock. Having learned frugality the hard way--by necessity--she knew how to stretch a dollar until it all but screamed for mercy. As a result she was close to becoming debt free, while still managing to squirrel away money toward a down payment.
Which she'd already have, if not for Brad.
She scowled at the reminder of her ex. She never should have given him the money, she thought bitterly. She, better than anyone, knew he'd never pay it back. Brad was, and always had been, fast with a promise and slow on delivery.
It was bad enough that she'd wasted four years of her life with a man who didn't care for her, but then he'd decided to prolong her misery by showing up unannounced on her doorstep every time he needed money. For some stupid reason, he'd gotten it in his head that she owed him, which was insane, considering she had been the sole breadwinner throughout their marriage. Now she was forced to constantly move, in order to escape his mental abuse and the demands he made on her. As a result of the forced nomadic lifestyle, she had few possessions and even fewer friends.
She stubbornly pushed the thoughts of her ex from her mind. She wasn't letting Brad, or anything, for that matter, spoil her stay in paradise. And house-sitting for Vince Donnelly was exactly that. Paradise.
She shivered deliciously, thinking the stars definitely had been shining on her the day she'd snagged the job as Vince's executive secretary. Besides house-sitting for him when he was out of town--a perk she hadn't expected when she'd accepted the job--she received an above-average salary and more benefits than any of the other positions she'd applied for after moving to Houston. Granted, Vince wasn't the easiest man to work with. He was obsessive, demanding and micromanaged all of his employees. But he was also successful and drop-dead gorgeous.
Not that his looks had factored into her accepting the job as his secretary, she thought judiciously. Money was her motivator.
She remembered the shock she'd experienced when she'd walked into his office for her job interview and gotten her first look at the owner and founder of Donnelly Consulting. Based on the size and value of the company, she'd expected an older man. One with at least a spattering of gray at his temples.