Authors: Lexi Black
My Billionaire Boss
Copyright © 2013 by
Lexi Black. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used, reproduced,
distributed or transmitted in any form without the prior written consent of the
Disclaimer: This is
a work of fiction. Characters, names, places, incidents and events are either
the products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any
similarity to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is purely
I suppose there are
gurus all over the world who could tell me how to relax and what I need to do
to get myself in a calm, peace-filled state where my mind is open and all the
answers flow toward me like lotus on a pond. If one of those masters happened
to be in front of me at this moment, I would reach out, put both hands around
his neck and shake him over and over screaming, “Why is everything so hard?!!!”
But, there are no
gurus here. Just Jim and I standing in the lobby of the Four Seasons
while he tries to explain to me how he lost August and what the plan is for
finding the young addict in a huge city we can’t possibly canvas effectively.
I thought you and your guys were supposed to stay with him,” I
say, running my hands through my hair and pulling it back. “How could he
possibly get away?”
We were packing everything up. He just slipped by us. He’s like a
little blond kitten. He just squirms away,” Jim sighs. I don’t know what he
does for Marcus when he’s not babysitting errant authors, but I can see this
assignment is pushing him to his limit.
Someone has to be accountable for that kitten,” I scold. I can’t
bear the thought of seeing August strung out, needle stung or dead. He’s too
young, too beautiful of a soul to endure much more. “It is your responsibility,
This isn’t about blame, Ms. Miller. We just need to find the kid.”
It isn’t about blame? It’s easy to say that when it’s your fault.”
Where’s your credit card?” Jim asks directly. I open my purse and
dig the platinum Eliott House card out of the bottom, trying to hide the breath
mints and Kleenex that insist on sticking to everything I pull out. Holding it
up for Jim to see, I realize he wasn’t really asking about the card, but
reminding me of my own lapse in good judgment that nearly resulted in the
I’m sorry, Jim,” I say, nodding. “How do we find him? Dagney Van
Der Vine is in the lobby. We can’t go running around screaming his name and
hoping he comes home”.
I’ve got Chris and Talbot on the street, checking every alley and
bar in the neighborhood. Chloe’s circling the area he went to last time in the
cab he took with your card. DeLong is getting his kit ready for anything, and
Mr. Eliott has been apprised. I need you to look around the hotel. Van Der Vine
and Davis are both used to seeing you here. Act like you’re looking for ice or
a gift shop or something.”
Nodding, I take
off, still holding the strange note from Chloe in my hand. What dark secrets
about Marcus does she want to tell me, and why now, when it was going so
well? I take the elevator to the top floor, intending to work my way
down. Jim’s right. This was Marcus’s floor and my presence won’t be
noticed. Turning the corner, I am filled with the desire to find August,
and the fear of what I will see if I am too late.
I notice a white
flash of hair down a side hall, and take off around the winding hallway to cut
him off before the elevator so he can’t get away. I sense his motion and jump
into the hall in front of him.
AHA!” I shout full of adrenaline, my sweat-stained hair clinging
to my head.
Huh?” A deep resonant rings out, then adds, “HAH!”
Oh, gosh,” I say out loud when the fog clears from my eyes and I
realize this isn’t August, but the blond intern following Jordan Davis down the
Looking for someone, Ms. Miller?” He asks, a curious smile curling
the corners of his mouth upward.
I was hoping to find Marcus, but I guess he’s already left. I’m
surprised to see you still here,” I say, trying to play off the fact I look
like a crazed track star running circles on the top floor.
I was about to say the same thing about you. Marcus left two days
ago, I assumed you’d be with him.”
Why would you assume that?”
You are his girlfriend, aren’t you?” I can’t tell if he’s trying
to get a scoop for Bookfeed or if he really cares. But, my life-long crush
starts clashing with my conscious thoughts, making everything come out gooey,
incoherent and flighty.
Why would you think that? Me and Mr. Eliott? No, um...no. We,
well, we know each other. Not in the biblical ‘know’ sense but in the…you know,
the ‘I know you’ sense of knowing someone. You know?”
I stand there
babbling in the hallway, momentarily forgetting August is missing, while both
Jordan and the intern put on polite smiles and let me continue to run verbal
circles until my tongue swells.
Well, I guess I got some wrong information,” Jordan says when I
finally shut up. I watch his eyes flicker as he looks up and down my body. I’m
no supermodel like the women Marcus is known for escorting, so I take it he
believes me. “I seem to be getting a lot of wrong information from Eliott House
I don’t know anything about that. I’m just on call for Mr. Kalle,”
I add defensively. Then I remember August is missing. “And, I should see to
I thought you were looking for Mr. Eliott,” Jordan floats the
thought out there. I ride on the tones of that beautiful podcast voice for a
moment before I realize he wants an answer.
I…um…was looking on behalf of Mr. Kalle,” I say, praying he
doesn’t ask me where August is hiding. The intern wraps her arms around her
bag, and Jordan nods.
I have an appointment with you and Mr. Kalle for an interview
tomorrow at my hotel. We will call your people with the room number once I
check in. I’m not made of billions like your boyfr…er….your boss…so we won’t be
in the same place there. I would like to spend more time with you though, Ms.
Miller, so plan for a long day.”
A long day? What
does he think I’m already having? Wait. Did he just say he’d like to
spend time with me? I’m going to spend time with Jordan Davis at his request?
I’ve just fallen into wonderland.
That sounds magnificent,” I rasp, rubbing my tongue over my lips
hoping to be cute, with a sprinkle of sexy thrown in as well. I think it might
have worked because he winks at me before he taps his intern on the arm and
they head toward the elevator together. I secretly stash myself behind a corner
and watch the elevator doors close. Then I sprint around the floor looking for
any sign of my runaway author.
Five floors and two
blisters later, I arrive back on the floor my room occupied. I still intend to
keep looking, but I need a potty break and some better shoes. I dressed hoping
Marcus would meet our flight in Boston and whisk me away. But now, all I can
think about is my afternoon with Jordan; answering his questions, guiding my
eyes down his athletic frame and running my fingers through his thick, sandy
hair. So, Marcus gets the “I’m pretty tired” routine, and that means I
can throw on some sneakers for the rest of the search and the ride to my
Walking in the door
I see two workmen from the hotel coming out of August’s room with the pieces of
the door Jim broke, shaking their head. I’m sure Eliott House is paying
for the replacement so I don’t know why they look some grim.
Sorry about that,” I say, as if I had anything to do with it.
That’s fine, Ma’am. Is this your suite?”
Yes. Well, my room is the one on the right. The one that still has
Good to know,” the man nods slowly. “Your son told us to come back
when he was finished with his words. Why don’t you give us a call when you
My son? My son lives in New York, I think.” He used to live
in New York, with that “Risen” group. But, truthfully, I don’t know if he is
alive or dead.
Your boyfriend, then,” the man looks at his coworker, and both
grimace their disgust at the idea they’ve settled on as an explanation. The
repairman stops as if he is going to say something, then shakes his head and
My son? What could
he…Oh my gosh. August!
I run into August’s
room to find him sitting in a chair with his feet up on the bed, a notebook in
his lap, writing furiously.
August!” I run over to him and wrap my arms around him, hugging
the author so tightly I feel his muscles contract beneath my grip. I brush the
wild white hair to the side and look at his eyes. They seem fine. Putting my
hand on his cheek, I attempt to connect with some part of him not swallowed by
addiction or obsession. “Are you alright?”
Silver hornet, Miss Carrie,” he smiles, his eyes down.
You are high,” I scold. “Oh, August, how could you? I’ve tried so
hard to watch over you and you sneak off and dope yourself up again. You’re
going to die and I’m going to lose a big piece of my heart when it happens.
Don’t you know that…”
I’m not high,” he says, pushing his hair out of his face so I can
get a better look in his eyes. They look fine to me, vibrant green and
piercing. “I’m working with my words. I went for a walk to clear the air and
some words came to me. I needed to pencil them. But those men were making so
much rackety rack the words were packing bags. I promise. I’m not high.”
I believe you,” I remark, hugging him a second time. He talks in
the same odd cadence he writes in, but only when he is writing. I’m sure he
wants me to leave him to his words as much as he wished the workmen away.
I fish my phone out of my purse, subconsciously checking the credit card, and
start to text Jim.
Please, Miss Carrie. Can I have ten minutes before the alarm? I
need ten more minutes with my words.”
Everyone is scared, August. We have all been looking for you. You
can write on Mr. Eliott’s private jet when we fly to Boston. But I have to tell
Dr. DeLong where you are. I can’t let him believe you’re still out there. It
would be like a lie.”
He’s the lie,” August looks down at the bruises DeLong’s shots
have left on his arms. “I shoot better than him when I’m riding the thunder
horse. 10 minutes. Please?”
Against my better
judgment, I pat him on the shoulder and leave him with his words. I change my
shoes and check my specialty pass for Marcus’ jet. Gently, I peer in to
see August still scribbling away. I go into the bathroom, closing the door but
listening for any hint of a sound revealing the young man is running away.
Safe and alone, I wrap my arm around my shoulders, then lean and kiss my
forearm gently, allowing my lips to rub against the skin.
Yes, Jordan,” I say in my moment of fantasy, squeezing my shoulder
and nuzzling my nose against my arm, kissing myself again and again, just like
I did in 7th grade before the big slumber party where Stephanie Jenkins
promised we would play “Spin the Bottle” and I practiced for that first kiss.
“I’ve wanted you for the longest time. I always knew you would be mine.”
I’m not sure how
much time goes by as I fantasize and French kiss my forearm, but eventually I
have to put a stop to this and get back on track. It’s so stupid, I tell
myself. I’ve got Marcus Eliott, media mogul, billionaire and darling of
the jet set eating out of my hands, and I’m going to toss him to the curb for
Jordan Davis — a man with much less money, few holdings and power only because
his websites guarantee it. I’m giving up “solid as a rock” for “floating in the
wind” and I can’t help myself.
One final arm kiss
and I bid fantasy Jordan goodbye and send the text to Jim that August is fine
and all will be well. Of course, no matter what the text said - the next half
hour of clomping bodyguard boots, Dr. DeLong’s protracted examination, and a
game of twenty questions was inevitable. August took it all in stride,
answering politely. He must have finished with his words. Although from the
pale, shaken frame I could see through the window, his words were finishing