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It wasn’t an unreasonable request…in fact, as expectations go, one could have easily classified this as mediocre. There was just one missing element, which seemed either reluctant or very determined not to come to the forefront. It was this constantly missing thread which was his current undoing. Frustrated, papers strewn about the oak desk in front of him, he gave into the sense of defeat that had been creeping up on him for the past hour. Throwing in the towel, he stood and turned away from the desk to stare out the window at the dismal scenery provided by a less than penthouse view.
Outside, the weather clearly reflected his current state of mind. The rain had been coming down in torrents for the better part of the day. The dreariness, now accompanied by a roaring cacophony of thunderclaps and an impressive visual display of almost constant lightning across a starless night sky, was somewhat abated by the spectacle, but was hardly removed from his temperament.
It had been the same for much of the week, remnants of yet another tropical disaster bombarding the coast with more flooding and destruction in its wake. Despite the mess, however, one could not help but admire the brilliant exhibition being splashed across the inky backdrop outside. It was certainly better than what his traitorous computer had been churning out for him this evening.
The very thought of the project, which was due at the end of the week and was so close to completion, made his blood boil. He had been pouring over the information for hours and could not get the damn thing to do what he wanted. He was exhausted, his head throbbing from a weeks worth of intense concentration and his eyes burned from staring blankly at a monitor with very few, if any, breaks. Massaging his temples in a soothing circular motion, he sat back down, leaning as far back as the leather wingback chair allowed. The earthy, rich scent of the new leather wrapped around him, bringing a small smile as some of the tension began ebbing out of his tense muscles, forcing them to relax if only a little.
“Want some sugar, big boy?”
The voice was soft and sultry, a barely audible breath across his ear and down the back of his neck. The fine hairs stood on end, causing a dilemma as to whether he should shy away or meet the caress head on. An amused giggle resounded from this obvious conundrum, making him aware of a definite other presence in his midst.
Startled, his eyes flew open and he whirled around in the chair to face the voice at his side. His gaze darted momentarily toward the clock on the far wall, noting the time. He had dozed off. Not for a considerable amount of time, but long enough to have not heard anyone enter the office proper, let alone the room that he now occupied.
Before him stood his assistant, soaked to the bone. One look at her confirmed that his request to keep the adjacent lot open for visitors had been ignored. The flooding must have already begun, he concluded, noting with a wry smile the way her pant legs were rolled up to her slender knees. He allowed his eyes to drink in the sight, as he couldn’t help himself.
Her clothes molded to every curve of her body, accentuating them lovingly. Her long, dark hair hung in dripping ringlets down the small of her back, while rogue strands had plastered themselves across her forehead and along her smooth, high boned cheeks. One particularly stubborn tendril had found its way across her forehead to hang suspended just above her full and tempting lower lip. A droplet of water escaped, running down the corner of her lips toward her chin and he felt the breath catch in his throat as her tongue instinctively shot out and captured it before it met its mark.
She shot him an inquisitive look and he realized that she had spoken to him and was waiting for a reaction. Feeling the colour rising in his face, he focused his attention elsewhere, anywhere but upon her.
“Wha…what was that you said? I didn’t catch it…” he stammered, feeling awkward and quite embarrassed at his improper initial response to her presence.
He had admitted to himself a year ago, when he’d first hired her, that he had not called her back for a second interview because of her resume. In truth, he couldn’t even remember really reading her resume in the first place. He had just wanted to see her again. It had been a fortunate twist of fate that she was not only excellent at her job, but was a fount of information and ideas which had helped his growing company blossom into a recognizable name in the industry.
Ever since discovering that there was more to her than just a blisteringly hot body and undeniable sex appeal, he had made a rule to never think of her as anything but what she was: a co-worker. To try anything else not only had the potential of a harassment suit, which would destroy his career, but would also result in losing someone who had quickly become an asset to the company. Beautiful as she was, nothing was worth
losing his business halkalı escort over. To do something to jeopardize all that he had worked so hard for would be just plain foolish.
As if capable of reading his mind, she cocked her head to the side, fixing him with a crooked, ‘I know what you’re thinking’ look and pulled a chair over to his desk.
“I asked you if you wanted some sugar,” she laughed, holding up a cup of coffee from the tray she had brought in. “I figured you’d been up half the night trying to get that damn program to run for you. After seeing you drooling on your new chair, I’m going to assume I was right.”
He looked to the side, grinning with embarrassment at the telltale marks, which proved her story true. Dabbing them gently with a tissue, he chuckled self-consciously while she leaned out of her chair and turned his monitor for a better look at the screen he had been staring blankly at all afternoon.
As she closed the space between them, the faint intermingling scent of musk and lilac drifted toward him, causing him to breathe deeply. She smelled like the forest on a warm summer afternoon, just after a sun shower.
She shifted onto her elbow to allow for a more comfortable viewing position and moved her heavy and cumbersome hair away from her face and off of her shoulder.
“You’ve been at this all day, haven’t you?” she inquired, turning to look at him.
From her position, halfway across his desk, she was close enough for him to count her eyelashes. Such nearness was beginning to have an adverse effect on his senses, forcing him to stand abruptly and start pacing the room.
“Yeah, I’ve been staring at that thing for almost sixteen hours and I still can’t figure out what the problem is. I’ve worked it and reworked it and it’s just not being agreeable.”
She laughed again, a deep, lusty sound that pulsated through his body with a most disconcerting effect. Standing up straight, she started over to his seat, stopping briefly to remove her jacket and lay it across the back of her own chair. Underneath, she wore a white, button down shirt, which was little more than tissue paper in its effectiveness. As she moved in front of the screen and began testing her own ideas upon the program, the monitor’s faint glow perfectly illuminated her form without a trace of modesty.
The situation was becoming too much for him to handle. Being in her presence had never been a problem before now, as fellow co-workers were always surrounding them. Now, with everyone long since gone home, they were alone in a darkened office and there was nothing stopping his vivid imagination from wandering to all the previously avoided improper places.
Her hair was beginning to slowly dry and, before it became too unruly forcing, she unconsciously tied the mass back into a knot, exposing the winding knot-work of the Celtic tattoo that gradually disappeared under her shirt collar.
He had noticed this marking before, on numerous occasions, but had never paid it much attention, except to recognize the irresponsible wild streak it represented in her personality. Not that he had ever been deluded into believing that she was the stereotypical business executive. She was the furthest thing from it, in truth. It was something that he had acknowledged immediately upon meeting her, as well as something he had long since denied about his own personality. Although he had to wonder if his own wild streak ran quite as deep as hers seemed to, he had to admit its presence nonetheless, and that it screamed for release on more than one occasion.
He had set a goal for himself a long time ago, and impulsive actions would only serve to undermine his plans for success and his future. It was becoming more and more difficult to deny its existence in his personality, however, as well as to deny that he liked possessing it.
On more than one occasion, he had found himself wanting to call into the office on an especially beautiful day, more interested in taking a cruise by the beach house than in toiling over an application deadline. The work would never suffer as a result of such spontaneity, as it could simply get covered by his more than competent staff. He just could never bring himself to actually carry out the impulse, as though the entire structure would collapse had he not arrived that morning.
Things changed dramatically once she had come to be part of the company. More than once she had walked in to find him immersed in a project, only to rouse him from his seat and send him home early for some relaxation or on an extended lunch so he could get his mind onto something else in order to come back to work with a new angle. It was almost to the point where he couldn’t help but occasionally wonder who was really running the show.
He chuckled in spite of himself at this revelation, causing her to look his way and cock an eyebrow at his quiet but still audible taksim escort outburst. Catching himself, he waved it off as an undeniable need for some sleep and, with a shrug, she went back to studying the screen.
Sitting himself in a chair across from her, he watched her thinking and experimenting with different code and formulas, her delicate brow creased in concentration while she unconsciously nibbled on her bottom lip.
Her sleeves were rolled up and her shirt was mostly unbuttoned, exposing the barest hint of a white, silky camisole underneath. Both garments were practically useless coverings since they were still quite wet and, for the most part, utterly transparent.
The rise and fall of her breathing pressed her breasts against the flimsy materials, the bronzed hue of her summer skin so drastic against the whiteness. Her nipples were erect, jutting through the fabric unashamed, declaring the chill in the room from the central air conditioning. For a brief moment, he wondered if taking them into his mouth would warm them or make them stand even more at attention.
“Would you like me to turn down the A/C?” he asked, hoping she wouldn’t consider what had brought her chill to his attention.
“You’re still soaked from walking over, I wouldn’t want you falling ill and taking days off.”
She laughed, the action causing the current focus of his attentions to push harder against their restraints, taunting him.
“That would be great, actually. I think my clothes may dry a little faster that way, too.”
As great a shame as that would be, he decided it was better than her deciding to put more clothes on in an attempt to keep warm.
He walked into the other room and fidgeted with the temperature until the overhead humming subsided. He could hear her moving about in the other room, and then the telltale rush of air as one of the office windows opened. A gust of warm, moist air greeted him upon re-entering his office and the temperature difference was almost staggering. He wouldn’t have been surprised to see a rain cloud begin to take form in the room.
“I thought that maybe the muggy crap outside might equal out the cold in here,” she explained, shrugging.
Her shirt was now fully unbuttoned, falling slightly away from her shoulders and emphasizing the ampleness of her breasts straining against the flimsy lingerie. She was leaning casually against the windowsill, wearing a cheshire expression, as she reached into the pocket of her shirt and produced a small, silver cigarette case. She removed a clove cigarette from the case and, leaning over to where her bag rested on his desk, sought out her lighter in her purse. The unconscious act giving more and more exposure to the bra-less cleavage he couldn’t tear his eyes from.
“Do you mind?” she inquired, holding up the cigarette and lighter and gesturing towards the window.
“I don’t usually smoke, but it helps me concentrate sometimes. Normally I’d go outside, but since there’s no one here I thought to just hang out the window so it wouldn’t seep into the office too much.”
He shrugged, gesturing for her to go ahead and was rewarded with a beaming smile as the lighter flickered, catching the aromatic paper aflame. The heady aroma drifted slightly on the breeze, making the room seem more exotic, the tension more sensual than stressed. Even the way she smoked was erotic, the long drags drifting lazily from her lips only to be caught up in a quick intake through her nose. French inhaling, he believed they called it, though he wasn’t much of a smoker. In truth, he had very few of the more traditional vices. He didn’t smoke, drink or dabble with the occasional recreational drugs. Hell, he didn’t even drink coffee, despite the fact that she was always trying to convince him to switch to it from the soda he always had by his side.
The way she would sigh and coo while savouring the taste of the dark liquid she ingested on a daily basis taunted him with daydreams of other things that could illicit such responses. He had to wonder if it was a dislike of the beverage or the sensual method of ingestion that caused him to send her on her way when she would tease him with the offering of a sip.
A social glass of wine was about as close as he came to the edge, in any given year. He was, however, extremely fond of beautiful women, and a more dangerous vice could not be had, in his opinion. This specimen in particular was threatening to thoroughly undo his usually reticent demeanor.
“So any ideas?” he asked, hoping that focusing his attention on the project might keep it from wandering any further into dangerous territory.
“A few,” she admitted, balancing the clove like an incense stick upon the sill. She walked forward and gestured for him to join her in front of the monitor.
“I think that changing a few elements here and there might make it come together quicker. I don’t know exactly what the bug potential will be with şişli escort the finished product, but right now it’s more important that we just produce some sort of product, regardless of how finished it actually is.
“The smaller nuances can be worked out later, once the client’s been appeased and shown that we’ve actually been doing something with their money all these months.”
She grinned at her last statement, and he joined her in it. Her point was well taken, right now the main importance wasn’t that the product worked perfectly, just that it existed, something that his type A personality had trouble realizing.
“I don’t know what I would do without you, sometimes,” he admitted, unable to catch the lusty emotion in his voice before the comment was out in the open.
She turned to look directly at him, her lips curving into a knowing smirk, “I’m sure you would find someone else to look at.”
Startled, he backed away from her, causing her grin to broaden as she chuckled at his astonishment.
“You think I haven’t noticed the way you look at me? I’m not oblivious, you know.”
He found himself speechless, unable to provide the answer to her question. There was only one for it, and the thought of offering it to her made his throat tighten.
How long had she known? What was she going to do with the information? Had he really been so blatant?
The questions just kept coming, making him wish there were a wall nearby that he could bang his head off of without her noticing. He had thought himself quite subtle in his admiration of her. He did not resort to leering at her, as he’d seen some men do. He’d witnessed both blue collar and white collar alike helping themselves to an indulgent fantasy as she passed them by, but he’d thought himself better than that, which apparently wasn’t so. Perhaps she was just so used to the attention, regardless of whether it was welcome or no, that her observations were more astute than most. Regardless, he considered himself to be in some pretty hot water if she decided to take offense.
“I…I…I don’t know what to say,” he stammered, eyes focusing on his shoes, the wall, out the window…anywhere but on her.
“I’m sorry would be a good start, I suppose. That and a promise it’ll never happen again, of course.
“You’re such an asset to the company that I shudder to think of how long it would take to find someone with even half of your skills, let alone your personality. Honestly, I would hate to lose you because of something as foolish as my non-respectful behaviour.”
She laughed good-naturedly, washing away his awkward tirade with a wave of her hand.
“I didn’t say it bothered me. You really needn’t apologize so profusely.”
“You’re sure?” he tried, unsuccessfully, to hide his skepticism and genuine surprise. Anyone else might have run to their lawyer; but she seemed to suggest she liked his attentions. A glimmer of hope rose in his chest, could it be possible that she welcomed his advances?
It wasn’t as though he was a disgusting and obese troll, covered in warts and oozing sores, feasting regularly on the innards of small creatures while sitting at his desk delegating responsibility. He was young and quite handsome, if he dared say so himself. Dark hair, piercing indigo eyes, a determined and focused personality, coupled with a confident attitude and flirtatious nature made him actually quite a catch, he thought. He had just never thought that catching a co-worker was a wise idea.
“I have a strict inter-office dating policy,” she informed him, “I don’t do it.”
She laughed at this admission and he felt compelled to join her, “Well, if it makes you feel any better, I don’t believe in it either. It’s bad politics.”
“I agree…but I also believe there are exceptions to the rule, providing both parties are in agreement to the terms.”
This addition to the conversation intrigued him. With him, there were rarely ever exceptions to the rules. Rules were rules. Granted, some were made to be broken within reason, like speed limits, for instance. They are placed for the safety of the population, true, but are bendable when the majority of the population isn’t around to get in the way of some highway amusement. Could office rules follow the same ideal? He was already in the midst of re-creating some of his own ideals, when she decided to up the stakes a little bit by removing her outer layer.
The soggy linen shirt was carefully draped across the back of the chair, and then the whole of it was dragged to the corner of the room where there was a small fan in place for circulation. As she turned to him, lightning streaked across the sky, illuminating the room, as well as the smirk upon her face. From the outer office, the glow from the other monitors provided a gentle backdrop for her advance. Outside, the pitter-patter of the rain upon the exterior ledge mingled with the occasional automobile racing through the swamped streets.
“Shall we try to conquer this demon, then?” she inquired, gesturing him back into his chair.
He tried in vain to suppress his disappointment at the abrupt change of subject, but found himself unable to quell his curiosity. She walked to stand behind his chair, turning it to face the monitor while she leaned upon the broad back of it.
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