Home > Right Billionaire, Wrong Wedding

Right Billionaire, Wrong Wedding
Author: Victoria Davies

Chapter One

Dear Mr. King,

It is with a heavy heart that I tender my resignation.

“Dear Mr. King?” Allison mused, chewing on the end of her pen. “Maybe I should go more informal?” After all, she had worked at the company for four years. Or should she be formal? Hell, maybe the request should just be sent to HR, skipping her boss altogether.

She banged her head against the desk. This shouldn’t be so hard. Sure, there would be people at the office she’d miss leaving behind, but wasn’t her freedom worth it? It wasn’t like her decision to leave was based on a whim.

“How informal do you need to be?” A curly red head poked around the side of her open door. “Just say yo, Darian, gotta split. Forward me my pay.”

Allison lifted her head to see Gillian, her office mate, grinning at her. “Not exactly the tone I’m going for.”

Gillian walked farther into the room. “I keep hearing you mutter about this letter. Honestly, how long have you been trying to quit? Just pull the trigger already.”

“It’s not that simple. I’ve got months left on my contract, and if Darian denies me a reference, I’m sunk.”

Gillian rolled her eyes. “You want a life beyond King Enterprises. I say that makes this all very simple. Sure, you signed a contract, but people find ways to break those all the time. Have you even tried asking Darian to let you go? His response might surprise you.”

“We’re right in the middle of the Sterling acquisition. You know this isn’t a good time to leave.”

“Darian King is always in the middle of something. On any given day that man has a dozen plates in the air at once. Being without an assistant for a few days will be a bump, but you know as well as I do there are scores of people who’d jump at the chance to be at his beck and call. You’ve served your time. Let someone else take over.” She flashed another grin. “Not that I’m looking forward to losing you. Once you go, I’ll need a new partner in crime.”

Allison waved her hand at her friend. “Back to work with you. I need to focus on this.”

“You don’t need a letter. Just go talk to him,” she said as she walked out of the office.

Go talk to him. It seemed so simple. Except she knew Darian would never understand her desire to get out of the rat race and start over at a quieter position. He’d never wrap his mind around the fact that she wanted something different. A slower pace. A balance in her life. Darian wasn’t the sort of boss who let the clock dictate when he worked, and he expected the same of his executive assistant. And that had been fine in the beginning when she’d lived and breathed for her job. But as the months rolled by she’d realized one very painful truth.

She’d made Darian King her whole life, and it didn’t take a genius to figure out she was merely a shadow in his.

No, she needed a change. A life where she wasn’t devoted to someone else’s success instead of thinking about her own. Maybe with a new career she’d finally get to be home at a decent hour. Maybe cook dinner instead of living on takeout. Hell, she might even meet someone if she wasn’t constantly catering to the whims of her boss.

But she knew as soon as she went to Darian with her request he’d come up with a dozen logical arguments against her decision that she’d never be able to refute. He’d offer her more money, more flexibility in her schedule. He’d promise she could have a normal nine-to-five job, that he’d never again call her at four in the morning with an urgent problem she had to rush to the office to help him fix. And because he’d been the only man to take a chance on her, she’d believe him. Then a week would go by, maybe two, and her phone would ring at midnight. A troublesome deal would keep her in his office till the stars were out.

And once again, she’d be stuck working an impossible job for an impossible man who demanded perfection.

Allison closed her eyes. She wanted more than to be a round-the-clock employee. And the only way she’d ever get it was by leaving.

Don’t back down, she told herself. This isn’t some passing desire.

She had a right to her own life.

Resolved, she turned back to her computer, her fingers flying over the keys.

“I appreciate everything you’ve done for me,” she muttered as she typed. “Time to move on to new challenges.” Sentence by sentence the letter came to life before her eyes. It was clear and concise. Professional in every way. After printing out a copy, she read through the finished product.

“I should redo this section,” she said to herself, tapping the paper. This had to be perfect. Perfect enough to convince the man who ruled this company with an iron fist to go against his best interests.

The phone rang as she analyzed her opening line again.

“Allison Reed,” she greeted, her mind focused on the screen before her.

“My office. Now.”

The line went dead.

She shook her head at the familiar summons. Darian wasn’t a man who wasted time on unnecessary words.

With a last glance at her letter, she opened the top drawer of her desk and tossed it inside. She’d fix it up later. One way or another, it would see its day, she just had to bring it up at the right moment.

Pushing up from her chair, she smoothed a hand down her crisp black suit and did a quick check in the wall mirror. Her perpetually messy brown hair was secured in its usual bun, the only style that seemed to tame her volume of curls. Leaning closer, she smudged away a fleck of mascara under one amber eye, but the rest of her minimal makeup remained nicely in place. Straightening her lapels, she nodded at her reflection. Professional as ever. She was nothing if not the perfect assistant. At least for a little while longer.

Her heels clicked across the floor as she strode to Darian’s office. He’d left the door ajar for her, and she slipped into the room she had been in so many times before.

Her office was by no means shabby. Darian wouldn’t stand for that. But his domain put hers to shame. The massive corner office boasted floor-to-ceiling windows on two sides. His large mahogany desk was as cluttered as ever, despite her best efforts over the years to organize it. Today, though, he stood by the leather sofas arranged around a glass coffee table. How many nights had they spent on those sofas, combing through files? She’d lost track. Long enough for the Thai restaurant down the street to memorize their late night orders.

“Darian,” she said.

He turned, and as always, her heart gave that familiar, annoying flutter when his eyes met hers.

Damn, unwelcome butterflies.

Towering over six feet, he looked more like an actor than a CEO. His dark hair was combed back so that nothing softened the sharp planes of his face. Those chiseled cheekbones and piercing blue eyes would put any A-lister to shame. His jet black suit had been custom tailored to perfection and she nearly sighed at the sight. A man who spent as much time as he did behind a desk had no business sporting such a hard, athletic body.

“Look at this, Ali.” He tossed a folded paper onto the coffee table.

Without a word she crossed the room and picked up the paper. Unfolding it showed it was a printout of an email. Scanning it quickly, her brows rose in surprise.

“Jenny is getting married?”

“To that musician she’s been seeing for years. That’s not the surprising part. Keep reading.”

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