Home > Falling For The Boss (The Attracelli Family #2)

Falling For The Boss (The Attracelli Family #2)
Author: Elizabeth Lennox

Elizabeth Lennox - The Attracelli Family #2 - Falling For The Boss

Falling For The Boss (The Attracelli Family #2)
Elizabeth Lennox



Chapter 1

The air conditioner whirred quietly but it didn’t ease the tension in the room or cool off Victoria Anderson’s tense nerves. She was terrified and hoped the dragon woman sitting in front of her didn’t see her anxiety.

The dragon lady continued, “You understand that this is a one year commitment, correct?” She was actually the head of human relations, Margie Peterman, but she seemed extremely protective of her boss’s schedule and requirements. “Mr. Attracelli is very firm about the commitment, to the point of requiring a contract stating that you will remain on the team for one full year. Despite the numerous tests and interviews, we’ve had a run of bad luck with recent personnel leaving before the year is over. It puts his team in a difficult position and they aren’t able to meet their tight deadlines.”

Victoria’s hands clenched together in nervousness. “I understand,” she said in a voice she hoped sounded confident. A wisp of honey blond hair floated down the side of her face, having escaped the tight chignon she’d put it in this morning. She casually pushed it back off her face, not even aware of the action as Margie looked down through Victoria’s resume and test scores again, looking for something else to question Victoria about.

The chair Victoria was sitting on should have been comfortable, but because she was so nervous, the Chippendale chair and highly polished conference table seemed too forbidding to allow any possible comfort. She perched herself on the edge of the chair with her back ramrod straight and her hands neatly folded on her lap, not able to relax even slightly.

Victoria surreptitiously wiped her hands on her black, wool suit skirt, hoping the interviewer didn’t notice her slight hesitation. She wasn’t afraid of the long hours, the travel or the demanding boss. She already had that without the excitement of visiting different cities and foreign countries which this job offered. There was nothing holding her in Washington, D.C. any longer now that Laci, her younger sister, would graduate from law school in a few months. This would be Victoria’s last fling before settling down and marrying Barry Lawson, the man she had been dating for over a year now. Once she’d “sowed her wild oats” as she was now thinking of this job opportunity, she’d feel comfortable settling down and raising children with her husband and knowing that she wasn’t missing out on anything.

“And you understand the demands of the job? The travel needs, the long hours?” Margie asked, her sharp, grey eyes watching Victoria’s expression over the edge of her bifocal glasses.

“Yes, I understand,” Victoria repeated, nodding her head for emphasis. “I’m eager to see different parts of the country,” Victoria explained, leaning forward slightly. The traveling part of the job was what had caught her interest immediately. “I’ve lived in the Washington, D.C. area almost my entire life. But as much as I like this area, I love traveling even more.”

Margie looked over the serene young woman sitting primly in front of her. The strikingly lovely woman was petite with beautiful blond hair pulled back at the nape of her neck and soft, green eyes. The black suit and crisp, white silk shirt she wore was professional looking but in no way enhanced her feminine shape. Margie considered that a good sign since the days would be long and hard. There was no time for primping and high maintenance females.

It was a good thing that this candidate had a long term boyfriend. Margie had seen enough females throwing themselves at her boss, Thomas Attracelli. He didn’t need someone on his personal staff getting romantic ideas. That would throw the whole team into a mass of inefficiency and chaos.

The only doubt Margie had about Victoria Anderson was the woman’s timidity. She definitely had the skills and the experience for the job.

Margie sat up a little straighter. She had considered all the applicants and the woman sitting in front of her had the best resume and interviewed extremely well. What’s more, from several tests, phone conversations and interviews over the past two weeks, Margie suspected her personality would fit in with the team easily, although her nervousness right now belied that impression.

Chalking that up to interview jitters, Margie decided to go with her gut instincts and recommend hiring Victoria over the other five candidates interviewed so far. Mentally nodding her head, she moved on. “I know this is your fourth interview but this really is the final one. You’ll be meeting Thomas Attracelli, the lead on the team, who will make the final decision.” Margie looked at her watch and frowned. “He should be here any minute,” she explained.

Victoria desperately wanted this position more than any of the others she had interviewed for over the past two months. But more desperately, she wanted out of her current situation. Victoria already had three job offers but was waiting to find out if she would be hired for this one, the most interesting and challenging from what she had learned so far.

Victoria tried to hide her sense of excitement but the idea of traveling to so many cities and countries, working on so many different projects had drawn her out of her job inertia initially. Over the past year, Victoria routinely reviewed the classified section of the newspaper, searching for job opportunities that seemed interesting. She’d seen the job offer for this position in the paper and had thought it was too good to be true.

“Who else is on his staff?” Victoria asked, eager to learn more about the job, praying that she would be selected over the other candidates.

Margie smiled, glad to have something to talk about while they waited for her delinquent boss to arrive. He had been scheduled to meet with this applicant fifteen minutes ago but he had yet to show up or call to let Margie know when, or even if, he would arrive.

Leaning back in her chair, Margie set her pen down on her yellow notepad and relaxed for the next few moments. “Mr. Atracelli travels with two other staff members. Mike is the operations manager and there’s also Bob, who is a human relations developer.”

“What is a human relations developer?” Victoria asked, not wanting to appear ignorant, but curious about the title.

Margie laughed slightly, appreciating the woman’s twinkling eyes showing her sense of humor. “It sounds like a made up, politically correct title, doesn’t it? I can assure you that ‘human relations developer’ is a perfect description of what this man can do. Bob goes into the ATI offices and assesses the morale of the place. He has a knack for building up the spirits of a group and creating a sense of unity. He works with the supervisors and mentors them on ways to increase or improve morale. He believes, and has shown, that an energetic and team oriented office staff produces much higher results statistically than a segregated and, what some offices consider, normal environment. I’ve seen him work and it’s a pretty great talent. But then, Mr. Attracelli only hires extremely talented people, like you,” Margie smiled conspiratorially.

Victoria returned the smile and was grateful for the vote of confidence. She looked at her watch again. “I think I might need to reschedule the interview with Mr. Attracelli. I really need to get back to work,” she said, about to rise. “I’m sorry, I only have one hour for lunch and my current boss is very particular.”

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