The Secret (Billionaire Secrets Series, #1)(10)

By: Lexy Timms

Mercifully, the elevator doors opened again, and they stepped inside. The tiny space was crammed with staff who greeted him, which meant his agonizing conversation with Heather was cut short.

Once they got to the right floor, Simon waited while Heather took her ID photo. When she finally walked back out, ID in hand, she was putting her glasses back on.

“I took off my glasses for the photo,” she said, not sure why she was explaining it to him. “I couldn’t see a thing, but I think the photo turned out okay.” She held the ID out to him and he glanced at it. She really was a stunner. Maybe not in the way celebrity magazines went crazy over, but there was something so wholesome about her.

“Looks great. They’re IDs. Like a driver’s license. We’re not supposed to look like we’re posing.” His gaze flicked back to her and he drank her in. Heather wasn’t very tall, but she was slender. Willowy. With a very upright posture and a poise that struck him. Despite how uptight she came across, Simon sensed what smoldered underneath.

More than anything he wanted to yank the pins out of her auburn hair and let it cascade down her shoulders. Run his fingers through the silky strands. The way he had when they were together.

No. This wasn’t his old neighbor. The resemblance might be startling, but that was just his own mind going haywire. His intelligence had always made his thoughts race a million miles a minute. He could solve multiple puzzles in his head at once. That’s all this was. His own thoughts getting the best of him. That would soon stop, once he got to know this Heather a bit better. She was simply another puzzle, like everything else.

Granted, people didn’t often interest him this much. Software and hardware. Engineering. Brainstorming. Trial and error. That was what he knew. Those were the easy questions because, ultimately, there was always an answer. What was the answer to a woman like this, who intrigued him so much because she reminded him of someone else?

“It’s almost lunchtime,” he said, glancing at his Dover-made smartwatch. “I can show you where the staff eats and then we can continue the tour after.”

She smiled. “I’d like that. Lead the way.”

He tried to ignore what her smile did to him. Instead, he headed to one of the company cafeterias for lunch. His relationship with Heather Hall was strictly professional. Even though Dover permitted romantic relationships—if they were disclosed—to Simon, employees, especially subordinates, were off limits. Whatever feelings his new PA stirred in him were merely biological. A trick of a brain reminded of the past.

The cafeteria wasn’t particularly crowded, so he grabbed a seat for the two of them and handed her a menu.

“Thanks,” she said she scanned the menu.

Even though he knew the menu by heart, he forced himself to focus on it rather than steal a glance at her. Right now, Dover, Inc. needed him to get through this week and deliver one hell of a speech. A new generation of software and hardware was going to be released soon, and he needed to be on his A game at the inter-company conference.

Still, considering his former PA’s insider trading, suspicion nagged at him. The only way to set those suspicions aside was to do a background check on Heather.

Starting today.

LUNCH WAS DIVINE. EVEN better than anything she had ever had at her previous job. And best of all, lunch at Dover, Inc. was free.

As Heather took a bite of her delicious stir-fried rice, she realized how easy it would be to get used to all this. Simon might have been a genius CEO who obsessed over keeping everything running smoothly, but there was a very laid-back culture at Dover. She could eat whatever she wanted for free, unlike at VLA Tech where employees had to pay for food.

“So, Heather, how do you like things so far?” Simon asked from across the lunch table.

“Great,” she said. “Everyone seems friendly.” While they had waited to get lunch, Simon had called a few colleagues over and introduced her. She had literally just been hired this morning, and everyone she had spoken to had enthusiastically offered to help her adjust.

“Right. Friendly.” He took a bite out of his ham sandwich. No, that wasn’t a bite. Simon was practically inhaling it. Not taking the time to even taste it.