The Secret (Billionaire Secrets Series, #1)(7)

By: Lexy Timms

When she had come in for an interview this morning, she knew she’d have to meet Simon eventually. However, having her interviewed changed from the media department to an interview with Simon at the last minute had been such a shock. Especially since she hadn’t come up with a plan to deal with Simon. Heather had figured she’d just cross that bridge when she got to it. She hadn’t anticipated that she’d be crossing it now.

“How long were you with VLA?” he asked.

“Four years,” she replied.

“Do you know Xander Richards?”

She squinted, trying to put a face to the name. “I’m sorry, who?”

“Never mind.” He waved his hand. “So, it was a good experience?”

She nodded. “Hours were tough, but they treated me well.”

“Hours are tough here at Dover, too,” Simon said. “But we make sure employees get a good amount of vacation days. You’ll also get some flexibility to work from home a few days a month. We expect you to work hard, but we don’t believe in burning people out. And I also believe that everyone on staff should be heard. So, I welcome your ideas and suggestions, Heather. Don’t be shy about speaking your mind around me.”

“That’s good to hear.” She exhaled, relief making her breathe a little easier. “How’s your head, by the way?”

He rubbed his temples. “Better. The pain is subsiding. It’s been a hectic morning, truth be told.”

“In your line of work, I can just imagine,” she said. “Is there anything I can do to make things easier for you?”

Simon leaned back in his chair and smiled. Getting a smile out of Simon had been rare when they were kids. She suspected it was still rare. The smile he gave her made her heart skip a beat. “Well, I like an employee who takes initiative. But my main problem isn’t today. It’s a speech I’m giving next week. It’s scheduled for an inter-company conference. The press is going to be there.”

“But you hate the press,” she said.

Surprise flickered in his eyes. “I’m not fond of the media. How did you know that?”

Her chest tightened. Ugh. She had forgotten herself. Being overly familiar with him and his habits would just remind him that he recognized her. And now that she had started her interview with a lie, she’d have to see it through. Especially since she wanted the job. Awkwardness with Simon aside, the man was brilliant. Working with him at Dover, Inc. would open so many doors for her.

“I...I’ve read up on you and the company. Wanted to be prepared for my second interview with Mrs.—Linda today. Sorry, it threw me when she told us we’d be interviewed by you,” she replied. That much was true. She really had read about him. Seeing someone she had grown up with succeed the way Simon had always filled her with a strange sense of pride. Not that the press had all that much to say. Simon was reclusive. Mysterious. Kept to himself and avoided interviews. Most of the information about him was just rumors and pure speculation. She knew that reporters would kill to get the kind of access to Simon that she was getting now.

“Doing research is good,” he said. “But don’t believe everything you read.”

She gave him a faint smile. “I’ll keep that in mind.”

“Since the speech is coming up soon, I’d need someone to go over it with. Deal with the press. That sort of thing.”

“I think I’m up to it,” she said. “I worked in the marketing department at VLA, so I have experience dealing with the media.”

“Excellent. Do you have any questions for me?”

None that were appropriate for the workplace. Heat flooded her entire body. Just being in proximity to him was bringing back old, erotic memories. Memories of her first time. It had been an awkward fumble in the dark, but still so romantic. He might not have known what he was doing, but Simon had been so very attentive.

She cringed inwardly. How on earth was she going to work as his PA if she kept thinking about him like this? Right now, she hoped to hell that he had a girlfriend. The press often harped on about him being a single, eligible bachelor, but if he had a girlfriend that might take away some of her own awkwardness around him. Sure, knowing he had the attentions of someone else would sting, but her bruised heart had healed a long time ago. Her disastrous marriage to Gary had toughened her up considerably.