Beg for Me(9)

By: Natalie Anderson

Logan stepped forward and toggled the applications on his computer to bring up her personnel file again. According to that, Ms Araminta Jones was twenty-three and had graduated first in her communications degree in Minnesota. Since completing her degree, only six months ago, she’d moved to New York and set up her own social media management company. A one woman operation.

That was about to be shut down.

Logan couldn’t believe that the woman-child had graduated first in her class. Not when she’d managed to screw this up so monumentally. It had to be a crap course.

A discreet knock sounded at the door. Drawing a cooling breath, Logan sat behind his desk, aiming to be as unfriendly and as intimidating as possible. Not gonna let any tearful apology move him. She was at the end of her very little line and she could just go back to her small town.

Another knock.

“It’s okay Ed, come right in.” Logan called out and schooled his face into seriousness.

But the second she walked in the door, he forgot his scary-boss intentions.

Bright green eyes snatched and held his attention. Like moss found in the undergrowth of a cool climate they were luminous green. Fresh, verdant, vital.

Those eyes widened fractionally as they locked on him.

For a moment there was nothing in the room but silence, stillness and staring.

There were years of experience in those eyes—uncertainty, hurt, strength. But she quickly veiled that vulnerable expression. She stood taller, lifted her chin, visibly preparing to face him.

No child at all, this was all woman. She was nervous, but proud. And composed.

Logan liked that lift of her chin. He liked that she wasn’t cowed and about to fall to tearful pieces, which was frankly the scene he’d anticipated. Sometimes some women pulled on the tears to get close. Araminta Jones most definitely didn’t want to get close—not given the way she was standing like a leggy gazelle on alert for a lion. But she wasn’t running away.

He liked that silent show of spirit. Unbelievably a surge of something fierce and hot rose in his chest. An urge of protectiveness.

WTF? Had he taken a knock to the head?

But her eyes held more experience than most other twenty-three year olds. And more cool criticism than any woman who’d ever looked him in the eye. Who was the one who’d screwed up here? Because she was looking at him like he was the one who’d done the damage. Protectiveness be damned, she didn’t need it. Not when she could shoot that kind of poison from her eyes.

With a single look, everything changed. Logan’s residual anger disappeared, amusement surged instead. It seemed Ms Jones was the fighting kind.

He stood and moved around his big desk, unable to resist the urge to move closer.

“Please come in, Ms Jones.” He walked over to the door, nodding for Ed to leave them.

She stepped forward, passing him to take position in the center of the room. As she moved Logan glimpsed a hint of curves beneath her jacket. But it was the faint scent that made him pause. Not perfume, but something more deliciously fragrant. His mouth watered—caramel? Vanilla?

Logan quietly closed the door behind Ed and turned.

That’s when he saw what hadn’t been obvious on the computer screen. That’s when the warmth in his chest shot straight down like a scalding arrow to his groin.

The broad braid hung almost to her waist. Golden, glorious hair bound into a thick rope that he could wind around his wrist to tether her to him while he...

Sexual attraction sizzled in the pit of his belly. His skin tightened in that old familiar way when he encountered pretty, feminine prey. It hadn’t tightened like this in an age. And it shouldn’t now. This was the woman who’d just destroyed the little he had left of his credibility. He was supposed to be tearing a strip from her, then giving her the sack, not deciding how edible she was.

Carefully he moved forward, away from her. But he couldn’t stop looking at that gorgeous braid. Logan had spent most of his adult life in the company of some of the world’s most beautiful women. He understood the tricks. Hell, he’d been bored out of his brains many times waiting for make-up artists to work miracles and turn scrawny plain Janes into raving beauties ready to be photographed. It was all smoke and mirrors and Photoshop. So he knew hair like hers was rare. That’s if it was all her own. But given the lack of artifice about every other aspect of her, he’d bet his life it was hers. No extensions. He wasn’t even sure it had been colored. He wasn’t sure he’d ever met a woman who didn’t color her hair. Not that he minded hair dye, he appreciated a woman’s desire to make herself more attractive. He understood the urge to attract and to be attracted.