Why must my muse torment me so? I'd deep in t he writing cave, steadily working on Trailing Moon Flowers, Scarlet Roses, Midnight Orchids, and Indigo Nights, you would think that would be plenty, right?
Oh no, not for my muse. I am now working on another second chance romance, Tuscan Sunset, and I have two more started that are, as of yet, untitled. And then, of course, my muse perks up with another idea.
Thank the writings gods for the notepad app on my phone because I am constantly having to pull it out when out and about to add things to one of the stories that I have going.
I think I like giving little teasers. Here's one from Indigo Nights.
Laney sat at her desk with several files open on her computer. She was 'deep in the zone' as her co-workers liked to call it, working on the marketing for a new acquisition, when there was a knock on the door. It took her several seconds to drag her eyes away from her work to look towards it to see who it was. “Hey, Brenda, what's up?” Brenda Wilkins was the junior marketing director.
“Hey, did you forget there's a meeting happening in like two minutes?” Brenda asked.
Laney groaned. “Crap, I was so caught up in what I was doing I did kind of forget,” she admitted. She secured her computer and quickly left her office. By the time she and Brenda reached the conference room everyone else was already there. She took a seat close to the door and turned her attention to the front of the room where Maxwell Griffin, founder and CEO of the company, stood.
“Thank you all for coming. I know you're each very busy, we've had a growth spurt in several areas, so I appreciate you taking the time out to be here today. I want to start this meeting by saying I appreciate all the hard work each and every one of you has put into GlobeNet Solutions. Your drive and determination have helped to propel us to the top of the market. That said, I have been struggling with a decision for some time. Mainly, I've been letting my pride get in the way, but it's time I stop doing that. I've decided that it's time for me to step down as CEO. Starting today, I will be handing the reigns over to my son, Maddox. I will miss working with all of you, but I know that you will continue to strive to be the best and I look forward to seeing where GlobeNet goes from here. Everyone, I'd like to introduce you to your new CEO, Maddox Griffin.”
All eyes went to the door that led to the large office that was attached to the conference room. When Maddox Griffin stepped into the room Laney felt like someone had hit her with a sledge hammer. It was suddenly hard to breathe. She knew that face well. She knew how those gray eyes darkened with desire, knew how soft those lips were, knew how those strong hands felt caressing her body. Her world was suddenly turned upside down and she had to force herself to stay in her seat as Maxwell brought Maddox around the table to meet each member of the leadership team.
“Son, I'd like you to meet one of the leadership stars of GlobeNet. Our Senior Marketing Director, Delaney Nichols. She's been with us four and a half years and she quickly moved up the ladder by proving herself driven and dedicated to the company.”
The name Delaney Nichols struck a chord in him. He'd known a Laney Nichols, once, about five years ago. She was the one woman he'd struggled to forget, and failed. He'd considered tracking her down, more than once, but what was he going to say? 'Sorry to bother you but that summer we spent together was amazing and I can't stop thinking about you. Oh, by the way, I lied about who I was, my bad.' Yeah, because that would go over well. So he did the only thing he could do; he tried to move on. The woman had her face averted until they were introduced. When she turned to look at him it took every ounce of willpower he had to not embarrass the hell out of himself. He knew those green eyes and that perfect bow of a mouth. He remembered the way it looked after he'd kissed her breathless.
Still, he had to remain cool and professional. Shit. How was he going to get through this without fucking things up? Would she mention already knowing him but under a different name? “Senior Marketing Director in less than five years? That's very impressive, Miss Nichols,” he finally said.
Laney gave herself a mental shake and forced a cordial smile to her lips. “Thank you, Mr. Griffin. It's nice to meet you. I'm sure the company will go far with you at the helm. If you'll excuse me, I really need to get back to my office. I'm working on the marketing campaign for our recent acquisition and it needs to be finalized by the end of the day.”
“Of course,” Maddox said with a nod. He would have to go find her office as soon as he could get away from there.
“Maxwell, I'm sorry to see you go. It's been an honor working with you, sir,” she said to the older Griffin before she turned on her heel and left as quickly as she could without looking like she was running away.
Maddox watched her go before he had to turn his attention to the remaining heads of the various departments, By the time everyone was finally gone and his father had returned to the office to finish clearing out his things, nearly two hours had passed. Maddox hoped Laney was still in her office.
Laney held it together until she reached her office. Once her door was closed she started to shake. How in the hell was she going to work every day with him? How was she supposed to keep things professional given their sordid history? She closed her eyes and took a few deep breaths.
As her panic subsided she felt anger take it's place. Maxwell was so proud of his precious son, she wondered what he would think if he knew how much of a lying bastard he was. Would he be so proud if he knew his son went around making up fake identities and charming women into bed? She contemplated, for just a moment, marching back to the conference room and calling him out for what he did five years ago. Then she dismissed the idea. If she did that she would have to admit she'd been conned by him and she wasn't willing to do that.
With a frustrated sigh, Laney pushed her troubled thoughts aside and went back to work. She would deal with the past later. This marketing campaign had to be completed so she could get out of there.
Maddox made his way to Laney's office and was glad to find her still there. Most of the employees had already gone home to get an early start on their holiday weekend. It was Memorial Day weekend, a time of year when most people had big cookouts with their families. He wasn't entirely sure she would still be there when he arrived but he was glad she was. Taking a deep breath to calm his nerves, he lifted his hand and knocked on her door.
Laney was just finishing up and forwarding her work when the knock came. “Come in,” she said without thinking.
Maddox stepped inside and closed the door behind him. “I'm glad you're still here. We need to talk.”
Laney's head snapped up and her eyes narrowed at him. “We have nothing to talk about, Colin,” she said, stressing the fake name he'd given her five years ago.
Maddox flinched a little. “I guess I deserve that.”
“You think?” Laney countered. “Is your father aware of your proclivity to lie to women while charming them into bed? Something tells me he wouldn't be quite so proud of you if he did. He might not even trust you to run his company.” She knew she sounded bitter but she didn't care.
“It's not like that, Laney. Please, just hear me out,” Maddox replied.
Laney rose gracefully from her chair. “I'm sorry, Mr. Griffin, but I was just getting ready to leave. I have someplace I need to be so you'll have to excuse me,” she said. She didn't want to hear his lies or excuses.
Maddox knew he couldn't force her to stay there and talk to him so he stepped out of the office ahead of her. “I'll expect you in my office first thing Monday morning. We will discuss this,” he told her. His voice brooked no arguments.
Laney felt like throwing something at him but refrained. “Fine.” she responded and headed for the elevators. This was a damn nightmare.
Maddox watched her go. He knew she was angry, he knew he'd hurt her by not telling her the truth five years ago, but he was determined to fix it one way or another.
There is a prologue to the story but I thought Chapter One would be a nice bit of a tease for y'all.