Chapter 2

Tick, Tick, Tick. 

The sound of my watches hands ticking by were the only sound I could hear right now. My office was on the top floor of ELH Firm's corporate high rise and is located in NYC, a bustling constant source of noise, so the windows are of course soundproof.

A gentle knock on my closed office door tore me away from the anxious thoughts that had begun to make their way into my mind. 

"Lana? Your fathers here", Evan said softly as he stepped into the room.

"Right, I'll be there in a minute"

Evan shut the door behind him as I made my way over to the ceiling length windows that wrapped around the entire building. 

I had been in many a presentation, both presenting and sitting in, but whenever my father attended one, it made me nervous. He usually only sat in for our most important clients, but with talks of his retirement soon approaching and rival companies attempting to poach our clients, I couldn't help but feel his presence was meant to intimidate me into not messing anything up. 

Taking one last deep breath I straightened my skirt and made my way out of my office and towards the presentation room. 

** Two hours later ** 

As the presentation room began to clear, my nerves had once again subsided and were pushed away to the back of my mind, where they would stay dormant for the foreseeable future, I hoped. 

The presentation was a success, even the board was impressed, who might I add was not attending as far as I knew. My heart almost flew out of my chest as I watched them file into the room one by one. 

My father was as emotionless as ever, though he grunted a "Good job" in my direction before following the other board members out of the room, no doubt for a scotch in their private lounge. 

My staff looked at me, their body language was rigid and awkward as they looked anxious to leave. 

"You're dismissed", I said with a wave as I walked out of the room. 

As I sat behind my desk, a sigh of relief washing over me, Evan snuck in before my door had the chance of slamming itself.

"What's that stupid look for?", I asked.

"Well, the presentation went well and it's over now so that means we can go for that drink you agreed to"

"I never agreed to any such thing, and besides it's barely past lunchtime"

"Exactly, that means we are already running behind and should have started as soon as we woke up"

I rolled my eyes in response and began to type away at the emails that had accumulated during my absence.

"Oh and by the way, would it kill you to thank the team?"

"Thank them for what? For doing their jobs, which they do get paid for you know", I said as I frowned at my screen. 

"Frosty as usual, even when daddy dearest is pleased", Evan sighed, "Now about that drink-", Evans work cellphone interrupted him as it began to ring. 

"Yes, he's here? Well send him up for goodness sakes", Evan shook his head as he ended the call, "Your replacement accountant is here, and you might want to think about replacing the reception staff while you're at it, they're complete bimbos if you ask me"

"You're just jealous about that intern frothing over them and not you"

"I am not"

"Mmm-hmm", was all I could manage to let out as I smirked at Evans reddening face.

"And by the way, the lot of them being called into HR for inappropriate workplace relationships also had nothing to do with me"

I chuckled as Evan began to rant. He only stopped once a knock sounded on my office door.

"Uh sorry", a males voice called from behind the slightly opened door, "they told me I would probably find you here, Evan?"

"And now they're sending people to your office?", Evan looked as if someone had just spoilt the ending of the notebook for him. 

"Relax, I wanted to meet our new accountant after the last buffoon we had. I swear I'm this close to sitting in on the HR interviews myself and screening everyone that walks through the door"

"Come in", Evan spoke to the door while still muttering away about the reception staff.

As the man walked through the door, I lost all train of thought. 

If I could describe him in one word, that would be breathtaking

A man of  5'11, possibly 6'0 stepped into my office. His olive skin glowed against his dress clothes and his dark chocolate eyes caught mine immediately. He stared at me with such an intensity, it was as if we were the only two people in the room, in the whole building for that matter. His dark mop hair was brushed aside, and his tongue peeked out to wet his full lips. 

"Noah Chaplain, is it?", Evan asked, but I could barely hear him. 

"Yeah", Noah cleared his throat but kept his eyes trained onto mine, "pleasure to meet you".

Was that an accent I could detect?

"Lovely. Well as you're now aware I'm Evan, executive assistant to our COO, Lana Harris".

I stood from my seat as the stranger, Noah, approached my desk. 

I reached out my hand to meet his extended one, "Lana", was all I managed to say. 

I was completely mesmerised by him. I could hear muffled talking in the background, but I tuned everything out somehow and continued to return his intense stare. 

A warm feeling spread throughout my body, one that was strong enough to melt all of the ice inside me away. I couldn't remember the last time I felt like this towards a man. I swallowed hard as I became aware of the burning feeling that had erupted on my cheeks. 

"Lana? Lana!"

I was pulled from my trance by Evans shrill cries.

"What, sorry?"

"I was saying I'll be back at 4:50 pm to escort you to that meeting we discussed earlier", Evan eyed me suspiciously and I absently nodded. 

Truth be told I didn't know what he meant, but I didn't care. I sat back down with a sigh as I watched our newest accountant leave the room...

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