The minute Andrew met Zoe he wanted her with a fierce urgency. Despite Zoe's warning bells, she fell hard for him. Being complete opposites hasn't made their relationship easy, but they both knew letting each other go wasn't an alternative. Now building a life together, obstacles will prove that there's still so much they have to get through, as a couple and as individuals. Will their relationship thrive in the hurricane or will it lie in ruins?
Drama, passion, romance and so much more in the sequel to Huracan.
Patricia, my intern, looked at me intently while taking down some of the things I was telling her on her sleek iPad. We were on our way to a meeting with a new client and I wanted to be on top of my game for this particular one. I snickered inwardly, damn the boss for laying this one me. "Read through it." I said to her and she quickly went over my notes and points and I nodded. "Perfect." I said, satisfied.
I go over everything in fine detail, that's what makes me good at my job. And its because I'm good at my job, that I don't get anxious, but I was surprised to find a twinge of nervousness in me. No, I'm not nervous...just apprehensive, I thought to myself, which is completely natural in this peculiar situation. Patricia knew her place, knew what to say and when, its one of the things I like about her. But I could see she's just dying to ask me more about this.
I knew she'd given up when she looked at me, "So let me get this straight, our client is Wright Incorporated and your husband is the boss, so technically your husband is our client?" she asked. I sighed inwardly, "Yes, Patricia, my husband is our client." I said and I could see her stifle a smile. "I'm guessing you're not overjoyed about it." She said and a small smile graced the corner of my mouth. "No, I'm not." I said.
"Landing Wight Inc. is a huge deal, these guys are the best and demand the best, and of course you know that." My boss said to me when I tried to reason myself out of this. "I do."
I said calmly. "But..." "Mr. Wright will also expect nothing less and you are one of my best people." He added. "Thank you sir, but surely there's someone else who can handle this."
I said, and his brows furrow. "Unfortunately everyone is packed full, I know you just closed another client two weeks ago, so you have room for one more." He said.
I sighed, "With all due respect sir, you do know that my name is Zoe Wright, I 'am the CEO's wife." I said with an exasperated tone. Mr. Brooks nodded, "I understand this is a bit unusual for you, but I know you're professional and good at what you do." He said, "Besides, its not often we deal directly with the head honchos." He added with a smile. True, but Andrew is a hands on type of person, both in his business and personal life, which means it's most likely he'll be involved.
I walked out of his office knowing I don't have a leg to stand on. Wright Inc. is making waves in the investment world right now, of course Andrew is smart, he knows what to sign off on, what to drop, and when. I knew we were bound to cross paths sometime in future,
I just hoped I'd be far away when that happens. Yes I was good, but its bullshit that no one else was available for this deal. I work at Nixon Brooks, the biggest investment and consulting firm in the whole continent. We have hundreds of qualified Actuaries more than adequate for the task but no; it just had to be me.
I knew for sure that wasn't by chance, although he'd never admit it, but I know Andrew requested me in particular. Mr. Brooks is an intelligent man, he didn't get where he is by not capitalizing on good business when he sees it and Wright Inc. is a big fish in the pond. So I'm guessing when the boss of that company says jump he'd be too quick in saying how high. Andrew didn't tell me he'd approached my firm for the Pierce & Sons pursuit.
I didn't know until Mr. Brooks called me in and told me their proposal and that I was the woman on call. He and I got into it that night, well I did, he just calmly listened to me rant. He gave me one of his sexy smiles, "You do realize you're chastising a client?" he said and completely perplexed, I just scowled at him. "Okay look, Pierce & Sons is a big whale and if I'm going to capture it, I need a lethal team, you know there's no one better than Nixon Brooks." He said, "Yes we're good but why do I have to be the one in charge?" I said, He shrugged innocently, spreading his arms on the headrest.
"Don't look at me, I don't know. I told Mr. Brooks to give me his best people and he should, I'm paying him good money for his services." He said and yet again, lost for words I glared at him. He sighed and stood up, "Why does the prospect of working with me upset you?" he asked, "Normally I'd welcome the challenge of working with you." I said and he grinned, "Good, then what's the problem?" he asked.
I raised my eyebrows at him, "You're my husband!" I said and he leaned closer to me, "Come on, we're both professional enough to leave business outside that door and our relationship inside it." He murmured, when he got this close my anger simmered away. I knew he was right but still. He made a move to touch me and I slapped his hand away, refusing to cave.
He softly chuckled, "Eight years together and you're still as frisky as when I met you." He said, pulling me against him. "And you're still as overbearing." I said with a begrudging smile and he kissed me and just like that the row was over.
I shook my head slightly looking out the tinted window of my chauffeured Mercedes Benz while I absently played with my instantaneous diamond wedding ring.
Yes I'm a professional woman but I also know I'm a woman helplessly in love with Andrew Wright. How am I supposed to give a hundred and ten percent to my job when Andrew's gorgeous butt is there distracting me every step of the way? Hell, I can hardly take work home. But regardless of him, bagging a company as big as his would look good on my record and I do love a challenge.
To avoid any sort of hiccups I've prepared well, I do this all the time but even Patricia must've wondered why I was making extra provisions.
Our relationship is strictly professional so she hasn't met Andrew yet. With my last name in the company name, she was bound to put two and two together. The car stopped outside the Sandton head offices. I looked at the tall dark glass building, I'd only ever driven passed it on the rare occasions when Andrew and I rode together. The Nixon Brooks offices were not that far from here.
Martin opened my door and I smiled at him when a text came in and I chuckled inwardly when I saw it's from Kay, Good luck! It wrote with a condescending little smiley face accompanying it.
Oh shut up. I replied, since when does she wish me luck before a meeting with a client? She loved this, and she didn't have the decency to hide it. I briefly glanced at my cream sheath dress and black pumps. Satisfied that I look like I know my stuff. Patricia and I went up the steps and through the automatic doors, stepping into the sleek reception. I went to one of the two women behind the desk; she greeted me with a polite smile.
"Zoe Wright, Nixon Brooks." I told her and I saw a flash of surprise on her face when I said my name. She briefly glanced at my left hand and I could see the wheels turning in that blond head of hers and she gave her head a slight shake as she typed on her computer. I guess she concluded there's no way I'm married to the boss, just a coincidence.
I wasn't sure if I should feel offended by that.
"Ah yes, for a meeting at 10 am," She said, "Please take a seat, someone will be with you shortly." She said and I nodded, moving to sit on the plush lounge of the reception, decorated with the company's purple and blue colors. We were ten minutes early and it didn't take long before a woman approached us, I stood to shake her hand, we exchanged pleasantries and she introduced herself. Caroleen deLange, the project's admin lady.
"I hope you haven't been waiting all that long." She said as she led the way to the elevators. "No, I'm just early." I pointed out and she gave a small chuckle. We stopped on the 24th floor, the second last one. She didn't attempt at any small talk as she led the way. When we walked into a conference room there were people present, but much to my relief, no sign of Andrew. Caroleen introduced me to M.D who then took the reins to introduce me to everyone else.
The CFO and lawyer were also present, the rest were the team assigned to the Pierce & Sons project. Thankfully I wasn't made to feel weird, even though I'm positive everyone in this room knows who I 'am. "Now that we're all here, shall we begin?" The M.D said and I was pleasantly surprised, my husband wasn't going to be present in this meeting. The head coordinator stood up and begun her presentation.
It was about five minutes into the meeting when the conference doors opened and Andrew came gliding in. My heart sped up, an involuntary reaction I couldn't do anything about. Everyone stood when the MD did and shook his hand, they said a word or two we couldn't make out. He was wearing a black suit with my favorite tie--which I'm sure he did on purpose--he left while I was still asleep so I was seeing him for the first time today.
I guess I shouldn't feel too blitzed; I'm also wearing his favorite dress, well one of many. He gave me a polite smile extending his hand and I gave it my no nonsense shake. "Mr. Wright, I wasn't expecting you to be joining us." I said, and I could feel everyone's eyes on us now. "As you know I have a lot riding on this project. I asked for the best, so I wanted to see the best in action." He said and smiled politely at him. He give me a quick once over I'm sure everyone else missed, it would've been completely inappropriate had he not been my husband. He walked to the head of the conference table.
I took a deep breath and sat down with everyone else, hoping I have my wits about me.
"Looks like the CEO will be sitting in." The MD announced to everyone, I could see Patricia trying not to stare at Andrew, poor girl; she wasn't desensitized like the rest of us. "Pardon the interruption, please continue." He said to the coordinator who took a few seconds pause before continuing. Her voice was not as measured as it was before then I realized, its Andrew's sudden appearance that has her a little flustered.
I stifled a smile; clearly this is the first time she's ever had her boss' undivided attention. She wasn't on her side, for that to happen today of all days, in front of me no less.
Soon it was my turn to make my case, I stood up and made my presentation. Proposing what would be the correct course of action when approaching this project and how best to get control of Pierce & Sons. Patricia handed out Nixon Brooks files with the plan outlined.
I walked around the table a bit; I've found doing that keeps everyone's attention on me and gave me total command of the whole room.
I needed that especially when my husband's stormy hazel gaze was fixated on me. I only looked at him when it would be weird not to anymore.
The CFO and coordinator were the most vocal, asking questions and sometimes contradicting me. I was glad to find that they weren't afraid to challenge me just because I'm the boss' wife. Which made me feel more in my element; I wouldn't be able to do what I do without being able to argue my point with infallible accuracy.
Towards the end of my presentation Andrew was the one to take a swing at me, his points more technical than the others. Of course having also majored in Risk Management, he knows the processes. I didn't pay much attention to everyone else as I debated with him, but I couldn't help notice the coordinator. She was having trouble hiding the fact that she's happy my husband is giving me a hard time. I chuckled inwardly; this was for their benefit, I know Andrew, this was his way of telling them he wasn't going to give me any special treatment.
I showed him off anyway, I was the specialist and I tried not to smirk at him when he relented.
Soon the MD adjourned the meeting but not before Andrew looked at me and told me more than asked to have a word. I shook hands with the MD and CFO, told Patricia to wait for me in the lounge close to the elevators before following Andrew out. We walked in silence, and he gestured into a sizable corner office. I'd never been in here; it looked so Andrew, that I couldn't imagine his father in here too. I wondered if he'd taken a completely different office after him. Its nicest feature was the view of Sandton from two sides.
"You're good, I'm impressed." He said, glad to hear his professional tone still in tact. "Thank you." I replied likewise. I grew apprehensive again when he hit a button on his desk and the glass walls of his office frosted, blocking the view inside. "Please." He gestured for me to sit and I took one of the seats opposite him.
"I'm interested in you're method of approach." He said, "Pierce & Sons' stocks have dropped in the last year. We're in a position to strong arm them." He added.
I lifted my chin; "I believe you're familiar with the idea of amputating the arm in order to save the body Mr. Wright." I said, "That's what Pierce & Sons might do if we make a robust approach. Yes, they're vulnerable now, but they might sanction a few of their divisions, it will cost them a sizable percent of their average turnover." I said "But their stocks in other sectors will grow and yield just enough returns to keep them on the safe side when the market rises. That will make it extremely hard for you to gain a proper foothold." I added and Andrew paused a second, thinking about it then stood up from his office chair, came around to my side and leaned against his table.
He gave me a satisfied smile, "You've done your math." He said, "And you know yours." I added and we stared at each other. That all too familiar attraction crackling between us, "I look forward to more of your input." He said and I stood up shaking hands again and my heart sped up when he didn't let go of my hand. Oh he was standing way too close too.
"You are captivating, I couldn't tear my eyes away from you in that conference room." He said softly, "So beautiful, strong and intelligent." He added caressing my cheek with his other hand. Then I knew I wasn't talking to a client anymore, I was talking to my husband, who sounded like he wanted to devour me right there and then.
Damn him for putting me in this position, I wasn't strong enough to keep both of us in check when he does this.
"Andrew." I whispered, his sensuous mouth just inches from mine, and shamefully I wanted it so badly. "Please don't, we agreed." It was strictly business outside the corners of our home. He took a second before he lifted his head with a sharp intake of breath. "I know." He said, taking a step back. He gestured for me to go ahead of him and I hate how my legs felt like Jell-O. Then again its not everyday my gorgeous husband pops up to seduce me while on the job. He silently walked me to the elevators.
Patricia jumped to her feet when she saw us approaching. Andrew gave her an acknowledging nod before he faced me after pressing the elevator call button. "You'll be working more closely with the coordinator, she'll contact your people on how things with proceed onwards." He said to me, my client once more. I gave a brief nod, "I look forward to it." I said and the elevator pinged its arrival.
I followed Patricia inside and turned to face Andrew.