Billionaire CEO and computer whiz Noah Frellish is a king among geeks. Women are attracted to his money, but he’d love to meet someone who’s actually interested in him. When he helps the sweet and sexy Michelle Kolson with a printing problem, she confuses him for a help desk technician. Noah knows he should clear up this case of mistaken identity, but would she still like him if she knew he was the boss?
Michelle thinks life in Chicago is perfect, as is the whirlwind romance with her smoking-hot coworker. When she unexpectedly finds her job on the chopping block and the man she fell headfirst into bed with running the company, will she abandon her dreams?
Noah must convince the small-town girl to stay in the big city—and that he really is the man she fell for.[/note]
“These don’t look like any chickpeas I’ve had before.” She peered
down at her falafel wrap. Steam curled up from the soft pita.
“They’re ground up, then fried into balls. Try it. It’s delicious.”
“I’m kind of a meat-and-potatoes gal.”
“Hazard of growing up in Iowa?” Sark asked.
“Probably.” She took a big bite of the wrap and leaned over
the table as it started to come apart in her hands. “Whoa. Messy.”
Sark handed her a napkin. “Yeah, they can be. Hold it tight on
the bottom. Or I can grab a plate and you can use a fork.”
“No. I want to eat it properly.” The salty and nutty flavors
exploded on her tongue, accompanied by the refreshing bite of
cucumbers and tomato. “It’s delicious.”
“How did the meeting go today? Are people really upset?”
Sark had barely taken any bites of his falafel.
“How do you think people took it? I can’t believe LiteWave is
laying people off. If I ever see Noah Frellish, I’m going to give him
a piece of my mind. How dare he run a company where people
are hired and fired a week later? It’s shameful.”
Sark looked stricken, and she reached out to squeeze his hand
resting on the table. “You’re sweet to be upset, but don’t worry.”
He opened his mouth, probably to apologize, so she rushed in
to stop him. “Seriously, it’ll be okay. And I’ve thought of the silver
lining in all this.”
He paused with the straw of his soda halfway to his sensuous
lips. “What’s that?”
“I’ll have more time to spend with you.” As soon as the words
were out of her mouth, she wished for a time machine to go back
and retract them. Instead of looking amused or intrigued by her
offer, Sark looked ill and choked on the soda coming through the
“Sark, I’m joking,” she hastened to say, inwardly cringing. It
was turning into a crap day. First she was laid off, and now she’d
made a fool of herself in front of a man she was attracted to. Nice
one. “It’s totally fine if you’re not interested.”
He grabbed her wrist, nearly making her drop the falafel.
“Oh, I’m interested. Trust me, I’m interested.” His finger stroked
the inside of her wrist, causing shivers to roll down her spine. “Just
a bit shocked you’re able to joke about being fired this soon. I
can’t imagine how hard being unemployed must be. I wish—” He
broke off, looking like he wanted to say something, but changed
the subject. “How about dessert? You have seven minutes left.”
She placed a quarter of her remaining falafel back on the foil.
“I’m nearly stuffed, but I can find room for dessert. You didn’t let
me pay for my own lunch, so it’s my treat for dessert. I insist.”
They left the falafel restaurant and she dragged him to a
newspaper stand anchoring the sidewalk corner. “We should have
time for this. Choose anything you want, but I highly recommend
these.” She picked up the small brown bag of M&M’s and held
them as if they were the finest thing on the menu in a five-star
He grinned and accepted the bag. She grabbed another for
herself and dropped two dollars on the counter. They strolled
back to the office, sucking back the chocolate rainbow pellets.
“Don’t tell my mother I’m eating these,” he said.
“What, why not? Is your mother a health food nut?” she
“Yup. She’s a nutritionist, and is fine with sweets now and then,
but goes crazy about anything with artificial colors. According to
her they’re poison. Luckily for Mars, their poison tastes awesome.”
“What about at Halloween—did she let you trick or treat
when you were a kid?”
“Yes, but I had to trade in all my candy for other prizes.” He
shrugged. “I was only bothered by it at my birthday in school.
All the other moms brought in supermarket cupcakes with cool
frosting or Superman rings on top. My mom brought in cupcakes,
but they were home-baked and always had a vegetable or two
sneaked in. Imagine explaining to third-graders that the green
thing in the cupcake was zucchini.”
She laughed. “Oh, no. I’m sorry.”
He shrugged and ate a handful of M&M’s. “It’s okay. And now
that I’m older, I see her point. There are some scary chemicals in
our processed foods these days.”
They both looked down at the small brown bags for a long,
silent second, then laughed in unison as they continued to eat
As they approached LiteWave’s office building, Michelle said,
“Do you know how I could find another job within the company?
This is my first experience with big business, and I’m not sure how
to go about it. You seem to know everybody.”
He frowned, looking skyward, then back at her. “What would
you want to do? If you could have your dream job, what would it
She loved that he was asking about her dreams and wished
they had time to cozy up and share more, but she only had a few
minutes to spare before she needed to get back to work. “Well, I
used to do all the promotions and signs for my parents’ store, so
I’d love to work in the marketing department.” She blushed. “Of
course this isn’t at all similar.”
“No, it is. Just on a different scale. Especially since we target a
global audience, not a local one, we have to consider the Internet
in our marketing plans.”
“‘We,’ ‘our’? It’s more than a job for you, isn’t it?”
He looked startled and dug through the M&M’s pack as if
looking for a long-extinct light-brown one. “Doesn’t everyone feel
loyalty and ownership of their company, especially one where we
get stock options?”
She laughed. “I’ve only been here a week. How long have you
worked at LiteWave?”
“Oh, since the beginning.” He paused for a moment. “I’m
gonna find you in a month and ask how you feel about the
“Sure, you do that. Oh wait, I’ll be gone in a month.”
“Don’t talk like that.” He furrowed his brow, then looked up
suddenly. “I know about one possible job opening. As soon as we
get back to the office, send an e-mail to the marketing director.
Her name is Casey Harper.”
“I can do that?” Michelle asked doubtfully. “Isn’t Ms. Harper
“Sure, but not as busy as she will be in a few weeks if she
doesn’t find a temp fill-in for her administrative assistant going on
maternity leave. Trust me. She’ll want to hear from you, especially
since you’ll be showing initiative.”
They reached the glass and metal entry doors. The lobby
teemed with employees returning from lunch. Sark froze. “I
remembered I promised to pick up a…smoothie for my coworker.
He had to work the lunch shift, so I’ll get him some food.”
How sweet of him. “Okay, bye. Thanks again for lunch.”
Impulsively, she leaned up and grabbed him for a tight hug. Her
chest met surprisingly taut muscles.
He returned the hug, then stepped back and smiled.
“Remember: Casey Harper. Send her that e-mail. A job won’t
come find you, but I know you’ll find a job.”
By day, Lynne Silver lives the suburban soccer mom life; volunteering with the PTA, doing laundry and working. By night she enters the sensuous world of alpha males and passionate heroines.
She calls the nation’s capital home and lives in an old fixer-upper with her husband and their two sons. When not writing romance, she reads it. Lots of it. Over and over and over again, preferably with a bag of M&Ms in hand.