The Sheikh and the Virgin Secretary(Desert Rogues, Book 10)(12) by Susan Mallery
His dark eyes revealed nothing of his thoughts.
“Shh.” He pressed his fingers to her mouth. “It’s late. I’ll have Arnold take you home.”
He shook his head and kissed her cheek. “I’ll see you at the office. I have a business dinner tomorrow night, but I would like to take you out Wednesday evening.”
“I’d like that, too.”
She would. Not just because of how she felt when he kissed her but because she enjoyed spending time with him. But what had happened tonight?
He escorted her out to the limo before she could figure out how to ask. As she leaned back in the soft leather for the drive home, she closed her eyes and consoled herself with the thought that there would be more. Much more. Three months was a long time and anything could happen.
Kiley wore her favorite silk blouse to work the next day. It was cobalt blue and suited her coloring. She figured she needed all the confidence she could get after the previous night.
What had happened? How could she have reacted so strongly to Rafiq’s kisses? She could accept that she’d enjoyed his company, but what about the rest of it? Less
than a week ago she’d planned to marry Eric and live with him for the rest of her life.
Maybe it was a post-wedding reaction. She’d been so focused on the path her life was supposed to take. When it hadn’t, she’d been set adrift, carried by a current she couldn’t control. She was confused, and Rafiq was a familiar and trusted haven.
Okay, that might explain her emotional reaction to him, but what about the sexual one? She’d been so intent on wanting revenge that she hadn’t thought past that. She hadn’t considered the reality of actually sleeping with him. If she had, she never would have had the courage to talk to him about her being his mistress.
Yesterday she would have assumed she would simply grit her teeth and get through the sex part because it was expected. Now she thought she might be the one hurrying things along in that department.
Which was not like her at all. She’d been comfortable being a virgin for twenty-five years. Why wasn’t she more apprehensive about making love with Rafiq?
When no answer popped into her head, she decided to forget the question and concentrate on work. After making coffee and taking a few calls, she settled down to edit a report one of the staff members had put together. She’d barely finished the first page when Rafiq walked in.
“Good morning,” he said as he walked by her desk.
It was the same greeting they always exchanged, only, this time she was hyperaware of him. She could sense the movement of his body, feel his gaze on her. She felt hot and bewildered and shy and not sure what to do with her hands.
“I left the messages on your desk,” she murmured as she rose. “I’ll bring in coffee.”
The familiar routine should have comforted her, but it didn’t. Suddenly everything was awkward. Just twelve hours before, she’d been in Rafiq’s arms as they kissed. She’d wanted him with a passion that had surprised her. How on earth was she supposed to forget all that and discuss business?
She poured his coffee and carried it into his office, along with her notepad and a pen. She set the cup on the table and took her usual seat across from his desk.
He’d already removed his suit jacket and settled behind his desk. He studied the messages, then returned two to her.
“Schedule meetings for next week,” he said. “An hour each. They’ll want more.
Tell them no.”
She made notes. “You have a lunch meeting today.”
He glanced at his schedule and nodded. “The reserve report is due this morning.”
“I’ve already told the mail room to send it up to me.”
They discussed business for a few more minutes, then Rafiq leaned back in his chair and looked at her. “I would like to take you shopping tomorrow night,” he said.
She clutched her notepad. “I don’t understand.”
“You will need new clothes. There is the fund-raiser Friday night and several other social events coming up.”
She’d never shopped with a man before. She didn’t think men ever liked to shop with women. Or anyone, for that matter.
“I can shop on my own,” she said. “You don’t have to—”
“I want to,” he said, cutting her off. “Plus, I can explain what will be required for the various events.” He smiled. “Believe me, I will enjoy the experience.”
“Okay. If you say so.”
“I do. Also, I thought we would want to go away for a long weekend in a month or so. Where would you like to go?”
A trip? Just the two of them? Pleasure filled her at the thought. “I’d like that. But I haven’t been many places so anywhere would be exciting for me.”
“Paris?” he asked.
She blinked. “Wow. Sure. I’d been thinking more on the lines of somewhere within driving distance, but Paris is good.”
She grinned. “Hey, maybe you should surprise me.”
“I will. You have a passport?”
“Uh-huh. In my sock drawer.” It was nearly three years old and every single page was untouched.
There was a moment of silence and Kiley realized she should leave. She gathered her pad and pen, stood and walked to the door. When she reached it, she turned back.
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