The Sheikh and the Virgin Secretary(Desert Rogues, Book 10)(13) by Susan Mallery
“I had a good time last night.”
“As did I.”
She bit her lower lip, then smiled. “I thought it would be weird, you know? But it was fun. We had a lot to talk about. I didn’t expect that. You’re great to work for, but honestly, I never really thought of how you’d be outside of the office. You’re nice.”
She held in a laugh. “You don’t want me to think of you as nice?”
“Because you’re macho and a prince?”
“Something like that.”
“Then I won’t mention the nice thing to anyone else.”
“I would appreciate that.”
After work on Wednesday, Rafiq escorted Kiley to the limo. She hesitated a second before sliding onto the seat.
“What’s wrong?” he asked as she shifted several times instead of reaching for her seat belt.
“Nothing serious,” she said with a sigh, then grabbed the seat belt. “I’m nervous. It’s not a big deal. Right? I mean it’s shopping. I’ve shopped before.
Not with you, though.”
He smiled. “I assure you the experience will not be that unfamiliar.”
“I wish I could believe you,” she murmured as she glanced around at the limo.
“You have a regular car, don’t you? I’ve seen you in it.”
“Yes. I usually drive myself to and from work. However, the trunk is small and there isn’t a back seat, so I thought this would be better.”
“It certainly made an impression on my neighbors this morning.”
He supposed being picked up in a vehicle like this wasn’t the normal morning routine for those who lived in her apartment building.
“I thought it would be easier for us to drive together today so we would have one car for this evening,” he said.
She nodded. “I agree. It’s a great plan.” She angled toward him. “It’s just that sometimes the difference between your world and my world is pretty startling.
You’re a prince.”
“We have already discussed that.”
“I know. It was fine when you were just my boss, but now, it’s totally strange.
I’m used to seeing princes in movies, mostly as cartoons. Now you’re here, in real life.” She glanced toward the privacy partition that was in place and lowered her voice. “It’s hard to get my mind around. In theory, I could see you naked.”
“I hope it is more than in theory.”
“You know what I mean.”
He did and her concerns amused him. Unlike other women who only wanted him on their arm to show off what they had managed to catch, Kiley wasn’t sure she wanted him at all. He was going to have to change her mind about that.
To that end, he reached for her hand and lifted it to his mouth. As she watched, he gently bit the fleshy pad below her thumb, then licked the center of her palm.
“You worry too much,” he said as he laced their fingers together. “Think about shopping.”
He couldn’t be sure, but he thought her breathing might have increased slightly.
She shook her head as if to clear it, then faced front.
“Okay,” she said. “Shopping. How exactly does that work?”
“I wouldn’t have thought this was your first time in a store.”
She rolled her eyes. “That’s not what I mean. This is my first time shopping with you. I know what you’ve done with your other women. I’ve seen the bills.”
“Then what questions do you have?”
“Just that I don’t really wear a lot of expensive clothes. I’m not sure that I need them.”
“The events we will attend require you to dress a certain way. It is my decision to go and therefore the clothes are my responsibility. I know how much I pay you and while the salary is more than generous, it does not cover expenses like these.”
She looked at him and narrowed her gaze. “Excuse me? A more than generous salary? I earn every penny of that. I work really hard and I’m good at my job and…” She stopped and pressed her lips together.
“Yes?” he promoted.
“You were teasing me.”
“That was my original plan.”
“Sorry. Okay, so you buy me really expensive clothes. Can we return them in three months so you get your money back?”
“No. You will keep the clothes. Another mistress perk.”
She leaned back against the seat. “Except for my father, no man has ever bought me clothes. I’m not in this for the money, Rafiq.”
“I’m aware your motives are far more noble.”
She considered that. “Is revenge noble?”
“I come from a long line of cruel warriors. It is to me.”
“An interesting way of looking at things, but okay. I just want to be sure you understand why I’m doing this.”
He leaned toward her and touched her cheek. “I understand completely.”
“I don’t care about keeping the clothes.”
“Perhaps you will change your mind when you see them.”
“Unlikely. But I appreciate you doing all this for me.”
“A perk,” he reminded her
“What are your perks?” she asked.
“I don’t actually consider myself a perk. I’m a sure thing, which may or may not be a plus. I’m not experienced. For all you know, I’ll be crappy in bed.”
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