“So, what exactly does your business—”
“I need to work,” I said.
I felt her look over at me, and I forced myself not to look back.
“Then I suppose I’ll take a nap,” she said.
I started responding to emails and checking on certain things as Elizabeth leaned herself back. I had no idea how long I was staring at my phone, but the second I heard soft, even breaths coming across the aisle, I could no longer keep my eyes away from her. I tried not to stare at her as the hours passed. I attempted to get as much work done as I could. But she was too damn beautiful, and I had way too much champagne in my empty stomach.
It was going to be a very long week.
By the time we landed in Vienna, it was after midnight their time. I stretched myself a bit as the flight attendant gathered my things, and I walked behind Phillip to disembark the jet. There was a car already waiting for us, blacked out and sleek as the night sky of Vienna backdropped the airport we had descended into. I still felt groggy from the flight, but with each step I took toward the car, I grew excited. Awake. Alert. I hadn’t been in Vienna since my days at boarding school in Switzerland, and I couldn’t wait to take in all the familiar sights and smells.
I missed my former life. It enabled me to travel the world in first class at the drop of a hat. I missed having my father around. I missed indulging my sweet tooth with him. I missed watching him and my mother kiss under the Viennese sun as I sipped coffee on a bench beside them.
Now, I was lucky if I didn’t have to fly coach.
Being on Phillip’s private jet was decadent, much like the life I used to live. I hauled my things into the back of the car, watching as he bypassed me with his nose in his phone. Well, I guess I didn’t need to expect a gentlemanly demeanor from him during the week. I shut the trunk and slid in beside him, trying to keep up my poise while containing my excitement.
Phillip didn’t strike me as the type of man to get excited about anything.
Without a word uttered between anyone, the driver pulled off the tarmac. We traveled through streets I recognized and rushed by shops I used to shop in as a little girl. I smiled as I peered out the window at the darkened world behind the tinted windows of the SUV The partition was rolled down, and Phillip was typing away on his phone, doing whatever it was he did.
I ran through some of the information he had fed me on the plane about himself, trying to piece together who this man might be. I needed to be able to talk intelligently about him and act as if we were in love. If I’d read the file right, I was acting as his supposed fiancée. That came with an entirely different set of parameters for how I needed to address him, appear around him, and act with him.
But I didn’t have much to go on. Even after a nine-hour plane ride.
The car pulled into a very old, very expensive hotel I recognized immediately: Hotel Sans Souci Wien. I contained my excitement as it bubbled in my gut. I’d only been to this hotel once, and it was by far the best stay I’d ever had in the country. And even though Phillip was quiet and removed, he really was a looker.
I stole a glance at him as he started talking to the driver.
He had dark blond hair swooped meticulously to the side. He was tall, with long legs that sprawled out and comfortably occupied the space he demanded as his own. His suits were tailored to his body, allowing my eyes a peek of the lean muscle he had underneath the layers of expensive fabrics. He had on thick-framed glasses that hid his emerald-green eyes, and his long, dexterous fingers continuously rolled over his phone screen. His hands were large, his legs were strong, and his wingspan was easily double mine. His jawline looked as if it had been chiseled from marble, and his pouty lower lip jutted out whenever he was deep in concentration.
Maybe making some bonus cash with him wouldn’t be as distasteful as it usually was.
I enjoyed sex. I was an independent woman at the prime of her life. I loved it, actually. I loved experimenting with it and sweating during it. I enjoyed the sounds and the tastes and the memories it created. I considered myself a strong, independent woman, one who owned up to her faculties in life and never once shied away from things many men traditionally expected a woman of my stature to shy away from. But that didn’t mean having to pretend to be aroused with random rich men who wanted what they could pay for was enjoyable. In fact, it was the exact opposite