four

Matthias POV

I hadn't been able to think of anything else except for my father's demands. I would lose everything. He hadn't given me a choice. He was making me marry someone I couldn't possibly love.

In his attempt to give me that happiness he was convinced I was missing out on, he was damning me to a miserable life of being trapped in a marriage I didn't want.

I felt physically ill.

The stress over what had to be done was disrupting my ability to think straight. No matter how much I tried to think of anything else, everything seemed to come back to my father's will.

Going home, I realized I could soon be out of a job.

Sitting behind my desk reminded me it could all be gone in nine months. I felt like my entire life was about to crumble beneath me.

....

The morning passed in a blur.

I barely remembered the meetings, only the mention of things being shuffled around, and my earlier appointment would be later in the day.

By lunchtime, I was feeling like a frazzled mess and needed to get out of the office for a bit.

I called Zach, and when he answered, I said, "Let's get out of here for lunch today."

"Your treat?"

I scoffed. "Sure, it might be the last time I can treat."

"I'll meet you in thirty. I'm starving."

"Of course you are. Laying around all day must be exhausting."

He chuckled. "I'm not alone."

I hung up the phone, shaking my head.

The man would never know what it was like to need to get out of bed early and go to work. He had never had a job or needed one.

He had been born wealthy, and his father had no qualms about letting Zach do as he pleased with the money.

I arrived at the upscale Italian restaurant I favored and was quickly escorted to a table. I debated ordering a cocktail but kept it clean with a soda instead.

When Zach arrived, he looked as if he had stepped directly out of the shower and into the restaurant.

"You could have taken a minute to dry off," I said.

He grinned. "My shower took a little longer than I planned."

The look on his face told me his shower had not been a solo one. "Anyone, I know?"

He shrugged. "It's not even someone I know."

I rolled my eyes. "Nice."

"So, where were you? I called you a couple of times yesterday. I blame you for what happened last night."

"What happened?"

"I had to go out by myself, and that's how I ended up with whoever she was," he said with a smile.

"How is that my fault again?"

"Because I didn't have you there to tell me it wasn't a good idea."

The waitress came by, got our orders, and drifted away.

"I had an emergency meeting with Bob, my dad's attorney, yesterday," I explained.

"Did he remind you the clock was ticking or offer you a solution to the problem?"

"Neither," I said. "He made my life far more complicated than it should be. Not only do I lose the inheritance if I don't marry but I also lose my company.''

Zach lowered his glass of soda to the table and looked at me. "No shit?"

I nodded. "No shit."

Zach shook his head and let out a long whistle. "Damn. That is crazy! He was really serious about you getting married. It's bizarre."

I scoffed. "No kidding. Now, I'm stuck."

"What do you mean you're stuck?"

"I have to figure out what I'm going to do and fairly quickly," I said.

Zach was shaking his head. "There is no figuring anything out. It's already decided."

I groaned. "I know. I just keep thinking I have a choice and have this big decision to make."

"Or..." Zach said, that familiar gleam in his eye that said he had one of his wild ideas.

"Or?" I asked, worried about what he would say.

"Or you hire a woman to be your fiancée until you get your inheritance. Once you get your money, you break off the engagement, playing up the broken heart to make it look legit and all your problems are solved."

He smiled as if he had just figured out the solution to all my problems.

I paused to think about it. It wasn't a terrible idea. "That might work," I mused."

Our orders came in within fifteen minutes of waiting.

We dig into our food as Zach was giving me some ideas on how should I handle this hunt for my so-called fiance.

I did feel better now that I had at least one option on the table.

After lunch, I headed back to my office and gathered my files for the interview with Josephine.

I felt bad canceling last minute, but, I was a bit glad she didn't mind of rescheduling the interview with me.

I couldn't stop thinking about her either.

She was on my mind the whole entire day, of course, I had to stalk her see what's her life about.

I sat down behind my desk, feeling ready to tackle the world before Lena buzzed to let me know my next appointment had arrived.

I smoothed my hair back, straightened my tie and quickly ran my hand over my mouth, making sure there was no evidence of my lunch. I didn't bother checking the calendar to see who it was.

A soft knock preceded the door opening, and the most beautiful woman on the planet stepped through my door.

I somehow managed to find my manners and walked toward her, extending my hand.

"Matthias Lekas."

I was drawing a complete blank on her name and the reason for the meeting.

My eyes were drinking in every detail, from the thick black hair falling around her shoulders in soft curls to the pretty brown eyes framed by gorgeous dark eyelashes.

''Josephine Daniels,'' she replied. "But I go by Josie."

"Nice to meet you," I said, trying to be cool but knowing I was failing miserably.

I had a feeling she was used to knocking men off their game. I was struggling not to worship at her feet.

I had seen plenty of beautiful women in my life, but the one standing before me was different.

She had an ethereal glow about her that I couldn't ignore. She was perfect in every way.

"It's nice to meet you," she said, her soft hand in mine.

I took a deep breath, pulled myself together, and gestured for her to sit down in the chair across from my desk. She sat, the skirt she had on rising a little to reveal a section of the thigh."

A brief image of those legs wrapped around me while I drove into her flashed into my head, nearly causing an instant erection.

As I stared at her, a thought popped into my head. "Josie, are you married?" I asked.

Her mouth dropped open, and her eyes widened in surprise. I knew it was an inappropriate question, but I didn't care.

What I was thinking about proposing blew appropriate right out of the water. I would wait.

I didn't want to have her running out of my office screaming just yet.

I needed to feel her out and learn a bit more about her first.

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Julz Sabelita
it was a good story ...
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