The Billionaires Love Curves 2By: Cj Howard
“Lacey listen to me!”
“No! You have no reason to say these things, the only thing you're trying to do here is make me unhappy again. The way you did when we were dating.”
He paused for a beat before answering this.
“You were unhappy when we were dating?” The tone of his voice hadn't softened but it was lower.
“Not unhappy, Nate. Not if I'm being totally honest. But I was dissatisfied. You know how I felt about all the secrecy. With Cole, that's not an issue anymore. That's the way relationships are supposed to be. With all your brains, looks and your money, you don't know the first thing about making a girl happy. You're older than me, you should have known better.”
“And you want to tell me that Cole is so Goddam mature, a man of the world?”
“He treats me right, Nate. He's even talking about taking me to see his parents.”
“What do you mean, already? We've been seeing each other for months now. The relationship lasted longer than you and I did. And what's wrong if he feels that it's time for us to move things along? He's mature enough to handle it.”
Nate walked around to Lacey's side of the desk. He didn't come up close but he walked past her, back and then forth, as though he was trying for the last time to find the words that would change her mind about Cole.
“Before you go,” Nate said. He was just to the side of her but looked down instead of straight at her.
“Ask yourself why, Lacey. Ask yourself why he's in such a rush to get you under his control.”
“His control?” She spun around and it made him look up to face her. “Is that what you think relationships are, Nate? One person trying to get control over the other? If you do I pity you. Is that why you didn't want people to know about us, because you thought I wanted you under my control? Well, if anyone was under anyone's control, it was me, and you know what – I hated it.”
“Like you hated me?”
“I never said that. Why aren't you listening? I felt manipulated, used, and so I was under your control. I did everything just to keep you happy and compromising myself in the process. But that happens when you love someone. Sometimes it takes time to see people for who they really are.”
“I'm telling you now, Lacey, you're not seeing that man for who he is.”
“Really? Well the way I felt with you isn't the way I'm feeling now with Cole.”
“Stop saying that name in my office.” His cheeks flushed and he stepped away from Lacey.
“You're the one who brought it up. And, like I say, Nate, it's none of your business. Now – is that all?”
“I guess it is.”
Nate walked back to his chair, Lacey felt awkward and began to make for the door.
“I'm only telling you this for your own good, Lacey.” Nate's voice seemed to soften.
She turned back, shaking her head.
“For my own good? Really? I think this is all for your own good, Nate. Don't think Cole never told me about your past.” She raised an eyebrow and looked down at him.
“About our past? I was waiting for this. What did he say?” Nate began to bristle again.
Lacey took an audible breath in, sighing as though this was the last thing she wanted to say.
“Look, Nate, I know all about how you stole his idea and made all those millions of dollars from running with them like they were your own and making a success of Holden-Taylor.”
Nate sat quietly.
Lacey continued. “But don't worry, your sordid little secret is safe with me. Cole told me just once and never brought it up again. You see, our relationship is about us and what we do. It doesn't have anything to do with you and Cole moved on a long time ago since then. I know you were young and he accepts that you were ambitious.
But he's made his money and he's getting on with his life, the way I just want to get on with mine. I do a good job here and I like working here. This was always my dream and you know it. Just leave us alone and let us get on with our lives.”
“Lacey, you're a brilliant journalist, you've got a great future here at Holden-Taylor...”
“Are you about to threaten to take my job away if I don't stop seeing Cole? What is this, the Wild West or something now? Are you about to challenge him to a gunfight at noon if we don't stop seeing each other?”
“You really don't know me at all, do you Lacey?”
“And maybe you don't know me. Look, I'd like to think that your concerns for me are genuine and you really think that what you're saying is for my own good. I appreciate your concerns, but you and I are over, Nate, get used to it. I'm happy now, so just respect my private life.”