Her Russian Billionaires #3 NIKO

By: Susan Westwood



He stood, then left without shaking the man’s hand. He didn’t want to touch him again. The man was an ass. Even if his father and Destiny were having an affair, it was none of the man’s business. And if he was spreading that rumor around, the man might have to be disciplined; through Human Resources, of course, not by the vigilante justice that Nikolai would like to administer.

No, he’d do it by the book. There had to be a record of it.

Another day for this problem. He had the rest of the floor to talk to. If anyone else mentioned Destiny with his father, he’d have to look into it. As far as he knew, his father loved his stepmother. She worked in Human Resources, so the rumors must have gotten down to her.

Nikolai puzzled over it as he went through his day. What had been Martin’s point in saying something like that to him? Did he expect Nikolai would be tunnel buddies with his father? He shuddered for a moment. That was a creepy idea.

***

The end of the day was approaching and Destiny hadn’t seen Nikolai. Thankfully. He’d been talking to all of the executives today. She knew he was on the floor, but she hadn’t had to run into him. Now she was exhausted.

Lunch had been lonely again as Yuri and his wife, Natasha, were off to his first chemotherapy session. She’d had the corner office to herself. She suspected that Nikolai would come back here and she wanted to be gone before then.

As she was packing to leave, he was striding down the hall. He was a large man who was not easily missed. Despite that his step wasn’t heavy.

“Leaving?”

She swallowed hard. “Uh, yes. Did you need me for something?”

He stared at her and she realized how loaded a question she’d just asked. She would have blushed if she could. “I mean, is there something else I can do for you?”

That didn’t sound any better.

“Can I go?”

He chuckled. “I’d like to talk to you about my day, Destiny. Let’s go in my father’s office.”

Oh, shit. She really needed to have packed up ten minutes ago. Then she wouldn’t be having this conversation. Alone. With this man who had turned her on so well last night.

Yikes.

She pasted on a smile. “Sure thing. You need coffee?”

“No. I’m not a huge coffee drinker.” He walked into Yuri’s office. “Close the door behind you.”

She did, then sat on a chair she helped pick out. It cradled her and she thought she could sleep in it. Maybe not what an executive wants, but she liked it and she probably sat in it more than anyone else in the company.

Nikolai settled on his father’s chair, as if he owned the place or had been running it for years. Guess he just had that presence. Even before she sat down at the bar last night, she’d noticed him. Her eyes had been drawn to him. His snow white hair stood out on such a young man.

At least she thought he was young.

“I talked to everyone on this floor except for the administrative assistants. I’ve asked everyone to give me a report about their duties here at Alman Enterprises. They should be filtering in all day tomorrow. I want to compare what they think they are doing to what you and my father thought they were doing.”

“Sounds reasonable. Do you need one from me?”

“No, but that brings me to a question.”

“Okay.”

What could he want to know? He looked uncomfortable. “Did Martin Krevchenko ever hit on you?”

She gulped. “Uh, maybe. I guess he did ask me out when I first started.”

“Did you go out with him?”

“No, he’s twice my age and was married at that point.”

Eww was all she could think. She’d turned him down as politely as possible. A grin blossomed on Nikolai’s face.

“Good.”

“Why?”

He rubbed his chin, while studying her. “He intimated that you and my father were having an affair.”

Destiny’s eyes widened. That might explain why no one wanted to eat lunch with her. “I’m not sure how that information would be pertinent to your job.”

He blinked. “You aren’t going to answer the question?”

“No. I don’t think it’s any of your business.”

She hadn’t had an affair with his father, but how could he ask her that? It was insulting. His father had been more like a father to her than a skeevy uncle like he was suggesting. He shifted in his chair, still studying her.

She knew what he was doing; remaining quiet so she would fill in the silences. She wasn’t biting. She could sit here all evening and not talk to him. She might yawn, but that’s all he’d get.

He finally smiled. “You’re good, Destiny. Most people wouldn’t last that long without stammering out some words. It also leads me to believe that you haven’t had an affair with my father. I didn’t think so, knowing him and that he loves my stepmother.”

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