The Boss's Baby

By: Miranda Lee


'Is there anything wrong, Olivia?'

Olivia glanced up to find her boss frowning down at her from his considerable height. With great difficulty, she pushed aside her whirling thoughts and smiled one of those smal plastic smiles she used round the office. 'Not at al,' she said, but the smile felt like cement. 'Everything's fine. I'm fine.' Dropping her eyes from his probing gaze, Olivia busied herself, mindlessly tidying her desk top. She wasn't about to confide her personal problems to her boss. They didn't have that kind of relationship. When she'd been hired eighteen months before, Lewis had warned her that his wife had not been happy with his previous secretary's far too familiar manner, and far too glamorous mode of dressing. Olivia had been only too happy to present the reserved and conservative image which found favour with the boss's wife. She was a reserved type of girl anyway, and had always been a conservative dresser. Years before she'd settled on always wearing basic black to work, with the odd white or cream blouse thrown in. That way, the only accessories she needed were black.

Her wardrobe was very economical, as was the simple hairstyle which saw her long straight dark auburn hair swept back from her face and secured in a big loop at the nape of her neck, the anchoring band always covered by a plain black clip or bow. Economical too was the minimal amount of make-up and jewel ery which adorned the rest of her. On her rare visits to the office, the boss's wife had never had any reason to be suspicious or jealous of her husband's new private secretary. Olivia made sure she never crossed the line where Lewis was concerned. She had no reason to. Tal , dark and handsome her boss might be, but she was very much in love with the man she was going to marry. Ironical y, Lewis and his wife had stil broken up six months back, an event which had propel ed the boss into a permanently morose and introverted mood. His noticing Olivia's own wretched and distracted state of mind was unusual to say the least, and quite irritating. Why couldn't he have stayed buried in his laboratory al morning, as had become his habit lately? Why did he have to come out and pry into her own private misery?

'You don't look fine,' he persisted.

'Oh?' Her hands automatical y lifted to check her hair.

'I'm not talking about how you look,' Lewis snapped, 'but how you're acting. Ever since you got in this morning you've been just sitting there, staring into space.'

Space. Now that was a word Olivia wasn't too thril ed with this morning. Space! Nicholas, her fiancé, had told her last night that he needed more space. It was one of his excuses for opting out of their relationship. That and about a mil ion others!

'You haven't even turned on your computer,' Lewis added, as though that were the crime of the century.

A glance up at the wal clock showed Olivia it was almost ninethirty. She'd been sitting at her desk doing nothing for over an hour. Wearily, she reached forward to snap on the screen, muttering, 'Sorry,' as she did so.

Lewis's sigh was ful of male frustration. 'For pity's sake, Olivia, you don't have to apologise! I don't give a damn whether you work or not. I'm concerned about you; can't you see that?'

'Concerned?' she repeated disbelievingly as her eyes lifted back to his.

It had been a long time since anyone had expressed concern about her, possibly because she always portrayed such a cool y efficient image. Her parents always thought she had it all together, as did her two younger sisters. It was she who usual y handed out the advice, happily lecturing her family on matters of budgeting and goal-setting. She'd had her life total y mapped out...til last night, when Nicholas had packed his bags and stormed out of their flat, leaving her alone with the person he'd nastily described at length during the previous sixty minutes, that control ing, stingy, boring bitch who'd been ruining his life for the past two years, ruling his every waking moment, smothering his personality and turning him into a spineless, mindless wimp. He was tired of saving money, tired of eating in and very tired of only having sex in a bed!

He was younger than she was, he'd reminded her scathingly. He wanted some fun before he settled down. Some fun and some space. He didn't want to get married just yet. He didn't want the responsibility of a mortgage and kids. He certainly didn't want to buy a family car. He wanted to drive a Porsche. He wanted to travel. He wanted other women, women who knew that oral was not just a brand of toothbrush!