Assistant to the Billionaire
Assistant to the Billionaire
Ashley's Billionaire Book 2
This is book 2 of 4 in the Ashley's Billionaire Series.
After leaving Drake behind, Ashley drives to Reno to begin her new life. Though she can’t stop thinking about the man she spent several incredible days with, she knows she needs to move forward without him—especially since he made it clear that she isn’t “real life”.
- Contemporary Romance
- Moving On
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Thanks to the GPS app on her phone, once Ashley reached Reno it didn’t take long to find Emily’s place. She’d called Emily ahead of time to let her know she was on her way so Emily had left a key under the doormat. Now, as Ashley walked up the steps to Emily’s second floor apartment, she smiled, glad to have finally made it. Even though she missed Drake—more than she wanted to admit—she was glad she’d reached her destination.
The key was right where Emily had said it would be and a moment later Ashley walked into the small living room. Sighing, she sank onto the couch. This place was nothing like Drake’s spacious cabin, but it was home now. Emily’s previous roommate had recently gotten married, which had worked out great for Ashley.
Excitement washed over her as her gaze wandered the small space. Newly graduated and ready to be a grown-up, Ashley was eager to discover what life had to offer her next. She pushed herself off of the couch and looked in both bedrooms.
The apartment was furnished, but she was still able to figure out which room was hers—the one with no personality. It took her two trips to bring all of her things into her room, but once she was done she sat on her bed and texted Emily.
Ashley: I’m here!
Emily: Yay! We need to celebrate tonight.
Ashley: Sounds great!
Emily: See you when I get home.
Ashley tucked her phone into the back pocket of her jeans and looked around her new room. At least it had the basics—a bed and a dresser. Glad she didn’t have to buy anything just yet, she frowned when she remembered that Drake had secretly paid for her car repair. She’d thought about that as she’d driven north to Reno and had decided that somehow she would pay him back. She knew he lived in Reno. If she could just find out where she could repay him.
Is that the only reason you want to find him?
She silently admitted that she wanted—no, needed—to see him. On the drive to Reno she’d stewed over their final conversation. The one where he’d told her he wanted to keep things with her separate from his real life. The one where he’d said being with her was like having a respite from his day to day responsibilities. As happy as it had made her to know that she could bring out the lighter side of him, it bothered her that he didn’t think she could be part of his real life.
Why did he think that? Did he think she was too young? Too immature? Too unsophisticated? Ashley thought about Rachel, his maybe-girlfriend, and how she seemed to be so opposite from Ashley. But Drake had also told Ashley that he had interests that Rachel didn’t share—like snowmobiling and having snowball fights and being outdoors. Things that Ashley had enjoyed doing with him.
Maybe if he got to know her better he would see that she could be just as sophisticated as Rachel, just as mature. Ashley had no desire to be as much of an ice queen as Rachel was, but if he saw that she was multi-faceted, maybe he would believe that she could fit into his real life.
Ashley smiled at the thought and imagined seeing him again. But the idea of showing up on his doorstep uninvited filled her with mixed feelings. When Rachel had appeared at his cabin unexpectedly, he hadn’t exactly been overjoyed to see her, and the thought of Ashley showing up at his house in Reno and discovering him with some other girl filled her with dread.
Then she recalled the way he’d kissed her, the way he’d told her there was something about her that he liked, and that she was a beautiful woman. What if she went to his house and he was thrilled to see her? The mere possibility that he would be happy to see her spurred her on to discover where he lived.
Now that she had something to look forward to, she smiled as she set one of her suitcases on the bed and began unpacking. She spent the rest of the afternoon settling in, and when she heard the deadbolt turning, she had a brief flashback to the night at the motel when she’d been attacked by the drunken creep.
Vividly recalling the feel of the creep on top of her, trying to kiss her, Ashley shivered, then mentally shook herself as she reminded herself that nothing had ended up happening. Thanks to Drake. Relief washed over her as she remembered how he’d gotten there just in time to pull her attacker off of her.
It was true that the police had arrived just moments after Drake had, but the fact that he’d come to check on her in the first place filled Ashley with longing. Longing to have his strong arms around her, longing to have him tell her that he wanted to see her again.
“Ash?” Emily called from the living room.
Ashley blinked, focusing on the present, and hurried out to meet her. “Hey, Em.” Smiling brightly, Ashley threw her arms around her friend. “It’s so good to see you.”
Emily hugged her back. “You too.” She released her, then they sat on the couch. “So, what’s been going on? What happened with your car?”
At the enthusiasm in Emily’s voice, Ashley felt warmth cascade over her. She was glad to be back with her old high school friend. While Ashley had chosen to attend UNLV, Emily had moved up to Reno to go to college. And when Ashley had told Emily she was ready to graduate, somehow Emily had talked her into moving up to the northern part of the state.
“When you convinced me to move up here,” Ashley began, “you failed to mention the treacherous roads.”
Emily grimaced. “I guess I’ve gotten used to them.” She smiled with a look that Ashley thought was supposed to reassure her. “But they’re only bad during storms. And that was a particularly bad storm.”
Giving her a half-smile, Ashley said, “I guess my timing was just right then, and obviously I’m not used to snowy roads. I slid right off and ended up in a snowbank.”
Emily’s eyes widened as she placed a hand on Ashley’s arm. “What? You just said you had car trouble, not that you almost got yourself killed.”
Holding back a smile at her dramatic response, Ashley decided to tell her about Drake. Even though Emily would probably scold her for the bad choices she’d made—going home with a stranger and then kissing him repeatedly—Drake filled her thoughts too much to keep him a secret. “It wasn’t the slide-off that nearly killed me, but the man in the truck who almost ran me over afterwards.”
Emily gasped. “Ashley! I’m so glad you’re okay.”
Now that the drama of that day was over it was easy to smile about it. “Me too.”
“What happened? How did you almost get hit?”
Ashley described how she’d flagged down an oncoming truck and how the man had almost hit her, but how she’d thrown herself out of the way and had hurt her ankle.
“You were out there all alone?”
“Yes. I was afraid no one would come along.”
“What happened next?”
“The man who almost hit me put me in his truck and brought me to his house.”
Emily’s eyes widened. “You went to this man’s house? Are you crazy?”
That was exactly what Ashley had thought Emily would say. She was so predictable—not that she was wrong. “I was freezing by then and I couldn’t walk. It’s not like I had a lot of choices.”
Emily’s voice softened and her eyebrows went up. “Was he cute?”
Ashley pictured Drake—tall, muscular, so hot—and grinned. “Very.”
Emily’s face lit up. “What happened when you got to his house?”
She told her how he’d taken care of her.
“Sounds like a good guy.”
Warmth toward Drake pulsed through her, especially when she remembered the fun they’d had playing in the snow and snowmobiling. Then she remembered the way she’d felt when he’d held her in his arms and kissed her.
“What?” Emily said, obviously noticing a change in Ashley’s expression. Then shock registered on her face. “You fell for him, didn’t you?”
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