Billionaire Romance: Darque Initiation (A Darque Billionaire Romance Book 1)

Billionaire Romance: Darque Initiation (A Darque Billionaire Romance Book 1) by Diana Steele Read Free Book Online

Book: Billionaire Romance: Darque Initiation (A Darque Billionaire Romance Book 1) by Diana Steele Read Free Book Online
Authors: Diana Steele
story. Making him look favorable. We can’t be ignorant of the scandal.”
    “No, no, that’s not at all…what…Listen,” he said, quite annoyed. “The job description says you follow orders. We had very specific orders from Mister Darque. Online content production, press releases, events…he at no time asked for anyone to probe deeper into his life. Are you making this personal?”
    “No…I mean…no. I guess you’re right.”
    “Then act like a professional God damn it,” Abrams said, shaking his head and taking the report out of sight. He thought it best not to let anyone else see the uglier reports, lest they fall into the wrong hands.
    But it wasn’t just about the ‘truth’ the way the Darques would spin it. This was about knowing the real Bastien, the man whom she made love to, and knowing just how dangerous he might be.
    Just as she relaxed and began to focus on ‘job description’ work, Bastien showed up, looking agitated and yelling for Arabella by name.
    Abrams looked at her, wondering what the hell she could have done to stress the client— really, Bella? Not even three days and you’re already costing the firm its biggest client in ten years?
    “Where is she?” Darque demanded. “Arabella Stone. I need to speak to her.”
    “The intern?”
    “She is my new Account Coordinator. I’m giving her a new title.”
    Abrams stared at Bella from a distance, having heard everything and probably rightly assuming something was amiss.
    “There you are,” he said, finding Bella’s eyes. “I need to see you. Something’s come up,” he said. “We’re going to take a lunch. Now.”
    Bella tried to stop from laughing, only releasing an inappropriate smile and a raised eyebrow.
    “Something has been reported to me. Concerning my name,” he corrected, not appreciating the double entendre he inadvertently made.
    “Now. You have some explaining to do, young lady.”
    She lost her smile. Apparently the probing into his character wasn’t so private and discreet after all.
    *****
    “I’m sorry,” Bella sighed, apologizing to Bastien who complained of two inquiries from past associates and two credit checks, just within a day.
    “This is the thanks I get for showing you a good time? Probing into my character and talking to people that claim they knew me?”
    “I’m sorry. I thought it was my job.”
    “Your job?” he said, becoming truly annoyed for the first time. “Your job is to do what I say.”
    “I just thought if we uncovered more of the truth, we could better respond to the criticism you’re receiving.”
    “The truth? Don’t you get it? The truth is illusory. Truth is all about perspective. You tell one perspective of the truth and it becomes a distortion. Your job is to cover this shit up. Not give them more ammunition.”
    “So what? Why am I on trial here?” Bella finally said, raising her voice and finding his eyes—a bold new emotion that he hadn’t quite seen. “You’re the one who’s been implicated in murder, bribes, money-laundering, and extortion. And you want to lecture me? Maybe I’m the one who’s sorry, Darque that I ever slept with you. Believing all those lies.”
    “Lies?”
    “Yes! Are you going to deny all that’s true?”
    “True? And by all means, little girl,” he said with an angry glimmer in his eye. “Tell me what you know about ultimate truth, from all twenty years of your vast learning experience.”
    “Whatever,” she said, turning away and pouting. She knew deep down she wasn’t afraid of him. He probably made some stupid choices here and there…but he couldn’t have actually killed anybody. Could he?
    She looked at him again, unsure if Bastien was giving another well-rehearsed speech or something close to a sincere thought.
    “I’ve never lied about anything, Arabella. But I refuse to give reporters the stories they crave. Truth is more complicated than a headline. Remember that, little girl.”
    “I’m not your little girl,”

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