At Her Boss's Bidding

By: Miranda Lee

Understandable, he supposed, after what she’d gone through these last few years. Sympathy for her washed through Justin and he decided then and there to offer her the job. He already knew she had the qualifications, even if she might be a bit rusty. But someone as smart as she obviously was would have no trouble brushing up on her secretarial skills.

Still, he supposed he had to go through the motions of a proper interview, otherwise she might think it a bit fishy. Nobody liked charity. Or pity.

‘So, Rachel,’ he said matter-of-factly once she’d settled herself in the chair. ‘My mother has told me a lot about you. And your résumé here is very impressive,’ he added, tapping the two-page work history which had been faxed to him the day before. ‘I see you were finalist in the Secretary of the Year competition a few years back. And your boss at that time was very high up in the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Perhaps you could tell me a little about your work experience there…’


‘THIS is just like old times, isn’t it?’ Rachel said to Isabel as she jumped into bed and pulled the pretty patchwork quilt up to her chin.

‘True,’ Isabel returned, and climbed into the matching single bed, her memory racing back to those old times.

Rachel and Isabel had attended the same boarding-school, and become best friends from day one. After Rachel’s parents were killed in a freak train accident when Rachel was only fourteen, the girls had grown even closer. When Rachel’s upbringing had been taken over by her mother’s best friend, a nice lady named Lettie, Isabel had been thrilled to discover that Lettie lived in the same suburb of Sydney as her parents did. During the school holidays Rachel had often slept over at Isabel’s. Sometimes, she’d stayed for days. Lettie hadn’t minded. The girls had become inseparable, and liked nothing better than to lie awake in bed at night and talk for hours.

Rachel smiled over at Isabel. ‘I feel like fifteen again.’

Well, you don’t look like fifteen, Isabel thought with an inner sigh. Rachel looked every one of her thirty-one years, and then some. Which was a real pity. She’d once been drop-dead gorgeous, with glossy auburn hair, flashing eyes and a fab figure which Isabel had always envied.

But four years of nursing her terminally ill foster-mother had taken its toll. Rachel was a mere shadow of her former self.

Isabel had hoped that Lettie’s finally passing away—the poor love had been suffering from Alzheimer’s—and Rachel getting back into the workforce would put some oomph back into the girl.

But that hadn’t happened yet.

Still, it had only been a few weeks.

She had put on a couple of pounds, which was a start. And when she smiled as she had just then you could catch a glimpse of the vibrant beauty she’d once been.

Hopefully, tomorrow, at the wedding, she’d smile a lot. Otherwise, when she saw the photographs of herself at a later date she’d be in for a shock. Isabel knew that she herself was looking her very best. Love suited her. As did pregnancy.

She was glowing.

Isabel was glad now that she’d taken some measures to make sure her chief bridesmaid didn’t suffer too much by comparison.

‘Promise me you’ll let my hairdresser have his wicked way with you tomorrow,’ Isabel insisted. ‘Red hair will look much better with your turquoise dress than brown. And its bare neckline needs curls bouncing around on your shoulders. None of that wearing your hair pulled back like you do for work. Or up in any way. Rafe hates hair worn up on a woman, anyway. I’ve also hired a make-up artist to do our faces and I don’t want to hear any objections.’

‘I won’t object. It’s your day. I’ll do whatever you want. But just a temporary rinse in my hair, please. I don’t want to show up at the office on Monday morning with red hair.’

‘Why not?’

‘You know why not. One of the reasons Justin hired me as his PA was because I was nothing like my predecessor. She’d been flashy and flirtatious, remember? Alice told us all about her.’

Isabel rolled her eyes. ‘I don’t think a bit of red dye in your hair constitutes flashy and flirtatious.’

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