His Millionaire Maid

By: Coleen Kwan

“Well, since it’s your first day, I’ll carry it for you.”

He led the way upstairs and showed her into one of the vacant suites. The Lily room was light and bright, with blue-and-white wallpaper, a queen-size bed, a mirrored armoire, and a private balcony with stunning views of the Pacific coastline.

The temp set down her load with a sigh of relief before looking about her with interest. She ran her fingers over a maple dresser and nodded her approval before opening the door to the balcony and surveying the view.

“Pretty,” she said.

Hartley wasn’t a big town. From the balcony, they looked straight down the main street lined with stores and businesses. The street ended at the beach, and beyond that the ocean, now splashed with orange from a spectacular sunset.

“Nice little town you’ve got here,” she said, sounding surprised.

She was acting more like a guest than a casual cleaner.

“Glad you approve,” Joe retorted, not bothering to hide his sarcasm.

She blushed and hurried on, “I mean, it’s so different from San Francisco.”

“Is that where you’re from?”

She hesitated before nodding.

“Well, don’t go thinking things are slow around here just because it’s quiet,” he continued. “I don’t allow laziness.”

She frowned at him. “What makes you think I’m lazy?”

The blue glitter in her eyes sent a strange frisson down his spine. Christ, what was that sensation? Excitement?

“You’re admiring the view instead of thinking about your duties.”

“I apologize. Please, let’s get back to my duties.” The corners of her lips curled up as if she were thinking of other duties she could perform for him.

Joe coughed. Her brief smile disappeared, and she pulled back her shoulders, but that only drew his attention to her breasts. She was small there, but that didn’t stop his imagination from freewheeling, wondering what she looked like naked. Slender like a dancer, with firm, perky breasts— Damn it, what was wrong with him? Annoyed with himself, he gestured at the adjoining bathroom.

“Your first job is to change the linen and clean the bathroom here and next door. But before you do that, I’ll take you through to the bar and restaurant and introduce you to the rest of the staff. Besides taking care of these rooms, you’re expected to bus tables in the bar and help out in the kitchen. Tonight you’re also on dish duty, since one of my kitchen hands is off.”

She blinked and faltered back. “Wow…uh, okay…”

Joe narrowed his eyes on her fingers as she toyed nervously with a pricey silver necklace strung around her delicate throat. Despite the blue-collar clothes, she seemed too fragile for hard physical labor, which the job required.

“Look.” He rested his hands on his hips, squaring his feet before her. “If you’re not up to it, just say so. I won’t hold it against you.” Although he’d have a few words to say to the employment agency. They’d been having trouble supplying him with reliable staff lately, but this time they’d really screwed up.

His words seemed to have an electrifying effect on her. She drew herself up to her full height, which wasn’t much.

“Who says I’m not up to it?” Her eyes almost spat with indignation. She was quite the fireball when she was riled. “I can handle a few bathrooms and clearing tables and washing dishes. I’m not some pampered rich kid with servants waiting on her hand and foot!”

He blinked at her outburst and bided his time until she’d calmed down.

“So,” he said, folding his arms. “Who are you, then? You never told me your name.”

Nina licked her lips that had suddenly dried at Joe’s question. She’d had the answers all figured out in her head, but having Joe stare at her made her thoughts scatter like that damned duck on the road that had started this weird chain of events.

This Joe Farina guy was one of the tallest, biggest men she’d ever come across. He towered over her, but in a good way—good to look at, at any rate. His broad shoulders and lean hips were accentuated by a tight black T-shirt and close-fitting jeans. His hair was thick and dark and tousled, his eyes were the deepest mocha brown, and his movie-star looks were enough to make a girl swoon—even when he wore pink rubber gloves. Her knees weakened, a bead of perspiration breaking out between her breasts.

Top Books