The Billionaire's Son

By: Arabella Quinn

Nearly five weeks ago, a representative from Jackson Vaughn’s corporate empire approached me with a job offer. I had just finished successfully wrapping up a very high profile case, even if my involvement as the lead forensic accountant was kept far from the public eye. It was as I was basking in the glow of my professional success, that I received the phone call. I was told that Jackson Vaughn had personally requested me for this job.

I would have to sign pages of confidentiality agreements before I was given even a glimpse of what was to be involved. Still, it wasn’t a very difficult decision to make. Over the years, I had consulted with many clients who demanded complete discretion. At the request of several of my clients, I had even gone undercover working side by side with key suspects to root out fraud within their companies. I was sure that I could handle whatever problems Jackson Vaughn suspected. Plus, the hourly wage and completion bonus they offered was quite generous.

Of course, I played it cool, but accepted the offer on the spot. I left my office early that day. The entire drive home, I kept trying to remember what I knew of Jackson Vaughn, the billionaire mogul, who tended to keep out of the spotlight. I could conjure up some blurry images in my mind of a handsome fatherly type figure. No doubt the man had a brilliant mind. What popped into my mind more readily was the image of the jet-setting playboy, Derek, who was Vaughn’s only son. Derek tended to be in the news more often for his bad-boy behavior than for the philanthropic endeavors that his father was known for. I didn’t know much about Vaughn's business dealings, except that his empire was vast and successful.

I spent the rest of the evening learning all I could about Jackson Vaughn and his companies. The internet was an amazing fount of knowledge; yet it only gave me a tiny peek into the complexity of what I would be dealing with. I found very few articles relating to Vaughn’s personal life. Apparently he was still married to his wife of 30 plus years and the two maintained residences all over the world. The only photographs I saw of the couple were taken at charitable fund-raising events. The Vaughn’s reputation was impeccable.

Stifling a yawn, I glanced at the time on my laptop. It was after midnight. I needed to turn in so that I could be at Vaughn’s downtown offices by 10:00 AM.

In the morning, I dressed with care. I selected my favorite suit, a feminine lavender color with a fitted cut, but very professional and expensive. I gathered my long brunette curls and loosely clipped them behind my head. That way my hair was pulled back for a more professional look, yet I still looked very feminine. I kept my makeup light and then added the finishing touch – a pair of fashion eyeglasses. My vision was perfect, but I had long ago found the eyeglasses added a touch of intelligence and sophistication to my look. I used my secret weapon sparingly. When I wore the glasses, I felt I could face down the most influential men and women in the world and come out on top. The confidence boost was priceless.

I checked the mirror one last time before heading out and smiled. I looked impeccable. Only the hint of my voluptuous womanly curves could be seen through the armor of my power suit. My hair was absolutely appropriate for the meeting, yet looked stunning. I was very aware of the impression that I always created walking through a door. Men often did a double take and women often sniffed in quiet disdain. I did not fit the mousy accountant mold that they always expected and I enjoyed that tremendously. Usually it only took me about ten minutes to grudgingly win over the respect that they weren’t planning on giving when they first set eyes on me. My analytical brain could usually out compute anyone who dared challenge me quite easily.

While I was a powerhouse in the boardroom, I was a disaster in the bedroom -that is when my relationships ever made it that far. Usually men were scared off closer to the first date. Lately, as I neared my 32nd birthday, this bothered me more and more. The more my personal life seemed to flounder; though, the more my professional career was soaring beyond my expectations.

The meeting was held at one of Jackson Vaughn’s subsidiaries, Venture Corporation, in downtown Dallas. I made it to the lobby of the impressive steel and glass structure with time to spare. I was given a visitors badge and asked to meet a Mr. Thomas on the tenth floor. I was seated in a lush office suite, staring down a lovely spread of fruits and cheeses and an assortment of bakery delights. While I waited for Mr. Thomas I helped myself to a coffee that turned out to be quite good.

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