Home > Filthy Love: A Billionaire Romantic Comedy (A Filthy Duet #2)

Filthy Love: A Billionaire Romantic Comedy (A Filthy Duet #2)
Author: Matilda Martel

One

 

 

Jude

 

 

It’s a trap.

Love. Marriage. Babies. Whatever. As long as I live, I’ll never understand why so many men run headlong into matrimony and expect their experience to be any different from the many fools who wish they had a life like mine.

I see the way they look at me. Every time I’m out on the town with a beautiful doll, I’ll catch the eye of some poor schlub escorting his missus for their monthly date or anniversary dinner, and the look in his eye gives his misery away. His collar grows a little tighter. Memories of his youth burn a bit brighter. It’s glaringly painful and I’ll have no part of it.

Love doesn’t suit me. Long walks on a warm night. Showing up for a date with flowers and candy. Writing love letters to that one special girl who keeps you up at night. That’s just nonsense. My heart doesn’t work that way.

I don’t think it works at all.

I’m not angling for pity. It’s fine with me. I accept it. I’m not a kid who believes in love at first sight. I don’t believe in soul mates or fate. Why complicate your life with shit you can’t control?

I have no desire to walk in my older brother’s shoes. The idiot’s in love. Madly in love. I’ve never seen him like this and frankly, it’s pathetic.

I used to respect him. He governed his world with meticulous precision. He didn’t have time for frivolous pursuits. He’s the eldest. The crown prince of the empire we inherited. Nothing came between him and our father’s company. Not even me. He took on most of the load, rarely had any fun and gave me the rubbish I couldn’t possibly destroy.

For most of my adult life, he’s delegated menial tasks and bullshit responsibilities to keep me out of his hair. I resented it at first, but now that he wants me to pull my weight, I realize I much preferred being neglected.

I don’t have time to execute all the duties of Chief Marketing Officer and maintain an active social life. It just can’t be done. It’s only been a week since he started cracking the whip and I’m already exhausted.

“Mr. McCormick. Your brother would like to see you in his office in ten minutes.” My assistant’s voice buzzes through the intercom.

“Kim, can you tell him...” I’m quickly interrupted.

“Sorry, Jude.” She recognizes the displeasure in my voice. “I already offered a few lame excuses. He knows you’re not busy until your noon meeting and says it’s important.”

Fuck. What now?

“Tell him I’ll be there in ten. I need to hit the head.” I kick away from my desk, stomp out of my chair and march from my office into the hallway. Steps from the bathroom, my eyes shift to the oversized clock on the wall. It’s 11:30. Why the shit can’t this wait until after lunch? I don’t appreciate being ordered around.

I swing the door open.

“Everybody out!” Frustrated, I bark at the dawdlers taking up space in the executive washroom.

This is bullshit. I need my own bathroom. I haven’t complained because I wasn’t working, but if he plans to make me work full days, I’ll want a bigger office and a private washroom---just like him. This company is part mine. Dad left it to both of us and it’s about time he stops acting like he’s King of McCormick Media.

I take care of business, wash my hands, check my hair and head out to the better side of the hallway. Declan’s domain.

“Mr. McCormick...just a second. I’ll announce you.” My brother’s assistant shoots out of her seat as soon as she spots me.

I wave her off. “I’m on a schedule, Holly. It’s been ten minutes.” I tap my watch and push open the door.

“You rang?” I raise an eyebrow and slam the door behind me.

“I did.” He leans back in his chair and smirks. “I need to speak to you about the interview you have at noon.”

“What interview?” I search my mind and try to remember the name on the Post-It note Kim slapped on my desk this morning.

He crosses his arms at his chest. “The fucking interview you have in twenty minutes. Jesus Christ, Jude. I know your schedule. You haven’t done a damn thing all day but cruise into the office at 10:30, drink a protein shake, answer emails that should have been answered last week and what else? Bathroom breaks? Flirting with the girls in social media? This might be the only thing on your calendar today. Can you get your head out of the clouds long enough to do your job for one goddamn hour?”

“An hour? Who is it? Since when do you send anyone important to me?” I run my fingers through my hair and once again reconsider his offer to sign over my portion of the company.

I think about it every day. It’s the first thing on my mind as soon as I wake up and it’s the thing that most keeps me up at night. Perhaps it’s best to enter early retirement. I hate this company. I hate media. This life, this work has never been a good fit for me. Dad knew what he was doing when he left Declan in charge.

“You are the Chief Marketing Officer. I didn’t want to give you that position. You do absolutely nothing to deserve it. I can’t give you anything too important because you’ll fuck it up and you know you will.” Declan throws a pen at me, but I catch it mid-air and throw it back.

“Just tell me who I’m interviewing so I can get the hell out of here. Next week, draw up the damn paperwork to get me out of this shit show. I’m blowing my life away in this building.” I snatch a piece of paper from his desk and grab a pen. “Give me this person’s name and tell me what I’m supposed to do. I don’t care enough to go through the motions of judging their character.”

He cocks his head and sighs. “You can’t leave yet. I need you here for the next three weeks.”

“No, you don’t. You just want to talk me out of it.” I shake my head and stand to leave. I’ve had enough of his big brother lectures.

“No, leave. I’m all for it. I’ll pack your desk and buy you a cake. This company doesn’t suit you. But I need you to stay around while I’m away. Ian will run things with Uncle Killian who flies in tonight. But they can’t sign shit. Only you can. You don’t have to work all day. Just make a daily appearance.” He stands and heads towards his window. Typical. He always stands by his window when he starts one of his lectures.

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