Chapter Seventeen

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Billie was back at the office early. Even earlier than usual so she could bypass the looks and glares she got yesterday. She got to her own office and called Rosaline.

"Yes, Ms. Dupree?"

"Good Morning, Rosaline. Could you do me a big favor and ask my father to meet me in my office when he gets in this morning?"

"Yes, Miss," her father's secretary, said.

All night, Billie had been replaying the day's events. She realized her father now knowing that she wasn't playing a game, would never believe that she had such a sudden change of heart, but she had.

She couldn't, however, mention marriage to Quentin, but she could play up the fact of them now dating. She'd have to get better at making everyone believe she wanted this. Her one fear, however, was in playing pretend that she might convince herself. Thinking again of Quentin, like she had a million times between the moment he left her to now, she had to admit there was a part of her that definitely wanted him but she knew she shouldn't mistake lust for love.

Billie got through the morning's work and even the work she's been doing in secret on her side project before there was a knock on her door.

"Come in," she announced shutting down the files she had open.

"My secretary said you wanted to see me," her father asked. He looked awful.

"Dad are you okay?" Billie got up and immediately came over to him.

"No, I'm not okay? You storm out of this office upset. You don't return any of my calls. If it wasn't for the fact that when I called Carlos he said you were at his house for Isabelle's birthday, I would have ended up calling the police to go looking for you."

"I'm so sorry, Dad. I really didn't mean to worry you. I was just so... mad. I needed to blow off some steam and went to the gym. Carlos showed up with Quentin and we hashed out some things."

"You did?"

This information had seemed to perk her father up some.

"Yes. You're right. He's not a bad guy and I overreacted about that picture. It is a good thing that the board of directors is not fighting you on this arrangement."

"Really? Why the turnaround?" Mr. Dupree asked hardly believing his ears.

"Quentin," Billie said his name like it explained everything and in her own mind it had.

"Quentin?" Her father was looking for more of an explanation than that.

"Quentin, well... he's not what I thought he was. I was wrong about him and seeing him in this new light got me thinking, maybe I'm wrong about a few other things too."

"Such as?" Her father pressed.

Billie began pacing the office while her father sat on the love seat and watched her pace.

"Such as this merger. Maybe it is a good thing. Who knows it may just be the best thing to happen to us," Billie said, thinking of what might happen if she did own half of everything H-Tech owned. What she could do with the company should that happen.

"You're serious?" her father asked astonished.

"Yes, I'm serious," Billie told him.

"And I owe this change to Quentin you say?" her father asked requesting more clarification.

"Yes, he's made me look at things a little bit differently than before."

"Huh, I guess I owe him one then," Mr. Dupree said.

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