Chapter 1

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“So now that you’ve been made partner, what do you say we get started on our own little firm?” my husband and colleague, Jason Sands, said to me and kissed my stomach. I knew what he was getting at, and I felt anxiety creep over me. How could I make him understand I wasn’t ready to start a family just yet? Yes, I’d reached my goal at becoming a junior partner at Bertram & Fillmore, but I wanted to be senior partner one day, and with the added case load I just couldn’t take on more responsibilities at home.

“As appealing as that sounds…” I said and threaded my hands through his blond, short hair, stopping him from heading south with his kisses, “I have to get to work now.”

Jason groaned and rolled off of me. “Already?”

“You do too,” I reminded him with a chuckle. I was an Entertainment lawyer at Bertram & Fillmore in Los Angeles, and Jason was a Sports lawyer at the same firm. He wasn’t bad at his job, far from it, but sometimes I wondered if he was as passionate about his career as I was. The managing partners didn’t seem to think so, since I’d been made partner while he was still an associate, despite the fact that he’d been with the firm longer than I had.

“Don’t you have that deal to sign with that new NBA player? With the sponsors?”

“Yeah… but I don’t have to meet them for another hour.”

“Well, I have a meeting with Mrs. Clarke about her book deal in less than half an hour, so I got dibs on the shower,” I said and swung my legs over the edge of our California King bed. My toes sunk into the soft carpet and I padded over to our en suite bathroom.

We had a two room apartment on Sunset with an ocean view from the balcony. The kitchen/living room combo was spacious and airy with marble flooring and granite countertops. Jason and I made a decent living, but the apartment was bought with family money. His, of course. My parents had a humble home in the Catskills, and I had been uncomfortable at first with the amount of money Jason had been willing to spend on our apartment, and our summer house in Colorado, but he said it was a good investment, and it wasn’t like we were spending money on outrageous things.

The bathroom… well, the realtor called it ‘a spa-inspired wet room with a modern boudoir feel to the space outside’. All I know is that the shower space was large enough to fit five people – which would never be required, by the way – and that there were a lot of gray tones to it. It had heated floors, and I always kept fresh flowers in the vase by the mirror, along with scented candles.

I turned on the rain shower and stepped under the spray, only to be joined moments later by my impatient husband, who was determined to prove you could do a lot in the span of a few minutes in the shower…

-

I walked into my office in a hurry, almost walking straight passed the little desk that had been set up outside. I halted and turned to find a young woman – well, maybe only a few years younger than me – sitting there, looking up at me like I was some kind of celebrity. That was new.

“Um… Ms. Sands?” she said timidly, rising to hold out her hand in greeting. “I’m Millie. Millie Porter. I’m your new secretary.”

“Oh… hi,” I blinked and shook her hand. “Sorry, I’m in a bit of a rush…”

“Oh, Mrs. Clarke called and said she was running late, but she should be here in a few minutes. I set up Conference Room C for you. I hope decaf is all right?”

“Uh… thank you… Millie,” I said, perplexed. How did she know to do that? Wasn’t this her first day?

“It’s what I’m here for,” she smiled and handed me a stack of Post-Its. “These calls came for you. I said you were in a meeting, I hope that’s all right? I organized them by order of urgency. Well,” she chuckled slightly, “everyone said they had urgent business, but…”

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