Tonight. Nana Malone

Tonight - Nana Malone

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it? I remember it differently.” When he’d told his father he didn’t want to work at the investment firm, the old man threatened to cut him off.

      “Don’t act like a child. I can pull you home whenever I want. Do you really think that you’re insulated in your little job? If I want, I can come in and buy that place. You will have to learn eventually that I am in control. I can fight to get control of your trust fund.”

      “That’s where you’re wrong, Dad. We’re done.” Tristan hung up with a soft click of the phone. It didn’t matter how much his father got to him. The old man wasn’t his puppet master. He’d fought hard for his independence and he was going to keep it. And that meant landing this account. Even his father couldn’t ignore the prestige of the position. All he had to do was beat Syn for it.

      * * *

      “That man is a pain where the sun don’t shine. He’s insufferable and a jackass.”

      “Don’t forget smoking hot, because let’s face it. He is.”

      Synthia scowled at her best friend, Olivia Banks. She and Liv had been friends since they started at the company as interns over five years ago. Synthia could always count on her friend to give it to her straight. “Try to keep up, Liv. We hate him, remember?”

      Liv put up her hands and laughed. “Oh, honey, I remember. He is our sworn enemy and we have to make him suffer. But that doesn’t preclude us noticing the assets on hand.” She waggled her eyebrows.

      Syn rolled her eyes and plopped into her chair. “I swear, you’re almost as bad as he is.”

      Liv clapped a hand to her chest. “Now, I take offense at that. I might ogle and appreciate, but I don’t use my...” She paused and reconsidered. “Okay, so maybe I’ve used my gifts for evil before, but Tristan Dawson takes it to a whole new level.”

      Synthia bit back a chuckle. “You’re impossible, you know that?”

      Liv grinned. “Funny, I’ve been told that before.”

      Synthia let the tension roll out of her shoulders. “I swear, you should have seen his smug face. With his magnetic smile and his focused attention, Bella didn’t stand a chance. She was all fluttering eyelashes and breathy voice by the time Tristan freaking Dawson was done with her. She’d been Dawsoned.” Liv had coined the phrase when he started at the company two years ago to describe how most of the women in the company reacted when Tristan graced them with a smile. Except Syn.

      “So, what are you going to do about it?”

      Synthia raised an eyebrow. “What makes you think I’ve got a plan?”

      “Because. This is you we’re talking about, so rolling over and playing dead is not in your nature. You’re too stubborn and good.”

      “Thanks for the vote of confidence, Liv, but I’m a little worried about this one.”

      Liv frowned. “Why?”

      “Because of Tristan. You know they’re sending us to Vegas. I just know he’s going to use this opportunity to his advantage. I’m getting the impression from Bella Bliss that she’s more interested in what Tristan can provide her in the bedroom than what I can provide her for the hotel.”

      “Then why don’t you fight fire with fire?”

      Syn frowned. “I don’t understand.”

      “Hear me out. Tristan is already using his charm to his advantage. Your best traits are your brain and your tenacity, which you have in spades, but you have an ace in the hole.”

      Syn laughed. “Oh, really? What’s this ace? Do I have a magic wand that will make Bella pay attention to the facts and figures when I present?”

      “You can call it a magic wand, I’ll just call it your banging bod.”

      Syn raised her eyebrows. “Um, I don’t think Bella’s into chicks, Liv.”

      Liv shook her wild mane of red hair. “No. It can’t have escaped your notice how Tristan looks at you. There’s interest there.”

      “Um, in case you haven’t noticed, we can barely stand to be in the same room with each other. It’ll be a wonder if we both make it back from Vegas in one piece.” She pointed a finger at her friend. “In case there’s any doubt, I’m the one who’ll be burying a body.”

      Liv giggled. “Of that I have no doubt, but take me seriously. All you have to do is play nice with Tristan and he’ll be too busy focusing on you to focus on his work. You’ll have the whole thing in the bag before he knows what hit him.”

      Flirt with Tristan? Yeah, no. Didn’t matter that the thought alone made the butterflies flutter low in her belly. “Not going to happen. I’m getting this account all on my own.”

      Liv groaned. “Honey, I’m not suggesting you sleep with the guy, but if you do, please take detailed notes and let me live vicariously. I’m just saying throw him off his game a little. Right now he’s in there with his boy, planning your takedown. Do you or do you not remember the Boyd account?”

      Syn ground her teeth. Boyd Seduction had been her account for over a year. But one chance encounter between Tristan and the lingerie designer’s CEO and Syn was off the account and out that bonus check. Her work was better than his, but there was a certain kind of client that liked his demeanor. That kind wanted to have a personal connection. And while she was hardworking and well liked, everyone loved Tristan. Except you.

      “I can’t do it, Liv. Besides, don’t you think Tristan will see that coming from a mile away? He’s not dumb.”

      Liv sighed. “Honey, the amount of time that man spends looking at you, he won’t be thinking at all.” She winked. “Besides, I’m just asking you to be nice, throw him off. Meanwhile, you’re getting together the best presentation Bella Bliss has ever seen.”

      Okay, this was getting out of hand. “First of all, Tristan doesn’t look at me.” But just the idea of it made her body flush with heat. Tristan Dawson was the stuff of really hot, need-battery-operated-boyfriend inducing dreams. With his broad shoulders and teasing grin, it was no wonder.

      Liv raised a delicately arched eyebrow. “Babe, if you believe that, then I have a bridge to sell you. What you have to ask yourself is, how badly do you want this account?”

      She didn’t have to ask herself that question. She already knew she’d do whatever it took to get the Bliss account. Even if it meant cozying up to her nemesis.

       Chapter 3

      Three whole minutes into his trip with Synthia and Tristan was ready to call uncle.

      By the time they boarded the plane, his nerves were raw. It’s only three days. Yeah, maybe, but he was pretty sure someone would catch a legal case before the weekend was up.

      The car service had picked him up first, and when they’d gone to her house to get her, she already looked irritated to see him. Granted, he’d poked the dragon when he replied to her “Good morning” with “I’ve always wanted to see the natural habitat of an ice queen.” She’d rewarded him with a scowl. And so it had gone the rest of the way to the airport. Him teasing her, and her resolutely ignoring him while managing to shoot him daggers with her eyes.

      He watched her struggle to stash her carry-on bag in the overhead bin for a moment before offering to help. Standing and leaning over her petite frame, he stabilized the bag.

      “No, it’s okay, I really don’t need your help. I have it—”

      The rollaway slipped again as a bottle of water escaped the side holder and rolled down the cabin. But then the bag gave way, bringing her body into direct contact with his, and they both froze.

      He knew enough to hold his breath. The strawberry-scented hair

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