“Rath Westin, my boss, my commander in chief, my Gucci Governor—”
“I don’t wear Gucci.”
“Go with it.” She winks and clears her throat. “Mr. Big Shot, Barking Britches, and Irritable Ira—”
“Jesus . . . Christ.” I rub my hand down my face.
“Will you do me the great honor . . .” She wobbles on her bent knee and clutches my hand to steady herself. “Will you . . .” She tears up, her voice becoming shaky. “I’m sorry, I’ve never done this before.”
“I sure as hell hope not,” I say through gritted teeth.
“And I didn’t think I’d get emotional either.” On a deep breath, she finishes, “Will you do me the greatest honor of all time and be my bridegroom?”
Christ, nothing is ever simple with her.
“Why did you say it like that?”
“Did I not do it right?” she mumbles to herself. “See, I knew I was doing something wrong.”
“No, why did you say bridegroom?”
“Oh, well, that’s what you would be. You see, that’s what they used to call men who were soon to be married . . . a bridegroom. But then somewhere along the way they shortened it to groom. But if you marry me, I would give you the dignified pleasure of retaining the honorable title, bridegroom.”
“Don’t call me bridegroom.”
“Boss man bridegroom?” she asks with a cheeky grin.
How the fuck did I allow myself to get in this position? With my quirky and sometimes annoying but mostly efficient assistant, kneeling in front of me . . . proposing.
Proposing to me.
In a pair of belly-covering slacks and suspenders, hair pulled back into a tight bun like she often wears it, looking up at me through her red-framed glasses, her bright blue eyes shining past the lenses, begging me to go along with this ridiculous scheme I suggested.
Like the goddamn idiot I am, I thought hey, why not start an HR nightmare and have my assistant ask me to marry her?
Don’t worry, so am I.
Where do I even start? Maybe from the beginning?
Here is a quick rundown: my ex, who used to work with me, left me for bigger and better things. We don’t talk about her, ever, because she took my heart with her. Instead, I buried myself in work. I became a hermit in my office, firing one assistant after another because they weren’t good enough or their voice annoyed me, or they thought salt was sugar and gave me one bad cup of coffee that ended their career at Westin Enterprises—that mistake was on them.
In my spare time—not that there’s much—but when I do have spare time, I follow my two idiot friends around the city, helping them avoid fucking up their lives. But now that they’re both in loving and committed relationships, one planning a wedding with my sister as the bride, I have much more time on my hands.
Maybe they’re to blame for my demise, for this ridiculous charade I’m now part of.
What does this have to do with my assistant proposing to me?
Well, you see, I was in the market for yet another new assistant, and that’s when one of my best friends, Bram, suggested I lean on his assistant, Linus, to help me find someone. Side note: Linus is a gift from God, and I’ve offered him huge pay raises many times to jump ship and join my company, but his loyalty lies with Bram . . . unfortunately.
So Linus helped me find an assistant, and that’s where it started to go downhill.
The minute I saw her, I knew it wasn’t going to be a good fit.
Because she’s too goddamn beautiful.
Because she’s far too bubbly.
Because with every smile and checklist she devises, she makes me want to bend her over my desk and make her mine.
But, since I clearly don’t know how to make any decisions worth a shit, I hired her, right there on the spot.
And that was the beginning of the end.
Need to know more? Well in case you are on pins and needles about my answer to her proposal, I said yes.
Here’s the story of how I became Boss Man Bridegroom.