A Bargain with the Boss - Page 41

He blew out a cold chuckle as he reached the door. He wasn’t kidding anyone, least of all himself. He wanted Amber in his bed, naked, smiling, welcoming him into her arms without a single mental reservation.

He answered to find her in the outdoor breezeway, Jackson by her side. Even without a smile, she was gorgeous, totally perfect.

“We’ve checked hospitals, morgues and police stations,” said Jackson, heading directly into the room.

Tuck dragged his gaze away from Amber. “I take it you found nothing.”

It wasn’t a question. If there was bad news, Jackson’s manner would be quite different.

“No leads from airlines, private or public. We’ve checked trains, buses and rental cars.”

“Buses?” Tuck couldn’t bring himself to believe Dixon would take a bus. “Have you met my brother?”

Amber marched into the room, expression schooled, her manner all business. He inhaled her subtle scent as she passed, feeling pathetic.

“He could have bought a car,” she suggested.

“That would be more like him,” Tuck agreed.

“We’ll check to see if anything was registered in his name or in the company’s. In case he stayed here in the Scottsdale area, we’re also checking hotels, motels and resorts.”

“Surely, he wouldn’t buy a house,” said Amber. She still hadn’t looked directly at Tuck.

“Depends on how long he’s planning to stay,” said Tuck, willing her to meet his eyes.

“I suggest we have breakfast,” said Jackson. “Then Amber and I will walk through everything she remembers.”

“What about Highland Luminance?” Tuck asked.

“Their records are confidential.”

“I know, but maybe you could—”

“Probably best if that’s the last question you ask on that front,” said Jackson.

“Got it.” If Jackson was up to something less than legal, Tuck didn’t want to know.

Amber looked puzzled. “What are you planning to—”

Both men shot her warning looks.

“Right,” she said and shut up.

Tuck stuffed his wallet into his back pocket and located the room key. “Let’s get started on what Amber remembers.”

“It’ll be better if she and I do it alone,” said Jackson.

Tuck fought a spurt of jealousy. “No.”

“She needs to be relaxed.”

“She is relaxed. She will be relaxed.”

“Given your history...” said Jackson.

Tuck couldn’t believe she’d told him about last night. “Our history?” he challenged.

“You fired her.”


“Yes, that.”

“I need to hear what she has to say,” said Tuck.

“She doesn’t want you there.”

Tuck tried to catch her gaze again. He willed her to reassure Jackson, but she didn’t.

“She might prompt a memory, remind me of something from our childhoods.”

“You’re going to use that against me?” Amber challenged.

“Do you or do you not believe Dixon’s background might be relevant?”

Her blue eyes narrowed.

“It’s not as if you’re going to be naked.”

“Oh, that’s helpful,” Jackson mocked.

“He’s just being ridiculous,” said Amber.

“She’s right,” Tuck agreed. “But I don’t want to miss something because neither of you recognize its significance.”

There was a beat of silence. “He’s also right,” said Amber, her shoulders dropping a notch.

Tuck would take the win.

“Don’t gloat,” she said to him.

“I’m not.”

“You’re such a liar.” She started for the door.

“I’m going to need her tonight,” Tuck said to Jackson.

Both Amber and Jackson swung their gazes his way.

“Robson Equipment is hosting a corporate event in Phoenix. Lucas said, and I’m quoting here, Amber has to attend because she’s smarter than me, and we can’t afford to lose the account.”

“Fine by me,” said Jackson.

Amber opened her mouth, but Tuck cut her off. “Double overtime. You’ll be well compensated.”

She hesitated. Then she nodded and turned for the door.

Tuck was surprised, shocked even. Money had swayed her again? This was starting to seem too easy.

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