“Cheers to that.” Daniel held up his scotch and Joshua his beer.
“So, what else is new with you? How’s that pretty agent you brought with you a while back?”
Joshua grinned. “Of course, Angela. You couldn’t take your eyes off her the entire night.”
Daniel nodded. He hadn’t been able to since, which was his problem. “True. And our relationship has progressed since then.”
“Progressed?” Joshua inquired. “So you’re an item?”
“I wouldn’t call it that,” Daniel stated, “but we have been seeing quite a bit of each other.”
“And that’s making you nervous?” Joshua quickly surmised.
Daniel turned to stare at him. “Is it that obvious?” Did he have commitment-phobe written on his forehead?
Joshua threw back his head and laughed. “Yeah, there’s a little bit of fear on your mug.”
Daniel sat forward in his seat. “I don’t know what it is. I really enjoy her company… It’s just things are moving quickly, too quickly for my liking.”
“We’ve kind of settled into an easy habit of her sleeping over and I like it, but there’s things starting to pop up all over the place. Today, it’s a toothbrush, tomorrow she’ll want a drawer, then a key…”
“Then marriage?” Joshua added, verbalizing Daniel’s fears.
“I don’t want to give her the wrong impression that this is anything other than a good time. I’m starting to feel a bit suffocated.”
“Have you had that conversation with her?”
Daniel nodded. “I thought I had. I mean, we discussed that we were going to keep our relationship on the down low, given that she works for me, so I guess I just assumed that the parameters were understood.”
Joshua snorted. “Make no assumptions where women are concerned, Daniel. You need to be straight up and honest with Angela about your intentions—or lack thereof.”
Daniel was quiet as he mused over that notion before finally speaking. “I don’t know how she’s going to take it. What if she walks away?”
“That’s the million-dollar question, right?” Joshua asked, sipping his drink. “You’re going to have to figure out just how important she is to you and if your independence is worth the risk of losing her.”
Daniel nodded his agreement. Joshua was right. He and Angela needed to discuss where their relationship was headed. He wanted breathing room, but he also didn’t want to lose what they shared. How did he share with Angela how he was feeling without losing her?
* * *
“Can you zip me up?” Angela asked Daniel as he stood admiring her from the doorway of her apartment on Saturday night. She was wearing a black leather minidress with a cutout back while he was dressed in all black. They were on their way out for a night on the town. Daniel had promised her they’d go dancing for some time and was finally making good on that promise. She’d made sure to pack an overnight bag because they would spend the night back at his penthouse.
“Of course.” He rose from his seat and stepped behind her.
Their eyes met in the mirror and the heat in them caused Angela’s heart to speed up. He slowly zipped up the dress, never taking his eyes off her.
“You look great,” he murmured huskily, and bent his head to kiss her shoulder.
She smiled. “Thank you.” She spun around to face him and he circled his arms around her waist. “So are you ready to show me all your moves?”
He pulled her closer to him until she was pressed against his groin. “You know most of my moves, but there are a few I haven’t shown you yet.”
Angela laughed. “You’re a flirt.”
“And you love it.”
Angela bit back a retort. She did love his flirting as much as she loved the man. But she couldn’t say that. If she did, Daniel would run in the other direction. “Let’s go.” She slapped him on the bottom and slid out of his hands before he could retaliate.
Shortly thereafter, they were seated in the VIP area of a popular nightclub as the strobe lights and music pulsed around them. “This place is great,” Angela said very loudly. She wasn’t at all surprised Daniel opted for bottle service in lieu of being in the throng below them on the first floor. The plush leather sofas were certainly pleasant enough.