Filthy Beautiful Lies Page 33

We kiss for several minutes and cuddle in the big, warm bed before Colton crawls out, saying he needs to shower and get ready for work. I guess I do too.

Chapter Twelve


Kylie is adorable. Probably a couple years older than me, she has wavy auburn hair tied in a messy bun on top of her head, and no makeup, but geez, she doesn’t need it. Her cheeks are rosy pink and her green eyes are large and wide-set. She’s barefoot and dressed in yoga pants and a tank top. "Hi!" She smiles widely, showing off perfectly straight white teeth. Does everyone in LA have teeth like this? "Don’t just stand there, come in." She tugs me by the arm inside her front door, closing it behind me.


"Sophie. I know. Colton is an absolute angel to send you. God, I was giddy when he called this morning." She leads me further into her house. "Sorry about the mess." She waves in the direction of the disheveled living room and kitchen. "I’m a terrible housekeeper. Hope that’s not a problem."

"No, it’s fine." I navigate the little living room, dodging laundry baskets and stray toys as I follow her.

Kylie leads me out the backdoor and to a set of steps. "Office is up there." She points. "Go ahead, I’m just going to grab the baby monitor."

I start up the stairs, wondering what I’m getting myself into. Joining me a few seconds later, she explains that when Colton hired her to run the day to day operations of his charity, he built her a home office above her garage. Her tiny two-bedroom house didn’t have any extra room to spare and she didn’t want to have to put her baby in childcare. It was the perfect arrangement – and awfully generous of him. I want to ask how they know each other, but I keep my trap shut and my jealousy in check. I’m here to work.

We enter a roomy loft above the garage. There are plenty of big windows to let in the light, and two large work stations with laptops and filing cabinets spilling over with papers.

Kylie thrusts her arms out proudly. "Welcome to the world headquarters of Highpoint Associates." She picks up a bottle and a baby rattle from the desk. "Seriously. Sorry about this. I would have cleaned up if I’d known you were coming."

"Trust me, its fine. I’m just happy to have a change of scenery. I’ve been cooped up at Colton’s for weeks and I’ve been going a bit stir crazy."

"Wow. You live with him? That’s…that’s…huge…" She turns to me, her mouth hanging open in surprise. "And that house is freakin’ incredible."

Interesting. She’s been inside his home and seems to understand that him having a woman living with him is a big step. I find it both fascinating and utterly frustrating that Marta and now Kylie seem to possess intimate knowledge about Colton. He must not be as discreet as his seems with his affections. His restraint is only reserved for me. Of course I have no way of knowing if Kylie has actually slept with him, but the faraway look in her eyes tells me she’s daydreaming of some memorable encounter with him. Oddly, it makes me want to hit something.

I shrug it off. "So, what’s on the docket today?"

"Right." She gives her head a shake, pushing away the thought. "First I’m going to give you an overview of the work we’ve done so far, and then I’ll explain what I’m hoping to accomplish next. You can be involved in any part of it that sounds interesting to you."

I nod. "Sounds good."

I listen while she explains, in more detail than Colton provided, about their mission to create a stable self-sustaining community in a sub-Saharan part of rural Africa. His vision is much more complex than just to provide clothing, food and medicine to people in need, like he’d humbly led me to believe. He wanted to do something bigger – something the residents could sustain long after he and his generous donations were gone. It’s quite a bit more sophisticated than I ever imagined and I’m impressed. No wonder he’s so busy.

He has a team of city planners, architects, engineers, teachers and doctors who are working together to drill for fresh, clean drinking water, plant crops and teach the local people about agriculture and farming as well as building a school for the children to ensure the next generation is prepared to lead. What Kylie is describing is a massive undertaking. He’s essentially creating an entire community from the ground up. I get goosebumps listening to her speak and I’m suddenly really glad I didn’t find a job at a coffee shop – this is much more worthwhile to devote my time to.

At the end of her explanation, Kylie provides an overview of the pertinent files on the laptop I’ll be using. "I’m so glad you’re here." She grins widely at me, showing off twin-dimples that make her look younger. "God, Stella was crazypants." Just then the baby monitor squawks and she jumps up from her seat. "Be right back."

She leaves me to work on creating mailing labels and to type up a letter to the additional investors Colton’s secured. My head is spinning and the work is a needed distraction.

Chapter Thirteen


After our erotic shower encounter, my relationship with Colton takes on a new meaning, changing in a subtle, but noticeable way. He texts me during the day while he’s at work and calls once he’s on his way home.

I’ve been working several days a week with Kylie, driving myself to her suburban home in one of Colton’s cars. It’s nice to feel like I’m making a contribution to something, and now that Colton and I are actually clicking, I feel a lot better about my situation.

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