Love on Fire with a Billionaire
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- ⭐ 9.1
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Aurora is a twenty-year-old young woman currently studying journalism. What sets her apart from others is her exuberant joy, audacity, and frankness, known for not mincing her words. She is in search of a polite, caring, and loving man, just like Alexander, a college colleague for whom she harbors a platonic passion. However, as she often says, "Life loves to play tricks on me," her path crosses with that of Tristan Callahan, the ruthless and sadistic president of one of the top accounting firms in New York. Despite Aurora being a modest girl, lacking expensive material possessions, she holds something extremely valuable to Tristan: her virginity. He is desperate to obtain it, but Aurora is not willing to easily give in.
"I'm sorry, but we don't have any vacancies for you at the moment, but please leave your number, and we'll get in touch if anything comes up," Aurora forced a friendly smile at the woman, but deep down, she wanted to beg for a job for that unknown woman. However, her pride was stronger.
She stood up and left the clothing store, walking towards the train station. It was the seventh "no" she had received that day. She had spent the Saturday afternoon looking for a job but wasn't accepted anywhere. They all said they might contact her, but they never did. Luck was definitely not on her side.
She had given up on searching for well-paying jobs. Not that she lacked the skills, considering she had numerous courses on her resume and could fluently speak three languages. But in her current situation, anything would be a blessing. She would even accept a job as a street sweeper.
As she entered the train, she hurried towards the seats and managed to claim one. "At least I accomplished that," she thought. But that victory lasted for a short time. An elderly lady leaning on a cane stood in front of her, looking at the young woman, waiting for the moment when she would be kind enough to offer her seat. Aurora hesitated, which made the old woman give her a deadly look. The young woman sighed and, with all her manners and patience, stood up and gave her seat to the elderly woman.
The girl dragged her feet due to exhaustion. She had walked so much that day, and all she wanted was a relaxing bath and her bed.
The young woman's eyes fixed on the scenery in front of her. She looked at the square in the center of her neighborhood, specifically at the huge tree in the middle of the square, shedding dry leaves onto the sidewalk and the street. To make the sunset even more beautiful, it was at a perfect angle.
Quickly, she took her worn single-strap bag and retrieved her camera. She took numerous photos from various angles. She also didn't miss the chance to capture the scene of the neighborhood children playing around the tree.
Aurora had a great passion for photography. She never missed an opportunity to capture a beautiful image. To her, a photograph is poetry for the eyes.
Despite not having a good financial condition, she managed to buy her desired camera from a famous brand through effort. It was the only branded item she owned.
Still looking through the lens of her camera, she zoomed in and focused on the face of the dark-haired guy who was smiling beautifully at the children in the street. She took a photo of her platonic crush, Alexander Blackwood, or as everyone in the neighborhood called him, Alex.
Aurora put her camera back in her bag and watched Alex enter the gate of his humble house, which was three houses away from the building where she lived.
Besides living close to each other, they attended the same college but different courses. Aurora studied journalism, while Alex studied music. Both buildings were side by side, so sometimes the young woman would run into the guy when they left or went to the cafeteria.
Even though destiny made them cross paths many times, they were not friends, just acquaintances. Aurora could be an outgoing girl, but when she was near him, she only opened her mouth to say nonsense.
It was almost impossible not to fall in love with Alex. He was affectionate towards people of all ages, had a wonderful smile, was gentle, and his voice sent shivers down one's spine, both when speaking and singing.
Aurora shook her head from side to side, realizing she was standing on the sidewalk, staring into space like a crazy person. She then entered her building and wished the fifty-year-old lady behind the counter a good night.
In a low tone, the girl cursed several times because the elevator wasn't working, forcing her to climb the stairs up to the fourth floor.
Aurora entered her house and found her older sister, Adelaide, sitting on the sofa, looking at a pile of overdue bills.
"How was the job interview?" she asked without looking at Aurora.
"Terrible!" the girl slammed the door shut, threw her bag onto the coffee table, and sat down next to Adelaide.
"You need a job, and fast!" this time, she looked at her sister. "It's getting hard to pay the bills with just the salary I earn at the restaurant. The owners are already pressuring us."
"I'll have to put my last plan into action." She sighed, and Adelaide looked at her angrily, remembering what the young woman had said a few days ago.
"Aurora, I've already told you that you're not going to become a stripper!" the younger one burst into laughter. Adelaide was an overprotective and responsible sister, and Aurora always enjoyed getting her angry.
"Then why don't you do it? I heard it pays a lot of money."
"I'd rather stick with my job at the catering company, thank you!" she dropped the papers on the coffee table, wanting to forget her problems for a moment. "How's college going? Does Alexander still not know you exist?"
"Hey! He does know I exist."
"Oh, yes, of course. I forgot that, to him, you're the crazy girl who threw Violet Delgado into the rattlesnake area during the zoo excursion."
"I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I was just taking her back to her natural habitat."
Violet Delgado was in the same course as Aurora. Ever since their first year of college, they hadn't gotten along. Violet was a spoiled girl who thought she was superior to others, and since Aurora wasn't someone who stayed quiet when injustice happened right in front of her, she confronted Violet many times, leading to their current rivalry.
"It's always good to remember the excursion incident. You know that most companies didn't hire you because they heard about that accident and thought you were crazy. Violet could have died."
"It's not that big of a deal, and that was a long time ago! Don't they believe that people change over time?"
"But you haven't changed at all. If you had the chance, you'd throw her again, am I not right?"
"I wouldn't throw her into the rattlesnake area, I'd leave her in the cobra area!" she replied, and Adelaide laughed.
"Do you think Alex will like a crazy person like you?"
"Adelaide, you're not the most normal person in the world. I know plenty of your dirty secrets. Do you think Nicholas will like knowing all of them?"
Adelaide became serious. Nicholas worked at the same restaurant as her. Once, when she was drunk, she confessed to Aurora that she had a crush on her coworker, but now she denies it every time that topic is brought up.
"I'm not even going to respond to that! I'm going to my job, which is the best thing I do." The redhead girl stood up, grabbed her bag from the coffee table next to Aurora's bag.
"Send a kiss to Nicholas for me!" she said as soon as Adelaide opened the door.
"No!" In response, her sister slammed the door shut, making the young woman laugh.
Aurora got up, took her camera from her bag, and headed towards the darkroom, which was basically a small room where she developed all the pictures she took. She spent minutes there, developing the photos she had taken earlier in the day. She bathed the last photograph in the fixer solution and then hung it on a drying rack. It was a picture of Alex smiling.
Not that she was obsessed with that man, but she felt like a foolishly in love person, always gazing at him as if he were a work of art.
It was already night, and Aurora was sitting on the couch, eating a tub of ice cream and watching a variety show on TV. Only the noise from the television filled the room, as everything would be in complete silence if it were turned off. That's why Aurora was startled when Adelaide rushed into the apartment.
"I have news that will make you very happy!" she opened a huge smile and jumped with excitement.
Aurora set aside the ice cream, stood up, and faced her sister. She pondered for a few seconds about what news could make her jump for joy.
"You prevented something bad from happening to a member of Little Mix, and as a thank you, she gave you two tickets to their next concert next month, and even a backstage pass!" Aurora said ironically, and Adelaide rolled her eyes.
"You need to stop watching reality shows."
"I already know! Are you and Nicholas going out tomorrow night?" she asked, and Adelaide's look made it clear that they weren't.
"I give up on trying to guess," Aurora replied.
"Pay attention, one of the girls who serves at the catering company got sick, and I managed to get you to replace her at the next catering event next week, along with me!" Adelaide smiled again, but Aurora had the opposite reaction.
"Oh no!" the girl sat back on the couch and returned her attention to the tub of ice cream.
"Why not? We'll have money to pay the rent this month." Adelaide sat down next to her.
"And will there be money to pay for my beauty salon? Because the last time I served at a catering event, I ended up with my face in Iron Man's cake!"
"Don't worry, it won't be a children's party. It's the celebration of Callahan's accounting company anniversary!"
"Callahan." The name sounded familiar. Aurora had heard of that family because they had one of the best accounting firms in New York, so it would be a high-class party, full of luxury. Aurora didn't see any harm in accepting that temporary job.
The following week, at the catering event...
Tristan entered his father's mansion office and saw the scene he was expecting. His date, Genevieve, who was also his future secretary, was kissing some random guy.
"Tristan!" the brunette stepped away from the unknown man and went after Tristan, grabbing his arm before he left the office. "I can explain..."
"Whatever, do whatever you want. I don't care," Tristan coldly spoke as he walked out, giving the couple more privacy.
That was true; Tristan didn't care about Genevieve, in fact, he didn't care about anyone. She was just another amusement. He took her to the company's anniversary party because she was beautiful, he could parade around the hall with her by his side as if she were a trophy, but only that, an object he used and then discarded.
Tristan returned to the hall where many people were gathered, women wearing expensive dresses and men in suits. Journalists and photographers were scattered in the corners. Tristan could already imagine the next day's photos of the party on the front pages of newspapers and magazines, becoming one of the most talked-about topics on social media.
Tristan walked through the hall, some people looked at him and smiled, especially the women because it was almost impossible not to try to charm such a man. He didn't need to smile to be so attractive.
He caught sight of a catering girl holding a tray of champagne flutes passing by his side. He grabbed her wrist, startling her with the sudden gesture.
"Do you want something?" Aurora asked, trying not to appear nervous. Besides the fact that this man was still holding her wrist, she was impressed by his beauty. His gaze showed no emotions, it was cold and yet charming.
"A glass," he said, taking one of the glasses from the tray and taking a sip.
Aurora turned around and quickly walked towards the bar, where Adelaide was serving some guests behind the counter.
Tristan watched as the girl walked away. She had an angelic face, and her red hair stood out. She seemed like an insecure girl, but he had no idea that she was far from defenseless.
"Who is he?" Aurora sat on one of the bar stools.
"Who?" Adelaide questioned, and Aurora nodded her head towards Tristan, who was on the other side of the hall. "Are you talking about Mr. Callahan's son?"
"Son? So, this party is for his father's company anniversary celebration?"
"Sort of. I heard that Mr. Callahan let his youngest son take over his position recently, which means that man is the new president," Adelaide replied, grabbing a cloth and wiping the counter.
"Handsome, very handsome," Aurora said absentmindedly, admiring Tristan's incredible beauty. She took a champagne flute from her tray and took a sip.
"Don't drink it!" Adelaide lightly slapped her sister's hand, and Aurora placed the glass on the counter.
Genevieve entered the grand hall, looking around for Tristan. She knew he didn't feel anything for her, that he only wanted sex, but Genevieve was starting to develop feelings for him, and she wasn't going to throw away the chance she had to have sexual relations with him, even if it was just for fun, that was enough for her.
After spotting Tristan, she ran towards him and stood in front of him. He looked at her, as always, with a cold gaze.
"Let me explain what happened in that office," Genevieve pleaded.
Tristan simply walked past her as if she wasn't there. He had already used her that night, and she had become disposable at that moment.
"Tristan Callahan! You have to listen to me!" she shouted, drawing the attention of everyone in the hall. Tristan stopped walking and sighed, trying to be patient.
"Sister, I think things are about to heat up here," Aurora whispered to Adelaide, who stopped what she was doing and paid attention to the argument.
"Stop ignoring me, please!" Genevieve said.
"Is the show over?" Tristan turned around and signaled for the security guards to take the girl away. Two of them held Genevieve's arms, and she immediately started struggling.
"Let me go! Tristan, tell them to let me go!" the brunette shouted, and photographers took photos of that moment.
"Take her away; her presence is irritating me," said the brown-haired man in a suit, turning away and taking another sip of his champagne, listening to Genevieve calling out to him as she was dragged out of the mansion.
"How rude," Aurora commented, shocked by Tristan's attitude. When she first saw him, she realized he was a cold and calculating man, but she didn't think he was so harsh, with a heart of stone.
"Isn't beauty the most important thing to you?" Adelaide said sarcastically.
"Good-looking men attract me for a few minutes, but character and substance matter more in the end," she sighed, thinking of Alexander. She took the champagne glass from before and finished the remaining liquid.
"Then you wouldn't be even slightly interested to know that he's looking at you right at this moment?"
"What?!" Aurora widened her eyes.
"You shouldn't be drinking that," Tristan sat next to the girl, who was paralyzed upon hearing that voice again. "We're paying for the drinks and buffet for our guests."
"And I'm paying for it too," Aurora retorted.
"With my services! It's unfair to serve all the guests and not be able to take a break for a drink."
He was surprised by the young woman's response, but he didn't show it. Tristan had thought she was one of those girls who always played by the rules, who didn't talk back to people, but her innocent young face had deceived him.
Aurora respected her superiors, but after seeing the way he treated that woman, she formed a terrible impression of the guy.
"Who was that girl?" Aurora referred to Genevieve, she was curious, and that was one of her biggest flaws, and she didn't mind being indiscreet. "Why were you fighting? I mean, it wasn't a fight, but it was an argument."
"Aurora! Stop it," Adelaide scolded her sister and then apologized to Tristan. "I'm sorry for my sister's rudeness, sir."
"That girl was just someone I knew who was about to have sex with some random guy in my father's office," he answered Aurora's question. In the girl's mind, that was his way of saying he had been betrayed.
"So she cheated on you?" Adelaide was astonished.
"Aurora!" Adelaide said.
"I don't owe you an explanation of my life," Tristan replied, and Aurora raised an eyebrow. She thought Genevieve was some girlfriend who had betrayed him, and this man's pride prevented him from confessing it.
"I apologize again, sir," Adelaide said once more. "Aurora, take this tray and go serve the guests." She handed her the tray with more champagne flutes. Aurora simply took the tray and started walking around the hall.
Tristan continued sitting on the bar stool, watching Aurora move around, serving the guests with a smile on her face.
"Do you want anything, sir?" Adelaide asked Tristan.
"The name of that girl," he replied.
"N-Name?" The girl became nervous; she thought Tristan was going to do something to her sister, but she had to say it. That night he was her boss, but if he insisted on messing with Aurora, she would get back at him. "Her name is Aurora Navarro."
Aurora had still drunk a few glasses of champagne hidden that night. By the end of the party, when only the staff and the mansion owners remained to clean up, the young woman was in a deplorable state; she was very drunk.
She changed her clothes and now wore a simple dress, with her worn-out purse on her shoulder. She approached Adelaide, who was collecting some dirty glasses from the counter.
"I'm heading out now," Aurora said with a smile. It was the effect of the alcohol, but she tried her best not to show it to Adelaide. She wanted to leave the mansion instead of waiting for her sister and having to help her clean up.
"Are you sure you can make it home alone?" Adelaide was a little taken aback by her sister's condition. "I think it's better if you wait for me to finish up so we can leave together."
"No need!" Aurora stumbled over her words. "I can manage on my own." She took a few steps away
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