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Secret Romance

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Brian Samudra, a high school teenager, fell in love with his Mathematics teacher at his school. The teacher's name is Nadine. Apart from being known for her beautiful appearance, Nadine is also recognized as a strict and disciplined teacher. Brian's efforts bore fruit when they spent two beautiful nights together at a romantic resort in Bali. However, their togetherness had to end due to differences in status and age, and reluctantly, Nadine rejected Brian's love. But fate had other plans; they were reunited after being separated for 5 years in a different situation. The presence of Ricky, a 4-year-old toddler by Nadine's side, intrigued Brian. His desire to be with Nadine grew stronger when she rejected him for the second time. Will Brian succeed in winning Nadine's love this time, or will he have to experience heartbreak for the second time?

Chapter 1

"Brian, your new secretary is coming today, and you can interview her directly," Cakra said to Brian during breakfast this morning.

"Why not just have Danisa as my secretary? You could use the new secretary, Dad," Brian replied lazily. He didn't really like the idea of having to use a new secretary who often lacked experience.

"Don't be so casual about it. I'm comfortable with Danisa, and Mom prefers the new secretary for you. Be nice to her; she's actually aunt Athalia's daughter, our friend from Samarinda. Remember, Brian?" Amanda protested, explaining who the potential new secretary was.

"Forgot, Mom. It's been such a long time. And I'm supposed to be nice to her just because she's Mom's friend's child? That's not how it works, Mom. If her performance is poor, I need to be firm!" Brian retorted, not wanting to back down. Since his old secretary resigned due to pregnancy, he needed a replacement urgently to handle all his tasks.

"Mom doesn't care. You have to accept the secretary Mom chose, period. You're going to like her; she's beautiful and certainly smart!" Amanda praised with sparkling eyes, determined to make her plan work.

"But, Mom?" Brian interjected, knowing that his mom's desires were usually unyielding.

"Both Dad and I have decided that she will be your secretary. Don't worry about her performance. She had an excellent track record at her previous company. Dad brought her into our company, so just accept it!" Cakra said firmly, not wanting to be challenged. With resignation, Brian could only finish his breakfast as quickly as possible. His mood was ruined this morning because of the new secretary. What bad luck.

"Oh my God," Brian exclaimed after cursing in his mind. He then reached for Amanda's hand and kissed her. Brian hurriedly left before witnessing his parents' intimacy. It was not uncommon for him to find his parents kissing, and sometimes Brian felt envious of their closeness, even though they weren't young anymore. Meanwhile, at nearly 24 years old, Brian himself had never had a girlfriend and had only fallen in love once. However, he had to experience heartbreak when the girl left him abruptly.

***

"Good morning, excuse me, Mr. Brian. Your new secretary has arrived," Danisa, Cakra's secretary, escorted Nadine into Brian's office for the interview.

"Good morning," Brian replied, swiveling his large chair to face Danisa, who was now in his office. Since arriving at the office, his mood had changed; he became less enthusiastic, reminded of his past failed love.

He saw a girl standing behind Danisa, looking nervous. Brian squinted his eyes, briefly wondering if his parents had made the right choice with a petite figure like that for a secretary. His previous secretary was very attractive, elegant, well-dressed, and certainly smart. Brian had some doubts about his parents' choice this time.

"Allow me to introduce Miss Nadine, your new secretary," Danisa explained. Like a bolt of lightning in the morning, that name shocked Brian. His body froze instantly, along with his rapidly beating heart. Could this Nadine that Danisa mentioned be the same Nadine from his past? Brian was curious and approached the girl. Danisa quickly stepped aside, knowing her boss was incredibly selective in choosing employees, especially for the role of his secretary. He wanted everything to be perfect.

Slowly, Nadine's face lifted, and their eyes locked. For several seconds, they simply stared at each other. Thud... they were both shocked; Brian hadn't expected to meet Nadine again, especially now that Nadine looked so different. Sensing the silence, Brian quickly switched his expression back to his usual cold and detached demeanor.

Nadine was equally shocked; it seemed that God had answered her prayers by allowing her to meet Brian again after more than five years apart. Nadine couldn't decipher her feelings, whether they were of happiness or sadness, as she worried that Brian might already have a girlfriend or perhaps even a wife. Given her past mistakes, Nadine doubted if Brian had forgiven her.

"Allow me to introduce myself, I'm Nadine. For more details, you can refer to my CV," Nadine stated firmly, concealing her nervousness. She tried her best to control her racing heartbeats.

"I'm Brian Samudra. Call me Mr. Brian," Brian replied while extending his hand. Hesitantly, Nadine shook Brian's hand. Summoning her courage, she stole a quick glance at Brian. He had become even more handsome and attractive, vastly different from the Brian she used to know when he was her student. Nadine wondered if she could work alongside the man she still loved deeply, all while burying her feelings.

Seeing Brian's smiling expression, Danisa felt relieved. It was a sign that her boss had accepted the new secretary. If Brian had rejected Nadine, Danisa would have been in trouble as she would have to be the secretary for both bosses. Especially this young boss of hers, who could be rather fierce. Danisa had always wondered why her young boss had never had a girlfriend despite the many beautiful and attractive women who often visited the office looking for him. Not to mention the female employees who admired him. They would line up, hoping to capture his attention, but not one of them had succeeded.

Earlier, Danisa had hesitated when she saw Nadine's conservative attire. She knew her boss preferred employees who dressed elegantly and stylishly. Honestly, Nadine was stunning and graceful. Danisa had felt a bit embarrassed by the revealing outfit she had worn when she first met Nadine.

"Danisa, please teach Miss Nadine all her tasks. I expect her to have completed learning all the transferred responsibilities by tomorrow!" Brian commanded, his tone icy and firm. After saying that, he resumed his seat in his large chair and immersed himself in his work.

Danisa and Nadine quickly left Brian's office and went over all the tasks that Nadine would be taking over. Danisa was pleasantly surprised when Nadine turned out to grasp her responsibilities so quickly. Not only was Nadine beautiful, but she was also intelligent – in an instant, she absorbed all the information Danisa provided.

"You're amazing, Nadine, to have absorbed all the material I gave you this quickly. It usually takes me a week to train Mr. Brian's new secretaries," Danisa praised, stretching her body as she had been sitting for too long.

"Does Mr. Brian often change secretaries?" Nadine asked curiously.

"Yes, Nadine. Mr. Brian is strict and meticulous. He demands perfection in all tasks. The previous secretary resigned just a week ago as she's about to give birth soon, even though she was a good fit for the job," Danisa explained enthusiastically. It had only been a day since she met Nadine, but she already felt a connection with the girl.

"Just call me Nadine for a more friendly tone," Nadine said warmly.

"You can call me Danisa too. We're around the same age, just a little age gap, haha," Danisa replied with a hearty laugh. She was glad to have a friendly colleague like Nadine. She hadn't been able to form close friendships at the office since most of the female employees liked to gossip, and Danisa was often seen close to the higher-ups.

"Oh, and one more thing, Nadine! Mr. Brian is still single, you know. Who knows, you might be lucky enough to win his heart!" Danisa whispered into Nadine's ear. Nadine just stared wide-eyed, unable to respond.

***

In his office, Brian felt restless, not expecting to encounter his past infatuation again. He had to admit that Nadine had become even more beautiful, and he found himself wanting to marry her immediately.

"Marriage?" Brian's inner voice exclaimed. Could it be that Nadine still had feelings for him? Like? Nadine had never even reciprocated his expressions of love back then.

Quickly, he reached for Nadine's CV lying on his desk. He wanted to know if she was still single or already married. But before he could read the entire content of the CV, Brian was reminded of how Nadine had rejected him so callously. He threw the CV back onto his desk with force, not wanting to get entangled in his past love again.

"Here I am, her boss. So just wait for my response, Nadine!" Brian muttered to himself.

***

Brian attempted to refocus by immersing himself in the pile of work on his desk. However, his mind kept wandering back to the girl in the headscarf who was working earnestly in front of the computer alongside Danisa. Occasionally, Brian saw Nadine smiling and even laughing, which made his heart feel elated.

"Oh God, what should I do? Should I just directly ask her why she left me back then? Or should I stay silent and pretend like none of it ever happened?" Brian muttered to himself, roughly adjusting his tie in an attempt to ease his suddenly constricted emotions. Since meeting Nadine this morning, his emotions had been in turmoil. He admitted that he still loved her deeply, even after trying for more than 5 years to hate her, but failing miserably. A cunning grin suddenly adorned Brian's handsome face.

"Nadine, join me for lunch with a client now!" Brian ordered abruptly, standing in front of Danisa and Nadine's desk. The two of them stared at Brian in astonishment, especially Danisa. She was shocked by her boss's command since she knew there was no scheduled client meeting outside the office today. Nadine wasn't even supposed to start working actively until tomorrow. A foreboding feeling overwhelmed Danisa; she worried that Brian might do something to Nadine.

Brian turned and walked back to his office with a satisfied smile.

Chapter 2

"Let's go, sir!" Nadine said, standing right in front of Brian's desk. Brian turned from his large chair and walked over to Nadine, adjusting his jacket as he gazed at her with an unreadable expression. For Brian's stature, Nadine was quite petite, with a height of only 155 cm compared to Brian's 185 cm, which meant she only reached his chest. Brian had to lower his head to look at the beautiful girl.

"You look even more beautiful!" Brian whispered into Nadine's ear, causing her heart to race instantly. Seeing Nadine's flustered expression, Brian quickly walked out of his office and headed for the elevator with his usual impassive demeanor. Brian was reminded of his high school days when he used to tease his favorite math teacher.

Flashback On...

"Brian, please bring this book to my office!" Nadine ordered the head of Class IPA-1 at Pelita Harapan High School. With enthusiasm, Brian stood up

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