Ready for a new adventure? I know I am.


"Winners are simply willing to do
what losers won't."

The sound of cheering fades into the distance like a dull hum behind your ears.

Your eyes are trained on the square ring before you. Your cage for the next hour, where anything could happen. You could come out a winner, or you could come out a loser. Just make sure you come out.

Anticipation flows through your body - mix that with excitement and you have one hell of a concoction on your hands.

Your opponent paces side-to-side in their corner. Stare them out; watch their moves - learn their weak spot.

If they have one.

The ring announcer would have done their job; introduce the fighters, call out their stats and continue to get the crowd excited. But again, you don't hear that; you're too busy processing your tactics.

Before you know it the ding sounds and round one has begun.

You pace the perimeter of the ring, and wonder who's going to make the first move.

Guard, block, step back, step forward. Punch.

Keep an eye on your prey but keep an eye on the prize.

One false move; that one fraction of a second when you blink or look away.


You're on the floor.

Blood pours from your open cut and pain radiates your bones, but you can't give up. You don't run from the pain like any sane person would do. You step into it.

Your coach steps through the ropes and works their magic on your face.

"Fuck." He whispers. It's a bad cut.

"What can I do?"

Your feet bounce on the floor.

"Don't get hit."

It's such a simple answer, but advice that could save your match.


The next round begins.

"KEEP YOUR GUARD UP!" Your coach bellows from the side lines.

You do everything with your balance - you want to move to the left, push on the right toe. You want to step right, push on your left.

Guard, block, step back, step forward. Punch.

You spot a weakness.

Repeat your mantra and focus on that weakness.

"Fuck, Edward! GUARD!"

One thing to remember? Always keep your guard up. All you need is to drop your guard for one second, and that is now your weakness.

A punch to the face could fracture your jaw and your nose at the same time.

Blood bursts from your face and spots the people that stand beside your cage.

You lose concentration from the hit. Another punch blows the other side of your head.

You feel the canvas of the mat against your tired body.

And before you know it? That's your match done. You lose.

You're out of the sport for weeks as your face tries it's best to repair itself.

Next thing you know, you're out of the sport for years, because you can't find the strength to get back in that ring.

Your whole career is over, because you dropped your guard for a split second.

Some people say the most important thing a fighter can have is heart, but I think I've only met one fighter that is all heart.

And she was barely fifteen years old.


"You can't keep me hanging like this, Bell!" My longest friend and companion, Angela, followed me around the staff cafeteria like a lost puppy and begged me for information I had held back from her all weekend.

"I said I'd tell you later." I opted for a bowl of the soup paired with a bread roll. Ang' did the same, but not without still pestering me.

"This is later! 'C'mon, B, the last thing I saw Friday night was you getting very close 'n' cuddly to the banker on floor 3 and now you won't tell me what happened!"

I found a spare table towards the back of the room where we could have our conversation in private. Ang' doesn't know when to keep her mouth shut, and the last thing I need is for the whole building to find out what may or may not have happened over the weekend. We have to be very careful in this place - even the walls have ears.

"First of all, do you want to keep your fucking voice down? Lucky for you there's more than one banker on floor 3. Now, tell me what you think happened."

"Well," Ang sat up straight and cleared her throat for serious effect. "if I know you as well as I think I know you (which is pretty well) I can tell, from what you're wearing, that you received a major dicking this weekend."

I stole a look at the black pencil skirt and grey blouse I usually wore to work. "And pray tell, Sherlock Holmes, how you came to that conclusion."

Her face lit with a smirk. She thought she was right, but I wasn't going to tell her otherwise until I heard the detective's story. "Thanks to the lightness of your blouse, I can see which bra you're wearing today and it's the fancy black one with that lacy trim. And I know you wouldn't wear underwear like that to work unless it was too impress someone. So, seeing as you haven't mentioned another guy in... ooh... months, it has to be for Mr. Banker. I bet you're wearing the matching panties too, right? You dirty slut."
I had to give her credit - that was a good analysis. "Well done, Ang'; I'm impressed. But unfortunately you're wrong."

She choked on her mouthful of soup. "Wrong? How can I be wrong?!"

"You're wrong because nothing happened Friday night." I couldn't have looked more smug. "I was all for it, until he mentioned how his wife was due home any minute."

Ang' covered her mouth with a palm, "oooh, damn!"

"Oooh, damn, indeed! I may be many things, Angela, but a home wrecker? I am not. And personally? He'd have been useless anyway," I waved my pinky finger at her, "if that was all he was offering - she can keep him."

The two of us cracked up laughing. I'm such a bitch.

"So... who is the bra for? The Bossman?"

"The Bossman?" I shouted out a laugh, "now you know I could wear a fucking burlap sack and the fucker would still drop to his knees and beg! No - I ran out of my comfies, so this bad boy had to do." I pinged the straps of my bra. At the same time, my cell started to vibrate beside me. BossMan was displayed on the screen. "Speak of the devil and he shall appear!"

"Hello." It was a response more than a question.

"Can you come upstairs please, Bella."

I peered at the watch on my right wrist and scoffed loudly, "No; I still have twenty minutes of my lunch left." Angela shook her head in disbelief with a small smile playing on her face.

"I don't give a fuck, Bella. I expect you in this office in ten minutes with a fresh coffee in hand. Got it?"

I felt like standing to attention and saluting, but I didn't. "I will be there most promptly, Sir." I hung up the call with a mumbled 'asshole' added in for good measure.

"If I spoke to Rose like that I'd be out this building faster than I know how."

I packed up my lunch as I replied, "yeah, but we all know Rose is a bitch. I swear she's constantly on the rag. What I don't get is how their father can be the sweetest man on this earth, but his kids are like demon spawn."

Ang' shrugged her shoulders, "one of life's unanswered questions."

"Yep. Better go see what the Bossman wants - probably needs his ass wiped or something. Catch you later, Ang'!"

Her reply came in the form of laughing, "see ya, B."


I almost crashed into the father of said demon spawn when I left the elevator on the very top floor. Fortunately, for my own sanity, I caught myself from bashing into owner of the entire business and building. "Oh, Mr. Cullen, I'm very sorry." Because he's my Bossman's Bossman if he says 'jump' I ask how high, and double it.

"No blood, no foul, Isabella." He held out his hands - palms facing me. "I'm just coming from seeing my son. He's not in the best of moods, just to forewarn you."

"Don't worry, Mr. Cullen; I'm used to his girly mood swings."

Bossman's Bossman let out a throaty laugh, "don't hesitate to come see me if they continue, Isabella. And call me Carlisle."

Ooh. First-name-bases with Bossman's Bossman. I'm getting somewhere in this world, guys.

Rubs hands with excited gleam in eye.

"You've got it, Carlisle." With a caring smile, he allowed me to go and face the wrath of his son.

I dropped off the papers I had picked up on the way, and then continued into his office to see where the fire was.

"I said ten minutes, Bella." He spoke to his computer, then turned to face me, "that means get up here in ten minutes, not take all the time you want."

"I was talking to your father. Now, what do you want?"

Bossman shot me the deadliest glare, but he didn't scare me.

Never has, never will.

"I want you do to exactly as I say." He spat. Someone needs to get laid... "I need you to cancel all my appointments for this afternoon - I'm leaving early."

You've got to be kidding me. "Is that all you needed me for? I could do that anywhere!"

I could have finished my fucking soup, asshole.

"I just wanted to see that fine ass of yours." He winked.

"You're a dick." I turned to leave whilst fighting off the smile from our usual banter. He flirts and I flirt back and that's how we've always been.

"Hey! Where's my coffee?" He bellowed. "I was serious about that request."

I spun around on one heel and shot him the bird. "Sit on this, Edward."

His throaty laugh followed me out the office.


My iPhone pinged with a new email as I left the office building. That was one thing I hated about being a PA is how often my cell goes off. It's like all the fuckers are too scared to contact Edward directly. Which... is probably true, but still. However I wouldn't have stayed with his cranky ass for the past five years if it bothered me that much.

From: Edward A Cullen.

It read.

Subject: I need you...
I need to discuss something with you. Come to the house when you have finished.

Edward Cullen.
CEO B&C Agencies New York.

Isabella? What has he been smoking?

I quickly worded a reply.

From: Isabella Swan.
Subject: Priorities.
What do you need this time? I have a date with Angus tonight, and I can't miss it.
We planned it weeks ago.

Isabella Swan.
Assistant to Bossman.

From: Edward A Cullen.
Subject: Angus?
You have a date with your cat? Good one, Swan.
Don't ask questions, just get your ass here ASAP.

Edward Cullen.
CEO B&C Agencies New York.

From: Isabella Swan.
Subject: Furry Friends.
Angus and I have a strong bond. You don't understand.
And leave my ass out of this.

Isabella Swan.
Assistant to Bossman.

From: Edward A Cullen.
Subject: I'm not blind...
Like I said earlier, it looked damn fine in that skirt.
But seriously, get here.

Edward Cullen.
CEO B&C Agencies New York.

From: Isabella Swan.
Subject: Tut Tut.
Dirty old man.
Fine, see you in a bit.

Isabella Swan.
Assistant to Bossman.


It took longer than usual to get through the New York congestion, but an hour and a half after I left the office block, I arrived outside Edward's lavish home. It didn't look like much from the gates, but if you knew what hid behind that grassy embankment? Man, you'd shit a brick. I let myself in with the memorized four digit code, and drove my car up to the first set of garages.

The smell of freshly cut grass I was met with on opening the car door, told me Edward had had the gardeners 'round. I could only pray that Siobhan was still on duty - I could kill for one of her speciality turkey sandwiches. Oh, and the chili? Fuck, if it was legal to marry food...

My stomach rejoiced at the smell of succulent roast beef that hit me smack in the face when I entered the house. After I chucked away my soup five hours ago, I was starving.

"Good evening, my dear." Siobhan appeared from the kitchen with a blue apron tied around her middle. She was middle aged, with thick, long, ginger hair and a permanent smile on her round face. She was a tall woman, and could look intimidating, but in reality she would never hurt a fly.

"Hello, Siobhan. I hope you saved enough food for me?"

Siobhan let out a hearty chuckle and put an arm around my shoulders. For as long as I have worked with Edward, Siobhan has always treated me like the daughter she never had. And because my own mom lived so far away, I accepted the motherly comfort.

"Of course, Bella. It'll be ready in half an hour."

"Excellent! Enough time for me too see what His Royal Highness wants."

She chuckled again. "Y'know where to find him."

Bossman's loud voice was heard before I reached his office. From the explicit language he used, someone had pissed him off. Big time.

"You had one job, Ryan! Fuck sake... No, no, no - listen. I expect you to do your job properly, and if you can't achieve that I'll make sure Isabella has your ass replaced by morning... I'm fucking serious. Make sure you clear up that mess by the time I get there tomorrow, or so help me..."

When it had appeared that he was off the phone, I knocked lightly and entered the room with a bright smile on my face. I had to cheer him up, before it was my own ass on the firing line. "Hey, Boss!" I dropped my bag on the leather couch and took a seat on the spinning chair.

"Isabella." He acknowledged me with a stern nod of his head, and never looked up from the paper work spread out on the desk.

"So... what can I do for you?"

Bossman sighed loudly and opened his mouth to speak, but his words were cut short by the ringing of his phone.

"Son of a bitch." He whispered harshly. "Cullen..." He answered just as harshly. "Very good, Ryan... very good. Email Isabella with the details and we'll get that underway." Then he hung up without a word.

"Email me what?"

Edward shoved a fist through his hair. "Something you need to sort out for us."

"And... I don't get more of an explanation than that?"

He let out an angry groan, "just leave it, Isabella."

I've got a spare tampon if you need one, Boss.

Jesus Christ.

"Then what am I doing here?" I have a date with Angus, remember?

"I received a phone call from Eric Yorkie earlier on."

I know that name... why do I know that name... Oh, damn!

"Eric Yorkie as in... Lauren Mallory's lawyer?"

He slammed his fist to the wooden desk. "Do you know anyone else with that name?"

It was just a question...

"And anyway, he's no longer her lawyer. He's now her husband."

Without warning, a laugh snorted its way out my mouth, which I caught in the cup of my hand. Edward shot me a glare. "Sorry... thats not funny..." But in reality, it's stinking hilarious. "So why did he ring?"

Bossman had a vein on the side of his head that looked as if it would pop any second. "Why do you think he rang?" He sighed again, to clear out all his pent up rage. "Lillian is doing something in New York this summer - don't ask what, I couldn't give a fuck - and they need me to find a place for her to stay."

"Lily's coming? Aw, I've always wanted to meet her!"

"Isabella, whose side are you on?"

"Oh, I'm sorry," I said, sarcasm thick in my voice. "I thought you would like having your daughter come to stay."

"She's not staying with me! I haven't seen her since she was seven years old; I don't know anything about the kid."


"How can you be so heartless to a poor little girl?"

"She's fourteen; not a little girl. We're getting off topic now." He looked me straight in the eyes. "I need you to find her a hotel to stay in for the duration of her stay - I don't care where and I don't care how much. Just get it sorted, is that clear?"

The smile on my face couldn't have been more fake. "Crystal."

You think I'm allowing a vulnerable teenage girl to roam New York on her own? You have another thing coming, Bossman.

Get ready for one helluva wake up call.


Yep, Bossman is an ass, and Bella is a feisty little thing.
I know things may be confusing, but all will fall into place soon. Tell me your thoughts and whether you'd like to read more?