Book cover of “The CEO's Target“ by Verity Nyle

The CEO's Target

  • Genre: Romance
  • Status: Completed
  • Language: English
  • Author: Verity Nyle
Melvin Swernbach needs to find a bride and get her pregnant before a certain date. A date that he does not know because his married girlfriend, who also works with his grandfather’s lawyer, will not reveal the full terms of the will. Life seems to smile his way when he meets Elaine Johnson. A woman he is sure that his grandparents will love. E... 

Chapter 1. Grandpa’s Will

Melvin Swernbach’s eyes swept over the message for the fifth time. His lean tanned hands unbuckled his seat belt. He ran his hands through his jet black hair.

This meeting had lasted longer than all others. Some big change was bound to happen.

He tossed his keys at the valet as the doorman pushed open the main doors of the Swernbach Hotel. This hotel was one of the biggest of their chains of hotels. They had one in every major city in the world. It was a strange place for a man to choose to update his will but his grandfather, George, had always had a strange taste in things. A strange taste in business, strange taste in houses and a strange love for Andrew.

Melvin frowned. Andrew could have their grandfather’s heart but he wouldn’t leave the hotel without progress. The larger share of his grandfather’s wealth would be his by all means.

“Where’s my grandfather?” he asked the secretary sitting at the gold gilded reception table.

She pointed toward the door leading past the lounge to the back of the hotel. “He asked that nobody-”

The rest of her words floated past his ears as he marched past the large red couches that formed the circular lounge area to the main French doors that led to the swimming and open bar area. He didn’t understand why they would want to keep him from the old man.

Every other person wanted him around but the old man. Ever since Melvin bashed George’s car at 14, the man had watched him like a hawk. He’d apologized for the car and they’d got him the latest model the next week but it wasn’t enough.

He opened the door and the sunlight kissed his face as he surveyed the area. A waiter held a golden tray with a single glass of sparkling white wine on it. George lay on the beach chair beside the waiter and Gwen, his grandfather’s solicitor’s assistant, stood opposite the waiter.

“Granddad.” Melvin swiped the drink off the tray and took a swing before hugging the man. “Good aged stuff.”

His grandfather remained still but blessed him with a pointed cold look. The one where his grandfather’s eyes froze on a person and his brows seemed to smash together.

“Are you not happy to see me?”

“No one is happy to see the devil. Why are you here?”

“Can’t I visit my beloved grandfather anymore?”

His grandfather signaled to the waiter and the man took a small bow before leaving. Melvin stood where the waiter had sat before.

The older Swernbach sat up and eyed Melvin. “You look too happy. Whose fortune have you gambled away this time?”

“No. None of that. I’m just happy to see you.”

The grandfather’s eyes strayed to Gwen. “That will be all for now. Be sure to let Carter know the changes I have made.”

“Yes, sir.” She bowed.

Their eyes met over the grandfather’s head and he winked at her. She rolled her eyes before picking the files that lay on the small stool at his grandfather’s feet. He would speak to her soon and they would do more than speak words.

“I find it very strange that you happen to show up every single time I think of making changes to my will.”

“It must be a gift. Or a sign that there is something good for me in there.”

His grandfather snorted. “I’d believe that after I die.”

“So, tell me what changes you made this time?” Melvin clasped his hands together like a little boy who could not wait to stick his hands into the candy jar.

His grandfather remained stoic, unfazed. “And why should I tell you. You can wait for me to die like the rest of the family.”

“That will take too long!”

“Well, then, maybe you will learn some patience?”

Melvin guffawed. “I am patient.”

“Then why are you bothering me about the content of the will?”

“Because you keep changing it.” Every two months, the man had something to add or remove from the will. There was no reason for that but he would not take any chances. “I just want to make sure that poor Andy still has a stake in the family after you leave.”

“Andy will be fine. If I were in your shoes, I’d worry about myself.”

George got off the bench, slipping his legs into his designer slippers and standing on his feet. A few wrinkles danced around loose flabby flesh on his hands and stomach but beyond that, the only tell-tale signs of his age were the white strands of hair underneath his chin and on his head.

“Worry? Are you going to cut me off?” Melvin’s voice rose.

“Who’s to say I haven’t?”

“But… but…” Melvin looked around, his eyes sweeping the ladies in the pool, before turning back to his grandfather. “What have I done?”

“What haven’t you done?”

Melvin sighed. The gambling business was just a way to catch some fun and he hadn’t meant to burn down the family’s summer home in that small British town. It was an accident.

It could have happened to anybody but he was unfortunately the last individual to host a party there and everyone thought it was his fault. If Andrew had thrown the party, no one would’ve said a word.

“But, grandpa. You know my heart is weak.” He clutched at his chest.

The heart thing was something he’d started when he was five years old. Even though countless doctors, until the one he paid, had insisted that there was nothing wrong with him, his acting had got him everything he wanted. At least, almost everything when anyone else but Grandpa George was involved.

“How would I be able to survive without your money? I mean, your support.”

“You work. Like Andrew does.”

“He works like a donkey.”

“But his inheritance is sure. Act like a responsible man, and I’ll think of what to do.”

“What does that mean?”

“Figure it out, Melvin. I’m not getting any younger.”

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