Welcome back to The Beautician and the Billionaire! Click here to begin the story, otherwise please enjoy scene 3!
It was as if everyone in the salon took a collective breath when he said he wanted to talk to Charisse and not Marie. But Charisse didn’t hear it because the way he spoke her name was how she imagined a Frenchman would whisper in his lover’s ear.
Marie broke the spell by saying, “Charisse? What does she have to do with anything?”
“Your father said she’d give me a good haircut.”
It was only because of her experience that Charisse didn’t drop the scissors right on top of Tanya’s head. She managed to put them in the pocket of her apron before turning around.
Oh. My. God. By all the kings of France, he was handsome. The magazine covers didn’t do him justice. His chiseled features were the ideal frame for his piercing sapphire eyes. She would’ve said he was perfect, except she hated his hair. He had it in the trendy style of a short but ridiculous pompadour on top like Harvey Specter from Suits.
But she ignored his hair because his eyes held a look of surprise like he found himself as attracted to her as she was to him.
And then she blinked.
The desire in his eyes vanished, replaced by a stoic business expression, and she remembered why she had sworn to never, ever date a suit again.
She wished she had the ability to turn so cold so fast, but the energy produced by the blush of allure turned to nerves. Everyone in the salon was watching her. She hated speaking if there were more than about four in a group, and really she was most comfortable one on one. Why had her daddy sent him?
Realizing everyone was waiting for her to speak, she said, “I’m Charisse. I, um, have a client right now. If you’d like to sit and talk to my sister, I’ll be right with you.” She tried to force confidence through her voice, but it came out halting and abrasive, rather than smooth.
“I’m happy to wait,” said Tanya, standing up. “I have nothing important going on this afternoon, and I’m sure Mr. Grishin has lots of meetings.”
What was Tanya doing? Was this some sort of loyalty to her, thinking Conor wasn’t interested in her sister? No, Charisse realized, Tanya wanted to watch the show.
“No, no, your hair is wet–”
“Thank you,” said Conor, stepping towards the chair that Tanya had abandoned. “I do have some early evening appointments.”
Undeterred, Marie came over and stood by the mirror. “Your hair is perfect. I can’t imagine Charisse improving on it. I’m sure you have the best stylist in the city.”
Charisse snapped open a fresh cape. She ignored Marie’s insult to her career, knowing she was just flirting.
Conor sat down in the chair and said, “I’d like to hear Charisse’s opinion.” He stared at her in the mirror with his inscrutable gaze.
Charisse heard a few snips, but everyone seemed too busy listening to do much styling. She really hated that haircut, but she could never come right out and say that. She stalled by running her fingers through his hair. Shoot. That was the wrong thing to do. Touching him made goose bumps erupt along her freaking wrists.
I hate suits. I hate suits. I hate suits. She thought the mantra to herself over and over and forced herself to pay attention to his hair and not her reaction to him.
Whoever he went to did a crap job. His hair was dry from overstyling.
“Well, have you considered not shampooing every day? Or at least not blow drying your hair every day?”
She noticed she was still combing her fingers through his hair even though her professional assessment was over. She yanked her hands away and hoped he hadn’t noticed how slowly, almost longingly, she’d been doing it. Marie wanted him, not her.
She cleared her throat, forcing herself to be all business. Even so, heat branched out through her veins. She was about to tell a billionaire his hair was sub par. “It’s just pretty dry. I could recommend a different shampoo specifically for people who blow dry their hair a lot.”
“What else is wrong with it?”
It felt like everyone in the salon stared at her. The gazes turned into a tangible weight on her shoulder, crushing any confidence she had.
Marie spoke, stroking her own locks back from her face and over her shoulder. It was a move Charisse had seen many men drool over, but Conor didn’t even look Marie’s way. “There’s nothing else wrong with your hair. The style is exactly you.” Marie punctuated her words by pushing out her boobs just a little further.
“I wasn’t asking you. I was asking Charisse.”
Charisse frowned. She hated people being rude to her family.
She jutted out her chin and said, “Your hairstyle makes you look douchey.”
Click here to continue to Scene 4.