Not Safe for Work

By: L. A. Witt

Chapter One

It all started with an app that I knew better than to check at work.

I especially knew better than to check it during a meeting. I mean, I was not one to fuck around on my phone during meetings in the first place. If I did, I sure as hell didn’t load anything besides my e-mail and maybe some social media, just in case someone glanced over my shoulder.

Most of the time, I sat there and paid attention—or, like I had in high school, at least made a damned good effort to come across that way—even when there was no rational reason for me to be parked in a chair in a conference room instead of working. I didn’t bitch (much). Not even when my boss inevitably bitched at me later for being behind on the project I physically couldn’t work on while I was in Meeting Purgatory with her.

That day, my patience ran out. I already knew I’d be working late tonight because every minute I spent in here, listening to the architects and the property developers drone on and on about every fucking detail of their newest project, was another minute I wasn’t downstairs working. Once this meeting was over, my boss and the other architect would be on my ass about the model I needed to build—a to-scale rendering of the project they were all discussing. Ninety minutes into this, I could already hear them asking why the hell I hadn’t made any progress since lunch.

So, fuck it. If they were going to kill my Friday night and likely my weekend, then I was mentally checking out. Perhaps not my most mature moment, but I’d been out of coffee for forty-five minutes, so I didn’t care.

Carefully sitting back and leaning my binder up on the edge of the table, I surreptitiously propped my phone against the notebook. It was completely out of sight from anyone else in the room, and the sound was, of course, turned off. Perfect.

E-mail. Check.

Facebook. Check.

Twitter. Check.

Facebook. Again. Check.

Meeting… Still going.

I listened for a few minutes to make sure they hadn’t gone off on some topic I needed to know about—they hadn’t—and shifted my attention back to my phone. At the bottom of the screen, a newish icon caught my eye. The little pair of crudely drawn handcuffs was tempting. So, so tempting.

No, better not. I’d only had the app for a couple of weeks, so it was still shiny and novel, but definitely not one I should be checking at work. Even if I wasn’t in a meeting. Which I was.

Then again, no one could see my phone.

No one was discussing anything that needed my input. None of my crew—the drafters and modelers I worked with on a daily basis—were here to sneak a glance over my shoulder, hoping to catch something they could razz me about until the end of time.

Nobody had to know.

Oh, what the hell?

I clicked on the app and got a little electric thrill when the Searching For Kinky Singles In Your Area…popped up. I hadn’t had much luck on here lately, but I also hadn’t checked it in a few days. And, well, hope sprang eternal. An app that found kinky people the way Grindr and Tindr found casual hookups? Hell yeah.

Found—17 possible matches.

Seventeen? Last time, it had been fourteen, so that was an improvement. I tapped Show Me Matches, which I’d already set to Sort by Proximity.

Last time, the nearest potential match had shown as five miles away, which had been surprisingly close. Sitting in a meeting with my boss, one of the firm’s partners and a few reps from our multimillion-dollar client, I was not prepared for what came up on my screen.

Nearest Match—six feet away from you.

My heart stopped.

And then I realized the match’s icon was green. They were not only in this room, they were online. They’d been active within the last few minutes. They could see me online and active.

No. No way. That had to be a mistake. Someone’s profile had the wrong location. Could’ve been someone on the floor above or below me. Maybe something in the building was interfering with the app or my GPS or something. There was no way in hell someone else in this room was viewing the same app and had been matched to me.

I lifted my gaze and cast a sweeping glance around the room.

Bob Mitchell, the partner, was still droning on about something. Dion Young, the gorgeous CFO of the client, Horizon Developing, had his phone out, but it was facedown on the table and hadn’t moved.

My eyes halted on my boss, Marie.

It couldn’t be her. Even if she was kinky—and I suspected sometimes that she was—my filters were extremely tight. I was specifically looking for a submissive, and the vibe she gave off pinged very, very heavily on the dominant end of the spectrum. It wasn’t unusual for management types to be subs, but I’d have been shocked if Marie had ever submitted in her life.

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