Hi, and thanks for having me. My name is Katherine Rhodes, and I’m the author of “Consensual: A Club Imperial Novel.” It’s the first book in the Club Imperial series.
So what am I doing on “Hardworking Heroes”? Well that’s easy… there’s not one, but two hardworking heroes in “Consensual”. The Walsh Brothers- Nathaniel and Victor -are co-owners of Walsh Manufacturing and Distribution. Nathaniel is the COO and Victor is CFO. While they are high up in the Mellon Building in Pittsburgh, nothing stops these two from going to the yard and overseeing the day to day on the ground. They pitch lumber and rebar at least twice a week, so they are connected to the employees who make their company successful.
Victor’s new administrator, Emmy, pulls on Nathaniel’s heart strings. She’s smart, sweet and also not afraid to get her hands dirty. She’s a lot stronger than either brother thinks she is.
Nathaniel and Victor are proud of where they are and the business they run. Their father built it up from a small business into the multimillion dollar company that the brothers control. Not only that, but he taught his boys the value of hardwork– learning what the boxcar loader does, what the lumber miller does, how to really figure out if the seed corn you have is a good solid product. He taught them the joys of working together for a common goal in the Shelby that Nathaniel drives- Fredrick helped them rebuild it from the ground up.
I really tried to write my guys from my own experiences. My dad took the time to show me his business, how to care for a house, how to do all sorts of things. And even both of my grandfathers took the time to show me what a little time and hard work could accomplish. I wanted to show that the brothers take pride in knowing their business inside and out. Not only that, but that by their actions, they care about their customers.
It’s kind of sad that they are the exception and not the rule to the way businesses are run. I can’t even say now, because even the Steel and Oil Magnates ran businesses without understanding what their employees were really up to on the ground. Steel mills are dangerous, coal mines are dangerous – and they wouldn’t want to dirty their hands. But Fredrick – and his boys – believed that knowing what everyone was doing from top to bottom was the best way to not only create a strong business, but a strong company family.
Emmy certainly ends up falling in love with each of the brothers in her own way – for their hardwork and their hearts and their generosity.
Want to meet Emmy and her Walsh Brothers? They are waiting for you on Amazon – http://amzn.com/B00H2MOQ2C
You can keep up on the newest news on Club Imperial at
my blog: www.katherinerhodes.com
my facebook: www.facebook.com/katherinerhodesauthor
or follow me on Twitter: @Mistress_KayR
The piles of files were gone; the furniture was rearranged and dusted. Victor was looking through some files Emmy had left there for him to check and see if they should be kept or trashed.
“Vic, I didn’t realize you had a couch in here,” Nathaniel said.
Victor moved his hand off the file and gave him the finger. “I told you, I suck at organizing. I always have. Emmy has done more in the past week than I’ve been able to manage in months.” He looked up. “I knew I did well hiring her.”
“That you did,” Nathaniel said, closing the door. “How many more of those files do you have?”
“Not many,” he said. “She cleared my calendar so I could do this. She’s my kind of admin!”
Nathaniel hopped a leg up on the newly revealed desk top. “Yeah, I kind of dig her too.”
Victor froze in position. “Uh oh.”
“Uh oh what?”
“You like her,” Victor said. His eyes narrowed. “You gave her those flowers.”
“Yeah, I did,” he admitted. “Um, do we have a policy about interoffice dating?”
“What about Jillian?”
“Oh, I’m so done with her,” Nathaniel said, standing from the desk.
“What do you mean?” Victor asked. Nathaniel explained the weekend to him, eliciting a raucous laugh out of his big brother when he told him about the membership to Imperial. Once he finished his story, Victor walked around the desk and clapped him on the back. “Nathaniel, my man, good riddance to bad rubbish. She was an albatross for you, and I’m kind of proud of the way you ditched her. She wouldn’t have done you a lick better, you know that.”
“Yup,” Nathaniel agreed. “I hope she enjoyed her leather man.”
“I suggest you warn Gwen about that charge on the card,” Victor said.
“I was thinking I should cancel it.”
“You could. But I think it’ll be interesting for you if you keep it. Mister Goodie-two-shoes, living on the edge. You might want to take your date there next weekend anyway.”
“My date?” Nathaniel asked.
“You are going to ask Emmy out, right?” Victor said.
“I don’t think Dad ever had a policy on inter-office romance,” Victor said. “Dad was a ‘find happiness where you can’ kind of guy. And if your happiness is sitting at my admin desk, why not go for it? You need to have a little fun with someone who isn’t a stick in the mud.”
Nathaniel laughed and rolled his eyes. He reached for the door, only to have it jump at him and nail him directly in the face. He yelped and jumped back, putting a hand over his nose. He looked to find Emmy was standing there, horrified.
“Oh, my God, Nathaniel!” she said. “I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to! I didn’t know you were there! You’re not going to fire me, are you?”
There was a grandiose thump from behind them and they spun around to find Victor had been laughing so hard he fell over in the chair and was now sprawled across the floor, still laughing and gasping for air. Nathaniel found himself starting to laugh, and Emmy put a hand over her mouth to try and stop the laughter, but it was useless.
Nathaniel walked back and helped his brother off the floor, righting the chair. He took the files from Emmy’s hands and put them on Victor’s desk, then held the door open for Emmy and himself, walked back out of the room and closed the door. “I can’t fire you,” he explained. “Victor is your boss, not me. And since you just made him laugh so hard he fell out of a chair, your job is safe. For now.”
“For now.” She smiled.
“Look, Emmy…I think you’ve figured out we’re a pretty unconventional office here, and most of the usual rules of business are kind of out the window.”
“It’s not every day a CEO falls off his chair laughing about what just happened.”
“True,” Nathaniel said, touching his nose. “Look, I was wondering if you’d like to maybe go out to dinner with me.”
Her eyes grew wide with shock. “Um…I…”
“You can think about it,” he said. “I know it’s kind of weird and—”
“Um, Nathaniel, I…” She looked confused. “Dinner?” she asked.
“Yes,” he replied.
She took a short breath. “All right, yes. Dinner.”
“Friday?” Nathaniel asked.
She thought for a minute. “Friday would be fine.”
“Great, and I know this great little club we can go to afterward, Imperial?”
Emmy started choking again. He patted her on the back. “I’m kidding! I’m kidding! I would never take anyone there on a first date. That’s at least a second date.”
She looked at him, and he suddenly couldn’t look away from her eyes. She seemed trapped by him as well. They stared at each other, the tension rising between them. He found himself panting, his lips dry.
She grabbed his hand and dragged him into his office.