The Girlfriend (Companions for Hire #1) Read Online Noelle Adams

Categories Genre: Romance Tags Authors: Series: Companions for Hire Series by Noelle Adams

Total pages in book: 71
Estimated words: 68190 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 341(@200wpm)___ 273(@250wpm)___ 227(@300wpm)

My three priorities for this year are to finish my PhD, avoid emotional drama, and earn some extra money, so when Steve hires me to act like his girlfriend for an extended business trip, I don’t hesitate to sign the contract. After all, the job will be easy. I can join him for the occasional dinner, pretend to adore him, and still have plenty of time to focus on my academic work.
I’m used to working with rich, entitled men, so I’m not worried about handling him. Except Steve is nothing I expect. He’s brilliant and funny and has emotional depths that keep surprising me. And he’s hot. Definitely hot. I’m starting to want more from him than this job allows, so avoiding emotional drama might not be in the cards for me this year.
I work for Companions for Hire, which means sex is against the rules and falling in love is out of the question.
The Girlfriend is the first book in the Companions for Hire series about a company that provides a variety of social partners for a price.



I loved princess movies as a girl. Animated or live-action. Mainstream or B quality. Based on fairy tales or doll franchises or bizarre fantasy worlds. It didn’t matter. If the movie had a princess in it, then I wanted to watch it.

Adults used to tell me that I looked like a princess when I dressed up and curled my long brown hair. My friends told me that my name, Giselle Auclair, sounded like it should belong to a princess. And I devoured every movie with that theme I could find. That’s how I saw myself. A princess. Looking pretty. Being brave. And one day finding a prince.

That childish optimism didn’t last long, that hope for a good, handsome man out there in the world, waiting for me. When I was eleven, I was rocking princess vibes in a beautiful red dress as I sang a solo at our church’s Christmas pageant. It was that night—in that dress—when my dad told me he had to leave me and my mom and he didn’t know when he’d see us again. He’d hooked up with a younger woman and no longer wanted the small-town family life he felt trapped in, but I didn’t know that back then. I ran after him down the driveway, bawling and begging him not to go away, and he still got in the car and drove off.

He never came back.

I had a succession of selfish, disappointing boyfriends all through high school and college and in the two years after college when I taught history at the high school level before I decided to go to graduate school. By then my hopes for a prince had transformed into something more basic. To find a good guy. A trustworthy one who wouldn’t leave me or betray me. A perfect fit for me.

The year my search ended was when I met Damian Winters. Like me, Damian was a graduate student, and like me, he was trying to work his way through his degree without taking on student loans. He was farther along in his degree. I’d just started my master’s in history while he was beginning his PhD in English. But we still connected.

Damian is movie-star good-looking—he looks exactly like a prince from a movie—but I’ve never been physically attracted to him. I didn’t want him as a boyfriend. We were simply friends. Real friends.

At the end of that year, I was finally able to say I found a good guy at last. He wasn’t my prince or a romantic partner, but at least I found a man it’s safe to trust. To believe in.

Over the four years that followed, I added more good guys to my social circle. Men I like and respect. Who haven’t let me down. They exist for real, not just in princess movies no matter how much I wondered before.

The only caveat I’ve discovered is they have to remain in the friend zone. Whenever I try to move a man into the boyfriend category, he inevitably turns into the kind of selfish asshole I should be able to recognize by now. It’s happened to me more than once. A year and a half ago, a guy named Brian was hanging out with my group of friends for several months. I liked him and thought he was cute, so when he kissed me one evening and told me he wanted to be more than friends, I was interested. We dated hot and heavy for two months. He convinced me he was serious. Attempting to be mature and emotionally healthy, I worked up the courage to tell him I loved him. He didn’t say it back.

Instead, he said things were moving too fast. He was gone within five minutes, and he never talked to me again.