“Come to Dubai with me, son!” Levi swept into Nick’s office with an air of excitement. He couldn’t help laughing and smiling along with his dad.
“Good morning to you as well, father,” Nick said, sauntering around the side of his desk to give his dad a hug. Then he gestured to one of the executive leather chairs placed in front of his desk where he could sit across from a guest or business partner and offer them a brandy or cup of coffee.
At only twenty-two years of age and having seen his older brothers make fools of themselves while drinking, Nick had no use for the fowl smelling liquor. He knew his father never drank alcohol either and he certainly didn’t need any caffeine this morning.
“What is all this talk about going to Dubai?” Nick asked, lowering himself into the chair beside his father. He purposely leaned forward so that his head and gaze were lower than his dad’s. He was sure his father wouldn’t understand the gesture but might feel just a little more in control of the situation than he would feel otherwise if Nick were even in height. “What’s in Dubai?”
“Possibility,” Levi drawled.
“Whose failing business are you snatching up for pennies on the dollar?”
“Natan Netanel,” he spoke low as if saying the name loud would enable someone else to swoop in and purchase the property before they had the chance.
“Aw man, dad.” Nick sat back and crossed his leg. “I know Nathan, he’s a great guy.” He also knew that Nathan preferred the more westernized version of his given name.
“But a terrible businessman,” Levi said. “His yacht manufacturing company is failing.”
“You’re a real estate developer. What on earth are you going to do with yacht manufacturing company?”
“I plan to put your design skills to good use, my son.” Levi patted Nick on the knee.
“M-my design skills?” Nick pulled back from his father. “I’ve never built a ship.”
“You don’t need to know how to build a ship. You just need to have an eye for detail. And you have that. You can work together with Natan and pull his company out of bankruptcy. All he needs is a mentor.”
“Dad, he’s like, ten years older than me,” Nick said. “And he prefers to be called Nathan.”
“Perfect,” Levi said. “You’re already on a first-name basis.”
Nick sighed. “I’m not going to be able to talk you out of this, am I?”
“Not likely.” Levi stood and patted Nick on the shoulder. “Wheels up in an hour. I have Gregory preparing our private jet as we speak.”
“Wait, you want to leave today?” Nick sprang to his feet. “I have a date tomorrow afternoon.”
“We should be home by then.” Levi shrugged. “If all goes well.”
“Fine, have Pierre pack me an overnight bag. I know how you get when you attend these mergers and acquisitions meetings.”
“Glad to have you on board, son. You’ll be just what we need to soften up this Nathan kid.”
“He’s hardly a kid,” Nick grumbled.
“When you get to be as old as me, you’ll understand.” Levi headed toward the door but turned back around as if just remembering one more thing he needed to tell his son. “Oh, and your mother’s pregnant again.”
“What?” Nick’s jaw dropped. “She’s, what? Forty-five years old?”
“Forty-six, actually,” Levi said then stepped back to pat Nick on the shoulder again. “You forget, we married very young. Your old man’s still got it in me.”
“Oh my gosh, Dad, that’s gross.”
“Nah, being as old as you are and not married yet, that’s gross.”
“Exactly,” Levi said, opening the door to Nick’s office. “Get on it, son.”
“Hard to accomplish when my date is in Jerusalem and I am in Dubai,” Nick grumbled.
“You’ll work it out,” Levi called from down the hall. “I have faith in you, my son.”
“Glad one of us does,” Nick said under his breath. He pulled out his cell phone and sent a quick text to Adele.
Might be a little late for our pool party tomorrow afternoon. I’m flying to Dubai