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Stay Afloat, My CEO!

Isla can barely keep her head above water: she’s an overworked, underpaid receptionist at a massive corporation, and she’s teaching late-night swimming lessons to make ends meet. One night, Isla discovers an unfamiliar man drowning in the pool, and she’s the only person present to save him–too bad he’s her boss and CEO, and he strictly forbids his employees from taking on extra work.

After a stressful rescue, Isla expects to be fired on the spot, when instead he asks her to be his private swim coach! At first she’s nervous, and frightened by his reputation for being ruthless and cold, but the more time they spend together, the more she realizes her perception of him could have been wrong.

Can she teach him to swim, when no one else has ever been able to help him conquer his fear? More importantly, who is the real Noah; the cold, stony business tycoon, or the thoughtful, trusting swim student? Isla better find out quickly, or BOTH her careers could sink!

Excerpt from the book:

After a much heated internal debate, I concluded that my CEO could only be a robot.

Noah Jung was a super rich, handsome, and intelligent machine. That was the only plausible explanation for his invincible existence. As his receptionist, there weren’t many opportunities for us to interact. But with a direct view of his office from my desk, I could even write a thesis on him.

In my three years at the Jung Group, he never missed a day of work. No sick days and no breaks. Ever. The only fuel he required was his expensive imported coffee. No sugar, no cream. Even his facial muscles had only three settings. A business smile for his clients. A straight face for his employees. And the faintest of frowns that meant the situation was beyond irreparable—someone was going to be fired.

It would have been tolerable, but the problem was… he expected the same kind of dedication from us. The overwork made us feel like we were one failed experiment away from turning into zombies.

But how would a robot understand the ways of humans? I suspected that he was truly unaware that we worked to live. And not the other way around.

A conformist by nature—rules were the love of his life. Anything was achievable if we kept by his standards. But what if one of us broke his rules? Unfortunately, none survived to tell the tale.

As a sane member of the human population, I should have known better than to take the risk. Breaking his rules was a cardinal sin. But I had no other choice. No, I didn’t sell off our secrets to our rival yacht company. Or add sugar to his favorite Jamaican coffee. But I did the one thing he hated the most.

I took up another job after work.

I was walking on eggshells, but I believed I had perfected my crime. Sharp at seven, I would shut my computer, exchange my nude heels for my white sneakers, and rush to the public pool to teach swimming. There were occasional run-ins with my colleagues and insistent dinner invites. But I always had an excuse ready. I’d successfully evaded their company but also kicked away my social life.

Read it here:

Published by Aanchal Budhiraja

Aanchal Budhiraja is the author of The Demon Babysitter book & comic book, Baking With Boys, Stay Afloat My CEO, Illusion Of Love: Sunshower, One Of These Endings and more. She has over 8 million reads and 60 thousand subscribers across platforms like Wattpad, Tapas and Radish.

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