Disclaimer: See Part 1
“Taking two showers in the morning is a pain,” Andy called out from under the pouring water of her second shower that morning. “Why can't they leave us be in the mornings and just stalk us from noon on?”
Miranda chuckled. “What's the fun in that?”
“Fun?!” Andy shut off the water and stepped out of the shower, grabbing a towel from the rack right next to the shower door. She looked at Miranda incredulously. “Did you say Fun?”
Carefully finishing her makeup, Miranda looked back at Andrea via her reflection in the mirror. “From their point of view, naturally.” She gave her partner an evil grin and thought, Of course it benefits me as well, giving me two opportunities to see you wet and naked in the morning.
Andy laughed and moved up behind Miranda wrapping her arms around the older woman's waist. She rested her chin on Miranda's shoulder, glad the woman was still in her robe. “I don't think they have all that much fun trying to keep up with me on my morning run. I suspect tomorrow there will a group of reporters with more athletic ability waiting for me.” She kissed Miranda's neck just below and behind her ear. “And I don't think being on the business end of Patricia's teeth would be all that fun.”
“Have they gotten that close to you?” Miranda was dismayed. “If they do, don't hesitate to let her bite them!”
“Miranda!” Andy laughed and released her hold, moving back slightly. “I'm not going to let Patricia bite anyone!”
Miranda shook her head in disappointment then turned to look Andy in the eye. “What's the point of having a dog if you can't let it bite the people who annoy you?”
Andy smiled, stepping a half step forward, left hand automatically rising to caress the older woman's neck, her thumb lightly brushing Miranda's earlobe. “You are incorrigible.”
Miranda laughed. “Working on your vocabulary, Darling?”
“Ha!” Andy was very careful not to smudge the other woman's perfectly applied makeup. “I've known that word for a long time.” She grinned. “Ten years at least.”
Miranda rolled her eyes. “Teasing me about the passage of time is not going to get you what you want, Andrea.”
“Hmmm…” Andy continued looking deeply into the blue eyes she loved, “and just what is it you think I want?”
Miranda moved closer, a mere fraction of an inch separated their lips. “You want to smudge my makeup.” The older woman smiled. “My lipstick, to be precise.”
“Oh,” The brunette took an impossible step forward and began to lean down, intent on smudging exactly as Miranda had accused. “that.”
“Indeed.” Miranda abruptly stepped back. “But as I said. It's not going to happen.” With a smirk, the editor walked out of the bathroom.
Andy exhaled slowly and shook her head accepting the small defeat. Lose the battle, win the war. She thought. Tonight, there will be makeup smudged. But that brought another thought to mind. Oh God, Ma's going to be here tonight.
Andy's head snapped up and she looked wide-eyed at her irate editor. “Yeah?”
“Get in here!” He gestured her into his office and shut the door after she'd entered. “What the Hell is this?!” He tossed a paper on his desk in front of her.
“Um…” She ventured. “The New York Times?”
He rolled his eyes and sighed. “How is it, that some noob gets the scoop on your engagement to Miranda? Why didn't you report that in our paper??”
“Greg… You've given me my assignments. I'm not going to be a reporter about my own life, something by the way I don't necessarily think is anyone else's business. I only gave you the first article because for one, I was going to give it to you anyway, and two you blackmailed me into it to get my two weeks off.”
“Tricky.” He laughed. “You were gonna give it to me anyway?” Shaking his head at her duplicity, Greg scrubbed his minimal hair and sighed. “Listen, I know it sucks. But, I think it might be best if you worked from home for a while.”
“How long is a while?”
He shrugged. “A few weeks maybe, until the furor dies down.” He huffed a little. “The reporters outside are beginning to effect the reporters on the inside… so if you aren't here maybe the outside ones will go away and the inside ones will be able to get their jobs done.” He looked at her. “We both know you can work from home just as easily as here. You're check is direct deposited, so I'll just mail you the stub.”
“Sure.” Andy nodded. “Sound's logical.” It depressed her for some reason, but he was the boss. “You want me to hang around today, or can I just go?”
“You can go ahead and leave if you want.” His eyes glinted and he grinned evilly, “Don't think you're getting off easily. I do have your email address. I'll be sending you your assignments.”
The teasing lifted Andy's spirits considerably and she grinned. “Oh, gee, great.” She realized that her working from home restriction meant she would be there all day with her mother and felt a little dip in her spirits again . Let's just hope we don't kill each other. She didn't want to fight with her mother at all. There was too much other stuff going on to try and deal with anything else.
Greg waved an exaggerated bye at her as she walked out of his office. She called Roy as she was packing up some stuff from her desk and waited until he pulled up to the curb before she stepped out of the building. Her upraised hands silenced the horde before she informed them that she was going to be working from home for a few weeks.
Once inside the car Andy exhaled slowly and shook her head. “They're crazy, Roy, who could possibly care so much about the minutia of a stranger's life?”
“You'd probably be surprised.” Roy chuckled as they pulled away from the curb. “Where to?”
Andy checked her watch. Nearly lunchtime. “Hold on a second… let me call Miranda.”
“Miranda Priestly's office.”
“Bethany.” Andy smiled into the phone. “Is Miranda busy?”
“She's talking to Nigel… but I can…”
“No… no no.. don't interrupt her.” Andy leaned back in the seat. “Do me a favor and see if she has a lunch meeting today.”
“Oh… okay, hold on.” Bethany moved to Emily's desk and barely touched the mouse to take down the Paris screensaver and show Miranda's schedule. “Today she has a twelve thirty lunch meeting with Massimo.”
“Okay, thanks.” Andy was disappointed. “Don't bother her. I'll just talk with her later.”
“You sure, Andy?” Bethany didn't want to be in trouble for not putting Andy's call through.
“Yeah… I'll see her tonight. I'll text her later to see what time she's gonna be home.” She grinned at the awkward silence on the other end of the conversation. “Talk to you later, Bethany.” She disconnected the call and looked up at Roy's eyes in the mirror. “Home, I guess.” Then she remembered. “Oh, my mother is going to be flying in today I think… so at some point you may need to drive to the airport.”
Roy shrugged. “Sure, just let me know when.”
“Does it ever bother you… being ordered around all the time?” Andy smiled at the man. “You always seem so easy going.”
“Miranda is a good boss. I know a lot of people complain about what a bitch she is, but she isn't, not really. She just expects people to do their jobs.” He shrugged. “I just do my job and we get along.”
“She thinks of you as family, you know that right?” Andy saw the slight shock in the man's eyes. “She lets her guard down when you're driving. I've seen it. She's told me things when you could overhear, done things when you could see… and not thought anything of it. She would never, for example, cry, if someone else was driving her anywhere. She would probably never kiss me, even on the cheek, if anyone but you were driving. She doesn't do that because she thinks you are ‘invisible' or whatever… she does it because she trusts you.” Andy saw Roy accept the truth of it and smiled. “I wish I would have had the chance to tell you this before now. Thank you for being someone she could do that with, when I wasn't able to.”
“You're very welcome, Andy.” Roy parked the car in front of the townhouse. “Glad to be of service.” He glanced through the tinted windows and sighed. “You want me to get the door for you? I think you're gonna have to run,” he indicated the pack of reporters, “They look hungry.”
Andy rolled her eyes. “Ugh. No, I can get it. I'll call you when I know the information about Mom's flight.”
“Sure.” He gave her a little salute and watched her hit the sidewalk running, normally just a figure of speech he realized how accurate the phrase was as Andy walked very quickly up the sidewalk to the door. “Go, Andy,” he urged. “Go.” He watched her make it to the stoop and through the door without answering any question or being impeded too much by the throng of snoopers. “Yes!”
With Andy safely inside, Roy pulled away from the curb and thought about what young woman had told him. Miranda thinks of me as family? It was an odd thought, but Andy knew the softer side of Miranda better than anyone and if Andy said so… Wow. Miranda considers me family. He thought. That's kinda nice…and terrifying at the same time.
“Miranda Priestly's office.”
“Oh, I'm sorry. I must still have Andrea's old office number in my cell. I hardly ever use this thing.” Dorothy was mortified and kind of in a rush, her flight was boarding.
“No problem.” Bethany was about to hang up when she realized what the woman had said ‘Andrea'. She didn't pronounce it like Miranda did, but… “Are you Andy's Mom?”
“Oh, well… yes.” Dorothy frowned at her phone only then actually realizing where she'd called, ‘That woman's' office. “I'm coming for a visit and wanted to give her my flight number and arrival time.”
“I can take the message and pass it on if you like?” Bethany offered. “So you don't have to make another call.”
“Are you sure?” Dorothy wondered why Miranda's assistants would take calls for Andy, but then rolled her eyes, Of course they would . The loud speaker announced her flight number, boarding… again. “Okay… great.” She passed the information to the woman on the phone. “Thank you so much, I have to go, my flight is boarding now.”
“Of course,” Bethany smiled into the phone. “Have a nice trip.” As she hung up she wondered if she'd get to meet the woman she'd just talked to; Andy's Mom.
“Is there a mote of something floating in the air that has you fascinated, Emily?”
Bethany blinked and refocused on Miranda standing in front of her desk. “Oh, no, I was just wondering if I would get to meet Andy's mom.” She passed the paper with the flight information on it to Miranda. “She just called.”
Miranda took the paper and muttered to herself, “Why would she call here?” She hadn't actually wanted an answer but Bethany provided the explanation Dorothy had given her.
“She said she still had Andy's old office number in her cell.” Bethany offered further explanation, “I think she was in a rush, her flight was boarding as we spoke.”
“Ah…” Miranda took note of the arrival time and nodded to herself. “Have Roy pick me up at four thirty. I will ride to the airport with him to retrieve Mrs. Sachs then he can take me on to my meeting with Jean Paul.”
“I read in the paper that you are going to marry Andy.” Bethany saw the beginnings of disapproval on Miranda's face, but smiled and continued. “When I first began dating my boyfriend, I always called his mom ‘Mrs. Woods'. For four years she was always ‘Mrs. Woods'. Then one day I started calling her by her name and after about six months of that, I called her Mom. Even though we aren't married, I've been with her son for six years, and she is more my mom than my own mom is.”
“The relationship between Dorothy and I is rather more complicated than that.” Miranda tilted her head in acknowledgement of the advice, the only acknowledgement it would get. She almost couldn't believe the nerve this new assistant had. Imagine, actually trying to lecture her, Miranda Priestly, about the importance of names. Miranda knew she'd chuckle about it later, but for now she just glared at the girl and issued an order. “Coffee.”
“Right.” Bethany jumped up. “Oh! But if I leave no one will be here to answer the phone. Emily isn't due back for another five minutes.”
“I'm perfectly capable of answering the phone, Emily.” Miranda almost, almost laughed at the expression on Bethany's face. “Now, are you going to carry out my request, or are you going to argue that I'm too incompetent to answer the phone?”
Bethany opened her mouth, closed it, and was gone to get the coffee. From the look on Miranda's face the assistant realized she'd pushed the woman to the very edge of her luck as it was; she didn't want to say anything else and dig herself into a deeper hole.
Miranda chuckled as she watched the small woman scurry away. Andy called her my new Disciple. Miranda thought. Maybe… maybe this is the one that can let Emily finally move on.
“Andy?” Peggy looked up from her recipe book. “Did I know you were coming home for lunch?” She panicked slightly. “I haven't prepared anything…”
Waving off the woman's concern, Andy smiled. “Don't worry about it. I'm not all that hungry. I'll just have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich later.” She put her laptop on the table. “Um... my mom is going to be here tonight… I'm not sure how long she's gonna stay. A couple of days probably.” Andy loved her mom, but she hoped the visit wasn't too long. “I'm just gonna go make up the guest room.”
“I can do that…” Peggy laughed, “It is my job after all.”
“I know.” Andy had this conversation with Peggy when she'd first began living there. She'd tried to help the woman with the daily chores and maintenance of the household, but Peggy just protested saying that it was her job and with Andy helping it didn't feel like she was earning her salary. Later Andy had found out that Miranda was very generous with her personal employees and understood Peggy's feelings on the subject. She doubted her mother would be convinced. “My mother is a different story though, I'm sure she'll be ‘helping' while she is here.” Her cell phone rang; the screen showed Miranda calling. Andy smiled. “Hello, Beautiful.” Andy winked at Peggy as the woman exited the kitchen.
Miranda snorted in surprise. “Andrea… you are so… unpredictable sometimes.” She laughed. “I'm in the car on the way to lunch with Massimo, but I wanted to tell you Dorothy called the office and her flight will be in at five.” She heard Andy groan and smiled. “I have a meeting with Jean Paul at six, so I'm just going to ride with Roy to the airport and greet your mother, then I'll go to the meeting and Roy can continue to the house with Dorothy.” She paused. “I'm not sure how long this meeting will last. He will... um… probably want to make it a dinner meeting.” She wasn't sure how Andrea would take that.
“Oh, I see how ya are, leaving me here with the kids while you go out to be wined and dined by some Frenchman.” Andy laughed. “I can't wait to see what the press makes of that!”
“Are you sure? I could probably…” Miranda started only to be cut off by Andy and she could tell that the young woman was rolling her eyes.
“Miranda, we have been over this. Your job comes first, I know that, and so do the girls. Come home when you can.” She grinned and lowered her voice, “I'll be waiting.”
Miranda felt the shiver run from her ear down her spine and closed her eyes. “Andrea… what you do to me…” Andy's low chuckle in her ear made her breath catch, as did the young woman's next words.
“I haven't done anything, yet.”
“You will be the death of me.” Miranda laughed and thought. But what a way to go!
“I love you, Miranda.”
“And I you.”
Andy smiled into the phone. “Have fun with Jean Paul.”
“Ugh…” She thought about their meeting last year. “He's so… smarmy, making all kinds of innuendo all the while constantly talking about how much he loves his girlfriend.” Miranda laughed. “There is no ‘fun' there.”
“He better keep his smarms to himself, or he'll have me to deal with.” Andy wasn't laughing now. “If this guy is going to bother you, Miranda…”
“No, no… no bother, he's all bluster and bravado.” Miranda scoffed at the man's attitude. “His designs last year were wonderful though, and I don't want him to think another magazine would be a better choice.”
“Another magazine, eh?” Andy knew exactly what ‘other' magazine Miranda was talking about. It and Runway had a rivalry that bordered on legendary in the fashion world. Andy also knew that the editor of ‘that' magazine and Miranda were very similar at least in attitude, toward their respective publications and they didn't really hate each other as much as they often pretended to. “We're going to invite Anna to the wedding reception, aren't we?”
Miranda laughed. “Are you joking?” She couldn't believe Andrea would even suggest such a thing. Inviting the editor of Runway's rival magazine to their wedding reception had never even crossed Miranda's mind. Ridiculous! The press would have a field day, oh… Suddenly the idea wasn't quite so insane. “We can talk about it later, right now I have things to discuss with Massimo.” The car pulled up in front of the restaurant. “I'll see you later tonight.”
“You bet you will.” Andy chuckled. “Every inch of me.” She grinned at the stunned silence on the phone. “Have a nice lunch. Bye now.”
Miranda sighed. “You are quite evil, Andrea. Goodbye for now.”
Andy chuckled as the call disconnected. She loved doing that, teasing Miranda over the phone. Especially if there was no way Miranda could do anything about it.
“Can I ask what the evil grin is for?” Peggy narrowed her eyes at the young woman as she put several ingredients she'd retrieved from the pantry down on the counter then asked, “Or do I even want to know?”
Andy laughed and patted the housekeeper on the shoulder, “I don't think you want to know.”
Nodding, Peggy accepted the judgment and tilted her head. “I'm gonna go get the guest room all freshened up.”
Andy followed the woman up the stairs. “Ma will be here around six I think.”
“So I'll set an extra plate for dinner?”
“Not necessary, Miranda said she has a dinner meeting with…” Andy's voice held a hint of amusement as she haughtily put a French accent on the man's name. “…Jean Paul.”
“Ohh la la…” Peggy chuckled and retrieved fresh linens from the closet. “How much work will they get done with the Paparazzi buzzing around?”
“Good question.” Andy thought for a moment. “Maybe not much.” She looked at the woman she was ‘helping'. “Have they bothered you? The reporters?”
“Bah.” Peggy waved off the concern. “I've dealt with it before, during the divorces.” She shrugged and tucked the corner of the fitted sheet under the mattress. “They just yell questions at me and I ignore them.”
“Some of them are really hard to ignore,” Andy admitted. “But it's none of their business anyway.”
Peggy fluffed the pillow she just put into a new case and tossed it on the newly made bed. “Exactly.”
They moved to the attached bathroom making sure the sink, tub and shower were clean. They also stocked the room with clean fresh towels and made sure all the necessities were available.
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