Liv pushed her glasses up as she tried to rub some of the tiredness out of her eyes. It had been such a long week that she was looking forward to the fact that she was going to be on vacation after she finished her paperwork. She let her glasses fall back onto her nose before she pushed them back into place.
She rolled her neck, and cracked her fingers before she went back to her typing. She was grateful that Lucy was sleeping over tonight. She paused to make a note on her phone to give her an extra big bonus for her birthday. She was tired but just wanted to get this done. She took a deep breath as she forced herself to focus. She felt annoyed with the fact that even music wasn't helping her focus. It just made her more antsy.
She looked up when she heard a knock on the door frame of her office, “I saw the light on,” Barba smiled as he offered up a cup of coffee.
“If I drink that I will be up all night, give it here,” She smiled at him as he walked in. She took her glasses off all together and set them on her desk before she took a cautious sip of the hot beverage. She watched him as he sat down across from her, “Why are you here so late counselor?”
“I figured I would pop in to see if you were still here. I figured you were lonely as well when I saw the light on. The way I look at it, we could be workaholics together,” He answered, giving her a half smirk, “Actually I need a favor. That is why I am really here.”
Liv cocked an eyebrow as she sat back in her chair, “I start my ten day vacation the moment I am done with this paperwork. I am staying so late so that I don’t take any paperwork home, because I am looking forward to spending ten wonderful days with my son.” She protested.
“Hey! Whoa. It’s not a work favor!” Barba set his cup on her desk, holding his hands up innocently as he leaned forward, “It’s more or less a personal favor. Something I would be forever indebted to you for if you agree to go along with this.”
“A personal favor?” She teased as she cocked her eyebrow. She stood, stretching her legs. She was shorter than normal since her shoes were under her desk. She switched to barefoot whenever there was no one else in the office. She held the cup of coffee between her legs as she perched herself on the edge of her desk.
“Yes. I was invited to a wedding in the Hamptons and I don’t want to go alone. A friend from law school is getting married and he told me that if I showed up by myself, he was going to set me up with his cousin Madison. Don’t get me wrong. She is a really nice lady and all, but she really isn’t my type,” Rafael paused to take a deep breath before he finally looked up at her, “She is just too damn naive,” He huffed.
Liv bit back her laugh, taking another sip of coffee before she took a deep breath, “So….just let me get this straight. You need me to be a fake date for you?” She cocked her head to the side, feeling how wide her smile was.
“I didn’t say it like that,” He shot back.
“But it’s what you mean?”
“No...yes,” He sighed deeply as before he looked at her, “I wouldn’t normally ask you, but I am desperate and you are a beautiful….no… a stunning woman and a funny friend that can work a room. Please. He paused, searching for the words to convince her so he wouldn’t have to suffer through the wedding. "Not only that, but it’s in the Hamptons and the wedding is going to be a lot of fun!” He knew if she was there that they would both have a good time.
Liv felt her stomach clench when he called her beautiful. She nodded, “Okay...okay….so I have a question and statement,” She articulated as she watched him cross one leg over the other. She tucked a strand of hair behind her ear, “When is the wedding, and I have nothing to wear,” She stated plainly.
“Well the wedding is on Saturday and I figured I would owe you for saying yes,” He stood as he dug out his wallet and handed over an American Express card, “I want you get your nails done, buy an outfit, anything you need. Don’t worry about the expenses. Okay?”
She could see the tension visibly disappear from his shoulders. She could tell that he wasn’t lying about how much he needed her as a date. She looked down at the card before she looked back up at him, “I seriously can’t believe that I am agreeing to this.” She stated with a slight chuckle.
“What do you mean? It’s a night full of adult conversations where you aren’t dressed to the tee trying to get more people to donate money to the NYPD, no cartoons, and you can actually drink. The cherry on top is you will get to dance with a Cuban,” He smirked as he wiggled the card between them.
“You are very cocky for someone who is basically asking me to play arm candy for them.”
“I wouldn’t ask if I thought it was inappropriate.” He said gently.
Liv looked down and finally took the card that was between them, “Okay,” She said softly, “I will have Noah sleepover Rollins house so that way I know that he is safe.”
“I already took care of that too. My Mami agreed to watch him. She said that she misses young kids around. Not only that, but it’s the least I could do because I will owe you so, so much. You will see what I mean about Madison once you meet her.” He grinned.
Liv placed her hand on his shoulder, “Hey now. I will be in good company. I should be able to have more than enough fun and have the chance to feel like a woman and not a Mom.” She grinned.
She watched as he closed the small amount of distance between them. She inhaled his expensive cologne and felt her toes curl against the carpet before she felt how quickly his heat was gone. She watched as he tossed his cup into her bin. She was always impressed with how fast he could drink a cup of coffee. It was almost as if his tongue was immune to burns.
“Then I will be more than happy to make that night memorable for you,” Rafael smiled before he stepped back, buttoning his jacket, “I promise that.” He grinned. He waved before he walked off.
Liv watched him leave before she circled back around her desk and sat down in her chair. She looked at the card before she tucked it away in her wallet. She chewed on her lip. She knew that she was not going to be able to focus on paperwork until all of this was over. She sighed heavily, slightly cursing Barba before she shut her laptop and tucked it into her purse along with the case file.
“Fine,” She grumbled to herself, “If you are going to distract me from my work, I am going to distract you the entire night,” She smirked to herself as she grabbed her jacket and flicked off the lights in her office before she finally left.
Liv felt absolutely ridiculous as she went through the dresses. She couldn’t find anything that fit her properly. She wished that she could just find something that would work for her. She sighed heavily as she stepped back and ran her fingers through her hair. She wished that she had someone in her corner that was better at this. She looked around and swore she was going to be swallowed by tulle.
“It looks like you could use some help,” A friendly sales associate smiled as she stepped forward.
“Actually yeah, I can. Is it that obvious?” Liv grinned.
“It’s my job to know when people need help. My name is Emma. I just need a few details and I can help you pick out the perfect dress.”
“Well, Emma, I am going to be attending a wedding in the Hamptons on Sunday. My friend asked me to go with him. I just need a dress and heels,” She smiled.
“Okay. That helps a lot. What is your favorite color? Would you prefer a long or short dress? How do you feel about strapless dresses?”
“I tend to lean towards darker colors, but I want to really surprise him. I prefer long dresses. I don’t mind strapless, but I would prefer straps.” She answered consicely.
“Okay, just tell me your dress size and go wait by dressing room and we will go from there!” She smiled.
“Size sixteen,” Liv responded before she headed over to the dressing rooms. She hugged her jacket to her chest, suddenly feeling naked. What was she thinking? She could just wear her baby blue dress that she wore for Noah’s official adoption day.
She started pacing before she looked up. She couldn’t help but think that Emma had a wonderful smile. Liv could tell that she genuinely loved her job. That was rare for retail. She smiled at her as she walked towards her, letting herself into a dressing room and hung up the three dresses that she picked out for her.
“Let me know if you need help with a zip up or want an honest opinion.” Emma grinned, “I am a few steps away!”
Liv briefly watched her light brown hair bob away before she stepped into the dressing room. She looked at the light blue dress, yellow, and a slightly dark, but pastel purple one. She quickly shed her clothes before she pulled on the yellow dress. She pursed her hips, cocking her head and twisting her hips from the left to the right but felt as though it just wasn’t her. It was too...bright. She heard herself laughing before she put the dress back on the hanger. She ran her fingers over the fabric of her blue dress, wrinkling her nose before she pulled the purple dress off the hook. She looked it over before she stepped into it.
She zipped it up, and turned, after clipping her hair. She heard herself audibly gasp. She didn’t recognize herself. She twisted her hips and found herself smiling. She ran her fingers over the sheer purple fabric that fluttered over her right shoulder. She liked that the dress hinted at her curves but didn’t over accentuate them. The dress cinched at her waist perfectly and she loved the pleating detail that covered her chest. She unlocked her door and poked her head out, “Emma?”
Emma rounded the corner, smiling, “How can I help you?”
“What do you think?” Olivia pulled the door back as she watched her face.
“I think you just found the dress. If you don’t mind me saying, damn. I am good. For future reference, ask for A-Line chiffon dresses,” She smiled widely.
Liv smoothed the dress over her hips, smiling, “Thank you. I will remember that.” She nodded.
Liv rode down the escalator stairs as she checked her date book on her phone. She would have to find someone to watch Noah overnight. The last thing she would want to do is wake up her son if she arrived home drunk. She knew that Barba's mom would watch him, but she wanted him somewhere more familiar. She bit her lip, zoning out briefly as she thought about the way that Barba had looked at her when he had called her beautiful. She felt her foot hit the landing, and snapped out of her thoughts as she stepped off the escalator and called Rollins.
“The precinct has not burned down. Don’t stress yourself.” She stated jokingly as she spun slightly in her chair.
Liv laughed lightly, “I am not calling because of that. I trust Sargent Fin,” She pushed open the door, still feeling weird with the way that rolled off her tongue, “Can I ask a favor? I was asked to attend a wedding on Sunday. I know it’s very last minute, but could you watch Noah? If you could do that I would greatly appreciate it.”
Rollins felt her eyebrows shoot upwards, “You have a date to a wedding? How serious are you two?” She quipped before she leaned back in her chair.
“Just a friend. Is that a yes?”
“Who is it?”
“Doesn’t matter who. If you can’t, I can always ask Lucy.”
“No, I can do it no problem. What time do you need me to pick him up?”
“Since you are doing me an enormous favor, I will drop him off around ten in the morning. Is that okay?” She questioned as she ordered a Lyft and brought her phone back to her ear. She waited outside the mall. She figured she could just wear her favorite pair of black heels. She didn’t want to do anymore shopping.
“That’s fine. Jesse will be excited. She loves whenever Noah sleeps over. Liv?”
“Yeah Rollins?” She scanned the parking lot to see if her driver had arrived yet.
“Just have fun. Ok?”
“Okay,” She grinned.