Work Header

blood in the water

Chapter Text

“Now, I’m sure you’ve heard a lot about Miranda Priestly,” Nigel chuckled knowingly, tucking his hands into his pockets. “That she’s ruthless, bathes in the blood of sheep, blah blah blah. It’s only partially true. What you really need to know is-”


“You have the right to remain silent, anything you say will be used against you.” A sharp voice interjected, followed by the aggressive clicking of heels.


Andy looked up from the screen of her laptop to see an older woman with intent blue eyes and white hair falling over her forehead. A hush fell over the room. She was the kind of person that demanded nothing but the utmost respect and attention, jutting her hip to one side, lips pursed. Andy snapped her gaping jaw shut. So that was Professor Priestly.


“Now when you choose a law career, the moment you embark; here is that joke you're bound to hear, ‘A lawyer is a shark.’ Ignore that, it's simplistic and it's stupid. Only some of you will turn out sharks, just some. The rest--” Miranda paused for a moment, looking around the room with that sharp gaze. It locked onto Andy, and the brunette felt a chill run down her spine. “Are fools.”


“Our topic is blood in the water.” Miranda’s voice dropped an octave, that amused gleam in her eyes disappearing as her eyes went stormy.


“You must use your time here efficiently. Law school is practically a waste.” She began pacing around the lecture hall, arms tucked behind her. For some unknown reason, Andy’s heart began to pound. “Unless you acquire a taste for blood in the water. You're nothing until the thrill of the kill becomes your only law.” Her mouth curved into a wicked smile, showing a flash of brilliant white teeth.


“Ms. Andrea Sachs, hypothetical question, would you be willing to defend the following banker accused of fraud?” Miranda suddenly inquired. Andy flinched when her name was called, and the professor rolled her eyes, but continued.


“A kind, old Grandma took her savings and she sent it off to your client, all she saved since she was born. Well, he promised to invest it, but he spent it on prostitutes and heroin and porn.” She looked almost playful when she purred that last part, and Andy swallowed before answering, “No, I would not want to take that case.”


“Wrong.” Her response was curt, that sharp edge to it back. Andy pretended to be very interested in the notes on her computer, knowing that the professor’s face was disapproving.


“This one is a sure victory unless you're totally incompetent. Grandma's broke, she'll have some blithering idiot from legal aid. Put her on the stand and call her a senile, batty crone, so your client goes free.” Her tone was cool, casual, and incredibly off-putting.


Andy wrinkled her nose at this and looked up, curious to see the expressions of her peers. They all looked just as surprised as she was.


“Read your Thomas Hobbes,” the professor said dismissively, with a wave of her hand. “Only idiots will quarrel with the morally dubious jobs. Who cares if it’s pleasant, so long as you win? In this world, your scruples are a flaw.” The brunette shook her head in disbelief. People really weren’t lying when they said she was nuts. Wasn’t that exactly what lawyers existed for? Justice?


“Ms. Lily Goodwin, hypothetical question, would you be the right lawyer for the following client? Say they offer you a bundle for defending a famous hitman for the mafia elite. Seems he missed his chosen prey, killed a nun and drove away.” Miranda’s voice was just a whisper, but authoritative and cold.


Lily, a girl with frizzy black hair, snorted derisively. “What, you think I wouldn't defend him just because he's a typical man?” The white-haired woman smiled sweetly at her, tsking. “Oh, you feminazis really think you’re something special, hm?”


The class went deathly silent as colour bloomed on Lily’s face, her words mumbled and stammered. Miranda had a triumphant gleam in her eyes. “Oh dear, I fear my comment has offended. However, it’s difficult to argue when you're too mad to speak. If we were in a court, your employment will be very quickly ended. Now you see how your emotions make you weak, yes?” Her lips quirked as she ambled around the room, likely noticing the expressions of perplexion and horror.

“So what's my point? I run a billion dollar law firm, and I hire four new interns every year. From this class I will select four young sharks whom I respect. And those four will have a guaranteed career.” Miranda tilted her head to one side and as if on cue, excited murmurs could be heard from the students around Andy.


The brunette couldn’t deny that it was really an exciting enterprise, a million law students would kill for that job. Working for Miranda Priestly though-- Andy couldn’t help but feel uneasy about that woman and her philosophies.


“I’ll only bring the best of the best with me, and I won’t be afraid to leave anyone behind shall they prove to be disappointing,” she drawled. “Now, would someone summarise the case of State of Indiana vs. Hearn from your reading, please Miss-- Jocelyn Brown?”


A hesitant hand was raised, and it was a nervous blonde girl. “I-I actually wanted to ask a question about the case with the grandma, I didn’t know we had readings,” she tittered, but went quiet when Miranda arched an eyebrow at her. “Get out of my class, and if you return you must be properly prepared to learn. That’s all.” The professor’s voice was breezy, and uncaring. Jocelyn squeaked as she gathered up her things, nodding vigorously. Then she bolted out the door in the blink of an eye.

Holy fucking shit , Andy thought to herself, beginning to sweat. This was shaping up to be an interesting class.

Chapter Text

For a moment, Andy seriously considered not showing up to Professor Priestly’s class. That lady was off her rocker. But not showing up would be totally giving up on that internship.


So she was sitting in the front row again, fingers flying across her keyboard as she typed out notes.


“If you want this life, these sacrifices are necessary,” Miranda snapped at a boy, who Andy thought was named Doug. Her lip was curled in a snarl, and she was standing over a desk intimidatingly, while the student cowered beneath her.


“Any softness, any vulnerability you show, can break you. Just because they’re on the prosecution doesn’t make them any less bloodthirsty than you.” It was probably terrifying for Doug, but Andy couldn’t help but think of how terrifically awesome it was at the same time. Like watching a shark tear a fish to shreds.


“They will pounce on the opportunity, and you will definitely lose, as they likely have the upper hand anyways. So in this class, and in the court, you do not shoot yourself in the foot by saying you don’t agree with the arguments you’re making. Anyone with an ounce of common sense would be able to see that without me spelling out for them.”


“Y-yes, Miranda,” he stammered, his face going pale. Andy felt bad for him, and thought that the professor’s onslaught of criticism was unnecessary. But she didn’t dare say anything.


Looking thoroughly satisfied with the reaction she’d gotten, Miranda changed the topic without warning, and the shuffling of papers and thud of textbooks could be heard.


“Now, can anyone tell me what prima facie evidence is? Those of you that completed the readings or merely asked a peer for a summary know that in a prima facie case, the facts themselves can prove to be an ironclad argument on their own. However, I’d like to hear a more detailed explanation. How about you, Miss Andrea Sachs?”


Andy jerked her head up from her textbook. Oh god, why did she keep calling on her, when there were at least sixty other people in the class. Shit, shit.


“Uhhh-- a prima facie case... in most cases, one party has a burden of proof.” Out of fear, Andy had thoroughly examined the reading. But for some reason, she was totally blanking. Ack, Miranda was making her way over to Andy’s seat, and she didn’t look very impressed.


“A-and in a trial under criminal law, the prosecution has to present prima facie evidence of each element of the crime charged against the accused. Usually this would include proof that the victim is dead, that the defendant's act caused the death, and evidence that the defendant acted with malice- Oh, and malice is a deliberate intention to unlawfully take away the life of a human being.”


Her voice was shaking like crazy and she sounded as though she would burst into tears at any moment, but at least she said something semi-intelligent.


Miranda nodded, looking mildly surprised. “Well done. As Miss Sachs explained, prima facie cases--”


Andy exhaled deeply. Jesus Christ, never a dull moment in this class. She’d be lucky if she was alive by the end of the semester, and she’d need a goddamned miracle to happen if she were to get one of those internship slots.


“Hey, what’s your name, kid?” Nigel Kipling, a grad student and Miranda’s right-hand man, approached Andy after the lecture. He looked at her curiously through round spectacles. “You did good.”


The brunette beamed. “Oh my god, really? I was a mess though, barely capable of saying stuff. And I didn’t define--”


“But you did say ‘stuff.’ And it wasn’t half bad, which is pretty good it’s only your second day here. I was one of Miranda’s students a while ago, and trust me, I did far worse.” He gave her a bemused look.


“Also, never use the word ‘stuff’ around Miranda. She also hates false modesty, so you better fix that before she does.” Nigel strode off without a goodbye, and Andy was left baffled, trying to process everything he said.

Chapter Text

“Mr. Lattimer wasn’t stalking. He was clearly within his rights to ask for visitation… Russell v. Sullivan.” A proud boy with curly black hair looked smug, and Andy was tempted to slap that stupid look off his face. Asshole.

“But Russell was known to the mother. Lattimer was an anonymous donor,” Miranda pointed out dryly. That smirk disappeared immediately, and now he just looked scared as he tried to formulate an answer. Andy bit her lip to keep from snickering.


“W-well yeah, but without Mr. Lattimer’s sperm, the child in question wouldn’t exist--right?”


The professor pressed her reading glasses to her lips, her eyes twinkling. “Yes, that’s right, Mr. Cooper. Now you’re thinking like a lawyer.”


Oh no, he wouldn’t get off that easy. Andy raised her hand.


“Yes, Miss Sachs?” Miranda tilted her head at her, looking mildly amused. Andy realised she must have had a pretty weird look on her face, and tried to look passive as she began to talk.


“I politely disagree with Mr. Cooper’s statement. He has no parental claim to this particular child unless he has tried to contact the others he’s fathered. Mr. Lattimer did not, therefore he has no justification for his actions. And by Mr. Cooper’s standard, that would mean he has been neglecting the child for five years, as he did not provide child support nor any other financial aid.” Andy surprised herself with the conviction in her voice. But she was more shocked by Miranda’s reaction.


Her lips quirked, crinkles forming around her eyes.“Wonderful, Andrea,” she purred, the warm, dulcet melody of her voice making Andy’s heart soar.“You’ve just won your case, congratulations.”


The brunette tried not to scream as she sat back down, fully aware she had a big grin plastered on her face. When the lecture was over, she shrugged on her backpack and began to make her way out when she felt a gentle hand rest on her shoulder.


What the fuck was that? Oh crap, it was Miranda. Andy tried very hard to think of malum prohibitum and habeas corpus instead of those delicate fingers on her.


“Miss Sachs, excellent work today. I assume you’re applying for my internship. Do you have a resume?” Miranda’s voice was a throaty whisper, and Andy felt her face get hot.


“Y-yes.” She pulled a paper from her backpack and handed it to her professor, ready to sprint out the first chance she got. “Thank you in advance for your consideration.” Andy took a small step towards the door, but Miranda narrowed her eyes at her. “What are you doing? There are things that we must discuss.”


“Right.” Shit. She could barely look at Miranda without feeling like her mind was on fire. How the hell was she supposed to have a conversation with her?


“I’ll make sure to put this on file, and at the top of the pile. You have a lot of potential, Andrea, and I wonder how much you’d be able to accomplish if given the right opportunity.” Miranda paused, reading over the resume. “And I believe that this internship may be that.” She glanced up, looking at Andy with an unreadable but intense expression.


Andy’s mind reeled. Praise from Miranda-- that was something. The space between her legs twinged uncomfortably. “Thank you.”


“Mm.” The older woman made a noncommittal noise. “That’s all.” Andy hightailed it out of there, her heart pounding. Holy shit. Holy shit.

Chapter Text

“Hey, guys!” Christian Thompson announced excitedly, his voice echoing in the quiet lecture hall. “Priestly got a big murder trial defending the actor named Samuel Brighton and needs extra help. She’s posting her internship today!”


The class imploded, and Andy tried her best not to get trampled as she dodged out of the way. Gently nudging through the crowd, she stared up at the sheet posted on the bulletin board.


Lily Goodwin, Nate Cooper, Christian Thompson, and... Andrea Sachs.


There were several groans of disappointment around her, but the brunette was elated. She did it! She actually got the job! It really was a miracle-- or maybe just a very vivid dream.


“Ladies and gentlemen,” Miranda announced grandly, her voice floating over the swarm of students, quelling their chatter.


“I need the best and the brightest. Congratulations to the choice few.” Her gaze landed on Andy. “And as for the rest of you, welcome to the middle. Nigel, I’m making you my co-counsel on the Brighton trial. Prove yourself here and the term ‘associate’ isn’t far off.”


The bald man only nodded, but Andy knew him well enough to know that he was just as excited as she was. Being Miranda’s right-hand man was one thing, but being her co-counsel in a really important court case spoke volumes about how much the professor trusted him.


“Andrea, I’d like to see you after class.” Miranda had seemingly teleported to Andy’s side, her hand ghosting the brunette’s forearm. The girl blushed, and felt stupid for doing so.


This brief physical contact wasn’t anything new, it had been happening ever since she destroyed Nate in that mock trial. The older woman wasn’t being inappropriate or anything though, her caresses and brushes never lingered.


But no matter how many times Miranda touched her, Andy got a thrill every time she did it. That day when she finally got in the professor’s good graces, when she had lay her hand on her shoulder and whispered in her ear ever so softly, Andy had gone to her dorm and slipped her hand down her pants.


After an incredibly satisfying climax, she cursed herself when she came to the earth shattering realisation that she was-- attracted to her law professor. Highly inconvenient, highly inappropriate.


It was difficult to keep a clear mind when Miranda was around, but often her irrepressible desire to impress her would supersede these distracting thoughts.

And now... she’d be spending several hours a day in the same room as the woman, most likely at the same table. I’m a goner , she thought helplessly.

Chapter Text

“We have a lot to cover,” Miranda drawled, impatiently flipping through a large packet of documents. Andy covered a yawn with her hand. It was 5 AM, and based off of how disgruntled her peers looked, they were just as tired as she was. She snuck a glance at her professor.


Miranda wasn’t necessarily bouncy. But her focus seemed as sharp as it always was, reading the case information in a clipped, brisk voice, glasses perched on the bridge of her elegant nose.


“Meet our client, Samuel Brighton, age 31. He’s one of the many frivolous faces of the gossip industry, but exorbitantly wealthy. His husband was a prominent economist, Max Peterson, age 60. Their son went downstairs to find Mr. Brighton covered in the blood of his husband.”


She looked up at the interns, no doubt gauging their reactions. Andy couldn’t help but feel a little jittery. How the hell were they supposed to prove him innocent?


“Now, if Mr. Brighton was willing to take a plea deal, we’d have this case wrapped up rather quickly. He swears he’s innocent, but refuses to present an alibi. That’s where you four come in. I want you to fetch me his alibi, and if you don’t, I will be immensely disappointed. Regardless, we will proceed with this case, but it’ll be a much more daunting task.”


Miranda had the tip of her pen in her mouth as she frowned at the folder, and Andy looked away from her, face burning. Jesus.


Wait a second. Their client’s name seemed familiar at first, and now she remembered why. Andy cleared her throat, and everyone at the table peered at her curiously. “Didn’t Samuel Brighton go to Northwestern University?” She heard Nate scoff, but kept talking.


“I was asking because I went to Northwestern before coming to Harvard, and I know we both worked on the newspaper there. Maybe I could talk to him...?” Silence followed, and Andy grimaced. Was it really that stupid of an idea?


“Yes, do that.” Miranda said hesitantly, sounding skeptical. “Nigel, you’ll go with her. In the meantime, the rest of us will start organising this information. That’s all.”

Nigel and Andy were on their way to the penitentiary Samuel Brighton was staying at, and the brunette was reading through the case again, annotating anything important. The taxi ride was smooth enough for her to write legibly.


“So Six,” Nigel started.


Andy groaned internally. Six was the annoying nickname he had for her, and she hated it. He began calling her that when Miranda called on her (again) on the third day, and she had absentmindedly answered, “Six” before realising her mistake. It was a very traumatic experience, and Miranda had lectured her about how dozing off during cases was unacceptable.


“What?” She said it a little irritably, partially because of the nickname and because she was in the middle of highlighting a sentence. Nigel raised an eyebrow.


“How are you going to do this? You think just because you and this man were in the same little book club, he’ll share all his darkest secrets?”


“First of all, it’s not a book club, it’s a college newspaper,” Andy retorted. “Secondly, I’m only asking for his alibi. It’ll be fine.” Even if it didn’t work out the first time, she’d squeeze it out of him eventually. Nigel looked like he didn’t believe her, but shut up after that.

“Hey, Mr. Brighton, I’m Andy Sachs,” Andy forced her voice to sound chipper, but not overbearing. “How are you?” Through a glass screen she could see a young man close to her in age. He sighed, running a hand through his stylish blonde hair. “I mean, not great, obviously. I’m going to guess you’re here for my-- what was it called? A liberty?”


“Alibi,” she corrected him gently. “And yeah, I guess I am. By the way, weren’t you once editor-in-chief of the Daily Northwestern? I was too in senior year, and after I graduated, I went to Harvard.”


To her delight, the man beamed at her. “Oh! Really? I’m so glad to hear that the paper is still going strong, I was wondering what it was like. Do you still have Friday meetings dedicated to controversial issues?”


Andy nodded vigorously, smiling back at him. “Yeah! I actually won a national competition for my article on the janitor’s union, which I published in the newspaper.” She thought Samuel was already pretty excited before, with this he looked enthralled.


“Congratulations! I’m glad to hear that. Lemme just say, it’s real nice to talk about the good old Northwestern days with someone. All these lawyers are all so-- ugh. I just don’t trust them, they seem shady. But you, you seem like a swell kid!” Andy’s eyes brightened hopefully. Oh, he trusted her? Perhaps he could tell her, then. The man frowned again.


“Wait, what do you wanna know again?” Andy opened her mouth to answer, but didn’t get the chance to say anything as he suddenly blurted out,“Oh, alibi, right? I can tell you, but you have to promise not to tell anyone.”


Andy nodded. “I promise.” She really did. Samuel glanced around furtively before pressing his face to the glass. Andy leaned in and held her breath.


“I was out before I got home and saw my husband there.” He paused. “But I was at--” Samuel’s voice got quieter, becoming inaudible.




“I said I was at--”


“I’m really sorry, but you’re going to have to speak up a little.”


“I was at a store, buying anal plugs!” He practically screeched that part, and Andy could feel everyone’s eyes on them. Samuel gaped in mortification, and made a noise that sounded like a sob. Andy was equally embarrassed, but pat the glass wall reassuringly, trying to get him to stop whatever it was he was doing.


“Your secret is safe with me.” Andy meant it. She couldn’t imagine Miranda asking her for the alibi, and her response being, “Anal plugs.”


She’d probably die on the spot. For her, she’d rather face Miranda’s wrath than what-- that would result in. Besides, Samuel has confided in her, and she didn’t want to break that trust.


Samuel sniffed but managed a weak smile. “Thank you so much, Andy.”


“How did that go?” Nigel inquired.


“I got it.”


The bald man looked impressed. “Really? Well, what was it?”


Andy shook her head. “I can’t tell you.” Nigel furrowed his brow. “I know, it’s weird. But I swore to Samuel that I wouldn’t tell anyone. We can win this case without it, we’re all capable lawyers.”


“You mean Miranda and I are capable lawyers,” he quipped. “The rest of you however, are unpaid interns and have only dipped your toes into the world of law. That alibi would get you far, and Miranda would probably give you a kiss on the forehead along with a gold star.” Andy blushed furiously.

“Uhh, yeah. But I’m not budging, and will keep my word.” Nigel tsked. “Miranda is going to be furious, but suit yourself.”

“What do you mean, you’re not telling us the alibi?” Miranda hissed.


Andy winced, shifting uncomfortably in her chair. Oh boy, this was bad. “By all means, ruin our hopes of winning this case along with our careers.” That last part came out as a vicious snarl, her hands digging into the table. “I don’t know who you think you are, it’s not your decision to determine whether or not to--”


“It is though, isn’t it?” Andy’s voice was measured and cool. “I’ve gained the trust of our client, and I intend to keep it. The information I’ve got was procured by me, and I decide what to do with it. Besides, considering you’re one of most successful lawyers in America, and this is a billion dollar law firm, we’ll fare just fine without that alibi.”


The brunette wasn’t sure where this confidence was coming from. Maybe it was shock. But she locked eyes with Miranda, her glare unwavering. The older woman slowly settled back into her seat, her ire apparently faded. “Fine.” She rested her chin in her hands, her face neutral as she began to speak again.


Her eyes glowed with something like awe, and Andy couldn’t help but feel like she was on top of the world.


“Hey, it’s Andy, right?” A tall, blonde man poked her arm. Andy gave him a pleasant if not confused smile. “Yeah, and you’re Christian.”


“That was cool, the way you spoke back to Priestly. And she didn’t kill you, either. Do you have any plans for tonight?” He had one of those dazzling, eyestraining smiles. Andy thought Miranda’s was more charming, just the lines around her eyes deepening or her lips quirking ever so slightly.


“No, but why do you want to know?” Andy asked cautiously.


“Well then, I guess it’s a date. My hotel room is 1297, I’ll meet you there and we can go get something to eat, maybe a drink. Whatever you’re up for.” He winked at her, and Andy couldn’t help but laugh at how ridiculous he was.


“Sure, why not.” This was going to be interesting, there was no doubt about that. “Wait, are we allowed to do that? Didn’t Miranda say that--”


“So.” A cool voice could be heard behind them, and the pair jumped. Andy felt Miranda’s arm snake around hers, and gulped.


“I thought I made myself clear when I said that there was to be no fraternising during this internship. You’re here to work, not flirt. Mr. Thompson, I’ll see you at five tomorrow morning. Come along, Andrea.” Andy was stunned, but mouthed “bye” to Christian, who watched them leave looking flabbergasted.


She didn’t really care too much that their outing had been ruined, as the warmth of Miranda’s arm around hers more than made up for it.

Chapter Text

Andy tried to stay calm as Miranda dragged her along. The older woman’s hands were firm but warm-- She knew she should have found that comforting, but instead it made her nervous. The brunette wasn’t sure why she suddenly felt so uneasy, this was her professor and boss, and nothing would happen between them. Right?


Miranda had led her to her office, with upholstered chairs and mahogany wood everywhere. The professor nodded at one of the chairs. “Have a seat, make yourself comfortable.” Andy settled into one of the chairs, but was still on edge. It probably showed, as Miranda chuckled, rolling her eyes.


“Do relax, Andrea, I won’t kill you. Especially in the middle of an important case like this. I just wanted to ask you something.”


“Yes?” What was there to talk about, when they had covered everything about the case earlier that day? Considering the circumstances, with Miranda taking Andy to her very private office when she was about to go on a date, this was sending her some red flags.


“Have you given any thought to what you’re going to do once you graduate?”


Huh. Andy eased into her seat, feeling relieved, but also slightly disappointed. Jesus, she needed to make up her mind how she felt about this, about Miranda, and the conversation they were having now.


“I mean-- I’m not sure. Join whatever law firm that’s willing to take me in. Why do you ask?”


Miranda hadn’t sat down yet, and was standing in front of the small coffee machine that whirred. Her back was turned to her and Andy saw it tense up, if only for a moment.


“I was asking because I was considering a position for you here. Of course, once you graduate. I’m sure you’re aware that this internship opens a lot of windows for you, but it rarely guarantees you a job set in stone. However, that’s what I’m offering. You have as much time as you need to decide, but you should at least consider it.”


Andy’s eyes widened. Oh wow. “I need a while to think about this.”


Miranda nodded, facing her with two full mugs of coffee. Without asking Andy if she wanted one or not, she held one out, and the brunette hesitantly took it. It burned her palms, and she grimaced before quickly setting it down on the table beside her.


The professor cocked her head at her. “I tend to prefer my coffee searing hot, I should have given you a warning. Are your hands alright?” Miranda gently took her hands in hers, assessing the palms with something that looked like well-disguised worry.


Andy smiled at this. “No, it’s fine. About the job, I’m not really sure. For a bit, I was considering going into forensics, and going elsewhere to get a degree for it. Now that I think about it though, that sounds like a hassle.” It really was, but after watching Criminal Minds in her high school years, she had been wanting to do it.


The older woman cradled her mug, taking a thoughtful sip. Andy thought the way she sat, huddling over her coffee, was really cute. “Ah. Forensics is an intriguing field, though it involves even more research and cataloguing than criminal law. Would you be a forensics attorney?”


Andy shrugged. “I’m honestly not really sure. I wanna do something , I know that much, but other than that-- It’s kind of a big unknown.” Law, journalism, and forensics were all things she wanted to pursue, and she was literally the most indecisive person to ever live. She could barely decide what she wanted for breakfast in the morning.


There was a long-suffering sigh. “Andrea, you must know what you want. You mustn't go gallivanting about, directionless with no set goals. Otherwise you won’t accomplish much at all. Your aspirations must be made clear to both yourself and others.”


Andy’s heart pounded. In terms of her career, she was definitely a little lost. But in other terms, she knew exactly what she wanted.


“Miranda.” She shut her mouth. This was a bad idea. She’d be taking Miranda’s advice, in a way. That didn’t make her feel any better.




“Never mind, it’s nothing,” she said too quickly.


Miranda rolled her eyes. “If it was nothing, you wouldn’t have brought it up to begin with. As I’ve made very clear before, I despise secrecy.” There was a brief pause as she looked down at her coffee. “What’s troubling you?”


“I think I-- Why are you being so nice to me?” Nice save , Andy, she grumbled to herself. Really great.


The professor’s face hardened. “Is that a problem?” The brunette felt her heart plummet unpleasantly. Oh yikes.


“N-no, I was just wondering why me, out of all the other students that are so much better than me. I was going to be a journalist, but I changed everything on a whim. Everyone else though, they’ve been planning their whole lives around this. And I think I’m not really deserving of this opportunity, or your kindness.”


Miranda didn’t look angry anymore, but there was a line forming between her eyebrows. Surprised, maybe?


“Andrea. You’re a bright, impressive, and highly ambitious girl. I know you are capable of greatness if given a push in the right direction. I can’t think of any more qualified candidate for the job I’m offering.” Her voice was earnest, and she met Andy’s eyes with a level of intensity that was shocking.


“Not even Nigel is, despite the fact that he’s very good. When he first came to Harvard, he wasn’t nearly as quick as you were. Neither are any of those other students who have dedicated their lives to law.”


She gave the brunette a wry smile, as if they were sharing a good joke known only to the two of them. It made Andy feel something warm. Not lust, nothing that shallow, but compelling and real.


“After all, I hadn’t planned on becoming a lawyer until I was around your age.”


She said that so nonchalantly, but Andy was shocked. “Gee. I can’t see you being anything else.”


“Mm. I wanted to go into fashion. If I had, I would have worked my way up to editor-in-chief of Vogue or Runway.”


Andy knew she would have. It would have been a cakewalk for her, considering how fast she climbed to the title of the best lawyer in America. Miranda would have fit well in the fashion world, with that disdainful yet sophisticated manner.


“That’s really cool. I mean, it explains why you dress so nicely. You’re the only exception to the ‘all lawyers dress badly’ stereotype, to be honest. I’m not even sure if that’s something people actually say, but it seems like it.” Andy knew she was rambling, but she couldn’t stop it. “Anyways, you always look perfect and sexy and I think that--” She bit her lip. Shit, she really said that aloud. Could you pass something off as a typo if it was spoken?


Miranda set her mug on the table, her face tilted downwards. Andy thought it seemed like she was shielding whatever emotion had flitted across her face. Disgust, no doubt. “I appreciate the compliment.” As if rehearsed, the professor glanced at her watch. “It’s getting late. The trial is in three days, and we should be well-rested. I’ll see you tomorrow, Miss Sachs.”


Miranda was still looking down at the ground, hands folded in her lap stiffly.


It was obvious the professor wanted her to leave. So Andy rose from her seat, regarding her now cold, untouched cup of coffee instead of Miranda, cheeks burning in mortification. “You’re right. I-I hope you have a nice night, Professor Priestly.” Andy had never called her that, even before-- stuff happened. She had always been Miranda, occasionally ma’am after getting rebuked for being stupid.


Miranda’s face remained neutral. If she was bothered by the sudden formality, she didn’t show it. “Yes. You as well. That’s all.”


Andy lingered at the doorway for a moment before finally stepping out. She had time to reflect on her stupidity as she stood in the elevator, groaning and burying her face in her hands.


When she reached the ground floor, she tried to go as quickly across the marble lobby as her heels would allow her. She needed to go back to her hotel room, raid her minibar, and drink the humiliation away. Unfortunately, she ended up stumbling into the janitor, letting out a yelp as she tried to regain her balance.


“Sorry, miss,” the balding man apologised, wincing a bit. Andy must have looked crazy, which made sense, since it felt like every atom in her body was on fire.


“Hey, are you alright, ma’am?” He leaned against his mop, peering at her inquisitively. “Yeah, I’m fine,” Andy lied. “Sorry for bumping into you, have a good night.” He nodded.


Andy waited until she was in a taxi to curse herself for being a dumbass. She didn’t even care an ounce that the driver kept staring at her strangely through the rearview mirror.


She had just called her law professor-- “sexy.” Andy could kiss that job offer goodbye. Not to mention tomorrow was going to be one hell of a nightmare, she knew it.

Chapter Text

“Is it possible that Mr. Brighton acted out of self defense?” Lily suggested, biting her lip nervously.


Miranda scowled, not glancing up from her paperwork. “No. Mr. Brighton was checked shortly after the police arrived. There were no signs of distress, no injuries, no wounds, and no blood drawn, other than the blood of his husband, that is.”


She was furiously jotting something down on a notepad, pressing so hard that the paper almost tore. They had been working for two hours already, and they had only managed to build a few weak arguments. Miranda wasn’t alone in her frustration, and the other interns were shaking their heads and sighing.


For Andy, this case wasn’t the only thing making her upset.


Andy didn’t really feel like contributing to the discussion, especially after yesterday. Miranda had almost friendly, but then abruptly pushed her away. It made sense though, Andy couldn’t blame her after what she’d said. She hadn’t meant to, it just kinda slipped out when she was on a nervous ramble.


Miranda’s praise had flustered her, and then she fucked up. The guaranteed career was gone, and so was whatever-- friendly-yet-professional relationship they had.


“Maybe,” Nate drawled. The brunette growled, her self-pity evaporating instantaneously. God, he was probably going to try and make Andy look bad again. That’s all he ever did whenever he opened his mouth.


“Maybe Andy could give us that alibi? That way we might actually have a shot at winning this case?” He gave her a wide smile, but it wasn’t genuine. Andy glared at him, and that stupid grin faltered a bit.


“I believe Miss Sachs has made it very clear that no one is getting that alibi,” Miranda said cooly, rolling her eyes. “I do wish you had been paying more attention earlier this week, Mr. Cooper.”


The other interns, including Andy, chuckled at this, while Nate tried and failed to stutter out a response.


After a five hour work session, Miranda finally decided to call a break. Andy shut her laptop and groaned, resting her head on the desk briefly. Jesus, her back hurt like hell. Everything did, actually. She desperately wanted to take a Tylenol now, but that wouldn’t be good on an empty stomach.


Food. Once she had grabbed her wallet, Andy began speed walking out of the office,. There was probably a vending machine around the corner or something, right?


“Andrea,” an impatient voice called. “Where are you going in such a hurry? I need to talk to you for a moment.” Andy braced herself for Miranda’s wrath as she turned around, meeting unnervingly sharp, blue eyes.


Before she realised what she was doing, Andy’s gaze began wandering down her very low-cut blouse. Not knowing where to look, she frantically diverted her attention to the ground instead.


The professor tapped a heeled foot on the floor in what seemed to be irritation. “I hope you’re aware of the fact that the position at my company still stands. That is, unless your performance continues to be as disappointing as it was today.” She gave her a stern look, and the brunette stared at her in disbelief. Did Andy really hear that correctly? The job offer was still open? Why?


“I’m having trouble understanding why you’re so baffled by this,” Miranda said wryly. Of course Andy would be extremely confused that nothing had changed. Because she last night she had said to her that--


The older woman’s eyebrows shot up and there was a faint blush creeping up her face. But it didn’t linger.


“Oh, I see now. Well. You’re young, and I suppose I can’t blame you for that. After all, it’s hard to know what you really want at your age. It’s natural to say things you don’t really mean.”


She said that last part with a smirk, and to Andy, it came off as condescending. The brunette didn’t care for that at all. But she gave Miranda a polite nod and a tight smile.


“You haven’t happened to received any offers from other firms, have you?” The professor inquired. There was an uncurrent of wariness in her voice. Hesitance. Andy heard it, even though it was subtle.


Andy had indeed, received several since earning the internship. All from firms that were on their last leg, desperate for anyone to come in and save them from their imminent bankruptcy. She had declined, obviously.


“No, I haven’t. I mean-- I have,” she sputtered, which made Miranda purse her lips in displeasure. For some reason, whenever she was around the older woman, she‘d always stutter profusely, even though she thought she’d fixed that speech impediment back in middle school.


“But I turned them all down,” Andy said quickly, and the professor relaxed, her tense expression melting back into one of cool, composed normalcy.


“I-I was thinking about it a little, and I’ve decided I’d love to work at your company.” Andy wasn’t sure if this job entailed working with Miranda or working for her. She didn’t really feel like asking.


The professor only nodded wordlessly in acknowledgement, but her eyes sparkled, and that alone spoke volumes. “Alright. I look forward to working with you.”


Ah. So that answered Andy’s question. But did she really mean it, or was she just saying that to be polite?


She started making her way out the door, and Andy tried very hard not to pay attention to the sway of her hips and that intimidating, but oh so appealing roll in her walk. God, would she even be able to get any work done if Miranda was her boss? All those tight blouses, short skirts, and that low, velvety whisper of a voice always within earshot-- Jesus Christ.


Miranda paused for a moment, gracefully leaning against the doorframe. Her head was tilted slightly towards Andy, and her face could only be seen in profile.


“Stop by my office sometime tonight,” she purred, and these words caused Andy’s increasingly inappropriate train of thought to fall off a cliff. “Huh?” The brunette blinked confusedly, the sudden snap back to reality jarring.

“That’s all.” Miranda quirked her lips amusedly, almost as if she knew what Andy had been thinking. When she finally left, the brunette let out a sigh she didn’t know she’d been holding. Miranda Priestly will be the death of me.

Chapter Text

Was that an order or a request? Andy wasn’t completely sure, but she was here anyways, tiptoeing down the dark hallway to Miranda’s office. Hopefully there weren’t any security cameras, it would look suspicious, and there would be questions.


When Andrea walked in, Miranda was sitting on the couch instead of at her desk, looking utterly miserable. Her reading glasses drooped in one hand, and she stared out vacantly, her eyes red-rimmed. Instead of sitting up straight, she sagged into the upholstery defeatedly.


Andy felt a jolt of panic, unsure what to do, what to say. “M-Miranda?” The older woman jumped at the sound of her name, and looked at her incredulously, watery blue eyes wide. Andy wasn’t sure why, but seeing Miranda so... helpless-- it terrified her.


Andy swallowed. “Are-- are you okay?”


Miranda’s voice was just as sharp as it always was when she answered, “No.” However her hands were clenched and she shook a bit.


The brunette desperately wanted to ask her what had happened, but Miranda wasn’t one to open up emotionally, or share any details of her personal life. The only thing she knew about her professor was that she had two twin daughters and a string of ex-husbands.


Andy weighed her options carefully. The professor would likely kill her if she asked, but also kill her if she left. Great.


So instead, Andy strode over to the couch and Miranda, who bristled as the brunette settled down next to her. They both stared at the ground in silence for a couple minutes.


No words were exchanged, but it wasn’t like they were needed. Andy had a feeling that Miranda appreciated the company, even though she was very difficult to read.


That was what Andy was best at, understanding people, who they are, and what defines them. Miranda was by far, the most closed off and tedious to comprehend. But Andy had also never been one to back down from a challenge, and tried her best.


There were so many layers, each complex one composed of painstakingly concealed fury, loneliness, despair. Miranda hid everything behind a mask of suave confidence and coldness, but occasionally the charade would falter. Then Andy could see her as she really was, if only for a moment. This was one of those moments, and Miranda didn’t seem so invincible. Just someone who needed and deserved comfort.


Eventually that lost look disappeared and Miranda seemed like her normal self again, regaining that gleam in her attentive, blue eyes.


“Andrea.” She lay her hand on Andy’s thigh, and the brunette tensed, felt a chill run down her spine. God, it felt electric. “Thank you.” She sounded sincere, and Andy forced herself to meet Miranda’s eyes.


She was expecting her to look impassive. Instead, the older woman’s expression caught her off-guard. Her mouth was barely quirked upwards, but her eyes revealed so much. There was still immeasurable pain, barely subdued anger, but also gratitude. And something else Andy couldn’t identify, but it made something warm and quiet blossom in her stomach.


“Would you like me to make some coffee?” Andy offered, and Miranda nodded wordlessly as she set down her reading glasses on the mahogany table.


As Andy was brewing the coffee, she was vaguely aware of someone watching her. Turning her head ever so slightly, she peered at Miranda out of the corner of her eye, and saw that the older woman was staring at her intently with her chin resting on a hand.


Andy bit her lip so she wouldn’t grin like an idiot, and handed a mug to Miranda. Their fingers brushed, and it made both of them pause.


“Andrea. Are you going to stand here all day like a child, or will you sit down?”


“Ah-- sorry.” Andy quickly took a seat on the upholstered chair across Miranda, blushing but not sure why. When she set down her own mug on the table, she noticed the professor was glaring at her with narrowed eyes. Shit, did she do something wrong? Andy racked her brain to try to remember stuff she might have messed up, but couldn’t think of anything.


Miranda cleared her throat, and jerked her head from Andy to her right. That was where Andy had been sitting before, and the brunette felt her mouth go dry. Unable to believe her luck, she moved quickly to Miranda’s side.


The older woman looked at her appraisingly, making a low humming sound as she drank from her mug. There was a red lipstick mark on the rim of it, and Andy regarded it as she sipped hers.


“You must have questions,” Miranda said. It wasn’t a question. Confused at first, Andy just blinked at her until it hit her. She’d been asked by the older woman to come to the office earlier that day, and ensuring Miranda was alright had been more of a priority than figuring out why she was here. “Sure,” Andy responded slowly.


Miranda tilted her head at her as she spoke. “I called you here tonight because I had intended to go over the case with you.” Andy’s stomach twisted unpleasantly. Was she here just because of the--


“The alibi? Oh, no.” Miranda chuckled. “Not that. I was hoping to get some work done on the case, since your peers have been so terribly unproductive. Always distracted. And trying to court you.” Distracted. Andy was very distracted, probably more so than the other interns.


“Well-- I mean, Christian wasn’t really...” Andy trailed off, and Miranda smirked at this. “Oh, yes he was. I overheard everything, unfortunately. I feared that your outing may have taken an-- undesirable turn, considering Mr. Thompson’s reputation.”


Andy felt her face get hot. “Y-yeah.” It didn’t have anything to do with what she’d said. Miranda was looking at her again, and Andy had this uncontrollable urge to brush her thumb across the sharp cheekbones and kiss those resplendent lips. It would be so easy.


“Anyways, the point is, I don’t think we’ll be able to get much work done tonight.” Andy was shocked at this statement, then realised Miranda was referring to how she was crying a little bit earlier. Not how Andy was having thoughts of kissing her as gentle as she could, and running her hands through downy, white hair.


“I think so too. I really am sorry that I can’t give the alibi, by the way. I just feel like we should try to value Samuel’s trust in us.” Would Miranda’s lipstick get smeared all over her face if they kissed? Andy hoped it would. In her idea of a perfect world, it would.


Real Miranda pursed her lips thoughtfully. “I suppose you have a point. I typically don’t go so far out of my way to get my client to find me enjoyable, and focus more on getting the job done. But do whatever you think is right, I trust your judgement.” Wow. She actually trusted Andy. Or at least, Andy’s abilities as a lawyer. Either way, that was great, because Miranda never praised people, let alone her freshman interns.


“Thank you.” She meant it, and she was thanking Miranda for so much more than her praise.


Miranda, who had raised her mug to her lips halfway, froze. “I beg your pardon?”


“Um. Thank you for-- trusting my judgement?” Andy looked at Miranda quizzically.


The older woman blinked, her cheeks turning a lovely shade of pink. “Ah. Yes, of course.” The brunette was about to ask what just happened, but Miranda was in the middle of drinking her coffee again.


Andy hesitated before speaking. “I just wanna say thank you again. For other stuff.” Oh god. She really said that. Shit, shit, shit.


Miranda’s eyebrows went up a bit at this and she set her coffee down. “Hm? Whatever for? What ‘stuff’ are you speaking of?” If Andy wasn’t so frazzled, she would have picked up on that note of apprehension in Miranda’s voice.


The brunette looked down, running her thumb along the handle of the mug. “For everything. This internship, the job offer, letting me sit next to you and making you coffee. And for just being.” Everything tumbled out in a single breath, and Andy nearly choked on the words as they came out.


For the first time since Andy had known Miranda, the professor seemed at a loss for words. Miranda, the one who had a witty comeback or comment for every situation.


“I--” Miranda opened and closed her mouth. If Andy could describe the peculiar, out-of-place expression, it would be “indecisive.” The older woman shut her eyes tightly, as if she needed a moment to process this. Like a computer buffering , Andy thought.


Bright, blue eyes fluttered open and Miranda didn’t look any more reassured than she had before. “Y-you need to go. I’ll see you tomorrow at 5 AM. That’s all.” Startled and disappointed with the sudden dismissal, Andy nodded and got to her feet.


She supposed she couldn’t be too upset, though. Tonight, something had shifted, that was evident enough. But what, exactly?


These thoughts occupied her mind for the rest of the night. Eventually she drifted off into a fitful sleep,  tired of asking herself questions she didn’t have the answers to.

Chapter Text

Andy walked into the conference room early, expecting Miranda to be already there, typing away on her laptop or flipping through paperwork.

Instead, only the sight of Nigel talking on the phone greeted her. He gave Andy a slight nod of acknowledgement, but held up a silencing hand before she could say anything. He suddenly frowned, in response to something the person on the other end had said.

“Yes, Miranda. I completely understand, and will ensure that everything runs smoothly. Mhm. Yes. Alright, good luck. Bye now.” The bald man hung up and tucked in phone away in his pocket. “Hello, Six. You’re not supposed to be here until six, and it’s only five. Something troubling you?” He raised an eyebrow inquisitively, looking mildly concerned.

Yes, Andy wanted to answer. The person you were just talking to on the phone. Instead she sighed, “No, Miranda told me to get here early. I was expecting to talk to her about something, where is she?”

Nigel shook his head. “Somewhere important. I just got off the phone with her, and she didn’t say where she was. Only that she wasn’t to be disturbed, and won’t be available today.”

Andy’s brow furrowed. A whole day? What happened? It must have been pretty bad, for Miranda to suddenly take off like that. “Has she left already?”

“Mhm, she called her driver here really early in the morning, around 3:00 AM. I don’t know if it’s for work, or if it’s something personal. Either way, I didn’t want to take my chances and ask.” He paused. “Whatever you want to ask her, I can pass it along if you want. Or answer it myself, depending on what it is.”

Andy bit her lip. That wouldn’t do at all. What she wanted-- no, needed to talk to Miranda about was very private. And something that had to be face-to-face.

She flashed Nigel a grateful if not weak smile. “No, it’s fine, I can wait. What are we going to do without her here, though?”

Nigel smirked mischievously. “Well, celebrate of course.” He rolled his eyes at Andy’s perplexed expression. “In all seriousness, we’re going to proceed as usual. Maybe just a little more lively chatter and more breaks.”

That should have been music to Andy’s ears. Everyone, including her, had been working like dogs for the past week. But all she felt was immense worry. Miranda had just left with no explanation whatsoever. “Cool. I’ll start working now then.” Nigel nodded, gathering up a thick stack of binders. “I’ll join you in a bit, but I need to give something to Emily, Miranda’s assistant.”

It sometimes totally slipped Andy’s mind that Miranda was both a Harvard professor and managed an entire law firm all on her own. It seemed like too much for one person, even if that one person was Miranda.


Within an hour, the other interns started shuffling into the conference room. Nigel still hadn’t returned so all of them with the exception of Andy began to chat amongst themselves.

Christian stretched out lazily in his seat, resting his legs on the table. Andy glanced up and frowned at him disapprovingly, but resumed her work. Unfortunately, she got distracted a couple minutes later by a loud squeal from Lily, and sighed, shutting her computer in defeat.

“Oh god, I’m so glad she’s not here!” The girl gushed, fanning herself. “This internship has been such a mess so far, just working and working and working nonstop.”

What did she think this internship was? That it was going to be easy? Andy thought everyone was under the impression that this job required an exorbitant amount of time and effort. If they weren’t prepared to work hard, then they should go home. She rolled her eyes at herself. The little voice in her head was starting to sound an awful lot like Miranda.



The rest of the day was slow, and unproductive as the interns didn’t feel like listening to Nigel, and Nigel didn’t feel like bossing them around.

Unfortunately, the light workload meant that Andy had plenty of thought to spare. Where was Miranda? Did it have anything to do with last night?


Miranda had an odd pattern of behaviour that Andy had observed. If she was warm one day, she’d completely ignore Andy the next. Perhaps this was her avoiding her again? Perhaps that was a conceited of her to think that the older woman would skip an entire workday, just so she didn’t have to talk to Andy. Whatever the case, the brunette spent most of the meeting conjuring up worst-case scenarios, a healthy blend of panic and dread demanding her attention.


Nigel dismissed the team early, at 9:00 sharp. That was a record low, and the other interns sighed their relief as they headed back to their rooms together.


Andy watched them leave, then turned back to help Nigel clean up and review tomorrow’s plan. Two days until the trial. They had been able to accomplish an obscene amount of work these past few days, if you didn’t count today. Their case for Samuel Brighton was nearing its completion, Andy realised. Damn, time had really flown by. What would happen when they got back to school? Would things between her and Miranda change? Andy felt her chest constrict painfully. No more late-night-- or very early mornings-- in the professor’s office, no coffee-fueled conversations. Shit, she hadn’t even thought about that.


Whatever she and Miranda had, this friendship or something, it wouldn’t last. It was wonderful, painful, but fleeting. Andy didn’t want to let go, but this sense of camaraderie only came into place because they were working together. Once they returned to Harvard, everything would revert to the way it was before, with Miranda as her professor and with Andy as the lowly law student. The constructs of the roles they were supposed to play would make sure of that. It was explainable, these late-night meetings at the end of the day. But back at school, those things would look out of place. Suspicious. Rumours flew around campus faster than they did in high school, and it wouldn’t be right for a student to spend all evening in her professor’s office.


From what Andy had gathered, Miranda had a bunch of ex-husbands, but she didn’t know if she was married right now. If she was, the brunette would be surprised, seeing as the older woman never spoke of him.


“Six, Miranda just texted me that she’ll be here in a couple minutes,” Nigel said gently. Andy nodded, only a little dazedly. “Okay.” Then she dared to ask, “Did Miranda say why she couldn’t come today?”


The bald man shook his head. “Nope, but I’m not surprised. She rarely offers any explanation for the things she does.”


Figures. Now that all the papers and packets had been tucked away neatly, there was a short-lived but strenuous pause. Nigel broke it with a, “So, how are you holding up?”


Andy blinked before responding. “I mean-- Fine, I guess. I’m not really sure.”


“Yeah, I guess all our emotions are a little frayed right now,” Nigel remarked, drumming his hand on the desk thoughtfully. “Especially with the case coming up so fast. I want this done, but at the same time, it’ll be disorienting when we return.” Andy couldn’t agree more, but was certain he was apprehensive about going back to Harvard for different reasons than hers.


“Don’t you think it’s odd that Miranda didn’t show up today?” Nigel’s voice echoed in the empty conference room, also echoing Andy’s thoughts perfectly. “I mean, we’re nearing the end, and I know she wants us to work our asses off. She’s fully aware that she’s the only one capable of leading this team, too. It must have been something really terrible that’s come up.”


“Y-yeah,” Andy offered halfheartedly. She had been worrying, because it was so uncharacteristic for Miranda to do something like this. Even that one time she had the flu, she showed up regardless. Andy couldn’t recall one day Miranda hadn’t been able to attend class. If it had been anyone else, this wouldn’t be such a subject of worry. But this was Miranda, and Miranda was never absent, never tardy.


The aggressive clicking of heels sounded into the conference room, and Andy glanced up to see Miranda standing there, looking radiant at 10:00 in the night. She wasn’t wearing work attire, instead she had a fur coat wrapped around herself and sleek gloves. Miranda was wearing head-to-toe black, her steely blue gaze hidden behind dark sunglasses. Andy was so happy to see her, she could have cried.


“Andrea. Nigel,” she greeted them both stiffly. Andy noticed her shoulders drooped a bit, and immediately began to worry. The last time she looked so defeated had been when Andy stumbled upon her in her office. “I trust you both have ensured that the team made good use of time today, yes?”


“Yes. We weren’t able to get as much done as usual, but still a decent amount. I think we’ll be able to pick up the slack tomorrow,” Nigel answered, looking a bit nervous as he toyed with the ring on his finger.


Miranda pursed her lips, but sighed, almost in resignation. “Fine. Goodnight, Nigel.” She swept the binder off the table, tucking it under her arm as she strode off. “Andrea.” The older woman beckoned for her to follow, and Andy reluctantly obliged, heart pounding so fervently she thought she’d collapse.




Andy has always gotten a thrill when Miranda walked her to her office. Now, however, she felt anxious. It didn’t seem like the older woman had any particularly good things to say to her, and the walk down the hall suddenly seemed very long. It didn’t help that Miranda was silent the entire time. Only until they had entered her office did the professor speak.


“Andrea.” Her voice was unsteady, and she bit her lip. “I didn’t mean for you to see that last night.” That much was obvious, Andy thought. “You must have felt an obligation to-- to do something, even though you really shouldn’t have.” Miranda lowered her sunglasses, regarding her carefully, and Andy squirmed under her gaze.


“I’m glad you did,” she murmured. Andy’s jaw dropped, but Miranda didn’t comment on it. She kept talking, the hardness in her eyes softening.


“I really think that-- I greatly enjoy your company, Andrea.” Andy grinned so widely, it almost hurt. Almost, but not quite, because she felt like she was on top of the world at the moment. “I do too. To um, both.” Miranda’s lips quirked. “Mm.”


“A-are we friends?” Andy asked stupidly, and wanted to die in that moment. Miranda snorted, rolling her eyes, but said nothing in return.  


She sauntered over to the couch, letting the fur coat she was wearing slip off elegantly. Any and all of Andy’s efforts to restrain her inappropriate thoughts were thwarted.


The black dress she wore hugged her sides perfectly, and while the neckline was high, a well-toned back was on full display. How the hell did this woman make time to exercise, raise children, run a law firm, and teach at Harvard? She was either some kind of deity or an excellent multitasker. Andy assumed it was a combination of the two.


Wherever Miranda had been, it was clearly not a work function. She didn’t look particularly happy, either, so it wasn’t like she’d run off to have a good time.


“My husband and I are getting a divorce,” Miranda announced without preamble, and Andy gaped at her. What was she supposed to say to that? Congratulations? I’m sorry? Thank you? Definitely not that last one, she decided.


Being the articulate intellectual she was, Andy’s response was, “Oh.”


Miranda rolled her eyes once more, this time looking a little more peeved. “Yes, Andrea. ‘Oh.’ You have quite a way with words for someone that planned to be a journalist.”


Instead of acknowledging the insult, Andy settled into the chair opposite Miranda, tapping her foot distractedly. It was quiet now, scuffling noises outside the door from the janitorial staff receding.


Miranda’s eyes were still trained on her, unblinking and contemplative. Whenever Miranda looked at her, Andy couldn’t help but feel like she was being scrutinised under a microscope. Like all her actions and words were taken into consideration and analysed thoroughly. For what Miranda was searching her for was a mystery she’d probably never be able to solve.


The older woman finally broke the quiet, but continued to stare at Andy. “My husband cheated on me. At least I don’t have to fight for custody, he hated the girls and they felt similarly towards him.”


Again, Andy wasn’t quite sure what to say, and shifted around in her seat uncomfortably. “I’m sorry he did that.” She was, because no one in their right mind would cheat on Miranda. If he had the rare privilege, the opportunity of showering Miranda in affection, why the hell didn’t he? Seemed like Miranda’s soon-to-be ex-husband was a dumbass.


“I suppose it’s partially my fault, in a way. I was never home,” Miranda said distantly as she stared at Andy, but her gaze was unfocused, as if she didn’t really see her there.


“That’s not really good enough justification to cheat on you,” Andy told her, a little angrily. “You-- you deserve better than that.” Miranda looked at her incredulously, and in a rush of embarrassment, Andy blurted, “I’m glad you know for sure that you’ll be able to keep your kids, though.”


The older woman nodded hesitantly. “Yes. This divorce will be quick, and painless.” She exhaled deeply, shutting her eyes momentarily before they fluttered open once more. Andy had a feeling Miranda didn’t actually believe what she was saying, because the anguished look in her eyes persisted.


“Hey,” Andy said, her voice gentle. “It’s going to be okay. You can take all the time you need to process this, there’s no rush.” She rested her hand on Miranda’s arm comfortingly.


The older woman sighed wearily, but didn’t push Andy away. “I’m on a tight schedule. The trial is in two days. I haven’t the time to drown myself in self-pity.” She gave Andy’s hand a startled look, as if she just noticed it on her arm.


Again, Miranda’s eyes were pressed shut, and she looked like she was struggling for control.


“Andrea, be professional for a moment.” There was a plea in her voice, and Andy gaped at her, shocked and a little outraged. Miranda, rebuking her for her lack of professionalism? After everything that she’d done? Touching her, inviting her for drinks, and literally everything else. She didn’t voice any of her complaints though.


“Sorry.” Andy didn’t really mean it, and Miranda frowned. Another interminable silence followed, and Andy wished for a time when conversation flowed between them easily. Had it really only been two weeks since Miranda first dragged her away from Christian and into her office? She felt like she’d aged years since then.


“Tomorrow is our last day. Get some sleep.” Miranda said to her suddenly, inflection as sharp and cold as if she had just been giving a lecture. The way she said that first sentence made dread settle over Andy, like she wasn’t just implying the end of the Brighton case. “That’s all.”


Only two words seemed appropriate at the moment. “Goodnight, Miranda.” Andy couldn’t help but feel a little dejected as she walked out, not bothering to glance back. She knew Miranda wasn’t watching her.

Chapter Text

Andy stepped into her hotel room, the door clicking shut behind her. Instead of collapsing onto her bed and falling asleep immediately like she always did, she opted slumping into a chair.


She needed time to think. What exactly were her feelings for Miranda? Why did it always sting so much whenever the professor dismissed her? Most importantly, why did she keep coming back, even when she felt so angry and hurt?


Andy wished she could get some damn answers, because this stupid hot and cold nonsense was starting to get to her. Any more pressure and she’d definitely fall apart. God, why did everything have to be so complicated?


If only she’d just have settled for becoming a journalist and not come to law school at all. Maybe then she wouldn’t be in so much pain, maybe she wouldn’t have developed these horrible, tortuous feelings for her professor. Okay, it had been manageable when it was just the sex fantasies about Miranda, but this-- this wasn’t just lust. Like an idiot, she’d managed to start caring about someone who no doubt, didn’t reciprocate her affections.


The worst part about it, though, was Miranda herself. She was kind, sometimes even sweet to Andy, but then she’d immediately shut her out. Why did the older woman keep inviting her to her office late at night if she hated her? Did she think of her as a friend? But if so, why was she so distant sometimes? Tonight, it felt like Miranda might have been a thousand miles away instead of right in front of Andy, with the way she’d snubbed her.


Andy exhaled deeply. She seriously needed to sleep. Repeatedly asking herself nonsensical questions wouldn’t fix anything.


She had just kicked her heels off and began unbuttoning her blouse when there was a staccato of knocks at her door. Dazed, Andy stumbled back onto her feet, and cursed loudly as she narrowly avoided tripping over her damn stockings, where were halfway down. The knocking intensified, which made Andy yell out, “Give me like a minute!” She really hoped it was just one of her peers, and not the hotel staff, so she could chew them out for coming here at this ungodly hour.


Andy hopped around on one foot, and she finally opened the door with a sigh. Then she saw blue eyes squinting at her in appraisal, the mussed white hair, and permanently affixed scowl. She swallowed. Shit.


“H-hey, Miranda,” she stammered, giving the older woman what she hoped was a normal smile instead of a look of complete and utter shock. “May I help you?”


Miranda’s face was unreadable as she pursed her lips. “We need to talk. Immediately.”


Andy squinted at her watch, which read as 2:33. “Now?” She was tired, cranky, and in no mood for this right now.


“Andrea, what part of immediately do you not understand?” Miranda tapped her foot impatiently, but Andy knew that she was nervous. The older woman wouldn’t meet her eyes, and she was biting the inside of her cheek.


“Okay. Do you want to come in?” Andy started to open the door more, then glanced down. Her skirt was really short, and without stockings, it was embarrassingly revealing. “Hang on, I need to put some pants on.”


She heard Miranda’s sharp intake of breath. “You’re not wearing anything, Andrea?”


Andy’s face burned in mortification. “N-no, I am! It’s just that--”

“Well then.” With a surprising amount of strength, Miranda pushed past Andy and into her room. Andy fumbled for the bathrobe that was left on the bed, and made quick work of tying it around herself. She could feel Miranda’s eyes raking over her legs, and felt a little thrill pass through her. Andy plopped onto her bed, which creaked as she sank into it.


Her professor sat opposite her on a lounge chair, her legs crossed in that stupidly tight pencil skirt. It was weird how she could look totally at home in her student’s hotel room, her posture relaxed and hard gaze surveying the room cooly. “I need to talk to you about...” Miranda paused, frowning deeply. Andy leaned towards her. “Yes?”


“Tomorrow.” Miranda said flatly. She’d clearly meant to say something else, but Andy decided not to push it-- at least right now. “We’ll be meeting in the lobby at 5:00 AM tomorrow. Nigel will be driving you all to the New York City Criminal Court, with the exception of you, who will be riding with me.”


Andy’s eyebrows shot up. “So it’ll just be you and me?” Because if so, she’d probably lose her mind. Miranda would too, considering all the scolding and criticising she’d undoubtedly be doing.


The older woman toyed with a delicate string of pearls around her neck and cleared her throat. “Yes.”


“Cool. Now, why don’t you tell me the real reason why you’re here.” Andy’s jaw was set in determination, and not even a scathing look from Miranda could make her confidence waver. “I know it’s not the iterary, because you already sent all of us an email regarding tomorrow. What do you want from me?”


Miranda’s face coloured, and she rose from her chair. “I have to go now.” She turned towards the door, but without thinking, Andy grabbed her arm and pulled the older woman closer to her. Miranda couldn’t just run off like that, when she still had so many questions to ask and so many things to say. God, she could smell her perfume, she was so warm, and Miranda’s shallow breaths hit her like a bus.


“Andrea.” It sounded a little bit like a whimper. “What are you doing?”


“I don’t know,” Andy murmured, tipping Miranda’s chin up towards her.


Miranda didn’t pull away, but she shut her eyes. Her eyeshadow was a lovely shade of lavender, and there was an endearing crease between her brows. “You, we, I-- can’t do this. Andrea, you have to stop. We have to stop.” She parted her lips to say something, but Andy silenced them with her own.


Oh. Her professor’s lips was softer than she’d thought they’d be. None of her fantasies came close to amounting to this. Miranda squeaked in her mouth, trembling like a leaf with her hands at her sides.


Andy wasn’t sure if Miranda liked it, but she deepened the kiss anyways, slipping in a bit of her tongue. Miranda made a noise that sounded an awful lot like a moan, and her hands came up around Andy’s back. Lips, hot and wet, began moving against hers, and Andy let out a moan as well. Elegant fingers traced nonexistent shapes at the base of her neck, then danced along her shoulders, dipping down her back.


Then Miranda pushed her away, her face red and chest heaving. “No, no. Stop, stop,” she whispered. She licked her lips, seeming very interested in the carpet. Once she’d gotten her bearings, she looked up to finally met Andy’s eyes. Miranda’s were wide and wild, and her forelock of silver hair came crashing over her forehead messily. “I was afraid of this. I knew this would happen. God, how on earth did I... why didn’t I end it earlier?”


The rush of happiness that Andy had experienced earlier faded into despair. “Miranda, I’m sorry, I just thought that--”


Miranda suddenly shook her head, breathing shakily. “I have to go. Now.” Then she fled like a monster was after her.


Andy just stood there in disbelief.

Chapter Text

Andy didn’t know what she was supposed to do.


Did she chase after Miranda, like in those sappy Korean dramas her sister was so fond of? Or was it okay for her to just lay down on her back and stare at the ceiling, as if white linoleum held the answers to all her problems?


Apparently it was best that she didn’t book it to Miranda’s room, because after what seemed like millenia, there was a frantic knock at her door.


Andy answered it, because it wasn’t like she had much of an alternative. “What?” She still felt like absolute shit, but she couldn’t deny the flutter in her stomach when she saw the older woman standing there. Goddamnit. “What do you want this time?”


Miranda didn’t supply an answer, and instead threw herself at Andy, pushing her against the wall.


Andy gasped a little as her lips met Miranda’s repeatedly. “Oh,” she breathed. It wasn’t gentle like the first time. It was rough, desperate, angry. It was good.


“I can’t--” Miranda whispered, and trembled a little against Andy. “I couldn’t stop thinking about you after I left. I can’t stop.” She kissed her. “Oh.” Andy didn’t want her to stop. Instead she held her by the waist. The older woman was warm, and soft here.


The smooth fabric of Miranda’s skirt bunched under her fingers, but she wanted it off. When she tried to speak, though, she found she wasn’t much more articulate than Miranda. “Can we, oh my god--”


Miranda groaned, and the sound went straight between Andy’s legs. “Yes, yes.” She tugged at the collar of Andy’s pyjama shirt. Message received. Once Andy had pulled it over her head, Miranda leapt at the base of her throat, kissing a trail up her jaw.


“Hhhngh,” was all Andy could say at this point, and tipped her head back against the wall. She closed her eyes, focusing on the sensations of Miranda’s mouth on her. When the older woman finally pulled away, she was breathing heavily, her cheeks flushed. Red lipstick smeared a cheek, and her eyes had glassed over. Andy’s heart thudded in her chest. She was beautiful, perfect, spectacular.


Miranda began unbuttoning her blouse, and their fingers brushed as Andy clumsily tried to help. The professor pulled her close again, her hand placed possessively on Andy’s waist as they continued undressing each other, a flurry of fabric, tousled hair, and soft gasps.


Miranda seemed content to do nothing but kiss. She tangled her fingers in Andy’s hair, kissed her shoulders, neck, jaw, and every square inch of her face. The way she clung to Andy was desperate, like how someone lost at sea would a lifeboat, and the thought kindled a warm feeling in the pit of her stomach. Andy felt drunk on ecstasy.


“Wait,” Miranda said, sounding worryingly hesitant. “Do you want this?” Andy met her eyes. She looked upset. Andy wished she could kiss that troubled expression off her face, smooth the crease between her eyebrows.


“Yes, more than anything.” Andy hadn’t ever done anything like this. She’s never had sex with a woman before, and she definitely hasn’t made out with her professor before.


Miranda seems pleased with her answer, because she gives her a quick, affectionate peck on the cheek before running her fingers through her hair. Her kisses are unhurried but still forceful, and she eventually she draws away.


“You’re magnificent,” she murmured, her voice husky and rough. “Do you have any idea how much I’m enjoying this?”


Andy gulped. “Um.” She forced her eyes open, and saw the older woman cosied up on shoulder, as if she belonged there.


“I’ve been thinking about this for quite a while,” Miranda continued. She tucked Andy’s hair behind her ear, slowly. In the process, she caressed the back of Andy’s ear, a sensitive spot.


Andy couldn’t hold back a whimper.


“Have you thought about this too? Do you touch yourself, Andrea? Surely those fingers of yours are capable of much more than simply note-taking.” She drew a line on Andrea’s cheek, her eyes dark with want. Miranda licked her lips, and Andy whined when she saw the pink of her tongue dart out.


“Oh,” was all Andy said.


Miranda simply nipped Andy’s ear, causing her to inhale sharply. “Please,” Andy said, not really sure what she’s asking for, but still needing it desperately.


“You’re wet, aren’t you Andrea?” Miranda’s voice was stern now, and with her words, Andy’s knees threatened to give out. The older woman’s strong hands were sliding down her chest, back, stopping at her hips. Andy thought she might come just from that. “Answer me.”


“Yes,” Andy managed to croak out.


“Do you want me to fuck you, Andrea?” The word rolled off of Miranda’s tongue so casually, along with that special way that only she said Andy’s name. She pressed her body against Andy’s, a thigh slipping in between her legs. God, that felt good.


“Yes,” Andy repeated. Her legs were uncontrollably trembling now, begging for sweet release. She really, really, really needed to get off already.


Miranda tilted her head to one side, lips pursed as if deep in thought. “I see.” Then her hand snuck past the elastic of Andy’s panties, delving into wet folds.


“Fuck!” Andy’s back slammed against the wall, her eyes fluttering shut. Miranda’s free hand supported her as the other fucked her relentlessly. “Oh my god,” she gasped.


“Mm. Enjoying yourself, aren’t you?” She knew the professor’s expression was smug, even without looking at her. A finger flicked against her core, causing her to claw at the wall.


Andy panted, feeling hot all over. Jesus Christ, she was not going to last very long at all. Miranda suddenly withdrew her fingers, and Andy whimpered at the loss of contact, before she felt three fingers re-enter her. There was a slight burn as her cunt stretched to accommodate Miranda’s slender digits, each curling and uncurling inside of Andy, each thrust carrying her closer to climax.


Then it happened, all too quickly for Andy’s liking. Her thighs clenched, and it was like a supernova went off, lights flashing behind her eyes. Miranda watched her, with intense grey eyes, and didn’t pull out until Andy’s spasms slowed. Andy sighed. “Fuck, that was good.”


“It was, wasn’t it?” Miranda licked her wet fingers tentatively. Andy might have just gotten off, but damn that was hot. She squirmed a little, and leaned forward to kiss Miranda, tasting herself on the other woman’s lips. It was salty and a little sweet. It was good.




Andy woke up to her phone alarm going off, and promptly rolled out of bed onto the ground. “Ugh.” She felt sticky all over from last night. They’d spent hours fucking each other, an impressive feat, but obviously fell asleep pretty quickly afterwards. Andy got herself off the floor and back onto the bed.


Miranda’s side of the bed was empty, but still warm. She’d probably left not too long before Andy woke up. That was a shame, because Andy would have liked to greet her with good morning kisses and know for a fact that last night wasn’t some kind of wonderfully vivid dream.


Sighing, she made her way over to the shower.


As warm water spilled down her shoulders, Andy used the time to think about what had happened. Was this all just a one night stand, how would this change their working relationship, what if someone found out, et cetera. As always with all things Miranda-related, she had no idea, and probably would just have to learn the answers to this stuff as she went along.


The room was a certifiable mess, but Andy didn’t really have time to tidy it up a little. The maids were going to be pissed. Andy put on the only clean outfit she had left, a smart black pantsuit, and muttered to herself as she hunted the room for missing papers. When she took inventory, she realised that one of them remained elusive. It was just a piece of scratch paper really, but Andy had written down a crucial piece of information on it that made it important; Samuel’s alibi.


Andy’s stomach churned unpleasantly. That fucking bitch.

Chapter Text

Andy all but stormed down the hall. She didn’t bother checking Miranda’s room, because she knew she wouldn’t find the older woman there.


As she waited for the elevator, she tapped her foot impatiently and glared at the woman staring back at her in those reflective doors. She felt disgusting, used, and most of all, stupid. Everything that had happened between her and Miranda over the course of this internship-- had it just been to weasel that alibi out of her?


Andy studied her reflection. God, she looked all kinds of batshit crazy. She smoothed down her hair and fumbled in her bag for some concealer. She usually didn’t wear a lot of makeup, but someone was going to comment on the dark circles under her eyes. Andy turned her neck a bit, and saw that there was a small bruise at the nape of her throat. After a moment’s hesitation, she covered that up too. As soon as she’d tossed the compact back into her bag, Nigel strolled past her and pressed the button.


“You know, Six,” Nigel began slowly. “When you’re standing at an elevator, you’re supposed to push the button. Otherwise the elevator won’t come up for a quite a while.”


Andy sighed. “I’m just a little tired.”


“A little? Darling, you look like you haven’t slept in years.” Nigel raised an eyebrow. “Mind telling your old pal what’s going on?”


Andy pictured herself telling Nigel that she’d slept with Miranda, and nearly laughed at the thought. “Not much.”


“I’m sure I’ll get the truth out of you soon,” was Nigel’s wry reply as he waggled a finger at her. “You must be excited for the trial huh? After this you can get back to school and do whatever it is you kids do.”


Andy wasn’t sure about her classmates, but the norm for her now was pining after her professor, and subjecting herself to what was essentially psychological torture. “Yep.”


“Pity that the breakfast buffet isn’t open until eight o’clock,” Nigel said. “They have an omelette to die for, it must be all that grease that makes it so good.”


“Wait, is that where you go off to during our morning work sessions?” Andy couldn’t help but smile a little. “Does Miranda know?”


“Are you crazy? Of course not.”


The elevator dinged, and the metal doors slid open to reveal Miranda, clearly in the middle of chewing someone out over the phone.


“No, I will not go on hold. I don’t understand how--”


The older woman’s eyes went wide.


“I’ll hold, yes.” Miranda sounded totally out of it, and Nigel looked between the two of them in what seemed like surprise, but said nothing.


Andy bit her lip and forced herself to stare at the ground instead of Miranda. She could smell her perfume. There was silence, the tension so palatable that it could be cut with a knife. Every part of Andy’s body felt coiled up, ready to snap at any given moment.


“Oh, Miranda. How are you on this fine Monday morning?” Nigel asked it neutrally enough, but Andy noted the raised eyebrow.


“Fine.” Miranda’s reply was curt, and Andy had a feeling her replies for the rest of the day would be monosyllabic. Communication was vital during a case, but hey, God forbid Miranda actually give a fuck about her interns, or anyone except herself for that matter. Even if this case flopped she’d only be knocked down a peg or two, but showing a little humanity would probably kill the woman.


Andy was beyond relieved when they reached the ground floor, and tried very hard not to look at Miranda as they emptied the elevator.


“What was that all about?” Nigel sounded a little out of breath as they strided across the marble lobby, their echoes of their clicking shoes bounding off the walls.


“I’ll tell you later,” Andy promised. Not everything, of course- but Andy needed to vent her frustrations to someone about what was going on.


She felt like she was losing her goddamn mind.




Shockingly, for some reason that was utterly beyond Andy, Miranda was still insistent upon having Andy come along with her. In her very private, professionally chauffered car driven by some dude sworn to discretion with an NDA. That did not sound good. At all. Andy wished she could have just taken the bus or subway like everyone else was.


She silently prayed to the powers that be that she survive this, preferably with some semblance of sanity. Or maybe the sanity part was asking for a bit too much, considering how the universe has been repeatedly fucking her over, a part of it being Miranda- literally and figuratively.


Andy took a deep breath in hopes that it would ground herself. It did not. She slid into one of the leather seats of Miranda’s car, and shut the door behind her.


Miranda was sitting all prim and proper, hands clasped in her lap. Dark shades were fitted on the bridge of her nose, her expression unreadable. She looked really good today, in her perfectly tailored suit and tie. She also wasn’t looking at Andy.


Miranda drummed her fingers on her lap, jerking her head to look out the window. Andy turned to her own window and did the same. She didn’t know what she could possibly say now.


After drifting through the road for twenty-something minutes in silence, the privacy screen went up, effectively isolating them from the driver. Miranda still wasn’t saying anything.


“I think you have something that belongs to me,” Andy said.


Miranda’s only response was a rattling sigh.


“I’d like to have it back now.”


The older woman turned and glared at her, but Andy met her gaze unflinchingly.


“I haven’t the slightest clue what you’re talking about.” Miranda narrowed her eyes at her, her face cool and composed as ever.


“I know you do, and I’ve got one question for you. What the actual fuck?”


“Don’t be crude, Andrea. It’s unbecoming.”


“You used me.” Andy’s voice almost shook- almost.


“That’s debatable.”


“Well, what would you call it?”


“Making the most of a business opportunity that has conveniently presented itself.” Miranda’s eyes gleamed with malice.


Andy’s mouth opened and closed. That’s all she was then, a quick fuck for Miranda to get what she wanted. She felt like she was going to be sick.


“I get it now.” Andy smiled in spite of how horrible she felt. “That’s all I wanted to know.”


“I’m glad I’ve made myself clear.” Miranda sounded almost exasperated, as if it had taken Andy millennia to figure it out. She rolled her head back against the seat, sighing.


Then silence washed over the car again, leaving them both mulling over their thoughts in solitude.