Chapter 1: Paris
Andy stood watching from the darkened corner of the room while the show came to a close. Her eyes were trained on the woman sitting in the front row with one leg crossed over her knee and hands settled in her lap. Her hair was done up as it always was in the perfect iconic coif. Most people thought her hair had gone entirely white but Andy knew that if you took a closer look there was just a hint of strawberry blonde still mixed in with the rest of it. There was no doubt a scowl forming at the corner of her mouth as her lips became a thin line due to the show being entirely subpar for the designer. The chair on the editor’s immediate left remained empty; normally it would be where Andy would have sat jotting down notes as the woman whispered in her ear with a hand resting on her arm. She was sure that the editor was unaware she had that particular habit. A small shiver ran through her at the thought of Miranda’s mouth being so close to her ear and her hot breath sending a very pleasant sensation to her core.
She sighed closing her eyes trying to rid herself of the images in her head of Miranda licking the shell of her ear and whispering how much she wanted her. It was this particular fantasy that played over and over in her head even during her waking moments. God, she wanted the woman so badly it hurt. It was part of the reason she had to walk away now. Last night had been when she made the decision to leave Paris tonight. It pained her but it was necessary. The woman had come to mean so much more to her than she had even realized until she saw the pain she was in the previous night.
- Last Night -
Andy sighed as she stood in the doorway to Miranda's suite; there was no pretending any longer. She was in deep. Looking at this woman, this strong mercurial woman, in this state made her want to fix everything. She knew at that moment she had done the one thing she had tried to avoid at all costs and had been doing a good enough job up till then (denying it anyway). But now that the walls were down and she saw the woman in such a vulnerable state, she knew without a single shred of doubt that she was in love. She had broken the cardinal rule of not getting personally attached in an undercover assignment.
“Oh, there you are,” Miranda’s voice was harsher than normal from crying. She cleared her throat. “We need to go over the seating, uh…” she waved her glasses around, “chart. For the luncheon.”
“Oh,” Andy was mildly disappointed that the woman wouldn’t confide in her. “Okay, sure thing,” Andy said as she dug through her messenger bag.
“By all means, move at a glacial pace. You know how that thrills me.”
Andy handed her the mock up chart and waited to take notes. “Let’s move Donatella to my table, Stephen isn’t coming.”
“He’s not… so I won’t need to fetch him from the Airport?”
“Well, if you speak to him and he decides to rethink the divorce; then, yes, fetch away. You’re very fetching, so go fetch.” Andy bristled slightly but ignored the barb. Miranda was in pain and more than likely felt as if she had failed her children once again as another father figure walked away from her. It was all Andy could do to not go to her on the settee and try to comfort her; she had wanted so desperately to take her pain away. She knew it would be unwelcome, however, and instead helped with the rearranging of the seating chart for the luncheon the next day, all the while she watched the editor in her peripheral vision as she stared off into space.
Andy stopped writing when Miranda stopped speaking. She still looked like she was miles away. “And then, when we get back to New York, we need to contact, uh, Leslie to see what she can do to minimize the press on all this.” The brunette did not reply but waited for further instruction. “Another divorce, splashed across Page Six. I can just imagine what they’re going to write about me. The Dragon Lady, career-obsessed. Snow Queen drives away another Mr. Priestly. The Devil in Prada wrecks another marriage. Rupert Murdoch should cut me a check for all the papers I sell for him…” the editor paused. “I don’t really care what anybody writes about me. But my girls my girls, I just… It’s so unfair to the girls; another disappointment, another letdown, another father figure gone…” she chuckled disparagingly.
“I’m so sorry, Miranda,” Andy finally said unable to hold in her sympathy even though she knew it would be unwanted. “If you want me to cancel your evening, I can,” she offered.
“Don’t be ridiculous. Why would we do that?”
Andy sighed. “Is there anything else I can do?”
“Your job,” Miranda said with a small amount of venom in her voice. Andy knew that it wasn’t necessarily directed at her, the editor was lashing out because she felt like a failure, but that didn’t make it hurt any less.
“I do not want nor do I need your pity.” The editor’s eyes turned cold. “Get. Out.”
Andy balked. Surely her expression was that of the utmost sincerity and concern? “I do not pity you. Admire, yes. Respect, definitely. But pity you?” she shook her head. “Never. I am merely concerned,” she replied crossing her arms over her chest.
“Why?” Miranda demanded with slight intrigue. She quickly became irritated with Andy’s lack of an answer. “Well, do enlighten me.”
The brunette sighed and ran a hand through her long chestnut locks. “Because, I care,” she finally answered.
Miranda scoffed and threw her glasses on the coffee table. “And why would care about some “ice queen” like me?”
Andy froze. She wasn’t sure she should divulge that information. She wasn’t supposed to break cover, telling Miranda the truth would require she tell her the whole truth and nothing but including her real age, name, and profession. The woman would likely be livid with her and feel betrayed. “Because I do, do you really need me to give you a reason? Is it so hard for you to believe that someone cares for you and just you? Not just simply for your money, power, or influence?”
“Do you take me for a fool, Alexandréa?” the editor glared. “All anyone ever wants from me is what I can offer them to further their career or political standing. You expect me to believe you want nothing from me? Why should you be any different?” Miranda had stood up during her rant, her robe falling slightly open and exposing the soft alabaster skin of her neck, shoulder, and a small portion of her chest. She had wanted to desperately tell the older woman the truth but her brain to mouth connection seemed to stop working at the sudden exposure of skin. The editor caught on rather quickly at Andy’s reaction. “Oh!” Miranda exclaimed sarcastically. “I see,” she shook her head with a sneer forming at the corner of her mouth. “You want me for my body.” It wasn’t a question. “I am not blind,” Andy stood there completely dumbfounded. Of course she had picked up on the way Andy watched her every move and had instantly frozen at the briefest glimpse of skin. “Everyone wants something, Alexandréa.”
The satisfactory sneer that formed on her lips set Andy off. “There is just no winning with you.” Miranda had seen right through her and shredded her where she stood with a tongue lashing based off a mere observation in the last few seconds. She felt her shoulders slump in defeat and she turned to leave the suite. She would not let Miranda speak to her this way when all she did was care about the woman.
“Don’t you dare walk away from me!” the editor yelled pointing an accusing finger her way. Obviously, she was pissed that Andy had made her feel any sort of guilt.
Andy turned back to her, chocolate eyes near charcoal. “Isn’t that what you ultimately want?” She accused the editor. “It’s so much easier for you to push and push than to admit you might have some sort of feelings that make you human or appear to be weak.” Miranda stood in front of her speechless. Andy was sure it was the first time in a long time. She felt tears pooling in her eyes, she should leave while she still had some of her dignity left and before Miranda stripped her bare only to cut her down with the deep lashes of her words. “I love you,” she confessed. “That’s why I came here tonight. Because seeing you in pain is unbearable. Because I wanted to make sure you were alright. I know you don’t believe that anyone could love you for who you are but I’ve seen you at your worst and your best. I’ve seen you with the girls. I’ve seen you when you push everyone around you to be better than they are. You are demanding, rude, and downright cruel sometimes; you infuriate me to no end. But you are also amazing, dedicated, and passionate. I see you, Miranda, not the Dragon Lady or Snow Queen, just you. I want nothing more from you than your heart, which I know you cannot give me,” with her final words uttered she left a speechless Miranda standing behind and shut the door.
Andy shook her head at the memory of their interaction last night willing the disheartening scenes away from her mind. She didn’t want to keep reliving them but had a feeling she would. The brunette was leaving soon but had to have one last look at the beautiful complicated woman who had stolen her heart without her knowing it. She sighed and pushed off the wall behind her as the lights came up and the music ceased. She would need to take her exit before the mercurial woman spotted her, which wouldn’t take her ny time at all if Andy stuck around for much longer. It was easier this way, as much as Andy wanted to explain and confess everything she had kept from Miranda, the editor would likely not forgive her. Yes, she sighed, it was better to walk away without saying goodbye. She wouldn’t have to face the other woman and defend her words from the night before because there was no way in hell the editor would believe a word of it after Andy told her the truth.
She returned to her complimentary room and gathered her belongings. She would be on a flight back to New York within the hour and in her own apartment about eight hours after that. Then, she had the weekend to prepare herself for the takedown scheduled for Monday morning; that is until a knock sounded at her door. Andy sighed tempted to just let whoever was there keep knocking until they left but decided against it. After the fifth round of serious knocking she opened the door and deflated at the sight of Nigel looking more harried than usual. “What the hell were you thinking?” he asked pushing past her and into her room.
“Nigel, please, do come in…” she grumbled.
“You left her in the middle of the busiest week of the year.”
“I had to,” Andy sighed. This wasn’t supposed to happen. Now she’d have to tell at least Nigel and lord knows no one could keep a secret from Miranda. Even Andy had to be careful how she worded every statement and control each reaction to not give herself away.
“Rubbish! You had to…” he shook his head. “What is the matter with you? She was finally letting someone in; she trusted you.”
“Nigel, you don’t understand,” Andy replied sinking into one of the lounge chairs.
“Explain it to me then. Here you are in a hotel suite paid for but not by you or Runway. What is going on? I had to bribe the front desk to even give me your room number. Thankfully it was listed under Andy or I never would have found you.”
Andy rubbed her face while siting slightly forward. “I’m an FBI agent,” she said fully expecting him to think she was crazy. When she glanced at him her suspicion was confirmed. His mouth was hanging open in disbelief. She rose from the chair and walked to her purse where her badge was. She dug around for it and then threw it on his lap along with her personal ID.
The art director looked it over and for a while remained silent. He looked up at her and then back down to the proof that she was in fact not lying. “Is it Miranda? Are you investigating her?”
Andy shook her head. “We eliminated her as a suspect fairly early; my first week as her assistant actually. We’re after Ravitz. He’s been involved in money laundering through the magazine and is under investigation of human trafficking as well,” the brunette explained feeling a weight leave her shoulders. “Do not repeat a word of this, Nigel. It would cost me my career.”
“I’m shocked and yet not, which I know makes little sense. My lips are sealed. But,” he scratched his head. “Correct me if I am wrong, but this is not why you left.”
Andy shook her head. Of course he would figure it out. “No, it’s not,” she ran a hand through her long chestnut hair. “Miranda is.”
“Talk to me, Six,” he said standing. “I know you; you would have never walked out like that. What happened?” Andy recounted last night’s events to him with unshed tears shinning in her eyes. “Oh honey, I’m so sorry,” he hugged her. “You have to know she does feel something and is just scared. You have to fight for her.”
“I do know that, Nigel. The problem is what will she do when she finds out I’ve lied to her this whole time and I’m not who I said I was? What if she just tosses me to the side?”
“I honestly don’t know, but neither do you, unless you try. You cannot start a relationship on a foundation of lies. You’ll have to tell her.”
She nodded knowing he was right. “She’s not the only one who is scared. The way she treated me last night,” Andy shook her head. “I can’t handle that again, not right now.”
“Six, she is always going to be the Dragon Lady with a sharp wit and even quicker tongue. The only thing you need to ask yourself is if Miranda, the woman, is worth it. So, is she?”
Andy contemplated his question long after he left. She was unfortunately due at the airport and needed to leave but promised to stay in touch giving him her personal cell phone number. She sat in the cab waiting for traffic to part when she saw the familiar car she had rode in with the woman all week. Andy observed her as she gracefully emerged from the car, hair still just as perfect. The editor was a sight in her red Prada pumps, tan Donna Karen slacks, white Michael Kors blouse, and black Versace trench coat. Then again, the woman was always a sight, even without make-up and tear stained cheeks. The editor in question stopped and looked around no doubt feeling Andy’s eyes on her. Miranda scanned her surroundings until finally her eyes landed on the brunette’s. Her reactions did little to assuage the quilt gnawing at Andy for leaving this way. She was confused but recognition flashed in her eyes. The editor knew she was in the cab and Andy looked away. She could have at least said goodbye, given her two weeks, tried to explain.
Andy felt a twinge of pain shoot through her chest as the cab pulled away from the curb and into traffic. She turned around in her seat as they passed to take one last look at the woman she would likely never see again.
As she sat on board her flight Andy wondered what had been going through Miranda's head as their eyes met from across the street. Her blue eyes had turned soft as confusion and recognition warred in the stormy orbs. Was she thinking of her feelings? Was she aware of Andy's eyes on her? She tried to push away the nagging questions pulling at her mind to get some sleep because as soon as she returned she would need to go in to the office to brief the team before the take down. It proved futile as her dreams swept in.
- Dream -
Andy's eyes scanned the ballroom looking for the object of her heart's desire but found she did not see her. She was suddenly twirled around gracefully from behind and swept into elegant shapely arms. Her hands landed on bare shoulders. She gasped as the mystery woman's hands burned her skin through the fabric at her waist. A hand move up her bare back and pulled her closer to the body her nose resting just beside the woman's jaw. Andy breathed deeply inhaling the scent of gardenia and musky sandalwood recognizing the perfume immediately. "Miranda," she moaned softly feeling herself being led across the dance floor.
"You look exquisite, Andréa. This Dior eggplant gown suits you," she commented in a dusky tone next to the younger woman's ear. The dress in question was extremely low v-cut in the front and the back as well as slit up to her mid-thigh on the left side showing off a buffet of skin for Miranda's eyes to feast on.
Andy slid one hand around Miranda's neck across her clavicle as her eyes roamed over the woman in front of her. The mask was white gold with sapphire inlays wrapping around her eyes and covering her cheeks. Matching earrings dangled from her earlobes and a necklace graced her slender neck. The dress was a deep sapphire off the shoulder Versace gown that was cinched at the waist and flowed off to the right. She was gorgeous. "I wasn't sure you'd be here," Andy said softly still eyeing the creamy skin of Miranda's upper chest and shoulders.
"I almost decided against coming but I had to see you," the white haired woman confessed bringing Andy as close as possible brushing her lips against the shell of the brunette's ear causing a shiver to run down her spine. "I can't have someone else taking you home now can I?"
"I wouldn't have gone home with anyone but you," Andy sighed feeling her body heat up as Miranda's fingertips skimmed over her back and into her long wavy chestnut locks.
"Glad to hear it," the older woman replied at least two octaves lower than normal. "Shall we?"
"God yes!" Andy groaned softly looking at Miranda with hooded eyes.
The older woman chuckled softly. "Alright, darling."
She pulled away reluctantly and Andy whimpered instantly missing the contact. Miranda's hand gripped hers tightly as she led her through the crowd of people and out to where Roy was waiting with the door to the backseat open. The white haired woman slid in first followed by Andy and the driver shut the door. The editor put the patrician up immediately and looked at the younger woman hungrily.
When Andy met the cool blue eyes staring at her with such ferocity, her breath hitched in her chest. Too aroused to be nervous she moved closer to the older woman until their bodies were mere inches away from one another and she could feel the current of electricity that flowed between them. She turned her body to Miranda slowly and reached out to touch her knee. The older woman lunged forward burying her hands the brunette's hair and pulled Andy's mouth to hers. The kiss was passionate with their lips parting almost immediately. The younger woman's other hand came up to cup Miranda's cheek as they continued to kiss. They only stopped when the need for oxygen became too much. And when Andy looked into Miranda's eyes they were now much darker than they had been at the gala. "Roy, a large bonus if you can get us back to the townhouse in twenty minutes," she stated loud enough for her driver to hear through the partition.
Andy watched as Miranda's eyes traveled along her body and to her chest. Finger tips slid from her hair down her neck and along the edges of the fabric causing Andy to shiver and moan softly as goose flesh erupted across her skin. As the editor continued to touch the younger woman she moaned and the touch grew more insistent causing her breathing to come in short rapid gasps. The hand left her chest and moved to her exposed skin above her knee to draw nonsensical patterns there. Andy nearly growled her next statement. "Roy, I'll make her double that bonus if you get us there in ten minutes!"
Miranda smiled mischievously like the Cheshire Cat as she leaned into Andy and kissed along her jaw. Her lips caressed the skin beneath the brunette's ear and all over her neck sucking occasionally. Andy's fingers tangled in the perfectly shaped coif scraping along the older woman's scalp. "Andréa, Roy has exactly five minutes until I take you in this car," she husked against Andy's ear.
"Oh God!" The younger woman's head fell back giving Miranda even more access to her neck. The editor's fingertips moved under the edges of Andy's dress to caress her upper thigh as her lips moved from her neck to her chest. She used her nose to push the fabric of the purple gown out of the way of her prize and took a nipple into her mouth causing Andy to gasp. "Fuck!"
"I'm about to, darling."
- Present -
Andy jerked awake panting heavily and groaned as she recalled her dream. It had been happening more frequently lately and the after she was always left wanting. Her hair, her eyes, her skin, and even her perfectly imperfect nose infiltrated her every thought for the rest of the flight.
Once home, she took a bath and read one of her favorite classics until the water was cold. Afterwards, the brunette put on her most comfortable pair of sweats and a t-shirt before she settled on the soft leather couch in her living room. Nothing was helping her to relax and rid her mind of the editor. Another few minutes passed and she rose from the couch and walked over to her liquor cabinet. She pulled an antique tumbler and an old bottle of scotch out and poured herself a glass. She downed the first one, her throat burning ever so slightly, but enjoyed the smoky vanilla and sweet apple after tones. Her father had bought her first bottle nearly ten years ago when she graduated from the academy and has been drinking the same brand ever since.
She poured another glass and tried to savor the taste this time as she sat at her piano. Andy ran her dexterous fingers over the ivory keys of her baby grand and began playing as she put the glass down. The notes flowed effortlessly together, it wasn't any particular song, but it was beautiful and haunting. Several hours and three more glasses later found her passed out on her very comfortable couch and still thinking about Miranda.
The next morning Andy woke up with a killer hangover regretting the amount of alcohol she consumed and immediately reached for water and Advil. She took a quick shower and changed into a functional navy pant suit, white blouse, and black chunky ankle boots. At the office she straightened up her neglected desk until the team was in. Deputy Director Hastings was the first one in and greeted Andy. "Good morning Sachs," she said passing her.
"Good morning, ma'am."
"My office, please."
Andy immediately stood and followed shutting the door to her glass office. "Ma'am?"
"Sit down, Sachs. Would you like some water?" Andy's boss offered.
"Yes, thank you."
Hastings handed her a tumbler of water and added a lemon. "I'm glad you're here early. I've been meaning to speak with you about something. It's been brought to my attention that a new posting has opened in L.A. A posting I believe you deserve after this last case. It would be a sizable bump in pay and you'd be in a position similar to mine on a junior level. I'm sure you can imagine the hours would be less hectic."
"I-" Andy began to speak but found no words.
"Take some time to think about it. I threw your name out there. The director is definitely impressed with your résumé and as much as I would rather have you here you would be the youngest agent to ever be promoted to junior deputy director. I can hardly hold you back from that."
Andy nodded and took a long sip of water. "Thank you but I'm happy where I am right now. I belong in the field. I'm not a desk jockey, no offense ma'am."
"Oh don't worry Andy, none taken. The desk life isn't for everyone. If I didn't have a family I might not have considered it myself. Eventually, the field work wears you down and there's really no other place to go. There are other ways to stay in the action of course if you'd rather be closer to the action. You're a great profiler, Andy. I'm sure that I'll find a way to keep you happy here if you wish to stay in New York."
Andy nodded. "I do wish to stay here, New York is and will always be my home."
"Well then," the deputy director nodded towards the double doors. "Your team has arrived, shall we go through the plan for Monday?"
"Yes, ma'am," Andy replied getting up to follow.
The brunette gathered everyone to the white board where the building plans were drawn up. "Mike, you'll cover the back exit in the garage with your team. Chris, you'll cover the front with your team where the security desk is. Natasha and Greg, you'll be with me. We'll have agents covering every elevator and stairwell also. The plan is to take the suspect into custody but we all know things hardly go as planned. The money laundering and fraud will stick but we need to flesh out more details about the human trafficking ring he's involved in. We believe some of the models the magazine uses are being brought in from Russia, the Czech Republic, and the Ukraine. They appear to live fairly decently as I have not witnessed any abuse or poor living conditions and they are currently put up at the Hilton. The girls are well fed and clothed so we can only assume that Mr. Ravitz is using Runway money to provide for these girls. Unfortunately his associates are very good at hiding their trail so we need to get as much information out of him as possible. Any questions?"
"What are we looking for in his office?"
"There will be multiple computers, servers, and files. We're taking everything. Unfortunately, that means we'll be completely obliterating their network. I'm sure the press will have a field day."
"And the Dragon Lady too!" Mike squawked and everyone laughed.
"Don't call her that," Andy said forcefully. "If she were a man in her position no one would dare say anything about how she treats people or how she runs the magazine."
"Woah, chill Andy. I was just kidding."
"No, you were being a misogynistic asshole." Mike slunk back in his seat and stared at the wall properly chastised. "Just be ready on Monday," she said pulling her jacket on and gathering her things. "And don't do anything stupid," she finished before storming out.
Andy really needed to talk to someone else about her feeling for Miranda so she called her best friend Doug. "Andy! It's about damn time girl."
"Sorry Dougie, you know how work is and plus I had that undercover gig, which you are totally going to go gaga over. Drinks at Angelina's?"
"Good Italian food and wine, you know the way straight to my heart."
"There is nothing straight about you, Doug, or me for that matter. I'll see you at 7pm."
Doug was waiting for her when she got there and waved to her from the table. She smiled and weaved through the other patrons. "Andy girl," he stood up and hugged her fiercely. "I'm so glad you suggested this."
"Me too, Dougie, it's been too long," she said sitting down. "How's the firm?"
"Great. We just busted a million last month. The investors and the board are very happy. Oh and I snagged you some nice margins as well. Made you about sixty grand."
"Nice, thanks Dougie. And how's Jack?"
"He moved out while you were in Paris. Which I'm totally jealous about by the way. Was that part of your cover?"
"Sort of," she replied as the waiter came over to their table she mouthed 'later' to her best friend. "We'll have a bottle of the house Cabernet and I'll have the shrimp scampi with a side salad. The house vinaigrette for my dressing. Thank you."
"I'll start with the muscles and I'll have the stuffed prosciutto shells as my meal," Doug ordered.
"Very good, I'll be by to fill your water glasses after I put the order in," the waiter said leaving.
Andy made small talk with her gay best friend until the waiter had filled their glasses and came back with the wine. Once she was sure he would be gone for a while, she started to tell Doug about everything in a very low whisper. "So let me get this straight, you're undercover working at Runway, under the icon herself Miranda Priestly, and you've fallen in love with her?"
Andy sighed. "You see my dilemma then?"
"No, I don't. You need to go for it."
"I can't. It's bad enough I tell you these things. I also told Nigel, who you would adore by the way, because he was asking too many questions. I could lose my job if I'm not careful."
"Andy girl, you've never spoken about anyone else as you just have about Miranda. She's special to you," he said leaning forward.
Andy rubbed her face. "God help me, I love her. I've never felt anything like this before."
Andy then recounted what happened in Paris."I say go for it. Don't be stupid and let her get away. From the way you described her, I think she's just scared. She doesn't want to fail again.
"That's basically what Nigel said too.
"Sounds like a smart man, you'll have to introduce us.
Andy nodded. "I think he would like that."
The rest of dinner went by pleasantly as the discussed other topics and planned to meet up again next week before stating their goodbyes. "Call me for anything, okay? I don't care if it's four in the morning."
Andy laughed lightly as she pulled away from the embrace outside the restaurant. "Be careful what you ask for, Doug."
The brunette lay in her queen sized bed staring at the ceiling. She had no idea how she was going to tell Miranda, she just knew that if they even remotely stood a chance she would have to. Andy was afraid that the woman wouldn't want to hear her out, that she'd dismiss her much like she had done that night in Paris. The pain that radiated through her chest at the mere thought of Miranda's rejection was excruciating. But the thought of not trying and living without the woman was even worse. Andy knew what she had to do, she just hoped things would go her way for a change, because Miranda WAS worth it.
- Dream -
Andy stood in Miranda's office the woman in question staring her down with cold eyes. "What are you doing here?"
"I wanted to explain and apologize for my rash behavior in Paris." Miranda waited impatiently for Andy to continue. "I am sorry but I had to leave because of my job. I'm not who I said I was on my résumé. While it is true that I enjoy writing it is not my chosen profession. I'm an FBI agent."
"That's quite enough! I've heard enough of your lies. You will leave, do not come back."
"Miranda please!" Andy all but begged on her hands and knees. "I love you."
- Present -
Andy woke up sweating and her eyes darted around. She hadn't even realized she had fallen asleep. She looked at the clock and rubbed her eyes before falling back to her bed with a harsh exhale of air from her lungs. It was unlikely she would fall back asleep so she extracted herself from the sheets of her bed and went about getting ready for work.
She was the first one in the office and began catching up on paperwork while she waited for the rest of the team. Hastings greeted her briefly and motioned for her to follow. "You've been around Runway for nearly a year now, how do you feel the board will handle the removal of Mr.Ravitz?"
Andy thought about it for a moment before replying. "It's likely they will give Miranda the position in the interim until they find someone or she proves she cut out to be the CEO of Elias-Clarke. Which means the traffickers might try to get to her as well."
"Those were my concerns as well. It might be time to read her in."
"I would like to be the one to do it, ma'am.
"Permission granted," Hastings said with a dismissive hand.
Andy went back to her desk to retrieve her badge and gun then headed down stairs to tactical to get ready. Natasha was already there. "Hey Andy," she smiled as she put her gun in its holster.
"Tash," Andy smiled back. "How is Robin?"
"And the Reid?"
"Growing like a weed. When are you guna finally settle down?"
"When I find a woman who can handle the job. You're lucky you have Robin she knows the risks and that you'll never work nine to five."
"You're right about that, I am lucky. But we're both always worrying."
"There's no shame in taking a desk job, Tash."
"I know. We've actually discussed it a few times. I'm not sure what I would do though."
"Go crazy for the first few months I'm sure," Andy replied with a smile changing into her black slacks, black tactical shirt, and vest. She strapped her second gun to her thigh and holstered the other in its usual spot.
“You’re probably right. Ready?”
“As I’ll ever be,” Andy sighed.
Andy took a deep breath as she entered the building and glanced around. Nothing had changed of course but suddenly being on the outside she looked at it differently. At some point during the case she had begun to feel a sense of belonging among these people especially after Nigel's make-over but as she walked to the elevator she realized she had never belonged. This was not her world but she had picked up a few tips that she would continue to use.
She waved her badge at security when they tried to stop her and they immediately let her and her team through. At the elevators she flashed her badge again and glared at any clacker who dared to get in the way. “Beta team back entrance to the garage, Delta team here, Alpha team stairwell A, Charlie team stairwell B, and Echo will cover the front door. Nobody is to be allowed in or out of this building until the suspect is in custody. Do I make myself clear?” She learned from the best after all. Once the teams were in place, she, Tash, and Greg walked into the elevator. She pressed the floor for the executive suite. The ride up was quiet and she really hoped that she wouldn't run in to Miranda. What a disaster that would be.
The brunette got off the elevator on the 20th floor of the Elias-Clarke building as soon as the metal doors were open both agents following her ready to reach for their weapons. She went straight passed reception and to Mr. Ravitz's office. "Excuse me!" His secretary exclaimed pushing up out of her seat and dashing to his office door to head Andy off. "You cannot go in there, Mr. Ravitz is in a very important meeting."
"I'm sure he is Louise," she smiled politely. "But as busy as he is, I guess he will just need to make some time for the FBI," she shrugged. “Now, be a good little secretary and call his lawyer like I know you will.” All the color drained from the woman’s face as she froze in her seat.
Andy stormed into the CEO's office with the other agents close behind and cursed under her breath. Of course Miranda would be his important meeting. Karma really was truly a bitch. The editor looked entirely confused and Irving's face was growing increasingly red. “Mr. Ravitz, please stand.”
The gruff paunchy man stood so quickly his chair nearly slammed into the window behind his desk. “Louise! Louise! Get my lawyer!”
“Why is it, you people never make things easy?” Andy groaned. “Get tech up here. I want every computer hard drive and sever on this floor.
"Alexandréa, what are you doing here? What is the meaning of this?" the editor looked between her boss and her ex-assistant. “You can’t take the server; we’re in the middle of the work day. Nothing will have been backed up.”
"I'm sorry Miranda, as this does not concern you I will be asking you to leave. And I suggest you back up everything you can. You won’t be getting the servers back until the FBI is done with them."
"I will do no such thing!" the editor crossed her arms and glared at the brunette who simply sighed.
"Miranda, if you do not do as I say and leave this very instant I will have to have you removed from this office and possibly charged with obstruction of justice. I do not want to do that nor do I want to do the paper work afterwards, so I am asking you to please just go," Andy said with a deadly calm voice causing the older woman to shiver.
Andy noticed the woman back down and with a final glare - demanding some sort of explanation at a later time - left the office. She heard Miranda speaking with Nigel and telling him to back up everything he could. Andy started speaking again and Tash got out a pair of hand cuffs. "Irving Ravitz, you are nearby under arrest for money laundering, bank fraud, and human trafficking. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say or do can and will be used against you in a court of law."
"Unhand me this instance. This is ludicrous."
"You have the right to an attorney, if you cannot afford one, one will be appointed to you. Do you understand these rights as they have been read to you?" the brunette finished as she started pushing him towards the door.
"I will sue you and the horse you rode in on!" By now the entire floor had gathered and was watching the scene.
"Mr. Ravitz, if I were you, I would focus on the three charges against you rather than threatening a federal agent," Andy replied taking him from the other agent and leading him to the elevator.
Miranda was staring at her in disbelief. Clearly, Nigel had kept his promise and didn't say a word to the editor. She would have to thank him later. "Miranda, I think this requires us to call an emergency board meeting," the CFO said and the editor nodded calmly.
The brunette could feel her eyes still staring at her as they waited for the elevator. As soon as it dinged, the imp of a man stomped on her foot, elbowed her in the stomach, and head butted her with the crown of his head. It was highly likely he was trying to escape somehow. Andy felt the snap and heard it at the same time as blood squirted from her nostrils. She cursed loudly and pushed the cretin into the elevator against the cold metal forcibly twisting his arm just the right way. She had probably slammed his face a little too hard but she found she didn’t really give a fuck. Exactly zero fucks given. "Every exit is covered asshole. Looks like we'll be adding assaulting a federal agent as well. Hold him." she sneered reaching for the bridge of her nose as Greg and Tash each took an arm. No doubt her favorite blouse was ruined. He was smiling as the doors closed and she remained on the floor so she didn't do something stupid clenching her other fist.
Miranda was at her side in an instant holding several tissues and forcing her hands out of the way. "Sit." She instructed and carefully maneuvered her backwards into a seat and began barking orders. "Louise, please call security and inform them of the situation. Then, call Nigel and have him get me a blouse from the closet, tell him it's for Alexandréa. Antonio, if you could please run to the kitchen for a towel and some ice and then let Emily know I'll be down to my office and she needs to get a first aid kit. That's all."
Andy gazed at the older woman in front of her thoughtfully. "Thanks," she finally said.
Miranda gave a curt nod and helped Andy to her office once they had the towel and ice. She had Andy sit in the couch by the window so she had as much light as possible. The first aid kit was sitting beside her. "I won't pretend to understand what the hell just happened but I think you at least owe me an explanation for leaving the way you did," she said cleaning the brunette's face now that the bleeding stopped. “You’ll have one nasty bruise but there you are.”
"Because I had to." Andy knew it was a cop-out but she didn’t have the time or patience to get into this right now.
"That's bullshit and you know it," Miranda replied. Andy tilted her head slightly not having heard the woman curse before. "I may be a lady but that doesn't mean I don't occasionally slip when speaking when I’m emotional."
"If I had stayed I would have done or said something I would have regretted later. I couldn't reveal the reason then but as you can see the FBI was after Irv for a multitude of reasons. I also broke a very important rule by falling in love with you. So yes, I left because I had to."
Miranda stopped what she was doing and stared at her. Andy silently cursed herself and crossed her arms over her chest. "And you were what? Undercover?"
"For eight months?” Andy nodded and suddenly felt extremely guilty. “What is your real name?" she could tell Miranda was only holding on by a thread. She either was hurt or felt betrayed, maybe both.
“Miranda, I’m sorry for leaving without saying goodbye but I can’t have this conversation with you right now. I need to get down to the main floor. I still have a lot to do. Thank you for your kindness,” Andy said with an exhausted sigh and pushed up off the couch.
“Alexandréa!” the editor yelled her name shocking Andy. Emily peeked in, her eyes wide, but said nothing. Miranda hardly ever yelled. Her voice was always calm to the point of being scary. The only other time she remembered the editor raising her voice was before she left in Paris.
Andy stopped at the doorway gripping the frame tightly. Her head was pounding and her nose hurt like hell, but that wasn’t why a tear fell down her cheek. “It’s Andréa.”
“What?” Miranda snapped.
“My name is Andréa. I never meant to hurt you and I know I did. If you want answers you may come to my apartment tonight. I’ll let you know when I get in,” she sighed and slowly withdrew her hand from the door frame.
Andy met her team downstairs a short while later. Ravitz was already on his way to the bureau but she had to get her nose checked out. Tash drove them back and escorted her to the onsite physician. "Hey doc," Andy said hopping on the exam table.
"Andy, and what have you done to land in my exam room this time?"
"Oh what? I can't come see your beautiful face?" she asked teasingly. "Suspect head butted me; nose took the brunt of it. It bled like crazy for a few minutes."
"Charmer. Let's have a look then," she stepped towards Andy and took her face in her hands to do a brief visual inspection. She then touched the surrounding areas and checked for and obstructions in Andy's nasal passages. "It doesn't feel or look misaligned so we can rule out a deviated septum. You'll definitely bruise but you should be fine. Plenty of ice and I'll prescribe you a low level pain killer. Make sure you keep your head elevated and limit your activities for the next two weeks," she said ripping off the paper from her pad and handing it to Andy.
"Thanks doc," Andy winked.
The doctor swatted her arm. "Get out of here," she smiled.
Andy grabbed her jacket and made her way up to the interrogation room where Ravitz was waiting. She opened the door and laid her jacket over the chair across from the suspect. "Got yourself in quite a bind don't you, Irving?"
She laughed. "We can do this the easy way or the hard way. We know you're taking bribes from the likes of Alexi Karoff, laundering money for him and keeping a cut for yourself. It's all on your computer. I've got you for bank fraud and assaulting a federal officer too. You're looking at serving at least ten to fifteen years in a federal prison. So tell me, Irv, can I call you Irv, do you want to spend your last years sitting in an eight by eight jail cell?"
"This is insane. You have nothing!"
"Really? What do you think I spent the last eight months at Runway for?"
"I assure you, Irv," she said throwing the file on to the table and crossing her arms. "I am not." His face went white. "So, ready to talk now?"
The slightly paunchy man looked through the evidence and sighed. "Fine, yes I launder money for the Karoff's and receiver a portion in return for my troubles."
"Well thank you for cooperating, Irv," she said standing. "Here's what I need your help with, Karoff is trafficking models into the U.S. and he's using Runway to do it."
Andy laughed. "You expect me to believe you don't know? You're shaking these models up at the Hilton on Runway expenses."
"I swear," he shook his head. "I had no idea."
"See here's the thing, Irv. I believe you didn't know they were using you to traffic in these girls, but I do think you know more than you're letting on, so how about this? You tell me about everything you know about Karoff and we'll only charge you with a minimum sentence of five to ten years with years less for good behavior."
"Fine. Fine, but you have to protect me! You don't know this man like I do, he'll kill me!"
"Very well, let's start with how you became involved with Karoff," she said and began writing down everything the former CEO had said.
Six hours later, they had a much better picture of the situation. Karoff had come to Ravitz shortly after he became CEO ten years ago with a deal. Being both afraid to say no and greedy, Irv agreed to launder the money for a small kickback. Karoff had also acquired several properties and other assets through illegal means which Irv had helped him with. Karoff told Irv that the models were women with no family, money, and were looking for a better life. A red flag if you asked her, but he truly thought he was doing something good for those girls and maybe that was the case for the girls that he hired for Runway but the other girls Karoff trafficked were definitely worse off.
Andy was speaking openly with deputy director Hastings about their next move when the idea came to her. "Miranda is no doubt the board's choice for interim CEO or even a full replacement and I'd bet my life on her taking the position. This could be a good opportunity for us to try and catch Karoff in the act of his dealings."
"You want to use Ms. Priestly?"
"I want to read her in and catch this fucker."
"Fine, read her in but if she doesn't want to help, we find another way. This guy is dangerous and she has children to think about."
"I'm well aware of her children and they're great kids. I don't want to put them in danger; we could offer them a safe house and an escort team."
"Seems you've thought of everything."
Andy shrugged. "I worked for this woman for eight months, I know her. She's going to be pissed we didn't tell her sooner but she'll help us if we have a plan."
"Alright, bring her in." Andy scratched her head and bit her bottom lip. "Spit it out, Sachs."
"She won't come here, she'll be uncomfortable. I've invited her to my apartment tonight, she wanted answers."
"So you were going to give them to her," Hastings finished. "About you?"
"You got too close, didn't you?"
Hastings rolled her eyes. "Just be careful, if this gets out that you started a relationship while undercover..."
"No, never. That's why I left Paris earlier than planned."
"Alright, do what you need to do. Dismissed," Hastings waved her away.
Andy went back to her desk and started filling out her report, by the time she was done it was nearing five. She decided she would pick up some things from the store to make dinner. She texted Miranda.
635 W Broadway, 10th floor, apartment B. 7:30pm. Come hungry.
I'll bring wine. Red or white?
Miranda texted back and Andy smiled softly before replying. Red. She stopped at the local organic supermarket close to her home and picked up two nice looking steaks with good marble in them, asparagus, gold potatoes, fresh crab, and cream. She then browsed their fresh made desserts and settled on tiramisu.
Once home, she set about making the béarnaise sauce and let the oven come to four hundred degrees Fahrenheit. The brunette peeled and sliced the potatoes vertically into wedges. She mixed the potatoes with olive oil, cracked pepper, and sea salt. Once the oven was at the required temperature, she put the potatoes on a cookie sheet and placed them on the middle rack. In the second oven, she set the broiler to four hundred and fifty degrees Fahrenheit. Andy then, seasoned the streak and placed it set it aside until the broiler was ready. After heating a pan with a bit of olive oil and lemon juice, she placed the asparagus and placed the steak in the broiler before she set the timer for five minutes. When the timer went off, she flipped the steak and then the asparagus before setting the timer for another five minutes. In another pan, she warmed the lump crab. Her buzzer rang as she was plating all the food.
Andy went to the intercom and pressed the button to speak. "Who is it?"
The brunette smiled and pressed the button to allow her entry. A short while later there was a sharp knock at her door and she placed the garnish on the food before going over to open the door. Miranda stood in her hallway holding two bottles of wine wearing more casual clothes than the brunette had ever seen her in. She wore a pair of vintage wash straight cut True Religion jeans, a heather grey Dolce cashmere crew neck sweater, and a pair of black Prada suede ankle boots. "You look gorgeous."
"Don't be ridiculous," she waved Andy off and stepped over the threshold a mere couple inches from the brunette making her inhale suddenly. She was in the middle of the doorway after all.
"Me? Ridiculous? What are you, forty-five?"
Andy shut the door and took Miranda's purse and coat to hang them up. "I hope you're hungry," she said showing the editor to the kitchen.
It was a very modern and edgy style that Miranda gave a nod to. "You have very good taste, Andréa."
"Thank you; I've always loved modern styles with a classic twist. I can give you the tour later," she smiled.
"You made Steak Oscar?"
"Yes, with pomme frites," Andy replied taking the bottles from Miranda. She opened one and poured it into a decanter to breathe. "How did the meeting with the board go?" she asked.
"They made me an offer and I accepted."
"So you're the new CEO of Elias-Clarke Publications?"
"Yes," Miranda replied taking a seat when Andy pulled out her chair. "I'll need to oversee both for a while until I select a suitable replacement for myself."
"Any thoughts?" Andy asked taking her seat.
"I'm sure he would be thrilled."
Miranda nodded and cut into her steak. "Medium rare, very nice," she commented before placing the cut into her mouth. She moaned appreciatively. "This is divine; no doubt you learned a few things from that chef of yours,” if Andy didn’t know any better she would have though the older woman was jealous.
"Who, Nate?" she asked and Miranda nodded. "We're just friends, he's proposing to his girlfriend Lily, also a friend, fairly soon. I merely wanted a new hobby and found I liked cooking, he offered to teach me if I helped him find the perfect ring."
"I see," Andy thought that the older woman sounded somewhat relieved. She stood to get the wine and brought it to the table.
"I know you have a lot of questions and I already know a great deal about you so why don't we get started?" the brunette asked.
"Alright. Full name?"
"Andréa Louise Sachs."
"Louise? That's an old name."
"It was my grandmother's name," Andy replied digging into her own food. “She was a single mother who raised four children on her own when my grandfather died very suddenly in his mid-forties. My mother idolized her. She worked three jobs just to put food on the table and clothes on their backs.”
"She sounds like a remarkable woman.” Andy nodded. “How old are you?"
"Older than you'd think," the brunette smiled.
"Your human resources file said you were twenty-five."
"Higher," the brunette replied.
"Andréa," Miranda glared, her turquoise eyes piercing.
"I'm thirty-six," she relented.
"Would you like to see my license?" Andy laughed wiping her mouth with a napkin. She poured each of them a glass of wine.
"No. No. That won't be necessary," Miranda frowned slightly. "Where are you from?"
"Born and raised in Brooklyn."
"I didn't think you had a Midwestern accent."
"No, I grew up in Bay Ridge."
"And your parents?"
"My mother is Dr. Virginia Williams, Chief of Surgery at Mount Sinai and my father is Richard Sachs, Lawyer. My sister Jillian Price is a school teacher, married, with two kids; Kevin is twelve and Michelle is eight. My grandmother lives in Caroll Gardens. My father’s family lives in upstate New York just outside of Albany."
"Where did you go to school?"
"UCLA, double major in law and criminal justice. I was recruited out of college to join the FBI and I accepted."
"I'm beginning to realize I know nothing about you."
"I go by Andy. I can be a bit clumsy in high heels. I babble when I'm nervous. I pull my fingers when I'm anxious and yes there is a difference. I am smart and I work hard. I'm ambitious. Professionally, I am the same person. You know me in that sense. Anything else you may ask."
"I suppose you are correct," Miranda said wiping her mouth and picking up her glass of wine. She took a sip and set it down. "What happened today?"
"I was wondering when you'd ask me that. We arrested Irv. He's been laundering money, taking kickbacks, and involved in human trafficking. He'll be going to jail for a minimum of five to ten years since he gave us everything he knew about Alexi Karoff and their dealings. You know the models that are staying at the Hilton? They're girls brought to the U.S. by Alexi. Irv thought he was doing something nice by hiring them but he was actually enabling Alexi to traffic these young girls into the country and these are just the lucky ones. The others are sold and used as indentured servants or sex slaves."
"Yes, it is. I suspect Karoff has heard of Irv's arrest by now. He's probably planning to approach you as we speak."
"So you want my help?" Miranda sighed shaking her head.
"The FBI wants your help to catch a very bad man plucking young girls from their mothers, moving them to whole new country where they don't speak English, and are sold as property to the highest bidder never to see their families again."
"You care about these girls." Miranda seemed to think it over for a while without saying a word. Andy could tell several emotions washed over her as her expression on her face and in her eyes changed. She seemed to be worried, anxious, and mildly outraged all in the span of less than a minute.
"I care about all victims but yes. The information we could get by you playing a double agent so to speak would be invaluable. Of course, we would make sure you are protected, the girls too. I would never want to put you in danger like that."
"I'll think about it."
"Alright," Andy said not pushing the issue.
"Tell me something you've never told anyone."
"I once had a threesome in college with two other girls while another girl watched," she smiled mischievously over her wine glass. Miranda's eyes grew very wide and Andy took pity on her. "I'm kidding. I'm not that kind of woman."
"Thank God. I don’t like to share."
Andy’s eyes grew wide and Miranda smirked at her. She was teasing. The brunette smiled. "I have had many dreams or fantasies if you will, of a sexual nature about you."
Miranda tilted her head to the side. "Y-you have?" Andy heard her voice drop an octave.
Andy nodded. "You are breathtaking, sensual, and slightly intimidating. It's kind of like having a crush on your really hot high school teacher."
"I'm over a decade your senior, almost fifty!"
"Miranda, I don't care. Our age difference is not an issue for me. My first girlfriend was in her mid-thirties and I was seventeen. I like older women."
"Some people would frown upon that."
"Oh I know, believe me. I had to jump through hoops with my parents for them to understand that I preferred mature women. They were always accepting of the fact I'm a lesbian but it took a long time for them to come around to the type of woman I was attracted to."
"How many women have you been with?" she asked as Andy took their empty plates and put them in the dishwasher.
“Two that were serious and four I had sex with. Quite a few that went absolutely nowhere after the first date. What about you, have you ever been with a woman?”
“Once, a long time ago, before I was married and had the twins.”
The brunette ushered her to the living room with the decanter full again. "Once again, your sense of style and decor amazes me," Miranda said referring to the warm and inviting sitting area with leather couches, bookshelves lined with first editions, and an excellent view of the city. "And very comfortable."
Miranda's eyes scanned the room and landed on the piano. "You play?"
"Yes," Andy nodded.
"Play something for me?" Andy smiled and stood up. She went to her piano bench and sat down. Her fingers flitted over the keys in a smooth practiced motion. Andy chose one of her favorite pieces by Jennifer Thomas called "Across the Starlit Sky". The brunette bent and moved with the ebb and flow of the music with her eyes shut. She completely lost herself in the piece. She went right into another of her favorites, "Waiting for You" by Jim Brickman. When she stopped, she had to take a deep breath to steady herself. Her eyes slowly opened and she turned toward Miranda, her expression was enigmatic but her eyes shone brightly. "You are a wonder," the older woman said softly.
Andy smiled and rose from the bench to return to the couch. She sat so close to the older woman their knees were nearly touching. Miranda looked down at their seating arrangement. "I took lessons when I was younger and kept up with it."
"I'll say. That was remarkable. And you know more pieces by heart?" she asked placing a hand on Andy’s knee. The brunette gasped, her eyes darting to turquoise orbs and searching for something.
"My favorite pieces, yes,” she replied after a minute. “Some of the more complicated or lesser known pieces I still need sheet music." Andy poured them the rest of the wine and simply watched the other woman. Her head was resting on her hand being propped up by her elbow on the back of the couch, her hand in her hair. The glow of the electric fireplace cast a soft glow around Miranda. Andy had to shake her head to clear her thoughts. Thinking about how beautiful the woman in front of her truly was drove her to distraction. "How about that tour?" Andy asked standing.
Miranda nodded and followed Andy around her apartment commenting on the decor and placement of her furniture. "I should go," Miranda finally said.
"It's quite late; I think you should stay here. I can make up the guest room for you."
"No. No. That's alright."
"Miranda," Andy pleaded with her eyes. She watched as Miranda silently warred with herself. "Stay. Please. It's very late. I'm sure Roy is already asleep."
She sighed but nodded her acceptance. Andy showed her to the guest room and gave her something to sleep in. "Thank you," the older woman said.
"You're welcome. I'll be just down the hall of you need me. There are extra toiletries under the sink in the bathroom and towels in the linen closet," she said leaning against the door frame.
Miranda stepped closer to her and cupped her cheek, her thumb brushing her face. Andy sighed and leaned into the touch. "You really love me don't you."
It wasn't a question but Andy answered anyway. "Yes, I do."
"Why is the sky blue?" Andy replied closing her eyes. "It just is." When she opened her eyes, Miranda was studying her face with inquisitive eyes. Andy was devoid of any make-up and she was sure that the older woman was now finding all her evidences of her age. "I'm sorry."
"Lying to you. I hated every second of it and before you agree to help the FBI I would like to take you by our offices in the morning so you can speak with our deputy director. I've texted Roy my address and told him to meet us here."
"I was mad.” Miranda admitted. “More than that, I was confused but everything makes more sense now that I know. And if you have a plan I would like to help. What has been happening simply cannot continue.”
"I was afraid you'd feel like I betrayed you."
"Silly woman, you are only trying to do your job. How can I possibly blame you for that?"
"You understand why I had to leave in Paris?" Miranda nodded and Andy breathed a sigh of relief. "I never wanted to hurt you."
"I know, darling. I'm sorry I was so harsh."
"You were shocked and hurting, maybe even in disbelief," Andy continued not wanting to draw attention to the term of endearment Miranda had used.
"That does not excuse the way I treated you. I was scared and I lashed out at the most convenient target, you."
"I know, it’s okay."
"Miranda, I know you better than you know yourself at times. I know how you react when cornered or concerned about someone you care for. Did you hurt me? Yes. But I got over it because you are worth it."
Instead of saying anything, Miranda leaned forward and moved her hand to the back of Andy's neck. She brushed her lips softly against the brunette's plump kissable ones. The agent sighed and melted into the chaste kiss mewling softly. The older woman's tongue peeked out and traced along Andy's bottom lip before seeking entrance which the brunette allowed while her fingers scratched softly at the base of her scalp. Andy moaned and moved to deepen the kiss but pulled back with a sharp intake of air as her nose throbbed. "Ow. Fuck!" she reached for her nose and tilted her head back as her eyes watered.
"Oh, darling, I'm so sorry. I completely forgot about your injury."
"I'm okay," Andy squeezed Miranda's hand when she frowned. "Really, I'll just get some ice."
"Let me change and I'll help you," she quickly changed and came back leading Andy to the kitchen. The sleepwear Andy had given her wasn't anything special but it certainly looked magnificent on her. She wrapped some ice in a towel and led Andy back to her bedroom where she forced the brunette to lay down with her head in the older woman's lap after she too bad put on something more comfortable to sleep in. Andy held the towel to her nose while Miranda ran her fingers through long chestnut locks. She sighed contented and Andy's eyes fell shut.
"You're going to put me to sleep if you continue," the brunette said quietly.
"I think I'll put myself to sleep as well," Andy could hear the amusement in her voice as well as the sleepiness.
"Come on; help me prop up some pillows. You need to get some rest too. You can stay if you like, the bed is big enough."
Miranda helped Andy arrange her pillows so her head would be propped up slightly to avoid any issues with swelling as she slept. The older woman settled down beside the agent and placed an arm around her middle holding on to the brunette. Andy smiled happy to finally have the burden lifted from her shoulders and Miranda with her. "Good night, Andréa."
"Good night, Miranda."
Soon, Andy was breathing deeply signaling that she was sound asleep. Had she been awake she would have heard Miranda whisper. "I love you, too,” before she drifted off to sleep.
Thanks to everyone who has reviewed and is following this story!
Andy was slowly roused from her very nice dream by a soft warm breath against her ear and a pleasant weight against her right side. She blinked and rubbed her eyes with her free hand. Her eyes drifted downward and landed on soft white hair mused from sleep. She continued her perusal of their current sleeping arrangement. Miranda's head was nestled on her shoulder and her hand was resting on her breast; funny how she was actually dreaming about something similar to this. "Oh God!" the brunette bit her lower lip and moaned softly as Miranda's hand was now massaging her breast. She clenched her thighs and tried to think of a way to extract herself from the very intimate and pleasing embrace even though she didn't want to. It was both torture and ecstasy.
She slowly sat up and started to scoot away but the older woman simply moved her hand to Andy's waist and pulled her firmly to her body. The warmth and scent of gardenias and sandalwood washed over her. The brunette sighed at the contented feeling that wormed itself into her very soul and simply gathered there. Then, Miranda's hand was on her breast again and making her extremely aroused as she tried stifling the moans that were being emitted from her mouth. Andy needed to put some space between them right now or she could not be held responsible for her actions. The brunette made deliberate movements to try and wake the other woman but when Miranda’s hand rubbed and squeezed again she moaned loudly and could no longer control her breathing.
"Andréa?” the agent opened her eyes at the sound of her name. So soft and sultry as it left the older woman’s lips it also sent a jolt straight to her core. God, everything about this woman is sexy. She groaned inwardly. “Is everything alright?" Miranda asked with concern in her stormy orbs.
"F-fine,” Andy stuttered aware of just how turned on she sounded. “Just, if you could remove your hand, please," she groaned slamming her eyes shut when that same hand inadvertently rubbed across her nipple. “Jesus…” the breath left her lungs in a soft gasp.
"What?" Miranda looked down at her hand grasping Andy's breast a bit firmly. "Oh, goodness! I apologize, darling," she pushed herself up so she was now resting above the younger woman. A blush crept its way up Miranda neck and into her cheeks.
Once her hand was removed, Andy slowly opened her eyes again and tried to get her breathing under control. She reached her free hand up to caress Miranda's cheek. "While I do enjoy your hands on me, I don't think we are quite ready for that," Andy spoke gently.
She knew her voice was slightly lower and a bit raspy. Miranda visibly shivered and leaned down to plant her lips softly to the brunette's. Good to know I’m not the only one affected. Their lips moved slowly and tenderly until the older woman pulled away placing a chaste kiss to the side of her mouth. "You are quite right," she sighed.
"I need to shower but I have a latte machine if you'd like me to make your coffee first," Andy smiled still stroking her cheek.
"Mmm, coffee. I would love some." Andy chuckled lightly and moved to get up. "No! Wait." The brunette was pulled into a sitting position on the edge of her bed. "We should talk."
"Okay," she smiled even though the brunette knew that what they needed to discuss was not something that could be rushed.
"You said you love me and I believe you. I know you are a genuine person. But why? Why me?" she asked wrapping her arms around Andy's torso.
"I could give you a million reasons, Miranda, but I doubt any of them would do how I feel justice." Andy sighed softly leaning into her embrace. "Love is beyond reason. Love is. It just is. I can't explain it right now; my brain is all mush because of you. Tonight?" she inquired hopefully.
"Yes. You can come to the townhouse. The girls are at their father's house until Spring Break is over."
"Okay. I really need to take that shower now though," Andy laughed.
"My apologies," Miranda smirked and the brunette had a feeling the older woman knew the effect she had on her.
"You ARE evil," Andy muttered and moved to get up.
She was unceremoniously pulled back down to the mattress and Miranda's lips attached to hers after she said, "I'll show you evil."
The brunette groaned when the older woman finally let her go. She hadn't wanted to move. Andy put the coffee on first so it would be ready and Miranda could enjoy her first cup while she took a cold shower. Much to her dismay, it only worked moderately. She would have to make it through the day perpetually aroused. She really hoped that wouldn’t become a pattern. She dressed in a smart black pinstripe Armani pant suit and matching vest with a lilac Donna Karan wrap shirt. Her make-up was light and her hair in soft curls.
When she emerged, Miranda was sitting at her small kitchen island enjoying her coffee already dressed and ready to go. Two strides in a pair of nude Blahniks into her kitchen caught the older woman's attention and Andy felt a small victory as she watched Miranda's eyes trail over her figure appreciatively. "Are you almost ready?" Andy asked walking to a cabinet and pulling out a travel mug for her coffee.
"Yeah...” a soft wet tongue snaked out to wet her lips. “I mean yes," Miranda's face flushed.
Andy chuckled softly and nodded without mentioning the sudden lapse in etiquette knowing full well Miranda would not appreciate it being pointed out. Instead, she grabbed a granola bar, her phone and texted Roy. "We'll go to see my superior first to discuss how we will handle this and then Runway."
"Alright, I'll inform Nigel to handle anything that comes up while we are busy."
The office was pretty quiet at this hour so thankfully they wouldn’t run in to too many people. Hastings was already in her office and by the looks of it waiting for them. The deputy director stood and straightened her pencil skirt before extending a hand to Miranda. The older woman merely looked at it and sat down. Andy really hoped her boss didn’t take that as disrespect. “Miranda this is Deputy Director Hastings, Deputy Director Hastings this lovely marvel of a business woman is Miranda Priestly.”
“A pleasure,” Hastings said politely. “I assume that agent Sachs has filled you in on some of the details of the case and her assignment?”
“Yes.” Miranda and Andy sat down in the chairs across from the deputy director’s desk.
“Are there any questions you have for me?” Hastings asked as she sat down.
“Why not tell me about this sooner? Why make her lie to me for nearly a year?”
“I suppose we could have read you in a lot sooner but then we might have put the case at risk. We had to make sure your interactions were as genuine as possible and didn’t draw suspicion toward our agent. You see, she was doing a lot of digging while at the Runway offices so late. You were completely eliminated as a suspect within the first week of her assignment. Quite the testament to her work ethic I believe. Irv was also quickly revealed though garnering the evidence took a little more time. We were trying to pin something more substantial on him when Andy here, found an exchange of emails detailing a drop off location and what the cargo included. Low and behold the cargo was women.”
“Yes. We have Irv’s full confession and every detail he knows or thinks would be pertinent to our investigation concerning Alexi Karoff. Now, I am aware that you will be taking the position of CEO and it is our worry that Karoff will approach you. First, I want to make sure you are aware you are in no way obligated to help us with our investigation. Second, should you choose to volunteer your cooperation I am prepared to give you and your family the very best protection my agents can provide. We already have several safe houses picked out for their discrete locations and ease of protection. I am also open to any demands you might have regarding the matter. I will give you some time to think on it,” Hastings said leaning back in her chair.
“No need,” Miranda waved her hand. “My demands are simple. Andréa continues as my assistant. She would be the most qualified person to protect me as she knows nearly everything about me. She has proven to be the most competent assistant I have ever had and I am confident she will protect me just as well. I do, however, want your best team with my girls at all times.”
“I can agree to that and I’m positive agent Sachs will as well.”
“I also do not wish to stay anywhere other than my own home. I do not want a parade of people coming in or out.”
“Ms. Priestly, while I am certain you would be more comfortable to stay in your own home I would advise you to consider the safe houses and how well we can protect you where the enemy does not know you dwell. You are a very public icon.”
“I am aware of my societal standing, no need to state the obvious. But if you want my cooperation those are my terms and I will not budge on them.”
“Fine, you will have one agent in the house at all times.”
“Andréa will be the only agent allowed in my home unless there is an immediate danger she needs backup for.”
Andy noticed the signs of a migraine flaring up and before things got any more heated stepped in. “It’s alright, I would prefer to be the one looking after Miranda and the girls while they are at home. I will continue in my assignment as her assistant as well. I would like to request Tash and Greg as part of the detail. Also, Miranda’s driver, Roy, is to remain as our transportation. I believe if we get someone else into Runway, perhaps via maintenance or front desk security or even reception, it would be beneficial.”
“You’ll have all three and I will make Natasha and Gregory available as well. Anything else?”
“Yes. We don’t needlessly put Miranda or her girls in danger,” Andy leaned over her hands on the desk and looked her boss square in the eye. She knew her dark orbs were the easiest way to read her and she knew right now they were flashing dangerously at her boss.
Hastings regarded her agent carefully. “You have my word. If that’s all, I believe you have several magazines to run now,” Hastings finished and dismissed them.
A couple hours later Andy was sitting at her desk rearranging Miranda's schedule to accommodate a staff meeting with each editor of the magazines under Elias-Clark when Emily walked in on her crutches. "Bloody hell, you're still here?" she shrieked.
The brunette smiled widely at the Brit, "Yes I am, so sorry to disappoint you. There's a meeting in Miranda's office in," she checked her watch. "Fifteen minutes, so you're..."
"Already late. Bollocks!" she muttered and hobbled into the editor's office where most of the staff was already waiting with Andy close behind making sure she didn't fall on her face in her hurry.
"Right, now that everyone's here," Miranda glared at her two assistants. "As most of you are aware Mr. Ravitz has been removed as CEO and the board has offered me the position. I'd be a fool not to take it; so naturally, you're looking at the new CEO of Elias-Clark publications. Now, I'm sure you are all wondering where that leaves Runway. We are in the middle of our next issue so for the time being I will still be your editor. As for the next issue, we will be making two replacements in house. Nigel will take over as editor in chief and Emily will move into his position as art director. The next few weeks will be rough and long but I expect the same quality of work from all of you. That's all," she waved dismissing everyone. "Nigel, Emily, Alexandréa a word."
Once her door was shut, she took her glasses off and looked at the three of them. "Emily, find a replacement for yourself and shadow Nigel for the next few weeks. Alexandréa will help you train your replacement. Nigel, you will edit the book and I will edit your edits. That's all."
Emily left the room to get started going through resumes from human resources. Andy was almost to the door when Nigel spoke. "Did you tell her?" he asked knowing that there would be no way the younger woman would still be "employed" if she hadn't.
"Shut the door."
Andy knew that Miranda meant for her to stay, leaving hadn't even crossed her mind. She sighed and slowly shut the door taking her time to compose herself. There was no doubt in her mind that she would face a very moody Miranda for the rest of the day and probably when they left as well. Her hand lingered on the door until it clicked and she turned around. The older woman's eyes were cold and narrowed. "You told him." It wasn't a question and suddenly she felt like she had that night not so long ago in Miranda's suite in Paris.
"I really gave her no choice," Nigel tried to defend her.
"No, no. She can defend herself," Miranda glared at him briefly causing him to wither where he stood.
This was it. Andy took a deep breath. If she backed down now she stood no chance of keeping Miranda in her life. This woman needed an equal, someone who could stand their ground and not tremble from fear. Nigel's wise words echoed in her head. Was Miranda, the woman, worth the scathing and sometimes degradingly cruel tongue lashings she might receive from the Dragon Lady? Her answer was a resounding yes, without a doubt she would withstand the fire which was why she dared to walk straight up to the older woman.
"Please, let me explain," Andy began speaking. "It was right after I left you in Paris. The FBI put me up in a hotel room until I could catch my flight and he managed to track me down. I was quite surprised since they didn't use either my real name not my cover. He knew that leaving like that was not something I would normally do and he was right. I'm not a runner but I realized I couldn't stay either seeing you every day after what I had confessed to you."
"Especially after the things I had said to you," Miranda seemed to deflate.
Andy stepped forward and took the older woman's head in her hands forcing her to look up. "No, what you said you said because you felt hurt and cornered and you lashed out at the most convenient target. It very well could have been Nigel you lashed out at had he come to see you. I am in love with you, Miranda. I have been for some time and I knew that if I had stayed I would need to tell you everything. I lied to you for so long," Andy sighed looking down at her feet briefly. She felt awful.
"You were afraid."
The agent nodded in confirmation and swallowed the lump in her throat. How she could ever think Miranda would feel so negatively toward her? This woman standing before her was nothing but understanding. "I was thinking about my job and the case. But if I'm really honest, I was afraid you'd feel betrayed and disappointed and I couldn't handle that."
"Oh, Andréa, darling I'm only disappointed you thought I could not accept it. I, of all people, understand the importance of your job."
"I know that and I realize now that I'm more disappointed in myself; how I reacted and didn't trust you.”
Miranda nodded and took a step back. The younger woman felt a brief moment of rejection but pushed it away. She knew that the older woman needed to compose herself and she shouldn't take it personally. They did have a lot of work ahead of them. "That's all."
Andy took the dismissal in stride knowing they'd talk more later and went to her desk leaving Nigel in Miranda's office. She watched out of the corner of her eyes as he cocked his head to the side. She didn't hear what was said but she did see the older woman wave him off and sit down at her desk to start working.
They were in the car on their way to Miranda's townhouse enjoying the comfortable silence after the hectic day. As they got closer, Andy realized there was a large gathering of paparazzi out front. "Roy, after we drop Miranda, circle around the block, I'll sneak in the back," she suggested with a soft sigh. It wasn't like she wanted to avoid being seen with the gorgeous older woman beside her but she quickly realized that's what it seemed like.
She saw the disappointment when Miranda's eyes when she looked at her. "Yes, perhaps you are right. We don't want to give them the wrong idea," her tone had turned more acerbic as she spoke.
The brunette realized Miranda probably thought she was changing her mind and backtracked. "I don't have any problem being seen with you. I know your life is very public even though you are a private person. It cannot be helped and I know that it's part of the package. My concern is for your safety. If people start digging too much they might figure out that I'm FBI and it could put you and the girls in danger and I don't want that."
Miranda's gaze softened and she nodded. Roy stopped the car to let her out and she put her famous sunglasses on to avoid the bright lights. "Any comment on Irv Ravits? Was he really skimming the books? Did you know about the charges? Did the board plan on making you CEO and simply saw this as an opportunity to oust Ravitz?" The questions all reached Andy's ears before the door was shut. Roy pulled away from the curb and circled around the block letting Andy out on the street behind the townhouse. "Thanks, Roy. We'll see you at seven sharp. Good night."
"Good night Andy."
The agent skillfully maneuvered around the back to the gate where Miranda was waiting to let her in. She smiled and locked the gate behind her. "Thanks," she said when Miranda took one of her bags. She brought several items from her apartment and the closet to make her stay more comfortable. "Greg and Tash will be here around nine. They'll be across the street in one of the loft apartments. A ground team will also be doing sweeps every few hours by car and foot."
"Lovely," Miranda replied wryly.
"It's for your protection, Mira," Andy said following her into the house. She only realized her faux pas when the older woman looked at her oddly. "Sorry," she sighed and shut the back door that led to the kitchen.
Miranda shook her head. "Acceptable,” she smiled softly and Andy beamed back at her relieved the nickname didn't seem to bother her. "But only when not at work."
"Of course," Andy nodded.
"Are you hungry, darling? You can put your things in my room, third door on right on the second floor passed the study."
"I'll order us something while you get changed. You're welcome to shower or take a bath if you would like. There are towels in the linen closet in the bathroom."
"Thank you, that sounds wonderful but if I do that I'll be in there for far too long and we need to talk. I'll just change and be down in a few minutes."
Miranda nodded and Andy went upstairs following the former blonde's directions to her bedroom. It was a mix of golden champagne, deep burgundy and brandy colors, warm yet vibrant and somehow completely Miranda. The brunette moved to the closet to hang her wardrobe. She locked her gun case and placed it on the right side of the bed assuming that the left was the former blonde's since her glasses and an open book were sitting on the bedside table. She changed into an old pair of sweats and an FBI t-shirt before returning downstairs. Miranda was sitting at the kitchen island with two glasses of wine.
"So, what did you order?"
"Italian. I noticed you skipped lunch today."
Andy nodded. "Not intentional I just wanted to make sure your day ran smoothly."
"I know. You're quite good at that."
"Well, that is my job," Andy smiled looking up through her lashes.
"Is that why you do it?" Miranda smirked back.
"No. That stopped being a reason a month after my being with you," Andy confessed meeting the older woman's gaze. "My days became less and less about doing the job you hired me to do and more about making you happy in any way possible even if it was just by making sure your day ran smoothly or your coffee was waiting for you after a particularly long meeting. Every once in a while the corners of your mouth would lift in a small smile unnoticeable to anyone else who didn't know what to look for."
"And you did?"
"I've spent the better part of twenty four hours a day for months studying you for different reasons, so yes; I know what to look for."
"Is that Andréa my assistant talking or Andréa the FBI agent talking?"
Andy smiled softly. "It's just Andréa. Just me. I happen to be quite observant. It certainly helps in my line of work. I can profile a suspect quicker than most of our analysts."
"So why stay in the field?"
The brunette shrugged. "Paper work has never been my strong suit. The desk life just isn't for me, at least not right now."
Miranda nodded and the doorbell rang interrupting their conversation. The former blonde went to get their food and pay for their order. Andy could smell it from here and her mouth was already watering. "Mushroom risotto, classic carbonara, and spinach and ricotta tortellini in a roasted tomato sauce."
"Sounds delicious. Did you get dessert?"
"Of course, darling. You aren't the only observant one. I believe the chocolate covered cannoli and tiramisu are your favorite."
"A woman after my own heart."
"Correction, a woman after your heart," Miranda smiled at her and started plating their dinner.
"You know, I find myself unable to keep my eyes off you and quite surprised at how you react to me."
"I know," the older woman said simply. "I can almost feel it when you look at me."
"Oh yes, darling. It makes me feel hot and tingly all over. You've gotten under my skin, Andréa."
"The feeling is mutual, I assure you."
"Good. Here. Eat. As for how I react to you, it’s hard to explain. You bring about a sense of peace and calm I’ve never known before.”
“I know what you mean, I’ve never felt the way I feel about you toward anyone else I’ve ever met or been with.”
“Good to know. What's it like being an agent?"
"It's a lot like being in the military. It’s ten rigorous weeks of classroom learning, on hands learning, combat training, arms training, and psychoanalyzing. We had to pick our top three field office choices the first week we were there and didn't find out where we were going until graduation. Most agents up and move every three to five years but I prefer New York. It's home. I'm good at undercover work and profiling suspects."
"And you like undercover work?"
"I love it."
"It's quite dangerous. Do you think you'd ever give it up?"
"It can be dangerous, yes. And I think if I had good reasons, yes I would give it up."
"And what would those reasons be?"
"I don't think that's something we are ready to discuss just yet."
"Fair enough," Miranda replied and they ate in a comfortable silence. "Andréa," the former blonde spoke softly gaining Andy's attention. "Where do you see this headed?"
The brunette carefully set her utensils down and wiped her mouth. "Honestly? I haven't given it much thought. We've just established that we both having feelings for each other and I'm not asking you for any sort of commitment right now but I guess it would be good to talk about the things we want from life," Andy said looking into stormy orbs and reaching for the older woman's hand.
"I love you."
Miranda held up her hand. "Please, darling. I know you did not ask me to reciprocate and I am not doing it out of some sense of obligation. I love you and it scares the hell out of me. I do not want another failed relationship so I need to know that you are in this with me."
"Mira, I want nothing more than to be with you and I promise you that I'll stay as long as you'll have me even when you are the Dragon Lady."
"Why ever would you want the Dragon Lady to be around?"
"Well first of all, she's down right sexy and secondly, she's part of you. I love you; therefore, I love the Dragon Lady too. And to answer your question from a little bit ago, my family would be my reason. I want a family and my current life isn't conducive to that dream. That's what I'd give up my career for."
It had been three days since they talked about what they wanted out of their relationship and Andy had confessed that she’d give up undercover work for Miranda and the girls if things worked out. So far nothing untoward had happened at Runway and the FBI was at a standstill until Karoff contacted Miranda so they went on with business as usual at work and when they were at home they got to know each other. Tash and Greg took turns watching the girls and the townhouse. Caroline and Cassidy were due home on Sunday and Andy thought it was about time they discussed how they were going to approach the situation.
Miranda was in her study looking over the book while Andy typed up an expense report for her. The fire was going and they’d had a couple of drinks from the bottle of scotch that the brunette brought with her. She looked up every so often to find the newly appointed CEO running the tip of her glasses over her lip and it was driving Andy to distraction. “You’re staring,” the older woman stated looking at her through her lashes.
“Well,” Andy coughed at being caught. “I can’t seem to help myself. You’re utterly gorgeous and when you do that,” she pointed. “It drives me crazy.”
“Does it now?” Miranda smiled. She stood from her desk and rounded the piece of furniture. She sauntered over to where the brunette was sitting predatorily as if she were about to devour her prey, which just happened to be the FBI agent. “You’re biting your lip; an action which I find is irresistible,” she explained as she unbuttoned her blouse. “Do you know what else I find irresistible?” Andy shook her head no. “Your bedroom eyes,” Miranda kicked her heels off and hiked her skirt up slowly revealing the tops of her thigh highs before taking Andy’s laptop and setting it on the side table. The brunette’s eyes followed the older woman’s every move completely enthralled. She groaned and licked her lips. The next thing Andy knew she had her hands and lap full of one Miranda Priestly.
“What are you doing?” Andy asked breathing heavily. Miranda’s hands were in her long chestnut locks tangling her fingers around strands and she leaned so close to Andy that her breasts were inches from her face.
“Oh, darling, I simply cannot stand to wait any longer. I have to have you. And I need you to take me. Make me yours Andréa.”
The younger woman found she no longer had the power to resist and lunged forward claiming Miranda’s lips. The blouse was quickly removed and tossed aside as Andy’s hands skimmed along her ribs, under her breasts, over her chest and shoulders, finally settling behind her neck pulling the older woman closer. Her mouth dominated Miranda’s in a way she had never done with any other lover. The only way to describe it was that it was pure unadulterated need and it took over. The kiss lasted until Miranda pulled away panting heavily. The brunette decided to busy her mouth with another task as she licked, nipped, and kissed along the older woman’s jaw to her ear, down her neck, across her clavicle and down her chest until she settled between her breasts. A heartbeat later her bra was gone.
Miranda moaned and held Andy to her chest not wanting her to stop the lovely ministrations but the need to feel her love overpowered her own pleasure. She pulled up gently and forced the brunette’s head away from her. Their eyes locked and the agent brushed the stray lock from Miranda’s face. The older woman took the hand in her own holding it around Andy’s wrist and brought her palm to her mouth placing a kiss there. She then kissed her fingertips before a warm wet tongue traced her index finger. Andy watched with rapt attention and gasped when Miranda pulled the digit into her mouth. Her tongue swirled around it and then she sucked gently. The brunette was sure her normally amber colored eyes were closer to a dark coffee by now showing just how turned on she was. Andy trailed the wet digit over Miranda’s lips and down the front of her chest and then followed the path with her mouth leaving lingering kisses.
Miranda was lost in the sensations and the brunette took advantage by slowly forcing her to stand. Her hands gripped a slim waist. Thumbs trailed along soft sensitive skin just above her skirt until they reached the zipper where she tugged and parted the material before letting it fall to the floor. Her hands cupped Miranda’s backside and she spread her fingers before raking her nails over her round globes and thighs. The former editor moaned. Andy reached behind her left knee and brought it towards her. Miranda’s foot rested beside her as she reached up and slipped her fingers under the garter and slowly pulled it down the older woman’s leg. Andy silently directed her to put her foot down allowing her fingertips to caress from her kneed to her inner thigh. Then, she did the same with the other just as slowly. She looked up at her love through her lashes as she hooked her fingers in the waistband of Miranda’s La Perlas and slid them down her legs never looking away.
Miranda shivered and realized she was the only one completely naked and shied away from the agent. Andy immediately gripped her hips. “No. Don’t.” She knew what Miranda was thinking and she wanted to reassure her. She let her gaze slowly travel the lithe but mature body in front of her. “Every inch of you is perfection, including every scar,” she said softly tracing the skin that was marred from her delivering the twins via C-section. “You are the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.”
The older woman’s skin broke out in a blush starting from her chest that moved to her cheeks. “You are far too overdressed, darling,” she said ignoring her flushed skin and pulled Andy up to stand. The CEO slowly untucked the blouse from her pants and untied it letting it hand open. Her hands smoothed over strong shoulders and pushed the garment down her arms. It fell to the floor with a soft thud. Miranda stepped into her and she could feel her breasts pressing against her deliciously. Andy moaned and the older woman’s lips began a trail along her shoulder to her pulse point where she sucked lightly marking her. Fingertips grazed a taut stomach causing a ripple in the surface of her muscles. Miranda easily unbuttoned her slacks and slid the zipper down before yanking both her panties and slacks down her thighs letting the fabric land where it may. Hands gripped her hips firmly turning her and backing her towards the fire. Andy’s bra was gone before she realized it and when their bodies came together she moaned.
Miranda carefully pulled her down to the floor where she was surprised to find heaps of blankets and pillows to make them more comfortable. “You planned this?” Andy stared up at her as her back hit the comfortable set up. Miranda’s arms rested on either side of her head and their legs were intertwined.
“I wanted to be prepared. We have been having eye sex for months. And with our apparent chemistry it was only a matter of time.”
“How very blunt of you,” Andy laughed lightly and held her head with both hands bringing her face closer so she could taste her lips yet again. Miranda let little bit of her weight fall against the younger woman her thigh pressing just so against Andy’s core. She felt a wetness coat her thigh when she brought her knee up and felt the sensation in her throbbing clit. The brunette couldn’t tell who had actually moaned or if it was both of them but she no longer cared as soon as the woman above her moved against her. She tore her mouth away, chest heaving, staring into stormy eyes as they slid against each other. Their breaths mingled as they gazed into one another’s eyes and Andy cupped her neck with one hand and her hip with the other. Their hips moved to a silent quickening rhythm until the agent began to shake with an impending orgasm. She shuddered against Miranda and with strong arms brought her hips down more firmly so the friction as she rubbed her thigh increased. With a few more hard swift strokes the CEO came and collapsed onto her love.
Several minutes passed with them lying together not moving and thighs sticky as they both came down from their orgasm. Andy had her arms wrapped securely around the former blonde and Miranda’s nose was nuzzled against her neck. She stroked her spine with light brushes of her fingertips and kissed her temple. “I’ve never in my life…” she shook her head with a light chuckle.
“Me either,” Andy smiled when Miranda lifted her eyes to gaze at her.
“It seems you are the exception to everything,” Miranda admitted. “I have never had the desire to take and be taken until I am exhausted but I simply cannot get enough of you,” she kissed Andy deeply. Their tongues slid along one another, lips mashed together. The CEO’s words alone had gotten the brunette hot again but as soon as those fragile looking hands cupped her breasts she was a goner. Miranda held herself up with one arm as she explored Andy’s torso. She cupped and massaged her breasts. Her fingertips brushed and pinched her nipples. The agent whimpered when Miranda pulled her mouth away and began kissing her way to her chest.
A warm moist mouth enveloped her other nipple and she cried out threading her hands through white locks holding the older woman in place. “Uh…” her chest was heaving, her heart beating erratically, her pulse racing. “Mira…” Miranda switched to the other breast to lavish the same attention on it as her hand slowly moved between them. Fingertips brushed Andy’s navel, the top of her mound, through the small thin patch of curls, and through her folds. The brunette’s hips rose off the ground on their own accord seeking more friction. Miranda stroked her softly and slowly taking her time to find all the spots that drove Andy wild. After several minutes, Andy whimpered again. “Please, Mira,” she begged.
Two fingers glided easily into her entrance and the brunette moaned loudly meeting each thrust with her hips. Miranda alternated between sucking, licking, and nipping gently at her nipples. “Tell me what you want, darling,” Miranda implored her love.
“More…” Andy was breathing heavily, her body beginning to shake again. “Faster… oh please, Mira, harder…” Miranda complied adding a third finger and put all her weight behind the thrusts. She curled her fingers and pressed against the rough patch firmly sending Andy over the edge. Her back arched and her legs shook. The sensation imploded and flooded her system causing her entire body to spasm as her orgasm hit.
It took a few minutes for the brunette to recover but once she did she flipped them so that Miranda was now on her back. She took her time exploring every inch of the body under her with her hands, fingers, lips, and tongue until Miranda was practically begging beneath her. Andy slid a hand between them and easily took the CEO with three fingers bringing her to a quick orgasm. She moved against her slowly letting Miranda ride out the waves before building her back up. The brunette slid down her body placing open mouthed kisses on her way to the apex of Miranda’s thighs. She had to taste her. Miranda looked down at the younger woman between her legs and moaned loudly. “Andréa…”
Andy licked her up and down exploring the older woman with her tongue. She gave long strokes, soft strokes, short strokes, and firm strokes. Her tongue moved around Miranda’s clit in a quick circle causing her to cry out. Andy did it again. The woman beneath her writhed and she held her hips down with one hand while the other moved to her breasts alternating attention on them. Her lips enveloped the pulsing bud and she sucked. The CEO’s hips bucked against her mouth. Andy let go and pushed her tongue inside moving it in all sorts of ways to drive Miranda to the brink then moved back to her clit where she flicked her tongue across the bud mercilessly. Miranda bucked so hard she had to use both hands to hold her hips. The older woman’s hand had tangled in her hair and pressed her closer. She cried out as her orgasm tore through her body and after a while finally came back down with Andy grinning at her smugly. She pulled the brunette to her and kissed her firmly. She had her distracted enough that the brunette gasped when the older woman’s leg made contact with her hot wet center. “Oh God!” Andy groaned and leaned her head against Miranda’s shoulder grinding against her thigh.
Miranda used her strength to surprise the agent and flipped her onto her back once more. Her mouth started its descent. She kissed, nipped, and licked her way along her love’s body until she reached her thighs where open mouthed kisses were placed. Andy moved her hips to try to gain any sort of friction where she needed the older woman’s mouth but Miranda wouldn’t be deterred from exploring every inch of the brunette before coming back to where she needed her. She paused and Andy whimpered. “I want you to look at me and what I’m doing to you.”
Andy gave a curt nod and propped herself up on her elbows so she could do as Miranda instructed. Seeing she was being obeyed Miranda settled between her legs and brought her to the edge only to switch what she was doing to something else bring her close again and changing what she was doing. Seeing the older woman between her legs had sent a jolt straight to her core. “Oh God! Please, Mira, I need you, please.” Miranda finally took pity on her love and thrust two fingers into her as her tongue swirled around her sensitive clit pumping in and out until she came hard against her face and hand. Miranda continued to lick Andy as she rode the long orgasm. She had to eventually push her away explaining that she was just too sensitive to keep going but Miranda grinned and surged forward wrapping her lips around her clit and sucking and pressing her tongue against it until Andy came again screaming her name.
Satisfied with herself she slowly kissed her way up to the brunette’s mouth. Andy could taste both of them on her tongue and moaned even though she was utterly spent. Miranda’s kisses became more soothing and loving as she pulled a soft blanket over them. She laid her head on the agent’s shoulder and Andy wrapped her arms around the former blonde. “You are exquisite,” she sighed against the brunette’s neck.
”Hmm,” Andy smiled down at the woman in her arms threading her fingers through white hair. “I love you.”
“And I you, now sleep.” The agent sighed content to be exactly where she was and let her eyes close. She couldn’t remember ever getting a more restful sleep.
I hope it was worth the wait!
It was now Sunday morning and the two women were in bed cuddling. Andy's arm was around Miranda with her hand resting on her back while the older woman's head rested on her shoulder. Fingers drew a light pattern across the brunette's abdomen. "I can hear the cogs turning in your head," Miranda murmured and turned her head placing a soft kiss against her skin. Her lips were warm and Andy sighed.
She kissed the top of Miranda's messy hair before telling her what was on her mind. "What do you want to tell the girls when they get back tomorrow?"
"Well, I definitely don't think we should tell them about you being undercover. I fear for their safety should they let anything slip."
"I agree, but I was talking about us, me to be more precise."
"They noticed a while ago to be honest. They've let it slip a couple times that it would be alright if I was into girls," Miranda laughed. "We'll tell them the truth. We just started dating but we really care about each other and want to see where this goes."
"And you think they'll be fine with it?"
"Why, darling, are you scared of a couple of ten year olds?" Miranda teased.
"Not per say. I'm more worried what they think about me," Andy said after a moment’s hesitation.
"Don't be silly, they adore you. You're the only assistant I've ever had that could tell them apart. Not to mention you got them the Harry Potter manuscript. How did you get that anyway?"
"A friend," Andy smiled. "She owed me a favor and knew the artist who illustrated the cover."
"Should I be worried about this friend?" the older woman teased.
"Of course not, I only have eyes for you Mira," she replied kissing her softly. "I love you."
"I love you too," Miranda smiled.
Andy hugged her closer and ran her fingers across her spine. "So what do we tell them about why I'm here? They are going to question that at least."
"You are right, they will. Perhaps it would be best for you to sleep in the guest room under the guise your apartment is being renovated?"
"Okay," Andy said somewhat sadly.
"What is wrong, darling?" the older woman asked when she felt Andy tense.
"I just really like sleeping next to you," the brunette admitted. "We've already wasted time not admitting how we felt about each other sooner."
Miranda nodded. "You are right, again. I do not wish to waste any more time either."
"So what do we tell them?"
The former blonde turned slightly so her body was more on top of Andy and rested her chin on top of her hand where her palm rested on the brunette's chest. "That we have known we love each other for some time and we do not want to waste it now that we are together. They may not understand fully but they will know it is serious," she said with clear bright eyes.
"Okay," Andy smiled and ran her fingers through her white hair. "I can live with that," she replied kissing Miranda's lips softly.
Their gentle kiss turned more passionate the longer their mouths were attached. Andy wasn't sure which one of them had started to make mewling noises but she didn't particularly care when Miranda's lithe body was covering her own. Her leg had slipped between Andy's thighs and she stopped thinking altogether, after all, they only had until the afternoon to be intimate in this way.
Miranda kissed her jaw and ran her tongue up to her ear where she pulled her line between her teeth. She breathed softly and made Andy shiver. Her fingers toyed with the brunette's nipples before skimming down her stomach and through wet curls. There was no hesitation as Miranda thrust two fingers into her love. "Oh, fuck!" Andy gasped in surprise at the welcomed intrusion. Her hips bucking automatically with the rhythm the older woman set. Lips, tongue, and teeth brushed across heated skin alternating between Andy's breasts and neck area while her fingers worked. It didn't take long once she added her thumb and swiped it across Andy's clit. A white hot sensation started in the pit of her stomach and burst through her entire body until her toes curled. "Mira!" she cried out.
The woman above her smiled utterly proud of her handy work and started to make her way further south. Andy's breathing hadn't even reached a normal cadence before she felt Miranda's tongue inside her. She threaded her fingers through her hair and pulled her closer feeling her second orgasm building quickly. The editor flicked, rolled, and thrust her tongue inside until Andy was begging. "Please, Mira..." She moved her tongue to her clit using a soft pressure at first but the brunette was having none of that. She pushed her hips forward and held Miranda in place instructing her to go faster and use more pressure. She came hard against the older woman's mouth unable to even form a sentence as her body arched and went rigid.
When Andy opened her eyes, Miranda was resting on top of her staring down at her. Gone were the bright turquoise colored orbs to be replaced by dark and stormy ones. "You are remarkably gorgeous when you come undone," she said causing the younger woman to blush and kissed Andy's chin.
"It's something I could definitely get used to," Andy smiled back and hooked her leg over Miranda's hip. She used her body to flip the editor into her back. She kissed her deeply only pulling away when the need for oxygen became too much. "What do you say we get a shower?" she asked with her long messy chestnut locks hanging in her face.
Miranda licked her lips. "Mmm, you with me all wet, water dripping down your skin, oh darling, that answer will forever be a hell yes," Andy smirked at the older woman's answer.
Andy slid from the overly heated woman beneath her and sauntered into her luxurious bathroom throwing a sultry look over her shoulder as Miranda's eyes hungrily watched her form. The editor was quickly on her heels following her into the other room and into the shower. As soon as the spray was warm Andy stepped under it and pulled Miranda to her. The brunette's lips slanted over the editor's as the spray hit them. Water was in their eyes and mouth but neither seemed to care. She pulled back staring at the older woman in front of her ready and wanting. She tried to push Andy against the tile but the younger woman grabbed her wrist and pulled them above her head walking her back toward the other end of the shower. "You've had your fun, now it's my turn, Mira," she smiled wickedly.
Lips attached to the editor's neck sucking and gently marking her soft skin while one of Andy's hands wrapped around her wrists. She pinned her with her hips pressing her thigh between her legs. "Andréa," Miranda moaned loudly.
The brunette pulled back slightly. "Don't move," she whispered in her ear before biting her gently. She slowly kissed her way down Miranda's body leaving goosebumps in her wake. She scraped her nails over the back of her right leg and hooked her hand around the back of her knee lifting it over her shoulder as she knelt in front of her. Andy's eyes took in the editor's glistening folds and inhaled her scent. "You smell divine," she licked her lips and leaned forward her tongue jutting out to taste Miranda. The brunette moaned loudly as the salty mixture flowed over her tongue while she licked the entire length of her lover. She started slow and deliberate with her ministrations.
Miranda's hands hand found her hit and she stopped looking up at the woman. "Andréa, why did you stop?" she whined.
"I told you not to move; hands above your head if you want to come. Now Mira," Andy commanded gently but firmly.
The former blonde complied and put her hands above her head. Andy went back to licking her languidly until she was gasping. The brunette drifted in and out of her opening gathering more of the salty mixture on her tongue and bringing it up to her clit. She swirled the hot wet muscle around Miranda's bundle of nerves before sucking the nub into her mouth and pulling gently. The editor cried her name out and pressed herself into her lover's mouth needing more. Andy pointed her tongue and started a quick rhythm flicking the muscle over the sensitive appendage until Miranda came against her mouth shouting her name. The brunette held on to her while the sensations slowed and tenderly kissed her way back to her lips. Fingertips slipped through wet folds and into the editor. “No more, I can’t…”
“You can and you will.” Andy kissed her deeply her tongue probing Miranda’s mouth. Her fingers were slow and steady. She curled them up brushing against that rough patch inside her lover and the former blonde held onto her tightly. The older woman whimpered when she felt the loss of Andy’s fingers but groaned as she realized another was added. She hissed at the slight stretching and the brunette stilled briefly but Miranda welcomed the small amount of pain thrusting her hips and groaning. She quivered and arched into Andy before crying out her release with her head back against the shower wall.
The younger woman carefully stilled her fingers and withdrew them from her lover bringing them to her mouth and sucking each digit clean. “Dear God! You are quite bossy when it comes to sex aren't you?" Miranda raised her patented eyebrow.
Andy shrugged. "Sometimes and sometimes not, I guess you'll just have to find out won't you?" she smirked reaching for the shampoo. The brunette squirted a small amount in her palm and slid her hands through Miranda short white hair. She massaged her scalp and worked the shampoo into a rich lather then rinsed it out. Miranda did the same but insisted she turn around so she could wash the ends better as Andy started washing her body. She was soft and gentle that way Miranda didn’t get aroused again, she was sure the editor was sore. The brunette turned and backed her under the water so she could rinse her skin. The older woman let her hands run over smooth muscles of Andy’s shoulders, back, stomach, breasts, arms, backside, and finally each leg slowly spreading the soapy lather. The agent sighed at the gentleness and placed a light kiss to the corners of Miranda’s mouth while she rinsed off. The editor turned the water off and they both got out. She handed Andy a towel and after drying off they went back into the bedroom.
The agent fell back onto the bed with a soft thud and settled onto her side watching Miranda go about getting dressed. “Are you planning on staying naked all day?”
“Hmmm, you know I thought about it,” she got onto her knees and crawled towards the woman at the edge of the bed. “We could just stay in bed until the girls come home,” she whispered against her lover’s ear.
“As much as I would love to, we need to restock the fridge for the week. That means a trip to the organic market so get dressed, darling. I promise I’ll make it up to you tonight,” she grinned.
“Well, how could I possibly say no to that?” Andy smirked and rushed about throwing on some lingerie she packed with her followed by a pair of 7 for all Mankind boot cut jeans, a grey Donna Karan casual button down, and a pair of nude heels. She placed her backup firearm in the waist band of her jeans in the back. Then, she threw her hair up into a messy bun and proceeded to let Miranda know she was ready, “Let’s go lady! Hurry up!” she teased. Of course Miranda was impeccable wearing a pair of Armani jean slacks and one of her popular wrap blouses that Andy loved.
“Cheeky,” Miranda smiled poking her in the ribs and moving her fingers against her.
“I’m not ticklish,” she laughed. “You look beautiful,” she kissed her nose making the older woman blush.
“Alright, let’s go,” the editor smiled taking her hand.
The sun was warm and bright as they walked the short distance to the market holding hands. Andy was smiling widely unable to stop herself. She was very much enjoying ever second spent with Miranda even if they were grocery shopping. When they returned with their purchases, the door was ajar and Andy motioned for her to stop and be quiet. She took her cell phone from her pocket and called in backup. “Wait here. I mean it, Mira,” the agent said firmly gripping her biceps tighter than she meant to and looked into her eyes leaving no room for questions or arguments. Miranda nodded once.
The agent pulled her gun pushed the door slightly ajar leaning around to get a look inside the foyer to make sure it was clear before slipping inside. The place was a mess, broken glass was everywhere, and furniture was overturned. Andy checked the alarm first noting that it was still activated which meant who ever had broken in was a seasoned professional and managed to circumvent the alarm system. She went room by room to make sure the intruder or intruders were gone. Every piece of china Miranda owned was shattered on the kitchen floor and Andy sighed knowing that several pieces were her grandmother’s and irreplaceable. She ascended the stairs taking note of the priceless art pieces slashed with a knife. Whoever did this wanted to hurt the older woman in a way that violated her privacy and caused her to lose the possessions that held a sentimental value. Once she reached the landing, she noticed every bedroom door seemed to be pulled off its hinges and marked with an ‘x’. Her office was in tatters, books ripped to shreds, paper everywhere, knickknacks broken, picture frames smashed, and her computer demolished. There was no way she was letting Miranda stay here after this. Andy decided right then they would go back to her apartment and then possible a safe house. She would protect Miranda and the girls at any cost including Runway
When she returned downstairs, the FBI had arrived and was already taking pictures. “I want every room swept and dusted. Find something!” she barked and went outside to find Miranda. She was speaking with a few NYPD officers and looked quite despondent. Bright turquoise eyes found hers, fear flashed through them. She clenched her fists; how dare someone do this to Miranda. She’d find them and make them pay for taking away her sanctuary.
“I have a catalog of everything I own. I will send it to the NYPD and FBI to compare the wreckage and see what is missing,” she heard Miranda say.
Andy knew she would be very upset at the disarray inside but she had to prepare her. “Miranda,” she started. “I’m so sorry but nearly everything is destroyed,” she sighed. The moment she saw a tear glistening in the corner of her eye she barked at the officers. “Go do something productive,” she yelled and glared at the three of them standing around Miranda. Once they were gone, Andy took Miranda’s hand and squeezed gently letting her know she was here. The editor’s mask slipped into place and Andy knew it was for the best. She could tell the older woman wanted so badly to take refuge in her arms but the press was starting to arrive and if the agent knew anything she knew that this would make the front page. “I’ll call Nigel to pack you a bag for the next week and have Roy pick it up. We can wash the girls’ clothes at my place.” When she saw Miranda open her mouth to object she said, “You’re staying with me for the week, no discussion.”
And now you guys are all caught up with LJ and FF.net. I hope you're enjoying the ride. Your reviews and kudos are always appreciated!
Andy walked with Miranda through the house. Agents and police officers kept the press far enough away that she could at least comfort her love. The former blonde was in her kitchen picking up the pieces of her grandmother's china with tears in her eyes. The brunette knelt beside her and took the pieces from her shaking hands so she didn't cut herself. The older woman sobbed and Andy felt her heart constrict. She took Miranda's hands and pulled the woman into her lap falling back on her behind on a clear part of the floor. She sat with her back against the cabinet cradling the woman in her arms kissing her temple knowing there was nothing she could do to help.
It was getting extremely late and Roy texted her to let her know he would be pulling up soon. "Is there anything you want to bring with you? Roy will be here in five minutes." Miranda looked up at her and shook her head unable to speak. Andy nodded and hugged her tightly. She carefully picked herself and the older woman up with the aid of the counter. The brunette untangled herself from the former blonde but Miranda wouldn't let go. "You have to go outside, Mira, Roy has the girls. They're going to be worried because of all the commotion outside. I'm going to grab a few things, okay?" The older woman still didn't move. Andy tilted her chin up so she could see her eyes. "I'll be out shortly, I promise."
Miranda nodded and started walking toward the front door. Andy sighed and walked around the townhouse gathering some things to make the girls and Miranda feel at home in her place. She managed to find a picture of Miranda with the girls on the beach, a couple blankets and stuffed animals from the girls' room, and a photo album that was somehow left untouched. She picked up her belongings that were salvageable and made her way outside.
Roy was waiting to open the door for her warding off the press. She knew this would be a total shit storm later but she was more concerned with the three people she was currently responsible for. If Hastings thought she was too close to be overly involved in the case, so be it. She needed to put Miranda and the twins first. The girls were sitting in the third row of the SUV and Miranda was in the second row staring out the window with her sunglasses on. The girls looked frightened so she addressed them first. "Hey girls. How was your trip to your dad’s?" she asked. They both shrugged.
Cassidy finally answered. "It was okay, he has a new girlfriend so she was trying to impress us."
"And how did that go?"
"We hate her," Caroline added. "She's awful."
"And she wears too much make-up."
"Okay, so we don't like the new girlfriend. Got it."
"Andy, what happened?"
Since Miranda had chosen to stay quiet, Andy explained briefly in terms they would understand. "Well, I suppose I should start at the beginning. Your mom and I realized we had feelings for each other when we were in Paris. Your mom and Steven are no longer together and he moved out. They're getting a divorce. When we got back, we decided we had wasted enough time trying to hide how we felt and we've been seeing each other since we got back."
"So you guys are like together?" Caroline asked.
"And you love each other?" Cassidy added.
"Yes," Andy confirmed. "Is that okay?"
"Duh! You're awesome! And mom seemed to be happier with you around the last few months even though Steven was stupid."
"You guys didn't like him?"
"No, he yelled a lot," Caroline said.
"What's wrong with mom?" Cassidy wondered.
Andy sighed. They would find out from the papers or school tomorrow so there was no point in not telling them. "Someone broke into the house; you'll be staying with me for at least this week, maybe longer. That's why I grabbed you a couple blankets and some stuffed animals from your rooms."
"Did you get stuff for mom too?"
"Of course I did, what kind of girlfriend would I be if I didn't? I found a photo album and the picture of the three of you at the beach." Miranda glanced at her with surprise written across her face. She knew the editor didn't expect anything to be left undamaged but the brunette had managed to find at least a couple things that wouldn't be marred by tonight's events. "Please don't take this the wrong way girls, but no one can know your mom and I are together right now. The divorce isn't finalized and I still work for her. You understand that for those reasons you can’t tell anyone?"
"What about page six? Won't they figure it out?" Caroline asked.
"Eventually, but for all anyone else knows I've been working late with your mom at the house because she's so busy. She just got promoted after all."
"You did?" Cassidy directed her question to Miranda and the woman nodded. "Wow!"
"So cool! So mom is like in charge of every magazine now?"
"Yes and very busy making sure they all run smoothly. In fact, we normally work pretty late during the week."
"But we can like have dinner together right? Because when you started doing her schedule we got to eat dinner with her a lot." Caroline asked hopefully.
"Yes, we will eat dinner together. Roy will pick us up from the office and then come to get you from school. Your mom and I will work from home the rest of the night. I promise you'll get to spend some time with her too."
"Do you have stuff for us to do? We only took a few things to dad's."
"I have a vintage Super Nintendo you guys can hook up and play, some board games, and adult coloring books."
"Adult coloring books?" Cassidy looked confused.
"Yes, they're for stress relief. They're mostly patterns of some sort although you can get really creative with the Harry Potter or Star Wars. I have a couple copies of those sitting around. You can each have one. I also have markers or color pencils."
"Cool. Thanks, Andy." Caroline and Cassidy both smiled.
Andy finally turned around feeling a little lighter now that she knew the girls were on the same page and okay with her and Miranda. The older woman was still looking out the window but had reached for the brunette's hand and gave it a squeeze. The agent squeezed back knowing as soon as they got to her apartment and away from the girls the woman would require her attention. She could give her the space she needed until then.
Luckily, her apartment was still clean since she had been staying with Miranda all week. She got the girls set up in her spare room and set up the gaming system for them. "This is so cool, Andy!" Cassidy said playing one of the games.
"I'm glad you like it, but homework first, we all know you didn't manage to get it finished at your dad’s," the brunette smiled and motioned for both of them to follow her to the kitchen. "Now, what do you want for dinner?"
"Can we have mac 'n' cheese?" Caroline asked.
"Let me check to see if I have the ingredients we need," she said opening her fridge. "Milk check, butter check, cheese check, bacon check," she moved to her pantry. "Macaroni check, bread crumbs check. Looks like you get my famous bacon mac."
"Awesome!" Cassidy replied and the girls stared their homework while Andy worked on dinner. She kept glancing at Miranda wondering what she could do to help the woman relax but continued to come up short. The brunette poured two glasses of her favorite bourbon while the butter was melting and took one to the older woman.
She took it with a soft thank you fingertips brushing against Andy's skin. The younger woman nodded knowing that she was thanking her for more than just the glass of amber liquid. The agent leaned over and kissed her temple before going be back to the kitchen to finish dinner. The girls completed their homework just as dinner was being pulled out of the oven. It smelled delicious. The twins devoured their portions but Miranda barely ate and Andy was starting to get worried.
After dinner, the girls took showers and then got ready for bed before raiding Andy's literature collection. Cassidy had settled on a Jane Austen novel while Caroline had picked up a Charles Dickens. A short while later, she managed to convince Miranda to take a bath. Andy had just gotten into bed after checking on the girls and was reading when Miranda emerged in her nightgown. "The girls are asleep," she said putting her book down. The older woman nodded. "Please, talk to me? What can I do?" she said sliding out of bed. "What do you need?" Andy asked rubbing her hands up and down the editor's arms.
Miranda's eyes were vivid and flashing dangerously. The younger woman knew that glance meant the Dragon was lurking in the background. "Get undressed," the editor ordered. Andy took a step back just staring at the woman in front of her. "By all means, move at a glacial pace, you know how that thrills me. Clothes. Off. Now."
"No. You asked me what I need. I need this. I need to be in control."
Miranda hadn't seemed to have heard her since she was still talking. "You wanted the Dragon; I hope you know what you asked for."
Andy put a finger on her lips to stop her. "I said, okay, Mira. Whatever you need."
The editor's tongue ran along the digit causing the brunette to moan and close her eyes. Fingers gripped her hips and pulled her close. Miranda's soft lips kissed the tip of her finger then moved to her mouth. Andy felt the older woman's hands move up her ribs to her breasts where her index finger and thumb pinched her nipples hard. The brunette gasped feeling the sensations travel straight to her core.
"I said, get undressed, Andréa," Miranda reiterated and pushed her back so there was more space between them. Andy slowly unbuttoned her shirt watching the older woman's eyes turn stormy. "Why am I waiting?" The brunette sighed and quickly removed her clothing until she was completely naked. "Get on the bed, lie on your back, and spread your legs." The agent did as she was told and watched Miranda waiting for more instructions. The editor licked her lips and her eyes flashed both hungry and prideful. "Touch yourself."
Andy complied starting with her breasts. She massaged and squeezed them with a groan escaping her lips. Fingertips brushed, flicked, and pinched her nipples roughly. The brunette's breath came in short gasps. Her eyes never left Miranda's gaze. One hand moved down her chest across her stomach and settled between her thighs. She was so wet. Her eyes slipped shut as she slowly teased her labia and opening bringing the moisture to her clit. Her other hand continued to play with her nipples as she fingered herself. "Stop," Miranda said firmly. Andy whimpered, she was so close. "Keep your eyes closed."
"Yes, Miranda," the brunette's response came out in short gasps mirroring her breathing. She heard a box open and close. Naturally, curiosity nagged at her but she kept her eyes shut. The bed dipped and the brunette could feel her body hum in anticipation. She felt Miranda slip her fingers through her wetness and lips attached to her skin. She was so caught up in the sensations she didn't notice how the editor had angled her hips or that she was more on top of her.
The intrusion came swiftly and penetrated her harshly. It was shocking and painful but it also felt so very good. Miranda's thrusts with the strap on were deep and deliberate. Her breasts were mashed against Andy's and their bodies quickly became slick with sweat. All sorts of sounds were leaving the brunette's mouth of an intelligible sort as Miranda thoroughly claimed her. Hips slapped together and a wet sucking noise was made every time the editor pulled out. Andy was desperately close to coming when the editor stopped and withdrew the dildo. "On your knees."
Andy rolled over and pushed herself up on all fours leaning slightly forward on her arms. Miranda entered her without preamble. She draped herself over the brunette and pulled her up with her. She had to brace herself on the wall behind the bed as her love thrust into her. Miranda bit into Andy's shoulder. Hands caressed her breasts and she thrust deeper, harder, and faster but even after building her back up it wasn't enough Andy needed more. "Do you want to come now, Andréa?" the brunette nodded pressing her backside into the woman meeting her thrusts. "Answer me."
"Yes. Yes. Please, Mira."
The woman had quickly reduced her to begging and she was desperate. A hand slid from her breasts between her legs. Miranda pinched and flicked at her clit while still thrusting her hips. "Now. Come for me, Andréa."
With a final swipe of her thumb Andy felt her insides turn to molten fire as her orgasm wracked her entire body. "Fuck, Mira," Miranda pulled her hair so her head rested against her shoulder and kissed her deeply. She pulled away breathing heaving and Andy sagged against her.
Andy felt Miranda carefully withdraw the dildo and heard her slip the harness off leaving it in a heap by Andy's bed. The brunette was spent and sincerely wanted to return the favor but couldn't move now that she was on her back. The editor settled beside Andy and pulled the sheet over them. "Mira?"
"Don't worry about me, darling, I got just what I needed. Thank you, for everything you did today."
"I'd do anything for you and the girls, Mira," she replied lifting her love’s chin so she could gaze into her beautiful stormy eyes.
Miranda nodded and snuggled deeper into Andy's side. The brunette felt tears against her skin and few minutes later the agent pulled the older woman as close as possible with her arms around her holding her as she cried. After a while, Miranda sighed and looked up at her love. "I have never felt as safe with anyone as I do with you. You trusted me to take what I needed and not judge me. There are not many people who would do that for me."
"I trust you because I love you, Mira. I mean what I say when I tell you I'm here, I'll protect you at any cost, and I'll do or give you whatever you want or need. I only ever want you to feel safe and loved."
"With you, it's impossible not to."
I apologize for taking longer than normal with this chapter. I had to work late this week and am away from home. As always thank you for your continued support in reading, reviewing, favoriting, and following. Enjoy! Reviews are like sour patch kids and popcorn at the movies!
The agent knew what was going to happen as soon as she took the call from Hastings asking her to divert to the office for a brief meeting this morning. She was taking her off the case, not removing her as Miranda's personal body guard, but she'd have no hand in bring in Karoff if Hastings had anything to say about it. She was waiting in the deputy director's office preparing to fight her boss on this when she walked in.
"I know why you called me in," Andy stated trying to keep her voice level.
"I'm sure you do," Hastings replied. "From here on out, you are Miranda's personal detail and you'll have nothing more to do with this case."
"You know nobody else has the same knowledge with this case that I do."
"You're right, which is why I'm tasking you with getting Russell up to speed."
"This is a mistake," Andy said haughtily.
"Your objections are noted," Hastings said dismissing her.
Andy was still livid as she approached her desk at Runway. Several clackers had jumped out of her way as she maneuvered through the lobby to the elevator simply because of the scowl on her face. She pressed the button for the executive floor where Miranda's new office was located knowing just seeing Miranda would make her feel better. The elevator dinged and the doors opened. She greeted Heather, the Chief Financial Officer's new assistant and a fellow agent. The brunette checked through the small window beside the door noting that the former editor was meeting with Nigel and Miranda so she plopped down into her chair rather ungracefully.
Heather typed a short message to her saying she hadn't seen anything suspicious and Andy thanked her. She straightened up and focused on her computer screen and tried to manage Miranda's schedule. It was another couple hours before Nigel and Emily both left her office and Andy barely acknowledged either of them. Her head had started pounding mercilessly and she was trying to massage her temples with her fingertips when the auras appeared in her vision.
"Andréa?" The brunette looked up but winced at the harsh lighting and saw a flash of concern in the newly appointed CEO's eyes. "We need to go over our publications and I could use another pair of eyes." Andy stood and followed Miranda into her office. Once the door was shut, she felt the soft touch of Miranda's hand at her lower back guiding her to the couch on the far side of the room. "You have a migraine." It wasn't a question. The older woman left her and poured a packet into a mug of hot water. "Here, drink this."
"Miranda, this is your medication."
She rolled her eyes. "Obviously. It is migraine medication is it not?" Andy nodded. "And you have a migraine, so take the medication."
"Yes, Miranda," the brunette complied.
"Good, now, I really do need your eyes once your head is no longer pounding. I'll need you to take half of this stack and help me decide if the magazine should go in a different direction."
Fifteen minutes later, Andy was able to open her eyes and focus on the glossy pages to help Miranda. The first one she picked up was Auto Universe. There was a picture of a new Corvette with two nearly naked women leaning against the paint. Anyone with any car interest knew the oil in your skin would ruin the paint if you didn't wash it right away. Andy flipped through several pages and was not impressed. As a car enthusiast herself, she would never read this. Miranda looked up hearing the magazine hit the floor. "Crap, utter crap," Andy sighed.
"You are a car enthusiast?"
Andy nodded. "A true enthusiast would never read this junk. A teenager looking for something to jerk-off to might though."
"That's rather crude," Miranda commented.
Andy shrugged. "If the shoe fits."
"And how would you like to see this magazine?"
"The cover shouldn't be about women. It should be about the car. Take a '67 Shelby GT500 for example. It's a classic sexy car that needs nothing else to showcase its majesty other than a perfectly done polish and wax and a photographer that can make its beauty really shine."
"You seem to have an idea for this."
Andy pulled up a picture on google of the car she was describing. It was gunmetal gray with black accents, the sun setting behind it and the surrounding scenery blurry creating an unreal image. The light and shadows played perfectly together. "This car doesn't need anything to enhance its beauty. It'd look just as sexy in a garage. Now, if you want to include something about women to draw in more readers my opinion is you find yourself a lovely grease monkey who will give you a unique perspective working in an extremely male dominated field."
Miranda stared at her with her mouth hanging open. "You are a very talented and clever woman," she stated with awe.
"I'm observant and happen to be interested in reading this magazine if it goes back to its roots. Twenty years ago, you would have seen a muscle car on the front with all sorts of specifications and builds about how to get more horsepower out of the stock engine."
"And you believe more people would read it then?"
"Based on the numbers I'm seeing on your screen here," she said over the older woman's shoulder pointing. “The calculations show circulation is down and so is customer satisfaction.” The position was much more intimate than it seemed with Andy's lips so close to her ear. "So, yes, that's exactly what I'm telling you." She could feel how tense the older woman was.
"And who do you suggest we get to bring about this idea of yours?"
"A grease monkey, of course," she shrugged. "Although you could always call a consultant that would give us ideas based on what they do on a day to day basis. Custom shops are starting to pop-up everywhere now. Everyone wants a custom paint job or some sort of modification. Not to mention there's always rebuilds and restorations."
"You may be on to something with that. I can get a slightly less experienced and inexpensive editor in here and simply pay a small fee for a consultation on what to use in the next issue. It's genius."
"Glad you think so," Andy smiled. "Now, I'll give you your first issue. You put the car I showed you on the cover. I'd get Patrick to do the shoot at a remote racetrack in upstate New York. I'll even find a driver for you. Your spread concerning the cover will be about how to restore this baby from the ground up. I'll even get you an exclusive."
"And just how are you planning on doing all of this?"
"You let me worry about that. I have a friend who owns the car in question, restored it herself, and would be more than happy to showcase its beauty." Andy smiled stepping away from Miranda and returned to her half of the magazine stack.
The CEO was still staring at her as she glanced through Smart Money. "I sincerely hope you never cease to surprise me."
"I'll try my best," Andy smiled.
"Would you like to discuss what happened this morning that caused you to give yourself a migraine?"
"I got pulled from the case."
"Don't worry I'd be remaining as your personal detail even if Hastings hadn't accepted it. She knows I wouldn't have left you even if it cost me my career. Which it still might if the director in D.C. catches wind of what I plan to do in a few days if they still don't have any damn idea who broke in."
"Please, don't jeopardize your career for me."
The brunette stood and walked over to the CEO's chair. She knelt in front of her. "My career has mattered less and less to me since Paris. I wouldn't give it up without a fight but if it ever becomes a choice between it and you," she said her voice thick with emotion as she cupped Miranda's cheek. "Please know that I'd always choose you." Miranda had tears in her eyes as she leaned forward and placed a chaste kiss to the agent's plump lips.
That night Andy called Russell to see if any progress was made and sent her everything she had on the case. Of course, they still had nothing and Andy wished she could look at the evidence. Knowing Russell was as by the book as you could get, Andy decided to not even try to convince the woman to give her details. She had a stick so far up her ass you couldn't even see it to pull it out anymore.
Miranda spent the night going over several more magazines under Elias-Clarke's repertoire while the girls and Andy were having a rather intense competitive game of scrabble. "No way! That's not a word!" Cassidy screeched.
"Za, is most definitely a word. It's slang for Pizza." Andy countered.
"No way! Moooommm!"
"I am not! Look it up!" Andy searched for it on google.
"Oh man!" Caroline sighed looking down at the screen. "Za is slang for pizza. How did you know that?"
"I was a college student once upon a time and I love me some Za!"
"Really, Andréa, you have a far better vocabulary than that. And Bobbseys, remember that Andréa is much older than you," she smirked when Andy took offense. "And her vocabulary is much more robust than your own."
"Does that mean you vocabulary is better than mine?"
"Of course, it is, darling," Miranda smiled.
"Well, how about a wager?" Andy challenged.
"Girls, cover your ears," Miranda smirked and waited for the twins to follow her directions. "If you win, I'll let you do anything you like to me for the entire night."
"And if you win?" Andy wondered.
"I get to tease you mercilessly all day and then take you on my nice new mahogany desk," Miranda's lips curled mischievously. Andy felt her stomach do summersaults and found herself unable to speak properly so she simply nodded her acceptance. "And no throwing the game," Miranda warned her eyes narrowing.
Andy shook her head. "I wouldn’t dare," she replied.
Miranda motioned for the girls to uncover their ears. "Finish your game, then off to bed."
"Aww, mom!" Caroline whined.
"No buts Caroline, it's already past your normal bedtime."
Andy was off her game for the rest of the match with the twins and ended up only barely winning. The twins got ready for bed and Andy picked up their board sliding the pieces back into the gray bag. She poured two glasses of bourbon and waited while Miranda tucked the girls in. "They say good night."
The brunette smiled and yelled. "Goodnight, girls!"
"Yes, really. Now, draw a tile to see who goes first," the agent was right down to business and Miranda raised a challenging brow. "Closest to 'a' goes first."
Miranda drew her tile and looked at it with a grin. "Your turn, darling."
"You're not going to show me?" the older woman shook her head. "Fine," Andy chose her tile and looked at it covering up her frown. "Show me yours I'll show you mine," she smiled. The former blonde revealed her tile and Andy groaned.
"Well, I believe that tells me all I need to know," the older woman grinned and Andy showed her the tile. She started laughing and soon the brunette joined her. Miranda picked her tiles and took a moment to think about what word to play. "I think I'll pass, you go first."
Andy narrowed her eyes suspiciously but pulled out her tiles anyway. She played waive for fifteen points.
Miranda smiled. It's wasn't a bad move, going first usually didn't score you any big points but she had some good letters to work with. When her tiles were placed, she looked up at the brunette with a smile. "You've got to be kidding me! How did you manage to get the 'q' on your first draw? That's... Damn it, forty-nine points." Miranda shrugged. Andy's eyes narrowed suspiciously. "I'm watching you Priestly."
A couple hours later, saw them so close in score it would come down to their last handful of tiles. Andy's last word was zonk for sixty six points putting her thirty-two points ahead. "A very nice move, Andréa," she said taking the last few tiles. "Flop for thirty-five points I believe," the former blonde smiled. Andy sighed and pushed the board away. "Now, now, Andréa. No one likes a sore loser," Miranda smirked as she slipped her shoe off. Her foot started at Andy's ankle and slowly slid up her leg.
"Is this part of my teasing?" the agent wondered breathlessly.
"Maybe," the former blonde shrugged. She caressed Andy's thigh with her stocking clad foot.
"This wasn't part of the wager," the brunette moaned staring at her love with hooded eyes.
"I'm aware, darling,"
Chairs scrapped against the floor tile and both women ignored it. She really hoped the girls were asleep. In her haste to round the table, Miranda knocked the board game and pieces on the floor. The brunette was positive that she'd end up losing several letters but could have cared less. Andy was utterly grateful they didn't have stairs to climb as she stumbled backwards and her back hit the wall. Miranda attacked her neck with her lips, teeth, and tongue as her hands slid along bare thighs under Andy's boxers.
The former editor sucked the skin at the conjunction of the agent's neck and shoulder. Deft fingertips found the bare skin under her tank top and skimmed across a flat stomach causing the muscles to twitch under her touch. Andy moaned and titled her head to give Miranda better access as her lips made a path to her ear and her tongue ran along the outer shell. "Fuck," the brunette hissed gripping the former blonde's hips tightly. "Are we really doing this here?" she asked breathing heavily.
"Yes, right here, against your kitchen wall," Miranda smiled against her skin. She pushed her tank top up her torso revealing smooth alabaster skin and her mouth moved down her chest where her lips wrapped around a nipple. Andy gasped tangling a hand in the CEO's hair holding her there. Thumbs hooked into her boxers and underwear yanking both down at the same time. Miranda moved to the other nipple and slid a hand to Andy's knee pulling her leg up to hook around her back.
Slender insistent fingers entered the brunette easily and set a rhythm. Miranda put all her weight into thrusting against Andy using her thigh as an anchor. Her lips trailed along the brunette's clavicle up her neck and across her jaw to her mouth. Andy moaned into their kiss allowing Miranda's tongue to slip inside and slide along hers. A warming sensation started in the pit of her stomach moving to her toes. She was so close. "More, Mira..." Andy gasped quietly breaking away from the very passionate kiss. The CEO complied adding another finger and brushed her thumb across Andy's clit. The orgasm rocked the agent to her core. Her back arched off the wall into the older woman and she bit her lip to attempt to keep herself from screaming. Instead of giving Andy time to recover, Miranda continued her movements although at a much slower pace until she built her love back up. Her second orgasm was stronger than the first and Miranda had to cover her mouth with her free hand to muffle Andy's cries.
Miranda held her tightly as Andy's body sagged with exhaustion. Arms hung loosely around the CEO's neck with her head resting against an arm. "Holy hell," she breathed against the older woman's neck. Miranda smirked as she brushed her thumb across her clit causing her to jerk. "Oh God..." Andy pushed her back gently.
"You are so incredibly beautiful when you come," the former blonde sighed and brushed a few strands of hair from Andy's face.
The brunette placed a hand on her chest and started walking her back towards the bar in the kitchen. Miranda yelped with surprise as she suddenly found herself naked and on top of the cool marble. Andy situated herself between the older woman's thighs hands stroking her skin as her mouth lavished attention on her chest. The brunette slowly made her way southward leaving open mouthed kisses on every inch of Miranda's skin that was in front of her and within reach until she was bent over. She was eye level with glistening wet folds and the older woman's scent was intoxicating. Her mouth watered and she felt a sudden urge to make Miranda come all over her face. She dove in with her tongue licking the entire length of the former blonde's folds.
Miranda leaned back on one arm while the other tangled in Andy's hair. She held the brunette to her and thrust her hips forward. The younger woman narrowed her tongue and pushed it inside Miranda's opening. "Ohhh..." Andy's nose bumped against her clit causing her to dig her heels into the brunette's back. The younger woman looked up briefly and saw Miranda's head thrown back, eyes closed, and mouth open in an 'o' shape. She looked gorgeous and it made Andy work all the harder to make her come. Moments later, thighs clamped around her ears and Miranda pushed her hips up so Andy was as close as possible. The brunette could feel her inner walls contract and her clit pulse. Her body went rigid and she grunted as the waves rolled through her.
Andy tenderly lapped her tongue around Miranda's core cleaning the mess she made before slowly making her way up her body and placing a gentle kiss on her lips. Miranda sighed against her and wrapped her arms around Andy's shoulders. "I love watching you come undone," the brunette murmured against her neck.
"It's most enjoyable," the older woman smirked. "Let's go to bed."
Andy smiled and helped her off the counter. Miranda picked their clothes up while Andy straightened up the apartment. The CEO was already snuggled under the covers when the brunette entered her room and she smiled at her content smile and tousled hair before slipping under the sheets on her side. "I love you," she said stroking Miranda's cheek and leaning forward to place a kiss to the corner of her mouth, chin, and nose.
"I love you, too," Miranda smiled softly and pulled the brunette to her. They were asleep in minutes. The former blonde's head resting just under Andy's chin, their legs intertwined, and arms draped over their midsections.
It had been four days. Andy was fucking pissed. Her anger rolled off her in waves as she marched through the office. Miranda was at work with one of Andy's handpicked team members currently guarding her. The brunette was here to demand answers. Four fucking days and nobody has come up with a single goddamned thing. People saw the look on the agent's face and scrambled to get out of her way. She needed to know who did this. She needed to protect Miranda and the girls. Just because they were staying with her didn't ensure their safety. Page six has been all over them, like white on rice, day in and day out between the divorce, break-in, and apparent affection between the two women. That was her next stop, in fact.
Hastings was sitting at her desk looking at something when Andy barged in not giving a rat's ass if she didn't want to be disturbed. "Well, come on in. Please, have a seat. What can I do for you Sachs?"
"I want to know who broke in to Miranda's house. Why don't we have anything yet?"
"There wasn't anything to find. No prints, no DNA and there are far too many people who'd hold a grudge against Miranda."
"This was personal. Her belongings were destroyed and I'm talking about priceless heirlooms, photographs, and artwork. There were big fucking 'x's on every bedroom door. You're telling me you don't think it was Karoff trying to scare her?"
"There's no proof that it was."
"Jesus, does he have to leave his damn card? The man is a sociopath and if he did this it could mean he knows about me. If he figured this out, Miranda and the girls are in danger! My family could be in danger!" Andy practically screamed at her boss in a fit of rage.
"What do you want me to do?" Hastings yelled back. "Huh? You're so smart, you tell me?"
"Put me back on the case."
"You know I can't do that, you're far too involved. You're lucky I'm letting you play bodyguard."
"You're damn right I'm involved! You're taking about the woman I love and her kids!" She took a step back and tried to calm herself, yelling was getting her nowhere. She needed to attempt to reason with her. "Let me look at what they found, I know this case better than anybody. Please, Amanda, they're my family now too. I can't lose them," Andy whispered her plea.
Hastings sighed. "Fine, but whatever you find you bring straight to me and we tell the team. You can't go off halfcocked and put yourself or the investigation at risk."
"Thank you," Andy sighed feeling a weight lift from her shoulders. As soon as she was out the door, she muttered, "better me than my family." And she walked toward the evidence locker to begin her search.
She called Miranda to check in with her while she sorted through the items that were bagged. "Hello, darling. Did you get what you went to the office for?" the editor wondered.
"Partially, I'm back on the case which means I can look at the evidence at least. How are you? Is your bodyguard doing a good job?"
"Oh she's fine; she's at your desk. I could have managed on my own for a couple hours."
"It's not going to be a couple hours, Mira. It's going to take me all day to get through all of this and I might have to go to the house afterwards." Her love was quiet. "Are you okay?"
"No," Miranda replied curtly. "Someone violated my home."
"I know sweetheart, I'll figure this out. Don't worry."
"What if you can't?"
Miranda's voice sounded so small it broke her heart. Andy had no idea what to say to soothe her love. "I will figure this out," she repeated a bit harsher than she meant to and Miranda didn't say anything. "I'm sorry, Mira, I didn't-"
"Darling, I know you are fiercely protective of me and the girls. I trust you. If you manage to find anything else at the house that isn't in tatters, could your bring it home with you?"
"Of course," Andy agreed. "I love you; call me if you need anything."
"I love you too, darling."
Andy hung up and continued to go through the evidence brought back from the house. There had to have been something left behind. They had to have missed something. She went over every piece of clothing and pulled every stray hair she found. She sent all of it off to the lab but found nothing else in evidence. She decided to go back to the house to check there.
Andy started in the kitchen remembering how much glass was in there. Most of the glass had been picked up or taken to the lab to be studied. The agent got her luminal and black light. She turned off the light and started to spray the surrounding areas. About an hour later, she was on her hands and knees looking under the kitchen cabinets. A glint caught her eye and she straightened out reaching with a gloved hand to pick up the stray piece of glass. It was glowing in the black light and she smiled triumphantly. She placed the piece in a plastic bag and placed it in her pocket for the time being.
The next room she went to was the study. It had been completely ransacked but it seemed fairly untouched which in her opinion was a problem. She picked up the room making it easier for her to find anything out of place and found a masculine glove that didn't belong. She added that to her collection of evidence putting it away in a plastic bag first. Her next stop was the bedrooms. It made her shudder to think that someone had seen such a private side to her love.
She checked the girls' rooms first and noted that even though the doors were crooked on their hinges and marked most of the room was left untouched. Something she had failed to notice the day it had happened. Only the items of import, of sentimental value, had been ruined. Their treasured knickknacks from their grandmother were shattered on the floor. Ribbons and awards were ripped and broken. She picked through their belongings to find a duffle bag and filled one for each of them with a few things. Andy had managed to find at least a few unbroken Fenton glass animals; a green frog, blue turtle, purple bear, and pink pig. She carefully wrapped them in the girls' clothes so they wouldn't break and moved to Miranda's room.
It was trashed. The whole room was chaos. Even her belongings had been ripped and strewn about. Luckily, she had taken her FBI credentials with her that day along with her side arm. At least the perpetrator would not know her true identity without a great deal more digging on their end. Hopefully, they would have this solved by then. Nearly nothing was salvageable from Miranda's bedroom and she gave up after an hour. Even the CEO’s perfume had been smashed on the bathroom floor. She went back to the study and pulled a few well-worn books she knew the older woman would find comforting and left.
The brunette checked her watch, it was well past dinner time now but she needed to drop off the evidence she found. She went straight to the lab to make sure it was put through as a rush. "Good evening, Karen, you're here late today," she observed.
"Yes, your team left me a mountain of evidence that I still have yet to get through."
"My team?" Andy questioned. "I got pulled off the case until this morning when I was technically insubordinate towards Hastings."
"Huh, that's odd."
"Very. So you have more evidence from the townhouse?" The redhead nodded and motioned for Andy to take a look at some of the things she had found. The whole mess reeked of Karoff's doing; she just had to prove it. "Unbelievable. She was purposely withholding this from me."
"It appears so, what else have you got?"
"A couple things that might have some DNA on them," the agent said retrieving the items.
"I'll rush these through and let you know what I find but in my opinion based on what we know of Karoff's dealings..."
"I know I just want firm proof that Hastings can't shoot down. I know we want him for the trafficking but I'll be damned if I let him get away with what he's done to Miranda."
Karen nodded knowingly. Andy was sure the whole office knew that she and Miranda were together and if they didn’t it was only a matter of time. "If it were my partner I would do the same. I'll let you know when I have something just know that I can't keep it from anyone else on the case."
"I appreciate it, Karen. Really, give Joanne my regards."
With that Andy left contemplating why Hastings would have kept her in the dark about the other evidence. Granted, they hadn't found much implicating Karoff, the whole situation was eerily similar to the same break-ins confirmed to be his or his associates' doing. They always went after the personal and irreplaceable items to intimidate their marks. The thing Andy couldn't figure out was how they knew Miranda was working with the FBI because that was the only explanation as to why this had happened in the first place since no meeting had ever been scheduled between the former editor and the crime boss.
A mole, that had to be it. There was no other explanation to fit her being removed from the case briefly, Hastings withholding evidence, and Karoff knowing Miranda's allegiance before meeting with her. Hastings had ruled her out in a matter of hours surely, but had kept her out of it so she hadn't gone ballistic on any of her colleagues. It all made sense. Now the only question was who did they think it was?
A/N: I apologize for taking longer than normal with this chapter. As always thank you for your continued support in reading, reviewing, favoriting, and following. Enjoy! Reviews are like sour patch kids and popcorn at the movies!
Andy and Miranda were walking from the building after finishing a meeting. The brunette was a respectable distance behind the CEO. The agent still hadn't heard anything from the lab concerning what she found a couple days ago so when her phone went off she immediately answered it. "Andy, its Karen, Miranda is in danger. They know she's working with the FBI. I found traces of explosives on some of the evidence. I'm sending a team over to the townhouse now."
Something had caught her eye while the other agent was talking to her, a flash of red. "Karen," she interrupted. "Get units and a bomb squad to Elias-Clarke. Now." The car Miranda was walking towards was not her normal town car or her sleek silver Mercedes. Andy quickly dropped to her hands and knees knowing she probably looked stupid but when she saw the receiver under the car she knew for sure there was a bomb on the car. The older woman was almost to the curb when Andy shouted for her to stop. The CEO turned to her briefly; she was on the phone and gave Andy one of her worst glares for interrupting. Obviously she was on the phone with someone important but Andy didn't care.
She hauled herself up from the ground and dashed towards Miranda cursing her choice of shoe for the day. The older woman was very close to the car and the brunette sprinted feeling a sudden burst of energy. A hand reached out for Miranda's wrist and yanked her back from opening the car door. She stumbled briefly looking at Andy like she had three heads until realization hit her hard. Something wasn't right. The agent looked back over her shoulder. "Run, Miranda. Get back inside."
As soon as the former editor started for the building, Andy heard a soft beep. Her eyes went wide and she turned on the spot running for the building shouting for people to get back. They had only seconds. She pushed Miranda down just as the explosion went off behind them. She felt the blast of heat on her back and the force lifted her off her feet. The brunette slammed into the ground hard feeling a pop in her shoulder. "Fuck!" she screamed as her pain receptors burned and sent a shooting pain through her arm and clavicle. She was sure she had dislocated her shoulder.
Fire blazed behind them and people were screaming. She carefully used her good arm to kneel and turn toward the wreckage. The car was completely destroyed, the windows were blown out, and debris surrounded the hunk of metal. You could barely tell it had been a car at one point. There was no way the driver made it unless he fled the car before he triggered the bomb. She felt warm liquid sliding down her temple and chin, her vision swam, and her ears were ringing. Sirens broke through the ringing and she winced. A concussion was highly likely and perhaps some loss of hearing for a few days. She noted people were gathering around the carnage and helping those who were injured. She hoped there were no casualties.
Miranda appeared in front of her cupping her cheek and brushing her thumb over it. The agent checked her for injuries but they appeared to only be minor scrapes and she silently thanked God. Andy winced when the thumb caressing her cheek moved to her lip. Add busted lip to her list of injuries. She was certainly luckier than the people who were closest to the blast. She didn't need to look to know that they had third degree burns, the smell of charred flesh lingered in the air. "I'm sorry," Miranda sighed.
"For what? Glaring at me? Don't be ridiculous," Andy placed her hand over the older woman's reassuringly.
"You were trying to warn me..."
"No!" Andy pulled her with the hand of the arm that wasn't injured into her lap. She winced slightly then lifted Miranda's chin to look at her. "Stop, none of this is your fault. You didn't choose this. You didn't plant that bomb," the brunette caressed her cheek.
"All those people..."
"Miranda Priestly!" she said effectively cutting her love off. "Enough, this is not your fault; no one is hurt because of you. I am not hurt because of you."
"But if I had..."
"Nothing you did or didn't do would have changed the outcome. You don't know what would have happened. He could have had a gun for all we know," Andy spoke slowly and firmly making sure to meet the CEO's eyes.
"I'll be fine, I've been in worse shape," Andy tried to soothe the older woman. The CEO's face went even paler if it was possible and then got all determined. The agent sighed; a story was in her future, or several.
"That does not reassure me, Andréa."
"I'm sorry," Andy sighed leaning slightly forward.
"Stop moving. I see the paramedics," Miranda said and waved her arm to alert them before stepping back.
A young man kneeled in front of her. "What happened?"
"Well, I should think that's obvious," Miranda glared and pointed to the car that was still on fire.
"Alright, so explosion and you were thrown from the blast?" Andy nodded but winced and stopped. Her head felt like it was going to explode. "Looks like you hit your head pretty hard," he pulled out the small light to check her pupils. "Possible concussion. How's that shoulder?"
"Hurts like hell," the brunette replied.
"Let's get it in a sling," he said waving at his partner. She came back with a sling and Andy was relieved to not have to support the arm or leave it at her side. "There, now let's see about those cuts," he said cleaning up her face. He bandaged a few of the major cuts and left the minor ones uncovered. "Off to the emergency room, get that shoulder popped back in."
"Thanks, I have to give my statement first," the agent replied. "Miranda, can you flag down the detective there and Hastings? I'd like to get this over with."
"Of course, darling," the woman smiled. Andy sighed closing her eyes briefly. She wasn't looking forward to getting her shoulder reset.
The brunette opened her eyes when the detective and Hastings arrived. She gave them a rundown of what happened and Miranda gave her account even though she hadn't seen nearly as much. Then, they were off to the hospital via Roy after he picked up the girls. Caroline and Cassidy were both frightened by what happened today and refused to leave the brunette's side even when the doctor finally came to see to her shoulder. The two women shared a glance and Andy wondered if they should tell the girls the truth. "Bobbseys, please come over here with me. The doctor needs room." They reluctantly followed their mother’s direction and held on to her waist.
The agent winced as the doctor took her arm and cried out in pain when it was forced back into place. Tears were streaming down her face as her arm was gently put into a new sling. "Plenty of rest, no lifting, light duty at work for at least a week. Here's a mild pain reliever you can get filled before you leave."
Once the doctor left, the brunette slid off the exam table and to her feet. Her shoulder was throbbing. Caroline took her purse and Cassidy carried her jacket while Miranda supported her with an arm around her waist. She didn't need it but she wouldn't complain. Roy was waiting with the door open when they left the hospital. Miranda, stronger than she looked, helped Andy in the car. The ride back to her apartment was quiet and she sighed. "Girls, you know I love your mom and both of you right?" They nodded. "Good. I have something to tell you, your mom already knows, of course."
"Okay," they both said at the same time.
"My name is Andréa, but you guys can still call me Andy. I don't really work for your mom, I mean I do in a way, I'm an FBI agent. The case I'm working on brought me to Runway. I stayed when your mom was promoted so I could protect her."
"You're a special agent? That's so cool!" Cassidy said.
"What do you mean, so you can protect her?" Caroline asked.
"There are some very bad people out there trying to hurt your mom."
"That's what happened today," Cassidy figured it out first.
"But Andy, you're the one who got hurt badly," Caroline commented not understanding.
"Because I was protecting your mom, yes," the brunette confirmed. "While we're on the subject, how old do you think I am?"
"Thirty-two!" Cassidy and Caroline both shouted.
"Ah, well, closer than your mom though the first time," Andy laughed. "I'm thirty-six."
"No way!" Caroline shook her head.
"But you're so beautiful, Andy!" Cassidy insisted.
"And just look at your mom, she's almost fifty and she looks gorgeous; barely a wrinkle aside from the ones around her eyes and mouth telling the world how happy she is. Not to mention she looks like she could be in her late thirties with a figure that well-kept."
"Yeah, you're right, Andy. Mom is beautiful." Caroline said.
"She's perfect," Cassidy added.
Andy hummed and nodded. "Yes, I think so too, even without make-up," she smiled and closed her eyes leaning her head back. The CEO squeezed her hand and brought it to her lips placing a light kiss on her knuckles.
Back at her apartment, Miranda started dinner while the girls did their homework. Afterwards, they watched television with Andy leaning against Miranda supporting her bad shoulder and both girls curled against her good side. It was a very warm and familial embrace that lulled the brunette into a deep sleep.
When she woke up several hours later, her head was resting in the older woman's lap and her fingers were lightly scratching against her scalp as they thread through her hair. "That feels nice," she hummed.
"The girls are sleeping and seem to be content at the moment."
"That's good," Andy situated herself so she could look up at Miranda. "And what about you?"
The CEO looked down at her and smiled halfheartedly. "I am concerned for your safety. I also wonder what happened to cause you to be in worse shape than you currently are."
"I know," the brunette sighed. "It was a couple years ago, I was on an assignment working with the NYPD and DEA to bring down a drug smuggling operation. I was in pretty deep, I didn't use, so please don't think that but I was a trusted part of the inner circle. I had worked my way up over the course of a year. A few months before we were able to finally put them behind bars, a friend of mine was killed on assignment. It messed with me. I made mistakes but by then I knew enough to nail the bastards. On the night of the raid, I was stabbed several times and left for dead. I was lucky someone found me or I probably would have died."
Andy heard the intake of breath before she asked. "Where?"
"Here and here," she said showing the CEO.
"How did I not notice these?" she leaned forward taking a closer look.
"Well, before today my guess would be you shrugged them off as childhood injuries I just hadn't talked about. My dad hired a very skilled plastic surgeon to make sure there was minimal scarring. The stab wounds were clean cut even though they were deep. The one in my ribs punctured my lung, again I was lucky."
"Good lord, Andréa."
"It's okay, I'm here."
"Yes, but I don't know if I can..." Miranda shook her head and tears leaked from her closed eyes.
"I know," the brunette replied reaching up to touch the CEO's face with her good arm. "I had planned to see this through then ask to be put on a desk."
"What will you do?"
Andy shrugged. "I'm one of the best profilers in the New York office and I'm pretty good at solving puzzles. There are other things for me to do."
"You just don't enjoy them as much."
"No, but I've told you before. If it comes down to the job or you, I choose you," Andy reassured her love. "I won't jeopardize this."
"You are something else."
"I try," the agent smiled softly when Miranda leaned down kiss her. "Are you done working for the night?" the CEO nodded. "Good, let's go to bed, I'm exhausted and really glad tomorrow is Saturday."
"Even if it wasn't, I have it on good authority your boss would have made you take the day off," Miranda smirked.
"I imagine we will be getting some company tomorrow so I doubt it will be all that restful."
"Is your family coming?"
"They can't, it would put them in danger. They'll have to wait to see me until the case is wrapped up. I'll call them though so they know I'm alright."
"I'm sorry you haven't seen them. Do you ever see them when you're on a case?"
"Only if I'm not the one undercover, which is hardly ever the case."
"So the last time you saw them was before you came to Runway," Andy nodded at her statement and turned down the covers on her bed. She was able to slip out of her pants but needed Miranda's help with her shirt.
Once changed and in bed, they turned toward each other. "What are you thinking about?" the brunette wondered.
"I'm thinking of selling the townhouse. I know I won't feel safe there anymore."
"But you love that house."
Miranda nodded. "I do, but a house is replaceable, my family is not."
"Would you come with me?"
Andy studied her for a moment. "If you really want me to then, yes, I'd be happy to."
"Of course, I want you to. It's going to be your home someday too."
"You want to go house shopping together. Are you sure about this?" the brunette wondered.
"Andréa, how long have we known each other, loved each other? All that wasted time," Miranda shook her head. "No more."
"I just want you to be sure because I don't want this to come back and bite us in the ass."
"I'm not saying we need to look right away. There's a lot going on right now. I'm just saying I'd like to think about it."
Andy nodded. "Okay. Since we're on the subject of future plans, can I ask you something?"
"Of course, darling."
"Do you…” Andy sighed knowing this was something she really wanted but would give up if the other woman said no. “Do you want more kids?"
"I-" she scratched her head, a very in-Miranda-like thing to do. "Well, with my last marriage it was off the table. There was no way I was having a child with that creep, I'm not even sure why I married him to tell you the truth."
"Surely you must have known when you walked down the aisle?"
"Business arrangement. Pure and simple. If I had known then what I know now I never would have."
"And what would that be?"
"If I had known how much I would come to love you I never would have married him, then we wouldn't have wasted all this time."
"You don't know that. I can be quite hardheaded and you're not the easiest person to convince. If someone would have told you you'd fall in love with a woman thirteen years your junior you probably would have had a coronary."
"True," Miranda smiled. "But I did. And I didn't answer your question. While I clearly cannot physically have any more children, I think I quite like the idea of a few more running around looking like you."
"Good to know."
"Darling, are you alright?"
"Yes, just the proverbial biological clock ticking I suppose. I will be thirty-seven soon. I'm not exactly in my prime."
"I had the girls a couple years older than you. We have time if you truly want to try and even if for some reason you can't carry there are other options. Whatever you want, darling, I'll make it happen. You'll be an amazing mother. You're already so wonderful with the girls."
"You say the sweetest things," her eyes watered.
"Only to you, Andréa," she smiled and kissed her lips. "Now, rest. We can talk more later if you want. I’ll set the alarm for a few hours from now to make sure we keep an eye on that concussion."
"I love you, Mira."
"I love you too, darling."
Andy sighed as she fell into her lovely comfortable couch and closed her eyes. The amount of people that came to visit her Saturday was entirely unexpected and left her feeling utterly spent by Sunday night. The phone call to her parents was rough. They were both very concerned that her job was becoming more of a danger and not quite as much about helping people. She had to agree with them at this point. Warm hands kneaded her sore shoulder carefully and gently drawing out some of the tension. "We should stretch your shoulder, doctor's orders," Miranda said in her low tone.
"That feels really good, Mira," she groaned appreciatively and rolled her neck forward to give the older woman more access.
"I'll give you another massage after your stretches," she promised. "Come on, darling."
"Alright," Andy gave in and used Miranda's outstretched hand to get up.
"Okay, stand here and bend your elbow at a ninety degree angle," Andy followed the CEO's instructions with a slight wince. "Yes, like that, darling. Open your palm and place it against the wall. Good, now push against it and hold for five seconds." Andy inhaled through her nose harshly at three seconds and sighed when she reached five. "Good. Here take this end of the band and," she bent over, "step on this end. Now, you're going to keep your elbow straight and pull your arm up so its level with your shoulder."
Andy gritted her teeth feeling the sweat gather on her skin. The pain increased the higher she tried to go. She made it to her hip before she had to stop. "I can't," tears formed in her eyes.
"It's okay, darling," Miranda said taking the band. "You did great," she kissed her softly and brushed the tears from her face. "Let's get ready for bed and I'll massage your shoulder, hum?" she directed the brunette towards the bedroom and helped her with her clothes.
Once changed, Miranda told Andy to sit in front of her. Expert hands moved across her skin drawing the additional tension away. Finger tips prodded gently. The agent was pretty sure if the older woman continued she would be asleep in minutes but she needed to ice her shoulder. "Not that I want you to stop but I do need to ice it for a bit," she sighed.
"I'll get it for you, stay here," Miranda replied and maneuvered herself so she didn't jostle the injured shoulder. She kissed Andy lightly on the corner of her mouth and went to the kitchen. Andy could hear her moving around and smiled. She loved having her and girls around her apartment. She returned a little bit later with a towel filled with ice. "Here you are, darling."
"Thank you," she took the towel and held it to her shoulder only wincing slightly at the coolness before it started to soothe her aching muscles. Her eyes were closed and she was daydreaming of a house, kids, a dog, and a very happy Miranda.
Andy felt the bed dip slightly. "What are you thinking of, darling?" Miranda traced her face with her fingertips slowly drawing Andy from her thoughts.
"You and the girls," the brunette smiled widely. "I enjoy having you here."
"The feeling is quite mutual, I assure you, darling," the CEO smiled back.
"Good," Andy smiled even wider if it was possible and Miranda leaned in to kiss her. "I've been talking with the girls lately," another kiss.
"Yes," their lips met again.
Andy tugged the older woman closer. "They both expressed an interest in dance, but Cassidy would like to try soccer while Caroline seemed more interested in music, piano perhaps. They've been hesitant to talk to you with everything going on."
"Wow, I think this is the first time they've ever wanted to do anything apart from each other."
"It was bound to happen eventually."
"I think once everything calms down we could revisit the topic," Miranda traced the ridge of her jaw. "Ah, I see it now," she traced a lone wrinkle. "Must be all that smiling."
"Oh!" Andy took mock offense and went for Miranda's ribs ghosting her fingers across sensitive flesh. The older woman squirmed careful not to hit the brunette's injured shoulder and did the only thing that would stall the agent's movements. She pulled her into a passionate kiss. "Mmm, cheater..."
"I prefer opportunist," Miranda smiled cheekily as she whispered against Andy's ear. Her tongue darted out.
"Mmm... So evil..."
"All the better to tease you my dear," she could hear the smile on her voice.
"Is that what you're doing?"
"You know you love it," Miranda's breath was hot against her ear.
"You're being mean," Andy sighed. "The doctor said I can't do any strenuous activity until at least Friday."
"Darling, you don't have to move," Miranda pulled her earlobe between her teeth.
A delicate finger landed on her lips silencing her. "Let me take care of you," she gazed into turquoise eyes filled with love and nodded though she was powerless to resist.
Miranda's mouth slanted over hers as hands explored under her night shirt skimming across the heated skin of her abdomen. It was soft, then barely there, then there was no mistaking her touch. It was was much like her kisses had been; slow and soft, a small peck here, a long hard kiss there. It was intoxicating and the brunette was feeling over heated. The older woman slid down her legs and kissed the flesh that appeared before her. Hands trailed over her thighs in a hard raking manner. Lips and tongue followed beginning at her chest and by the time Miranda's mouth had reached her thighs Andy was breathing heavily and her skin was flush and hot all over.
"Mira," the brunette said breathlessly.
The older woman slipped her fingers into the waist of her pajama bottoms and panties. She used her good arm to lift herself just a little and Miranda pulled them off. She kissed a trail from the inside of her knee up her thigh. "Open your legs for me," the CEO demanded softly.
Andy's legs would have fallen open on their own but just hearing the sexy demand in Miranda's low register sent a jolt down her spine right to her core. "Mira," she looked down through her lashes at the woman between her thighs. Her entire center was throbbing with need and she was so very wet. A nip at the junction of her inner hip and thigh pulled a low moan from her throat. She wasn't above begging for it if the older woman didn't move soon. "I need you," she said feeling a cool air blown against her dripping center.
Miranda looked up to meet her gaze while her hands massaged her inner thighs. "I know, darling," she placed a lingering kiss against her swollen lips and moved back into position. Andy nearly cried at the first long slow swipe of her tongue upwards toward where the brunette needed her. Fingers tangled in white hair holding the older woman there as if afraid she'd move too far away. The hot muscle trailed up and down her folds, first one side then the other building her need to the point she was about to beg when two fingers entered her hot core.
"Yes!" she cried. Miranda's tongue zeroed in on her bundle of nerves and she swirled it around the sensitive flesh while her fingers moved in and out. She pressed up on the withdrawal hitting the rough patch of flesh causing Andy to gasp each time as little waves rolled through her body. "Mira," she whimpered and scratched her nails lightly against her scalp. Miranda flicked her clit repeatedly continuing the motions with her fingers until Andy felt like every little wave turned into a tsunami that grew higher and higher until finally it crashed down on her. The brunette cried out her name.
Andy slowly came down from the orgasm that just rolled through her thunderously feeling small aftershocks as the older woman continued to lick her. She pushed Miranda's shoulder, anymore stimulation and she'd need to come again. Miranda kissed her way up Andy's body until she was straddling her lap. The brunette could feel her dampness on her leg. At some point she must have taken her underwear off. The things she wished she could do right now. "Your hand, darling," Miranda guided her wrist to where she wanted it and placed a hand on either side of Andy's head on the wall she was leaning against.
"You're so wet," Andy sighed as her fingers slipped through her folds and into her opening. "Nightgown off," the brunette commanded.
The CEO removed the flimsy fabric and Andy's lips went to work on the breasts in front of her. Miranda rocked her hips against her hand fast and hard. The brunette bit down on one of the buds and pulled gently before letting it go and moving to the other one. She angled her palm so it brushed against the older woman's clit each time.
"Look at me, Andréa."
Andy let go of her nipple with a slight pop and gazed up at her love. Her mouth was open, eyes glazed over, and skin flushed. It was one of the most alluring sights Andy had ever seen and she had caused it. "God you are so beautiful, Mira."
"Come for me, Mira," the brunette spoke huskily. Andy's words seemed to set off fireworks within the older woman. Her body went rigid, her eyes slammed shut, and she cried out the brunette's name. While the agent waited for Miranda to move, she kissed her sweat covered skin. When she finally did move and collapsed beside Andy, the younger woman cleaned off her fingers. A few minutes later they both put their clothes back on, Andy with assistance from Miranda. "I love you," she said kissing the CEO's forehead, nose, and mouth.
"I love you, too, darling. Good night." Andy smiled happily as she closed her eyes and felt Miranda tuck herself into her embrace.
A/N: I apologize for it being so long since the last update. I hope the longer chapter makes up for it a little bit. Enjoy!
It was now Thursday and both women returned to work after working a few days from Andy's apartment. The other executives and the board were very understanding of the time needed to do so and both of them were grateful. She was chatting with Heather when Miranda called her into the large office overlooking the city.
"Schedule a meeting with the editor from Auto Universe. I'm going to pitch your cover idea to him. Then, call Nigel and Emily to invite them to lunch. Book a reservation at that place I like for the four of us. That's all," she said drawing the earpiece of her glasses across her bottom lip. It reminded Andy of the days before they'd admitted their feelings for each other. It literally drove her crazy with want.
She turned toward the door but instead of leaving she shut it with a soft click and turned back toward Miranda with a sly smile as she rested against the wood. "I really don’t think you know how incredibly sexy you are," Andy sauntered toward the older woman now that she had her attention. She stalked forward and leaned over the mahogany desk. "You know, my shoulder feels much better."
"Does it now?" Miranda husked. "I don't think you're quite ready for what I'd like to do to you. Here. On my desk," the older woman gazed at her.
Andy could see the wheels already turning and shivered. "I look forward to it," she replied leaning down to capture Miranda's lips possessively. She pulled away nipping lightly at swollen lips and grinned at the soft moan that escaped the CEO's lips.
She was at the door when Miranda spoke again. "God, your ass looks downright criminal in that skirt," the younger woman turned and smirked over her shoulder.
"All the better to tease you with, my dear," she replied cheekily before returning to her desk.
She did as Miranda asked and then started looking for an event to surprise the three Priestly women with to get the out of her apartment for a little while. They'd been either cooped up at the apartment, school, or work and deserved a night out. She knew Miranda enjoyed the ballet since she had gotten her tickets before and now that the girls had an interest in dance she started her search at the New York City Ballet. Liebeslieder Walzer was showing tomorrow through the weekend at the New York State Theater. It was a period piece set in an elegant nineteenth century house party that transitioned into a modern ballet. She was sure they'd all love it and bought four tickets right away for Friday night. It was an occasion they could all dress up for too. She would task Nigel with finding them all dresses and Serena with doing their make-up and hair. The girls would have a blast and it would make the older woman happy which in turn would make Andy very happy.
She invited Doug and Serena along for lunch as well making the decision herself without asking Miranda. She wanted to introduce Doug and Nigel and didn't want Emily to feel like a third or rather fifth wheel so that's where Serena came in. The four of them were already waiting when she approached the host to let him know they were here for Miranda Priestly's table. Andy was also very glad she had the foresight to book one of their private rooms so they could enjoy lunch freely and not worry about onlookers.
"Right this way," the host bowed slightly and motioned for the two women to follow. The room they entered was closed off from the main dining area and was a very elegant decorated with rich burgundy and wood. "Your waitress will be Amanda, she will be right with you," he said and gracefully bowed out closing the doors.
"Well, now this is a pleasant surprise. Hello Douglas. Serena. A social lunch then?" she asked cocking her head at Andy.
"Yes, Nigel and Doug didn't get to meet when everyone came over last weekend so I wanted to give them the opportunity."
"And we both thank you for it," Nigel smiled and Doug nodded enthusiastically.
"Doug and I also usually meet up weekly to catch up, we just haven't been able to," Andy smiled and pulled Miranda's chair out.
"Thank you, darling," Miranda smiled ignoring the looks of surprise she seemed to get from everyone but Nigel.
Andy smiled back. "You're welcome, my love," she said testing the waters of the new pet name. Miranda gave her a nod and an even wider smile. She liked it.
"So how's your shoulder?" Doug asked taking a sip of water.
"Really good actually, I was able to do my exercises yesterday without much pain. Nigel, I'll need your help with something, do you have a free moment later today?"
"I can fit you in at four," the bald bespectacled man said with a smile.
"And Serena, I'll need to confer with you on something as well."
"Of course, does quarter after three work for you?"
"Perfect, thank you. Emily you look splendid today, Vivienne Westwood?" Andy inquired.
"I can scarcely believe it, never thought I'd see the day when you'd recognize a designer just by looking at a piece of clothing," the redhead snarked.
"Why, Emily, are you giving me a compliment?" the brunette feigned surprise.
"Perhaps, depends on the shoes you are wearing today." Andy lifted her foot just above the table so she could see. "Ah, Prada, classic choice, three and a half inch heel if I'm not mistaken. Fine. Today, a compliment."
The brunette smiled. "I managed to remember a few things you all have taught me. And just so you know I was never completely oblivious, I had to work with the cover I was provided."
"Quite right, darling. You should show Emily your closet sometime. I think even she would be jealous of all those designer suits you own," Miranda smirked at the Brit's surprised expression. "Andréa mostly dresses in Armani from what I've seen but she has excellent tastes both professionally and casually, except for those hideous drab items in the back."
"I told you, they're for when I am certain it's going to be a shitty day or I know I'll have to dig through some untoward gook. Besides, I promised to let you burn them once I make my transfer official."
"Oh, I cannot wait, darling, I assure you."
The table's occupants were surprised at the light and funny banter being carried on between the two women. "What transfer?" Doug asked picking up on the serious part of her statement.
"Once this is all over, I'm asking for a desk job," she admitted and looked at the CEO. "What I do is dangerous and I won't put my family at risk," she said never breaking eye contact with the older woman. She squeezed Andy's hand.
"Wow," Doug whistled and leaned back.
"What?" Nigel prodded. Emily and Serena also looked like they wanted to know. She and Miranda had decided after the explosion that they needed to tell a few more people who had their backs. It hadn't gone over well at first, at least not with Emily. She thought they were all playing a trick on her until Andy showed her the badge.
"Andy has been asked by a few people to give up her undercover work over the years. Her mom and grandmother when she joined the FBI, myself when I saw her after a particularly hard case involving a little boy, and an ex fiancé. All of them asked and yet for Miranda she is making the choice to give it up," Doug said.
Miranda was gazing at her with questioning eyes. It was clear there would be a conversation later. A knock on the closed doors alerted them to the waitress's arrival and the conversation moved on to what they intended on ordering for lunch. Andy decided on a steak with a baked potato and side salad. Miranda had the Steak Oscar though she whispered in Andy's ear that the one she had made for her was ten times better. Doug and Serena both got the poached salmon with lemon dill sauce. Emily got a large salad and Nigel ordered seared scallops.
The conversation flowed over to work related topics that Doug could even comment on and Miranda was genuinely interested in what Doug did for a living especially when Andy mentioned he turned a five thousand dollar investment into sixty for her in just a little over a year. "I'd be happy to take a look at the financials if you'd like, I bet there are things we can do to get you well under budget."
"Wonderful, please make an appointment with Andréa once we are back at the office. She'll know when the best time in my schedule is."
"And I'd like you to take a look at some of my personal financials, I'll have Andréa book an appointment with you."
"Oh don't worry, just let me know when you're free and I'll make the time."
"Douglas, I appreciate the sentiment but I am well aware of how busy you are. Andréa will make an appointment."
"Okay, well I should go. I have a meeting in a little while. Thank you for inviting me to lunch. Emily, Serena it was nice to meet you. Nigel, I'll call you."
Andy smiled knowing her two favorite men outside her family had really hit it off. "Did you?" Miranda whispered in her ear and she nodded. "Quite right, darling."
"So Nigel, you and Doug?" Andy prodded.
"Oh don't play innocent with me, Six. I know darn well you orchestrated this," he admonished. "And thank you, Doug is delightful. We're getting coffee later."
"Good," she smirked. "I want all the juicy details afterwards."
"Fine, fine, lunch tomorrow then."
They ate the rest of their lunch making small conversation and Miranda surprised everyone by actually caring to know what went on in their lives. "Surly by now you realize I consider the three of you friends?" she explained.
"Well yes, but..." Serena started.
"You assumed I treated my friends in a similar way. I understand," she smiled softly as Serena tried to explain. "I am not nearly as heartless as Page Six would have you believe."
"Speaking of," Nigel looked weary. "They've all but outed you and Andy at this point. Are you going to do anything?"
"These are very abnormal circumstances," Emily cut in. "I don't think Miranda or Andy want to be the headline anywhere anytime soon."
"Em is right, we need to be careful. If my real name were to come up my immediate friends and family could be in danger. That's something I'd rather avoid."
"Yes, I would imagine so," Nigel said. "They're going to keep digging and eventually find your records to be false, what then?"
"Hope the FBI has found the mole by then," Andy sighed.
After that, Andy lost her appetite and merely followed the conversation. It pained her to realize she hadn't taken her family into account when it came to her job sometimes. This time in particular. She knew Miranda noticed something was eating at her when she raised a trimmed brow in her direction but Andy ignored it for now. They'd talk later.
The rest of the afternoon went by per usual. Andy had her meetings with Nigel and Serena. Miranda had her meeting with the current editor of Auto Universe and practically castrated the poor man. She stripped him up one side and down the other with every claw out. The CEO was sure to let him know that if the next issue didn't do better, he was out. And when he threatened to take half his staff, Miranda didn't bat an eyelash. She pretty much gave him permission to do so.
They were now riding in the car with Roy on their way to pick the twins up from school. Andy's eyes were closed and she very well could have fallen asleep but Miranda had other thoughts. "Are we going to discuss your reaction at lunch?"
"Hastings has no idea who the mole is and if she does she isn't telling me. It frightens me, what could happen to my family, you and the girls included," she sighed. "I've never given it much thought before."
"It would seem that maybe you didn't have anyone you cared enough for," Andy went to open her mouth but Miranda held up her hand. "I don't mean to slight your family but I'm sure it's been a while since they asked you to consider a different profession. I'm also sure they want you to be happy and did not bring it up again after asking the first time and were supportive. God knows you need the support with the way your job is. I simply meant that you now have three people who mean more to you than the rest of the world. Individuals you would do anything for. It makes you think about your choices and responsibilities. And being a parent is something that changes you. This may be new but the way you are with the girls, there's no mistaking how much you love them."
Andy nodded in agreement and settled back into the comfort of the backseat. A few minutes later, two very rowdy girls got in the car and gravitated to the brunette. Yes, Miranda was right. She loved them all with everything she had the younger woman smiled and hugged them with her good arm.
Miranda was in the shower while Andy and the girls made breakfast. Since the girls didn't have school today, Miranda had decided to work from home. The brunette was making French toast while Caroline scrambled the eggs and Cassidy turned the sausage links. The orange juice was already freshly squeezed and sitting in the fridge to chill.
When the older woman emerged in the most casual wear Andy had ever seen looking quite radiant, she instantly smiled at the sight in the kitchen. "What's all this?"
"We wanted to make you breakfast," Caroline smiled stirring the eggs.
"Andy is helping with the French toast," Cassidy provided shaking her pan of sausage.
"Yes, ma'am. This morning we have a lovely cinnamon French toast with scrambled eggs and chicken sausage," the twins giggled at Andy's playful tone. "There is fresh fruit and squeezed orange juice chilling in the refrigerator. Coffee is on the table," the brunette smiled speaking normally.
"Sounds positively delicious, my darlings" the older woman said joining them in the kitchen. "I shall set the table."
Andy went back to concentrating on the French toast and helped the girls plate their dishes. She set the plates full of food on the table and made the twins wash up. After everyone was seated, she found the three bags she wrapped the night before. "Alright my lovely ladies, a present for each of you," she smiled.
Andy shrugged. "No reason," her smile grew wider.
"Caroline, you first," Miranda he's turned toward her youngest by a couple minutes.
The younger red head tore into the tissue paper leaving it scattered and floating down around her. She pulled out a signed limited edition of the Harry Potter series, a Ravenclaw t-shirt, and a Hogwarts Crest keyring. "Wow! This is awesome! Thanks Andy!"
"You're welcome," the brunette smiled at a beaming Caroline.
"Look mom!" Caroline practically shoved her books into Miranda's hands and pointed to the sticker that said they were signed by the author.
"How on earth did you get these?" Miranda wondered. "Cassidy, you next."
Andy shrugged. "I have my ways," she smiled taking a sip of her orange juice.
The older red head ripped through the bag hoping she got what her sister did and Andy could see the disappointment in her eyes when she realized she hadn't. Miranda also noticed but prompted Cassidy to share her gift. "The complete works of Jane Austen, the movie Pride and Prejudice, and a silver heart locket."
Miranda fixed her daughter with a warning glare and spoke softly. "Thank Andréa."
"Thank you," Cassidy sighed and placed her things back in her bag.
"You're welcome, but I should warn you both, I bought you the exact same thing. Cassidy, your Harry Potter stuff is over on the bookshelf by the piano. Caroline, your Jane Austen stuff is over there as well."
"Andy!" Cassidy shrieked with excitement.
"Can't very well have you hate me, now can I?" the brunette joked.
"Don't be silly, we love you," they said together.
Andy smiled even wider. "And now you, my lovely lady," she said turning her attention to Miranda.
Miranda was much more careful unwrapping her gift. It was a leather bound book of some sort. A finely manicured fingertip ran along the edges with care before lifting the cover. She gasped and was nearly speechless. "This is... How did you... What...?"
"I asked a favor of Karl since he owns most of the sketches. He was happy to help."
"I... I don't know what to say."
"I know they're not originals, but I can guarantee nobody else has original prints. These are the very first prints from the collection he had hidden away, 1st editions if you will."
"Andréa," the older woman was near tears. "I... This is..." She shook her head completely taken by surprise at the generosity of the younger woman.
"I know," Andy smiled taking the hand on top the table and giving it a light squeeze. "One last thing," she placed the ballet tickets on the table. "I planned an evening out for us, I hope you like it."
Miranda checked the tickets for the show name and nodded. "I've heard excellent reviews of this production as well as its cast. Darlings," she called to her daughters.
They both looked up. "Yes?"
"We're seeing a show tonight."
"We are?" Caroline all but yelled.
"What is it?" Cassidy wondered.
"It's a ballet set in the 19th century that suddenly goes modern. It's supposed to be very good. Nigel has agreed to dress all of us and Serena's team will be doing our make-up," Andy explained.
"That's why you were meeting with them," Miranda commented finally figuring out Andy's plan.
"Yes," the brunette confirmed.
"You are truly unbelievable," Miranda smiled happily.
"Gotta keep you on your toes," Andy grinned back sipping her orange juice.
Most of the morning she spent time watching movies with the girls while Miranda worked. Eventually she persuaded the girls to work on their homework before the weekend really started so they didn’t have to worry about it. Unfortunately, that also meant she now had to discuss an ex-fiancé. She went into her office where Miranda took up the free desk and sat across from her in one of the leather arm chairs. “How is work going?”
“The usual, reviewing budgets and previous issues,” Miranda waved her off.
“So, you know I was previously engaged.”
“Yes,” Miranda commented without inflection indicating it wasn’t a topic she had planned to discuss. “Honestly, darling, I’ve been married and divorced three times. It matters very little to me that you were previously engaged, you are after all, mine now,” she smiled removing her glasses and resting them on her lower lip.
Andy groaned. “Every damn time,” she muttered.
“What was that?”
“You and that look,” Andy indicated waving her hand at the older woman. “You drive me crazy.”
“Well, when I’m done here and the girls are asleep, I’ll show you just how crazy you make me,” she promised.
“I’ll hold you to that,” Andy warned her with finger pointed at the older woman as she left her to work.
Later that evening after Runway closed for the day, Miranda led the girls and Andy through the empty hallways to the closet where Serena’s team was waiting with Nigel and Emily. The Brit’s arms were crossed and a scowl was upon her face. Serena smiled warmly and Nigel looked bored as he examined his nails. “Really, you could have given us a little more time,” Emily barked and snapped her fingers. She would be helping with accessories while Nigel picked out their outfits.
“Relax Emily,” Miranda smiled sardonically. “I pay you plenty to handle things in a short amount of time.” The redhead gulped.
Andy sniggered behind her hand to hide her smile and hugged Nigel. “Thanks again for doing this.”
“My pleasure, I’ve already got my eye on something for you. It just came in and I set it aside. I believe our dear Dragon will approve,” he smirked. “We will get you to hair first, and then make-up; you will dress last.”
“As you wish my liege,” Andy bowed and followed him as the girls trotted behind her gleefully. She looked over her shoulder seeing a pleased and warm smile on the CEO’s face and felt a rush of pride knowing it was her doing.
“Young ladies first,” he pointed over towards Serena and a team of stylists.
“Girls, why don’t you read while you get your hair done?” the agent suggested.
“A lovely idea girls,” Miranda agreed knowing it would keep them too busy to act up and run around.
“Miranda, would you like a quick wash and blow out?” Serena asked.
“That sounds nice, yes, I would.”
Serena motioned for the older woman to follow her toward the sinks and to sit down. Miranda leaned back so her neck rested in the cradle of the sink and Serena checked the water temperature. When it was just right she started spraying the massaging head over the CEO’s scalp and massaged the shampoo into her hair as her nails scratched her scalp gently. Miranda hummed appreciatively and Andy smiled to herself.
“You have a way of knowing just what will calm her or make her happy,” Nigel remarked. “I’m thinking simple curls pinned back here,” he pulled her hair loosely back and held the sides.
“I trust you,” Andy replied.
“Good, Joanne,” he waved her over and pointed to the brunette. “Big wavy curls, make sure it holds, then pin the sides back like this and fluff the top just so,” he demonstrated. She nodded and Nigel moved to sit in front of the FBI agent while the young woman got to work. Andy did her best to relax knowing she needed to hold still. “So tell me, how are things going?”
“Do you mean the case or our relationship?” Andy asked.
“The case is going slower than I’d like, obviously. I just want to catch whoever did it and make sure it stops. Part of the problem is that I still think it’s related to Karoff. It’s figuring out how it’s related.”
“And you haven’t brought it up with her,” he guessed. She shook her head. “You should. She might get mad at first but she’ll understand you’re just doing your job and trying to protect her and the girls.”
“I will after I confirm with the lab on that DNA I found. I’m really hoping it gives me some solid answers.”
“I just want to point out that she has many enemies. The break-in was most definitely done with insider knowledge or by someone close to her. They knew exactly what to go for in that house. I know you’re probably already mulling that over in your FBI brain right now but whatever you do, be careful.”
“I’ll try to. You know what my priorities are if it comes down to it.”
“I think I do, yes. God willing, it won’t come to that. Now, about your relationship…”
“It’s really good minus the current situation,” she smiled. “It’s like she’s a completely different person; sweet and thoughtful, especially if I’m hurt or don’t feel well.”
“She is different around you, still snarky, but softer.”
“We have a lot in common that I don’t think she realize. Our age was a small issue for her until I convinced her it didn’t matter to me and that it wasn’t that large of a gap.”
“It’s really not when you think about it.”
“And my God, she is wild in…”
“I swear, Six, if you say a word about your sex life I will never speak to you again,” he warned her and she laughed so deeply everyone looked at her questioningly but then Nigel started laughing and they were quickly ignored.
Andy left Elias Clarke when she received the call from Karen about the DNA results. It was still fairly early so the office wasn't very crowded. A few of her team were gathered in the break room drinking coffee and eating donuts. She waved in greeting to their hellos and good mornings and continued down to the labs. "Good morning, Andy," Karen's assistant greeted her.
"Hi Leo," Andy smiled. "Where's Karen?" she asked leaning against the lab table.
"She's in her office," he said waving to the back corner.
"Thanks," she smiled and made her way around several tables.
She knocked briefly on the door and then went in without waiting for a response. The redhead looked up momentarily before returning her attention to the paperwork in front of her. "Shut the door," she said. Andy turned and closed the door. Karen removed her glasses. "I got the results back, they're quite interesting."
Andy sat in the chair across from the other woman. "Why interesting?"
"The DNA is a match."
"Okay?" Andy was ready to get some answers.
"There are two matches; Stephen Tomlinson... and Ivan Karoff."
"Wait... What?” She had to have heard wrong. “Did you just say Karoff?" Karen nodded and threw a file down in front of Andy.
"This is a copy. Ivan Karoff, Alexi Karoff's cousin. Want to guess who our lovely human trafficker has on retainer?"
"You said it."
"Miranda is going to have an aneurysm."
"I'm guessing this will move the divorce proceedings along."
"They're basically done, but he's been fighting with her over some of their join assets. This will definitely help her case.” Andy thumbed through the pages “What's Ivan's criminal history like?"
"It took me a while to dig it up. His uncle is Mikel Karoff, Alexi’s father and the head of the family. Ivan was charged with assault with a deadly weapon, burglary, attempted murder, and drug possession all before the age of twenty. Most of Ivan’s records were conveniently lost in a fire shortly after he started posing as Stephen. Stephen Tomlinson's parents were Harry and Joan Tomlinson; they died in a car accident when he was twelve and he went into foster care."
"Stephen went to NYU for his bachelors and Yale for law school. I bet his uncle paid for it and gave him his new identity," Andy thought out loud. "It says here Ivan's mother was unmarried and died when she gave birth. All of the incidences that he was involved in appear to be connected to Alexi."
"So, uncle Mikel decides to split them up and push Ivan to become someone useful to the family instead of another thug."
“Right, he has Alexi for that. I bet Ivan didn’t even commit those crimes and just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
"Well, it does certainly help to have a lawyer in the family."
Andy sighed. "Thanks for this, have you told Hastings yet?"
"No, I wanted to give you a heads up first."
"This would explain the intimate knowledge behind the break-in," Andy stood and paced within the small space. "I knew they were connected somehow. Stephen's been feeding them information since the beginning. I'd even bet that part of the reason he married her was to have access to Elias Clarke. That bastard has played her from the start."
The agent was fuming. How had Miranda's lawyers missed this? "Be careful, Andy," Karen said warningly.
Andy nodded and took the file so Miranda could see it. She needed to know and the brunette had a feeling it would be hard for the CEO to believe. She knew for a fact Miranda screened everyone that had access to the girls, Stephen included. But how was Ravitz involved? She needed to have a chat with the imp again.
The elevator dinged and she checked her watch. She still had an hour before she had to get back to Miranda so Heather could grab lunch. The guard at the desk was eating what looked like a very greasy slice of pizza. Andy walked over and showed her badge. "I'm here to speak with Irving Ravitz."
"I'm sorry agent; Mr. Ravitz requested that all visitors speak with his attorney."
"And who is his attorney?"
The guard looked down. "A Mr. Tomlinson."
Andy cursed silently, of course. "Tell, Mr. Ravitz agent Sachs is here and that he will want to speak with me. I can get some time knocked off his sentence."
"I'll relay the message," the guard said taking a large bite of his lunch.
"You're going to deliver the message now," Andy said leaning forward and grabbing his tie. She glanced at his computer. "Or I'm going to get your supervisor and let him know that you're watching porn instead of the security cameras. Deal?" The guard nodded frantically and scrambled from his seat as she let the fabric slowly slip from her fingers. "Good, now run along."
She only had to wait a few minutes for an answer. "Mr. Ravitz will see you. Please follow CO Fowler."
Andy smiled and thanked the slightly anxious guard and followed the woman by the door after they were buzzed through. Ravitz was waiting for her in a locked room sitting with his hands clasped on the table linked through a shackle holster. "Mr. Ravitz," Andy smiled sweetly.
"Agent Sachs. What do you want?"
"Now is that anyway to speak to the person offering to have the judge consider less time for your crimes?"
"If you're here to jerk me around you can speak to my lawyer," he spat starting to get up from his chair.
"You mean Mr. Karoff? Oops, I meant Mr. Tomlinson, or did I?"
"What are you talking about?"
Andy sat down across from the portly balding man. "Mr. Tomlinson is really Ivan Karoff, Alexi's cousin," Ravitz grew pale. "What? You didn't know that your lawyer was family?" Andy was almost having too much fun revealing this information to him.
"What do you want?"
"I want to know everything you know about Stephen, leave nothing out," she leaned forward staring him down. He cowered and nodded.
By the time Andy left, she had the information she needed and was already in a cab. Apparently Stephen had been Irv's confidant for years and had been looking for a way to cheapen labor. Ravitz thought it was a win win for his flagship and the girls he was bringing into the country. They'd be taken from the harsh lives they were subject to and given a home, food, and a way to make a living. Stephen was the middle man between him and Karoff. He was the who and how Karoff had been trafficking the models. It all made so much sense now.
The brunette stormed through the office on a mission ignoring everyone she came across in favor of making it to Hastings' desk. "Sachs, what can..." the woman jumped when the door was slammed shut.
"It's Tomlinson," Andy said with her jaw set and teeth clenched.
"What?" Hastings shook her head trying to understand.
"Her husband, Stephen Tomlinson, he's behind it."
"We already cleared him."
"His real name is Ivan Karoff. Ravitz spilled the whole thing. He's how they've been getting the models in the country, work visas, and a place to stay. He fed those thugs the information to get back at Miranda!"
"Are you sure about this information?"
Andy slammed the recorder on the desk. "A hundred percent."
Andy watched her supervisor carefully as the thoughts turned in her head. She picked up the phone. "We'll bring Tomlinson in. Get the girls and Miranda and go home. Stay there," she said pointedly.
Andy nodded before she left she turned to ask, "Who's the mole?"
Hastings shook her head. "I wish I knew."
Andy barely held herself from rolling her eyes but she had no time to worry about the mole right now. She called Roy on her way out of the building and told him to pick up the girls immediately and then called their school and the agents with them. She called Heather next, to let her know what the situation was and to man the floor until she got there.
When she got there, Miranda was spouting off directions while trying to tell Heather off. "Mira," Andy sighed thankful the older woman hadn't gone anywhere.
"What on earth is going on?" she demanded.
Andy directed her towards her office and shut the door. "I found a shard of glass with blood on it, the results came back, and it’s Stephen's."
Miranda stood there for a minute just staring at her. "Explain to me how that is remotely relevant when he lived there?"
"Because he's not who he says he is," the brunette ran a hand through her hair and sighed.
"What are you talking about? I ran a background check on him."
"I know," Andy stepped forward and took her hands. "I know you check everyone who has contact with the girls. Believe me, I know you'd never put them at risk."
"Who is he?" the older woman searched her eyes. Andy paused. “Andréa, please, this man has been around my children.”
"His name is Ivan Karoff, he is Alexi Karoff's cousin."
"How is this possible?" Miranda looked away and plopped on to the couch.
"His uncle arranged for the cover to send him to law school. He was orphaned that much is true."
"So he's a criminal," Miranda voiced.
"Yes. Assault, burglary, drug possession, and attempted murder."
"Jesus," the older woman looked up at the brunette.
"I've already called Roy; he's picking the girls and then coming for us. We're going home until they have Stephen in custody."
"He never loved me did he?” she looked up at Andy shaking her head wondering how she could have been so stupid. “He won't stop," Miranda said quietly. "I know him. He may have cheated first, but he did this to get back at me. He's known about my feelings for you since the Gala when she showed up drunk. I didn't think he would... I didn't know he was a criminal."
"Miranda, no one knew. It’s not your fault he’s a lying cheating criminal bastard," Andy looked down at her phone. "Come on, Roy's here."
The agent lead the CEO to the elevator and the waiting SUV parked outside. Caroline and Cassidy were waiting anxiously. "Mom! Andy!" they shouted and hugged both of the women.
"What's going on?" Caroline questioned.
"We're heading one early, Bobbseys, nothing to worry about," Miranda smiled perfectly as if nothing was wrong.
"Yes," Andy smiled. "I convinced your mom to have a Harry Potter marathon."
"Awesome!" both the younger redheads yelled.
Miranda mouthed a thank you to the brunette and Andy nodded knowing the girls were busy chattering about the movies and snacks already. Once they were at her apartment, Andy placed a few calls. Two agents were posted outside and one in the building. It made her feel a little better. She busied herself in the kitchen while Miranda finished working and the girls did their homework. Once they were all finished, they settled in the living room. Miranda and Andy sat with the girls comfortably between them.
They were in the middle of the second movie where the professor sets the pixies loose when Andy heard a commotion from outside. She faked getting up to get a drink to get a look outside. A homeless man was giving the agents posted outside a bit of a hassle. It wouldn't have struck her as odd if it were any other day but today. After everything she learned in the last ten hours, she would be as cautious as possible.
A noise outside the agent's door caught her attention. She slowly moved from the window in the kitchen and looked to the living room. Miranda was eyeing the door and her gaze found Andy's. The brunette motioned for her to stay while she checked the hallway through the peep hole. The agent that was there earlier was now gone. Andy swiftly moved through the apartment to her room and unlocked her gun.
"Miranda, take the girls, get in the bedroom."
"Mom? What's going on?" Cassidy looked frightened.
"The bedroom, Miranda," she ordered raising her voice just slightly. "Lock the door. Stay quiet."
"Mom? Mommy? Where's Andy going? What's happening?" the girls were talking over each other scared and confused as Miranda corralled them into the bedroom and hushed them.
The brunette turned all the lights off and was thankful her bedroom window faced another building rather than the street. She carefully and quietly watched the hallway for signs of movement when she smelled it. Smoke. She moved as softly and swiftly to the living room window as she could and gasped. They set the building on fire. She opened her phone and dialed 911 to call it in but there was no way they could stay put. Even if the flames didn't reach them, the smoke would.
What could she do to get them out? She had to find a way to make sure they were safe. "Come on, Andy, think," she muttered to herself pacing. "The roof."
She moved to her bedroom where she told them to go and found the girls in a corner shaking while Miranda tried to comfort them. "What's going on?"
"The building is on fire."
"Fire?!" the girls cried.
Andy went to the immediately and crouched to their level. "I need you to listen to me, okay? I need you to be brave. We're going to be fine,” she took a brief glance around. “Put on some clothes, jeans and long sleeves would be preferable with sneakers." Andy also changed. "Grab a bag and anything you absolutely cannot leave behind but can carry." Andy let them gather a few things while she stood and looked around. Most of her things were replaceable but a few were not; like her grandfather's piano. She would have to leave them behind though. When the three of them appeared behind her, she took a deep breath. "Follow me, stay as quiet as possible."
"You have a plan," Miranda stated.
"Of course I do, I can do anything remember?" the agent tried to smile.
Thank you to everyone who has read, reviewed, favorited/bookmarked, and given kudos. It is much appreciated and I love knowing what you all think! Feel free to leave me any prompts for one shots.
To everyone who has commented, given kudos, favorited, or bookmarked. Thank you.
The agent turned and strode quickly to her office her expertly trained eyes scanning the room to make sure it was clear. Then, she waited for each of them to cross the threshold while she kept her eyes on the front door and leaned against the door frame. Once everyone was inside, Andy shut and locked the door before securing her gun in the back of her jeans. A hand gripped hers tightly and she tried to smile reassuringly. "It's alright," she spoke gently and stuffed a chair under the doorknob with her free hand.
The room was glowing from the small lamp on her desk and she let go of the child-sized hand belonging to Caroline so she could unplug and hide her laptop. Before she slipped the small silver computer behind one of the book shelves, she unplugged and pocketed the USB drive. The brunette glanced toward the only window where the fire escape was and picked up the broken piece from her desk putting it into her back pocket. She could see the unknown vehicle was still sitting on the other side of the street, but her window was out of sight of the car. Slowly and quietly, the agent lifted the window. She leaned out of the window carefully and surveyed her surroundings. The fire escape was clear. She smelled smoke and could see people starting to gather on the street as she put one leg through the window and leaned outside.
"Be as quiet and as careful as you can. Stay behind me at all times unless I say otherwise. Got it?" each of them nodded at her whispered instructions. The agent lifted her other leg and motioned for the girls to go first. Miranda helped both the twins climb out and then lifted herself out using Andy's hand.
The CEO was trembling and the younger woman did her best to reassure her with a light squeeze of her hand as she shut the window. She jammed the broken piece of her desk she picked up earlier in the slot between top and bottom portion of the window. Satisfied that no one would be able to open the window without breaking is she turned and began climbing the rickety metal. The brunette stepped carefully to avoid making too much sound as she made her way up to the roof. She kept her eyes focused and continued to check their surroundings.
As they neared the top edge, Andy instructed them to duck and keep low once they were on the roof so they wouldn't draw any attention to themselves. She checked again before pulling herself over. The agent crouched low and faced the three of them. "Stay here for a minute, I'll be right back," she said barely above a whisper. Miranda nodded holding her twins close. Andy slipped her shoes off so she didn't make too much noise and quickly checked the roof to make sure it was safe. She found the board right where she left it and went back to the edge where she left the girls and Miranda.
The younger woman helped the twins up and then the older woman before putting her sneakers back on. "Now what?" Miranda asked slightly irritated but Andy knew she was more afraid than she left on.
"You and I are going to move a board I left up here for this very purpose," she responded and crouched low motioning for them to do the same. If anyone saw them they were sitting ducks until that board was moved. Andy lead them behind the structure that lead back into the inside stairwell to the building and made the girls stand against the brick. "Don't move until one of us come to get you," she told them and pointed to the board. "We need to move that so it’s lying across the gap between this building and that one."
"The board? Andrea? This is crazy!" the older woman whispered harshly.
Andy grabbed her shoulders and forced the woman to look at her. "Listen to me. The building is on fire. I called 911 but we both know the response time is too long. I smelled gasoline which means this building has maybe an hour before it goes up in flames. We've already wasted nearly a half hour. This board is our only way out. You will help me move it and the three of you will cross first. Do you understand?" Andy knew her eyes were wide and showed her concern, possibly even her fear. She couldn't lose them.
"I understand," Miranda replied softly with a brief incline of her head.
Satisfied, Andy moved to pick up the far end while Miranda grabbed the end closest to her. The agent maneuvered the board with the CEO's help until it was level with the other building. "Careful when we put it down, we don't want to lose the board. Switch places with me," Andy waited for the silver haired woman to take her place and moved to the back. "When I tell you to let go, go back to the girls and bring them over here. I'll place the board." Miranda nodded and they moved the board until the agent was happy with its position. "Okay, let go," Andy nodded and held the board up using her thighs as the older woman carefully let go.
Andy watched from the corner of her eye as Miranda moved to where the twins were and she slowly lowered the board until she had to let the far end drop. It was louder than she intended and she cursed under her breath. "I thought we were supposed to be quiet?" Cassidy asked and Andy couldn't help but laugh. Leave it to one of the girls to have some sort of comedic timing.
"We are supposed to be quiet but the board was heavy," the agent shrugged and sent Miranda across first. "Don't worry I tested the weight a while ago."
"That's supposed to reassure me?" Miranda looked at her as if she had three heads.
"Well, yes,” Andy didn’t wait for her reply. “When you get to the other side there should be a bat on the ground, check the roof before I send the girls over."
Miranda nodded and carefully climbed up on to the ledge. She tilted her head up skyward and muttered to herself as she stepped one foot in front of the other. To Andy it seemed like the walk took an hour when she knew it only took a few minutes.
Miranda bent down to pick up the wooden bat and carefully checked the other roof before signaling Andy to send the girls. "Cass, you'll go first. I want you to crawl across the board."
"But mom walked," the shorter twin said.
"I know, but you'll have a lower center of gravity if you crawl. It's a little windy and both of you weight about half of what your mom does. You'll be less likely to fall."
"Come on, let's not think about that. Crawling, you'll cover more distance and you'll be with your mom before you know it," she said helping Cassidy up on to the ledge. Andy held her hips as the redhead lowered herself and she held on until she couldn't anymore. Miranda stretched out to grab her hands immediately when she was close enough to do so and pulled Cassidy to her. "Alright, Caro, you're next."
Andy helped her up. "What about you?" Caroline asked looking back at the brunette.
"I'll be right behind you," Andy smiled softly and held on until she couldn't and waited for Miranda to stretch to grab her other daughter.
Once both of them were safely across and in Miranda's arms, the brunette felt like she could breathe a bit easier. She lifted her knee and crouched to pull herself up on the ledge fingertips gripping the brick. Andy heard a sharp intake of breath and Miranda called her name before she felt the tug on her hair pulling her off the ledge. She reached back with one hand and stumbled backwards nearly tripping over her own feet as she was pulled back from the ledge. She stretched the other hand to brace herself as she was thrown into the wall.
Her head and shoulder slammed into the brick leaving her dazed as she fell to the ground. "Andréa!" Her vision was fuzzy and her ears ringing. The stench of smoke was stronger in her nostrils than it was before. She pushed herself up slowly to her knees trying to figure out where the attacker was but her senses were dulled. She didn't know who attacked her or where they were. "Andy! Behind you!" the girls shouted.
She was too slow though and the attacker kicked her in the stomach. She felt her ribs protest as her body was flipped with the force. The brunette landed on her back and rolled to the same wall she was thrown against moments before. She could feel the roof getting hot; the fire would reach them soon. A figure bent over her and picked her up by her shirt. "I'll make her pay for this. It's all her fault! She never loved me and once you came along she was head over heels for you like the delusional old woman she is. Why would she want you? You are nothing!" he spat.
Andy immediately knew who her attacker was after he spoke. "Stephen, you put that fancy suit on and parade around like you're this big hotshot lawyer when really you're nothing but a lowlife criminal," she antagonized him.
"And who are you? Huh? Some stupid assistant?"
"Actually, I'm an FBI agent or did your informant in the bureau forget to mention that?" she spat back indignantly.
He punched her in the face, his ring cutting open her cheek. "I don't care who you are. You are nothing."
Her head bounced off the ground and her vision swam. "Me? What about you? I know what your rap sheet looks like. I know you helped traffic those models. Who knows what else you've done for Alexi? If I had to guess I'd bet you laundered money for him at the very least. Do you know how long you'll be in jail?"
He growled and slammed her into the ground before standing and kicking her again and again. He didn't seem to care what portion of her body he hit either. Some blows landed to her stomach, some to her ribs or back, a few around her hips, and at least one to her face. Miranda and the girls were screaming. She could hear the sirens, they'd be there soon, but she wasn't going to let her family see her being beaten. And certainly not by this sorry excuse of a man. Stephen went to kick her again and she grabbed his leg using his momentum to pull him forward into the wall as she rolled away and reached for her gun.
She pulled it in seconds and had it pointed at him. He growled and moved faster than she could take the safety off. His hands gripped her wrists and twisted the gun down. She could feel it pressed against her as they struggled. She jammed her heel into the toe of his shoe and head butted him breaking his nose. He grit his teeth and forcefully slammed her back against the wall. One of her hands slipped from the gun. A shot rang out and she felt a warm liquid cover her. "Andréa!"
Stephen's eyes went wide as he looked down at his chest. Blood seeped through his shirt. Another shot rang out and he fell to his knees. "He'll kill you," he said blood flowing down the sides of his mouth. "You, that bitch and her stupid kids," he spat staggering to stay upright.
Andy felt a white hot anger rise in her chest as she tried to breath over the rising smoke. The roof was getting hotter. "No one will touch them," her voice was deep but clear as she walked towards him. "And if anyone tries to hurt my family they will end up just like you," she seethed and pushed his body to the side and returned to the ledge. She slowly and carefully made her way over and collapsed on the other roof in Miranda's arms just as flames exploded through the door to the roof.
The sirens were closer and she knew if Stephen wasn't dead from blood loss he'd definitely be thrown in jail. At least he wouldn't be a threat anymore. Miranda was stroking her hair while the girls held each hand. "I'm fine," she said trying to smile though she was sure it looked more like a grimace. Her ribs were probably broken and her face was a mess but it could have been worse. She sighed and let her vision go black.
She woke up in the hospital with Miranda holding her hand and the girls asleep on cots they put in her room. She squeezed the older woman's hand gently easily waking her from a fitful sleep. "Andréa," Miranda sighed kissing the top of her hand tears pooling in her eyes.
"Hey, I'm okay," Andy rubbed her thumb over the top of the CEO's hand. "Why don't you tell me what the doc said?"
"You have a concussion and three broken ribs. One of the bones punctured your lung. And your face is covered with bruises."
"So I look like I feel, good to know," she chuckled softly so she didn't jostle herself too much.
"It's not funny," Miranda chided.
Andy stopped and squeezed her hand. "I know, but I'm fine."
"Hastings will be stopping by later, she checked in a little while ago but you were asleep."
"Did she say what she wanted to discuss?"
"Something about a safe house," Miranda sounded reluctant.
"Probably for the best, Mira. I'll need to ask her to put a detail on my family and our friends. They won't like it but it needs to be done. I don't want Karoff coming after anyone."
"I've decided to send the girls to James' parents in Rhode Island. He's going with them. I don't want them to be involved in this anymore than they already are."
Andy nodded. "I'm sorry; I should have suggested it sooner."
"It's not your fault," Miranda sighed. "I'm their mother. Regardless of our relationship I should have sent them away when all this started. But they love you and I knew you'd protect them with your life. I just can't ignore James anymore, they're his children too. He wants to keep them shielded from anything else and I'm inclined to agree given what happened last night."
"I'm sorry; I never wanted them to see any of this."
"I know. Like I said, it's not your fault. I wanted them here. I was being selfish."
"You're the least selfish person I know when it comes to the people you care about."
"Ah, but that's when I am really the most selfish," Miranda admitted with a small smile. "I don't like to share; I've never been all that great at it, even when it comes to my girls seeing their father."
"Miranda, you love fiercely, don't ever apologize for that," Andy said seriously pulling the older woman to get so she could kiss her.
They broke apart hearing the knock on the door. Hastings was in the doorway. "You're awake, good," she shut the door to keep their conversation private. "Stephen Tomlinson was pronounced dead on arrival due to his injuries."
"Am I in the clear?" Andy asked.
"We managed to get a full confession out of him in the ambulance. Apparently, his reasoning behind all of this was that Miranda made him look like a fool. We also took witness statements from Miranda, the girls, and a few of your neighbors who saw him set the fire and attack you. So yes, you're in the clear. There won't be any internal review."
"Well, I should hope not," Miranda said indignantly and Andy smiled at her protectiveness.
"I've set up a safe house for you in the mountains until we find out who the mole is and put Karoff behind bars. You've dealt with enough. I want you to lay low; no internet, no phones, no television. If you need to contact someone you can send a message via transmitter radio on a secure channel only we have access to."
"What about the girls?" Miranda asked.
"It's probably best you don't contact them while you're in hiding. There's a good chance they'll be watched carefully," Andy was about to speak when Hastings held up her hand. "I've already called the local police department and they have assured me there will be a detail at all times. They won't be leaving the house without one."
"Do we have a cover while we are upstate?" Andy asked.
"Maureen and Ava Fontaine," she said handing them their new IDs and paperwork. "You'll be pretty close to the Canadian border so you'll need the passports. Greg will pick you up when you are discharged and drive you up there. A car, food, and clothing have already been provided. If you need anything else you can let us know over the radio."
"What about my badge and gun?"
"Greg will have them when he picks you up after you are discharged."
"And what name was I admitted under?"
"Grace Williams, the same name on your lease."
"You switched my lease?"
"It was the only way to protect your identity."
"I want a detail on my family and our friends."
"I keep a constant detail on your family in case your cover is ever blown. Your friends I don't have the power to keep under that kind of detail but I'll put an order in until this whole mess blows over."
Andy nodded and before Hastings could leave her mouth started moving. "I want out. When this is all over, I'm done. Give me a desk job."
Hastings stopped in the doorway and glanced at the agent. "Demitri is retiring soon; you can take over the profiling department when he does. I'm guessing you're a bit rusty so until then you'll train with him and get familiar with the team. We'll go over my expectations at a later date. Get some rest. I'll keep you informed of the situation while you're upstate."
A few hours later, Andy was saying goodbye to the girls while James spoke with Miranda. She heard parts of their conversation but tried keep her attention on the twins. "What if something happens while we're gone?"
"Don't worry so much Cass, you'll get wrinkles like your mom," Andy smirked knowing the older woman could hear. She received a playful glare from the doorway. "I'm kidding, your mom is beautiful. But my point is you’re just kids; let me and the grown-ups worry about the big stuff. You just stay safe and enjoy your time with your dad because when this is all over I doubt your mom will allow you any time to yourselves," Andy smiled.
"Please don't let anything happen to our mom," she said pleadingly.
"Yeah! And you're not allowed to die either!" Cassidy said with her finger in Andy's face.
"Hey, hey, I know you're scared," Andy gathered them in her arms as best she could given she was still in the hospital bed and leaning over the side. "I love you guys and your mom more than anything in the world. I promise I'll do my very best to make sure we both make it back to you, okay?"
They both nodded and hugged Andy tightly. "Girls," James called for them from the doorway. "Say goodbye to your mother, it's time to go." Andy watched as Miranda hugged them extra tight and smothered them with kisses telling them to be good. "Take care of her," a deep voice said from beside her.
Andy looked up at James. He was a handsome man with graying dark hair, a strong jaw, and blue eyes; he was any woman's dream really. "I'll do my best," the agent said meeting his eyes both determined and respectful.
"I can see why she loves you," he said with a small smile. "Take care of yourself too, we'll see you soon. Maybe you'll be the one to make an honest woman out of her," he said squeezing her hand.
She tilted her head watching him go with the girls and Miranda walked with them to see them off. I think he just gave me his blessing to marry Miranda. Andy smiled and then laughed to herself. It's not like she hadn't thought of asking already but there were still things she had to do first like ask the girls and Nigel, pick out a ring, tell her parents. God they haven't even met Miranda or the girls yet! And this mess needed to be over with. Yes, she would ask when the time was right.
I apologize for the lateness. Work and real life has been crazy! Hopefully, I will be able to get on a regular schedule. Thanks to everyone who has favorited, followed, commented, given kudos and what have you. It is much appreciated.
The car rolled to a stop outside a small rustic log cabin with dark wood, forest green shutters, and a stone work chimney. There was a covered front porch that ran the length of the entire front of the cabin. There was a boathouse attached to the dock out back. Large trees surrounded the property giving them privacy. It was like it was straight out of a painting and for a safe house it was definitely more than Andy had expected. A black extended cab pickup truck was parked in the driveway next to the cabin.
The agent was out of the car and opening the door for Miranda before the older woman could stretch to pull the lever on the door. “Thank you, darling,” the older woman said taking the brunette’s offered hand.
“I’ll bring the baggage in why don’t you have a look around?” Greg motioned to the cabin.
Andy nodded knowing it would calm her nerves if she were to check how secure the cabin was. She ushered Miranda towards the cabin with a hand on the small of her back offering silent support knowing that being without her children was extremely hard for the older woman. The CEO settled at the high top table in the kitchen while Andy went to inspect their accommodations.
The kitchen was a decent size, about as big as the one in her apartment. Rich brown cabinets with modern hardware really made it look both functional and new. Off the side of the kitchen were the laundry room and a half bath. The kitchen led into the living room. A rich chocolate leather couch and settee was positioned around the television with a small sofa and arm chair in the corner that formed a reading nook. She walked through the living room into the hallway where there were two more bedrooms, a full bath, and an office. The office was cozily set up, almost like more of a tiny library with books from floor to ceiling. The smaller bedroom had two twin beds, a small toy chest, and a large dresser. The bathroom was simple with a combination shower tub and one sink though it was definitely updated recently. The master bedroom was large, much larger than her own and only slightly smaller than Miranda’s minus the closet. The furniture was dark walnut with maroon accents. The master bathroom had a nice large separate shower and tub. It wasn’t quite as nice as the CEO’s at the townhouse but it was certainly nicer than hers.
She placed her gun case by the bed before returning to the kitchen where Miranda was. The woman was sitting in the same position she had left her in. Andy sighed and checked both the front and back door noting that they had both regular and deadbolt locks. Greg finished bringing their luggage in and putting it in the bedroom. “Hastings asked that I get you a second firearm to keep in another secure place, I would suggest under the sink in the kitchen or in the laundry room,” he said handing her a gun case. It looked like it was the same as the one she already had so she wasn’t worried about how to operate it. “You’re pretty secluded here, no neighbors for few miles so you can practice shooting if need be,” he said with a jerk of his head towards the older woman. “There’s a radio in the bedroom and living room set to the secure channel if you need us for anything. Town is about twenty miles east if you need more supplies or feel like being around civilization for a while. The sheriff’s station is on Main Street. The television doesn’t have cable, but there are a ton of movies on the shelves in the living room,” he said pointing. “The electricity is run on a generator that’s right outside. You’ll need to fill up every three to four days depending on usage. Everything should be pretty well stocked; candles, firewood, food, medical kit, and oh,” he paused and dug in his pockets. “The keys to the truck.”
“Thanks, Greg,” Andy smiled taking the keys.
“Stay safe Sachs,” he nodded. “Miranda,” he added before heading out the door.
Andy watched Miranda closely, noticing how tense and rigid her posture was. Her lips were set into a thin line. Worry lines marred her beautiful face but the agent wasn’t sure how to help the CEO relax when she was on edge herself. “Everything is secure; it’s pretty quiet around here so we will hear anyone approaching. The accommodations are actually quite nice,” the agent tried to reassure her love.
“Fantastic,” the older woman muttered.
Gone was the calm woman Andy was normally confronted with; a frightened and anxious woman hiding behind a numbness replaced her. She took Miranda’s hand and pulled her to the bedroom. “The doors are all locked,” she added for comfort. She coaxed the older woman to sit on the bed and began unpacking their clothes. She could feel the CEO’s gaze on her as she moved about the room. The brunette nearly laughed when her fingertips brushed flannel and she thought of Miranda wearing it. No doubt she would look downright gorgeous in it but most likely wouldn’t wear it even though it was definitely comfortable.
“What’ so funny?” Miranda demanded.
“Oh nothing,” Andy shook her head.
“I was just picturing you wearing flannel,” she replied throwing the garment at the other woman.
She caught it and smirked back at the brunette. “I suppose this is all I was wearing when you imagined it?” she suggested.
“I do like the sound of that,” the agent sighed dreamily finding the flannel thrown in her face moments later. “That’s quite rude you know, you could have hit me in the eye,” Andy chastised the older woman playfully.
“You can wear the flannel, darling.”
Andy shrugged. “Suit yourself, but you’d look beautiful no matter what you did or didn’t wear,” the brunette said sincerely. “Besides it’s comfortable.”
“We both know that I go for style over comfort unless I can have both.”
“I’m aware,” the agent smiled hanging up a blouse. “Keep in mind that we do have to blend in here a little bit. So nothing that’s going to be super fancy. In fact, I’d be surprised if they packed a single wrap dress for you. Slacks are probably as dressy as you’ll get. And definitely no heels.”
“Well, we all have to make sacrifices,” Miranda rolled her eyes catching a yellow sun dress in her line of sight. “I’ll wear the flannel if you wear that dress,” she smiled.
Andy laughed. “You are out of your mind if you think for one second I will wear that dress.”
“Spoil sport,” Miranda huffed and started helping the brunette put their clothes away. Most everything in the luggage was designer but very casual and downplayed.
A half hour later with all of the clothes now put away Andy turned to Miranda and smiled. “Do you want to take a bath?” she suggested thinking it would help them both relax.
Miranda nodded and watched as the younger woman walked towards the bathroom striping her clothes off and leaving them wherever they landed. She turned the water on and waited for it to get hot and start to steam making the room warm. The agent placed the drain in the locked position and took the lavender and chamomile scented salts pouring a handful in. She was thankful that Hastings listened to her when it came to the toiletries and what to have stocked at the cabin. At least it would feel a little more like home. It was a small but welcomed comfort.
Andy stepped into the bath once she turned the water off and slowly slid into the tub. It was large and spacious and deep enough that she was mostly covered. The door to the bathroom opened and revealed a naked Miranda. She looked exhausted. “Come here,” the agent sat forward and held out her hand.
The older woman took the offered hand and stepped into the water. She turned and sat between Andy’s legs sighing deeply as the water warmed her. The brunette wrapped her arms around Miranda and kissed her temple. Instead of telling her that everything would be okay when she knew it might not be, the agent gave Miranda physical contact and conveyed as much love as possible. The former blonde leaned back and rested her head against Andy’s shoulder. Her eyes fell closed and she sighed. “I just want it to be over,” she said softly.
“I know,” Andy sighed and tilted her chin towards her kissing Miranda gently. “I wish I could say it will be over soon, but I don’t know that.”
“I know. Are you sure that a desk job is really what you want?”
“Yes, absolutely. I don’t ever want you or the girls to go through this again. That life just isn’t for me anymore.”
“I don’t want you to have to choose. I don’t think I could, so I’d hate to ask that of you.”
“You never asked and it’s not really a choice. It’s a necessity. It’s hard enough for me to handle being away from my family for long period of time like this; I can’t imagine how hard it would be to be away from you and the girls, especially now that we’ve made all these declarations of love and what we want from life. Undercover work is not conducive to having a family and keeping it. Me not being home and you being alone would tear us apart. I’ve seen it happen. I won’t do that to us.”
Miranda sighed and pulled Andy’s arms around her tighter in response. The brunette gave her a light squeeze. They continued to hold each other until the water got cold. While Miranda got into something comfortable, Andy went downstairs to start a fire and make some hot cocoa. She placed a few logs on the metal stand in the firebox along with a fire starter log and used the long lighter to get it started. She poked the logs until the flames were steady. The brunette then walked to the kitchen and put water into kettle before turning on the stove and setting it on the burner.
Just as it was whistling, she felt arms circle her waist. Andy smiled and turned slightly to kiss the older woman behind her before she reached for the kettle and poured the hot water over the cocoa she made. “I don’t think I’ve had cocoa in quite some time, I used to make it for the girls when they were younger.”
“Well, that’s something we will need to fix, cocoa is a staple.”
“Sometimes I wonder how old you are,” Miranda chuckled.
“Thirty-six going on twelve,” Andy smiled and pecked the older woman on the lips. As she pulled away, she noticed that the CEO was wearing the same flannel from earlier. The brunette smiled and pushed her back just enough to get a better look. The flannel stopped mid-thigh and it was unbuttoned to the fourth button showing a good amount of creamy alabaster skin. The green in the shirt made Miranda’s eyes even brighter. With her hair tousled from being towel dried the older woman was a sight to behold. She licked her lips. “Well, would you look at that, I was right,” her voice dropped an octave as she grinned.
“Cheeky,” Miranda pinched her playfully.
Andy smoothed the fabric of her shoulders until her fingertips came in contact with the collar of the flannel shirt. She toyed with it staring at the CEO with a predatory expression. “Probably not the best shirt to wear if you don’t want me to attack you,” she muttered sliding her hands down so that her thumbs traced the exposed skin of Miranda’s collar bone and chest.
“Who says I don’t?” the older woman replied lifting the shirt enough to show she wasn’t wearing anything underneath.
“Naughty,” Andy whispered against her lips.
“Indeed,” Miranda smirked unbuttoning another button so that the tops of her breasts were visible. The former blonde started to pull away and walked backwards toward the bedroom. Andy’s eyes never left her even as she sat on the bed. The brunette lifted her leg to straddle her lap and crawled across the bed as Miranda scooted back to the middle. The CEO’s eyes were dark and stormy as Andy leaned in to capture her lips as her fingers moved to continue unbuttoning the flannel shirt.
The brunette was now straddling her legs and sliding the material off her shoulders. The older woman pulled her arms out and let the shirt fall behind her. Miranda’s hands went to the hem of Andy’s tank top sliding underneath and along the strong muscles of her abdomen. The brunette slid her hands along the smooth skin of her shoulders, neck, and into her hair as their lips connected. Miranda’s hands slid around the brunette’s sides and to her back scraping her nails gently along Andy’s back. The agent pulled away with a slight nip at the older woman’s bottom lip and pulled the tank top over her head. Miranda’s eyes roamed her upper body appreciatively. “You are such a marvel,” she spoke with a slight awe to her voice.
“I do actually work out from time to time,” Andy smirked.
“I haven’t seen you do so recently.”
“Well, my boss is a slave driver,” she replied.
“Just for you,” Andy leaned forward again capturing her lips. She gently forced Miranda to lay back and moved her lips along her jawline to her ear. The older woman moaned when she felt the hot breath against her skin. Fingertips grazed her ribcage causing Andy to shiver. Those fingertips moved to the underside of her breasts causing her breathing to quicken. The brunette licked and kissed a path down her neck to her shoulder biting gently causing Miranda to moan softly. Andy continued to move further down and the older woman’s hands moved to her hair. Lips, teeth, and tongue teased the former blonde’s nipples causing her back to arch into the brunette’s mouth. After a while, Andy’s mouth continued down her stomach pausing briefly at her waist to look up at Miranda. “You are positively gorgeous.”
Before Miranda could reply, Andy was moving further south and her mouth was now placing kisses along the insides of her thighs. When her mouth finally moved to where Miranda needed her, the older woman was so far gone it didn’t take long. All the brunette had to do was move her tongue in a quick back and forth motion.
As the older woman came back down from her orgasm, she found Andy smirking at her. “Oh I suppose you’re just so proud of yourself now aren’t you?” The brunette shrugged in response and soon found herself flipped on to her back. Her boy shorts were quickly removed and Miranda was kissing her deeply. Hands roamed her body, squeezing and massaging her breasts. Fingers pinched and rolled her nipples before sliding down between their bodies. Miranda entered her gently and set a pace. She curled her fingers on the way out pumping hard but slow. A sheen of sweat covered both of them and Andy was moaning incoherently. Miranda flicked her thumb across the brunette’s clit and she came undone under the older woman with a loud expletive. They spent the night wrapped up in each other slowly reigniting the fire between them and then exploding spectacularly.
I want to thank everyone who has commented, favorited, followed, and left kudos. It means the world to me! Enjoy!
Miranda was sitting at the kitchen table with her back to Andy. Pencils of all sorts were scattered around her and a sketch pad lay open in front of her. Pencil shavings littered the floor and the brunette could tell that the former blonde's right hand was marked up with lead from moving across the sketch filled paper. Andy moved toward her and peered over her shoulder just slightly. "That's really good, Mira," she complimented the drawing. "I didn't know you sketched."
"I don't, not really," she shrugged uncharacteristically. Andy must have rubbed off on her slightly. "I just needed something to do," she said stretching and flexing her tired hand. "I picked it up when we were in town last."
"I hadn't even noticed," Andy sighed and sat at the table. "What's with all the different pencils?"
"They each have a different hardness or softness to them."
"Like you?" Andy smiled and bumped her shoulder playfully.
"Watch yourself, Maureen," Miranda chided with an eyebrow raised.
"Oh come on, you can't tell me you don't see the similarities," Andy took the sketch pad and flipped the page to a clean sheet. She took each pencil and drew a line straight down the page. "Look, this is the hardest lead, right?" Miranda nodded. "Okay, well this is how you are at work. Straight to the point, blunt to an almost impossible degree, hard and ridged in your expectations, zero room for mistakes, there is no deviating from this course." Miranda hummed but stayed silent. "And each of these lines following represent what you are to a different degree. This one," she pointed to the next one. "Is how you are when it comes to your work parties and other functions. You give just a little so you can get more in return. It is honestly brilliant, the way you work a room. Then take this one," she said pointing to the third line. "This represents how you are with Nigel, Emily, Serena, or myself at work. And don't try to deny it. You definitely show us favoritism, it's not over the top so to an outsider or anyone but us it wouldn't look like you treated us differently. But nobody, and I mean nobody, would ever get away with the way Nigel speaks to you sometimes. He's your friend, you trust him personally and professionally. Emily is your most trusted assistant you've ever had." Miranda moved to interrupt her but Andy held up her hand. "I was never just an assistant and we both know that, body guard, yes. And Nobody can bring a model to life the way Serena can. She takes risks that you wouldn't tolerate from anyone else. It is still rigid but the line blurs for you just slightly."
"I get your point," Miranda sighed. "What about this one?" she wondered pointing to the widest line drawn by the softest lead.
"This is your personal life. This is your softest side that only the girls and I get to see. Vulnerable, beautiful, breathtaking," Andy said gently cupping her cheek and stroking her thumb over soft skin. "The side where Cassidy can get away with saying yeah and Carline can run through the house screaming because she's overly excited. The side where I get to do things like this," Andy pulled her chair out to make enough room for herself and settled into the older woman's lap. Her arms wrapped around Mirandas neck and fingertips scratched softly at the back of her neck along her hair line.
"Huh, you're right, I'm entirely too soft with you," she smirked and kissed Andy roughly. Their lips pressed firmly together briefly before the CEO's teeth nipped and pulled at the agent's bottom lip. The brunette gasped and Miranda took advantage by sliding her tongue passed bruised lips plundering Andy's mouth. As they kissed, Miranda's fingertips gripped her hips almost painfully.
Their lips broke apart and they leaned against one another. "That wasn't quite where I was going with all of that."
"No?" Miranda asked raising a perfectly manicured eyebrow.
"No. I was trying to express how ironic I found it to be that sketching so perfectly matches your personality."
Miranda hummed, "well, are you complaining?"
Andy rolled her eyes. "What kind of question is that?" She received a punch in response. "Ouch," the brunette rubbed her thigh where Miranda had pinched her. "That's rather rude don't you think?"
"No, I think it's rude you complained about my kissing you."
"Not complaining, for the record, I was just saying I hadn't intended to make out with you when I started that conversation. I never said I was unhappy about it," Andy kissed the former blonde slow and deep. "Let's watch a movie," she suggested when she pulled away again.
"I can think of other things to do," the CEO grinned sliding her hands along Andy's ribs.
"Later," Andy promised.
"Does that mean I get to have my way with you?" the older woman's eyes sparkled.
"When don't you?" She pointed out.
"Fair point," Miranda conceded.
Andy pulled her from the chair and into the living room. She picked an older movie that was in black and white and the two of them settled on the sofa. Andy lounged with her head in the CEO's lap. Miranda threaded her fingers through the long chestnut locks very nearly putting the agent to sleep.
A commotion from outside made Andy jump awake. It was dark, the movie was long over, and they had both fallen asleep at some point. She carefully removed herself from Miranda's grasp and quietly walked to the laundry room in the shadows. The moon was high but it was still dark enough she could move without being seen. She had the weapon out in seconds. The gun was cool in her sweaty palm. Movement in her periphery caught her attention and she crouched low to the floor.
She was careful as she peered through the back door window when she felt someone tap her shoulder. She jumped and fell forward slightly. Turning to look behind her the brunette saw Miranda leaning against the door frame smirking. "Jesus, Mira," Andy placed a hand over her heart. She was very glad that the safety was still in place.
"It's just a bear," the CEO pointed.
"What?" Andy popped up and looked outside. Sure enough there was a black bear along the edge of the woods. "Well then," she picked a fake piece of lint off her shirt.
"Aww, you're so cute," Miranda teased.
"Alright, lady," Andy glared and put the gun back. "That's enough out of you," she sighed heavily. Almost every night this week, she's seen something outside and has gone for her gun only for it to be an animal of some sort; a fox, a deer, a mountain lion, and now a bear.
Miranda held her hand out for the younger woman and waited for her to take it. Andy slipped her larger more calloused hand into a small delicate one. "I hate this," the older woman said when they finally got to the bedroom. "All of it. I can't see or call my girls, we're stuck here in the middle of nowhere."
Both women quickly changed. They pulled the sheet and blankets out from under the pillows and slipped under the covers. "I'm sorry, I know it's not ideal."
"Andréa, we've been here for a week, every sound or slight movement of shadow has you reaching for your gun. You haven't talked about how this makes you feel, it worries me."
"You want to know what I'm feeling?" Andy asked pulling the woman she loved to her chest to spoon her. They tangled their legs and the younger woman softly moved her nose against Miranda's neck.
"Always, darling," she replied.
"I'm thinking that this can't be over soon enough. I'm tired of hiding and running. I'm tired of feeling like I have to look over my shoulder or wonder if today might be it for one of us. I'm scared and I don't..." her voice cracked and Miranda turned in her arms. "I don't like being scared."
The former blonde wiped the tears from Andy's cheeks and kissed her gently. "I'm not going anywhere and neither are you."
After another week, Andy decided they needed to go into town. She was incredibly bored and needed something to keep her occupied. They walked along the quiet sidewalk through down town peering into the little shops and boutiques. The brunette spotted a music shop that sold instruments and Miranda smiled following her into the small store. An older gentleman sat behind the counter. He was thin but not frail with expressive brown eyes and grey hair. If the agent hadn't known better she might have confused him with her grandfather. A slight pang registered in her chest but she pushed it away and smiled. "Good morning, you must be new here or on vacation."
"Vacation," Andy replied.
"Ah, I thought so, I would have remembered seeing a face like yours. Anyhow, what can I help you with this morning?" he asked smiling.
Andy couldn't help but smile in return. The man was just as warm and inviting as her grandfather had been. "I'm looking for something to keep myself busy," she said admiring a mahogany piano in the corner.
"Do you play?" he asked noticing her gaze.
She moved to the beautiful instrument running her fingers along the polished wood. She lifted the lid carefully. The felt was a deep maroon. "A little, my grandfather taught me," she ran her fingertips over the ivory and sighed. "Do you mind?" he shook his head and she sat down at the bench. The brunette played a piece from memory, a piece her grandfather had taught to her when she was young, one she never forgot but rarely played. When she finished, Miranda and the gentleman were both wiping their eyes. She felt something wet on her face and reached up to remove it. Andy hadn't realized she was crying too. "I'm sorry," she smiled weakly.
"Please, don't be," he reassured her. "That was beautiful. Your grandfather taught you that piece?" she nodded. "Walter Sachs was a good friend of mine, I would recognize his work anywhere. I was very sad to hear of his passing, I'm very sorry for your loss."
Her mouth opened and shut again. This man knew her grandfather and well if what he said was true. "Thank you," she took a deep breath.
"You are Andy, correct?" Andy gasped and looked at him with surprise. "He always talked about how talented you were." She nodded again. "He was right, you know?"
"I- thank you."
"Come," he waved for her to follow him. "I have something I think you'll love," he disappeared to the back. Andy briefly looked at Miranda who shrugged and then followed him.
He was standing in front of what looked to be similar to the piano she possessed that was probably made into firewood. The finish was a dark mahogany with the barest hint of red. It had notable scratches and places it was visibly worn as well as a thick layer of dust. She surmised it had once been well used and loved but that it had been a long time since anyone had touched it. "It's beautiful, how long have you had it?"
"Twenty years or so," he replied. "I bought it from your grandmother," she looked up at his words. She had the baby grand her grandfather gave her but this, this was his pride and joy. The piano she got in serious trouble for defacing when she was five. The piano he wrote his songs on. "She had to pay for the funeral expenses and was too prideful to ask any family for help."
Andy nodded with a light chuckle. "Yes, that sounds like oma," she bent down so she could get a better look at the underside. Her fingertips caressed slowly along the right side of the case until her fingers were met with the smooth indent of letters. She gasped and swung herself under the instrument. There in her sloppy scrawl read opa & Andy. Tears pricked her eyes and she closed them tightly. "Why haven't you sold it?" she wondered knowing the Steinway and Sons piano would fetch quite a price.
"I originally had it in the front window and I've had offers over the years but it just didn't feel right. So I brought it back here until the right person came along."
She bit her lip knowing full well she could never ask the man to hold it for her; there was no way she could ever afford it. "Thank you for showing me," she finally said. "Do you have a used digital piano?" she requested trying to hide her disappointment.
She could tell Miranda noticed the change in her demeanor but chose not to say anything. As it was, they were already going to have to ask the nice gentleman not to tell anyone who they were. "I do, came in last week, I'll let it go for a hundred if you like it."
Andy followed him to inspect the small keyboard and nodded. "I'll take it," she agreed and they went to do the paperwork. After it was boxed up, she asked him not to tell anyone who she was or that he knew anyone new in town. He agreed though he looked concerned.
"If you ever need anything, my name is Henry Owens. Come back any time," he smiled.
"Thank you, Mr. Owens," she smiled.
Once they returned to the cabin, Andy immediately cleaned up and prepped the keyboard for play. It wasn't as rich sounding but it still served to take some of the stress away. Andy got so lost in her enjoyment of the instrument that she didn't notice Miranda observing her or that she had taken Henry's card and pocketed it for later.
"You really are quite good," Miranda complimented softly.
"Nowhere near as accomplished as my grandfather was."
"He sounds like a remarkable man."
"He was," Andy agreed. "Hard working. Loved life and his family. That piano was his pride and joy. I remember when I was five," she turned to the CEO. "I took a letter opener and carved his and my name on the underside of it. I got in so much trouble. But you know what he did?" Miranda shook her head. "He carved it deeper, smoothed out the rough edges, and preserved it," her fingers had long since stilled over the keys simply hovering in midair slightly above them. They were shaking until Miranda took them in her own. "I miss him so much, Mira, and I lost the one thing that made me feel connected to him," she cried as Miranda pulled her close.
"I know, darling. I'm so sorry."
Andy shook her head. "Not your fault," she sighed and wiped her eyes.
"Yes it is. Not only did you lose that but you lost your home because of me," the CEO said feeling guilty.
"No, my apartment hasn't been "home" in a long time. I will grieve for my piano but you are home. You and the girls, wherever you are, that's home."
OMG! I am so sorry it’s been so long. I’ve been working tons of overtime and just haven’t had the energy to write. Fortunately for all of you, I have like five chapters written, I just need to edit. So there will be lots of posts this week and weekend. Thanks for sticking with me!
The brunette was situated on the couch with her head resting in the older woman's lap as they watched a black and white movie. It was one of her favorite classic romantic comedies, the Philadelphia Story with Katherine Hepburn and Cary Grant. She was having trouble focusing on the screen, however, due to the rhythmic stroking of the older woman's fingers against her scalp. Her eyes felt heavy and she tugged on Miranda's hip. "Lay down with me," Andy asked sleepily. Odd sounds had kept her up the night before and she was extremely tired and in need of a nap.
The CEO shifted and scooted down into a comfortable position so that the brunette could cuddle against her side. Andy tucked her head under Miranda's chin and threw her right limbs across the former blonde's body. The older woman had quickly discovered this was a favorite position for her lover when they watched movies. Her other favorite was the previous position with her head in the older woman’s lap. The CEO pulled a blanket down from the back of the couch and covered them. Andy was asleep in minutes.
She was jolted awake by a familiar sound from outside and nearly smashed her head against Miranda's chin. She propped herself up on the armrest trying to make sure she didn't startle the other woman. It sounded like someone knocked over a trash can, which very well could have been another bear. So the brunette tried not to panic but the last two weeks had been almost too quiet. Like the quiet before the storm as the animals took shelter or left altogether. Animals were strangely intuitive.
The sound of breaking glass is what prompted her to lean up and shake Miranda. The CEO jolted awake and Andy quickly covered her mouth. The brunette moved to place her forefinger over her own lips to signal to her lover to be quiet. She pointed in the direction of the bedroom and the two of them carefully got up. Andy ushered Miranda to go ahead and turned her body toward the noise backing her way into the room.
Once there, the agent soundlessly closed the door keeping her hands rested in the wood and took a deep breath. She shook her head when Miranda placed a hand on her shoulder and turned off the lights. Her mind was racing with strategies. It only took seconds for her to assess the situation. She didn't know how many of them there were. Miranda's best option was probably to hide. She also knew she should call for backup via radio. She pushed herself away from the door. "Get the radio, call for help," Andy stated in a low whisper leaving little room to argue. The younger woman moved around on autopilot unlocking her gun, checking her rounds and extra ammunition, and started to place the holster over her shoulders.
"What do you think you are doing?" Miranda whispered harshly.
Andy turned to the woman she loved with her eyes wide and replied simply. "My job, Miranda. I'm doing my job."
"You can't be serious," the former blonde shook her head.
Andy slowly backed her toward the bathroom attached to the bedroom. "I am deadly serious. My job is to protect you, it always has been and always will be no matter what the situation is," she sat Miranda on the toilet entirely thankful that there were no windows in the room as she kneeled. "Now, you're going to call for help and stay here."
"But I-" Andy grabbed her face with both hands forcing their eyes to meet.
"No, you will stay here or so help me," the brunette muttered and kissed the woman hard. She broke the kiss and leaned her forehead to Miranda's. "I can't be worried about where you are while I'm trying to protect you. Please, stay here." The CEO gave a curt nod. "I love you." The older woman hooked an arm around Andy's neck and brought their lips together again. The brunette carefully removed herself from the CEO and sighed closing her eyes.
Miranda grabbed her wrists as Andy stood up and the brunette gasped softly at her rough grip. "Don't you dare die," the former editor demanded.
"I wouldn't dream of it," the brunette replied with a cocky smile. "This door stays locked." She said and closed the door. She waited until she heard the click. In reality she wasn't sure if she would die or not as she held the cool smooth metal in her hand and readied her weapon. That's why she told the woman she loved her. She grabbed one of the pillows from the bed and waited behind the bed in a low crouch. When the door opened, she sprang into action. Whoever was at the door obviously wasn't expecting to be attacked and so she easily took them by surprise as she rammed her right shoulder into their chest. She heard the breath leave their lungs as they hit the wall together.
A hand reached out grasping her shirt as she tried to regain her balance. She had dropped her gun when they both hit the wall behind the door and she was trying to locate it while keeping her enemy in place. She must not have hit them hard enough because she soon felt a hand grasp her throat roughly. Her air was immediately cut off and she was slammed against the opposite wall. The hit knocked the wind from her lungs and before she could react she was being lifted off the floor. The hand around her throat was very obviously male; the strength was a dead giveaway. Her vision was slightly blurry from hitting the wall so hard and quickly losing oxygen. She had to do something quickly. The door to the bathroom opened slightly and Andy made her move.
Pulling her dominant arm up she brought her elbow down on the arm connected to the hand holding her enabling her to dislodge the hand from her throat. She coughed and fell to the floor while the man recovered from his shock at what she had done. She had little time to recover as he charged her and slammed her back against the wall hard enough to leave an indent. She gasped in pain but her thoughts of protecting the infuriating woman who completely disregarded her request overpowered the discomfort and she rammed her elbow into his back. He fell to the floor and she immediately maneuvered away from the wall to give herself more space as he was starting to get up. He growled and lunged at her but she was able to stay just out of his grasp. Then, he noticed Miranda and smiled a crooked slimy evil smile. Andy moved as fast as her feet would take her and placed herself in front of the door. "Over my dead body," she huffed.
He cracked his knuckles. "Oh, that can be arranged." His voice was familiar but she couldn't place it. "I'll kill you first and make her watch, helplessly as you die," he growled and lunged for her but Andy was quick. She ducked out of the way and yanked the door shut again. She would deal with her woman later after she'd beaten this lug of meat. She swept her leg knocking him off his feet and was on him before he knew what was happening. She punched him square in the nose breaking it. Blood gushed over his face and her hand but she didn't let up until he was able to get his hands out from where she had pinned them with her legs.
He caught her left arm and yanked until she heard a pop and screamed as pain erupted from the appendage. She tumbled off him and fell to the floor. He had literally pulled her arm hard enough to dislocate her shoulder. She struggled to get to her feet and then the wall for support before feeling him ram his shoulder into her back as her face connected with the wall. She heard a crack and gasped. Even though it was just a rib it still hurt like a bitch. She allowed him to yank her to the floor landing on her good shoulder. She would need to use her legs to beat him.
The agent pulled her knees up and used both feet to kick him in the chest as he got ready to attack. He staggered back on his knees and fell over clutching his chest because she'd knocked the wind out of him again. She used the brief respite to wrap her legs around his neck. Her knees locked together as her shins cut off his air supply. He struggled but she didn't budge until his struggling had long subsided. She kicked his body away from her and slowly pushed herself back to the wall for support. She took a minute to catch her breath eyeing the damage to the room. Andy immediately spotted her gun and picked it up as she pushed away from the wall.
The door to the bathroom slowly opened and Miranda appeared. She gasped and rushed to Andy but the brunette stopped her. "I told you to stay put, I meant it. I can't have you interrupting my thoughts."
"What? I was just concerned."
"I know," Andy sighed and winced as she tried to straighten up. Her arm was useless unless she could get it back in place. "But I make mistakes if I'm trying to keep you safe and you don't listen to me. Those mistakes come at a cost, Miranda." She sighed and took a deep breath as she prepared herself for putting it back in. She slowly lifted her arm over her head and reached for her good shoulder. Miranda winced at the popping noise and Andy sighed with relief. "I need to know you're safe, Mira. If I don't, then, I panic and if I panic I can't think straight. If I can't think straight I make mistakes. Those mistakes lead to one if not both of us being seriously injured or worse." She said turning toward the CEO. "Now please, stay in the bathroom."
Miranda nodded. "Hastings is on her way," she stated and slowly made her way into the bathroom locking the door again.
Andy sighed and pulled her gun from its holster. Her arm was sore but at least she could actually use it. She had to figure out how many of them there were. No one had come charging in at all the noise they were making so there couldn't be more than a few. She checked the hallway first, then each room before moving to the living room and kitchen but everything was clear and no noises could be heard. Had the other taken off when they heard her fighting? She wondered and doubted it but found no one else in the cabin. She quietly made her way outside. There was an unfamiliar car parked across the lake she hadn't seen before but it could have been family visiting.
Andy got low to the ground and began to check the perimeter. It seemed as if the man was alone but she'd rather be safe than sorry so she made her way to the edge of the woods. It was quiet, too quiet. The next thing she knew she was on her stomach warmth running over her chest, shoulder, and arm. She muttered a few choice words and attempted to get up but gasped as the pain suddenly swept over her. "Jesus mother fucking Christ," she yelled. No use in keeping quiet if she'd been shot. Someone clearly spotted her and judging from the amount of blood seeping from her shoulder down the front of her chest that someone was behind her.
"Andy, don't make me shoot you again," she heard a female voice from behind her. It was harsher than normal but she recognized it. "I'm only here for her," she said.
Andy turned and found a gun pointed at her head. She kept her arms at her side as she stared at a colleague she’d worked with for a very long time. "Tash, you don't want to do this," she said carefully. "Think about your family."
"I am thinking about my family!" She screamed back. "That's all I think about! He said he'd hurt them, Andy! If I don't do it," she shook her head. "I have to do it."
"No you don't, we can protect you!"
"What? Like we protected you and Miranda and her girls?" She asked incredulously. "You are blind!"
"What are you talking about?"
"Hastings is the mole Andy! She's been feeding me info for months!"
"You're lying!" Andy screamed at her.
"Am I?" Tash laughed. "Use your head Andy; she's the only one who knows everything about all of us!"
"She wouldn't do that! We're her team!"
"Yeah, we're her team, well you are anyway. She loves you. Andy this and Andy that. It's always about you! It's always been about you!"
"Are you... jealous?"
"Oh for fucks sake! That doesn't matter. He's got my family Andy!"
"Let us help you! Let me help you."
"If I don't kill her he hurts my family!"
"And if you do he'll kill you too! You're just a loose end to him Tash! You're better than that! You're better than him! This isn't you! You are not a murderer!"
Tash sighed and dropped her gun. "You're right," she cried.
Andy immediately went to her friend and comforted her. "We'll do all we can, I'll do all I can."
"Andy, I'm so sorry!" she cried.
"Well, I guess that makes us even since I kicked your ass at paintball all those years ago," Andy joked and the two of them laughed together. And then the laughing stopped, Tash jerked sideways, Andy closed her eyes, and her friend was limp in her arms. Warmth was splattered on her face and the brunette screamed when she opened her eyes. She fell to her knees with Tash cradled in her arms. "No," she shook her head. She was so caught up in what she was going to tell Tash's family she didn't hear anyone come up behind her.
"Andy, Andy, Andy..." a voice mocked her.
It was another familiar voice. She looked up and shook her head. "No," she whispered.
He shrugged at her. "Karoff has eyes everywhere Andy, you should know that. The FBI is no exception."
He sighed and shrugged. "What can I say? He pays me three times what the FBI does. Get up," he said waving the gun.
Andy slowly put Tash down and stood. "Frank, you don't want to do this."
"Actually I do, because you're a pain in my ass. Every promotion I've been passed over for you." Andy's eyes briefly flicked to the SWAT team behind Frank but quickly flicked back to the gun currently in her face. "I had to wait an extra year to get my own team and I've been in the bureau longer." Frank lunged forward and dug his fingers into Andy's wound. "Too bad Tash missed," he force through his clenched teeth. "But I won't."
Just as he was about to shoot her, one of the SWAT team's snipers put a bullet in his head. He fell to the ground with his eyes still open staring at her. Another shot rang out and Andy fell to the ground. Frank must have had an accomplice other than Tash. "Find that shooter!" Hastings yelled and went to Andy's side.
The brunette coughed and turned her head spitting the blood that had pooled in her mouth. That meant her air way was compromised somewhere. "Miranda," she clutched at Hasting's sleeve. Her chest was on fire as she wheezed.
"We found her in the bathroom, she's fine," Hastings assured her.
"Tash..." Andy's eyes teared and she shook her head.
"I know," her boss sighed. "Frank I knew about but Tash..." she shook her head. Andy coughed again. "Just hang in there Sachs, I need a medic over here!" she yelled over her shoulder.
"She said... you..." Andy sputtered.
"I'm sure she did," Hastings sighed. "I was feeding Frank information, wrong information obviously. He nabbed Greg a few days ago and beat him to a bloody pulp. When he found out Greg had been here, it was first on his list. He visited a music shop in town; apparently an older gentleman accidentally let your name slip."
"Is fine, a little roughed up but fine."
Andy nodded and coughed again but tried not to spit too much blood when she saw Miranda. "Mira..."
"Andréa! Darling," the CEO rushed forward and knelt by the brunette.
"Where is that EMT?" Hastings yelled. A young woman rushed over and muscled both women out of the way. "We'll meet you at the hospital, Andy."
"I'm riding with her," Miranda stated.
"You can't, ma'am," the EMT replied working in getting the wounds packed and putting Andy on a stretcher.
"I wasn't asking," Miranda replied with a glare that shut the EMT up and got in the back of the ambulance with the brunette.
Andy woke up to a dark hospital room and three figures were curled up together on the bed beside her. She felt like her mouth was covered in cotton as she tried to speak. Her head was slightly spinning which meant she probably had major surgery. She reached around for the call button for her nurse and pushed it. A minute or so later, a nurse opened the sliding door to her room. "Ah, you're awake. I'll let the doctor know and get you some water," he said and returned shortly with both.
"Agent Sachs," the doctor greeted. "I'm Doctor Rosche. You were quite lucky. When they brought you in, you had a collapsed lung, three broken ribs, a broken nose, a dislocated shoulder that was poorly put back in the socket, a concussion, and two bullet wounds. I'm honestly surprised you're awake right now. You'll be just fine obviously." She nodded. "I'm recommending light duty and a desk job seeing as one of the bullets nicked your heart and we had to patch it."
By the time he finished explaining, Miranda was awake and looking at her as if she were about to disappear at any given moment. "So when can I get out of here?" she asked.
"A few days if you're able to stay with someone. You'll still need about a month off before I sign off on light duty."
"She'll be staying with us," she heard from the doorway. Andy's brown eyes met similar ones in the doorway.
"Andy, we were so worried when Miranda called to tell us," her mother was by her side in seconds followed by her father.
"You can't stay with me seeing as I don't currently have a residence other than the townhouse and we are not planning to return there. This gives you the opportunity to rest and spend time with your family," Miranda smiled.
"Thank you for calling them, but I, and please don't take this the wrong way, I don't want to stay with them. I told you, you and the girls are my home."
"Darling, you need to stay somewhere you are familiar with and can rest. A hotel will only increase your stress."
"Why don't all of you stay with us?" Andy's father suggested. "We have the room. It will give Andy all the things she needs to recover and we'll all get to know each other better."
"You can't fight that logic," Andy smiled.
Miranda's mouth fell open and she went to say something but the brunette was right. "No, I suppose you can't," she finally agreed with a smile.
Andy stood at the window in the library staring out at the graying sky. It was supposed to rain which she supposed matched her mood the last few days. She spent most of the first week out of the hospital sleeping. Hastings was sure to call her to let her know when they had picked up Karoff. He was currently awaiting his trial date in Rikers thanks to a very competent attorney who managed to get his bail revoked. Tash's funeral was yesterday and she had gone by herself refusing Miranda's company. The brunette had just wanted to go on her own.
- Funeral -
Andy stood on the far end of the cemetery not wanting to get too close. She could see Tash’s family huddled together. Little Reid was hanging on to Robin’s leg as she tried to console the little boy. She sighed and pulled her jacket tighter to ward off the rain. She saw Hastings and a few other colleagues along with some people she didn’t know personally but she knew worked at the bureau. None of them knew that it was Tash who shot her first. She didn’t want that to be the way the woman was remembered by her family. She just lost her way a little bit and they deserved to remember her as the caring and smart woman she was.
A figure stepped up next to her and was quiet. Out of the corner of her eye, she could see that it was Greg. “How are you?” he asked quietly. Apparently, he didn’t want to draw any attention to himself either.
She turned to him briefly noting the bruises on his face and shrugged turning back to the ceremony. “Fine I guess.”
“Never would have imagined things going down the way they did. I’m sorry,” he sighed and slicked his hair back.
“Don’t worry about it,” she replied crossing her arms. “It wasn’t your fault. I’m just glad Henry wasn’t hurt too badly.” She had checked in on the sweet old man. He was staying with his son in Buffalo until he was better and could return. He was incredibly contrite and Andy had told him there was nothing to be sorry for and that she was glad to have met him. She really hoped she would see him again.
“How’s the nose?”
“Better than yours,” Andy shrugged. “How’s the shoulder?”
“Better than yours,” he smiled. “You planning on going over there?”
“No,” she sighed. “I don’t wish to disturb them. I said my goodbyes before everyone got here.”
He hummed in response and turned his attention back to the scene. He twirled a rose in his hand and stepped forward. “You should talk to someone,” he urged her gently. “I know you don’t think you need to but…” he paused and looked over his shoulder.
“Trust me; I don’t need a reminder of what happened. I was there.”
“I know,” he sighed and left her alone.
She watched him walk towards the casket and thought about her last words to Tash. At least they could share one last laugh together. The brunette shifted on her feet and stretched her shoulder. A police squad was lined up along either side. That’s how the two of them met. Tash was an NYPD officer and got a job with the bureau because she couldn’t imagine her life without Robin. Each officer raised a gun filled with blanks. They shot together. Andy shuddered and closed her eyes. Each shot caused her to jump and squeeze her eyes shut. She always hated taps.
- Present -
"You seem lost in thought dear," her mother said softly handing her a cup of tea. The brunette nearly jumped out of her skin. “I’m sorry, are you alright?”
"Thank you," Andy replied taking the offered mug with a sigh. She really hoped that she wouldn’t continue to startle so easily.
"Do you want to talk about it?" the older Sachs woman asked.
"Not particularly, no. I watched a good friend get murdered right in front of me."
"You should speak with someone."
"I will before I go back to work. The doctor will need to clear me physically and work will have to make sure I am mentally fit for duty."
"Okay, if you don't want to talk about it that's fine. Why don't you tell me about Miranda and the girls?" Andy looked at her feeling her lips turn up slightly. "Ah, I know that look," Virginia said teasingly. Andy rolled her eyes at her mother. "Oh come on, I hardly ever see you. I have to get my teasing in sometime."
"You’ll be seeing much more of me from now on.”
“I know and I am thrilled, but indulge your mother.”
“Very well, yes you are correct. I am very much in love with her and the twins."
"You're very good with them and I believe they feel the same about you." Andy nodded. "So, when's the wedding?" Virgins asked brazenly.
"I haven't asked her yet. I wanted to ask the girls first."
"Awe that's sweet of you, dear. You know, I have your grandmother's ring..." her mother said waking towards the stairs. Andy perked up and followed. "You could repurpose it into something new, I doubt she would mind."
"Miranda loves vintage, so it just depends on the condition it's in and if I think it's sufficient," Andy replied from the doorway. Virginia dug around her jewelry box until she found the felt box it was housed in. The ring itself needed a bit of polishing but Andy could tell it was a gorgeous piece of jewelry and Miranda would probably love it as is, but the brunette found herself wanting to make it an original piece. "I think it's beautiful, but I would like to add some personal touches."
"I'm sure your grandmother wouldn't mind."
"Speaking of grandparents. I found opa's piano," Andy said painfully. "I wish I could buy it back. It meant so much to him and I lost the one he gave me in the fire," she frowned.
"I saw the fire on the news," Virginia sat down next to her daughter. "I was so worried and imagine my surprise when she called and told me you were in the hospital. I thought the worst.”
“She told me you planned to get a desk job after this and I was shocked. Do you think she’s the one?”
Andy nodded solemnly. "She definitely is. I can't imagine putting her through all of this on a consistent basis," she twisted her fingers and sighed as she briefly felt guilty for putting her mother through the same thing.
"You really love her, don't you?"
"Yes, I do. I think maybe on some level I always have. I knew in Paris when we were there for fashion week, I even confronted her about it. She hurt me pretty deeply but we obviously worked that out and I knew she would react that way so it wasn't like I was unprepared for her to lash out at me. But if I really think about it I admired her from the start because she's a self-made, strong, independent woman. My job quickly became about what made her happy or how I could make her day run smoothly."
"Oh dear, you have it bad, don't you?" her mother laughed softly. Andy nodded in agreement. "So where do you want to go to get the ring restored and make changes?"
"Giovani's maybe," she shrugged. "They did a really great job on your set."
"I think that's a fine choice. Do you want to go today? I can take the day and go with you," she offered.
Andy nodded. "As long as you're sure you don't need to be at the hospital, I would love the company."
"Of course dear, let me just get you a warmer coat. It's a bit chilly today and I don't want you catching a cold or getting an infection."
"I'll just go change. Miranda had some clothes delivered for me."
Andy decided on the Calvin Klein skinny jeans, a pair of brown Tory Burch riding boots that Miranda got her as a gift, and beige Burberry sweater. Her mother held out a black wool coat which she took without complaint. "Miranda spoils you," her mother laughed recognizing her shoes.
"Mhm, although I have to say the clothes she finds for me are quite comfortable."
"And you let her?"
"Have you met Miranda? There is no letting her. She does whatever she wants whenever she wants and makes no apologies for it. And she shouldn't unless she's in the wrong, in which case she promptly apologizes."
"You're very protective of her."
"She's misunderstood. People think she's just an ice queen who steps on the little people because she demands perfection in her professional life. If she were a man, no one would dare say anything about her methods. She's not perfect, far from it, she has faults just like everyone else but if she were to show any sign of weakness the vultures would swoop in and eat her alive. People don't get it, what women in power have to do to keep that power."
"I'm glad you understand her. You're good for each other."
"She challenges me in ways that no one ever has. She's intelligent and likes to carry on a conversation. We enjoy the same things," Andy said simply. "We both love the girls and each other."
"I'm really glad you found each other. She's really a remarkable woman; youngest ever to reach editor, CEO of a national publishing company, mother of twins. I am amazed by her, truly. And I don't think she'll take any of your bull shit."
Andy laughed heartily forgetting her wounds and winced but nodded in agreement. "Yes, she calls me on my crap just like she does with the twins, but I also get away with quite a lot too."
"Of that I have no doubt; you were always able to talk your way out of anything."
"Do you remember the time that Jill and I rode our bikes all the way to Brighton Beach? You were so mad and Jill kept telling you it was my idea because I wanted to meet up with some college boy and you wouldn't even hear of it because she was older and knew better?"
"I remember. I also remember finding out later it wasn't a boy but a girl who was a decade older," her mother laughed. "You were such a trouble maker."
Andy shrugged. "Someone had to keep you on your toes," she replied and emerged from the car after they parked.
They walked into the small shop and the doorbell went off signaling to the workers that someone had entered the shop. "Virginia! Darling, it's so nice to see you!" Giovani said in a heavy Brooklyn accent.
"What brings you in today? Normally I see Richard in here looking for a present for you."
"Andy is looking for something special. I'll let her tell you."
"Well, Andy dear, let's see what you've got in mind," he motioned her toward the counter. She took out the box and opened it revealing her grandmother's ring. "Ah, this is a gem. Are you sure you want to change it?"
"Miranda is a very unique woman who deserves a very detailed and unique ring," she replied.
"Alright, why don't we go over to the case here and take a look? I'm guessing you want to keep it vintage."
"Yes, modern isn't her style."
"I know of Miranda. She's very classy," he commented as he browsed. "Ah, here we go," he pulled three rings from the case. "Take a look at these two bands. This one has a cross crossed pave design that makes it look like the stone is sitting on top of a flower. This one is a classic vintage design with very intricate metal work. Which do you think she would prefer?"
"I like the metal work on this one, can you do something similar with several stones at these points?" she pointed where the designs came together.
"I think so, yes. Do you know what stones you'd like? And what about the setting?"
"For the side stones do you have something in the blue family?"
"I have several small tanzanite stones, they look like this," he said pointing to an intense violet blue stone.
"Wow, maybe a pink stone instead? Pink sapphire maybe? The blue is quite striking; I'm just not sure it goes with the rose gold."
"I think you're right, I can do pink sapphires instead."
"As for the center stone, I'd like a one and a half carat round cut diamond."
"Very good, I assume you want the best clarity and color I have available?"
"Yes, at least a VS2 if not better and colorless."
"Understood, I'll need to order the diamond but as soon as it comes in, I'll let you know. I can get to work on the band this week."
"Can you keep me in the loop? I'd like to really be a part of the creation of this ring."
He smiled and nodded. "Of course, I'll call you as soon as I finish the band."
"Great! Thank you Giovani!"
"You're welcome, Virginia, always a pleasure. Send your husband in will you?"
The older Sachs woman laughed. "Oh, don't you worry. Our anniversary is coming up soon!" she called over her shoulder as they left.
Back at the house, Virginia helped Andy shower and change her bandages. "I'm good to get dressed," Andy smiled at her mom.
"If you're sure."
"Yeah, I'll be down in a few minutes," she assured her mom.
"Okay, I'll get started with dinner."
Andy nodded and went about getting dressed. She moved carefully to avoid causing herself too much discomfort. Her chest wasn't really all that sore but her shoulder was. The doctor said she had to continue to use it and start doing things on her own though or her muscles wouldn't get stronger. She decided to just put on her pajamas for the night and then headed down stairs.
She moved beside her mom and started chopping the vegetables for the salad. The girls and Miranda were home first followed by her dad. The twins each hugged Andy and then her mom which made the brunette smile. The CEO kissed her cheek before following her dad into the library to talk about stocks while they finished dinner.
After dinner, Andy asked the girls to stay behind and help her clean up. "So, I have something I wanted to ask the two of you," the brunette said as she washed a plate and handed it to Cassidy to rinse who handed it to Caroline to stack.
"Okay," they said together.
"What do you guys think," Andy washed a bowl and handed it to Cassidy. "Of your mom and I getting married?"
"Really?" Caroline asked excitedly.
"Careful with the dish, sweetie," the brunette reminded.
"You mean you want to marry mom?"
Andy laughed softly at Cassidy and hushed her. "Not so loud, but yes. I'd like to marry your mom. I love her and both of you very much."
"I think it's a great idea!" Caroline said placing the bowl in the drain board.
"Well, I am happy to hear that," Andy smiled. "What about you Cassidy?"
"Does that mean you're going to be our other mother?"
Andy had to keep herself from laughing but smiled. "If you want me to be; or I can still just be Andy. It's entirely up to you girls. I'll love you no matter what."
"I guess that's okay," Cassidy shrugged.
"You guess?" Andy screeched and took a handful of bubbles. "I'm going to need a better answer than that missy," she said with a mischievous grin and plopped the scoop of bubbles on the taller twin's head causing her to scream.
"Andy!" Cassidy yelled and tried to run. Andy grabbed the girl around the middle and started tickling her. "Yes, yes! Okay!" she giggled and squirmed against the brunette. She felt her shoulder burn indicating that she was overdoing it and let the redhead go.
"That's better!" Andy huffed and looked up to see a rather upset Miranda in the doorway.
"Uh oh..." Caroline looked down at her feet and Cassidy clasped her hands together.
"Caroline! Cassidy! What did I tell you?" she asked sternly but calmly. "No rough housing!"
"Don't be mad at them, Mira."
"Oh don't you worry, darling, you'll get yours," she warned. "Baths, brush your teeth, and off to bed, now." She said pointing over her shoulder. "And you," she pointed her finger at the brunette. "The doctor told you to take it easy."
"Oh come on, Mira, we were just playing around. I'm fine."
"You're out of breath; your heart was just surgically repaired! Are you trying to die?"
"Don't be ridiculous," Andy smiled. "I'm a survivor," she wrapped her arms around the former editor.
"You really scared me this last time. I almost lost you," Miranda cried. They certainly did not need any reminders of the brunette nearly dying before arriving at the hospital and then on the table. "Don't make me feel like my emotions are not relevant."
"I would never do that," Andy sighed setting her chin on top of the older woman's shoulder. "I love you."
"And I you darling," the CEO replied.
"I think we should start looking for a house," the agent said after a while.
Miranda looked at her and moved a lock of chestnut hair that fell out of place behind her ear. She kept palm against her cheek caressing softly with her thumb. "Are you sure?"
Andy nodded. "I'm done waiting Mira. I want to start our life together."
"We are together darling. I just want to be sure you're ready."
"Oh, I'm definitely ready. I love my parents and I'm gratefully they've been gracious enough to let us crash here but we need our own space. The girls need some consistency. And I think this is a good first step."
"Well then, I'll set up an appointment with a realtor. Where do you want to look?"
"I've always loved Brooklyn, probably always will but that can come later. I know you like living in the city."
"Darling, I have a driver. Living outside the city really isn't that big of a deal. I hear West Brighton is nice."
"Miranda, are you crazy? It would take us hours to get into the city."
"I'm just saying, it doesn't have to be Manhattan, darling."
"Alright, we'll look based on what we can afford. Why don't we call Doug and he can run some numbers for us based on income and our expenses."
"That sounds fair."
Miranda hummed. "Let's go to bed." Andy and Miranda said good night to the brunette's parents and climbed the stairs to their guest room. "I'm still mad at you."
"I know," the agent smiled softly. "You're allowed to be."
"You bet your sweet behind I am."
Andy rolled her eyes and removed her pajama bottoms. "Yours is nicer," she smirked and slid under the covers.
Miranda pulled her tight to her front and nuzzles her neck. "You're such a charmer."
"What can I say? I'm a natural," she laughed.
"Indeed you are."
So this is a longer chapter, I hope it makes up for the months I went without publishing anything for you all to read. I want to thank all of you for sticking with me. This is going to end up being a pretty long story I think. I had thought of breaking it up but it just makes sense to leave it all together. As always, R&R. Enjoy!
Andy was fidgeting as she waited outside Dr. Furthoffer's office. She was the bureau's psychiatrist and needed to clear the brunette psychologically before she could return to work. The agent hated this part of her job; where someone probed her brain until they thought they found the answers they needed. The door opened revealing a tall blonde woman with green eyes and glasses. She reminded Andy of a supermodel that Miranda might work with. "Andy, are you ready?" the doctor asked.
The brunette nodded, "Yes, Dr. Furthoffer."
"I've told you before, call me Bridgette," she smiled and waved the agent into her office. Andy shut the door as the middle aged woman walked around her desk and picked up her notepad. "Couch or chair?"
Andy but her lip and decided to go for the couch. She generally hated speaking to quack doctors but she had to concede that maybe she needed to. "Let's get this over with," she sighed as she plopped on to the sofa.
The blond chuckled. "Always so eager to get this over with aren't you?"
Andy shrugged. "Only because I normally want to get back to work," she explained.
The doctor crossed her legs. "You say it's normally because you want to get back to work. Does that mean it's different for you this time?"
The brunette nodded. "I've never really been anxious about work. Sure I've got a touch of anxiety, a need to always be moving," the doctor nodded in agreement noting the agent was shaking her leg. "But this is different," Andy sighed and ran a hand through her long hair.
"Why is it different?"
"I almost died."
"You've been in harms way countless times and if I recall there was an incident several years ago that nearly got you killed. What's different now?"
"And who is Miranda?"
"My life partner."
"And why does she make it different?"
"Because I love her," the doctor could tell she was going to need to coax it out of the brunette.
"Do you not love your parents? Siblings? Friends?"
"Of course, but this is different..." Andy sighed frustratedly.
Andy stood and paced. "I love her so much. I mean I love everyone else in my life but I've always loved my job too. This is the first time I've ever questioned if this is the right job for me when I want so badly to be with Miranda and have a family."
"You love her more than the job," the doctor stated with a small smile.
"And why does that make you anxious to return to work other than the reason you just listed."
"That I'll die."
"Were all going to die," the doctor said softly.
"Yes, but if it happens while I'm on the job," Andy shook her head. "If I leave her all alone, she will never forgive me." The doctor waited. "I'm afraid she'll hate me," Andy sighed collapsing on to the couch and putting her head in her hands. "And I wouldn't blame her. I'd hate me too," she cried.
"Andy, this woman loves you, yes?" the brunette nodded. "Then, even if she did hate you for a time, she would have no choice but to forgive you. Grief manifests itself in different ways for everyone. Yes she would be angry and depressed but she would eventually accept it and forgive you for leaving her."
"I just..." Andy sighed. "I've never wanted to do anything else in the bureau other than what I'm doing."
"Until you met her?" Andy nodded. "I know it's hard because you've been by yourself for basically a decade or more but you've found someone you care deeply for; someone you'd like to have a family with. It's only natural for you to feel like your job is too dangerous because you want to make sure you're around for them. There's nothing wrong with that."
Andy was quiet for a moment. "I'm not even sure I want to stay in the bureau anymore..."
"Don't get me wrong, I love my job. But there are much safer passions to explore."
"While that is true, do you really think you'd be happy giving this up?"
"No, I suppose not, at least not right now anyway."
"You are transferring to profiling, correct?"
"That will get you out of harms way while still proving to be of use and getting criminals off the streets. That is your main aim with doing what you do, besides a sense of duty, yes?"
"I suppose," Andy agreed.
"Well, why did you request the transfer? Because of Miranda?"
"Any other reasons?"
"Besides the fact that I didn't want to put her through what we went through the last few months for the rest of my time in the FBI?" the doctor nodded. "The twins, Miranda's daughters. They're my family. They mean everything to me."
"And in what ways did you do this for yourself?"
"It was hell not speaking with anyone I was close to for so long."
"It's normal for the longer undercover operations to begin to wear on the agents. I'm quite impressed you lasted as long as you did, most people with family are done after one lengthy mission."
"It's not that I don't care about my family..." Andy sighed.
"I wasn't implying that was the case. You are a very strong individual, Andy. We all need human interaction, especially from those important to us." The doctor paused waiting for the brunette to get comfortable before suggesting a new topic. "Let's talk about Natasha and Frank."
"I could careless about Frank, he was a misogynistic pig. I feel bad for his family, but there is no love lost between us."
"Alright then, Natasha. What was your relationship like with her?"
"She was a friend. Not a close friend but a work friend, you know? She was someone I could talk to who would understand what I was going through." Andy paused gathering her thoughts trying to suppress the memories of scents gunpowder and blood. There was so much blood.
The brunette shook her head. "I'm sorry."
"That's alright, why don't you tell me what you were thinking about?"
"That night. I remember it so clearly, like it just happened. The scent and feel of blood on my face."
"She died in your arms?"
Andy nodded. "Frank shot her in the head. One minute we were laughing and the next she was limp in my arms."
"How does that make you feel?"
"I was shocked then but now I'm angry and sad that a woman as intelligent and caring as her is gone and her family will not have any more time with her."
"She shot you, didn't she?"
"Yes, but she felt like she didn't have a choice. I had talked her down. She just lost her way a little bit, you know? She wasn't that person. I just had to make her see that she had a choice. That she needed to think about her family."
"It seems to me that a lot of your actions lately stem around family."
"Tell me about them." Andy launched into a long explanation of how she met Miranda and the girls, how they made her feel, and what she was willing to do to keep them in her life. She also talked about how hard it had been being away from her own immediately family and friends. She'd felt isolated and was slowly realizing she was depressed about her career choice because as much as she loved it she felt like she was alone. "Well, you're certainly fine to go back to work if you chose to. I would recommend taking an additional week to get used to the idea though."
"I may just do that," Andy said standing. "Thanks for the talk doc."
"You're welcome. You could also teach, in sure the academy would love to have your wealth of knowledge."
"I can't leave New York. It's home and my entire family is here."
"A university then. Think about it."
Andy pondered the idea. It wasn't a bad one. There were plenty of universities in the area that had a criminal justice department. She wasn't sure that teaching was her forte but the doctor was right. She did have a lot of knowledge to impart on younger generations.
Andy took the doctor's advice and decided to help Miranda for a couple weeks before going back to the bureau. During the first week, she conducted interviews for her replacement. She ended up hiring a new assistant, Grace, who was an intelligent recent college graduate with a bachelor's of fine arts in fashion marketing and management. She would be starting next week. The brunette contacted a friend of hers about a possible position at Auto Universe be it permanent or contract. The woman said she would have to think about it but since it involved cars, Andy knew she would likely say yes. Doug called her to confirm their appointment later in the day to go over the budget. The realtor confirmed their appointment for tomorrow. She was just finishing up Miranda's schedule, adding her check up appointment, when her phone rang.
"Elias Clarke Publications executive offices, this is Andy speaking," she greeted pleasantly.
"It's Emily, we have a situation," the brunette could hear the desperation in her voice. "I need you to not tell Miranda anything."
"Don't worry Em, I'll just tell her I'm stepping out to run an errand and meet you in Nigel's office, okay?"
"Hurry!" the Brit urged.
Andy laughed lightly and hung up. Best not to get on the redhead's bad side. She knocked on Miranda's door and let herself in knowing she was perusing the magazine budgets before the meeting with Doug. "Hey beautiful," she smiled and kissed her cheek. "I need to run a few errands, are you okay here?"
Miranda hummed delightedly at the touch of Andy's lips and nodded. "I'm fine, everything is ready for the meeting. I trust you'll be back by lunch? I'm craving a steak salad."
"I'll order on my way back," the brunette assured her. "And you really should eat less red meat. It's not good for you."
"But darling, it tastes so wonderful."
Andy rolled her eyes. "I'd like you to live a long time too you know."
"I tell you what, if you make a little extra for dinner and there are left overs, I will try to bring them for lunch."
"Alright," the agent sighed knowing that was as good as she was going to get. "As long as you'll try, that's all I ask. I'll see you soon."
"Wait," Miranda said as she was pulling away. "You forgot something," she smirked.
"Mhm, and what would that be my love?" She leaned over the desk resting a hand on the mahogany and the other in the back of the CEO's chair.
Miranda snaked one arm around Andy's waist to pull her closer and the other around her neck to pull her down to eye level. The brunette could tell the older woman was in desperate need of sexual release from her darkening eyes. She had been very patient while Andy healed and with her next check up she would find out if she could begin to be more physical. Stormy eyes flitted from chocolate orbs to plump lips and back. The agent slowly closed the distance as she licked her lips.
Their lips crashed together in a heated kiss. Miranda's fingers finding purchase along the back of Andy's neck and scratching the base of her spine. She shivered moaning softly and brought both hands to either side of the CEO's face holding her in place. God she loved this woman. They broke apart breathing heavily and the older woman caressed the side of her neck just along the pulse point below her jaw for a few seconds instantly calming the younger woman's heart rate. Andy sighed contently. "That is such a neat little trick the doctor showed you."
Miranda hummed. "Indeed, perhaps this next visit you'll be cleared for something a little more... interactive," she raised a brow suggestively.
"Good lord I hope so, I love you."
"I love you too, darling. Now go, so I can get some work done."
"Alright," she sighed and straightened up. She put a little extra sway in her hips as she was leaving knowing Miranda couldn't help but ogle her backside as she left because her skirt was so tight.
As soon as she was back in her area, Andy grabbed her purse and phone and made her way down three floors to Runway. She saw a few familiar faces on her way and said hello but didn't stop until she reached Nigel's office. She let herself in and closed the door. "What's the emergency?"
"Miranda's birthday is coming up. She usually hates putting up a fuss but with everything that's happened we want to do something."
"And if I help, she won't kill the pair of you?"
"Well, she still might, she is Miranda after all," Nigel smirked and Andy laughed. These two were bold, she'd give them that much.
Andy spent most of the morning plotting with her friends, calling catering companies, and making a list of people to invite. They decided on only the most important and influential people in Miranda's professional life would be included since they were planning for this to be a more intimate and personal party outside of Elias Clarke. She left just before noon and called in an order for her and Miranda. She had a macadamia crusted chicken breast and salad while Miranda would eat her steak tip salad. At least it was a salad, Andy sighed hoping the woman really took her words to heart. The last thing the brunette needed to worry about was whether or not her soon to be fiancé, she smiled to herself thinking of the ring she was designing, would be around long enough for their children to have children.
After lunch, Andy continued her afternoon in Miranda's office leisurely looking through the magazine's finances with Doug. "Miranda, have you considered a book publishing company or possibly a Runway spinoff?" the financial advisor wondered.
"I have thought of it, yes."
"Acquiring a book publisher would diversify your portfolio a little bit and generate good will. Paper copies and brick and mortar stores are becoming extinct. You would gain a lot of publicity for saving a struggling publishing house."
"What about Daring House?" Andy suggested. "I've heard through the grapevine of assistants that one of their big investors pulled out. The owner is in dire need of an influx of cash."
"I'll discuss it with the board at our next meeting. I'm sure that Rodger would greatly appreciate the liquid injection so to speak. Thank you, Andréa." Andy nodded. "As for a Runway subsidiary, it always has been and probably always will be our most successful magazine. Adding more to the family wouldn't hurt."
"Actually, Doug and I conducted an online survey. Men's Runway and Teen Runway were a huge hit as opposed to fresh magazine brands. Sixty percent of men polled said they would read Runway if it was more masculine and of those seventy percent would read it for fashion. Some topics they would like to see besides fashion are health pieces and sexual pieces. Ninety percent of people polled between the ages of twelve and twenty-five said they would read the teen edition if it was all inclusive. So additional fashion choices such as punk rock. There's also a young man I believe that would be a great addition to the team for Teen Runway. His name is Ryan Dunn. He's a very talented make up artist from Mississippi."
"I believe I recently saw a piece on him in Seventeen magazine."
"You did and it would be a good idea to snatch him up regardless of whether or not you decide to do the Teen edition."
"These are all very good points. Thank you. I certainly hope your replacement is as resourceful."
"Don't worry, Grace has a degree in fashion marketing and management. I have a feeling she will be a great asset to you. And she's not quite as cheerful as myself or as cynical as Emily. She's right in the middle with a healthy dose of sarcasm."
"Wonderful, so I'll get twice the amount of sass," the CEO rolled her eyes. Andy simply shrugged. "Douglas, can you still make our dinner meeting?"
"Yes, I confirmed with Andy this morning. May I bring Nigel?"
"Of course! He'll want to help decorate anyhow," the older woman smiled. Something she was doing far more often since the brunette had come into her life.
"Great, well then, I'll see you ladies in a few hours. I have some paper work to finish up at the office," he said standing.
"Bye Dougie! See you later!" Andy hugged him.
"I'm so glad you're not undercover anymore," he sighed. He had been missing his best friend. "Oh, Nate and Lily are in town next week and want to get together. Do you think it will be slow enough at the office for you to meet us?"
"Definitely, I'll just be shadowing the person I'm replacing and refreshing my skills."
"Great, see you tonight. Enjoy the rest of your day!" he said as he left.
Andy sat across from Miranda and slouched into the chair trying to ease the tension in her shoulders. While work would probably be fairly slow for her from here on out, she was still a bit anxious about returning. The next thing she knew, Miranda was in front of her and leading her towards the couch in the corner of her office. "You are far too anxious, darling. Sit," the older woman positioned herself beside Andy and pulled her body tightly to her chest.
The brunette felt herself relax almost entirely as the hug lasted longer and longer. Her heart rate and breathing slowed to an acceptable rhythm. She hadn't even realized she had been on the verge of a panic attack until she was calm enough to think properly. "Thank you," she sighed into the embrace.
"You're welcome, darling. It's just about time to go pick up the girls. Why don't you text Roy and we'll head out a little early?"
"That sounds nice."
"Good. Let me just finish gathering my work laptop and we can be off." Andy nodded and reluctantly let go of the older woman before texting Roy.
"Roy will be here in ten minutes, there was some light traffic," she informed the woman and gathered her own things as well.
Andy spent the car ride glued to Miranda's side even after they picked up the twins. It wasn't until they arrived at her parents house that they finally parted. Miranda took the girls to get a treat from the kitchen while Andy disappeared upstairs to take a nap. The brunette woke up to a light touch along her cheek and opened her eyes to find bright cerulean ones staring back at her. "Hi," she said sleepily.
"Hello," Miranda smiled and ran her fingers through wavy chestnut locks. "I love your natural waves."
And smiled. "Good, because your hair cut is sexy as hell."
"Is it now?"
"Mhm, don't ever change it."
"Well I was thinking about it but now I definitely won't," she joked.
"What do you want to wear to dinner?"
"I'm feeling adventurous and my bandages are smaller now so I think that green Dolce dress you found for me would do nicely."
"Of course, you'd pick that when I can't do the things I want to do to you in it."
"Just think, it's great foreplay," Andy smiled and Miranda smacked her arm. "You should wear that sky blue one," the brunette suggested. "I may as well suffer with you, right?"
"Cheeky, but fair," Miranda smiled and kissed her softly. She moved to the closet and retrieved the dresses while Andy slowly removed her clothing. When Miranda turned back around, she paused. The younger woman felt her skin burn with a fully body blush but ignored it. Miranda could look all she wanted as she stripped down to her underclothes. The older woman shook her head and helped Andy into her dress. She slowly zipped the back trailing her knuckles along the tanned skin of her back. "You are beautiful," she sighed kissing the skin where her neck and shoulder met.
Andy smiled. "Thank you, sweetheart. You are quite something to admire as well." Miranda smiled back and got dressed while Andy prepared her makeup in the bathroom. "Would you mind?" she asked holding out a necklace.
"Of course, darling," she took the two strands and lifted it over the brunette's head clipping it together after she swept her hair aside. Lips caressed the back of her neck causing a shiver to run down Andy's spine. "Exquisite."
"Flattery will get you everywhere in about forty-eight hours," Andy laughed.
"I think a long bath is in order when we get back from dinner," Miranda sighed dreamily just thinking about it.
"Agreed," Andy smiled. "You look gorgeous by the way. I love that dress. Actually, I'm jealous of that dress."
"Oh darling, me too."
Nigel and Doug met them for dinner at a quaint upscale restaurant in Brooklyn that Andy suggested. It would allow them to dine privately with little interruption as compared to dining in the city, which if she was honest, was a relief to the older woman. They spoke of personal and professional topics throughout dinner and completed their meal before ordering dessert and getting into details about their finances. "So, Dougie, what can we afford?"
He wiped his mouth and set the napkin in front of him. "Well, honestly? Just about anything. I'd say the only thing you couldn't afford is your own personal island in Fiji," he laughed. "But seriously, it just depends on how you want to split your finances."
Andy thought for a minute before speaking. She didn't want to say the wrong thing. She knew Miranda had a lot of money and that she was fine with using it for the both of them but Andy wanted to feel like she was contributing too. "I would feel better discussing the specifics behind closed doors when we get home but give me a number for now, Doug."
"You can afford any neighborhood in and outside of the city. You'll want to consider ones with the best schools obviously but there really is no limitation unless you place it yourself."
"Alright then," Andy sighed and took a sip of wine. She knew Miranda was looking at her but thankfully she decided to drop the conversation and move on to embarrassing Nigel.
They enjoyed dessert and decided instead of calling Roy to pick them up they would walk back. It was nice enough even though it was chilly but the cool air did wonders for the agent's nerves about the upcoming conversation. Miranda waited for her to bring it up while the two of them got ready for their long luxurious bath.the older woman added some oils to help calm the brunette and got in. Andy stopped in front of the tub, taking in the beauty of the woman waiting for her. Miranda offered her hand and the brunette took it using the assistance to settle herself between the older woman's legs. She sighed contently as the water warmed her and the scent travelled to her nose. She breathed deeply and leaned her head back on Miranda's shoulder. The older woman ran her hands along exposed skin pulling up warm water to make sure she stayed warm. "I think we should discuss how much we would like to spend on a house considering our incomes."
"As Doug said, my net worth is considerable. We can literally afford whatever you want, but I would like you to be comfortable. This will be our house, not my house."
"I definitely don't feel comfortable relying on just your income, but I also don't make nearly as much as you. I also know we have the girls to think about and possibly future children so a good school is a must. I think that we should consider areas that have the best schools whether they are public or private."
"I agree with that. And what do you think about price?" Miranda asked gently while massaging the brunette's shoulders.
"I make a little over a quarter of what you do and that's probably being generous. I'll make more once they make me head of profiling but it still won't make much of a difference. I'd feel more comfortable if we used, say fifty percent of our income towards the numbers and see what we can afford from there. I don't want anything extravagant but I won't stop you from vetoing anything you feel is too mundane. I know you're taste in decor and such can be expensive."
"How about this? We'll cap the mortgage at two million, according to the numbers Doug ran that puts us at about ninety-five hundred a month as a payment if we get the four percent interest rate. If we open a combined account for the house, incidentals, and other couple related expenses we can each keep a personal account that can be used as we wish. Maybe withhold thirty percent of our earnings for our personal account and combine the rest?" she suggested.
"That sounds fair."
"Good, then we have a ceiling, but I will compromise. If we find something we love that is less, I am okay with that too."
"Thank you and I'm willing to compromise too if it has everything we want," Andy smiled and closed her eyes. Miranda kissed her temple and moved her hands down her arms. Deft fingers massaged cool flesh instantly warming it. She made sure she steered clear of any areas she knew would turn the brunette on and kept her touches firm and controlled. "You're going to put me to sleep," Andy muttered softly.
"Let's get out then," she gently pushed the younger woman forward and got out. She carefully dried off and followed Miranda to the bedroom. She was already dressed for bed and Andy put on her pajamas. "Lay with me," she motioned the brunette over to her and wrapped her arms around the taller woman so that every inch of their bodies were touching.
"We should have a yard," Andy yawned.
"And a big kitchen, I want a big kitchen. Ooh with a double oven."
"Whatever you want, darling."
"A place for a new piano once I've saved up enough," she sighed sleepily.
"Of course," Miranda agreed readily.
"What about you?"
"A huge office and library."
"A waterfall shower and tub big enough that the water covers both of us." Andy hummed in the affirmative. "A pool perhaps. If not, definitely a hot tub," she smiled at Andy's soft snoring.
Apologies for the delay, I would promise another chapter soonish, but we all know that's near impossible lol. Thanks to everyone who has stuck with me and left such wonderful comments or kudos or bookmarked this.
Andy sat on the exam table and waited for her doctor while Miranda took an important phone call. "How's my favorite patient?"
"I'm good! No discomfort or pain in either of my lovely new additions," she joked.
"Yes, I've noticed you have quite the collection. How are the palpitations? Have you noticed any in the last few days?"
"No but I've been working on keeping my heart rate down using the techniques you suggested."
He wrote down a few notes before replying. â€œThat's good, continue to monitor it and let me know if they return. When are you going back to the bureau?"
"I was cleared this week but I waited an extra week to get my anxiety under control."
"Good, let's see those incisions then," he said and she unbuttoned her shirt. They've been uncovered since they healed over though she's had to be careful not to overdo it and pull them apart. He touched the areas to check for tenderness and inflammation of which he found none. "Looks good."
"Does this mean I can finally have sex again?" she asked bluntly.
He laughed. "Yes, you can resume exercising," he said as the door opened to reveal a smiling CEO.
"Thank God! You have no idea how hard it's been for us to keep things cooled off."
"Oh, I understand. I just had a valve repair done myself not too long ago. Just remember if your heart rate gets too fast you'll need to do that thing I showed you. If it doesn't help, you get to the emergency room right away."
"Will do, doc", she said buttoning up her shirt. "Thanks!"
"You're welcome, Andy. And no offense but I hope I never see you again," he added as he pushed back on the stool and stood up.
"Me too!" she hopped off the exam table.
They climbed into the SUV and Miranda told Roy to go back to Elias Clarke. "I need to go back to the office."
"Really? I was just cleared for sex; can't you skip it?" the brunette all but whined.
Miranda laughed heartily. "I'm glad to hear that but no I can't. The board wants to discuss my proposals."
Andy sighed, "Alright, I guess I can wait a little longer."
"Wait in my office," Miranda instructed as she got out of the car and made her way into the building. She sent a flirtatious smile of her shoulder and winked. Andy immediately followed and did as she was told.
It took three hours for her to finish but sure enough, Andy was in her chair behind her desk when she opened the door. "Finally! So, what happened?"
"We're a go on acquiring Daring House, they loved the idea. I'll be meeting with acquisitions and their CEO next week. Teen Runway and Men's Runway were discussed, they want me to pick from the current Runway team to get it started. I had Nigel and Emily join me for those discussions and suggested that young up in coming makeup artist you told me about. They loved the idea of bringing him on for Teen Runway."
"That's great, Mira," Andy smiled.
"It is," Miranda nodded and turned to lock her office door. Andy wet her lips and gasped at the hungry gaze directed at her when the former editor turned around.
"Jesus," Andy breathed and gripped the arm rests of the chair. Her stomach clenched as the older woman approached. Andy was very glad that Miranda's new office had a real door and not a glass one. The older woman slipped herself between the brunette's legs and sat on the edge of her desk. The paisley wrap dress she was wearing rose higher uncovering strong thighs. Andy couldn't help her reaction. She flew from the chair not caring if it clattered to the floor and lunged for the woman's lips. The kiss was all teeth and tongue as her hands gripped Miranda's hips and lifted her fully onto the desk.
The older woman pulled away ignoring the brunette's protest and immediately pulled her head to the side to gain access to the agent's neck. Miranda drew sighs and gasps from Andy's now unoccupied mouth as her lips, teeth, and tongue worked the skin. She left marks carelessly, claiming the brunette as hers. She drew a long deep moan as she sucked at the pulse point of the brunette's neck and felt her skirt being pushed up. Hands gripped her thighs pulling their bodies flush against each other and she gasped as the younger woman rolled her hips. "I need you," she moaned when teeth pulled at her ear.
Andy quickly had her dress open and bra off as she kissed her way down to her chest. She pushed her panties aside and groaned at how wet Miranda was before thrusting two fingers into her. The CEO leaned back on one hand and fisted a handful of chestnut locks in the other as the brunette attached her lips to a rock-hard nipple. She rocked her hips in time with each thrust as Andy fucked her gasping and moaning the entire time for her to go harder, deeper, faster. The brunette felt her own wetness pool in her panties and clenched her thighs together to try and relieve some of the built-up pressure. She needed to come soon or she just might spontaneously combust.
She rubbed her thumb over Miranda's clit and moved her mouth to lavish her other breast. Her lips, teeth, and tongue stiffening it into a hard peak almost immediately. The hand in her hair clenched and pulled her mouth away only to be plundered by the skilled tongue of her lover as she came hard. Andy gladly swallowed her screams and kept her hand moving until she slowed and collapsed on the desk. "Fuck me," Andy was breathing heavy and holy shit did she need to get off.
"I intend to, darling," the CEO smirked wolfishly. "I just need a minute, I'm not as young as I once was."
"Oh, stop it," Andy smacked her thigh. "You're beautiful. Sinfully so." Miranda laughed and sat up. "So, I guess you don't mind your board hearing you scream..."
The older woman glared at her but it only served to turn her on further. "They left before I came in here. I made sure it was just us. Don't think that because we're together I'll allow you to fuck me in the office during work hours."
"I love it when you curse," Andy grinned.
"You love it when I'm bossy too."
"You got me there," the brunette confessed. "I fucking love it but you already know how wet it makes me."
"You have such a dirty mouth on you," Miranda chided.
"And you love it."
The older woman hummed. "I think you need to put that mouth to appropriate use."
Andy cocked an eyebrow and crossed her arms. "You're seriously demanding I give you another amazing orgasm before I get one?"
"Darling, I will give your orgasms all night long," she accentuated the all.
"Fuck," Andy moaned and reached for the chair she was previously sitting in. She scooted as close as possible and yanked Miranda's underwear off. She dropped them behind her somewhere not caring and pulled the older woman's hips toward her. She wasted no time in using her mouth to build Miranda up again. She alternated between long and slow licks and quick short ones. She teased with her lips and teeth gently pulling the bundle of nerves before letting it go and flicking her tongue across it.
"AndrÃ©a..." the CEO moaned and placed her feet on either side of the chair before wrapping her legs around the brunette's head.
She slipped her tongue inside and began bobbing her head to a silent beat and her nose brushed Miranda's clit. Fingers gripped her hair and hips rose to meet her mouth. Expletives dropped from a normally very ladylike mouth and Andy increased her pace until Miranda was saying her name over and over like a prayer. Andy slowed her movements and licked her up and down avoiding her sensitive bundle. She waited for the older woman to regulate her breathing. Her chest finally stopped heaving and she was resting with a light sheen of sweat glistening on her skin.
Miranda shivered and Andy slowly gathered the woman into her arms pulling her down from the desk and onto her lap. She kissed her cheeks, neck, chest, and anything else her lips could reach. "You are amazing."
"I'm glad you think so, but I need you to fuck me right now," Andy demanded.
"I suppose I did promise, didn't I?"
"Why don't you look in my lower left drawer."
Andy cocked her head but did as she was told. Her eyes widened and she pulled the toy from the drawer. "You've been planning this," it wasn't a question.
Miranda smiled. "You've been quite the naughty little minx, teasing a dragon to near madness. I think some punishment is required."
"Miranda, this is huge! I can't..."
"You can and you will," Miranda stated as she began unbuttoning the brunette's shirt. Hands snaked under her shirt and nails scratched at her shoulders lightly.
"Fuck," Andy groaned. "How big is this?" she asked examining the shaft. It was very real looking and rippled with veins. Just the thought of Miranda using it on her made her center clench in anticipation. But the girth, she shook her head. She could barely wrap her hand around it.
Andy's eyes met hers. Miranda was grinning mischievously and clearly had every intention using the dildo. When it started to hum in her hand, the brunette nearly jumped. "Holy shit."
Miranda ran her tongue along her jaw. "Remote control," her voice dropped an octave and the agent slammed her eyes shut. She found herself nodding to the silent question because she trusted this woman. "Good," Miranda took the appendage and set it on the surface of the desk. She moved from the brunette's lap and then pulled her up. She pushed her gently towards the desk and slipped behind her. "Shall I take you from behind against the desk or on it?" Her breath was hot against Andy's ear causing her stomach to do flips and a moan to escape her lips. "Answer me, darling."
The agent sighed and gripped the desk. Hands slid down her sides and gripped her hips roughly as Miranda proceeded to grind against her backside. Her knuckles went white. She knew if she didn't answer she'd get neither but Miranda was making it hard for her. "Mira..." she gasped as teeth bit into the flesh of her shoulder after sliding her shirt off. She slowly explored the younger woman's torso alternating between light and rough touches.
"I'm waiting," she licked a path along the column of her neck occasionally nipping.
"Behind..." teeth sank into her exposed shoulder. "Oh God, behind..." Miranda smirked and moved her hands to unzip the designer jeans. Deft fingertips pushed the heavy fabric and panties down Andy's hips. She followed her hands with her mouth leaving open mouthed kisses on flushed skin. The CEO kneaded her buttocks and bit into the soft round flesh. "Mira..."
The older woman stepped back slightly ignoring the whimpering protest from Andy as she positioned the strap on and then the dildo. Miranda stood behind her pulling her body tight to her chest and cupped her breasts. Thumbs brushed over sensitive nipples and fingers tweaked them into hard peaks. She wanted to taste them but that would come later. Andy had let her head fall back to Miranda's shoulder and to the side. Lips attached to her neck. The older woman leaned forward causing Andy to put her hands out to catch herself. She was bent at the waist opening her legs just so to give the CEO access. The brunette was about to succumb to begging when the dildo was placed at her opening. She was more than wet enough by now.
Miranda dragged her fingers through slick folds and coated the dildo with Andy's wetness. "Oh God, Mira, please..." She repositioned her feet and slowly pushed her hips forward. Andy hissed at the stretching but the older woman was gentle. She waited for the agent to get accustomed to the sensation before pulling back a little and sinking into her further. Andy thoroughly appreciated that Miranda was slowly and gently acclimating her to the large dildo but she needed to come and she needed to do it soon. The brunette hooked a foot around her ankle. "All the way," she demanded.
Miranda gasped. "Are you sure, darling? I don't want to hurt you."
"Miranda, I'm so wet for you, please, I need..." she whimpered.
"Alright, okay," the former editor soothed Andy with kisses to her back and soft caressed to her hip. "I'll go all the way in and you move when you're ready, okay?"
Andy nodded and Miranda slowly pushed all the way inside her. The brunette could feel herself stretching to accommodate the girth of the dildo and hissed at the slight discomfort. It quickly disappeared though and she ground her backside against Miranda's center. Andy moaned loudly. Seeing that she was ready, Miranda pulled the phallus out to the tip. The brunette whimpered at the loss and then groaned when she felt the member hit her cervix. It stretched and rubbed her inside walls delightfully.
The older woman leaned down pressing her front to the brunette's back. Her hands pinched and pulled at rock hard nipples. Andy gripped the edge of desk and rolled her hips as she met each of the CEO's thrusts. "Fuck, Mira..." she half moan and half whined. God, she was close. Miranda gripped her hips and helped her keep a steady rhythm as her body started to shake. The former editor reached for the remote and turned the vibrator onto pulse causing the brunette to curse loudly. Andy could feel the phallus pulsating within her as her walls clenched around it. She forced her hips to start moving again. Her hands balled into fists. Words were minced and intermingled until she was incoherently muttering. Miranda bent forward again knowing her lover was just shy of one of her most explosive orgasms and pushed sweat soaked hair to the side. "I want you to come for me, AndrÃ©a," she hummed in a low register against the brunette's ear. Miranda proceeded to nip her ear and make her way down her neck until sinking her teeth into the skin at the base of Andy's neck.
"Fuck... fuck... Mira... oh God..." Andy felt it coming but when Miranda reached around her and started to flick her clit with her thumb it exploded. One hand stayed balled into a fist while the other reached back to grip Miranda's hip. "Don't... stop..." she moaned.
"It's okay, let it go," Miranda mumbled against sweat coated skin.
Andy's walls slammed down around the member. "Fuck!" she cried out as her body stiffened, her back arching towards the older woman.
"That's it, come for me," Miranda kissed her jaw. The hands on her hips continued to help her ride out the first wave of her body's reaction keeping her at the edge after it subsided slightly.
The older woman changed the vibration setting to steady keeping her hips still. Andy jerked and moaned. "Fuck..." her breathing was coming out in quick gasps and whimpers as Miranda began moving again. She turned the setting to high and the brunette screamed her name as she came hard. Wave after wave crashed around her as the member continued to vibrate and her walls contracted around it. "Fu...ck..." she cried. Miranda turned the vibrator off but continued small gentle thrusts with her hips until Andy was left a whimpering mess. She moved to pull out but the brunette stopped her. "No," she all but whined. She wasn't ready to feel the loss of the phallus inside her just yet.
Miranda kissed the back of her neck and sighed contently. "You are so beautiful when you come," she said with a small amount of awe. Andy could only hum her response. "Let's move somewhere more comfortable, shall we?" she asked.
Andy gave her a nod in the affirmative and gasped when Miranda pulled the dildo out. She suddenly felt very empty. The CEO helped to guide her over to the couch and pulled her down so the brunette was laying on top of her. Deft fingers threaded through chestnut locks soothing the agent into a rather relaxed state. Andy threw her leg over Miranda's and heard a whimper from the older woman. She picked her head up just enough to meet her eyes. "You're close again, aren't you?" she asked with a small smirk.
Miranda sighed but nodded. "The position the harness keeps the dildo in is made to rub the wearer's clit," she explained. Andy carefully pushed herself up and swung her leg over Miranda's hip. "Darling, what are you doing?"
"I'm going to give you another orgasm," she smiled and kissed the former blonde deeply.
Miranda groaned into her mouth when she felt Andy's hand wrap around the dildo and move it. The brunette broke the kiss and sucked the spot just below her ear. "Aren't you exhausted?"
She hummed next to Miranda's ear. "Correction, I was exhausted," she replied drawing back slightly. She wanted to see her lover's face. She slid her body along the CEO's feeling the member hit her still engorged clit. Miranda's eyes never left her as she took the phallus and ran it through her slick folds coating it. Andy met her eyes as she lined up the dildo and sank down on it to the base. She groaned as it hit her cervix and Miranda gripped her hips.
Chocolate eyes locked on stormy cerulean and held. It was an intense gaze. Andy braced herself with either hand on the arm rest behind Miranda's head and started to roll her hips. Each time she rolled forward they'd both gasp. Her movements were deliberate and quick as she built up a rhythm. She held herself up with on hand and moved the other to Miranda's cheek. She brushed her thumb across a high cheekbone. "I love you," she panted.
"I... love you too..." Miranda groaned when Andy forced her hips down. The base of the dildo pressed against her clit roughly sending a jolt through her body. The brunette leaned forward claiming the older woman's lips and only broke the kiss when she felt Miranda's hips jerk. Andy cried out and ran her hand along her lover's neck, chest, breasts, and stomach as she straightened her back. Miranda took the hand trailing along her abdomen in her own and intertwined their fingers.
As Andy rolled her hips, Miranda would occasionally thrust upward sensing jolts of pleasure through the brunette. Her head fell to the side, her long hair spilling over her shoulder as her body arched. Her breasts just waiting to be touched. The CEO's free hand alternated touches and attention on Andy's breasts as they bounced. "Fuck...Mira..." her hips bucked wildly forgetting the pace and simply seeking as much friction as possible. Miranda felt the beginnings of an orgasm tighten in her belly and canted her hips. Andy gripped her fingers tighter and ground down harder until she was chanting her lover's name and threw her head back. Miranda had never seen a sight so glorious as the brunette coming undone and felt her own orgasm rock through her.
Andy's hips rolled until Miranda placed a hand on her thigh to stop her. The brunette groaned and collapsed on the older woman still breathing heavily. The former blonde wrapped her arms around her lover and sighed. They were both sweaty and exhausted but they couldn't stay here with no blankets or a shower and they both really needed a shower. "Best surprise ever," Andy tried to control her breathing and get her heart rate down.
"Deep breaths, darling," Miranda reminded her. Andy followed Miranda's instructions and inhaled deeply and followed it by exhaling a long breath but it wasn't working. Her heart was still beating wildly. Miranda sat up and placed a hand over her heart when she saw panic cross Andy's features. "It's okay, just breathe with me. I'm going to massage your neck okay?" The brunette nodded and felt the firm pressure of Miranda's forefinger and middle finger as they rubbed the spot the doctor showed them. "Is it helping?"
Andy shook her head and gasped. Her heart fluttered and then raced. A sharp pain shot through her chest. "Mira..." she winced.
"Okay, we need to get you to the hospital," Miranda turned her over and withdrew from her lover. Andy hardly noticed as she moved around like a blur gathering their clothing. She helped the brunette get dressed and then dressed herself after telling Roy to pick them up. She then dialed the doctor and informed him of what was going on. Miranda guided her as they walked stopping only in the elevator to wait for the lift to take them down to the lobby. Roy was waiting for them and had the door open. "I'll double your bonus and pay any tickets you get. I need you to run red lights and not stop until we get to the hospital."
"Yes, Ms. Priestly," he tipped his hat and shut the door once they were inside.
Miranda carefully buckled them both and pulled the younger woman to her chest. She was pale and sweaty. Her pulse was pounding and breathing labored. "Hold on, darling," she held her tightly stroking her hair.
Andy was panting and using Miranda for support when they entered the emergency room. The older woman had her right arm wrapped around the brunette’s waist. "You!" the CEO pointed. "Find Doctor Rosche!" the nurse only faltered briefly before running in the opposite direction.
Thankfully the doctor appeared rather quickly knowing they were on their way in. "It's a good thing you called," he said out of breath. "I need a gurney over here!" he took Andy from Miranda and the older woman sagged slightly. “How long has this gone on?” he asked pressing the stethoscope to Andy’s chest.
"I'd say a little over an hour and a half," the CEO sighed.
"Why did you wait so long?" the doctor was bewildered.
"We were rather occupied doing some vigorous exercising," Miranda gritted through clenched teeth.
"What could have..." he stopped speaking remembering the question the brunette had asked earlier. "Oh!"
"Yes, oh," Miranda rolled her eyes.
One of the nurses placed a gurney in front of them. "Thank you," he smiled and helped Andy sit. "Just lie back, were going to take your vitals quickly," he nodded to the nurse and the two of them moved her to a trauma bay.
He ordered several tests while the nurse hooked up a heart monitor. "Her heart rate is a hundred and seventy-one beats per minute."
"Damn, okay, what have you tried?" he asked the older woman.
"Deep breathing and massaging her neck."
"Get me a basin of ice water, fill it with as much ice as you can," he instructed the nurse. "Andy, I need you to take a deep breath and hold it for me," he instructed when the nurse reappeared. “Okay, good. Now, dunk your face in the water. Hold your breath as long as you can and then come up for air.” He held the basin for her and waited for her to do as he told her. Andy dunked her face into the freezing water and held it there until she needed to take a breath.
She gasped and shook her head water splashing everywhere. "Still fluttering," she coughed.
"Her hear rate is still too high," he sighed noting it went down a bit but not significantly enough. "Get me an IV kit!" he ordered the nurse and then turned back to the brunette. "Andy, I'm going to order you adenosine. It's going to slow your heart down and you'll feel it skip a beat or two. And when I say that I literally mean it will skip and then start again. It will probably hurt," she nodded looking panicked at Miranda who was just as fearful and grabbed her hand. "Push twelve milligrams of adenosine," he ordered.
Andy felt her chest tighten and her heart actually stopped. She paled and squeezed Miranda's hand tightly. "Oh God, I'm going to be sick..." she gagged and covered her mouth with her other hand. The doctor shoved the basin in front of her face to allow her to vomit.
Her heart rate immediately went back up to the one seventies. "Damn it," he sighed. "Get me an echo and chest X-ray." Andy felt chilled from the amount of perspiration on her skin. She gazed at Miranda weakly. "Don't worry, Andy. We'll get to the bottom of this."
"It's never lasted this long," she gasped as her heart fluttered and the rate increased to a hundred and eighty.
"Her blood pressure is dropping," the nurse stated wheeling in the echo machine.
He quickly took it pulled Andy's shirt down. "I apologize but we need to be quick," he said and she shook her head as she shivered. He squirted the gel over her sternum. He used his hand to smooth it over her chest and located her heart with the wand before looking at the screen. "There!" the doctor easily found the electrical path that was causing the supra-ventricular tachycardia. "Take a picture and mark this area."
"Her pressure is bottoming out!" the nurse informed the doctor fervently.
"Get a crash cart in here," he yelled. "Andy, we're going to shock you," he explained as he held out his free hand and willed the cart closer.
"Won't that stop her heart?" Miranda asked him in a high-pitched voice.
"Essentially the shock will reset her heart rate and eliminate the irregular beat. Ready?" he asked the agent.
"Wait! What if her heart doesn't restart?" Miranda yelled with wide eyes.
"Then, she is absolutely in the best possible place she could be," he replied. "We'll cross that bridge if we come to it."
"It's okay," Andy squeezed Miranda's hand before letting go so the shock didn’t transfer to her. She gazed at the former editor and watched as her gaze turned warm and her shoulders slacked.
He placed two patches on her chest. "This will leave a small burn mark and your chest will be tender for a few days."
"I'm ready," Andy nodded.
"Charge," the nurse nodded and pressed the button. Andy felt the jolt run through her and winced at the contraction in her chest before gasping. The heart monitor numbers immediately flickered and the brunette's heart rate returned to normal. All those involved collectively sighed. "Alright, I'm going to go in through your neck here," he said drawing a small line in one of her creases. "And I'm going to repair the abnormal pathway so this doesn't happen again."
"How long will I need to stay?" Andy asked utterly exhausted.
"A day, maybe two to be safe. I want to make sure this is taken care of before you go home," he said patting her arm. "The procedure doesn't take long but you'll need to be on these two medications for the next couple of months."
"It could be far worse, darling," Miranda chided softly.
"I know," the brunette sighed.
"When was the last time you ate? We'll need to put you under so you'll need to fast for twelve hours."
"I ate around noon."
"Then, we'll wait until tomorrow morning to be safe. You can eat an early dinner and we'll go ahead and admit you."
"Okay, well then, for my last meal I'd like a steak from Smith and Wollensky," Andy smirked.
Miranda shook her head. "Cheeky," she kissed her softly causing Andy to smile.
Andy woke up from the surgery extremely groggy and sighed. Miranda was by her side in an instant. "Here, have some ice chips," she placed the quickly melting chip on the brunette's lip.
"Thank you," she finally managed after getting half the ice chips down.
"I'll get the doctor," Andy nodded.
"Andy! Good, you woke up earlier than I had predicted. The procedure went well and seems to have worked. You've had a regular rhythm since we shocked you. I still want you to take these medications though," he said seriously.
"You got it, Doc."
"If I still like what I see tomorrow, we'll let you loose on the masses," he smiled. "If you need anything the nurses station is just outside your room. Liquids for now, a light dinner of toast and apple sauce, and I'll sneak you a waffle in the morning," he winked and left.
Andy sighed and rubbed her chest. He was right, definitely tender. "Are you alright, darling?"
"Yes, just tired of waking up in the hospital."
"I'm sorry," the older woman looked away dropping the brunette's hand.
"What do you have to be sorry for?" she asked but when Miranda looked at her with guilt filled eyes she shook her head. "No. Don't you dare. Give me your hand." When the older woman persisted to be stubborn Andy glared at her. "Give. Me. Your. Hand." She enunciated each word harshly and waited until the older woman did as she was told. "This was not your fault. I was cleared to start exercising. You didn't shoot me. You did nothing wrong. Nothing." Miranda sighed and nodded. "Good. Now, I want strawberry Jell-O not that lemon-lime crap."
"Whatever you want, darling," Miranda smiled and kissed her gently.
It took them a little over a month to find the right house. The first few were too small for expanding their family while the others were simply far too drab for Miranda's taste. The two women finally compromised on a six bedroom, three bathroom, three story house comprised mostly of masonry stone and some brick. The beige, brown, and sandy colored stones were a nice counterbalance to the brick. The shutters, doors, and window trim was a rich brown that blended well with the rest of the exterior. The yard was quite big since they were able to find a house with a little under an acre of land and a pool. There was an attached three car garage and detached five car garage. And to top it off, the community they decided on was a gated community with a guardhouse that offered a great deal of privacy.
The master suite was one of Andy's favorite rooms. There was a balcony off the master suite on the third floor that over looked the city and a fireplace with a small sitting area that the brunette simply fell in love with. They incorporated the rich brown and maroon that she decorated most of her apartment in with the soft gold Miranda liked to incorporate both of their tastes. The bathroom was a marvel in itself. The décor was Tuscan with rich yellow, copper, rust, and green stone. All of fixtures were a dark copper or bronze color. The tub was large and set into the floor in the center of the far wall with a stone arch enclosing it. On either side, was a mahogany vanity with sinks for each of them. The shower was in a corner and used the same kind of stone work as the arch over the tub with bronze metal work inlaid in the glass. It wasn't a rainfall shower but that was easily fixed.
Her second favorite room was the den which boasted floor to ceiling bookshelves, two mahogany desks, a black marble fireplace, and a large bay window behind the CEO's desk. It was very much like Miranda's den from the townhouse only larger. Her third favorite room wasn't actually complete yet. They were currently renovating the basement turning it into a large home theater. The seats that the twins requested had motion sensing software that moved and vibrated the seats to make you feel like you were there and in all honesty Andy couldn't wait to try it out with Harry Potter. The kitchen was also at the top of her list. The stone work from the master suite bathroom was carried over to the kitchen. It didn't just have a double oven but two full ranges. A massive island with a farmhouse sink was set in the middle and gave her plenty of counter space. There was also an eat-in-island on the other side. The dinning room was connected to that and had room for ten.
Caroline and Cassidy picked bedrooms across the hall from each other on the second floor. Cassidy decided she literally wanted her entire bedroom to be hot pink. Andy managed to talk her into a hot pink rug and one accent wall while the other walls were a warm grey color and white furniture. Miranda seemed happy with the compromise. Caroline on the other hand wanted turquoise and cerulean which the older woman was ecstatic about and used rich browns to offset the bright color. She also got white furniture.
The house literally came with everything they could ever want. They had to make some sacrifices since it was located in Staten Island. Their commute for instance, changed from about thirty minutes to close to an hour because they'd need to take the ferry and then have Roy drive them from there. The twins would be changing schools though they didn't seem to mind too much and Andy or Miranda would be dropping them off in the mornings. They had to hire a new house keeper but Cara was able to stay on as the girls' nanny. They also had to hire a grounds keeper.
Andy had to compromise on price but was willing to do so when she saw her favorite rooms. The house was spacious and large enough they could add to their family, maybe they could even get a dog.
She was currently staring out the bay window in the den swirling her lemon water. The girls had already gone to bed and she was waiting for Miranda to get home from her dinner meeting with the board. The brunette spent most of her day approving profiles before sending them out to the appropriate agents or teams. It was somewhat tedious but she was actually enjoying it. It allowed her to use her critical thinking skills. She had a conference to attend in a few months in Orlando she was looking forward to, mainly because she wanted to make it a family trip. It was coincidentally going on while the twins were off for one of their breaks. She was already looking into tickets for Disney, Universal, a Titanic exhibit, and several art and natural science
The brunette heard the door open from down stairs and set her glass down. Andy took the ring out of her pocket and looked at it briefly before putting it back in its hiding spot. It had turned out beautifully. Giovani did an astounding job restoring the ring's natural beauty while adding the touches she wanted. Miranda sighed as she entered the den and plopped on one of the leather couches. "I'm sorry it's so late, darling," she sighed tiredly.
Andy heard her kick off her shoes and turned around. "Don't worry love," she waved it off. The brunette knew how busy this week was with the acquisition of the publishing house and kick off of Teen Runway next week. Miranda had been booked solid all week and worked until nearly eight o'clock every night. Andy made sure she was home in time for dinner with the girls, helped them with their homework, and spent some quality time with them. They were currently helping her plan the big surprise for Miranda. "Thank you for everything you're doing around the house," the older woman said holding her hand out.
Andy sat in the corner of the couch and pulled the CEO's stocking clad feet into her lap and began massaging the sore appendages. "You know I don't mind, we all knew what this week would look like for you. Besides, most days you work from home when you can and when you are unable to you are always home before the girls."
"Mmm," she mumbled and hummed at Andy's ministrations. "You have talented hands, darling."
"I know," the brunette smirked as Miranda leaned her head back and closed her eyes. "So, there's this conference I have to go to in December, right after Christmas. I was thinking, maybe we could take the girls and make it a nice family vacation?"
"That sounds wonderful, I'll need to check my schedule though." Andy laughed. Miranda opened one eye and peered at her. "You already did, didn't you?"
"Yes, I called Grace when I found out to see if you had anything important that could not be moved."
"Seems you are quite free that week."
"Wonderful. You've already begun planning I presume?"
"You presume correctly," Andy confirmed kneeling a particularly sore spot that was extremely tense. "Point your toes for me," Andy instructed and worked her fingers along the older woman's arch.
"Oh God," she moaned with relief. "You are an angel," she said when the younger woman was finished.
Andy chuckled softly and stole a lingering kiss. "You're overworked and tired, possibly delusional. You know for a fact I'm no angel."
"Quite right, you're a cheeky woman."
"Mhm," Andy kissed her lips softly and helped her up. "Come on, to bed you go. I packed up a nice healthy lunch for you tomorrow along with breakfast. No more skipping meals."
"Why are you so good to me?" Miranda wondered as they climbed the stairs.
"Because you are just as amazing to me and I love you," she replied easily. "Don't forget you have to leave the office by two o'clock tomorrow."
"Yes, darling. Grace alerted me this afternoon that we were meeting with the caterer for the party."
"Good, we just need to make those last minute changes discussed to swap out one of the meals for a vegan friendly option and go over dessert."
"Are you sure you can't do it?"
"You know I am fully capable of doing it on my own. You wanted to leave early tomorrow because the girls want to watch movies and have pizza so we put it in your calendar."
"Right, thank you, darling."
"You are welcome, my love," Andy smiled and directed her towards the bathroom. "Go on and take a bath, it's all warmed up for you."
"Thank you," the older woman kissed Andy deeply to show her affection for the younger woman. The brunette smiled and gave her hand a light squeeze. While Miranda soaked she changed into her pajamas and got into bed. She was reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, one of her favorites in the series, when Miranda emerged. She waited for her lover to climb into bed with her and get comfortable before continuing out loud and the CEO was asleep in minutes.
Andy worked from home the next day and got their living room set up for pizza and movies. The girls had been wanting to see Charlotte's Web and Night at the Museum so Andy had rented those from pay per view. Pizza night was a newly created ritual where Andy would make the dough and the girl's would help create masterful and tasteful concoctions such as peppered Hawaiian pizza. When the brunette questioned why, Caroline simply said it was sweet and spicy at the same time and delish. Her word, not Andy's.
Miranda got home just as the brunette was kneading the dough. The older woman was staring at her as if she had something on her face. It was probably flour. "Hello, darling. You appear to be having fun," she smirked.
"Watch it, or I won't make your monstrous pizza," Andy warned.
"You wouldn't dare." Andy cocked an eyebrow in her direction. "Fine. You look cute," she quickly kissed the brunette.
"That's better. So the girls wanted to discuss extra curricular activities. Cassidy said soccer tryouts are this spring and she wants to start working to get better now. Caroline would like to start playing the violin. I've already spoken to the music teacher and Caroline can start next week, we just need to get her a violin."
"Didn't they want to continue dancing as well? That takes up a lot of time."
Andy nodded. "Yes, they still want to dance, ballet and jazz I believe."
"Well at least it's not that hip hop junk."
"Even if they wanted to dance that hip hop junk, you'd make sure they could and you'd still go to their competitions."
"Yes, you're right," Miranda sat down at the island and watched as the brunette worked. She separated the dough into four portions and covered it to let it rise while she worked on cutting up the ingredients. "What do you think of teaching me how to cook something?"
"That depends," Andy smiled. "What do you want to learn?"
Miranda hummed. "I don't know, maybe you can choose."
"Sure, we'll do something while the girls are with James this weekend. He's still picking them up tomorrow right?"
"Yes as far as I know. He'll be dropping them off Monday afternoon since they have the day off from school."
The brunette's lips slowly formed a mischievous smirk. "I can't wait to christen another room."
"Maybe we can christen the hot tub too," Miranda smirked back causing Andy to smile wider.
"I like the way you think, sweetheart."
The older woman continued to watch the agent work until the twins got home from school. "Mom! Andy!" They yelled and dropped their bags by the door.
Andy laughed catching Caroline around the middle and hoisting her off the ground slightly. "You left the door open my little gremlins," she admonished and Cassidy turned back to close it. "Thank you," Caroline moved on to greet her mom while Cassidy slipped her arms around the brunette. "Do either of you have homework?"
"No, we finished it before we left. But We have an essay to start brainstorming topics for," Cassidy replied.
"What kind of essay?" Miranda asked.
"We have to describe something that means a lot to us."
"Like what? Did your teacher give you any examples?" Miranda wondered.
"Our favorite book or art work, a pet, our hero, the usual," Caroline shrugged.
"Right, well I rented the movies you girls wanted to see. We'll do Night at the museum first. Go wash up and change into lounging clothes," the agent instructed the twins. They were halfway up the stairs when Andy turned to Miranda. "You too, go on, comfy clothes."
Andy smiled and started making Miranda's pizza. She started with a red sauce followed by mozzarella cheese, pepperoni, spinach, banana peppers, and a drizzle of ranch dressing. It was like the woman was pregnant or something. The brunette shook her head and then made her own. She topped hers with sauce, cheese, and pepperoni. Cassidy was first to return to the kitchen and made an all veggie pizza on top of a bed of mozzarella and sauce. She liked her sauce on top of the cheese. Caroline made her usual Hawaiian with hot peppers and Andy put all of the personal pizzas into the ovens.
"Alright, to the living room. I'll start the movie while we wait for the pizza," Andy smiled and ushered the girls into the large open room where there was a huge television and sectional with juices already waiting for them.
Miranda emerged in sweat pants and one of the brunette's t-shirts. Andy thought she'd never tire of seeing the older woman relax in front of her. She made room for the CEO on her end of the couch and leaned against her side. Twenty minutes later the timer went off for the pizza and Andy paused the movie. She took their masterpieces out of the ovens and carefully cut them before plating them. She called the girl's and brought Miranda's with her. "Try not to get anything on the furniture my darlings," the former blonde requested.
"We'll eat on the floor," Cassidy suggested.
"Wonderful idea," Miranda smirked and goosed Andy's ribs. "You as well, darling."
"Seriously?" the brunette asked incredulously.
"Yes, seriously. You make a bigger mess than our children do." Andy simply smiled and huffed moving to sit on the floor with a redhead on either side. They were beaming at her. Miranda chuckled and the resumed the movie.
They only made it halfway through Charlotte's Web before the girls fell asleep. Andy decided to carry Cassidy up to her room first and then came back for Caroline while Miranda got ready for bed. "So," the brunette smiled as she entered their room and closed the door. "Your birthday is coming up, any idea what you want?"
"I have what I want, darling."
Andy shook her head. "You're impossible."
"You can cook for me."
"I already cook for you," the agent pointed out as she turned down the bed while Miranda removed her earrings.
"I know, but I buy everything I want."
"There has to be something..."
"Not really," Miranda shrugged and Andy sighed. "I have you and the girls..."
"Miranda," Andy rolled her eyes. "Fine, I'll just consult Nigel and the girls."
"You do that," Miranda smirked sliding into the bed.
They both settled into the bed and Andy picked up her book while Miranda looked over something for work. It was only a few minutes into reading that the brunette felt cerulean eyes on her. "What is it sweetheart?"
"Do you want to get married?"
Andy gapped at the woman. Was she really asking that? Like that? "Miranda Priestly, are you asking me to marry you?"
"I- well no. I just, we never discussed it."
Andy closed her book and set it on the side table before turning towards her lover. "No, I suppose we haven't. I'm not opposed to it," she smiled thinking about the ring sitting in her hiding spot. "I've certainly thought about it. What do you want?"
"I-" Miranda rubbed her temple. Apparently this had been on her mind a lot lately. "I'm a little scared seeing as none of my marriages have worked out."
"I am nothing like your ex-husbands," Andy points out gently trying not to dismiss Miranda's fears.
"I know you're not."
"So, you've thought about it then?"
"Yes, I have. Not that I think we need a piece of paper to be committed to each other."
"I would hope not," Andy smirked.
"But I love you with all my heart and I'd like nothing more than to tell everyone how much you mean to me."
"I don't know about everyone," Andy laughed nervously knowing Miranda's habit of inviting everyone she knew to her parties.
"I didn't mean," Miranda ran a hand through her hair.
"I'm kidding, sort of," Andy took her hand. "I've given it a great deal of thought, actually. But just so you know, I don't want anything huge. I'd be happy with just a small ceremony with close friends and family."
"Would you want to do a destination wedding or something here?"
"Honestly, either," Andy shrugged. "I'm happy either way so long as I'm getting married to you."
"Really? You can't give me anymore than that?"
"Miranda, I love you. I love the girls. I really only need the three of you plus the officiant there," Andy chuckled. "I mean I'd like my parents to be there too and maybe your mother and our friends. But I really don't need anyone else to be there."
"Oh, be serious."
"I am, sweetheart," the brunette cupped her face wishing she could tell her just how serious she was. "I will give you my opinion when the time comes, I promise."
"I want your opinion now."
"Why? We aren't getting married anytime soon are we?" Andy cocked an eyebrow at her wondering if her lover had something up her sleeve too.
"Well, no, but..."
"We have plenty of time but please know I will not leave you to do all the planning."
"That's good," Miranda nodded and sighed looking down at some report she was holding.
Andy rolled her eyes giving in just a little. "Mid fall, October maybe or winter just after it snows. Spring and summer are far too predictable and nowhere near unique enough for you."
Miranda smiled and pulled her in for a kiss. The CEO moved her mouth against the brunette's setting her entire being on fire. Their tongues slid along each other's fighting for dominance. Andy moved to pull the older woman's silk top off and was stopped. "Each detail I get, the more clothing that gets removed," she smirked evilly.
Teeth scrapped along her ear. "Oh, playing dirty."
"No," Miranda shook her head. "I play to win. One detail for one piece of clothing."
"Fine," she would play this game and she would win damn it. "I want you to wear something strapless or off the shoulder."
"Alright, I suppose you can have some say on the dress but you don't get to see it," she slipped out of her silk pajama bottoms. "What about your dress?"
"I'm not telling you that," Andy all but shrieked as she pulled back with wide eyes. "That's bad luck."
"One detail," Miranda demanded and Andy rolled her eyes. "One word?" the older woman tried again.
"White," the brunette smiled leaning in.
Miranda put a hand on her chest to stop her. "Cheeky. Don't you dare take off those boxers," she warned.
"Fine, lace," she said removing her boxers and throwing them on the ground.
"Formal or informal?"
"Formal wear but only gray scale colors allowed," Andy answered and Miranda motioned for her to take off her top. She lifted the thin material over her head and tossed it somewhere behind her. The cool air made her shiver and her nipples hardened immediately. "Silver, cream, and burgundy color scheme? If it's in the winter?
"Hmm... maybe, not atrocious colors," Miranda said removing her top leaving her in only her underwear as she kneeled in front of the agent. "Eggplant, merlot, and apricot for fall."
"I can live with that," Andy husked against her ear as she pulled their bodies flush; hip to hip and breast to breast. "Grey tux for winter, black for fall."
"Acceptable," Miranda moaned and tilted her head back as the brunette started ghosting her lips along her jaw and down her neck. "Think about..." she gasped as those same lips took her earlobe into their grasp and a tongue flicked over the shell. "Cerulean."
Andy smiled against the elegant neck at her lips. "Possibly," she hooked her thumbs under the elastic band of Miranda's satin underwear.
"Honeymoon?" Miranda asked dragging her finger tip along the brunette's stomach. Muscles twitched under her touch and Andy gasped. She pulled back long enough to look at her lover. She licked her lips. God she was so turned on right now if the white haired woman didn't touch her soon she'd spontaneously combust. Stormy eyes stared back at her, no doubt as ready as she was. The brunette surged forward no longer caring about the game they were playing. The CEO twisted using their momentum to pin Andy beneath her hands above her head so she could no longer touch the older woman. Both of them were breathing heavy and their legs were intertwined. "Andréa?" Miranda asked again with an eyebrow raised.
"Fiji!" Andy all but screamed eyes wild with desire. "Now fuck me," she demanded.
Miranda moaned at her forcefulness and rolled her hips. She could feel how wet Andy was through her underwear. "So ready, aren't you?" The CEO leaned down and nipped along the brunette's collarbone. She moaned and lifted her hips seeking more friction. "So wet for me," Miranda licked a path along her neck and then pulled at her ear. "All for me?" she asked punctuating her question with a sharp roll of her hips.
"Jesus! Yes, yes..." Andy struggled against deceptively strong hands.
She rocked backward out of reach. "Yes what?" the agent whimpered.
"All for you!" Andy moaned. "Please?" she begged when Miranda didn't move.
Miranda nearly ripped the fabric she yanked on them so hard but the brunette didn't care. She needed her touch. She writhed beneath the CEO arching into her touch and trying to gain any friction she could. The older woman continued to tease her. "Do you want my fingers inside you, twisting and thrusting," she breathed against Andy's ear. "Or should I use my mouth, hot and wet as my tongue slides along your clit?"
"Oh God!" The brunette moaned loudly and bucked her hips. Miranda was talking dirty to her and it was fucking hot.
"Or maybe you want a nice big rubber cock filling and stretching you?" she hummed against her ear biting gently as she rocked her hips forward.
"Fuck, Miranda! Your fingers!"
"Mmm... I wonder if you can take three all at once..." she said against flushed and sweaty skin. She kissed, licked, and nipped her way down a splotched chest stopping to love on two extremely hard nipples before Andy felt it. She cried out in relief and thrust her hips forward. "You're so fucking wet," Miranda moaned and bit her nipple and rubbed her clit with her thumb.
"Oh God! Fucking fuck!" Andy thrust her hips in time with Miranda's hand.
"You like this, don't you?" the older woman curled her fingers.
"Fuck, yes, d-don't stop," the brunette moaned and slammed her eyes shut. She was trying to focus on the fingers thrusting in and out but the thumb on her clot and the lips on her breasts made it very hard. It was quickly becoming overwhelming especially with the dirty talk coming from her lover.
"I wasn't planning to stop, darling. I'm going to fuck you so good," she smirked and bit the other nipple causing Andy to cry out.
"Fuck, do... do it again..." she panted.
The pleasure mixed with the pain was sending wonderful jolts to her core and she was so close. "I knew you liked it rough, darling, but I had no idea did I?"
"Fuck, Mira, please..."
Miranda moved her hand faster and bit down on each nipple once more before moving to leave little love bites all over Andy's chest and shoulders. Her hips bucked wildly until she came screaming Miranda's name. Stars burst in front of her eyes and her body went rigid. The older woman continued until Andy begged her to stop. She was completely spent and hardly able to move because the CEO had fucked her so thoroughly.
Miranda collapsed on top of the brunette, nuzzling her nose against her neck. "Good God, woman," the brunette huffed after a while. "Give me a few minutes."
"Not necessary," Miranda smirked biting the side of her neck. "I already came against your thigh," she admitted.
"Oh my God," Andy groaned. "I'm sorry."
"Why? I was getting off on fucking you." Andy moaned and slammed her eyes shut. Miranda moved to get more comfortable and snuggled into her side. Deft fingers trailed lazily over her skin. "Don't worry, darling. Seeing you come so hard and riding that strong thigh of yours was more than enough."
"You like my dirty mouth, don't you?"
"Fucking love it," she moaned and kissed her hard. "It's hot as hell."
"Good to know."
"Pretty sure you already did," Andy chuckled softly. It wasn't the first time Miranda had spoken dirty to her during sex.
The older woman hummed. "I told you, I play to win."
"I have never doubted that."
"I'm quite glad we decided to sound proof our bedroom," Miranda added and Andy laughed melodically.
They laid there for a while just caressing each other gently. Andy's fingers tangled in white hair while Miranda's drew nonsensical patterns across her skin. "Did we just plan our wedding?" Andy asked with surprise.
"I think we did, darling. At least a rough outline of it at any rate," Miranda laughed causing the brunette to smile.
A few weeks later, Andy had settled into her new position nicely. She enjoyed the challenging work and using her brain to work out profiles and actually didn't mind reviewing them with her team. Today was a busy day for her though. Miranda's party was after work and she still had a class to teach. She sighed, the class was exciting, but she had a lot on her plate. It was her suggestion to start it though, so she shouldn't complain in the slightest and it kept her busy when work was slow.
She gathered up the papers on her desk and made her way to one of the larger conference rooms in the dungeon. Everyone called it the dungeon because there were no windows and they were underground. It was just about the only thing Andy hated. She missed the sun shining through her window. While the agent waited for the attendees to file into the room she passed out the papers she printed out. It wasn't much, a brief biography and a picture. Of course, it was actually someone who committed mass murder but most of the agents here probably had no idea who this person was without a name. She wanted to see what they could remember from training in Quantico.
Five minutes later, she was introducing herself. "For those of you who don't know, I'm agent Sachs, head of the behavioral analysis department. I won't make anyone go around the room and introduce themselves because I always hated that. If you have a question, you will state your name and department before asking. When you answer a question you will do the same. Today, we will be looking at the profile of a mass murderer. We will attempt to create this profile based on the information we have and at the end of our session you will guess who this person was or is."
A hand went up near the back. Andy pointed to the young man. "Dexter Gallagher, white collar crime. What do we get for guessing correctly?"
"Bragging rights of course," she smiled. "Unless of course you'd like me to throw candy at your heads?"
"Please do!" a few yelled and Andy chuckled.
"Alright, alright," Andy leaned against the wall. "Next session I'll bring some candy. Let's get started shall we? You have ten minutes to read over the biography, crime, and start thinking about how to profile this individual," she instructed and set a timer. She walked around the room while they were working and took note of certain points made. She hummed at a few and smiled when they looked at her. Every once in a while, she would mutter a "good work" or "nice job".
A knock on the door caused her to lift her head. Hastings was standing outside and waved her to come out. "This will just take a few minutes," her boss said when she cracked the door open.
"Continue working, I'll be right back," she said and stepped out. "What's going on?"
"Oh nothing drastic, come to my office when you're done here. Good work by the way, I've been getting a lot of good feedback about this little project of yours."
"That's great," Andy smiled. "I'll see you on my way out before I take off for the day."
"That's right, you're taking a half day. I forgot."
"Miranda's party is tonight."
"Ah, well I'll let you get back to it. Looks like your timer is going off."
"Thanks," Andy said and went back into the room. "Alright," she turned the timer off. "First, a little refresher. Who can tell me why we profile criminals?"
Several hands went up. She pointed to a young woman on the left side of the room. "Spencer Hawthorn, violent crimes. We create profiles so that there is a database law enforcement can look at so that, for instance, if a crime is committed in California and it is similar to another crime committed in Ohio the local and state authorities can determine if they are looking at the same suspect. Without this database, law enforcement would have to start from scratch. The database allows law enforcement of different jurisdictions to work together and string together crime scenes they might otherwise not be able to."
"Yes and there's a big initiative to use this kind of analysis in other areas such as white collar crime. For instance, an art thief that steals a priceless painting from a museum. Maybe he steals them because he makes forgeries and sells them. Maybe he started doing this recently or maybe it was years ago. He could prefer to steal from high security museums because he likes a challenge or low security because it's easy."
A hand shot up. "What are some of the responsibilities of someone in the BAU besides profiling?"
"Name and department?" Andy reminded the person asking the question.
"Alexa Cahill, linguistics."
"Well, Alexa, this class is just give you an overview and an opportunity to see if this interests you in any way. The BAU requires a great deal of training. It's sixteen weeks of classroom training that's followed by a mentorship. You'll work with all different types of law enforcement; crime analysts, case specialists, local and state officers, and our own fellow agents, even doctors. In that aspect, you'll need to know that we aren't directly involved in the cases we see. We are there only to provide assistance. We are once removed from the cases so to speak so that we do not get emotionally involved. It allows us to see a better picture."
Another hand went up and the brunette called on him. "Sean McDaniel, cyber crimes. You're quite young, where did you start out in your training?"
"I began my career in intelligence and found I had a natural talent to analyze people's behaviors. It made a lot of people notice me but it wasn't what I wanted to do. I wanted to work undercover, so I've worked in several departments and used my talent to profile when necessary. It has allowed me to excel at my job and in many cases I was used as an onsite behavioral analyst so to speak."
"Did you go through the training?"
"Yes, I did go through the training and mentorship a few years after being an agent." Another hand was raised and she allowed another question. "Last question before we get into our analysis."
"Fiona Campbell, counter-terrorism. Will we work in teams or is it a one case one agent system?"
"We always work in teams. There will be a case agent assigned. That person is pretty much in charge of the case. They make sure all the notes are gathered and the report is prepared. They also make sure none of the material reviewed gets in the wrong hands. There are usually a handful of agents assigned to the case and sometimes an outside expert such as a psychologist." Andy pushed off the wall and turned off the lights and then started the projector. "Let's start with the biography." Andy pointed to someone up front.
"Kyla Jennings, intelligence. The individual was born and raised in Indiana and grew up around the time of the Great Depression. He was an avid reader of books, most notably books by world leaders such as Marx and Hitler. He was obsessed with religion and death. His father was part of the KKK and it caused them to have a strained relationship because the individual sympathized with the black community. His parents divorced before he went to high school. He married and went to college, earning a degree in higher education. The FBI investigated the individual for his involvement in the US Communism movement. He was introduced into a Methodist church where he became a student pastor. When he was not allowed to integrate blacks into the church, he left and started his own. He and his wife adopted several children calling their family a rainbow family. He travelled to many places around the world before returning to his church in California and preaching to them that there would a nuclear apocalypse. By the 1970s he was openly rejecting the Bible and labeling Christianity as a "fly away religion" and preaching that he was God and savior. The church went through exponential growth even though he professed there was no heaven and that they would make a heaven down here. He somehow managed to gain political support and eventually moved to Guyana. The move was followed by allegations of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse."
"Does anyone know who we are talking about yet?" Andy watched as the younger agent shook their heads and she heard some murmurings. "No?" She looked around and nodded for Kyla to continue.
"The settlement in Guyana was named after the individual. He called it a socialist paradise, a sanctuary. In spite of the allegations he faced as well as a drug problem, he was still a well respected leader for arranging a racially mixed congregation that helped the disadvantaged. Nearly seventy percent of the settlement's population was black. It was here, that he began to believe in and teach translation, where he and his followers would all die together and move to another planet and live blissfully. In the late 1970s, he began to lose political support and concerned relatives of the settlers began protesting. This lead to a congressman investigating and later being murdered for trying to take defecting members away from the settlement. That same day 909 settlers, 304 of them children, died in apparent cyanide poisoning. The FBI later recovered a 45 minute recording of the mass homicide event. The individual had told the residents that men would parachute into the settlement and kill and torture their families. It was discovered that several meetings had taken place to discuss the mass suicide and they had planned to put the poison in grape kool-aid. He was found dead with a gun shoot wound to the head consistent with a self inflicted wound."
Gasps could be heard around the room. "Yes, it was the single greatest loss of American life in a deliberate act until 9/11. And that's a good overview of this man's life for our purposes. Let's discuss some of his arrests, allegations, and criminal acts."
Andy pointed to a young man on her right. "Mark Richards, surveillance. In 1951, he was investigated by the FBI for his involvement in communism. In 1973, he was arrested and charged for soliciting a man for sex in Los Angeles. In 1977, a group made up of media and church defectors began accusing the organization of abuse. In 1978, congress received more of these accusations and a congressman went to investigate the allegations of human rights violations. In November of that year, a congressman flew to Guyana to investigate and was attacked as he took fifteen defectors with him. Shooting began that ended with five dead at the airstrip including the congressman himself. And that same day, as previously mentioned, the rest of the settlers were found dead."
"So who knows who were profiling today?" she asked and watched gleefully as every hand went up. "You, in the back by the door."
"Garrett McNeal, counter-intelligence. James Warren Jones."
"That's correct. Who wants to take a stab at his personality?"
"He's a narcissistic sociopath."
"Name and department, why?"
"Lauren Mathews, intelligence. Narcissism is characterized as extreme self-centeredness with a grandiose view of one's own talents and a craving for admiration. These types of people are often talented and very charismatic. In Jones' case, he was preoccupied with fantasies of success and power, believed he was special, lacked empathy, and had a sense of entitlement."
"Why do you say that, based on what we've gathered from the biography and his crimes?"
"He preached to his own congregation that he was their God and savior, that he would create heaven on earth. His intentions in the beginning were certainly good but it quickly turned from performing good deeds to receiving praise for those deeds. He was politically connected and successful very early on which enabled his behavior. He was charitable and made people feel special. The loved him and he loved that they loved him. He craved it, needed it. He believed he was above the law and influenced hundreds of people to kill themselves as well as ordering several murders. He exploited these people in order to meet his own needs and goals. He didn't care about them."
"You seem to know a lot about this topic, were you a psychology major?"
"Yes," the girl replied. "He is the very definition of narcissistic personality disorder. Not to mention a complete sociopath. He has no regard for other people and based on the allegations of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse there is a strong need for stimulation. He is impulsive, paranoid, and manipulative."
"What can we expect from people with these kinds of personalities?" Andy asked and watched a few people murmur before raising their hands. "Go ahead," she told the group.
"Michael Kerrigan, counter-terrorism. They appear to be charming but are in fact domineering and only see people as a means to an end, their end. They are incapable of love and are prone to frequent outbursts of rage followed by abuse and then small amounts of compassion leaving the victim in an almost whiplashed state of confusion. Promiscuous behavior is also often a characteristic displayed whether consensual or not."
"Indeed, so not a great person is he? Why, then did so many people love and defend him?"
"All they saw was his charisma, good deeds of racial integration and helping the disadvantaged. They didn't see the abuse and violations of basic human rights."
"Right, and these are the characteristics of cult leaders such as Charles Manson, David Koresh, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, Marshall Applewhite, and Shoko Asahara. That's all for today. If you feel you'd like to apply to the BAU there are forms on the table in the back and you can leave them in my mailbox," Andy dismissed her class. She watched quite a few agents pick up a form when they left and smiled to herself.
She made her way to Hastings' office after picking up her belongings from her office. She still had to pick up Miranda's gift, a diamond and tourmaline Tiffany necklace with matching earrings. It cost her a pretty penny but her savings wasn't completely depleted and it would be worth it to see the beautiful piece around such an elegant neck.
"Sachs, come in. This director Walsh," the woman introduced an older gentleman in what looked to be his sixties.
"A pleasure, sir."
"The pleasure is all mine, agent Sachs. I hear great things about you."
"Thank you, sir, but I'm just doing my job."
"Nonsense, the admission rate for the BAU has gone up by five percent since you started your little class. We might even be able to create another unit."
"Keep up the good work!" he said clapping her shoulder.
"Thank you, sir. I will."
"That's it Sachs, get going. I'll see you Monday," Hastings dismissed her.
She walked out of the office sliding her jacket on still a bit stunned. She just met the director of the FBI. "Holy shit!" she shook her head and hauled a cab. "Tiffany's on 5th avenue," she said and took her phone out to look for the confirmation number. Traffic was light for this time of day. "Keep the meter running, I'll be right back." The brunette was in and out in five minutes. "South Ferry station," she instructed.