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Christmas Carolls

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Elias Clark was having its annual Charity evening, and Andy was flattered that they had deemed her worthy to help plan the event. She was sure it had something to do with her ability to read Miranda’s whims like nobody else, but she didn’t care.

   

    This was her chance to truly prove herself as indispensable to the queen. The queen of her heart. She could only ever roll her eyes at herself. She knew was ridiculous, but her feelings were her feelings and there was nothing she could do about it.

 

    Not that she hadn’t tried, she had. She’d read every book, every magazine article, but nothing worked. So she stopped trying, and focused on doing her job to the best of her abilities. 

 

    Naturally she was insanely attuned to Miranda’s moods, due to her- fixation, so she used it. She didn’t realize anyone was noticing, how she picked up on everything. Until rumours went around that she was the “dragon slayer”.

 

    She wasn’t sure she liked that, but guiltily part of her really liked the idea of Miranda going soft for her.

 

    But Andy made sure to keep that to herself.

 

    “Six, where is your head? Miranda wants to see the seating plan for that charity thing you’re planning!” 

 

    Nigel was standing in front of her, his hand held out expectantly.

 

    “What does she need it for?” Andy asked softly, not truly expecting a real answer as she glanced over at the woman in question.

 

    Nigel rolled his eyes.

 

    “Yes Andy, she explained her every decision to me, and afterwards we braided each others hair.”

 

    Andy sighed, and handed him the documents.

 

    “You can tell her not to worry, I didn’t put her next to anyone she didn’t like.”

 

    Nigel raised a brow as he went headed back into the lair.

 

    “The Dragonslayer strikes again.”

 

    Andy rolled her eyes and sighed.

 

    As much as she loved being depended upon, she just wanted this whole thing to be over. She refused to admit to herself that the main reason was because she couldn’t wait to see what Miranda would be wearing. She tried to focus on how much she loved singing and how this carolling thing was for a good cause. 

 

    That’s what she told herself again later on to quell her disappointment, when the week of her event she came down with the worst flu she’d had since she was a kid. It started out slow, at first she was able to hide her tired, red eyes with careful applied makeup.

 

    If Miranda noticed the lower, husky tone of her voice, she didn’t say anything.

 

    The third day of this hell, she spent the early hours of the morning throwing up, a slight fever had started, her muscles ached. If Miranda noticed she didn’t take a lunch that day, she didn’t say anything. Though during her daily perusal of her appearance, she did pause slightly longer than usual on Andy’s face. Slightly longer in Miranda time felt like an eternity.

 

    The fourth day, she made more mistakes than she’d ever made since working for Miranda. Lucky for her Nigel caught every single one, and finally decided he’d had enough. He cornered her at her desk.

 

    “What is up with you today? You’re making mistakes you didn’t even make when you first started, what is happening!?”

 

    Immediately Andy burst into tears.

   

    “I’ve just caught the worst flu, I’ve been throwing up and my head is a million degrees and I have the worst headache-”

   

    Nigel sighed.

   

    “Oh honey, you sound like a frog.”

 

    That only made Andy cry harder.

 

    “If you’re this sick you should be home, I’m surprised Miranda hasn’t shipped you off of the continent by now.” Nigel said softly.

 

    Andy sniffled.

 

    “She hasn’t said anything. If I go home sick, that’s admitting defeat. The charity event for the children’s hospital is tomorrow, and I’ve been looking forward to it ever since they handed the reins to me.”

 

    Nigel gently touched his palm to her forehead. She was a furnace.

 

    “Andy, you have a crazy fever and you sound delirious. Go home, I can lend Miranda Emily until you’re better. If you rest today and tomorrow, maybe you’ll be able to go tomorrow night.”

 

    Andy narrowed her eyes at him. His logic seemed sound to her flu addled brain. She really did want to lie down.

 

    Finally she relented.

 

    “Ok, but what am I going to tell Miranda, she’ll never let me leave-”

 

    Nigel waved her off, collecting her things from her desk.

 

    “Don’t worry about Miranda, I’ll talk to her. Go home and rest. Leave me your extra key so I can come check on you later.”

 

    Andy sighed, but removed the second key from her keyring and handed it to him.

 

    “Nige, you really don’t have to do that.”

 

    Nigel grinned.

 

    “I know, that’s what makes me so great. Call Roy and have him take you home. Miranda will have my head if she knew you took the subway in your current state.”

 

    Andy shrugged.

 

    “That’s doubtful.”

 

    Nigel narrowed his eyes, and put both his hands on her shoulders.

 

    “Andy you may very well be Miranda’s favourite person in this office. If you value my life at all, call Roy and have him take you home.”

 

Andy nodded.

 

“Good, now go home.”

 

Andy nodded again, sending Roy a text before heading towards the elevators.

 

Nigel sighed, and turned to Miranda’s office.

 

“Hey, I sent Andy home.”

 

Miranda frowned.

 

“What made you think that you had the authority-”

 

Nigel smoothed his hand over his head.

 

“She’s really sick Miranda, I’ll lend you Emily.”

 

Miranda’s frown deepened.

 

“Why didn’t she tell me herself, does she not trust me?”

 

Nigel rolled his eyes, this woman would be the death of him.

 

“No Miranda, she was just so excited about the event tomorrow. She was trying to just power through it. She’s absolutely devastated that she probably won’t be able to go. I know how much she loves carolling, and it’s for such a good cause.”

 

Miranda hummed.

 

“Make sure she at least takes a taxi and not the subway.”

 

Nigel laughed.

 

“I told her to text Roy.”

 

Miranda smirked.

 

“Thank you.”

 

When Nigel let himself into Andy’s apartment that evening, a hot bowl of soup in his hand, he was met with a mess of cold medicine covering the counters.

 

“Andy?” 

 

“Nige, is that you?” Andy called back weakly.

 

Nigel went into her cupboard, pulling out a bowl for the soup. Leaving it on the kitchen table, he went further into the apartment to find Andy. He crossed through her small living room, past her bathroom and into her bedroom, where he found her.

 

The blinds were drawn, and she was wrapped in several blankets in a cocoon.

 

“Good morning sunshine! How was your nap?”

 

Somewhere inside the blanket pile she groaned.

 

“Come on Six, get out of bed.” He spread her curtains open, letting the last of the sun's rays into the room.

 

“Nooooo.” Andy whined.

 

Nigel tugged at the sheets, dropping a very gross looking Andy on the carpet.

 

“Now, you need to go and shower. You look absolutely dreadful, and you smell even worse.”

 

Andy pouted, as Nigel helped her up and dragged her to the bathroom. 

 

“Now you shower, and then if you want, you can get a bath or something. But only after you shower, because if you bath first you’re sitting in your own filth.”

 

Andy rolled her eyes.

 

“Thanks.”

 

Nigel shoved her into the bathroom, leaving her to do her thing. Then he went back to her bedroom, and stripped the bed, replacing it with clean sheets he found folded in her closet.

 

He heard the shower stop, and then the water started again, what he assumed was her filling the tub for a bath.

 

Going through her dresser drawers, he pulled out a silky tank top and shorts to match, for her to change into. There was no reason you couldn’t be sick and still feel sexy, right?

 

He tapped on the bathroom door, before opening the door to place the pyjamas on her counter.

 

“Change into these when you’re done.”

 

Andy didn’t even react, she was neck deep in hot water and soap suds. 

 

Nigel chuckled.

 

“I have soup for you when you’re done here.”

 

Andy opened one eye.

 

“What kind of soup?”

 

Nigel smirked.

 

“Well, Miranda had Cara make her vegetable soup. I hear it’s a favourite-”

 

“Get out so I can get dressed then Nige!”

 

Nigel shut the door and headed back to the kitchen. Grabbing the bowl he had placed on the table, he popped it in the microwave to reheat it.

 

Just as the timer went off, Andy entered the kitchen, dragging her feet to the table. She plopped ungracefully into the chair, as Nigel placed the bowl in front of her.

 

“See, doesn’t that feel so nice?”

 

Andy sighed, and nodded.

 

“Okay, so you have been bathed, I replaced your sheets, and you’re going to be fed. I can tell Miranda not to worry.”

 

Andy froze.

 

“Miranda asked-”

 

Nigel nodded.

 

“Miranda gave me a list of things to accomplish when I got here. She’s quite bossy about the people she loves, you know.”

 

Andy’s stomach filled with butterflies, as she took small spoonfuls of soup.

 

Nigel chuckled as he saw the effect his words had on her.

 

“Now don’t mope in bed all day tomorrow alright? If you’re going to mope, at least move from your bed to the couch. Give your bed some time to breathe and air out.” Nigel gave her a pointed look.

 

Andy nodded.

 

“I will. Thanks so much for this Nige, tell Miranda too.”

 

Nigel gave her a nod as he got up to leave.

 

“Take care of yourself.”

 

Andy sighed and nodded again. Her hopes a little higher, than when Nigel had first arrived. Though this would not last very long, as the night finally came and Andy’s health seemingly plummeted. Unfortunately for her, she would spend the next 48 hours in a cold medicine haze of half asleep and half awake. Much to her utter disappointment, Andy was forced to text Nigel about an hour before the charity event to tell him she couldn’t make it.

 

Some time later, she wasn’t sure how much time, there was a knock on the door. In her muddled state, Andy didn’t acknowledge it really. Only quietly muttered at the sound. She was lying on the couch, some movie was playing very softly in the background.

 

“It’s the pizza boy, he brought me some soup.” Andy mumbled softly.

 

The door opened and clicked shut, and a familiar perfume wafted in Andy’s direction. She scrunched her nose.

 

“The pizza boy smells like Miranda.”

 

“What on earth are you mumbling about, Andrea.”

 

Miranda was a vision in a long silver gown that hugged every curve, the lamp behind her casting a halo-like glow around her head.

 

Andy sighed, what a wonderful dream.

 

“Are you an angel?”

 

Miranda rolled her eyes, and gently touched Andy’s forehead. She still had quite a high temperature.

 

“No, silly girl.”

 

Andy frowned.

 

“You must be my dream Miranda, the real Miranda is at the party.”

 

Miranda raised a brow, but said nothing, as she moved back to the kitchen to search for a cold compress for Andy’s forehead.

 

“I hoped she liked it, I did all of it just for her.”

 

Andy sighed.

 

Miranda’s heart clenched.

 

“It was absolutely beautiful, Miranda loved it.” 

 

Andy hummed softly in response.

 

Miranda returned, sitting on the edge of the couch and placed the cloth on Andy’s forehead. Gently she cupped Andy’s cheek and stroked it with her thumb.

 

“Why aren’t you at the party? If Miranda is there, than you should be there too. Did she not like it?” Andy mumbled.

 

Miranda sighed, and gazed lovingly at Andy.

 

“No Miranda loved it, the only thing that would have made it better was if you were there.”

 

Andy pouted.

 

“I got sick. I hope she isn’t mad.”

 

Miranda shook her head.

 

“She’d never be mad at you, Andrea. You’re too precious to her.”

 

It felt so easy to bear her heart to Andy like this, when it was only just a dream. When tomorrow she wouldn't remember any of it.

 

Andy opened her eyes, and smiled softly.

 

“Don’t tell Miranda, but she’s so pretty. I only wish I could have seen her at the party. She sparkles like no one else in the room.” She gushed.

 

Miranda’s cheeks blushed.

 

“You think she’s pretty?”

 

Andy nodded eagerly.

 

“The most beautiful, sometimes so much I could kiss her!”

 

Andy slapped her hand over her mouth and hid her face.

 

“Don’t tell her I said that! She would hate me.” 

 

Miranda shook her head.

 

“Miranda could never hate you, darling.”

 

Andy bit her lip, and scrunched her nose.

 

“I’m sorry I missed the carolling. I wonder if Miranda sings, do you know?”

 

Tears began to pour down Andy’s cheeks, and Miranda could only wipe them away.

 

“I’m sure she does.”

 

Andy nodded slowly.

 

“You’re my dream Miranda, will you sing?”

 

Miranda paused.

 

“What would you want me to sing?”

 

Andy shrugged.

 

“A christmas carol, like you would at the party.”

 

Miranda nodded as Andy got comfortable and closed her eyes.

 

“A slow one?”

 

Andy nodded excitedly, though almost immediately after she frowned.

 

“Will you be here when I wake up?”

 

“Do you want me to be?”

 

Andy paused, then sighed.

 

“I guess it doesn’t really matter, the dream will be over when I wake up.”

 

Miranda stroked her cheek again.

 

Silent night, Holy night, All is calm, All is bright.”

 

Miranda’s voice carried softly in the quiet living room. Andy tucked her face into Miranda’s palm.

 

Round yon virgin mother and child, Holy infant so tender and mild. Sleep in heavenly peace, sleep in heavenly peace.”

 

As Miranda finished the verse, Andy smiled.

 

Finally, unable to contain herself, Miranda leaned in and pressed her lips to Andy’s. Andy’s intake of breath was heard clearly in the apartment, but she wrapped her arm around Miranda’s neck. Miranda kissed her softly but thoroughly and Andy responded in kind.

 

When Miranda pulled back, Andy looked up at her with tired eyes.

 

“Sleep now my love.” Miranda whispered, kissing Andy’s forehead just below the cloth there.

 

Andy sighed, forcing her eyes open.

 

“I’m already asleep, we’re just dreaming.”

 

Miranda smiled.

 

“Sleep anyway.”

 

Andy closed her eyes, and as Miranda gently smoothed down her hair, Andy’s breathing evened out. 

 

Miranda adjusted her covers, and quietly left the apartment.

 

~

 

When Andy returned to the office on Monday, she was feeling much better and quite refreshed.

 

“Hey there Six, you look better!”

 

Andy nodded as she placed Miranda’s coffee on her desk.

 

“I feel a lot better. You know I had the weirdest dream the night of the party.”

 

Nigel raised a brow and smirked knowingly.

 

“Oh yeah? The event was a hit by the way, everyone had a blast.”

 

“Yeah, that’s great Nige. But yeah, I had this dream and Miranda-”

 

As if summoned, the steady clicking sound of Miranda’s heels on the tiles announced her arrival. 

 

“I need someone to find me some cold fx, I don’t care what it is I just want it to be strong, and probably a tissue box. Where’s my coffee?”

 

The clacker Miranda had been talking to scampered away, as Miranda eye’s found Andy. Her nose was red, her eyes tired,and her voice low and husky  but nevertheless she smiled. Andy picked up the coffee from Miranda’s desk and handed it to her.

 

Miranda took it, then gently placed a hand on the small of Andy’s back, leaning into her space and gently kissing her cheek.

 

“I’m so happy to see you’re feeling better darling.” Miranda whispered, before heading into her office.

 

Andy looked around to see that the only one else to see it was only Nigel who could have witnessed their exchange. Her eyes were wide as he laughed.

 

“A dream, huh?”

 

Andy opened her mouth and then closed it again.

 

"Miranda's sick?"

 

Nigel raised his brows as he head back to his office.

 

"I wonder how she got that?" He called back to her.

 

Andy froze, and glanced back at Miranda's office. She better not be dreaming, she thought to herself as she followed after Miranda into her office.