Why am I here?
Andy opened her eyes slowly, adjusting to the light that came in through the small dormer on the roof. She caressed the satin periwinkle sheets that covered her and wondered how much time had passed since the last time she slept in her own bed, in her own apartment, in cheap simil-cotton sheets that she could afford.
Three months. Three whole month had passed since the last time she had coffee in her kitchen, alone, at 5:30 a.m. and unable to sleep. She had just got back from Paris Fashion Week, tormented by guilt and terrified of her future.
A week after she had got the job at the Mirror, she had received a desperate phone call from the most unexpected person: her former boss, Miranda Priestly. She remembered the tension, the silence that followed the push on the answering button on her phone. She had waited, listening to the ragged breaths on the other end of the line:
“Come back, please.” She had said, breaking her a little.
Andy hugged the pillow at the memory.
How could she have denied her? Miranda had asked so desperately and delicately. She had knew she had just heard something rare and intimate, a precious revelation that very few had been lucky to unveil. She hadn’t been able to divert her look, her curiosity and her desire.
She sighed and tried to get up from her bed at the Priestly house.
She obviously had kept her job at the Mirror. Miranda hadn’t wanted her back because of her skills as a secretary, nor she had planned on keeping her safe and trapped in a job she didn’t want. That night, Miranda had waited for her impatiently at home, biting her nails and feeling like a wounded animal. When Andy had got through the door, Miranda had jumped up from her seat, carefully watching her.
“Hi.” She had said, not moving from her spot in the hallway. “Come in.”
Andy had immediately understood her request and had walked the space between them, hugging the most beautiful, breathtaking woman she knew in a delicate hug.
It had been the start of something confusing and not yet defined. They hadn’t talked about their... arrangement, afraid of ruining their intimacy and happiness.
Every morning since that night, Andy woke up in a guest bedroom, next to Miranda’s own. She prepared and left for work, just to return back at 7 p.m. They ate dinner together, they watched movies together, they even told each other what they did during the day, the troubles they had to resolve at work. But nothing romantic nor sexual has happened between them yet and Andy didn’t know how to behave, how to pursue her... roommate? How to tell her that she loved her and wanted her.
Andy sighed, everything was just so damn confusing.
She descended the stairs, wearing her favorite pair of jeans, a pinstriped jacked and a white shirt. Not a look that Miranda would necessarily choose, but an improvement from her old outfits for sure. She smiled and entered the living room, expecting to see everybody at the table.
“Hi, girls,” she approached the twins, waiting for breakfast. Caroline sighed a small, defeated ‘hi’ and Andy pouted, putting a strand of Caroline’s red hair behind her ear, “Ow, what’s wrong?”
“Mom’s preparing breakfast.”
“Yeah, she said she is in charge of it today.” said Cassidy.
“Has she fired Olivia? We liked her.”
“I don’t think so.” Andy replied, turning around to try to get a look of Miranda in the kitchen, “Maybe she wants to surprise us, uh?”
The twins exchanged looks, before Cassidy waved her hand at Andy to make her lean in closer, “She has never cooked for us,” she whispered, “Is she ill or something?”
Andy raised her eyebrows in surprise, “I-“ she sighed, “I’ll go talk to her, don’t worry.”
“Be quick, we are hungry.” They said in unison as Andy walked to the other room.
When she peaked her head inside the kitchen, she saw Miranda struggling with some eggs and cursing in her own elegant way at the pan. Andy laughed and asked: “Do you need help?”
Miranda turned towards her and sighed in relief, “Oh, thank God, you’re here,” she extended her hand holding an egg towards Andy, “Teach me!”
Andy raised her eyebrows at her, smiling.
“Please?” Miranda asked.
That was the second time that Andy had heard that word coming from Miranda’s lips, it made her feel a bit hot. It was intimate, rare, it was... kind of sexual coming from that velvety voice. She licked her lips, approaching Miranda.
“I know you’re not a fan of salty breakfasts, but cooking an egg...” Andy took the egg, caressing the other woman’s hand softly, “That’s a pretty basic cooking skill.”
“I don’t like them.” Miranda said, averting her eyes, her cheeks a bit red “That’s all.”
“Mhh,” Andy licked her lips, “It sounds like an excuse to me.”
They stayed in silence for some minutes, while Andy cooked and Miranda watched her every move, taking in the soft pale skin and the elegance of Andy’s long fingers. Andy didn’t really want to break the calm aura of the morning, nor she wanted to feel felt guilty later for speaking, but she felt the need to speak her heart.
The older woman looked up from studying the movements of Andy’s hands. She nodded, asking for Andy to continue.
“I think we need to talk.”
Miranda looked away again, visibly clenching her jaw, “About what?” She struggled to get her cold demeanor on.
“About us.” Andy stopped Miranda from turning away from her, holding her hand delicately, “We need to.”
Miranda didn’t look at her. She just kept still as if she was waiting to hear a bad, devastating news.
Andy didn’t let Miranda distract her, “You know I love being here with you-“
“But?” Miranda turned her cold look on her.
Andy wanted to reassure her that there was no ‘but’, that things were perfectly fine as they were, but she knew that was a lie. She was feeling confused and totally lost about what was happening between them.
She took Miranda’s hand in hers, drawing invisible circles on the skin with her thumb, soothing. She needed to find the most direct and real way to tell Miranda how she felt about her, so she let herself speak without thinking, recklessly: “But I want you.”
Miranda looked taken aback.
Andy continued, “I want to know what we are doing, I want to know if I can touch you, if I can let the door of my room open at night, for you to come visit me...” Was it too much? She couldn’t stop now, “We have been living together for months, most of my things are here, I talk and help your kids. We even shared dinner together, alone, but I can’t touch you or kiss you, I- I’m confused. I don’t know if you want... company or if you called me that night for something more... I’m-“
“I want you too.” Miranda said, stopping the movements of Andy’s hands. She pursed her lips and looked at her, “I want you too, but I am terrified.”
Andy read the fear in Miranda’s eyes and suddenly understood what she meant. Miranda needed a push, she had been trying to restrain herself for months when all Miranda needed was her recklessness. She needed Andy to act on her impulses to push her on the edge. She had mastered all her courage that night months ago to call her, to ask her to come to her, to save her from her loneliness and sadness. Miranda Priestly was a fierce creature, scary at times, and ruthless in her business but emotions made her lost. Miranda needed Andy to let herself go and enjoy peace and happiness for once.
Andy’s determined look must have reassured Miranda, because she looked softer, calmer. Andy kissed her lips delicately, caressing her hand and stealing a desperate sigh from the other woman.
“Mom? What is that burning smell?” Cassidy called from the other room.
“Shit!” Andy exclaimed, breaking the kiss with Miranda and taking the pan away from the stove. “Everything’s okay, girls!” She shouted and looked back at Miranda who was smiling behind the hand that she brought to her lips. She shook her head and then she kissed Andy’s cheek.
“It’s Friday today. The girls will stay at their father’s tonight.” She said and Andy nodded, a bit dumbstruck, “Let’s have dinner here, together. I won’t be late.”
Andy kissed her softly again, “I will wait for you anyway, you know that.”
As she watched Miranda returning to the twins to ask for patience, Andy felt excited about her future. What will it bring? How will it be being with Miranda? She was determined to take the risk and, as she listened to the grumpy complaints coming from the other room, an insidious and bright thought formed in her mind.