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Shatter Your Illusions of Love

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Therese POV
“Shit,” Therese swore under her breath when she noticed she left her keys in the apartment she shares with Dannie.

Already running late she heads toward the stairs and takes out her phone to call Dannie.

“Pick up, pick up, pick up,” she whispered under her breath.

“Hey T! What’s up?” Dannie answered.

“I’m running late to the interview with Abby and I forgot my keys inside the apartment.” therese explained.

“Woah is everything ok? You’re usually never late.”

“Yeah everything is fine, I just overslept because of the concert last night,” Therese groaned while running down the street.

“Oh yeah, I forgot you went to that. How was it?” Dannie asked eagerly.

“It was great. I sat next to the most gorgeous woman ever. She had blonde hair down to her shoulders, she was tall, probably about 5’9, and she had eyes that were the perfect mix between a light blue and a light grey. I almost forgot we were at a concert because of how much we were talking. I never did get her name though,” therese gushed while walking into the subway station.

“Well sounds like you had an amazing night even though you never got her name,” Dannie responded.

“I did,” therese said, “so what did your night look like?”

“The usual worked late at the restaurant with Tommy, Abby, and Harge. As we were closing, Rindy stopped by to give Abby and the rest of us an update on her latest design for FIT. After we closed Tommy and I went back to his place and we were asleep until you called.” Dannie answered.

“Sounds like you and Tommy had a great night. How is it going with you guys?” Therese asked.

“It’s going better than I expected. He told me he loves me last night,” Dannie explained, “which caught me off guard because it has only been two months, but him saying that made me realize that I love him too.”

Therese smiled at her phone.

“Why are you smiling…” Dannie asked.

“What makes you think I’m smiling?” Therese asked.

“Come on T I know you well enough to know that you are smiling. So out with it, why are you smiling?” Dannie responded lightheartedly.

“I’m just really happy for you especially considering all of your past relationships,” Therese said as she was still waiting for the train.

Therese was lost in thought as the train arrived blowing wind through her hair.

“Therese? Therese? THERESE!” Dannie yelled through the phone to get her attention.

“Yes sorry, I was thinking about the interview,” therese mumbled, sounding worried as she stepped onto the train to find a seat.

Dannie picked up on the worry in her voice.

“Hey therese relax, Don't stress about it. Abby will love you and so will everyone else.” Dannie told her to help calm her worries.

“But what if I don't get the job? Dannie, I really need this,” Therese sounded like she was on the verge of tears.

“Trust me you will get the job and even if you don't you will always have my shoulder to cry on,” Dannie reassured her.

“Thank you, Dannie. I owe you for getting me this interview,” Therese stepped off the train and onto the platform.

“Don't worry about it, you have helped me more times than I can count,” Dannie replied.

“Alright, I’m here so I have to go but thank you again and I love you so much,” Therese said as she walked up to the restaurant.

“Good luck Therese and try not to panic, Abby will love you. I love you too.” Dannie said.

As Therese put her phone in her pocket she looked at the building and noticed how fancy it seemed. She was suddenly glad she wore a blazer with her pants and white shirt.

When she stepped inside she spotted Abby sitting in a booth on FaceTime with someone but she hung up when she spotted Therese walking over.

CAROL POV
Carol awoke with the sunlight streaming in through her balcony and onto her face and the cover thrown off to one side of the bed.

“Ugh,” Carol groaned from her headache, the light not helping.

Carol waited a minute or two before getting up to get Advil from her bathroom. When she came back she checked her clock for the time.

“SHIT! It’s already 11 am! I have to call Abby!” Carol yelled aloud.

She ran out of her bedroom and started looking for her phone. Thirty minutes later she found her phone on top of the counter in her kitchen. She immediately picked it up and FaceTimed Abby.

“My god you look terrible,” Abby teased when she picked up.

“I know, I know. I overslept and then had a terrible headache when I did finally wake up and then I couldn’t find my phone and- UGH it’s about to die! Hold on let me go grab a charger,” Carol rambled.

“Ok, I got one. Where was I? Right, I’m so sorry but the earliest I can be in is at 12:30” Carol plugged in her phone.

“Carol, relax, it’s ok. We have covered for now. Just come in around-” Abby was cut off by Harge yelling “HEY SIS!”

“Huh? Wait why is Harge there isn’t his day off?” asked Carol

“Oh no, it is his day off. When I called to tell him you weren’t in yet he said he could come in. so, basically, you owe your brother a favor, and knowing him he is going to make sure it is a good favor.” Abby explained.

“Can you tell him thank you for me?”

“Yes, I can. On another note, how was the concert? I have been dying to know! Did you meet women?” Abby asked eagerly while sliding into a booth.

“God, what am I going to do with you?” Carol asked sarcastically.

“You’ll keep me around because you love me,” Abby laughed.

“That I will and that I do. But no, I did not meet women. However, I did sit next to the most beautiful brunette.” Carol responded to Abby’s previous question.

“Oooooo do tell,” Abby begged just as Rindy slid into the booth next to her aunt.

“Hey, Aunt Carol! What are we talking about?” Rindy asked as Abby made room for her in the booth.

“Just the woman Carol met last night,” Abby told her niece while she propped her phone up so Carol could see them both.

“Wait, Rindy, I thought you had classes today, what are you doing here?” Carol asked, she always loved hearing Rindy’s stories about her classes at FIT.

“I did but Professor Ruby canceled so I told Abby I would help out around here today. But enough about me, tell us more about the mystery woman you sat next to last night,” Rindy echoed abbys request for more information.

“Alright, fine. She was gorgeous, a little shorter than me, probably about 5’6, long brown hair, emerald green eyes, and soft features that draw you in but also leave an air of mystery about her, and she was hilarious as well” Carol revealed, describing the woman.

“She sounds wonderful, Aunt Carol!” Rindy exclaimed.

“She sounds gorgeous, not quite your type, but gorgeous nonetheless. Rindy take out your phone and look up her Instagram,” Abby exclaimed while hitting Rindy’s arm to make sure she was listening.

“You know, come to think of it, we never exchanged names. We talked so much but I guess we never got around to exchanging names, numbers, or any of that,” Carol looked confused.

Rindy went to put away her phone just as a text came through.

“Oh, sorry guys, I have to go. I forgot Genevieve and I had plans to work on a design for class,” Rindy stood up while blushing profusely.

“Why did she blush so much? It's just gen, she's never done that before.'' Carol mentioned.

“Yeah I don't know, anyways my interviewee is here so I have to go. Love you,” Abby said

“Alright, love you too Abigail,” Carol responded.

Therese POV
As she walked over to Abby she noticed that Abby was dressed in jeans, a baggy t-shirt, and sneakers. Therese suddenly felt very overdressed. Abby was exactly like Dannie had described her, shoulder-length brown hair, brown eyes, and soft features.

“Hi, I'm Therese. It's so nice to finally put a face to the name! Dannie has told me so much about you!” Therese shook Abby's hand.

“All good things I hope,” Abby motioned for Therese to take a seat across from her, “then again I can't imagine Dannie bad mouthing anyone,”

Therese laughed, “Neither can I!”

“So basically the job is yours if you want it,” Abby started to explain as Therese smiled, “Dannie and Tommy have spoken so highly of you that I only need to ask one question, are you looking for this to be short term or long term? It’s ok if you don’t know yet,”

“Wow, ok thank you so much, I see Dannie and Tommy really talked me up, haha,” Therese laughed nervously, “I think this is going to be semi-long term.”

Abby smiled, a real genuine smile, not the fake forced smile Therese had become accustomed to while living and growing up in the city.

“Well since we have another hour let's get to know each other because Celia and I are the owners that are on the floor most often. Carol and Harge are both here the same amount of time but they are usually in their offices doing more of the money aspects of the restaurant.”

The next hour went by very quickly with Harge stopping by to welcome her to the Songbird family.

As Therese walked out she picked up her phone to call Dannie to tell him the good news. Right before she hit the call button she glanced across the street and saw someone who looked very similar to the woman from the night before. She shook her head and hit the call button.

“So... how was it?” Dannie asked and therese could practically feel the eagerness radiating off of him.

“Well you and Tommy talked me up so much that Abby hired me on the spot,” Therese gushed.

“What, that’s great!” Dannie exclaimed, “Abby totally didn't tell Tommy and me that you got the job last night…”

“Dannie!” Therese yelled, “You knew and didn't tell me?”

“To be fair you were at a concert and Abby did tell us not to tell you,” Dannie responded, “So if Abby didn't need to interview you, what did you do with the rest of your time, did you meet anyone else who worked there?”

“Yeah, harge stopped by to say hello and rindy was there but only for a very short amount of time because she forgot something for school,” therese explained, “so what is rindy and Abby’s relationship because Abby looks too young to have a daughter who is 20?”

“Rindy is Abby's niece but she has lived with Abby ever since she was 14 because Abby's sister died. However, she was always closer with Abby, Celia, Harge, and Carol because she would stay with Abby when her mom was on business trips. So she basically grew up with Abby anyway and Harge and Carol as her uncle and aunt.” Dannie explained as her train arrived.

“That’s nice of Abby,” therese responded, “Can I come by Tommy’s place and hang out with you guys because I forgot my keys?”

“Of course! You’re always welcome here,” Dannie replied.

“Thank you, I’ll be over in roughly 30 minutes,” therese said.

“See you soon!” Dannie responded.

Carol POV
After Carol got off the phone with Abby she made her way back to her bathroom. Once she was in the bathroom she turned the water on, put on music, and waited until it was steaming. 30 minutes later Carol stepped out of the shower in her robe and brushed her teeth.
As she re-entered her bedroom she checked her phone. She saw she had 2 text messages, one from Rindy and one from Harge. She opened the one from Rindy first.

R- hey! Black, white, or grey? Genevieve and I need to pick a color for the fabric.
C- hmm… maybe a light grey, but I’m sure whatever you and gen chose will be perfect :)
R-thank you! That’s also what aunt Abby said. Huh, you two really are basically siblings.
C-that we are! Send me a picture of the fabric you and gen chose?
R-of course!

Carol was wondering what they were making this time as she opened the text from Harge.

H- I’m going to go easy on you with the favor you owe me.
C-gee thanks harge, what is it though?
H-Abby and I ordered food for the team, it will be ready for pickup around 1:00, can you get it on your way over?
C-yeah I can get it, whose name is it under though?
H-it’s under Abby’s name
C-alright I’ll grab it.
H-thanks.
C-yep

Carol put her phone down to go get dressed.

“What to wear, what to wear, what to wear?” Carol muttered to herself as she stood in her closet.

After twenty minutes of debating, she finally settled on a pair of light wash straight leg jeans, a white tank top, a pair of black heeled boots, and a long black jacket because it was an uncharacteristically cool day in September.

On her way out she double-checked, she had everything in her purse. She realized she forgot her wallet on her nightstand so she quickly ran back to grab it. On her way out of the building, she thanked the doorman and made her way down the street.

As she was waiting in line for the food she felt her phone ring in her pocket. She took her phone out of her pocket to see who it was, it was Celia so she answered.

“Hey, Celia, what’s up?” Carol said as she picked up.

“Not much. What about you?” Celia asked

“Just waiting in line to pick up the food Abby and Harge ordered,'' Carol responded as she moved forward in line.

“Do you know why Abby isn’t picking up her phone? I’ve tried calling her three times,”

“Yeah, she should be interviewing therese belivet, better known as the one Dannie and Tommy always talk about, hold on a sec,” Carol paused.

“Thank you,” she said to the person handing her the food.

“Anyways as I was saying she should be in an interview,” Carol said.

“Thanks, carol I was getting worried,”

“Is something wrong?” Carol asked.

“No, nothing wrong I was just going to ask if there was anything she and rindy wanted before I come home tomorrow,” Celia mentioned.

“Ok, I’ll tell her to check her phone when I get to the restaurant, anyways how was the trip?” Carol inquired.

“It’s going great! It’s been nice to see my family again. They do miss Abby, sometimes I wonder if they love her more than me,” Celia laughed, “they also miss Rindy, and you and Harge. Phil has grown so much since we all saw him last!”

“No way!” Carol giggled, “little Phil, he has to be, like, four now!”

“He’s 6,” Carol gasped.

“I know right! He keeps asking about harge, I think phi misses his piggyback rides,” Celia laughed.

“He probably does, I know those were my favorite things when I was little. I have to go I just arrived,”

“Alright, I’ll see you tomorrow,” Celia hung up. As Carol stood on the corner of the street she saw a woman who looked exactly like the woman from the night before walking out of the restaurant looking very happy. When Carol entered the restaurant she saw Abby getting up from the booth that everyone had nicknamed “the Abby booth” because it was the only one she would sit in. She jogged over to Abby.

“Well, well, well, look who decided to show up,” Abby teased.

“You need to start paying attention to when your phone is ringing Abigail! Your wife tried calling you three times,” Carol poked Abby in the ribs.

“Oh shit, thanks for telling me,” she responded as they walked into the kitchen, “FOOD’S HERE!”

“Do you know who walked out a minute or so before I walked in?” Carol grabbed her food.

“Yeah, it was probably therese, why?” Abby held the door open for carol.

“She looks a lot like the woman from last night,”

“You know I was thinking she looked like your description,” Abby closed the door to Carol’s office for her.

“Oh my god, it is her!” Carol gasped.

“Wait, how do you know already?” Abby asked.

“I looked her up on Instagram,” Carol shrugged her shoulders and sat down.

“Send it to rindy she will want to see it,” Abby sat down across from her.

“Ok,”

C- Abby and I found out who the mystery woman is!
Attachment- Instagram profile
R- omg she’s gorgeous! I see what you mean about her features drawing you in but leaving mystery. Wait why does her name sound familiar
C- because Dannie and Tommy always talk about her, and Abby just interviewed her
R- Woah, small world huh?
C- yeah it is
R- wait so did aunt Abby hire her because if not I’ll be mad
C- don't worry she did
R- good
C-alright I have to work now
R- alright I’ll be by later tonight

“So what did she say?” Abby asked.

“She said ‘wow it’s a small world’ and that she will be by later tonight,”

“Come on, we both know she said more than that,” Abby pressed.

“Fine she also said that therese is gorgeous, but then again you’d have to be blind to think otherwise and that she would be mad if you didn’t hire her, so I guess it’s good you did because everyone knows that girl can hold a grudge.”

“Yeah, I guess it is good I hired her then,” Abby laughed.

“Now I need to work and correct me if I’m wrong but you have a wife that needs to be called back,” Carol reminded Abby.

“Alright see you later,” Abby got up and closed the door behind her.

Rindy POV
“Who are you texting?” gen asked while wrapping her arms around rindys waist from behind.

“My aunt Carol, she and aunt Abby figured out who the mystery I told you about was,” Rindy held up her phone so Gen could see.

“Wow, she gorgeous,” gen remarked

“Yeah but not more than you,” Rindy put her phone on the counter.

“Why does her name sound similar?”

“Dannie and Tommy talk about her a lot and aunt Abby hired her today,” Rindy explained.

“Huh, small world,”

“That’s what I said!” rindy exclaimed.

Gen laughed and said, “We should probably get going if we want to get to the fabric store before it closes,” She barely got the words out before Rindy turned around in her arms and planted a kiss on her lips.

“What was that for?” Gen said while smiling.

“You know that I love you right,” rindy mumbled, sounding uncertain.

“Don't you know that I love you too?” Gen pulled rindy in for a hug.

“We should probably get going,” Rindy said, still in gens arms.

“Yeah, but you might want to fix your makeup first,” Gen went to put her shoes on.

“Yeah I probably should,” rindy headed back to gens bathroom where she kept some makeup. A few minutes later Rindy returned and found Gen sitting on the counter.

“Hey! Ready to go?” Gen leaned in to kiss rindy.

“Yeah, let’s go,” Rindy said when she pulled back from the kiss.

Therese POV
Dannie opened the door to Tommy’s apartment with a bottle of champagne in his hand.

“Dannie, you do know that it’s only 1:45 in the afternoon right?” therese laughed.

“So? We are celebrating, remember or did you forget that you just got a job,” Dannie jokes, “ Tommy is the living room with Black Widow set up,”

“Omg really?” therese asked excitedly. She had been wanting to see it since it came out but never had the chance.

“Yes! Now get in here so we can start it,”

“Tommy, I love you!” therese called while walking into the kitchen.

“I know! Now hurry I’m excited,”

“Hold on a second I’m grabbing your leftovers from last night,” therese called back.

2 hours later after the movie was done, and everyone was shocked by the end credits scene, therese got up and Tommy followed while Dannie stayed sleeping on the couch.

“So how was last night?” Tommy asked. Therese recounted everything that happened.

“You know the woman you described sounds like carol,” Tommy told her.

“Carol? As in your boss carol?”

“Yeah,” Tommy handed therese his phone with a picture of Carol pulled up. Therese almost spits out her drink when she sees the picture.

“Holy shit that’s her,” therese confirmed just as Dannie walked into the kitchen.

“Who’s her?” Dannie asked through a yawn.

“Guess who the woman from last night was?” Tommy said before Therese could say anything.

“I don't know, who?” Dannie responded.

“Carol. The woman from last night is carol.” Therese said.

“Holy shit, like carol-carol, our boss carol?” Dannie questioned while blowing out a breath.

“Yeah…,” Therese trailed off remembering everything that Dannie and Tommy had told her about Carol.