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Undercover

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After college, Andrea Sachs had tried desperately to find a job at a magazine in New York. But all she ever heard was "You're too young, you have no work experience, you're a woman. Get some work experience first and then get back to us and maybe we'll have something for you." blah blah blah - it was frustrating!!!

Andy had begun to hate the interviews and her gender as well. How and where was she ever going to get work experience if they weren't hiring her anywhere? And did the experience she had gained at the Northwestern as editor-in-chief of the Daily Northwestern count for anything???

One evening when she came home frustrated from another job interview that went badly, she slumped on the couch and zapped through the TV program, stopping at an old movie. Andy loved the old classics and so watched she the movie "Victor/Victoria" with interest and attention.

Andy sighed, Victoria had the same problem in this movie as she did, she was an unemployed opera singer that no one wanted to hire. Only Victoria didn't give in but created a situation out of this emergency situation that made her successful and also famous. To do this, Victoria only had to transform herself into a man and then as a travesty artist be able to portray a woman. It was a funny movie that cheered Andy up a bit, so that in the end she didn't go to bed quite so depressed and fell asleep right away for once without any problems.

But when she woke up the next morning, the movie still haunted her mind. The thought of how Victoria had managed to get a job and become famous remained in Andy's mind for many days and slowly, but surely, it developed into an idea.

It had worked for Victoria, so it could work for her, right? How hard could it be?

And so Andy decided to change Andrea Sachs into André Sachs.

First, she had her beautiful long chocolate brown hair cut off and made into a nice man's haircut. After that she went with her boyfriend Doug to look for men's clothes from second hand stores and bought some things and experimented a little bit until she was satisfied with her men's style. And the last thing she had done was get a pair of glasses, which she wore every day from then on. Andy was sure that what had worked for Clark Kent (Superman) would work for her.

Together with Doug, she had practiced walking like a man, acting like a man, and even speaking as deep as a man. It was strange, the more she turned into a man, not only outwardly but also inwardly more and more began to think like a man, the more her self-confidence grew, which had clearly diminished due to the many job interviews that had gone badly.

Andy's quiet, rather simple and modest life in New York immediately turned upside down as soon as she was satisfied with her portrayal as a man and applied again to the various publications in NY and very quickly got a job at the NY Mirror.

For the first few months, she had indeed worked as a girl ... ugh.... boy for everything, but had then gradually revised or written smaller articles for colleagues when they themselves were too busy with other things/articles.

Her personal life had also taken a drastic turn since her transformation, especially when Nate had left her because he couldn't stand to be seen in public with a man who was actually his girlfriend and be considered gay.

But okay, Andy quickly discovered that life without Nate wasn't so terrible. No, quite honestly, it was actually more than okay. She had only had to find a smaller apartment, which she was fortunately able to pay for well with her salary.

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"Sachs!!! In my office!" Greg, editor-in-chief of the NY Mirror shouted and Andy immediately got up from her desk and hurriedly ran into her bosses office.

"Yes boss?" she asked cautiously as she sat down in the chair in front of her boss.

"Sachs, we've been trying to get someone from our magazine placed with the Dragon Lady for quite some time. But for some reason, the female staffers we send to her aren't with the Dragon Lady for more than the blink of an eye before they're kicked out the door again. And here's where you come in. If our female reporters can't do anything, maybe you can." explained Greg and Andy looked at him with a puzzled look.

"Boss?" she asked in her deep André voice that she had grown accustomed to in order to seem more masculine.

"What?" asked Greg, looking at Andy curiously.

"What exactly is my job here? Am I supposed to dress up as a woman and apply to be an assistant to the Dragon Lady (Andy knew Greg was talking about Miranda Priestly, of course) or how do you envision that exactly? And what will my actual job be in this?" asked Andy cautiously, and Greg grinned at Andy.

"Well, no. While I think you might cut a good figure as a woman, after all you have a rather girlish face and a rather petite figure for a man. But no, no, no. I think you should go as yourself and apply for the vacant assistant position. And your job will be to go undercover and find out what's really going on with all the rumors about the Dragon Lady. Sort of - can she really breathe fire when she's pissed off enough? Or does she keep her assistants trapped in her basement when they do something wrong? That sort of thing. I want you to work there and just get a feel for her and finally give the public a clear picture of the Dragon Lady. I've read your college articles and I think you have a good knack for it. You are a good observer so to speak, you don't cover up or cover up anything, your articles are written clearly and well crafted and you don't force your opinions on anyone. That's good, really good, and I think a look from you at the Dragon Lady would do a lot for how the public perceives her, and it would boost our sales a lot too." explained Greg, and Andy looked at him thoughtfully.

"But what if I find out something I don't really want to write about?" asked Andy, tugging at her fingers and kneading them unconsciously.

Greg looked at Andy intently. So far he had come to know the young man as quite fearless, brash, confident, and chatty. Seeing him so nervous now was new. Hmm...

"Well let's try to get you settled there first, and if there's anything you find out that you don't want to write about, we'll talk about it. Okay?"

"Okay." said Andy "What about my work here?"

"Well you'll be on leave, of course we can't continue to pay you your usual salary during the time you're working for the Dragon Lady, but part of it. So try to work at the Dragon Lady as long as you can and find out as many things as you can and you will surely come out big with your articles then. After all, the Dragon Lady never gives interviews and New Yorkers are eager to learn more about her." Greg promised and Andy grinned at him.

Coming out big was Andy's goal, especially because then maybe she would/could be herself again. So yeah, this assignment promised to give her life a direction that was pretty acceptable.

"Okay boss, I'll do it. When do I start?" asked Andy, now much more confident about the assignment.

"First thing tomorrow, I've set up an application appointment for you and I hope you do your best, because if not.... well, we'll see." explained Greg, and Andy looked at him a bit aghast.

"If not, then what???" she immediately asked, not wanting to think about the fact that it implied that she would then lose her job at the NY Mirror.

"Who knows." replied Greg evasively.

"Okay boss." said Andy somewhat meekly.

"Sachs I have high hopes for you, so don't disappoint me. Now go home and get ready for your interview tomorrow. And comb your hair tomorrow, tuck in your shirt and try not to be as sassy and annoying as you usually are. And get back to me as soon as you get the job." Greg said and Andy grinned broadly at him.

It was true, since she had short hair, she almost never combed it, but just kind of tousled it into a shape she thought was okay. And yes, as a man she felt somehow also much more self-confident and also much more self-assured, so that it had come in the last few months already often to the fact that she was cheekier and more annoying (especially if she wanted it something, then she stayed so long at a thing until she got it), than she had ever been otherwise as a woman.

Okay, comb her hair, don't be sassy, and tuck in her shirt if she wore one tomorrow. She could do that, it wasn't hard. Andy grabbed her things, off her desk and left her workstation.