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Bobbseys, What Did You Sign Me Up For?

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A month had already passed by since Andrea had left Miranda in Paris. To her surprise, the Editor-in-Chief had written her a recommendation letter, so it was no problem for her to find a new job. She was now starting her career as a journalist at The Mirror, although since she was a newbie, the only task her new Boss gave her was writing short columns about boring things. And that was when she was not in charge of writing obituaries; those days she felt like throwing herself out of a window. Who would write her obituary then? She did not really care. And because she was not feeling fulfilled by this job at the moment, her thoughts would always go back to the one person she had ever had feelings for: Miranda.

Before going to Paris, she had had a big argument with Nate. He kept saying how much she had changed, and how obsessed she was about Miranda, that she always picked the phone when she received a call from her, but did not pay nearly the same attention to him.

[ Flashback to the morning before Paris Fashion Week - Andy's apartment ]

"She's my Boss! What do you want, for me to get fired?"

"Well, actually yes, that would make you a big favor! Look at yourself! This isn't you anymore, Andy. This person you have become? I don't recognize her."

"Now you're just talking like Lily. You know what? You're right."

"Finally, we agree to someth…"

"No, you listen to me because I'm only gonna say this once! I am different from who I used to be, not because I have changed, but because… because I have finally let myself be the person I always was in the first place."

"What the hell are you talking about? Working for that bitch has made you crazy!"

"Don't you fucking dare call Miranda that in my presence!"

"See? You're always defending her like… like you were her girlfriend or something. It's ridiculous!"

"What is ridiculous is to have forced myself to live a life that makes me miserable just to keep you, Lily and Doug, and especially my parents, happy."

"What do you mean?"

"I'm a lesbian, Nate."

Nate scoffed, "You definitely have lost your damn mind."

"It's over, Nate. You'll find a girl who feels the same way about you that you feel about her."

"But… but you love me! Come on, Andy, I'm sorry I insulted your superior, if it's about that, but…"

"It's not! Are you even listening? I grew up in a conservative family. I couldn't come out to them! I told myself I wasn't "like that" like my parents call gay people, that if I finally dated a boy, I would like it. But if I learned something during the time I've been working for Mi… 'Runway', it's… I am a lesbian. And I've always been! All the hints were there, I've just been ignoring them all my life. Do you know how hard this is for me?"

"For YOU? How about, for fucking ONCE, you care about ME? Do you know what it is like to know I've wasted the last year dating someone who suddenly has turned into a lesbian? Is this what Miranda does at Runway, huh? Her hobby is turning girls gay for her because she's so egocentric and her life is empty, like her head?"

Andy was trying not to cry, but she was feeling completely helpless, and could not stop the tears from falling down. She knew she could not have this talk with her family, but thought maybe Nate, being from a younger generation, like her, would understand. She would talk to Lily and Doug later, but was convinced they would not take it well. Well, maybe Doug would, since he is gay, but Lily…

"People don't just turn gay, Nate! That's what ignorant people say! We are born the way we are, but unfortunately for me, I've discovered who I really am now! And I'm not gonna hide it anymore, whether you like it or not."

"You weren't doing a good job at hiding it either. Go to your dear Miranda, kiss her ass or whatever you two do."

Andy slapped his face with more strength than she expected. She had never reacted this strongly towards anyone before. "How could I have chosen to date this selfish jerk in the first place?" She grabbed the suitcase that was next to her, which she had prepared last night, since she had to go early this morning to the airport for Paris Fashion Week.

Nate just stood there, petrified, still trying to process what had just happened, and heard Andy slam the front door. "Fuck that bitch! I'm better off without her." he thought, and decided he would leave the apartment for good, maybe head to Boston to become a Chef, so when Andy came back from her stupid trip with her bitch of a Boss, she would regret having said and done this to him.

[ End of flashback ]

Andy sighed. But then she remembered, it's Friday and I'm gonna see Nigel, Emily and Doug after work. 2 more hours and I'll be free.

[ Flashback to the morning before Paris Fashion Week - Airport ]

It had been a relief telling Doug what had happened with Nate when she was waiting for her flight at the airport last month. She had sent both him and Lily a short message. Lily was the first one to reply:

How could you do this to Nate? You used him! You chose to be a snob and to sleep with your Boss to advance in your career. How can you be so pathetic? He's better off without you, and so am I. Don't contact me ever again.

She tried very hard to not cry at the airport, since she was surrounded by people and had to find Miranda, who would not appreciate her being a mess who looked like a raccoon. She should not have used mascara that morning. One minute later, she received not a message, but a phone call, which she took with trembling hands:

"Yes?"

"Andy? Oh my God, you're gay!"

"No shit, Sherlock." she joked, but her sniffing betrayed her.

"Hey, are you okay? Tell me Nate didn't do anything stupid."

"Well, apart from saying I have decided to turn into a lesbian because I'm selfish and calling Miranda horrible things, no, he didn't."

"You should've told him being gay isn't a choice, but being an idiot is. Girl, I'm so sorry you had to stand that crap. But now the good thing is… we're a gay duo! We are Queens, you and me. We have to catch up, I'm sure there's a lot you would like to talk about, am I right?"

It took Andy a few seconds to react. She wasn't expecting anyone to be supportive because of her past (and present) experiences, and even though Doug was gay, a part of her was afraid he would pick sides, like Lily just did, "thank you, Doug. You don't know how much this means to me."

"Don't even mention it. And by the way, you're going to the City of Love, so, honey, you know what this means?"

"Doug, don't be ridiculous!"

"Aww, now you're just talking like her! Isn't that adorable?"

"You're impossible." she smiled.

"Well, have fun and remember: don't disappoint your Queen. Or she'll end you and there will be no gay duo no more when Paris Fashion Week is over."

"You know I would never disappoint her on purpose. Anyway, I gotta go, I can't be late to my flight and… oh, there she is. And Emily is making faces at me, she's so pissed off. Love you, Douggie!"

"Love you too, au-revoir!"

[ End of flashback ]

Those 2 hours were over, finally! Andy grabbed her messenger bag and left the building as quickly as she could, wishing a nice weekend to her peers on her way out. She headed towards the Elias-Clark building, since Nigel and Emily would be waiting for her outside, as usual. Doug would join them at their favorite bar.

"Hi, Six! Looking good as always."

"Hi yourself, Nigel, and thanks."

"Can you stop your stupid small talking? I'm starving, and God knows I need a tapa right now."

"Em, ever since you stopped being stubborn about not eating properly, you're insufferable about going out to eat. I just arrived here!"

"So arrive earlier!"

"Girls, please. Behave yourselves; we have a reputation to keep." Nigel said, clearing his throat.

"Wha...? Oh." Andy did not realize she had stopped breathing as she saw her ex-Boss heading towards her limousine.

Miranda did not seem to have noticed they were there. But of course, this was New York and there were a lot of pedestrians walking by all the time.

"Earth calling Six: we have an emergency, Emily will either have her tapa or your head for lunch."

"Oh, I'm sorry. I… zoomed out for a moment. Let's go!" she started walking, followed by her two friends, who looked at each other in understanding.

Later, at their spot…

"There you are! I have ordered the usual. I was starving." Doug said once they all were sat at the table."

"See? This man gets me!" Emily exclaimed, starting to eat, even moaning at her first bite.

"Do yourself a favor and save that for whenever Serena is around." Nigel said, taking a sip of his drink.

Emily choked on her food, "What… what do you mean?"

Andy intervened, "Em, let's just say you're not very discreet about your feelings for Serena."

"What feelings? We're friends!"

"And whose fault is that?" Nigel asked, teasing her.

"She can't possibly be interested in me in that way! And I'm not gonna break our friendship over this!"

"So you admit you have a crush on her." Doug said, satisfied with Emily's reaction, whose face had turned the same color as her hair.

"Oh, fuck off!"

"Now, enough about Emily. Six, we have some news for you. She and I have decided to help you out, and I'm sure Dough will like it too."

"Uuh, color me intrigued." Doug said, eating a fry.

"Uh-oh, what are you two up to?" Andy asked, fearing the worst.

Nigel cleared his throat, "so, remember you said you can't forget about Miranda?"

"Yes?"

"Well, you should."

"I… I can't, I tried, but…"

"So we thought of a solution."

"Bloody Hell, can't you just go straight to the point?" Emily said, "we created a profile for you on a dating site, so you can get over the bloody Ice Queen."

"NO! No-no-no-no-no, you've got to be kidding me. That's for desperate people!"

"Do you want to look at yourself in the mirror I always bring in my purse?" Emily rolled her eyes.

"Hey!"

"Desperate times call for desperate measures. And also, you know what they say: one devil drives out another." Nigel said.

"You think you're so funny!"

"Andy, what do you have to lose?" Doug tried to encourage her, not only because he wanted to see her friend happy, and finally dating the right person, but also because he was curious about this site and the anecdotes Andy would no doubt tell them.

"I guess I could give it a chance, see what happens."

"That's the spirit!" her three friends said in unison, and had a toast "to finding love!"

Meanwhile, at Miranda's townhouse…

Miranda was officially divorced from Stephen. Of all the mistakes she had made, he was by far the worst of them all. But at least this was over. What was not over though, was her feelings for her ex-assistant. Not the first assistant, of course, but the clumsy, awkward one who had gone through a metamorphosis in the blink of an eye. She could never recover from the fact the brunette had decided to abandon her in Paris, after having let herself been vulnerable in front of her about her divorce, after having told her how much of herself she saw in her, which was the biggest compliment she had ever paid to anyone. After all of this, she had left her in front of the paparazzi. She had been so stupid, thinking… what? That she would be different? What exactly was she expecting to happen? Andrea was just an assistant, the best one so far, very efficient, always knowing what she needed before even she knew it. She had almost completely stopped eating, except when she was having dinner with her daughters, to set a good example for them. She was barely getting any sleep, which had had a negative influence on her mood, so her employees were a wreck of nerves, even more than usual. At least Emily had been competent and found a decent replacement for Andrea.

Caroline and Cassidy had thought her mother was depressed because of the divorce, since they were living for the second time the backlash from the press. Those idiots from Page Six really enjoyed coming after her mother, they hated them so much. But they took after Miranda, after all, and so they were very smart. It did not take long for them to notice that the real reason why her mother was so sad and seemed to not even be alive was the departure of the Potter girl, as they had decided to call her. How could she abandon their mother? Who did she think she was?

"Alright, Cas, we just have to click here and boom! Mom will have new suitors in no time!"

"I hope this works."

"Me too."

The girls were so immersed on their task, they did not hear Miranda had just come home from work.

Their mother walked towards them, "I said, Bobbseys, I'm home. What are you two doing on my computer?!"

"Nothing!"

"We had to do a research for an essay on… on magazines."

"And we chose fashion. So we wanted to take a look at your PDFs."

Miranda did not seem convinced by their explanation, and so she decided to check her laptop. Caroline hit on the last box she needed to check to complete the registration, without looking twice, since her mother was about to catch them, and both she and her sister ran upstairs.

"Pheww, that was close." Cassidy said, "Did you send the form?"

"Yes, it's all done. Good thing she didn't notice…"

"Caroline, Cassidy, come here right now!"

"Uh-oh."

"Well, she had to find out what we did sooner or later."

The twins met her mother in less than a minute to prevent a bigger disaster than the one that was coming.

"Will you care to explain what is this screen and why does it say here CaputDraconis?"

"It's such a funny story!"

"You're so gonna laugh about it!"

She did not.

The twins explained their plan to her, and Miranda pinched her nose, trying to process it. This had to be a nightmare. She could not be registered on a dating site! She was the Ice Queen, not the Ice Bachelorette, for crying out loud!

"Go to your rooms. I'll think about your punishment in the morning."

"Yes, mom." they said in unison, slowly heading to their rooms. They were so disappointed in their plan being a failure when it had barely started...

The silver-haired woman went back to the site, deciding to delete her profile, but truth be told, she was a bit curious. She checked what kind of people was registered. There was no harm in that, right?

"Let's see. I'm a sugar… disgusting. Oh, this one seems normal "I'm a surgeon and I love dogs. Searching for a young… eww! Eww! How can men be so gross? I've had enough!" she was about to go to her profile to delete it, when a picture called her attention. It was not a man's, but a woman's picture. Why did a woman appear in the screen instead of just men? "Oh. It seems I gave such a scare to my daughters they hit on the bisexual box. But I must be dreaming, this… it can't be… her."

She was looking at the pic of no other but Andrea Sachs, whose nickname was ChanelBoots.

"Kinky much? What are you doing here? Does this mean her story with the chef wannabe is over?" She could not stop herself from reading her profile.

Hi! I'm searching for a woman who likes to have fun, but who is also intellectual, so we can have dates at coffee shops and have meaningful conversations. I'm nice, funny, a bit of a geek, and work as a journalist, and as such, I'm curious about different topics, so don't hesitate to contact me if you're not boring ;P

"Andrea, you were always a box of surprises." Miranda said to herself, deciding to not delete her profile and to pursue her ex-assistant. She did not know how, but she would try, as she was never a coward and always did whatever was necessary to get what she wanted, which, in this case, was her Andrea's heart.

Chapter Text

On Saturday night, Miranda decided to send Andrea a message. She won't even know it's me for now, what do I have to lose?

"Hello, Chanel girl." Miranda looked at the screen, not knowing if she was being silly. Even if she replied, what would happen once Andrea knew it was her behind the screen? Maybe she'd block her and would think she was too old to be in this site. She sighed. She really was behaving like a teenager, wasn't she? "I'll just keep checking The Book, it could be hours until she…" a beeping sound interrupted her. There was a new message on the chat.

"Hello, stranger. What's with the name in Latin? Are you a librarian? :P"

She had replied! But what name was she referring to? Oh, right, the one her Bobbseys had chosen for her. What a surprise, it was a Harry Potter reference.

"It's the password for Gryffindor's students, from 'Harry Potter and The Philosopher's Stone'. Have you read it?"

"OMG, you're a Potterhead too? Yes, of course I have!"

"Well, I wouldn't call myself that, but this saga is very important to me," Should she talk about her daughters? Considering it was an anonymous profile, and she would not even mention their names, Miranda thought it was fine, "I used to read the first books to my daughters when they were little. And they made me go to the cinema with them every time a new movie was released, sometimes even twice."

"Aww, that's so cute! May I know which House do you identify with the most? Sorry if I'm being too much of a geek, I just always get very enthusiastic about this stuff."

Stuff. She used the word stuff. Miranda hated that word so much, but of course Andrea did not know it was her she was speaking to. She had only used said word in her presence once, and she had destroyed her in front of the rest of her employees for doing so, after having laughed at the two belts she was uncertain about choosing for a photoshoot. She cringed at reading the last word of the message, but since Andrea was being nice and the point of this chat was to woo her, she replied without making a fuss about it:

"I am a Slytherin. What about you?"

"Oh, you're on the dark side! I like it :) I still have an identity crisis tbh"

What the heck did that emoji mean? She would have to ask her daughters. But that would mean to admit she approved of them making her a profile in this site, and she had told them she would punish them for it. Well, she would have to let this one slide. After all, she was following their plan. Oh, God, she really was doing what their daughters had wanted her to do! Like mother, like daughters.

"An identity crisis?"

"Yes. It's just… I've always felt like a Hufflepuff, ya know? But during the last year, my life changed completely and the job I used to have turned me into a Slytherin little by little (in a good way though, I don't have prejudices against that House and don't believe in the clichés people say about Slytherins)."

"And what job was it? The mob?"

"xDDDDD oh god, you're so funny! :D No, I used to be an assistant, but the job was very demanding and I had to push myself to meet my Boss' expectations. It wasn't easy, but it was worth it."

Miranda was feeling a bit frustrated. Why were there so many 'Ds' after that small 'x'? She would need a dictionary if she wanted to keep up with this online texting crap! But Andrea had called her funny, so that was good. Come to think of it, no one on Earth had ever referred to her as funny, this was a first.

"Well, if you're writing this, it means you survived whatever hard tasks your Boss gave you, so congratulations."

"Thanks, but tbh I am not very proud about how things ended."

Paris. That still stung. Surely she meant she hated how Miranda had compared her to herself, even saying everyone wanted to be them.

"What happened?"

"Well, I… oh, God, it's embarrassing."

Embarrassing for her? She had been the one who had abandoned her with all those paparazzi taking pictures to immortalize the moment.

Andy kept writing, "I'll only tell you that I did something I shouldn't have done, or rather, I did things the wrong way. It was so very unprofessional of me."

Now with that, Miranda totally had to agree.

"You don't have to tell me if it bothers you, it's alright."

"Okay. But just so you know I am not a bad person or anything, I just made a stupid mistake. Well, I have made two big mistakes in my whole life."

"Judging by your picture, you must be near 30, so I would say 2 mistakes in all that time are not a lot."

"Yeah, but one of them must really have sucked for a certain person I owe a lot."

"Have you tried apologizing to them?"

"No, she wouldn't listen to me. She probably deleted my phone number and everything. I don't want to make her hate me even more."

"I don't think anyone could actually hate you, you seem like a nice woman."

"Thank you, but… try telling that to my family and my ex-boyfriend."

Ah, the ex. Of course she would speak about him sooner or later. But Miranda wanted to know everything that happened. She would be lying if she told herself otherwise.

"Your family?"

"Yes. It's no mystery that I am a lesbian, since you've literally found me in this site, so I don't mind telling you. I won't bother you with details."

No, no, this was unacceptable! The Editor wanted to be bothered with all the details she would like to share with her. For once she did not mind someone chit-chatting and they refused to spill the tea, how unfortunate!

"I can assure you you won't bother me. I'm a good listener when I want to." Which was not often.

"Okay, so… I was dating a boy, but only because my family is very conservative, and I wanted to convince myself I'm not who I am."

"That doesn't sound healthy and it's certainly not fair to you."

"I know, I just was afraid about their reaction. I believe they had their suspicions, and he talked to me during a party when I was in my last year of college, so it seemed like the perfect opportunity to see if I could like men, you know?"

"I understand, although it's horrible to see oneself in such a horrible situation. I know it very well."

"How so? If you don't mind me asking."

"My family isn't open-minded either. I am older than you, and things were even worse for gay people when I was your age, of course. I married a man I didn't love, who was my friend, thinking it'd be easy changing our relationship from friends to lovers. But I was wrong, of course. He is the father of my daughters; they are the one good thing that came from this relationship. Then we got a divorce, of course, and I made the mistake of marrying a man again, a few years later. I listened to my family, who stated I just had to find the right man. They were wrong, and so was I thinking I should do whatever they expected of me because they were older, so they knew better."

"Oh, no, I'm so sorry, Draconis!"

"See? I've also made mistakes. We're only human, Chanel girl."

"You're right :) But I really wish I hadn't dated that douche. He was so mean when I came out to him, and tried to make it all about him, as always! And the worst thing is one of my friends sided with him."

"Then that person was never your friend to begin with, so it was good riddance, same for that idiot you dated. What is important is that it's all over now."

"Yeah, I'm relieved about that. However, the douche got in touch with my parents, since they used to exchange messages every now and then. I think they always thought of him as the son they never had, and well… he told them I broke up with him and outed me."

That son of a bitch. The silver-haired woman pursed her lips, upset she did not know this before to try and help Andrea somehow, even taking revenge on that bastard. Maybe she still could.

"He had no business doing that."

"Yeah, I know, and he got his own way: my parents won't talk to me. If they were rich, they would disown me."

"I'm terribly sorry you're going through this. No parent should reject their sons or daughters because of stupid prejudices, much less ally with the person who hurt their daughter the most. I hope you have friends who are there for you."

"Yes, I do! And ironically, one of them used to be my enemy or something at work! But she turned up to be a very loyal friend :)"

A friend from work who was her enemy? That had to be Emily, no doubt. And maybe Nigel was friends with Andrea too. He certainly helped her feel more confident and bring out all her potential.

"I'm glad you can count on them. It seems except for your parents, who I hope someday will listen to reason, everything turned out alright."

"Not everything, I wish I could turn back in time and do things right regarding this other person I prefer not to talk about. I know she wouldn't appreciate me doing that."

But she is here reading this, and she certainly wants you to talk about her. Ok, that sounded a bit egocentric. But who is not a bit curious about what others say about them when they're not present, right? Oh, Andrea, always so loyal!

"Who knows? Maybe someday you will find the perfect opportunity to make amends :)"

Oh, God, did she just use a fricking emoji? What was Andrea doing to her?

"I certainly hope so. I gotta go, my phone's ringing. I hope we can talk some more another day, I really enjoyed talking to you, Draconis ^^"

"Alright, talk to you soon, Chanel girl."

Miranda checked the time: they had been texting for half an hour. And it had not been a big disaster! It had felt quite nice, actually. She could not stop a smile from appearing on her usual serious face, and when she turned her laptop off, she saw a silhouette watching her from the doorframe of her study.

"Mom, why are you smiling?" Cassidy asked.

"Don't be silly, Bobbsey, I am not doing such thing."

"Whatever you say."

"Why aren't you sleeping? It's late."

"I was, just came to get a glass of water. Goodnight, mom."

"Goodnight, Cassidy."

When Cassidy told her sister what she just had seen, she could not believe it.

"No way! Do you think she was…?"

"On that site? Duh!" Cassidy said, "I don't remember the last time I saw her being this excited."

"Then she owes us an apology, we helped her and she pretended it was a stupid idea."

"Mom, apologizing to us?" the child raised an eyebrow, Miranda-style.

"You're right. Well, she better tell us about this mysterious person she's been talking to."

The twins were almost as excited as their mother to know more about this person who had managed, somehow, to change Miranda's mood for the better in the blink of an eye.

Meanwhile, at Andy's…

"So? What took you so long to pick up the phone?" Doug asked, "DON'T TELL ME YOU HAVE COMPANY?! Hey, give me my phone back, Nigel!"

"Nigel is there with you? You two really love a gossip."

"Yeah, yeah, don't take the subject, Six. So, are you with someone?"

"At this moment? No, but…"

"Buuuut?" the two men in unison.

"I've been… talking… well, texting, someone."

"I knew it! My plan is a success!"

"Pardon me? Your plan? How about you stop taking credit for something that was also my idea?" a snob voice said in the background.

"Em, are you there too? What is all this?"

"This is the Besties Gossip Committee, of course!" Doug replied.

"I told you I'm not calling us that, it's hideous!"

"Alright, Emily, it's the Gossip Bollocks Committee for you then."

"Fuck you!"

"Hey, guys, stop it. Do you or do you not want to know about this person whom I've been texting?"

"Yeah, Six, tell us all about her. How does she look like? Is she a blonde?"

"She's probably a brunette. They say lesbians tend to date someone who looks similar and often struggle with people asking if they're sisters."

"Bollocks, she's obviously going after a replacement for Miranda, but this bitch is so whipped for her she has to have grey hair."

"I… I honestly don't know."

"What do you mean you don't know? Six, haven't you seen her profile picture? I mean, we made 90% of the work for you. We set up your profile, but surely you are capable of finding her picture!"

"She did not have one."

"Oh, God. What if it was a guy you have been talking to? Andy, you need to be more careful." Doug said.

"No, she was a woman, I just know! And she went through some shit with men as well, so I don't know… we kinda connected instantly." she said with a dreamy tone.

"Great, now she's losing her shit for someone who may not even exist! Nigel, I knew your idea sucked!" Emily exclaimed exasperated.

"Oh, so now it is my idea, huh? Shame on you."

"Guys, please, not again. You really don't have to worry about me, she's so kind, and I can't believe I am about to say this, but…" she was smiling like a teenager.

"BUT WHAT?" the three asked.

"You guys, I got myself a milf!"

"What the hell is that?" Emily asked.

"Good for you, kiddo!" Doug said, while Niggle giggled in the background.

"Anyone care to explain what is happening? Am I the only one who doesn't know that term?"

"She has a crush on a hot mom, Emily. Jeez, go check the internet, not everything has to be about work." Nigel explained.

"Oh, God," Andy could not see the Brit, but she was massaging her temple, "Andrea, you do realize the point of all this was for you to get over Miranda? Hello? That includes the perks of not having to stand two little monsters!"

"Caroline and Cassidy are not monsters, Emily, you're just too… uptight."

"Thank you, Emily, for helping me with my love lifeeee." Emily said in a mocking tone.

"Sorry, but it's the tea."

"Well, you keep spilling the tea tomorrow or whenever you talk to her again." Nigel said.

"Sure thing. Thank you guys."

"Byeee!"

Andy ended the call. She went to bed and felt asleep with happy thoughts. She could not wait to speak to this person again.

Chapter Text

This week was feeling particularly long, and Andy did not know what was coming. On her lunch break, she received a call from Doug:

"Andy? I have some bad news."

"Great, just what I needed this week. They can't worse than me writing obituaries, right?"

"Actually…"

"Wait, did someone die?!"

"No, no, calm down. But you'll wish a certain someone had. So, Lily, who hasn't contacted me ever since I told her I would never stop being friends with you, sent me a text this morning."

"What did it say?"

"Turns out Nate passed the casting to become one of the contestants on MasterChef this season."

After a long pause, the brunette replied, "Please, tell me this is a joke."

"I wish it were, but judging by her tone I don't think so. She said 'screw you and that bitch, Nate is gonna win this edition and you'll have to see him being successful, but don't expect to be allowed in his future restaurant.' Like what the Hell, are you her fucking cheerleader? They're gonna record the first show very soon, so the first episode will air in a couple of weeks or so."

"I hate this week and it's only Tuesday. I hope he chokes on his sauce or something."

"Wishful thinking. Anyway, I just wanted to give you the heads-up so you don't turn on the TV and see his stupid face."

"Thanks, Dougie."

"You're welcome. This Friday drinks are on me, okay, Queen?"

"Can't wait!" that cheered her up a little.

She hung up the phone and sighed, avoiding hitting her head against her desk repeatedly like she wanted to do.

Meanwhile, at Runway offices…

"You won't believe what Doug just told me." Nigel mumbled to Emily and Serena after exiting Miranda's office.

"Come on, spit it out!" the redhead urged him to talk, since her Boss could get out of her lair at any moment and the last thing she wanted was to get in trouble because of some stupid gossip.

"Doug sent me a text, and apparently, Andy's ex is one of the new contestants on MasterChef! The dude is gonna appear on national TV and may become a Chef!"

"Uh, I love that show!" Serena said, but quickly added, seeing her friends' serious stare, "But I hate that jerk. It's not fair!"

"That's an understatement. He can't win! Karma can't allow such a thing to happen!" Emily was furious, "And since when do you watch that show, Serena?"

"Since the first time it aired. I love cooking, which you'd know if you actually came by my place someday. We only see each other at the office."

"We always have a lot of work to do!"

"Also in the weekends? Come on, Em. I'll make you my special lasagna." she winked at the Brit, whose cheeks flushed for some reason.

"Alright. How about this Saturday?"

"Perfect!"

Nigel had watched the whole interaction in silent, especially amused by Emily. He had to tell this to Andy and Doug later.

What these three did not know is that someone else had heard their conversation.

That idiot who hurt my Andrea will not get his own way. I will make sure of it. The Editor got back to her desk, a devilish smile on her face.

That night, after Miranda had had dinner with her daughters, who were very insistent about knowing who she was exchanging messages with (but she refuse to tell them) she logged into the dating site.

"Hello, Chanel girl. How was your day?"

She knew her ex-assistant would not be happy, if what her friends had been talking about was true. She received her reply a few minutes later.

"Hi, Draconis. Not very well. Life can really suck sometimes."

"What happened?"

"So, remember my ex? He may become a Chef. He's gonna appear on damn national TV, on MasterChef!"

"That's… unfortunate. But he may be expelled sooner than later, and Gordon is known for his temperament, something funny may happen."

"Maybe… but let's drop the subject. How was your day?"

"It could have been worse, I guess, although something interesting happened between two co-workers today. They are both women by the way."

"Oh? Please, spill the tea :P"

She had used an emoji for the first time today, so her mood was improving. Miranda smiled to herself.

"For months I was under the impression they were dating, but it turns out they are just friends, and while one of them has blatantly been flirting with the other one, the latter is very stubborn, and it was only today that she said yes to what I think it's a date."

"Oh, that's so exciting! Please let me know how this develops. I'm invested."

"I'll make sure you receive the news."

Miranda kept distracting her from the MasterChef topic for a few minutes, and after they had said goodbye to each other, the silver-haired woman picked up her phone and rang one of the few people she considered an intimate friend.

"Gordon, hi. This is Miranda. Yes, yes, I know it's been a while, but work has been crazy… yes, I know it always is. Oh, come on, don't be such a drama queen! I promise I'll meet you and your wonderful family the moment I take some time off. So, listen, I need a favor…"

A few days later, the news became official: the names of the contestants appeared in all websites and journals on the TV section. Andy's friends had told her to not watch the reality, but she insisted she wanted to see how the first episode turned out, for better or for worse, so they agreed to watch it with her as moral support.

The next week, they gathered at Nigel's to watch MasterChef. They had decided to have pizza for dinner (a bit ironic to watch a cooking TV show while consuming fast food, but this was the life and they liked to indulge in carbs every now and then).

"Are you ready, boots?" Nigel asked Andy. It had become a joke between them ever since she first had worn those Chanel boots. When Nigel turned on the TV, they were presenting the contestants.

"I have my pizza and I have my friends. Nothing can go wrong now." Andy said smiling.

It could. Her phone started beeping.

"This can't be happening."

"Who is it?" Emily asked.

"My mother." she huffed.

"Oh, God, I can already tell why she's calling." Doug rolled his eyes and took a sip of his drink.

"Mother, what do you want?" the brunette asked tired, "Yes, I am watching it. Yeah, I know he is one of the contestants, I have eyes." after a few seconds of listening to her mother, her face changed into an expression of disbelief, "HE WAS IS CATCH I LET GO? WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU SMOKE?"

Her friends were shocked, she had never snapped like that, much less used swear words directed to her family. But again, her own family had stopped talking to her the moment she had broken up with her now ex-boyfriend because she is a lesbian, and picked him over their own daughter.

"No, it's you who shouldn't be talking to me like this! Go to Hell, adopt that bastard if you want! Don't fucking call me ever again!" she ended the call, with some tears in her eyes.

"Andy, I'm sorry she still is picking sides against you, but we're here for you, okay?" Serena said, gently placing her hands on her shoulders to calm her down.

"This is never gonna change, I should stop bringing my hopes up for nothing. Just, let's watch the damn show, alright?"

Her friends nodded and kept eating in silence, until the camera focused on Gordon Ramsay.

"Oh my God, I had forgotten how hot he is!"

"Serena! Really? You… you fancy him? You CAN'T fancy him!" Emily exclaimed, not being able to hide her jealousy. Not that they were dating or anything, Serena and her were just friends (friends who had shared Serena's lasagna, which she had only cooked for her dates in the past, but Emily did not know) as she had reminded herself in past few years.

"Of course I can! I wish I could cook with someone who could teach me a couple of new receipts. It would be so romantic!"

"Oh, shut up, the first contestant is speaking." Bloody Hell, what's the big deal about this dude? There are plenty of people who can cook, like me for example, and you don't get this excited!

"Great, her name is Karen." Doug said, "This is gonna be fun."

Finally, Nate appeared on screen, praising himself about how gifted he had always been, that ever as a kid, his family had been telling him he was the best cook and would open his own restaurant in the future.

"Yikes, always so egocentric." Andy said, chewing her pizza.

"The audience won't like him. He'll be roasted on Twitter for sure." Nigel said, "And I'm a part of the audience, just saying."

"What are you gonna do, Nige?"

"Nothing, I'll just use my freedom of expression."

They all smiled at hearing this. They did not use Twitter to comment trends, but they may as well do an exception.

Today's challenge would be cooking a medium rare stake. Andy smiled to herself, feeling a bittersweet sensation, remembering this was her ex-Boss' favorite food.

"You may prepare a sauce of your liking that you consider pairs well with the stake. But, and this is very important: I don't want a raw stake, or an overcooked one, understood?" Gordon asked the contestants.

"Yes, Chef!"

And so, everybody got to business. They had the basic ingredients on their counters, but were allowed to go to the room where more ingredients were stocked.

"Excuse me?" Karen asked, raising a hand.

"What's the matter?" a judge approached her.

"Why is this counter so high? It didn't look so high at home! You raised its height this season, didn't you?" she kept rambling in a high-pitched tone of voice.

"Karen, honey, we didn't…" he started talking, but was quickly interrupted by her.

"Don't honey-me! Come on! You did this on purpose! I'm clearly in disadvantage here!"

"Karen, you are not. Johanna right there is like three heads smaller than you and she seems to be doing fine. Isn't that right, Johanna?"

Johanna was containing her laughter. The counters were a good size even for kids, for God's sake! "Yes, I think these counters are quite alright. The ones I have at home are slighter taller and I have no problem cooking." she smiled.

"She just knows she's gonna go home tonight and doesn't give a damn about the damn counters! I want to speak to the manager!"

This provoked laughter in everybody, including Gordon, who had had a serious face since the reality started.

The interviews with the contestants speaking to the camera were airing every few minutes. One of them, Gretchen, stated that "I didn't come here to make friends, I came here to win," to which Emily said "well, said, I'm rooting for this bitch." making her friends laugh. "But I do appreciate some healthy competition, and just in case someone has got the wrong idea about me: I won't try to win by cheating or being a snake, that's just disgraceful."

"Well said, Gretchen." Emily nodded, and Serena looked at her raising an eyebrow, amazed by her enthusiasm.

"Are you and Gretchen cousins or something?" the blonde asked.

"Obviously not, she wishes she could've got this marvelous red hair of mine, but if she were my cousin I'd be very proud of her." she replied, holding her head high and making Serena chuckle.

When the commercials were on, the Besties Gossip Committee shared their impressions and talked about who were their favorite candidates. Nigel checked Twitter, and there were already people talking about the interviews.

"Who the hell is this dipshit who behaves like he was the Queen of England on the first day?" he read.

"Ha! Retweet!" Doug exclaimed, doing exactly that on his phone.

"We know he's hiding his huge ego under all that mop of hair." Nigel read another tweet.

"I always told him to go to the hairdresser and he wouldn't listen to me." Andy said, "He also would never let me do his eyebrows, they made me so nervous, it's like looking at two cats lying on his eyes!"

Emily snorted at that, but quickly got upset over a tweet about Gretchen, "Hey! What is this idiot talking about? alphamach0m4n says 'Gretchen be like, I am no snake but she sure is a Slytherin, hypocrite much? lol." And then added something so disgusting I'm gonna just block him. What a pig! How about Gretchen turns you into bacon next week, huh?!"

"Emily, breathe," Serena was giggling at seeing her friend like this, "there are a lot of douches like him, just block and ignore them all. It's what I do."

"You're right."

And commercials were over. There was a fast-forward of what was coming and there was a lot of yelling. They only showed Gordon but not who he was screaming at.

"I should've bought popcorn." Nigel said.

"This is getting exciting!" Doug patted Andy's leg.

"It is. I'm glad you told me to watch this with you, guys."

"Aww, Six, you're getting emotional and we still haven't had any drinks!"

"Shut up, I'm not!" but she was. In fact she wished she could talk to Draconis at this very moment. She would talk to her tomorrow though. She wondered if her friend/potential girlfriend was watching this too.

The judges were taking turns walking around, checking on the contestants, seeing their process. One of the young men was gonna be, no doubt, one of the favorites. Mark was charming, said he was used to cooking under pressure because his big family had always been very demanding and that he was usually the one cooking for them on Christmas and other events, and loved cooking for his parents when he lived with them. He was also very good-looking, had a resemblance with The Rock, and people on Twitter were going crazy about him.

Nigel was giggling while checking his phone, "Yes, ashleyolo, I would also want to try his pickle."

"Eww!" Emily and Andy exclaimed at the same time, making Serena, Nigel and Doug laugh.

Everything was going smooth, there were good vibes, Gretchen had helped the girl next to her when she was struggling with a minor thing, but then, a dramatic music came on, Mark slipped and fell on his back, and was having trouble to breath because of the impact. The cameras focused on him and it seemed he might have a concussion. He received medical attention, and they took him out of the stage.

"What the fuck was that? How did he slip?"

"Is he okay?" the contestants asked, or rather, most of them. Nate had stayed in his position, in the last row, a bit too much to its left to be honest.

"Wow, how considerate of that bloody wanker!" Emily exclaimed.

"He's always been like that, always caring about himself first." Andy replied, "Mark seemed so nice, I hate he was the one who fell on the ground." she added in a sad tone.

"He can't get disqualified! He should be given another chance!" Doug said, devastated, maybe too much.

"Do you have anything to tell us?" Nigel asked a bit too serious.

"My handsome boy!" he dramatically exclaimed, bringing the back of his head to his forehead.

"Hey, it's mine! I thirsted about him first!"

"You guys are ridiculous. You should be fighting over Gordon, he's the best cook and I mean, those icy glares he gives? I'm practically wet!"

"Serena, can you please piss off?!"

"What's your problem, Emily? Are you jealous?"

"Me? Oh, please!" she crossed her arms.

The screen showed new, dramatic scenes: Gordon was yelling at someone, just like the show had teased before the commercials.

"What's the meaning of this?"

"I don't know what you're talking about." the camera focused on no other than Nate.

"Do you dare to lie to my bloody face?! I saw you boycotting Gretchen's sauce!"

Gretchen gasped. When could he have done such a thing?

"Gretchen, please come here."

Gretchen came back to her counter, and the rest of her peers went back to theirs as well, since they had been standing where Mark had been one minute ago, trying to help him before the paramedics came.

"You told me you were gonna use a family recipe when I checked up on you. Does this taste like the sauce that's based on your family's recipe?" he asked, bringing a wood spoon to her mouth.

"Eww! No, this… this isn't my sauce! I… it's too salty, I swear I didn't add so much salt!" she was shaking, this could not be happening to her.

"Damn right you didn't, because your 'friend' here felt like helping you finish your sauce. Isn't that right, knob head?"

"Hey!"

"Hey what? Are you gonna keep denying it? Have some fricking balls, for God's sake!"

"I didn't do it!" Nate complained like a child.

"It's on camera, you bloody twat!"

The TV showed the exact moment in which, while everybody rushed to help Mark, Nate grabbed a generous amount of salt and threw it on the saucepan, his chin up like he had accomplished some major thing.

"Gordon? Is this…?" another judge started asking and made a gesture so Gordon came to the place where Mark had slipped.

The camera zoomed in and there was a tiny trail of oil, which had made him fall to the ground. Everyone at home could see the evidence. During the time Mark and some peers had gone to get some ingredients, Nate had approached the girl who was standing next to Mark, asking her a question and making a joke to try to seem funny and get the audience wrapped around his finger. He had sneakily poured a small quantity of oil from a small container he was hiding on one of his sleeves. He had tried to not be suspicious by making gestures while talking with his free hand.

"Oh, my God! I knew he was bad, but I didn't think he was that bad of a person! Although it's weird he would leave his counter to make a stupid joke only to remain in it when someone had hurt himself so hard! Fucking douchebag!"

"And Lily said he was gonna win MasterChef" Doug snorted, "He's gonna win enemies, starting by Gordon Ramsey himself."

"It seems karma bit him in his stupid arse." Emily smiled, and moaned after having a bite of her pizza.

Serena was staring at her open-mouthed, which only Nigel and Andy noticed. They shared a knowing look and smiled to themselves.

Gordon was furious, "In all these years of being a cook and TV host, I have never seen such a lack of camaraderie, have never seen someone being so dishonorable! Your egocentrism, selfishness and lack of talent is beyond me. I mean look at your steak, I said medium rare, and it looks like a rock, it's not even a well done steak, it's beyond salvation! I don't know what to tell you that you don't know already." Gordon said fidgeting. And this was only the first episode of this season!

"Lack of talent? Ha!" he replied insolently.

This was the last straw. Who did this boy think he was? This nobody felt like he had a right to be sassy against fricking Gordon Ramsay on TV?

Gordon stopped walking and approached Nate menacingly, "Now, you listen to me, you little brat, the things you've done here today, you did them because you feel threatened by your peers!"

"Oh, yeah?" he did not even blink, and cackled instead.

"DON'T YOU DARE INTERRUPT ME!" he screamed, making Emily grab Serena's hand. She was about to take it back, but Serena did not let her, and smiled sweetly at her instead.

Nigel and Andy looked at each other as if saying "These two were gonna bang sooner or later."

"YOU ARE NOTHING BUT A COCKROACH. AND YOU KNOW WHAT? NO ONE WANTS COCKROACHES IN THEIR KITCHEN, SO GET THE HELL OUT OF MINE AND GO BACK TO THE TRASH, WHERE YOU BELONG, YOU PIECE OF SHIT!"

The contestants were shocked but amused. That dude was bad news, and fortunately he had been expelled.

Meanwhile, Nate started kicking anything that was on his way and throwing recipients to the ground like a child throwing a tantrum.

"Everybody, hurry up, there are only 10 minutes left, go, go, go!" Gordon exclaimed clapping his hands.

"Oh, my… God!" Doug said. They all looked at Andy, who was thrilled her ex had got what he deserved, finally!

"You guys, karma exist! I… he was expelled on his very first day! I… I can't…"

"This is amazing. Okay, Serena, I will not get mad at you for fancying Gordon anymore. He put that idiot in his place."

"You do know it's not him I fancy, right, Em?" she asked the redhead in her ear.

"Wha... bloody Hell!" she exclaimed, and both she and Serena started giggling like teenagers.

"Do you think he will eventually become a Chef?" Doug asked.

"With that horrible personality of his? No way José. He will be lucky if he gets hired as a busboy. Look, his outburst has already gone viral on Twitter! This deserves a round of gin tonics!" Nigel said, getting up to prepare the drinks.

"This week can't get better." Andy smiled, making a toast with her friends.

But again, she was wrong, as she did not know good things were coming her way.

Chapter Text

Andy was feeling very happy the day after she had watched MasterChef with her friends. She was also feeling braver and decided she would ask Draconis if she would like to meet in person.

"Hi, Draconis! How are you? :)"

The mysterious woman replied not much later, as usual. They always talked at the same hour, so unless something work-related prevented from doing so, the other woman would always reply back soon after.

"I'm fine, thank you. And you?"

"I'M ECSTATIC!"

Miranda smiled to herself. Surely this had to do with the ex and his humiliation on MasterChef before the eyes of the whole country.

"Did you watch MasterChef last night?"

"I did."

"Wasn't it amazing? I can't believe karma exists! I must have a guardian angel or something like that."

Yes, something like that.

"I'm glad he exposed himself. And believe me: he won't be working as a Chef in this country, maybe not even in Europe."

"How can you be so sure?"

"His tantrum and despicable acts are all over the internet, so the most important cooks, who surely must have watched the show, know what he did. Otherwise someone must have told them about it; maybe a co-worker, a friend, a family member…And I don't know, let's just say I have a feeling." the silver-haired woman replied, with a proud smile. "And I have contacts" she thought.

"So, I just wanted to ask you something. I've been wanting to for a while really."

"Go ahead."

"Would you like to meet, like for a cup of coffee?"

Oh. Miranda knew this had to happen eventually, but she did not expect it to happen so soon. She will know is me, finally. She may reject me, she will probably be furious when she knows she's been speaking to me for the last weeks, but that's a risk I decided to take.

Andy felt unsure now, seeing the woman was not replying, "You know what? Forget I asked, it's stupid, we barely know each other anyway, I didn't want to make you feel uncomfortable."

"No, no, I want to. When would you like to meet?"

"Say this Saturday? Does that work for you?"

"Yes. Where would you like to meet?"

"How about the Starbucks near that Elias-Clark building? I just happen to know their coffee is really good."

Miranda was surprised Andy had chosen that place in particular. Maybe she had fond memories of the time she worked for her. Sure, she had fond memories of running marathons to get her damn coffee… She shook her head.

"Acceptable. Say, 9 am?"

"Alright! :D"

"I'll place my copy of 'Harry Potter and The Philosopher's Stone' on the table so you can recognize me."

"Okay. See you on then :)"

Andy was very excited about it. She could already feel butterflies in her stomach at the prospect of meeting her mysterious woman. Oh, my God, she said yes! I'm finally gonna see her!

They kept talking for a little longer, and Andy sent a message to her friends' groupchat, telling them the news.

Andy

OMG, YOU GUYS WON'T BELIEVE WHAT JUST HAPPENED!

Doug

What?! :O

Andy

I just asked my milf out!

Nigel

About time, Six! So, what was her answer?

Emily

She probably replied that she is gonna bring her bloody children with her. Guess what, kids? Mommy just got you a nanny for free! ◔_◔

Serena

Don't be like that, cutie pie! This is so sweet! Good for you, Andy ^^

Andy

Thank you Serena! Did you just call Em cutie pie?! ಥ_ಥ

Emily

NO, SHE DID NOT! That was her autocorrect feature! She meant "cut the pie", 'cause I did one and it's sweet because hello? It's a BLOODY CAKE!

Doug

Someone's salty… maybe it's because it's true what they say

Emily

What 'who' say?

Doug

You know, Serena and you are dating, it took you so long…

Emily

BUT WHO SAID THAT?

Nigel

Me. And Six. And Doug.

Andy

You two were so obvious the other day, you even hold hands!

Serena

Well, the cat is out of the bag now, so might as well enjoy ourselves without hiding, don't you think?

Emily

Whatever, but don't you dare call me pet names at work, understood? I have a reputation to keep!

Serena

Oh, honey, I love it when you get mad, it's so cute!

Emily

I am NOT cute, I'm fierce and I won't listen to this rubbish anymore!

[ Nigel and Andy both sent popcorn emojis ]

Doug

Guys, we need to get back to Andy and her milf!

Nigel

So, your place or hers? ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

Andy

Eww! We are just gonna meet over coffee, it's our very first date! I don't even know what she looks like, but she'll bring a Harry Potter book with her.

Doug

It's like in the movies! Aww!

Emily

You got yourself two kids and a nerd, brilliant

Serena

Good luck on your date! Promise you will tell us everything :)

Andy

Of course!

The rest of the week went by a bit slow for Andy's liking. Work days usually felt long because she still had not got the chance to write a story for The Mirror. She counted the days until it was Saturday, finally! She had barely got any sleep last night due to her nerves.

She had changed, trying to look presentable, but casual, so she chose to wear her favorite pair of jeans to feel comfortable, a white t-shirt with a random text in black letters, and her leather jacket. Lesbians liked chicks in leather, right? Right? She finally grabbed her black bag and headed to the metro station.

Miranda was looking at herself in the mirror, not sure about what outfit to choose. It was always the same with her: she could easily pick up the perfect outfit for work, but when it came to dating… well, that was a completely different story. I don't think a dress will do this time, maybe this blouse…

"Mom! Aren't you gonna tell us about the man you're dating?" Caroline asked standing next to the doorframe, interrupting her thoughts.

"Yeah, you could at least tell us how he looks like or something!" Cassidy made an appearance too.

Miranda chuckled. They really did not know what they did when they registered her on that dating site.

"What's so funny?" they both asked at the same time.

"Bobbseys, remember the night I came home and you were creating a profile for me on that website?" she asked, and when they nodded, she continued, "You were so afraid I would catch you and punish you for doing that, you didn't realize something."

"Uh-oh. What is it?" Cassidy asked, worried, since she had been the one who had hit the "send" button.

"You selected the bisexual option."

"Wait, you're dating a woman?" Caroline asked, frowning.

"Yes, Bobbsey. Well, we're just friends, but this may turn into something else if we're meant to be."

"You're gay, mom?!" Cassidy asked, confused, "But how? You married our dad, and that pig whose name I won't say."

"I made a mistake marrying them, my girls, because at that time, I didn't know any better. Society makes you believe only one option is normal, and the rest are not. My parents wanted me to settle down and get married, and I did so because 'it was the right thing to do'.

"Would you go back in time and avoid marrying dad?" Caroline asked.

"No, Bobbsey, because then I wouldn't have you, my wonderful girls." the Editor replied kissing each of them on their heads.

"And the pig?" Cassidy asked this time.

"Yes, that is a mistake I could've lived without. Now, please help your mother choose something for today's date, will you?"

"Yes!" the twins loved playing personal shoppers. In fact, whenever they went shopping, they liked to pretend one of them was the client, and the other one, the person who would help the former choose her clothes.

Later, Andy arrived at Starbucks, and looked around. Today it was not that crowded, so she easily spotted a book on a table that was far away from the entrance. The person sitting there was reading a big newspaper, so she could not see her. She approached the table, her heartbeat pounding in her ears.

Andy cleared her throat, "Dr… Draconis?" She felt a bit stupid, because, what if it was a random person?

The person behind the newspaper slowly placed it on the table. It could not be… it was not possible! Her! Her ex-Boss was wearing a navy blue suit, which made her eyes pop, and a white blouse. Elegant as always.

"You?!" For a moment, Andy felt like her feet were glued to the ground.

"Yes." Miranda saw her date was slowly turning around, while shaking her head, "Please, Andrea, let me explain myself."

"You… all this time, you've been lying to me! How could you?!"

"But I did not. I simply did not tell you who I was."

"So you hid the truth! What difference does it make? Oh my God, I can't believe I told you about my ex, my worries, my… I'm… I'm out, I can't do this…"

Miranda quickly got up and grabbed her wrist gently, making Andy turn back to her and look her in the eye.

"Andrea, just let me tell you the reason behind this and then I promise you, if you don't want anything to do with me, I will not bother you ever again."

The brunette considered this option for a few seconds and thought that, what the Hell? She had got up early on a Saturday morning, so if she stayed it would not be in vain. Miranda went back to her seat, and the moment she did, she saw Andy leaving.

Oh, no, not again. How could she have been so stupid? Of course Andrea would leave me again. Miranda looked at the Harry Potter book with sadness, and proceeded to save it in her purse. This would be the first time she did not finish her coffee, but she refused to stay any longer here, she already felt like a loser.

"Miranda, are you alright?"

"Andrea! What are you doing here? Did you not leave?" her voice sounded weak, which she detested.

"Leave? Hell no, I came to Starbucks to have some coffee and that's exactly what I'll be doing." she said, shaking her cup of coffee a little with a smile.

"Oh." Way to go Miranda, you just made a fool out of yourself!

"Wait, did you think I...? No, I just went to grab a coffee, I'm gonna need it to hear whatever you have to tell me."

"I see." the Editor cleared her throat, "So, let's start with why do I have a profile on that site."

"I think we can skip that part, it's pretty obvious."

"No, no, I wasn't there on purpose."

"Alright, I may not be the smart girl you once hired, because I'm not following."

"It was the twins."

"The twins pranked you and started talking to me pretending to be you? They must really hate me. I'm the girl who ran away from their mother, and gave PageSix something more to talk about, ain't that right?" she asked, taking a sip of her coffee.

"No, that's not it, Andrea. They registered me on that site because they wanted to help me find someone. They must have felt I was sad because of your absence in my life."

Andy was speechless at hearing the last part.

"I caught them when they were finishing the process, and they accidentally clicked on the bisexual box, that's why I saw your profile."

"Oh, I see. But why did you start talking to me, of all people? I'm your biggest disappointment after all."

"That's not true. Well, I felt disappointed the most by you because of… Paris." she replied, her fingers fidgeting with her own cup.

"Miranda, I'm so sorry about Paris, I meant what I said."

"And what did you say?"

"I told you I wish I could turn back in time and do things right regarding the person I didn't want to talk about. That person is you, of course."

"What would you have done, then?" she asked curious.

"I would've stayed. I would've told you my dream was to become a journalist because I just love writing, that I didn't want to be an assistant anymore. I wouldn't have just turned my back on you all of a sudden, leaving you there. I still have flashes of the moment you walked those stairs, surrounded by all those paparazzi. I saw the pictures they took on Page Six, it was devastating for me to see that expression in your face, even if you were wearing your sunglasses, you were taken aback, trying to find me, and then you realized I had abandoned you, and…" Andy was tearing up, and so the Editor placed a hand on hers, to try to calm her down.

"It's alright, Andrea, I understand. I didn't at the time, I thought you hated the fact I compared you to myself and you felt it was insulting. I thought you thought it was a shame to be considered somewhat similar to me."

"No, never! I was flattered, but I just didn't think things through. I could've changed jobs without making a scene…"

"That's true, but what's done is done."

"I still don't understand how you decided to help me and wrote a reference letter for me. That was so considerate of you. I don't know how to thank you properly."

"You're now here, and decided to give me a chance to explain myself. That's a good 'thank you'." the corners of her mouth raised a little, it was almost imperceptible, but not for Andy.

"By the way, I'm sorry about your marriages. When you told me you had to do that because of your family pressuring you, I just wanted to hug you. Well, Draconis." she had now an expression of realization, "My God, your name!"

"What about it?"

"It was so obvious! You're called the Dragon Lady! It was pretty close! I'm so stupid!"

"You were just distracted by the fact it came from a Harry Potter password, that's all."

"Wow, I've missed hearing you say that." she said, beaming at her.

"Say what, Harry Potter?" How could she miss her ordering her to get the manuscript? Maybe she had hit her head on the pavement after all.

"No, you silly!" Andy opened her eyes widely, realizing she had just called Miranda Priestly silly, "I mean, uh… the 'that's all'."

"You must be the luckiest woman in the world. The one that got away and the one who called the Dragon Lady 'silly' without dying in the process." the silver-haired woman muttered amused, taking another sip of her coffee.

Andy stared at her lovingly.

"I really am something."

"You're also so humble." she rolled her eyes.

"I just can't believe you are here with me. And by the way, you still haven't answered my question. Why did you start talking to me?"

"I wanted to reconnect."

"To reconnect? Why? I thought you hated me, although the recommendation letter told me otherwise, I was confused about that, but grateful."

"I couldn't hate you, Andrea. Especially not since the Benefit."

"The Benefit?" Andy asked with a pensive expression. "Oh, yes, the one in which Emily wore Valentino and was very sick."

"And why is my first assistant so relevant all of a sudden?" Miranda asked with a stern look, raising an eyebrow.

"She was very annoying that week, saying she couldn't get sick because 'she was wearing Valentino, for crying out loud!' Andy made her best impression of a British accent, making her ex-Boss chuckle. She had never thought she would ever see her like this.

"I see. Well, as I was saying…"

"God, and you were so sexy, exposing your shoulders like that, and the… alright, sorry, I won't interrupt you again." she said a bit embarrassed.

"No, no, by all means, continue. And the what, Andrea?" she asked, playfully.

"The cleavage." she nodded, as if she was confessing to some awful sin she had committed, blushing furiously.

"I knew I wasn't imagining things. You kept checking me out all night." she said, placing her index on her lips like the day she interviewed her and Andy had spoken back at her.

"Umm… sorry?" Andy replied with a nervous smile.

"Don't be. You saved me that night."

"Saved you?"

"From Stephen. He was drunk and was making a scene, whining about people referring to him as Mr. Priestly, then trying to insult Irv, but then you graciously intervened, grabbing Irv and asking him a question, keeping him away from the bastard I was married to at the moment."

"Oh, I remember! You muted a 'thank you' and I thought I had had too much champagne.

"That, I did. And you smiled shyly. It was adorable."

"There was always something there, whenever we were in the same room, I could notice it, but I told myself I was being stupid."

"You were never stupid and you obviously were right. I also noticed, but thought I was just an old woman having a mid-life crisis, crushing on her much younger second-assistant. What a cliché." Miranda shook her head.

"That's not it. Wanna know how I ended up in that site?"

"I'm all ears."

"I had told Nigel and Emily I had feelings for you." she made a pause to see Miranda's reaction, but her expression did not change one bit, "Anyway, they said I had to get over you, so they decided to create a profile on my behalf."

"Our destiny ended up on someone else's hands."

"Yes. But it was for the best, don't you agree?" Andy asked, hopeful.

"Indeed."

"Wait, you once told me two co-workers were having an office romance. Who were they?"

"Emily and Serena, naturally." she replied like it was the most obvious thing in the world, which, it really was.

"You saw the beginning of their relationship? Lucky you! Doug, Nigel and I only knew officially very recently. But we had our suspicions."

"Doug? Who is that?"

"He's my gay friend, other than Nigel, that is. He's the only one I have left from my college years. Nate and Lily were horrible to me, and Doug called me and made sure I knew I wasn't alone."

"I like Douglas then. As for those other two rats, they better not get in my way."

"You're so hot when you get full Ice Queen mode."

"Am I?" Miranda was feeling so powerful in this instant. She loved the way Andy was looking at her. "Then you will be happy to know I know who your guardian angel is. I'm done with my coffee. Are you?"

"Yeah, I am. Wait… don't tell me YOU had something to do with the MasterChef events?!" she exclaimed, getting up of her seat.

"Yes." the Editor replied doing the same.

"Oh, my God, Miranda. How? What did you do?"

"Well, I'm close friends with Gordon, so I simply called him and let him know about the background of that ex of yours, what he did to you, how cocky he could get… the rest is on Nathaniel. Gordon simply acted upon his actions and knew this douche didn't deserve a second chance, unlike Mark, who will get back to the reality. Gordon told me it could've been worse, but he's practically fully recovered."

"I'm so relieved! Doug and Nigel were devastated, they were fighting over Mark!"

"So you were watching the show with your friends? That must have been funny."

"It was! We're called the Besties Gossip Committee." she confessed with a smirk.

"What a silly name, honestly, Andrea…"

"Emily hates it too."

"Of course she does, she never disappoints me."

"Hey!"

"What? Are you jealous?" Miranda asked with a smile, placing her sunglasses on her face slowly, a gesture that always captivated Andy when she used to work for her.

"Nah, she only has eyes for Serena, so."

"Hmm…"

"What are you thinking?"

Miranda smiled, "Meet me for lunch on Monday at my office."

"But, but Emily will freak out if she sees me waltzing in… oh."

"Yes, oh."

"Woman, you're wicked." the journalist grinned.

"So I've been told."

On Monday, Andy did as she and Miranda had planned. The moment she as much as put one foot near the place where her old desk was, Emily exclaimed:

"Andrea! What do you think you're doing? Miranda can't be disturbed, she will kill you! Have you lost your bloody mind?" the British woman started pushing her towards the exit, when someone talked behind her.

"As much I appreciate your loyalty, Emily, you can let Andrea in. I was expecting her."

"I… I… of course, Miranda." Emily went back to her seat, appalled. When the new second-assistant looked at her, she snapped: GO BACK TO WORK. I'M NOT A MONKEY AT A ZOO!

Once Andy came into Miranda's office, she closed the door.

"Here, I brought you lunch. It's your favorite."

"Hmm… sometimes I miss you being my assistant." she grabbed the bag and proceeded to place the food on her desk, and so did Andy.

"You know what's funny? The day you told me to get the Harry Potter manuscript you had also told me you wanted steak for lunch, but later you came back to the office and said you didn't want it anymore and I threw it away. My ex had cooked it, but he really was unable to cook your favorite steak, medium rare. He always overcooked stakes."

"How fortunate I decided not to eat it then."

They mostly ate in comfortable silence, except for a few anecdotes Andy told her about her friends and herself. Then Andy checked her watch and got up.

"I need to get back to work. Those obituaries won't write themselves."

"That's all you've been doing for the last month?"

"For now."

"What a waste of talent. They better give you stories to write, a lot of things happen in New York and you deserve to write about them."

"If I don't get assigned any stories to write by the end of next month, I'll look for a job elsewhere, I didn't stop being your assistant to write about people dying."

"Well said, darling." the moment she noticed she had used that term, Miranda flinched.

"What did you just call me?" the journalist's eyes lighten up.

"Nothing, I said nothing, now go back to your…" she was interrupted by Andy's lips on hers, and she quickly reciprocated the kiss, maybe a little too passionately.

"Miranda, Patrick says…" Emily had opened the door, and was paralyzed by the scene she was witnessing.

Miranda and Andy started giggling, and slowly separated to let Emily speak.

"What does Patrick say?"

"He… he can meet you tomorrow for lunch."

"Tell him yes, I'll meet him at 1pm at Pastis."

"Yes, Miranda." the redhead rushed towards her desk.

"Can we do this again, Miranda? Not just the kiss, but the umm… everything. Lunch, hanging out… Dating?"

Miranda smiled at seeing Andy all flustered, and nodding, said "Yes, Andrea, we can do this as many times as you want."