From across the office at Blush magazine, Maya Gallo regarded her
coworker, biting her lip and wishing she didn't feel just so guilty about
what had happened. Though annoying and strange some of the-well, most of
the time, Finch had something that Maya could never put her finger on. When
she was with him, it was always as if someone had pumped 1000 volts through
her system. He positively glowed.
"Hey, Space Ghost, you okay in there?"
She glanced up to see Nina staring at her from the office door, holding
a mug in one hand and displaying a worried expression. "I'm fine, Nina-I
was just thinking."
"Mmmm, I'd say you are. 'Thinking' in the way that you were staring
directly at our second-grade friend over there." She grinned and shook her
head, dropping into the chair in front of Maya's desk. "Ahh, young love."
Maya felt a warm blush creep up her face, and she shook her head,
trying to make Nina understand how she really felt. "I wasn't staring at
him," she stuttered, gesturing to Nina's mug. "You've probably had a little
too much of that this morning."
"Hey, I swear to God, it's coffee!" Nina retorted, casually dumping the
remains of the mug into the plant by Maya's door. "Oh, and if that plant
dies, don't worry, it's not your fault."
Maya chuckled and looked down at her desk, her eyes floating to the
picture of her colleagues at the office Christmas party. Everyone's face
was flushed with happiness and wine, and Finch's arm was tucked comfortably
about her waste. She blushed again.
"Don't think I didn't see that, missy." Nina raised her eyebrows. "You
have a crush on Finch."
"No!" A brief chuckle passed over Maya's lips as she saw Nina's
disappointment. "I hurt his feelings last night, and I was just wishing I
hadn't done that."
Nina snorted and put her mug down on the desk, rolling her eyes at
Maya. "Let me tell you, Maya, it doesn't take much to 'upset' Finch; the
guy starts to cry if he misplaces a cat. If I were you, I'd just leave it
alone." Standing up, her eye caught the downcast look on Maya's face, and a
pleased smile crossed her face. "Unless, of course, you're distraught at
having upset him."
"Distraught; that's a big word. Did you get that from the word-of-the-
day calendar, or does it just describe the senator's wife when you opened
The sound of Finch's voice jolted Maya out of her thoughts, and she
looked up to see him standing in the doorway, glaring at Nina. She watched
as the older woman stood up and scoffed, tossing her black hair over her
"At least I can open the door, wimp," she said, and stalked out of the
Maya glanced with embarrassment at Finch, feeling her face redden as
she looked at his serious face. The eyes that had been so full of pain the
night before...now they seemed devoid of any emotion at all. They were
fixed on her with an intense gaze, and she found suddenly that she couldn't
He spoke first. "Look, I know you're wondering how to apologize, and
I'm here to tell you that you don't have to. The comment I made last night
was low-even for me, it was low-and I'm sorry that it upset you." He took a
breath, looking as if he was surprised at his own words, and then smiled.
"Besides, Nina's a witch, so I wanted to get one up on her."
Maya found herself smiling despite herself. Knowing that her face was
probably flaming, she nodded and gestured for Finch to sit down. "Thanks,
Finch, and I-"
"Hey!" Finch grinned. "I said no saying that!"
"I know, but I-"
Suddenly, a hand clapped over her mouth, and she could feel Finch's
fingers over her lips, something that shocked her into almost choking on
her coffee. "Mmphmp!"
The devilish smile reappeared, and Finch removed his hand, giggling at
the look on her flushed face. She didn't slap my hand away, he thought to
himself in surprise, and she doesn't even look mad! He could feel himself
reddening as a tingle passed through him, and he quickly turned away from
her. Smiling to himself, he left her office, never seeing the soft brown
eyes focusing on him from behind.