Author: momma2fan PM
Three women develop a close bond despite having never met face to face. When tragedy strikes one of them, they band together to help her heal. A story about friendship, loss, and love. AH, Canon characters. M for language and future lemons.Rated: Fiction M - English - Romance/Friendship - Chapters: 20 - Words: 31,376 - Reviews: 577 - Favs: 158 - Follows: 203 - Updated: 04-23-13 - Published: 12-10-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8782679
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: All characters are the express right of Stephenie Meyer. No copyright infringement intended.
AN: Thanks to my beta toocute24. Sorry for making your job harder by adding in the French. Love you, Sally!
I apologize for the late update. My husband was in the hospital for the last couple of days. He was released this morning and hopefully will not have to return. Thanks to all of those who offered up your thoughts and prayers. Love you all!
Thanks to all those who reviewed last chapter. I did read them all. Some of you were curious about a lemon…not yet. Bella still needs to get her head on straight. Edward knows that they have to take everything slow and is willing to be patient. Now, let's see what's happening in NY.
The flight was smooth, and I soon felt the hum of the landing gear as we made our decent to JFK. This was the part that I hated the most about flying – the landing. When the plane finally touched down, I let out a sigh of relief.
After I had disembarked, I headed straight for the baggage claim area. I joined the throng of people around the carousel and waited for my three suitcases. I was wondering how I was going to get it, along with my shoulder bag and laptop, all out by myself. When I left Denver, Emmett had helped me. Now I was here alone.
I turned when I heard my name shouted over the din. What I saw both surprised and pleased me.
Edward was walking toward me with a large smile on his face. "Hey!" he said as he approached.
"Hi! What are you doing here?"
"I wanted to pick you up." He reached me and wrapped his arms around me in a hug. "Is it okay that I'm here?"
I nodded into his chest as I pulled him in tighter. I had almost forgotten how good his arms felt around me – almost.
I pulled back and looked up at him. "It's more than okay. Thanks for coming."
He grinned and pressed his lips gently to mine. When he pulled away, we turned to the baggage carousel and retrieved my suitcases as they spun toward us.
"Is this everything?" I nodded in answer. "Okay, come on. I'll drive you to your hotel."
"Oh, Carmen said that she was sending a car for me," I told him offhandedly.
"I called her office and told her that I would see to it that you were delivered safely," he chuckled.
I couldn't help smile and be a little grateful that he wanted to spend time with me. I followed him out to the airport parking garage and helped him load my things into his trunk.
"So where to, beautiful?"
"Um…Carmen said that I was staying at the Plaza, but let me call her and double check," I stammered. No one ever called me beautiful.
I plucked my cell phone out of my purse and dialed my boss. While I waited for her to pick up, I took a moment to stare at Edward. He kept his eyes on the road, but I saw his jaw tense, almost like he knew that I was staring at him.
"Carmen? It's Bella. I just wanted to let you know that I made it in, and to verify my accommodations."
"Oh, Bella, I'm glad you called. The Plaza was booked solid, but I was able to procure you a room at Trump Towers in SoHo. You are in the Deluxe Suite Ten."
"Thank you, Carmen. When am I meeting with Ren?"
"You will be having a dinner meeting with him and his wife, Irina, this evening at Raoul's. It's French cuisine, so I thought he would feel at home there, plus since you speak the language…"
I chuckled. "Okay, Carmen – Trump Tower and Raoul's. I will see you on Monday morning."
I placed my phone back in my bag and looked at Edward. "I guess the Plaza was booked, so I am at Trump Tower in SoHo." Edward nodded, but didn't speak. I looked at him questioningly. "Is everything okay?"
"Huh? Oh, uh…yeah."
We were silent the rest of the drive. The playful banter that we usually engaged in was gone, and in its place was a tension that I didn't understand. We arrived at my hotel, and the doorman opened my door, helping me from the car.
"Welcome to Trump Tower, Ma'am."
"Thank you." I turned to see if Edward was coming, and saw him at the trunk removing my bags. I turned back to the doorman, who had signaled for a bellhop. "Thank you, again. I will be in in just a moment."
The two men turned and returned to their posts, taking my bags with them. I turned back to Edward, who had walked to my side after shutting the trunk.
"Edward, what's going on? You got very quiet all of a sudden."
Edward looked down at me. "Nothing is wrong. Listen, I have to go in to work, but I have a surprise for you later."
I laughed. "That's cryptic. What kind of surprise?"
"If I told you, then it wouldn't be a surprise." He kissed me quickly and then called over his shoulder, "I'll see you later."
Shaking my head, I turned and went in to the hotel. I stepped up to the reception desk and checked in, then followed the bellhop and my bags up to my room. I decided that after my travels, a nap and a bath were in order before I headed to dinner.
I walked into the restaurant and looked around. I spotted Laurent and a beautiful blonde woman sitting at a table in the corner. I nodded to the maître'd and pointed. He led me over and pulled out my chair, then pushed it back once I was seated.
"Merci beaucoup." After he walked away, I turned to Laurent and Irina. "Bonsoir, Laurent. Comment avez-vous été ?"
"Très bien, Bella. Je vous remercie d'avoir accepté de prendre la relevé."
I waved a hand at him. "Pas de problème." I turned to Irina. "Irina, tu es magnifique, comme toujours."
"Merci." Irina blushed.
She had always been a quiet woman, so I wasn't surprised when she didn't say much. We continued to speak to each other, and I discovered exactly what the problem was that Laurent had been having with Jessica, the former editor. She had apparently been trying to sleep with him, and Irina had walked in on her attempted seduction.
"Femme stupide." Irina muttered under her breath, causing me to giggle.
The waiter came and took our orders, and while we waited for the chef to prepare them, the maître'd came over with a bottle of champagne.
"Compliments of the chef." He bowed and then popped the cork. He poured three glasses before placing the bottle in the chiller that was sitting beside the table. "Enjoy." He bowed again and then retreated.
I looked at Laurent, forgetting that I was supposed to be speaking in French. "Do you know the chef?"
"No, I 'ave never eaten in zis place before." His thick accent overwhelmed his English, although I was impressed that he was speaking it back to me. He never had before.
I sipped at the champagne and giggled as the bubbles slid down my throat.
"Peut-être que vous le connaissez, Bella. Il este a regarder a droite a vous," Irina spoke in rapid French.
I turned and met the amused gaze of Edward. How did I not know that this was his restaurant?
I turned back to Irina and Laurent. "Excusez-moi un instant."
I didn't wait for them to agree; I rose and made my way over to where Edward stood with a crooked grin on his face.
"Edward, why didn't you tell me this was your restaurant?"
"I wanted to surprise you. It looks like I succeeded." He reached up and brushed a wayward strand of hair behind my ear.
"Yes, you did. Thanks for the champagne. You didn't have to do that."
"I wanted to. I've also comped your dinner for this evening, so enjoy yourself, okay?"
"Edward…" I started to protest.
He reached up and took my face in his hands. "Bella, I want you to have a good time tonight. You deserve to be pampered, and this is just the beginning of what I have planned for you while you're here."
Before I could protest further, he pecked my lips with his own and then sent me on my way. "Get; I have work to do."
"Alright, you've won this round, Mr. Cullen, but I have a few tricks up my sleeve, too." I winked and then turned to go back to my table.
It took all I had not to turn back around and see what he thought, but I knew that if I did, I wouldn't go back to my table, and this was my job. I would just have to see what else he had in store for me. This could be a very interesting trip.
AN: So, she is in NY, Edward's home turf. I would love you hear your ideas on ways that he can romance her. Until next time. Translations are at the bottom.
Bella: Thank you very much. (Merci beaucoup)
Bella: Good evening, Laurent. How have you been? (Bonsoir, Laurent. Comment avez-vous été)
Laurent: Very well, Bella. Thank you for agreeing to take over. (Très bien, Bella. Je vous remercie d'avoir accepté de prendre la relevé)
Bella: No problem. Irina, you look beautiful, as always. (Pas de problème) (Irina, tu es magnifique, comme toujours)
Irina: Thanks. (Merci)
Irina: Stupid woman. (Femme stupide)
Irina: Perhaps you know him, Bella. He is staring right at you. (Peut-être que vous le connaissez, Bella. Il este a regarder a droite a vous)
Bella: Excuse me for a minute. (Excusez-moi un instant)