In the Backseat 2 – Miranda's POV
A set of MirAndy drabbles – a 100 words each. Companion piece to "In the Backseat". You might want to read that first - but it's not strictly necessary.
By Gun Brooke
I feel her eyes on me, like skittish, curious fingertips. This young woman locks her dark brandy eyes on me and somehow, I know it. How odd that I'm not as outraged. I ought to be. Assistants have eyed me before. The difference is, they explored my outfits, accessories and had something calculated about them.
I glance down quickly and see my skirt has ridden up. Oh. Well.
I let her look. It's all right, at least for a moment. Andrea's gaze warms me, much like the heated seats in the car.
We're almost at Runway. I speak. "You're staring."
I'm on my way downstairs when I hear Andrea enter. I stop out of sight and witness her struggle with the dry cleaning and the Book. I enjoy watching her flustered expression as she nearly drops my favorite Balenciaga dress, but rescues it at the last moment with a whimper.
Whimper…the sound she makes pierces my skin and I shudder. Flickering images suggest other situations where she might offer the same sound.
I stifle a groan and clasp the lapels of my robe, squeezing them tight as if attempting to keep my heart in place.
Before it leaps to her.
I dial Andrea, my hands still unsteady.
"Are you at the townhouse?" I bark. I'm in the corridor not to disturb my sedated Caroline.
"Yes. Cassidy is getting ready for bed. Me too." Her voice is soft, laced with concern. "And Caroline?"
"Sleeping. Surgery went well."
"Thank God," Andrea gushes. "And you?"
I stare blindly at some pamphlets on a table. "I'm…fine."
"Good. It was a bad scare, getting that call from Daltons. I'm glad I was with you. I mean," she babbles, "that you weren't alone."
I close my eyes hard. Oh, dear Lord, so am I.
Andrea just doesn't get it. I try again. "The girls miss you."
"I miss them too. I'm glad Caroline is already doing so well."
Oh, please. I grip my iPhone harder. "Yes." I have to think of something. Fast. We're almost at our destination. I come up with …tacos. The girls want her to join us for our Friday special.
"Maybe?" Andrea says, sounding uncertain and shy.
I furtively glance at her. She's flustered and plucks at a button on her coat. Why is she blushing? I inject all the trademark impatience I can muster into my voice. "Friday. Tacos."
Andrea still doesn't get it. She's infuriating in her stubbornness and I'm at the end of my rope. She insists on returning to that horrible apartment and I fail to see why. I try to reason with her, but she insists on 'going home'.
Her choice of words hurt. I recoil for a moment, but then something snaps. I engage the privacy screen and slide across the backseat toward her.
Pressing herself against the door, Andrea looks alarmed. She should. I'm about to kiss her.
My lips against hers, and how appropriate our first kiss occurs in the town car.
Andrea's hand slips into mine. I hold onto it as if I feared the car door would open, and I'd be sucked out of the car. She closes the privacy screen.
"Are you still upset?"
I am. I'm devastated. She's leaving. Leaving Runway. Leaving me?
Andrea insists it's the right move, to keep gossip at a minimum. Of course she's right. As my lover, she can't work at Runway.
I tremble. It's hard to breathe. "Perhaps."
"Once your divorce is final, I'm all yours."
I jolt. It sounds like a promise. Like a vow. Looking at her, I see love.
She's a golden, scorching flame in my arms. I push her against the backrest, grateful for the privacy screen and the tinted windows of the car. I just can't wait.
Andrea laces her fingers through my hair. I hear the crinkling of hairspray but simply cannot be bothered. "Kiss me," I demand.
She does. Her lips move against mine, but it's not enough. I part my lips and she understands. Hotly, she slides her tongue inside. Reciprocating, I twist to get closer, sliding annoyingly against the seat in my evening dress.
Instead I push Andrea's skirt out of the way.
Nigel stares at the gold band. "Miranda?" He blinks as if trying to clear his field of vision. "You—you're engaged?"
"I am," I reply calmly. Checking the time, I realize the town car will be here to pick me up in less than ten minutes.
"But…who? I mean—"
I take pity on him and interrupt. "We've kept it out of the press. The divorce procedures, remember?"
"Who's the lucky guy?" Nigel demands, looking alarmed. "Do I know him?"
I chuckle. I can't help it. "Of course you do. In fact, you adore her."
"I do? Eh, hey, wait-a…Her?"
"You can't stay away that long ever again," I whisper into Andrea's ear. "I don't think I could endure it."
All right? I stare at her. Am I hallucinating?
Andrea explains. The two years on the road as a war correspondent—two years of danger and absence, of heartache and worry, is over. She's ready to settle down.
She places our hands on her stomach in a gesture I cannot misunderstand.
"You're sure?" I ask.
Her crystal tears glisten. "I am."
I keep my arms around her. We don't even care about the privacy screen.
Andrea's finally home.