Disclaimer: I don't own Ugly Betty, nor am I in any way connected to ABC, Silent H Productions or any of its affiliates. No copyright infringement is intended, so please don't sue.
Summary: Daniel receives a letter from Betty. Just a little introspection by Daniel. One-Shot.
"Daniel, here's your mail for today. The ones in this pile are the people who want you to want them, this pile are for those who you want to want you and this pile are for those who don't have a chance in hell. Oh, and there's a letter from Betty."
Daniel looked up at Amanda's recitation. He raised his eyebrows at her colorful description but made no comment.
She took that as a dismissal and walked out of his office.
He reached over to the third pile and picked up Betty's letter, rolling his eyes at Amanda's choice for its location.
Betty had been gone less then a week. She and Henry were on a two-week vacation to Costa Rica to celebrate their one-year anniversary. When Betty had asked him for the time off and the reason, he had laughed a bit until he realized that she was serious. He hadn't realized people made a big deal out of just dating for a year. What did people do once they were married?
This was the second piece of correspondence he had received from her. He had laughed when he realized that the first one that he'd gotten had been written and mailed from the Kennedy Airport (judging by the postmark on the envelope). Looking at this letter, he was pleased to see that it had an international stamp on it. He frowned a bit at the weight until he opened up the envelope to find not just a letter, but another sealed enveloped holding something that felt like cardboard.
He could almost hear Betty's cheerful voice in his head as he read the letter. She recounted how her first plane ride had gone (it was fun, except for the long lines, some difficulty at the security desk because her picture didn't quite match her face as it was taken before she got her braces off, and the fact that they lost her suitcase), the beautiful scenery, the gift shops and some of the activities she and Henry were doing (snorkeling, hiking, dancing and sight-seeing).
The chatty letter made him smile and made up for the rather abysmal day that he had been having. Alexis and he had butted heads over one of the layouts for next month's issue and Wilhelmina had sided with Alexis and it had been one big headache. In the end, they had reached a compromise but it had taken a looooong time to resolve. Being co-editor in chief was a pain in the ass sometimes.
Throughout the negotiations, that had involved a lot of yelling and a couple of shoes thrown at his head, he wished that Betty had been there to help diffuse the argument. They probably would have finished everything sooner had she been there. She was good at that. She was good at a lot of things.
Finishing up the letter he quirked a brow at the other envelope. Why would she put a letter inside of a letter?
Opening it up, he burst out laughing. It was a postcard with a tropical beach on the front and, in her neat scrawl the words, "Weather is beautiful. I'm doing great. Hey, gotta go, it's lambada time" were written on the back. They were, almost verbatim, what he had written on one of those post cards he had sent to her while he was supposedly in Rio after the whole Sophia fiasco.
He hadn't thought of that incident in over a year.
He bumped into Sophia on the elevator a few times since the sham that had been their engagement, and they had managed to be somewhat civil to one another. Fortunately, he hadn't seen her in a few months as her magazine had gone under less than a year after its debut.
He had to smile a little vindictively at that. Although the magazine had started off with a splash, courtesy of his very public humiliation, it hadn't been able to deliver in the subsequent issues. Interest waned as the publicity over the first issue faded and, when no other scandalous pieces were included, it just became one more magazine among the many that graced newspaper stands, until finally it was cancelled.
Betty had brought in her dad's special cupcakes the day it was announced. They were damn good cupcakes.
He stared at the postcard in his hand and, for the first time, realized that when he had run off with his tail between his legs after the Sophia-debacle, the only person that he had remained in contact with had been Betty. He had told everybody that he was leaving, but throughout the whole two weeks he had been gone, she had been the only one he had sent word to. He hadn't contacted anyone else. Not his father, not his mother, no one at Mode. Except Betty.
He had never wondered why, out of all of the people in his life, he had chosen her to be his one link to reality. It had, at the time, seemed like the most obvious thing to do.
Shaking his head at the strange thoughts going through his head, he put down the postcard and picked up the letter again.
He still couldn't believe that this was the first time she had ever been on a plane. He had been flying across the country on a regular basis before he was even out of diapers. It seemed unfathomable to him that someone who had reached the ripe old age of 24 had never been on a plane.
Reading the description of her experience again, he couldn't help but think to himself that if he had been the one to take Betty up on a plane, it would have been on a private jet where she wouldn't have had to worry about long lines, lost luggage or baggage claim. It was too bad that he hadn't thought to take her before Henry did.
He could just imagine the look of wonder and absolute delight on Betty's face when the plane would take off. He could picture her awe-struck look and that familiar twinkle in her eye at the first feeling of the plane taxiing down the runway. He smiled at the thought of her pressing her face to the window to watch and marvel as the ground fell away and the plane ascended. She might have even grabbed his hand in her excitement.
Pleased by that thought, he put the letter aside on his desk to be read again at a later time. Propping the postcard on the desk lamp, he reached for the proofs from the photo shoot last week. He absent-mindedly wiped his damp palms on his pants before he picked up the first picture.
A/N: I know, there's no actual Betty/Daniel interaction and it's mostly just Daniel musing to himself without any big epiphanies. I was trying to go for a more subtle approach. I hope you enjoyed it! Please let me know what you think! I always appreciate comments and suggestions.