"-so handsome in real life! Even better than in the photos and films and stuff! Just perfect in everyway!" Lauren giggled loudly and sighed as she remembered.

I sighed as I edged past the gaggle of women in red lipstick, short pencil skirts and dangerously low ruffled pinstripe blouses. I curled my Starbucks cup into the crook of my arm, trying not to spill the hot liquid but I tripped over a crumpled can on the floor and spilled latte all over my statistics notes.

"Is he tall? Cause there's like some guy that's really short in real life and I really hate short guys."

I dabbed furiously at my notes, cursing myself for using fountain pen and not my trusty biro.

Lauren gestured submissively with her manicured hand and licked her bottom lip. "He's about six foot. And he has this way of looking at you and I almost melted…" She demonstrated looking up seductively from under her lashes but from her expression and the tilt of her head it just looked like she had a painful crick in her neck.

I slumped at my desk and fished around for a tissue under the mounds of paper on my desk. When I found one I wiped my notes with it but the damp caused it to flake off in little white bits, sticking to the sticky latte. I cursed furiously and unwrapped my scarf with one hand, leaning back in my chair with a sigh.

"Swan? Is Swan in yet?" boomed a voice from the main office. Biting my lip I jumped up and half ran to the main office.

"Yes, Miss Weber. I'm in. Is everything okay? Is my report satisfactory?" Realizing that I was babbling I shut up and looked expectantly at Angela, the editor.

"Well…yes and no, Bella. But I want you to redo it." She handed me my carefully typed report back and I stared at it in horror.

"But…but…Miss Weber it was perfect!"

She looked at me like I was a little child. "I know, Bella."

My forehead wrinkled n confusion. "But why are you giving it back? If Lauren or Jessica did this you fawn over them and promote them!"

Angela smiled wearily at me. "Yes, I probably would."

"But…but…Is it favouritism then?" I simply couldn't get my head around it.

"Bella, if Lauren gave me this I would probably drop all atheism and become a devout Christian, praising god at every turn. But she didn't. It was you. And you're my best journalist, Bella and what would be astounding for her is less than average for you. I expect more of you. It was lacking your usual brilliance and dry wit. Are you okay?" she added as she saw my expression.

I rubbed a globed hand across my forehead tiredly. "I'm fine, Angela. It's just…bills and stuff, all getting to me. Just not in a happy place at the minute."

She nodded maternally. "Go ahead Bella. Take a few days off. I need you back to your usual standard."

I brightened suddenly. "Thanks Angela. You won't regret this!"

"I'd better not."

I skipped out of the office feeling lighter although free time off wasn't paying any more bills or getting me a half-way decent boyfriend.

I went back to my desk again and scooped all my papers into a crumpled heap. A shadow loomed over my desk and picked up my Starbucks cup.

"I thought you swore you were off your caffeine addiction."

I looked up in surprise. "Jake!"

He smiled broadly at me. "Hey Bella!"

"When did you get back?" I asked trying not to smile at seeing my friend.

"Oh, yesterday. I just rested for a day."

"Oh yeah, cause being a hotel inspector for a newspaper is so hard. You get free meals, free gym access, free food…That's a tough job, Jake."

"Someone has to do it."

I reached over and hugged him tightly. "Missed you Jake," I whispered.

"YOU WHAT????"

The whole office looked up as the normally placid Angela towered over Lauren, bright red in the face.

"What's happening?" Jake asked me.

I shrugged. I had no idea.

Jessica came over. "Lauren's flunked the Cullen report."

"What?" I said confused. "she was talking about the interview this morning."

Jessica made a face. "Yeah she went to the interview and interviewed him. She just forgot to take any notes or pay any attention to what he was saying because she was staring at his face."

I stifled a snicker then realized what was wrong. He wouldn't let another interview take place. She buggered it all.

"YOU…YOU…SILLY, INSIGNIFICANT GIRL! I GAVE YOU THAT REPORT IN CONFIDENCE! I TRUSTED YOU AND YOU'VE SCREWED US ALL! ONE, CULLEN WON'T GIVE ANOTHER INTERVIEW TO THE SAME NEWSPAPER AND TWO HE'LL NEVER GIVE US ANOTHER ONE IN FUTURE BECAUSE HE'LL THINK THAT WE LEFT OUT THE INTERVIEW CAUSE IT WAS CRAP! AND-"

Jake smiled nervously at me. "Shall we get out of here?"

I linked my arm through his. "We shall."

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"So, what have you been up to?" asked Jake as we huddled in the steamy coffee shop waiting for the ain to die down.

"Not much," I sighed. "Paying bills, keeping track of all my reports and stuff. Nothing much."

"Right." Jacob nodded morosely staring into the depths of his Americano. "No guys on the go, then?"

I cringed dramatically. "Jake! You make me sound like such a slut! I think it should maybe just be guy not guys."

He looked up at me suddenly. "Is that a yes, then?"

"No! Of course not!"

"So, are you free tonight?" Jake's eyes pleaded with me but I shook my head slowly.

"Jake, I love you, truly I do, but I'll never love you more than a friend."

"Okay."

"Aw, don't be like this…I'll leave if you're going to huff."

"Fine." Jacob refused to look at me.

I sighed and pulled on my gloves, hat and black coat. As I walked away he never looked up. Biting my lip I arranged my scarf around my neck as I walked out onto the freezing streets of New York.

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