Author's Notes: The semester's been shit busy, guys. That's all the excuse I can offer. But thanks for the wishes for my choice of university – I did get in. :D Anyway, here is the eight chapter. Finally.

Disclaimer: Nope. Not mine.


Chapter 8 – The Celebration of the Deal

He swirls the champagne in the goblet in his hand and then takes a sip. He looks at the woman sitting in front of him and his heart surges with pride. He watches as she takes off her shoes and sits on the couch, crossing her legs Indian style so she is comfortable. She leans back, closes her eyes and sighs. Her mouth is curved upwards and that makes him grin.

He is so proud of her, so unbelievably proud of her and her accomplishments. He had thought her to be a mistake of his life but she had proved him wrong. Now she was the greatest achievement of his life.

He loves her. A lot. Even though he does not say it much but he does adore her and she knows that. She loves him back, he knows. She says it quite often and shows it as well. The affection is mutual and he is happy with his life. He has earned respect and money and the love of his child. He is content. Now all he wishes for is for his daughter to be completely happy, the daughter who is now opening her eyes and winking at him.

He winks back at her and raises his tumbler for a toast. She does the same and they clink their glasses together, taking a deep sip.

He wishes the world for his daughter. His Elizabeth.

0o0o0

Elizabeth walked to the door, rang the doorbell and tapped her feet as she waited outside. She heard footsteps approaching and the door was opened by a woman who was her age but looked slightly older. Or rather, it was Elizabeth who looked young for her age.

The visitor walked into the apartment without waiting for any invitation. She marched on, threw her car keys on the coffee table and slumped on the loveseat.

'Bee,' the other woman called out with a sigh as she closed the apartment door. She joined her friend, choosing to sit on the three sitter sofa.

'Charlotte,' the brunette replied back, stretching out the last syllable. Then she grinned and clapped her hands. 'I got it!'

The woman called Charlotte sat bemused and pushed a lock of black hair behind an ear. 'You got what?' she asked and then realization hit and she clapped her hands, too. 'The deal is signed then?' she wanted to confirm.

'Yes!'

'We need to celebrate!' Charlotte squealed. 'Congratulations by the way, girl. You did it!' She got up and hugged Bee, her light blue eyes shining with excitement on her best friend's achievement.

'Thank you!' Bee returned the embrace. 'Where do you want to go?'

Charlotte grinned mischievously and named the most expensive restaurant in town knowing Bee wouldn't like it.

'You want me to dress up formally.' Elizabeth sighed. 'Okay. Just this one time. But you do owe me. I won that dare so many weeks back and never got the prize,' she reminded her.

'What prize?' Charlotte teased her and then a thought struck her and she covered her mouth with her hands. 'Oh my goodness! I never thought of this. Didn't he recognize you in any of the meetings?'

Bee laughed – a loud, genuine, carefree laugh. 'Apparently not. It must not have struck his mind that the waitress who had dared to talk to his "esteemed guest" at his own birthday party was his latest business associate.'

'Oh. Oh.' Charlotte seemed disappointed.

'As it is, it has been weeks since that incident and I'm sure that rich and important businessmen like Wilhelm Darcy do not pay attention to mere waitresses.' Bee scoffed.

'Oh, well. But it would have been pretty funny if he had made the connection.'

'Maybe. Okay, yes, it would have been amusing. But the man did not recognize me. Maybe he did not agree with the newspapers and did not find me to be a "beauty with brains".' Bee grinned, quoting the phrase from a local newspaper. 'Or maybe he knows I like a laugh and he does not want to give me that pleasure.'

Charlotte laughed. 'You know you're gorgeous, stop fishing for compliments.'

'And this is the part where I blush,' Bee quipped.

Charlotte waved her hand. 'But what if he realises it later?' she insisted, a frown replacing the grin on her face.

Bee considered it. 'I doubt it,' she finally said. 'He is a busy man. I don't think he has time to ponder over an insignificant waitress who he may think looks like me. But,' she added mischievously, 'I might just tell him myself later on. I'm sure his expression would be worth watching.'

Imagining such a scenario, both the girls dissolved into giggles.

0o0o0

'Sir, the invitations have been sent out for the Ball next weekend. Some of the guests have responded already. I will give you the final list later this week. The event manager has talked to the caterers as well as the band that is to play. The theme has been selected, the decorations been bought. Everything is in order for the party.' Will's secretary listed off the tasks accomplished so far.

There was to be a party to be thrown the next Saturday. Signing a contract with B&G Company meant celebrations, which obviously led to a Ball, especially since they hadn't had one in quite a while.

Unlike most of the employees, Will was not thrilled about the upcoming event but he knew it had to be done. Generally, the company did not throw a party for every deal signed – much to Will's relief – or there would be a party every other week and surely Will could not cope with them recurring so often. But this deal was a big thing and Will had left all the preparations to be done in the hands of his more than capable event manager.

Will leaned against the back of the chair, massaging his neck. It was going to be just another day, he told himself. He would just have to meet people and not go through the files. It did not matter that he was not a people person and it would not be easy. It was just part of his job.

He frowned.


Chapter End Notes: There you go! I'm sorry but I can honestly not promise when the next chapter will be up. So, Merry Christmas Happy New Year and Happy Holidays to all the readers in advance! :)

Also, thank you for the reviews and the favourites and the story alerts.

Until next time.

-Afifa