Birthday Surprise

Author's Notes: This for A Pile of Stuff: DWP Comment Ficathon link: .com/dvlwears_

Author: JAZWriter
Rating: R (for adult themes—no sex)
Miranda/Andy, The Devil Wears Prada
Word Count: 2664

Disclaimer: I do not own The Devil Wear Prada or its characters. I am not profiting from this story (except through positive comments which feed my Muse). It is created through the fair use doctrine or some such pish-posh.

"This is the worst idea ever," Andy thought to herself as she rushed through the foyer of the Elias-Clarke building. She had so much to do and only about two hours to get it all done.

Grabbing a bag from the coat closet, Andy was halfway out the door before she stopped short and pivoted back. Reaching for the bottom drawer of her desk, Andy took out a wrapped box, hidden under some hosiery and notepads. Shaking her head, unable to believe she had nearly forgotten it, Andy ran out to complete her next errand. She had to get to the bakery. Luckily, the florist had agreed to deliver the flowers at the venue, so that was one less worry.

Emily was already at the Edison. It was a Monday night, and Miranda was attending a preview for the new line of winter coats that Michael Kors was rolling out. Today was Miranda's fiftieth birthday. Elias-Clarke was hosting a large birthday bash for her on Friday at the Ritz, but today Runway was throwing their own party for their illustrious leader. A surprise party.

Andy had spearheaded the entire event. She had imagined a small party at the office where everyone would be waiting for Miranda when she got back to the office near the end of the work day. The problems had begun when she mentioned her idea to Nigel. He had shaken his head in disgust.

"In the office, Andy? How bourgeois. Were you planning on baking the cake, too?" Andy had blanched, and Nigel had smirked. "I have a friend who works at the Edison. We can have it there. He owes me a favor. I'll call him to reserve a room. You invite the crew and collect money for the cake and a gift. We can borrow supplies from the art department to decorate the place." He stared at Andy closely. "Do you really think people will keep this a secret? Miranda hears everything."

"Sure. I'll tell everyone not to talk about it here. It will be fine." Andy crossed her fingers and toes. She really wanted to pull this off. Miranda worked so hard. Her success pulled everyone else with her—not one person at Runway could claim that they had not benefited from Miranda's dedication to the magazine. This was their chance to thank Miranda in a significant way.

Andy got in the town car and directed Roy to the bakery. "I'll be right out," Andy said as she hopped out to pick up the cake. "May I see it," Andy asked as the cashier rang up the sale.

"Well, it's all tied up, but if you really want to," the snotty lady replied.

"No, no. Forget it. I'm sure it's fine." Andy got in the car. "To the Edison, Roy." Andy went through her mental list, trying to remember what else needed to get done before Miranda arrived. It was a long list.

Rushing into the private function room, Andy noted that the band wasn't there. "Emily?" Andy looked around as she crossed to the far wall where a table was set up with utensils, dishware, drinks, and hors d'oeuvres. She placed the cake gently on the table. Seeing a flash of red in her peripheral vision, Andy turned. "Emily! Where's the band?"

"They double booked. They're in Hartford, of all places!"

"Shit! What are we going to do?" Andy had booked a well-known jazz quartet to play ambiance music and to provide back up for Miranda's big surprise.

"They are sending another group they claim is excellent." Emily shrugged.

Sighing with frustration, Andy found a knife and opened the cake box. And stared. Gawped, really. "Shit!"

Instead of the case saying "Happy 50th birthday," it said "Happy 60th birthday." Andy took the knife and carefully removed the middle part of the six. It didn't look like a five. It looked like a half-eaten six. "Fuck!" Andy sighed and took off the entire number. Now it looked like "Happy birthday" with a big smudged space in the middle of the cake. Andy sighed again. Still, it was better than keeping the wrong age on the cake.

Hearing people filtering in, Andy dismissed her thoughts about the cake and started to arrange the flowers on all the tables. At least no freesias were in sight. Next, she lit the tea candles and uncorked all the bottles of wine. Just as she finished she heard Emily's voice screeching, "You must be joking!" What Andy saw made her grab the closest table, afraid she was going to faint.

A group of four men stood next to Emily holding their instruments. The youngest man looked to be a hundred years old. He wore a plaid jacket and black pants with a bright blue bowtie. He held an accordion in his hands. Next to him stood a dead man, or at least he seemed so emaciated as to have not eaten in years. His skin was loose on his limbs and he leaned to the side like a tree branch. In his hands were a flute and piccolo. The third man was plump and short. His bald head shone, and sweat dripped down his face. He held a guitar. The last person looked like a lumberjack, strong, large, and hairy. He held onto his drum set as if it were as light as a feather.

"Um, what kind of music do you play?" Andy asked hesitantly.

"Oh, we can play anything, ma'am," the lumberjack said. Andy found that hard to believe. "You can set up over there." Andy ignored Emily's look of outrage. Instead, she pulled out her phone. This party was already falling apart. She called Nigel. "Tell me you are on track," Andy said when he answered.

"Of course. We just have to stop at the Edison to meet Testino, and then we'll be back to the office. Be a good girl and make sure everyone is behaving." Andy sighed with relief.

"Good. So, we'll see you in an hour?"

"Nooo. In about ten minutes." Andy sucked in her breath. That was too early! She looked around the room. Only about half of her colleagues were present.

"You can't stall, Nigel?" Andy asked desperately.

"No can do." Before Andy could say anything else, she heard a click. She looked at the phone in mute horror.

"Emily. They'll be here in ten minutes!"

"Bollocks! We're not ready." Emily headed toward the band to urge them to finish setting up.

Andy dimmed the lights and made another phone call. Maybe the night could still be salvaged. After several texts to key people at Runway, Andy sighed with relief. They were on their way. She watched the door, feeling a bit better as several employees rushed through the entrance. Two minutes. Andy looked around. It wasn't too bad. The room looked filled, and the four dead men were finishing up their sound check.

Feeling the hair at the back of her neck rise, Andy said in a hushed voice, "She's here! Everyone gather toward the entrance. We'll start singing as soon as she comes in." The room was unnaturally quiet as everyone held their breath.

"I simply don't understand…" Miranda said as she entered the room. She stopped quickly, her face reflecting surprise for a moment before her mask of indifference slammed down.

"Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday to youuuu. Happy BIRTH-day, dear Mirandaaaaaa. Happy birthday to YOU!" Everyone sang with gusto as the band played the familiar tune. Andy was surprised that the accordion didn't sound as horrendous as she had feared. Everyone clapped as Miranda's lips curled in a pleased smile.

"Well, this is unexpected." Miranda's eyes caught Andy's as she raised an eyebrow. Andy smiled brightly.

"Happy birthday, Miranda. We know that you are having a large celebration on Friday, but we at Runway wanted to give you your own party." Andy saw several more employees standing quietly behind Miranda. At least they'd made it.

"I see." Miranda's eyes swept over the crowd. "Well then. I believe I shall have a drink. Andrea?" Miranda walked through the crowd, Andy following in her wake. Miranda sat down at the center table while Andy hurried to pour a glass of wine for her boss. "Thank you," Miranda breathed as she accepted the glass.

Andy looked up, startled. Since when did Miranda thank anyone? "You're welcome."

"Not just for the wine, Andrea."

"Oh. Well, um, you are welcome, Miranda. Happy birthday." Andy got lost in Miranda's gaze. Feeling her cell vibrate, Andy took it out of her jacket pocket and read the message. She smiled. "I'll be right back, Miranda," she said before striding away. She could feel Miranda's eyes on her and hoped that her outfit was sufficient. She wore a black pin-striped Armani suit. It hugged her curves and accentuated her attributes well.

Hurrying to the band, Andy leaned in to speak to the lead singer. Luckily, they seemed willing to go along with her request. They started another song as Andy exited the room through a side door. Returning a moment later with her newest surprise, Andy caught the emaciated man's eye and nodded. They ended the song and began the next one as Andy opened the doors wide. The newest guest began to sing as she entered the room. All conversation ceased as others looked on in surprise.

What are you doing the rest of your life?
North and South and East and West of your life?
I have only one request of your life
That you spend it all with me.

Barbra Streisand sang the song as she approached Miranda at her table. Andy stood to the side watching. She found herself spellbound by the song, the emotions it evoked, and Miranda's eyes staring first at Barbra before finding Andy's. Smiling, Andy felt heat wash over her. Of course Miranda would know she had arranged this for her. Andy had found out quite by accident that Miranda loved Barbra Streisand. She had jumped through numerous hoops to get the singer here, but, judging by Miranda's shining eyes and beautiful smile, it had been worth the effort.

The song ended, and the room erupted with applause. Barbra gave Miranda a hug and wished her a wonderful birthday before taking song requests. "Who knew I'd be accompanied by an accordion and a flute," Barbra joked. Andy cringed.

Miranda tilted her head at Andy and nodded toward the empty chair next to her. Andy hurried over and sat down.

"You are full of surprises, Andrea," Miranda murmured. Andy just smiled. Miranda deserved this. People did care about her, and she needed to see that. Andy certainly cared about her. As Barbra belted out "Somewhere" from West Side Story, Miranda leaned in closer. "Andrea, why exactly do you have a band with an accordion playing back up for Barbra Streisand?"

"That's a long, boring story," Andy sighed. "They're not as bad as I feared. And if you want to dance the polka later, you're all set," she joked. Miranda's chuckle reverberated through Andy. Taking the opportunity of having Miranda to herself for a few moments, Andy withdrew the present from her pocket and handed it to Miranda.

Miranda placed it on the table and clapped as the song ended. Moments later she opened it, her hands stilling for a moment when she saw the Tiffany label before she removed the box cover. Andy waited anxiously for Miranda's response. It really was a simple piece of jewelry. Lord knew Andy couldn't afford much. Yet, she had wanted to give her something unique. Something that would let Miranda know that she was rare and extraordinary and worth the effort. A large sapphire reflected the overhead lights, winking brightly as the small diamonds encasing the teardrop-shaped gem flickered. A thin white gold chain completed the gift. Andy knew that Miranda owned much more expensive pieces. Certainly Andy could not hope to dazzle her with an expensive gift. This necklace seemed to be perfect, though. She hoped so.

"Andrea," Miranda said in a hushed tone. Her stare made Andy feel self-conscious. "Will you put it on me?" she asked as she extended the box. Andy tried to keep her hands steady as she took out the necklace and slowly leaned forward. Miranda stared into Andy's eyes while she tried to catch the clasp onto the loop without taking too long. She had her arms wrapped around Miranda's neck, and Andy caught her breath when she realized just how close their faces were. She could easily bridge the distance to taste those parted lips. Realizing she was staring at Miranda's mouth, Andy's eyes flitted up to burning eyes.

"I am tempted to ask you to dance," Miranda purred as Barbra began to sing "Memory" from Cats.

"You, you are?" Andy asked, feeling breathless. She searched Miranda's eyes, seeing sincerity and desire. She stopped trying to secure the necklace around Miranda's neck, instead resting her arms lightly on her shoulders.

"Oh, yes." Miranda nodded. "However, this really isn't the best environment for me to hold you in my arms for the first time. I do have a reputation to maintain," Miranda sniffed.

Andy laughed, delighted by Miranda's confession. "Another time, then."

Miranda nodded. "Yes, soon." She gazed into Andy's eyes for several moments. "You really are a precious gift."

Andy felt her restraint weakening. Refocusing on the necklace, Andy said, "There you go," releasing the now fastened necklace and pulling back slowly, distancing herself from Miranda with reluctance. She took a deep breath to calm down.

Miranda's hand traced nonsensical designs on Andy's thigh. Shuddering at the feelings coursing through her, Andy's mouth fell open as she sipped the air. "I am willing to bet that you will keep surprising me for a very long time," Miranda said. "This is the best birthday party I have ever received—accordion player and all."

Laughing, Andy shrugged her shoulders. "Well, all I can promise is to deliver the unexpected."

"Yes, that I believe. You may find, my dear Andrea, that I have some surprises of my own to share with you." Miranda smirked as Andy gulped. "In fact, I have a birthday wish only you can fulfill," she whispered as she took Andy's hand.

Barbra's voice reverberated through Andy with the final verse as Miranda leaned closer. And closer.

If you touch me
You'll understand what happiness is
Look, a new day has begun.

Soft lips covered Andy's as her eyes closed at the sensation. She whimpered at the exquisite sensation, compounded by a gentle hand cupping her cheek. Too soon the kiss ended as everyone clapped. Andy gazed with fascination at how animated Miranda's face was. A gentle smile and bright eyes kept her captive. Unable to think of anything but how wonderful that had felt, Andy whispered, "Thank you."

"It's cake time, darling," Nigel announced as he strolled toward their table. Miranda's hand fell away from Andy.

Andy got up to light the candles and to organize one more round of the song, this time sung by Barbra with dulcet tones. As Miranda blew out the candles, she stared at Andy.

"Well, Six, you pulled it off. And it seems you are the birthday gift she most wants to unwrap." Nigel wiggled his eyebrows as Andy blushed.

"Miranda, it's been marvelous sharing in your birthday surprise. Here's to you," Barbra said as she raised a glass to toast her. "I hope all your birthday wishes comes true."

"Thank you," Miranda murmured as she her eyes once more found Andy. "I believe they already have."

Noise at the door, as well as catcalls and laughter, caught their attention.

"Bollocks!" Emily whispered. Andy placed a hand over her eyes, lowering it when she heard Barbra begin to sing, "Send in the Clowns" from A Little Night Music.

"Really, Andrea," Miranda drawled. "Clowns?" Andy would have answered but smiling lips covered hers before she could formulate an explanation.

The End.

status: complete, pairing: Andy/Miranda, User: Jazwriter, Rating: R, dwp