This story was largely inspired by watching Harvey tear Louis a new one in the most recent episode (1x11). Clearly, he has a number of skeletons in his closet. But, after reading an interview where the staff of the show promised that there would be a woman from Harvey's past, I wanted to play around with the idea of who that might be and how she might re-appear.
Donna was thirty minutes early to work, dressed impeccably and carrying two piping hot lattes in hand. Had it not been February 27th, she was certain that Harvey would have killed her for having them make him a breve latte—he was always such a drama queen about the extra calories, even though he secretly loved it. Had it not been February 27th, she would not have cancelled all of his meetings and every court appearance he was supposed to make. Had it not been February 27th, she would not have called Mike that morning to threaten him within an inch of his life if he so much as breathed too loudly today or, for that matter, wore another God forsaken skinny tie.
But, much as she dreaded the day, February 27th it was, and no amount of arguing with God—or Satan for that matter—was going to change anything.
Much as she hated it, all she could do was hand Harvey his latte when he walked in fifteen minutes later and assure Louis—who had come by to ask why in hell Harvey was listening to La Bohème loudly enough that it was audible outside his office—that she was far stronger that she looked and that she would be perfectly happy to body check him if his hand came within a foot of the handle to Harvey's office door.
Simply put, February 27th sucked.
After nine years of this ritual, Donna knew better than to disturb Harvey until Act I had finished. So she waited until she heard the last notes of O soave fanciulla before silently walking into his office, lifting the needle from the record, and seating herself opposite him in one of the black armchairs. She had always considered herself to be Harvey's big sister. Protective to a fault, Donna hated to see him in this much pain, even when she knew quite well that it was his own doing.
Yep, February 27th sucked royally. This was the day when Harvey Specter knew full and well the price he had paid to be the Harvey Specter. This was the day when no leggy, pretty blonde could comfort him and no fast car could calm his spinning mind. She had never understood why he insisted on coming into the office on this of all days, but it was better than burying himself in a bottle of scotch the way he did three years ago when the 27th fell on a Saturday, so Donna didn't mind. At least in the office, she could keep an eye on him.
They sat there in companionable silence for a solid ten minutes, Donna waiting for him to say something, anything. To passersby, it looked like any normal exchange between Donna and Harvey. Their posture was the same, expressions unreadable as always, but this exchange was anything but normal.
"It's a new recording," he said, intonation flat, but finally breaking the silence.
"Did she finally—" Donna questioned before being cut off with a curt nod.
"It was released in Japan. Live recording from the Met tour last year. Had it shipped here by a friend, then converted to vinyl."
"And?" she asked, cocking her head slightly before taking a sip of her latte.
"What do you think?" he asked, laughing slightly, though with no humor in the sound. Then he made a gesture that scared Donna. Harvey Specter, never one to have so much as a hair out of place, literally ran his hand through his hair, ruffling it and mussing it to hell. And worse than anything, he didn't seem to care.
"It's her," he continued, shrugging as though there was nothing more to say. "She's perfect." He took a long draw from his latte before placing his legs on the low table between them, ankles crossed. "She did Puccini proud." He looked away then, taking in the New York skyline on the cold, snowy day. The white powder was falling lightly, enough that it would stick by the evening, but soft enough that it still had a romantic, fairy-tale quality to it.
Donna was never one for pity, and Harvey would never accept it, but she couldn't keep the words from leaving her mouth. "Is there anything I can do?"
His head spun rather swiftly, too fast in fact, and his eyes passed Donna altogether and instead landed on the petite brunette in the bright red coat and matching pumps standing outside his office. Her back was turned and she held a wide brimmed red hat and a large red bag in her crème gloved hands. Yes, her back may have been turned, but the electricity that raced up his spine could mean only one thing.
Donna quickly noticed how pale Harvey had gone and inclined her head in the same direction.
"Yeah, you can, Donna. Send Bess in."
Author's Note: For any of you who are unfamiliar with La bohème, go google it, now. And no, this will not be Rent, and nothing in this story will be based on said opera. R/R