Disclaimer: I don't own Devil Wears Prada. Just borrowing some of the characters for a while.

A/N: Hey guys. This is my second Fanfiction story. I'm so thrilled that my creativity bug has decided to stay for a while! I decided to write this in first person, because I've never written a story like that before and liked the challenge. This is the first 'dark' story that I've written, so please leave advice! Thanks!

"Where the fuck have you been bitch?" A hand shot out and seized my arm as soon as I stepped into our apartment. I jumped.

"Work, Nate," I said meekly, shuddering.

"The dragon lady again?" Nate hissed, digging his nails into my wrist.

"Nate, please stop. You're hurting me," I whispered, not even acknowledging his use of my boss' cruel nickname.

"No way. Answer my question. What the hell were you doing?" His voice rose. If possible, he dug his fingernails even deeper. My arm barely registered the pain, as he had been abusing me like this for about a week.

"Work Nate," I repeated. "Please. I was dropping the book off. Please let me go."

"And just what were you doing with her?" Nate spat, not letting go of my arm. It had become numb from his grip.

"I didn't even see her. I swear," my eyes filled with tears before I rapidly blinked them away. I would not give him the satisfaction of seeing me cry.

"Whatever, bitch," Nate rolled his eyes, and shoved me away and I crashed against the wall before sliding down, grateful that he'd released me. A shooting pain traveled up my leg and I cradled my arm to my chest and looked at the ground, willing the tears not to fall.

"I'm going to the store. You'd better not leave," Nate glared at me and swept out of the room, slamming the door shut.

As soon as he left, I let the tears run down my cheeks as I looked down at my bruised and throbbing wrist. I stumbled to the fridge and grabbed an ice pack out of it, wincing as I pressed it gingerly on the swelling bump. It was the same old charade each day. I'd come home from work, and he'd immediately start beating me, yelling about Miranda. It was all my fault that he'd started being abusive. I had neglected him, spending more and more time at work. And not to mention that damned journal that I so foolishly left lying around in my bedroom. I still can't believe that he read it though. I resumed my spot on the ground where I fell and I thought of the first time that he'd hit me.

I had kept a journal where I recorded every personal thought that I had. After Paris, I wrote about how Miranda looked when she was sitting in the hotel room wearing nothing but a bathrobe, her feet bare. Her face was wiped clean of makeup, and she looked like any other normal middle-aged woman who was devastated about her upcoming divorce. I wrote about how I tried to comfort her as much as I could, and was astonished when she let me. She didn't talk much at first, but she soon became more comfortable and confided in me that Stephen had called her an 'ugly, old, frosty bitch.' A flash of anger overtook me, and I forcefully declared that she was a gorgeous powerful woman that I looked up to. I wrote about when she looked at me with her puffy red eyes, I ignored the warning signs flashing in my head and sat on the couch next to her. Miranda looked at me quizzically but without malice, so I gently wrapped her in a hug. Stiffening at first in my arms, she allowed herself to relax and sank into my embrace, sniffling. We sat there for a while in comfortable silence before Miranda's sobs subsided and she lifted her head up and stared at me. She softly told me that she wanted to be left alone for a while. I hesitated, but I saw the icy mask return so I scrambled up and left silently. I wrote about the surprise that filled me when I heard a quiet 'thank you' from behind me. I turned. Her piercing blue eyes were looking right at me and I nodded once with a small smile on my face before continuing on my way out of the room. After I exited her room and looked into the mirror to touch up my makeup, I saw that my chocolate-colored eyes had filled with tears. It hit me like a bolt of lightening. I wrote about the shock I felt when I finally admitted to myself that I was in love with my boss. It wasn't an infatuation. I wrote about the soft gasp that escaped before despair filled me. There was no way she'd ever feel the same. I sniffled and dabbed at my eyes. Damn unrequited love. At least I still got to see her everyday.

I wrote about having a drink with Christian Thompson that night. I declined his offer to go back to his house for a nightcap after he revealed his plan to get rid of Miranda. It was already 2 in the morning before I returned to my suite, and I decided to warn Miranda in the morning since now was an unreasonable time to tell her. The next day was filled with me panicking and furtively trying to tell Miranda, but of course, she had it all figured out. I wrote about how I was hurt a little that the woman that she'd shown me the previous night had disappeared. When she announced her plan and I saw Nigel's face fall, I wrote about how I almost left in anger. Thankfully, Nigel talked some sense into me before I did. We returned from Paris, and life moved on… Except I was in love with Miranda. She'd been kinder since we'd returned. I wrote about the very first smile she gave me, my words written sloppily in cursive in my haste to get it down on paper. We were friends now. I wrote about our weekly coffee meetings that slowly progressed to daily ones. I wrote about every little touch. Every single smile we'd shared.

Then Nate found my journal. I arrived home late from work one day, and he confronted me about it, holding my journal in his right hand and waving it around. I knew he had been drinking, judging from his flushed face and the smell of beer wafting from him. Nate demanded to know why I was attracted to my boss that was about 30 years older than me. He asked why I suddenly was a lesbian. I don't remember what I said. I was nervous, my only thought was 'why didn't I hide that better?' and 'why the hell did he read it?' He advanced menacingly towards me. He struck me and I cried out, clutching the reddening skin. All of those little thoughts vanished, and I was immediately thinking darker thoughts. 'What if he raped me? Would he kill me?' Suddenly, the light from his eyes brightened and he slowly ripped my journal up. Each tear made me shudder and I felt like he was shredding my heart. He threw the remains into the fire and grinned, the light illuminating the dark shadows on his face. I was so scared. He turned and went to bed like nothing had happened. Before he left though, he rasped, "If you try and leave Andy, I will find you and kill you." I just sat crying, rocking back and forth with my arms around myself.

The next morning, Nate apologized profusely. He was so sorry. His excuse was alcohol, and my tender stupid heart forgave him. That was my mistake. I didn't leave when I had the chance. I went to work and covered up the mark. I had made Miranda laugh, and my heart lifted as I proceeded on my way home. When I walked into my apartment though, all of the exuberant feelings crashed. Nate was sitting in a chair, clearly drunk again. The events from last night transpired again. He hit me multiple times, and when I tried to scream for help, he covered my mouth and whispered that he would do much worse if I tried that. I shut my mouth, terrified, and let him strike me over and over again, the slaps making an echoing sound. I felt so helpless. He left, but I didn't sleep. My body ached so badly and I longed to get a wet cloth to soothe the welts, but I didn't move from my crouched position on the ground. I stayed up, waiting for him to return. When 5 am rolled around and he still didn't come back, I ran to the shower and scrubbed at my skin, making it even redder than it already was. I popped two Advils in my mouth before pausing and contemplating. I shook some more out before I threw them back in the bottle in disgust and set it back down. I scolded myself for even pondering death. I was strong enough to handle this.

I planned to pack my bags and leave before he came back, but he was too fast. He returned, reeking of alcohol as I was throwing the last of the stuff that I needed into a black duffle bag. I whirled around, screaming. I felt so stupid. I should've planned my escape better. He hit me so hard that time, I blacked out. When I came to, he was leaning over me and he growled, "If you ever try and escape again, I will make it the last thing you do." I believed every word, and didn't try to escape again. I would give anything to escape this new hell that I found myself in.

Each day passed so slowly, the beatings becoming progressively worse. He would yell awful things to me as he was punching me, and my self-esteem was slowly plummeting with every passing day. I was faithful to work though, not missing a day. I kept my 'happy' mask on and from the outside, I appeared calm and collected like I always was. Once though, I had instinctively flinched when someone had reached out to me, and I quickly turned the flinch into a stretch, mentally scolding myself. I had almost revealed that somebody was hitting me. Sometimes I would limp and other people would comment, but I would brush it off, joking about how clumsy I was. The main culprit of my hobble was the stairs. I covered up the bruises with heavy foundation and concealer. I wore sleeves and pants most of the time. My clothes were baggier since I had started eating less and less. Although this time, it wasn't because I was surrounded by size 0 models all the time; it was because I had lost my appetite. Wearing belts with most of my outfits helped a lot in not drawing too much attention to my shrinking figure, and I fooled everyone into thinking I was ok. Even Miranda, although today she looked at me with a look of concern on her face when I had a particularly large bruise in my face that makeup couldn't quite cover up. I said that I tripped, blaming the stairs again. I smiled, but I think she could tell that it didn't reach my eyes.

I let my eyes wander over my tattered body. It was getting harder and harder to cover up all of the marks. Thankfully though, Nate mostly hit me in places where my clothes covered the awful black and blue spots from prying eyes. I was so ugly. I squeezed my eyes together when I felt a new wave of tears coming. Nate didn't even need alcohol to help aid him now. And that scared me the most. He was comfortable hurting me when he was sober.

I was so tired. I covered my eyes with my hands, wiping away a few drops that had escaped. The strain of each sleepless night filled with abuse (both mental and physical) had started slowly catching up with me. I had scarcely slept 5 hours total in the last week, and my makeup was barely covering the dark bags under my eyes. I needed to find a peaceful place to rest so people wouldn't get suspicious. Perhaps I could find solace underneath my office desk. A shudder passed through me as I thought of what Nate would do to me if I never came back. But I desperately needed the sleep, so I decided that tomorrow I would stay at work during the night, and face the consequences as they came. The doorknob jiggled, and my heart thumped as my stomach lurched.

(A/N: I just wanted to let you know that I never use those swear words in real life. I kept cringing every time that I wrote one, but I felt that it was essential to Nate's character).