Tuesday, December 19, 2006
Friends are Forever Pt. 6
Three weeks later, I was sitting at my desk when Debbie, one of our senior event planners, knocked and entered my office.
“Mandy, you’re not going to believe this, but the McFarrell wedding is off!”
I almost dropped my coffee mug. “Off! What the heck happened?” I exclaimed, my heart racing.
She shrugged. “No idea. I just got a call from the groom. He’s a friend of yours, isn’t he?”
“Yes, he was,” I said distractedly. We went over the Carmichael-McFarrell account, examining what implications the cancelled wedding would have for our company’s finances.
Later that evening, I was preparing to decorate my Christmas tree when the doorbell rang. When I peered through the front window I was surprised to see Steven on my doorstep. His handsome face looked weary, and his jeans and t-shirt were crumpled.
“Hi Mandy, can I come in?” he asked.
I stepped aside wordlessly and led the way into the sitting room, where he settled his tall frame on my sofa. I tidied up the boxes of garland and lights I had spread out on the coffee table and sat on a nearby mahogany rocker.
“So,” he began, “I guess you’ve heard the wedding’s off.”
I nodded, tugging distractedly at the belt of my Victoria’s Secret robe. “I’m so sorry, Steven. Despite what I said before I still know how hard this must be for you."
He smiled slightly and rubbed his goatee. "At least you didn't say I told you so."
"I would never say that. Friends aren't happy when their friends are hurting," I assured him.
He smiled bitterly. “I don't deserve your friendship. After the way I've treated you, turned my back on you to pursue my own ambitions, you still consider me a friend?"
I snorted. "Well, there were some days I wasn't feeling the love, but yeah, I still care about you. We go way back, Steven."
He stared at me intently. "I thought long and hard about our last conversation and I realise what a fool I've been. I've always cared about you, Mandy. I still do. More than just a friend."
"Is that why the wedding was called off?" I asked breathlessly. Although my heart leaped in joy at his revelation, I didn't relish the idea of being the cause of his broken engagement.
He grimaced. "Partially. I was about to tell Veronica I couldn't go through with the wedding when I found out she was having an affair with her stylist.”
I gasped in disbelief. “Frederik? But isn’t he gay?”
“Apparently not,” he replied dryly.
We stared at each other for a few seconds before bursting into laugher.
“I’m sorry for laughing,” I wheezed, “but the thought of Veronica and that little man is just too hilarious!”
Steven wiped his eyes. “I know. All the time I thought the brother was gay, he was only metrosexual.”
That renewed our laughter and when we recovered, I fixed us both some much needed glasses of Malibu and orange juice.
Steven raised his glass. “To new beginnings, without trust fund babies or sexually confused stylists!”
He placed his glass on a side table and turned to me. My heart skipped a beat as he leaned over and took my hands in his.
“Mandy, I’m sorry for being too blind to see what a great relationship we could have had. I’ve been given a second chance and I don’t want to miss it.”
He ran his fingers through my dreadlocks and stroked my cheek. “Keep talking,” I whispered, heat coursing through me at his touch.
He laughed. “You’re not going to make this easy for me are you?”
I shook my head and grinned back. “Nah, you’re going to have to work hard from now on, brother man.”
He chuckled. “Fine by me.”
He drew me on to his lap and his arms encircled my waist. I moaned softly as his lips pressed against mine insistently, coaxing my tongue to meet his in an erotic dance. His hands deftly untied my robe to reveal the sheer blue camisole underneath.
“I love you, Mandy,” he whispered hoarsely as he freed my breasts and started to caress them gently. “I always have. Forgive me for taking so long to act on it.”
I began to unbutton his shirt, kissing a trail from his neck and down his tight abs to his belt buckle. “I love you too, Steven. Now, are you sure you don’t mind ruining our friendship?” I teased and paused before unbuckling his belt.
In response, he scooped me up in his arms and enquired where my bedroom was located. As he laid me back on the cool, fresh sheets he grinned and replied. “I have enough friends. I’ll take my chances.”
I laughed and pulled his body to mine, and he proved that his feelings for me were far from platonic.
...and that's all folks! The Christmas rush is heating up so I'll be unable to post regularly until after the 26th, so I want ot wish you all a Merry Christmas! Be safe!