"Since when have you known William?" Harry asks the next morning as we're having breakfast. I knew this question was coming. I look down at my toast, chewing slowly as I form an answer.
"For as long as I can remember. He's always lived in the house opposite mine."
"I got the vibe that you didn't like him."
I roll my eyes. "That's got to be an understatement."
"So he really was trying to irritate you?"
"Every damn day."
Harry chuckles, "What for? What did he have against you?"
Shaking my head, I get up. "I've tried to answer that question for almost 24 years. If you can come up with something, let me know alright?"
He laughs, "Why so sour?"
On the way to work, I'm transported back to the past again as I wait for the tube to arrive at my stop.
"So, I was wondering, tonight if you are free," Tony asks nervously and I bite back a grin. I've caught him checking me out and I've been waiting for him to make a move.
"I don't think that's a good idea."
My eyes widen and I spin around to see William walking towards us with a lazy smile playing on his lips.
Shaking my head, I turn to Tony. "Ignore him."
William slings an arm around my shoulder and as I try to push it off, his grip tightens.
"You see, our Donna here, stays with her aunt, who's a wonderful person. But she's got a cousin who's fiercely protective of her and thinks none of us guys are good enough for Donna. So what he does is the boy she dates gets tied up to a tree and he does terrible thing to him," William says in this eerie voice.
Tony stares at him, not sure if he should believe him.
"Don't listen to him. He's full of crap," I shoot William an irritated look and turn back to Tony.
"I should know mate. I've seen it happen."
"Uh, Donna? I just remembered my sister's waiting for me. I'll... I'll see you around."
As he leaves, I turn around and elbow William. "What the hell is your problem?!"
He shrugs. "What do you mean?"
"Why the hell did you do that?"
He laughs, "It was fun! Did you see his face?"
"Oh yeah, I did. What's your life mission? To ruin mine?!"
He chuckles, winking. "Don't flatter yourself! I don't have time to waste on you."
"Then why are you here?"
He stares at me for a second, just blinking. It's one of those times I actually break through his 'too-full-of-himself' barrier. Staring at me, he sticks his hands into his pockets and turns away.
Shaking my head, I look around the tube. He always was good at acting. No wonder Tony believed that stupid story.
What's with the sudden flashbacks though?
As we near my stop, I get up, grabbing my bag. My mind's still swimming with sixteen-year old William and his last night.
Why can't I get this moron out of my head?
Taking in a deep breath, I step off the tube. Walking across the station, I head upstairs and onto the sidewalk. Pulling my shades down over my eyes, I look around, heading towards the office.
I'm just reaching the building when I hear something. Turning around, I scan the area but don't find what I'm looking for. I could have sworn, I heard... Pushing open the glass door, I glance behind me again.
Taking in another deep breath, I step into the cool office building. The day passes by quickly. I don't have much work. Or maybe I do and I finish quickly as I try to keep my mind occupied. By 3 pm I'm done. I have a short meeting with my boss before getting ready to leave for the day.
I stop by Crystal's office before I leave. She usually leaves around this time as well. Crystal's worked in this company for four years, I actually hired her myself, impressed by her resume. We don't usually hang out outside work but I know she's there to help me out of a spot or if I just need to talk.
Crystal and I make our way downstairs, talking about what's going on at the moment. Crystal's married to Taylor Ramirez, a very handsome entrepreneur, who is completely besotted by her.
I secretly think of them as our modern New York fairytale.
"Shall I drop you home?" She asks, holding up her keys.
"No, thanks. I need to stop by some shops."
"Okay." As she hugs me, she whispers. "There's a really handsome guy standing and gawking at you."
I chuckle as she pulls back. "Yeah, right."
"No, really. Look behind you."
I glance behind me and freeze as my eyes fall on the one person I least want to see.
I try to keep the frown from forming but it doesn't really work. "What are you doing here?"
He smirks, that one expression irritating me beyond belief, and pushing himself away from the wall, starts walking the few steps towards us.
"You know him?" Crystal asks.
"Unfortunately," I mutter back.
As she chuckles, his smirk broadens. "Hello ladies."
"Again. What are you doing here?" I ask before Crystal can answer.
"I'll see you tomorrow Donna," Crystal waves and leaves.
Traitor. I cannot believe she's leaving me alone with him!
"Yes, William?" I ask, my tone overly patient.
"I was told you were the best person to show me around New York."
"So you decided to crash my day?" I ask raising an eyebrow.
He chuckles, "It's not like it's so hard to hand out with someone like me."
I roll my eyes, "So full of yourself. Nothing's changed I see."
He laughs, "So you up for it?"
"Up for what?" I rummage through my bag, looking for my phone.
"Show me around New York."
"Why the hell would I do something like that? And who told you that I was the best person to show you around?"
"A little birdie."
I'm going to kill her.
Sighing, I finally look up at him. "What exactly do you want me to do William?"
"To show me around, nothing else. Don't get your hopes up too high."
I shoot him a dirty look.
"Come on Donna."
My mouth goes dry when I hear him say my name. I look up at him properly, my eyes meeting his green ones. I gulp, desperately trying to restart my breathing.
"Where exactly do you want me to go?" I ask, playing with my phone. "It's too late to visit any of the museums or any of the other places."
"Were you heading home?" He asks.
"Um... I was going to stop by some shops."
He shrugs. "Would you mind my company?"
"You want to come shopping with me?" I ask, shocked.
As his lips curve into his signature smirk, I hold back a smile, sensing a challenge in his expression. "I'm sure, I'll survive."
"Alright," pulling my shades over my edges, I glance up at him. "Cab or tube?"
"Uh," he looks thrown as his eyes wander from me to the road. "Let's get a cab."
I don't talk to him during the fifteen minutes drive as we weave through the traffic. Pushing my shades on my head, I call Harry. As I talk, William pulls out his Blackberry and starts tapping away on it.
"Yeah, I'll be home. Love you." I hang up with Harry just as the cab comes to a stop.
Okay, I was going to pay the cab driver in the first place, but etiquette calls for the guy to at least offer.
William gets out, slamming the door behind him. Shrugging, I pay the driver and get out.
"Why didn't you tell your boyfriend you were with me?" William asks as we walk.
My lips curve into a smile.
That's what bothering him. "Because he didn't ask."
He doesn't say anything as I lead the way towards Barney's, my all time favorite store.
Pushing the door open, I step inside, removing my shades. William follows me as I start making my way to the 2nd floor.
"Donna! I wondered when you'd turn up!"
Turning around, I see Ryan walking up to us, a huge smile on his face.
"Ryan!" I grin as he engulfs me in a huge hug. "How are you?"
"I'm great." He takes a step back. "You? You look fantastic! New hairstyle?"
I laugh, "You like?"
He chuckles, "I love." His eyes wander behind me and that's when I remember William.
"Oh, Ryan this is..." I hesitate for a second, "my friend, William. William, Ryan, one of my closest friends and he works here."
"Nice to meet you."
William shakes his hand. "Please." He answers, his British accent thick.
"So, the new collection just got delivered this morning," Ryan turns back to me, grinning.
"Yes! I get the first pick?" I ask excitedly.
"Of course. Go catch a dressing room and I'll bring them over."
"So I take it you come here often?" William asks as I sift through a tack of shirts.
"Whenever I can."
He shakes his head. "I'll never understand women and their urge to shop."
"It's just like you men and your football games. It's just a bunch of grown men kicking a ball around but when a game's on, it's like the most important thing in the world."
He chuckles, "Okay, good point. But we don't spend thousands of pounds... uh, dollars, whereas you women..."
"Tickets cost a lot! And shopping is considered a therapy you know?" I glance up at him as he raises an eyebrow.
"Yup." I pull out a purple satin blouse that has a black belt around the waist. "What do you think?" I hold it up so he's able to see. "You're right, it's cute." I nod even before he answers and lay it on my arm.
After going through a few more racks, where William surprisingly picks a few cute tops, we head towards the dressing room.
As William sits down on one of the stools by the mirror, I drop my handbag beside him. "Here you go. Take care of it for me."
Ryan walks in just then, wheeling in a covered rack. I grin, excited, as he glances at me.
"You should be glad there aren't many people around today. Ready?"
"Come on already. You're killing me."
He pulls off the cloth, revealing the rack jammed with clothes. I walk over and the first thing my hand touches is a long brown and black leopard print dress.
"Wow," I pull it out and hold it up, looking at myself in the mirror.
"Why don't you try it on?" William asks, looking up at me.
I grin, "Of course, I will."
As I head into the dressing room, Ryan leaves saying he needs to check on the shop. Kicking off my work heels, I change into the dress.
"Wow," I whisper, looking at myself in the mirror.
It fits like a glove. The top bodice is black satin, the sleeves ending at the elbows. The dress falls below my chest in a leopard print net design over black satin. The dress end just below my knees.
"Are you going to stand and stare at yourself all day or am I going to see how you look?" William calls.
I roll my eyes, a smile tugging at my lips. I glance at myself before opening the door and stepping out.
William looks up from his phone and I feel my heart speed up, I really have no idea why, as his eyes slowly trail down. I gulp as he finally looks up and locks his eyes on mine.
"What do you think?" I ask when he doesn't say anything.
"You want my opinion?" William asks, raising an eyebrow.
"No," I reply nonchalantly, turning towards the mirror. "Since you're staring at me, I assume you like it."
He scoffs, "I wasn't staring at you. I was merely appreciating the view."
I grin, looking at him through the mirror. "Thanks William. I never knew you had it in you to give a compliment."
He laughs. A loud, pleasant sound that's got my lips curving into a smile. "Don't get your hopes up too high, hun. It doesn't happen too often."
"I know that all too well."
Before he can reply, Ryan walks into the room.
"Look at you, gorgeous!" He whistles as I twirl around.
I shoot William a look. "Now that's the type of reaction I expect from a man."
He raises an eyebrow, leaning back in his seat. "Are you saying I'm not a man? Or that you didn't enjoy me eying you up?"
I roll my eyes, irritated. Irritated at myself for liking the fact that he admitted that he WAS eying me up and irritated at him... for being him. "Don't put words into my mouth William." I turn to Ryan. "Do you really like it?"
"Yup. You know what would look amazing with them?"
"What?" I grin, just then noticing his hand behind his back.
"A pair of these."
He hols up a pair of leopard Louboutins.
"Ohmygosh! They're gorgeous!"
"And they just happen to be your size," he chuckles.
"Now I know why I love you!"
He chuckles, "Try them on."
I peek at William as I pull them on and he's got an irritated expression on his face. Good. He deserves it.
I walk over to the rack and pull out a Chanel navy and white skirt.
"Nice choice," Ryan comments as I hold it up.
I shoot him a smile and turn back to the skirt. It's really cute, not too informal. I could wear it to work. About knee-length, it's a dark navy blue with white strips are the waist.
"You know I saw a really cute white top up front. It had a light blue floral design around the neck."
Ryan frowns, thinking. "Boat neck?"
"Yup. I think it was full sleeves."
He snaps his fingers, "I know which one. You've got a great eye. It'll go perfectly with this skirt. Lemme go get it."
Two hours later, I'm done, much to William's relief, although he barely complained. I urn to him as we step out of Macy's. He's holding four bags while I've just got two in my hands.
"Thanks a lot William."
He raises an eyebrow, "So you're done?"
I nod, "Relieved, huh?"
He shakes his head, laughing. "It wasn't all that bad."
I smile, "And you're not such bad company yourself. You can be quite amicable if you want to."
He smirks, "I know how to behave myself in front of a lady. I'm English after all."
I chuckle, looking at him before glancing around. "Well, I should be getting home."
"Shall I get you a cab?" He asks, already taking all the bags in one hand to signal for a cab.
I shake my head. "No, I take the tube home. You?"
"Well, while my apartment's getting fixed up, I'm staying at a hotel. So it'll be a cab for me."
"Oh." I hesitate before asking. "Where's your apartment?"
You've got to be kidding me! How loaded is this guy?
"Oh, wow. So, where are you staying now?"
"Holiday Inn. Let me drop you home Donna."
I bite my lip, unsure. "I don't know."
"We'll share a cab. Please?" He looks up at me and I nod, smiling.
Replies to comments
Praiser - Lol, yeah, him turning up shakes things up! Let's see what happens! Thanks a lot.
PH - Thanks! No one can compare to your Jacob that's for sure! Lol, how did I know you'd like him? Thanks a lot.
Rae - Thanks so much!
Mar - On their way! Lol thanks.
Sony T. - Thanks a lot! I'm glad, you're enjoying!
MayJuneJuly - Haha, yeah, finally! All your whining paid off, glad you're enjoying!