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John Marion Francis

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Category: 

Romance

Type: 


Fiction

Romance Short Story - Red Diamonds

She's a high power attorney and he's a fashion designer. She challenges him to make her a evenning dress to die for. Can he do it without fallin in love with her?

Chapter 1 - The Lady in Red


All aboard!” announced the porter as he stepped into the first class rail car leaning out towards the crowd.  It was five thirty in the afternoon in Boston as I checked my watch jumping on the steps pulling myself up into the train.  It had been a long week and I was looking forward to the weekend.  I went over to the bar section in the dinning car, one of the perks of platinum first class travelers.  The plush leather chairs and private waiters made the long trip back to Manhattan a dream ride. 

“How may I serve you sir” asked the waiter.

“Double jack on the rocks please” I replied. 

“My pleasure sir.” I loosened my tie and checked my Blackberry for final emails. 

“Let’s see nothing important or that can’t wait until Monday.

”I murmured to myself scrolling down the small list of emails.

“Your drink sir” said the waiter.  “Thanks”. I said staying focused on my Blackberry.
 

The main door opened letting in a small puff of wind with the scent of Tresor perfume in the air.  I looked up from my Blackberry to see who it was.  A tall beautiful red head strolled in with her gloves draped in her hand and bag tucked under her arm.  She was dressed in red from head to toe with a red hat and sheer veil.  Her lips were red, her nails were red.  She was just pure class from head to toe.

“Good afternoon Miss Patterson” said the waiter as she approached her private table and took a seat.

“Hello Charles how’s Barbara and kids?” she asked. 

“Doing well Miss Patterson” he said placing a pink Cosmo and two napkins on her table. 

“Thank you Charles” she said.

“You’re welcome Miss Patterson”. 

She lifted her veil and took a slow sip leaving her red lip imprints on the edge of the glass.  I’ve never seen her on the train before.  Who was she?  How could I have missed this beautiful woman all this time?  My Blackberry vibrated interrupting my thoughts. 

“Hello, Paul speaking” I said in a low voice. 

“Yeah… Right… Okay, let’s talk about it on Monday. Thanks, talk to you then.”  I powered off my Blackberry and reached for my drink to finish it off when I saw Charles approaching me with another one.

“From Miss Patterson sir” he said handing me the drink and a business card. 

Patterson, Morgan & Chase Attorneys at law, NYC, Miss Samantha Patterson Sr. Partner it read on the card.  “Samantha Patterson” I thought to myself.  Who was she?  I scanned the room and stopped on the lady in red.  She was looking right at me.  I raised the drink up and made a toasting thank you gesture.  She raised and lowered her eyebrows and took another sip of her drink.  Why me I thought to myself?  She could have any man on the planet in my opinion. 

I picked up the menu on my table and raised it up gesturing “can I buy you dinner” to her.  She crossed her legs and nodded a confirming yes.  The sun was setting as the train glided down the tracks.  Charles went from table to table lighting the little votive candles floating in small intimate clear bowls of water with rose pedals in them.  I picked up my drink, coat and brief case and headed over to her table.  The flickering light from the candle made her eyes sparkle as she looked up at me. 

“Hello my name is Paul, thanks for the drink” I said putting down my brief case and coat.

“My pleasure Paul, I am Samantha”.  She was even more beautiful up close.  Her ruby red lips, long red crimson red hair and slow batting eyes were intoxicating.  I took the seat across from her and sat down my drink. I handed her my business card. 

“Oh, you’re in fashion design” she said with a big smile.

I could see by her outfit that she wore only the best tailored clothes and how lucky for me that I am one of the top private tailors and couture designers with boutiques in Boston and New York. 

“Yes, I’ve been in the business for years.  Both my parents retired from it and I took over the family business.” I replied.  She took another sip of her Cosmo,

“Well, I am in luck then.  I am attending a client’s merger party next weekend in the Hampton’s.  Think you can put something together for me by then?” she said offering me a challenge.

“Why yes I can.  I am working on a piece now I call “Red Diamonds”.  I’d say you’re a size six?” 

She smiled flattered, “You’re right Paul.  You are good.  Let’s order some appetizers then we’ll discuss that dinner offer you made.  Do you have a place in mind?” 

Thinking of a couple places then I decided, “Yes, CoCo Pazzo between 5th Ave and Madison?”  I asked seeking her approval.

“Perfect, one of my fav’s.  Mark Strausman is an excellent chef.  The “Duetto di Agnello di Latte” is to die for.” She said looking into my eyes as if I had said the magic words of the day.

The waiter brought over two more drinks.  We ordered two small appetizers and continued talking as we were being whisked to New York for dinner.  How lucky I was, I thought to myself.  The perfect girl for my new design, “Red Diamonds” that I had been working on for the past two months has walked into my life.
 

Part 2 – “Dinner at CoCo Pazzo” 

“Hello Miss Patterson, we’ve been expecting you” said the doorman as we stepped from her private car.

“Hello Jimmy.  Is Mark on staff tonight?” she asked as if expecting a yes. 

“He is Miss Patterson.  He said he’ll come by your table after you have a chance to settle in.” said Jimmy escorting her from the car by her hand.

“Very good Jimmy, this is Paul a friend of mine.  He’ll be joining me for dinner.” She said softly waiting for me to exit the car.

 “Very well Miss Patterson.  Right this way.  Your table is waiting.”
 

Samantha strolled in greeting clients and friends of hers.  Everyone knew her.  She has a power and presence glow about her.

“After you” I said to Samantha letting her slide into the leather booth first.

“Thank you” she replied smiling, scooting in laying her purse and gloves on the table. 

“My pleasure Samantha” I said scooting in next to her. 

“So tell me about this design of yours” she said touching up her lips. 

“Red Diamonds is a one piece full open back with an empire waist design” I said adjusting my tie and unbuttoning my blazer. 

“Wow.  You’re not fooling around.  Why red?” she asked.

“Red is a deep bold color that commands attention in any room” I said with a smile adjusting the silverware.

“I was going to make it in white, but when I was in Paris a couple of months back, I found this unique red fabric that I knew the moment I laid eyes on it that this was the fabric for my Red Diamonds design”. Our waiter arrived just as I finished

“Your Cosmo Miss Patterson and your Double Jacks on the rocks sir”.

“Thank you Marcus, to Red Diamonds Paul” she toasted.

“To Red Diamonds” I said toasting her glass.

“Good evening Miss Patterson” said Mark the head chef arriving to attention at our table.

“Oh, hello Mark, what’s on off menu tonight?” Samantha asked. 

“I have a delightful Pollo alla Diavola.  It’s fresh organic chicken, braised in balsamic vinegar and pan seared with lemon, herbs, and crushed red pepper, broccoli rabe and sautéed Yukon Gold potatoes” said Chef Mark. 

“That sounds delightful, don’t you think so Paul?” she said asking for my approval.

“Sounds awesome to me” I said nodding my head in approval.

“Very well Mark, two orders please with two wild green winter salads?” she said lifting her veil tucking on top of her hat.

“It’ll be about twenty five minutes Miss Patterson is that okay” asked Mark. 

“That will be fine Mark, thank you” she said sipping her Cosmo.

We talked about her law firm and how she climbed to the top and becoming one of the law firms in New York.  Our meal arrived and as Mark promised it would be divine.  We ordered a couple more drinks to go with desert and called it a night. 

“So when should I come by for a fitting?” she asked picking up her purse and gloves. 

“Is Monday afternoon anytime after four pm okay for you” I asked looking at my Blackberry. 

“I am open from three O’clock on.  Works for me” she said thumbing her Blackberry.

“Good, I’ll see you then. You have my card with my New York address” I said powering off my Blackberry.

“Four O’ Clock it is.  Mind if I come a little early?” she asked touching up her lipstick.

“Not at all, I’ll have a Cosmo waiting for you” I said flirting with her. I could barely keep my eyes off of her, but from the moment we met on the train, introduced ourselves and exchanged business cards, she became my client. 

Chapter 3 – “I have the weekend to get Red Diamonds ready”

I went right to work on Red Diamonds after I got home. It would take all weekend to have all the alterations done.  I knew Samantha would not accept anything less than stellar.  My creative juices were flowing as I pictured your size six frame in the dress.  I called Rachel of Rachel Hats, Bags & Bangles, a very good friend of mine and my absolute go to person for special custom hand bag and hat work.  I knew from seeing Samantha’s hand bag, the bag to go with Red Diamonds had to be nothing less than a original and a one of the kind.  I heard the buzzer at the door as I was mounting Red Diamonds on the mannequin.

“Who is it?” I asked pressing the door buzzer mic. 

“It’s Rachel” the soft voice said. 

“Come on up” I said buzzing her in. I live above my shop in New York.  It’s a nice two level three bedroom loft. 

“Hey Paul, what’s up?” asked Rachel walking over to the dress. 

“I’ve got a big one Rachel” I said walking around Red Diamonds sticking in marker pins. 

“Well, you found the perfect girl eh’” said Rachel putting down her things and taking off her coat. 

“Yeah, here’s her card” I said pushing it over to her. 

“Wow, you’ve got your hands full. I’ve heard about her.  She’s real picky” said Rachel tapping on the card. 

“I know” I said walking around the dress.

“Let’s have a look shall we” said Rachel approaching the dress. 

“Man, this is one awesome piece of work.  I am thinking of a couple bag designs that would work with this” she said turning the mannequin around.  She pulled out her laptop and turned it on. 

“Got anything to drink?” she asked walking over to the fridge. 

“Yeah, help yourself.  You know your way around”.  Rachel picked out Evian water and went back to her laptop and started software for designing bags and attached a digital pen pad.  She looked at the dress and started drawing out her ideas. 

“Nope, no looking until I am done” she said shielding her laptop as I tried to get a look.

A couple of hours had passed and I had made all the alterations to Red Diamonds. 

“What do you think?” I asked Rachel. 

“Boy, that’s one drop dead sexy number.  She is going to light up when she sees that!” Rachel said with wide eyes. 

“Well, check these two ideas out and let me know if I’m close” said Rachel turning her laptop around. 

“Definitely the second one, it’s not too small or too big.  She seems to like medium bags” I said pointing. 

“Yeah, that’s what I was thinking” she nodded.

“Okay then, I’ll see you tomorrow morning with it in hand” she said powering off her laptop. 

“Excellent Rachel, you are the best!” I said giving her hug. 

“That’s what friends are for” she said walking to the door.

“And you owe me dinner for this rush job” she said over her shoulder pulling the door closed behind her.

“You got it!”

 Chapter 4 “Is the dress ready Paul?”

Rachel dropped the bag off yesterday afternoon as promised and it was perfect.  It was a red sequined clutch with red marble inlays trimmed in gold.  Red Diamonds was setup in the private fitting room.  I catered in food with a professional server from Gourmet Details.  I cleared my appointments for the rest of the day.  Fortunately I have understanding clients. The food and server showed up right on time to setup.  Everything was perfect.  I was on a phone call when I heard the chime of the front door.  “She’s here, I’ll call you later Rachel and let you know how it turned out” I whispered into the phone and quickly hung up.
 

There Samantha stood with a full length black coat, a stunning black two piece Donna Karan with gold buttons down the front, a matching black Dolce Gabbana handbag, black mid high gloves, Gucci large rim dark shades, with her hair down.  She was drop dead gorgeous and knew it.  I quickly and calmly walked to the door. 

“Hello Samantha, welcome to De’gassi Designs” I said in a calm voice smiling. 

“Hello Paul, it’s good to see you.  This is a nice boutique, I am impressed” she said walking in looking around holding out her Dolce Gabbana in anticipation that I would be taking it from her hand. 

“Very nice in deed” she said taking off her glasses.  I took her coat after she pulled off her gloves sliding her sleek arms out the long sleeves. 

“Thank you Paul” she said. 

“Very nice dresses, very nice in deed” she said walking over looking at the four couture pieces I had out on display feeling the fabric. 

“So, now where is my dress?” she said with a smile turning around.

“Right this way Samantha” I said opening the French double doors to the private viewing and fitting room.  There it was, Red Diamonds in the center of the room turning slowly on a rotating stage. 

“Oh’ my god” said Samantha with a big smile. “This is absolutely beautiful Paul, I mean absolutely divine work, a master piece” she said spellbound by its rotating display. 
“Your cocktail Miss Patterson” said the waiter walking over after I gave him the queue.

“O’, thank you” she said taking a sip with her gazed still locked on Red Diamonds. 

“Can I try it on now?” she asked like a kid asking perMiss.ion to open Christmas presents.

 “But of course Samantha, this is all about you” I said pressing the button stopping the rotation so that the front of the dress was in front of her.  She put down her drink and walked up to it. 

“Simply divine work Paul” she said slowly stepping out of her high heels.

“Right this way Samantha” I said leading her to the dressing room. 

“I’ll bring the dress to you”. 

“Hurry Paul, I can’t wait” she said closing the door. 

A few minutes later I tapped on the door.

“Here you go” I said hanging the dress on the back of the door.

“Simply beautiful Paul” she said sliding out of her skirt.

“I’ll be out in the lounge waiting” I said looking at her long beautiful slender frame.  She blushed a little realizing that she just took off her skirt with me in the room with her. 

“Okay” she whispered with a smile.  I pulled the door behind me, went over to the leather chair, sat and sipped my drink waiting for her to appear.

“Here I come” she said from behind the door opening it slowly. 

She came out tip toeing as the full length of the dress trailed behind her.  She slipped on her high heels and the dress came alive. 

“Wow Samantha. You look ravishing” I said setting down my drink as I slowly stood up to examine my alterations. 

“Absolutely ravishing, just as I imagined, but with you wearing it” I said spellbound looking at her as she turned around slowly for me to see. 

“Paul, this is magnificent.  I’ve never had anything on like it.  I’ll be the hit at the Hampton’s next weekend” she said looking at herself in the surrounding mirrors. 

“Yes you will Samantha. No doubt about it” I said clapping my hands in a soft applause.  She turned and looked me dead in the eyes. 

“You must go with me Paul.  I will not accept no for an answer” she said in a pouting please say you’ll go voice.

“It would be my honor Samantha” I said smiling helping her down from the stage.

I turned her around checking my alterations one more time.  “Hummm, a little tacking here and on the shoulders and that should do it”. I said walking around her stopping and putting the chalk marker in my pocket.  We were face to face.  I could feel her breath and smell her perfume.

 “So, it’s a date” she said in a soft voice watching my eyes. 

“Yes, it’s a date” I said wanting to kiss her.

“Very well, when’s my next fitting” she asked getting closer to me. 

“Tuesday afternoon, same time?” I asked. 

“I can do that” she said.  The phone rang breaking our focus. 

“I have to get that, I am expecting a call from my supplier in France” I said looking at her eyes. 

“I’ll go change back into my things” she said stepping back. 

“I wont be but just a few minutes” I said listening to the phone ringing in the background.

“I’ll be waiting” she said standing in the doorway of the fitting room.

I finished my call with my supplier and returned to the viewing room with a red velvet box.  It had red and gold ribbon wrapped around it with a red rose in the center (Rachel’s personal touch). 

“There’s one more part to Red Diamonds Samantha…” I said holding out the red box.  She broke into a big smile.

“Oh my, you are just full of surprises” she said putting down her Cosmo while admiring the box. 

“Can I open it now?” she asked. 

“But of course.  Today is all about you” I said sitting in the chair next to her.  She sat down with the red box on her lap and slowly began to open it. 

“This is so great.  I am having the best day I have ever had in a long time” she said pulling on the bows. 

“O’ Paul, its perfect!  Absolutely perfect!” she said holding the exquisitely crafted red handbag by Rachel in her hands. 

“Just perfect, now I’ll have to go shopping for shoes.”

I pulled out another box from underneath my chair. “You mean like these?” I said with a devilish smile.

“O’ my, my, my, Paul” she gasped at the stunning red matching shoes.  She quickly slipped off her heels and slid her slender feet into the perfect fitting shoes.

 “How’d you know my size?” she asked while admiring them. 

“I got four pairs of them just in case I didn’t get your size right the first time” I said with a smile sipping my drink. 

“Well mister, we’re going out for drinks to celebrate your divine work.  Of course you must say yes” she said still admiring her shoes. 

“I don’t have any plans.  My schedule is open.” I said admiring her joy and satisfaction.  Everything went off as planned and I couldn’t have been happier myself.  She slipped off the shoes and put hers back on, and pulled out her blackberry from her purse. 

“Hello, James? In fives minutes please, thank you” she said with a smile looking at me. 

“Our ride will be here in five minutes” she said touching up her lipstick. 

I went and got her coat and stood behind her as she slipped her arms into the sleeves.

“Thank you Paul” she said over her left shoulder. 

“My pleasure Samantha, after you” I said as I walked her to the front door. 

It was exactly five minutes as James was waiting outside with the door opened to her private car. 

“Thank you James, we’re going out for cocktails” she said sliding into the smooth black leather seat.

“Yes Miss Patterson” said James closing the door after I got in. 

“I know the perfect place to go Paul” she said crossing her legs. 

“I am all yours” I said. 

Chapter 5 “Two more days until the Hampton’s”

It was Thursday already.  The week went fast as I was working on a couple of other pieces.  Samantha’s dress had been delivered yesterday along with the shoes and handbag.  I was just finishing my coffee when I heard the buzzer. 

“Who is it?” I asked.

“Delivery sir from Miss Patterson” said the familiar voice.  It was James.

“Come on up.” I said releasing the button.

I was wonder what could be coming from Samantha?  Certainly not a payment, I hadn’t even considered a bill.  There were three sharp knocks at the door. 

“Hello James.”

“Good morning sir, this if from Miss Patterson.  She said to call if you have any questions.” It was a large black box with silver satin ribbon. 

“Here you go James” I said setting the box down on the counter and handing him a twenty dollar bill. 

“Not necessary sir.” He said tipping his hat and excusing himself. 

“Thank you James”.

Just as James was leaving Rachel came through the door. 

“You been shopping?” she said admiring the black box. 

“No, it just arrived from Samantha” I said sipping my coffee. 

“Want some?” I ask Rachel while I was refreshing mine. 

“Sure.  She must have been really impressed” said Rachel taking a sip looking at the box. 

“Well, she was gaga over everything.  I have no idea what’s inside or what this could be.” I said staring at the box. 

“Well open it!” said Rachel pushing it towards me. 

“Okay, okay” I said pulling on the silver bow.  There resting inside of softly folded black satin was a black Armani tuxedo. 

“Wow!” I said out loud stepping back with my eyes wide open. 

“Oh my” said Rachel looking at it. 

“This is nice!” I said pulling out the jacket. 

“She’s not fooling around” said Rachel. 

Resting on top of the vest and pants was a black and gold envelope with my name written in gold. 

“Open it” said Rachel.

“I am. Give me a minute to take all of this in” I said setting the jacket on the back of the sofa.  I picked up the envelope and could smell Tesor on it.  I broke into a small smile. 

“What?” said Rachel noticing my smile. 

“She spritzed some of her perfume on the envelope” I said opening it slowly. 

“So read it aloud please” said Rachel holding her cup with two hands walking around to see what it said. I started reading it aloud:

Good morning Paul,

I hope this finds you smiling because I’m still reeling from this wonderful week.  I couldn’t imagine not seeing you in this Armani tuxedo at the Hampton’s this weekend.  The moment I saw it, I knew you were the man it was meant for.  Please take it to Macy’s and ask for Martin and he will take care of all the alterations and will be sure to have it ready for you in time. 

Know that I am looking forward to showing everyone your’s and Rachel’s fabulous and wonderful work.  I am bursting to tell my friends about Red Diamonds, but I know nothing will compare to unveiling it Saturday evening with you standing beside me.

Sincerely yours,

 

Samantha

“Boy, sounds like somebody has a crush on you” said Rachel sniffing and re-reading the card again. 

“Well, I don’t know about a crush, but this is nice” I said slipping on the jacket. 

“You don’t know!  What? Are you a blind man? If I were to do anything like this for a man, trust me, it would be because I am very interested in seeing if we could take things to the next level” said Rachel checking the fit for me from behind.

“You are going to be one handsome man Paul” said Rachel turning me around and buttoning the front. 

I walked over to the floor mirror and stood there.  Rachel was right, this was one sharp tuxedo.  I am use to my own custom suits, but it was nice to be wearing someone else’s design for a change. 

“Well I better get to Macy’s.  I am sure Samantha is expecting a call from Martin to make sure I came by”.  I said taking off the jacket and admiring it one last time before putting it back in the box. 

“Yep, let’s go” said Rachel “I have a little shopping to do myself.”

Part 6 “Let’s do lunch”

Rachel and I went straight to Macy’s. 

“Hello I’m Paul Digassi, I am looking for Mr. Martin please” I said to a standing salesman.

 “We are expecting you Mr. Digassi, right this way please” said the tall well dressed man. 

“Ahhh, Mr. Digassi, Miss Patterson said you would be coming bys” said Martin a small but very proper gentleman extending his hand.

“Hello Martin. I am here to get fitted?” I said handing him the box.

“But of course Mr. Digassi, right this way, please follow me to our fitting room, this will only take about thirty minutes” he said walking towards the fitting department. 

Thirty minutes later I was done with my fitting and went to meet Rachel. 

“So how did it go?” asked Rachel. 

“Very well, now I know how my clients feel” I said smiling.

“Well, I got to go.  Call me later?” she said. 

“I will.  I am going to salon for a cut and style. Talk to you later”.  I said waving.  My cut and style was quick.  I took a taxi back to my shop. 

The phone was ringing as I unlocked the door.  “Digassi Design’s, Paul speaking” I said in my best professional voice.

“Hello Paul, Martin phoned and said you had been by and got fitted.  Did you like it?  I hope I am not being too forward” said Samantha in an upbeat voice.

“I am flattered Samantha. I feel like James Bond and the design was dead on.  It was nice to be fitted for a change” I said standing looking at Red Diamonds imaging her in it. 

“Well, I am glad you liked it.  I just couldn’t help myself when I was walking through Macy’s.  So, are you free for lunch?” she asked sounding hopeful. 

“Yes I am.  I was just checking messages and waiting on a shipment.  Other than that I can be ready say around twelve thirty?” I said looking at the To Do list on my blackberry.  

“Very well, I’ll be by to pick you up then. See you later” she said.  “I’ll be waiting outside, see you then.”

I went into the viewing room, sat down and just looked at Red Diamonds.  How could such a beautiful work of art bring such a beautiful woman into my life, I thought to myself?  Not to mention that she has been pursuing me so it seemed.  But she is a very powerful woman and knows what she wants and not afraid to go for it.  No wonder she’s one of the top lawyers in town.  My shipment arrived on time. I talked with Rachel and finished up some emails. 

I stepped outside and checked my watch (12:25pm).  I could see Samantha’s black private town car at the light a block away.  James pulled the car up to me and quickly hopped out to get the door. 

“Good afternoon Mr. Digassi” said James opening the door.

“Good afternoon James.  Hello Samantha” I said sliding in next to her.

“Hello Paul, it’s good to see you” she said crossing her legs.

“Is Landmarc okay with you?” she asked. 

“One of my favorites.  Excellent choice” I said with a big smile.  I eat there at least once a week.  “James, Landmarc please” she leaned and commanded. 

“Yes Miss Patterson”.  We chatted about what’s been going on over the past couple of days in our lives.  The Landmarc is filled with high powered clientele huddling over tables and cocktails. 

“Hello Miss Patterson, we have your table ready, right this way please” said the tall waiter.

“Thank you Michael” said Samantha as she greeted familiar faces on our way to our table. 

One thing about her, she knew everybody and everybody knew her.  Her power and presences is awesome. 

“Thank you Michael, this is perfect” she said pulling off her coat and gloves.  “Well, the reason why I asked you to lunch is because I am having a little pre-Hampton gathering at my office Saturday before we head out to the Hampton’s.  It’s from three pm to six pm.  Can you make it?” she asked. 

“My entire weekend is all yours” I said reaching for the menu. 

“Excellent. I can’t wait to see you in your tux” she said opening her menu smiling.

“I can’t wait to see you in Red Diamonds” I said putting down the menu smiling. 

We were like two kids exchanging valentine cards and sweetheart candy just waiting to see our responses.  We ordered our lunch and cocktails.  She filled me in on the details of the pre-Hampton party.  Boy, talk about a who’s who get together.

Chapter 7 “Let’s go to the party James”
 

My tux arrived Saturday morning at nine am sharp just as Martin said it would all pressed hanging in a personalized satin garment bag along with the box that Samantha had it delivered in.  Rachel was coming over at noon with my next surprise for Samantha.  A master piece red silk hat with a black veil netting studded with diamond points throughout.  I was nervous all morning.  I eat very little wanting to keep my appetite at bay until the pre-party.  A couple of hours had passed when I heard the door buzzer. 

“It’s me” said Rachel as I buzzed her in. “Well, here it is.  Brace yourself because I did.  This is one of my best hats EVER!” she said as she took off the top of the red velvet box and set the hat on counter.

Rachel was right.  It was nothing short of being the crown jewel to complete Red Diamonds. 

“Bravo Rachel!  Bravo!  This is truly your best work ever!” I said hugging her and looking at the hat. 

It was my personal gift to Samantha.  I knew I was beginning to fall for her after she came by for her first fitting.  I just don’t know when to reveal my feelings to her. 

“Well Paul my friend, if she doesn’t get the hint that you’re interested after you give her this, you two should just give up” said Rachel plopping down on the sofa. 

“I think I’ll tell her how I feel tonight.  What do you think?” I said knowing I needed a friend and a woman’s opinion. 

“You’d sweep me off my feet all dressed up in a tux, a couple cocktails and drop dead gorgeous red hat” she laughed getting up heading for the door. 

“I hope so Rachel.  I’ll call you and let you know how everything went” I said walking her to the door. 

“Paul, you’re my best friend and I can see the happiness and the glow you have had since she has walked into your life.  Go ahead, take that chance.  You have my vote.” She said kissing me on the cheek then waved goodbye to my as she walked to the elevator.  “Take care of you” I said closing the door.  “Take care of you” she said back.

I shined my shoes and got dressed.  One last look in the mirror and I was ready.  James was waiting out front on time as usual. 

“Good afternoon Mr. Digassi” said James holding open the door. 

“Good afternoon James” I said sliding into the black limo.  The weather was perfect with a slight chill.  We pulled up to her office building where other limos were dropping off guest for the pre-party.  Everyone is dressed to the nine’s. 

“Thank you James” I said as I stepped out of the limo buttoning my jacket and taking the red box from his hands. 

“My pleasure Mr. Digassi, have a wonderful evening.”

I took the elevator up to the twenty fifth floor after inserting my private invitation only key that James gave.  The elevator doors opened to a grand master reception area like I’ve never seen before.  Private butlers and waitresses were walking around with silver trays of appetizers and fluted glasses of champagne.  I saw the black marble bar to my left as I entered the main area where the guest was gathering.  “Jack on the rocks please” I said the bartender.  A few minutes later I had my drink.  I took a sip and looked around for Samantha.  Just as I was wondering where she was, two large doors to one of many board rooms opened.

There she was standing tall, looking beautiful and ravishing.  Everyone stopped talking, turned her way and begin applauding as she made her entrance as only she could.  A photographer took pictures like he was at a wedding.  “Ladies and gentleman, Miss. Samantha Patterson” said one of the waiters as she paused at the door smiling. 

“Isn’t she beautiful?” said a lady standing next to me. 

“She is indeed beautiful” I said smiling and clapping along with the crowd.  Samantha walked slowly through the crowd smiling, shaking hands and softly kissing cheeks.  She stopped about ten feet away and held out her hands towards me signaling for me to come and stand by her. 

“Everone? Everyone? This is Paul Digassi, the designer of this master I am wearing--Red Diamonds” she said with a perfect smile looking in my eyes.  The room filled with applause. 

“This is for you to Paul. You are my knight in shinning armor.  Just look at you, you are as handsome as when I first saw you and I am so glad you are here.” She whispered holding both of my hands. I was nearly speechless and almost didn’t know what to say.  I turned to the crowd and raised my hands.

“Thank you everyone.  But this dress, this master piece would not have been possible without Samantha.  I knew it was meant for her the moment I saw her.  No other women would have done it justice.  It is with great pride that I look upon her with eyes of absolute happiness, for Red Diamonds has found the only person on earth that it was meant for, Samantha Patterson. I thank you” I said holding her hands and turning her towards the crowd.  The crowd broke into applause again.

We walked around greeting her associates and guest.  We stopped by the gift table.  “Well, I guess we are kinda like a couple” I said to Samantha nearly stammering my words. 

“I guess we are Paul.  Is it something you want?” she asked holding my hands. 

“Yes Samantha it is very much so.  I just didn’t know when to tell you how I felt about you.” I said looking into her eyes. 

“You just told me out there in front of everyone and I am glad you did” she said moving closer to me. 

“So am I” I said moving closer to her.  Our lips touched slowly as we kissed the deepest kiss I have ever had in a long time. 

“Oh, by the way this is for you” I said after pulling away from her kiss and embrace and handing her the red velvet box from the table.  The crowd turned to watch her open it.  I could see the happiness in her eyes as she began to cry.

“Oh Paul, you are so unbelievable” she said touching the tears with her napkin. 

“Well, open it my queen” I said touching up the other tears with my napkin.  She slowly pulled the bow as I held the box for her.  She was nearly shaking when she saw the red hat.

“Oh my God Paul, its, its so beautiful my darling” she said with watering eyes looking at me. 

She pulled out the hat as the crowd gasped at its beauty.  Samantha looked like a prom queen receiving her crown as she slowly put it on and lowered its diamond veil.

“You are truly beautiful Samantha and I am the luckiest man in the world” I said holding both her hands.  She cried soft small tears and wrapped her arms around me and began to cry.  The crowd applauded again as I pulled her back and lifted her veil and softly kissed her again. 

“I love you Samantha” – “I love you Paul”.


The End.

Excerpt
“All aboard!” announced the porter as he stepped into the first class rail car leaning out towards the crowd. It was five thirty in the afternoon in Boston as I checked my watch jumping on the steps pulling myself up into the train. It had been a long week and I was looking forward to the weekend. I went over to the bar section in the dinning car, one of the perks of platinum first class travelers. The plush leather chairs and private waiters made the long trip back to Manhattan a dream ride.

“How may I serve you sir” asked the waiter. “Double jack on the rocks please” I replied. “My pleasure sir.” I loosened my tie and checked my black berry for final emails. “Let’s see nothing important or that can’t wait until Monday.” I murmured to myself scrolling down the small list of emails. “Your drink sir” said the waiter. “Thanks”. I said staying focused on my black berry.

The main door opened letting in a small puff of wind with the scent of Tresor perfume in the air. I looked up from my black berry to see who it was. A tall beautiful red head strolled in with her gloves draped in her hand and bag tucked under her arm. She was dressed in red from head to toe with a red hat and sheer veil. Her lips were red, her nails were red. She was just pure class from head to toe.


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