The Affair of the Necklace
Character(s): : Bruno Gianelli and Margaret
Summary: The morning, yeah right. Margaret would be lucky if she remembered to put it out next trash day.
Spoiler: The Black Vera Wang
Author's Note:Gillian reminded me of the beauty of this scene and I thank her. I took it back a few months, the episode actually takes place in May. #14 in the Marnie and the Shark series.
It was 10:00 and Margaret had been home for almost an hour. She spoke with her parents, a few friends whose phone calls she hardly ever returned, and read a few chapters of the Michael Connelly novel she bought on Sunday. It was a chilly March night and she felt she should have worked later but Leo insisted she go. He had meetings all day tomorrow and people he had to try not to piss off…it would be a long day for him and his assistant. After pouring herself a glass of cherry wine, Margaret opened her laptop.
Leo bought her the computer last Christmas. For almost a week, she refused to take it; it was too much. She only bought him cufflinks and tickets for an Orioles game that try as he might he would never get to. Finally, he brought it to her on New Year's Eve with this speech about how she did not make enough for all the work she did and the computer was the least he could do since hers was so old and decrepit. Margaret took it…he looked so embarrassed just having to express all his feelings. Between her Christmas and end of the year bonus she brought home almost $1700. Margaret was a smart woman; she knew most of that money came from Leo's pocket. She checked her Yahoo account, smiling when she saw the e-mail from her sister Ann.
Hey kid, sorry I had to send this via AOL but Yahoo doesn't seem to agree with Paris this week. I love it here but I do not love Jean-Luc. We broke up about a week ago…the wandering eye thing is so five years ago. People around here just hop beds as if STDs are a figment of the imagination. Anyway, Stefan the semi-pro tennis player is back and I think I may go to Prague for a time with him. First, I am going to Kenya on safari to takes some photos for Safari magazine. I'll make sure to get some lovely ones I can send home to you.
How are you darling? I see Bartlet is still up in the polls but Ritchie is gathering steam. When the time comes, I will send in my absentee ballot for your guy. Is McGarry still working you to the bone…doesn't he have a pregnant wife whose nerves he can get on? Kidding, I know you love him to death and the feeling is mutual. What of the political strategist? You haven't mentioned his name in a while. You must keep me informed. I miss you more than I can express and love you even more than that. Next time I will send pictures so you can know I am healthy and happy. Write soon.
Margaret smiled. Instead of reply, she opened a new e-mail.
Subject: the affair of the necklace
So I'm doing work at my desk today and Bruno comes up. He called Stacey and we played that game. Ann, he bought me a gold necklace with my name on it. Can you believe it? It is so pretty and this is the third piece of jewelry he has given me. What does it all mean? Please, please, please, do not let me fall for this guy. OK, don't let me fall harder for this guy. OK, I think I'm in love with this guy. I mean, he is smart, handsome, and more conceited than anyone I have ever met in my life. Luckily, I have a lot of work to do so I don't have time to drool over him.
He's not even my type you know…what does he see in me. Before you get all mad, I'm not getting down on myself; I'm really just wondering. I'm sure he can have any woman in the room, and he has, but he seems to like me. This is one I definitely need to play by ear…I know, I know, I have been playing by ear for over a year. I can't let anyone at the White House know what's happening. Leo would blow a gasket, I know he would. I had better go if I want to get any sleep tonight. Talk to later, love you lots.
Margaret shut down the computer and changed into her pajamas. She went back into the kitchen to refill her wineglass when the door buzzed. It was probably one of the neighbors who forgot their keys.
"Hey Stacey, let me up."
"There's no one here by that name. you must have the wrong door."
She buzzed him up, trying to wipe the smile off her face. She really wasn't expecting him tonight. They had all been so busy lately and they had not spent a lot of time together. She rearranged her couch pillows for a few seconds and then didn't know what to do with her hands. There was a tap on the door and she pulled it open. Bruno Gianelli stood on the other side with a plastic bag.
"I bought Chinese." He said, coming in and closing the door. "The front door was actually locked, can you believe it?"
"The super fixed it a couple of days ago. I'm not hungry…I ate before I left the White House."
"Oh, well I thought…"
"Its alright. Do you want a plate?"
"I'm not hungry either. I just thought you would be."
She shook her head, taking the bag from him and putting it in the fridge.
"What did you bring me anyway?" she asked.
"Um, sesame chicken, white rice with gravy and rib tips. I know you like choices. It will taste just as good in the morning."
The morning, yeah right. Margaret would be lucky if she remembered to put it out next trash day. She had no time to do things like eat meals.
"So, what brings you here tonight Mr. Gianelli?" she leaned against the wall between the kitchen and the living room.
"I love it when you call me that, but preferably here and not in the office."
"I have to call you that at the office. Anything else is unbecoming and I don't want Leo to suspect that anything is happening between us other than professional work."
"What happens between us is none of his business." Bruno replied. "He is your boss, not your father."
"Don't start. What brings you here Bruno; I thought you had a crazy night ahead of you."
"Well, I figured since I bought you the lovely necklace there would be a strong chance you'd want to have sex with me tonight."
"Well, I thought…"
"I heard you."
Margaret went into her bedroom and walked out with the red box. She slapped it back into his hand.
"Then please take your necklace and get the hell out of my apartment."
"Go." She pointed to the door. "I certainly don't need sex gifts; I thought you knew that by now. Oh God, I really thought…"
"Margaret, wait, wait. I was just kidding." Bruno held up his hands. "Damn, I didn't think you would take me seriously. I did not buy you this necklace to get into your pants. My charm works just fine if I recall."
"Then why did you?" she asked.
"To see you smile, and because I knew it would look good on you. Please," he held out the box. "take it back."
Margaret reluctantly took it back.
"Your sense of humor leaves a bit to be desired." She said.
"So, I've been told." He stepped closer, sliding his arms around her. "You like the necklace?"
"Its pretty. Thank you."
He kissed her and Margaret felt her knees buckle. He was a good kisser, strong and masculine. He ran his fingers through her hair and she moaned into his mouth.
"You're so pretty. Do I tell you that enough?"
"I never think about it."
"You should." He kissed her again. "What were doing before I got here?"
"I just changed into my pajamas…I was going to call it a night."
"You don't say?"
"I do. If you ask nicely you can join me." She said.
He smiled. Kissing her hand, they walked back toward the bedroom. Margaret slid her arms around his neck and smiled.
"What do you want Mr. Gianelli?"
They moved back onto the bed as they kissed. Margaret unbuttoned Bruno's shirt, pulling it off his arms as he lifted her tank top over her head. She blushed in her nudity but Bruno just smiled as he kissed her neck and shoulders. Margaret whimpered when he moved lower, running her fingers through his hair. He reached into the night table drawer and pulled out a Trojan. He asked if she was OK as he slid it on. Margaret took in air as he entered her. She still seemed a bit uptight, tense as they made love. Bruno kissed her skin softly. She gripped his back and moaned. His hand found her clit, touching her there.
"Oh God!" her back arched and she bit her lip.
Bruno did not talk much, he was doing that grunt. Margaret tried not to giggle but after a few minutes, she didn't care anymore. She was in the zone now…he always got her there so quickly.
"Oh Marnie, oh God."
He groaned into his climax as he came. Rolling over on the bed Bruno took a deep breath. Margaret pulled the sheet over herself. They were quiet for a while; Margaret took his hand and held it in hers.
"You have very large hands." She said.
"Mmm hmm. What size is your ring finger?"
"13. I don't think anyone has ever asked me that question before."
Bruno slid his fingers between hers. He turned to look at Margaret; her eyes were closed.
"Are you alright?" he asked.
"Yes. I like the weight of your hand." She said.
Bruno turned his body, using his other hand to brush red hair from her cheek.
"Marnie, I truly think you are the strangest woman I have ever met."
She opened her eyes as he pulled her against him.
"That does not sound like a compliment. You really are 0 for 2 tonight."
"It is." He kissed her. "Where I come from all women are the same. You are not."
"That's me, the original square peg. Well, maybe not the original but…well you know what I mean. Why do you call me Marnie? I look nothing like Tippi Hedren."
"Its another form of Margaret. I like it better than Maggie….you are definitely a Marnie. It's a unique name for a unique girl."
Bruno kissed her again. Margaret held him to her for a while. He wore Burberry Brit and smelled so damn good; not that she would ever tell him that. The last thing Bruno Gianelli needed was a woman that filled his head with more compliments…well, another woman. Margaret still could not believe she was the only woman getting these late night visits. Bruno never talked about it with her, but then again why would he?
"I have to go. I don't want to, but I should." He whispered against her ear.
He really wanted to stay and take her again; hear her call his name. He wanted to spoon with her as she slept and inhale the scent of the fruity shampoo she used. All this made his desire to run stronger. The demons were battling in his head; it frequently gave him migraines.
She let go of him and he got out of the bed. He took his time getting dressed; he was in no rush.
"We should have dinner Saturday…wait, nevermind."
"Its alright." She said.
"I have that fundraiser so I'm not coming back from LA until later that evening. My flight is at 8 tomorrow morning; that's why I should go home tonight. Airport security is insane and I have to be there 2 hours before the flight. I refuse to wake you up that early in the morning."
"I'll be up already, but it doesn't matter. Another time is fine…I'll see you when you get back."
"I need to check my planner." He buttoned his shirt. "I have virtually no time these days. Soon though."
"I could cook, if you want. I hardly do it anymore. C'mere, I'll help you with the tie."
"You would cook for me?" he asked.
"Don't act like I haven't done it before. I like to do it."
Bruno sat on the edge of the bed. The last woman who helped him with his tie was his mother. Someday he would tell her that; time was running out to tell her that.
She finished with the tie before getting out of bed and wrapping up in a Terry cloth robe. She and Bruno walked to the door holding hands.
"Thank you again for the necklace. It really is lovely." She said, opening the door.
"You're welcome. Goodnight Margaret. I will call you while I'm away."
"If you have time then I would love to hear from you."
Their kiss was tender and then he was gone. Sighing, she locked up and turned off lights. She was on her way back to the bedroom when there was a knock on her door. She looked out the peephole, saw Bruno, and opened the door.
Bruno pulled her to him, kissing her passionately. Margaret was breathless when she pulled away.
"On the way down the stairs I remembered I wasn't going to see you for about three days. I needed to kiss you again."
"That makes you my boyfriend." She replied.
"Good." He kissed her again. "I'll call you. I promise."
"Alright. Have a safe trip."
She watched him walk down the stairs before closing the door. Heading back to her bedroom, Margaret smiled letting the scent of Burberry Brit take her to her dreams.
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