L13 Outtakes

So, you've purchased Lucky 13! Thank you!!  Well, kittens, here are the Outtakes! Enjoy!



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Pre-Prologue
Friday, January 13, 1987


‘Black Ice’ the news reports said, but when a baby was about to enter into the world one could hardly remember to be careful on the road. The Farmer’s Almanac declared January of 1987 the worst winter on record and it was. Nor'easters, blizzards and ice storms hammered the Greater New York area with determination, trying to bring its inhabitants to their knees. Fourteen degree temperatures with wind chill factors of two degrees below zero, threatened even the winter-hardened New Yorker. Ice covered every bare tree branch within a twenty mile radius of Meryton, Long Island and the dreaded Black Ice lay in wait for cars to speed over and lose control. On this particular night, when the moon was full and high and not a driver on the desolate country roads was in sight, the second Bennet child decided it was time to enter the world.

Frances Bennet’s labor pains were fierce, certainly more painful than that of her precious, beautiful first born child, Jane Anne Bennet, her fair haired picture-perfect, soon to be toddler pageant winner. At three years of age, she was everybody’s little darling, with cascading blonde curls and vibrant blue eyes. Frances, the proud, doting mother, made sure that everyone first had a good look at Janie’s blue eyes and then at her unique birthmark nestled below her Sesame Street Pull Ups.

But this baby, the baby she had waited for three years, was going to be her bouncing baby boy. The doctors had shown her on the sonogram that tell-tale little pee-pee. The Bennet heir, the son who would be called “momma’s little boy,” was on his way. Already the child within was named Edward Thomas Bennet, a good name, a family name. The nursery was not-so tastefully decorated in baby blue, highlighting the beginnings of Frances’ Precious Moment’s Collection.

From the back seat, holding onto the coat hook strap, another contraction tore through her as Thomas, her good and kind, albeit quiet husband, put the pedal to the metal and flew west on Route 25 toward Frances’s hospital of choice. After all, only the best and largest hospital would do for bringing her son into the world. The expected golden child was worth the twenty mile drive. The blackness of night and the dark abyss void of the farms beside them lay still and silent. Nothing but the eerie laughing moon and the headlights of their Chevy Citation offered light. Frances screamed in pain. Originally, she had hated delivering her baby on Friday the 13th but obviously her boy was a headstrong, determined one and would have his say in it. She was proud already, quickly deciding that there was nothing unlucky about his coming into the world on Friday the 13th.

Beautiful Janie, sitting illegally in the front seat, unsnapped her seatbelt and turned around, “Momma stop skeeming, you wake baby, Edard.”

Frances’ shrill, pained voice yelled to her beloved, perfect daughter, “Turn around and put that seatbelt on!” She then began to pant in a mantra, “Tho-mas, Tho-mas. Drive fas-ter. Tho-mas, Tho-mas.”

Like the husband he was taught to be when faced with his wife’s demands, he did exactly as he was told, pushing the speedometer to 85 mph.

It was three o’clock in the morning, the witch’s hour, when their gold-toned Chevy drove over the dreaded and feared Black Ice, which was sneakily hiding under an overpass.

The car skidded and then spun in multiple 360 degree rotations.

Frances held on tighter, her free hand covered her big belly to shield her son. Thomas furiously turned the wheel trying to right the car as Janie fell from her seat onto the floor, banging her perfect little head on the glove compartment above her.

Finally, the car came to a jolting, sudden stop – in a frozen ditch on the side of the road. The Citation’s headlights scanned out into a nearby black field, the front wheels of the car rested two feet below the height of the rear wheels. The only color illuminating the darkness was the flashing of the vehicle’s red emergency lights. Blink, blink, blink.

Thomas immediately cared for Janie, who would no doubt have a concussion from the impact. Frances continued to scream from the pain. The Man in the Moon looked down upon the stranded family and laughed. It was after all, Friday the 13th.

No one remembered the wise Yiddish saying, “Man plans. God laughs.”

It would be three cold hours of horrific labor on the side of Route 25 before a State Trooper came to their aid. It would be another fourteen hours of labor until the Bennet’s second child was born. An ugly, breech child, who looked like Rocky Marciano after a fight. The baby was a scrawny, tiny little thing whose birth almost, unwittingly, killed Frances when the placenta became stuck to her uterus.

The doctor spoke to Frances as the baby’s feet came out first. “Beautiful feet, Fran. Beautiful feet. You’re doing great.”

“Oh, doctor! Is he beautiful, do you see him?”

“I’m still only at the ankles, Fran.”

Then silence.

“Do you see it, Doctor Andrews? His little pee-pee? My boy.”

More silence.

The healthy baby, with thick black hair, had been completely delivered.

Worriedly Frances lamented, “What is it? What’s wrong? I can feel it in my bones, something’s wrong!”

“You did great, Fran. Amazing - twenty hours with a breech baby. The baby is perfect.”

The baby cried a harrowing wail as if in foreboding of the next 26 years to come. The nurse took the little one to clean and swaddle while the doctor attempted to deliver the placenta.

Fifteen minutes later, weary and beaten after having lost blood and any strength remaining to hold her male bundle of joy, exhausted and barely able to speak, Frances whispered, “Let me … hold … my son, Edward.”

Nurse Ratchett came with the little one all swaddled and wearing a tiny hat over the jet black hair. She gently placed the ugly baby into Frances’ arms.

The doctor sheepishly smiled and said, “Fran, meet your new … daughter.”

As if woken from the dead, Frances sat up in bed, held out her arms with the baby precariously teetering in her hands. She cried with that severe Long Island accent of hers, “Oh. My. Gawd. Take it back! She’s bad luck! I don’t want her. I want Edward.”

*
Eighteen Years Later …
Tuesday, December 20, 2005


The age of twenty-one was to be a turning point in the charmed life of the handsome Fitzwilliam Darcy. Having just begun the Masters of Musical Arts program at Yale’s School of Music, he was pumped for what the future held. His was a lucky life when he was born into a loving, close knit-family that was over-the-top wealthy. His dear mother had once been an opera singer and his honorable father owned his own technology company. The Darcy wealth was blue-blood money that went back three generations. Young Darcy was blessed with a beautiful little sister who adored him and a cousin who was like a brother to him. Damn, life was good, especially since he was becoming wildly successful at his part-time singing gig down at Joe’s Pub in the East Village. It was his first taste of independence and freedom from the high society in which he had grown up. In his perspective, he had the world and his future by the balls and like most twenty-one year olds who are paving their way and trying to make their own mark, Darcy felt that he needed to make a few adjustments.

Especially in regard to the ever-present, ever-perfect, Sarah Pendleton, who grew from his childhood friend into frequent nourishment for his young man’s eager libido. Sarah had one goal in mind and so did her family: to marry Fitzwilliam Darcy. Of course, it was to be expected. Their wealthy families did business together, socialized in the same Upper East Side Manhattan society circle, and had perfect children, who they believed would be perfect together and one day provide them with perfect grandchildren.

Sarah, a beautiful, highly sought after society babe was every young man’s wet dream, at least those who wanted a statuesque blonde who had more money than Ivanka Trump and a Pan-Am smile that fit every situation. She was the ultimate arm candy and she only had eyes for Darcy, but Darcy found her generally lacking. Lacking in every quality a woman worthy of marriage to him should have: wit, mystery, independence, and a spirit that couldn’t be found in the society papers of Lenox Hill and Gramercy Park.

It was in that realization that Darcy had decided to break off their family’s long-standing, unspoken hope and expectation for these two perfect people.

In an uncharacteristic rebellion from the respectful, obedient and responsible son that he was, Darcy refused to join his parents and Rick at The Union League for the annual Christmas Gala, where Sarah and her family would be waiting for him. Darcy instead chose to celebrate the festive holiday season on his own terms. New terms, unfamiliar terms he had yet to indulge in. He chose to party like there was no tomorrow – and so he did.

First there was Brittney, who was a redhead, but not a natural one he found out. Then there was Lily who danced on the bar at the Delancey Nightclub. She hardly cared about the length of her mini skirt, nor the eyeful she gave every patron. There was dancing and bar hoping and booze - a lot of it.

Santa Darcy, as he came to be known that night, was the monetary and physical gift that kept on giving to all the eager she-elves who enjoyed his gift-giving generosity while hanging on his arm or giggling in the backseat of the limo. All the while Andy, his driver, sat with the privacy screen up. Sure he couldn’t see, but he could hear and the son of his employer was having the time of his life – for the very first time.

Somewhere along the way, Darcy’s flip phone disappeared along with any responsibility beyond the important parameters of practicing responsible sex and not doing drugs.

It was three a.m., the witch’s hour, when the very drunk and very sexed-up Darcy had Andy drive him back home to the family brownstone on 70th Street and Third Avenue.

A sobering sight waited for them both.

The now roof-less Nineteenth Century, three-story Darcy brownstone was ablaze in an inferno of white hot flames that illuminated the pitch black early morning sky. Raging and billowing flames roared from every window toward the stars above. New York City’s Bravest from two separate fire stations manned hoses attempting to control the blaze from spreading to neighboring buildings. Two fully extended ladder trucks held firefighters, spraying the building from above after having attempted to rescue the remaining inhabitants to no avail and subsequently having to rescue trapped firefighters from the second floor from that attempted rescue.

The street was an active hive of red lights, bystanders and fire rescue workers. In front of the four fire engines, shouts were called out and grunts filled the air as firefighters fought the sub-zero wind chill temperatures that threatened to freeze the water lines and pumps. Off to the side, by one of the Rescue Squad trucks sat two firemen inhaling oxygen from a portable unit, another removed his soot-covered mask.

Within the ambulance eleven year-old Georgiana, Darcy’s sister, lay on the gurney in her red Christmas nightgown, covered by an emergency blanket. Beside her sat Darcy’s cousin, Rick, with his tuxedo sleeves rolled up. What was once white, crisp expensive cotton was now torn and dirty from ash and soot. His normally debonair, clean-cut features were marred by fatigue, grief and filth. With a blanket draped over his shoulders, he sat holding Georgiana’s hand whose face was covered by an oxygen mask. Her rescue by Rick had been just in time, but he had been unable to get to the third floor for his aunt and uncle. It was there that the fire was said to have begun while they slept.

Darcy approached the single open door of the ambulance and immediately sobered at the sight within. Thunderstruck with his mouth gaping and tears beginning to stream down his face, he stared at Rick who looked at Darcy with tears of his own. The older of the two cousins, Rick was unsure of whether he should hug Darcy or punch him for his uncharacteristic irresponsibility. There would always be that lingering, unknown question, the what if … what if Darcy had been home? Could he have saved his parents?

Rick rose, exited the ambulance and chose to hug his cousin, sobbing into his neck. “They’re dead. Your parents are dead. The roof fell in on them before they could get out.”

It was in that second that Darcy’s guilt began to consume him.

***
How to Navigate A Visit to a Jewish Matchmaker
By Liz Bennet

Remember that famous plot line in the movie, Crossing Delancey? You know the one, the one where Amy Irving’s character, Izzy, gets set up by her Bubbe (grandmother) to visit with a shadchan, a marriage broker? It’s probably one of my favorite scenes in a movie. There they are, her Bubbe and she, sitting on a park bench in the Lower East Side of Manhattan having a conversation while the diverse residents of that historical section of the city enjoy a beautiful day around them. Much to Izzy’s mortification she learns that Bubbe has done a little matchmaking for her dear grand-daughter: she’s arranged for a shidduch match to find her a husband.

Enter Hannah, the marriage broker.

Her thick New York accent collides with her Yiddish, in movie trope personification of the Jewish Yenta. When she calls Izzy’s Bubbe, “Ida-la,” it’s standard fare. Her smiling face, and positive outlook reassures her new client that she’s “very nice, very nice, what a beauty,” but Izzy isn’t buying it. But to Hannah the shidduch process is serious business, as it should be. After all, the first recorded shidduch in the Torah was the match that Eliezer, the servant of the Jewish patriarch, Abraham, made for his master's son, Isaac. You see, the shidduch process is a costly, detailed, effort-laden attempt to do a mitzvah (a good deed) to help someone find his or her divinely foreordained spouse or soulmate, who is called "bashert" (female) or "basherter" (male.) To tell you just how serious this is taken, there are even profile questionnaires, interviews, references and then finally: cue the drum roll … “The Date.”

Now, I’m not going to give you a movie review here, that’s not my intent, but I will give you a little insight into my shidduch experience. Trust me, you’ll get all the sordid details of Charlotte’s and my trip, on a freezing cold day, down to Clinton Street, but you probably wouldn’t know what the heck was being said once we got there!

Thank goodness before our arrival downtown, I found this website: Bubby Gram! http://www.bubbygram.com/yiddishglossary.htm. Because, Lord knows, I might not have understood a word, thinking that Gay Kocken was a XXX movie in the West Village!

I was nervous arriving at my appointment for my destiny, while thankfully, Charlotte wasn’t. She’d had several conversations with my matchmaker prior to our arrival. Furthermore, I was surprised that I would even be considered for a shidduch, given the fact that I’m not even Jewish! But that’s a story for another time.

Today’s lesson is on Yiddish words. For my international friends it might help you to know that some of “New York” English, particularly the classic Brooklyn accent, derived in some extent from Eastern European Jewish immigrants. That should help you a bit as I share with you what I’ve learned. So go get your little Santa head eraser pencil and a notepad and let’s begin our lesson shall we?

First off, please understand that everyone, no matter who they are, acknowledges that Entenmann’s pastry, cookies and cakes have been a staple for one-hundred years on every single table in the New York Tri-State area. What started out as a nice Jewish bakery, becoming kosher in the 1980s, is now owned by Bimbo Bakeries. I kid you not! Oy vey iz mier! That’s almost blasphemy. Sadie Finkelstein, my shadchan matchmaker, had quite a spread, including Entenmann’s, waiting for our arrival Downtown.

Sada-la, as she became known to us, has now become part of our family! That’s how wonderful my experience was. Granted, what ‘Bubby Gram’ website failed to mention was that in order to truly understand Sadie, who was born in Russia, I needed to replace every ‘V’ with a ‘W’ in order to hear the word as I know it. For example, the key word she used often, referencing how she thought I would make a good one: ‘wife’ she pronounced as ‘vife’, ‘wonderful’ as ‘vunderful’. It’s an Eastern European thing, I’m told. It took me a while, but I eventually got the hang of the accent and so will you.

So here is my very important list for you, just note that Yiddish is written in the Hebrew alphabet thus the spellings in this glossary are transliterations. Every website spells every word differently.

By the way, it’s important that you remember - I absolutely love lists!

Bubelah = A term of endearment similar to “darling” or “sweetheart”
Challah = Bread
Chochem = Intelligent person
Drek = To denote crap
Farkakte = All crapped up
Goy = One gentile / Goyem = a bunch of non-Jews
Keppe = Head
K’vetch = Complain
Mensch = A good, honest man who always takes the high road
Meshuggeneha = Crazy
Oy vey iz mier = Oh, woe is me
Ponem = Face
Shayna maidel = Pretty girl
Shlep = Haul, carry, drag, either something or oneself.
Shtup = Literally, "push" but used colloquially to refer to the act of sex
Shul = Synagogue
Shmooze = To chat, talk socially, network.
Shiksa = A non-Jewish woman
Sufganiyot =Traditional Hanukkah jelly donuts
Shvitz = Sweat
Yenta = Gossip

Here’s a couple of guys to help us out.
http://youtu.be/BKgQv_Jyh2M


Well, so I think this a good beginning. You’d be surprised how many words are already part of our daily use. Words such as: klutz, megillah, nosh, putz, pischer, and schtick, have become Yinglish. As a little girl, I even remember watching re-runs of Laverne & Shirley, singing to their theme song about a Shlemiel and a Shlimazel. Those are Yiddish words. Who knew?

However, the beauty of the Bubbe and the Yiddish language is learning the intonation and the body language. I won’t get into the various nuances or word rearrangement to indicate sarcasm or disbelief, but you’ll need to know the subtle unspoken things that make up the Bubbe’s impressive skill set. Take for example the word ‘chochem’. Certainly Sadie could refer to any number of people as ‘intelligent’, but when she raises that finely tweezed eyebrow of hers, she’s actually calling them a complete idiot. LOL. Like I said, Sadie is now part of the family. Any woman who can raise an eyebrow with implied subtext like Charlotte, Jane or me, well then she’s one of our peeps, that’s for sure!

So study up, my peeps because on Thursday, December 12, with only thirteen days until Christmas, I Elizabeth Bennet, have an appointment scheduled to meet my very own professional matchmaker. Thank goodness, I’m not meeting her the next day on Friday the 13th, because who knows what bad luck is bound to happen!

Wish me luck or rather - Mazel Tov!

http://youtu.be/59Hj7bp38f8

***
Lucky Ladies

Slick, smooth and suitably rigid, the Hot Stuff – Heroes of FDNY 2014 Calendar measured in at ten inches by fourteen inches thick with thirteen bright glossy photos of smoke-eating, hose toting hotness, sheathed within the sixteen scorching pages. There was no doubt the calendar’s official public reveal at the Fifth Avenue branch of Barnes and Noble was already a huge success. The line, like a long, fully charged fire hose, extended outward from the front of the store, snaking up the avenue and wrapped around the corner of 46th Street. Held in place against the perimeter of the building by restraining barricades, the patrons, eager women, and yes, several men, waited their turn to share a few moments of face-to-face intercourse with the real life heroes. Most wrapped their gloved hands around hot blue and white coffee cups from the nearby street vendor or nibbled on warm pretzels and roasted peanuts. Excited to purchase next year's annual wall decor, they moved forward in line. Through large book-filled windows enticingly dressed for the season with sprays of faux snow, beneath suspended cellophane snowflakes, the patrons were able to catch glimpses of the yummy human beefcake poised inside.

Waiting on line, the lust-crazed fans of FDNY’s Bravest – and sexiest - were treated to a unique performance by an industrious Salvation Army kettle collector guy dancing on the street corner. The very shrewd volunteer had read about the calendar signing in the Daily News and seized the opportunity to inspire the waiting, would-be donors by playing and dancing to a selection of perfectly suited tunes, most notably, a fully choreographed exhibition to Donna Summer’s “Hot Stuff.” Following his routine, he watched the money flow into the little red kettle pot hanging beside him which seemed strangely reminiscent of five dollar bill’s being tucked into a Chippendale’s g-string. He knew he was stoking the fire and getting these women hot, hot, hot. But after all, it was all for charity.

It didn’t matter that the wind was whipping through the cross-street, and it sure as hell didn’t matter that it was only twenty-eight degrees Fahrenheit because these shoppers knew, between the crowd and the attraction that drew them, it would be a virtual inferno inside those doors.

At the back of Midtown’s Barnes and Noble, two long wood tables had been set up with three banners spanning the wall behind the tables. The signage made sure that calendar purchasers would be reminded that, a. they were in Barnes and Noble, in case there was some confusion of their location in their lust-filled mania. And b., they were purchasing a calendar of New York City firefighters, in case they needed clarification beyond the men’s tight, blue, tee-shirts with F.D.N.Y emblazoned across the hard chests, and lastly, in case the patrons needed to be reminded that every touch granted, smiled shared and signature given was to benefit the FD Burn Foundation charity.

With lightly tousled wavy hair, and dimpled smile, Darcy looked so fine in spite of the maelstrom of feelings he was suffering, lending to his mood of quietness. Most people present would assume his reticence was due to his usual nature: silent, strong and deadly. Only Rick, Charlotte and the Captain knew that behind Darcy’s requisite, million-watt smile lurked a man whose heart had been broken three days ago, to be additionally tortured and tormented yesterday by encountering the very same woman who had broken it. Holding Elizabeth in his arms while dancing, gazing into her sparkling green eyes and then watching her leave on that jackass’s arm had been too much. Not for a second had Darcy stopped replaying in his mind over and again their dance and her nervousness when she spoke to him. Her compliment of his character never left the forefront of his mind. One thing was certain, she had left immediately following their dance, and she wasn’t here at the calendar signing – both gave him hope. She could only be, must be, struggling through her own feelings.

The calendars lay stacked upon the tables ready for signatures, along with other FDNY items for sale, including registration forms for several other FDBF/FDNY events coming up. The next scheduled activity was to be the Valentine’s Day Kissing Auction and Date. On a separate small table, wrapped with a big red bow, sat a firefighter’s single, black, rubber boot striped with yellow, serving as the raffle ticket deposit receptacle for a chance to win a one-on-one cooking lesson with Mr. January, the Captain, at the firehouse.

In month order, Mr. December was seated at one of the tables beside Mr. November, a guy nicknamed “Little Axe” from Brooklyn’s Ladder Company Five. Making sure the fingers of his right hand were splayed across his image, Darcy repeatedly signed his name above the slick photograph of him clinging to the side of the West End Cave’s Ladder 13. With every glimpse of his full color, half-naked body, he couldn’t stop his recollection of Elizabeth smoothing the oil over his aroused pecs during the photoshoot. The memory alone had the potential to both emotionally stab at his heart while instigating the identical physical reaction the feel of her soft touches had caused him that day – and this was definitely not the setting for that reaction. Given the hungry look on some of the lined up faces, that kind of reaction could be dangerous - like maybe not making it out alive, dangerous. By the time the line had rotated to him, many of these fine patrons of charitable good works were nearly foaming at the mouth.

About two hours in, an attractive, sophisticated middle-aged woman from Brooklyn stood opposite Darcy with undisguised lust in her eyes as he autographed her calendar copy. “Oooo you’re a lefty, Mr. December,” she noted.

He smiled graciously, “Yes, I am. Would you like me to personalize this to someone special, ma’am.”

“Oh, that would be wonderful, darling. You can make it out to me, Louisa.” She bent down and touched his hand, stilling it from its task. Seductively she spoke low, “Is it true what they say about lefties?”

Darcy had no frickin’ idea and thankfully one of the three security guards directing the flow and traffic of the line, came and moved her along to “Little Axe” before he had time to answer or inquire what exactly lefties had that righties didn’t.

Rick came up behind his cousin and rested a bottle of water beside him. With his hand on his shoulder he bent down to speak in Darcy’s ear, “How you makin’ out? Are you alright?”

Darcy smiled wryly. “Yeah, I’ll be fine.” He clasped the bottle. “I’d prefer a double scotch.”

“That’s not going to happen. Trust me, Liz is gonna’ come around, Darce.”

“I hope you’re right. I’m surprised she’s not here, though. Maybe that’s a good sign, right?”

“I don’t know. Charlotte said she had an important meeting downtown. Something she had to take care of before Christmas Eve.”

“Yeah, Charlotte told me the same. That’s tomorrow.”

Rick slapped Darcy’s back and gave his cousin a sympathetic smile before heading purposefully over to where Charlotte stood taking pictures of the firefighter everyone called “Hose Monster.” He was determined to make sure she spent as little time as possible enjoying the month of June.

Next in line, standing before Darcy, was an exotic, Brazilian woman whose hand had a mind of its own. She leaned across the table and squeezed his bicep, giggling as she did so. Teasing her, Darcy flexed his muscle causing her to jump back, startled by the firmness and twitch of his hard body. She giggled as he signed ‘Darcy’ with a big flourished ‘D’. “Can you personalize it to Tai?” She asked then snapped a picture of him with her iPhone.

His sexy, deep voice washed over her, “Of course. Are you having a good time today, Tai?”

She nodded vigorously, answering in Portuguese, “Sim,” while leaning over again and smoothing her hand over Mr. December’s tight tee-shirt, easily discerning his hard pecs and taut nipples. She was making him feel like an exotic dancer and he wasn’t even moving anything beyond his fingers while signing his name. He might have chuckled, but the experience reminded him too much of the photoshoot moment with Elizabeth and the loss he felt.

It was the same with all the men, some standing, some sitting, others conversing or rather, flirting. The women were uncontrollable, especially toward Mr. August standing off to Darcy’s left.

The firefighter was tall and lean, a little older than most of the calendar men, with the exception of the West End Cave’s Captain, who was Mr. January. Mr. August seemed to attract women and men of all ages who wanted their photograph with him. With his expressive blue-grey eyes and deep, evocative baritone voice, mention had been made that he bore an uncanny resemblance to Thorin Oakensheild. One woman in particular, strangely clinging to a watermelon, kept asking him if he wanted to give Ausra a ride on his hose … um horse … into the flames of the Lonely Mountain. Darcy didn’t catch the reply, but he sure as hell noticed Mr. August’s overt maneuver to fondle her fruit.

Then there was the whole dance debacle with Mr. October when he decided to give into the promptings from a hot biker chic who had ridden up from Tennessee for the audition and now the calendar signing, all for the chance to meet the calendar men, up-close and personal. In spite of the cold weather, she had camped out in front of the store overnight to be one of the first in line. After having attended the audition, Pamela had set her sights on Mr. October, otherwise known in his station as “Anaconda,” because the hose he wielded from his Engine apparatus used an inflation device of the same name. All it took was a little background music to “Money” by Ringside, and Anaconda was standing on the far table gyrating and grinding in similar fashion at the audition two weeks prior.

Neither the three security guards, nor the management at Barnes and Noble stopped the performance, all having noticed that every single one of the calendars available for purchase had been scooped up by the near-hyperventilating, close-to-swooning, absolutely-drooling fans waiting in line. It was only when Pamela grabbed onto Mr. October’s leg that their little exhibition had to be halted by the President of BADCo.

The press caught it all, especially Candy Moore of Eyewitness News who once again was covering the event in her fan-like, entertaining manner with her persistent inane questions. As Darcy signed calendar after calendar, his genuine smile sometimes faltered- not quite able to shield his recently damaged heart, but certainly, with sincere gratitude for everyone’s attendance - he could hear Candy off to his right side interviewing calendar patrons.

Candy’s first victim was a beautiful young woman from the Philippines who anxiously stood in line clinging to her yet-to-be-signed calendar. Kayenne’s eyes were fixated upon Mr. March’s backside as he stood with his back to her, talking to another fan. Having worked for a bakery, Kayenne had a keen eye for nicely shaped buns. She was near salivating from the temptation to bite into her favorite, tasty beefcake calendar man.

“I see by the expression on your face that you’re very happy to be here. Who is your favorite month?” asked Candy.

“March … definitely March. He reminds me of that actor from the BBC 2005 adaptation of Pride & Prejudice,” replied the lust-filled woman who then promptly squealed in excitement.

It was a strange day for Darcy as he battled between his outward, cool persona and his inward turmoil when all the while women swooned, touched, fawned, flirted and made suggestive innuendo after innuendo. If one more woman asked to sit on his lap or ask how large a hose he wielded, he was sure he would go insane, either that or jump off the wagon he’d been attempting to stay on.

In stark contrast to the raw heat and explosive sexual energy emitted by both the FDNY hard-bodies and the desirous fans, it had all occurred to a cheerful, soundtrack of innocent holiday music at America’s most reputable, biggest, box bookstore. It had been a holiday season like none Darcy had ever had and it was all thanks to one woman acting on the crazy scheme of his cousin.

One thing kept Darcy smiling and grounded from fleeing. It was the knowledge that this was all for the Foundation and ultimately would secure Elizabeth’s success and happiness at BADCo. He would withstand anything, even humiliation, for the success of both. Behind his piercing blue eyes was a man determined not to give up on her, or on love, or on the Christmas spirit. Miss Elizabeth Bennet, her Santahead pencil with clipboard, and her breathtaking smile would be his. He loved her and he would wait for her as long as she needed.
 ***

3 comments:

  1. Cat, I loved reading about Liz's birth and about Darcy's tragedy. Poor Darcy...no wonder he he has been carrying guilt and depression for so long! And Mrs. Bennet, well...I think we all know that she is not my favorite person. "Nuff said about that! Thanks for sharing these outtakes! You rock!

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  2. Replies
    1. Hi Sophia! Thanks for stopping by! I hope you are enjoying L13. There is also Lucky Valentine on the February blog post. Enjoy!

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