Move- Chapter 10

MOVE poster

Previously on Move– Read Chapter 9 HERE

Aria and Liam burst into Liam’s place, kissing, as they bump into a nearby potted plant, knocking it over. It shatters, but doesn’t make them miss a beat.

Liam’s hands cupping her face, deepening each kiss as Aria pushes the door shut.

Reaching for his jacket, she maneuvers it off as it falls to the floor. Liam’s hands circle her waist, but stay put as Aria reaches for his tie- loosening it and tossing it off.

“Aria?” he whispers.

“Shh, we’ve had this date with each other from the beginning,” she says smiling as she covers his lips with hers again, starting to unbutton his crisp white shirt.

Hitting a tough button, Aria breaks their kiss. Sighing in frustration, she rips the shirt open, buttons flying everywhere.

“Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry, this was probably so expensive,” she says looking around on the floor.

Liam pulls her back to him, “Do I look upset,” he says kissing her.

She laughs against his lips as her hands stroke his chest.

Aria pulls away to look up at him, for a beat, his kind eyes stare back waiting for her move.

She smiles, as she un-clips her black wrap around dress letting it fall open.

Liam’s eyes glance over her toned figure, as her lacey black lingerie set hugs her curves perfectly.

He lets out the breath he’s been holding in since he met her, “Wow,” he says coughing shyly looking away, as Aria looks after him with a small shy laugh.

Liam pulls her to him, placing a sweet, yet intense kiss on her lips, but soon pulling away he cups her face, staring at her.

“As much as I want to do this love, I don’t think it’s the best order of events.”

Aria looks up at him, confused, stepping back, and away from him.

Liam sighs.

“Please don’t miss understand. I like you. I really really like you. And I want this. I want you, so much that I don’t want to jeopardize it by moving too fast too quick. So before we let this go this far, I’d like to at least take you to dinner first,” he says smiling.

Aria sighs and starts laughing as she closes her dress and refastens it.

“Oh, right. Of course, that makes sense,” she says smiling. “I’m sorry I was pretty aggressive there,” she says with a laugh. “I’m sorry if I came on too strong.”

“Trust me love, I didn’t mind,” he says grinning down at her. “I was quite unprofessional with you from the start,” he smirks sheepishly.

“I wouldn’t say that,” Aria looks at him as they make their way to the kitchen.

“What would you say?”

“I would say that…we both probably….maybe…sort of…knew there was a spark there when we first met and then the universe kind of just kept throwing us together- it was hard to deny it.”

Liam looks at her and laughs.

“What?”

“I may have orchestrated a few of those run-ins we had.”

Aria looks up at him in shock.

“Wait…what? How?”

“I may have kept tabs on you.”

Aria gasps, “Wait…Did you Facebook stalk me?”

“More than I’d like to admit,” he says avoiding her eyes, as he grabs a few things from the fridge. Aria sits across from him at his kitchen island.

“Oh my gosh, well, now I’m flattered,” she says laughing as her cheeks blush.

“Really your not creeped out?” he says laughing as he begins chopping some vegetables.

“Well…that depends,” she says smiling.

“On?”

“On how many of these run-ins you actually orchestrated?”

“Oh boy…”

“All of them?”

“No…but most.”

“Which ones, come on, I need specifics here.”

“And let you think that we are anything but fate in human form, no thank you love.” he says smirking.

Aria walks over to him, coming up behind him, she circles her arms around him, her hands on his chest. 

Liam laughs.

“Please,” she says kissing his shoulder.

Liam turns in her arms and cups her face, “You fight dirty,” he says smirking.

Aria laughs, reaching up to kiss him, he accepts it with a smile.

“Fine, don’t tell me,” she laughs, kissing him once more, she walks away from him. “I really should be going, anyway.”

Liam looks after her, “Aria.”

Aria turns, “Would you like to join me for dinner?”

She smiles at him, “I would love to but I have a class to teach tonight and then I really need to get to the studio and work on my routine.”

Liam nods his understanding, but she can tell the sadness on his face.

“What about lunch tomorrow? I can come by the office.”

Liam smiles, “That would be perfect.”

“Ok I will see you tomorrow, then,” she leans over and gives him a kiss. “Bye,” she smiles and begins walking toward the door.

“Don’t worry I’ll tell Marco you say bye,” he says walking after her with a smirk playing on his lips.

Aria turns around, “Oh, ok,” she says laughing, “So your the jealous type?”

Liam walks over to her, his arms circling her waist.

“Only when it comes to you,” he says looking at her deeply.

Aria pulls him into a long kiss.

“Stay,” he whispers pleading with her.

“I can’t,” she says frowning, “I’ll see you tomorrow,” she places a quick peck on his lips and walks away.

Liam grabs her hand pulling her back to him, as he kisses her again, his feelings for her pouring out of him.

Aria looks up at him, her head in a fog for a beat.

“My driver is downstairs, let him take you.”

“No that’s really ok, I-“

Liam kisses her again, as Aria’s response is cut short.

“Ok,” she says looking up at him with a laugh.

He laughs, and opens up the door for her.

Grabbing her bag she walks out, and turns to face him.

“I had a really nice time,” she says smiling at him.

“Me too, love,” he says smiling brightly.

Aria waves and walks off.

Liam shuts the door, starring at it for a beat. He smiles to himself as he exhales deeply, running his hand through his hair. He walks back to his kitchen to continue making dinner.

***

Aria steps out of Liam’s black sleek car, and walks into the Gym.

Upon entering the locker room, she’s bombarded by questions from her girl squad.

“Where the hell have you been?” Yolanda says quickly with worry.

“Yoyo, I’m fine. I’m sorry, I got caught up.”

Molly and Allie exchange looks.

“Your still in your work clothes…” Molly says.

“I know, I have to change,” she says grabbing her work out clothes from her gym bag and un-doing her dress.

“Well well isn’t that set a little sexy for the work place, were you looking for a certain someone to see it?” Molly says coyly.

Aria laughs as she pulls on her clothes.

“Let’s just say I didn’t have to hope at all, it kind of just happened,” she smirks throws her stuff into her locker and closes it, walking off.

The four girls all look at each other, their mouths open as they rush after her into the gym.

The gym is already full of excited ladies ready to work out.

“I’m sorry WHAT?” Allie says excitedly.

“Did you guys have sex? Oh my gosh was it amazing? Is he like ya know…?” Molly says rambling.

“Oh ew,” Layla says her younger age showing.

Yolanda looks worried, “Please tell me you were safe?”

“Of course we were,” Aria says spinning around.

The girls all freeze.

“Because we didn’t have sex.”

Yolanda sighs of relief, “So where were you?”

“Aw, let down,” Molly says under her breath.

“I was with Liam and don’t get me wrong, we were well on our way to…but then he put the brakes on.”

“Wait I’m sorry HE stopped you?” Allie says.

“Yea, he said that he didn’t want to rush things.”

“Is he some kind of male robot, or something, because I feel like that never happens. If a guy gets a girl willing to have sex with him, he’s having sex with her. Case closed,” Molly says.

“Ok not every guy is like that,” Allie says.

“Oh please your only saying that cause your boyfriend Colin is as perfect as they come.”

“Maybe,” Allie says smiling.

“Liam is different too, I can tell. He’s a man, not a guy, not a boy. He’s a man, he knows what he wants.”

“And apparently, that’s you,” Molly says smiling.

“Oh so it’s back to Liam now,” Layla says laughing.

“Well considering I don’t work for him anymore…yea,” she says smiling.

“Wait when you text us to meet you here, I just assumed you were filling in again, did they offer you a full time position?” Allie asks excitedly.

“Yes!”

“Wooo! Yes girl! Congrats!” she says hugging her as all the girls join in.

“Ok, I really gotta get this class started, full details later” she says smiling, standing at the front of the class, pressing play on the radio.

As the music bursts through the room, bouncing off the walls, Aria begins doing the moves and calling them out as her class follows enthusiastically.

***

Liam finishes loading his dish washer and closes it, looks down at his floor and sees all the buttons scattered. He has a flashback of he and Aria during their intense moment and lets out a laugh, grabbing a broom, he begins to sweep them up.

***

Aria exits the gym, girls in tote.

“Guys, I really have to get to the studio to practice,” she says walking to the street and holding up her hand to hail a cab.

“Um hello you promised us details,” Allie says.

“And you will get them, just not now,” she says laughing.

“Your gonna make us wait?” Molly says whining.

“I will call you later and fill you all in, I promise,” she says walking over to give each of them a hug as a cab pulls up.

Aria gets to Yolanda and sees the worry etched in her facial features.

“Yoyo I’m fine. Nothing happened. And even if it would have happened, I know what I have to do to keep myself safe, ok. You don’t have to worry about me.”

“Ugh yes I do,” she says hugging her. “Don’t make it too late.”

“I won’t, bye girls,” she says getting in the cab.

***

Aria’s body is sweating as she finishes her routine she looks in the mirror and smiles.

“We’re getting there,” she says to herself.

Her phone lights up and she walks over to check it, taking a sip of water.

She opens her Facebook app and sees Molly tagged her in a picture, the caption reading… “Work it girl.” #BESTZumbaInstructorAround #TakeHerClass #FullTimeInstructor

Aria looks at the picture, her body shining, fierce expression and a perfect view of her curves.

Aria smiles as she screen shots it and types out a message.

***

Liam stands at his canvas painting, his cell phone goes off. He smirks when he sees the message is from Aria- the same post from Molly with an added message that reads- “Just in case you didn’t see it on Facebook, here’s how my class went.”

He smirks looks over the picture, and sends a text back that reads-

That’s one hell of a view, love.

***

Aria reads it and blushes, responding-

I miss you. Is that weird to say?

***

Liam smiles, responding-

Well if it is, then I guess we’re both weirdos.

***

Aria smiles and dials Liam’s number.

He smiles seeing her name flash across his screen.

“Hello?”

“Is that your way of saying you miss me too.”

“Well, nothing gets by you, love.”

Aria laughs.

“How’s the rehearsing going?”

“Good, I should be wrapping up and heading home soon. I think I’m actually making some progress.”

“That’s fantastic.” (he pauses, thinking)

“Liam are you still there?”

“Come here.”

“What?” she says confused.

“My driver can be there to get you in 15 minutes, come back here, spend the night with me.”

“I thought we agreed that maybe we were moving too fast.”

“We don’t have to do anything. I just- I’d really like to spend more time with you. It’d be nice to fall asleep with you in my arms.”

Aria sighs, her smile bright.

“15 minutes, huh?”

“I’ll see you soon, love.” he says smiling as he hangs up.

Aria looks at her phone, her heart beating quickly.

She dials another number.

“Hello?”

“Yoyo, I have to tell you something. And you can’t freak out.”

“What?”

“I’m spending the night at Liam’s.”

“Aria…”

“I said not to freak out!”

“I’m not freaking out, I just feel like you say one thing and do another. You barely know this guy.”

“I know that. But it doesn’t feel that way. I feel like he’s been meant for me my whole life. We just fit. It just feels natural.”

“Aria are you sure about this?”

“I’m positive, I feel safe with him,”

“Fine. Your a grown woman, but you keep your phone on, and you let me know when you get there and you come home early tomorrow morning. I’m talking sun up, so are you. Please can you do that and save my sanity?”

“Yes of course. I love you yoyo.”

“I love you too, you pain in my ass. Please please please BE SAFE.”

“Nothings going to happen. I’m just going to spend time with him.”

“Right.”

“I’m serious. He’s not like that.”

“I hope your right, because if I don’t hear from you, I’m calling the cops on his ass!”

“Deal.” Aria says laughing. “And yo, can you just do me one favor…”

“Oh you are pushing it now, babe.”

“I’m sorry. I know.”

“What is it?” Yolanda says sighing and rolling her eyes as she stands folding clothes at home.

“Just please tell the girls, I’ll have to explain everything tomorrow.”

“Fine, but you owe us.”

“Dinner on me,” she says smiling and hanging up, a text from Liam pops up-

Car’s outside. Can’t wait to see you.

Aria smiles brightly rushing out.

***

Aria steps onto Liam’s penthouse floor and sees him waiting at the door with a bright smile on his face.

She smiles.

“Hello love.”

“Hi,” she says kissing him. “I’m sorry I’m a sweaty mess, I must look gross,” she says laughing.

“You could never,” he says cupping her face and kissing her again.

He takes her hand and leads her in.

“I’m really glad your here.” he says smiling at her.

“Me too.”

“Are you hungry?”

“I’m starving,” she laughs

“Let me heat you up some leftovers.” he says walking to the kitchen.

“Um, do you mind if I take a quick shower?”

“No of course not, do you need any clothes to change into?”

“Um no I keep some extras with me at the gym so just point me toward the bathroom and I’m good.”

Liam smiles and leads the way.

Aria walks into his crisp white porcelain bathroom, the shower is huge and it just glistens with cleanliness.

“Now this is a bathroom!” she says seeing it.

Liam laughs.

“Towels are in the cabinet over there, and soap and everything is in that one.”

“Thank you,” she says smiling, “I’ll be quick.”

“Take your time, I’ll go heat up that food.”

“Thank you,” she whispers, standing on her tippy toes and kissing him.

Liam walks out as Aria closes the door, she reaches for her cellphone-

“Hello? Hey Yoyo I’m here, I’m alive. Don’t worry. Ok? (she laughs) I love you, good night.”

Liam overhears and laughs.

***

Aria emerges from the bathroom all clean and cozy in a long sleeved thin hoodie and leggings, her hair long and damp.

Liam smiles as he places a plate of food on the table for her.

Aria sits.

“Wow this looks amazing, I didn’t know you cook, but of course you cook,” she says shaking her head with a smile.

Why are you so perfect, she thinks.

“Taste it first” he says with a laugh.

Aria takes a bite, “Oh my god,” she says closing her eyes. “This is amazing.”

“Yea?”

“So good, what is it?”

“It’s grilled chicken in a red wine sauce, my sister makes it even better.”

“Mmm, how is Sky, I didn’t see her at the gym tonight,” Aria says taking another bite.

“She’s good, she had a gig with her band. But I did tell her how you are teaching Zumba full time, it enlisted quite the squeal. I’d say she’s looking forward to it.” he says smiling as he leans across from her.

Aria laughs, “She’s a really sweet girl, I’m happy I got to meet her.”

“Me too, she’s probably the only sane person in my family.”

“Oh boy!” Aria says laughing.

“Do you want a glass of wine with that?” Liam asks.

“Sure, thank you.”

Liam walks to the cabinet pulling two glasses and sets to pouring the wine. He hands her a glass, with the company of a big smile.

“What?” Aria asks.

“Cheers to us,” he says clinking his glass into hers.

“Cheers to us,” she repeats taking a sip, a smile playing on her lips.

***

Liam and Aria sit on the couch, his arm draped over her and her body snuggled into his as the tv hums in the background.

Liam looks over at her, and she notices.

“What?”

“I just can’t believe your here,” he says sheepishly, his arm pulling her tighter into him.

“Aw,” she says smiling as she nuzzles closer to him. “There’s no where else I’d rather be,” she says kissing his cheek.

Liam looks at her lovingly, cups her face, and places a sweet kiss on her lips.

The two part and stare at each other for a beat, before simultaneously diving into another, more heated kiss.

Aria leans back on the couch, pulling Liam with her, and they continue to kiss, her legs and arms wrapping around him.

“I thought we said we wouldn’t do this,” he says in between kisses, his voice breathy.

“We’re not, we’re just kissing, that’s allowed right?” she says before placing another kiss on his lips.

“I like the way you think,” he says kissing her back.

“Yea?”

“Yea, I can kiss you all night.”

Aria smiles pulling him back to her lips as one of his hands cradle her head and one circles her waist, their lips barely parting for long.

 

TO BE CONTINUED…

 

*I do not take credit for the images used in my edits or other wise.*

-<3-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Move- Chapter 7

MOVE poster

Previously on Move– Read Chapter 6 HERE

meet sky

“Cheers, to our newly employed girl, Ari we know your gonna crush it, like you always do!” Yolanda says, holding up her wine glass as Aria smiles clinking glasses with the members of her girl squad- Yolanda, Layla, Allie, and Molly.

“It’s only temporary, but thank you,” Aria says with a smile.

“Hey, if Whitmore knows what’s good for him, he’ll never let you go,” Yolanda says proudly.

Allie and Molly exchange glances.

“I agree,” Molly says her response laced with knowing.

Aria gives Molly a look.

The girls sit on the floor of the apartment amongst pizza and junk food as Gilmore Girls plays in the background on Netflix.

So I have to ask, how the hell are you going to concentrate on your job when your boss is so hot!” Layla says.

Allie and Molly exchange knowing smirks once again as Aria’s eyes widen.

“How do you know he’s hot?”

“Uh, hello, it’s called google,” Layla says with a sarcastic tone and face to match as she lets out a giggle.

All the girls look at Aria expectantly.

Aria sighs.

“Ok fine! Yes, Liam Whitmore is hot, and I’ll admit I am attracted to him. Very attracted. Ok there I said it.”

Yolanda smirks, as she looks on, taking a sip of her wine in silence.

“Oh dear god, thank you!” Molly yells. “Finally!”

“Seriously it’s about time,” Allie says smiling.

“But-” Aria says forcefully.

“No but, why but?” Molly says pouting.

“He is my boss, and I have to remain professional.”

“Only in the office,” Molly says jokingly.

All the girls laugh.

“You guys stop it, ok. I’m actually really regretting taking this position now.”

“What position?” Molly says her eyebrow raising.

Aria gives her a look.

Molly laughs, “What? I’m just messing with you.”

“Yea and your not helping,” Aria says squatting her with a nearby throw pillow.

“You already took the position, and if you ask me you should take all the positions he wants to put you in,” Allie says taking a bite of her slice of pizza.

Layla and Molly laugh as Aria gasps.

“Stop! Ok what is it that you can’t comprehend? He. is. my. boss.”

“And he. wants. you. Seriously how do you not see that?” Molly says sipping her wine.

Aria throws herself back into a stack of pillows, in defeat, rolling her eyes.

I’m sorry how do you know he’s into her?” Layla asks confused.

“They met at an event we were catering, and he swooped in and defended her when Lucifer Lee tried to boss her around and since then they just continuously find themselves in the same place at the time- several times actually.”

“Wait a minute, like when?”

“Oh she didn’t mention that she ran into him on her little walk the other night…”

“Oh you mean when I was waiting up for you for hours?” Layla says giving Aria the eye.

“Mm hmm, he bought her ice cream, walked her home.”

Layla gasps.

“Oh don’t forget the part where, he told her that she has a hot body,” Allie says smiling brightly.

“What?” Layla says shrieking.

“He didn’t say it like that…” Aria says trying to normalize the comment that made her stomach flutter when Liam said it.

“How’d he say it?” Layla questions, obviously intrigued.

“He may have compared my body to art…in some way, I don’t really remember….”

The ladies all laugh and gasp in joy, “Yea you don’t remember, my ass!” Allie says smirking.

Layla slaps her cousin in the knee, “How could you not tell Yoyo and I about this guy?”

“Oh don’t feel bad, I didn’t know about him either,” Allie says with a huff.

“And I only knew because I just happened to be working with her that day, this one likes to keep secrets!”

“It’s not a secret it’s just not a big deal. I didn’t feel like I had to broadcast anything. Oh my gosh, now you guys have me all anxious and nervous, what if I can’t work with him…”

Aria looks at Yolanda as she sits there silently watching, taking it all in.

“Why are you so quiet?”

“I don’t have anything to say, You’re an adult, it’s your choice.”

“Are you mad?”

“No.”

“Yoyo, your the smart, older cousin, you’ve got your shit together, tell me what you think? Do you think taking this job was a mistake knowing I’m attracted to my boss?”

Everyone looks at Yolanda with pleading eyes.

“I think you might be reading too much into things right now. The job is temporary. You need the money, he has a job open. It’s as simple as that. You’ve only just met him. Can I see someone falling for you, a curvy, smart, fun, soulful Latina of course. Can I see you falling for a gorgeous, rich, successful man, absolutely. But you need to not let all that get in the way of doing your job. I’m not telling you that if you have feelings for him that you shouldn’t go for it, I just think there’s a time and a place. Give it the two weeks. Feel him out. If he starts to pursue you, then once the two weeks are up and you find other work you can go for it. But I would remain professional while you are still his employee. Guys with high rank like Liam, can get into a lot of trouble if they get caught messing around with an employee, and you could get a bad rep. We don’t want that. The job world is hard enough.”

Aria smiles, “Finally, some good advice.”

“Hey!” the others say as they all laugh and throw pillows at Aria, Aria laughs as she gives her cousin Yolanda a hug, “Thank you,” she whispers. “Anytime babe.”

Aria’s cell phone rings.

“Huh it’s the gym,” she says answering.

“Hello?…Oh, um….sure, Yea I’d love to, yea I can be there in like 15 minutes. No problem. See you soon. They asked me to cover tonight’s Zumba class, what do you guys say you feel like shaking your asses?”

“Hell yes!” Molly says as they all jump up and start to gather their stuff to leave.

***

Liam walks into his house, he flips on the light to reveal a gorgeously decorated room. Full of crimson, and burnt orange hues, wooden tones, and tons of art pieces dancing on the walls.

Dropping his suitcase on the end table, he walks into his kitchen and opens his refrigerator, grabbing some things out to make dinner.

Liam stops as a moment with Aria pops into his head.

“Why is it your last shot?”
“The academy is pretty expensive and so is Manhattan rent. And I’m not exactly in my prime…”
Liam’s brow furrows as he smirks, confused. Aria smiles and clarifies.
“As a dancer 28 is considered old to break into the industry.”
“Ah…well if your body isn’t considered a work of art, I don’t know what is,” Liam says and then mentally kicks himself when he realizes the words he thought were actually voiced out loud.
Aria freezes and looks up at him. Instant blush.
“I’m sorry, that was forward of me. I just meant you seem to work at your craft, often. It shows. I am sure you deserve this shot, along with many others.”
“Thank you,” Aria says licking her ice cream cone to stop it from dripping.
Liam looks at her, studying her movements, he spots a bit of ice cream on her lower lip and instinctively reaches over and wipes it off with his thumb, licking his thumb after.
Aria gets caught off guard, as does Liam.

I feel like I’ve known her for years, things feel so natural, Liam thinks, as he rolls up his sleeves and unties his tie removing it and tossing it to the side. His cell phone rings distracting him from his thoughts of Aria’s perfection. 

“Hello?”

“Hey Ev-, Good, just got home from work. What about you?”

“Oh that sounds fun, yea I can meet you after, yes, sounds good. Ok see you then. Bye.”

Liam puts his stuff back in the fridge and grabs his keys heading back out.

As he does we see an easel hosting a blank canvas in the corner of the living room.

*** 

Liam walks through the streets as people fuss about in the busy city life, he looks up at the sky as the colors swirl.

He gets a text-

Evelyn: Hey so sorry bugga–my class is just ending, I’ll be on my way in a jiff.

Liam smiles and texts back a reply: Patiently waiting, you owe me a mint chocolate chip though.

Evelyn: Fair enough.

Liam smiles as he sits on a nearby bench.

He scrolls through Aria’s Facebook as a video catches his eye.

Aria is tagged by her friend Molly.

Liam plays the video, Aria shouts out Zumba moves as she does them, her hips shaking and her body glistening, her passion for dance- evident. She is as sexy and as talented as he imagined her to be. And yes, he has imagined.

The video caption reads…

Impromptu Zumba class tonight? Yes, please. My girl Ari killing it as instructor, as usual. #ThatLatinButtTho #ItsJustNotFair 😉

Liam laughs out loud as he watches Aria his eyes sparkle, his heart beating rather fast.

***

Aria and Company start to leave the gym as they do they see one of Aria’s most enthusiastic customers.

“Hey again!” she says “Awesome class, like seriously, so damn good.”

“Thanks so much! I’m so glad your liking it!”

“Love it! But I was surprised to see you teaching tonight?”

“Oh yea, I was asked to cover for someone.”

“Well I think they should make you full time, I come 3 times a week and I have to say, you have everyone buzzing, your the best.”

The girls all smile.

Aria laughs, “Oh my god, really? That’s amazing, thanks so much, you just made my night!”

The girl laughs, “I’m Sky,” she says shaking her hand.

“Pleasure to meet you,” Aria says beaming.

The ladies chat as they walk out of the gym.

“So ladies, drinks on me?” Yolanda says.

“Well yes your the only one of us with a job right now so…” Layla says nudging her sister as the girls laugh.

“Sky…wanna join us, there’s a bar just around the corner?” Aria asks as they walk the streets passing the food trucks.”

“Oh I would love to, but I’m actually meeting my b-“

Liam rounds a corner as he begins connecting the dots.

“Oh there he is-Liam!” Sky says running over and hugging him tightly.

Aria notices and her heart freezes in her chest. Liam seems happy to see this mystery woman.

“Holy shit,” Molly says, as Allie nudges her.

“Sorry,” Molly whispers as she rubs Aria’s back.

“We should go,” Aria says wanting to get out of there as quickly as possible.

Aria goes to walk away.

“Aria,” she hears him call.

“Mr. Whitmore, is that you, wow what a small world,” she says trying to act aloof.

“Wait a minute, you two know each other?” Sky asks confused.

“I’m going to be filling in for his secretary while she’s away-starting Monday.”

“No way- Anne finally took a vacation! Good for her! That lady never rests. ”

Aria looks up at them, her jealousy creeping in.

“Aria, Evelyn is my baby sister.”

Aria’s head pops up.

“Wait who’s Evelyn?”

Sky raises her hand.

“That’d be me. Sky is my stage name, and I think it’s just cooler, so I kind of stick to it.”

“Stage name, what are you a stripper?” Molly says.

Aria and all the girls look at her in shock and dismay.

“Oh my god did I say that out loud? I’m so sorry.”

“Hey, it’s cool, just know, we prefer to be called exotic dancers,” Sky says.

“Oh, ok.” Aria says nonchalantly.

Liam lets out a laugh.

“She’s kidding.”

“Your faces were awesome though, thank you for that. But I am kidding, I’m in a band.”

Aria lets out a laugh.

“Oh my gosh, I was going to say Liam is the most polished and respectable guy I’ve ever met, how could his sister be a stripper?”

Although Aria did notice the rolled up sleeves, and the open collar.

Sky laughs, as she sees the flicker in Liam’s eyes as he watches Aria speak.

“So why don’t we all head to that bar that you guys were talking about, drinks on my big brother here, since he’s rich and everything.”

“Oh we couldn’t-” Aria begins to say.

“Sure, let’s do it,” Liam says not taking his eyes off of Aria’s.

Molly jumps in.

“Yes Let’s.” She says ushering Aria along toward the bar before she tries to rush off.

The girls all rush along.

Sky nudges Liam, he smirks as he followers the group.

***

“I have to say this is such a trip, I was just telling Liam how there’s this new Zumba instructor who rocks and little did we know you would be working with him!”

“Yea, I didn’t know you taught Zumba, that’s great,” Liam says with a smile.

“Yea I just started, it’s only once a week, but tonight I was covering for someone.”

“Super happy about that by the way” Sky says coming over with a tray and handing everyone a beer.

“Seriously though, you are fantastic, I swear. Liam, you should see her, she can really move.”

Aria coughs, feeling uncomfortable.

“I’m sure she can,” he says smirking as he takes a sip of his beer, his eyes finding Aria’s for a beat.

The ladies all take notice.

Liam’s phone rings.

“Excuse me ladies,” he says “Hi Mum,” he says walking away.

“Oh gosh, It’s mum, ugh.” she says taking a chug of her beer and rolling her eyes.

“You don’t get along with your mom?” Aria asks.

“Nope. She’s a bit…old fashioned. I love music. Always have. But musicians don’t make a steady living, so I was basically disowned. I came to New York on my own, and then Liam convinced mum to let him open up a Whitmore Ink here so he can help me find my way. He’s always been my life line.”

“That’s so sweet.”

“Yea. I just wish I could do the same for him. I know the job kills him, he’s not happy. But he’s too sweet to tell mum to shove it up her- HEY!” Sky says as Liam comes walking back over.

“Let me guess, my sister here is bashing our mum…”

Aria and the ladies look around trying to avoid his gaze.

“She’s not exactly the most nurturing, wouldn’t you say?” Sky says sipping her beer.

“No she’s not,” Liam says sipping his own beer.

“Oh hell, shots?” Molly says looking around.

“Yes please.” Aria says rather quickly.

***

Aria and Liam sit alone in a booth at the back of the bar, just talking and laughing. Liam sits next to Aria his arm draped over the back of the booth.

bar

Sky and the other ladies play a game of pool, across the room.

Sky looks over.

“Wow, they are getting rather chummy, aren’t they?” she says smiling.

“One can only hope,” Molly says.

“So you think Aria fancy’s Liam?”

“Fancy? Sure. Yea. I think she fancies him.” Allie says laughing.

“Good because I think he really fancies her. I have not seen bugga, smile like that in… years.”

“Bugga?” Layla and Yolanda ask.

“My nick name for him, when I was a little girl. I couldn’t say brother, so I’d say bugga, I don’t know don’t ask. It just kinda stuck.”

“That is the cutest thing!” Allie says.

***

“So your sister is really something.” Aria says laughing.

“Oh yea. She’s a bit of a pistol. But she’s always danced to the beat of her own drum, never let anyone stop her. Not anything. I’ve always admired her for that.”

“Well it seems like she adores you. She was telling us how you took Whitmore Ink to New York to keep an eye on her and help her out after-“

“After our mum disowned her?”

“She may have used that word.” Aria says scrunching her nose. Liam dies just a bit.  

“I’d like to say that it’s exaggerated but, sadly it’s not. Evelyn hasn’t spoken to or seen our mum is about 3 years.”

“Wow that’s so terrible. That must put you in such an awkward position.”

“Holidays are bizarre to say the least.” Liam says laughing.

“I’m sorry. You deserve better,” Aria says placing her hand over his.

Liam laces his fingers with hers.

Aria looks down at their hands and then up at Liam as their eyes lock.

They both lean into a kiss, as Liam cups her face.

Molly’s mouth drops as the other ladies notice and theirs follow suit.

“Yes!” Molly says throwing her hands up in the air.

“Well this is going to be interesting,” Yolanda says taking a sip of her beer.

Aria pulls away her eyes heavy.

“Wow.” she says unfiltered.

“Wow.” Liam says unable to come up with a different word at the moment.

“I should probably get going,” Aria says starting to get up.

“Yea me too,” He says not moving.

“Excuse me.”

first kiss

Liam is in a daze, so Aria sits back down as they sit side by side in silence.

Simultaneously they turn to each other leaning in once more, Liam cups her face and kisses her as she accepts willingly.

Allie grabs Molly’s arm as they both gasp.

“Get it girl,” Layla says smiling.

Sky smiles brightly.

“Well that went rather nicely.”

Aria’s hands lay on Liam’s chest, one rounding the nape of his neck.

She gets lost and so does Liam as his hand lays on her thigh.

As if a light bulb goes off in her mind, Aria pulls away.

“Good Night,” she says abruptly.

Liam breaks out of his gaze and stands moving to the side to let Aria through.

“Ladies,” she calls out waving them toward the door as she rushes out.

The girls all rush after her, as Sky saunters over to Liam.

“Well well…”

“That was stupid.” he says, covering his mouth, the stress starting to settle in.

“That was stupid.” Aria says as she speed walks in the direction of the loft.

“Was it though?” Molly says.

“Yes.”

“Was it though?” Sky asks Liam.

“Yes, because now I’ve made her uncomfortable. She technically is my employee.”

“Well if you ask me, your “employee” only felt uncomfortable because she probably feels something for you too.”

“Oh come on, you can’t say you didn’t feel anything,” Layla says.

“Of course I felt something. That’s why that was so stupid. He’s my boss.”

“What happened to letting the two weeks go by before the exchanging of saliva?” Yolanda asks in her motherly way.

“I don’t know I had every intention of doing that. I didn’t think I’d be seeing him tonight, let alone kissing him. Hence I look like a gym rat. I have no idea, what came over me, it was just like we were in this weird bubble, it was just the two of us and we just felt so close. I feel so comfortable around him. He’s easy to talk to and I just feel like things happened really out of the blue, but when they did happen it was like why haven’t we been doing this our whole lives. I don’t know it felt like such natural behavior to be kissing him.”

“Aw like it was meant to be.” Molly says grabbing her arm and hugging it.

“And now I have to act professional around him for two weeks? That’s going to be impossible, I’m so stupid!” Aria says covering her face.

“You really think she feels something?” Liam asks Sky.

“You are my big brother and I love you for so many reasons, but your naiveté is not one of them. Do you ever notice women falling all over you? I’ll give you a clue,  it happens often.”

“Yea maybe because they hear my name and dollar signs cross their minds.”

“So you think Aria is after your money?”

“No, god no. Are you kidding me, I had to fight that girl just to let me offer her a job. And even then she insisted I still interview her first.”

“She seems like a force to be reckoned with, love her! And dear old mum is gonna hate her. Which if you ask me is a HUGE bonus.”

“Why do you think she’ll hate her? Aria is lovely.”

“Are you kidding me? You really are blind when it comes to mum aren’t you? You and I know that Aria is amazing, yes. But mum has a one track mind. You bring that creative, ethnic beauty with a body to mum and she will have your head on a platter in a second. Not to mention the “different worlds” “wrong side of the tracks,” “gold digger” clichés she’d be sure to throw at you.

“She really is ancient in her way of thinking.”

“Welcome to the dark side, bugga, your gonna love it,” she says clinking her shot into one that sits in front of him, come on, go on, you need that.”

Liam shakes his head but knocks the shot back wincing.

Later that night Aria lays in bed.

She thinks of her kiss with Liam, her eyes close as she relives it.

Opening her eyes, Aria grabs her chest, “Shit, I’m in trouble,” she says covering her face as a smile slightly crosses her lips.

 

TO BE CONTINUED…

 

*I do not take credit for any  images used in my edits or otherwise.*

-<3-