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 The Perfect Assistant

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Sebslady
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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Sat Sep 01, 2012 7:40 pm

Chapter 25

The next morning, Carla woke up in David’s arms and she couldn’t think of a place she’d rather be. She loved feeling his arms around her and a smile appeared on her face when she looked at him. His hair was messed up and it was a reminder of the passionate night they had spent together. David began to stir and Carla closed her eyes and pretended to be sleeping. He slowly opened his eyes and stretched his body before looking at Carla who was sleeping in his arms. David kissed her softly on the lips and Carla returned the kiss, taking them back to the passion they had shared the night before.

“It’s time to get up, baby. We have to meet the others for breakfast,” Carla informed him as she kissed David.

“Do we have to? I think we should stay here?” David suggested flashing his smile.

“I like the idea but we promised the others that we would be sightseeing today, and I really want to take a look at Dublin. We can continue this when we get back later,” Carla said as she looked at him.

“Guess I don’t have any choice,” David sighed.

Carla kissed him before she rose from the bed and disappeared into the bathroom. David wanted to join her but it would be a bad idea because they did have an appointment with the others. After finishing her shower, Carla walked into the bedroom to get dressed while David took his turn in the bathroom. Half an hour later, they were on their way downstairs to have breakfast with the others.

**********

Steph was the first one to arrive in the breakfast restaurant. It had been a rather restless night for her and she couldn’t get the images of last night out of her head; Séb with blood on his face, Remy almost hitting her and of course Séb almost kissing her. She wanted nothing more than to feel Séb’s lips on hers but it was too soon for that. They had only recently been able to talk without shouting too much at each other and she wanted to find out where this relationship could go but she didn’t want to rush anything.

“Good morning, Stephanie,” Gillian suddenly said, taking Steph out of her daydreaming.

“Good morning, Gillian,” Steph replied letting out a yawn.

“You look tired, honey. Had a bad night?” Gillian asked as she pulled out a chair.

“I didn’t get much sleep,” Steph replied.

“Because of a man?” Gillian smiled at her.

“No, two of them but it’s not what you think. Remy showed up last night after the party and he had an argument with Séb. Not much love lost between those two,” Steph informed her as she looked at her.

“I know. Simon did some research on Remy before he came to London for the musical and he found out about Remy’s ex, Corinna and the family not wanting anything to do with Remy,” Gillian told her.

“I bet he doesn’t know that Remy slept with Melissa when she was with Séb,” Steph stated.

“No, he doesn’t know that. How did you find out?” questioned Gillian.

“Séb and Remy were arguing in my suite and it came up in the conversation. They almost got into a fight but my yelling stopped them,” Steph answered.

Gillian was just about to say something when Alyssa and Urs walked into the restaurant, followed by Carla and David. After saying good morning, they sat down and talked about their plans for the day. Shortly after, Carlos and Sam joined them and a few minutes later, Séb walked into the restaurant. The others stared at him and they all wondered what had happened to him. He walked over to the table and said good morning before sitting down.

“What happened to you?” Carlos asked him.

“My face got in the way of Remy’s fist last night,” Séb replied.

“Why was Remy here?” questioned Urs looking at Séb.

“He came to see me,” Steph explained.

She could see on their faces that they wanted answers and she decided to tell them everything. They listened as she told them about everything that happened before Remy left her suite and they were all stunned to hear what she had to say. Steph left out the part about Séb almost kissing her because she knew that would raise more questions and she wasn’t ready to answer them.

“Do you think we will see him again?” David spoke up.

“You won’t but I will. My parents are celebrating their anniversary next month and Remy has been invited too. No matter what has happened between my parents and Remy, he would never stay away from the anniversary. I might not know him anymore but I do know that,” replied Séb truthfully.

“I don’t know about you but I am starving,” remarked Gillian interrupting the conversation.

They all walked over to the breakfast buffet to get something to eat and after returning to the table, they talked about the plans for the day. Simon was at a breakfast meeting and Gillian decided to stay at the hotel and just relax until he returned. After finishing their breakfast, the guys and girls left the restaurant and took a look at Dublin.

They had been in Dublin during their last tour but due to a busy schedule, they hadn’t had time to see anything in Dublin. This time they were not on a tight schedule and they could enjoy the beautiful city and take a closer look at the sights. David, being the photographer of the group, took a lot of pictures of the sights and of his friends. It was a beautiful day in Dublin and they all had a great time, relaxing and joking.

After spending a couple of hours together, the group talked about going their separate ways. The Divo couples wanted some private time and they all hoped that Steph and Séb would do something together but that was not the case. Séb went back to the hotel alone and Steph wanted to do some shopping before going back. As Séb and Steph had disappeared, the others looked at each other.

“Well, that didn’t go as planned. What is wrong with those two?” Alyssa was the first one to speak.

“They don’t want to admit that they love each other,” Sam replied.

“Give them time. They’ve both had bad relationships and they don’t want to rush into anything,” Urs continued.

“That’s true. Why don’t we get some lunch before splitting up?” Sam looked at them.

They all agreed on Sam’s idea and they went to a small restaurant to have lunch together.

**********

Séb had returned to his suite and he decided to go swimming in the hotel pool. After changing into his black trunks, he left his suite and walked to the elevator. As he walked into the pool area, he met an elderly couple who were just leaving and he found himself alone by the pool. He placed his towel on one of the chairs and jumped into the pool.

While Séb was in the pool, Steph returned to the hotel after her little shopping trip. She walked to the elevator and went upstairs to her suite where she put down the bags on the bed. Steph reached into one of the bags and took out her new bathing suit. Since the others hadn’t returned to the hotel, Steph decided to try it out and she went into the bathroom to change. A few minutes later, Steph was on her way down to the pool and she hoped that she would be alone.

When she walked into the pool area, she could hear someone was in the water and she wanted to leave. She hated it when someone else was there because she felt embarrassed about not being a good swimmer. Well, actually she couldn’t swim but only her family and a few close friends knew about it. They knew she couldn’t swim but they had no idea why. She kept telling people that she had never learned but that was not the truth. Only three people knew the truth and she wanted to keep it that way because it wasn’t something she wanted to remember.

Steph couldn’t see anyone in the pool and she put down her towel on the chair but suddenly she had the feeling that someone was watching her. She felt uncomfortable and turned around to see saw Séb staring at her with a smile on his face. His eyes scanned her body and he liked what he saw but he knew that he could only look for now.

“Are you joining me?” Séb winked at her.

“No, I think I will go back to my room,” Steph turned and picked up her towel.

“Why? You came down here to swim and I won’t stop you,” Séb stepped out of the pool and walked over to her.

“I came here to swim but I was hoping to be alone here,” Steph turned around and looked at him.

She swallowed hard as she looked at him standing in front of her, wearing his black trunks. Steph watched the water drops as they slowly ran down his chest and she forced herself to look into his eyes, hoping that Séb had not noticed her looking at his chest. Séb had noticed but he didn’t say anything as he feared it would scare her away.

“So, I am in the way?” Séb asked, thinking something was wrong.

“No, you’re not in the way but I just feel more comfortable swimming alone,” Steph avoided his eyes.

“I see. You can’t swim. That’s the reason why you want to be alone,” asked Séb looking at her.

“You’re right, I can’t swim. Now you can laugh at me,” Steph whispered, turning away from him.

“I’m not going to laugh. If you really want to learn, then I’d be happy to teach you,” Séb announced as he touched her shoulders.

“I don’t think it’s a good idea. Maybe I should go to my room,” Steph said.

“No, I don’t think so. You want to learn how to swim and I swear that I won’t try anything,” Séb promised.

“Let’s make a deal. You teach me how to swim and I will buy you dinner,” Steph suggested.

“You’ve got a deal. See you in the water,” Séb smiled before jumping into the pool.

Steph walked over to the edge and climbed into the pool. As soon as she got in the water, Séb came over to her and reached out his hand to her. Steph took a deep breath as she placed her hand in his and let herself be led out to the middle of the pool. Her heart was beating faster than ever but she couldn’t tell if it was because she was scared or because of Séb. He told her what to do and he could feel her body shaking.

“Are you scared?” he softly asked her.

“No, I’m terrified,” Steph confessed.

“You shouldn’t be. I won’t let anything happen to you. Do you trust me?” Séb questioned looking into her eyes.

“Yes, I trust you,” Steph answered truthfully.

“Good. Now that we’ve got that part settled, let’s continue the lesson,” Séb smiled at her.

Séb was a great teacher and Steph felt comfortable in the water and in Séb’s arms. Steph was so focused that she didn’t even realize that Séb was no longer supporting her and she was actually swimming on her own. Séb never left her side because he wanted to be close in case she had problems. After a while, they got out of the water but suddenly Steph’s foot slipped and Séb grabbed her.

“Thanks,” Steph looked up at him.

“You’re welcome,” Séb looked into her eyes.

They looked at each other and Séb wanted to kiss her but how would she react? She had pulled away the day before and he wasn’t sure he could deal with being rejected one more time. Feeling her body this close to his was driving him crazy and he had to take the chance. He placed his lips on hers, searching her mouth with his tongue and he was surprised when Steph gave in and opened her mouth. Steph was completely lost in the kiss and Séb was an amazing kisser. She could feel the tingling all the way down to her toes and she wished the kiss would never end.

Séb broke the kiss when he heard the door to the pool area open and shortly after people walked in. Séb and Steph looked at each other and they both agreed it was time to leave. As they walked back to their rooms, they talked about where to go for dinner and they agreed on the restaurant they had seen earlier in the day. Steph said goodbye to Séb and walked into her room, closing the door behind her. Séb walked down the hall to his own room and he couldn’t wait to have dinner with Steph.

**********

It was time for Séb to get ready for his dinner with Steph. After having a shower, he dressed in a pair of black jeans, a white shirt and a jacket. He knew they were just going out as friends but to him it felt like a first date and he wanted to look good. Just as Séb was about to pick up his keycard, there was a knock on the door. He had a smile on his face as he walked to the door but he wasn’t smiling when he saw the person on the other side of the door.

“What are you doing here?” he asked.

“I need to talk to you, Séb. It’s really important. Can I come in?” Melissa took a step forward.

“No, I don’t have time to talk to you. I am on my way out to dinner,” Séb looked at her.

“Who is the lucky girl?” Melissa demanded to know.

“I don’t have to tell you that. We are not together anymore,” Séb reminded her.

“That is why I want to talk to you. My fiancé called off the engagement because he found out that I was sleeping around and I don’t have anywhere to go,” Melissa started crying.

“Oh, stop that. It’s not going to work, Melissa. Why are you really here?” Séb asked her.

“I made a mistake when I walked out on you and I want a second chance,” Melissa looked at him with pleading eyes.

“You can forget about that. It’s over and I have no intention of getting back together with you. My heart belongs to someone else,” Séb firmly stated.

“Oh, right. The little PA. She can’t make you happy, Sébastien. She is just a girl and you need a woman in your life,” Melissa told him.

“Steph is more woman than you will ever be,” Séb pushed her into the hallway.

As Séb closed the door, Melissa saw Steph walking down the hall, wearing a purple dress. She looked stunning in the dress and Melissa felt the green eyed monster coming to the surface.



Melissa watched as Steph came closer to Séb’s room and she had to come up with a plan fast. There was no way that she would let a PA get in the way of her and Séb getting back together. Séb was facing Melissa and he had no idea that Steph was walking down the hall to his room. Suddenly Melissa took a step forward and kissed Séb as she locked her hands behind his neck. Steph felt like someone had kicked her in the stomach and she turned on her heel and ran down the hallway.

Séb had heard someone running and he pushed Melissa away as he turned around to see Steph disappear around the corner. ‘This is not good at all’ he thought to himself as he ran down the hall to catch up with Steph. As he got to the elevators, he could see one of them was on the second floor and he knew it had to be Steph. He pushed the button and it seemed to take forever for the elevator to get there. After what seemed to be an eternity, the elevator arrived and Séb got in. He knew that it would take a miracle for him to catch up with Steph now but he had to try.

While Séb was in the elevator, Steph had reached the lobby and she ran out into the street as Sam and Carlos got out of a cab. Sam called out to her but Steph didn’t stop. She had to get away from that hotel and Séb now and nothing could stop her. As Carlos and Sam stepped into the lobby, Séb came out of the elevator.

“Have you seen Steph?” he asked them.

“She ran down the street. What did you do to her?” Sam yelled at him.

“I will tell you later,” Séb ran out of the lobby.

Sam and Carlos looked at each other and as they walked over to the elevator, Melissa came out with a smile on her face and they both knew that she had something to do with Steph running out.

“Life is great,” Melissa said to them before disappearing into the street.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Mon Sep 10, 2012 4:59 pm

Chapter 26

After Séb had ran out of the hotel, Carlos called Urs and David and told them to get back to the hotel. Ten minutes later, they gathered in the hotel bar and Carlos filled them in on what they had witnessed at the hotel earlier. It was one big mystery because none of them knew what had happened to make Steph leave like that.

As they shared their opinions, Séb walked into the bar and ordered a drink. He noticed the others at one of the tables and after getting his drink, he walked over to them and sat down.

“What did you do to Steph?” Sam asked, raising her voice.

“It’s all one big mess,” Séb replied, running his hand through his hair.

“What is? You’re not helping us,” Carlos enquired looking at him.

“Steph and I were having a great time by the pool and we ended up kissing. It wasn’t planned, it just happened and it felt right. We agreed to have dinner tonight and when I was about to leave my room, Melissa showed up and told me that her fiancé had dumped her because she had been cheating on him. Then she said that she wanted a second chance with me and I told her no. Suddenly Melissa kissed me and I heard someone running away. I pushed Melissa away and turned around to see Steph disappear around the corner. I followed her into the street but I lost her,” Séb explained.

“My friend is somewhere in Dublin alone because you messed up,” Sam raised her voice.

“I didn’t mess up. Melissa kissed me but I didn’t kiss her back. What kind of man do you think I am, Sam? Do you think that I would kiss Steph and then move on to my ex who walked out on me?” Séb was stunned at her remark.

“You tell me,” Sam questioned as she glanced at him with anger in her eyes.

“No, I wouldn’t do something like that. I felt nothing when Melissa kissed me but I did feel something when Steph kissed me, in fact I felt a lot. And for your information, I love Steph but I’m not ready to tell her that. We have only recently been able to talk without ripping each other’s heads off and I don’t want to push her away,” Séb confessed.

“Well, I am sorry to say this but it looks like you managed to push her away by kissing Melissa,” Sam looked at him.

“I didn’t kiss Melissa! How many times do you want me to say that? Forget it. I have to find Steph,” Séb told her. He finished his drink and left the bar.

They all watched him leave before turning to Sam. She knew deep down that Séb would never do something like that but she was worried about Steph. Sam picked up her phone and dialed Steph’s number but it went to her voicemail. After leaving a message, Sam put her phone away and looked at her friends.

“Steph is my friend and I don’t want to see her get hurt. I know that Séb loves Steph. It’s written all over his face when he looks at her,” Sam said.

“She is our friend too and we don’t want to see her get hurt either but I think she overreacted a little,” Carla said.

“Maybe but with everything she has been through with her ex, you can’t blame her for reacting the way she did,” Sam defended Steph’s actions.

“You do have a point,” Carla smiled at her.

“We should be looking for her too but I think it’s better to stay here and let Séb look for her,” David spoke up.

The others nodded their heads in agreement and they all hoped that Séb would bring Steph back. All they could do was to wait.

********
Séb was walking through the streets of Dublin, asking people if they had seen a girl in a purple dress. He knew it was a long shot but he had to try and hopefully she would listen to him when he did find her. Séb kept asking people in the street but they hadn’t seen her and he had almost given up when a young man approached him. He informed Séb that he had just seen a woman in a purple dress in the park and she looked very upset. Séb thanked him and ran into the park and looked around but there was no sign of Steph. He was just about to turn around and leave when he saw Steph coming out of the restrooms.

Steph seemed to be in a world of her own and she sat down on a bench, looking at the swans in the lake. Séb slowly made his way over to the bench as his brain was trying to come up with something to say. But what was he to tell her? Would she even believe him if he tried to explain what happened? He had no choice but to tell her the truth and hopefully she would believe him.

“Hey. You’re not an easy person to find,” Séb joked, hoping to make her smile.

“What are you doing here? Shouldn’t you be with Melissa?” Steph spat.

“I’m here because we need to talk and no, I shouldn’t be with Melissa,” Séb said.

“Well, you could have fooled me. It sure did look like you wanted to be with her, not me. Maybe you could take her out to dinner,” Steph snapped.

“You got the wrong idea, Steph. It wasn’t what it looked like,” Séb tried to explain.

“It looked like the two of you were kissing. First you kiss me then you kiss Melissa. You kissed the woman who is responsible for your hate towards me when I first moved to London. Wait, I get it now. You used me to make her jealous. I’m such an idiot,” Steph rose from the bench.

“No, that’s not true. You don’t understand, Steph. She kissed me,” Séb stood too.

“Oh, please. Don’t give me that. You didn’t exactly look like it was bothering you,” Steph turned to leave but Séb stopped her.

“Will you listen to me for once? Melissa kissed me, I didn’t kiss her and to me, that is not a kiss,” Séb said as he held her hand.

“It doesn’t really matter who kissed who. That was a kiss, whether you think so or not,” Steph looked at him.

“You’re wrong, Steph. That was not a kiss. This is a kiss,” Séb pulled her close and he kissed her.

“What are you doing?” Steph pulled away.

“Trying to prove to you what a kiss is,” Séb smiled.

“Don’t think for a second that you can fix this with a kiss. I’m leaving and don’t follow me,” Steph turned around and walked away.

“I will be at the restaurant in case you get hungry,” Séb told her as she walked away.

Steph didn’t respond to what he said, she just kept on walking. Deep down she knew that she was overreacting but she was sick and tired of getting hurt. The kiss by the pool was special and it gave her hope that something could happen between them but now she just wasn’t sure. She walked back to the hotel and went straight to her room.

********
Séb had arrived at the restaurant and he was shown to his table. He informed the waiter that he was waiting for his date and they would order as soon as she arrived. Séb kept looking at his watch and he thought that Steph would be there any minute but deep down he knew that she wouldn’t. Time went by and after an hour, one of the waiters approached him.

“Can I take your order, sir?” the waiter asked him.

“No, I’m about to leave. My date didn’t show up,” Séb sighed and got up.

He left the restaurant and went back to the hotel. Séb needed someone to talk to and he needed someone to help him get Steph back. There was only person who could help him. He walked into the elevator and pushed the button that would take him to the second floor.

*******
“Do you think Steph will let him explain?” Carlos asked Sam.

“I don’t know. She has been hurt so many times,” Sam replied, letting out a sigh.

“They need to talk about this. They love each other and I would hate to see Séb miss out on love because of Melissa,” Carlos said, pulling her into his arms.

“I feel the same way,” Sam told him, as she looked into his eyes.

Carlos was just about to kiss her when there was a knock on the door. On his way to the door, Carlos said a lot of colorful words in Spanish and Sam couldn’t stop giggling. Carlos opened the door and when he saw Séb on the other side he knew that the talk with Steph didn’t go as planned.

“Come on in,” Carlos stepped aside and let him in.

“Thanks. I’m sorry for disturbing but Steph stood me up and I really need someone to talk to,” Séb sighed as he walked into the suite.

“That’s what I am here for,” replied Carlos as he patted him on the shoulder.

“I know that but I was referring to Sam. She knows Steph better than any of us and I need some advice,” Séb looked at Sam with pleading eyes.

“I’ll see what I can do. Sit down and let’s figure this out,” Sam smiled as she gestured for him to take a seat.

Once seated, Séb informed them of his conversation with Steph and both Carlos and Sam listened without saying anything. A part of them couldn’t understand why Steph had refused to talk to Séb but with everything she had been through, it actually made sense somehow.

“I think you have to give her time, Séb. Steph was hurt by her ex and just as the two of you are getting closer, she is hurt by you,” Sam spoke up.

“But I didn’t do anything. Melissa kissed me,” Séb repeated.

“Yes, but that is not how Steph sees it. What she saw was you and Melissa together with your lips pressed against hers and her hands locked around your neck. Maybe you should see things from her point of view. You might not like what I have to say now but it’s necessary. Let’s pretend that Remy is Melissa and you saw Remy and Steph together like she saw you and Melissa. Would you have believed her if she had told you that Remy was kissing her?” Sam asked him.

“I don’t think so. I probably would have reacted the same way. Guess I really blew it,” Séb answered.

“No, you didn’t. Just give her time and everything will be fine,” Carlos assured him.

“I’ll get that,” Sam said as there was a knock on the door.

She opened the door to see Steph standing there and she wondered what to do. Séb was there too and she wasn’t sure about having both of them in the same room but maybe it wasn’t a bad idea. They needed to talk and they wouldn’t get into a fight with Sam and Carlos there.

“Where have you been?” Sam hugged her.

“I just needed to be alone,” Steph took off her jacket.

Sam closed the door and the two girls walked into the living room where Carlos and Séb were talking. Steph looked at Séb turned around and walked back to the door but Sam blocked the door and Steph knew that she wasn’t getting out until she had listened to Séb but there was nothing more to say.

“What is going on? I want to leave now,” Steph said as she stood right in front of Sam.

“I’m sorry, sis, but you’re not leaving,” Sam said as she gestured for Steph to go back to the living room.

“You can’t keep me here against my will,” Steph raised her voice.

“Yes, I can and don’t you raise your voice,” Sam glanced at Steph.

“Why are you keeping me here?” Steph questioned Sam as she sat down.

“It is the only way we can make you listen and you have to listen because Séb,” Sam paused and looked at Séb and Carlos.

They just looked at each other without saying anything and Steph was losing her patience with them. Sam told her to listen but listen to what? There was nothing but silence in the room and it was driving her crazy.

“You said I have to listen because Séb and then you stopped. What about Séb? If you don’t speak up now, I will leave this room,” Steph looked at the three of them.

“Tell her,” Carlos demanded, looking at Séb.

“No, not yet. It’s not the right time,” Séb refused.

“You tell her or we will. Your choice,” Carlos glanced at him.

“Someone please tell me what is going on,” Steph yelled at them.

“I think we should leave, Carlos,” Sam signaled for them to leave.

“No, don’t leave. This is your room. I will leave,” Steph turned and walked towards the door.

Carlos and Sam looked at Séb with anger in their eyes and he knew that he had to tell her before she walked out of the door and maybe even his life. Just as Steph was about to open the door, she heard Séb’s voice.

“I love you,” Séb finally confessed.

Steph froze when she heard those words and she didn’t know what to do. She turned around and looked at him without saying anything because she didn’t know what to say. A lot of things were running through her head and she didn’t know how to process everything. She hadn’t heard those words in a very long time and hearing them now scared her.

“I think we should leave them alone for a while,” Sam whispered to Carlos who nodded his head in agreement.

They left the suite, leaving Séb and Steph alone to talk. Hopefully things would have changed when they got back.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Mon Sep 10, 2012 5:01 pm

Chapter 27

It had been five minutes since Carlos and Sam walked out of the suite and Steph still hadn’t said anything. The silence was killing Séb and he wondered if he had done the right thing in telling her how he felt. When he kissed her by the pool, he had the feeling that Steph felt the same way about him but could he have been wrong? Was he just imagining things? No, it was real and he needed to know how she felt.

“Could you please say something?” Séb enquired, looking at her.

“I don’t know what to say,” Steph replied as she felt the tears forming in her eyes.

“Is that a bad sign?” Séb asked, not sure what to think.

“No, it’s not a bad sign. It’s just a bit overwhelming right now. I never imagined hearing those words from you,” Steph answered, hoping he wouldn’t be mad at her.

“I can’t blame you for that. We didn’t really click when you first arrived in London and it was my fault because I took my frustration out on everyone but Melissa who was the one who had hurt me. Speaking of Melissa there is something I need to know. Do you believe me when I say that I didn’t kiss Melissa?” Séb asked, looking at her.

“Yes, I believe you. I’m sorry for not listening when you tried to tell me but it was just hard for me to see you with another woman like that. I understand if you can’t forgive me for doubting you,” Steph responded, looking down at the floor.

“Thanks to Sam, I understand how you felt seeing me with Melissa because it is what I would have felt if it had been you and Remy. Guess there is only one more thing I need to know. Do you love me?” Séb asked, walking towards her.

“Yes, I love you and I have loved you for a long time. You were the one thing that made my last years with my ex bearable,” Steph told him as the tears started to fall.

Now Séb was the one who didn’t know what to say. He had been an important part of Steph’s life for a long time and he was surprised to hear that. He was standing in front of her and he gently wiped her tears away as he looked into her eyes. It was the first time he had taken time to look deep into her eyes and he couldn’t believe how beautiful her eyes were. They were greyish blue with a tiny circle of green and gold/brown, something that could only be seen when you were close.

“You have got the most beautiful eyes I have ever seen,” Séb looked at her as his hand removed a strand of hair from her face.

“Thanks,” Steph smiled as she looked back at him.

“So, where do we go from here?” Séb whispered, touching her cheek.

“I guess we start dating like a real couple but I don’t want to rush into anything. I want to take things slow and get to know you, the real Séb,” Steph expressed her wishes, biting her lower lip.

“And by taking things slow you mean no sharing a room or bed?” Séb enquired, looking at her.

“Yes, that is what I mean,” Steph confirmed his question.

“I can live with that but what about cuddling, kissing, holding hands and stuff like that? Can we do that?” Séb asked, placing his arm around her waist.

“Maybe this will answer your question,” Steph whispered as she locked her hands around his neck before she placed a kiss on his lips.

“Yes, that did answer my question. Are you hungry, Cherie?” Séb asked after they broke from the kiss.

“Yes, I’m starving but where will you find something to eat now?” Steph asked, waiting for him to answer.

“Well, the hotel does have a 24 hours room service but it requires eating in a room and we just agreed on not sharing a room. Guess we have to eat separately tonight,” Séb laughed, thinking he was funny.

“You’re so annoying. When I said that we couldn’t share a room, I didn’t mean that we couldn’t eat together in one of the rooms,” Steph explained, rolling her eyes.

“Should we make it your room or mine?” Séb whispered in her ear, sending shivers down her spine.

“Your room. That way you get to walk me back to my room after dinner,” Steph answered with a smile.

“I like that idea,” Séb agreed as he took her hand.

They left the suite and walked to Séb’s room. Steph made herself comfortable and she called Sam to tell her that they could return to their suite while Séb called down to place the order. The girl informed him that food would be delivered within fifteen minutes. Séb hung up and joined Steph on the couch. It occurred to him that he hadn’t really heard much about her family and he wanted to know everything about his girlfriend. Steph told him about her family and he listened to every word she said. It sounded like she had a great family and he was looking forward to meeting them.

The food had arrived and they two of them were enjoying their late dinner. During dinner it was Séb’s turn to tell her about his family and Steph thought that she couldn’t wait to see Paris and meet Séb’s parents. She knew he was going to the anniversary and she really hoped it would be an opportunity to go to Paris but he had to invite her first. He still had time to do so if he wanted her to go with him. She just had to wait and see.

After dinner, Séb rolled the cart into the hallway before he walked Steph to her room. He really didn’t want her to stay in her own room but he respected her decision about taking things slow. If he pushed her too much, she would turn away from him and he couldn’t let that happen. As they reached Steph’s room, Séb pulled her close and kissed her softly. He wanted to feel her lips on his one more time before he said goodnight.

“I will see you tomorrow, cherie,” Séb said after they broke from the kiss.

“Yes, you will. Goodnight, Séb,” Steph promised, touching his cheek.

“Goodnight, cherie,” Séb said as he kissed her once more before he walked back to his own room.

Steph walked into her room and closed the door behind her. She couldn’t stop smiling as she got ready for bed. It had been a day filled with emotions but it turned out well in the end and she was now dating the man who had been holding her heart for a long time. Tomorrow was a new day and she couldn’t wait to find out what the day had in store for her.

*******

The last day in Dublin had arrived and they would be leaving Dublin right after lunch. They were all meeting for breakfast in the hotel restaurant and then they would have a few hours to themselves before they had to go to the airport. As the other Divos and their partners were arriving at the restaurant, Séb was getting ready to pick up Steph in her room. He couldn’t wait to see the looks on his brothers’ faces when he appeared with Steph by his side, although he had a feeling that they were expecting it. Séb grabbed his keycard from the table and left his suite, closing the door behind him.

Steph was running late and she had just come out of the shower when Séb knocked on the door. ‘Great! Séb is here and I am wearing a towel. Why couldn’t he be late in picking me up? Steph thought as she walked over to the door and opened it.

“Looking good this morning,” Séb said as his eyes looked at the towel.

“Stop drooling and close the door behind you,” Steph ordered, turning around to leave.

Séb walked into the suite and closed the door behind him as she had requested but he kept staring at the towel she was wearing, wondering what she was hiding underneath. He knew it would be a while before he would find out and he couldn’t wait to explore that part of her.

“I should get dressed. We will be late for breakfast,” Steph stated, looking at Séb.

“We are already late, Cherie and a few more minutes won’t hurt,” Séb winked as he cupped her head and softly kissed her.

As they kissed, his hand went down her to her shoulder and stopped when it reached the towel. He was really tempted to remove the towel from her body but he had made a promise to her and he was going to keep it. Séb knew it wouldn’t be easy but he wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize their relationship. He pulled away and told her to get dressed. Steph disappeared into the bedroom and returned a few minutes later.

Five minutes later they walked into the restaurant hand in hand and Steph felt like everyone was staring at them but she really didn’t mind. She was walking hand in hand with the man she loved and it was good to be with a man who wasn’t afraid to show his feelings in public.

“Sorry we are late,” Séb apologized to their friends, still holding Steph’s hand.

“That’s ok. Something you want to share with us?” Simon asked, looking at them.

“Steph and I are now dating,” Séb announced the good news.

“You certainly took your time in getting there but I’m happy for both of you,” Simon said with a smile.

They sat down and joined the others for breakfast. After breakfast, the couples wanted to take one last look at Dublin and do a little shopping before they had to leave and Simon told them to bring their luggage down to the lobby where Gillian would make sure it got to the airport. He also told them to be back at the hotel by noon as the cars would be waiting for them.

After bringing down their luggage to the lobby, the Divo couples left the hotel and went their separate ways. It was a nice day in Dublin and they all enjoyed their last day in Dublin. Steph and Séb were holding hands and kissing occasionally as they walked back into the hotel and this didn’t go over well with Melissa who was waiting for them in the hotel lobby. Séb sat down and pulled Steph onto his lap, unaware that Melissa was watching them closely. She watched as Steph got up and walked to the ladies room and Melissa knew this was her chance to make a new move on Séb. Melissa got up and walked over to Séb.

“What do you want?” Séb asked as he got up.

“I just wanted to say hello and continue where we left off last night,” Melissa replied, running her hand down his chest.

“Get your hands off him,” Steph suddenly said.

“Why should I listen to you?” Melissa asked, turning around to look at Steph.

“Séb is my boyfriend and I don’t like it when you touch him,” Steph replied.

“He is not your boyfriend, darling. Séb doesn’t love you. Open your eyes sweetie pie,” Melissa told her as she turned towards Séb who pulled away.

“Don’t call me sweetie pie and get out of here,” Steph angrily said.

“Who do you think you are?” Melissa questioned as she took a step towards Steph.

“I am Séb’s girlfriend and if you don’t get out of here right now, I will throw you out,” Steph warned her.

“You don’t have what it takes to do that,” Melissa dared her to do it.

Steph’s blood was boiling and without saying a word, Steph hit her hard in the face and Melissa went down. She looked up at Steph as blood was running from her nose and just smiled. Steph was about to hit her again when Séb grabbed her and tried to hold her back.

“That’s enough, Cherie. I think she got the point,” Séb whispered, hoping it would calm her down.

A security guard arrived and escorted Melissa out of the hotel as Séb was still holding Steph. He was afraid to let go of her because he knew she would run after Melissa. The other couples arrived at the hotel and they all wondered what had happened until they saw Séb holding Steph. They walked over to them and Séb filled them in on what had happened. Needless to say they were all proud of Steph for hitting Melissa and somehow they didn’t think that Melissa would ever show her face around them again.

The cars arrived shortly after to take them to the airport and as soon as they were on the plane, Steph asked for some ice for her hand. It was hurting but it felt good to hit Melissa and it was worth the pain. She would do it again if she had to.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Wed Sep 19, 2012 2:33 pm

Chapter 28

----- Three weeks later -----

The Divos' had been back in London for three weeks and it had been three weeks of interviews, performances and rehearsals for the upcoming tour. Simon had approved a week off as the guys had things to do. Séb would be leaving for Paris to attend his parents’ anniversary, Carlos would be going home to Spain for his mother’s birthday. David, meanwhile, wanted to show Carla his hometown, and Urs and Alyssa would be going home to Urs’ parents to relax but for now, Simon’s wedding had first priority.

Yes, Simon had finally proposed to Gillian and she had accepted. Simon was surprised when Gillian told him that she wanted a simple wedding at sea, surrounded by their closest friends and family but he didn’t mind. The dress code would be casual clothes and the ceremony would take place on Simon’s own yacht, followed by dinner at his place.

The day had finally arrived and after a beautiful but simple ceremony at sea, they all returned to Simon’s place to celebrate the happy couple. Simon’s speech to Gillian was beautiful and he had arranged for the Divos to perform a song that had been written for this occasion. After dinner, it was time for dancing and the couples all walked to the dance floor.

“As you know I’m going to Paris in a few days and I will be gone for four days but I can’t stand the thought of not having you with me. What I am saying is that I want you to join me in Paris and I will show you my town and my favorite places,” Séb explained, hoping she would say yes.

“I thought you would never ask,” Steph said with a smile.

“Is that a yes?” Séb asked, looking at her.

“Of course it’s a yes. I’ve always wanted to see Paris and now I get to see it with you,” Steph replied.

Séb was thrilled to hear those words coming from Steph and he couldn’t think of anyone he would rather share four days in Paris with. He looked deep into her eyes and he wanted to do something special for her. They had been dating for three weeks and Séb was ready to take their relationship to a new level because he was sure that Steph was the woman he wanted to be with. Hopefully she felt the same way as him but if she wasn’t ready to take the next step, he would wait until she was ready.

The wedding party ended right after midnight and after saying goodbye to each other, the Divo couples left the party to go home. Carlos and Sam would be spending the night at Sam’s place and they got into the car with Séb and Steph. After stopping the car, the two couples got out and walked to the apartment where Carlos and Sam said goodbye to Séb before going into the apartment, closing the door behind them.

“We’ve been dating for three weeks now but we haven’t had a real date yet and I want to change that. I want us to have dinner at my place tomorrow at seven pm,” Séb said, holding her hands.

“Dinner at your place sounds great and I can’t wait,” Steph smiled at him.

“I can’t wait either and I promise you it will be the best date you’ve ever had,” Séb told her, touching her cheek.

“I’ve never had a date before and no matter what you come up with, it will be the best date ever for me,” Steph informed him.

“Oh, then I will make it extra special. I will see you tomorrow night then,” Séb pulled Steph close and kissed her softly.

He said goodbye and left. As Steph walked into the apartment and closed the door, she thought of what to wear at dinner the next evening. She had a dress in her closet but she had never worn it and maybe her dinner date with Séb would be the perfect occasion for wearing the dress. Steph turned off the lights and walked into her bedroom and after taking care of her business, she climbed into bed.

******

It was almost seven pm when Séb had finished getting dressed for his dinner with Steph. After trying on several suits, he decided on the same white suit he had worn at Simon’s birthday party. He felt comfortable in that suit and he didn’t want to wear a tie since he was having dinner at home. Séb took one final look at himself in the mirror before walking into the dining room where he made sure that everything was ready for his date. He had just lit the candles when he heard the doorbell.

He walked to the door and took a deep breath before he opened it. Séb smiled at Steph as he stepped aside and let her in. As soon as she was inside, she removed her jacket and Séb stared at her without saying a word.

He just kept staring at her and Steph smiled because she got the reaction she had hoped for. ‘How the hell am I supposed to get through dinner when she is wearing that?’ Séb asked himself as he looked at her.



“Earth to Sébastien,” Steph teased him by saying.

“Wow. You look absolutely stunning,” Séb finally managed to speak.

“Thank you. You don’t look bad yourself. That suit looks good on you,” Steph said as she looked at the open shirt he was wearing.

Steph couldn’t help it. She loved it when he wore his shirt open and she also loved him in white. He was perfect in every way. Séb placed his arm around her waist and pulled her close as he softly placed his lips on hers. His hand touched her back and it was sending shivers of delight through Steph’s body. Séb broke the kiss and led her into the dining room where he pulled out a chair to her. As soon as she was seated, he poured two glasses of champagne and handed her one before he sat down across from her.

They enjoyed their dinner and talked about the trip to Paris. Séb couldn’t wait to introduce Steph to his parents and he knew they would love her. After dinner, Séb told Steph to wait for him in the living room and he would be with her soon. Séb cleared the table and put on some coffee before he put the dishes in the dishwasher. As the coffee was done, Séb poured two cups and joined Steph in the living room.

“Are you still sure you want to come with me to my parents’ anniversary?” Séb asked, taking off his jacket.

“Of course I’m sure. Why do you ask?” Steph responded, looking at him.

“I was just thinking that Remy will be there,” Séb replied, sipping his coffee.

“I’m not letting him stop me from spending time with you. And could we please not talk about Remy? It’s our first real date and I don’t want to talk about your brother,” Steph firmly stated, touching his cheek.

“You’re right, Cherie. We shouldn’t talk about him,” Séb agreed as he rose from the couch, holding out his hand to Steph.

“What?” Steph asked as she put her hand in his.

“I want to dance with you,” Séb smiled as he pulled her up.

He pulled her close and they danced, wrapped in each other’s arms and it seemed like the world around them had disappeared. Séb looked deep into her eyes kissing her softly and he ran his hands down her back as he deepened the kiss. Steph was lost in the kiss and she didn’t sense anything around her. It was like she was under some kind of spell, unable to move or do anything but surrender to him. Séb’s hands kept wandering down her body until he stopped at the part of her leg that wasn’t covered by a dress. His hand grabbed the fabric and slowly pulled it up as Steph’s hands began to unbutton his shirt.

Steph continued to unbutton his shirt and she could feel what her touch was doing to Séb. After unbuttoning his shirt, she moved her hands up his chest to his shoulders where she pushed the shirt off him and dropped it on the floor. As she ran her hands down his chest, Séb closed his eyes and welcomed the feelings that Steph’s touch sent through his body. No woman had ever made him feel like this just by touching him and he knew that he would soon have to release the passion that was building up inside of him. He opened his eyes as he felt her breath near his ear.

“Make me yours,” Steph whispered in his ear.

Séb didn’t need to hear those words twice and he took her hand before he turned out the lights and led Steph into the bedroom. He closed the door behind them before he pulled her into his arms and kissed her deeply. Steph unzipped his pants and Séb took them off before he continued what he had started in the living room and shortly after, Steph’s dress dropped to the floor and Séb looked at the beautiful creation in front of him. As soon as all of their clothes were removed, Séb picked her up and carried her over to the bed.

He began kissing her passionately and Steph closed her eyes as Séb’s hands explored her body. Steph had never been touched with such tenderness and she felt like she was floating on a cloud. As Séb continued his quest, Steph ran her hands up his back and the passion was building up between them. Séb knew how to make Steph feel like a woman and he took her on the journey that would bring both of them together as one. Steph could do nothing but give in to him and it was the most passionate lovemaking she had ever had. He was sweet and gentle which made it even more special.

They continued on their journey until they reached their final destination. Séb looked at her and he could see that she was overwhelmed by what had just happened. He kissed her softly on the lips as he rolled onto his back, pulling her with him. They didn’t say anything because no words were needed. The love they had just shared said everything there was to say. Steph snuggled up to him and he held her close for the rest of the night.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Mon Sep 24, 2012 10:51 am

Chapter 29

It was almost 4 am and still dark outside when Séb woke up alone in his king sized bed. He looked around the bedroom and saw Steph standing by the window, looking out into the night. She seemed a thousand miles away and it made him wonder if she had any regrets about spending the night with him. He rose from the bed and walked over to her and placed his arms around her waist as he softly kissed her neck.

“Are you alright, Cherie?” he softly asked.

“I’m fine, Sébastien,” Steph replied, wiping a tear off her cheek before looking at him.

“You’re wiping tears away and that tells me that you’re not fine. Are you having second thoughts about us?” he enquired, hoping the answer would be no.

“No, I’m not having second thoughts. Last night was amazing but it was just overwhelming. Nobody has ever made me feel so loved and I got scared,” Steph answered his question, letting out a sigh.

“I had no idea. You deserve to be loved like that, Cherie, and I swear to you that I will love you like that forever,” Séb promised her, wiping her tears away.

“I love you, Sébastien,” Steph said, locking her hands around his neck.

“I love you too, Cherie, and I know that we have to get up early for breakfast at David’s place but I want to show you how much I love you,” Séb placed his lips on hers, searching her mouth with his tongue.

Steph opened up to him and the kiss became deeper and more passionate. Séb broke the kiss and lifted her into his arms before he carried her back to the bed where he would show her once more how much she meant to him. Slowly, he unwrapped the bed sheet that she had wrapped around her body and he took time in looking at her body. Gazing up into his emerald green eyes, she couldn't believe that this wonderful man was hers; in more ways than one.

Now, with the sheet tossed to the floor, Seb's lips left her mouth and travelled slowly down her body until he came to her breasts. He gently sucked on one, while kneading the other, causing her to moan to delight. Gosh, what this man was doing to her; she was becoming lost in his touch, his exploration of her body brought her such pleasure that she had never experienced before.

Séb kept exploring her body as he kissed her all the way down to her belly where he stopped for a few seconds before he continued his quest. As he reached the most intimate part of her body, he let his tongue explore that area and he knew what he was doing. It didn’t take long for Steph to reach the point where she had to stop him.

"Séb, I want to see you," she managed to moan.

"You are seeing me," his right hand cupped her breast.

"No, I mean I want to see you," she repeated.

Séb looked at her, wondering what she meant, until it suddenly occurred to him that she wanted to see the part of him that every other Siren could only imagine. With a smile on his face, Séb pulled back and laid on his back and folded his hands behind his head and let her explore his manhood. Now she could get a good view of all of him and she let her eyes scan the gorgeous body lying there in front of her. He could tell from the look on Steph's face that she wanted to touch it; hold him in her hands.

"It's not a snake, it won't bite," he joked.

"I know that but it's yours," she said, not breaking her gaze.

"Now it's part yours, I own it as its on my body but so do you as it has given you such delight," he took her hand and placed it on his manhood.

Steph couldn't believe it. Her hand was on his most intimate part and she felt stupid because she wasn’t sure of what to do with it. In her marriage with Mark, he had never let her touch him like that and she didn’t have a lot of experience in that area. Her biggest fear was that Séb would think she was a complete idiot if she told him.

"Stroke it," he whispered, looking into her eyes.

"Can we take this slow?" she asked, hoping he wouldn’t be upset with her.

"You are holding it in your hand; I think slow has left the building," he smiled at her.

"I know but I’m not really sure of what to do. You may laugh and think that I’m weird but my ex wouldn’t let me touch him like this so I don’t have a lot of experience. I will need you to help me,” Steph said softly looking into Seb's eyes.

“I’m not going to laugh and I don’t think you’re weird. I think you are brave for telling me,” Séb told her.

Séb slowly put his hand around hers and began helping her stroke him up and down in a slow rhythm she could feel his manhood standing proud. She could tell he was more than ready to love her. She explored a bit further and found his scrotum and began to softly squeeze them. Seb was at the point he couldn't wait to be inside her and feel her wet hot tunnel, he reached down and began to stroke her clit in tiny circles, as he watched her close her eyes, as the feeling of an orgasm became more then she could stand. She had never actually experienced a real full on orgasm with anyone she had relations with.

Soon they were back together on the bed and Seb leaning over her touching and playing with her womanhood, he waited till her first orgasm ended and then plunged his hard manhood into her and began thrusting as they found a rhythm, they both groan each other’s name as they came together. Seb could feel her tightly milk him dry, and then when he was sated he collapsed on top of her then moved a bit to make her more comfortable, as her aftershocks and his began to calm.

After an hour of passionate love making, Séb rolled onto his back, pulling Steph with him. She rested her head on his chest and Séb took her hand and kissed it before he let his fingers entwine with hers.

“I love you, Cherie,” Séb whispered, kissing her forehead.

“I love you too, Séb,” Steph whispered back.

Wrapped in each other’s arms, they slowly drifted off to sleep. Two people content to be in their own world of love and passion, a world they had created together as a couple.

Steph woke up a few hours later and she looked at Séb who was still sleeping. She couldn’t resist the urge to touch his face and she gently outlined every inch of his face before she placed a soft kiss on his lips that woke him up.

“Good morning. Did you sleep well?” Séb asked.

“Fantastic,” Steph replied with a smile.

"So did I and I wouldn’t mind staying in bed all day but David will be disappointed if we don’t show,” Séb told her as he held her close.

“I know that and it will be the last time we will see for the next two weeks,” Steph told him with a smile.

“Two weeks? Simon has only given us one week off or is there something you want to tell me?” Séb asked as he looked into her eyes.

“Well, I’ve asked him for another week off because I want to go back to Copenhagen and visit my parents. Now that you’re taking me to Paris to meet your parents, I thought you would like to meet my parents,” Steph replied, biting her lip.

“You are beautiful when you are nervous and I would love to meet your family,” Séb kissed her.

“Great. They are looking forward to meeting you and now I need a shower,” Steph smiled, slipping out of Séb’s embrace.

Séb watched as she walked out of the bedroom and he wanted to join her in the bathroom but he knew it was a bad idea. They had a busy day ahead of them as they would be leaving for Paris the next morning. Séb got out of bed and put on his boxers before walking into the kitchen to make a cup of coffee. Yes, they would be going to David’s for breakfast but Séb still had to get some coffee before his shower. Steph came out of the bathroom and joined him in the kitchen where Séb handed her a cup of coffee and kissed her before he disappeared into the bathroom.

Half an hour later they left Séb’s apartment and drove off to spend the morning with their friends.

**********

“Welcome back to Paris, monsieur Izambard,” Keith Morris said as he reached out his hand to Remy.

“Thank you, Keith. You’re looking well,” Remy shook his hand.

Keith Morris had been with the Izambard family for the last 30 years and he was working as both limo driver and butler. He loved working for Bernard and Arienne Izambard and they had always treated him like a part of the family, never as a servant. Keith was married and he lived with his wife, Céleste, in a guest house close to the Izambard estate. They had one son, Lucien, who was married and lived with his family in Nice. Lucien and the Izambard brothers grew up together and they had always treated him like a brother.

“How was your flight?” Keith enquired as they walked to the car.

“It’s was ok but I’m a bit tired. I can’t sleep on a plane,” Remy answered, letting out a yawn.

“Well, you will have plenty of time to rest and your old bedroom is ready for you,” Keith informed as they put the baggage in the trunk.

They got into the car and drove off to the Izambard estate. Remy was nervous about seeing his parents again because of what had been said between them five years ago. He reached into his bag and took out a bottle of water and something that looked like a pill box. Remy took out two pills and swallowed them, followed by a sip of water.

“I’ve got a headache,” Remy explained, hoping that Keith would believe him.

Remy didn’t want anyone to know the truth, at least not yet. It would have to wait until after the anniversary as he didn’t want to ruin his parent’s big day. As they drove to the estate, Remy told Keith about what he had been doing since he left Paris but he didn’t mention his arguments with Séb. Their arguments were their own private business and there was no need to tell other people what had happened with him and Séb in London.

The car drove up the driveway and Remy became even more nervous when Keith stopped the car in front of the house. What would he say to his parents? How would they greet him? Would they be happy to see him after all these years? Thoughts were running through his head as he got out of the car and walked up to the door. A part of him wanted to get back into the car and go back to the airport but he didn’t want to run away again. Taking a deep breath, Remy knocked on the door and walked inside.

As he entered the hallway, Remy took a look around and a lot of memories entered his mind. His thoughts were interrupted by Céleste who walked into the hallway and greeted him with kisses on his cheeks.

“Welcome home. Your parents are in the garden,” Céleste informed him.

“Thank you, Céleste. You look beautiful as always,” Remy said with a smile.

“No, I don’t but thanks. Keith and I will bring your bags to your room,” Céleste smiled back.

Remy winked at her before he walked towards the garden. The walk to the garden seemed to take forever and he had never been so nervous in his entire life. He stopped for a few seconds before he took the final step and stepped into the garden where he was met by the family dog, Chester. As he was greeting Chester, he heard a noise and he looked up to see his parents standing in front of him.

They just looked at each other without saying anything and it made Remy feel uncomfortable. He wondered if he had done the right thing in accepting the invitation because it didn’t seem like he was welcome. Why did they invite him to their anniversary if he wasn’t welcome? Did they only invite him because he was their son and they felt obligated to invite him? No, they wouldn’t do something like that. They had invited him because they wanted him to be there.

“Bonjour maman et papa,” Remy spoke up, waiting for his parents to respond.

********

The Divo couples had all arrived at David’s place and they were enjoying their breakfast. They were all happy to hear that Steph had arranged for one more week off, mostly because the tour would be starting soon and they wouldn’t have time to visit their families.

“I know you probably don’t want to talk about this but will Remy be at the party?” David asked Séb as they were clearing the table.

“Maman called me the other day and told me that he would be there. I told her not to tell Remy that Stephanie was coming with me,” Séb responded.

“Do you think he will cause problems?” Carlos joined the conversation.

“No, I don’t think he will. Remy would never do that to our parents,” Séb replied, putting the dishes away.

“You know it won’t be easy for him to see you and Stephanie together as a couple. Even if he didn’t show it, he did have feelings for her,” Carlos continued.

“I know he did and he might even have loved her but she turned him down and he has to accept that. I told her what kind of man he was but the decision was hers and hers alone,” Séb said.

“You’re right about that. You’ve got a strong woman there, Séb,” Urs smiled, padding him on the shoulder.

“Yes, I do and I will never let her go,” Séb agreed with a smile.

The Divos returned to the living room and they all had a great time until they had to go home and pack for their trips. David and Carla would be leaving in the evening and the other couples were all leaving the next morning and they couldn’t wait to spend time with their families.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Wed Oct 03, 2012 3:44 pm

Chapter 30

“I wasn’t expecting to see you here,” Bernard said, staring at Remy.

“Why? I received an invitation to your anniversary and here I am,” Remy told his dad.

Bernard didn’t say anything and Arienne looked at the two of them. She could see the anger in their eyes as the two men stared at each other and she wondered if things would ever get back to normal. Arienne wanted to hug her son because she had missed him but she knew that Bernard wouldn’t allow it.

“You did receive an invitation but we didn’t think that you would accept it,” Bernard finally spoke.

“Now I get it. You sent me the invitation because you thought that I wouldn’t accept it, didn’t you? Well, I will make it easy for both of you and don’t worry. I won’t show my face here again,” Remy angrily said before he walked back inside.

“I knew it was a mistake to invite him,” Bernard told his wife.

“That’s enough, Bernard. He is our son and I miss him. We all said a lot of things that shouldn’t have been said but I refuse to be stuck in the past. Corinna has moved on with her life and we should too,” Arienne expressed her feelings.

“What he did was wrong and you know it but you’re right. We’ve lost five years and I don’t want to lose more,” Bernard agreed.

Arienne watched as her husband walked into the house and she hoped that Remy would listen to his father and stay with them. They had a lot of catching up to do and she wanted the family to be together for the anniversary. She poured herself a glass of wine and sat down, thinking back to the times when Remy and Séb were kids. It made her smile but she was still worried about what would happen when they met each other again after five years. All she could do was to hope that they could become friends and brothers again. Suddenly she heard footsteps and she turned around to Bernard standing there alone and she broke into tears. She had lost her youngest son.

**********

Sam and Steph had arrived at their apartment and Sam was dying to ask Steph one question but she wouldn’t do it with the others around. Steph disappeared into the bedroom to change out of the clothes she was wearing and she came out wearing a top and a pair of jeans. Sam handed her a cup of tea and the two friends walked into the living room to relax a bit before they had to pack.

“How was dinner?” Sam asked, sipping her tea.

“It’s was great,” Steph replied with a smile.

“It must have been more than great since you haven’t been sleeping here,” Sam winked at her.

“What makes you think that I haven’t slept here?” Steph questioned, looking at her.

“Come on, sis! The clothes you wore at breakfast were Séb’s and that means that you spend the night at his place,” Sam responded with a big smile.

“You’re right. I did spend the night at his place but it wasn’t planned. It just happened and it felt right. The dress I wore last night was not really suitable for breakfast at David’s so I had to borrow some of Séb’s clothes,” Steph admitted with a smile.

“How was it?” Sam asked, knowing that Steph wouldn’t tell her.

“I won’t tell you that. All I can tell you is that he knows how to make a woman feel loved,” Steph answered.

They continued to talk for a while about travelling with the guys to meet their families and Sam was excited about meeting Carlos’ parents. From what he had told her, they seemed like they were very nice. Steph on the other hand was a bit worried about going to Paris but it had nothing to do with Séb’s parents. Her problem was Remy and how he would react to her and Séb being together. After talking for about half an hour, they walked into their bedrooms to start packing.

************

“Why are you crying?” Bernard asked his wife as he held her in his arms.

“I’ve lost, no we’ve lost our youngest son,” Arienne cried.

“No, we haven’t. He is upstairs in his old room unpacking his bags,” Bernard said, pulling away.

“What? He is still here?” she looked at him.

“Yes, he is still here and he will be down soon,” Bernard smiled at her.

Arienne let out a sigh of relief when she heard those words coming from her husband. She wanted for them to be a family again but she also knew that Séb and Remy didn’t get along because of what had happened with Corinna. Unaware of the affair between Remy and Melissa and the fact that Remy was interested in Steph, she had high hopes for the reunion of the Izambard brothers and the future.

“It’s good to be home,” Remy suddenly said.

“It’s good to have you here again,” Arienne smiled as she hugged her son.

“Yes, it is good to have you back. Now let’s sit down and talk. We have a lot of catching up to do,” Bernard said as the gestured for Remy to take a seat.

Bernard poured a glass of wine for Remy but he declined and asked for a soda. Alcohol didn’t go well with his pills and drinking wine would make him dizzy. They talked about what he had been up to for the last five years and they both listened as he told them everything, well almost everything. He told them that he had met Séb a few times but he didn’t tell them about their arguments.

“Sébastien will be here tomorrow and he is bringing his new girlfriend. She sounds like a sweet girl and he is really in love with her,” Arienne told Remy.

“I’m happy for him. With everything that has happened between us it may sound strange but I mean it,” Remy said.

“The beginning of their relationship was a bit rough as they didn’t get along but they worked it out,” Arienne said as she sipped her wine.

“What’s her name?” Remy asked.

“Stephanie Petersen. She is their PA,” Arienne answered.

Remy didn’t say anything. He wasn’t shocked about the news as he had been expecting it but he knew it would be strange seeing them together. Whatever people may think, he really did like Steph a lot but when he thought about it, her heart had already been taken when he met her. Remy finished his soda and excused himself. He was tired and needed some rest. Bernard and Arienne watched him leave and they both felt that something wasn’t right and hopefully he would tell them later.

Once he was in his room, Remy lay down on the bed and his mind drifted back to his final encounter with Séb and Steph. He knew that he had been wrong about hitting his brother in Dublin but Séb had no right to interfere with something that had nothing to do with him. Remy couldn’t believe that he had almost hit Steph in anger but he would get a chance to apologize to her when she arrived the next day. He closed his eyes and drifted off to sleep, wondering what would happen the next day.

*********

Séb had returned to his apartment and he was in his bedroom packing for his trip to Paris but it was with mixed emotions. He was looking forward to spending time with Steph, showing her around in Paris and introducing her to his parents but at the same time he was worried about Remy. Séb knew that Remy had strong feelings for Steph and he knew that it might be difficult for Remy to see them together but it really wasn’t his problem. Remy had his chance with Steph but he blew it and now she was with Séb.

His mind drifted back to the day when he saw the name Stephanie Petersen for the first time on the application and that was the day he decided to hate her without even knowing her. When she walked into the room at Sony BMG, he despised her because she was a woman but today he was happy that she was a woman. Suddenly he realized that he should be thanking the guys for choosing Steph as their PA instead of the one Séb wanted. He smiled to himself as he closed his suitcase.

Séb picked up the suitcase and carried it into the hallway where he put it down. He took out his phone and sent a message to Carlos saying that he would be leaving within a few minutes. Séb took one final look around the apartment to make sure that he hadn’t forgotten anything before he picked up the suitcase and walked out of the door. As he left the apartment building he received a message from Carlos saying that he would be ready when Séb arrived. After putting his suitcase in the trunk of the car, Séb got into the car and drove off. Carlos was standing outside of his apartment building waiting when Séb arrived and after putting his suitcase in the car, the two Divos drove off to their final destination of the day.

**********

Steph and Sam had finished packing and Sam was sitting in the living room while Steph was having a shower, Sam and Steph had invited Séb, Carlos, Urs and Alyssa to join them for dinner but Urs had cancelled because Alyssa wasn’t feeling well. The girls were sorry to hear about Alyssa being sick but there was nothing they could do about it and spending an evening with Séb and Carlos wasn’t bad. The plan was to order some food and just have a good time.

Steph had just come out of the shower when she heard the doorbell. She prayed that Sam would keep both of them in the living room while she finished getting dressed. Steph wrapped a towel around her body before she walked into the bedroom where she found Séb waiting for her. She froze as Séb walked over to her and cupped her face as he whispered bonsoir. His lips made contact with hers and Steph locked her hands around his neck.

“I will let you get dressed,” Séb said after he broke the kiss.

“Thank you,” Steph smiled at him.

Séb kissed her once more before he left her bedroom and Steph finished getting dressed. Ten minutes later she joined the others in the living room and Séb pulled her onto his lap. Sam and Carlos looked at each other as they exchanged smiles. Both of them were happy to see Séb and Steph together and there was no doubt that the love between them was strong. Nothing, not even Remy, would be able to split them up.

After talking for a few minutes, they decided to order some Chinese food and stay in. Carlos and Séb picked up the food as Steph and Sam set the table. Ten minutes later the guys returned with the food and they enjoyed spending the evening together, just talking and watching movies. After clearing the table and doing the dishes, the two couples retired to the bedrooms for some private time.

“What are you thinking of, Cherie?” Séb asked, holding Steph tight.

“I’m thinking of your brother,” Steph replied with a smile.

“I really don’t think that’s funny, Cherie. You are in my arms, thinking about my brother,” Séb repeated, looking at her.

“It’s not like that. I’m just worried about his reaction when he sees us together,” Steph explained.

“He won’t be happy about it but I don’t think he will make a scene. Remy does a lot of stupid things but he won’t do that,” Séb told her, kissing her forehead.

“Well, I’m still worried,” Steph looked at him.

“Let’s see if I can do something to chase your fears away,” Séb winked at her.

He found her lips and kissed her deeply, taking them to their own little world where nothing existed, except for Steph and Séb.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Mon Oct 08, 2012 7:02 pm

Chapter 31

Carla and David were on their way to Denver and would be there at about 3am. David didn’t want to wake up his parents when they arrived so he had booked a room at the hotel by the airport. Carla had been sleeping but woke up when she heard a voice saying they would be landing in Denver soon. She stretched her body and looked at David who had a smile on his face.

“What?” she asked.

“You just look beautiful when you are sleeping,” David replied, placing a kiss on her forehead.

“Thank you, babe. The first thing I want to do when we get to the hotel is to take a long shower,” Carla said as she looked at David, tilting her head.

He knew that look and suddenly he couldn’t wait to be alone with her. It had been a long flight and he wanted a shower and something to eat. David had already made all of the necessary arrangements for food and drinks so all they had to do was just enjoy being together.

Twenty minutes later they got off the plane and they walked to the baggage reclaim to get their bags. After they had gotten their bags they walked into the arrival hall where they were met by a driver from the hotel. He took their bags and placed them in a trunk before taking David and Carla to the hotel. Ten minutes later they arrived at the hotel and after checking in, they walked to their room.

Carla wanted a shower and she walked into the bathroom. She had just finished getting undressed when there was a knock on the door. She could hear David talking to someone and shortly after the door was closed and locked.

“Dinner is served, babe,” David said, opening the bathroom door.

“But I want a shower,” Carla complained, putting on a towel.

“If you join me now for dinner, I swear that I will join you later in the shower,” David promised with a smile on his face.

“You’re really smooth, Miller. But I am hungry so you’ve got a deal,” Carla agreed as she walked over to him.

He took her hand and led her into the dining room. They sat down and enjoyed their food and talked about the next day. Carla was looking forward to meeting David’s parents but she was also a bit nervous. After they had finished their dinner, David rolled the cart into the hallway and locked the door. He turned to look at Carla who was still wearing a towel and he slowly walked over to her and took her hand.

David placed a kiss on her lips before leading her into the bathroom. He turned on the water and let the water heat up the tiles while he took off his clothes. David pulled Carla into his arms and kissed her softly on the neck as he removed the towel she was wearing. It dropped to the floor and David led her into the shower where they took time in exploring each other’s bodies.

After the shower, David dried both of them off before he picked her up and carried her to the bedroom where he gently laid her down on the bed. He joined her and shortly after they were making love.

*******

Urs and Alyssa were getting ready to leave when Alyssa suddenly disappeared into the bathroom. She was still not feeling well and Urs was really concerned about her. Alyssa was really pale when she walked into the living room and Urs suggested postponing the trip to Switzerland until she was feeling better but she told him no. She was really stubborn and Urs knew when to argue and when not to.

They left the apartment and Alyssa got into the car while Urs put their bags in the trunk. Urs looked at Alyssa as he got into the car and he hoped she would feel better when they arrived in Switzerland. He hoped that his mom would be able to convince Alyssa to pay a visit to the doctor because he knew what would happen if he asked her to do it. She would tell him to stop worrying about her and just enjoy his vacation but how could he enjoy the vacation when she was sick?

Urs parked the car and they walked into the airport. As they were waiting at the check in counter, Alyssa felt a little better and Urs hoped that it had just been one of those 24 hours bug. After checking in they walked to one of the cafes to get a cup of coffee and just relax before they had to board the plane. An hour later they walked to the gate and soon after they were on their way to Switzerland.

About two hours later they arrived in Switzerland and as they walked into the arrival hall they were met by Urs’ dad, Didier. He hugged both of them and he helped Urs with the bags as they walked to the car. They drove off and Urs enjoyed being back in Switzerland. He couldn’t wait to ride his bike through the mountains and spend his time with Alyssa. Didier stopped the car in front of the house and Urs turned to look at Alyssa and he found her sleeping. He didn’t have the heart to wake her up and after asking his dad to take care of their bags, Urs carried Alyssa into the house and up to their bedroom. Urs lay her down on the bed and kissed her softly before walking downstairs to greet his mom.

“Is Alyssa alright?” Arlette asked her son as they were having ice tea.

“I don’t know. She has been sick since yesterday but at the airport she seemed fine. I think she is just tired from the trip,” Urs replied.

“She should see the doctor. I will call him and ask him to make a house call,” Arlette said before leaving.

Urs and Didier looked at each other and they knew there was nothing to do. When Arlette Buhler had made up her mind about something there was nothing anyone could do to change her mind. Arlette returned and told Urs that the doctor would be there an hour later to check on Alyssa. Urs kissed Arlette’s cheek before he joined his wife upstairs. Alyssa was still sleeping when Urs walked into the bedroom and he opened his suitcase and took out some clothes before he walked into the bathroom for a shower.

Alyssa woke up when Urs was in the bathroom and with a smile she rose from the bed. She walked into the bathroom where she undressed before joining Urs in the shower. He jumped when he felt her arms around him.

“Did I scare you?” she whispered.

“Yes, you did. I thought you were sleeping,” Urs responded as he turned around and looked at her.

“I was sleeping but then I heard this beautiful voice singing in the bathroom,” Alyssa said, running her hand down his chest.

“What are you up to, Mrs. Buhler?” Urs asked as he touched her face.

“I think you already know that,” she giggled, looking down.

Without saying a word he wrapped his arms around her as he kissed her deeply. The passion was building fast and the heat coming from the water was nothing compared to the heat coming from their bodies. Both of them knew exactly where to touch each other and it didn’t take long for them to reach climax. After they managed to get their breathing under control they dried themselves off and got dressed before they walked downstairs.

**********

After having breakfast, the other two Divo couples left for the airport together. Their planes left Heathrow almost at the same time and both couples were looking forward to their vacations. They agreed to meet at Cafe Nero after checking in and getting through security. After spending about twenty minutes at the check in counter, the two Divo couples met at the café and ordered something to drink. Half an hour later they were on their way to the gates and they said goodbye to each other.

Sam and Carlos boarded the plane and shortly after the plane left Heathrow Airport. The flight time was almost three hours and Sam decided to get some writing done. She had decided to stop writing books but she still had a lot of ideas for short stories and she wanted to work on those. While Sam was writing stories, Carlos decided to get some sleep.

The plane arrived in Madrid on time but the baggage was delayed. Carlos called his mother and informed her that they would be late but he would call her when they left the airport. Forty minutes later they left the airport and Carlos hailed a cab and gave the address to the cab driver. Sam had never been in Spain before but she felt like she had been living there all of her life. It seemed like home to her and she wouldn’t mind living here one day with Carlos.

“What are you thinking of, querida?” Carlos enquired, holding her hand.

“I was just thinking of the future,” Sam replied with a smile.

Carlos kissed her hand and smiled back at her. He had been thinking about the future too and he knew that he wanted to spend his life with Sam. The cab stopped in front of a big house and they got out of the car while the cab driver took their baggage out of the trunk. Carlos paid the cab driver before they picked up their baggage and walked to the door. Sam couldn’t wait to meet Luciana and Enrique Marin, the two people who had been responsible for bringing Carlos into the world.
He opened the door and let Sam enter before he walked inside himself. Sam looked around the house and she felt at home right away. Carlos put down the baggage and put his arm around Sam before they walked into the living room where Carlos’ parents were waiting for them. Luciana walked over to them and she hugged Carlos before turning to Sam.

“Welcome Sam. I’m Luciana and it’s a pleasure to meet you,” she said, hugging Sam.

“Thank you. I feel at home already,” Sam replied with a smile.

Luciana smiled at her as Enrique hugged his son. Sam watched the two men and there was no doubt where Carlos had gotten his good looks from. Enrique was a very charming man and he looked like a man who took care of himself.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you. My son has excellent taste,” Enrique said, extending his hand to Sam.

“Thank you. So does his dad,” Sam smiled, shaking his hand.

“Your old room is ready. Is it ok for the two of you to be in the same room,” Luciana questioned, looking at them.

“Yes, mom. Sharing a room is not a problem,” Carlos replied, wiggling his eyebrows.

“I am your mother, Carlos. The wiggling eyebrows don’t work on me,” Luciana reminded him.

“Well, it was worth a try. I think we need to freshen up a bit before lunch,” Carlos said, looking at Sam who just nodded her head in agreement.

“Good idea. I will tell Esperanza to start lunch,” Luciana smiled and left.

**********

Séb and Steph had arrived in Paris and Steph had a bad feeling about being there. She tried not to show it but Séb wasn’t stupid. He knew exactly what was going on in her head and she had no reason to worry. After they got their baggage they walked outside and waited for Keith to pick them up. As they stood there in front of the airport, Steph remembered that she didn’t have a dress for the party and she would have to do some shopping.

“Stephanie Petersen. Are you listening to me?” Séb suddenly asked.

“I’m sorry. I was far away,” Steph apologized to him.

“You were thinking of him again, weren’t you?” Séb questioned, not hiding that he was hurt.

“No, I wasn’t thinking of your brother but I am now that you mention him. All I was thinking of is that I don’t have a dress for tomorrow night,” Steph responded, hurt by his question.

“I’m sorry, Cherie. I shouldn’t have said that,” Séb apologized, putting his arm around her waist.

“No, you shouldn’t have said it,” Steph agreed, looking at him.

Séb stepped in front of her and pulled her into a kiss. Just as his lips were about to make contact, he heard a familiar voice. Séb let go of Steph and turned around to see Keith standing there with a big smile on his face. He walked over to them and greeted Séb before turning to Steph.

“You must be the woman who has stolen our dear Séb’s heart. My name is Keith,” he said, extending his hand.

“Stephanie Petersen,” she smiled, shaking his hand.

“Welcome to Paris, mademoiselle,” Keith told them as he grabbed their baggage and placed it in the trunk of the car.

Séb and Steph got into the car and soon after they were joined by Keith. As they drove through the streets of Paris, Séb had his arm around her and she rested her hand on his lap. Séb was talking to Keith and Steph was looking at the beautiful city outside of the window. She couldn’t wait to explore the city with Séb, just the two of them alone in Paris. A smile appeared on her face as she thought of it and suddenly she felt Séb’s breath by her ear.

“I know you are nervous but if you don’t keep your hand still, I am not sure I will make it to my parent’s house,” he whispered in her ear as he took her hand.

“What did I do?” she whispered back.

“You were rubbing your hand on my thigh,” he replied, looking at her.

“Oops. Sorry,” she apologized.

“It’s ok and I forgive you if you promise to finish the job later,” Séb winked.

“You have my word,” Steph promised.

They arrived shortly after at the Izambard estate and Séb took a deep breath before he got out of the car. It was time to come face to face with Remy again and it wasn’t something he was looking forward to. Steph looked at him as she got out of the car and they both knew that things could go really bad.

“Are you ready to do this?” Séb asked, putting his arm around her waist.

“As ready as I will ever be,” Steph answered, followed by a sigh.

They made their way to the door and Séb hesitated for a few seconds before he opened the door and walked into the hall where they were met by Celeste. She greeted both of them and informed them that she would take their baggage to Séb’s old room. As Celeste and Keith disappeared with the baggage, Séb and Steph walked into the living room where Arienne and Bernard were waiting.

“Welcome home, son,” Arienne said, hugging Séb.

“Thank you, maman. This is Stephanie and these are my parents, Arienne and Bernard,” Séb said.

“You truly are beautiful. Welcome,” Arienne hugged her.

“Thank you, Mrs. Izambard,” Steph smiled.

“It’s Arienne. Mrs. Izambard makes me feel old,” she laughed.

Bernard greeted both of them and they were just about to sit down when they heard a voice behind them saying hello. They turned around to see Remy standing there with a smile on his face. As Remy walked towards them, Séb put his arm around Steph and pulled her close to him. Remy stopped in front of them and Steph felt uncomfortable as she felt Remy’s eyes scan her body. A strange silence filled the room and the Izambard brothers just started at each other. It was almost like being in a western where the good guy and the bad guy were getting ready for the last fight. Only one question was waiting to be answered. Who would pull the trigger first?

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Tue Oct 16, 2012 10:11 am

Chapter 32

Steph could feel Séb tighten his grip around her waist and she knew that he was angry. She knew there was no love between the two of them but she had to do something. It was their parents’ anniversary and she couldn’t let their disagreements stand in the way of them having a wonderful day.

“Hello Remy,” Steph spoke up, extending her hand.

“Hello Stephanie. You look beautiful,” Remy said as he took her hand and kissed it.

“Thank you,” Steph smiled as she pulled back her hand.

“Bonjour Sébastien,” Remy nodded his head, looking at Séb.

“Remy,” Séb said, nodding his head too.

Bernard and Arienne watched the scene in front of them and they looked at each other. There was no doubt in their minds that Remy was in love with Stephanie or at least had very strong feelings for her. This could get very complicated, especially with the history Remy and Séb have but they hoped for the best.

“Lunch is served,” Céleste announced.

“Merci, Céleste,” Arienne smiled at her.

Séb still had his arm around Steph as they walked outside with his parents and Remy to have lunch. He didn’t like the way Remy looked at Steph and he didn’t trust him at all. There was no way that he would let Remy get close to Steph during their stay in Paris. Arienne and Bernard wanted to know everything about Steph and she told them about her family and her marriage to Mark. They were surprised to hear that she had been married but even more to hear what Mark had done to her.

“Did you ever ask him if he had been cheating on you?” Arienne asked her.

“No, I didn’t ask him. Maybe I should have asked him but it wouldn’t have changed anything,” Steph answered.

“That’s true but if you wanted closure it would have helped you,” Arienne continued.

“You’re right but I got my closure with the divorce papers,” Steph looked at Arienne.

“I’m glad you got the divorce because if you hadn’t, you wouldn’t be here with me,” Séb kissed her cheek.

“Could you please save that for later? People are trying to eat,” Remy sneered.

“Sorry, Remy. I will save it for later, along with other things,” Séb said, knowing it would make Remy angry.

“That’s enough boys. We have guests and we are here to have a good time, not argue,” Bernard told them.

Remy and Séb looked at each other before they nodded their heads in agreement. They didn’t want to ruin the big day for their parents, but they knew their behavior made Steph uncomfortable. Arienne told Steph about the time when Séb and Remy were kids and she had a lot to tell. As Arienne was telling her stories, Séb and Remy looked at each other and they remembered those good times really well. Steph had fun listening to the stories but she wondered if there was a way to rebuild the bond between them.

After lunch Séb and Steph drove into town to go shopping for a dress for Steph. Séb knew of a few stores that might have something she would like and he stopped the car in front of one of them. They got out of the car and Séb took her hand as they walked into the store. Steph had never seen so many beautiful dresses in one place before and she knew it would be difficult to choose one. The sales woman found 6 dresses for Steph to try on and Steph loved all of them. She went into the dressing room and changed into the first dress but she didn’t feel comfortable in it. After trying on all 6 dresses, Steph still hadn’t found the dress she wanted.

The sales woman excused herself and disappeared into the back of the store, leaving Steph and Séb alone. A few minutes later she returned with a stunning dress in her arms. She gave the dress to Steph and after putting it on Steph came out of the dressing room. Séb didn’t say anything because he didn’t know what to say. It was the perfect dress and Steph looked stunning in it. Suddenly he got up and walked over to her.

“You look stunning, Cherie but something is missing. I will be back in a few minutes,” Séb kissed her before he disappeared.

Steph looked at the sales woman who seemed just as puzzled as Steph before she walked into the dressing room to change. She had found the perfect dress for the anniversary party and she couldn’t wait to wear it. As she was about to pay for the dress, Séb returned and told the sales woman that he would be paying for it. Séb paid for the dress and they left the store.

“I could have paid for the dress myself,” Steph said as they got into the car.

“I know that, Cherie but I wanted to get you something special,” Séb smiled at her.

“Thank you,” Steph kissed his cheek.

“You’re welcome, Cherie. Let’s go home,” Séb suggested.

Steph nodded her head in agreement and they drove back to the house.

**********

“What is wrong with my wife?” Urs asked when the doctor returned to the living room after checking on Alyssa.

“I think she should be the one to tell you that,” he told Urs as Alyssa appeared behind him.

“What is going on, love?” Urs questioned Alyssa as his mother showed the doctor to the door.

“He confirmed what I have been suspecting myself,” Alyssa told him with tears in her eyes.

“Are you dying?” Urs asked, taking her hands in his.

“No, I’m not dying, I’m pregnant,” Alyssa replied with a smile.

“A baby? A baby Buhler? Are you serious?” Urs looked at her.

“Yes, I am serious. In about 7 months we will have a baby Buhler,” Alyssa repeated.

Without saying a word, Urs picked Alyssa up and spun her around before he placed a kiss on her lips. He was going to be a dad and he couldn’t wait to meet his child. Alyssa had made him the happiest man on earth and he wanted to take her out to dinner to show her how happy he was. He put Alyssa down and excused himself before he left the room. Alyssa sat down with Arlette on the couch and the two women were talking about baby stuff when Urs returned.

“We won’t be joining you and dad for dinner tonight. I want to take my wife out,” Urs announced, looking at his mother.

“That sounds like a good idea,” Arlette told him.

Urs and Alyssa went to their room to celebrate the little miracle they had created.

************

After a night of passion, Carla woke up in David’s arms. She loved feeling his strong arms around her and she couldn’t wait to spend the next two weeks in Denver with him but first she had to meet his parents. Slipping out of his embrace, Carla rose from the bed and walked into the bathroom to take a shower. When she returned to the bedroom after her shower, David was still sleeping like a baby. Carla smiled as she walked over to him and placed a soft kiss on his lips. David opened his eyes and looked at her before he wrapped his arms around her and pulled her to him.

“Good morning,” David said with a smile.

“Good morning, Dave. We have to leave in ten minutes so please get up,” Carla looked at him.

“I don’t want to get out of bed. Can’t we just stay here?” David asked.

“I wish we could babe but your parents are expecting us for breakfast,” Carla kissed him.

“You’re right,” David sighed as he rose from the bed and walked into the bathroom.

After getting ready they left the hotel room and went downstairs to check out. About ten minutes later they were on their way to meet David’s parents, Craig and Lauren Miller.

******

After having lunch with Carlos' parents, Sam and Carlos went sightseeing in Madrid. First stop on Carlos’ plan for the afternoon would be the Secret Gardens. A place not many locals went to and Carlos wanted to show her something very special. At Huerto de las Monjas after walking down the street with these modern buildings, you come to this charming garden, which was protected by high walls of a convent till 1972. Probably used by the nuns as a plot for growing carrots, lettuce, chives and cabbages, today this park is reminiscent of the convents in Madrid during the Golden Age.

Sam was awed by the beauty of the Gardens and having Carlos to show it to her made it all that much more special in her eyes. After spending time looking around, they left hand in hand and headed toward the 'El Rastro Flea Market' where they could spend the afternoon touring all the different stalls of Paintings and anything your heart desired. Carlos enjoyed so much watching Sam as she discovered some new in every place they went.

"Sam, have you ever danced the tango?" he heard a street musician playing tango music.

"No, I'm not a dancer," she admitted.

"Nonsense, you are beautiful, elegant and graceful; and now you have the proper partner. This dance is about closeness, togetherness and heat. The tango is about trust and desire. Trust in me, feel the desire,” Carlos said as he led her in the steps.

Pulling her close and flinging her out as the dance steps called for, Sam was swept up into a world that she only dreamt of being part of. Carlos opened up a new world for her and she loved being in this new world with him.

"That was fun," she smiled.

"I love dancing; it's very intimate," he said.

"Come on, show me the rest of your fabulous city," she looked at him.

He couldn’t wait to show her what he had planned for the rest of the day and he hoped that she would enjoy it.

**********

Steph and Séb had returned to the Izambard estate and Steph was in the bedroom changing into her two-piece bathing suit. After putting her new dress away, Steph grabbed the towel from the chair and walked towards the door. She couldn’t wait to jump into the pool and just enjoy her time off but when she opened the door and saw Séb standing there, she knew her plans had changed.

“Shouldn’t you be playing tennis with your dad?” Steph asked him.

“Yes but he had to postpone it. I’ve got one hour and I want to spend it with my girlfriend. She needs to know how much I love her,” Séb replied with a smile.

“She knows how much you love her,” Steph told him.

“Maybe she does but I want to show it to her,” Séb said as he walked into the bedroom and closed the door behind him.

“Séb, this is your parents’ house,” Steph reminded him.

“Yes, it is their house but I don’t see what that has to do with anything,” Séb looked at her.

“It just feels weird making love in your parents’ house,” Steph said, knowing it sounded stupid.

“I can’t make love to you for four days because you think it’s weird?” Séb questioned her.

“Yes,” Steph answered without looking at him.

“Close your eyes,” Séb ordered.

Steph did as he said and soon after she felt him take her hands in his before he gently forced her arms behind her back. He whispered in her ear before placing soft kisses on her neck. The soft kisses were sending waves of pleasure through Steph’s body and when Séb’s lips made contact with hers, she gave in and surrendered to him. Séb let go of her hands and he began to caress her body with soft strokes as Steph’s hand found its way under his t-shirt. She pulled his t-shirt over his head and tossed it on floor before she let her hands caress his chest.

As soon as their clothes were in a pile on the floor Séb captured her lips in an intoxicating kiss and gently lay her down on the bed. They continued to explore each other’s bodies, whispering words of love as they slowly build up the passion that would take them to their final destination. Steph closed her eyes and savored the moment as if it was the first time. As they reached the height of their passion, Séb kissed her deeply and they calmed down, holding each other close.

Séb didn’t want to get out of bed but he had an appointment with his dad. Reluctantly he rose from the bed and got dressed as Steph watched him closely. As she watched him getting dressed, she wondered why a man like Séb had chosen her of all people. He could get any woman he wanted but he had chosen her. Séb turned and looked at her and he sensed that something was bothering her.

“What’s wrong?” he asked as he sat down next to her.

“I was just wondering why a wonderful man like you chose a girl like me. You’re surrounded by beautiful women and you still picked someone like me,” Steph told him.

“You’re more beautiful than any of them and you’re the one who hold my heart, Cherie. I love you,” Séb assured her, stroking her cheek.

“I love you too. Now go and play tennis with your dad,” Steph kissed him.

Séb left the bedroom and Steph once again put on her bathing suit before picking up her towel and leaving the room. She came down to the pool area and placed her towel on one of the sunbeds before she stepped into the pool. After swimming a few laps she got out of the pool and lay down on the sunbed to let the sun dry her body. Suddenly she heard footsteps and she looked up to see Remy standing in front of her with a smile on his face.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:47 pm

Chapter 33

---- Carla and David ----

Carla and David had finally made it to David’s parent’s house and Carla couldn’t wait to meet David’s parents but she was a bit nervous. What if they didn’t like her? When she felt David’s arm around her it was like all of her fears disappeared and she was able to relax. They walked into the hallway and David helped her get out of her coat before he took off his own.

“Are you ready for this?” he asked as he put his arm around her waist.

“As ready as I will ever be,” Carla replied with a smile.

David kissed her softly before they walked into the living room where they were met by David’s parents, Lauren and Craig and his sister, Paula. David never let go of Carla as he introduced her to his family and they were all pleased to meet her. Paula and Carla hit it off right away and Paula offered to show Carla around the house as they still had a few minutes before breakfast was served.

“What do you think of her?” David asked his parents.

“She seems like a wonderful girl and it’s obvious to see that she loves you,” Craig replied, looking at his wife.

“I love her too. She is the best thing that has happened to me since Patty decided to leave,” David informed them.

“Are you planning on marrying her?” Lauren questioned with a smile.

“Mom, please! We’ve only been dating for about three months. It’s a little early to be talking about marriage,” David was shocked.

“I know but I was just thinking about your future,” Lauren told him.

“If you are asking me if I could see myself marrying Carla, then the answer is yes. But I don’t want to rush into anything,” David explained.

Lauren was just about to say something when Paula and Carla returned to the living room. They were chatting and laughing like two old friends and it made David smile. His family seemed to like Carla and he was happy to see that because he really loved Carla and she was really important to him. No woman had ever made him feel the way he did when he was with Carla.

As he watched his girlfriend and sister together, his mom’s words were running around in his head. He could definitely see himself marrying Carla at some point in the future but for now he was content being boyfriend and girlfriend. David had learned his lesson with Patty and there was no need to rush into anything. Rushing things would only cause problems and he didn’t want that.

---- Remy and Steph ----

“That bathing suit looks good on you, Stephanie,” Remy winked at her.

“Shouldn’t you be somewhere else?” Steph asked him, feeling uncomfortable about him looking at her like that.

“Not really. Dad and Séb are playing tennis and mom went out with the neighbor. You’re here and that is where I want to be too,” Remy replied as he took off his t-shirt.

“What are you doing, Remy?” Steph looked up at him.

“I just want to spend some time with you,” Remy answered with a smile as he stood in front of the sunbed.

“Well, I don’t want to spend time with you. Excuse me,” Steph said as she rose from the sunbed.

She grabbed her towel and looked at him briefly before she started to walk away but suddenly she felt Remy grabbing her arm. He wasn’t being rough or anything but it still wasn’t a nice feeling, especially since they were alone. Ok, Séb and Bernard were at the tennis court but they were not at the house.

“I just want to tell you that it’s all in the family,” Remy said as he moved his head closer to hers and tightened his grip.

“You’re not family,” Steph said and kneed him in his crown jewels.

“You little witch. I will get you for this,” Remy whispered in pain as he went down.

“Stephanie, go inside. I need to have a few words with my son,” Bernard suddenly said.

Steph looked at him and did as he said. As soon as she was gone, Bernard turned towards Remy and looked at him with anger in his eyes.

“What has happened to you? First you abandon your girlfriend and your child and now this. Who are you? What has happened?” Bernard asked.

“Why do you care? You never loved me. All you wanted to do was to keep the Izambard name intact and avoid a scandal,” Remy surprised him by saying.

“What are you talking about?” Bernard questioned, shocked by Remy’s words.

“Don’t act like you don’t know, dad! I know that mother cheated on you and to avoid damage to the precious Izambard name, you adopted me,” Remy said as he put on his t-shirt before leaving.

Bernard stood there, watching him leave. He had tried so hard to keep all of this a secret and the one person he had hoped would never find out now knew everything about it. Bernard walked into the house and he knew that he had to tell his wife and they would have to tell Sébastien too. This secret could ruin the family and it would be better to wait until after the anniversary party.

Meanwhile Steph had picked up a bottle of water and walked upstairs to the bedroom. She couldn’t understand what was wrong with Remy but hopefully Bernard could figure it out. Steph let out a sigh and walked upstairs to the bedroom. When she passed the bathroom door she heard Séb singing her favorite song and she smiled to herself as she slowly opened the door. She could see Séb behind the glass and she sat down and watched him. She didn’t say a word and Séb didn’t seem to notice that he wasn’t alone. When Séb turned off the water, Steph took off her bathing suit and waited for him to come out of the shower.

“Now this is a nice surprise,” Séb smiled as he looked at Steph.

“Get your mind out of the gutter. I just came in here to take a shower,” Steph smiled.

“Don’t let me stop you,” Séb smiled back.

When Steph disappeared into the shower, Séb walked into the bedroom to get dressed. He couldn’t wait to see her face when he told her that they were going out to dinner. Séb wanted to be with Steph without having Remy around, telling him what he could or couldn’t do with his girlfriend. Steph came out of the bathroom and looked at Séb who was dressed in a pair of black pants, a black shirt and a white jacket.

“What is going on?” she asked.

“I am taking you out to dinner. We deserve some private time without Remy’s eyes scanning your body,” Séb answered.

“That sounds good to me. I don’t feel comfortable around him,” Steph expressed her feelings as she put on her dress.

“I know, Cherie. We need to work this out but it will have to wait until after the party,” Séb said.

“Yes, I agree. Your parents’ anniversary comes first. Let’s not talk about Remy for the rest of the night,” Steph suggested.

“Your wish is my command. Let’s get out of here,” Séb kissed her.

As they walked downstairs hand in hand, they ran into Remy. He smiled at Steph as he walked pass them and she had that feeling again. Séb could feel Steph tighten her grip on his hand and he wondered what was going on between them. He wanted to ask but he had made a promise to her and he wouldn’t break his promise.

When they came downstairs, Séb told his parents that he was taking Steph out to dinner because they needed some time alone. Arienne and Bernard knew the reason why and they told them to have a great time and enjoy their dinner. As soon as they were gone, Bernard turned to his wife.

“We need to talk,” he said as he closed the door to the living room.

---- Stephanie and Séb ----

Steph and Séb had an hour to kill before they had to be at the restaurant and Séb decided to show Steph some of his favorite places in Paris. She enjoyed walking around this beautiful city and especially because she was with Séb. Steph had always wanted to see Paris but Mark wasn’t interested and he wouldn’t let her go to Paris alone.

“I love this city already and I’ve been here less than a day,” Steph said as they stood in front of the Eiffel Tower.

“It is a beautiful city and I couldn’t think of anyone I would rather show around in Paris,” Séb pulled her close.

“And I couldn’t imagine seeing Paris with anyone but you,” Steph looked at him, pressing her body against his.

“Cherie, please don’t do that,” Séb moaned.

“Do what? “ Steph asked with a smile.

“You know what I am talking about,” Séb answered, letting out a groan.

“No, I don’t know. Why don’t you tell me?” she whispered as she ran her hand down his chest.

“Steph, stop that right now or we will have to skip dinner,” Séb whispered.

“Well, I’m hungry so you win,” she kissed him.

“Can we just wait for a few minutes?” he questioned.

“Sure, we can wait,” Steph responded with a smile.

After a few minutes they drove to Tour Montparnasse where the restaurant Le Ciel De Paris was. It only took 38 seconds in the elevator to reach the top of Tour Montparnasse and the restaurant. The restaurant was set off by textured materials with muted shades, and had an elevated, graphic and ultra-trendy bar in the middle of the room. It had a great view of the Eiffel Tower and it was a breathtaking sight.



Séb gave his name to the hostess and they were shown to their table. Being the gentleman he was, Séb pulled out the chair for her before he sat down across from her. The waiter came to take their order and when he was gone Séb took Steph’s hand and kissed it. Steph noticed the looks from some of the other guests and Séb took a look around the restaurant.

“Are you feeling uncomfortable about being here?” he whispered to her.

“No, I just have to get used to people watching me when I am with you,” Steph told him.

“You will get used to it but it might take some time. Don’t let it get to you, Cherie,” Séb assured her, still holding her hand.

Steph smiled at him as the waiter brought them their food and drinks. The food was excellent and after they had finished the main course, the waiter returned and asked them if they wanted dessert. Séb felt Steph’s foot go up his leg and he looked at the waiter, shaking his head no. The waiter left but returned a few minutes later with the bill and shortly after, Steph and Séb left the restaurant.

As they drove home to the Izambard estate, Séb couldn’t wait to take Steph into his arms and make love to her. She had started a small fire inside of him when they were standing in front of the Eiffel Tower and now the fire was getting out of control. Ten minutes later Séb locked the car in front of the house and they walked inside. It looked like everyone had gone to bed and that is where Séb wanted to take Steph.

They walked upstairs to his bedroom and as they stood in front of the door, Séb pulled her close and kissed her with a forceful passion. He picked her up and carried her into the bedroom, closing the door behind them. Séb locked the door before he lowered Steph’s feet to the floor and began caressing her. Shortly after they were in bed, showing each other how strong their love was.

---- Alyssa and Urs -----

Once they got back to their room, Urs picked Alyssa up and carried her to the bed where he gently lay her down before joining her. She cuddled up to him and they were talking about baby names and colors for the nursery. It was still unknown to them if it was a boy or a girl but it didn’t hurt to pick out names and colors. Suddenly Alyssa stopped answering him and when he looked at her, he could see that she was sleeping. Urs smiled as he set the alarm and he pulled Alyssa closer before he closed his eyes.

They woke up to the alarm and Urs suggested that they went into town and looked at baby stuff. Alyssa agreed and they walked into the bathroom to take an exploring shower together. After the shower, they got dressed and said goodbye to his parents before they left the house.

“Why don’t we take your motorcycle?” Alyssa asked him as he was walking to the car.

“Are you sure you want to do that? You’re pregnant,” Urs looked at her.

“I know but in a month I won’t be able to ride with you and I want to experience it one last time,” Alyssa smiled.

“Ok. I will get the bike. You wait here,” Urs told her as he walked over to the garage.

A few minutes later he returned with the motorcycle and he handed Alyssa a helmet before putting his own on. Alyssa put on the helmet and climbed up behind Urs. She wrapped her arms around his waist and cuddled up to him as they drove off. Alyssa loved being in Switzerland and she hoped that someday they could move here and raise their child in this beautiful country.

When they arrived in town, Urs help his wife get off the motorcycle and they walked around town, holding hands and kissing. They enjoyed looking at stores and they walked into a baby store to get ideas. Alyssa found a lot of things that would be perfect for their baby and she was making plans of how to decorate the nursery. She made a list of stuff they needed for the baby and she looked at Urs who seemed to make plans of his own.

“What are you thinking of?” Alyssa asked him.

“Nothing, love. I am just looking at all of this stuff. It’s a lot of stuff you need for a baby,” he lied.

Alyssa accepted his answer but she didn’t know that Urs always knew exactly what the nursery should look like. He had made a plan for a boy nursery and a girl nursery, all he needed now was to know which idea he should go with. Urs knew that Alyssa might be upset about not being involved but it would be his way of saying thanks for the precious gift she was carrying.

After looking at stores for a while, Urs took her to his favorite restaurant and they talked about the future as they had their dinner. It would be a big change for both of them but they were looking forward to meeting the life they had created together. After paying the bill, they walked back to the motorcycle and drove home. When they got back, they said goodnight to Arlette and Didier before they walked to their room. Urs pulled Alyssa into his arms and kissed her deeply as they began to undress each other. Shortly after they were making passionate love and they continued to do so until the drifted off to sleep, wrapped in each other’s arms as the sun began to rise.

---- Carlos and Sam ----

After walking around Madrid for hours they headed over to a restaurant called Los Galayos. The restaurant had three dining rooms and their table was in the “Bodeguilla” dining room. It was a Castilian cellar with brick walls and small tables, a perfect place for a romantic dinner. The waiter came quickly to take their order and then he disappeared, leaving them alone. They were the only two people in the dining room and it was perfect. About ten minutes later the food arrived and they enjoyed their dinner, talking about their families and friends.



After enjoying a nice dinner, they left the restaurant and headed for their final destination, The Royal Palace, where they could watch the sun set behind the palace. Sam was enthralled with all she had seen and done and this was the icing on the cake. She looked at the man, then Divo sitting beside her and she couldn’t believe how lucky she was to be with a man like him.

Carlos on the other hand was thinking of asking her to join him on the upcoming tour but he wasn’t sure if she would join him. He thought long and hard and decided to take a leap of faith and put the question out there. As she was watching the sun setting, he leaned over and took both of her hands in his and asked his question and then waited for her to think it over. It was a big step for her and he knew that, but his heart wanted her beside him always and he couldn't just leave her behind.

“I would love to go with you on tour. I thought you were never going to ask me,” Sam replied.

“Why would you think that, querida? I can’t imagine not being with you when we go on tour. You’re my girlfriend and I want to spend every minute with you,” Carlos told her as he pulled her close.

Sam felt the same way about Carlos and she kissed him as the sun disappeared behind the palace. As soon as the sun was gone, it became a bit chilly and they decided to go back to the house. Carlos and Sam walked back hand in hand and Sam was enjoying walking through Madrid with Carlos by her side. When they returned to the house, they joined Enrique and Luciana in the living room. They seemed really taken with Sam and she seemed to like them too. After spending some time talking to Carlos’ parents, Carlos and Sam said goodnight and went to their room. As soon as Carlos had closed the bedroom door, he pulled Sam into his arms and kissed her.

“Carlos, this is your parents’ house,” she giggled as she broke the kiss.

“I am not going to let that stop me from being with you,” Carlos said before kissing her again.

"But it's weird and your parents could walk in," she said as he kissed her neck.

"Sam, my parents know I am a grown man and they know what grown men in relationships do," he said as he ran his fingers through her long dark hair.

"Can you at least lock the door?" she asked.

"I already did that," he replied.

"Let's put on some music. I think I have the right CD in my travel bag,” Sam smiled as she took out a CD.

"Which group?" he questioned, as she walked over to the CD player.

"It is just a group of four singers from four different countries and the Spanish baritone has a really deep voice and the most kissable lips,” she placed her lips on his.

As the song played in the background, Carlos and Sam found romantic warmth in each other's embrace. She looked into his eyes and knew that this man was all and that is what she has always wanted. After they made love, Sam picked up Carlos shirt and put it on.

"What's with the shirt?" he looked at her.

"I always had this fantasy about wearing your shirt and snuggling close to you. I love your chest. In the past, I could only imagine what the wisps of hair would be like and imagine running my fingers up and down your chest," she smiled as she placed her head on his chest.

"Now you don't need to wonder," he said, removing the shirt.

For the second time tonight, he was about to show her all the benefits of being his girlfriend.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:55 am

Chapter 34

Steph woke up the next morning in Séb’s arms and as she watched him sleeping, she wondered what he would do if he knew about the incident by the pool. She knew that she had to tell Séb about it but it would have to wait until after the party because she wanted Séb’s parents to have a nice party. Steph placed a soft kiss on Séb’s lips as she let her fingers run over his chest and down to his stomach. Séb began to stir and Steph couldn’t stop smiling.

“Are you awake?” she whispered in his ear.

“Well, a part of me is,” he said as he opened his eyes and looked at her.

“Oh, I’m sorry,” Steph giggled.

“No, you’re not. What time is it?” he asked, letting out a yawn.

“Time to get up,” Steph replied.

“I don’t think so,” Séb told her as he tightened his grip.

“We promised to help your parents set things up for tonight and your family is coming for brunch but you can join me in the shower if you want,” Steph looked at him.

“Now that sounds like a good idea,” Séb kissed her.

They rose from the bed and walked into the bathroom unaware that Remy had been listening by the door. He had heard every word and he couldn’t understand why they couldn’t show some respect. There was no need to act this way around him when they knew how he felt about Steph. Remy swore to himself that he would do what he could to split up Séb and Steph and he would start by telling Séb about the pool incident. When Séb found out that Steph wasn’t who he thought she was, he would dump her and Remy would make his move. One way or another, Steph would be his. He felt good when he walked downstairs and he knew it would be a good day.

Steph and Séb had finished their shower and after getting dressed, they walked downstairs to join the families for breakfast. Arienne and Bernard had decided to invite their two families for breakfast and later their friends would join them for the big party. The breakfast would be held in the dining room and the party would be held in the garden. Steph was really nervous about meeting the family but Séb promised her that she had nothing to worry about.

Séb never let go of Steph’s hand as he introduced her to his family. Both sides of the family were pleased to meet the girl who had stolen Séb’s heart and they could see how much love the two of them had for each other. They were all curious to know more about Steph and while she gave them her life story, Remy was talking to his grandmother on Arienne’s side, Felice. She was watching Steph and Séb together and she was happy to see that Séb had found a girl who truly loved him. When she turned to look at Remy, she noticed that he was looking at them too and she knew something was going on.
“She is a beautiful girl, isn’t she?” she asked Remy as she touched his hand.

“Yes, she is. Séb is a lucky man,” Remy replied with a smile.

“Do you have someone special in your life, Remy?” Felice looked at him.

“Well, I am in love with someone but she doesn’t want me,” Remy answered.

“What is wrong with that girl? You are a handsome young man, Remy,” Felice touched his face.

“Nothing is wrong with her. It is my own fault. I had my chance with her but I blew it,” Remy informed her.

“I never thought that you would give up that easy. If you really love this girl, you should fight for her,” Felice said to him.

“She is in love with someone else,” Remy explained.

“That does complicate things but you should give it a try,” Felice smiled at him.

Remy smiled at her and kissed her cheek as Céleste announced that breakfast was served. Bernard’s mother, Clarisse, wanted to know everything about Steph and she asked Steph to sit next to her at breakfast. The two of them seemed to be getting along great and Séb couldn’t stop smiling. It made him happy to see how everyone had accepted Steph into the family and he hoped that at some point, Remy would accept their relationship too.

After breakfast, most family members were helping getting things ready for the party. Remy had been watching Steph and Séb all morning and seeing them together was really driving him crazy. Steph was supposed to be with him, not Séb and it was about time Séb was told about what happened at the pool. While Steph was busy helping Céleste and Arienne, Remy walked over to Séb and asked if they could have a word alone. Séb wasn’t in the mood to talk to Remy but with the family around, he didn’t have much choice.

As the two brothers walked upstairs, Remy looked at Steph and she knew by the smile on his face that he was up to something. She knew what he wanted to talk to Séb about and even though she knew that Séb wouldn’t believe a word he said, she still had a bad feeling. As the two brothers disappeared into Remy’s room, Bernard walked over to her and put his arm around her.

“Sébastien loves you, Stephanie, and there is nothing Remy can say that will make him stop loving you. But in case he does believe him, I will tell him what really happened yesterday,” Bernard promised.

“Thank you,” Steph smiled.

“What happened between you and Remy?” Bernard asked her.

Steph told him everything, except for the parts about Remy and Séb arguing over Corinna and Melissa because it really was something he should hear from Séb or Remy. Bernard listened as Steph told him her story and he knew that it wasn’t easy for her to be around Remy, especially after what happened the day before. Telling him about her and Remy felt good and it was nice to know that Bernard was on her side in all of this.

“What is on your mind, Remy?” Séb questioned his brother when they were alone.

“I just thought you should know that Steph and I kissed yesterday,” Remy answered.

“You’re lying. Steph would never do that. She loves me,” Séb looked at Remy.

“The truth hurts, doesn’t it? You are so blind, Sébastien. Why do you always pick the wrong girls?” Remy asked.

“I only picked the wrong girl once and that was Melissa. Steph is the right girl for me and nothing you say will make me doubt her feelings. You’re just angry because she chose me over you,” Séb responded with anger in his voice.

“Just don’t feel bad when Steph decides to leave you to be with me,” Remy said.

“I know what you’re doing but it doesn’t work. I am not going to hit you and she will never leave me. Accept that she is with me and that she will never be yours,” Séb yelled before he left Remy’s room.

Shortly after he heard someone slamming the door to Séb’s room and a smile appeared on his face. He knew that his words had gotten to Séb and now that Séb was angry, the first step had been taken. Remy walked out of his room to see Bernard and Steph standing there and they didn’t look happy. He smiled at them before he walked downstairs and Steph turned to look at Bernard before she walked to Séb’s room. She was just about to knock on the door to Séb’s room when Bernard stopped her.

“Don’t do that, Stephanie. I will talk to him. When Séb is like that, he might say or do some things he will regret later,” Bernard said.

“Ok,” Steph agreed before walking downstairs.

As soon as Steph had disappeared, Bernard knocked on the door to Séb’s room but there was no answer. He knocked again and this time he got a response from Séb but it wasn’t a nice one.

“Leave me alone,” Séb’s voice sounded through the door.

“No, I can’t do that. We need to talk before you do something stupid,” Bernard said as he opened the door and walked into Séb’s room.

“Then talk,” Séb looked at him.

“What is going on?” Bernard asked, looking at his son.

“Remy kissed my girlfriend,” Séb yelled as he punched his fist into the wall.

“No, he didn’t kiss Stephanie. He grabbed her and tried to kiss her but she kneed him in his private parts. I saw the whole thing,” Bernard explained to Séb.

“She did that?” Séb looked at him.

“Yes, she did. Stephanie loves you, not Remy. Think about that or you will lose her,” Bernard replied before he left.

Séb watched him leave and he knew that his dad was right. Steph loved him and she had proved that to him a lot of times already and Remy had proved to him that he couldn’t be trusted. Why was he even thinking that she would kiss Remy? Suddenly he remembered the conversation he had with Steph after their first kiss. ‘You’re not just anyone’. Those were her words and now he knew what she meant. He was the man she loved. Séb walked downstairs and he walked straight over to Steph and put his arm around her waist as he kissed her cheek. They spent time with the family until it was time to get ready for the party.

----------

Steph had just come out of the bathroom and she was looking at her dress when she felt Séb behind her. He wrapped his arms around her and she could feel his breath by her ear. Steph knew there was something he wanted to say but she also knew that it wasn’t easy for him to say it so she had to say something.

“I didn’t kiss your brother yesterday,” Steph said as she turned around.

“I know, Cherie. Dad told me what happened. I don’t want you to think that I don’t trust you because I do,” Séb looked at her.

“If you trust me, then why did you think that I would do something like that?” Steph asked him.

“Remy had an affair with Melissa and I know how smooth he can be with women. You have a history with him and I was afraid that he would somehow manage to steal you from me,” Séb answered.

“To me that sounds like you don’t trust me,” Steph said as she slipped out of his embrace.

“Steph, I don’t want us to argue over this. I do trust you,” Séb told her.

“I don’t want to argue either but what you just said hurt me,” Steph looked at him.

“I know and I am sorry. I love you, Cherie,” Séb pulled her into his arms and kissed her.

“You need a cold shower, Izambard,” Steph pointed out to him when she broke the kiss.

Séb looked down and smiled. He kissed her once more before he headed into the bathroom for his shower. As soon as Séb closed the door, Steph put on her make-up and did her hair before walking back to the closet for her dress. She heard the water being turned off in the bathroom and shortly after Séb walked into the bedroom. Steph put on her dress and Séb looked at the beautiful woman in front of him. She looked stunning in her dress and he couldn’t wait for the other guests to meet her.



Séb walked over to the closet and took out his tuxedo and after putting it on, he walked over to the night table and opened the drawer. He took something out and walked over to Steph.

“You look beautiful, cherie but do you remember what I told you at the store when we bought the dress?” Séb questioned.

“Yes, you said that something was missing,” Steph answered.

“That’s right. And this is what is missing to complete the outfit,” Séb opened the small box.



“It’s beautiful. I love it but you didn’t have to do that,” Steph looked at him.

“You’re my girlfriend and I want to spoil you. Don’t deny me that,” he said as he took out the necklace and put it on her.

“Thank you,” Steph kissed him.

“You’re welcome, Cherie. Are you ready to go?” Séb asked, offering her his arm.

“Yes, I am,” Steph smiled.

They walked downstairs and Steph felt like everyone was looking at her. She wasn’t used to that and it made her feel a bit uncomfortable but when Séb took her hand and squeezed it, she forgot all about it. Séb introduced her to the new guests and they too seemed taken with Steph. When all of the guests had arrived, it was time for the party to begin.

Everyone seemed to be having a good time at the party but Remy wasn’t in the mood for partying. He kept his eyes on Steph and Séb and it made him sick to see them kissing on the dance floor. Suddenly Séb excused himself and Remy decided to follow him inside the house. He watched as Séb disappeared into the bathroom and he waited for him to return. A few minutes later Séb came out of the bathroom and Remy approached him.

“Why can’t you show some respect?” Remy asked.

“What are you talking about?” Séb wondered what he was talking about.

“I am talking about you and Steph. Can’t you keep your hands off each other for one night?” Remy questioned with anger in his voice.

“She is my girlfriend and if I want to touch my girlfriend, I will touch her. And why should I show you respect? You don’t show me or Steph any respect,” Séb responded and walked away.

Remy watched him leave and he waited a few minutes before he walked outside. He grabbed a bottle of water from the table and went to a remote part of the garden where he took out his pills. Remy took two pills and then a sip of water. Just as he had swallowed the pills, he heard a female voice behind him.

“You have leukemia and you take the pills to fight off infections. Am I right?” Steph asked him.

“How did you know?” Remy turned and look at her.

“My uncle is a doctor and he taught me a lot about medicine because he wanted me to become a doctor too but it wasn’t me,” Steph replied.

“Now you know my little secret. Why don’t you go back to your precious Sébastien and leave me alone,” Remy said with anger in his voice.

“You have to tell your parents about this. Don’t you think they deserve to know?” Steph looked at him.

“No, they don’t care about me. Go away and leave me alone,” Remy raised his voice as he grabbed her arm.

“I can’t do that. They have a right to know that you are dying,” Steph raised her voice too.

“Didn’t you hear me? I told you to leave me alone,” Remy pushed her hard.

“What do you think you are doing, Remy? If you ever touch my girlfriend again, I swear that I will kill you,” Séb told him as he helped Steph get off the ground.

“You don’t have to kill him, Séb. Remy is already dying,” Steph said as she looked at Séb.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Tue Nov 13, 2012 4:59 pm

Chapter 35

”What was that?” Séb asked her, thinking he had heard her wrong.

“Remy has leukemia and he is dying. The pills he is taking to fight of infections do have some nasty side effects and I think we have seen a few of them,” Steph replied.

“I don’t believe it. If Remy really is dying, he should have been thinking of setting things right instead of making things worse,” Séb looked at Steph.

“You’re right about that but I think we should wait until tomorrow to talk about this. Your parents need to hear it too,” Steph suggested.

“I agree, Cherie. No need to upset mom and dad tonight,” Séb agreed, looking at Remy.

“Steph is right. This can wait,” Remy agreed and left.

“Are you ok?” Séb looked at Steph.

“Yes, I’m fine. How do I look?” Steph questioned.

“Beautiful as always, Cherie,” Séb kissed her.

He took her hand and they walked back to the party. Remy was talking to some of the guests and everything seemed to be ok. Séb watched the couples dancing and he looked at Steph and asked her to dance with him. She smiled at him, nodding her head yes and he smiled at her as he led her to the dance floor. Séb pulled her close and he looked deep into her eyes as they danced. He couldn’t understand what he had done to deserve her love and he swore to himself that he would never let anyone get between them again.

It was almost three am when the last guests said goodnight and left. Steph and Séb said goodnight too and they walked upstairs to Séb’s room. Séb watched as Steph undressed herself and after removing his tuxedo, Séb walked over to her and pulled her into his arms. He kissed her passionately and soon after they were in bed, showing their love for each other.

The next day most of the family members left right after breakfast and only the grandparents were left. Steph looked at Remy and he knew what she wanted to say but he didn’t know how to start. How do you tell your parents that you are dying? He wanted to wait but the longer he waited the more difficult it would be for him to say something. Remy decided to just get it over with.

“I’ve got leukemia”, Remy bursted out, shocking his family.

“You’ve got what?” Arienne looked at him.

“Leukemia. I’ve known for a while but I didn’t want you to worry about me. That’s why I haven’t told you,” Remy said.

“You didn’t want us to worry about you? You are our son and we love you,” Arienne informed him.

“I may be your son but I am not his son,” Remy pointed at Bernard.

“That is nonsense. Bernard adopted you and he loves you just as much as he loves Sébastien,” Arienne said.

“Don’t give me that, mom. He only adopted me to avoid a scandal. It wouldn’t look good if it came out that his wife had been cheating on him,” Remy spat.

Séb looked at his parents, then at Remy and he couldn’t believe what he had just heard. He knew that Remy was adopted but he had no idea that his mom had an affair with Remy’s dad. No, this couldn’t be right. Remy was just angry and this was his way of getting his anger out. Steph was shocked about this piece of information too and she could tell that Séb wanted to leave the room but she couldn’t let him do that.

“Not everything is the way it seems,” Arienne told him.

“You cheated on your husband with my dad and you got pregnant. When my dad died, Bernard adopted me as his own son but it wasn’t out of love,” Remy was angry.

“Wait a second. You always told me that you adopted Remy when his parents died,” Séb suddenly said.

“We told you that because it was better at the time. When your mom told me that she was pregnant with Alain’s baby and that he didn’t want Remy, I agreed to take him in as my own son. It was not because I wanted to protect the family name,” Bernard explained.

“Your father is right. His name is on the birth certificate, not Alain’s name but not a lot of people know that,” Arienne continued.

Séb looked at his parents and he didn’t know the two people in front of him. Who were they? They had been lying to him most of his life and right now he wasn’t sure if he would ever be able to forgive them. He excused himself and left the room. Steph excused herself and walked after him and she managed to catch up with him in the garden.

“What is wrong, Séb?” Steph questioned as she wrapped her arms around him.

“I’m just disappointed. My parents have been lying to me since I was a kid. I’m angry at Remy but it is not even close to the disappointment I feel about my parents. Would you mind if we left today instead of tomorrow?” Séb looked at her.

“We can leave today if you want but not until you speak to your parents about this,” Steph told him.

“Ok, I will talk to them but I can’t promise you that I will forgive them,” Séb agreed.

“That’s fine. I will call my parents and you will talk to your parents,” Steph said.

Séb sighed and walked back inside as Steph took out her phone and called her parents to let them now they would be arriving later that day instead of the next day. After speaking to her mom, Steph hung up and walked back into the house and sat down. She whispered to Séb that it was ok for them to arrive earlier and he was happy to hear that.

“I would like a word with you and dad alone,” Séb looked at his parents.

“Let’s go into my office,” Bernard suggested.

Séb nodded his head in agreement and he kissed Steph’s cheek before he left the dining room with his parents. Remy looked at them leave and he then turned his attention to Steph, wondering what she had told Séb. Steph wasn’t uncomfortable about Remy looking at her but it might have had something to do with the grandparents being there. He wouldn’t dare to do anything with them in the room.

Bernard closed the door to his office behind them and it was time for them to tell Séb the whole truth about what happened all those years ago. They all took a seat and Séb waited for one of them to start and Arienne was the first one to speak.

“We know you are disappointed but we really did what we thought was best at the time. We did what we could to make sure nobody would find out,” she sighed.

“When were you going to tell me?” Séb questioned, looking at both of them.

“You may not like this but your mother and I had planned to keep it a secret. There was no need for you or your brother to find out that you were blood related because you already had a brotherly relationship. We decided to keep it a secret,” Bernard answered his question.

“You lied to me and to Remy. You can’t even begin to imagine how betrayed I feel right now. I remember how upset mom was when Remy slept with his ex after walking out on Corinna. She accused him of cheating on the mother of his baby but she did the same when she slept with Remy’s dad,” Séb looked at his mother.

“Your mother didn’t really cheat on me. You were too young to remember but your mother and I split up for a short time when you were a kid. I told her that I needed time to think and I moved out. During those two weeks she was with Alain for one night only and she ended up pregnant. When I returned, she told me everything and I forgave her,” Bernard explained as he looked at his wife.

Séb looked at his mother and he felt bad about accusing her of cheating but what was he supposed to think? It was just too much information to take in but he had to apologize to his mom. Séb looked at his dad and without a word he asked him to leave. Bernard nodded his head and walked out of the office, leaving Séb and Arienne alone to talk.

“I’m sorry,” Séb said and walked over to Arienne.

“It’s ok. You didn’t know. I love your dad very much and I never should have done what I did,” Arienne looked at Séb.

“I spoke to Steph and we’ve agreed to leave later today. You and dad need some time with Remy. I am sure there is a lot you need to tell him and you should do that in private,” Séb smiled at her.

“You don’t have to do that, Sébastien,” Arienne was surprised to hear him say that.

“I know but it is better this way. Remy might open up to you if I am not around. Steph and I will be back to visit before we have to go back to London,” Séb promised her.

“You might be right and you know that you’re always welcome here and so is Stephanie. She is a wonderful girl and it is easy to see that she loves you,” Arienne smiled at him.

“It is strange how things change. When I first met Steph, I couldn’t stand her and I did what I could to get rid of her but now I can’t imagine not being with her,” Séb confessed.

“Let’s go back to the others. When are you leaving?” Arienne asked as they left the office.

“I don’t know yet. We will have to check the flight schedules,” Séb explained.

“You can borrow your dad’s computer if you want,” Arienne suggested.

Séb kissed her cheek and walked back into the office and turned on his dad’s computer. He searched for flight schedules to Copenhagen and he found a departure at 2 pm. Séb booked two tickets and closed the computer before he walked back to the family.

“We have to be at the airport by noon so I think we will go upstairs and start packing,” Séb announced.

“Then you won’t stay for lunch?” Arienne asked.

“No, we won’t. We will get something to eat at the airport,” Séb answered.

“Ok. Go on then,” Arienne smiled.

Séb and Steph disappeared and Remy watched them leave. He had accepted the fact that Steph would never love him the way she loved Séb. It had always been Séb and he had been a fool for believing that Steph would leave Séb to be with him. He had never thought about it before but when he looked back, he remembered the times when Steph had looked at Séb and it was a look that she would never give him.

“Maybe I should leave too,” Remy said, looking at his parents.

“No, we want you to stay here for a while. I think we need to talk,” Bernard told him.

“Are you sure about that?” Remy questioned.

“Yes, we are sure,” Bernard replied, looking at Arienne who nodded her head in agreement.

“Ok, then I will stay,” Remy smiled at them.

Steph and Séb came downstairs and Séb put down the suitcases in the hall before they walked into the dining room to say goodbye to the family. Arienne and Bernard hugged both of them and Bernard told Séb to take care of Steph because he would never forgive his son if something happened to her. Séb smiled at him and nodded his head in agreement. Steph said goodbye to Séb’s grandparents and when Séb said goodbye to them, Steph said goodbye to Remy.

“Can I talk to you in private, please?” Remy asked her.

“Sure,” Steph replied, knowing Séb wouldn’t like it.

Séb watched as they left the dining room and he wanted to follow them but Bernard told him not to. The two of them needed to talk and Steph had shown Bernard that she could take care of herself if needed. Séb still didn’t like it but he had to let Remy and Steph settle whatever was going on.

“Ok, I’m listening,” Steph looked at Remy.

“You’re mad at me and I can’t blame you. I’m sorry for what I did to you and I’m sorry for trying to ruin what you and Séb have,” Remy apologized.

“I don’t know why but I actually believe you are sorry but I am not the only one you should apologize to,” Steph told him.

“I know that. Could you please tell Séb that I want to talk to him?” Remy questioned.

“Yes, I will tell him. Goodbye Remy,” Steph answered and walked back into the house.

“Are you ok?” Séb looked at Steph.

“I’m fine. Remy wants to talk to you. He is waiting for you outside by the pool,” Steph said.

“I’ll be right back,” Séb kissed her and joined Remy outside.

Séb and Remy returned ten minutes later but it wasn’t easy to see if they had worked things out. Séb told Steph they had to leave and after saying goodbye again, they picked up their suitcases and left the house. Kevin took the suitcases and put them in the trunk while Séb and Steph climbed into the car. Séb didn’t say anything at all as they drove to the airport and it made Steph worry but she didn’t want to ask about what happened. Arriving at the airport, they said goodbye to Kevin and walked into departures. After checking in, they walked through security check and then headed into a café to get something to eat. Séb still hadn’t said anything and it was driving Steph crazy.

“What happened at your parents’ house?” she questioned.

“Remy apologized,” Séb coldly replied.

“That is not all, Séb. Tell me what happened,” Steph demanded.

“I am telling you that nothing happened. Can we just forget it?” he said with anger in his voice.

“Fine,” she snapped at him.

They finished their lunch in silence and when it was time for them to board the plane, it happened in silence. As they found their seats on the plane, Steph looked out of the window because she didn’t want to show him that she was on the verge of crying. Suddenly she felt his hand touching hers and it made the tears fall but her hair was covering the tears rolling down her cheeks. She closed her eyes and suddenly she felt Séb’s hand remove her hair from her face and shortly after she felt his breath by her ear.

“I’m sorry, Cherie,” Séb whispered as he saw the tears on her cheek.

When Steph didn’t look at him, he placed his hand on her cheek and turned her face to look at him. He felt bad about raising his voice earlier and he wiped away her tears before gently placing his lips on hers. Séb promised her that he would tell her everything when they arrived at her parents’ house, Steph responded by resting her head on his shoulder and they sat like that all the way to Copenhagen.

Without delay the plane landed in Copenhagen and after retrieving their suitcases, Séb and Steph walked into the arrival hall and straight to the metro. The train arrived on time and they quickly found a seat and sat down. Steph kept running her hand up and down her thigh and Séb wondered what was going on.

“Are you going to tell me what is bothering you?” Séb looked at her.

“There is something you should know. My parents don’t know that you’re coming,” Steph said, biting her lip.

“Would you care to explain that further?” Séb questioned.

“They know I’m bringing my boyfriend but they don’t know it’s you. I didn’t know how to tell them that I’m dating Sébastien Izambard, especially since my dad isn’t too thrilled about French people,” Steph looked at him.

“Are you telling me that your dad doesn’t like French people? Can I ask why?” Séb looked at her.

“He thinks French people are arrogant but once he gets to know you, he will change his mind. I promise you,” Steph kissed him.

“This is going to be fun,” Séb said.

“Don’t worry. It will be ok. My dad wants me to be happy and I am happy with you,” Steph smiled at him.

“I trust you but let’s make an agreement. From now on there will be no more secrets,” Séb looked at her.

“It’s a deal but remember it goes both ways,” Steph kissed him.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Wed Nov 28, 2012 4:16 pm

Chapter 36

Séb and Steph had arrived in Copenhagen. Steph was, to her surprise but delight, she saw her older brother, John, waiting at the airport. She didn’t expect anyone to be there to pick her up but it was nice to see him again. John hugged her before turning to Séb.

“You must be Sébastien. I’m Stephanie’s older brother, John. It’s a pleasure to meet the man who has stolen my sister’s heart,” John said as he extended his hand to Séb.

“It’s Séb and it’s a pleasure to meet you too. I’ve heard a lot about you,” Séb shook his hand.

“Well, I wouldn’t believe half of it,” John laughed.

“What are you doing here?” Steph asked her brother.

“Mom and dad wanted to make sure that you got home safely so they send me to get you,” John answered.

“If they want us to get home safely, then why did they send you?” Steph teased him.

“I see that being in London hasn’t changed you,” John smiled.

“No way! I am still the same,” Steph smiled back.

“Let’s get out of here,” John suggested.

Steph and Séb nodded their heads in agreement and left the airport with John. They climbed into the car and as they were driving to the Biehl estate, Séb held Steph’s hand. She could tell he was nervous, and she knew it had to do with what she had told him earlier about her dad. However she also knew Séb had nothing to worry about. John could also tell that Séb was nervous so he decided to tell him a few stories from when Steph was a kid and Séb forgot everything about being nervous.

“We’re here,” Steph announced as they drove up a large driveway.

“I love this place already,” Séb smiled.




As they came closer to the house, Steph noticed a lot of cars in front of the house and she knew that the entire family was there. John stopped the car and they got out. Séb helped John get the suitcases out of the boot. Steph smiled as she watched the two of them getting along. After getting the bags, they walked into the house where they were met by the family dog, Rusty. He was a five year old German Shepard and he had been with the family since he was a pup.

Steph kneeled down and hugged Rusty who returned the hugs with licking her face. Séb smiled as he watched Steph play with Rusty because this was a side of Steph that he had never seen before. After playing with him for a few minutes, Steph told Rusty to stop and Rusty walked over to Séb and looked at him. Séb reached out his hand and petted Rusty and Steph smiled at him. As they walked towards the garden, Rusty followed them and he stayed close to Séb all the time.

“Are you ready to meet the family?” Steph asked Séb.

“As ready as I will ever be,” Séb answered as he took her hand.

Steph smiled at him as they walked into the garden. The family seemed to have a good time and Steph looked at her family. She couldn’t deny that she had missed her family very much but now she had Séb and a new life in London. It only took about two hours to get from London to Copenhagen and if possible, the family could visit her in London.

“We’re here,” Steph announced with a smile.

“You’ve been expected for a long time. Welcome home,” Anette said as she hugged her daughter.

“Thanks mom. This is Sébastien,” Steph informed her family.

“Welcome Sébastien. It’s a pleasure to meet you,” Anette extended her hand.

“Thank you. The feeling is mutual,” Séb took her hand and kissed it.

“I’m Martin, Stephanie’s dad, and my wife is right. It is a pleasure to meet you,” he said and shook Séb’s hand.

“It’s a great pleasure to meet you too,” Séb told him.

“You look very familiar but I can’t remember where I’ve seen you before,” Anette said to Séb.

“He is in Il Divo,” Julie joined them.

“Hello again Julie,” Séb smiled.

“Hello Séb. I told you she liked you,” Julie said, feeling good about being right.

“Yes, you did tell me that,” Séb agreed.

“If the two of you are done sharing memories, I would like Séb to meet the rest of the family,” Steph smiled at them.

After introducing Séb to the family, Steph and Séb excused themselves and walked upstairs to Steph’s room to freshen up. Steph decided to take a shower and when she returned to the bedroom, Séb was standing by the window, looking out into the garden and Steph walked over to him. She wrapped her arms around him and Séb turned around and looked at her. He had promised her that he would tell her about what happened in Paris and it was time to do so. Séb looked at her before taking her hand and leading her over to the bed.

“What’s wrong?” Steph asked.

“I think it’s time for me to tell you about my talk with Remy. He asked me to be the donor. Can you believe that? He must be out of his mind,” Séb replied as he rose from the bed.

“I know the two of you have a lot of issues but you are brothers by blood,” Steph told him.

“And that is supposed to make me help him? Not a chance! He walked out on Corinna and his child, slept with Melissa and finally he tried to steal you,” Séb looked at her.

“But he didn’t steal me and I am here with you. My heart never belonged to Remy but I dated Remy because the man who had my heart didn’t like me. You hated me before you even met me.” Steph said.

“Actually I did like you but I didn’t want to admit it because I was afraid of getting hurt again. How could I ever hate you? You’re smart, beautiful and you’re the best thing that has ever happened to me,” Séb kneeled down in front of her.

“You’re not going to propose are you?” Steph asked.

“No, not yet at some point in the future I could see us getting married. I love you,” Séb replied as he touched her cheek.

“I love you too,” Steph said.

Séb kissed her softly and the kiss became deeper but Steph pulled away, telling him that her parents were waiting for them downstairs. Letting out a sigh, Séb stood and disappeared into the bathroom. Fifteen minutes later they walked downstairs and joined the family in the garden for coffee. Martin and Anette wanted to know more about the man sitting in front of them and Séb told them about himself. They all listened with interest and Steph knew by the looks on their faces that they had accepted him as a part of her life. Séb being French was not a problem and it made Steph happy to see her father and Séb getting along.

Anette watched Steph and Séb together and she was happy to see that Steph had found love again. The break-up with Mark had been harder on Anette than Steph because she wondered how Steph would cope on her own. Steph had never been alone before. She was only 16 when she met Mark and they got engaged when she was 18. Later that year they moved in together and two years later they got married. Anette knew there was no point in thinking about that now. Steph was a grown woman and Séb was a nice man and it was easy to see that they loved each other.

A few hours later, Steph decided to give Séb a tour of the house and the surroundings and they had company by all of Steph’s nieces and nephews. Séb had hoped to spend some time alone with Steph but that would have to wait until later. After giving Séb the big tour, Anette and the girls were cooking dinner while the guys were in the living room talking. Dinner was served in the garden and as the sun was setting everyone was having a good time.

It was almost midnight when Steph’s brothers said goodnight and left. Steph and Séb spend half an hour with Anette and Martin before they said their goodnights too. As soon as Steph closed the door to her bedroom, Séb walked up behind her and gently kissed her neck as he wrapped his arms around her.

“Finally alone,” he whispered in her ear.

“Are you trying to tell me something?” Steph giggled as she turned around.

“Me? No, not at all,” Séb smiled at her.

“You’re a bad liar, Sébastien Izambard. What is on your mind?” Steph asked as she unbuttoned his shirt.

“The same thing that is on your mind,” Séb replied as he pulled her T-shirt over her head.

Steph locked the door before Séb led her over to the bed. As soon as all clothes had been removed, they lay down on the bed and loved each other until sleep caught up with them.

The next day Steph and Séb left right after breakfast because Steph wanted to show Séb her favorite places in Copenhagen. They went shopping and had lunch outside in one of Steph’s favorite restaurants. Steph told him that she loved spending time just watching people because not two people were alike in Copenhagen and you could wear anything you wanted without people making fun of you.

“This is actually the first time I’ve had a chance to see the city. Last time we were here we arrived early in the morning and we had to leave right after the concert. It won’t be the last time I will visit Copenhagen,” Séb said.

“I’m glad you said that. The good thing is that it’s only a two hours flight from London,” Steph smiled at him.

“Yes, that is a good thing. And Paris is not far from London either,” Séb reminded her.

“I love Paris. It’s a beautiful city and I wouldn’t mind living there someday,” Steph said.

“Was that a hint?” Séb asked with a smile.

“No, it was just a piece of information,” Steph replied.

Séb didn’t say anything. He couldn’t deny that the thought hadn’t crossed his mind several times but something was telling him to wait. Séb knew he shouldn’t even be thinking what he was thinking but Steph’s concern for his brother was puzzling him. Why was she so concerned about Remy? Was she in love with him? ‘Don’t even think that, Izambard. She has proved to you so many times that she loves you so why do you have to doubt her feelings? Séb thought to himself as he looked at Steph.

“What’s wrong?” Steph asked, sipping her coke.

“I was just thinking. It’s nothing to worry about,” Séb answered.

Steph looked at him and she could tell that something was bothering him but she chose not to say anything as she didn’t want to ruin their stay in Copenhagen. After finishing their lunch they continued the tour and walked back to the car. Steph wanted to show Séb the oldest amusement park in Copenhagen and she had arranged for them to have dinner there. They arrived at the amusement park and Steph parked the car. As they walked around in the park, Steph felt like someone was watching them it made her feel uncomfortable.

“What’s going on?” Séb asked her.

“I just feel like someone is watching us,” Steph looked at him.

“Let’s go in here and get something to drink,” Séb suggested.

Steph nodded and they walked into a café to get some coffee. They talked about who could be watching them and only one name popped up but why would Mark be watching them? Séb tried to convince her she was only imagining things but Steph was sure that someone was watching them from a distance. They left the café and walked around the park for another hour before they walked to the restaurant.

They were shown to their table and after placing the order, Séb did what he could to convince her that it was all in her imagination. The waiter brought the wine and shortly after the food was served. Steph and Séb were just about to eat when Steph heard a familiar voice behind her.

“Hello Stephanie,” Mark said.

“Hello Mark,” Steph said without looking at him.

“Mark Petersen, Steph’s ex-husband,” Mark reached out his hand to Séb.

“Sébastien Izambard, Steph’s boyfriend,” Séb shook his hand.

“This is Dina, my girlfriend,” Mark introduced them to the blonde woman next to him.

Steph looked at the woman and she couldn’t believe that Mark had replaced her with that. Nothing on Dina was real and her outfit was at least one size too small. The jewelry around her neck told Steph that Mark had to work hard to make enough money to make her happy.

“You divorced me for that?” Steph questioned, looking at Mark.

“This is not the time or place to discuss this. I just wanted to say hi,” Mark said and left.

“Do you want to leave?” Séb asked, taking her hand.

“No, I don’t want to leave. I won’t let him ruin our dinner but now I know who was watching us. Let’s enjoy our dinner,” Steph smiled at Séb.

Séb smiled and kissed her hand. They finished their dinner without paying any attention to Mark and Dina. After dinner Steph paid the bill and they walked back to the car. Soon after, they were on their way home.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:14 pm

Chapter 37

The Divos and their partners were back in London after spending time with their families. Simon had called and asked all of the Divos and Steph to meet him in his office for a meeting because he had something important to discuss with them. They arrived at Sony BMG and they all wondered what could be so important. They got the answer to that question when they stepped into Simon’s office and saw their tour manager, Jeremy Holden. He greeted them and they were just about to take a seat when Simon walked into the office with Gillian by his side.

“Thank you all for coming. Jeremy and Gillian are here for a reason and I think I will let Jeremy tell you what the problem is,” Simon told them.

“We have got a problem with the venues and the hotels in Dublin and Glasgow. My assistant had to leave due to a family emergency and I have to sort this out before the tour starts. I’ve asked for Simon’s permission to use Stephanie and Gillian for about a week and he agreed,” Jeremy explained.

“Your schedule only includes rehearsals from now on and you won’t need Steph for that,” Simon continued.

“I will need her for something else,” Séb mumbled.

“What was that?” Simon asked him.

“Nothing,” Séb replied.

“Good. Jeremy will give you the details but I can tell you that you are leaving for Dublin tomorrow morning and I expect you to be back here by the end of the week,” Simon explained, looking at Steph.

“Ok, but next time I would appreciate it if you could give people some notice,” Steph said, letting Simon know that she wasn’t happy.

“We didn’t know until yesterday,” Jeremy told her.

“Guess I have to accept that,” Steph looked at Jeremy.

Simon wrapped up the meeting and they all left his office. Steph told Séb that she had to pick up some things in her office and she cursed all the way there. She walked into her office and closed the door behind her. This was not what she had planned but she knew how important it was. Steph grabbed the things she needed and just as she was about to leave, Séb showed up.

“Are you ready to leave?” Séb asked.

“Yes I am. Let’s get out of here,” Steph replied with a smile.

When they left the building, the other Divos were waiting for them. They agreed to meet for dinner and Urs told them that he would make the reservations. They said their goodbyes and went home. Carlos, Séb and Steph drove back to Steph’s apartment where Sam was waiting for them. She was curious to hear about the meeting and Steph filled her in as they were having lunch.

*****

“How did the meeting go?” Carla asked David when he walked through the door.

“Well, Jeremy is having problems with the concerts in Dublin and Glasgow and he needs Steph and Gillian to help him out. They are leaving tomorrow,” David repeated what had been said at the meeting.

“Why didn’t they tell you earlier?” Carla looked at him.

“According to Jeremy they just found out yesterday. Steph is not pleased,” David replied.

“I can imagine that but she knows how important this is,” Carla smiled at him.

David nodded his head as he smiled back at her. He helped Carla finish the sandwiches and the two of them sat down and enjoyed their lunch, talking about the vacation they had just spent with David’s parents.

******

Alyssa was resting when Urs came home and he didn’t want to wake her up. He picked up his phone and called the restaurant to make a reservation before he started lunch. About ten minutes later, he had finished lunch and he put everything on a tray before walking into the bedroom where Alyssa was sleeping. Urs put down the tray and softly kissed Alyssa to wake her up. She opened her eyes and looked at him with a smile.

“It’s lunch time,” Urs smiled at her.

“That sounds good. We are starving,” Alyssa giggled as she touched her belly.

“Good. Let’s eat,” Urs sat down next to her.

They enjoyed their lunch, talking about the meeting and their baby.

******

Later that night the four Divo couples met for dinner and after ordering their food, they started talking about what had happened during the two weeks off. Urs and Alyssa announced that they were expecting a baby Buhler everyone was happy for them. If they were lucky, Alyssa would be able to follow Urs on tour but time would tell.

David told his friends about his conversation with his mother and everyone was shocked to hear that she was talking about marriage already. Carla had taken the news well when David told her about it and she had told him that marriage was not on her mind yet either. They had all the time in the world for that and there was no need to rush into something like that.

Sam told them about the day they went sightseeing. How they danced the tango in the street, had dinner at a romantic restaurant and watched the sun set behind the palace. They had been celebrating Carlos’ mother’s birthday and Sam had a great time with the Marin ladies. Especially Carlos’ grandmother had been taken with Sam and the two ladies hit it off from the moment they met.

Steph and Séb told them about the party, finding out that Remy and Séb were blood related, Remy being sick and meeting Mark in Copenhagen. They were all shocked to hear about Remy and Séb being blood related and also Remy being sick came as a surprise to them. Séb informed them that he had been asked to donate bone marrow if needed.

“Will you do it?” David asked him.

“As things look right now the answer is no. Not because of what happened in the past but because of what he did in Paris,” Séb answered.

“What did he do in Paris?” Sam looked at him.

“He tried to split us up and then he tried to hurt me because I found out his secret,” Steph replied, taking Séb’s hand.

“I’m glad he didn’t manage to split you up and I’m happy you’re ok,” Sam smiled.

“So am I,” Séb kissed Steph’s hand.

They finished their dinner and paid the bills before they went their separate ways. Alyssa was tired and wanted to rest and Carla had to get up early the next morning for work. Carlos and Sam were supposed to spend the night at his place but because of Steph having to leave the next day, Sam wanted to sleep at her own place and Carlos agreed. After returning to the apartment, the four friends spent some time talking before they decided to get some sleep.

Séb was already in bed when Steph came out of the bathroom and the smile on his face told her that he had no intention of letting her sleep. When Steph climbed into bed, Séb pulled her into his arms and kissed her deeply. He couldn’t touch or kiss her for a week and he wanted to give her something to remember him by when she was away. Steph completely surrendered to him and soon after they were making love.

The next morning Steph said goodbye to Carlos and Sam before Séb took her to the airport. When they arrived at the airport, they were met by Gillian, Simon and Jeremy and Simon told her she had 5 minutes before they had to board the plane. Steph gave him a look that could kill and he knew that it was time for him to keep quiet and leave her alone. He turned his attention to his wife and Jeremy excused himself to let the two couples say goodbye to each other.

“I miss you already,” Séb said as he held Steph close.

“How will you get through the next week without me?” Steph asked.

“I will be busy with rehearsals,” Séb replied.

“Good answer. I will miss you too and I will call you from Dublin,” Steph smiled.

“I will be waiting. It’s time for you to leave, Cherie,” Séb looked at her.

“I’ll see you in about a week. I love you,” Steph said.

“I love you too,” Séb kissed her deeply.

Steph grabbed her suitcase and walked over to Gillian. They joined Jeremy and they walked out to the plane. Simon had arranged for his private jet to take them to Dublin and later on, it would take them to Glasgow. As soon as they were gone, Simon offered Séb something to drink and Séb accepted the offer. They walked to a café and had a cup of coffee as they talked.

---- Two days later ----

Séb woke up to the sound of his phone ringing and he wasn’t fully awake when he answered it. The minute he heard his mother’s voice, he knew that it had something to do with Remy. He turned on the light and looked at his watch and it said 3 am.

“What is wrong?” Séb asked.

“It’s your brother. He is in the hospital, Sébastien, and we really want you to be here,” Arienne managed to say between sobs.

“Ok, I will call Simon and tell him that I have to leave. I will call you when I leave. Au revoir,” Séb said and hung up before dialing Simon’s number.

“It’s 3 am, Sébastien,” Simon said when he answered the phone.

“I know that and I am sorry for calling but I have to go to Paris as soon as possible. Remy is in the hospital and my parents want me to be there,” Séb explained the situation.

“That is impossible, Sébastien. You have rehearsals to do,” Simon reminded him.

“So you are telling me that I can’t go?” Séb was stunned.

“I am telling you to think about it. You know how important rehearsals are and I hate when one of you miss out on rehearsals,” Simon replied.

“If you can’t let me go to Paris for a family matter, then I have no other choice but to quit Il Divo. Goodbye,” Séb said and hung up.

Simon stared at the phone and he wasn’t sure of what had just happened. He couldn’t believe that he had just denied Séb to be with his family and he couldn’t believe that Séb had quit Il Divo. Simon called Séb’s number but he only got the voicemail. He left a message before hanging up and he hoped that Séb would at least listen to the message.

Meanwhile Séb had packed and was on his way to the airport. He couldn’t understand why Simon was against him wanting to be with his family now. Yes, rehearsals were important but this would only be for a few days, so what was the problem? Séb arrived at the airport and he walked into departures to check in. After checking in, he walked to a café to get a cup of coffee before he had to board the plane. He took out his phone and noticed a voicemail from Simon but he didn’t listen to it. Right now he just wanted to get to Paris. An hour later he was on the plane to Paris.

---- Paris ----

“Are you sure you want to do this?” Bernard asked his wife.

“He is our son and I am the best match for this. I know Sébastien might be a match too but we can’t ask him to do it,” Arienne replied, letting out a sigh.

“I know but I still think we should ask him when he gets here,” Bernard said.

“Maybe you’re right but you will have to do it,” Arienne looked at him.

“Don’t worry. I will talk to him,” Bernard agreed.

“Thanks. Now I want to get some sleep,” Arienne smiled at him.

Bernard kissed his wife before leaving the room. He walked straight to Remy’s room and he wanted to sit with his son until Séb arrived. As he watched Remy lying there, he thought back to the time when everything was ok between Séb and Remy. He hoped that the two of them could put everything behind them and move on but he knew the chances of that happening were not good.

“Hi dad,” Remy suddenly said.

“How are you feeling?” Bernard asked, thinking it was a stupid question.

“I’ve had better days. Where is mom?” Remy looked at him.

“She is resting at the moment,” Bernard told him.

“Is she ok?” Remy asked.

“I won’t lie to you. Your mother is the perfect match and she will be the donor,” Bernard answered.

“She must really love me,” Remy looked at him.

“We both love you and deep down your brother loves you too,” Bernard explained.

“Is he here?” Remy questioned his dad.

“No, but he is on his way.” Bernard replied.

“Ok. I think I need some rest,” Remy said.

Bernard nodded his head and left the room. He hoped that Séb would get there soon because he couldn’t deal with all of this alone. Bernard made his way to Arienne’s room but she was still sleeping so he decided to get a cup of coffee.

Séb had arrived in Paris and he took a cab to the hospital. At the hospital he asked for Remy’s room and when he got there, Remy was sleeping. He looked at his brother and he wasn’t looking good. Even though Séb didn’t like Remy at the moment, he couldn’t stand to see Remy like that. Séb closed the door and turned around to see his dad walking towards him.

“It’s good to see you, Sébastien,” Bernard hugged him.

“Where is mom?” Séb asked his dad.

“She is in another room. You didn’t bring Stephanie?” Bernard asked.

“Steph had to work. What is wrong with mom?” Séb looked at him.

Bernard told him that Arienne had agreed to donate bone marrow to Remy and it didn’t come as a surprise to him that his mom wanted to be the donor. Being Remy’s mom, she would be the best match but would it be safe for her to do it? What about complications? Séb had to talk to the doctor and he excused himself before leaving to speak with the doctor. He returned twenty minutes later and walked into his mom’s room to talk to her about his decision.

“You’re here,” Arienne smiled.

“Yes, I’m here and you don’t have to donate anything. I’m a match too and the doctors have agreed to use me,” Séb told her.

“Why?” Arienne asked.

“I’m younger and stronger than you. No matter what has happened between us, Remy is my brother,” Séb told her.

“It sounds like you have made up your mind and I guess it won’t matter what I say. Is Stephanie here?” Arienne looked at him.

“No, Simon sent her off to Dublin and Glasgow. I will see her again this weekend,” Séb answered.

“Does she know about this?” Arienne asked.

“No and I want to keep it that way. She is working and I don’t want her to worry about me,” Séb explained.

“I’m glad you decided to do this,” Arienne smiled.

Séb kissed her cheeks and he was about to leave when the nurse entered the room. She told Séb that they had to move fast because Remy’s condition had just gotten worse. Séb joined the nurse and half an hour later, they were ready to start the procedure. The doctor assured Bernard and Arienne that it would be completely safe for Séb to donate.

Arienne and Bernard were in the waiting room and they talked about calling Simon to inform him of what was going on. After donating bone marrow, Séb would have to rest for a few days and there was no way the doctor would let him travel. Bernard excused himself and walked outside to call Simon. He returned ten minutes later and told Arienne that Séb had quit his job with Il Divo because Simon wouldn’t let him leave. Arienne couldn’t believe it and she wanted to tell Simon what she thought of him but Bernard told her no.

After what seemed to be an eternity, the doctor joined them and informed them that everything seemed to be well. Of course it would take some time before they could say anything about Remy but it looked good so far. Arienne and Bernard let out a sigh of relief and they couldn’t wait to see their sons. Both Séb and Remy were resting when Arienne and Bernard checked on them and they decided to get some rest themselves.

Over the next few days, Arienne and Bernard took turns in watching over their sons and they were happy to see that everything was looking good. Remy seemed to be responding well to the bone marrow from Séb and Séb was doing well but as the day turned into night, the condition of one son had changed.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Sun Dec 16, 2012 7:12 pm

Chapter 38

”What is wrong with our son?” Arienne asked the doctor.

“It looks like his immune system has been weakened and he has caught some kind of infection. The infection is causing him to be delusional due to a very high fever. Right now we are doing some tests to find out what kind of infection it is and I will let you know when we have more info,” the doctor said and left.

“We have to call Simon and let him know what is happening here,” Arienne looked at Bernard.

“I will do that and you can go to Séb’s room. I will check up on Remy after I make the call to Simon,” Bernard said and walked out of the waiting room.

Arienne watched him as he left before she let out a sigh. She turned and walked into Séb’s room. She slowly opened the door and saw a nurse in the room with Séb. Seeing him like that was breaking her heart and for a moment she regretted letting him help Remy. If she had done it as planned, both Remy and Séb would be fine.

“How is he?” Arienne questioned the nurse.

“His fever is still very high and as you can see, he is very delusional. He keeps mentioning the name Steph. Do you know who he is talking about?” the nurse looked at Arienne.

“Stephanie is his girlfriend and she is in Dublin at the moment,” Arienne explained.

“I know this is none of my business but why is she not here with him?” the nurse asked.

“She doesn’t know that he is here. Séb didn’t want her to know about it because he didn’t want her to worry when she is working,” Arienne replied.

“If my boyfriend was in the hospital, I would want to be with him,” the nurse said before leaving the room.

Arienne watched her leave and she knew the nurse was right. Steph deserved to know that Séb was in the hospital and she hoped that Bernard shared her opinion. Arienne took a seat next to Séb’s bed and it brought back memories to when he was a child. She remembered one night when Séb had a fever and she spent the night in his room, taking care of him.

While Arienne was watching over Séb, Bernard was calling Simon. Bernard had no idea that Simon had told Séb that he couldn’t go to Paris or that Séb had left Il Divo. He dialed Simon’s number and shortly after Simon’s voice was on the other end.

“Hello Simon, Bernard Izambard here. I hope I didn’t wake you up,” Bernard said.

“No, I was awake. How is Remy?” Simon asked.

“Thanks to Sébastien, Remy is doing fine,” Bernard answered.

“What do you mean?” Simon questioned.

“Sébastien donated bone marrow to Remy but Sébastien is now suffering from a high fever and it’s causing him to be delusional. Arienne and I thought you should know,” Bernard replied.

“I had no idea that it was that bad. Now I feel sorry for what I said to him,” Simon was shocked.

“What did you say to him?” Bernard asked.

Simon told Bernard of his conversation with Séb and Bernard couldn’t believe what he was hearing. He knew that rehearsals were important but how could Simon deny Séb to be with his family when they needed him? It didn’t make any sense at all. The news about Séb quitting Il Divo came as a surprise too but Bernard knew the words had been said in anger because Séb loved being part of Il Divo. Hopefully they could work on this when Séb was feeling better.

“I can’t say that I’m pleased to hear what you just told me but I really don’t care about that now. I just wanted to tell you what is going on in Paris and hopefully you will tell the other guys,” Bernard said.

“I will call them right away. Knowing them, they will be on the first plane to Paris,” Simon told him.

“Well, I have to get back. Bye Simon,” Bernard hung up.

Simon called each of the other guys and told them what was happening in Paris and he also informed them of his conversation with Séb. The guys were all shocked to hear the news and they were not happy about Il Divo being reduced to a trio. They all wanted to go to Paris and Simon knew that he couldn’t tell them not to go. He informed them that his jet would be ready to leave in the morning and he expected to see all of them the next day at the airport at 9 am. They could talk more on their way to Paris. After talking to the guys, he wondered if he should contact Gillian but it was getting late and she was probably sleeping so he decided to wait until the next day.

*******

“What’s wrong, Carlos?” Sam asked when she saw the look on Carlos’ face.

“Séb is in a hospital in Paris. Apparently he has donated bone marrow to Remy but he caught an infection. He’s suffering from a high fever which is causing him to be delusional,” Carlos replied, still shocked about the news.

“What?” Sam looked at him.

“That’s not the worst part. Il Divo has lost a member,” Carlos told her.

“What is that supposed to mean?” Sam questioned.

Carlos took her hand and told her everything that Simon had said. Sam was just as shocked as Carlos and they talked about what to expect in Paris and the future of Il Divo. The guys had said a lot of times that they wouldn’t continue as a group if one member left and now one member had left. Sam knew the guys and Simon would have to talk about it and Simon needed to talk to Séb too but it would have to wait until Séb was feeling better. Carlos and Sam packed a few things before they went to bed.

******

Unaware of what was happening in Paris, Gillian and Steph went downstairs to have breakfast with Jeremy before they had to leave for Glasgow. Everything had been sorted out in Dublin and now it was time to do the same in Glasgow. As they were eating, Jeremy’s phone rang and he excused himself before he walked out of the restaurant to take the call.

“Good morning Simon,” Jeremy answered his phone

“Good morning Jeremy. I need an update on the Dublin situation,” Simon said.

“Well, Dublin has been solved and we will leave around noon,” Jeremy informed him.

“The guys and I will leave for Paris shortly. Séb is in the hospital but I need you to promise me that you won’t tell Stephanie or Gillian about it,” Simon told him.

“You do know Stephanie will be mad at you when she finds out, right?” Jeremy asked.

“She won’t find out until you get back from Glasgow and by then Séb will be fine,” Simon replied.

“I don’t like it but I will do as you ask,” Jeremy said.

“Thank you. The guys are here now. I will talk to you later. Goodbye,” Simon hung up.

Jeremy walked back to the restaurant and when he saw Steph and Gillian talking and laughing, he felt bad but he had made a promise to Simon and he would keep that promise. Taking a deep breath, Jeremy walked over the girls and sat down. When Gillian asked who had been on the phone, Jeremy told her that it was his contact in Glasgow who wanted to give him some information and she seemed to believe him. He hated lying to them but he had no other choice.

Back in London Simon, the Divos and the girls were boarding Simon’s jet. As soon as they were seated, Simon started to tell them exactly what had happened that night when Séb had called him. Simon could see that they were angry at him and they had every right to be angry. This was their future too and right now they didn’t know what would happen.

“Does Steph know any of this?” Sam asked him.

“No, she doesn’t know anything about it. She doesn’t even know that he went to Paris,” Simon replied.

“I don’t believe it. Don’t you think that she has a right to know about it?” Sam yelled at him.

“Séb didn’t want her to know about him going to Paris because he didn’t want her to worry and you can’t blame me for respecting his wishes,” Simon defended himself.

“I can’t blame you for that but Séb is sick and if I was Steph, then I would like to know that my boyfriend was in a hospital in Paris,” Sam told him.

“I can’t go against Séb’s wishes,” Simon looked at her.

“Well, I didn’t make any promises to him and I will take full responsibility,” Sam firmly stated.

She picked up the phone and dialed Steph’s number. Steph deserved to know that Séb was in the hospital and Jeremy didn’t need Steph around. As she was waiting for Steph to answer the phone, she looked at the others and she knew they wouldn’t try to stop her. They were all feeling the same way but Sam was Steph’s best friend and it was better to let her take care of this.

*******

Steph and Gillian were back in their suite after having breakfast with Jeremy and they had ten minutes to pack their things before they had to leave. As they were about to leave the suite, Steph’s phone started ringing and she could tell by the ringtone that it was Sam. Steph told Gillian that she would meet them downstairs and as soon as Gillian was gone, Steph answered her phone.

“Hello sis. How are things in London?” Steph asked.

“Things are good in London but things are not good in Paris,” Sam answered.

“What’s going on in Paris?” Steph sat down on the bed.

“Séb is in the hospital in Paris and I think you should get to Paris as soon as possible. We are on the plane to Paris right now,” Sam told her.

“What’s wrong with him?” Steph asked.

“It’s a long story but he caught some kind of infection after donating bone marrow to Remy,” Sam explained the situation.

“How long has he been in the hospital?” Steph questioned her friend.

“Three days but you should know that Séb is the one who didn’t want you to know about him going to Paris,” Sam responded.

“I see. Who didn’t want me to know that he was sick?” Steph asked with anger in her voice.

“I don’t know. Simon informed us last night,” Sam said.

“Well, you can tell Simon that I will be on the first plane out of here. I will see you soon,” Steph hung up the phone.

She was angry, hurt and disappointed and she wondered if they had any intention of telling her that Séb was in the hospital. Steph picked up her suitcase and walked to the elevator and pushed the button. Shortly after, the doors opened and she got into the elevator and pushed the button for the lobby. As Steph stepped out of the elevator, Gillian knew by the look on her face that something wasn’t right. Steph walked over to them and after checking out, they left the hotel. They climbed into the car that would take them to the airport and Steph didn’t say anything until Gillian pulled her aside and asked her what was wrong.

“I’m not coming with you, Gillian. I have to go to Paris. Séb is in the hospital and he is very sick,” Steph told her.

“What?” Gillian looked at her.

“Séb caught some kind of infection after donating bone marrow to Remy. He has been in the hospital for three days but he didn’t want me to know,” Steph explained.

“Did Simon know about this?” Gillian asked.

“Yes Simon knew that Séb went to Paris. He even told Séb he couldn’t go because of rehearsals and Séb quit,” Steph answered.

“You go ahead and get a plane to Paris. I will talk to my husband about this. Now go and I will see you soon,” Gillian hugged her.

Steph walked over to one of the counters to get a ticket and Gillian walked back to Jeremy. She told him about Séb and Jeremy confessed that he already knew about it but he had made a promise to Simon about keeping his mouth shut. Hearing those words made Gillian angry and she instantly picked up her phone and called her husband. It was easy to see that Gillian was angry and Jeremy was glad that he wasn’t Simon. After being on the phone for a few minutes, Gillian and Jeremy checked in and walked to the gate.

*******

“I just thought you should know that Steph is on her way to Paris and I don’t think you are one of her favorite people right now,” Sam said, looking at Simon.

“Well, I just got off the phone with Gillian and she wasn’t happy. She told me that she would deal with me when we are back together,” Simon told her.

“I think we should all calm down. Yelling at each other won’t do any good,” David told them.

“He is right. We shouldn’t argue,” Carlos agreed.

Simon and Sam looked at each other and they both knew that David was right. Sam took a seat next to Carlos and she didn’t say another word until they reached Paris. After getting off the plane, they left the airport and went to the hotel that Simon had booked for them. They all wanted to freshen up a bit before they headed to the hospital to see their friend. When they arrived at the hospital, they met Bernard and Arienne in the waiting room and Simon introduced them to the girls before Bernard gave them an update on Séb’s condition.

“Can we see him?” David asked.

“Yes but he won’t know you’re there. The fever is still high,” Arienne replied.

Bernard told them to follow him but Sam decided to stay with Arienne. Sam told Arienne that Steph was on her way and that she wasn’t in a good mood. Arienne told Sam that she couldn’t blame Steph for being angry and she felt bad about not calling Steph herself but Séb wanted it that way. When Bernard returned to the waiting room, Arienne excused herself and walked into Remy’s room to spend some time with him. He was doing well and she couldn’t wait to have both of her sons healthy and happy.

Steph had finally arrived at the hospital and she was shown into the waiting room by a young nurse. Bernard was standing by the window when Steph walked through the door and he turned around when he heard his name. He walked over to her and gave her a big hug.

“You’re finally here,” Bernard said.

“I’m sorry for not being here earlier but I wasn’t informed,” Steph told him.

“I know that and I want to apologize to you for not calling you but Séb didn’t want you to know,” Bernard looked at her.

“Sam told me and I’m not mad at you. I’m mad at Simon, for a lot of reasons. He didn’t tell me about Séb being in the hospital and he told Séb that he couldn’t go to Paris. Family is more important than rehearsals,” Steph said.

“I agree with you and if you want to yell at me then go ahead,” Simon suddenly said.

“No, I won’t yell at you yet. Right now I want to see my boyfriend. Excuse me,” Steph walked out of the room.

“She is a tough lady,” Bernard smiled.

“That is why I hired her,” Simon agreed.

Steph walked into Séb’s room and she greeted all of her friends. Without saying a word, Urs gestured for them to leave the room and let Steph be alone with Séb. As soon as they were gone, Steph sat down on the bed and watched Séb as he said a lot of strange things. She gently touched his cheek and it seemed to calm him down a bit but he was still saying a lot of words that didn’t make any sense.

“Why didn’t you want me to know? I’m your girlfriend and I should be informed of these things. I really should be mad at you but I’m not. Well, I’m here now and I’m not leaving until you’re feeling better,” Steph whispered.

As she sat there, she hoped that Séb would make it and she hoped that he could work things out with Simon but for now the most important thing was Séb and his health.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:21 am

Chapter 39

It had been five hours since Steph had arrived in Paris and she hadn’t left Séb’s room in those five hours. She didn’t want to go anywhere and she really wasn’t in the mood to talk to anyone. Steph knew that keeping her in the dark had been Séb’s decision and she knew that the Divos didn’t know until Simon had called them but she still felt betrayed by them. As she looked at Séb, she still couldn’t understand why he had asked everyone to be quiet about it.

“Can I come in?” Sam’s voice suddenly asked.

“If you want to,” Steph answered without looking at her friend.

“How is he doing?” Sam walked over to the bed.

“It’s still the same,” Steph looked at her.

“I know you feel like all of us have betrayed you but we didn’t know about any of this. If we had known earlier, we would have told you,” Sam said.

“I know that but wouldn’t you have been angry if it had been Carlos? Wouldn’t you like to be informed if anything like this happened to him?” Steph questioned.

“Yes I would and I don’t blame you for being angry,” Sam replied.

“Well, right now the only thing I want is for Séb to get better,” Steph looked at Séb.

“We were talking about getting something to eat. Bernard and Arienne will stay here so you can come with us,” Sam explained.

“I’m not hungry,” Steph told her.

“You have to eat. They will let us know if there is any change,” Sam said.

“I’m not going anywhere. You go ahead,” Steph looked at her.

Sam let out a sigh as she left the room. She couldn’t blame Steph for not wanting to leave the hospital because she would have made the same decision if it had been Carlos. Sam told Bernard and Arienne that Steph didn’t want to come before she made her way downstairs to meet the others. Bernard looked at his wife and they both knew they had to talk to Steph but first they had to check up on Remy. They made their way to Remy’s room and they found him awake and flirting with one of his nurses.

“You seem to be doing fine,” Bernard looked at him.

“How can I not be fine? I’ve got a lot of nice nurses to keep me company,” Remy said.

“I wish your brother was doing as well as you,” Bernard walked over to his bed.

“What do you mean? Is something wrong with Séb?” Remy asked.

They hadn’t told Remy that Séb was sick but Bernard felt it was time to do so and he asked the nurse to leave the room. Bernard sat down next to Remy and informed him of Séb’s condition and he also informed Remy of Steph being there to be with Séb and it didn’t come as a surprise to Remy as he knew how much Steph loved Séb. It was the kind of love that she would never give him and he had accepted that. Remy hoped that Séb would be ok so he could thank him for saving his life.

“I would like to see Steph if it’s possible,” Remy looked at Bernard.

“Stephanie won’t leave his side, Remy. Her friends went out to get something to eat and they wanted her to join them but she refused. I will see what I can do but I won’t promise you anything,” Bernard told him.

“I understand but please see what you can do,” Remy said.

“I will,” Bernard promised and left the room.

Remy still couldn’t believe that Séb had chosen to donate bone marrow. Their relationship hadn’t been the best over the last five years and Remy was aware that it was his fault but he couldn’t change the past. As he thought of how to make things right, there was a knock on the door and shortly after, Steph walked into the room. Remy had asked for her to come but he was still surprised to see her. She walked over to the bed and sat down.

“Hello Remy,” Steph said.

“Hello Steph. How are you?” Remy asked.

“I’m ok but a bit angry. It seems like Séb didn’t want me to know about him going to Paris and Simon didn’t want me to know that Séb was sick,” Steph replied, raising her voice.

“Ouch,” Remy looked at her.

“I’m sorry. It’s not your fault. How are you feeling?” Steph questioned.

“I’m feeling good and if it was up to me, I would be up and walking around. I’m thinking of asking the doctor to let me see Séb,” Remy told her.

“That won’t happen, at least not yet. We don’t want you to catch the same infection as Séb,” a voice suddenly said.

“Do you know what kind of infection it is?” Remy looked at the doctor.

“We are still waiting for the test results but I will keep you informed,” the doctor promised.

“I want to go back to Séb now,” Steph stood.

“He will be fine,” Remy said as she walked to the door.

Steph turned and smiled at him before she left the room. As she walked back to Séb’s room, she wondered if Remy really had changed or if he was just pretending. She hoped for a change and she knew that Arienne and Bernard wanted nothing more than for their sons to become brothers again. Steph had reached Séb’s room and when she opened the door, she saw Arienne sitting by the bed, holding Séb’s hand as she sang to him. It was a private moment and she didn’t want to intrude so she gently closed the door and walked to the waiting room.

Simon was talking to Bernard and Steph could feel the anger towards him coming back when she saw him. She wanted to tell him what she thought of him and she knew it might cost her the job with Il Divo but it didn’t really matter because there was no Il Divo anymore. Séb had quit and the others wouldn’t go on without him so there was no reason why she couldn’t tell him a few things.

“Could I please have a moment with Simon?” Steph asked Bernard.

“I will be with Remy,” Bernard answered and left the waiting room.

“Séb was the one who didn’t want you to know about him going to Paris,” Simon explained.

“I know that but why didn’t you want me to know that he was sick? I know that wasn’t Séb’s decision,” Steph looked at him with anger in her eyes.

“You’re right, it wasn’t his decision but I wanted you to stay and help Jeremy with the venues. The tour is very important,” Simon told her.

“What tour? You don’t even have a group anymore and you have yourself to thank for that. It’s not a secret that the other three Divos won’t continue if one member left the group,” Steph pointed out to him.

“I know that but I never wanted Séb to leave the group. It was in the middle of the night and I wasn’t fully awake. We both said some things that shouldn’t have been said but I will apologize to him and ask him to come back to the group when he is feeling better,” Simon promised her.

“And if he doesn’t want to come back?” Steph asked.

“We have to wait and see about that. Right now we all want him to get better,” Simon responded.

“I am still waiting for my apology,” Steph said.

“I’m sorry for not telling you about Séb being sick,” Simon reached out his hand to her.

“Apology accepted but keep something like that hidden from me again and I won’t be so forgiving,” Steph stared at him as she shook his hand.

While Simon and Steph had their talk at the hospital, the others were at a small French bistro getting something to eat. They needed to talk about the group and the tour without having Simon around and they had hoped that Steph would join them as she was their PA.

“You can’t cancel the tour now. Your fans have already bought their tickets and some of them come from other countries to see you. They will be very disappointed,” Carla said.

“She is right. Do you really want to disappoint the people who support you and are the reason why you’re still singing?” Sam added.

“We don’t want to disappoint our fans but we have too because we can’t and won’t continue without Séb. Il Divo is the four of us,” David looked at the others.

“I still say that you can’t disappoint your fans and I’m sure the girls agree with me,” Sam said, looking at them.

“I suggest you try to convince Séb to change his mind and return to the group when he is feeling better. If you won’t go on without him, you have no other choice. Séb will agree to it because he loves singing with you guys on stage,” Alyssa looked at the guys.

“Your wife does have a point, Urs. Ok, we will ask him when he is feeling better and it might be a good idea to have Steph as back-up,” Carlos said.

They all agreed to the plan and after finishing their food, Carlos and Sam went to the hospital while the others went back to the hotel. There was no need for all of them to be at the hospital and they could use some rest. Sam promised to call them if there was any news about Séb’s condition. When Carlos and Sam returned to the hospital, they met Bernard but there was no sign of Simon, Steph or Arienne. Bernard told them that Simon had gone to the hotel and Arienne was at a bistro with Steph. She had finally convinced Steph to get something to eat and Bernard thought they could use some time alone.

Carlos and Sam walked down the hall to Séb’s room as Bernard made his way to Remy’s room. When they entered the room, Séb seemed to be sleeping peacefully and they decided to go back to the waiting room. As they waited for Steph and Arienne to return, they saw a woman walking down the hall with one of Séb’s nurses and something about her made Sam feel uneasy but she thought it was just her imagination. They were talking when Steph and Arienne returned to the hospital and Sam informed Steph of the mystery woman.

“Are you sure it has something to do with Séb? The hospital does have other patients,” Steph looked at Sam.

“No, I’m not sure but I just have a bad feeling about it,” Sam answered.

“Well, I’m sure it’s nothing but I will check it out now,” Steph said and disappeared.

As she walked down the hall to Séb’s room, she wondered if Sam was right about the mystery woman but who would know that Séb was in the hospital? Only the Divo team knew about it and they wouldn’t leak the story to anyone. Steph reached Séb’s room and when she opened the door, she noticed a woman in black sitting next to Séb’s bed. The woman was holding Séb’s hand as she stroked his cheek and Steph couldn’t believe it.

“Who are you and what are you doing in Séb’s room?” Steph asked the woman.

“Hello Stephanie! I bet you thought you would never see me again. Well, I am here to see my boyfriend so you have to get used to me being here,” the woman replied as she turned and smiled at Steph.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:43 am

Chapter 40

Steph couldn’t believe her own eyes. Melissa was sitting there in front of her, holding her boyfriend’s hand and stroking his cheek. Steph felt sick to her stomach and she wondered how Melissa knew about Séb being in the hospital. Only the Divos, the girls and Séb’s family knew about it and suddenly she had a strange thought. Was Remy behind this? Was he the one who had leaked the story to Melissa? No, he wouldn’t do that. He owed Séb his life.

“You don’t have any business here. I suggest you leave right now,” Steph angrily said.

“I want to see Séb. After all, he is the love of my life,” Melissa told her.

“If that is true, then why did you sleep with his brother?” Steph asked.

“I don’t have to explain myself to you. Besides, you wouldn’t understand,” Melissa said.

“You’re right about that. There is no way that I could possibly understand why you would do something like that to the man you loved,” Steph agreed.

“That just shows how brainless you are,” Melissa looked at her with a smile.

“I do have a brain and unlike you, I know how to use it. Now I want to know how you found out about Séb being here,” Steph walked over to Melissa.

Just as Melissa was about to answer, Bernard walked into Séb’s room and he too was surprised to see Melissa next to Séb’s bed. The anger was burning in his eyes and Steph asked him to leave the room because she had to speak to Melissa alone. Reluctantly, Bernard left the room and Steph turned her attention back to Melissa.

“Now, answer my question,” Steph grabbed Melissa’s arm.

“I have some connections here in Paris,” Melissa laughed.

“I am asking you for the last time. Who told you?” Steph pushed Melissa against the wall.

“Maybe you should ask Remy that question,” Melissa said, trying to get away from Steph.

“No, he wouldn’t do that but I will ask him. Now it’s time for you to leave,” Steph told Melissa.

Steph dragged Melissa out of Séb’s room. When they walked into the waiting room, the others just stared at them without saying a word. They were all shocked to see Melissa standing there and just like Steph, they wondered how she knew about Séb. Steph asked David and Urs to escort Melissa outside and the two Divos did as she requested. Steph told her friends that she had to see Remy and ask him a few questions. She turned and left the waiting room, leaving the others to wonder how that meeting would turn out.

Outside of the hospital, David and Urs were having a huge argument with Melissa. She was angry about getting thrown out of the hospital and she did what she could to gain access again but David and Urs both blocked the door. There was no way that they would let her near Séb again. She had done enough damage and Séb didn’t need any more stress from her. Melissa was cursing as she walked to the car and the Divos watched as she climbed into the limo and drove off. They waited until the limo had disappeared and as soon as they were sure that she was gone, they walked back to the others.

Meanwhile Steph had reached Remy’s room and when she walked into the room, she saw a nurse in the room with Remy. Steph cleared her throat and Remy looked at her, gesturing for her to enter. The nurse seemed a bit strange and Steph felt uncomfortable with the woman in front of her.

“You look like a thunder cloud. What’s wrong?” Remy asked with a smile.

“Melissa came here to see Séb. It looks like someone has told her about Séb being here and she says it’s you,” Steph replied.

“And you believe her? Why would I do something like that? Yes, I’ve done a lot of bad things but I would never tell Melissa something like that,” Remy looked at her.

“He is telling you the truth,” the nurse added.

“How would you know?” Steph questioned.

“I am the one who called Melissa. We have been friends for a very long time and I thought she deserved to know,” the nurse answered, feeling proud of what she had done.

Without saying a word, Steph left Remy’s room and she was furious when she entered the waiting room. She explained the situation to her friends and Bernard stormed out of the waiting room. He found the head nurse and passed on the information to her and she was just as shocked as everyone else. The nurse promised to take care of it but Bernard didn’t trust anyone in that hospital after this and he wouldn’t be happy until the nurse was dismissed from the hospital.

While Bernard was talking to the nurse, Steph apologized to Remy before she returned to Séb’s room. She was determined to spend the night in the hospital and she wouldn’t take no for an answer. Steph didn’t trust Melissa and she knew that Melissa would do whatever she could to get back into Séb’s room but there was no way that she would let that happen. Steph was so into her own thoughts that she hadn’t noticed that Carla was standing in the room.

“How is he?” Carla asked, bringing Steph back to reality.

“It’s still the same,” Steph turned and looked at her.

“He will be fine. I came here to tell you that we are leaving now and we really think you should come with us,” Carla said.

“No, I am not leaving this hospital. If I have to sleep on the floor tonight, then that’s what I will do. I don’t think we have seen the last of Melissa and I don’t want her near Séb,” Steph told her.

“I understand how you feel. I would do the same if David was in that bed. We will be back tomorrow morning but if there is any change, please call us,” Carla said.

“I will do that,” Steph smiled.

Carla said goodbye and left the room, leaving Steph alone with Séb who was beginning to stir. Steph watched as he opened his eyes and it was like he wasn’t even there. She tried talking to him but he didn’t seem to notice her being there. Never before had she felt so helpless and not being able to help him was really getting to her because she was the kind of person who wanted to help other people. Steph knew she couldn’t help everyone and her help wasn’t always appreciated but she had to try.

********

Meanwhile Melissa had returned to her hotel and she had to figure out a way to get back into the hospital but it would be difficult now that Steph was there. She had no other choice but to hire someone to keep an eye on the hospital and let her know when Steph left but she didn’t know anyone in Paris. Suddenly she thought of Remy and maybe he could be her eyes and ears in the hospital. She knew that Remy and Séb had a lot of problems in their relationship and maybe she could turn that into her advantage.

It was half an hour later when Melissa walked into the hospital, hoping the Divos and the girls had left. She had to speak to Remy and she had put on an outfit that she hoped would convince Remy to help her. As she passed Séb’s room, she noticed Steph sitting next to Séb and she felt like she was the one who should be sitting there. Melissa continued down the hall to Remy’s room and as she walked into the room, Remy opened his eyes and looked at her.

“Hello Remy,” Melissa smiled at him.

“What do you want?” Remy angrily asked her.

“I need a favor and it is something that will help both of us. You know Stephanie is with Séb but you also know that I should be with him and you should be with Stephanie. All I need from you is to tell me when Stephanie leaves so I can be with Séb. I will take good care of him and at some point he dumps Stephanie. She will need someone to comfort her and that person is you,” Melissa answered.

“You’ve got to be kidding me. What makes you think that I would agree to something like that? Séb saved my life,” Remy looked at Melissa.

“You love Stephanie and this would be the perfect opportunity to win her heart,” Melissa told him.

“You’ve lost your mind. Get out of here and don’t come back. Stay away from me, Steph and Séb,” Remy raised his voice at her.

Melissa was stunned and she left the room without saying a word. She couldn’t believe that Remy had turned her down like that and she swore that she would make him pay for what he did to her. Nobody did that and got away with it. Leaving the hospital, Melissa thought of how to make Remy pay but she decided to wait until he was released from the hospital. She went back to the hotel, packed her things and checked out of the hotel but she would return soon to make the Izambard family pay.

******

Back in Séb’s room, the doctor had arrived to check up on Séb and he informed Steph that it looked like the fever was slowly falling. Steph asked him if it was possible for her to stay with Séb because she couldn’t and wouldn’t leave his side. The doctor refused at first but Steph was really persistent and the doctor finally agreed to put an extra bed into the room. A few minutes later, two nurses brought in a bed and one of them informed Steph that she would be back later with dinner. Steph thanked the nurse and sat down on the bed. She was just about to call Sam when the door opened and Sam’s face appeared.

“I assumed you would be spending the night here and I brought you something to wear for the night,” Sam said as she held out a bag to Steph.

“Thanks,” Steph smiled and took the bag.

“Have you eaten yet?” Carlos asked her.

“No but the nurse will bring me something to eat later. They are really nice to me but I can’t wait to get out of this place. I’ve never liked hospitals,” Steph said.

“I know how you feel. We have dinner reservation and we should get going,” Sam looked at Steph.

“Enjoy your dinner. I will let you know if something happens,” Steph promised.

Carlos and Sam hugged her before they left the room. Steph looked at Séb before going to the bathroom to change into the nightgown that Sam had brought her. When she came out of the bathroom, she took out her laptop and climbed into bed. As she was checking her emails, Bernard walked into the room without Arienne and he greeted Steph before he sat down on her bed. He told her that Arienne needed some rest and he had asked her to stay at home.

Steph enjoyed having Bernard there with her and he was easy to talk to. They were talking when the nurse walked into the room with Steph’s dinner and Bernard excused himself to spend some time with Remy while Steph finished her dinner. Remy was eating too when Bernard joined him and it had been a while since the two of them had been together like that, just talking as father and son. Bernard hoped that he would have both of his sons back when this nightmare was over.

After finishing her dinner, Steph picked up her laptop and continued to check her emails. She found an email from her parents and they wanted to know how they were doing in Paris. Steph wrote back and told them about Séb and his condition and she would call them when Séb had recovered. She logged off and closed her laptop before she turned on the TV but she couldn’t focus on watching TV. Just as she turned the TV off, Bernard came into the room to tell her that he was going home but they would be back in the morning. He hugged Steph and told her to take good care of Séb before he left the room. Steph rose from the bed and walked over to Séb’s bed and sat down. She touched his cheek and whispered ‘I love you’ before she climbed back into her own bed to get some sleep.

After a good night’s sleep, Steph woke up to a brand new morning. The sun was rising and it looked like it could be a good day. Stretching her body, she turned to look at Séb but his eyes were closed and she sighed as she rose from the bed. She walked over to the window and looked at the view. The sun was rising behind the Eiffel Tower and it was a beautiful sight. Steph turned around and saw Séb looking at her but he didn’t look happy to see her.

“What are you doing here?” he surprised her by asking.

“I’m here to be with my boyfriend,” Steph answered, feeling hurt about his question.

“Apparently I didn’t make myself clear when I said that I didn’t want you to know about me being in Paris,” Séb said.

“Why didn’t you want me to know? I’m your girlfriend, Sébastien, and I have a right to know things like this. You can’t just do something like this without telling me,” Steph was upset.

“You had enough to deal with and I didn’t want you to worry about me,” Séb told her.

“And that makes it alright? When were you planning on telling me?” Steph asked him.

“Actually I wasn’t going to tell you. The plan was for me to be back in London when you returned from Glasgow and you wouldn’t have found out, at least not for a while,” Séb explained to her.

Steph couldn’t believe what she was hearing. What happened to not keeping secrets from each other? She was disappointed and hurt and without saying another word, she walked into the bathroom to have a shower. As she was in the shower, she could feel the tears forming in her eyes and she didn’t try to stop them from falling. After her shower, she got dressed and left the room without even looking at Séb. She needed some fresh air and as she stepped out of the hospital, she ran into Alyssa and Urs and they could see that something wasn’t right.

Urs feared that something bad had happened to Séb and he told Alyssa to take Steph to the waiting room while he would go to Séb’s room. Alyssa did as Urs requested and the two friends went into the waiting room and sat down. Steph told Alyssa what had happened in Séb’s room and she asked Alyssa to call his parents and their friends to tell them that Séb was awake. Alyssa excused herself and walked outside to make the phone calls and after about five minutes, she returned to the waiting room and sat down.

Meanwhile Urs had reached Séb’s room and he spoke to one of the nurses about what was going on and he was pleased to hear that Séb was awake and it looked like he would be fine. She informed Urs that Séb was eating breakfast and that was a good sign. Urs thanked her for the info and knocked on the door before walking into the room where Séb was in his bed, enjoying his breakfast.

“Welcome back from the delusional world,” Urs joked as he walked over to the bed.

“Very funny,” Séb looked at his friend.

“Are you going to tell me what happened with Steph?” Urs questioned as he sat down.

“She was hurt by the fact that I didn’t want her to know about me being in Paris and I just told her that I didn’t want her to worry about me,” Séb explained the situation.

“Listen to yourself for a second. How would you feel if Steph was doing something like this and she didn’t want you to know about it? Wouldn’t you be hurt?” Urs asked him.

“I guess I would be hurt. We made a promise not to keep secrets from each other and I broke that promise. It looks like I messed up,” Séb admitted.

“She is in the waiting room with Alyssa right now if you want to apologize. You should know that she hasn’t left the hospital except for when your mother decided she needed to eat,” Urs told him.

“Could you please ask her to join me?” Séb looked at Urs.

Urs nodded and left the room to get Steph. As he walked down the hall to the waiting room, he hoped that the two of them could work this out because they belonged together and they shouldn’t let this ruin the relationship. He walked into the waiting room and told Steph that Séb wanted to see her but Steph wasn’t sure about seeing Séb right now. Alyssa told her that she needed to talk to him because she would regret it if she didn’t.

Steph let out a sigh and left the waiting room. She walked down the hall to Séb’s room and she hoped that they could talk like adults because she hated fighting with him. Steph had reached Séb’s room and for some reason she was nervous about seeing him but she couldn’t let him see that. Taking a deep breath, Steph knocked on the door and stepped into the room, closing the door behind her.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:44 pm

Chapter 41


Séb looked at Steph and he knew she was hurt by his words. Deep down, he knew that he really had no reason for being angry at her for wanting to be by his side because she was only doing what any girlfriend would do. By being there with him, she was proving to him how much she loved him and how important he was to her. Steph walked over to his bed when he reached out his hand to her and she sat down on the bed.

“I’m sorry for what I said, Cherie. You being here really mean a lot to me and I’m glad you’re here,” Séb said.

“I thought we agreed on not keeping secrets from each other,” Steph reminded him.

“We did agree on that and since it was my idea, I should be the first to honor that agreement. I promise you that there will be no more secrets from now on. I really am sorry,” Séb looked at her.

“Apology accepted but don’t think I’m letting you get off that easy. What you said really hurt me, Sébastien and you shouldn’t be angry at me. I did what any person in love would do,” Steph said.

“I love the way you say my name,” Séb cupped her face and kissed her.

“Don’t think that you can fix this with a kiss,” Steph rose from the bed.

“I know but it was worth a try,” Séb smiled at her.

“You are so annoying. I’m trying to be mad at you but you’re not making it easy,” Steph said.

“That’s what happens when you’re irresistible,” Séb laughed.

“Stop doing that,” Steph told him.

“I’m not doing anything,” Séb looked at her.

“I give up. You’re impossible to argue with,” Steph sighed.

“Does that mean that I’m forgiven?” Séb asked.

Without answering his question, Steph walked back to the bed and sat down. She looked at Séb and without even thinking, she kissed him passionately. Séb returned the kiss but suddenly he broke the kiss and whispered to Steph that they had to stop. Steph looked at him, wondering what he meant and she giggled when her eyes followed his. Suddenly the nurse walked into the room and Steph laughed when Séb folded his hands to hide what was happening under the covers.

“Good morning, Mr. Izambard. It sure looks like you’re doing fine this morning,” the nurse said as she looked at Séb.

“I feel great,” Séb told her as he looked at Steph who tried not to laugh.

“Breakfast will be served in a few minutes,” the nurse informed them before leaving the room again.

“That was close,” Séb laughed, looking at Steph.

“I’m really glad the nurse walked into the room when she did because things would have gotten too heated for a hospital,” Steph giggled.

The nurse returned with breakfast for Séb and Steph and as she put down the tray, she smiled at them. As they were eating the breakfast, Arienne and Bernard walked through the door and they were happy to see that Séb was awake and it certainly looked like he was fine.

“Looks like you’re doing well,” Arienne kissed Séb’s cheek.

“I am doing fine but I don’t remember much of what has happened these last few days but from what I’ve heard, I have been a bit delusional,” Séb explained.

“Do you remember what happened before you came here?” Steph asked, sipping her coffee.

“Yes, I remember quitting Il Divo but I didn’t have a choice. Simon wouldn’t let me to go Paris,” Séb told her.

“Would you come back if he asked you to?” Steph looked at him.

“You know I love performing with Il Divo and I would hate to let our fans down but Simon has to learn that family is important,” Séb answered.

“Answer my question,” Steph pleaded.

“If Simon asks and he apologizes to me, then yes I will come back to Il Divo,” Séb said to her.

“Good. I will call him and ask him to come here,” Steph told him.

Séb nodded in agreement before Steph left the room. While she was gone, Séb had some time to think of what to say to Simon when he arrived. They needed to talk about what happened but Séb knew how stubborn Simon could be and he had to be prepared for anything. Steph walked back into his room, followed by his parents and his friends. They had all received a phone call from Alyssa, telling them that Séb was now awake and seemed to be doing fine.

“Simon will be here in an hour or so,” Steph told him as she sat down on his bed.

“Thanks. How did he sound?” Séb looked at her.

“Well, he wasn’t happy about coming but I kind of told him that I would quit my job if he didn’t come,” she said.

“That’s blackmail, Cherie,” Séb told her.

“I know but I had to do something. The man is so stubborn,” Steph pointed out.

“Thanks,” Séb kissed her hand.

They were talking and having a good time but everything changed when Simon suddenly walked straight into Séb’s hospital room without knocking. Simon and Séb looked at each other and everyone in the room could feel the tension. Arienne and Bernard told Séb that they would be in Remy’s room and left, leaving the Divos alone to talk.

“Maybe we should leave you two to talk?” Carlos suggested as he looked at his friends.

"If you ask me, there's nothing to talk about. Séb seems to think that personal affairs come before Il Divo but I don’t agree,” Simon replied.

"Excuse me? Family comes before anything,” Seb was furious.

"Yes, but you aren't a teacher or a dentist or marine biologist. In those professions, if something happens you can have a substitute cover for you. When it comes to this group or any group, you can’t just take off and leave for personal business. If you don’t show or quit, the other guys suffer. I know that you had this pact that if one of you wants out, then it’s over but maybe we should ask the girls what they think,” Simon said, looking at the girls.

“I will support Séb in whatever decision he makes. I admit that I would hate to see him leave Il Divo but on the other hand, I can’t blame him for doing what he did. His family needed him and it was wrong of you to tell him that he couldn’t go,” Steph looked at Simon.

“Do the rest of you agree with Steph?” Simon looked at them.

“I don’t know what Carlos was like before he joined Il Divo but I do know that he enjoys being on stage, singing with you guys. Would I be happy if you guys no longer did what they love because one-fourth ruined it for the whole? No, I wouldn’t,” Sam answered.

“Are you blaming me for ruining Il Divo? Well, if the rest of you share that opinion, then I don’t see any reason for me to come back to the group. I’m sure your families would be happy to know that you wouldn’t be with them if they needed you because Il Divo comes before them. I had hoped for a little support from my friends,” Séb was disappointed.

“I didn’t mean it like that. It just came out wrong,” Sam told Séb.

“You do have our support and the four of us belong on stage as a group. We all love singing together and we’re just like brothers. Do you really want to throw that away?” David asked him.

“No, I love being in Il Divo but Simon needs to learn that we have lives outside of Divo world,” Séb answered.

“If Simon allows us to spend time with our families when they need us, then will you come back to the group?” Carlos questioned Séb.

“Yes, then I will come back. I love being a Divo,” Séb responded.

“Looks like it’s your call, Simon,” Carlos looked at him.

“Ok, I agree to your terms. Now can we focus on the tour?” Simon stood.

The four Divos looked at each other before nodding their heads in agreement. Simon informed the guys that he had spoken to Jeremy and everything had been sorted out with the venues in Dublin and Glasgow. Nothing was standing in the way of a tour now and as soon as Séb was back in London, they would start rehearsals. After an hour, Simon, the Divos and their girls left the hospital, leaving Steph and Séb alone.

“Thanks for your help,” Séb said when the others had left.

“I didn’t do anything, except for saying how I felt. When you go on stage, something happens to you and I know that you would never get that feeling with any other job. You love being in Il Divo but if you had decided to quit, then I would have supported you because that is what partners do,” Steph smiled.

“If we weren’t in a hospital, I would make love to you right now,” Séb whispered in her ear.

“Well, you haven’t had a shower today,” Steph seductively whispered.

“You’re right about that but I’m not sure the nurses will allow me to take a shower. I’ve been sick and I’m still not back to my old self,” Séb reminded her.

“I will be the judge of that. You stay here and I will talk to the nurse,” Steph kissed him and left.

She returned a few minutes later and told Séb that the nurses had agreed to let her help him with the shower. Steph walked into the bathroom and Séb joined her shortly after. They took their time in the shower and after the shower Séb grabbed a towel and wrapped it around Steph as he kissed her. He dried both of them off and helped Steph put on his robe before he put on his briefs. They stepped into the hospital room to find Arienne and Bernard waiting for them and Steph felt a bit uncomfortable wearing only a robe in front of Séb's parents.

“Excuse me for a minute,” Steph grabbed some clothes from her bag before disappearing into the bathroom.

“We spoke to the doctor and you will be released tomorrow. Remy is doing better but he has to stay here for at least another week. When are you planning on going back to London?” Bernard looked at Séb.

“Tomorrow evening or the next morning, depending on the flights,” Séb responded as Steph came out of the bathroom.

“Good. Your brother wants to see you before you leave,” Arienne told Séb.

“Ok, I will talk to him tomorrow before they release me,” Séb promised.

“That’s good. I really hope things will get better between the two of you from now on,” Arienne said.

Séb didn’t know why but he hoped so too. He had to let the past be the past and focus on the times ahead. How could he not? He was part of a successful group and he had a beautiful, talented woman by his side and Steph had proved to him that she would support him no matter what he decided.

After spending half an hour with Steph and Séb, Arienne and Bernard said goodbye. They were off to have dinner with some of their friends and they didn’t want to be late. Before Bernard walked out of the room, he told Séb that he would pick them up the next day around noon. Just as Bernard and Arienne had left the room, the doctor walked through the door and Steph excused herself to leave them alone.

“Hey,” Steph said as she walked into Remy’s room.

“What a nice surprise,” Remy said to her.

“The doctor is talking to Séb and I thought I would check up on you. You seem to be doing well,” Steph told him.

“I feel a lot better but unlike Séb, I have to stay here a little longer. I’m not complaining because people are nice and the nurses are hot,” Remy looked at her.

“You are feeling better,” Steph said, rolling her eyes.

“What’s on your mind?” Remy asked her.

“I just wanted to warn you about Melissa. I don’t trust her and you shouldn’t trust her either,” Steph replied.

“I don’t trust her. She got upset when I told her that I wouldn’t assist her in getting Séb back. I tried to tell her that Séb was with you and I wouldn’t do anything to hurt the two of you. Séb saved my life,” Remy looked at her.

“Good. She will be back here and I just think you should watch your back,” Steph told him.

“I know she will be back but I’m not scared of her and I will watch out. That’s a promise,” Remy smiled.

“I should get back. We will see you tomorrow before we leave. Goodnight Remy,” Steph said and left the room.

Remy leaned back and thought of what Steph had told him. He knew that Melissa would do what she could to make him pay for not wanting to help her with her plan and he had to be prepared for anything. Thinking back, he couldn’t believe how he could have started an affair with that woman. She was a nutcase and she belonged in a place with other nutcases.

********
In another part of Paris, Melissa had finished her plan and she was only waiting for the right moment to strike. It would be a meeting that Remy would never forget and if everything went as planned, she wouldn’t have to deal with Remy again. Confident that her plan would work, Melissa opened a bottle of wine and poured a glass before she walked onto the balcony to take a look at Paris by night. It was a beautiful city and she could see herself living there with Séb but she had to get rid of Steph first. Well, that would have to wait until Remy was out of the way. Right now he was the first obstacle in her way. With a wicked smile on her face, she walked back into the hotel room and closed the door to the balcony behind her. Tomorrow would be a good day for sure.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Fri Feb 15, 2013 9:03 pm

Chapter 42

Bernard arrived at the hospital the next morning, unaware that Melissa had been following him. She watched as he walked into the hospital and all she had to do now was to wait for him to leave with Steph and Séb. Once the three of them had left the hospital, there was no one to stop her from getting to Remy. Melissa had sworn to herself, she would make him pay for what he had done to her.

“Where is Séb?” Bernard asked, hugging Steph.

“He is with Remy,” Steph replied.

“I hope they don’t get into a fight,” Bernard sat down next to Steph.

“They won’t. Séb is ready to put the past behind him and I think Remy is too,” Steph smiled at him.

“Remy was wrong when he walked out on Corinna and his unborn child but Corinna is happily married and she is expecting another baby. I don’t see any reason for my sons to fight anymore,” Bernard told her.

“I agree with you and I hope the two of them can be friends from now on,” Steph agreed.

“I’m ready to leave now,” Séb said with a smile.

“Did you settle things with your brother?” Bernard asked his son.

“Yes. There will be no more fights. I promise you that,” Séb responded.

“Good. Let’s get out of here then,” Bernard said.

They left the hospital and climbed into the car and as soon as they were out of sight, Melissa put on a wig and sunglasses before she left the car and walked into the hospital. If her plan worked she would be the last person to see Remy alive and after Remy was out of her way, she would go after Stephanie. Her original plan was to get rid of Séb too but she had been forced to make some changes. She had been searching her heart and she still loved Séb and he would need someone to comfort him when Steph had been removed from the equation.

Melissa continued on her way to Remy’s room and the wig and sunglasses seemed to be doing the job because none of the nurses recognized her. She walked down the hallway to Remy’s room and she opened the door to see Remy sleeping. For a second she wondered if she should leave but she had to convince him to help her get Séb back. She walked into the room and as she closed the door, Remy woke up and looked at her.

“What are you doing here?” Remy asked with anger in his voice.

“We need to talk. You can deny it all you want but I know you still love Steph and that’s why you will help me get Séb back,” Melissa touched his hand.

“Don’t touch me. I already told you that I won’t be part of your plan,” Remy looked at her.

“You don’t even know what the plan is yet. I’ve made a few changes from the last time we spoke,” Melissa said with an evil grin.

“That sounds interesting. Tell me more,” Remy gestured for her to sit down.

Melissa did as he said and she filled him in on her plan. Remy listened to what she had to say and he couldn’t believe what he was hearing. The woman was crazy and she shouldn’t be allowed to interact with other people. Remy was stunned, to say the least, but he had to pretend like he was in on her plan even though he would never agree to do what she expected him to.

“So, what do you think?” Melissa asked.

“It sounds interesting and I’m sure Armand agrees with me,” Remy replied.

“Who is Armand?” Melissa looked at Remy.

“That would be me. Armand Pelletier at your service,” a man’s voice said.

“Oh, are you going to help us with the plan?” Melissa smiled at him.

“No, I’m here to stop you,” Armand said as he showed her the badge.

“You’re a cop?” Melissa was stunned.

“Yes and you are under arrest,” Armand handcuffed Melissa.

“You are making a big mistake Remy,” Melissa yelled.

“The only mistake I ever made was to be with you. Get her out of here,” Remy said.

Armand grabbed Melissa and escorted her out of the hospital. Once they were outside, another officer arrived and they drove off with Melissa.

Alyssa and Urs

The other three Divos and their partners were back in London on Simon’s request and they were all pleased to know that Séb would be joining them in London soon. They couldn’t wait to start rehearsals and they were all looking forward to the new tour. Simon had arranged a meeting as soon as Séb and Steph were back in London and it would be the last meeting before the tour.

Alyssa was tired from the trip and Urs ordered her to relax and he would take care of dinner. Yes, the baby was not due for another six months but he didn’t want to risk anything happening to the baby. He still hoped that she would be able to travel with him on tour but he also knew that he might have to leave her in London while they finished the US leg of the tour. Only time would tell if Alyssa would follow him on tour but he didn’t want to think too much about it right now. He just wanted his wife and baby to be safe.

Urs was busy in the kitchen and Alyssa was on the couch, looking at baby stuff. She couldn’t wait to meet the life growing inside of her and she knew that Urs was just as excited as she was. Alyssa hoped that baby Buhler would make an appearance after the tour because she couldn’t imagine not having Urs around when the baby was born. She let out a sigh as Urs walked into the living room, holding two plates of food.

“Here you are,” Urs smiled and put down the plate in front of Alyssa.

“Thanks. It looks delicious,” Alyssa smiled at him.

“You let out a sigh. What was that all about?” Urs asked his wife.

“I was just thinking about the tour and the baby. I’m afraid that you will miss out on the birth,” Alyssa replied.

“I promise you that I won’t miss out on the birth of our baby. You have my word,” Urs reached for her hand.

“If I have your word, then I’m not worried at all,” Alyssa smiled at him.

Urs kissed her hand and they continued to talk about the tour and the baby as they finished their dinner. They loved being able to just enjoy a home cooked meal instead of restaurant or hotel food. After dinner, Urs cleared the table and did the dishes while Alyssa turned on the TV. Once Urs had finished in the kitchen, he joined his wife on the couch and Alyssa snuggled up to him as they watched a movie. Urs was rubbing Alyssa’s stomach but it seemed like he hadn’t even noticed and Alyssa didn’t want him to stop so she didn’t say anything.

They didn’t have a lot of time to enjoy each other when they were on tour and that was one of the things Alyssa missed on tour but she would never ask Urs to spend more time with her. She wanted him to be happy and just like the other Divos, being in Il Divo was what made Urs happy. He loved singing and it wouldn’t be right of her to ask him to give that up to spend more time with her.

As the movie came to an end, Alyssa let out a yawn and Urs turned off the TV. He was tired too and they both could use some sleep after the trip to Paris. Urs rose from the couch and helped his wife get up before he took her hand in his. He turned off the lights in the living room and led his wife to the bedroom.

Carla and David

Carla’s parents had returned from a six month business trip in Thailand and her mom had invited them over to dinner. As they were getting dressed for dinner, Carla wondered if her dad would accept David as a part of her life. Ewan Hudgens was convinced that no man was good enough for his daughter and he had proved that two times before. The only man who had managed to get some kind of acceptance was her ex but the relationship had ended because he had been more interested in his job than her.

“Are you still here?” David asked her, flashing his smile.

“I’m sorry. Guess I was miles away,” Carla smiled back at him.

“What’s wrong? You look worried,” David walked over to her.

“I think you should know that my dad might not like you. He has this crazy idea that nobody is good enough for me,” Carla explained.

“He must have liked your ex,” David looked at her.

“Oh, he did like him…..when he found out that he had his own business,” Carla smiled.

“Don’t worry about that. Your dad will love me,” David said.

“I hope so,” Carla sighed.

“How can he not love me? I’m funny, cute and extremely……charming,” David winked.

“That’s true but I really don’t think hitting on my dad is the way to make him love you. Something tells me that he won’t like that approach,” Carla laughed.

“No, but it can’t hurt to try. Are you ready to leave?” David questioned.

“Yes, let’s go,” Carla answered.

Carla and David left the apartment and drove off to meet Sienna and Ewan Hudgens. David pulled up in front of the red brick house and stopped the car. They got out of the car and David had his arm around Carla when they walked to the front door. Carla opened the door and once they were inside the house, she closed the door as she announced their arrival. Sienna and Ewan came into the hallway to greet their daughter and her boyfriend. While Sienna greeted both of them, Ewan glanced at David and Carla couldn’t figure out if the look meant that he had accepted David or not.

“I’m Ewan, Carla’s dad. Welcome to our home,” Ewan extended his hand.

“Thank you,” David shook his hand.

“Dinner is almost ready but we have time for a drink. Follow me,” Sienna said.

They walked into the living room and Ewan offered them something to drink while Sienna gestured for them to take a seat. Carla and David sat down on the couch and Ewan handed them a drink before sitting down across from them. Ewan kept staring at David and it made David feel uncomfortable but Carla seemed to be even more nervous and Sienna could see that. She suggested that they should leave the two men alone to talk and Carla agreed to her mom’s suggestion. As soon as they had left the living room, Ewan turned to David.

“Carla tells us that you’re a singer,” Ewan stared at David.

“That’s right. I’m a singer in Il Divo,” David told him.

“I’ve heard some of your songs and you guys are really good,” Ewan said.

“Thanks. I wouldn’t be happy doing anything else. Singing is my life and yes, travelling around the world is hard but I don’t mind. I get to see new countries, new cities and I get to meet new and old fans,” David explained.

“It sounds like we have something in common. I travel a lot although it’s mainly business trips but I love meeting new people and see new countries. We just returned from Thailand and it was our first trip there,” Ewan sipped his drink.

“I can’t imagine not travelling around the world and of course it will be better now that Carla will be joining me on tour,” David informed him.

The two men continued to talk and when Carla and Sienna returned to the living room, Carla let out a sigh of relief. Her dad and David were getting along, talking and laughing and for the first time, her dad had accepted one of her boyfriends for being who he was. David winked at her and Carla smiled back at him. Sienna took her Carla’s hand and squeezed it, letting her know that she too liked David. They finished their drinks and went into the dining room for dinner.

“How is the business doing?” Sienna asked Carla.

“Business is good, better than expected. I’ve had to hire two more people because I am planning on going with David on tour,” Carla answered.

“I know I don’t say it a lot but I’m really proud of you,” Ewan told his daughter.

Carla smiled at him and it meant a lot to her to hear those words coming from her dad. Ewan and Sienna were curious to know more about David and they listened as he filled them in on his story. Carla couldn’t stop smiling as she watched David and her parents and she was happy when they left her parents.

Sam and Carlos

Carlos wanted to do something nice for Sam and he had decided to take her out to dinner. Sam was busy in the bathroom and Carlos was in the living room, trying to decide if he should ask Sam to marry him. Deep down he knew it was too soon but it just felt right so why not do it? He heard Sam call out his name and Carlos told her that he was in the living room. Sam joined him in the living room and he helped her put on her coat before they left the apartment.

They arrived at the restaurant about ten minutes later but their table was not ready and the hostess asked them to wait in the bar. Carlos and Sam walked into the bar and sat down. This wasn’t what he had planned but there was nothing he could do about it now. They ordered something to drink and Sam could tell that Carlos wasn’t happy.

“What’s wrong?” Sam asked.

“This wasn’t part of the plan,” Carlos sighed.

“What plan? I thought we were just having dinner. Are you up to something?” Sam looked at him.

“Maybe I am. I’m just not sure if I’m doing the right thing,” Carlos replied.

Sam didn’t say anything and Carlos wondered what was going on. She looked like she had seen a ghost and he turned around to see two men walking towards them. One of the men stopped in front of the table and stared at Sam. There was no doubt that Sam and the man knew each other but how did they know each other? He didn’t have to wait long for that question to be answered.

The man in front of them was Sam’s ex, James Kennedy. He was a handsome, young man and it didn’t take a genius to see that James still had feelings for Sam. Carlos knew that Sam didn’t love James but he still felt a bit uncomfortable having James around. Sam introduced Carlos to James and his friend but Carlos was sure that James would have preferred him not being there.

Carlos watched as James and Sam talked and he wondered if Sam really wanted to travel with him around the world. He knew it was a stupid thought but he couldn’t help thinking about it. Maybe he was wrong about asking her to travel with him but he just couldn’t imagine not being with her. He was relieved when the hostess came to tell them that their table was ready. They said goodbye to James and his friend and walked into the restaurant to have a nice dinner.

“Something is on your mind. Please tell me what it is,” Sam pleaded.

“Are you sure about travelling with me around the world when I go on tour with the guys?” Carlos asked after placing the orders.

“Yes of course I am. Why do you ask me that?” Sam looked at him.

“I just saw you in the bar with James and I just started wondering if you wanted stability instead of travelling with me,” Carlos explained.

“Maybe at some point in my life I want stability but right now I just want to be with the man I love and see new places,” Sam told him.

“I’m glad you said that,” Carlos took her hand.

As Carlos held her hand, he thought that this was the right time to ask he big question but he never got that far because the waiter brought them their food. Carlos believed it was a sign from above and he chose not to ask Sam to marry him. There was no rush and they didn’t have to be married to be happy or travel around the world. After a nice dinner, Carlos paid the bill and they drove back to the apartment to share their love.

------- Paris --------

Bernard pulled up in front of the Izambard estate and they were met by Arienne who had prepared lunch for all of them. As they were having lunch, Séb informed his parents that Simon had booked a flight for him and Steph later that day. Arienne knew that Séb had a life in London but she loved having him around. With Il Divo being on tour, she knew it would be a while before she would see Séb and Steph again.

“I had hoped that you would stay a few days but I know your schedule is busy,” Arienne said.

“As far as I remember, we will be in Paris in the middle of next month. We are doing the UK first, then Europe and finally America,” Steph informed her.

“That’s good. Hopefully you will have time to visit us,” Arienne smiled.

“I was hoping that you would be at the concert. We’ve already arranged for tickets for you, dad and Remy,” Séb told her.

“We will be there,” Bernard said with a smile.

Steph noticed that Séb kept looking at his phone and she wondered what was going on. He had been acting a bit strange since they left the hospital and even though they hadn’t been dating that long, she knew that he was up to something. When his phone suddenly started ringing, he excused himself and left. Bernard, Arienne and Steph looked at each other without saying anything. All they could do was to wait for Séb to return.

----- Outside the Izambard estate -----

“Do you have any news for me?” Séb asked the person on the phone.

“Yes. Everything has been taken care of and this person will no longer bother you or your girlfriend again,” the person on the phone replied.

“Good. I knew I could count on you to take care of it. Now I have to get back to my family before they suspect anything,” Séb said.

“I will see you soon,” the person said and hung up.

Séb smiled to himself when he put away the phone and returned to the dining room. He had never felt such a relief in his entire life and it felt good to have one less problem to deal with. Steph, Arienne and Bernard looked at him and he just smiled at them as he took his seat at the table. He pretended like nothing had happened and it made all of them worry. Normally Steph loved his smile but the one he had on his face had her worried and she wondered what was going on with him.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Sat Mar 02, 2013 4:07 pm

Chapter 43

“What?” Séb asked, looking at Steph.

“Nothing,” Steph replied without looking at him.

Once again it seemed like Séb had forgotten about the whole no more secrets agreement they had and Steph was beginning to wonder if Séb would ever honor that agreement. Right now it didn’t look like it meant anything to him and if so, then she had no other choice but to end the relationship with him. Steph excused herself and left the room, saying that she wasn’t feeling well. She went upstairs to the bedroom to call for a cab to pick her up and take her to the airport. The cab driver told her that he would be there within 10 minutes and Steph thanked him and hung up.

The silence in the dining room was really getting on Bernard’s nerves and he couldn’t believe that Séb didn’t seem to care that Steph had left the dining room. Bernard turned his attention to Arienne and the look on her face told him that she was thinking the same thing as him and they really couldn’t understand why he didn’t go after her to check if she was alright. Why was he acting like that? Did he even love Steph at all?

It was just about 10 minutes later when Steph walked down the stairs with her bag and a letter that she had written for Séb. She left the letter in the hallway, hoping that someone would find it. Steph left the house and as she closed the door behind her, Séb looked at his parents before getting up. He opened the door, hoping to see a police officer and his brother but all he saw was a cab that was driving away from the house. Séb ran after the cab, calling out Steph’s name but she told the cab driver not to stop.

Séb knew he would never catch up with the cab and he returned to the house where he found the letter in the hallway. He opened it and read it before walking into the dining room to his parents. Without saying a word, Séb sat down and passed the letter to his mom. Arienne read the letter and passed it on to Bernard. He read the note out loud:

Dear Séb,

This note is probably the hardest one I’ve ever written but I don’t feel like I have a choice.

You promised me there would be no more secrets between us but that promise seems to mean nothing to you. I know that something is going on with you but once again you’ve decided to keep it a secret and that hurts.

It might seem like I’m running away but that’s not the reason why I’m leaving. I’m leaving because I can’t be in a relationship with a man who keeps secrets from me. A relationship with secrets doesn’t last and I think we’re the perfect example of that.

I still love you and I always will but don’t try to find me.

Love always,
Stephanie

“What are you still doing here? Shouldn’t you be going after her?” Bernard looked at his son.

“You’ve read the note. Her mind is already made up. Nothing I say will make her change her mind,” Séb told him.

“You could start with telling her the truth. What is going on with you?” Arienne looked at Séb.

“I spoke to Remy before we left the hospital and I called my friend, Armand, to help us set up a trap for Melissa. I had a feeling that she was up to something and I was right. Armand was the one of the phone and he told me that Melissa had been arrested and that he would bring Remy here,” Séb explained.

“What was Melissa’s plan?” Arienne asked.

“I really don’t know but I’m guessing it has something to do with Steph,” Séb replied.

“Do you think Melissa wanted to hurt Stephanie?” Bernard looked at him.

“Knowing Melissa and what she is capable of, the answer to that question is yes,” Séb rose from the chair.

“You know as well as we do that Stephanie is the best thing that has ever happened to you and you will regret it if you just let her go. Go after her, Sébastien. We will talk to Remy and Armand,” Bernard said.

Séb looked at his parents. He knew they were right but Steph had made it clear to him that it was over between them because she was sick and tired of him keeping secrets from her. What if she didn’t want to see him? She was the only woman he had ever really loved and he wasn’t sure if he could deal with her rejecting him. In their relationship there had been a lot of obstacles but they had always managed to overcome all of them because they loved each other.

“Can I borrow your car?” Séb asked his mom.

“The keys are in the kitchen,” Arienne smiled at him.

Séb left the dining room and picked up the keys in the kitchen before running out of the house. He was just about to get into the car when Armand came up the driveway in the police car with Remy. Séb was in a hurry and didn’t have time to talk to them but Armand and Remy walked up to him and asked him where he was going. Séb told them and Armand offered to take Séb to the airport and it was an offer Séb couldn’t refuse. He gave Remy the keys to Arienne’s car before getting into Armand’s car. As soon as the car had disappeared, Remy turned and walked into the house to see his parents.

------ London ------

“How could you hide something like that from Steph?” Gillian asked Simon.

“She had a job to do and I needed her to focus on the job, not Séb. You know how important it was to get things sorted in Dublin and Glasgow,” Simon defended himself.

“I know how important it is for you but you can’t make decisions for her or the guys,” Gillian looked at him.

“You’re right but I just want everything to go smoothly with the tour and if people have other things on their mind, they can’t do their best,” Simon reminded her.

“That’s true but sometimes you have to think of the personal aspects of things,” Gillian walked over to him.

“Have you always been this wise?” Simon asked.

“Yes but you’ve been too busy to notice,” Gillian laughed.

“I know that I’ve been busy but it can’t come as a surprise to you because I told you that when I hired you for the job,” Simon told her.

“I remember and I also remember thinking that you seemed like a man who had no personal life,” she said.

Simon smiled at her as he pulled her into a kiss. He knew that he shouldn’t have denied Séb a trip to Paris and he knew that he should have told Steph about Séb but all he saw at the time was a ruined tour. Well, he had all of his Divos and Steph was the best PA the Divos had ever had and he would never make that mistake again.

“I’m sorry to spoil the fun but I have a meeting with Jeremy,” Simon told her.

“And I have a meeting with a shower,” Gillian smiled.

“I will see you later,” Simon kissed her and walked out of the room.

Gillian watched him leave and as soon as she heard the door close, she walked upstairs to have her shower.

----- Paris -----

Armand and Séb had arrived at the airport and while Armand parked the car, Séb ran into the airport to find his girlfriend. He looked at the board with departures but he couldn’t find London on the board and he wondered if she was actually going back to London. Séb took another look at the board and when he saw Copenhagen on the board, it became clear to him that Steph was going back to her home town. He couldn’t let that happen and he had to find her.

“Do you need some help?” Armand suddenly asked him.

“It’s impossible to find anyone here. I’ve been watching the check in counters but there is no sign of her. She is probably half way through security check now and that means I can’t stop her from leaving. Let’s go back to the house,” Séb replied.

“I’ve never seen you give up that fast. If you really love this girl and you want her to stay, then what are you still doing here?” Armand looked at Séb.

“I can’t get through security, Armand,” Séb reminded him.

“You seem to have forgotten that I’m a police officer? I can get both of us through security but we will have to hurry,” Armand told him.

“Lead the way,” Séb said.

Armand and Séb ran through the airport until they reached security check and Armand explained the situation to one of the security people. The security guard allowed them access and the two friends ran to the gate to find Steph. Séb looked around and he noticed Steph sitting by the window, looking at the planes taking off. He made his way over to her and sat down next to her.

“What are you doing here?” Steph asked without looking at him.

“I’m here to stop you from leaving,” Séb answered.

“You can’t stop me from leaving and I can’t be in a relationship with a man who doesn’t keep his promises. I’ve had enough of that,” Steph told him.

“I know I promised you no more secrets but I couldn’t tell you what was going on,” Séb explained.

“I don’t care anymore. I’m going home to Copenhagen and then I will send my resignation to Simon. You guys have to find another PA,” Steph rose from the chair.

“That’s it? You’re just going to leave without letting me explain? I can’t believe you’re ready to throw away what we have,” Séb stood too.

“You’re the one who is throwing away what we have. As long as you keep hiding things from me, I can’t be with you. I’m sorry but I have to board the plane,” Steph said.

“No, you don’t. If you come back to the house with me I promise to tell you everything and you will see why I’ve been acting strange today,” Séb grabbed her hand.

“Let me go,” Steph looked at him.

“All I am asking you for is to listen to what I have to say and if you still want to leave after hearing me out, then I won’t stop you,” Séb let go of her hand.

Steph looked at him but she wasn’t sure if she should go back with him. She wanted to know why he had been acting strange but she didn’t know if he deserved a chance to explain. He kept promising her that he would not keep anymore secrets from her but she was no longer sure that she could trust him.

“Are you coming?” Séb reached out his hand.

“Don’t make me regret this,” Steph looked at him.

“You won’t regret it. Please come back with me,” Séb said.

Steph placed her hand in Séb’s hand and Armand picked up her bag. They walked out of the airport and shortly after they were on their way back to the Izambard house. Steph didn’t say anything in the car and Séb watched her, wondering if she would ever forgive him. The car drove up to the house and they all got out. Séb reached for Steph’s hand but she ignored him as they walked into the house.

Remy, Bernard and Arienne were in the living room when Séb, Steph and Armand walked in. Arienne could feel the tension between Séb and Steph and she had to do something. Without a word she reached out her hand to Steph, gesturing for her to take a seat between her and Bernard. Steph walked over to Arienne and took a seat between Séb’s parents while Séb took a seat next to Remy.

“We, or I, owe Stephanie an explanation and I think I should be the one to tell her what has been going on and why I have been acting weird,” Séb said.

“I can do it if you want,” Remy offered.

“No, I have to do this,” Séb told Remy.

Steph listened as Séb explained everything but she wasn’t convinced that he was telling her the truth. Armand and Remy confirmed the story and Steph wanted to believe it but she just couldn’t. She didn’t trust any of them and they hadn’t given her any reason to trust them.

“Please say something,” Séb looked at her.

“It’s a great story but I’m not buying it. Now I must leave,” Steph rose from the couch and left the living room.

“I think you have a problem,” Remy looked at his brother.

“You think so?” Séb said and walked after Steph.

He caught up with her in the hallway and he grabbed her arm as she was about to leave the house. She turned to look at him and Séb remembered what he had promised her at the airport and he had to keep that promise. He couldn't do anything else and he let go of her arm.

“I promised you that I wouldn't stop you and I'm going to keep that promise. If you want to walk out of here now, then that is what you should do. I just want to tell you that I love you and nothing will ever change that,” Séb turned around and walked back to his family.

“Where is Steph?” Remy asked.

“I had no other choice but to let her go,” Séb explained.

“You let her go? Are you insane?” Remy was stunned.

“She deserves to be happy and apparently I am not the man to make her happy. I made a promise to her and it's about time I keep my promises,” Séb said.

Shortly after they heard the front door being closed and Séb knew that he had lost Steph forever.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:49 pm

Chapter 44

At the Izambard estate, a silence filled the living room as Séb buried his face in his hands. He couldn’t believe that he had lost the only woman he had ever loved. However he knew that he was partly to blame for that happening. If he had only been honest with her, none of this would have happened and Steph would still be here with him instead of on her way back to where she had come from. Seb knew he shouldn’t have done what he did, especially since he knew what Mark had done to her and how it had affected her.

“I still can’t believe that you let her go.” It was Remy who finally spoke up.

“You don’t understand. I made a promise to her that I wouldn’t stop her from leaving if she didn’t like what I had to say. After two broken promises, I thought it was time for me to keep a promise. That’s why I let her go. Sorry, but I need to be alone for a while,” Séb walked out of the room.

Arienne, Remy and Bernard watched him leave and Arienne turned to look at Remy and he knew what the look meant. She was asking him to check on his brother and make sure that he was ok. Remy rose and walked out of the room and as he was about to walk upstairs, he heard the front door open. He turned around and he was surprised to see Steph standing in the doorway.

“I wasn’t expecting to see you again,” Remy said.

“I know but here I am,” Steph looked at him.

“Séb just went upstairs. He said he needed to be alone. I’ve never seen him like that before and he really does love you,” Remy told her.

“Don’t you know the expression?” Steph asked him.

“What expression?” Remy walked over to her.

“If you love someone, set them free. If they come back they’re yours; if they don’t, they never were,” Steph told him.

“I’ve heard of that. Come with me,” Remy asked her as he reached out his hand.

Steph placed her hand in Remy’s and they walked upstairs to Séb’s room. As they got closer to his room, Steph wondered if Séb would want to see her again. She shouldn’t have walked out but she had to and hopefully he would listen to her, and understand why she had walked out. Remy told her that he would talk to Séb first, and then she could see him afterwards. That was if Séb wanted to see her. Steph stood in the hallway as Remy knocked on the door to Séb’s room.

“Go away,” Séb’s voice said from the other side of the door.

“You have a guest,” Remy opened the door.

“I’m not really in the mood for guests,” Séb snapped at him.

“You will regret it if you don’t talk to this person,” Remy informed.

“Well, I don’t want to see anyone,” Séb told him.

When Steph heard those words coming from Séb, she wondered if she had made a mistake by walking back into the house. Maybe she should just turn around and leave without looking back. She looked at Remy, hoping he could help her but Remy didn’t know what to do either. He knew the love between Steph and Séb was more powerful than they wanted to admit. They could get through everything if they just talked things over.

“I really think you should talk to this person,” Remy repeated.

“No. I already told you that I don’t want to see anyone,” Séb raised his voice.

“Does that include me?” Steph appeared in the doorway.

Séb turned around and looked at her with a stunned look on his face. He didn’t know what to say because he never expected her to come back. She seemed so determined to leave him for good but now she was back, standing in front of him. Séb stood and Remy knew it was his cue to leave them alone. Remy smiled at Steph before leaving the room, closing the door behind him.

“I’m surprised to see you here,” Séb said.

“That was the idea,” Steph told him.

“What do you mean?” Séb asked.

“Well, I agreed to leave the airport with you because you promised me that you wouldn’t try to stop me from leaving if I wanted to leave after hearing you out. I did listen to what you said but I had to find out if you would keep the promise you made at the airport. That’s why I walked out of the living room,” Steph explained.

“You were testing me?” Séb looked at her.

“Yes I was and maybe it wasn’t a nice thing to do but I needed to know that I could trust you,” Steph defended herself.

“I passed your test but you still walked out on me. That doesn’t make any sense,” Séb said, not hiding that he was hurt.

“I know and I don’t expect you to understand. I’m sorry if I hurt you and if you want me to leave, just say it and I will get out of your way,” Steph looked at him.

Séb looked at her without saying anything and she couldn’t figure out what that look meant. Was he thinking of what to do? Could or would he forgive her for walking out? Was this the end of their relationship? Why couldn’t he just tell her to leave if that is what he wanted her to do? Lots of thoughts were running through her head as she stared back at him. His silence was really getting to her and after a few minutes of complete silence, Steph had enough.

“Do you want me to leave?” Steph questioned him.

“No I don’t want you to leave. Don’t you understand that you’re the best thing that has ever happened to me and that I need you more than anything? More than I need revenge on Melissa. I can’t imagine not having you in my life,” Séb replied.

“But I walked out on you,” Steph reminded him.

“I know that you did but I wasn’t being honest with you,” Séb said.

“After what happened with Mark, I’ve been having some trust issues but I am ready to work on that,” Steph told him truthfully.

“And I’m ready to start keeping my promises,” Séb smiled.

“So, where do we go from here?” Steph asked.

“First we kiss, then we go downstairs to say goodbye to the family before we go to the airport. Once we’re back in London, we will start over and we won’t let anything or anyone stand in the way of us being happy together,” Séb pulled her into his arms.

“That sounds good to me. Now kiss me,” Steph looked into his eyes.

She watched as Séb lowered his head and just before his lips made contact with hers, she closed her eyes and returned the kiss when his lips made contact with hers. The kiss made her legs feel like rubber and she had to hold on to him to steady herself. Séb could feel what the kiss was doing to her and he deepened the kiss. The kiss caused Steph to press her body against his and he could feel by his own reaction that they would have to stay in Paris a little longer.

“I think we have to postpone our plans for a few hours,” Séb whispered to her as he broke the kiss.

“I think so too,” Steph giggled.

Séb pulled back and smiled at her as he locked the door. He lifted Steph into his arms and carried her over to the bed. Slowly he placed her feet on the floor next to the bed before he once again let his lips make contact with hers. Without words, Steph told Séb everything he needed to hear from her and he slowly began to remove her clothes. Once all of their clothes had been removed, he lifted her into his arms again and placed her on the bed before joining her. Slowly they made love like it was the first time.

Meanwhile Remy had joined his parents in the living room and he had informed them that Steph had returned and was now talking to Séb upstairs. Arienne let out a sigh of relief because she knew how difficult it had been for Séb to get over Melissa. She knew that if he lost Steph, he would never get over it, and she knew without a doubt that Séb was deeply in love with Steph. Never before had he been more in love with a woman.

“I’m glad she came back,” Arienne said.

“I don’t think she wanted to leave. She loves him too much to give up on their relationship,” Remy told her.

“You surprise me,” Arienne looked at her son.

“Why?” Remy asked.

“Well, you were in love with Steph once and now you are ok with her being with your brother,” Arienne replied.

“Steph never loved me and I don’t think I ever loved her. It was an attraction, not love and I can see how happy she makes Séb. Those two are made for each other,” Remy explained.

“You are right about that. Steph is a wonderful girl and she is the best thing that has ever happened to Séb. I can actually see your brother marrying her someday,” Arienne looked at him.

Remy smiled at her without saying anything. As crazy as it may sound after what he had done, Remy couldn’t agree more and he too hoped that Séb would marry Steph in the future. She was a special woman and deep down he hoped that he would find a woman like Steph and settle down with her. He had made a lot of mistakes with woman in the past but he had learned his lesson. He would never do what he did to Corinna. From now on he would act like a man instead of a jerk.

After their love making, Steph was cuddled up to Séb and she couldn’t believe that she had almost walked out on him. She wondered what would have happened if Séb hadn’t followed her to the airport. As she was in his arms, she couldn’t think of a place she would rather be; she was happy that she had changed her mind. She could feel a tear leaving her eye but she wiped it away, hoping that Séb hadn’t noticed.

“Are you ok?” Séb suddenly asked, looking at her.

“I’m fine. I was just thinking,” Steph replied as she stared into his eyes.

“About us?” he questioned as he touched her face.

“Yes. You’re the best thing that has ever happened to me and I can’t believe that I was ready to walk out on you because of something so stupid. Sometimes I wonder if I’m even capable of being in a relationship,” Steph sighed.

“Stop that. Of course you’re capable of being in a relationship and you are in a relationship with me. We belong together and as I told you earlier, I can’t imagine not having you in my life. I love you,” Séb kissed her.

“I love you, too, Sébastien,” Steph replied.

“I just love it when you say my name,” Séb whispered and kissed her again.

“Don’t you think it’s time for us to leave?” Steph asked.

“Yes it is,” Séb sighed as he looked at his watch.

Séb rose from the bed and Steph watched him closely as he made his way into the bathroom. As soon as he had closed the door, she turned onto her side and closed her eyes. She cuddled up to the pillow and she could smell Séb’s cologne on the pillow. Slowly she ran her fingers over the pillow, unaware that Séb was watching her. He just stood there with a smile on his face and suddenly Steph opened her eyes and looked at him. Séb could see that she was embarrassed about being caught but he just walked over to the bed and softly kissed her on the lips.

“We have to leave in half an hour,” Séb told her.

“I know,” Steph sighed and rose from the bed.

As soon as Steph was in the bathroom, Séb finished getting dressed and he sat down on the bed and waited for Steph to return. She joined him ten minutes later and as soon as she was dressed, Séb took her hand and they walked downstairs to say goodbye to his family. After saying goodbye, they picked up their bags before they walked to the car and headed for the airport.

The couple walking into the airport didn’t look like a couple who just a few hours earlier had almost ended their relationship. They were happy and deeply in love. Séb had his arm wrapped around Steph at all times. They checked in and after the security check, they found a table in a café and Steph sat down while Séb was getting coffee. As he walked back to the table with the coffee, two women walked up to them and asked if they could have their pic taken with him. Séb just wanted to spend time with Steph but he didn’t want to be rude to the fans so he agreed to have his pic taken with them.

“I’m sorry about that,” he apologized to Steph after the women had left.

“Don’t apologize. You are a Divo and I doubt it will be the last time that someone wants to have a picture taken with you,” Steph smiled.

“So you’re not mad at me?” Séb sipped his coffee.

“No, I’m not mad,” Steph answered.

“Good. Let’s talk about something else. Where do you see yourself in five years?” Séb asked, holding her hand in his.

“Why do you ask?” Steph looked at him.

“Just answer the question,” Séb replied.

“Well, I’m still Il Divo’s PA and still loving the job. I have a wonderful boyfriend and a great life,” Steph told him.

“I hope you’re talking about me,” Séb looked into her eyes.

“Of course I’m talking about you. You’re the only boyfriend I have and I’m not planning on getting rid of you. You are stuck with me,” Steph smiled at him.

“That’s the way I want it,” Séb kissed her hand.

Half an hour later they were on the plane, heading back to London and they had no idea of what was awaiting them there.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:24 pm

Chapter 45

---- London ----

Sam and Carlos were busy preparing a welcome home party for Séb. Well, it wasn’t really a party. It was more like a welcome home dinner with their closest friends. David and Carla had arrived earlier to help even though Sam had told them not to. She was convinced Carlos and her could do it all on their own but she had to admit it was nice to have two extra set of hands to help. Alyssa and Urs couldn’t help with the party because they had a doctor’s appointment. She was now three months pregnant and it was time for the last check up before she would be joining Urs on tour.

Sam and Carla were in the kitchen preparing the food, while David and Carlos were taking care of the Welcome Home banner. They couldn’t wait to see the look on Séb’s face when he walked into the living room. After they had finished with the banner, they joined the girls in the kitchen.

“Shouldn’t Alyssa and Urs have been here by now?” Carlos asked.

“I think we can expect them any minute,” Sam responded.

“I really hope she will be able to travel with Urs. He would hate to leave her behind when she is pregnant,” Carla added.

“She might be able to. If I remember correctly she is about three months pregnant which means she still has about six months left. The tour only lasts six months so you never know,” Sam looked at her.

“We’re here,” Urs announced.

“How did it go?” Carlos was curious.

“Everything is fine with Alyssa and our baby. The baby is growing as it should. It couldn’t be better,” Urs proudly said.

“Did the doctor say anything about the tour?” David continued the questions.

“He didn’t see any problem with Alyssa joining me on tour as long as she felt up to it. She had to promise him that she would see a doctor if she had any problems,” Urs explained.

“That sounds like a good idea. Hopefully you will be able to make the whole tour,” Sam smiled at Alyssa.

“I hope so too,” Alyssa touched her belly.

“We should finish up here before Séb and Steph walk through the door,” Carlos noticed the time.

“You’re right. The plane should have landed by now and that means they will be here shortly,” Sam agreed.

*******

“I want to just sleep when we get back to my place,” Séb yawned in the cab from the airport.

“Your place? I thought we were going to my place,” Steph replied as she looked at him.

“You’re up to something, Stephanie Petersen,” remarked Séb, as he glanced at her.

“Why would you think that?” Steph asked him, knowing it was probably written all over her face.

“I know you, Cherie, but you get it your way; we will go to your place,” Séb replied as he kissed her cheek.

“We can go back to your place later,” Steph responded as she smiled at him.

Séb took her hand and held it tight in his. The look in his eyes told her that he agreed with her suggestion and she knew what would be awaiting her later. Séb told the cab driver the new address before turning his attention back to Steph. She looked so beautiful and he thought of how close he had come to losing her. He had messed up but Steph had forgiven him. Deep down he only had one wish but he wasn’t sure of how Steph would react if he told her what he wanted. They had been through a lot of things but somehow it had only brought them closer together. It made him think that they could get everything because their love was strong.

The cab pulled up in front of the apartment building where Sam and the others were waiting. As Séb took their bags out of the cab and paid the cab driver, Steph sent a quick text message to Sam to inform her that they had arrived. Within a few seconds Sam had replied that everything was ready. Steph looked at Séb hoping he would like the surprise. As the cab drove off, Séb wrapped his arm around her waist and pulled her into a kiss. At that moment Steph wished that they didn’t have to go upstairs but she knew how much effort Sam had put into the welcome home dinner party and she didn’t want to disappoint her friend.

When they broke the kiss, Séb took Steph’s hand as they walked upstairs to the apartment. Steph took out her key and opened the door. Séb instantly knew that something was going on because the smell of food filled the apartment. He helped Steph remove her coat before he removed his own and placed them on the coat rack in the hallway. The couple walked into the living room and even though Séb knew that something was up, he did not expect to find his friends there.

“So this is why you wanted to come here instead of my place,” Séb looked at Steph.

“Don’t be mad. After what happened in Paris, we just thought you could use a nice dinner party with your friends and me. It was my idea so if you want to be mad at someone, you should be mad at me,” Steph said.

“Why would I be mad? This is exactly what I needed,” Séb told her as he kissed her cheek.

“I’m glad you feel that way. They have all put a lot of effort into this dinner,” Steph informed him.

“It smells delicious and I can’t wait to taste it,” Séb said, as he looked at his friends.

“Welcome home,” David hugged him, followed by the other Divos and their partners.

“Thanks. It feels good to be home but if you don’t mind, I would like to freshen up a bit before we eat,” Séb looked at them.

“Go ahead. We will be here when you get back,” Carlos told him.

Séb grabbed the bags and disappeared into Steph’s bedroom. He sat down on the bed and removed his shoes and socks. After undressing himself he walked into the bathroom to have his shower. In the living room, Steph filled them in on what had happened in Paris with Melissa. It was a relief for the Divos to hear that Melissa was now gone from their lives. The story of Remy helping Séb came as a surprise to them but they were happy to hear that Séb’s family problems had been solved. Now they could focus on the tour and give their fans the best experience ever.

Séb returned after his shower and it was time for them to enjoy the food and have a good time. Sam had been watching Séb since they walked through the door. Something was on his mind but it seemed like she was the only one who had noticed. Séb looked back at her, telling her without a word that he really wanted to talk to her in private soon. Sam excused herself to get something to drink and Séb offered to help her. Steph and Carlos looked at each other, wondering what was going on.

“What is wrong?” Sam asked Séb.

“I want to talk to you about Steph but I don’t think this is the right place to do it,” Séb answered.

“Well, I will be spending the night at Carlos’ place. Maybe you can meet me there tomorrow after Steph leaves for work?” Sam suggested.

“Steph and I will spend the night at my place so I think it can be arranged,” agreed Séb.

“Good. Now let’s get some drinks and join them again before they start looking for us.” Sam suggested.

Sam smiled at him and Séb nodded in agreement. They grabbed some more sodas and a bottle of wine before returning to the living room. Steph had noticed that Séb seemed more relaxed and she looked at Sam to get some answers but all she got was a smile. She knew that Séb had a secret but seeing the smile on Sam’s face told her that it wasn’t something bad. Besides, she had promised him that she would work on her trust issues, and this was the right time to honor that promise.

It was just around eleven when Urs, Alyssa, David and Carla said their goodnights and left. Sam told Steph and Séb to leave too because it was obvious they wanted to spend some private time together. Steph wasn’t happy about leaving everything to Sam because the dinner had been her idea. She tried her best to convince Sam to let her stay and help but Sam kept telling her that Carlos would help her. Knowing there was no point in arguing with Sam, Steph reluctantly put on her coat and left the apartment with Séb. Once they were in the street, Steph gave Séb the keys to her car and they drove off to Séb’s place.

**********
As Sam and Carlos were doing the dishes, Carlos asked a lot of questions about Sam’s conversation with Séb in the kitchen. Sam informed him of what Séb had told her and Carlos wanted to know if he should be there or not. To him it sounded like it was a private conversation and he didn’t want to interfere in anything that wasn’t any of his business. She added that it might be better if she spoke to Séb alone, as he had asked her because she knew Steph better than any of the Divos or the girls. Carlos had no problem with it because he knew Sam was right.

***********
Séb and Steph arrived at Séb’s place. It had been a long day and Steph just wanted to put on something a little more comfortable. She walked into the bedroom to change but she didn’t get a chance to do that before she felt Séb’s arms around her. He whispered a soft thank you in her ear and she instantly felt the shivers down her spine. Séb placed soft kisses on her neck as his hands caressed her shoulders. Steph turned her head to look at him but before she had a chance to do anything, Séb captured her lips in an intoxicating kiss.

“I thought you were tired,” Steph giggled when Séb broke the kiss.

“I am tired but I just wanted to say thank you for the dinner party. It was a nice gesture and I had a great time,” Séb looked at her.

“You deserve to have a good time and you deserve to be happy,” Steph said.

“I am happy. How could I not be happy? I’ve got my family, a great job and great friends but most importantly I’ve got the love of a wonderful and beautiful woman,” Séb kissed her before he let go of her.

“Thanks,” Steph smiled at him.

“What would you like to do now?” Séb asked, taking off his shirt.

“That’s not fair,” Steph replied.

“What is not fair?” Séb smiled as he unzipped his pants.

“What you’re doing right now isn’t fair and you know it,” Steph kicked off her shoes.

“I know but you love when I do it,” Séb took off his pants.

“That’s true,” Steph started to remove her clothes but Séb stopped her.

“Allow me to do that, cherie,” Séb seductively said.

Steph just stood there, unable to do anything as Séb undressed her. His touch was building up her desire and she could tell that it was doing the same to him. He picked her up and carried her over to the bed.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Tue Apr 02, 2013 4:39 pm

Chapter 46

After Steph had left for work the next morning, Séb took a quick shower before he walked to Carlos’ apartment to talk to Sam. Hopefully Sam could offer him some advice on what to do and how to do it in case she thought it was a good idea. He had been thinking about it for a while but with Steph’s past, he wasn’t sure if it was a good idea. Séb knocked on the door to Carlos’ apartment and he was greeted by Sam. She stepped aside and let him in.

“Let’s go into the kitchen,” Sam suggested.

“Where is Carlos?” Séb asked as he looked around the apartment.

“He went for a walk. It’s just you and me,” Sam answered as she poured coffee for both of them.

“Good,” Séb said, sipping his coffee.

“Now tell me what is on your mind,” Sam looked at him.

“You know Steph better than any of us and I was just wondering if you knew how Steph feels about marriage,” Séb explained.

“You’re thinking of proposing to her?” Sam asked with a smile.

“Yes I am thinking of it but I need to make sure that she wants to get married again before I ask. It may sound stupid to you but I don’t want to make a fool of myself,” Séb answered.

“It doesn’t sound stupid. You’re thinking that after what happened with Mark, Steph might turn you down if you ask her to marry you? Well, she told me once that if the right man asked her, she wouldn’t mind getting married again. Steph was young when she married Mark, maybe even too young but she is older and wiser now,” Sam explained.

“I don’t know,” Séb rose from his chair.

“Do you love her?” Sam questioned as she looked at him.

“Of course I love her. I love her more than I ever loved Melissa,” Séb returned to his chair.

“Then what more do you need to know? Steph loves you and you love her,” Sam told him.

“You’re right. I know everything I need to know,” Séb agreed.

“Did you know that Mark never proposed to Steph?” Sam asked him.

“He never proposed to her? Well, guess I have to come up with a proposal she will never forget,” Séb replied.

“Do you have any ideas yet?” Sam was curious to know more.

“My first idea was to propose in Paris in front of the Eiffel Tower when we are there next month but it has been done so many times before and I want it to be special,” Séb sighed.

“Well, maybe I have an idea that might work. This is what I think you should do,” Sam smiled and explained her idea.

“I love the idea but I will need some help setting it up. I want it to be a proposal she will never forget,” Séb told her.

“It will be and I know how to make it work. Just leave it to me,” Sam looked at him.

“Thanks Sam,” Séb kissed her cheek.

Séb and Sam were still talking when Carlos returned from his walk. He poured a cup of coffee and joined them at the table. Séb filled him in on the proposal idea and Carlos thought it was a great idea. Carlos added a few of his ideas to the proposal and they knew it would be the perfect proposal. Steph would never suspect anything. Séb finished his coffee before he said goodbye to Carlos and Sam. He left Carlos’ place with a good feeling.

Séb hung up and looked at his watch. It was only 11.15 and he still had 45 minutes before Steph would be free for lunch. He walked into the bedroom and took out a box that had been on the top shelf in the closet. It was a box where he kept the ring that he had gotten for Steph some time ago. He took the ring out of the box and put it in his pocket before putting the box back in the closet. Séb grabbed his keys and his jacket before he left the apartment. He wanted to do some shopping before taking his girlfriend out to lunch.

*******
Steph was in a meeting with Simon and Jeremy. They were discussing the guys’ schedule for the tour and it would be a very tight schedule. Steph had her doubts about the interviews that Simon had arranged because it really didn’t look like the guys could relax between concerts. Simon told her the interviews were necessary but Steph didn’t agree. Some of the interviews were a waste of time and after thinking about it, Simon had to agree with her. He promised her that he would cancel some of the interviews later that day.

Once the meeting was over, Jeremy left Steph’s office but Simon didn’t leave. He wasn’t done yet. There was something important he wanted to discuss with Steph, something she wasn’t prepared for. Steph wondered why he hadn’t left her office and suddenly she had a bad feeling. Was he going to fire her for speaking her mind? He couldn’t do that to her. Anyone with half a brain could see that the schedule was too tight.

“Now that we are alone, there is something we need to talk about,” Simon folded his hands in front of him.

“I’m sorry but most of the interviews really were a waste of time. The guys want to give the fans everything they have at each concert but they can’t do that if they don’t have time to rehearse properly,” Steph raised her voice.

“Are you done now?” Simon questioned with a smile on his face.

“Yes I am,” Steph responded.

“I think you’re better than this. A woman like you shouldn’t work as a PA. Nobody knows about it yet but Jeremy is very sick and he has been forced to quit his job as tour manager. It’s a bad time with the tour coming up but I hope that you would consider taking over the job,” Simon surprised her by saying.

“What? You want me to take over as tour manager now?” Steph was stunned.

“Yes. You’re already part of the team,” Simon looked at her.

“I’m not sure I can do that. It’s not that I don’t want the job but I don’t know much about being a tour manager,” Steph said.

“You know enough. Jeremy has already taken care of everything regarding flights and hotels. You’re the best one for the job. Please do this for me,” Simon pleaded.

“Ok Simon. You’ve got yourself a new tour manager,” Steph agreed.

“Thanks. I will make the announcement after rehearsals this afternoon,” Simon said with a smile.

Simon left the office and Steph couldn’t believe that she had just been assigned as the new tour manager for Il Divo. She couldn’t believe how much had happened in a short time. Her life had really changed. She wanted so badly to tell Sam about the new job but she couldn’t do that until Simon had made it official. Steph sat down at her desk and checked her emails. It had been a busy morning for her and she hadn’t had time to check emails yet.

Her 30th birthday was only a little over a month away and she had asked her parents to arrange a party as she would be too busy. She smiled when she noticed an email from her mother. The email contained all details for the party and Steph let out a sigh of relief. It would be the perfect birthday party at her parents’ house and she was looking forward to introducing the Divos and their partners to her family and friends in Denmark. Steph had a tiny hope that the guys could be convinced to sing a few songs at the party.

“Someone looks happy,” Gillian suddenly said.

“I am happy. My mom just informed me that I could relax about my birthday party. It looks like she has taken care of everything,” Steph smiled at her.

“That’s good news. I want a mom like that,” Gillian laughed.

“Well, you can’t have mine. What’s on your mind?” Steph asked.

“It’s almost lunch time,” Gillian pointed at the clock on the wall.

“I didn’t even notice that. Let’s go then,” Steph smiled as she picked up her purse.

Séb had arrived at the office building and he was on his way to Steph’s office when he saw her walking down the hallway with Gillian. When he saw the two of them together, he knew that he should have called Steph but then it wouldn’t have been a surprise lunch. It didn’t look like they had seen him so maybe he could just walk away. Just as he turned around and walked away, he heard Steph’s voice.

“Are you running away from me, Izambard,” Steph said with a smile.

“I would never do that, Cherie. I want to take you to lunch but it looks like you already have a lunch date,” Séb looked at Gillian.

“You go ahead. I will just have lunch with my husband,” Gillian winked and walked away.

“Shall we?” Séb reached out his hand.

Steph smiled as she placed her hand in his. Séb kissed her hand before he wrapped his arm around her. They left the office building and went to an Italian restaurant close to the office building. She told Séb about the email from her mom and Séb smiled when he heard about it. He was looking forward to seeing Steph’s family again. After lunch, Séb escorted her back to the office. He kissed her deeply and told her that he would see her back at his place for dinner. Séb left the office and Steph returned to work.

********

After finishing the rehearsal, the Divos were in Simon’s office. It was time for him to tell them the news, both the good and the bad news. He knew it would come as a big surprise to the guys and he wondered how Séb would react to his girlfriend being the new tour manager. Hopefully it wouldn’t change anything between them. Simon folded his hands in front of him and looked at the Divos.

“I have some good and bad news for you. The bad news is that Jeremy won’t be able to continue as your tour manager. He has been diagnosed with a heart condition which means that he has to slow down and take it easy for a while,” Simon explained the situation.

“What? Then what will happen with the tour?” Urs asked.

“That is the good news. I’ve hired a new tour manager to take over and this person has accepted the job but it means that you guys will need a new PA,” Simon grinned.

“Wait a second. Why do we need a new PA?” Séb looked at Simon.

“I could be wrong here but I think Simon means that your girlfriend is our new tour manager,” David answered the question.

“Steph is our new tour manager?” Séb asked Simon.

“Yes. Steph has accepted the job as your tour manager. Helen will be your new PA,” Simon replied with a smile.

“Helen is a good PA and I’m sure Steph will do a terrific job as tour manager. She has my blessing,” Urs voiced his opinion.

“I’m with Urs on this one,” Carlos looked at Simon.

“I don’t have a problem with it,” David said.

“What about you?” Simon asked Séb.

“I agree with the guys and I’m not just doing that because she is my girlfriend. I’m just curious to know how long she has known about it,” Séb wanted to know.

“She got the offer earlier today and didn’t hesitate to accept,” Simon informed him.

“Looks like I might have to take her out tonight to celebrate her promotion,” Séb said with a smile.

“That sounds like a good idea. She deserves it. Unless you guys have anything to add, I think this meeting is over,” Simon rose from his chair.

When the Divos didn’t have anything to add, Simon told them to go home and spend some time with the girls. The Divos left the office and went home. As he entered his apartment, Séb was still a bit surprised to hear that his girlfriend was the new tour manager but it wouldn’t change anything between them. She would still be with him on tour and that was all he wanted.

Steph wasn’t there when Séb came home but he knew it wouldn’t be long before she would be there. He went into the bathroom and took a quick shower. Just as he had finished getting dressed, he heard Steph’s voice call out his name. Steph took off her coat and hung it on the coat rack as Séb appeared in the doorway with a smile on his face.

“Congratulations,” he said.

“Simon told you. How do you feel about it?” Steph asked as she walked over to him.

“I think Simon made the right decision. I’m happy for you and I think we should go out and celebrate,” Séb told her.

“Would you mind if we just stayed here?” Steph whispered in his ear.

“No I wouldn’t mind at all. In fact, I really don’t feel like going out tonight,” Séb whispered back as he pulled her close and kissed her.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:13 pm

Chapter 47

---- Glasgow – one month later ----

It had been a month since Steph took over the job as tour manager and a lot had happened in that month. The passing of Jeremy had come as a shock to all of them because it had happened so fast. Jeremy and his wife had been out to dinner and they had gone to bed as soon as they got home. When his wife tried to wake him up the next morning, Jeremy was dead.

David and Carla had ended their relationship and David was now the only single in the group. It turned out that they were too different and wanted different things for the future. They tried to make compromises but it wasn’t enough and they split up as friends. David believed he was ready to meet other women and Steph told him that she had a lot of single friends and cousins. They would all be at the party and David thought it couldn’t hurt to look at them.

*********

“It’s hard to believe that it has already been a month. It seems like I just started as a tour manager last week,” Steph said to Séb as they were getting ready to leave.

“Well, it has been a month and you’ve done a great job,” Séb walked over to her.

“Jeremy did most of the work. I don’t want to take the credit for someone else’s hard work, especially not when that person is no longer with us,” Steph looked into his eyes.

“I know that. It happened so fast and when something like that happens, it makes you think about how fragile life is,” Séb touched her face.

“You’re right about that. Remember when you asked me where I saw myself five years from now?” Steph asked him.

“Yes I remember that,” Séb answered.

“Well, the truth is that I see myself married to the man I love. We live in London and hopefully we’re planning on starting a family,” Steph told him.

“That sounds pretty much like the future I want,” Séb smiled at her.

Séb kissed her deeply but Steph pulled away, telling him that they were running late. They grabbed their coats and picked up their bags before they left the hotel suite. After checking out of the hotel, they went straight to the venue for tonight’s concert. They would be leaving for Copenhagen right after the concert and Steph couldn’t wait to see her family and friends again. It had been a while and she was looking forward to celebrating her 30th birthday with them. Most of her friends had been in her life since kindergarten and they had always been there for her when she needed them, especially after Mark kicked her out. She owed them a lot.

Once they arrived at the venue, the guys had to do the final soundcheck before they had to get dressed for the Meet & Greets and the concert. Steph had a lot of things to take care of at the venue and the first thing on her list was meeting her contact. His name was Adam Wilder and he was about Steph’s age. He was tall, dark and handsome and he knew that he was good looking. As he was showing her around the venue, he asked her a lot of questions that had nothing to do with the concert or her job.

After the tour, Steph told him that she wanted to listen in on the rest of the soundcheck and Adam agreed. They took a seat and listened to the guys singing. Once the soundcheck was over, the guys left the stage and Steph stood to leave but Adam stopped her.

“Would you like to have dinner with me tonight after the concert?” Adam surprised her by asking.

“No thanks. We have a plane to catch after the concert and I would prefer to have dinner with my boyfriend. He wouldn’t like it,” Steph politely replied.

“Well, here is my business card in case you change your mind,” Adam said and handed her his card.

“I won’t change my mind so I don’t need it,” Steph turned and left.

Adam watched her leave and he couldn’t believe that she had turned him down. No woman had ever said no to him before. He decided to follow her because there was no way he could live with being rejected. Steph walked down to the room where the Meet & Greets would take place. The room was empty so she decided to just wait for the guys. Suddenly Adam walked into the room and closed the door behind him.

“What do you want?” Steph asked.

“I want you to change your mind about having dinner with me,” Adam walked towards her.

“That is not happening. I have a boyfriend and he can be here any minute with his friends,” Steph explained as Adam stopped in front of her.

“You turned me down. Do you really expect me to just give up?” Adam asked as he grabbed her arm.

“Let go of her arm,” Séb’s voice suddenly said.

Steph looked towards the door and Adam turned around as he let go of Steph’s arm. The sight of the four Divos standing in front of him with anger in their eyes made him feel uneasy. He was trying to come up with a lie but it had to be a lie the guys would believe.

“We were just talking,” Adam said, hoping they would believe him.

“It didn’t look like you were just talking. Are you ok, Cherie?” Séb asked Steph as he walked over to her.

“I’m fine. Just get someone to escort him out because I have to meet your fans in ten minutes,” Steph answered him.

“We will take care of that,” David said as he grabbed Adam’s arm.

He gestured for Urs and Carlos to follow him because he thought Séb and Steph needed some time alone. The guys left the room with Adam and Séb looked at Steph. Even though Steph had told him that she was fine, Séb knew that she wasn’t fine. He pulled her into his arms and held her tight. Séb wanted to know what the problem was and Steph told him everything he needed to know. She told him that Adam had asked her out to dinner but she had turned him down and he hadn’t been pleased with that.

“Do you want someone else to take care of the Meet & Greet?” Séb looked at her.

“No. I’m the tour manager and I will do it. Don’t worry about me. I will be fine,” Steph assured him.

“Ok. It’s time for you to pick up our fans,” Séb kissed her.

Steph left the room as the other guys returned. They had turned Adam over to security and they had escorted him out of the building. While the guys were preparing for meeting the fans, Steph had arrived at the entrance where the fans were waiting for her. She informed the fans of the guidelines for the Meet & Greet before they made their way down to the room where the guys were waiting.

One by one the fans were escorted into the room and Steph enjoyed every single moment of it. Some fans were nervous while others were used to meeting the guys. The Divos knew how to make everyone feel good about being at a Meet & Greet and Steph was proud of them. After the last fan had left the Meet & Greet, Steph and the guys left the room. The Divos went to their dressing rooms and Steph met up with Simon.

Sam and Alyssa had arrived at the venue and the guys finally appeared on stage. The concert went smoothly and the audience loved it. After the concert, they drove straight to the airport where the jet was waiting for them. Steph was still a bit shook up about what happened with Adam but even though she wanted to hide it from her friends, she decided to tell them. The girls were shocked when Steph filled them in on what had happened at the venue but they were happy to know that the guys had arrived before things got out of hand.

“I think we’ve talked enough about that. Are you ready for my birthday party tomorrow?” Steph wanted to know.

“Of course we are. It will be so great. I can’t wait to meet your family and your friends,” Alyssa answered.

“Her family is great. Amazing people who treat strangers like friends,” Séb added his opinion.

“It’s been a while since I’ve seen my friends and I’m really looking forward seeing them again,” Steph told her.

“Everything will be fine. We will make sure that it will be a birthday you will never forget,” Séb smiled as he took her hand.

“That sounds good. I do have a favor to ask of you guys and you can say no if you don’t want to do it,” Steph looked at them.

“What is it?” Carlos asked.

“Well, I was wondering if you would mind singing a few songs. A lot of the guests don’t know who you are and I want to introduce them to the best singers in the world,” Steph responded with a smile.

“We did talk about that and we would love to sing at your birthday. Any wishes?” David questioned her.

“No. I want you guys to choose the songs,” Steph answered.

“I think we can find a few songs that will make your guests happy,” Séb assured her.

“Thanks. I can’t wait,” Steph told them.

Séb couldn’t wait to see Steph’s face when they performed the song that would lead up to the proposal. In fact, he was looking forward to seeing her face when he did propose to her. He knew she didn’t expect it, at least not with her entire family around. Hopefully the proposal would knock her off her feet and hopefully she would say yes.

The jet landed in Copenhagen on time and after getting their bags, they left the airport and climbed into the bus that would take them to Steph’s parents. When the bus pulled up in front of the house, Martin and Annette came out of the house. After Séb and Steph exchanged hugs with her parents, they made an introduction. They had to agree with Séb, Steph’s parents were amazing. Martin asked them to follow him and he showed them to their rooms.

Annette had prepared a late dinner for them and everyone was having a good time. The Divos wanted to know more about Steph as a child and Annette told them a lot of things. She even took out the old photo albums and Steph had never felt more embarrassed in her entire life.

“Don’t be upset, Cherie. You were cute as a child and so was I. Our children will be cute too,” Séb kissed her.

“Children? Are you pregnant?” Annette asked with a smile.

“No. I’m not pregnant,” Steph shook her head.

“Oh ok,” Annette said, not hiding her disappointment.

After spending almost two hours with Steph’s parents, the couples and David said goodnight and went to bed. It had been a long day for them and they needed a good night’s sleep. Annette and Martin turned out the lights and went to bed too. They had a surprise for her the next morning and hopefully she would like it.

The sun was shining from a clear blue sky and the rays woke up Steph. She was surprised to find herself alone in the bed and when she called out Séb’s name, there was no answer. Steph let out a sigh as she rose from the bed and walked into the bathroom. After a quick shower, she got dressed and walked downstairs to something she wasn’t prepared for. The house was empty and not even Rusty, the family dog, was anywhere to be found. Suddenly she heard voices coming from the garden and she slowly walked towards the door. As she opened the door, she saw the Divos, the girls, Rusty and her family at a large breakfast table.

“Happy Birthday,” Martin said with a smile.

“Thanks. I didn’t expect this,” Steph was surprised.

“The look on your face tells us that much. Now say hello and let’s get some breakfast,” Annette smiled.

Steph greeted her family before taking a seat next to Séb. As she sat there with her family, she couldn’t think of a better way to start a birthday. Annette told them that as soon as breakfast was over, she would need a lot of help getting things ready for the party and everyone agreed to help. Steph told her parents that the guys would be singing a few songs because she believed her family needed to learn what it was about these four guys that fascinated her.

“They are great,” Julie added her opinion.

“Yes they are. A perfect combination of voices and I’m proud to be their tour manager,” Steph agreed with Julie.

“Tour manager? When did this happen?” Martin looked at his daughter.

Steph had been so busy with the new job that she had forgotten to tell her parents about it. She told them what had happened and how Simon believed that she could do the job. They could see how proud and happy their daughter was and it was all because of four gentlemen in a group named Il Divo. After breakfast and the dishes were put away, it was time to raise the tent, set the tables and decorate for the party.

The guys were helping Martin with the tent and the tables while the girls helped with decorations. Steph couldn’t believe how much her mom had done to make it the perfect birthday party. Once the tables were ready, the girls could start setting them and after a few hours, the tables and decorations had been done. One of Steph’s old school friends was a DJ and he had agreed to let them use his equipment for the party. He would also be at the party so Annette had put him in charge of the music.

After getting everything ready for the party, Steph gave her friends a tour of the premises. She wanted them to see every part of the house and the garden, to show them where she had been raised. Annette had lunch ready when they had finished the tour and as they were having lunch, Steph was sure this would be the best birthday she had ever had. It would be just like she had always imagined.

******

It was just around 4 pm when the Izambard family pulled up in front of the house. Steph and Séb went down to greet them and they were really anxious to meet the woman who had captured Remy’s heart. Yes, Remy had a girlfriend and it sounded like it was serious between them. From what he had told them, Claire Bonnet had been one of his nurses when he was in the hospital but it wasn’t proper for a nurse to date a patient. After Remy had been released, he had contacted Claire and asked her out. She said yes and here they were.

After exchanging hugs and kisses, Steph showed the Izambard family into the house. She introduced them to her family and she was surprised to see how well they got along, especially since her dad had a problem with French people. Martin and Annette showed them to their rooms while Steph and Séb went to Steph’s room to relax before they had to get ready for the party. Steph opened the closet and took out the dress she would be wearing at the party.



“Is that your dress for tonight?” Séb asked, hoping she would say yes.

“Yes it is. I think it matches the necklace and the earrings you gave me,” Steph answered with a smile.

“It does and you will look stunning as always,” Séb said as he walked over to her.

As he pulled her into his arms and held her tight, a smile appeared on his face. Everything was falling into place and he couldn’t wait to ask her to marry him. Without saying a word, he took her hand and led her over to the bed where he showed her how much he loved her before they had to get ready.

When the clock hit 6 pm, the guests were starting to arrive. Steph’s friends were happy to see her again and of course they were dying to know all about her and Séb. She told them that she would tell them everything later and they had to accept that. Half an hour later, all of the guests had arrived and it was time to start the birthday party.

As they were having dinner, Séb became more and more nervous. He was having second thoughts about the whole thing and maybe he should just forget about it. Before he could do anything, Martin rose and explained to the guests that Il Divo would perform a few songs. The Divos all rose from their seats and as they walked to the small stage, Séb knew that he couldn’t change his mind. He checked his pocket to make sure he had the ring.

“Good evening everyone. We’re Il Divo, in case anyone has missed that, and the birthday girl asked us to sing a few songs for you. We will start out with one of Steph’s favorite songs, Pour Que Tu M’aimes Encore. We hope you like it,” David said.

Steph looked at the guests as the guys were singing and it seemed like people were enjoying the music. Marie, one of Steph’s cousins on her mother’s side, kept staring at David and it looked like David had noticed her too. When he flashed his smile, Marie instantly looked down and it made Steph smile. As the song came to an end, the guys received a standing ovation and Steph knew that it had been a success.

“Thank you. This next song is also one of Steph’s favorite songs. It’s called Senza Catene,” Carlos said.

Once again, the guests seemed to be enjoying the music. Steph had no doubts that her family and friends were beginning to understand why she was so fascinated with Il Divo. Four amazing voices in perfect harmony. What more could anyone ask for? The song ended and Séb asked for some water. Julie was fast and he smiled as he took the bottle from her. He looked at his brothers as he sipped the water and they all knew that he was getting nervous but they couldn’t let him quit now.

“I can’t do this. I don’t know half of these people,” Séb whispered to them.

“You don’t know half of the people at the concerts. You’ve got less people here,” Urs reminded him.

“Ok, let’s do this,” Séb took a deep breath.

“It’s time for the last song from us. It’s a song that most of you know with a great artist. His name is Elvis and it is a great love song but after tonight, it might have a new meaning. This is Can’t help falling in love,” Urs said.

The music started playing and the guys started singing. Everyone was listening to the song and Steph looked at her mother. Annette had always loved Elvis and it was obvious that this version of the song went straight to her heart. After the instrumental part of song, Séb gestured for Steph to join him at the stage. As she walked to the stage, she wondered what was going on. When the words ‘Take my hand’ filled the room, Séb reached out his hand to Steph. She placed her hand in his and he held her hand until the song ended. He kept holding her hand as the guests gave the guys the response they deserved.

“Thank you. Now it’s time for me to say a few words. There is a reason why we chose this song and I’m the one who should tell you that reason. You see, the jewelry Steph is wearing tonight belongs to a set but the set is not complete. An important part is missing. Steph and I belong to a set too but just like the jewelry, a very important part is missing to make us complete. The thing that will make the jewelry set and us complete is here in my left pocket,” Séb pulled out the ring box and revealed the ring.



“Oh my God,” Steph felt the tears forming in her eyes.

“This is harder than I thought it would be. I love you, Stephanie Petersen. Will you marry me and make us complete?” Séb asked as he kneeled in front of Steph.

“Yes. Of course I’ll marry you,” Steph replied with tears running down her cheeks.

Séb smiled as he stood and placed the ring on Steph’s finger. He pulled her close and wiped her tears away before he placed his lips on hers. The cheering seemed to go on forever and when they broke the kiss, people couldn’t wait to congratulate the happy couple.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Mon May 27, 2013 2:36 pm

Chapter 48

“Can I talk to you in private?” Martin asked Séb after dinner.

“Of course,” Séb replied and excused himself.

Séb was nervous when he followed Martin into the garden because he wasn’t sure of what to expect. He knew that Martin didn’t like French people but Séb felt like Martin had accepted him. Had he been wrong about that? Thoughts were running through Séb’s head and he hadn’t noticed that Martin was talking to him as they walked.

“Did you even listen to what I said?” Martin looked at Séb.

“No I didn’t. Sorry but my imagination was running wild,” Séb answered truthfully.

“Running wild? Why? Am I that intimidating?” Martin asked with a smile.

“No you’re not intimidating at all but I was worried that you would tell me that I couldn’t marry Steph because of where I come from,” Séb confessed.

“As long as you make my daughter happy, I don’t care if you’re American, African or French. You’re a good man and you love my daughter. I want my daughter to be happy and you’re the man who makes her happy. Steph is my only daughter and I want what is best for her and to be honest, I can’t think of anyone I would rather see her marry than you,” Martin told him.

“Thanks. It means a lot to hear you say that,” Séb said.

“Let’s go back to the party,” Martin suggested.

Séb nodded his head in agreement and the two men walked back to the party. Steph was talking to her friends from school when Séb walked over to her. He pulled out a chair and sat down next to Steph, taking her hand in his. She noticed how her friends were all staring at Séb and it brought back memories to her first meeting with Séb. According to her friend, she had been staring at him the same way. She had never imagined back then that one day she would be engaged to this wonderful man.

“You survived the chat with my dad,” Steph looked at him.

“Yes I did. We had a great talk and he has accepted me as your husband to be,” Séb smiled at her.

“Of course he has. He is not a bad person,” Steph said.

“I know he is not a bad person. He wants you to be happy and you’re happy with me,” Séb said with confidence in his voice.

“You’re just full of confidence. Who says that I’m happy with you?” Steph teased him.

“I know you are. I can see it when you look at me,” Séb kissed her cheek.

“You’re right. I am happy with you and I can’t wait to become your wife,” Steph looked at him.

Séb rose and pulled Steph with him. He led her to the dance floor and pulled her close to him. Steph locked her hands behind his neck and Séb couldn’t resist the urge to kiss her lips. He lowered his head and gently pressed his lips against hers. Séb broke the kiss when he felt someone pat him on the shoulder.

“Get a room,” Carlos said with a smile as Séb looked at him.

“We will do that later,” Séb told him with a smile.

“If you don’t mind, I would like to dance with your fiancé,” Carlos looked at Steph.

“You want to dance with Séb?” Steph laughed.

“No, I want to dance with you,” Carlos replied as he held out his hand to her.

Steph placed her hand in his and Carlos pulled her into his arms as he smiled at Séb. Carlos didn’t notice the look Séb gave him and maybe that was for the best. Séb wasn’t happy about Carlos interrupting his dance with Steph so he walked over to Sam and asked her to dance. They walked to the dance floor and Séb pulled Sam into his arms as he looked over at Carlos. Suddenly Carlos stopped dancing and walked over to Sam and Séb.

“Ok, I can take a hint,” Carlos laughed.

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Séb tried to appear innocent.

“Sure you do. Now dance with your fiancé,” Carlos said as he pulled Sam into his arms.

Séb smiled at him before he walked over to Steph. Urs and Alyssa joined them on the dance floor while David was talking to Julie and other members of Steph’s family. David knew that he was Julie’s favorite Divo and he decided to ask her to dance. Julie accepted the offer and David smiled as he led her to the dance floor. A lot of the guests smiled as the two of them were dancing because David was a lot taller than Julie but Julie didn’t care at all. She was dancing with David Miller of Il Divo.

After finishing the dance, Steph went to get something to drink and Séb walked over to the table where Bernard and Arienne were talking to Annette and Martin. As Steph was getting a glass of champagne, Claire joined her and Steph could tell that Claire had something to say.

“I want to say thank you for dumping Remy,” Claire said to Steph.

“I didn’t dump Remy. We had one date and I think we both knew that nothing would happen between us. I was in love with someone else but I didn’t want to admit it because Séb and I were not exactly best friends when I started working as their PA,” Steph explained.

“Really?” Claire looked at Steph.

“Yes. Séb hated me and he actually made me quit my job but he asked me to come back and I said yes. I think we should be thanking Remy because if it wasn’t for him, Séb and I would have never gotten together,” Steph replied.

“Remy is the best thing that has ever happened to me and I love him,” Claire smiled.

“I feel the same way about Séb,” Steph suggested.

“But I thought you had been married before. At least that is what Remy said when we talked about you,” Claire looked at Steph.

“I was married once to the man I thought I would be spending the rest of my life with but he didn’t feel the same way about me. I was too young when I got married and I can’t stop thinking if there was something I could have done differently. I must have done something wrong to make him cheat on me but I can’t think of anything. Well, I don’t want to worry about that anymore. I’ve moved on and I’m engaged to a wonderful man,” Steph said.

“We’re both lucky. Let’s join our men,” Claire suggested.

Steph nodded her head and the two ladies walked over to their men. Bernard and Arienne looked at their two sons and then at each other. Remy had found his one true love and Séb was engaged to the woman he loved. After everything that had happened in the Izambard family, it was a nice feeling for Bernard and Arienne to see their sons happy.

It was almost 2 am when the last guests left the party. David and the Divo couples were enjoying a drink in the living room with Steph’s parents and Séb’s family and of course they were talking about the upcoming wedding. When Martin told Steph that he would give her the wedding dress, Séb told him that he didn’t have to do that but Martin insisted and in the end Séb agreed. Steph knew why her dad insisted on giving her the wedding dress and she would tell Séb the reason when they were alone.

About an hour later, everyone said goodnight and went to their rooms. The guys had to perform in Copenhagen later that day and they had a soundcheck at the venue at 4 pm. They had agreed to do a little sightseeing after breakfast but they needed a good night’s sleep before that. It would be a busy day because they had to leave Copenhagen right after the concert.

“Don’t be mad at my dad for wanting to give me a wedding dress,” Steph told Séb as she cuddled up to him in bed.

“I’m not mad at him but he doesn’t have to buy you a dress,” Séb kissed the top of her head.

“Actually he does. I didn’t have a wedding dress when I got married to Mark. A few weeks after the wedding, my aunt told me that dad had been very disappointed because his biggest wish was to buy me a wedding dress. I don’t want to disappoint him again,” Steph explained.

“You won’t disappoint him, Cherie. It means a lot to him to give you the dress and he should be allowed to give it to you,” Séb said.

“Thanks. Let’s get some sleep,” Steph suggested.

“Later. There is something I want to do first,” Séb flipped Steph over on her back and began kissing her neck.

******

After breakfast, the Divo couples, Steph’s parents, Séb’s parents, Remy and Claire went sightseeing and they had a great time. They had lunch at Steph’s favorite restaurant before they continued with the tour. At 3.45 pm the guys headed to the venue for the soundcheck and the others went back to the Biehl estate to relax before they had to leave.

It was almost 5 pm when Steph arrived at the venue and she quickly picked up the list with the names of those who would be attending the Meet & Greet. Helen, the guys’ new PA, brought her a cup of coffee before she left again and Steph looked at the names on the list. She almost choked on her coffee when she saw one familiar name on the list but she knew it had to be another person with the same name because the person she knew would never attend an Il Divo concert.

Steph looked at her watch and it was time for her to see the guys shortly before going to the entrance to pick up the fans for the Meet & Greet. The guys were already in the room when Steph walked in and she told them that only 12 people were on the list. After briefing the guys she grabbed the camera and went to meet the fans. A lot of people were already waiting for tickets and she asked the people with Meet & Greet to get into another line. She gave them the Meet & Greet passes and asked them to pick an item for the guys to sign. Steph also asked them to write their name, the row and seat number down and she would make sure that the signed items were returned during the intermission.

She noticed that two people were missing and she only had ten minutes before she had to take the fans to meet the guys. Helen arrived and told Steph that everything was ready for the Meet & Greet and Steph had to make a decision. She walked over to the fans and she was just about to inform them of what would happen at the Meet & Greet when two people entered the venue. Steph walked over to them and they were surprised to see her.

“What are you doing here?” Mark asked her.

“I’m the tour manager. What are you doing here? You don’t like Il Divo,” Steph told him.

“No, but Marianne likes them and I gave her a ticket for her birthday,” Mark said.

“Ok. I have your passes here and then I want you to come with me,” Steph gestured for them to follow her.

Once Mark and Marianne had given Steph the items they wanted to have signed, Steph informed the fans of the rules. No kissing or hugging the guys and they could have a group picture and an individual picture. Steph could see that some of the fans didn’t approve of the no hugging or kissing part but she didn’t say anything. It wasn’t her decision and there was nothing she could do about it. As they walked to the room where the guys were waiting, Mark noticed the ring on Steph’s finger.

“What is that?” he asked as he pointed at the ring.

“It’s an engagement ring,” Steph answered.

“You’re getting married. What happened to never getting married again?” Mark questioned her.

“Well, I changed my mind when I met someone special. He loves me and he would never cheat on me,” Steph replied.

Mark didn’t say anything. He knew what she was referring to and he didn’t want to get into that discussion with her. Once they reached the Meet & Greet room, Steph walked into the room and Helen showed people into the room. Mark and Marianne were the last people to enter and Marianne was quite taken with the four Divos. As soon as Mark and Marianne had left the room, Steph took the signed items and left the room with the guys. She walked to the stage while the guys finished getting ready for the concert.

Ten minutes later the lights were dimmed and the music started playing. The guys appeared on stage and it was time for the concert to start. Steph watched the performance from the side and she was proud of them. At the end of part one, Séb stepped forward and Steph thought that he was introducing the last song but she was wrong.

“I have something to share with you. Last night I asked my girlfriend Stephanie to marry me and she accepted.” Séb said and turned to look at Steph.

The audience was cheering as Steph smiled at Séb. Mark was watching the two of them and he didn’t like what he saw. He was involved with Marianne and he had no reason to be upset so why did it bother him so much? The song ended and the guys left the stage. As promised, Steph returned the signed items to the owners. She walked over to Mark and Marianne to give them their items and as expected Mark made a comment about the announcement that Séb had made.

“You’re not seriously considering marrying a Divo, are you?” Mark asked her.

“Yes I am. I love him and to be honest, I’ve never been more in love with anyone than I am with Séb. He is the perfect man and he knows how to treat and love a woman. Séb would never cheat on me and it feels good to be with a man who isn’t afraid of showing how he feels. Now if you will excuse me, I have more items to return to the fans,” Steph replied and turned around.

Mark watched her as she walked away and he was fuming mad. He couldn’t believe that she had just told him that her feelings for Séb were stronger than her feelings for him. Mark had always had a big ego but tonight his ego was smaller than a grain of sand. He pretended like everything was ok and they watched the second part of the concert. After the concert, Steph watched as Mark and Marianne left the venue and she felt good. Normally she was a nice person but making Mark small in front of Marianne had made her day.

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PostSubject: Re: The Perfect Assistant   Fri May 31, 2013 6:20 pm

Chapter 49

As the guys continued with the European Tour, the girls were busy coming up with ideas for Steph’s wedding but Steph felt like it was a waste of time. She wanted to marry Séb but with the tour and being tour manager, she didn’t feel like she had time for planning anything. Besides, she wanted Séb to be part of the planning as it was his wedding too but he only had one wish and that was getting married in Paris. Steph had always wanted that too but she didn’t want to do the rest alone.

“What do you think of this color?” Sam asked as she showed Steph a bridesmaid dress.

“I guess that would work,” Steph replied, hardly looking at the picture.

“Ok, what is wrong with you? You don’t seem interested in planning this wedding at all,” Sam looked at her.

“I don’t. Don’t get me wrong. I love Séb and I want to marry him but he should be involved in the planning too. It feels wrong to plan a wedding without him,” Steph told her friends.

“Séb told you that you could choose whatever you wanted,” Alyssa reminded Steph.

“I know he did and that’s sweet of him but that’s not what I want, not anymore. I’ve always had an idea of what my dream wedding would look like and Séb has given me a chance to plan my dream wedding but this wedding is our wedding, not just my wedding. I’ve decided to postpone the wedding planning until after the tour,” Steph looked at Alyssa.

“As strange as it may seem, it actually makes sense. Have you talked to Séb about this?” Alyssa asked.

“Talked to me about what?” Séb’s voice suddenly said.

“We can talk about it when we’re alone,” Steph answered as she looked at him.

Séb looked at Steph and she could see that he was already thinking the worst. She had to put his mind at ease and she told him to follow her. They excused themselves and went into the bedroom. The others watched them leave and the guys were all wondering what was going on. None of the girls wanted to tell them what was going on because it wasn’t their job to do that. It was up to Steph and Séb to tell the guys if they wanted them to know about it.

In the bedroom Séb was pacing up and down the floor and it was making Steph nervous. It made her wonder if she should tell him what she had been telling the girls. Suddenly he stopped and looked at her, waiting for her to tell him what was going on but when she didn’t say anything, he continued to pace up and down the floor.

“Could you please sit down? You’re really making me nervous,” Steph said.

“Are you kidding me? I am making you nervous? I can’t believe I’m hearing this. How do you think I feel?” Séb raised his voice at her.

“Don’t raise your voice at me,” Steph raised her voice too.

“Are you calling off the engagement?” Séb asked her.

“What? No, I’m not calling off the engagement. I can’t believe that you would even ask me something like that,” Steph was shocked to hear him say that.

“What did you expect me to think? I walk into the room when Alyssa asks if you have talked to me about it,” he told her.

“It’s nothing bad but it does have to do with the wedding,” Steph said, biting her lower lip.

“So you don’t want to get married. That’s the same thing as calling off the engagement. Why did you say yes if you didn’t want to marry me?” Séb questioned her with anger in his voice.

“Forget it. We can talk about this when you’ve calmed down,” Steph said and left the bedroom, slamming the door behind her.

Without saying a word to her friends, Steph grabbed her coat and her purse before she left the suite. She had to get out of there because she needed to calm down. As she reached the lobby, she remembered that she was in a foreign town and going out alone wasn’t a good idea, especially in the evening. Steph walked into the bar and ordered a glass of wine before she took a seat by the window.

“A beautiful woman like you shouldn’t drink alone,” the bartender said as he brought her the wine.

“She is not alone,” Séb’s voice suddenly said.

Steph looked at Séb and the bartender chose to walk away and leave them alone. He could sense the tension and he didn’t want to get involved because it wasn’t any of his business. Séb ordered a glass of red wine before he took a seat across from Steph.

“I’m sorry for acting the way I did but I was scared. It’s no excuse for raising my voice but I was scared of losing you,” Séb looked at her.

“What you said really hurt me a lot,” Steph told him.

“I know and I truly am sorry for saying that. Do you want to tell me what this is all about?” Séb asked her.

“I want to wait with the wedding planning until after the tour. It’s our wedding and I really want you to be a part of the planning,” Steph answered.

“What about your dream wedding? All of your plans?” Séb was surprised to hear Steph say that.

“It was just that….a dream. It’s our wedding, not just my wedding and we should plan this together,” Steph said.

“But I told you to plan it the way you’ve always imagined your wedding to be,” Séb told her as the bartender brought him the wine.

“I know you did but it just feels wrong to plan everything alone. Besides, my dad wants to buy my wedding dress and he can’t do that as long as I’m on tour,” Steph sipped her wine.

“Are you sure this is what you want?” Séb looked at her.

“Yes, I’m sure. I want us to plan this wedding together,” Steph replied.

“Ok. We will start planning the wedding after the tour. Now let’s go back to the suite and get something to eat if there is any food left,” Séb suggested.

“That sounds good to me,” Steph smiled.

Séb paid for the wine and they left the bar. As they were waiting for the elevator to arrive, Séb wrapped his arm around Steph’s waist. He pulled her close to him as the elevator arrived and they stepped into the elevator. Séb pushed the button and when the elevator stopped, the couple left the elevator and walked to their suite. Séb opened the door and as expected, the others were eating.

“The food was getting cold so we had to start eating,” David said as he picked up a spring roll.

“That’s fine. I just hope there is enough food left for us,” Séb smiled at his friend.

“More than enough,” Carlos said.

Steph and Séb sat down with their friends and enjoyed their food. Séb told them about the wedding plans and they all thought it was a good idea to wait until after the tour since both Steph and Séb would be very busy with that. They needed time to plan their wedding and they didn’t have that at the moment.

Urs and Alyssa didn’t say much during dinner but there was a reason for that. They had been keeping a secret for some time and they wanted to tell their friends but they didn’t know how to do it. Earlier in the day Urs had received a phone call from a real estate agent who had given him some good news. The house they had been looking at was now theirs and they could start moving in whenever they wanted.

“Are you still with us?” Séb asked them.

“Yes we are. Alyssa and I have something to tell you,” Urs said and told them everything.

“With a baby on the way, moving out of the apartment seems like a wise decision,” Séb said.

“I agree with Séb. An apartment is not the right place to raise a baby. When are you moving?” David asked.

“Thanks to my parents, the house will be ready for us when we return to London,” Urs responded with a smile.

“Congratulations. What about the nursery?” Sam looked at them.

“They will take care of that too,” Alyssa replied with a big smile.

“That’s great. You have a great family,” Sam smiled back.

“Does anyone else have something to share with the group?” Carlos looked at his friends.

They all shook their heads no and they continued to eat their dinner. After dinner, the others said goodnight and went to their own rooms. After taking care of her needs in the bathroom, Steph walked into the bedroom to change into her night gown and Séb watched her closely. She turned around and saw him staring at her and he had a look on his face that she hadn’t seen before. Suddenly Séb turned around and walked into the bathroom without saying a word.

Steph watched him but she didn’t say anything. She climbed into bed and Séb returned a few minutes later. He climbed into bed and pulled Steph into his arms. As she rested her head on his chest, she was dying to find out what he had been thinking of but did she dare ask? She decided not to ask him because she didn’t want to risk him getting upset.

“I’ve been thinking of something,” Séb surprised her by saying.

“What?” Steph looked at him.

“We’re engaged to be married and we both have an apartment in London. Instead of moving into one apartment I think we should buy a house,” Séb said as he looked at Steph.

“That sounds like a good idea to me,” Steph agreed.

“I’m glad you agree with me. It will be the perfect way to start our new life together,” Séb smiled at her.

“I think so too. I love you Sébastien Izambard,” Steph said as she touched his face.

“I love you too Cherie,” Séb kissed her softly and turned out the lights.

He pulled her closer to him and Steph rested her head on his chest. She loved feeling Séb’s arm around her because it made her feel safe. Suddenly she heard Séb snoring and as she closed her eyes, she whispered goodnight to him. Shortly after saying goodnight, Steph drifted off to sleep.

*******

The group arrived in Madrid late in the afternoon and while the others were staying in a hotel, Carlos and Sam would be staying in Carlos’ apartment which was close to the hotel. Carlos wanted to cook dinner for Sam and he asked Sam to go out and buy the groceries while he would get things ready. Sam asked Steph to join her because she didn’t want to walk around in Madrid alone. Steph agreed, even though Séb had plans for the two of them but Steph promised she wouldn’t be gone too long.

As soon as the girls had left, Carlos called Urs and told him it was safe for him to come over. After months of planning and searching for the perfect ring, Carlos is finally going to ask his beloved Sam to marry him and today he needed some last minute advice from Urs. When Urs arrived, Carlos was busy trying on clothes and Urs had a few suggestions.

"Are you sure about this jacket?" Carlos looked at Urs.

"Yes, Sam loves you in a leather jacket. Now, relax," Urs tells him.

"Relax? How am I supposed to relax? I am asking Sam to marry me tonight and she might say no," Carlos was worried.

"Why would she say no? You haven't cheated on her. You haven't lied to her. She has no reason to say no to marrying you," Urs looked at him.

"You are right. She will say yes. I have the ring here. Isn’t it fabulous?" Carlos asked as he placed the ring box on the coffee table.

"She will love it. I’m going to get going before Sam gets back,” Urs grabbed his jacket.

As Urs heads to the door, he hears steps on the stairs and when Samantha puts her key in the lock, he turns around to look at Carlos.

"She's coming," Urs said.

"Quick, go out the window," Carlos gestures for him to head to the window.

"It's five stories off the ground. What are we doing? I am a friend. I can go out the front door," Urs walked back to the main door.

"Hi Urs," Sam smiled at him as she walked into the apartment.

"Let me help you with those," Carlos said as he grabbed one of the grocery bags.

"Want to stay for dinner? I am making your favorite, fettucine Alfredo," Sam looked at Urs.

"Oh, yummy," Urs replied with a smile.

He smiled because behind Sam’s back, Carlos was waving no and gesturing for him to get out of the apartment and he looked so funny.

"It does sound good but I’m taking Alyssa out tonight. See you soon," Urs kissed her cheek and left.

“I hope you’re hungry," Samantha turned her attention to Carlos.

"I already made dinner; seafood pasta," Carlos smiled as he took the other grocery bag from her and placed it on the table.

"That sounds good," Samantha kissed him before putting away the groceries.

"Sam, come sit down," Carlos held out his hand to her.

"I bought puppy food. Bailey was running low," Samantha told Carlos.

"That's great but there is something I need to ask you,” Carlos looked at her.

"Sure. What’s up?" Samantha asked.

"I had a whole speech prepared but now the words escape me," Carlos took a deep breath.

“Are you ok?” Sam questioned as she looked at him.

“I’m fine. Samantha, you’re the best part of me; the other half of my orange,” Carlos said.

"Oranges?" she was confused.

"It's a way of saying soul-mate. I love you," Carlos touched her hand.

"I love you too," she looked at him.

"And I love your hands; so soft and beautiful. However, I think your hand would look more beautiful with this,” he said as he opened the box.



"Carlos," Sam looked at him.

"Will you marry me?" he asked as he took the ring out of the box.

"Yes I will. I can’t believe that we’re engaged," she smiled as he put the ring on her finger.

“We are. If you start setting the table, I will prepare some kibble for Bailey," Carlos walked into the kitchen.

“This will be our first dinner as an engaged couple,” Sam smiled as she set the table.

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