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Story: Serenidy

Okay so I decided I should post the story I'm working on here along with everything else.  Right now I don't have a set name for it, I'm still kind of testing the waters with this so for now it's just called "Serenidy". So far I've written a bit but seeing as how I don't have a lot of free time at the moment I'll just post this and get some more out when I can.

My alarm blared, I rolled out of bed, groggy and disoriented. Stumbling into the bathroom, I shed my clothes and I jumped into the warm shower, letting it wake me. Applying the usual floral scented lotion afterward took only minutes. I stood in the enormous closet in my robe, trying to figure out what to wear for my first day back to work. my vacation to Honolulu had really messed up my schedule, tome it felt as if I should be in the middle of a dead sleep. After trying on various outfits, I finally settled for my usual work clothes: a dark pencil skirt, a pale blue blouse and my pumps. Instead of fussing with my pale platinum hair I let it hang around my shoulders in waves but pinned half of it away from my face. After applying mascara and a hint of blush to my nearly translucent skin I looked at the clock once more and swore. I was going to be late! My boss Mandy really hated that. I grabbed my keys and ran out of the house. My heels clacked against the cobblestone path that led to my car, I managed to stumble only once on my way. I got there just in the nick of time, my best friend, well, one of them anyway, tsked me playfully.
"It's only your first day back and you're already rushing to work. What happened to the always-on-time Serenidy we all knew and loved?"
"She's back in my warm bed," I muttered loud enough for it to be heard."Hey, Nick, how are you? I haven't seen you in what, two months?"
Nick rushed up and gave me a hug. "You haven't changed a bit. I would have thought you'd at least be a bit tanned. Are you sure you're not an albino?"
I gave him a tired Rose McGowan look. "I'm sure. Come with me to the staff room. I'm dying for some coffee."
Once I'd had my jolt I started telling Nick about my wonderful vacation. "Wow, two months of surfing, running on the beach and scenic tours but you didn't bring back a man. What good did that vacation do for you if you don't have a hunk of man candy? You really need to settle down."
"You're only saying that because you have David. He's totally perfect for you, hell, if he wasn't yours I would've gone after him long ago." Nick pretended to be shocked.
"He still wouldn't have gone for you. Last time I checked he wasn't into women, even in they're cute as a button."
David was Nick's super sweet boyfriend. The man was perfect, cooked and knew everything there was to know about Nick, even a little on the pudgy side, he was still rather handsome, and to top it all off, he owned a restaurant.
"My meeting should be starting soon, I need to go. Wouldn't want Mandy on my on my first day back." I left Nick's cubicle and headed for Mandy's office. She was actually a really good person but was extremely pushy. I stuck my head in, making sure she was actually in. Mandy stood as soon as she saw me.
"Serenidy, come in, come in," she ushered me inside. "I trust your vacation was pleasant." I affirmed. "Good. I have some news for you, it may not be the best but there's good ones too. Kyle quit, well, he moved but the end results' still the same. I know what you're going to say but I did tell you I had good news. Ben's going to be working with you. He's every bit as good as Kyle."
I hated that kyle had quit, we'd been partners for a while and we worked well together. Now I had to work with Ben, I'd only ever worked with him once, when he and Kyle shot me for my story. He hadn't said much and would always hide behind his camera.
"Come in, Ben, I was just telling Serenidy you two are going to be working together." I almost didn't hear her, I was lost somewhere between shock and disbelief. Somehow Ben had gotten... well, hot. That was the word that kept running through my mind as I took in his messy dark hair, smooth, tan skin, slightly crooked nose and sensual slope of his mouth. I gaped at the way he filled out his dark shirt, the muscles in his arms evident. His dark pants were no different, slung low on his hips, they outlined his rear perfectly and accentuated his tall, lean frame.
I pulled myself away from my ogling and tuned into what Mandy was telling me. "I expect the piece on the Feroí fire at noon Wednesday. Have at it you two and good luck."
For some odd reason my breath caught in my throat at her words. Had she seen the way I was obviously checking Ben out? Oh, God, I hoped not. I really needed to keep my emotions under control or else I would have a real problem on my hands.
"Okay, so what do you know about the fire?" I asked Ben as we walked out of Mandy's office. I was completely out of the current events.
"Not much,"Ben said, smiling slightly. "Last night there was a fire over at the Feroí, the police said it was too soon to tell if it was accidental or provoked. They managed to prevent the fire from spreading but mostly, there's nothing left but charred remains."
I thought for a moment. "Did the owner have any serious competition? Anyone who really disliked him?"
"Of course." Ben chuckled, the sound deep and natural, sensual, he didn't force it like some men. "Half the people in the villa hated his guts. He wasn't the nicest guy around."
Okay, that went nowhere. "Fine. Competition?"
"Not really likely. He owns a buisness firm, the only people who would be interested would be his employee;s, possibly his clients. He was a real shark."
"Okay, we're going to need a list of his employee's and clients. Not that hard to get, most people here are ready to spill their guts for the paper. Are the burnt remains still untouched? We'll need pictures of it."
"Yes, they're still there. We could go after lunch, or we could use pictures from the fire. I live close by and managed to get a few from far and up close."
I smiled at him. "You're a genius. We'll see your prints and a couple we take later depending on what we find out we'll pick our image." I was glad I could concentrate on work even with him here. I loved my job, it was so fun and thrilling to investigate and write a story. Finally finding out the truth was the best, people rarely realized how much time was invested in the paper they red then tossed in the trash bin.
"Wow, this place looks terrible, even for a fire," everything stood in a pile of ashes, only the brick walls and metal frames stood intact.
Ben stood behind his camara, clicking away, taking the pictures of the blackened remains. "There is no way this place could have gone up in flames because of faulty wiring or anything of the sort. It couldn't have burned this succesfully. Someone started this fire, now all we have to do is figure out who it was and why."
"Yeah, that's what I thought but the polieve are perfectly content taking their time now that Mr. Feroí is going through all the legal trouble that's involved in collecting the insurance for this place."
Ben was really something. The look of concentrated ease his face held while he was behind the lends was facinating. It was almost as if he was the old Ben but the new one all at the same time. He was the old Ben because he had he same expression he always wore when working but the new Ben because he was speaking to me. That and the fact that he was totally hot, she could see all his muscles defined under his dark sweater. His pale eyes and squared jaw were the same along with his dark sable hair, his big hands carefully moved the camera with precision, never faltering.
"I can't imagine how much the insurance for this place would be. And he's only had this firm for a little while, can't be more than than a year and a half."
Something clicked in my mind, what Ben had said. "That's it, Ben! We have the pictures we want. We need to go back to my place for my laptop." His expression was confused, his eyebrows drawn together. I'll explain everything later, now we need to go, come on." I grabbed his arm and tugged a bit, heading back to his car.
Once seated in my kitchen table, he asked me for an expression.
"Well, you remember when you said that Mr. Feroí is going to collect the insurance for his firm? It doesn't take long for the insurance cover to start up, all he needed was some type of accident to happen and demolish it... Of course no one would suspect him, why would he do that to his own buisness?"
"Um, Serenidy, as much as I'm trying to keep up wth you I can't. What are you talking about? The insurance cover? Who's business? Give it to me straight."
I was already busy typing away furiously on my laptop, outlining my story. "Feroí set the fire himself. He gains a lot more then he looses wth that accident. He did it to collect the insurance payment. "It finally dawned on him.
"Of course, no one thought it was him becasue he wanted to press charges and it was his firm. He told the press that he was going away on a vacation. I bet that vacation is an extended one and won't come back for a long time."
"Exactly," I said without looking up. "Now all we have to do is make sure the police look in the right direction. A quick talk with them, asking the right questions should point them in the right direction, now all we need is one day, a picture of Feroí and your prints of the fire. This is a story Mandy will be glad we ran with.



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