DISCLAIMER: The Devil Wears Prada and its characters belong to Lauren Weisberger and 20th Century Fox. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

The Fear Within
By pure_ecstasy6


Miranda was sitting under her umbrella on the beach as she watched her lover kick a soccer ball around with her children.

Cassidy kicked the ball and Andy began to run after it but abruptly stopped when she came closer to the water.

"Andy! What are you doing? Get the ball before it gets washed away." Caroline said as she started to run up to Andy with Miranda wandering behind her.

"Andrea darling, what's wrong?" Miranda asked as she came up to stand next to her lover as she watched Caroline go fetch the ball from the water.

Andy slowly turned her head to face Miranda and looked her lover in the eyes before she shook her head out of the daze she was in. "Everything's fine." Andy replied with a small laugh and a reassuring smile but Miranda wasn't convinced as Andy looked over to the girls who had retrieved the ball. "Come on lets keep playing!" Andy added as she ran to steal the ball from Cassidy.

Miranda watched her lover interact with her children as thoughts wandered in her mind. Miranda was sure that when Andrea had looked her in the eyes she has seen fear. "Scared of what?" Miranda thought to herself.

Later that afternoon they were all gathered by the pool outside their hotel room when Caroline jumped up and looked over to Andy.

"Hey Andy! Come play with us in the pool!" Caroline said and Andy looked up at the hopeful girl just as Cassidy popped up beside her sister with the same puppy dog eyes that they all knew worked on Andy so well; Andy was simply too soft.

This time, however, those cute little puppy dog faces didn't work for her as she hesitated before she shook her head. "Sorry girls but I'm just not in the mood." Andy replied and the girls let out an annoyed sigh before they turned to look at Emily and Serena. "How about you guys?" Caroline asked.

Serena looked over at Emily and Emily raised her eyebrow at her girl who was smirking at her.

With a sigh Emily stood up and offered her hand to Serena to help her up -A hand which was gladly accepted- before they followed the two redheads to the pool where they dived in and began laughing as they threw the ball to one another.

Andy sighed as she watched the twins play with Emily and Serena and she just wished that she was able to be in the pool and do it with them.

Instead though, she was stuck sitting at the table watching; she was much too scared to get into swimming pools again.

When Miranda heard Andrea sigh she looked over and saw the sad look on her lover's face as Andrea watched the girls interact with Emily and Serena in the pool. Miranda desperately wanted to question Andrea about what was wrong but decided that she'd wait for her lover to talk to her when she felt she needed to.

"Hey Andy! Watch me!" Cassidy shouted cheerfully. "No watch me, Andy!" Caroline also said as they began racing each other to the end of the pool.

Andy let out a laugh as she watched the twins as they continued to race each other.

Now she truly wish she had the guts to get into the pool but she found she couldn't find the courage within her to do that.

Andy felt a warm hand on her shoulder and she looked up to see Miranda. She let a small smile form on her face as the older woman bent down and placed a kiss on her lips.

"I'm going to take a dip." Miranda said to Andrea as she pulled back from the kiss.

"Alright. I might come and get my feet wet." Andrea replied as she stood and wandered over to the pool as she watched her lover dive gracefully into the pool.

With a sigh she sat down on the edge of the pool and dangled her feet in the cool water.

Emily glided over to where she was sitting and pulled herself up to sit next to Andy on the side of the pool. "You should come in. It's beautiful." Emily said as she nudged her best friend.

Andy let out a laugh and looked at the English woman who was making eyes with Serena before she shook her head. "Nah. I think I'll just sit here and watch." Andy replied and Emily let out a sigh.

"Well that's boring then." Emily said and looked back over to Serena who was now resting against the side of the pool with her eyes closed.

Em let a small smile form on her face and Andy noticed this, nudging Emily. "How are things going with you and Serena?" Andy asked.

"Brillant as usual." Emily replied with a bright smile on her face as she turned to face Andy.

"Looks like it." Andy replied with a laugh. "You can't take your eyes off her." Andy added.

"Well, you can't talk. You can't keep your hands to yourself longer than 5 minutes when you're around Miranda." Emily said with a laugh.

A small blush crept onto Andy's face as she gave Emily a nudge and Emily nudged Andy right back but did it a little too hard and Andy slipped off the side of the pool and into the water.

Andy had not been expecting it and her whole body turned to jelly as her body hit the water. Andy struggled to get back up to the surface as she began to frantically move her arms around.

Emily looked on and started to laugh. "Oh come on Andy don't use that crap on me!" Emily said but stopped laughing as she thought back to all those moments when the girls and herself had asked her to join them in the pool and at the beach and she had always shaken her head arguing she was alright just watching.

Emily shook her head and cursed to herself and was about to jump off the edge and into the water to help her friend but was too late; Miranda had noticed, had swam over and pulled her lover up from the water.

Once surfaced Andrea began coughing frantically. "What the fuck did you do that for?" Andy shouted at Emily.

"I..." Emily was shocked at Andy's sudden anger and didn't know what to say.

Miranda was still holding Andrea from around the waist as she could tell that her lover wasn't able to hold herself up in the water on her own and she made quick work of helping Andrea to the shallow end of the pool which Andrea was thankful for.

In seconds Andy felt the surface beneath her feet and she let out a thankful sigh and turned to Miranda. "I'm fine..." she said and Miranda nodded a little worried as she watched Andy walk up the steps of the pool and back over to the table.

Miranda quickly followed suit and caught up with Andrea who was now at the table and picking up her towel and drying herself off with shaky hands.

Miranda placed a hand on Andrea's shoulder and Andy jumped at the contact she hadn't been expecting. "Jesus Miranda. Don't do that!" Andy said as she turned to face her.

Miranda saw the fear in Andrea's eyes. "Darling, I'm sorry. Are you sure you're alright?" Miranda asked but before she got an answer from Andrea Emily was out of the pool and was trying to apologise. Andrea wouldn't listen to the English woman and wandered off back into the hotel.

Emily slumped her shoulders and let out a sigh.

"Just let her calm down." Miranda said with a small smile on her face and patted Emily's shoulder as she walked over to the girls and told them to make the most of their time in the pool as they were going to get ready for dinner soon.

That night Andy decided to head down to the beach and sit beneath the stars in hopes to calm herself down a little seeing as she was still a bit shaken up over the fact that she could have drowned earlier that day.

When Andy closed her eyes in hopes to relax all she saw behind her eyes was that horrible day when she was younger. She quickly opened them and let out a sigh as she stared out into the night.

When Miranda realised that Andrea wasn't in bed with her she wandered down to the beach where she saw her lover sitting in the distance looking out towards the sea.

When Miranda reached Andrea she sat down next to her lover as Andrea turned to look at her. "Hey." Andy said in a small voice.

"How is it that you're always around the exact time I need you." Andy said as she leaned into Miranda and placed a kiss on her lover's cheek.

Miranda let a bright smile form on her face but couldn't help but think about what had happened that day and of the day before, when Andrea froze on the beach. So, Miranda's curious side got the better of her. "What was that about, Darling? I mean what just happened earlier and yesterday at the beach...?" The words came out of Miranda's mouth before she could stop herself to ask what she was doing; she had wanted Andrea to talk to her on her own accord.

Andy let out a sigh as she looked to Miranda and they looked one another in the eyes for a few moments. "When I was younger my brother and I had been mucking around in the swimming pool in our backyard." Andrea started. "I told him that I was going to quickly duck inside to get our towels and I made him get out of the pool with and sit on one of the chairs which were by the pool and told him to stay where he was." Andy froze for a moment as she remembered that horrible day and tears began to run down her cheeks. "He nodded to me and I ran inside the house to grab the towels. When I came back outside I saw that Jason wasn't sitting on the seat I told him to stay and I glanced down to the water in the pool where he was floating head down and not moving." Andy began choking on her sobs as she continued to speak. "I stood there for god knows how long just looking at him. I couldn't move my legs to help him. They just wouldn't move." Miranda tried to pull Andrea in to comfort her but Andrea pulled away. "I swear Miranda, I thought he understood me and was going to stay where I told him to! Why did I do that though?" Andy asked more to herself then Miranda as she cursed herself. "I was such an idiot. Mum came out a few moments later and asked me what I was doing when she looked down into the water and saw Jason floating there. She began screaming out his name and jumped in to get him. I don't remember much else after that but I do remember later that day when my Mother was yelling at me, telling me that it was all my fault and why did I not go and help him." Andy said as she finally let Miranda pull her into her arms. "Ever since that day she hasn't forgiven me." Andy said through small sobs.

"That's why you never speak to your Mother?" Miranda asked softly and she ran her hands through her lover's gorgeous long hair.

Andy nodded and began sobbing even more. "Ever since that day I haven't been able to step foot in a swimming pool or go swimming at a beach. I just think of the stupid thing I did. God, even I can't forgive myself for that day so I understand why my mother has disowned me." Andy said.

"You weren't to know that he was going to go swimming without you there." Miranda said quietly.

"But I should have known. I should have made him come inside with me!" Andy replied.

After a few seconds went by and Andrea calmed herself down she pulled away from Miranda's embrace and looked out at the ocean.

"Why don't I walk with you?" Miranda asked as Andy looked over at her.

Andy hesitated for a moment. "Alright. I will if you will." Andy said with a small smile and Miranda stood up and walked with Andrea hand in hand towards the ocean water.

They stopped just before the water was touching their feet.

Andy looked over at Miranda and gave her a small nod before they took a few more steps until their feet were in the cold ocean water.

Andy slowly released her hand from Miranda's and walked a little further into the water before turning back to look at Miranda who was looking on. Miranda smiled at her before Andy turned back around and was crashed with a wave around her waist causing such a joyful reaction in her that she let out a cheerful laugh and began jumping and splashing around.

Miranda chuckled as she watched her lover and soon enough she was pulled in further by Andrea and they mucked around for a while.

At the end of the day Andy was glad that Miranda helped her overcome her fear of water but she knew that she still had a long way to go to overcome everything else and she was glad that Miranda would be there by her side.

The End

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