DISCLAIMER: Olivia Spencer, Natalia Rivera, and all of the characters of Guiding Light are owned by Procter & Gamble, Telenext and CBS. I am borrowing them for a short time for entertainment purposes only. No copyright infringement is intended. No profit is being gained from this story. Please don't sue me. The song, "Some Enchanted Evening" is from the Rogers and Hammerstein musical, "South Pacific". While the play is not a favorite of mine, I love the song. Again no profit is being gained by this story and no copyright infringement is intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To privia123[at]verizon.net
Some Enchanted Evening
Some enchanted evening
You may see a stranger,
You may see a stranger
Across a crowded room
And somehow you know,
You know even then
That somewhere you'll see her
Again and again.
"Well I've got to hand it you, Spencer, you know how to throw a corporate cocktail party with the best of them." Doris Wolfe lifted her glass in a salute to her friend who simply dipped her head in acknowledgment of the compliment.
One week earlier, Olivia Spencer, owner of the Beacon Hotel, had received a frantic call from her friend Doris Wolfe, the Mayor of Springfield. The consummate politician had begged the hotel owner to reserve a banquet room for her use the following week so that she could wine and dine some bigwigs from a major pharmaceutical company.
Springfield, like so many other cities and towns across the country, was facing an economic crisis and needed an influx of jobs and new revenue streams. In response, the Mayor had developed a new stimulus plan to lure corporations headquartered in the mid-west to her city.
In addition to the various tax incentives she promised to businesses that re-located to her city, companies would be able to increase their bottom line by taking advantage of Springfield's office and research and development spaces at prices much lower than those in large cities such as Chicago.
Also, a small city such as Springfield would offer employees a better quality of life for themselves and their families. The neighborhoods were safe, the schools were strong, and housing was much more affordable. Olivia had to admit that Doris had prepared an effective two-pronged argument: (a) hit the companies in their bottom line; and (b) convince them that their employees will love them for the move; after all a happy employee is a productive employee.
So one week later, Olivia stood in the Beacon's main banquet hall, champagne in hand, with Doris at her side looking like the proverbial cat that ate the canary. The Mayor was basking in her first success with her new program. Earlier that day, Doris had finalized a deal which would result in the relocation of both the corporate headquarters and primary research and development facility for NAR Pharmaceuticals to Springfield within the next six to eight months.
This commitment from one of the largest drug companies in the country was a major coup for the mayor. The deal would benefit the city, its residents and, of course, Doris Wolfe, who would soon been seeking re-election. It was time to celebrate and, celebrate they would, for Doris was right about one thing: no one threw a party like Olivia Spencer.
Sharp green eyes scanned the crowd to make sure that all was in order. The guests appeared to be enjoying themselves. The vast number of city officials in attendance spoke volumes about the importance of this new venture. Olivia would make sure that her friend's triumph was properly recognized and celebrated.
Satisfied that the food and drink were flowing at appropriate levels, the hotelier was able to relax a bit. As she lifted her champagne flute to take another sip Olivia's hand froze as something, or rather someone, caught her eye. Captured by the stunning woman who held court across the room, Olivia couldn't contain the quiet gasp that slipped past her lips or control the eerie tingle that traveled up and down her spine.
Unable to tear her gaze away, Olivia followed the streams of sable hair that cascaded past the woman's bare shoulders. Her glorious body was shrouded in Chanel; the black dress clung to the woman's scrumptious figure was as if the garment was designed especially for her. Olivia soon found herself lost in the depths of eyes that brought to mind the deepest pools of delectably rich chocolate. Then there was her smile, so simple yet so blindingly brilliant in its intensity.
With a shaking hand, Olivia continued her previously halted attempt to raise her glass to her lips and imbibed a healthy swallow of champagne to calm her suddenly unsteady nerves and racing heart. She had never experienced a similar reaction to any man or woman in her past; to say that the hotelier was caught off-guard by her body's reaction to this woman would be an understatement. Olivia was well aware that she needed to get herself back under control, and she would, as soon as she learned the name of that glorious stranger.
Some enchanted evening
Someone may be laughing,
You may hear her laughing
Across a crowded room
And night after night,
As strange as it seems
The sound of her laughter
Will sing in your dreams.
Natalia Rivera was exhausted. She had managed to endure the lengthy negotiation sessions with the Mayor of Springfield these last few days and eventually agreed to move certain key components of her company to this smaller city. In her brief time in Springfield, there were two things Natalia was certain of: (a) this new deal would benefit her company both in the short-term and in the future; and (b) Doris Wolfe was aptly named.
Perhaps even worse than having to listen to the Mayor and her various staffers extol the virtues of their city, some based in fact while others in hyperbole, was the requirement that she attend that evening's celebratory cocktail party. To be fair, the gathering was well organized and even better attended, but having to deal with what seemed like an endless stream of people 'just wanting a moment of her time' was daunting.
She never dreamed that a city the size of Springfield would have so many officials, politicians and 'fellow business owners' lining up to shake her hand or have their picture taken with her. Nevertheless, Natalia fully understood that this facet of business was a necessary evil.
Bound and determined to present herself, and by extension her company, as a 'good neighbor', Natalia's warm smile never wavered and her confidence never faltered. All the while her feet were killing her, her back ached and all she really wanted to do was escape upstairs to her suite where she could treat herself to a long, hot soak in a cozy bathtub with a good book. On this night however, this particular indulgence was not to be.
While trapped in a discussion with Alan Spaulding, the self-appointed leader of the local business community, Natalia heard a most unexpected sound: laughter. It was loud, a bit unrestrained and perhaps the most honest noise she had heard anyone utter the entire evening. Why the laughter had so beguiled her, Natalia wasn't sure, but she did know that she felt compelled to seek out its owner.
Although Alan Spaulding was in mid-diatribe, Natalia managed to courteously excuse herself and skillfully deflect the older man's attempts to keep her by his side. Free at last, her eyes roamed over the milling crowd and soon landed on their target. Standing at the bar across the room was the Mayor of Springfield and by her side was the woman whose mere laugh had sent warm tingles up and down her spine.
Natalia crossed the room to stand at the other end of the bar where she could discretely observed Doris Wolfe and her female companion. Fashionably dressed, with eyes the color of shimmering green crystals and a body that would make event the most devout man or woman stray, the stunning woman captured Natalia's attention.
The mysterious stranger leaned closer to Doris and whispered in her ear. This seemingly intimate gesture caused an unexpected jolt of jealousy to surge through Natalia. Caught off-guard by the intensity of her feelings, the corporate executive clutched her drink even more tightly and, taking a languid sip, tried to get control of her emotions.
Natalia knew she needed to calm down and think logically. To feel this strongly about someone whose name she didn't even know was insane, wasn't it? As she pondered her mental well-being, she looked up to see the woman who was dominating her thoughts and causing her to question her sanity slip out of the room, leaving the Mayor alone.
Swallowing the last drops of her drink to bolster her courage, Natalia took advantage of the opportunity the fates had bestowed. Grabbing two fresh glasses of champagne and with a confident smile firmly in place, the corporate executive approached Doris.
"Good evening again, Madame Mayor. May I offer you one of these?" Natalia gave a slight tilt of her head and raised one of the flutes at her question. Never one to turn down an offer of good alcohol, Doris took the proffered glass and silently toasted her benefactor before raising the glass to her lips.
"Are you enjoying yourself, Natalia?" The women continued to sip their drinks all the while keeping a watchful eye on the goings on in the room.
"Yes, very much so." She wasn't exactly lying. Her interest in the function had significantly escalated in the last few minutes. "By the way Doris, thank you again for hosting all of this." Natalia swept her hand out across the room.
"No, thank you, Natalia. Businesses like NAR Pharmaceuticals are going to bring new life to this city. You and your company are an integral part of Springfield's future." Once again Doris raised her glass in acknowledgment of the executive.
"Well that's what all of us want isn't it, a better future?" If Doris was surprised by Natalia's cryptic response, she didn't show it, just one of the many skills she had acquired during her time spent at the prosecution's table in the courtroom.
"I guess we do, don't we." It wasn't a so much question as a neutral statement of fact.
"I must admit, I was a bit surprised you were able to put together a party of this magnitude on such short notice. I mean, we only finalized our deal this afternoon."
"Well, I had a great deal of help. One of my dearest friends owns this hotel. She's really the one who organized all of this."
"She sounds like she must be a good friend. Perhaps, you'll introduce us one day, so I can thank her properly."
"Actually, you just missed her. She was here with me a few minutes ago " Doris saw a spark of interest in chocolate brown orbs, " but she needed to go upstairs for a few minutes to say 'goodnight' to her daughter."
"Oh, is her husband here as well?" As Doris took another sip of her drink, ice blue eyes surreptitiously studied the younger woman in front of her. The devastatingly attractive Natalia Rivera was searching for something and the infinitely curious Doris Wolfe was determined to find out exactly what that was.
"Her husband? No, she's not married." The Mayor snickered. "But, quite a few of her ex-husbands are milling about tonight."
Natalia quickly hid her gasp of surprise by gulping down her remaining champagne. She had definitely gotten a certain vibe from the hotelier earlier in the evening while watching her interact with Doris. She had been so sure, but ex-husbands?
"Well Doris, I'm going to have to excuse myself, but thank you again." The Mayor followed the younger woman's progress as she hurriedly made her way through the throngs of people toward the ladies room.
"Hmm, now what the hell that was all about?"
Who can explain it?
Who can tell you why?
Fools give you reasons,
Wise men never try.
Olivia returned to the festivities after kissing her young daughter, Emma, good night and leaving her in her nanny's care. Immediately upon re-entering the ballroom she sought out the brunette who had so captivated her earlier. During her conversation with Doris, she had learned that the gorgeous young woman in question was none other than Natalia Amaya Rivera, CEO of NAR Pharmaceuticals, that evening's guest of honor.
Doris had raved about the brunette. Giving detail after detail of the flirtatious exchanges the mayor and the corporate executive had shared away from the negotiation table over the past few days. At first, the tale had been quite funny, and Olivia had genuinely laughed in all of the appropriate places. Then she came to learn that the woman from Doris's story was the same brunette who had caught her attention earlier in the evening, and the tale didn't seem quite so funny any more.
She had known Doris Wolfe long enough to realize that the woman was quite taken with the CEO. What she didn't know was whether or not the brunette returned those feelings. Needing some time to collect her thoughts, Olivia had headed upstairs to check on her daughter and to figure out what she was going to do about these insane ideas that were rolling around in her head.
Love at first sight? Was she insane? That was the stuff of fantasies. Olivia Spencer didn't live in a fairy tale. But her reaction earlier that evening when she first saw Natalia had never happened to her before. Was it truly possible to see someone who you've never met and just feel so much more than you had ever felt before?
Her thoughts soured when she discovered that Natalia had gravitated to the Mayor in her absence. Olivia felt her blood pressure elevate as she observed the duo in such close proximity, their interaction suggesting an intimacy that made the hotelier quite uncomfortable.
Every muscle in her body cried out for her to move forward and interrupt the two women. However, Olivia remained out of sight; choosing to merely observe their exchanges from a safe distance. That all changed however, when she saw Natalia nervously bolt from Doris Wolfe and deftly evade well-wishers on her path to the ladies room. Wanting to know what had gone on between the two women, Olivia quickly made her way over to her friend.
"What the hell did you do to that poor woman, Wolfe?" The emerald-eyed beauty tried to inject a note of humor into her voice but her roiling emotions made it difficult at best. She had never even laid eyes on Natalia Rivera before this evening, so why did she feel so protective of her? Frustrated by what she considered a lack of self-control, Olivia waved down a nearby server and ordered herself a dry martini.
"I have no idea what you're talking about." Catching the server's attention before she moved on to other guests, Doris doubled the drink order.
"Oh really? Then why did I just see the guest of honor at this shindig run from you like you were the devil incarnate?"
"Stupid stupid .." Chocolate brown orbs slowly shifted open to find their reflection in the mirror. Natalia had been quite relieved to find the ladies room empty after her hasty departure from the Mayor of Springfield.
"God, I didn't even get her name." Shaking her head in frustration, the brunette lurched forward so that her hands were now flat on the countertop supporting much of her weight. Refocusing on her mirror image, Natalia continued her one-sided conversation.
"Not that it would matter....ex-husbands? I mean one ex-husband could qualify as a mistake, but ex-husbandsss ?" She emphasized the plurality of the word. " sure sounds like a preference to me."
Natalia recalled images of her mystery woman from earlier in the evening: the amazing laugh that reached inside of the brunette's soul and tugged at her heart, the way the older woman moved, the confidence in her step, the delectable sex appeal that oozed from every one of her pores, everything about her called to the corporate executive in a way that no one and nothing else had called before.
"Okay, I need ." The word 'her' echoed through her thoughts but she refused to allow the word to slip past her lips. She had made the mistake of lusting after straight women before, and she had vowed to never allow herself to suffer through that heartbreak again.
"I need to calm down." She filled her lungs with a deep, cleansing breath, before exhaling slowly. Staring at her reflection, she willed confidence into her dark brown eyes.
"I need to get back out there." Nodding her head once in affirmation, a rejuvenated Natalia pushed away from the counter and headed toward the bathroom door. She would rejoin the party. After all, this night was important for her company. She couldn't allow some infatuation with a total stranger to interfere with that, now could she?
"Wait a second, I think I might know what's going on here." A superior gleam filled ice blue eyes and a knowing smirk appeared on Doris's face as she took a long, luxurious swallow from her perfectly prepared martini.
"Well, do you plan on sharing your miraculous insight with us mere mortals?" Even though they were the best of friends, Olivia wanted to reach out and strangle the other woman. Doris was testing the waters to see how far she could push the hotelier before she snapped. Just before Olivia took a step forward to lessen the distance between her hands and the Mayor's neck, Doris spoke.
"Ms. Natalia Rivera, head of NAR Pharmaceuticals, gorgeous brunette, and brilliant business woman, has the 'hots' for you my friend." Wanting to catch Olivia's reaction to her bombshell, Doris peered over the rim of her glass as she lifted it toward her lips.
"Wait you're joking right?" When Doris didn't respond with anything more than a smug look, Olivia continued. "You're out of your mind, do you know that?" The hotelier's derisive laugh sounded phony even to her own ears. For a moment she allowed the fleeting hope that Natalia Rivera might actually share her interest play through her mind.
"Ah ah ah don't lie to me, Spencer. You can hide the truth from everyone else, even from yourself at times, but not from me. I see that little glimmer in those fabulous eyes of yours when you talk about her."
"Doris, I " She had been caught, she knew it, unfortunately so did Doris, but Olivia was ready to admit defeat. "Look, weren't you the one telling me earlier how the two of you have been flirting for the last few days, and how she is, and I quote, 'so into you'?"
"Oh please, she's a bright, gorgeous woman who seeks out the companionship of other devastatingly attractive and keenly intelligent women. Of course she's into me."
"Oh my God, Doris" Olivia couldn't help but laugh at the smug grin on her friend's face. " sometimes you can be such a "
"Stop right there, Spencer, no taking the name of your best friend in vain."
"Ugh, never mind! You do know that you're incorrigible, right?" She didn't know whether to laugh or punch the other woman in the face. In the end, she did neither, choosing instead to drain her glass of its glorious beverage.
"Of course I do, but the truth is, Olivia, that you wouldn't have me any other way." Doris was thoroughly enjoying their playful banter, but recognized the hotelier's paling complexion and tremoring hand for exactly what they were, signs that her closest friend on this earth had absolutely no idea what to do about Natalia Rivera. She had no point of reference for her.
In truth, Doris had developed a bit of a crush on the corporate executive and had fully planned to share a steamy sex-filled night with the younger woman before she returned to Chicago. However, if she was reading the players in this love match correctly, and Doris Wolfe fully believed she was, her friend was quite taken with the stunning CEO. Meanwhile, Natalia had already shown her hand with her sudden interest in green-eyed hotel owners.
Doris would gladly step aside if it meant her friend could find true happiness. The hotelier simply needed a push in the right direction, and Doris Wolfe was just the woman to provide that little shove. With one last moment spent mourning the incredible night of sex she might have had with Natalia, Doris cast that thought aside and tried once again to get her friend to take a chance.
"Liv " The tone of the Mayor's voice was much more serene. She reached out to put a calming hand on Olivia's arm before she continued.
"I'm telling you that Natalia Rivera is interested in you very interested." She briefly paused to gauge Olivia's reaction. She hoped she was getting through to her.
"The question is, Olivia, what are you going to do about it?" Doris took a step back from the hotelier, relinquishing her gentle hold on the other woman's arm. Keeping her eyes focused on the other woman, the Mayor finished her drink. Placing her now empty glass on the tray of a passing server, Doris decided to plant one last seed before she walked away.
"I've gotten to know Natalia a bit over these last few days, and I can tell you she's an amazing woman. You'd be a fool to pass up a chance to be with her, and if there's one thing I know, Olivia Spencer is no one's fool."
Some enchanted evening
When you find your true love,
When you feel her call you
Across a crowded room,
Then fly to her side,
And make her your own
Or all through your life you
May dream all alone.
Olivia would never recall exactly how long she stood off to the side, apart from the remaining guests, to gather her thoughts and ponder what Doris had said. Just when it seemed like her fears would drown out the pleas of her heart, the hotelier put an end to the internal debate. Olivia Spencer was many things, but Doris was right: she was not a fool, and she was most definitely not a coward.
Emerald eyes scanned the remaining celebrants, trying to catch a glimpse of the guest of honor. She had almost convinced herself that she had missed her chance and that perhaps this relationship was not meant to be, when she spotted Natalia on the other side of the hall. From the look on the younger woman's face, it appeared she was engaged in a conversation with someone who was trying her patience.
Despite the limited view she had of the man who was speaking to Natalia, the hotelier knew who he was. Even with only a glimpse of his profile, she could recognize Frank Cooper.
Oh, Natalia had plastered a tolerant smile on her face, but Olivia could tell, even from across the room, that the other woman was not enjoying their interaction, especially after she attempted to excuse herself only to have her path blocked by Detective Cooper.
Deciding that regardless of what might happen between Natalia and herself in the future she would not allow the other woman to be subjected to apparently unwanted attentions, Olivia began to head in their direction.
As she came closer to her target the hotelier caught a glimpse of Frank's face. She recognized the look in his eyes. In the past that look of curiosity and hope for much more had been directed at her. She had broken his heart by rejecting his advances, and Olivia had no doubt that her actions in the next few minutes would do very little to improve their already strained relationship. Oh well, perhaps it just sucked to be Frank Cooper.
"Ms. Rivera?" Natalia had been so focused on boring an imaginary hole in the middle of Frank Cooper's forehead using only the sheer power of her mind, a self-preservation technique she had developed after years of drowning out the incessant ramblings of board members, she had not sensed the approach of the woman now calling her name.
"Excuse me, Ms. Rivera?" Natalia felt a warm hand gently touch her shoulder. Turning her attention to the newcomer, the brunette was surprised to see that her savior was the mystery woman who had dominated her thoughts for most of the evening.
"I'm sorry to interrupt, but I was wondering if I could have a few moments of your time to discuss something with you?" Olivia cast an apologetic glance in Frank's direction before returning her attention to the beautiful woman. Oh, the hotelier could tell, even from her quick inspection, that Frank was not happy about her intrusion, but she was so enamored with the brunette that she couldn't care less.
"I um of course yes." Natalia inwardly grimaced at her verbal fumbling. She didn't have long to worry about her nervous utterances however. The hand that had been resting on her shoulder moments before dropped down to her lower back. Neither woman spared an angered Frank Cooper another glance as Olivia used her fingertips to guide Natalia to the opposite corner of the room.
When they had reached a spot away from the other attendees, Olivia stopped and removed her hand. Natalia felt the loss instantly. A surge of emotion bubbled up within her as her body yearned to reconnect with the other woman. She had to restrain herself from reaching out to take Olivia's hand in her own in response to this call.
They were silent for a few moments, each with her own thoughts. Soon however, shimmering emerald eyes met darkening chocolate orbs and the rest of the world fell away.
"I wanted to thank you for putting together this party." Natalia had regained her voice and was quite relieved to find that she could actually verbalize a coherent thought in the presence of the most gorgeous woman she had ever laid eyes on.
"It was my pleasure, Ms. Rivera." And, for the first time since Doris had called her the prior week and dumped the responsibility for putting together this party in her lap, she actually meant it.
"Please call me Natalia." A slight blush had crept into the brunette's cheeks, and she couldn't control the smile that enveloped her face.
"Natalia." Olivia couldn't help but return the gesture. They could both feel the tension that was growing between them as each second ticked by. At that moment, however, they were reminded that they were not alone when a slightly inebriated city councilor stumbled into Natalia, pushing her forward into Olivia's arms.
Realizing that potentially injuring his city's newest benefactor was not the best impression to make, the man righted himself and started to apologize. Natalia quickly waved off his attempts as unnecessary. Relieved that he had not offended the corporate executive, the councilor took his leave. Perhaps if he had been more sober or less mortified by his faux pas, he would have noticed that Natalia had decidedly remained in Olivia Spencer's embrace.
The unexpected sparks that passed between them were almost tangible. Neither woman wanted to relinquish her hold of the other. Reluctant to have their initial intimate embraces be on display for public consumption, Olivia was the first to step out of Natalia's arms. Not willing to completely lose contact with the younger woman, however, the hotelier intertwined Natalia's fingers with her own.
"Would you like to go somewhere more private?" Olivia nearly cringed at her words. How often in the past had she said them when her true purpose was to entice the recipient into bed? They would have sex, and then shortly thereafter, Olivia would flee, usually by the early morning light.
The purpose of those encounters had been achieving physical release. She'd had an itch and she'd scratched it, nothing more. This time however, she wanted so much more. She had little doubt that one day, in the not too distant future, she would make love with the beautiful woman before her. But for this night she was content to merely be with her.
"I would like that very much." Natalia gazed down at their linked fingers and then back up to those glorious eyes. She was discovering that emerald green was quickly becoming her favorite color.
The fortunate duo slipped away from the party with little fanfare. As they headed into the hotel lobby, Natalia suddenly stopped walking. Not wanting to relinquish their physical connection, Olivia halted her steps as well and turned to look at the younger woman with a question in her eyes.
"I just realized something," Natalia said somewhat sheepishly. "I don't even know your name."
The look of sheer amazement that crossed Olivia's face made the brunette giggle. The hotelier quickly replayed her conversation with the younger woman from that evening. Natalia was right. She hadn't ever told the other woman her name.
"Well then, let me rectify that right now. I'm Olivia Spencer, and it is my absolute pleasure to meet you." The older woman lifted Natalia's hand to her lips and placed a gentle kiss upon it.
The chivalrous move caught Natalia off-guard. When those luscious lips caressed her skin, she couldn't hide the gasp that escaped her lips. Given the way Olivia was looking at her, she wasn't sure that she would have wanted to hide it. The women stared deeply into one another's eyes, before Natalia spoke.
"That private place you were going to show me, I doubt it was the lobby, right Olivia?" The hotelier was amazed at the stirrings she felt just from hearing this woman say her name. If this was any indication of things to come, she knew she was in trouble, but that was fine with Olivia Spencer, she thrived on trouble.
Squeezing the hand she still held in her own, sparkling green eyes glowed as they gazed gently into chestnut orbs. "Come on then, let's go. I have something I want to show you, Natalia."
And in that moment, Natalia Rivera came to understand a truth that would remain with her for the rest of her days: she would willingly accompany Olivia Spencer wherever she wanted to take them.
Natalia had to admit that she had been a bit surprised when she had opened her eyes to discover that the private place Olivia had escorted her to was the roof of the Beacon. With the stars above and the city's lights as a backdrop, the setting, although unorthodox, proved to be incredibly romantic.
They talked about everything and nothing at all: the city before them bathed in star light, Natalia's plans for her company, Olivia's dreams for franchising the Beacon, things they had never discussed with another living soul. Soon hours had passed, and even though it was early summer, the wind rising off the nearby lake caused a chill to seep into the air. Noticing that the younger woman was shivering, Olivia excused herself, promising to return shortly. Minutes later she reappeared carrying a blanket in her arms.
She tentatively approached the brunette as she unfolded the covering. Given what had passed between them in the last few hours, the younger woman was surprised by the hotelier's hesitation. With a tilt of her head and a curious smile, Natalia asked the silent question, 'what's wrong?'
Gathering her courage, Olivia extended the blanket until it was taut behind her back, then slowly closed the distance between herself and the younger woman until they were inches apart. She loosely encircled the brunette in her arms so that they were both wrapped in the warm covering. Natalia turned slightly so that her back was now leaning against Olivia. The older woman tightened her grasp around Natalia's middle and could feel the younger woman relax as she settled in her arms.
"Are you comfortable?" Olivia whispered the words into Natalia's ear.
"God yes." The softness of the brunette's reply could not hide the longing in her voice. The low, sexy chuckle Olivia gave in response only served to fuel the fire building inside the younger woman. After a few moments of shared silence, Natalia felt the hotelier's body stiffen and heard an almost imperceptible sigh.
"I have a daughter. Her name is Emma." Olivia stared out at the city over Natalia's shoulder. Using every ounce of self-control she possessed, she strained to keep a neutral expression on her face. Things had been going so well between herself and Natalia, but she had learned during the course of their discussion that the brunette didn't have any children and worried that perhaps this was by choice.
"I know." Natalia remained wrapped in the hotelier's arms, but altered her position so that she could see Olivia's profile.
"How old is she?" She felt more than saw the easing of the older woman's expression and the set of her shoulders.
"She's eight going on thirty." The accompanying laugh brightened Olivia's face and if possible made her even more alluring in the brunette's eyes.
"I've always wanted to have a little girl. Tell me, is she as beautiful as her mother?" With those few words, Natalia Rivera earned herself a place in Olivia Spencer's heart that she would never relinquish.
"Thank you." And with that, Olivia decided she could wait no longer. Leaning in toward the younger woman, she captured her lips in what was at first a gentle kiss. As soon as she felt the brunette respond, however, Olivia loosened her restraint and allowed her tongue to glide across Natalia's bottom lip. Understanding the request for what it was, Natalia drew Olivia's tongue into her mouth and the power of the connection they felt to one another surrounded them and bound them together as tightly as any vows ever could.
This was the stuff of romantic legend. The kind of love flowingly described in the stories Natalia's mother had read to her as a small girl and Olivia now read to Emma. On this evening, this enchanted evening, two women learned that perhaps fairy tales really can come true.
Once you have found her,
Never let her go.
Once you have found her,
Never let her go .
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