Morning came far too quickly for Ivy. Joe woke her up around 7:30 and she’d sleepily pulled on a simple black sundress before curling back up in the bed while Joe got ready. She must have fallen back to sleep because the next thing she remembered was being lifted in a strong pair of arms and cradled against a broad chest.
“You don’t have to carry me. I can walk,” she murmured sleepily, even as she nuzzled his throat like a little kitten. He tightened his hold on her, pulling her in closer to protect her from the early morning chill.
“I’m the one who kept you up half the night. I got you, baby,” he chuckled softly, kissing her temple.
Ivy grinned at the mention of their late night escapades that led well into the wee hours of the morning. The couple had come back to the hotel, ordered some room service, passed out and woken up sometime after midnight to ravage each other. He carried his little angel down to the SUV, gently loading her into the front seat and buckling her in.
“Imma grab our stuff and go check out. Be right back, baby girl.”
Ivy yawned, a little smile on her face as she curled up a little. Little things that Joe did like that always got her and made her fall even harder for him. He came back to the car and climbed into the driver’s seat, turning the heat on.
“Mmmm…yes please,” she murmured, leaning over to kiss his cheek.
It took her a second to notice that he was wearing glasses and she gaped at him.
“How did I not know that you wear glasses?”
Joe snickered as he drove towards the coffee shop.
“I usually wear'em when I’m traveling…or reading.”
"Just when I thought you couldn’t get any sexier, your ass goes and pulls Professor Roman outta the bag.”
“Professor Roman?” he asked, looking over at her incredulously.
“Mmhmm. Cause you still look like Savage Roman from last night but with those glasses, I just wanna ask you what it’ll take for me to get an ‘A’ in your class.”
Joe laughed his ass off at her statement. It always amazed him the way Ivy could go from almost shy to a sultry vixen who tempted him at every turn.
“Gonna add that to my list of fantasies. We can act that one out in the library at my place.”
“You have a library in your house?”
The way she perked up at the mention of books was fucking adorable.
“I do. And I was thinking you should come… meet the family and all before Mania.” He glanced over at her to see her reaction. “We don’t have a pay per view in February. I was thinking that I take a day or two off after Raw on the 20th and we go to Pensacola.”
Ivy nibbled her full bottom lip as she looked over at her boyfriend.
Hello! Can you write about Lumiere throwing Plumette a surprise birthday party for her? Thanks!
it’s been a year since the curse blacked out the sun, and the castle is gloomy. grime catches on the windows.
lumiere clears a spot—it’s hard to wipe the windows down when one doesn’t wear soft silks, anymore, but he tries, and leaves a few scratches where his sleeve drew on the glass. He can just see out. Snow, still. And yet he knows it cannot still be the cold, dead winter.
No. Impossible. Because it’s Plumette’s birthday.
And this is shameful. The palace is silent. On her birthday! When there should be streamers, buckets of orchids, a fine carpet and fine wine to match. On Plumette’s birthday.
He is in the kitchen in seconds. His strides don’t take him far, now, but he has a newfound ability to ricochet around; though where his hands were now feel heavy, covered in wax and fire, at least he has a degree of lightness. He bounces up to Cuisinier.
“What’s cooking, mon ami?”
“Beef stew. With gruel.“
“Not anymore,” says Lumiere. Mysteriously, all the pots on Cuisiner’s surface have tipped onto the floor. “Use your cavernous insides to bake us a cake, Cuisiner! We need frosting—cupcakes—those little delicate macarons, you know the ones.”
The chef wishes he had eyes to roll out of his head. “And why is that, ‘mon ami’? You wish to waste all our sugar and sweets on dishes the prince can’t eat?”
“Non! For shame. For Plumette, of course, you know how she loves sweet pastel candies! Vanilla frosting, I think, with caramelized sugar—”
“Lumiere. Lumiere. She can’t eat any of it.”
“She can’t—what are you—oh.” The flames dim. “Oh.”
“Yes. Now if you don’t mind, I have a beef stew to make for the master.”
Cuisiner deposits Lumiere on the ground, and he wanders off.
What kind of birthday would this be?! No cake. No frosting. No pastel sweets to stuff and stuff. Pity; Lumiere can barely remember what a macaron tastes like, now. His candles light and glow against the shadows of the palace walls.
Fine. No frosting. But a party, at least! A little light for these damp halls. Why, he hasn’t lost it entirely—he can’t have lost it entirely—
That night, the Beast goes to bed in silence. Lumiere wishes him goodnight, as always, and draws the curtains shut. It’s strange; Adam could swear Lumiere seems more in a hurry to leave him than usual. Hmph. His beastly face must be scaring away even his friends, now.
But the beast snores, and Lumiere runs. He told Plumette to meet him in the ballroom; or at least, the north-east corner. The ballroom seemed so huge now, it was safest to pick clear spots for meetings. He runs and bounces down the steps.
Plumette is there. She turns when he comes in. Her eyes wide, her feathers fluffed, still as lovely as ever; more lovely, even, because she still loves him, despite this metal shape and metal clank and his inability to get anybody to make him frosting. He runs to her side.
“Plumette! Plumette—it’s an emergency—extremely urgent, it just happened—”
“Oh no!” Plumette is following him in a moment, flying beside him to the north west corner. “What has happened? Is someone broken?? Lumiere, what—oh.”
He draws aside the curtains. He couldn’t clean the whole ballroom, not from the mighty height of 16 inches; but he could clean this corner, and he had gone beyond cleaning it—he had bedazzled it, covering every surface with frozen ivy leaves, still glittering with ice, and setting candles everywhere. In a space that would have barely held Plumette’s smallest petticoat as a human, the staff rejoice.
“Happy birthday, dear,” says Mrs. Potts. Chip bobs forward, nudging along a small box. “We couldn’t go shopping in Paris, like we had planned, to buy you all your present, but we did manage something. We bought this….we bought this before.”
“Yes, just a little nod of our affection,” ponders Cogsworth, in the corner. He sounds pretentious. He always does that when he’s about to sneeze—he really hates sneezing, now; it makes all his chimes go off.
Cadenza plays a little tune. He barely knows any of the staff, but he takes what joy he can. Chapeau pulls out his fiddle and accompanies it; Cadenza perks up a bit, and lightens the tune.
Plumette is shaking from happiness and surprise, but she opens the box. Lumiere’s face is close to hers.
“Do you like it, mon amour?” he whispers. “Is it all right?”
A bracelet lies in the box, glittering with all the happiness from earlier days. Or it would be a bracelet, if she was still human. It would slide off her wrist, now. If she had wrists. The melancholy draws close around the gathering; the candles almost go out, and the ice shines bright in the dark.
But Plumette beams. “A necklace!” she cries. “And just the right size!”
She slips it around her bird’s neck, and turns this way and that for the company. Mrs. Potts, steaming slightly, chuckles deep. Cogsworth sneezes, but doesn’t frown. Lumiere’s fire has never hit so high a light; why, he’s not even a candelabra anymore—he’s a sparkler, practically, light bouncing off every surface, shots of flame that he’s desperately trying to keep from her feather.
“You are so beautiful,” he says, and his golden face is dear to her. “May I have this dance?”
She’s dainty and perfect; somewhere deep inside her, an ankle she doesn’t have twitches, waltzes. “You may, ma cherie.”
They dance the night away. The ivy melts in the heat, glows green and bright. Mrs. Potts sings old songs. And as the moon shines on the winter palace, for a few hours there is warm, soft joy.