Her cell phone going off distracted the red-head from the paperwork in front of her. Curious as to who would call her on her cell phone in the middle of a Tuesday afternoon, she glanced at the name of the caller before deciding to answer.
It's him! She thought happily. I thought he forgot about me, or that he thought our date really went badly.
At the other end of the line, a still nervous, but more in control Rufus Shinra waited for her to answer her phone. Maybe she's just not there right now, he assured himself, taking time to answer doesn't mean that she knows it's you and she's ignoring you. Maybe she thinks the date went badly...
'Hello?' Rufus breathed a sigh of relief upon hearing her voice.
'Hi, I hope I'm not disturbing you.'
'Not at all,' she chuckled, 'I was going over the quaterly report and was close to ripping my eyes out so I should thank you for calling me when you did.'
Rufus couldn't help but groan. 'I should be getting one of those soon too. I know what you mean; after reading them for so long at a time, you think that watching paint dry is more entertaining then reading those reports; no matter how important they are.'
'You're probably right. Watching grass grow would be better too.' She added, smiling. The guy just talked to you for 2 minutes and you're already in a happy mood? Face it girl, you've got it bad for him... 'So, to what do I owe the honor of this call? Hopefully it wasn't just to ask me if you were disturbing me.'
'Ah, no, of course not. I was wondering what you were doing this Saturday.' Please say nothing...
'I don't think I'm doing anything...' she replied, 'although there is that charity ball that I have to go to that night.' You idiot! she yelled to herself, he called to ask you to that ball! You can be really dense sometimes...
'It's funny that you mentioned the ball since I will be attending it as well.' Rufus took a breath before trying his luck for the second time. 'Would you like to accompany me to the ball?'
'I'd like that.' She managed to reply, showing no signs of overzealousness in her voice. He didn't forget about me and he wants another date!! Looks like my luck is finally changing... 'How did you want to do this? Did you want to meet up at the ball or would you like to meet up before and go together?'
Rufus thought it over for a minute. 'It's up to you; either way is fine. I know your father will also be in attendance so I'm sure that if something happens and you have to leave before or after me that you will be able to leave with him.' Please tell me you caught that hint and you tell me you want me to pick you up.
'Alright then, how about you come around to pick me up? Same time as last time? We'll get to the ball on time if we do that.'
'That sounds like a good idea. I'll be seeing you at 6pm on Saturday. In the meantime, try not to have too much fun with the reports.'
'I'll try my best not to, but there's no guarantees. Goodbye Rufus.'
Rufus hung up the phone, relieved that it went well. He was about to return to his paperwork when someone knocked on his door.
Tseng entered, looking as pristine as always and smiled knowingly at the President. 'Will we be having someone else joining us in the limo Saturday evening, sir?'
'Yes we will.' Rufus smiled. 'Be sure to tell Elena to not giggle all night. If I have to hear her giggle one more time about me seeing someone, she may no longer be employed.'
'I'll be sure to notify her.' Tseng bowed slightly, then left the room.
Once Saturday evening came around, Rufus found himself in front of the mirror again, looking at his hair for the umpteenth time. You've been with her before and everything went perfectly, stop worrying about it. You know she likes you or else she wouldn't have said yes.
Sighing, he exited his apartment, Tseng riht behind him and headed towards the exit and the awaiting limo. Once inside, he took a few deep breaths, trying to relax his nerves.
Picking her up was uneventful. Like the last time, they both stared at each other for several minutes before telling each other that they looked very good. Arriving at the ball, both of them felt knots in their stomach as the photographers came into view.
'I forgot that they'd be here tonight.' Amber sighed. 'Although I shouldn't be surprised. This is a big event after and they wouldn't miss an opportunity to photograph this for the world.'
'Just relax,' Rufus said confidently, 'just think of them as doing their job and you can ignore them pretty easily. Besides, if one of them tries to get in our way, Tseng or Elena will get rid of them for us.'
Amber shot a thankful smile to the two Turks in the front seat then waited for one of them to open the limousine door. Once it was open, she was blinded by the flashes that bombarded them.
'How much do you want to bet that we'll be in the gossip colums tomorrow morning?' Rufus smirked.
'No need to bet that since I'm sure it will happen. The simple fact that Edge's most eligible bachelor is attending a public function with a girl is huge gossip.'
Following closely behind Tseng and Elena, Amber and Rufus made it into the ball with little trouble.
'I have people that I have to say hello to.' Rufus stated. 'It would be a huge insult and they'd take offense if the President didn't say hello to them.'
Amber nodded her head. 'I know what you mean. I have to say hello to someo of them too. Want some company? Most of the ones you have to talk to are the ones that I have to talk to as well.'
'Very well,' Rufus said extending an arm out towards the ball room and putting his other arm down on the small of her back. 'shall we?'
The red-head couldn't help but blush slightly. 'We shall.' She took his arm and followed him into the ballrom. Lowering her head to his shoulder, she sighed. 'Well, let's get this over with. We can start from the left and work our way around the room.'
Rufus nodded and they began greeting the various dignitaries and business associates that had gathered for the event. Looking on from the side, Elena couldn't help but giggle.
'This is so sweet!' She gushed. 'They look like they were made for each other! And did you see Tseng!? He put his arm around her! He never touches people unless he really likes them. And she took his arm and leaned on him and he didn't look like he wanted to kill her! I can't believe I'm saying this, but I agree with Reno; this really does seem like the girl for him.'
Tseng nodded in agreement. 'It would appear that the President holds her in high regard. If something other then companionship comes from this relation, then I will be most happy for him.'
'Oh Tseng,' Elena sighed, 'can't you act happy just once? Please? For me?'
'Fine,' Tseng sighed, smiling at Elena, 'I'm happy that she's making him happy but if she does anything to him and hurt his feelings then she will regret it.
'Fair enough. I don't think she would though, she looks too nice to do something like that.'
'Perhaps you're right, Elena.' Tseng conceded. 'We'll just have to wait and see.' He glanced back at the couple who were now speaking with Reeve, or rather Rufus was speaking with Reeve while Amber payed only half attention. He then noticed her putting her hand back on his arm, then moving towards the punch bowl.
'Elena would you like something to drink?'
'Sure.' She smiled. 'I was looking around eevrything around here so much that it slipped my mind.'
'I'll go get us a drink then, one one condition.'
'That I get a dance with you at some point in the evening.'
Elena blushed. 'I'd love to, Tseng.'
She watched Tseng go for the punch then turned her attention back to Rufus. This is a good change. She mused. He's usually working so much that he never unwinds. I have to hand it to this girl; she's relaxed him so much and overall just made him happy again.
Amber returned to where she last saw Rufus and noticed that it was only Reeve, with no Rufus in sight.
'Excuse me, Mr. Tuesti?' she began, 'Where is Rufus?'
Reeve smiled at the young lady. 'Ah yes, he asked me to tell you that he went to the buffet table to get the two of you something to eat. He asked me to inform you to pick a seat and that he'd find you.'
'Alright, thank you.' She scanned the buffet table and found the blond towards the end of it, two plates full of various foods. Smiling, she found a table near him and set the drinks down.
'I didn't know exactly what you liked out of the food here so I took a bit of everything.' He said sheepishly. 'I hope there's something here that you like.'
'All of it looks really good. Thank you for thinking of the food.' They sat at the table for a few moments, eating and conversing. Occasionally, one of them would look up and see one of the Turks, or Reeve himself smiling in their direction before they would look away blushing.
The rest of the evening went by relatively quickly. When they didn't have to speak to any dignitaries, they were at a table, talking over a drink or finger food. By the end of the night, Amber had memorized Rufus' favorite drinks and foods, and Rufus could say he knew the same about Amber.
Dropping her off at her apartment, he couldn't help but laugh to himself when he got back in the limousine. 'I can't wait to read the papers in the morning.' He said aloud. Elena and Tseng both laughed and were both equally curious.
'Hey boss!' Reno shouted, entering the blond's office. 'Apparently your love life is more important then the ball itself. Most of the article is about you and Amber.'
'I expected as much.' Rufus shrugged. 'The media never can differenciate between important news and idle gossip.'
'But the picture here is worth a thousand words though. I never thought I get to see a picture with you having your arm around a girl's waist in public.'
'I what?' Rufus took the paper from the Turk. 'What is it with these people?'
'What? You didn't think they'd take that shot? It's priceless. The cold-hearted Rufus Shinra being melted down by a girl. A red-head no less too. It is a nice shot though; at least it doesn't look like you're reaching for her ass or anything. Plus she's even touching you and you don't seem to mind at all.' Reno smirked. 'Guess this means you really like her.'
Rufus read the article and stared at the picture. It was taken when they first arrived when Rufus was leading Amber into the main room and Amber put her arm around Rufus'.
He shook his head sighed. 'I like her company, Reno. Is that a problem?'
'Of course not, boss. But not being able to admit to a friend that you like a girl is a little sad. What? You don't want to admit it to yourself or something?'
'That's not it.' Yes it is, you're worried she'll get to know you and realize what a jerk you are so you don't want to admit you like her. Just admit it; then maybe you'll be able to quit squirming everytime someone mentions her. 'Alright, fine.' Rufus shrugged and stood up from his chair. 'You really want to know, I'll tell you. Yes, I like her, alright? A lot. Happy now?'
Reno grinned at the blond and gave him a thumbs up. 'Yup, I'm happy now, boss. It was obvious from the start anyway, but it's just nice to hear you say it.' He waved the newspaper in front of Rufus' face before turning to leave.
'I'd get used to the tabloids if I were you.' Reno teased. 'They love dishing stuff out about personal lives, and to them, yours is the most interesting right now.'
Reno shut the door behind him, as Rufus let his head fall heavily onto his desk as he let out a deep sigh. 'It was bound to happen I guess. So much for having a private life.'