II. The Wedding, Part One

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The sweltering heat of the summer evening hit Franki the second she stepped out of her car

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The sweltering heat of the summer evening hit Franki the second she stepped out of her car. Sweat was already beading across her forehead as she pulled one bag after another full of clothing samples and piles of paperwork from the backseat and tossed them over her shoulder.

A relentless heat wave had plagued London for the past week, making the days unbearably long and exhausting. Luckily for Franki, she used it to her advantage and squeezed every bit of time out of each minute. With her company opening a number of boutiques in Australia and her brother's wedding (in which she was dressing the entire bridal party) all quickly approaching, she went to work first thing in the morning and didn't return home until late at night.

Her feet felt as heavy as cinder blocks as she lugged herself from her car to the entryway of her apartment building, a stunning four story complex in Camden. She felt fortunate to share one of the penthouses with her sister Emilia, their very first investment from the early success of their fashion line.

After a wave to the elderly gentleman standing behind the concierge desk inside, the entrance clicked and unlocked.

"Evening Ms. Leto," he greeted her as the doors automatically opened.

"Hi George, quiet night?" She muttered through a half yawn, glancing at the clock behind him that read a quarter past 11.

"It is," he smiled warmly. "And you've been working far too much this week, Franki."

She acknowledged his sentiment with a grin as her sandals echoed against the tile floor leading toward the lift.

"You're too good to us, George," she sighed, knowing very well that he was probably right. "Have a nice night."

Once inside the lift, Franki shuffled the bags in her hands as the doors closed and she started moving up to the fourth floor. After exhaling a heavy sigh, she stared blankly at her reflection in the metal doors as each floor passed by.

Is it possible to fall asleep standing up? She wondered, unsure whether or not she had already dozed off.

A sharp ding and the lift's jolting stop snapped her out of her daze as the doors slowly opened to reveal a hallway that ended at her front door.

After a few steps, she pushed open the door, immediately hearing the noise of the television coming from the room on the other side of the entryway.

"Honey! I'm home!" She sang as she dropped her bags, pulled her sandals off and hung her keys on the hook one after the other.

"Franki! Your airplane boy is on Fallon!" Her sister shouted over the faint sounds of an audience's applause filtering in from the living room.

Jimmy: Sign of the Times is just so good!
Harry: Thank you so much. Thanks.

Against her will, Franki's heart dropped to her toes when she heard the deep timbre of his voice. Without giving as much as a glance toward her sister or the tv, she continued straight into the kitchen.

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