You’ve Been Wait­ing for!

OMG, the se­quel to The Devil Wears Prada is out! Here’s a lit­tle Cosmo preview into the lives of Andy and Emily... By Lau­ren Weis­berger

Cosmopolitan (India) - - ONLY IN COSMO -

It was a long, cold win­ter. A long, cold, lonely win­ter. And so Andy did what ev­ery young New Yorker be­fore her had done at some point dur­ing their first decade in the city and signed up for a How to Boil Wa­ter cook­ing class. It would have been a good idea, if New York wasn’t the small­est city in the world at the ex­act times you needed anonymity. Sit­ting across the test kitchen from Andy on her very first day of class, look­ing supremely has­sled and in­tim­i­dat­ing, was none other than Run­way first as­sis­tant ex­traor­di­naire Emily Charlton.

Eight mil­lion peo­ple in New York City and Andy couldn’t avoid her only known en­emy? She des­per­ately wished for a base­ball cap, over­size sun­glasses, any­thing at all that could shield her from the im­mi­nent blaze-eyed glare that still haunted Andy’s night­mares. Should she leave? With­draw? See about at­tend­ing an­other night? As she de­bated her op­tions, the in­struc­tor read the class ros­ter. At the sound of Andy’s name, Emily jolted a bit but re­cov­ered well. They man­aged to avoid eye con­tact and came to an un­spo­ken agree­ment to pre­tend they didn’t rec­og­nize each other. Emily was ab­sent the sec­ond class, and Andy was hope­ful she had bailed on the course al­to­gether. Andy missed the third one be­cause of work. Each was dis­pleased to see the other at the fourth class, but there was some sub­tle shift mak­ing it too dif­fi­cult for them to ig­nore each other en­tirely, and the girls nod­ded an icy ac­knowl­edg­ment. By the end of the fifth class, Andy grunted a barely dis­cernible “Hey” in Emily’s gen­eral di­rec­tion, and Emily grunted back. Only one more ses­sion to go! It was con­ceiv­able, even likely, that they could each fin­ish out the course with noth­ing more than gut­tural sounds ex­changed, and Andy was re­lieved.

But then the un­think­able hap­pened. One minute the in­struc­tor was read­ing the in­gre­di­ent list for that night’s meal, and the next he was pair­ing the two sworn en­e­mies to­gether as “kitchen part­ners,” putting Emily in charge of prep work and in­struct­ing Andy to over­see the sautéing. Their eyes met for the first time, but each looked quickly away. One glance and Andy could tell: Emily was dread­ing this as much as she was.

They moved word­lessly into po­si­tion side by side, and when Emily set­tled into a rhythm of slic­ing zuc­chini into match­sticks, Andy forced her­self to say, “So, how is ev­ery­thing?”

“Ev­ery­thing? It’s fine.” Emily still ex­celled at con­vey­ing that she found ev­ery word Andy ut­tered ex­tremely dis­taste­ful. It was al­most com­fort­ing to see noth­ing had changed. Al­though Andy could tell Emily didn’t want to ask and couldn’t have cared less about the an­swer, Emily man­aged to ask, “How about you?”

“Oh, me? Fine, ev­ery­thing’s fine. I can’t be­lieve it’s al­ready been a year, can you?” Si­lence. “I’m ac­tu­ally writ­ing now for a wed­ding blog, Happily Ever Af­ter. Have you heard of it?” said Andy.

Emily smiled, not meanly but not nicely ei­ther. “Is Happily Ever Af­ter af­fil­i­ated with The New Yorker? Be­cause I re­mem­ber there was a lot of talk about writ­ing for them...”

Andy felt her face grow hot. “Yeah, that was pretty stupid of me,” Andy said qui­etly. She stole a quick glance at Emily’s thigh-high boots and but­tery leather mo­tor­cy­cle jacket and asked, “What about you? Are you still at Run­way?”

She’d in­quired to be po­lite since there was no doubt Emily had been pro­moted to some­thing glamorous, where she would happily re­main un­til she mar­ried a bil­lion­aire or died, which­ever came first.

Emily dou­bled down on her zuc­chini slic­ing, and Andy silently prayed she wouldn’t nick off a fin­ger­tip. “No.”

EIGHT MIL­LION

PEO­PLE IN NEW YORK CITY AND ANDY COULDN’T AVOID HER ONLY KNOWN

EN­EMY?”

The ten­sion was pal­pa­ble as Andy ac­cepted Emily’s match-sticks and sprin­kled them with chopped gar­lic, salt, and pep­per be­fore adding them to the siz­zling pan. Im­me­di­ately, it be­gan spit­ting olive oil.

“Turn down that heat!” the in­struc­tor called from his perch at the front of the kitchen. “We’re brown­ing zuc­chini here, not hav­ing a bon­fire.”

“Em, look, I—” She stopped short when Emily’s head whipped around to stare at her. “It’s Emily,” she said tightly. “Emily, sorry. How could I for­get? Mi­randa called me that for a year of my life.”

Sur­pris­ingly, this made Emily snort, and Andy thought she might have even de­tected a small smile. “Yeah, she did, didn’t she?”

“Emily, I...” Andy, un­sure how to pro­ceed, stirred the zuc­chini de­spite the in­struc­tor’s com­mand to “let them stand and brown with­out both­er­ing them too of­ten.”

“I know it’s been a re­ally long time since that, uh, that year, but I feel badly about how we left things.”

“What, you mean how you weaseled your way onto the Paris trip de­spite it be­ing my life­long dream—and de­spite my work­ing way longer and harder than you ever did—and then you hav­ing the nerve to up and quit in the mid­dle of it? Never tak­ing a sec­ond to con­sider what a very bad mood that might put Mi­randa in or how long it would take for me to hire and train some­one new—nearly three weeks, by the way, which meant I was at her beck and call 24/7, to­tally solo?” Emily stared down at her zuc­chini. “You never so much as e-mailed to say good­bye or thanks for the help or go to hell or any­thing. So that’s how we left it.”

Andy peered at her cook­ing part­ner. Was Emily ac­tu­ally hurt? Andy wouldn’t have be­lieved it if she didn’t see it her­self, but it seemed like Emily was ac­tu­ally up­set Andy hadn’t got­ten in touch.

“I’m sorry, Emily. I fig­ured I was the last per­son you’d want to hear from. It’s no se­cret I didn’t love work­ing for Mi­randa. But I rec­og­nize now that it wasn’t so easy for you ei­ther, and I prob­a­bly could’ve been a lit­tle less dif­fi­cult.”

Emily snorted again. “Dif­fi­cult? You were a first-class bitch.”

Emily dropped two hand­fuls of halved brus­sels sprouts into the pan and then poured a Di­jon, wine, and vine­gar mix over it. “She fired me, you know.”

Andy’s wooden spoon clat­tered to the floor. “She what?”

“Fired me. About four months af­ter you quit. I’d just fin­ished train­ing the fourth new girl; it was prob­a­bly 8 in the morn­ing on a to­tally aver­age day, and she waltzed in, barely glanced at me, and told me she didn’t need me to come back the next day—or ever.”

Andy couldn’t keep her mouth from drop­ping open. “Are you se­ri­ous? And you have no idea why?”

Emily’s hand was shak­ing slightly as she stirred the sprouts. “None. I worked for her for al­most three years—I fuck­ing learned French so I could tu­tor Caro­line and Cassidy in all my free time—and she threw me out like garbage. I was weeks away from a promised pro­mo­tion to as­so­ciate fash­ion edi­tor and bam! Good-bye. No ex­pla­na­tion, no apol­ogy, no thank you, noth­ing.” “I’m so sorry, that’s hor­ri­ble—” Emily held up her left hand. “That was last year. I’m over it. Well, maybe

not over it ex­actly—I still wake up ev­ery morn­ing and pray she gets run over by a bus—but af­ter that I can get on with my day.”

Emily put down her tongs. “I Googled you for a while af­ter you left, but I never found much.”

“Yeah, that’s prob­a­bly be­cause there wasn’t much to find. I sent my ré­sumé to pretty much ev­ery list­ing on Me­di­a­bistro and ended up with Happily Ever Af­ter. So far, it’s been pretty okay. I get to write a lot.”

“It’s a wed­ding web­site, right? I’ve read their part­ner site, the one about home de­sign. It’s not bad.”

“Ladies in the cor­ner!” the in­struc­tor bel­lowed, point­ing a sil­i­cone scraper in their di­rec­tion. “Less talk­ing, more cook­ing. De­spite the name, you ac­tu­ally should learn how to do more than boil wa­ter.”

Emily nod­ded. “I re­mem­ber now. You just in­ter­viewed Vic­to­ria Beck­ham on what her fa­vorite mem­o­ries were of her wed­ding and if she could ad­vise a bride to­day to splurge on a sin­gle thing, what would it be? And she said the booze, be­cause that’s what guar­an­tees peo­ple have fun? Was that you?”

Andy couldn’t help but smile; it was still such a nov­elty real­iz­ing that peo­ple ac­tu­ally read things she wrote. “Yeah, that was my piece.”

“No of­fense, but how’d you get her to agree to give an in­ter­view to a wed­ding blog?”

Andy thought for a mo­ment,

“SHE FIRED ME, YOU KNOW. ABOUT FOUR MONTHS AF­TER YOU QUIT.’”

con­sid­ered how hon­est to be with Emily, be­fore say­ing, “I called her PR woman, said I most re­cently worked at Run­way di­rectly for Mi­randa Priestly, and since Mi­randa is such a huge fan of Vic­to­ria Beck­ham, I was hop­ing she would grant me a quick in­ter­view about her wed­ding.” “And she did, just based on that?” “Yep.” “But Mi­randa doesn’t even like Vic­to­ria Beck­ham.”

“Ir­rel­e­vant. It works as long as Vic­to­ria—or at least her PR per­son— likes Mi­randa, which they al­ways do. So far I have a hun­dred per­cent suc­cess rate.”

“What? You’ve done it be­fore? Given the im­pres­sion that you used to write for Run­way?”

“I don’t lie,” Andy said, pop­ping a ched­dar cube in her mouth. “How­ever they choose to in­ter­pret it is up to them.”

“It’s bril­liant. Just bril­liant. Why the hell not? It’s not like slav­ing for her is go­ing to get you any­where else.”

Emily reached over and cre­ated a lit­tle sand­wich with two cheese cubes and two crack­ers, and Andy tried to keep her mouth from hit­ting the floor. Emily Charlton ate? “It sounds great, Andy,” she said through a crunch.

Andy must have been star­ing at her be­cause she half-smiled and said, “Oh yeah, I eat now. It was the first thing that came back af­ter she fired me. My ap­petite.”

“Well, you sure don’t look it,” Andy said truth­fully, and Emily half­s­miled again.

The in­struc­tor ma­te­ri­al­ized out of nowhere. “Ladies? What’s go­ing on here? Be­cause I’m pretty sure ‘Sit around and snack’ isn’t in the class de­scrip­tion.” He clapped his hands to­gether and raised his eye­brows.

“And I’m pretty sure ‘Be a com­plete jack­ass’ isn’t in the teacher de­scrip­tion. We were ac­tu­ally just leav­ing,” Emily said, look­ing at Andy.

“Yes, we were. Thanks for a ter­rific class.” The cheer in Andy’s voice made Emily shriek with glee, and the rest of the class turned around to watch. The girls gath­ered their things and stum­bled into the hall­way be­fore dis­solv­ing into laugh­ter.

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