"If I’d known what all this would lead to," he said to himself as he ran through the heavy rain. His heart was beating fast and his breathing was irregular. As he saw some huge building with light in the distance, he started sprinting as fast as he was able, almost tripping over his own feet. "I wish I’d never met her," He said to himself. He finally reached the building and leaned against the walls to give his body some rest. As he breathed, he noticed how drenched he was. His hair was so soaked that drops rolled down his forehead, nose and cheeks. He couldn't decide if all the water in his face was rain or tears."Never...Never again…" He mumbled to himself.
It was a nice and sunny day in Germany. The city was decorated with impressive office buildings and the streets were in a constant hurry. The fresh air made the sky look really clear today while the sun was shining brightly. But even the best weather couldn't stop this man from his work. He was very tall and well-built for a man of his age. He was sitting in a big room which was filled on the right side of the room with bookshelves. He had so many books that he even had to put some on the ground, turning it into many tiny piles of books. Whenever some of the blonde strands fell into his sight he ran with his hands through his hair to slick them back into place. Sometimes he would even put his glasses down on the desk and close his blue eyes for a few seconds to give them a rest. The big windows behind his table gave him so much brightness that he wouldn't need any lights before night fell and the moon rose. On the left side of the room was a tiny table with four chairs. It was usually used to take a break, eat lunch, or just to see anyone who came to visit him. The room was decorated with a few very beautiful expensive-looking pictures. Some had plain landscapes, and most of them were not signed. He hoped to finish his work on time today, and trusted that no one would disturb him.
But as usual, there was that one person who ruined his plans. Suddenly the door opened and a loud cheerful man walked into the room. The German man didn't even have to lift his head to know who it was. He bit his lip out of frustration; he knew he would not be able to finish anymore today.
"Hey Ludwig, I just walked by a nice restaurant and I couldn't resist the smell of the pasta they had there. It made me think of you right away. So I thought maybe we could eat lunch together?” asked the happy man. He was smaller than Ludwig and seemed to always have a smile on his face. His eyes were brown and, although Ludwig didn’t like to think about it, he would say that his eyes were very gentle. His brown hair fell just above his chin and on the left side of his hair he had an unruly curl. Whenever he seemed to feel really strong emotions this curl seemed to change. Once Ludwig had accidentally brushed the curl in such a way that the other man turned completely red. Ludwig still had no idea what the curl was for, but he decided he did not need to figure it out. The man was now leaning over Ludwig’s desk, his hands pressing on the edge as he waited for a response. Ludwig always took his time to give a kind but exact answer in order not to hurt his friend. He took off his glasses and placed them gently on the table and then looked up to the man.
"Listen Feliciano, I'm not sure how many times I have to tell you, but I don't have time to go eat lunch with you every time you decide to drop in. I need to finish these reports."Suddenly the cheerful smile on Feliciano´s lips changed slightly into a sad smile."But you know that I enjoy my pasta most with you. Don't worry I will make it really quick and you will be back to your work in no time," begged Feliciano, who was starting to bend over the table, closer to his German friend.
Ludwig started to feel uncomfortable. Of course he knew Feliciano for a long time and he was his best friend but every time he came nearer to Ludwig, he just felt weird. He tried to scoot back as much as possible into his chair and watched as Feli tilted even farther over the table with his and somehow managed to get closer to Ludwig. He could almost feel Feliciano´s breath on his face as suddenly someone knocked on the door and pulled Ludwig right out of the potentially awkward situation. Impulsively, He stood causing Feliciano to straighten up as well. As they did so, Ludwig noticed a sort of dejected look on his friends face.
"Come in!" said Ludwig. The door opened and a young lady entered the room. She had reddish brown hair that hung in a braided rope over her shoulder. Golden buttons decorated her green military uniform, and the small white lace at her throat made her look a little sophisticated. Her long black boots, which matched her gloves, gave her a little height over Feliciano. In her hands was a big pile of documents. She headed to Ludwig right away without even paying attention to Feliciano.
"Mr. Beilschmidt, I just came back from Mr. Edelstein and he gave me all these papers for you. Also you got a call from Miss Braginskaya saying that she won’t be able to come to the meeting because of some heavy health issues. And I was actually waiting all day for Mr. Williams at my desk to give him the papers like you told me to but I didn't see him all day," the woman said in German. Her voice was pretty soft but really fast at the same time.
She noticed Feliciano trying to listen to the conversation but since Feliciano could barely understand German, he could only guess at what they were discussing. The woman turned to Feliciano and reached her hand out to his. "Oh, I’m sorry. I'm usually not that rude but I’m in a hurry and I’ve had a long day already. My name is Miranda Silverstone. I am Mr. Beilschmidt´s secretary and I'm pretty new here. Pleased to meet you." Feliciano put on his cheerful smile but also looked a little bit confused.
"Miss Silverstone, he is Italian. He doesn’t understand much German. I believe you speak Italian as well?” said Ludwig as he pointed to Feliciano. He had read her files thoroughly before hiring her, and remembered that she spoke English and Italian in addition to his native language.
As Miranda turned back to Feliciano, she smiled slightly and explained everything in Italian. From one to another second his smile grew bigger and bigger. He was obviously happy about the fact that she spoke Italian. As soon as she finished, he began flirting with her.
"You are such a pretty thing, how about you and I go eat somewhere nice after work. I know a really good Italian restaurant here around the corner.”Ludwig was shaking his head. He knew his Italian was not perfect, but he did understand enough to know that Feliciano was shamelessly trying to flirt with his Secretary. "That´s Enough Feliciano! Last time you did this you someone almost called the cops, remember?" said Ludwig with a mainly neutral expression on his face, only interrupted by the small creases forming between his eyebrows. At Ludwig's change of expression, Feliciano panicked a little, but luckily Miranda started talking again.
“I'm really sorry, I don't have much time lately, and I'm also gone next week. So Perhaps maybe some other time? Maybe after I return from Italy?"As Feliciano heard the word “Italy” his eyes widened and he grabbed Miranda´s hands, almost jumping out of happiness and saying, "But that´s perfect! I'm also heading back to Italy next week. We both could take the trip together and I could show you around Italy!"A little confused by his behavior she answered him. “You don't need to do that. I was born in Italy and spent my childhood there, so I don’t think I’ll need a guide. Also I don't want to make you feel like you need to take care of me."
His eyes were sparkling as soon as she said this sentence. She knew by the look on his face that no matter what she would say that she would end up with him anyways on that trip, so she finally agreed.
Before she headed back to work she suddenly turned to Feliciano again. "But how did you come here? Did you drive or did you fly? Because I was planning on taking my car and make a quick stop in Austria to drop off some papers."
He clapped his hands together and then put on his best Smile. "Perfect! This way we have lots of time to talk and we can see all the sights together. Hey Ludwig, don't you want to join us?"
Ludwig's Head shot up like a rocket, his face slightly red out of anger. "Of course not! I need to finish all this work!"
"So I guess it’s just you and me, I’ll pick you up from this building here on Monday, three in the morning. I prefer to travel in the night and watch the sunrise as I drive." Miranda said.
"Anything special you want me to bring?" Feliciano asked.
"Can you make caffè macchiato? I’d really appreciate a good Italian cup of coffee. I'm not really a morning person." She informed him.
"Okay, so then I’ll see you on Monday!" He said as he walked to the door, opened it and looked back. He raised his hand and waved goodbye before giving a last smile and he walking out of the door. The door clicked closed behind him.
Ludwig looked up to Miranda as she sighed. "I hope you understand what you got yourself into there," he asked worried.
"Well it can’t be that bad, as soon as we reach Italy I can still kick him out and feel not guilty because he knows that place so he will be able to find his way home. I just hope he really won’t make me do that," her face suddenly became worried. "He’s not…” she faltered, “He won’t try anything will he? I’ve never had an Italian with me in my car, only a Frenchman and that didn’t end well."
"Don´t worry, he might be sometimes not the smartest and he is a chronic flirt, but he won’t touch you if you don't want him to," he said with a slight smile on his face."I hope you’re right about that. Anyway, I’ll head back to work now." She said and grabbed some of her papers and walked to out of the room.