Chapter 1:

Angelica double checked the address and then shrugged. She rang the doorbell of the massive house.

A woman in a tidy blue suit and her blonde hair in tight perfect bun on her head. She looked like a wedding planner to her.

"Are you Roberta Angelo?" Angelica asked.

"Yes, yes I am. Are you the florist?"

Angelica nodded.

"Great, we've been waiting for you. Did you bring the samples?"

"Well their in the van… I wanted to make sure I had the right place…"

"Okay well I'll have the staff bring them in for us. The Bride and her future brother in law are here to look at them."

Angelica instantly furrowed her brow… Why would the groom's brother be looking at the flowers? She shrugged and followed Roberta into what she assumed as a sitting room.

The Bride was just as fashionable as the wedding planner, which caused Angelica to gag mentally. The Bride was a thin woman and her hair was a dark blonde, even though her strawberry roots were starting to show a little. Everything about her was petite, including her nose, which Angelica assumed was also "bought" like everything else on her body. No woman could look that perfect without work. The Bride, she assumed was in her mid 30's but who could tell with the work she obviously had done.

The brother however was smirking slightly at something the bride had said before they had entered the room. His hair was Dark and had a wave to it. His eyes were also dark and his skin was Olive, indicating a European background.

"This is Angelica Robitaille. She's from the florist." Roberta said. The Bride rose, showing that that the only thing she couldn't have altered was her height, which she tried to enhance with heels.

"Lisa Lamar." She said and extended her hand knuckles down, like was part of the royal family. Angelica shook it and Lisa pulled back her hand a little too quickly, as if shaking hands with the staff were the most revolting thing she'd ever have to do.

"And this is the Best man, Caleb Bianchi; he is also the groom's brother."

He rose and took her hand and kissed the knuckles while looking up with her with intriguing brown eyes. Angelica suddenly felt like he was undressing her with his eyes.

"A pleasure." He spoke and his voice was deep and made the hair on the back of her neck stand up.

"Anyway, we're having the staff bring in the examples you asked for Miss Lamar." Roberta commented, "Once they have brought them all in, Miss Robitaille can explain them." Roberta looked up at her expectantly.

"Yes." Angelica replied.

That staff, or the butlers and assorted gardeners had the boxes of flowers brought in and set them in front of them. Angelica started to pull the arrangements out, showing the flowers that she would put at the church, the reception as well as the bouquets and the boutonnières.

"They all look lovely, don't they Miss Lamar?" Roberta asked.

"I just need a couple changes and then it will be fine." She ripped of a piece of paper from her notepad and handed it to Angelica. The paper was full. She had suggestions even down to how the petals would fall against the greenery.

"I can see what I can do, but we might not be able to get the flowers to all open pointing to the west." She said, trying not to sound like she was making fun of the bride.

"Well see what you can do then." She waved her hand. "I have 7 bridesmaids & groomsman. I also have my father and Leo's father. And the mothers. We have 4 flower girls, who will need fresh rose petals to throw. There are also 4 ring bearers and I would like to have the mixed day lilies in all the bouquets."

Angelica couldn't believe the demand.

"Okay well we'll try and arrange to have this done for you."

"I want to see examples before I order." She said matter of fact.

"Day lilies will run quite expensive… for me to do more samples…"

"You want this job don't you? Then you understand that your competition would be willing to do anything to get this job. My fiancé insisted that we go with you first since it was sentimental to him because he bought the first flowers for me at your shop."

"Certainly. I'll see what I can do."

"Great. Please call Roberta when you have the samples ready."

Roberta stood and called in the staff again to move all her boxes back to her truck. She escorted Angelica to the door.

"Thank you for coming. How long do you think it will take to hear from you?"

"2 weeks." Angelica said.

"Make it 5 days and I'll really push for them to go with you."

"I have to order in day lilies…"

"Well, it's up to you." Roberta waved her hand and then turned and left her standing on the steps of the house. If Angelica didn't need the money so bad then she would just say to forget this whole thing, but her shop was losing money, fast.

She already had 3 weddings thanks to her best friend. Charlie was great. He owned his own company and he referred all his clients to her shop. In fact most of her business was because of Charlie. He always came in, 5 minutes before a date to get some flowers and she would insist that he not pay but he always did and never took the change.

She got into her van and started the engine. She was supposed to meet Charlie for lunch today but she was running late. She rushed out toward the high way, hoping she'd only be a few minutes late.

Charlie's office was right in the middle of down town, leaving her with few options to park. She popped some money in the meter and ran toward the reception desk.

"Hey Angel…" the security card said with a wave.

"Hey Jacob, how's everyone?"

"Derek got first prize in that spelling bee."

"That's great. Sorry I can't talk more, I'm late."

Jacob nodded and she ran for the elevators. She rushed toward Charlie's office when the doors opened and when she got there, his assistant was laughing.

"You just made it." She said.

Angel stopped and straightened her clothes a little. "He wouldn't just leave without me."

"His colleagues were getting impatient."

"How many times do I have to play girlfriend for Charlie?" she asked, more to herself.

"Until you stop pretending you don't love him." Carly, the assistant, got out of her seat and stood in front of Angel. "You have to start saying no Angel."

"I can't."

"I know you love him, but he's so blind he can't see what's right in front of his face."

"I don't think I'll ever stop Carly. He means too much to me and he's done so much…"

"And he uses you like this."

"He doesn't use me…"

"You've done everything short of sleeping with him."

"Carly…" she hissed.

"Ok. Listen, you have to get him alone and tell him that it's getting to be too much to pretend to be his girlfriend so that he looks good to his associates."

"I will."

"No you won't."

"I promise I will… eventually. He needs my help."

Carly shook her head. "I hope for your sake some handsome guy comes and sweeps you off your feet. Maybe then, he'll see what's he's missing."

The double doors opened and 3 men came out, behind them was Charlie and she held her breath.

He was tall, but most people were compared to her 5'4 frame. His hair was cut short and the blond tresses always needed to be controlled with gel or some other styling product. His eyes were the most extraordinary thing about his physical features. His right eye was blue, ordinary but still strikingly bright, but his left eye was a creamy green colour. She always thought it was like his body couldn't make up its mind about what colour eyes it wanted.

He looked up and when he saw her he smiled.

"You gentleman remember my fiancé, Angelica." He offered.

"Of course." One older gentleman replied. "Nice to see you again."

"And you…" she said.

"We'll meet you at the restaurant." Charlie offered.

"Of course." The same man winked and followed his co-workers to the elevator. Charlie took Angel's hand and pulled her into his office.

"You almost missed it."

"I know I'm sorry…"

"How did that meeting go today?" He offered her a chair and he sat behind his desk. She sat down.

"She's a real headache."

"I know, but its really good money. It will help you out a lot."

"She wants this flower that I have to order in and she wants to see more samples before she'll confirm the order."

"Do you need help with that?" he asked.

"You've already done enough Charlie."

He waved at her. "I can write it off as a donation. You know that. You don't have to worry about it. I want to help you."

"The only reason I'm surviving is because of you."

"I wanted to talk to you about that."

Angel raised her eyebrows.

"I've been saying that you and I have been engaged for 3 years now and everyone is wondering when we're actually going to get married. I'm afraid I'm going to have to actually give them a date."

"So then we'll fake a break up. It's not a big deal."

"It is a big deal. The companies that I go into business with favour a family man. Because I've been with you it's helped for them to want to go with me rather than some other company."

"I don't know a solution to that Charlie."

"I do."

"What?" she was amused. Charlie always had weird ideas that always managed to work out in the end.

"We'll just have to get married."



"We can't… I mean…"

He laughed. "You and I could still have boyfriends or girlfriends and of course it would be in name only."

"And what if you meet someone you actually want to marry?"

He rolled his eyes. "I won't."

"How do you know that? What if I find someone…?"

"Then we'll cross that bridge when we get to it."

"This won't end. Once you get married they'll start asking when you're going to have kids…"

"Again, we'll deal with that when the situation arises. What do you say?"

"Charlie, you're my best friend and you know that I would do anything for you…"

"It's not a big deal Angel. Doesn't even have to be a big party. We could get married at a park, invite the people that matter and then run off on some exotic vacation for 2 weeks."

"When did you want to do this?"

"Next week." He said and it caused Angel to start choking. He rose from his desk to rub her back until the coughing subsided.

"Next Week... Charlie are you crazy?"

"I already talked to an officant and the park."

"Before you even asked me?"

He shrugged.

"So you think I'm just this lonely girl that would give into you because you've offered your charity to me for so long?"

"Exactly." He winked.

"Stop teasing me."

"I'll help you get those arrangements done for the Strafford wedding on Saturday, and I'll have those other flowers you need special expedited. I'll come in and help you with those too."

Angel shook her head. She remembered 3 years ago when she had meet with Charlie in the first place.

Angel had enrolled in the flower arrangement course at the local college to augment her completed entrepreneurship courses. It was the last course she needed to open up her own shop. Because of the lack of supplies, they were assigned partners. Her's had been Charlie. She had been amused at the fact that he was the only, straight male to enroll.

"What's so funny?" Charlie asked at her grin.

Angel shook herself from the memory. "Nothing."

"So I'll come and help you with those two orders, that leaves you free for a few weeks."

"Yeah the Berger wedding isn't until July."

He smiled. "Come on Angel. I really need this."

"But there is more to arrange than simply getting married…"

"You can move in with me." He said.


"You should have just taken my offer a year ago when you started to struggle. It would have saved you money in rent."

The truth was, she had said no to the moving in together because she couldn't stand to hear Charlie with other women in a room right next door to hers. She had stayed with him for a week once when her apartment was being fumigated. That week alone he had brought home 4 different women. All the while she had lain awake, envious of the women, even if Charlie would never call them again after.

"I still have to think about it…"

"There isn't anything to think about." He opened a desk drawer and took something out. He came around and knelt in front of her with the open ring box. The diamond, if sold, could have fed a small country.

"Angelica Lee Robitaille, will you be my wife so that I can continue to have good business with family oriented companies?" he had a smirk on his face and Angel couldn't help but laugh at him.

"I'm not changing my name."

He smiled and got up to pull her into a hug.

"You don't know how much this means to me Angel. I couldn't ask for any better woman to be my wife."

Angel frowned. Now she was going to be married to Charlie, but it made her feelings ten times worse.