All Daisy could think about were the two empty chairs on either side of her. She was not emotionally prepared for this movie, let alone for the possibility that one or more of the stars could sit beside her for the premiere. She kept her head down, unable to look up at the gentlemen assembled at the front of the theater. She could hear them speak and the passion they were displaying for the project and the characters. They talked about how the outcome of this film would propel the MCU forward for the next phase of movies. They warned everyone to hold on for one heck of a ride and then the lights began to dim. She knew that meant that they would be taking their seats and sure enough, she felt the seats on either side of her move. Wait? What? One of those seats was supposed to remain empty.
Whoever sat on her left had bumped her arm when he sat down. He reached out to touch her hand and say ‘sorry’ and her heart stopped. The deep, velvet voice was unmistakable. The man sitting beside her was none other than Chris Evans.
She slowly turned to look at him; he was smiling at her. Dear God, he was smiling at her. She tried to smile back but was pretty sure she looked like a fool. She quickly looked away, reasonably confident that her face was turning crimson. She was not sure, but she thought she heard him chuckle when she turned away. Great, he was laughing at her, just what she needed. She turned to look at the other seat that was supposed to be empty. Instead, Sebastian Stan had taken the place. Great, sitting in between Cap and Bucky!
She never had truly taken notice of Sebastian before; she had made comments that he was attractive but it was always Chris Evans that held her attention. But being this close to him, she had to admit that he was a very handsome man. He couldn’t replace Chris in her eyes but she was pretty sure she would enjoy hanging out with him. She hoped he did not catch her staring at him.
She crossed her legs and tried to get comfortable in her seat without utilizing the armrests. She did not want to risk touching either Chris or Sebastian; she was not sure she would be able to handle that emotionally. It was quite difficult to get comfortable when your lady parts are screaming at you and you trying to ignore them while you keep your hands and arms tightly to your body. Damn, she was not going to to survive sitting her and the movie hadn’t even started yet.
Daisy had done reasonably well holding it together; there had been gut-wrenching scenes and she had been able to maintain her composure. But she could tell things were drawing to a close and her emotions were being put through the wringer and was not sure she could take it any longer. She was holding back tears and trying to remain calm but she was evidently not as strong as she thought. She felt a tap on her shoulder and then suddenly a tissue was being held out in front of her. Are you serious? Chris had tissues in his pocket?
Sheepishly, she accepted the tissue and turned to mouth a ‘thank you.’ She was embarrassed and thankful that the theater was dark so he could not see her cheeks flush. When the movie ended, she kept her head down, fearful that her makeup would be smeared and honestly too scared to make eye contact with either man. Unfortunately, they didn’t read her social cues or weren’t really interested in following them.
Sebastian leaned toward her and asked quietly, “So, what did you think?”
Without looking up, she turned her head in his direction and softly responded, “It was incredible, but I think I am going to need a little time to process it thoroughly. Maybe even see it a couple more times.”
“Well, Marvel will be happy to hear that, I am sure,” He laughed and then asked, “Was it enough of an emotional rollercoaster for you?”
“Yeah, you know I feel like I was warned but there was no way to be truly prepared for that. Honestly, I think you all are trying to kill your fans.”
With that, Sebastian let out a hearty laugh. “That wasn’t our intention, I promise. We need all of you around for the next set of movies.”
As he said the words, the ushers arrived to release the VIP section. Daisy didn’t move, she just kept her head down and let everyone else stand and leave. She didn’t want to be in the crowd, she figured once the crowd thinned a little it would be easier to maneuver to the lobby and out to the car. She could tell by the crowd noise that the VIP section was clear and that the general public in attendance was now exiting. She kept her head down, electing to text to her friends and let them know that the movie was over and they would be blown away. She promised no spoilers and she chose to save the detail about who she was seated next to for the time being because she wanted to see the expression on their faces when she delivered that news.
Suddenly, she felt a tap on her shoulder. Her head snapped up, and she slowly started to turn her head when he began to speak, “You do know that the movie is over, right?” His hot breath on her neck was enough to make her skin tingle and turn hot at the same time. “Do you have an aversion to leaving the theater?”
She swallowed hard, trying to take a moment actually to find her voice. “Um, I was just waiting before I left, I just didn’t want to get lost in the mass of humanity in the lobby.”
“Oh, I see. Well, if you needed a chaperone you should have said so. Would you like for me to escort you out to your carriage?” She could hear the smile in his voice.
She took a deep breath and slowly stood from her chair, smoothing her dress as she stood. Being cognizant that his eyes were most likely on her. As she turned around, she realized he was standing up as well from where he had been leaning over the seats. It was her first opportunity to look truly at him.
He was wearing a navy blue suit with a soft white, almost ivory shirt. He was not wearing a tie, and he did not button the top two buttons on the shirt, so his clavicle tattoo was clearly visible if you looked, and, of course, she was looking. His hair was just how she loved it, longer on top with less product in it, and his beard was well trimmed and had flecks of ginger and gray. It was taking everything within in her not collapse, he was even more beautiful in person than he was in the hundreds of pictures of she had stared at online.
It was then that she noticed that the theater still had quite a few people in it. How in the world did he realize she wasn’t in the lobby? He offered his hand to hers and after some hesitation, she took it, and he led her to the aisle and up to the lobby.
Daisy released his hand as they reached the lobby doors; he didn’t seem to notice, or he didn’t appear to care as he made no motion to reclaim her hand. He opened the door and as they walked through she was immediately struck by the sheer number of people as well as the lights and cameras. Every media outlet was covering the premiere and reporters were everywhere. She distanced herself from Chris and eased over to the wall, trying to make herself small, and moved toward the side exit. She scanned the crowd to see where her knight had made off to but could not locate him in the crowd.
She reached the side lobby door and pushed it open, breaking into the chilled night air. The line of limousines was long, and all she could see were the taillights. She had no idea how she was supposed to find George in this mess. She decided just to start walking and figured she would run into him and sure enough, the third car down on the left.
“Ms. Proctor are you ready to head to the reception?” His voice boomed and echoed in the alley. He had walked around the back of the car to greet her and was now standing next to the door that he had deftly opened for her.
She smiled at the gesture, this type of treatment was not something shew as used to, “Thank you, George. You know, I’m not so I want to go to the reception, would it be rude if I just had you take me back to the hotel? I know it is part of my trip but I just don’t do well in crowds; I just don’t want to offend Mr. Feige.”
Before George had a chance to answer she heard footsteps and voices approaching. Then she felt an arm snake around her waist, “Well good evening, George, are you the lucky man who gets to drive for this beautiful young woman tonight?” Daisy was sure she heard a little slur in the at velvet voice, he had probably had a drink or two while he had been in the theater.
“Yes, sir, I certainly am. It is the one time in my life when I can actually say I am driving Miss Daisy,” George let out a belly laugh at his joke.
Of course, it was something she had heard numerous times. You don’t grow up with a name like Daisy and not hear those jokes. That one, in particular, she heard most often, close followed by the questions about whether she had a boyfriend named Donald or if her last name was Duck.
“I didn’t even think of that George; that is downright funny. Make sure she gets to the reception, she has to be formally introduced to everyone, and I think Kevin wants to get a group picture.” His touch was setting her body on fire, five alarm hot, and she was not going to be able to stand it much longer. Just then, as if he knew this, he removed his arm but decided he wanted to up the stakes and send her over the edge. He leaned over and whispered in her ear, “You aren’t going to get away so easy.” His hot breath on her skin was intoxicating and he knew he was playing with her. She was well aware that this was a game of cat and mouse and it was going nowhere. He wanted to have fun and she wanted to run.
George just watched, his eyes were wide. He swallowed hard and finally spoke, “Ms. Proctor, are you still wanting me to take you back to your hotel?”
She didn’t answer. Instead, she watched as Chris Evans turned and walked back to his waiting car. He had an air of confidence when he walked and he knew he could to control her evening. Damn him.
“I guess I am going to the party, George,” she was resigned in her response. As she got in the car, she pulled out a small mirror and tried to check her makeup. She freshened her lipstick and fixed her eyeliner that had smudged ever so slightly when she wiped a few tears during the movie. “George, I realize that it is probably unprofessional for you to answer but can you tell me if I look okay?”
He smiled in the rearview mirror, “Ms. Proctor you are a lovely young woman and do look beautiful. I don’t think you have anything to be nervous about.”
“Thank you, I appreciate that, I just can’t help feeling self-conscience going to a Hollywood party full of beautiful people.”
George laughed at her comment but did not respond. She was not sure she was going to survive this party. The wallflower act worked while in the lobby of the theater and it worked in the movie until Sebastian and Chris sat down. Now she had one of the hottest actors in Hollywood teasing her and she was not sure how to handle it.