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Nobility (1/3)

Title: Nobility
Author: royal_chandler
Rating: PG-13
Summary: Peter Cortlandt returns to Pine Valley with expectations and finds Corrina
Disclaimer:  I don’t own All My Children or its characters, ABC does. I also don’t own Clark Kent, Lois Lane or Lana Lang—they belong to DC Comics. Neither do I own Abercrombie and Fitch. They're just commercial things that I love so much…I had to mention them.


 

Nobility (1/3)

Corrina Gomez stared at her boyfriend in disbelief, shaking her head, disappointment transparent on her face, “How can you not understand that I’m upset?”

Ren, her oblivious boyfriend, brushed past her into his vacant house. He dropped his car keys onto the coffee table in his living room before acknowledging his girlfriend. He called out to her, “Are you coming in or not?”

Corinna sighed, unsure of what to do. She hadn’t wanted to come to Ren’s house; she had wanted to go home. Forget about Colby Chandler’s stupid birthday party, forget about the games and beer and then erase that kiss from her mind. She was aware that Colby had been beyond drunk but that hadn’t stopped Ren from kissing her back. Why didn’t he ever consider how she felt? Corrina felt another part of her give way as she crossed the threshold, gently closing the door behind her.

“Come here,” Ren beckoned, his gaze taking her in greedily.

Corrina gingerly walked over to him, wrapping her arms around his waist as he did the same to her. She closed her eyes and rested her head on his chest.

Ren ran his hand up and down her back. “I shouldn’t have let Colby kiss me.”

Corrina didn’t respond, she was tired of reminding him, both of them actually, that he had kissed the birthday girl back. She pulled back and looked into Ren’s pale green eyes. “I just felt unwanted.”

The hand he had been rubbing her back with found its way under her shirt. “You’re definitely not unwanted.” He lightly pinched the skin he found there.

Corrina jumped back as if he had burned her. “Ren, stop.”

He tightened his grip on her, “You never let me touch you, Corrina.”

She looked at him with a serious expression, “I’m not ready.”

Ren let her go with a frustrated breath. “You’re never ready. You know if it was any other girl…” He trailed off.

Corrina watched him expectantly, “What? It’d be easier to score?” She paused, crossing her arms in front of her before continuing, “I just wanna go home.”

“We just got here, Corrina.” Ren said with a whiny tone. “I promise not to try anything.”

Corrina rolled her eyes; she had stopped believing him about the fifth time he had swore that. “I have work tomorrow.”

Ren nodded. Corrina suspected that he had remembered her telling him that before. She hadn’t expected Colby’s girls’ night out to last so long. She’d be lucky to get five hours of sleep tonight. “Do you need a ride to work tomorrow?”

Carmen quickly shook her head, “I’m taking the bus but thanks anyway.”

He gave her a smirk that one would find on a plastic clown. “Let’s get you home.”

Corrina rushed into the lobby of Cortlandt Electronics, almost slipping when her high heel left the logo mat on the floor. She spotted an elevator beginning to close but it definitely had enough room for her to get through. She quickly darted towards the lift, grateful when an older woman held it open for her. “Thanks,” Corrina said nearly out of breath.

“Think nothing of it, darling.” The woman replied with a genuine smile. “You sure are in a hurry.”

Once she caught her a hold of herself, Corrina admitted, “It’s my first day and I’m late.”


“Her first day and she’s almost forty-five minutes late. Kids these days are just juveniles.” Palmer Cortlandt complained to his youngest son, who happened to be one of these ‘juveniles’. “I’m firing her as soon as she walks through this door!”

“Dad, don’t you think you’re overreacting?”

“Petey—”

“Pete.”

“Pete, this young girl is supposedly coming in with high credentials and strong reccomendations—top of her class. For her to be this lat is hardly professional.”

Pete smiled, he had missed being around his family, especially his father. “She’s your new assistant, you can’t fire her. You have no reason to. The company won’t collapse because she’s a little late. Give her the benefit of the doubt. Maybe her car broke down?” Peter offered.

“Petey!”

“Mom!” Pete rose from the chair across from his father. He turned to find his mother at the door with a girl he had never seen before. He didn’t have time to acknowledge the girl before he was enveloped in his mother’s arms.

Opal Cortlandt pulled back and took a good look at her teenaged son. He was a replica of those male models from the magazines all of her younger female clients were always drooling over. “Petey, you look positively handsome, baby!”

“It’s Pete now, mom.” Pete informed her, his face a little crimson.

“Sorry, I forgot.” Opal told him. “I’ve missed you so much. How was your flight?” Opal asked with enthusiasm.

“Boring.” Pete revealed. He gestured to his father with a nod of his head. “But that’s what happens when you fly alone.”

“Cortlandts do not do commercial. You should be grateful to have a personal jet to fly in.” Palmer chastised. “Who is this?” He referred to the dark haired girl who had entered his office with his ex-wife.

Opal grinned and pulled Corrina alongside her, “This is my new friend, Corrina.”

“Corrina Gomez?” Palmer wondered aloud.

Corrina nodded timidly, getting ready for an earful.

However, Pete didn’t give his father the chance. He cleared his throat, and then gave Corrina a warm smile. “We’ve been waiting for you. My dad wanted me to give you a tour of the company; he’s so excited to have you here.”

“Oh,” Corrina responded mutely, grateful that she wasn’t in trouble with the CEO.

“Come on.” Pete took her hand and then gazed at her weirdly, wondering if she had just been shuffling her feet on the carpet. Electricity igniting their hands. “Don’t want to delay any longer.” He turned to his parents. “Mom and dad, I will see you guys later.” He said before leaving the room with Corrina.

When they were out in the hallway, a good number of minutes into the tour, Corrina thanked Pete for the coffee he had gotten her from the vending machine and for saving her earlier.

“Think nothing of it. I know how my dad can be.” Pete told her, leading her into the conference room. “What happened? If you don’t mind me asking.”

Corrina watched as Pete sat on the conference table nonchalantly. He was attractive but she was more taken with what seemed to be his caring nature. It had been a while since a guy had actually cared enough to ask questions. Pete looked at her strangely, still waiting for her response.

Corrina blushed and ducked her head, “I—I went to this party last night and didn’t get home until late. I missed my alarm this morning, got into an argument with my dad about going out into the business world and then the bus I took here broke down midway.” Corrina explained rather quickly. She plopped herself into a leather seat situated at the long table, staying in close proximity of Pete.

Pete chuckled lightly, honestly feeling for the girl. “That sucks and all of it happened before you could get a decent dose of caffeine.”

“Yeah.” Corrina worried her bottom lip in thought, “Your dad won’t be too mad, will he?”

“No, I’m pretty sure he’s over it. However, if he gives you any trouble let me know.” Pete told her.

Corrina looked at him with question in her eyes, “You don’t even know me.”

Pete took a sip of his own coffee, shrugging. “I know my father and how he can be. He won’t be mad but he could get to be overbearing.” Pete confessed, “I’m glad you’re here for him.”

That line caught Corrina off guard. “What do you mean?”

Pete jumped off of the table, taking a seat next to Corrina. He looked into her deep brown eyes, his unwavering. “My dad won’t ever admit this but he’s getting up there, you know. He usually works from home but he still needs the help. Don’t take this the wrong way but you’ll take a lot of weight off of his shoulders and I'm happy about that.”

Corrina was amazed by how much the young heir was admitting to her. Her father had always told her stories of the rich but this guy was the anti-thesis to them all. “I can’t imagine how that must be.”

“It’s not easy,” Pete told her. “So…you want to continue this tour?”

Corrina was surprised by the sudden change in conversation but didn’t question it. “Oh yeah, sure.” Corrina quickly became erect. She moved to follow behind him but stopped.

Pete wheeled his head to look back at her, “Corrina? You okay?”

Corrina grinned at him, “Just taking things in.”


Outside of the Chandler mansion, Pete let out a breath and ran his hand through his thick hair. Colby and her friends hadn’t invited him to come along in their plans. He hadn’t expected her to be with anyone but wasn’t surprised to find her with friends. How was she still able to get to him? He took another look at the door before walking down the pathway stretched in front of the estate. Pete stopped short of the driveway, staring at Colby’s vehicle suspiciously.

“What are you guys hiding?”

He slowly walked by the car, never taking his eyes off of it. Pulling his car remote from one of his pockets, he unlocked his vehicle’s doors. He let go of the mystery, reluctantly leaving the estate.

A few hours later, Pete sat in thought on a bench in the park. He had gotten something to eat when he’d first left Colby’s and then he had ended up in the park. He had loved coming there as a kid and its magic still worked. He didn’t want to head home quite yet, calmed by the sounds and sights of the park. He heard footsteps on the grass near him, “Pete?”

Pete gazed up to find Corrina looking at him strangely. “Hey, Corrina,” he greeted her sheepishly.

Corrina was taken aback by his get up. She used her hand to gesture the empty seat next to him, “Mind if I sit? My feet are killing me.”

Pete nodded with a smile, “No, sit. You walked here?” He asked incredulously. This girl was really something else.

Corrina laughed, sitting next to him. “It seemed like an okay idea at the time.” She hesitated before continuing. “Um…what’s with the glasses and the pocket protector? Earlier you looked like a model for Abercrombie and Fitch.”

Pete looked down at his lap, “Tried to impress this girl.”

Corrina’s heart became warm, although she didn’t know why. She didn’t really know Pete Cortlandt at all. What she knew is that she wasn’t the most popular girl and didn’t have many friends, even fewer guy friends. Corrina was flattered that Pete felt he could confide in her. “How’d it go?” she inquired.

Pete took off the fake eyeglasses and put them into the pocket of his plaid shirt. “It didn’t. She couldn’t have shoved me out of her house any faster than she did. She even called me a tool.”

“Ouch,” Corrina commented, visibly wincing. “I’m sorry.”

“Thanks. I was trying to bring back some childhood memories but it just didn’t go the way I planned. I tried to be too nerdy then too cool—God, it was a disaster.” Pete said, thinking back on it. "It was actually pretty pathetic."

“You really like this girl.” Corrina decided.

Peter didn’t know what he felt for Colby, knowing everything he wanted to happen was just wishful thinking. “I don’t know. But enough talk about me, how was your first day?”

“Pretty seamless.” Corrina said in a light tone, happy spirited. “Your dad had me file and organize what had to be 200 folders, then we planned meetings for next week. He told me that he’ll be working from home tomorrow so I’ll be at your house it seems like.”

Pete noticed her shining brown orbs and took in her joy. “You like working behind a desk?”

Corrina beamed at him, “Pete, its great! I mean I really feel like I’m learning a lot. I don't want to work in an office later in life and I won't but it's fun and it's order and it's money.”

“Well I'm glad you like it. As long as he wasn’t hackling you.”

“Not at all. He’s actually charming.”

Pete furrowed his brows together, “We are talking about Palmer Cortlandt, right?”

“Absolutely.” Corrina affirmed with an even bigger grin. She regarded him with a friendly smile a few moments later. “You seemed to be contemplating a lot when I got here. I was going to offer you a penny but I wasn’t sure if you were Clark Kent or not.”

“Clark Kent was just dreaming about his Lois Lane.”

“Or maybe his Lana Lang.” Corrina provided.

Pete’s eyes were wide, “You read comics?”

Corrina threw her hair over her shoulder dramatically. “Only Pre-Crisis, anything else is totally fanon.” She broke out laughing at her antics and faux accent.

Pete joined in with her, “That’s cool…that you know that.”

Corrina shrugged, “I could say the same for you. Maybe the geek wear isn’t so much of a façade?”

“Maybe.” Pete replied. Shadows casted around them as the day began to grow dark and cool. Pete was a little disappointed by the change in the atmosphere, enjoying Corrina’s company. He checked the time on his cell and found that it was actually time to head back home. “I promised my mom I’d be back in time for dinner; it’s kind of a welcome back bash. Do you need a ride home? Or—or maybe you could come to my house? Get another tour?”

“That sounds great.” Corrina said with genuine interest but Pete could sense that something was off.

A small frown graced his face even though he was trying to be indifferent. “I’m sensing a ‘but’.”

Corrina felt a pang of guilt and a hint of something else that she couldn’t name. “I’m meeting someone here.”

Concern highlighted Pete’s handsome features. “I don’t want to leave you here alone.”

“I’m actually early.” Corrina admitted. “I’ll be fine.”

Pete nodded but didn’t make any motion towards leaving. They sat there quietly, not really knowing what to say. Their brown eyes connected and they drew closer to each other. Pete raised a hand to cup her cheek, watching her eyes close slowly. He missed the dark honey color of them but relished in the knowledge of what was about to happen. As soon as his eyes began to close, a beeping noise sounded from the pocket of Pete’s khaki pants. They reluctantly pulled apart at the noise.

Pete pulled out his phone from his pocket and flipped it open. His eyes surveyed the screen before his disclosed, “It’s my mom. I um…I have to go.” He looked back at her expectantly, his eyes searching her for an answer.

Corrina ignored the rapid beat of her heart and her cold cheek. “You should go.”

“Right.” Pete agreed with reservation, rising from the bench. He looked down at Corrina, opening his mouth to say something but nothing came out. “Bye,” he let out a beat later.

“Bye.” Corrina whispered softly.

She watched him leave and pondered on what had almost taken place. She had almost kissed a complete stranger. Peter Cortlandt. A guy who she had only met that morning. How had so much happened in just half a day? The previous night she had been hurt by her own boyfriend’s actions. She had a boyfriend! Corrina wasn’t the type to cheat but Pete, Pete was…what exactly? A guy she would be losing plenty of sleep over tonight.

“Corrina.”

Corrina took a deep breath before answering, “Ren, we have to talk.”

Note: For those who aren't too interested in Superman, Lana Lang was Clark Kent's highschool sweetheart and first love. Lois Lane is his soulmate and his destiny. So Corrina is trying to reassure Pete that there will be love for him later.

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