Mirela didn't really talk much on the way to the studio. I wasn't sure what Luther had in mind but he was adamant about having a solo shoot of her. Usually he only did those for his portfolio and those they were only professional models. Was he going to offer her a chance at going professional as a model? I had a feeling she'd say no. If she was going to get involved it would be with the editing process. I smiled a little. It was fun doing editing with her. She had many questions and actually listened to the answers.
I sighed quietly as we got out of the car. I was not used to being in love with someone. Even though nothing could change my love for her, I felt like I would do something wrong. There was no way in hell I'd tell her, either. Not yet, at least; especially since we weren't in a relationship to begin with.
"You're awfully quiet," she said when we got in the elevator.
"Sorry," I said. "Just... tired I guess."
She winced. "Was I that bad?"
"No," I said quickly. That had been a bad lie. "The trouble with my father and I'm worried about Tom."
"I'm sorry," she said sincerely. "I wish there was something I could do."
I squeezed her hand. "You have done more than you know, Mirela," I said and she smiled shyly.
"The woman of the hour!" Luther exclaimed when we walked in and Mirela laughed nervously.
"Caleb said you wanted to take some pictures of me?" she said.
"Yes! Are you up to it today?" She nodded. "Perfect. I have some clothes that will actually fit you this time."
She laughed and waved as she was dragged into the dressing room. I sat in the computer room and pulled everything up. Luther didn't really know much about the computer so he left that to me. I logged into my account and smiled at my background picture. It was one of Mirela and I where she was leaning into me from Luther's romance shoot. I pulled up the new software we got that focused through the digital computer our investor, John Patterson, purchased for us.
The camera and software were amazing and I loved them. I could take pictures from here if I wanted to. With Mirela on that screen, though, there was no way I was hiding out in the computer booth. I'd probably sit back here during family photos. Those were the hardest for me. I'd tear my hair out with the little babies.
Ten minutes later, Mirela walked out in a pair of blue jeans and a red tank top with a black cardigan.
"I still can't believe you found a tank top that won't pull up or down," she was saying.
I stayed in the computer booth for a second. He had put makeup on her but she didn't need it at all. She couldn't see me since it was a one way mirror. I sighed. She laughed at something Luther said and I smiled. I grabbed my digital camera and headed out.
"So, I've got three outfits for her," he explained as we put up the white screen. "Two will be on the white screen and the third will be on the black screen."
I frowned. "The black screen?"
We usually only used those for professional pictures or prom photos. While Mirela got comfortable on the stool, I pulled him to the side.
"What are you scheming?" I whispered.
He smiled. "You'll see, my friend. Get your camera ready."
I took the lens cap off and stood next to one of our lights. Luther had Mirela sit on the stool with her hands propped up on the stool seat. She was to make a smile as if she were laughing at a joke. He tilted his head then adjusted the different lights until he found one he liked.
"Do you want a special color filter?" I asked.
"Not for this one," he said. "The next outfit we'll do purple. Okay, love, time to get that beauty on film. Laugh."
"There's nothing for me to laugh about," she said nervously.
Luther nodded at me and I lifted my camera.
"Look at Caleb and imagine kicking him in the balls."
That got her laughing and I chuckled.
"Keep looking where I was standing," I said. "Imagine hitting me across the head with those stilettos I made you wear."
We managed to get her to laugh some more and it was good to see. After what she just went through last night.... The next pose she'd be standing up and he had her put her hands on her hips.
"Pop out your right hip. Very good. Pouty face."
She wrinkled her nose and I took a couple pictures of that. I loved that look on her face.
"I don't do pouty," she said. "Too cliché."
"My love, I know you love clichés," Luther said, laughing.
She wrinkled her nose again. "Maybe; but the pouty face is like the duck face. I can't do it."
"Oh fine," he said. "What do you think, Caleb? What should we have her do?"
"Take her clothes off," I said and she glared at me. I immediately took a picture and smirked. "Perfect."
"Toss your hair over your shoulder," Luther said and I got a few pictures as she did so. "Push those beautiful twins out."
She laughed, embarrassed. "Come on, Luther. You and I know that there's no need for that," she said, narrowing her eyes a little.
"Got it," I said with a smile, snapping some pictures.
"Time for the second outfit," Luther said. "We'll be right back."
I sat in one of the director's chairs, looking through the photos I took. They were perfectly beautiful, just like her. I had always enjoyed candid photos. They were always more natural and honest. Poses always looked too scripted.
She came out in black yoga pants - which I could tell she was more comfortable in - and a white halter top - which she did not look comfortable in. She was red in the face and kept pulling on the top.
"I thought you said it would fit," she said in a high pitched voice.
Luther laughed. "That's how it's supposed to fit, dear."
He brought over a box for her to sit on and I put the purple filter over the light bulbs. I got my camera ready.
"Lean back," Luther instructed, "propping yourself up with your arms. No need to look nervous; I promise it won't fall down."
"Easy for you to say," she groaned, leaning her head back and I snapped some pictures.
"Cross your legs at the knees and smile for the camera, precious."
She did her best and I snapped a few pictures.
"You look bored," I said. "Come on. Be a little more... not like that Paul you were telling me about."
She laughed and I got a few pictures. She stuck her tongue out at me, wrinkling her nose, and I got as many of those as I could before she stopped. Luther had her do a few more poses, one of which she was lying flat on her back. I brought out the ladder so I could stand over her and he got another box so she could prop her legs up. He spread her hair out around her head and put one hand on her stomach and the other next to her body. She didn't smile but that seemed to satisfy Luther for that outfit.
While we had her dress in the last outfit, we switched to the black screen. I took the filters off; if we had them on we'd get terrible results. She'd be barefoot so we wouldn't have to worry about her dragging anything onto it. He went back to do her hair and I sat back down, whistling a little while I waited.
When the door opened, I nearly dropped the camera. She was in another dress but this one was one shouldered and white with glitter. It was tight down to the hips and got looser as it went down to her left knee where it stopped and cut diagonally. He put a wreath of flowers on her head.
"You'll be standing," Luther said. "I hope that's okay." She nodded. "No funny faces this time around, my dear. This one I need you to be as serious as possible." She just nodded again and I frowned. "Now, put your arms to the sides and roll your shoulders back. Bend your elbows a little. Good. Take it away Caleb."
I walked in a semicircle, getting a good shot from all angles. She kept her eyes forward and her face neutral. Then Luther had her put her hands out to the sides straight with the wrists bent so she was pointing down. Her left knee she bent and put her foot on her right thigh, swinging her left knee out. She was surprisingly limber.
"Look up," Luther whispered. "Perfect. Go, Caleb." I obeyed. "All right. The next two are the last poses. Put your hands together at the top of your head like you're a ballerina. Good. Put your leg down and step with your right foot as if you were going to walk forward. Good. Caleb." I snapped photos, walking around her. "Final pose." He was whispering and I looked at him. "It includes this mask." He handed one to her and she bit her lip. "Put your left hand behind your back and your right hand on your waist." She did so and Luther gulped, his eyes glistening with tears. "Caleb."
I took a lot of pictures. He hand her bed her right knee then swing it in front as if she would do a twirl.
"We're done. Go change and I'll explain."