Chapter 1 – I touched the earth, and she loved me back.

I pull up to the valet area in front of the Sogno di Guilietta in a rented, black Maserati GranTurismo coupe convertible, just as the built in GPS confirms that we’ve arrived in her strangely feminine but robotic voice. I look to Tina in the passenger seat and smile brilliantly. Her returning smile is as warm as it is beautiful and there’s a moment of quiet calm that settles around us. We’re tired, exhausted really, after the eleven hour trip. We stopped in Paris, and it felt good to stretch our legs, but really, the long hours in the plane combined with the previous weekend and almost two years of struggles, make it feel like we’ve been travelling forever. We’re jet lagged and in need of a good shower and warm bed, but despite the tiredness, I think we’re both still in a state of wondered, almost energized shock.

Tina looks down to the ring on my finger and smiles. I follow her eyes and I can almost feel the heat of the promise it represents sear my finger. It’s an incredible feeling. We wore commitment rings before, but somehow, it all feels so different now. When you really think about it, a ceremony, legal or otherwise, is just a celebration to confirm what you already know, and an open door for bureaucratic bullshit to make your life miserable should anything happen during the tenure of your commitment. I know ‘tenure of your commitment’ sounds harsh, but hear me out.

Things happen that are beyond our control and people are flawed and faltered, I’m living proof of this. And as such, vows and commitments that should be at the very forefront of our minds get lost. In essence, we get lost; and in turn, we lose those we are committed to. Being committed is all that really matters, right? Some would agree and others disagree. I used to be the former. Outside of the homophobic mindset that tries to hinder our society from having choices based on antiquated and ritualistic morals, I never saw the value in the act of marriage, or the gay communities push to have it. If you’re committed, who needs outside recognition or a piece of paper that says you are? I didn’t; we didn’t. No, what we wanted was for zealots and bigots to stop imposing laws that limit choice. It should be a law, a federal law, free and equal rights for all, no matter the issue at hand. At least that’s what we believed.

But as I gaze at the ring on my finger now, the old blending with the new, the meaning of it official, I realize that it does matter. When you love someone, you should yell it from the highest mountain so it can be recognized and sanctified. You shouldn’t just be proud to love your spouse; you should be reconciled to love her unconditionally. You should make a commitment that is impossible to break; but most importantly, you should have the faith and confidence in your love that boasts of embracing harsh consequences should you manage to somehow fail. Those papers, those witnessed and attested to vows, this ring, they all indicate that no matter what, I will honor her in everything I do because the consequence of failure is incomprehensible. Just knowing and falling into a life together doesn’t even compare.

I turn my head to the sound of tapping on my window to see the valet attendant eyeing me impatiently. I smile at him. I didn’t mean to let my mind wander, but the exhaustion and shock of everything is taking its toll on my mind. I look back to Tina and we both smile as we finally exit the vehicle. The valet hands me a tag before stepping in and pulling away quickly.

I join Tina on the sidewalk and we both gaze at the beautiful, authentic Italian craftsmanship that is the courtyard of Juliet. There is a bronze statue of her beneath the very balcony that Shakespeare himself memorialized for all recorded time. It almost seems ominous to start our marriage at the iconic place where epic love went so tragic, but that’s really what happened with us. The only difference is we made it through alive, healthy, and together.

I feel her small warm hand entwine with mine as a bellhop signals us. Our luggage is on a rolling rack that he’s pushing in front of him and we each take our first step towards the long overdue celebration of our full and complete commitment.

We walk through the large courtyard and follow him to the stone archway with rounded, hand-carved, double doors, and up to the desk in the middle of the expansive old world room. It almost feels like stepping back in time. Everything about this place feels beautiful, ornate, and durable, much like our commitment to one another.

I smile warmly at the receptionist as we approach her. “Bette and Tina Porter-Kennard. We have a reservation for seven o’clock.” It feels so good to say that and have it be entirely legitimate.

The young blond behind the counter smiles brightly until she notices our linked hands, and raises her eyebrow in response. Her face turns stern but she starts typing in her computer without a word. What was that I was just saying about legitimate? This planet and the pathetic people on it have a long fucking way to go. Despite her unwarranted feelings, could she not have at least greeted a paying customer?

I look to Tina with barely contained annoyance but she smiles reassuringly as she reaches her left hand up to curl it around my forearm, and soothingly stroke it with her thumb. Sigh. This is my honeymoon and some bigoted little twat with needless phobias will not ruin it. In fact, it might make it more interesting.

I give Tina my most lovesick and pathetically adoring eyes as I lift her hand and kiss the back of it with a full, lingering kiss. She raises her eyebrow at me and I smile suggestively as the gleam of mischief lights in her eyes. The typing noise from the counter stops, so I look up to see the girl watching us with an embarrassed blush on her face. I put my arm around Tina’s waist and pull her tightly against me as brush the hair off her neck and lean in close to her ear to softly whisper, “I can’t wait to get you alone. I want to touch you…” I run my hand down her arm. “…all of you, until you’re so desperate for me that you forget your very name…”

I didn’t want the ignorant girl behind the counter to hear; what I wanted was for Tina to noticeably, sexually respond to me, and she doesn’t disappoint. The hungry lust in her eyes and attractive flush of her skin are testament to the effect of well used words. I look the receptionist in the eyes and smile my most feral smile. “Have you found our reservation yet? We’re on our honeymoon…” I glance down at Tina to see her rubbing my forearm suggestively. “…and we’d sort of like to get started.”

She releases a short huff as she starts to click the mouse hurriedly. The printer behind her comes to life and she turns to pull the document off the tray as well as grab two keycards. She still doesn’t say a word as she sets them on the counter and pushes them toward me so hesitantly that it’s possible she thinks I’m a leper. Or I just must have AIDS, that’s it. Fucking ignorant people. For a moment I’m tempted to sneeze on her just to give her limited psyche a good scramble. I pick up the pen and sign the document, as well as retrieve the keycards. I smile brightly at her and wink before turning to the bellboy.

He seems to be more accepting; in fact, maybe too accepting. I snap my fingers in his face to get his eyes off my cleavage, and give him a look that indicates blindness is eminent, or perhaps the loss of a favored appendage. I point to the rolling rack and demand, “Room 308.” He looks up, finally. “Now.” His eyes get round as he finally focuses on my face and he fumbles a bit as he starts to lead the way to the elevator. Tina chuckles and I look down at her indignantly. She’s not repentant at all and I can’t help but chuckle with her.

We get in the elevator and he presses the button for our floor. His posture is rigid and he seems nervous as he glances at me from the corner of his eyes; every time I catch him, he diverts them. I turn to Tina who’s still holding my hand and gently running her fingers along my forearm obliviously. She lets out a sigh and rests her head against my arm as she closes her eyes. I look on her peaceful face and yawn. Fuck. In all honesty, I just want to hold her and go to sleep. Would she find that insulting? I gaze again at her contentedly resting face and smile. No, I think we’re on the same wavelength.

The elevator dings, and the bellboy rolls the rack into the hallway. Tina opens her eyes and I settle my arm around her shoulders, holding her close as we make our way down the lavish but understated décor of the hallway. We arrive at room 308, and I use my key to open the door. Tina and I both walk in, the bellboy carting our luggage behind us. As he starts to unload, we step in and look around.

The room is spacious and open, with white walls and a row of wood framed windows behind the centralized king sized bed. The ceiling has large, white wooden beams that slant on both sides from the high point at the middle. Everything is white and airy and just…peaceful. It almost feels like an old world retreat. Tina walks forward and puts her knee on the bed, bouncing a little on the down comforter before crawling forward and collapsing in a satisfied heap. I smile and set my purse on the table against the furthest wall and the bellboy clears his throat.

I turn to look at him. He’s finished unloading our bags, and has even set them on the luggage stands for easy access. The rolling rack is already in the hallway and he’s standing by the open door with his arms tucked behind his back. I consider him for a moment but then decide to be forgiving. I reach into the wallet in my purse and pull out a twenty, handing it to him with a smile and a “Thank you.” He returns a bright, blushing smile of his own and clears his throat before shutting the door behind him.

I turn to Tina, who’s looking at me and beaming, her adorable face slightly askew on the mattress. I walk over to her and remove her shoes. She giggles as I accidently tickle her instep. I remove my own and collapse face down next to her with a satisfied groan. We both lay this way just staring at each other for a few minutes before she rolls onto her side and scoots closer to me.

I close my eyes as she runs her delicate fingers across my facial features. Her touch is warm and soothing and I realize with startling clarity that she will be a tremendous mother. Her fingers move to my hair and I situate myself on my side, just inches away from her. I open my eyes and she smiles warmly again as she continues to play with my dark curls. “You’re going to be a wonderful mother, T.”

She raises that beautiful eyebrow. “Yeah?”

I smile a watery smile. “Yeah…” I reach up and grab her hand and kiss the knuckles before playing with her fingers. “I’ve never met someone who so effortlessly nurtures. It’s just who you are…”

Her smile turns radiant and tears gather in her eyes. “We haven’t really…talked…about starting a family…since…”

I kiss her hand again. “I know.” I bend my elbow and lean my head against my fist. “Do you want to try again?”

She furrows her brows and considers this for a moment before mirroring my posture. “Well, our only options are for me to try again…or we adopt.” My heart falls to my toes. Those are the only options? She meets my gaze and her smile is radiant as she says, “I do know that I can’t imagine my life without children. I want a family with you, Bette.” I smile through the tears of this bittersweet moment. She hasn’t even considered me as the possible birth mother.

I close my eyes and take a deep breath. Okay, I’m lucky. I’m lucky to be with someone who can tolerate a lot more than my mother did. There’s no such thing as a perfect relationship. You find the one person who tolerates you the best, who maybe moves you to reach beyond yourself sometimes, who sees you more truly than anyone has ever seen you. And when she fails to see you, then you just take a deep breath and remind yourself not to expect perfection. And Tina, the love of my life, just failed to see me. But despite being imperfect, those are the very things that make her my soulmate.

I release my breath and any unrealistic expectations. I failed her first. She’s given me enough. She doesn’t need to give me this. “Hey, are you okay?”

I open my eyes and gaze at her. Do I lie? I haven’t lied in a while. I don’t want to start now. I reach out and caress her face as I just let it go. “So which way do you want to go?”

Her face is radiant, and beautiful, and some of the pain of her offhanded inconsideration melts away. “I still want to have a baby. I know adoption would give a needy child a home, but to experience that…connection…of carrying and giving birth…I still want that…”

I take her hand again and she plays with my fingers. I think I’d like to experience that too. I sigh and realize that, “I can’t wait to see you carrying our child.”

She laughs joyously and then her face falls as something occurs to her and she stares at our hands. “Bette…what if…”

I squeeze her hand. “No, T…don’t go there.” She meets my eyes and I can see the frightened worry of devastation there. “It will be okay.” I gaze at her deeply so she can see the sincerity of my words. “We’re going to be extremely careful this time. I’m going to take such good care of you and our baby…” I smile brightly and stroke her tight tummy. “…our baby is going to fight to make it into this world…if for no other reason than because he or she will know just how much we want them…how much we love them.”

She raises her incredulous brow and we both laugh through our tears. She touches my face in a sweetly romantic gesture before scooting forward and kissing me sweetly. I pull her close to me and wrap my arms around her as the warm, intimate, devotedly honest kiss goes on long minutes. Tina finally pulls away and tucks her head under my chin with a satisfied sigh. “I love you Bette…”

I curl my fingers in her hair and hug her closer as I close my eyes and release a contented breath. “I love you too, T…”


 

I set the cruise control and we both settle in for the hour long drive to Milan. We’ve spent most our first week in the city of love and honestly, there were several days when we just didn’t leave our room. I smile. Our lovemaking has been passionate and intense and utterly soul rending. Our connection has grown increasingly stronger, and as a result, we can communicate whole thought processes with a single look.

Tina reaches over and takes my hand, linking our fingers in her lap. Her form fitting, off the shoulder, white dress stops just above her knees giving me a wonderfully scandalous view of smooth burnished skin. Her hair is styled up off her slender neck, and it’s all I can do not to pull over run my tongue along its length. She looks so much like she did at our wedding reception. I chuckle. Tina smiles at me with that raised eyebrow, just like she did when she saw Ricky and Valentino leave the intimate party early. Ricky even stayed with him in New York an extra week. I hope they find fulfillment in each other as much as I do in Tina.

Tina leans forward and fidgets with the knobs on the radio. Every station is in Italian, and some of the music is a little frightening. It’s so strange just how much the world changes a few hours in any direction across the ocean. She finally settles on some opera, in fact the very opera we’re driving to see tonight.

I smile again. We’re going to see Madam Butterfly at Milan’s famous opera house, Teatro Alla Scala. The historic building reopened in December, 2004 after an extensive renovation. It now has a bookshop, bar, and history museum, in addition to the original opera house. It was designed by neoclassical architect Giuseppe Piermarini, and opened originally in 1778. It was nearly destroyed during World War II but reopened in 1946 after extensive repairs, and since it’s been one of the top opera houses in all of Italy. I get the feeling that it will be as historically and culturally gratifying as it is beautiful.

I look again to Tina who’s staring at the rolling green hills and beautifully maintained expansive countryside through the low setting sun in window, and release a satisfied sigh. It looks so much like Valentino’s estate. He truly brought a piece of his heritage to his home in New York.

We had a small reception in his parlor. The cake was delivered after a call to the bakery. Candace’s last minute cancellation didn’t change the fact that the cake was already built and paid for, and we all sat in a close circle of friends as we enjoyed the food, the company, and the incredible reason for the celebration. I gazed around at their joyous faces and held my wife’s hand as she smeared cake on my face, and I don’t remember a happier time, at least until I saw Shane and Carmen.

There was trouble in paradise, and for a moment I wondered if it was my fault. Did I push Shane too hard before the ceremony? Is she self-destructing? Something wasn’t right, but it didn’t upset the celebratory atmosphere and I didn’t want to corner her and make it worse. Shane is a quiet person, and Carmen not only seems to compliment that trait, but respect it. After returning Tina’s favor with the cake, we danced together to what is now our song, and when I was finally forced from my capsulized elation, I found Shane and Carmen missing.

I sigh and Tina rolls her resting head against the seat to look at me curiously. The breath escapes my lungs. No matter what the circumstance, she will always be the most beautiful creature to ever walk this earth, and despite the worried thoughts, I can’t help but beam with the possessive pride of the knowledge that she is mine, and gave herself to me freely. She is, by far, the most forgiving woman I will ever know.

We only stayed at the reception for a couple of hours before it was time to head to the airport. Tina and I spent several hours picking rice out of our hair in first class, and I think the other passengers thought that maybe we had lice. I chuckle and Tina smiles at me. I think she’s resigned herself to the fact that I will laugh often; due to strange thoughts and memories or just elation with my place in life, who cares? Either way, it’s joy, complete and satisfactory joy.

The chime of the GPS tells me that we are only a mile away from our destination and it’s time to focus on the vehicle I’m controlling. I turn my gaze ahead and we both marvel as the impressive stone structure comes into view. It’s getting dark out and they have lit the architectural masterpiece that is the Teatro Alla Scala so beautifully, that only the woman in the seat next to me could rival it.


 

We have balcony seating and the opera is as beautiful as the structure in which it’s occurring. It’s everything I expected and more of the true Italian experience. I turn to Tina who has tears in her eyes, and I can tell that our time together here will stand out in our minds for the rest of our lives together.

We ventured to Lake Garda a couple of days ago, and not even its serenely pristine waters compare to the incredibly moving opera taking place. But yesterday, yesterday is still the focal point in my mind. The Sistine Chapel in Rome…well…I was moved to tears, and for the first time in a long time, my passion for art came back into the forefront. The sheer beauty offset by the ornate and sloping peaks of Roman design and skill was life altering. I fell in love with art all over again, and I look forward to returning to work and harnessing one of the better traits of myself that has been buried for far too long.

I look over to see Tina smiling radiantly as the Love Duet begins and I can’t help but match her expression. The music is indicative of the hope and faith we both have in one another and I turn my attention back to the drama unfolding on the stage.

The man gathers his love in his arms as he sings of her beauty, and Tina leans in close to me, very close, as she settles her hand on my thigh and moves the dark locks away from my ear. She’s so close that I can feel the warmth of her very aura as she whispers, “Alice said that you both shared balcony seats for Lakme when you were dating…” Her breath flutters across my lobe and I close my eyes against the rush of arousal that assaults my center. “…but that’s not all you shared…” Her hand slithers dangerously high under my skirt and my breath comes out in ragged huffs. “…is it…?” Wait…what did she just…oh fuckme

I feel her fingers sneak past the lingerie at the apex of my legs and run down the length of my sex to gather the seeping moisture she so effortlessly created there. I feel her lips smile against the tender skin of my neck as she begins to caress me in long deep strokes, and my legs spread in an involuntarily vulgar reaction.

The sure, steady touch, the hot puffs of her breath tickling my neck, and the increasingly passionate intensity of the orchestral sounds filling the acoustic room swirl together, and I give myself over to the climax that quickly shudders through me as it crescendo’s. It’s hot and I feel flushed, and unfortunately, the orgasm didn’t satiate my desire in the least. If anything, it’s magnified.

I turn to meet her flushed face and lust filled eyes as she withdraws her hand and slowly cleans her fingers in her mouth. I close my eyes against the current of eroticism that charges down my spine only to lean forward and claim her mouth in a desperate and barely controlled frenzy. I can taste myself on her and this only further heightens my need for her. She pulls back abruptly and settles in her chair as if nothing just happened as she starts to clap with the rest of those in attendance. And all I can do is pant as I stare at her with wide disbelieving eyes. I’m not the only one who’s changed for the better.

 


 

Dear Juliet,

My wife and I came to visit your home on our honeymoon. You’ll be happy to know that your kin and country have been very hospitable, but there is something that I wish to inquire of you.

Your Romeo loved you so much that he refused to face life without you, and you returned his love just as fully. But what if your Romeo had failed you? What if he loved you but still found it within himself to betray you with Rosaline? Would you have found it within yourself to forgive him? Could your love have lasted in a flawed life should you both have had the time and courage to live it?

I have faith in my wife and our commitment to one another, but I failed her, and while she has forgiven me, she has now failed me. You see, we are both women, and as such, nature has cruelly stricken away the possibility of creating life together. We want to start a family; we long to start a family, but I fear that certain aspects of who I used to be will haunt us forever.

We finally spoke about it, and she didn’t even see me. The possibility that I might want to carry our child never even crossed her mind. In fact, she would adopt before considering me. And while I know that she didn’t mean to hurt me so deeply, and will remain unaware by my choice, I cannot help but feel devastated. I know who I used to be would never have wanted to carry our child, but I am not that person any longer. She sees this for the most part, but there are things, hurtful things, that still linger and cling to our future with a desperately destructive grip.

So, Juliet, had your circumstances mirrored mine, what would you have done? How would you have approached the situation? Would you have taken your life, or would you have been brave enough to face it? Well I won’t give up on life, so if you were brave, how…how would you handle it?

Sincerely,

The Lucky but Wounded


 

Tina doesn’t notice that I’ve tucked my own letter into the bricks of Juliet’s wall as we both reach out to touch its historic surface. The wall itself is nondescript, plain even, but the weighted dichotomy of years of grief and happiness that linger on its rough surface is strikingly heavy.

It’s our last day here in the city of love, and we’ve only just visited the balcony and wall. There is a small crowd of people in various states of joy and pain as they sit and write their own letters. I have stared at this balcony from our room window many times, just considering what to do. I have now tucked my own grief away in its depths, and I have no expectations. Just like my journals, I have released the thoughts out into the world and don’t expect anything in return. There is nothing to do, but I do feel lighter.

For the last week, we have dined and explored most of Venice, Milan, and now Verona, saving the closest for last. Tina turns to me with a bright smile and I return it as I take her hand and link our fingers. The courtyard is starting to empty and the sun is low in the sky. She pulls me to Juliet’s statue and hands her camera to a woman there. She doesn’t speak English, but smiles knowingly as Tina pulls me up to the statue. We stand on either side of the bronze beauty and each of us put a hand over one of her breasts as the woman clicks the shutter. Tina retrieves her camera with a sincere, ‘grazi,’ and we both look at the photo.

She turns to me with smiling eyes as she stows it away in her jeans pocket. She relinks our fingers and kisses the back of my hand as she pulls me away. There is one final place we want to visit, and I can see she’s ready by the subtle look in her eyes. We make our way through the narrow, busy streets towards the Piazza Bra to spend our last night just being together and absorbing the beauty that so fully surrounds us.

Our stride is easy and we swing our joined hands slightly with the movement. “Bette…” I look up from the stone street and look at her questioningly. “…I miss home, but I don’t want…this…to end…” I furrow my brows. She lifts my hand and kisses it again and I realize what she means. We’ve grown so very close, and she’s nervous.

I smile at her and hasten to reassure her. “T…I don’t want to lose this closeness either, but perfection doesn’t really exist. We’re going to fail each other…” I swallow hard. “…but we’ll make it. I have faith in us.” She smiles so radiantly that my heart bursts and I have to match it with my own.

We approach the fountain, both quiet and lost in our own thoughts. I loathe leaving this haven too. But it’s no safer here than at home. I’ve learned this first hand. A small family crosses in front of us, a boy and a girl giggling, and Tina turns to me with bright watery eyes. I caress her cheek and she snuggles into my side as we watch them leave. “I don’t want to wait babe. I want to find a donor and start the minute we get home.”

I kiss the crown of her head and squeeze her. “Then we won’t. We’ll find someone suitable. There’s always what’s left of Marcus’s…

She shakes her head. “No, everything so far has been a fresh start. I think this should be one of those things.”

I sigh and rest my cheek on her head as we watch the water dance against the darkening sky. Tina reaches out and lets a small stream hit her fingers. I’ll have to tell Alice that I forgot to visit the Pope while we were in Rome. I chuckle and Tina looks up to me with her raised eyebrow. I smile at her. “You didn’t burst into flames just now, and while we’re very close to Rome and the Pope, I don’t think I want to try my luck.”

She chuckles with me and I see the flame of mischief spark in her eyes. I give her a stern look and my voice is low in warning. “T…” I step away from her with my hands raised. She looks into my eyes and shrugs her shoulders as she cups a small amount of water and splashes it on my chest. I look down at the water spots in disbelief before I meet her eyes. She’s covering her mouth as she shakes with quietly subdued laughter.

I smile my most feral smile as I step forward and splash her back. It’s only a small amount but it lands low. She holds her hands out and her mouth gapes open as she looks down at the wet spot right on the crotch of her jeans. I cross my arms over my chest and smirk as I try to hold the laughter in. She looks up into my eyes and I can see the threat laced in the glassy, hazel depths. My smugness drains away and I un-tuck my arms as I take a few steps back.

She leans towards me lifting her foot, and that moment’s pause is all I need. I turn and start running for the hotel. I hear her following right on my heels laughing. We giggle as we speed through the lobby and the receptionist stares at us disapprovingly as we barrel into the elevator. Our chests are heaving as I press the button for our room and take her in my arms, kissing her passionately before the doors are fully closed. Let the bigot deal with that mental image.

Tina laces her hands in my hair and returns the kiss, pressing herself tightly against me. I hear the ding of the elevator in tandem with its rocking halted motion as it stops, and whimper as I pull away from her. The elderly couple standing there gives us the once over but I wink at them as I grab Tina’s hand and blow past them. We start running down the hall and I hear the woman behind me slap her husband’s arm and say, “Herald! You never kiss me like that anymore!”

We get to the door and I fumble as I try to pull the keycard from my pocket fast enough. It doesn’t help that Tina is assaulting me from behind, running her hands from my ass to my breasts and palming them in tandem. I finally get the card from my wallet only to drop it. Fuck…I hasten to lean down and grab it, and just as my hand grasps the card, I feel Tina’s own hand slip between the apex of my legs and massage me. I let out a guttural moan and jerk up fast, hitting my head on the handle.

“Oh God…babe?” She’s giggling as she puts her hand on the sore spot that I’m already rubbing and I stand to my full height more cautiously. It doesn’t hurt that bad but the indignity of it is a blow to the ego. I squint my eyes at her as I slide my keycard in the door and the catch releases. I push the door open and turn to her worried face before smiling brightly and picking her up in my arms. She shrieks and giggles as I shut the door with my foot and walk to the bed where I throw her unceremoniously to the middle.

She laughs harder as I pull my clothes off and climb on top of her to remove her own. It’s a struggle, but I finally get them removed with no help from her, although the merciless tickling and pinching couldn’t have helped. Just as I pull her jeans and underwear off, I realize that she’s not laughing. I let my eyes track the gloriously naked length of her until I reach her face. She’s supporting herself on her elbows and smiling at me with so much love, and trust, and utterly devoted lust, that I’m not sure which tack to take on this specific carnal journey.

She reaches her hand out to me and I take it before crawling forward and laying down next to her. She rolls over on top of me and stares deeply into my eyes before leaning down to kiss me hungrily. It’s warm, and open, and almost sloppy as she runs her tongue against mine and palms my breasts harshly in her hands. She pulls away and starts kissing down the center of my bare chest and I grip her hair as I watch her travel the length of me with her mouth and tongue.

She gets to my belly button, swirling her tongue around it before traveling back up and pulling one of my nipples into her mouth. The warm, wet suction further increases my ragged breathing and I feel my clit twitch in anticipation. She releases my breast only to again attack my mouth. She kisses me for long, sweet moments before leaning up and gazing directly into my eyes as she runs her fingers over my lips. Her eyes are warm, and gentle, and honest as the sincerity of the words that pass her lips penetrate my heart. “I’m so lucky to have you…”

I smile at her and run my fingers through the golden locks, stopping to caress her cheek. I pull her down and kiss her roughly as I roll over on top of her. I don’t waste a moment as I run my tongue down her torso, straight past the sticky blond curls, and right through her swollen center. I swirl my tongue all along the silky skin and reach up to squeeze her breast, alternatingly pulling the most private parts of her into my mouth and palming the firm globe in my hand.

She rests her arms above her head as she grinds it sideways into the pillow and writhes against me. I feel her hand reach into my hair and pull gently as she breathlessly says, “Come here…”

I rush up to meet her mouth, letting her taste the sweet and salty musk on my tongue. She pushes us up into a sitting position where she straddles me before easily sliding her fingers into me. I gasp and she leans back. I brace her with my arm as I run my free hand from her chin to her vulva, locating her dripping center, and pushing my own fingers in deep. She whimpers, and shudders, and I can feel her muscles clamp down in welcome.

We start pumping and stroking into one another and I slide my hand up her back, grabbing the back of her head by her hair and pull her mouth to my own. The kisses are open and short as we pant for breath, but I keep my eyes locked on her. I want to witness the glorious release that’s building in both of us.

We both start to shake and the kisses decrease as the need for air takes precedence over passion.  There’s a moment of stillness as we crest over a powerfully shocking precipice and rigidly begin to tremble as we free-fall. I feel the shudders of it pass through her into my hand and my own sex clenches at the intensity of it. We finally catch our breath as we start to kiss and stroke each other soothingly.

We stay locked together for long moments as our frantic hearts find the will to be calm. She gazes into my eyes and we both smile at the other. I can think of no better way to end our time here than just glorying in the reason we embarked on this journey to begin with: glorying in love. What a way to go out…


Continued in Chapter 2 – Go that way really fast. If something gets in your way, turn.

34 thoughts on “Chapter 1 – I touched the earth, and she loved me back.

  1. I haven’t read this installment of your wonderful story yet but i’d like to refute your claim that readers are getting tired of your story, speaking for myself, i am defo not getting bored of the story! Please carry on, could read your writing for a long time.

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    • lol thanks helsbels. I’ve noticed a large decline in readership as the story progresses, even a lower rating on the last one. You guys have been absolutely fantastic, but if it’s getting where people don’t want to read it, then it’s easily given a decent stopping point. I honestly never meant to continue it from the first installment, but you guys were so excited and I was enjoying writing so much, I figured why not? I just want to be sure that it holds true to what you guys want and what the story needs. If it does that, then I’ll keep it going. I won’t stop writing…ever…but this story is really up to you guys. I have an idea for a sci fi uber that’s pretty crazy. I actually started to write it as a novel, not a fic, but lost the whole damn thing in a hardware malfunction. You’d think a tech would back up. smh I got cocky. lol Anyway, comment honestly and let me know what you guys want to see. If you think this is coming to a place where you don’t care to read it, then I’ll move on to the next project, finishing this one of course. Thanks for the encouragement. It’s awesome!

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      • No, no, no, don’t post in 2 page dribs and drabs, i would rather read your great story all in one go, its such a treat not having to wait between chapters. My lack of sleep issue is my own and would happily stay up half the night to read your story, luckily i’m off at the minute so you keep posting your epics and i’ll keep reading. Ratings on stories also seems to affect the counts, R and above, more readers, not sure why, lol! You keep doing your thing…

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  2. Don’t ever care about the count! It’s that time of year -summer’s over – back to school…blah, blah, blah… YOU JUST KEEP THEM COMING…and the greedy readers that we are – well…we’ll just sit back and enJOY!!! oh btw – Kelly should accidentally fall off a cliff or something more gruesome! just saying!

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  3. Well, i’ve just read it in one sitting. And again you keep me up till after 5am, i keep needing to stop reading and you keep pulling me back in! I can’t explain the dropping numbers but the amount of readers you got for your previous installment was still really bloody high! I love the intelligent way you write, the way you weave in touches from the show so it is familiar and yet very new to us all and just the way your imagination works! I find i’m not a very imaginative person so love that trait in others and you have it in spades. I love your story and so do thousands of others judging by your readership numbers. I will read until you get bored of writing it, just don’t make that any time soon, and i hope you have the next installment ready cos i want to know what happens next! Take care and please post soon, i’m not a patient person either ;-)…longest comment i have ever left!

    Liked by 1 person

    • If it makes you feel any better I lose sleep when I’m choking through a particularly difficult moment or writing block. If you prefer, since you’re such a patient person, I can put little posts up every week, like two or three pages. You’ll sleep just fine then. 😛 Nah, I’m kidding but thank you for the support and the lengthy comment. I appreciate knowing what you guys are liking and not. In depth feedback is by the far the most useful, so thanks for that.

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  4. Hey, before I comment on the fic (it’s also after 5 am here for me… nearly 6!), I need to explain something about the view counts. The more pages your fic has, the bigger the likelihood that you’re going to get a high view count. How? Well, it has to do with cookies being disallowed and private browsing and all that. If someone closes the browser on whatever device they’re using to read it, or the IP address changes, and comes back to it later, that’s a new session ID for the site, and a new page count. If a post is say, 2-4 pages long, it’s more likely that it’s going to be read in a single session. The longer it is, the less likely. My own connection died, frustratingly on page 15. While I waited for my router to reboot, I most likely got a new IP addy, so that’s 2 views for your story from me alone. See what I mean? I don’t think your readership has decreased all that much. Comment in a few, I need tea!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for the clarification. I hadn’t thought of the IP refresh and length until you pointed it out but I do know that the count isn’t exactly true. Probably 30 of the hits on the first one are mine alone due to refreshes from corrections and the like. It just found it odd that the first one had 18k the last time I was there, the second like 10k, the third only like 5k, and then this one hasn’t been up but a couple hours so it doesn’t much matter yet. That startling of a decline is a lot even accounting for what you’ve mentioned, and I think the second post turned some people off. Which is fine, but if people are bored, like I said before: I write for me, share on here for you guys. If the readers are bored, then sharing’s not really helpful. I felt maybe I had gone too far away from the show or pushed Bette too hard to change. People want her to change, but not really. lol People are odd in the extreme. Thanks to everyone who’s commented so far. It gives me a lot to mull over. I’m still correcting this one, I always do after I post, but once I’m done, if I’m not tired, I’ll start the next installment. I guess I’ll just take this as it goes, and see where I end up. Everyone – Thank you all again for your help and support! You guys are awesome! I think it’s indicative of being a dyke. Dyke power and all that…

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  5. Right… I gotta say, I’m really disappointed with Shane. That was pretty low, cheating while Carmen is in the same *house*… why would anyone DO that? She needs some serious help. (I totally loathed that Shane did the deed with Niki while Jenny was a stone’s throw away not once but TWICE on the series.) I know Bette wants to be there for Shane the way Shane eventually was for her, but hopefully it doesn’t cause any issues between Bette and Tina. Disclosure perhaps should have been an earlier option. Malcolm seems to be a really positive addition in Bette’s life. She’s missed out on knowing him as they were growing up, but choosing to have a relationship with him now is a good thing. There’s enough love to go around. His offer was really generous. Re: the honeymoon and Tina skipping past the option of Bette being the birth mom, again, disclosure should be one of Bette’s priorities. How can Tina know if she’s hurting Bette if Bette’s not telling her? They’re close, but not psychic. Speak up, Bette! Lastly, Kelly is a deluded tramp. After the havoc Candace brought, Bette’s spidey-sense should be tingling whenever a desperate ho is near. Her hubris in thinking she can handle things on her own is going to lead to trouble… Thanks for another engaging post! Can’t wait for the next part, and keep writing! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • As usual, you’re pretty spot on. I was disappointed with Shane in the show as well. She didn’t just fail to grow, she got worse, and I think the whole Molly thing only further perpetuated her downward spiral. She does need help, and unlike the show, she’s going to get a healthy dose of it. It will be a hard pill to swallow. I won’t say much, but Carmen’s a family oriented girl. Ahem, anywho, as far as Bette holding emotions back, well that sounds sorta familiar doesn’t it? Disclosure, as you say, is key to any relationship. But, there is a stone in Bette’s stiletto that she didn’t even realize she put there. Unlike the show, she’ll learn how to disclose by force. Force seems to be my way of making this ladies get their asses into shape. I guess I’m a forceful kinda gal. I just sincerely hope that Tina can trust that Bette wouldn’t cheat, no matter how many desperate ho’s there are. I just hope Bette wouldn’t go there again…sheesh. I don’t know though…we’ll see…oh, and how’s your tea? 😉

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      • I may need something much stronger than tea if Bette’s gonna do anything as daft as even THINK about straying again… Tina would never, ever forgive a second transgression. I just hope she sees beyond what Shane did and realise that doesn’t mean Bette would follow suit.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I think I have some Bailey’s in the cupboard if that will help. I’ll let you off the hook, no, my Bette isn’t that daft. Even if I had every intention of writing it, I don’t think my fingers would obey. I just couldn’t do it, and I’m wearing Bette’s skin, so that means she can’t. But keeping things from Tina and trying to take on the world again is going to teach her something. These girls have a hell of a long way to go, but progress is eminent. I will ask you guys something, would you hate me if someone died? Just asking…

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  6. Just wonderful. So naturally expressed. Don’t have anyone die unless it’s Kelly.There’s plenty o’drama w/o a sad death. Bette still struggles w/the truth. She seems to be insecure of Tina’s love for her. That Tina couldn’t handle knowing that Kelly made advances on Bette. KDub is just a skanky ho. Please continue. I love to read of Bette’s insecurities. I can actually feel her getting unraveled and losing focus. Excellent writing and pace.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I’m glad the story felt paced. I felt like maybe I had rushed through Malcolm and Bette getting to know one another. But honestly, nothing more was coming to mind to further flesh it out so I just went with it. It’s strange, I’m more like Tina in my personal life, at least I think I am, but I identify more with Bette. It seems easy to know what she’ll do even though she’s so unpredictable. The human psyche is a strange place indeed. Dainty – You’re cracking me up with your rant. It’s true, Bette’s doing the same old shit and doesn’t even realize it. She pulled her head out of her ass just to stick her thumb there. She still has a long way to go, so does Tina. I’m getting them there as fast as I can. They’re just stubborn…

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  7. Great update. I promise we are not tired of reading this fantastic story. Your number of views average over 8800 per posting. That tells me we are not tired of reading unless you are tired of writing then I would very kindly ask that you keep on writing and we shall keep on reading. The story is great with just the right amount of canon and your wonderful imagination added in to make a great story. Bette needs to get it in gear and tell Tina about whore wentworth. She has to trust Tina at some point and for gosh sakes tell Tina she will carry the child if Tina doesn’t want to or can’t for some reason. And that she, (Bette) really does want to carry the child if Tina can’t. Bette should be aware that she can not keep things from Tina because it just gets blown out of proportion. She is making the same mistake as before. And why in the sam hell does she think she can handle these women, past history should be screaming in her head that no one gives a damn that she is laughing at them and they will continue to go after her while she is still being a damned fool thinking that no one would dare cross that line. Well, hell yes they will, a la kelly. I’ll stop preaching now but, Bette makes me so mad not seeing what is right in front of her face and hell, Tina saw it too. Don’t let Bette make the same mistake again. Get her head out of her ass, please. Thanks for writing and please keep doing so.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Well let me assure you that I am not tired of this story. I am amazed at your writing skill and the artful way that you have weaved dialogue from the show into your story. Keep writing…we’ll keep reading. We are far from bored. Every time I see your post, it feels like a mini book that I can curl up with and enjoy. Please, please, please continue!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. You’re killing me, smalls! Please don’t stop writing! Your stories are a great read and I laugh out loud which I am sure draws odd looks from folks around me. I would be very sad to see you give up this storyline. I love the romance, struggle, and humor in your story. This is so good that I am sad this chapter is complete. I look forward to many, and I mean many more chapters! Write on!

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  10. I’d be honored to give you both a child…and I can think of nothing better than becoming an uncle…” – aww 🙂 … and we’re just happy to be your readers ;-D

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Girl, i wish you had written the L Word…or at least B & T story line after season 1. I enjoy immensely your stories, I like how you went deep in exploring Bette’s emotions and her long path to becoming a different person. Sometimes I’m exasperated by Tina being not completely trusting, I feel they’re still very fragile. Keep up the good work, I kind of find peace with TLW by reading your stories. That’s how it should have been if they had decided to be a serious show. I would love to read about Tina’s pregnancy, in happiness this time, the challenges and transformation that can happen between an expecting couple and of course also when the baby is there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, now that’s a compliment. Thank you for that. Hearing that you feel my take is what the show should have been, really makes my day. And as always, every single one of you guys are awesome for taking the time to comment and leave such amazing feedback. It feels really good to be a part of your community. Keep it coming and I’ll keep up my end of the bargain. I’m working on the next installment as we speak. It’s difficult, so be patient with me. I’ll give you a little piece of the beginning and see what you think: I love her so deeply I cannot even fathom the depth of it or the sheer impossibility of such a phenomenon, but I was foolhardy to have let her in. Just like mom, just like daddy, my family always leaves me. And this time, I fear that I’ll be destroyed, utterly and completely destroyed. I just got her back and I’m going to lose her again. You will not be disappointed then. Plenty of tender moments in this one. It’s a rough story, I think, because of those tender moments, but this is just what our girls need. 😉

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  12. Nobody is tired of your stories. That is hogwash! I was wondering why you stopped there. I wanted to read more. I was hoping that Bette would get inseminated to show Tina how committed she was to a family. She should have told Tina that she felt hurt by not being considered. Thank you for posting. Don’t even think of not continuing we will hunt you down lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sweet, being threatened over the internet always warms my heart. 😉 Nah, I ended it there because I had a specific vision for the next installment that couldn’t just kind of roll into it. That was where it had to stop for the flow to work. I’ve received some of my best feedback yet from you guys and utterly appreciate it. I’m going to do my best to give you what you want in the next two installments. The next one is going slowly, mainly because I keep getting distracted by my guitar. The curves of that instrument call to me better than any woman sometimes…it’s a compulsion. I’m working on it and it is coming along though. See you kids on the flip side. KEEP THE COMMENTS COMING!!!

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  13. Thank you all for encouragement. I didn’t mean to be a whiny bitch but thank you for letting me know how you feel. I hope you’re all right. I’ll write this one out until it leaves me but honestly, this next part hurts. It hurts to write it, it hurts to see it, it just hurts. We’ll see how it goes.

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  14. I’m about to write the last chapter of the next installment. Then, I just have to proofread before I post. It should be posted within the next few hours. I hope you’re ready for this.

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