A New Day Dawns
By Ri

Dedication; I would like to dedicate this story to those brave Emergency Service Personnel who gave up their lives to save others. I dedicate this story to you with love and gratitude.

Disclaimer; This is an original story all the characters and situations were made up in my little head. There is a love between two consenting adult women. There are also parts with hurt/comfort is definitely a vital part of the plot. If this bothers you please don't read any further. The medical information is accurate as I could make it with research on the Internet so please understand I do not have training in that area. The areas and restaurants and amusement parks in this story are all quite real and a lot of fun. If you ever get to Los Angeles you might want to check them out.

Thanks; I would like to give special thanks to Larisa and MJ for reading this all the way through for give me constant feedback, help and support. I couldn't have done this with out you.

        The shaking slowly stopped and so did the deep rumbling from the ground. I was finally able to breathe as I felt and smelled the dust and debris settling everywhere. I have never in my life been in such a strong earthquake and I was from Los Angeles so I thought after Northridge I was pretty darned experienced. I couldn't see, everything was pitch black. My training had taken over at the beginning and I automatically went under the nearest archway by my bed, which happened to be the bathroom door. I was here in New Delhi to complete my senior course in cultural anthropology and now I couldn't even find where my bed was. I was terrified.

        Now that the shaking had stopped I knew I needed to find my shoes and get the hell out of here. The only problem was I couldn't even see my bed where I had left them just before I went to sleep. I put my hands out toward where my bed was but there was something blocking my path. So I did the only thing I could do I went into the bathroom to look for way out. I could already hear a horrible creaking sound and I remembered the apartment building that collapsed on itself at home and knew I had to get out of here as quickly as I could.

        I could see some light streaking through a crack in the window. I reached for a towel and stood on the toilet seat praying an after shock wouldn't hit while I was in this position. Then I put my fist in the towel and widened the crack in the window and smoothed it down the best I could. Then I lay the towel down and was preparing to heave myself up when suddenly there was a dirty face with sky blue eyes staring at me through the window. I screamed, I was so shocked.

        “Take my hand.”        

        I stared at the face and stood as still as a statue.

        “Do you understand English? Take my hand. Hurry, before we have an aftershock.”

        I nodded, I seemed to be struck mute by my fear but I now saw that this apparition was there to help me so I took the offered hand and my rescuer pulled me through the window.

        “Are you ok?”

        I nodded again and my rescuer smiled sweetly and said, “Good, come on, please hurry!”

My hand was taken again and I was led to a ladder that was leaning against the building of my small hotel. Once in daylight I realized that my rescuer was tall, strong woman. I didn't know who she was or how she got there but I gratefully followed her to safety.

        Once I was down with the other EMT's who were busy fixing cuts and bruises that I didn't even realize I had she started to move away back toward the building. When I saw she was leaving I asked to have just a minute and ran to her side. I touched her arm and as she turned I looked into concerned blue eyes I knew I would never forget and choked out, “Thank you.” Then I hugged her.

        She returned the hug and patted me gently on the back. Then she pulled back and smiled saying, “You are very welcome. I have to go back. There are a lot of others we have to get out of there. Don't worry those people will help you. Umm….Well…Take care of yourself…”She stuttered and she was gone. I watched her go up the ladder back into that building and out of my life…

                ***                ***                ***                ***

One year later I was back home in Los Angeles in the San Fernando Valley. I worked in Northridge at Chili's restaurant near my campus Cal State Northridge. It was a very busy Friday afternoon and I had large group of firefighters at one of my tables. I was just coming to the table when one of the paramedics was just removing their helmet and a cascade of black hair tumbled over her shoulders as she turned to sit down she faced me and gasped. So did I, it was the woman who had saved my life.

        “Hi,” I said with a shy smile.

        “Hi,” She replied back very shyly.

        We stared at each other silently for almost a whole minute when one of the men at the table called out, ”Hey Christie, Order already we're hungry.”

        Christie blushed beet red and quietly ordered a Chicken Fajita and Iced Tea. I nodded smiled and went to the next person at the table.

        I went to place the order and when I turned around to head back out to my next table she was there, “Hi.”

        “Hi…Um, Did I thank you?” I asked shyly looking at her through my bangs.

        A big beautiful smile suddenly appeared on her face and she said, “Yep, You even hugged me. It was the only one I got. Except of course, the poor souls that were unconscience, I had to carry them out with their arms around my neck. It was very scary. I was very happy that we got out as many as we did. That place was such a death trap.”

        “Yes, I was so lucky. I read how many people died just in that building.”

        Christie nodded, “I was on a training sabbatical in New Delhi. I just happened to be near there when the quake hit and was trained to help. What on Earth were you doing there?”

        “I'm studying Cultural Anthropology and my advisor was a specialist on India so he arranged for me to do my senior project there. I obviously didn't get to finish after what I went through my folks wanted me to come home. I'm still trying to get my senior classes done I will probably go to Mexico to complete my senior project.”

        Christine smiled, “Well I'm glad I was there to help you I…”

        “Hey Mary, your order is up!” Yelled the cook who waited for several minutes but finally felt he had to call her.

        I put my hand lightly on her arm and said quietly, “I am very grateful.” I smiled and went to get my order.

        ***                ***                ***                ***        

        I was done with my shift at Three P.M. and was heading out back toward my car and there she was all alone. My eyes must have been huge she gave me a lopsided grin and said, “Hi, I…um…really wanted to talk to you. Could we…um…could I follow you to another restaurant so we can be comfortable and talk?” She was very nervous and kept looking down at her hands that she was wringing together.

        I gulped, I really wanted to talk to her too but I was so pooped. My shift was the morning and lunch shift that really kept me hopping. I was astonished she came back and I was very glad, “Ok, I would love to talk you too uninterrupted for a while.”

        The bright shining smile that she gave me made me happy that I had made the right decision.

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        We went to a small Starbucks on Ventura Blvd. close to my apartment. We sat and talked for hours. It was so comfortable I felt like I had known her forever. I actually started to nod off on her and she suggested that she drive me home. I was so tired and she was worried that I would have an accident. I protested that I didn't want her to go out of her way or leave my car.

        She put a gentle hand over mine and said softly, “I'll pick you up in the morning and…we could have breakfast. It's a pretty good excuse, Huh?” She asked me with a lopsided grin.

        “Please believe me Christie, you don't need any excuse. Thank you though, I accept.”

        The smile I got was absolutely blinding
        ***                ***                ***                ****

        The next morning there was a knock on my door that I nervously answered. I had just checked myself in the mirror for the third time. I was wearing black jeans and my black mock turtle neck sweater. I had my short blonde hair brushed so it shined brightly and I was wearing my black ankle boots. I answered the door and had to remind myself to breath because before me was the most stunning woman I had ever seen. She was dressed as casually as I was she was wearing blue jeans and an electric blue sweater which made her already stunning eyes sparkle. She had that incredible smile on her face again as she playfully bowed and said, “Your chariot awaits.”

        I laughed and shook my head saying, ”Thank you for bringing it around.”

        “Oh it's my pleasure, If you will come with me, Madame.” She said offering me her arm and escorting me to her Ford explorer. My eyes widened it was so big, I drove a tiny Mazda I had never even been in a SUV. She winked at me opened the passenger door and then gallantly helped me into the seat. I smiled at her and said, “Thank you I didn't think I could make it up here.”

        She reached up ruffled my hair and with an adorable lopsided grin said, “No charge.”

        She closed the door and went to the drivers side of the car and asked, “Is Twains good for you?”

        “Oh that would be great it's nice and simple.”

        She laughed and started the car carefully pulling out as she replied, “I never thought of it that way I just love their toasters.”

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        We entered one of the last old-fashioned family restaurants on Ventura Blvd. It was built in the style of its time that was the 50's and it had toasters at every table so people could make their own toast any way they wanted it. It was full of older people and families. The waitresses wore the old uniforms and were sweet and friendly. I think it was the only place of its kind in the San Fernando Valley.

        We sat down at a booth and I asked Christie, “Are you off today?” It was Saturday so I wondered what the firefighter's weekend looked like.

        “Yep, I have the next three days….Um, what does your schedule look like?” She asked me shyly.

        The night before as tired as I was I went on the net to do a little research and discovered that firefighters had as crazy a schedule as we do in the restaurant business. I smiled into the beautiful blue eyes that waited for an answer to her question anxiously, “I have the first weekend off that I have had in two months” I replied excitedly.

        We smiled at each other silently for few minutes when there was a quiet cough next to us. We were both startled and looked up, “Oh ?” Said Christie with a smile. “What would you like Mary? My treat…no arguments.”

        I almost choked but I got myself together enough to smile at the sweet-faced older woman who was our waitress and said, “I'll have a Denver omelet and a large orange juice”

        The waitress smiled sweetly and asked, “Would you like hash browns or home fries with that?”

        “Hash browns, thank you.”

        The lady nodded and turned toward Christie who smiled and ordered, “Two scrambled eggs and bacon with the hash browns and chocolate milk. Thank you.”

        The waitress smiled back and said, ”I'll get these right up for you, Ladies” And left to put the order in.

        “About the your treat thing, Christie you paid for the coffee last night…”

        “I said no arguments my friend.” She said with another blinding smile.

        “Ok…Um, I guess it was lucky we met yesterday….”

        “I think luck had little to do with it. Um…Mary I believe in destiny. How else can you explain us? I mean don't you think its bizarre? I'm not from California I was born and raised in Las Vegas but I wanted to join a fire department. My Dad found an add in a newspaper advertising for women for the department. I was excited because Los Angeles has one of the best fire department in the country, so I applied. What are the odds that we are both here at the same place at the same time? It's remarkable.”

        “Yes, it is….” We fell into staring deeply into each other's eyes again. We left the world around us for a few minutes, as we became engrossed in the other's soul.

        Then a throat cleared again as the waitress put our drinks down. She smiled at us and said she would be back in a few minutes with our breakfast.

        Christie sighed as she watched the waitress leave. “This is so weird. It feels….like I…well like I've known you forever. Even when I was helping you out of that death trap I felt that I had to help you. When you hugged me…I…I almost…well I almost kissed you. Bizarre, huh?”

        My eyes widened I never expected that. I mean she was in rescue mode at the time I didn't even know that I was a…well someone she …would want to kiss. I shook my head and lowered my eyes to my hands around my orange juice glass. “No, After the initial shock wore off I felt the same way. In fact if you want to hear something really nuts I wanted to go back up into that building to be with you. I knew when you disappeared into that building you would be out of my life forever and…I really wanted to …I wanted to kiss you too.”

        A long elegant finger slowly lifted my chin till my eyes met misty blue, “Really?”



        We both were silent with this new knowledge as the waitress delivered our meal to us. We both smiled at the waitress and then silently began to eat our food.

        After a couple of minutes I looked up and put my fork down, “Christie would it be pushy if I asked you to the spend our whole time off together? I mean just having fun of course.”

        A beautiful bright smile lit her face, “No, I don't think that's pushy at all. I'd love to spend time with you, all in good fun of course.” She said with a wink.

        I almost choked on my hash browns but I swallowed some juice to clear my throat. I lifted my glass and said, “To fun.”

        Blue eyes sparkled as she clicked her glass to mine as she replied, “Yep, to a lot of fun.”

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        After breakfast we decided to drive up to Citywalk at Universal Studios, This is an area that was made to attract local residents. It has a movie complex attached to an area with a mall, which has many unique shops and restaurants. It was unique for many reasons; it has several restaurants most people wouldn't think of going to like the Hard Rock Café and Gladstones. It has virtual car racing and virtual experience theater as well as an Imax. It has a crazy bowling alley with wild lights and crazy videos going and blaring rock music. You could walk by a movie star as well as tourist any time it's kick for any local to go to and we usually went once in a while to see what was new.

        It was Christie's first time up there and she was looking around at everything with an amused interest. She had a firm hold on my hand as we watched the strolling performers and kids jumping around in the open fountain that anyone can get soaked anytime in. She shook her head at the kids that just stood there and let the water go up their pants leg and soak them from top to bottom.

        “This place is a circus,” She said to me with a huge smile on her face.

        “Yep and its not even that busy. They're not having any event today. You should see it when it's really mobbed.” I said amused at her wide-eyed reaction, as she looked at the milling crowds.

        “You mean this isn't crowded?” She asked when I shook my head her blue eyes widened even more. ”God, I don't believe it. What would you like to do?” She asked taking my hand and walking down toward where the movies we're. ”Would you like to see a movie?”

        “I'd love to, “ We went and got our tickets there was still time before the movie started so I suggested that we window shop.

        The smile suddenly left her face and she asked quietly, “Window shop?”

        “Yes, What's wrong?”


        I could tell she was upset by something. She was still holding my hand but her other hand was going through her hair and she couldn't seem to look me in the eye. I pulled her gently to a bench across from the theater and sat down next to her. I took her hand into my lap and asked, “Please tell me what's wrong. I don't judge people and I especially would never judge you. Please talk to me.”

        “Well…I know its silly but I'm not much of a shopper at all. I mean I order everything on line even my groceries. I'm not very patient and I don't like to worry about rude people in the shops and I…”
        “Shh, Its ok, we don't have to do anything. It was just a suggestion I thought it would be fun.” I looked up and saw the huge screen with Madonna belting out lyrics I smiled and leaned my head on her shoulder and said, “We can just sit here and watch music video's if you want.”

        “Mary, What I'd really like to do is talk. I don't really want to do anything but get to know you better…I mean…”

        “That's fine with me I'd love to talk to you. You have the most beautiful voice I have heard.” It was so adorable she actually blushed.

        She looked down and then looked up at me through those impossibly long eyelashes and said, “Thank you. You have a beautiful voice too. I love the sound of it. It's really strange but it soothes me. I have never had that feeling from anyone else in my life.”

        Now I blushed, she smiled and caressed my cheek. I looked up at her and in a very strained voice said, “Thank you that means a lot to me. What would you like to talk about?”

        “You…Everything…I want to know everything about you. I want to hear anything your willing to tell me.”

        “That could take a long time. We might miss the movie.”

        “To hell with the damn movie, your far more important.”

        “I am?”

        “Yes,” She got up and pulled me up next to her. “Come on lets walk. I want to go some where more private.”

        “Um…I think that would be a good idea…Private might be the best thing for us right now.”

        We looked into each other's eyes and understood each other perfectly. We were walking in the opposite direction from where we parked the car. She stopped us and turned around and gently pulled us other way. We left Citywalk and headed toward her place, which was closer. We really did need some privacy and the sooner the better.

                ***                ***                ***                ***

        Her place was a beautiful condo nestled in the hills that surrounded the studio. It was duplex that had two condo's one up stairs and one down stairs. Hers was the one on the top floor I was amazed by the size of it. It was a huge place beautifully decorated simply but with good taste and excellent quality furniture. There was little else, no nick nacks or clutter. It was beautifully done with out it and my eyes must have reflected my surprise.

        “I bought it furnished, I don't have a lot of stuff. I like thing simple…”

        “Yes I can see that. Don't you have any pictures of your family?”

        “Sure, there in my room. Come on I'll show you.”

        She gently guided me to her room. It was obviously the only room in the place that was occupied. She had two lovely pictures framed in gold. One was her whole family, her parents, her two brothers and herself. The other was picture of just her parents. She had two posters on her walls one was of the Chinese symbols Yin and Yang. The other a beautiful white Lotus. Her bed was neatly made and everything was in its place even her water glass was just so.

        “Are you sure you even want to be near a slob like me? I'm a collector and I have gobs of stuff scattered everywhere. Also I'm not exactly orderly or neat…”

        A gentle hand landed on my mouth as she smiled at me affectionately, “Opposites attract. I really don't give a damn if your slob or not. The reason this place is so neat is that I'm hardly ever here. I live at the station most of the time. I tend to clean a lot when I'm here. I don't…well I'm not…I don't go out much and It helps with the loneliness. I am not a…I don't really get along….I…”

        Now my hand copied hers and covered her mouth with the same gentleness. I took my hand off and we smiled at each other. Slowly we moved into an embrace. We kissed each other with a deep loving passion and the more we kissed the more passionate it became. We explored each other till we ran out of breath.

        When we pulled back Christie stroked my hair around my ear and said quietly, “You are so beautiful. I am so drawn to you. I am not….I have never wanted …I have never done anything like this before…”

        “Me either, What do you think it means? “

        “I don't know, I think I do but I'm not sure.”

        “Do you think that we…Do you think were…”

        “In love?” Asked Christie who obviously felt as uncertain as I did.

        I nodded. “Yes.”

        “Yes…I think so …I …Mary I can't resist this any more…”She said her eyes darkened with passion as she picked me up and carried me to her bed. As soon as we hit the bed we were both consumed by passion. Our hands were busy removing clothes; our lips were busy exploring skin. It was as if two meteorites collided our love just exploded when we reached our climax it was so intense I thought I was going to faint.

        Somehow we were able to crawl into each other's arms before sleep over took us. It was the most profound and wonderful experience of my life. I had never felt anything remotely like this before. I had never felt so loved or so connected to another human being. I had been hunting all my life for that missing piece that would bring some sort of happiness, Christie was that missing piece, and she was home.

        Christie was gently stroking my hair and snuggling against my shoulder, my hands were lovingly stroking her strong back. What amazed me was how intimate I had become with some one I hardly knew so quickly. I was always a friendly but a distant person with Christie though all the walls were gone.

        “Christie have you ever felt like this for a complete stranger before?”

        “Your not a stranger,” Said Christie firmly as she pulled me closer to her so she could embrace me tightly in her warm arms.

        “I'm not?”

        “No, I felt like I knew you when I carried you out of that hotel. Did you…um…Do….?”

        “Yes, I was going to say the same thing. I feel like I have known you my whole life. Like this was always planned…”



        “I am deeply in love with you.”

        I smiled and turned so I could look into those beautiful blue eyes and I found them so open and loving I felt like I would drown in them. ”I am deeply in love with you too. I feel like your inside me. That you are a part of me…”

        “Soulmate's.” Said Christie with a huge smile.


        Christie laughed and rubbed noses with me, “ I have looked a long time for you. I didn't really think you would come…I haven't…well I don't…well you saw that we were both….”

        “Virgins, “ I said very quietly.

        Christie nodded.

        “You are so beautiful, you must have had many…well…opportunities.”

        Christie blushed and snuggled her head into my shoulder where I could feel the warmth of the reaction I just caused. “I never felt right with any of the people I met. I didn't trust them. Its like I knew I had to wait…damn this will sound so bizarre…”

        “I doubt it, what?”

        Christie smiled and looked up at me so she could look into my eyes, What I saw there stunned me. It was as if I could see myself, my own heart reflected in those beautiful blue orbs.

        “I had to remain pure. Mary, I know this sounds really strange but I felt like I couldn't waste this precious gift on someone who wasn't….well….”

        “The other half of your soul?”

        She nodded and I kissed her cheek, “I know, I always felt the same way. I pretty much figured that I would die a virgin. Unlike every other person I knew I was never interested in casual sex. None of the people in my life were…well they weren't you. I had to wait for you. It isn't bizarre it's beautiful.”

        “Your beautiful,” Christie brought me closer to her it was if we were floating in time. She kissed me deeply and then when we parted our lips she looked into my eyes and said, “I love you so much that I feel like my heart is going to burst out of my chest.

        “Me too,” I brought her lips back to mine and kissed her with such passion I hardly recognized myself.

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        The next morning we went to a coffee shop called Dupars on Ventura Blvd. Another comfortable place with waitress as old as time. We were enjoying our order that just arrived and were teasing each other back and forth when suddenly there was choking noise from the booth behind us.

        Christie became instantly alert she jumped up and ran to the booth where the woman was choking on what we would later find out was a piece of bacon. Christie gently stopped the man who appeared to be the woman's husband from slapping her on the back and went behind her and performed the heimlick maneuver. After a couple of seconds of the professional's help the piece of bacon flew out of the woman's mouth. Then Christie checked the woman's passage to make sure it was clear. She got a glass of water from the table and gently urged the woman to sip it. This all happened in a matter of minutes everyone else in the restaurant stood around with their mouths hanging open including me.

        Once Christie was sure that the woman was ok, she got up sat back down in our booth and quietly ate her breakfast as if nothing had just happened.

        I slowly sat down next to her and tapped her lightly on the shoulder and said, “Excuse me love, I believe your a hero.”

        Christie looked up at me from the pancakes she was dissecting and shook her head; “No I'm not. I was just doing my job.”

        “Well I know that it is part of your training, but to me I'm in love with a hero. You saved her just now and you saved me a year ago. I call that extraordinary.”

        Christie put her fork down and gently took my hand in hers shaking her head, “No, I hope your not in love with a hero because I want you to be in love with me. To you especially I don't want to be a hero I want to be your soul mate.”

        “Can't you be both?”

        “I guess…Mary, I really was just doing what I was trained to do. I am very glad I was here to help the poor woman but I am not a hero I'm a paramedic. Please, please see me for what I am.” There were tears in her worried eyes as she pleaded with me.

        I cupped her cheeks with my hands and wiped the tears from her eyes. I looked deeply into her eyes and replied, “I do see you for you. Can't I be proud of you?”

        She swallowed and looked down toward her lap nodding, “Yeah, I guess so. But I…”

        “I love all of you, every part of you. The good and the flawed all of you, every inch. I love you, my soul mate…ok?”

        “Ok,” She replied as she looked up at me though her eye lashes a slight grin on her face.

        “I'm still proud of you because Christie what you just did was more then your job it's part of your soul too. “

        Big blue eyes looked up at me as an eyebrow rose archly she smiled and quietly said, “Ok, I guess I can accept that. As long as you accept that I'm flawed and that I'm just a working person doing my job.”

        “Well the only faults of yours I know is that you don't like shopping and you're a neatness freak and I can easily accept those. I hope you can accept all mine as well.”

        Christie laughed and nodded, “Oh I do, I am desperately in love with you even if you do love to shop and are a collector extrodinare.” We both laughed and started to feed each other our breakfast.

        “Excuse me, Miss.” Said the man from the next booth.

        Christie looked up at the man shyly, “Yes sir?”

        “Thank you for saving my wife…If you hadn't been here…well… thank you,” He said as tears poured out of his kind eyes.

        Christie looked upset but she nodded and said quietly, ”It was my honor, sir.”

        The man nodded then he reached out squeezed her hand and walked back to his wife.

        Teary blue eyes met mine, “Why did he have to do that?”

        “Because he's grateful and he's a good person.”


        “Just accept it. That's part of your job too.”

        Christie took a deep breath and nodded. “Ok” She squeaked then she stared at the pancake and slowly tried to eat it again.

        ***                ***                ***                ****

        We only had one more full day together before we both had to go to work. We decided to go up to Santa Barbara and walk around the beach and the pier. It was a weekday but since it was a tourist town it was still crowded with people. We strolled and people watched, it was fun. We sat in the sand and watched the boats go out of the harbor it was interesting collection from canoes to yachts to a huge freighter.

        Christie suddenly felt the urge to do something different and talked me into to taking a small kayak around the harbor. I was amazed at how easily I picked up all the instructions that Christie was gently guiding me with, I was never an outdoorsy person and this was a really new experience for me. We had a great time laughing and talking till the time was up. Then we returned the kayak and went up to the pier so we could wander around and shop some more.

        Christie gently nudged me in the arm and asked, ”So would you like to indulge in your favorite sport?”

        “Very funny…Um, could we?” I asked laughing after I gently slapped her stomach.

        Christie's smile widened and she said, “Sure, Come on.”

        Christie walked quietly behind me as we browsed through the first shop. It was a typical seaside shop full of brick a brack and T-shirts. My eyes caressed each object with a deep enjoyment; I impulsively looked behind me to find Christie watching my every move with an intense focus. I wasn't sure what was so fascinating about me glancing at brick a brack so I shrugged my shoulders and continued to look around.

        Suddenly my eyes focused on a beautiful cut glass Pegasus with blue wings. I couldn't take my eyes off it for a full minute it was so breathtaking.

        “Do you like it?” Christie's voice purred into my ear.

        I nodded unable to take my eyes away from it.

        “Ok, Its yours then I'll buy it for you.”

        I turned to meet warm crystal blue eyes that were more beautiful then anything man could create and shook my head, “No Christie, It's a big piece and its expensive. $65.00 is way too much on a gift…”

        Christie cocked her head to the side and asked, “Why don't you really want me to?”

        I was too scared to say that such an expensive gift was too much for a new relationship. I didn't want to abuse our friendship it was all to new for us. I just said “Its just way too expensive and…”

        “Do you like it?” Christie asked with lopsided grin. She could read me too well already and knew exactly why I was hesitating. I nodded yes and she shook her head and put her hand on my shoulder, whispering in my ear, “Well I love you and I want to. Isn't that reason enough?”

        Tears suddenly poured from my eyes. “Wow.”

        Tears suddenly appeared in Christie's eyes too but she smiled and said quietly, “Not exactly the response I expected but its pretty damn good.” She joked as she reached over my shoulder and gently picked up the Pegasus to take to the cashier.

        I tried for a couple of minutes to get my breathing back to normal then I followed the taller woman to the counter.

        ***                        ***                ***                        ****         

        We were nestled together in my living room after our trip to Santa Barbara. I was admiring my new artwork on the table and when I looked up into blue eyes I noticed that she was looking at me with that same intensity. I was more then a little pleased by that.

        She gently touched my skin and said, “You're a little burnt do you have any Aloe Vera?” I nodded but I didn't move I was way too comfortable. “Your warm to the touch I really should…”

        I caressed her cheek and said, “Your pretty warm to the touch too.” I smiled as I felt her shudder.

        “I don't think there are words to describe what you are doing to me.”

        “Mm, Good,” I was suddenly overwhelmed with the need to kiss her so I did. I was so passionate I took Christie by surprise she fell back and moaned in response to what I was doing to her mouth. She unbuttoned my blouse and then made her way to my breasts. Making me moan in need from what her mouth was doing to my already hot skin. Now it was on fire.

        “You taste so good,” She purred as she made her way to south tantalizingly.

        I was beyond responding she was now doing things to me I had only dreamt of and I allowed my mind to float away. I was drifting in this cloud of passion till I slipped over the edge taking a very happy Christie with me.

        The next thing I knew I was in my bed naked with soft strong hands massaging Aloe Vera into my back and shoulders. Christie must of felt I was back with her because I heard her voice right next to my ear ask quietly, ”Does this feel good?”

        “Oh Yeah, Um…How long was I…Um…”

        “Out cold, only a couple of minutes. It was enough time to get you in here and undressed the rest of the way. Then I got a wash cloth and some Aloe Vera. I bathed you in cool water and you woke up as I was spreading this cream on. Sweetheart your still warm to the touch I'm going to get you some aspirin.”

        I watched as a completely naked Christie walked to my bathroom completely oblivious to the fact that she was buck-naked. I had to remind myself to breathe a few dozen times. She came out and her face was lit by a beautiful smile as she caught me gawking at her.

        “I thought I should get comfortable too, “ She said with a smirk as she helped me to sit up and handed me a glass and some aspirin, which I dutifully took.

        “Did any one ever tell you how incredibly beautiful you are?”

        Christie actually blushed beet red. She was sitting on the edge of the bed playing with the end of the blanket. Her eyes were downcast as she quietly replied, “No, I never let myself become close enough to anyone before…I was….well….”

        “Well you are, “ I said as I put down the glass and cuddled up next to her.

        “Thank you, You are more beautiful then I can express. Mary, I never want…can we…I really…” I was beginning to understand that when Christie stuttered she was trying to get out something personal and emotional.

        “Would you like us to live together?” I asked her shyly.

        Christie's eyes widened in surprise and she nodded, “Yes, If you want to. I mean I don't want you to feel…Um, like you were…”

        “I want to.”


        “More then anything,” Christie's face beamed with happiness and I could feel my face match hers.

        “Wow!” She said as she crawled into bed beside me. I don't know if it was her warm body, the sun I had or the long day but I fell into a deep sleep. The last thing I heard as I drifted off was, “Sleep well my love.”

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        I got up all alone in the bed. I looked around the room and called, “Christie?”

        “I'm right here, Sweetheart.”

        Christie was by the window looking out on to Ventura Blvd. She was fully dressed and had a very sad expression on her face.

        “Why are you dressed I thought you went on duty at 10am?”

        Christie chuckled shaking her head and pointing to the clock by my head, “It's already 9am.”

        I was shocked I usually wake up at 730am, “I have never slept this late in my life.”

        “Well you were very tired and the sun will kind of do that to you.” She said quietly still looking out the window. Sad blue eyes then turned toward me and she said really quietly, “I don't want to be away from you for 4 whole days.”

        I suddenly realized what she meant and my eyes widened at that realization, “Can't you come over at all?”

“Yes…I'm not a captive there. ”She replied with a smirk as she walked over and sat on the edge of the bed and caressed my cheek. “Its just better to be at the station when your on call. This is exactly why…I never…Um, Mary will you be able to deal with this…I…?”

        I put my arms around her and brought her close nodding my head against her chest as I said, “Yes, I can deal with anything as long as you come back to me.”

        I felt her fingers going through my hair and her breath gently caress my neck as she replied, ”I'll always come back to you.”


        She nodded her head and cuddled it against my neck, “Forever.”

        We held each other close till Christie had to leave. When it was 930am she kissed me deeply and pulled back gently pushing my hair behind my ears and promised, “I will call you every chance I get.”

        I nodded and leaned my forehead against hers and said, “I'll keep my cell on at all times, ok?”

        She smiled and kissed my cheek, “Good, I've got to go.” She reluctantly got up and stood in the doorway saying sweetly, “I love you.”

        “I love you too,” She blew me a kiss and just looked at me for a whole minute then left with a wave of her hand and a small sad smile.

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        The call came at 12pm; a woman was riding her horse in the Angeles National Forest when a rattlesnake spooked her horse. It reared and the woman fell off and down the side of cliff. She landed on a ledge conscience but badly hurt. She broke her leg and sprained her wrist.

        Christie's company was the first on the scene. She saw what had to be done and she just did it. She had the rescue helicopter called got in attaching the harness to herself and getting all the things she would need ready carefully packing them all in a small pack at her waist. When the helicopter was over the woman, Christie carefully got out and propelled herself down into mid air to be slowly let down the side of the mountain till she was on the ledge aiding the wounded woman.

        The first I heard about all this was on a breaking news bulletin on the TV in the bar. I looked up and saw a paramedic being lowered down the side of a mountain. I walked closer to the TV mesmerized by the scene.

        I watched as the paramedic helped the poor woman and then she was placed on a stretcher and sent up via a safety harness. Then the news helicopter followed the paramedic up and I watched the safety helmet come off her head and I almost fell down. It was my Christie.

        The bartender came over and caught me before I fell to the ground. “Mary are you ok?”

        I nodded at him.

        “Do you want some water?”

         I nodded again as I watched several reporters trying to get an interview with her after they landed. She just briskly went to the truck and let the spokesman for the Los Angeles Fire Department take care of it.

        I was sitting in a booth in the back of the restaurant drinking some water with my mangers permission. She is a really nice woman and she had no problem giving me some time to get myself together again. My cell phone rang and I almost dropped it trying to open too fast.

        “Christie are you ok?” I asked anxiously in a hysterical rush.

        I could hear her blow out a breath and say, “I was afraid you would see that. I'm fine Sweetheart.”

        “Thank God. How is your patient?”

        I could hear the smile in her voice as she answered me, “She is fine, Thanks Sweetie. She's in really great shape actually considering what she just went through. You wouldn't believe the way this place looks. It seems that every magazine show in Los Angeles have invaded this hospital. They're trying to get an interview with anyone even the janitor.” She said with a chuckle.

        “So will I see you on Extra?”

        Christie laughed fully for the first time; “No I refused them all. I always do. I hate all that publicity stuff. Its like I told you before I was just doing my job. I was just calling to make sure you were all right.”

        I wanted to hug her so badly I could taste it, I just smiled and replied, “Your always looking out for me, huh?”

        “Yep, that's my privilege and pleasure.”

        “Well I almost keeled over when you took that helmet off, but I'm fine now.”

        “Oh Sweetie, I am sorry you got so scared. I am glad your all right. Listen my team is leaving I have to go. I love you.”

        “I love you too. Please be careful.”

        “I always am. Bye.”

        “Bye.” I disconnected the phone and put it in my pocket.

        Sandy the bartender smiled and asked, “So is your friend ok?”

        “Yeah, Thanks for taking care of me before.”

        “Hey, you'd do the same for me.”

        “True, Thanks anyway ole' boy.”

        “Your welcome, Shrimp.”

        ***                ***                ***                        ***

        Christie was at the station grabbing a bite to eat when she glanced at the duty roster in the kitchen and groaned. My Christie enjoyed it when it was her turn to clean and it was ok to shop for food since she ate it but cooking was a chore that she despised. It was not unusual for a stack of boxes to arrive from the closest pizza parlor when it was her turn to cook. Christie leaned against the refrigerator and moaned. She took her slice of pie out of the refrigerator and walked hopelessly to the kitchen table.

        “What's wrong Christie?”

        Christie looked up and saw her partner Jennifer was getting a cup of coffee and looking at her sympathetically. She sighed and said with a tilt of her head, “Guess who has to cook dinner this week?”

        “Oh, I'll look forward to Pizza.”

        Christie sighed and shook her head, “I just wish I could really cook something….Wait a minute, I know..” Christie suddenly smiled and snapped her fingers; “I'll call my best friend. She's made me a wonderful dinner and I know she's a great cook. I'm sure she would be happy to save us…”

        “Best friend? Miss super private life has a best friend?”

        Christie stared at her piece of pie she was trying to protect me but at the same time she was proud of me and wanted to share our friendship with her other friends. “Yes.”

        “Um, How close a best friend?”

        “Jennifer,” Christie growled.

        “Come on, Christie, You have been alone too long. Did you meet someone nice?”

        Christie looked up at her friend and nodded.


        She nodded again.


        “And what?


        Christie got up and walked to the sink looking out the window as she replied in a very low voice, “I'm in love.”

        Jennifer looked at her with an expression of pure happiness mixed with disbelieve, “I am astonished but I am so damn happy for you.”

        Tears fell down Christie's cheeks and she said very quietly, “Please don't say anything to anyone, ok? She is just my friend, Jen you know how they are about…”

        “Us dykes?” Said Jennifer with a slight grin.

        Christie nodded sadly, “I want them to meet her and know her as my friend. I want them to fall in love with her for the wonderful person she is. I don't want them to say mean things to her because were different…. I have to protect her but I want her to be a part of my life here…”

        “Shhh, It's ok. I really fully understand. She will be just your best friend to our crew. You know I can just hear hearts breaking all around town…”

        Christie wiped her tears on her sleeve and asked, “What are you talking about?”

        Jennifer rolled her eyes and replied, “You are so oblivious. Don't you realize how many men and women wanted you? There are so many of them you'd need to beat them off with a stick.”

        “Jen you are nuts!”

        “Am I?”

        Christie rolled her eyes and walked to her barracks leaving the uneaten pie sitting on the table knowing that Jennifer would eat it with out a second thought. She wanted to talk to me so she took out her cell and called me at home.

        I was at home missing her and watching TV when my phone rang.


        “Hey Beautiful.”

        “Christie, Oh my God, Hi! How are you? I was just thinking about you, Well I never have stopped thinking about you,” I said blushing even though I was all alone.

        “I'm better now and I never stopped thinking about you too. I miss you so much,” She was lying on her bunk staring at the bottom of the bunk above her.

        “I miss you too. I really wish there was some way I could see you before Friday night.”
        “You sound so cute when you pout,” She teased me I could hear the smile in her low sexy voice.

        “Do I?”

        “Yeah you do. Well I do have an idea on how I can see you before then but there are a few obstacles.”

        “Whatever they are I will jump over them.”

        Christie laughed quietly and said, “My little supergirl. Well I was assigned cooking duties tomorrow night. Would you like to help me?”

        “Help you? Love you can't cook.” I laughed at what I knew would be the surprised slightly bruised expression on her pretty face.

        “Well…Yeah, that's too true. Would you mind cooking for us?” She asked me hopefully.

        “That's a lot of people. I guess I can figure it out, sure I'd be happy to. Is that the hurdle you were talking about? That's not really a big deal I…”

        “No Sweetie, That's not it. The hurdle is…um…”

        “What?” I asked gently I could tell she was upset.

        “Um well, there is a lot of homophobia here at the station…You'd have to only be my best friend. I feel…I hate to lie…I want…”

        “Shh, Its ok. I can deal with that.”

        “I just don't want you to think I'm ashamed…”

        “I don't…Christie, you know that people are people. I think I can handle being just your friend for a few hours, can you?”

        Christie took a deep breath and then quietly replied, “Yes, I just want to see you. Also I think they will all fall in love with you too. Maybe once they know you…”

        “No, I don't think so. Prejudice doesn't change just with exposure only a soul searching can do that and most people don't want to do that. At work I can be your friend as long as it's understood that at home I'm everything to you.”

        “Yes, I agree. Oh and your more then everything to me. Mary you are my life.” There was a gentle catch in the voice at the other end of the phone as she said that and it made my heart beat faster.

        I felt the tears fall down my cheeks as I replied in squeak, “As you are mine.”

                ***                ***                ****                ***

        I arrived at the station at 4pm with all the makings for a huge and complete spaghetti dinner to feed her department. My Christie had met me in the driveway and helped me carry all the fixings as she escorted me to the kitchen. We hugged and kissed on the cheek in the driveway and then she picked up the biggest boxes and led me to the kitchen.

        The Fire Department Captain came in as I was getting all the stuff organized. He smiled at Christie and said, “So I understand we will be skipping pizza tonight?”

        I giggled and Christie blushed nodding saying, “Yes sir. This is my best friend Mary and she is being kind enough to help me out and save my peers from food poisoning.” Christie said proudly putting her arm around my shoulders and bringing me over to meet her Captain.

        He smiled and held out his hand, “Its nice to meet you Mary. Christie has been talking about you this whole shift and to get this silent one to chatter about anything is quite an accomplishment. You must be quite the charmer.” He said charmingly to me with a huge smile on his handsome face.

        I think I blushed fire engine red as did Christie. We both stuttered and he laughed. “Ok, you two bashful young women get cooking we have a company of starving hands to feed.” He said with a smile as he gently shook my hand and slapped Christie on the shoulder in a friendly manner.

        As he left they turned toward each other smiling. “He seems very nice,” I said as I started to boil the water for the noodles.

        “He is very nice, Of all the people here he is the one I am most tempted to tell about us.” She said quietly next to me handing me the things I pointed to. “But if I tell one of them I have to…”

        “Its ok, Lets just handle this the way we discussed.”

        Christie nodded and gently nudged me in the shoulder, “So what do you want me to do.”

        “Can you handle boiling water?”

        Christie rolled her big blue eyes and replied, “Yes.”

        “Good go boil the water while I fix the garlic bread and start the sauce.”

        We were quietly working side by side when Jennifer came in. She watched us silently for a couple of minutes with an affectionate smile on her face. Then she cleared her throat and chuckled as we both jumped.

        “You are going to introduce me to your best friend old girl aren't you?”

        Christie put her arm around my shoulder and said quietly, “Sure, Mary this my partner Jennifer. Jennifer this Mary, my best friend in the whole world.”

        We shook hands and said, “It nice to meet you,” I said in a school girl manner that seemed to please Christie and Jennifer no end which made me blush a deep shade of red.

        Jennifer laughed and said gently, “I'm so happy to meet you, Mary. Christie has told me wonderful things about you and I'm really glad she found someone like you.”

        My head snapped up and I looked at Christie with a shocked look on my face.

        Christie shrugged and said, “Um, Its ok. Jennifer is…well she's…um…”

        “I'm one of the family.” Jennifer supplied for her stuttering friend.

        “Oh good, So I don't have to…”

        “Nope you can say whatever want to me. I approve Christie, she's adorable.”

        Now I blushed a deep red and quickly crossed to bread and started unwrapping it so I wasn't so obvious to the two paramedics.

        “Jennifer,” Christie growled and then she walked over and helped me unwrap the bread. As we began to put them in a pan she whispered, “She is right you are adorable.”


        “Hey, I have to call them like I see them.”

        “Go check the water, Christie” I said blushing and trying to keep my face straight. Christie giggled and said “Yes Ma'am.”

        I glanced toward Jennifer and asked, “Would you like to help us?”


        “Good, Can you handle tossing a salad?”

        “I can handle it. I'm slightly better them my butterfingered friend…”


        “I didn't burn the grilled cheese last year…”

        “That was because John distracted me with that hour long dirty joke…”

        “Well you didn't have to listen to him…”

        “Hey, I was being polite…”

        “Excuse me!” I interrupted the two paramedics who looked at me guiltily, “Concentrate on the tasks at hand. I would like all the food to be eatable please.”

        Christie and Jennifer dutifully nodded and went back to work with out another sound. Jennifer winked at Christie and they both looked at my back affectionately. I didn't know it but I had just gained a friend and ally.

        ***                ***                ****                ***

        Our dinner was cooking under Jennifer's watchful eye as Christie took me on a tour of the station. After I was introduced to everyone she pulled me aside and said, “Oh look you have some sauce on your sleeve.”

        I looked down surprised and said, “I do?”

        “Uh, huh. Come in here it's the laundry room.” She said as gently pulled me into the near by laundry room making sure it was all empty. Then she locked the door and kissed me with all the love and passion we both needed. We enjoyed exploring each other's mouth till we ran out of breath.
We pulled back and looked deeply into each other eyes trying to get our breath back.

        “Do you have any idea how badly I needed to do that?” Christie asked as she gently pushed some bangs out of my eyes.

        “Probably as badly as I did. I love you.”

        Christie smiled and replied, “I love you too. Everyone really likes you. I think I heard about 20 adorables and God knows how many cutes…”She said to me as she hugged me tightly to her and nibbled my ear.

        I rubbed my hands against her strong back and leaned into her as she started to kiss my neck I muttered, “You heard all that? How come I didn't?”

        She pulled back smiling at me; “Because I'm one of the boys and you're a beautiful woman.”

        I shook my head at the statement and said as I caressed her cheek, “They must all be blind and this city is in big trouble if they can't see what a beautiful woman you are.”

        She took my hand and kissed my open palm and then looked at me with lopsided grin; “Sweetie, Here I am just one of the boys. So is Jen. It's the way it works. We like that it seems to stop any sexual harassment. It seems to work real well this way. Like we're just one big family. And that family simply adores you just like I knew they would.” She finished with a kiss on my nose causing me to blush and put my head in the crook of her neck. She snuggled against me and stroked my hair.

        I pulled back and shook my head with a huge smile on my face, “Okay you know best about this place. Why on earth should they feel anyway toward me they just met me?”

        “Several reasons. Your feeding them which is always in endearing. Your incredibly sweet and Oh of course the most vital reason of all, your very easy on the eyes,” She said with wink.

        I rolled my eyes and she laughed, “Seriously though I really want them to accept you. This is a vital part of my life and I desperately want you to be a part of it.”

        “I want to be apart this side of your life too. Um, I think we should go check on our dinner or it may burn and then where will be?”

        “Yes, indeed we can't have that can we. Can I have one more for the road?” She asked as she kissed me deeply again. She pulled back and straightened my hair saying, “I love hugging you and kissing you on the cheek but it kind of wet my appetite for more.”

        I laughed as I replied, “It did the same for me. I just can't wait till tomorrow night.”

        Christie growled lightly as she replied, “Oh God, me too. Come on Love, lets go feed our mob.”

        We left the laundry room and walked back to the kitchen where we we're met by Jennifer who was waiting with her hands on her hips, “Just where have you two been?”

        “We were cleaning Mary's sleeve, see its perfect now,” She held up my arm for Jennifer's inspection.

        Jennifer rolled her eyes knowing it was never dirty as she looked at us with a big smile she said, “Oh yes, I do see all right,” She winked at us causing us all to laugh. “Ok Boss what next?” She asked me with smirk.

        Christie and my eyes met twinkling with mischief as she said, “You get to do all the rest yourself while we set the table.”

        “Oh no I can't wait!” Was the panicked reply.

        We both laughed and then I gently slapped Christie on the arm, “You are a big bully you know that? Ok, Lets get going you two so we can feed your hungry mob.”

        ***                        ***                ***                ***

        We had an incredibly good time with Christie's crew and I was anxiously waiting for our night alone together. I was at work and I had a large set of tables to serve so I was very busy that night. One of the bartenders Angela came to me and said, “Come to the bar, There is a news story on that you need to see.” She whispered.

        I looked up into worried brown eyes and nodded silently following. My fingers nervously playing with my apron pocket. We went into the bar and on the screen a news reporter was explaining about a warehouse fire in the Van Nuys area. Christie's company was on the site because I recognized one of the trucks. It was a 4-alarm fire and the fast moving flames hurt many people.

        I watched as several paramedics brought people out to ambulances as the reporter on site explained that 2 fireman and 1 woman paramedic were injured and being rushed to the hospital. My Heart felt like lead and I whimpered before I fainted because I knew in my heart that it was my Christie.

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        I frantically was trying to reach Christie; I called her cell, the station and her home. At the station no one would say one way or the other they just said they could only release that information to family members. I didn't know her Dad's number so I couldn't call him and even if I did I didn't want to worry him too. The hospital wouldn't even disclose if they had any firefighters within their walls. I stared at my beautiful crystal present on my table with the color of my love's eyes shining. I broke down again and sobbed my eyes out. I hadn't eaten or slept in 24 hours and was beyond knowing what to do.

        There was a knock on my door and I wearily walked over to answer it. When I saw Jennifer I sunk to my knees sobbing hysterically. I was positive that I knew what she was going to tell me, that my love was gone forever.

        Jennifer scooped me up and carried me to my couch. She had closed the door with her shoulder. She soothingly stroked my hair and held me close trying to calm me down.

        “She's ok, Mary. Calm down please. Shh, stop crying she only had smoke inhalation and they cleared it out in 12 hours. She's been moved to a private room and desperately wants to see you.” She saw I was still crying and chucked my chin, “Are you hearing what I'm saying?” I looked up at he with red rimmed exhausted eyes and nodded whispering in disbelieve, “She's really ok?”

        “Yes, my friend she will be fine. Stop bawling and go get pretty. I'm suppose to sneak you into see her…”

        “But…is she…?”

        “It was really bad, my Friend. She had a lot of junk in her lungs but she is as healthy as horse and they were able to flush it out of her. I won't lie to you it was touch and go but she is fine now and really, really wants to see you.” She explained with an understanding expression on her face.

        I nodded, “Okay…Um, I'll go get dressed….Is she really…”

        “Yes, you will see for yourself, Now go get pretty for her.” She said sweetly shaking her head. I went to the bathroom and thought, Considering how I feel she had better deal with me looking clean, I doubt pretty will come to mind when she looks at my exhausted face.

        ***                ****                ***                ****

        They finally removed all the breathing apparatus from Christie and moved her to a private room. She sat up against several pillows as she moodily changed the channels on the TV with the remote.

        Where the hell are they? Damn it! Christie thought to herself as she kept changing the channels not really seeing what was on the TV. I want my Little One right now! She thought angrily as turned off the TV and threw the remote onto the bedside table.

        “Does that mean you feel better?” I asked as I watched the remote bounce off the table on to the floor next to the bed.

        “Mary!” She yelled her face beaming suddenly with a beautiful smile.

        “Hi Beautiful!” I said as I ran to her side. To my surprise she didn't just return my hug her strong arms pulled me up into the bed with her. She showered my face with soft loving kisses, which I happily returned.

        When we pulled back she brushed my hair from eyes where I had carefully brushed it to hide my sore eyes from the world. “You look so pale and your eyes look really raw, Oh Sweetie,” She hugged me to her tightly as she realized the effect this had on me.

        “Um, You're the one in the hospital…”

        “I'm fine. You look like you have been crying the whole time. Your eyes are shiny,” She gently leaned her cheek against my forehead, “You have a fever.” She said in alarm as she pushed the button for the nurse.

        “What are you doing?” I asked suddenly panicked and trying desperately to pull away.

        “I'm doing my job, I'm taking care of you.” She said holding onto me tightly not letting me get an inch away from her. When the nurse came in she forestalled any arguments holding her hand out she said, ”Stop, This is my best friend she has been so worried about me she's developed a fever go and get her some aspirin…Now!”

        “Christie I…”

        “No arguments, Go!” Christie growled.

        The nurse blinked and left.

        “Um, Why is she listening to you?”

        “She used to be an EMT and I knew all her little secrets…so?” Christie said with a wicked smirk.



        “Love, Isn't that blackmail?”


        “You're a very dangerous woman.”

        “Yep very. Have you eaten anything since you found out about this?”

        “I…Um well,…I kind of…”

        “You haven't have you?” She asked holding me close and running her fingers through my hair, which was very calming to my beating heart.

        “No,” I admitted in a whisper against her shoulder.

        The nurse came in with water and an aspirin, “Casey bring me a sandwich from the vending machine…”

        “Christie you can't eat that…”

        “Its not for me, she hasn't eaten for at least 36 hours I needed to get something into her stomach.”

        Casey looked at me sympathetically and said sweetly, “I'll go down to the cafeteria and get her some eatable food.”

        “Oh I don't want you to get into any trouble,” I tried to protest.

        “Shh Sweetie, Casey I'll pay you as soon as Jen gets back with my clothes and stuff.”

        The nurse nodded her head and left. Christie then looked me in the eye and shook her head at me. “Really Love, Starving yourself? Yeash, Mary what in the world am I going to do with you?”

        I tilted my head to one side and said quietly, “Love me?”

        “Oh Sweetie, I do and I always will. Forever.”

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        Jen took us to Christie's where she had to fight with the tall beauty to get her to go to bed.

        “Christie the doctor said bed rest. You are going to have bed rest even if I have to knock you out. I don't want to lose my partner…”

        “You are not going to lose your partner!”

        “I sure as hell could you look like crap!”

        “Do not!”

        “Do too!”

        “Ok, You two enough!” I said standing in between them with my hands on my hips. I pointed to Christie; “You get into bed.” And pointing to Jen I directed the tall woman toward the front door, “And you go to the car get the stuff we left in there that she will need later.”

        They both stood there with their mouths hanging open which amused me no end. So I gave them both significant looks till Christie smiled and saluted me saying, “Yes Ma'am.” And obediently went into the bedroom.

        Jen smiled, shook her head and went to get Christie's bag and her medicine.

        I walked into the bedroom and leaned against the door looking at the very reluctant patient sitting on the edge of the bed.

        “Get in the bed, please.”

        “Sweetie, I am fine…”

        Christie if you tell me your fine one more time I'll…I'll…”

        An eyebrow rose and blue eyes sparkled at me, “Yes?”

        “I won't stay and keep you company.”

        The beautiful blue eyes suddenly widened and she hurriedly got into the bed, “I'm in, I'm in.”

        “That's my big girl,” I said with a smile, “And as a reward for being such a good girl,” I walked over and gently kissed her on the cheek.

        “Oh no you don't,” She said as she pulled me into the bed with her, “Now give me a proper kiss.”

        I looked deeply into her eyes and teased, “Please?”

        “Pretty please?” She asked sweetly kissing me all over my face.

        I giggled and pulled her closer still and kissed her deeply. We both pulled back in the need of air against the stacked pillows and hugged each other again.

        Jen dropped Christie stuff in the corner of the room. She cleared her throat and shook her head, “Excuse me didn't the doctor's orders for you include bed rest? That doesn't look very restful.”

        We both looked at her and Christie pulled me even closer as she looked over my shoulder at Jen saying, “For me this is very restful. You go!”

        “Pushy broad. For someone who just got out of the hospital your acting pretty tough…”

        “Jen,” growled Christie sitting up.

        “Ok, ok I'm going.” She smirked and tipped her hand against her forehead as if she was wearing a cap. “Have fun you two.”

        “We intend to. Now leave,” Said Christie as one of the pillows sailed across the air toward Jen's head.

        Jen caught it in the air and grinned at her, winked at me and left.

        “I thought she would never leave, now where were we?”

        “Shh, now Christie…”

        Christie looked as if I was about to deny her a birthday gift.

        “Ok here's a deal for you. You take your meds like a good girl and we can cuddle till they take effect. Then later we will do whatever you like after you get some sleep. Deal?”



        “Oh Goody! Then it's a definite deal,” She said with sparkling eyes.

        “Oh boy, what have I gotten myself into?”

        “Don't worry little one, You will love every single minute of it. I guarantee it.”

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        One blue eye opened a crack followed quickly by the other, Christie looked up into my eyes and smiled sleepily, “And just why are you sitting there devouring me with those beautiful eyes of yours and not sleeping?”

        I shrugged and smiled as I gently ran my fingers through her thick soft hair. She captured my hand and brought it to her lips kissing it gently. Then she pulled me down with it till I was lying on top of her, “Why?” She asked whispering in my ear.

        Tears sprang to my eyes and I buried my face in her shoulder. She held me tightly and said softly, “Please tell me why your crying, Sweetie. What's wrong? What's hurt you?”

        There was desperation in her voice that registered in my foggy brain and I looked up into her worried gaze. I swallowed a couple of times and I croaked out, “I was watching you sleep because I was afraid if I closed my eyes you would be a dream and I'd be all alone again…”I broke down crying in great sobs. I could feel Christie's arms pulling me close and gently stroking my back. I could hear her crying softly too.

        “Oh God, Sweetie, I'm here. I'm really here. Please don't cry anymore,” She begged me softly.

        I looked up to meet tear-filled blue eyes with my own. We wiped each others tears gently and I whispered, “I'm so sorry…”

        “No, Why should you be sorry?”

        “Christie, I fall apart every time you get hurt. I…its just not fair to you. I…its just that I finally found you and I…I don't think I could live with out you…”

        I tried to stop myself but I began to cry again, She kissed my forehead and ran her fingers through my hair saying, “You are always going to worry about me as I will always worry about you. Its part of being in a relationship. Why do you think I went nuts in the hospital till I knew that you were fed and taken care of? You see my love our work will now have to take a back seat to our real job, which is taking care of each other. It's the way it should be. I am a part of the fire department and it's a part of me but you are my heart and soul. So I understand why you're crying and guess what? This will happen again. My question though is do you want it to? Can we continue this relationship? Can you stand what it will do to you every time I'm on a dangerous call? I am now thoroughly committed to you can you commit to me too?”

        “Yes, oooh yes! I already have. You are my life. My everything. You are right I have to accept that this is a part of my life now. I do.” I hugged her tightly to me and kissed her cheek then I continued softly into her ear, “I just love you so much. I don't just want this relationship I need it, you're so much a part of me. I'm deeply, deeply committed to you, to us…”She interrupted me by kissing me passionately.

She pulled back and looked deeply into my eyes as she said, “I love you more then life itself but you are not going to have to live without me. If I have an ounce of strength in me no matter what the situation is I will always come home to you. You are my home. I promise.” She sealed that with a searing kiss.

        “Can we move in together this weekend? I want our life together to begin as soon as possible,” She replied kissing the top of my head.

        “Yes, as soon as I get the ok from my Doctor.”

        “Where will we move in, your place or mine?”

        “Well, I do own this place so can it be here?”

        “Are you sure you want a slob like me here all the time?”

        Christie chuckled and rubbed her nose against mine as she replied, “Yes.”

        “Um Christie?” She kissed her way to my ear lobe nibbling gently; she stopped nibbling long enough to mumble, “Mmm?”

        “Will you marry me?”

        Suddenly she raised her eyes and the most incredibly beautiful expression appeared. She then kissed me with such passion that I forgot the question but not for long.

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        Three days later with her doctor's approval Christie and Jen helped me move into Christie's condo. We were all lying around the living room recovering from the move. Jen looked across the living room at Christie and asked, “Where are the keys for the rental truck?”

        Christie was lying on the couch with her head in my lap. She reached deeply into her jeans pocket and pulled the keys out jingling them in the air with a smirk.

        Jen held her hands out and Christie threw them to her.

        “See you in a few.”

        “Bring back some Pizza and a bottle of coke,” Said Christie as she played with the end of my workshirt her warm hands stroking my stomach at the same time causing me to lean back against the pillows in reaction.

        “Sure any restrictions?” Asked Jen with an amused smirk.

        “No anchovies please,” I called and burst out in giggles because the warm hand started to tickle my stomach.

        “No problem, I hate them too.” Replied Jen chuckling at our antics.

        “Go!” Said Christie then she snuggled deeper against my legs. I ran my fingers through her hair and smiled at Jen who smiled back at me and shook her head.

        After Jen left I kissed the top of her head and whispered in her ear, “Well your stuck with me now.”
        “Yes, Thank all that's holy I have you forever,” She said pulling my lips down to meet hers and kissing me tenderly.

        I pulled back and said, “What would you like to do till Jen comes back?”

        “Suck face,” She replied with a huge smirk.


        “Hey, If it's good enough for Henry Fonda to say why can't I?”

        “Who could have known what a bad influence “On Golden Pond” would be on you, my love.” I replied chuckling.

        “Yeah, all those radical ideas filling my head like the importance of love and family.”

        “Those horrible liberals!” I replied laughing reaching down as if to kiss her and then I licked her nose.

        “Oh you!” She scolded pulling me down to give me another kiss almost pulling my back in half.

        “Hey I'm not that pliable,” I cried when I pulled back against the pillows again.

        “Says who?” Christie had a very mischievous look on her face

        “My back …Um, we could get started on the unpacking…”

        “Aww, Sweetie we have all weekend to do that.”

        “Ok, we'll suck face but you will have to change position I think I will break my back if we keep this up.”

        “Deal,” Said Christie sitting up then she scooped me into her arms as she re-situated herself on the couch kissing me deeply. She moved so fast I hardly realized it happened. I was glad the only one who helped us was Jen because anyone else walking in on us at this moment would just about kill me.

        We pulled back after a few minutes to catch our breaths. Christie pushed my bangs back kissing me on the top of my head and asked, “So when are you going to make an honest woman of me?”

        “I'll do it whenever your available.”

        “How about the day after tomorrow?”

        I pulled back from tracing her chin with my tongue and looked astonished into her amused blue eyes. “Really?”

        “Yep, I want to do it as soon as possible.”

        “So do I? But how can we?”

        “Jen will arrange it. She's good at that stuff. Just tell her who you want to be there and give her their phone numbers.”

        I rubbed my cheek against hers and mumbled, “Deal!”

        Christie brought my lips to hers and just a breath apart whispered her voice rough with need, “That's my girl!” Then she kissed me with such passion I felt like she just launched us into orbit.

        ***                ***                ***                ***

        Christie was in the living room with Jen that Sunday trying to calm herself by seeing that the room looked all right for our guests.

        She looked at Jen and asked as she fixed a chair that was already perfectly aligned, “When is everyone going to get here?”

        “Any minute, Yeash calm down. All you have to do is marry the person you love most on the planet. I had to arrange it all last minute. Now relax, your getting what you want.” She grabbed Christie's arm and took her into the Den where Jen had place all the things she needed earlier. All that was left was the cumberbun and tie, which Jen helped her, put them on. She then pulled back and inspected Christie to make sure she looked perfect for our special day.

        She had on a black tuxedo jacket with a white silk ruffled shirt. She had on white dress slacks to match the shirt. The cuberbun and tie were both sky blue to match Christie's eyes. She looked beautiful, in each ear was a small blue sapphire earring a gift from her loving lifemate, me. They were clip ons from my Great Grandmother and I was amazed the night before that she loved them on sight, when we exchanged gifts over dinner since my love never wore jewelry.

        Sandy the bartender from my restaurant stuck his head in and smiled at my beautiful brunette and Jen. “Hey Jen, the guests are arriving.”

        “Thanks Sandy, would you try and keep nervous nelly here calm while I go and check on her bride.”

        “No problem,” Said Sandy who sat down in a chair and watched Christie pace back and forth while Jen came into the bedroom to find me pacing all by myself.

        Jen had knocked and came in and shook her head at me. “My goodness you are breath taking did you know that? I don't think I ever saw anyone look so angelic.” She looked at my antique white dress with matching veil and smiled, “That pearl necklace looks really beautiful with that dress.”

        I smiled back and said a breathy, “Thank you.”

        Jen smiled and said, “Lets see, something old, The dress. Something new, The gift from your betrothed, that bracelet is gorgeous!” I blushed just as I had the night before when my beloved had given it to me, Jen continued, “Something borrowed my Grandmother's pearls and something blue…shit…”

        “Shh, its ok my garter is blue.”

        “Oh you clever girl I'd never have thought of that!”

        I blushed a deeper shade of red and said, “ Thanks and Thanks for being my Father of the bride. My folks couldn't get here in time they are on a business trip for my Dad and were upset but they sent us their love. We
really appreciate you standing in for them.”

        Jen smiled sweetly and bowed, “Its my honor.”

        There was a knock and one of the guys from the station peeked in and looked at Jen saying, “Were all ready.”

        “Thanks,” Jen said as he nodded and bowed out of the room. Jen looked at me and said, “Time to get the show on the road.”

        “Um, I thought Christie didn't want anyone from work to know about this but you…”

        “Shhh, Its ok. John is like family and he's gay so he won't spill it to anyone. He is such a sweetheart; he helped me plan a lot of this for you. You know it was a lot to do in only 48hours I had to have some help or you two nuts would have been really disappointed. Now come on I want my pay off!” She said as she took my arm and led me out of the room.

        I walked down the aisle where a few selected friends and family were all seated. My friend Mason a manger from work had gone on the Internet to get his credentials to marry us. He looked as nervous as we were which made me relax a little.

        I approached Christie with her hair down and shining and her eyes filled with love and tears and I melted. Our eyes were locked as Jen escorted me to her side and I felt like I was floating toward her. When I reached her side she took my hand whispering “Stunning,” into my ear.

        “For you,” I whispered back.

        The commitment ceremony was just like a dream; all I heard were voices, I felt like Christie and I was bound together for all eternity already and this was just a formality. I knew I was home and we turned toward each other and kissed. I blushed when we turned toward our friends and family who cheered congratulations at us.

        After a short reception we went to the limo which was Jen's wedding present. We sat in the back kissing and touching beyond the reality of the moment.

        The driver lowered the window and asked, “Um…where to?”

        “The future,” Christie murmured as she continued to caress and kiss me.

        Jen stuck her head in the driver's window and instructed the confused man on where we were going on short honeymoon.

        The window went back up, the limo moved away from the Condo and we were off to begin our life together.

        The End

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