Disclaimers: All characters referenced in this story are mine and mine alone. Any similarities between them and anyone else living, dead, or fictional, is purely accidental/coincidental. Basically, hands off without my permission-pretty please.
Warnings: No violence, sorry. This does involve a look at loving relationships between women. If this is not your style, you are under 18, or if this is not legal where you live: Either don’t read it, don’t get caught reading it, or forget you ever saw this stuff.
For those who think lesbianism is wrong -sorry, perhaps one day after we cure stuff like cancer and AIDS we’ll work on stupidity-until then, don’t read and don’t flame.
Sex: Of course-not in all sections but it does happen now and again.
Anything I missed? Fill in the blanks or email me.
All comments, questions, suggestions and nice stuff are LOVED!
Bailey held her phone and stared at it in shock. Not only had Jay called her back, but she had actually agreed to meet tomorrow. The ease with which Jay agreed, and the tone of her voice, told Bailey that this would not be an easy meeting. She had to try to make Jay hear her out and she knew this would be her only chance. Now that she knew that she was being offered the job she wanted, there had to be a way for them to make peace. Bailey had given up hoping for anything more with Jay. She simply didn’t deserve someone like her.
While in Florida, Bailey had tried to date the guys she met at college, but couldn’t find anyone she was interested in enough to date more than once or twice. Life didn’t make sense without Jay, but it couldn’t make sense with Jay, could it? She immersed herself in things other than relationships. She took guitar lessons, pottery classes, read voraciously, and even found a spiritual path that finally made sense to her. Finally, she found some peace in her life, but it still felt not quite complete.
On the day before her twenty-sixth birthday Bailey went out to a popular lesbian bar with some friends from work. She found that watching women dancing with women made sense somehow. When a woman asked her to dance she nervously agreed, thankful it was a fast song. Suddenly, the song changed. The new song was slower and the lights dimmed. She was being held by a woman, feeling another woman’s breasts against her own, and she found the feeling intoxicating. She flashed back to that one night with Jay, and she felt sick thinking about what she had given up. She was far from home, working for a liberal company with several gays and lesbians in positions of power. In fact, she was at the club with one of her managers. She didn’t fight it when the woman she was dancing with pulled her in tighter, or when she leaned in for a kiss. Bailey gave in to the kiss, moaning in the back of her throat. Then, Jay’s face flashed in her mind.
She pulled back, apologized to the woman, and stumbled back to the table hoping no one had seen her on the dance floor. She felt a hand on her shoulder and saw that it was her manager, Kelly, looking at her with a little concern.
“Are you okay?” she asked. Was she? Bailey had no idea, so she just shook her head before bursting into tears. Kelly pulled her from the chair and took her outside to get some air.
“What’s the matter Bail? Did she do something to you? I’m sorry, this place was my idea.” said Kelly, as she handed her some napkins she had grabbed on her way out the door. Bailey sniffed and wiped her eyes, trying to calm down. She tried to assure her boss that the woman on the floor wasn’t at fault for her tears, and Kelly relaxed a little.
“What is it Bail? Come on, talk to me. What bothered you in there?” Suddenly something dawned on Kelly, and she asked, “Were you getting into things out there? Perhaps feelings came up you weren’t prepared for?”
Bailey nodded her head, afraid she’d be unable to speak without sobbing.
Kelly leaned over and gave her a hug of support. She asked gently, “Is this the first time you have realized an attraction for a woman?”
Bailey shook her head and said softly, “No, it’s just the first time in a long time that I’ve had to face it. And I ran from it, just like I always do.” With that, she started sobbing and all Kelly could do was hold her gently and whisper words of comfort. She gently rubbed Bailey’s back and suggested they head home when the crying eased. Kelly went inside and grabbed their things. She told everyone that Bailey wasn’t feeling well and she would make sure she got home safely.
Kelly walked Bailey to her door and picked up the keys that Bailey dropped on the ground. She picked the right key and unlocked the door, handing the keys back to Bailey. Bailey just looked at her a minute before thanking her, and asking her in for a drink.
Kelly hesitated, but nodded her head and followed Bailey into her townhouse.
“What can I get you to drink, any preference?”
“Just some water would be great. The club gets too hot, and water is always the best thing after that for me.”
Bailey motioned to Kelly to sit down and went to get two bottles of water. As she reentered the room, Bailey saw Kelly sitting uncomfortably on the edge of the couch. Bailey handed Kelly her water and sat down on the armchair adjacent to the couch. That seemed to put Kelly a little more at ease.
“Bailey, I know that tonight was a shock to you. I’m sorry about that, I sure didn’t mean for it to happen.”
Bailey gave a sad smile before answering, “The only thing you did was help save me after I made a complete fool of myself. I can’t believe I reacted that way to a dance.”
Kelly tried to reassure her, “You know, I think I reacted in a similar way when I started questioning my sexuality. It’s normal to be surprised, shocked, or even want to deny your feelings.”
“That’s not quite the problem. I mean, yes, I’m a bit shocked. But what really shocked me, is that I realized I made a huge mistake and hurt someone very badly back in college. I don’t know what to do with all of this now.”
Bailey was starting to shake a little as she thought back to Jay’s voice when she called to tell her about her move to Florida. Kelly moved over to her and held her, trying to calm her down and give some reassurance. Bailey looked up and found herself entranced by Kelly’s gaze. There was such acceptance, sympathy, and tenderness in her eyes. She wondered why she hadn’t noticed it sooner. This woman is someone who could be a real friend to her. My first real friend since Jay .
Kelly quickly stepped back and resumed her place on the couch. “Um, I don’t know how to say this without sounding egotistical, but you know we can’t be more than friends, right?” asked Kelly. “I mean, I care about you and I consider you a friend, but I can’t have a relationship with a subordinate, it wouldn’t be professional.” Bailey looked a little shocked, and then remembered staring into Kelly’s eyes a moment ago.
“Oh! I’m sorry, I didn’t mean anything … I was just, I mean … Oh Goddess, how do I get myself into these situations?” Bailey moved over to sit next to Kelly, “I’m not about to try to start a relationship now, no worries. I respect you as my boss, and my friend, I’m sorry if you thought anything else. I’m just having a really bad night. I think I just figured out that I haven’t had a real friend since I left home. I never let anyone else get close enough to me.”
Kelly gave her a grateful smile and said, “I’m happy to be your friend and if you need to talk more of this out, now or in the future, you can call me. I’d be honored to help you as you find your way. I have to ask though, this woman you mentioned, is she from around here?”
“No, someone I knew back home. That is part of why I never moved back after college. Well, that and I got recruited by a great company out here!”
As Bailey added that last bit, she got a bit of her normal spark back in her eye and Kelly began to relax. They called it a night shortly after that, but they continued to grow closer after that night. Bailey thought of her a bit like the older sister she never had.
Sunday morning, Bailey woke up early and changed outfits four times. Finally, she settled on tan cargo shorts and a blue polo shirt that fit well, but not too snugly. She styled her dark hair to look casual and a little tousled. She was ready to go a full hour before she needed to leave. Deciding she would use the time to be early and scope out the area, she jumped in her car and headed out. Nervously, she scanned the area for Jay and was surprised to see her arrive quite early as well. Bailey pondered that a moment, thinking that perhaps Jay was as nervous as she was.
Walking over to Jay, she handed her a small bottle of fresh squeezed orange juice that she had picked up on her way to the meeting. She knew Jay loved fresh orange juice in the morning.
Jay stood still for a minute before saying softly, “You remembered, thank you. Should we start walking?”
Bailey agreed and they walked in silence for a few minutes, both trying to settle their thoughts. Finally, Bailey started talking, “Jay, thanks for meeting me like this. I know we both have some concerns about working together. I won’t take the job if we can’t resolve some of that today. I actually have a lot to apologize for and to share with you, if you’ll let me.”
Jay, still nervous and now puzzled, looked over at Bailey and noticed the other woman was biting her lip and looking a bit pale. “Bailey, I respect that you thought about this before taking the job. As an employee, I think you will fit into the work group fine. We can keep our relationship strictly professional. I won’t treat you any differently than anyone else on my staff.”
“Jay, that’s just it, I didn’t come back here just to change jobs. I came back because I owed you a major apology. I—”
“Wait Bailey, you don’t owe me anything! What happened between us, happened a long time ago and we’ve both moved on.” Jay’s brown eyes were flashing with anger that she was trying very hard to keep it in check. “I don’t want to make this personal.”
“Jay, please, just let me say what I have to say, and then take all the time you need to think it over and make up your mind. I will not accept the job without you agreeing to this one request.”
Jay thought for a moment. Then she sighed and nodded her agreement. She guided them towards a bench under some trees and away from the main path.
“Okay, go ahead, I won’t interrupt again.”
Bailey took a deep breath, exhaling slowly before looking up into those brown eyes she used to know so well. “First, my apology comes in two parts. I am so sorry that I ran away from you after what we shared that night.”
Jay stiffened but kept listening. Bailey could see the muscles in Jay’s jaw jump as she clenched her teeth.
“I was young, stupid, and scared to death that my parents wouldn’t understand. I was fine with you being a lesbian, but I was terrified when that term could be applied to me. It was too much to fast for me and I ran because I couldn’t figure out what else to do. I should have talked to you, but I was so afraid, and it was easy to blame the alcohol and you. You didn’t do anything wrong Jay, I initiated everything that night and I enjoyed it all.” Bailey stopped to regroup and take a breath while trying to assess Jay’s reaction, thus far.
“The second part of the apology is because not only did I hurt my best friend, I lied to you. I lied about my feelings and I continued to lie by not getting in touch with you since then. I did finally come out to myself, and eventually my folks. We worked through things and we’re fine. Yet, I was still too afraid to contact you. I’m so very sorry for all the pain I may have caused you Jay. You are the person I would like to protect the most, and instead I hurt you so much.”
Jay sat there, unable to believe what she was hearing. The conversation she had dreamt of for years was actually happening, but she found that she no longer wanted to walk away or react with rage. Part of her wanted to toss her revelations back in Bailey’s face, but she thought she felt a tiny whisper of hope too.
“I’m not sure what to say Bailey. You were my best friend for so long, and then I fell in love with you. I resigned myself to you never feeling the same way. But, then we made love and I thought that you must love me too. I woke up to find you gone and couldn’t reach you. The next thing I knew, you were leaving for another state and I never heard from you again. You broke my heart Bailey!” Jay stopped for a moment as she very obviously gathered herself together. “I appreciate the struggle you went through, but you broke my heart.” Tears glistened in both their eyes as they sat next to each other, still looking in each other’s eyes.
“Jay, I know you may never trust me again. I know that I have no right to ask for this, but I want to try to rebuild our friendship. You were the most important relationship I’ve ever had, and I miss you every day. Can we at least try?”
Jay took a deep, shuddering breath, blowing out slowly as she counted to ten.
“Part of me wants to tell you to fuck off, but— part of me wants to talk more,” admitted Jay. “You just threw a lot at me and I need time to think about it. The way things happened between us affected a lot of my life. I don’t trust easily anymore, I don’t let people in.”
Bailey nodded her understanding, afraid to speak lest she start crying.
Jay continued, “I’ve been thinking about the past a lot and about making some changes in my life. Why don’t we try this— we agree that you will take the job for now, and we’ll try to build a professional relationship. In the meantime, give me a little time to absorb this and I’ll call you so we can talk more. I have to admit, I’ve really missed you, and our friendship. I don’t know where this will head, if anywhere, but I’m willing to consider it.”
Bailey gave a small smile and tears started running down her face. “Thank you Jay, I’m willing to spend the rest of my life making things right between us. I’ve regretted this for so long, but I was too afraid to deal with it.”
Jay was silent a moment and then asked, “What changed? I mean, why did you finally come back?”
“The truth will sound a little trite, but I promise you, nothing but honesty from now on. I lost a close friend of mine recently, my former manager Kelly. She taught me many things. She helped me come out and come to grips with the mess I made of my personal life. She told me that the one thing I shouldn’t do was postpone conversations like this one, because the regret of what might have been is too great.”
Jay nodded and said, “I’m sorry for your loss. Were you lovers?”
Bailey gave a short laugh before replying, “No, never lovers, but good friends. We would have made horrible lovers. She was my only real friend since you, and she died way too young.”
Jay remembered her juice suddenly, and gave it a quick shake before opening it. She took a swallow and offered it to Bailey, who took it gratefully, and drank some down before handing it back.
“Do you mind me asking how she died? You don’t have to talk about it if you don’t want to though.”
“It’s alright Jay, I’ll answer any question you want. She died of a brain hemorrhage, an aneurism. She actually had two. They got to one in time, but couldn’t reach the second. It started leaking and she passed away two days later. Before she lost consciousness, she made me promise to come home to resolve my life. She was right. It was past time for me to take responsibility for myself.”
Jay patted her hand and offered her the rest of the juice. Bailey finished the juice, then stood up and walked to a trash container, before coming back and resuming the conversation.
“I guess things happen for a reason, but sometimes it’s hard to see it. I’m sorry for your loss Bailey. I can tell you were close to her.”
“Thanks, but enough sadness and tears. Shall we finish our walk back to our cars? I don’t want to push my luck today and wear out my welcome.”
Jay smiled at her and started walking with her back towards the path. “I’m glad you came back Bailey, no matter what else happens, it was good to hear you admit you missed me too. I always thought you simply forgot about me.”
Bailey gasped and looked at her in shock. “Forget about you? Jay, there is no way I could ever forget about you! We grew up together, we went to college together, and, well, you were my first sexual experience. Trust me, you are unforgettable! I’ve never stopped loving you Jay. I simply didn’t know how to deal with it.” With that, they walked back to their cars and took their leave of each other, both slightly lost in their own thoughts about everything they had discovered today.
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