~ Second Generation ~

by Littlespit

Disclaimer: These characters are mine; although they very well may resemble a certain Warrior Princess and bard we all know and love.

Love/sex warning: Yes, there will eventually be a loving relationship between people of the same gender. If this offends you or is illegal where you are, please grow up or move on. If you are under the age of 18, go away and play with your toys until you're old enough.

Violence: There is reference to rape, though no graphic depiction.

Dedication: This story is dedicated to my Sandra, you complete me beloved...always remember.

Feedback welcome at Littlespit@cox.net


The sound of the front door flying open and the pounding of small feet running through the house startled Elise out of her deep concentration. With a grin and a small shake of her head, the small strawberry blond woman gathered her senses and braced herself for the whirlwind she knew was on the way.

"Mama!" exclaimed the small girl as she launched herself into her mother's lap.

Elise caught her daughter in mid-launch and settled her on her lap giving her a welcome home hug. Looking into green eyes so much like her own she asked, "So, munchkin, how was school today?"

"School was so good today, Mama. We got to build forts out of sugar cubes and Bobby kept eating the sugar cubes and he ate so many he threw up all over Jacob! Then, it was SO gross, Jacob threw up all over Suzie and Wanda's fort and Wanda hit Jacob right in the eye!"

"That sounds like a pretty exciting but smelly day at school!" commented Elise.

"Yeah, it was. Ms. Powell had us go out to recess with Mrs. Harrington's class so that she could clean up all the barf. She had to throw out Suzie and Wanda's fort project and she said that was too bad 'cause they had done a good job!" After wiggling a bit, little Angel became quiet and looked into her Mother's eyes. With a seriousness that seemed beyond her years she said, "I met a new friend."

Concerned about the serious look and attitude her usually exuberant little girl was displaying, Elise asked, "Honey, why do you seem so sad if you've made a new friend?"

With a shrug and a sigh Angel replied, "Well, Ellie, that's my new friend's name, doesn't know we're friends yet. Mama, she so lonely and no one will play with her but I know she's really nice even though they all say she's not and I'm not going to let them tell me she's bad when I know she's really good."

It took Elise a moment to process the words as they spilled from her daughter's lips, but she understood the gist of what her little girls was saying. It sounded eerily familiar. "Honey, who is this girl and why do the other kids say she's bad?"

Angel scrunched her face up and said, "Ellie's new at school and she's really tall. She's quiet, Mama, and she just stands on the side of the playground looking at us playing dodge ball or red rover. Just 'cause she's quiet they all think she's a stuck up." The small face transformed into a determined mask, "Tomorrow, I'm gonna go talk to her and make her be my friend."

Smiling at her daughter's determination yet concerned for her daughter's soft heart, Elise wondered how she should handle this situation. She remembered when she was Angel's age and she had met a girl on her own playground. The girl in her memory was a tall, silent, seemingly angry girl who had been shunned by most of her classmates. The similarities between her daughter's new "friend" and that of her own long lost true friend was uncanny. A feeling of longing swept through Elise as she thought about her childhood friend.

Elise was roused out of her musings by a small soft hand on her cheek, "Mama?" inquired Angel, "why do you look so sad?"

Hugging the small body in her lap, Elise smiled, "Ah, Honey, I was just thinking about a girl I met on my own playground. I was just as determined as you are that she would be my friend. It took a while, but eventually we were the very best friends. I looked sad because I miss her."

"Where is she? Aren't you still friends?" Angel Asked.

"When we were in Junior High, her family moved out of the country. We wrote to each other for a while but then the letters stopped and I have no idea where she is now. But, Angel mine, no matter where she is she's still my friend."

"I'm gonna make Ellie my best friend, Mama, just wait and see!"

Kissing the top of the small head, Elise whispered, "I have no doubt about it, Angel mine."

Elise set her daughter on her feet and the two of them went into the kitchen to have their afternoon snack. After splitting a peanut butter and banana sandwich with her daughter, Elise asked what homework the child had been assigned. Once the child was settled at her own child's desk to work on her math and spelling assignments, Elise went back into her home office to work out the bugs in the latest web design had been working on when Angel had come home from school.

It had been a risk to venture out on her own as a web designer but that risk was finally beginning to pay off. If the prospective client liked this new design, it would mean a regular and comfortable income for a long time to come and hopefully word of her work would spread and she'd have work coming in from all over.

After an hour's time, Elise realized that Angel was being entirely too quiet and decided to find out what the young scamp was up to. As she stood in the doorway to Angel's room, Elise saw that the small girl was bent over her desk studiously working on something.

"Still working on your homework, sweetie?" asked Elise.

"Uh-uh, I'm working on a picture to send to Gran. I promised her on the phone last night that I'd send her a new piece of artwork for the art wall."

Smiling proudly at her daughter, Elise asked, "Mind if I take a look?"

The seven-year-old held up a brightly colored drawing of two girls holding hands under a rainbow. The first figure was a smiling girl with yellow hair and bright green eyes, the taller companion wore a diagonal line for a mouth, making a smirk beneath dark hair and blue eyes. Elise's breath caught in her throat as looked at the drawing her daughter had made. She took the drawing from her daughter's hands and sat on the edge of the twin-size bed. 'How can this be?' she wondered. She felt her heart racing as a sensation of deja vu washed over her. Her hands shook as she held the child's drawing and she felt tears prickling behind her eyes.

"Mama, why are you crying? It's a happy picture!"

"Baby, where did you get the idea for this picture?" Elise asked.

Angel shrugged her small shoulders and replied, "It's just the picture I have in my head when I think about Ellie and me. Mama, I just know we're gonna be the bestest of friends!"

Unable to keep from correcting her daughter's grammar, Elise said, "The best of friends, munchkin, you know you'll be the best of friends with Ellie." As small green eyes rolled beneath strawberry blonde bangs, the smiling mother said, "Don't you roll your eyes at me, young lady!"

"Yes Ma'am," responded the eye roller, "But Mama, why did you look so sad?"

"Honey, I wasn't sad, not really. I just..." with a sigh, the woman stood up from her place on the girl's bed, "come up with me to the Attic, I'll show you why I reacted the way I did to your beautiful drawing, honey."

When they reached the attic door Elise entered first and reached up to pull the string that dangled from the light fixture. Turning to her daughter, she beckoned her to come in. "I think what I'm looking for is in the boxes that Gran sent after we moved here. Look for one that says, "El, grade school" on it, ok?"

Loving a good hunt, the little girl's eyes sparked and she went to work looking at the neatly labeled boxes until she came to the one her Mother had mentioned, "I found it!" she exclaimed hopping excitedly, "I won!"

Chuckling at Angel's enthusiasm, Elise ruffled the girl's soft hair and acknowledged that she had, indeed, won the hunt. Elise's hands shook as she pulled the appropriate box from the stack. After removing the lid, she rifled through the contents until she came to the item she was searching for. A smile came to her lips as she pulled the yellowed paper from the box. New tears sparked in the green eyes as she looked at the childish drawing she held. The twenty-seven-year-old held up a once brightly colored drawing of two girls holding hands under a rainbow. The first figure was a smiling girl with yellow hair and bright green eyes, the taller companion wore a diagonal line for a mouth, making a smirk beneath dark hair and blue eyes.

"Let me see, Mama, let me see!"

"You ready?" Smiled the older blonde.

"Yes, yes, yes!" exclaimed the youngster.

As the twenty-year-old drawing was turned around the small girl's eyes grew wide with wonder. She furrowed her brow as she tried to wrap her mind around what she was looking at. "Mama, that picture is just like mine!" Angel whispered in awe.

"I know, Angel mine, that's why I was so affected when I looked at your drawing. It kind of scared me, little one, that you would draw a picture almost exactly like the one I had drawn when I was your age. It's kind of neat, isn't it?"

Angel's head tilted as she considered her Mother's words, "Yeah, I guess it is neat." Then taking a deep breath and letting it out in a puff, while rolling her eyes she continued, "Mama, everyone says how alike we are, how I have your eyes and your hair and your smile and now I have your drawing..."

Elise waited for Angel to finish her thought, watching the sneaker clad toe scuff the attic floor.

"Does this mean that I'm you? I mean, I love you Mama, but I wanna be me, not just another you, y'know?"

Kneeling down and taking her child into her arms, Elise quickly thought through what to say, "Baby, I'll agree that we do look very much like one another and it is rather unusual that you would draw a picture almost exactly like mine. But Honey, you are your own person. You can dance so beautifully and though I enjoy dancing for fun, I could never manage to move with the natural grace you have." After noticing the small nod from Angel she continued, "Then there's the fact that you love cats whereas I really like dogs..."

As the little girl caught on, she joined in the comparison game with "I like strawberry ice cream but your favorite is chocolate!"

"Exactly!" smiled the proud parent, "We share many similarities but we also have many things that are unique to each of us. I think that makes us a pretty special family, don't you?"

"Absolutely!" smiled the seven-year-old.

Looking at her watch Elise realized it was time to get dinner started. She closed up the storage box, keeping out the old drawing. The family of two then made their way down to the kitchen and they set about their nightly routine of dinner then story and bedtime for the younger family member.

After Angel was successfully tucked into her bed, Elise poured herself a glass of Merlot and went out to the back patio. As she relaxed on the softly cushioned porch swing she allowed her mind to wander back to the days she'd spent with her "very best friend." The memories were sweet, yet even after all the years that had passed; her heart still ached for her missing friend. After an initial reticence from the dark haired girl, the two of them had become inseparable. Their parents had dubbed them "Mutt n' Jeff" and the girls had argued as to which of them was Mutt and which was Jeff because neither of them wanted to be a mutt!

Elise remembered all of the things the two of them had shared, broken bones from escapades and mock battles they'd waged against the neighbor kids twice their age; the excitement of the last days of school; the fun of summer activities; the secrets shared. She remembered that as the two of them had grown, Angela had always been her champion...and she had been Angela's champion a time or two as well.

Her mind wandered to the day, when they were twelve years old, that Angela had run into Elise's room sobbing. Angela's father had been given a huge promotion and was being transferred to Greece. The whole family was moving and Angela's parents didn't know when, or if, they would ever return.

The recollection of that day brought fresh tears to Elise's eyes. She remembered how she and Angela had clung to one another swearing they wouldn't allow themselves to be parted. They had even plotted to run away together so that they wouldn't be separated. But, as most plans of the young go, their schemes didn't work out as they had determined and the day soon came that Angela was forced to move abroad with her family.

Realizing that she was working herself into a state, Elise got out of the swing and strolled barefoot through the lawn of the back yard, pulling herself back into the here and now. Although her heart still longed for her friend there was not a thing she could do about it and she steeled herself against the feelings of loss and longing and went into her home to settle herself for the night.

Chapter 2

As weeks passed, Angel would come home from school with regular progress reports on how "Project Best Friend" was developing. Elise admired her daughter's tenacity in her quest to become the quiet girl's friend. As time passed the stories Angel told let Elise know that her big-hearted daughter had indeed won over the new, quiet girl at school. Almost every tale about school recess began with "Ellie and I..." It warmed Elise's heart to know that her daughter had a very special friend just has she had had. She hoped that Angel would never have to know the heartache of losing her new 'very best friend'.

One day before school Angel approached her Mother, "Mama?"

"What is it love?" replied Elise.

"Is it ok if I ask Ellie to spend the night on Friday?" Taking a deep breath, Angel rushed on, "Stupid Erica is having a slumber party at her house and she invited me but she said Ellie can't come so I'm not going to her dumb old slumber party but I wanna have a sleep over so can I ask Ellie?" The pleading look on her daughter's face melted Elise's heart.

"First things first, young lady," began Elise, "You are never to call people stupid, you know better than that."

"But Mom.." The young girl interrupted

"Don't you 'But Mom' me Angel mine. Name calling is not allowed in this house and you know that."

"I'm sorry, I'm so mad. I know Erica's not inviting Ellie just because she's mad that I'm friends with her. She's mad that I share my lunch with Ellie and Ellie gets my Ding Dongs and Erica doesn't but that's just too bad. I can give my Ding Dongs to anyone I want to"

Trying her best not to laugh at the 'Ding Dong defense', Elise pointed out that no matter what the reason; Erica didn't have to invite anyone to her slumber party that she didn't wish to invite. She also acknowledged that Angel didn't have to go to any party she didn't want to go to, but then she had to address the issue of the requested sleep over.

"Baby, as far as having Ellie over for a sleep over, it would be fine with me but you know the rules of sleep overs, what are they?"

With an exaggerated sigh the little girl replied, "Before I sleep over anywhere or have anyone sleep over here you have to meet the parents, we have to get permission and plan ahead."

Smiling at the seven-year-old's dramatic recitation of 'the rules', Elise responded, "You got it right in one, oh great daughter of mine!"

Remembering how, at seven, everything was life and death Elise decided to give the little girl a break. "I tell you what, tomorrow at school ask for Ellie's phone number and after school tomorrow I'll call her parents and see if they would be willing to meet with me. If they are willing, and if all the parents are comfortable after that meeting, I don't see why you can't have Ellie over to spend the night. How's that?"

A little fist reached up, grabbed air and was brought back to a little chest in a victory grab, "YES!" The small body hurtled into the larger one as a hopeful daughter hugged her Mama

The following day a very anxious Angel ran into her Mother's home office with phone and phone number in hand. She bounced on the balls of her feet, barely able to contain her anticipation, she just knew that everything would work out and that she would be able to have her new and best friend over that coming weekend.

Elise shook her head at her daughter's antics but she took the proffered phone and slip of paper. "Alright munchkin, you go into your room and get started on your homework and I'll call Ellie's Mom."

"But Moooooom, I need to know what happens!" cried the overly anxious blonde.

With a firm look and tone Elise cautioned, "Angel, we do not listen in on other people's phone conversations. I will not make this phone call until you are in your room and you have started on tonight's homework. Got it?"

"Got it", said a scowling Angel.

Elise took her daughter by the shoulders, pointed her toward her room and gave her small bottom a soft pat to hurry her to her assigned task. As soon as she was sure that her daughter was at least attempting to look at her homework she dialed the number on the slip of paper. The phone was answered after two rings.

"Hello?" the voice that answered sent a tingle down Elise's spine, it took her a moment to gather her thoughts to respond.

"Oh, uh, yes, Ms. Papodopolis?" Elise inquired.

"Yes, how may I help you?" answered the sultry voice.

'Gods, get a grip, El, it's only a voice!' thought Elise "Ms. Popodopolis, this is Angel Covington's Mother. I believe that our daughters are ' the very best friends in all the world'." Elise paused after hearing a soft chuckled from the other end of the line, "My Angel has her heart set on having Ellie come for a sleep over but before that happens I think our families should meet."

Another soft chuckle came through the earpiece of Elise's phone, "Yes, I've been expecting you to call. Ever since Ellie got home from school she's been hovering over the phone like a protective lion making sure no one touched the phone until your call came." This time, Ms. Popodopolis heard a soft laugh. "I agree completely that we should meet before there are any visits to one another's homes. Did you have anything in mind as far as a meeting time or place?"

The blonde Mother answered, "Well, a thought just occurred to me, do you and your family have dinner plans this evening? Perhaps we could meet somewhere for dinner tonight, that way I can get to know you and your husband and the girls would be able to see on another outside of school"

Enjoying the soft tones of the woman on the phone, Ellie's mother took a moment to answer, "Ah, no, actually I was just thinking about what to do for tonight's dinner so that would work out well. Just so you know, our family consists of only Ellie and me so it would just the four of us. Any idea where you'd like to meet?"

"How do you feel about The Old Spaghetti Factory downtown?" answered Elise.

"Sounds great, why don't we meet there around 5:00, that way we can hope to beat the after work crowd." replied the deep velvet voice.

With a smile in her voice Elise replied, "Perfect, we'll see you then. I'm not going to bother giving you a description of us since I know the moment our girls see one another not only will we know, but everyone for blocks around will know that two our two girls are together!"

"I have no doubt." chuckled Ellie's Mom, "We'll see you at 5:00 in front of the restaurant. Bye for now."

"Good bye, I look forward to meeting you." Ellie said as she disconnected the line.

Elise rose from her work chair and went to the door of Angel's room. As she looked in on her daughter she saw that although the girl was at her desk with her books open, no work had been done. The small feet were tapping on the floor and the small bottom lip was being nervously chewed upon. "Have you done any work at all in here?" asked Elise.

Angel's head whipped around to look at her Mother. Eyes wide with hope and wonder at how the phone call had gone. "Ummmm, oh Mama I've just been too nervous to do any work! Please, tell me what happened on the phone! Can Ellie come over?"

Putting on her 'Stern Mom' face, Elise walked over and put a hand on her daughter's shoulder. "The phone call went fine, but we have to do some more talking before a decision is made about this weekend." Looking down at the open books on the desk she continued, "Before any more talking will be done that homework must be completed. Do you understand me?"

Knowing that her Mother meant business, the little girl hung her head slightly and said, "Yes Ma'am, I'll work on it right now."

Bending down to place a soft kiss on the top of her daughter's head Elise said, "That's my Angel girl, thank you."

Only a few miles away, a similar conversation was happening between another mother and daughter pair. Both mothers had instinctively not told their daughters that they had dinner plans set for the best friends. Each of the women understood that any mention of the dinner plan would guarantee that the little ones would be too filled with anticipation to get their homework assignments finished.

As soon as she saw that her daughter had buckled down to do her few homework assignments, Elise walked down the hall to her bedroom. She walked over to her walk-in closet and started to choose what she would wear that evening. Thinking about the voice on the phone she once again felt a warm shiver move up her spine. 'Get a grip, El, this isn't a date, it's a meeting about Angel' she reprimanded herself. With hands on hips Elise looked through her clothing choices. Deciding that classy casual was always safe she pulled down a green linen button down shirt and a pair of tan casual slacks. She placed her clothes on the bed and went into the adjoining bathroom to shower. After her shower she found herself taking extra care blow drying her hair and applying a light touch of makeup. She didn't quite understand the feeling of anticipation she felt as she thought about the meeting with Angel's friend and her mother. Once she was satisfied with her hair and face, Elise padded down the hallway and back to Angel's room hoping that she'd find all the homework had been completed. When she reached Angel's room she found the little girl lying on her bed with a book. As she so often did, she sent up a silent prayer of thanks that she had been blessed with such a wonderful child, one that loved to read and who rarely asked to watch television.

"Homework all done, Angel mine?" asked Elise.

"Eyup, all finished and ready to be checked," replied the little one, barely looking up from her book.

Elise strolled over to the pages of homework on the desk and quickly checked to make sure that they were done and correct. "Excellent job as usual, love" complimented Elise. "I was wondering, how would you like to go get dinner at The Old Spaghetti Factory?" asked the Mother.

Young eyes lit up, "Really!? I loooooove eating there, maybe we can sit in the train car again like we did the last time."

Elise smiled at Angel's enthusiasm, "We'll never know if you don't change into some better clothes so we can go."

No sooner were the words out of Elise's mouth than a small blond blur moved across the room to pull out a favorite outfit and start to change. Laughing, Elise returned to her own room to put her own clothes on.

A few minutes later the two blondes were buckling themselves into Elise's car and starting off toward Angel's favorite eating establishment. Elise smiled to herself as she thought about how her daughter was going to react when she saw her 'very best friend' outside of the restaurant. She loved to surprise the little girl and never tired of watching the youthful excitement that her daughter exuded. Pulling the car into the Ace parking lot across the street form the restaurant, Elise scanned the area for a woman with a dark-haired child but didn't see anyone fitting that description. She felt relief at this knowing that if Angel caught sight of Ellie she might be apt to run ahead of Elise and cross the street without looking due to her excitement. Getting out of the car, Elise made sure that she took Angel's hand and held it firmly to be safe.

After crossing the street, Elise did not let go of Angel's hand. The fact that her Mom still held her hand caused Angel to look up at her Mom with a puzzled look, "You can let go now Mama, we're on the right side of the street."

"Honey, I'd feel more comfortable holding on to your hand. It's not always safe down town so humor me, all right?"

Realizing that sometimes adults are just a little on the crazy side, the little girl put up with her Mom's overprotective gesture. "Aren't we going inside?" asked Angel.

"In just a moment, Munchkin," replied Elise distractedly.

"Mama, you're acting weird," commented Angel.

"Weird, am I?" started Elise, "I'll show you weird!" and with that Elise bent down and started to tickle the little girls sides making the young child laugh and try to swat the tickling fingers away.

"I take it back, I take it back!" laughed Angel, hoping that would cause the tickle-fingers to stop.

"Oh, alright spoil sport but watch who you're calling weird next time," kidded Elise.

As Elise straightened up from tickling her daughter, she caught sight of a dark-haired girl with bright blue eyes and for a moment she felt as if her heart had stopped. It was like seeing a vision from her past; this girl was the spitting image of her lost friend. 'How can this be? How could she have not grown up?' the thoughts raced through Elise's mind as she tried to process what was before her.

Although the thought process Elise was going through felt like it had taken eons, it had only taken a moment in real time and she was brought out of her trance by the high pitched squeals of both her daughter and the beautiful dark-haired girl. The small dark-haired beauty was running pell-mell toward Angel with a beaming smile and as the two girls met and embraced, Elise noticed the form of a taller, much taller, version of the dark tike jogging to catch up to the small dynamo.

"Ellie! Get back here NOW!! demanded the frightened woman. As soon as Ellie caught sight of her best friend she had taken off at a dead run, leaving her mother behind as she locked up the car. As Angela ran to catch up to her daughter, she stopped short when she saw her daughter fly into the arms of...'gods, how?' Her daughter was wrapped in the arms of a little girl from Angela's past. The best friend she'd ever had, the friend she'd never gotten over. As Angela stood gaping at the embracing girls she heard a sobbing gasp and looked up into a pair of teary green eyes.

Neither woman was able to find their voice for a moment but finally the Blonde broke the silence with a cry of "Angel!" as she launched herself at the woman she knew instantly.

The 6-foot tall woman caught the small woman and held her in a tight embrace, her heart, brain and body all attempting to find a way to process what was happening. After a moment of holding the smaller woman close, she put her Ellie, the original Ellie, at arms length so that she could get a good look at her. She had to make sure that what she was seeing and holding was real.

"El?" asked the tall woman, her blue eyes searching the green ones before her. "How? Where have you been?"

"What do you mean where have I been, I never left. You moved to Greece, you're the one that stopped writing after..." A moment of hurt and anger passed through Elise as she remember how broken hearted she had been when her friend had stopped writing to her all those years ago, but then she remembered that she had vowed to herself that if she ever found her Angel again she wouldn't let resentment get in the way. She would take the way of friendship. Sighing, Elise continued, "Angel, I've been here, I'm still living in the same house I grew up in. Why are you asking me where I've been?"

Realizing they were still standing on the brick sidewalk outside of the restaurant, Angela said, "El, let's get the girls and go get a table, we'll talk inside." As she gathered all the smaller females together, Angela didn't resist the urge to put her arm around Elise's shoulders and pull her close against her as they entered the establishment. It was the most natural thing in the universe to do, and for once, she allowed herself to do what her heart told her to do.

Elise leaned her head against the strong shoulder, simply happy to be close to the person she'd been missing for so many years. Questions and answers would come later, for this moment she simply relished the closeness.

The two little girls had watched the exchange between their mothers. The only thing their young minds and hearts cared about was that their Moms were obviously getting along and that they were going to get their sleep over! The two grinning girls gave each other an enthusiastic high five as they entered the Italian eatery.

The foursome walked up to the elaborate reception desk to see about being seated. As the adults had hoped, they had missed the after work dinner rush and were shown to a table immediately. To the younger pair's delight the table they were seated at was inside one of the antique train cars parked inside the restaurant. As the hostess showed them to their table, Angela kept her arm draped around her companion's shoulder. Once at the table the smaller girls quickly commandeered two chairs on the same side of the table. Shrugging their shoulders, the adults took the seats opposing their respective offspring. The hostess looked between the young pair and the older pair and thought to herself that cloning must have come to pass in her lifetime. The pair of little girls were so similar in appearance to the larger pair it was almost uncomfortable. Shaking off her Science Fiction train of thought, the hostess graciously handed the little girls children's placement and menus and then turned and handed regular menus to the older pair.

"Thanks!" chimed the little girls happily. Both adult women thanked the hostess as well. Within a few minutes a young man came to the table to pour water as well as take drink orders. Angela ordered a glass of milk for Ellie and Elise said that Angel would have milk as well. Angela caught Elise's eye and smiled softly, "I think a couple of glasses of wine might be good about now, what do you think?" Elise nodded her agreement as she lost herself in the blue eyes she remembered so well. "We'll each have a glass of your house red, please" said Angela never taking her eyes away from Elise.

Feeling as if he was intruding, the young man blushed and said, "Uh, sure, be back with that in a flash."

Not knowing where to start talking, the women opted to simply be quiet in one another's company for a while. Each had a desire to be physically close to the other and as a consequence they felt themselves leaning into one another's shoulders, arms touching as they sat side by side in the bent wood chairs.

"Mom, what are you gonna have?" asked a smiling Ellie.

Realizing she hadn't even unfolded her menu, Angela shook herself out of her dazed state to read over her choices. Looking over at Elise she asked, "Do you know what you're having? You haven't looked at the menu."

A giggle from the blonde across the table caught Angela's attention. Smiling at the girl Angela asked, "and just what is so funny Miss Covington?"

Angel rolled her eyes and quickly informed the larger version of her best friend, "Mama always has spaghetti with mushroom sauce, a salad with creamy Italian dressing on the side and coffee with spumoni ice cream for dessert. She never has anything else so she never looks at the menu."

Dark brows arched up to disappear beneath long bangs, "I don't remember you being such a creature of habit, Ellie."

"Well, I'm still not. Not usually anyway. It's just that I really enjoy the mushroom sauce here so I decided that I'll stick with that when we come here."

Under her breath Angela commented, "Good, I'd hate to think you'd changed that much."

Green eyes met blue and Elise whispered back, "not to worry, my Angel, I'm basically still the same person you knew. I've just grown up a lot."

Maintaining the soft tones Angela said, "You've grown up beautifully, Ellie. I don't want to take my eyes off of you."

A reddish blonde brow raised, "Then don't."

"We have a lot to talk about, Mutt," said Angela.

"I know we do, Jeff," answered Elise.


Friday morning Elise was awakened before her alarm had a chance to go off. A small blonde body hurled itself onto her bed and bounced up and down on top of the groggy woman. "Mama, it's Friday!"

"Angela Janice Covington! What are you doing waking me up at..." prying her eye open to peer at the bedside clock, "FIVE O'clock in the morning!?"

"Mama, I'm just too excited to sleep, Ellie's coming over tonight and we're going to tell stories and play games and I just can't wait." The small girl oozed.

"Baby, you won't be awake enough to read or play games if you don't get some more sleep before school." Elise folded the covers back and motioned for her daughter to join her in her bed. "Come here, my Angel, and try to get some sleep, please." Knowing she would not win this battle, the little girl crawled into bed beside her Mom and immediately felt strong arms surround her and hold her close. Though she would have though it impossible, Angel felt her eyes becoming heavy and before too long she fell into slumber snuggled comfortably in her Mother's arms.

After waking for the second time, and at a much more reasonable hour, Elise got Angel ready for school and made sure she was out the door in time to be picked up by the car pool driver. Angel had reminded her Mom at least a dozen times that morning that she would need a note telling the school that she had permission to ride home from school with Ellie and Ms. Popadopolis. The excited youngster hadn't been willing to leave for school until the note was safely pinned to her sweater. Even if it looked dorkey, she was not taking any chances of losing that note!

To be honest, Elise had to admit to herself that she was as excited about tonight's "sleep over" as her daughter was. After dinner with Angela and Ellie, the two women had decided that the girl's sleepover night would be a good time for the two grown-ups to begin talking about all that had happened. The plan was for Angela to pick up the girls after school and drive over to Elise's house where the girls would spend the night and the women would have time to talk.

They hadn't discussed dinner plans, but Elise wanted to make a special dinner. In the days since seeing Angela again Elise had admitted to herself that the feelings that had started to blossom for the original Angel all those years ago had never gone away. She knew that she had never been able to love or to fall in love with another person because no one had ever compared to her beautiful dark-haired Angel.

As Elise moved through her day, straightening and re-straightening, dusting and re-dusting the home she'd lived in her entire life, she allowed her mind to think back to her earlier years. After Angela had moved to Greece with her family, the two girls had written to one another faithfully. At first the letters were written and sent every day but as the girls grew older and their schedules grew busier, the letters became slightly more infrequent. There were never fewer than two letters per week from each girl to the other, though, until Angela's letters had stopped coming altogether. Thinking about the abrupt cessation of letters caused Elise's heart to clench all over again.

Taking one more trip through the house to make sure everything was ship shape, Elise found her footsteps taking her up to the attic. She realized she was yearning to re-read the last letters she had received from Angela. After she entered the attic, she went over and knelt in front of an old steamer trunk that had belonged to her Aunts Janice and Mel. She kept her most treasured belongings in this trunk. Elise lifted out the ribbon wrapped bundle of letters and sat just holding them for long moments.

Knowing the light in the attic was not sufficient to read by, she closed the lid to the beloved trunk and took her packet of letters down to the comfort of the living room. Leaving the letters in her favorite huge overstuffed chair, Elise went to the kitchen to make a cup of tea. Returning to the comfortable chair, she set her tea on the end table and untied the ribbon binding the package of mail. She smiled as she looked at the stamps in the corner of each envelopes, each stamp was upside down, it had been their code for "I love you" on each letter. The packet of letters she held were from the last six months of their correspondence. They had been sixteen that year. Looking through the stack, Elise made sure that she had put them in date order and then she pulled out the one dated the earliest and began to read. The letters from the dark-haired Angel were filled with words of friendship, and of love. With each letter the tone of the letters transformed to a grown up type of love between two teenagers. Words of longing and love; of plans to finish high school and find a way to be together all poured off the pages in neat precise handwriting.

Elise was so engrossed in the letters that she didn't hear the front door opening or the three sets of footsteps as they entered her home. She didn't hear the girls run upstairs and into Angel's room and she didn't hear the footsteps of the tall beautiful woman as she walked over and knelt in front of her. Only when a strong, tanned hand reached over and pulled the letter out of her hand, did she look up into startling blue eyes. Angela reached up and cupped Elise's cheek in her palm, she wiped away the tears on those cheeks with her thumb and softly said, "It's all still true, Ellie. Every word in these letters is true." Still holding Elise's gaze she reached inside the black leather satchel over her shoulder and pulled out her own bundle of letters, these with U.S. Stamps all upside-down. She set this stack of letters beside the ones already in Elise's lap. As Elise looked down at what had been placed in her lap a sob escaped her throat. She raised her eyes back to Angela's and said, "My Angel, every word in these is still true. I was never able to stop loving you, I was never able to forget you. But Angela, I was devastated when you stopped writing. You never warned me, you never gave me an explanation, you just stopped. It almost killed me!"

Confusion clouded the blue eyes as she said, "I only stopped writing after you did, Ellie." Taking a deep, calming breath she continued, "I even wrote to you after I stopped getting letters from you, but you never wrote back." A look of hurt flashed across the beautiful face quickly followed by a mask of calm, "Finally, my father told me that he'd heard from your family. He told me that you'd met someone here and that you all thought it would be best to just make a clean break."

"NO!" Elise interrupted, "that's not true! I never met anyone, I never did any of that. I don't understand!"

That was the moment the girls chose to come bounding into the room, arm in arm, to ask for an afternoon snack.

Elise quickly snatched a tissue from a nearby box and dried her face and eyes while Angela scooped up the two bundles of letters and stowed them in her bag. Both women stood and walked into the kitchen following the skipping seven-year-olds. Elise opened the refrigerator and pulled out the makings for an afternoon snack. As she cut up apples and smeared the wedges with peanut butter, Angela asked the girls about weekend homework. Both girls groaned exaggeratedly. They had hoped that because of their special sleep over they would get out of doing their schoolwork for that day.

"Oh no, young ladies, sleep over or no sleep over school work first, then fun." A stern faced Angela dictated.

Twin groans were heard from Angel and Ellie as they realized their unadulterated fun would have to wait. Angela and Elise caught one another's eye and they shared a smile over the joys of parenting.

After the snack was eaten and the dishes rinsed, Elise told the girls to get their schoolwork and bring it to the kitchen table so that the girls could work in the same area. Once they were settled with books and assignments, Elise offered Angela a cup of tea, the offer was accepted and after it was made the women moved back into the comfortable living room and sat beside one another on the sofa. "Angel, will you tell me about Ellie's father?" Elise asked.

Angela's shoulders slumped, but her reply was, "Yes, there really isn't all that much to tell." Gathering her thoughts she started her tale, "After Popa told me you'd moved on, I shut down, El. I did things I wish I hadn't done and I ran with a crowd that was as close to being a gang as I'd like to admit." Looking into Elisa's soft green eyes shining with nothing but loving interest Angela went on, "I got into some pretty deep trouble with the law. I was angry, El, angry at you, angry at the world, angry deep into my soul."

Elise's soft voice broke in, "I should have known that's what would happen. You got angry and fought and I fell into such deep a depression my family wasn't sure I'd survive it."

"Oh gods, Baby, no." Angela cried.

"Shhh, my Angel, I did survive and I'm fine now. Better than fine now that you're back in town. Please continue."

Angela nodded, "I met Miklos when I was in the hospital after getting stabbed in one of my fights. He was a young, handsome doctor and he made me his pet project. He showed me that my anger was getting me nowhere but closer to a grave. He taught me to defend myself without losing control. He dragged me back from a dangerous edge and over time we became lovers." Seeing Elise flinch, she continued, "To be more accurate, we became intimate friends. After a few years we decided to get married. It made sense since we both wanted children. We got along well, we had money to spare and our families thought it was a match made on Mt. Olympus." Pausing to sip her tea, she looked at Elise, "Are you all right, love?"

"It's just hard to hear that you loved someone." Elise said quietly, "I know it's unrealistic of me to think that you could have gone without being close to someone, and in my head, I can appreciate that you needed to love and be loved, to touch and be touched. But our letters...our letters promised that the first touches of love would be each other's. It hurts to know that you gave that to someone else."

With a furrowed brow, Angela asked, "But, what about Angel's father? He obviously touched you intimately."

Elise couldn't meet Angela's gaze, "But I didn't give him my first intimate touches, Angela, He took them."

As the implication of what Elise was saying penetrated Angel's mind, a rage filled her. She took Elise firmly by the shoulders and forced the green eyes to look at her, "He forced you, El? Someone forced you?"

"It was my own fault; I shouldn't have gone out with him. I knew I had no feelings for him and I knew he wanted me. I went anyway and I paid dearly for it."

Hearing Elise blame herself for being raped only served to further enrage Angela. "El, who was it? Who took what was mine, WHO?"

Putting her hand on Angela's arm to soothe her, Elise said, "Angel, it doesn't matter any more. I wasn't' the first woman he took advantage of and I wasn't the last. He was caught with his pants down, literally, by the boyfriend of one of his victims and he'll never hurt another woman again, believe me."

Taking Elise into her arms, Angela rocked back and forth while saying, "I can't stand that someone hurt you. I can't stand the idea that I wasn't here to defend you. Gods, I wish I understood why you and I lost touch, why things happened as they did. Someone stole your virginity from you and I gave mine to someone I could never love the way I loved you...the way I still love you."

Elise relaxed in Angela's arms for a moment more before moving away. "Hey Mutt, we should go check on the girls."

"You're right as usual Jeff" replied Angela.

Elise and Angela walked into the kitchen to find the two youngsters still sitting at the kitchen table. Their homework had been finished for some time but the girls had started playing hangman and were concentrating so hard that both little brows were furrowed.

"Hey you two, it's a beautiful afternoon, why don't you go out in the back yard and play until dinner's ready?" Elise said

The girls both replied, "OK!" and they made a beeline for the back yard.

As Elise pulled out the ingredients for dinner, she turned to Angela, "So, where is Miklos now?"

A flash of pain crossed Angela's face and she quietly replied, "He was flying his plane over the Aegean sea when something went wrong. The plane went down and sank under the water. Even though he crashed in only 10 feet of water, he couldn't get out of the plane. He drowned."

Elise rushed over to her beloved friend and wrapped her in her arms, "Baby, I'm so sorry."

Angela nodded and swallowed until she could find her voice again, "He was a good man, a wonderful friend and the best father I could ever have hoped for Ellie. They adored one another, it's been very hard on her." Wrapping her arms more tightly around the smaller woman, Angela went on, "Until we moved here and Ellie met Angel, I wasn't sure what I was going to do. She had stopped talking, she was a completely different girl than the one I'd raised. Then, your little Angel came along and brought my baby back to me."

Enjoying the closeness of their embrace, Elise commented quietly, "And Ellie and Angel brought you back to me."

"No, they brought US back to each other, love" purred Angela.

Remaining in Angel's arms, snuggling her face into the tall woman Elise whispered, "Angela?"


Continuing in her whispered tones, Elise spoke her heart, "I'm going to make dinner for the four of us, and then we're going to play games with our daughters until we tuck them into bed. After they're settled I'm going to wrap my arms around you and kiss you just the way I've dreamed of kissing you for 12 years."

Angela's eyes closed as she felt the rush of desire Elise's words stirred in her, "Oh gods, I have to wait that long?"

Pulling herself out of the strong arms, Elise looked frankly into the eyes she loved and said, "Yes, WE have to wait that long. Because if we start kissing now we'll never get dinner made and those two little girls will find their mothers doing more than playing hangman on that kitchen table!"

The fire in the green eyes gave Angela a warm rush and the adamantly spoken words brought a bright smile to her face. "You're right, ok, we'll wait, but no longer than absolutely necessary. Twelve years is long enough to wait for a first kiss, Damn it!"

Smiling smugly, Elise turned to start the dinner preparations in earnest.


Hours later, dinner had been eaten, the dishes washed and the foursome had played board games of Sorry, Monopoly Jr. and Disney Trivial Pursuits. The more activities the girls participated in the more awake they seemed to be. At 9:30 Angela leaned over toward Elise with a twinkle in her eye and a sassily arched brow and said, "Hey El, we need to get these two settled down, 'cause we've got a buss to catch."

Elise had just taken a sip of her soda and Angela's comment caused her to laugh, sending a spray of sticky liquid across the table and onto the two young girls.

"Ewwwwww Mom" cried Angel as she jumped up out of her seat.

"That is so gross, Ms. Covington!" commented Ellie.

The corner of Angela's mouth quirked up and one brow raised, 'hmmmm, not exactly what I had in mind, darlin', but I think this will work', she thought. "Ok girls, I think it's bath time. Since Ms. Covington showered you with soda, you now get to take a bubble bath!" Looking over at Elise Angela asked, "Is that great tub still in your folk's old bathroom?"

"Oh yeah, you didn't think I'd ever get rid of that did you?" replied Elise.

"Mmmm, nope, never dreamed it" smiled Angela.

"Ok girls, get upstairs and get ready for a bath." Elise looked at her daughter and instructed, "Angel, you can lend Ellie your extra robe. You two go into your room and get into the robes then come into my bathroom. I'll start the water and bubbles and you can get all that stickiness off of you. Scoot!"

The girls raced upstairs to get ready for their bath and the two adults followed at a more leisurely pace. Elise stepped onto the first stair tread and turned to face Angela. "We have a buss to catch?" Elise asked with a sultry smile.

Blue eyes filled with a mixture of humor and desire, "Mmm hmmm, we sure do. You got a problem with that?"

Putting her arms around the Angela's shoulders, Elise answered, "oh, no, no problem at all." She tilted her head and pulled the other woman close. She saw Angela's lips part saw that the blue eyes were focused on her lips and it took every ounce of strength she had to playfully push the taller woman away as she turned to dash up the stairs calling, "Payback's a bitch, Mutt!"

"Oh Jeff, you are gonna pay BIG time for that one!" Elise responded chasing up the stairs after Elise.

"Uh uh uh, that was payback for the buss comment that made me spew, so now we're even," said Elise as she reached the top of the stairs.

Reaching the top of the stairs herself, Angela reached out and wrapped her arms around Elise, pulling her back against her. Leaning down so that her lips brushed Elise's ear she whispered, "we're not even at all, you just upped the stakes and you know it. All I did was make you laugh, what you just did was..." She paused and ran her tongue along the shell of Elise's ear, "cruel."

Feeling Angela's warm wet tongue caress her ear, Elise moaned. Hearing Elise's moan drove Angela's pulse rate up but she had accomplished what she'd wanted so said, "now, we're even."

Elise growled her frustration then moved away from Angela and down the hallway, through her room and into the adjoining bathroom. Angela followed a few steps behind taking the time to admire how gracefully Elise moved and, quite frankly, to admire how nicely Elise's jeans molded her backside. As she entered the large bathroom, Angela got an even better view of the shapely rear as Elise bent over to plug the tub drain and start the water running. When Elise stood back up she saw where Angela's eyes had been and couldn't resist asking, "Like what you see?"

Groaning, Angela answered, "You don't even have to ask. Gods, yes I love what I see."

Elise grinned, "good!" Pointing behind Angela, Elise said, "The bubble baths are in that cabinet, I suggest we use the lavender scent, hopefully it will calm the girls down so we can get them settled for the night."

Reaching into the cabinet and choosing the appropriate jar, Angela commented, "Good idea they're pretty hyper right now." Handing the bottle of scented bubble salts to Elise she said, "They're so much like we were at that age, it's spooky."

"I know. Oh, speaking of spooky..." Elise went on to tell Angela about the drawing Angel had made and the similarity it had to her own drawing from years past.

"Amazing" commented Angela softly.

After the little girls were bathed and put into their pajamas, Elise and Angela each held their own daughter as Elise told story after story until both girls fell into sleep. Carefully tucking the small bodies into Angel's full size bed each woman bent and left a soft kiss on each girl's head and whispered soft prayers for a good night's sleep.

As Angela moved toward the hallway she held out her hand to Elise. Hand in hand the women exited the little girls' room and made their way downstairs. Once downstairs turned to Angela, "I'm so scared, Angel."

"I know, Baby, I am too." Looking into verdant green eyes she said, "El, we don't have to do anything we're not ready for. Even if you're not ready for that kiss we've been talking about, that's all right."

Cupping Angela's cheek in her palm, Elise said, "No, that's not what I mean, c'mon, let's sit down and talk."

"Sensitive chat time, huh?" asked Angela with a smile.

Chuckling, Elise agreed with Angela, "Yes. Have a seat on the sofa, I'll go get us some wine and we can talk."

Once both women were settled on the sofa, Elise reached over and took Angela's hand pulling it into her lap and began stroking the back with her thumb. "Angela, I'm not scared of the kiss, I'm afraid of all of this. I'm afraid of how much I feel. Gods, we've been separated for over twenty years and yet I feel as if we've never been apart. I look at you and I feel every ounce of love we shared as friends plus all the love that grew between us when we wrote those letters. I'm afraid someone is going to wake me up and I'll find that this has all been a dream." Taking a breath she continued, "I'm afraid that you'll find out that I'm just a silly side kick and will need something, someone more," raising her eyes to Angela's her voice caught, "I wouldn't be able go through it again, I can't let my heart accept that my Angel is back and then lose you, I wouldn't survive it another time. When we were 16 I had my family around me to help me, my heart was young enough to bounce back a bit. This woman's heart wouldn't be able to bounce back, Angel."

Raising Elise's hand to her lips, kissing the palm Angela answered, "Do you think I could survive it, El? I couldn't. I don't quite understand all that's happening between us, but I do know that what I feel is real. I know that when I look at you now, as a grown woman, I feel things that I never dreamed I would experience. I feel as if we've never been apart and yet I still have the ache that being away from you caused." Raising her hand to gently stroke Elise's face she continued, "El, we both want this, right? You feel the connection we share and want to continue, whatever this is?"

"Of course!" Exclaimed Elise.

"Good. Baby, let's just take it slow, we'll get reacquainted and let the rest fall into place. There's no need to rush into anything until we're both ready. What do you say?"

"I say that sounds good," replied Elise, "but only on one condition."

A worried look entered Angela's blue eyes, "what's the condition?"

"That you kiss me, right now." answered Elise as she leaned in to capture Angela's lips.

The kiss started as a soft caress. Angela's lips left Elise's then instantly returned for another kiss, and another. Soon their kisses deepened and Elise felt Angela's tongue stroking her lower lip, seeking entrance. Elise moaned as she actively took Angela's tongue into her mouth, her tongue dueling with Angela's. The kisses went on until both women's need for air overrode all else. Elise leaned her forehead against Angela's and attempted to get her breathing under control. "Wow," panted Elise.

"You can say that again," murmured Angela.

"Wow," repeated Elise, causing both women to chuckle softly.

"As much as I'd like to stay up all night talking and kissing, I think we should get some sleep. I'm sure our little ones will be up early and we're going to have to keep up with them!" Elise commented.

"I agree, let's go." Said Angela as she rose from the sofa and offered a hand up to Elise. As soon as Elise was on her feet, both women did a security check of the house making sure all the doors and windows were latched. Hand in hand they walked up the stairs and down the hall until they stood outside the door to the guestroom. Angela opened the door and walked in to the warmly appointed room and turned to say good night to the woman that held her heart. Taking Elise into her arms, she bent her head and captured Elise's soft lips. She felt Elise's arms wrap around her and felt one small hands run up and down her back, then felt that hand slide up and into her hair to pull her into a deeper kiss. Angela moaned into Elise's mouth and her tongue plunged into the sweet cavern that was offered when Elise parted her lips. Both women felt their passion racing out of control and, as if they'd planned it, they both broke off the kiss at the same moment.

Breathing hard and jaw clenched, Angela rasped, "Go, El, go now." She knew if Elise didn't leave at that moment, that they would do more than they were ready to do. No matter how much they desired one another, they needed to build a foundation together before the physical aches were eased.

"Good night, my Angel" Elise said from the doorway.

"Good night, my Ellie" called Angela.


The weeks after the sleepover were filled with regular visits, date nights that included the little girls, and nightly phone calls between Angela and Elise. They talked about their childhood, they talked about what had happened in the intervening years and they talked about what the future held. The more time the women spent together the more certain they became that they were, indeed, one another's destiny.

Although the women enjoyed spending time with their daughters, they desired some adult alone time. One morning, after getting Angel off to school, Elise picked up the phone and dialed a number from memory. Her heart beat nervously as she waiting for the phone to be answered.


"Hi Mom," answered Elise.

"Elise, Sweetheart! How are you? I've been worried sick that something is wrong! I've left messages on your machine and you haven't called me back. If you hadn't called in the next day or two I was going to come over to check on you." chastised Bonnie Covington.

"I know, Mom, and I'm sorry." Taking a deep breath Elise continued, "Mom, so much has been happening lately, I just got caught up in it and, to be honest, I've been afraid to call you."

"Honey, what's happened? Why would you be afraid to call me? Are you in trouble?" Elise's could hear the worry in her mother's voice and decided to jump in with both feet.

"No, Mom, I'm not in any trouble," Elise paused "unless being in love is trouble."

"WHAT?" exclaimed Bonnie, "Elise Melinda Covington, you get your little blonde butt over to my house this minute and tell me what is going on with you!"

Knowing there was no escape from her mother, Elise agreed to drive to her mother's house and update her on all that was happening. After showering and dressing in a comfortable yet sophisticated silk pants ensemble, she drove over to her mother's house. On the way to her mother's place, Elise called Angela on her cell phone.

"Hello?" answered the sultry voice.

"Gods, do you know what your voice does to me?" asked Elise.

"Mmmm, no, why don't you tell me, baby?" purred Angela.

"No, I'm not going to tell you because I'm driving and you distract me enough as it is!" Elise paused, waiting to hear the sexy chuckle she expected from Angela, "Listen, Mutt, I'm on my way to Mom's house right now. I decided it's time to tell her what's happening with us."

A moment's silence greeted Elise before Angela said, "Oh, Gods, Jeff, do you want me to meet you there?"

Touched at Angela's immediate offer, Elise said, "No, thank you Baby, I need to do this part alone. Knowing Mom she'll be calling you herself to demand a personal appearance!"

Remembering Mrs. Covington from her childhood, Angela laughed outright, "I'm sure you're right. I'll be ready. You sure you want to do this now, El?"

"Yes, I'm sure, the longer I wait the tougher it will be and she'll be hurt that I hid something this huge from her." Elise went on to explain, "I just wanted to hear your voice to bolster my courage and because I love to hear that sexy voice of yours." Looking ahead Elise saw that her exit was coming up, "I'm almost to Mom's exit, so I'm going to hang up now. I love you Angel."

"I love you too, El. I'm going to go jump in the shower, I'd put money on a bet that I'm going to be heading to La Jolla in a few hours!" laughed Angela.

"Safe bet, gorgeous. Bye for now," Elise laughed into the phone.

"Bye sweetheart," Angela signed off.

As Elise finished her drive, she rehearsed what she would say to her mother. When she pulled up in front of the ocean-view home and got out of the car, she took a moment to gather her courage then headed up the walk way. Before she was halfway to the house, the front door opened and out walked Bonnie Covington. "Hello Darlin', how is my little girl?"

Elise smirked and said, "Your little girl is in school, mother, your grown girl is just fine."

"Don't you get sassy with me young lady, no matter how old you get you will always be my little girl. But, speakin' of my grandbaby, how is my precious Angel girl?"

"Angel is thriving, Mama." Taking her mother's hand and placing it in the crook of her own elbow, Elise walked into the house, "She and her best friend tied for first place in the second grade spelling bee. Next time she sees you she'll show you her blue ribbon."

"Oh, she's a smart one, just like her Mama," Beamed Bonnie.

Elise bent and placed a kiss on her mother's cheek, "Thank you Mama, I love you too."

"All right, enough chit chat. I have tea ready and we are going to sit down so you can tell your Mama what is going on in your life." The elder Covington sighed, "I swear, I go on one little ol' cruise and come back to find the whole plantation in an uproar!"

Laughing, Elise said, "Mother, you haven't lived in the south for more years than I can count, why do you continue to speak like that?"

"Ms. Covington, once a southerner, ALWAYS a southerner," beamed Bonnie.

"Yes, Ma'am Mama," replied Elise with false seriousness.

Pouring two cups of tea and placing one in front of her daughter, Bonnie demanded, "So talk."

Taking a deep, cleansing breath, Elise began to tell her story. She told her mother about her daughter's determination to make the new girl in school, 'her very best friend', she told her about her daughter's desire for a sleep over and that she made plans to meet the parent of the child in a public place.

"Oh, that's very wise of you, Darlin', you never know these days." complimented Bonnie.

"Thanks, Mama" and with a grin added, "See, I was listening sometimes!"

"I suppose," muttered Bonnie, "Now get on with it."

"Ok, Angel and I went to meet Ellie and her Mother. Mama, when I saw Ellie, I almost fell over in shock."

"Why Darlin'? Is she hideous or somethin'?" Bonnie asked.

Elise couldn't stop herself from smiling at her mother's comment, "No, far from it." A thought came to Elise and she decided to act upon it. Reaching into her purse, she pulled out a packet of pictures she had just had developed. Extracting the photo she had taken of Angel and Ellie in the back yard, she quietly handed it to her mother.

After taking the photograph and looking at it, Bonnie's brow furrowed, "Why are you showin' me a picture of you and Angela?"

"Mama, that's Angela and her friend Angel." explained Elise.

"Oh My, " breathed Bonnie, "Oh my," looking up at her daughter, Bonnie said, "They are the spittin' images of y'all."

"I know, Mama" said Elise. "Mama, the sock I felt when I saw little Ellie was nothing compared to the one I got when her mother came running around the corner of the building." After a pause she continued, "Mama, Angela's back."

"Oh my Lord," Bonnie Covington paled and jumped out of her chair to go look out the window, "Oh sweet Lord."

Confused by her mother's reaction, Elise questioned "Mama?"

Elise could see the tight, controlled look on her mother's face. When Bonnie turned to look at her daughter, there was a look of profound sadness, and something else, guilt, in her eyes. "So, I suppose she told you."

"Told me what, Mama" Elise asked, more confused than ever.

"Told you about your Daddy's ultimatum." answered Bonnie.

"No, Mama, but why don't you tell me about it," demanded an angry Elise.

A mask of resignation came over Bonnie's face as she contemplated how to tell her daughter about the events from so long ago. Looking into her daughter's angry and confused continence, Bonnie asked, "I'm thinkin' its Angela you're in love with, am I right?"

"Yes, Mama. But I'm not telling you one more thing until you explain what you mean by 'Daddy's ultimatum'."

Closing her eyes and nodding her head sadly, Bonnie decided that she needed to clear the air. She had never agreed with what her husband had done so many years before, but she knew she was guilty as well because she hadn't done enough to stop it.

Bonnie walked over to Elise and held her hand out palm up, "Elise, give me Angela's phone number. I need to tell this to both of you and I'd rather do it at one time."

After Elise gave her mother Angela's phone number, Bonnie dialed and waited for the phone to be answered.

"Hello?" answered Angela after one ring.

"Oh my," sighed Bonnie, "Angela Amphipolis you sure do have one luscious voice."

With a sexy low chuckle, Angela answered, "Why thank you Mrs. Covington, it's good to hear your voice as well."

With a determined tone, Bonnie went on, "Angela dear, I think you had better get over to my house."

"Mrs. Covington, I figured you would be calling me so I'm all ready to leave the house. Elise told me that you now live in La Jolla, but I'll need directions to your home."

After directions had been given, Bonnie turned to her daughter, "Do you want to say anything to your Angel, Darlin'?"

Elise nodded yes, and Bonnie handed over the phone. "Angel, hurry. Drive safely, but come quickly, all right?"

"Baby, what's wrong?" asked Angela, immediately concerned by the tone of her love's voice.

"I'm not sure, Mama needs to tell us something and I just need you here." Elise answered with a tremble in her voice.

"I'm on my way, Baby." Angela said as she picked up the keys to her car.

"Drive safely, Angel," Elise said as she hung up.

As Angela drove the twenty miles north to La Jolla, she wondered what had upset Elise so profoundly. From the way Mrs. Covington had spoken on the phone it didn't seem as if their relationship was the problem. 'Guess I'll simply have to find out when I get there', thought Angela as she maneuvered her car up interstate 5 toward La Jolla.

Angela pulled her car in back of Elise's and headed to the beautiful home. As she raised her hand to ring the bell, the front door opened and her arms were filled with a bundle of crying blonde. Angela held Elise close, rubbing her back and stroking her hair until she heard the tears diminish. Leaning away to look into Elise's eyes, Angela asked what the matter was.

"Oh, I don't know, I just have a really bad feeling about whatever it is Mama needs to tell us," sniffled Elise.

With their arms around each other the two women entered the house. Angela couldn't help but smile when she saw Mrs. Covington, she had always liked Elise's Southern Mother. Mrs. Covington had always made her feel welcome in their home. Angela dropped her arm from around Elise just long enough to greet Mrs. Covington with a hug then replaced the arm around her love.

"Let's go into the Livin' room, girls. We'll need to be comfortable for this." Bonnie led the women into the expensively appointed living room. As Angela sat on the butter-soft leather sofa she gazed out the ceiling to floor windows that overlooked the Pacific Ocean. "Mrs. Covington, this is breathtaking." She said in awe.

"Thank you, Darlin', I always loved the ocean, and now I get to enjoy it every day," answered Bonnie. "Now, I have some mighty difficult things to tell you two and I'd appreciate it if you would stay quiet until I get it all out. After I'm done you can ask all the questions you want, agreed?"

Angela and Elise looked at one another then at Bonnie and both nodded their agreement. "Good." Taking a moment to gather her thoughts, Bonnie launched into her story, "Angela, when your family moved to Greece, my Elise was beside her self with grief. Not a day went by that I didn't see a look of longin' on her face." Angela turned her head to look into Elise's eyes as she listened to Mrs. Covington; her heart ached at the thought of her friend's anguish. Elise saw all of the feelings pouring from Angela's eyes and softly smiled at the woman she loved. Mrs. Covington had noticed the silent exchange between her daughter and the tall beauty at her side and paused until she saw that she had their attention once again.

"Elise, your Daddy and I knew that you were writin' letters back and forth to Greece. We were both amazed that even after four years; you two were still faithful in writin' to one another." Knowing that the rest of what she had to say was going to be the most difficult, Bonnie paused to gather her courage, "Elise, Angela, there is no excuse for what I'm about to tell you, but I need to say it anyway. One day your Daddy just got too curious about what you were writin' in all those letters, Elise. So, instead of droppin' one letter in the mailbox as usual, your Daddy opened your letter and read it."

Elise gasped and started to say something, but Angela's hand on her arm and her mother's upheld hand asking for quiet stayed her tongue.

"Elise, there is no excuse for what your Daddy did that day. There is no excuse for what he did after he read what was in that letter either." After taking a sip of water to moisten her nervous parched throat, Bonnie continued. "Honey, your Daddy had seen the kind of life your Aunts Janice and Mel had gone through. He saw, first hand, when Mel got beat up simply because she loved your Aunt Janice. He didn't want his little girl to go through the same torture." Holding up her hand once again to silence her daughter, Bonnie went on, "I know, it should have been your choice to either put up with people's small minds or not. But once your Daddy got it in his head that if he nipped your blooming romance in the bud you would both be better off, there was no stoppin' him"

"He called your Father, Angela. He told your Father what was in the letter and he told your Father that if any more letters came from you, he would cut the funding to your Father's project. Your Popa was caught between the proverbial rock and a hard place, Angela. To his credit, he argued that you girls had every right to love one another and that it was none of my husband's business to play god in you girls' lives. But James had made up his mind that his plan was the best and would not budge."

"Angela, if your father hadn't intercepted the rest of your letters, he would have lost millions of dollars and that would have put so many people out of work that he simply did what he was forced to do."

"I didn't find out about the whole fiasco until a year after the letters were stopped. I was so worried about you, baby," She said looking at her daughter who was now quietly sobbing into Angela's shoulder. "I went to your Daddy and asked him if he couldn't please find out what had gone wrong between you two. I had hoped that he could find out what you must have argued about and that we would find a way to mend your friendship. When he told me that he was the reason your letters had stopped I couldn't believe it." Even after all the years that had passed, Bonnie's insides still shook with anger about the situation, "We had a terrible argument about it. Actually we had several arguments about it but he would not budge. He had it in his mind that what he was doing was for your own good that he was unmovable."

"Girls, I regret that I didn't have the courage to defy him and find a way to get you back in contact with one another. All I can say is that I was taught that a wife was to obey her husband and that's what I ended up doing. I tried the best I could to change his way of thinkin', but in the end, I did what I thought a good wife was supposed to do and went along with him and for that, I ask your forgiveness, both of you."

Angela and Elise sat huddled together in a state of shock. Finally, Elise broke the silence, "What happened to all the letters I wrote to Angela after that?"

Bonnie couldn't meet her daughter's eyes, "He burned them, honey."

Elise didn't know how to react to everything she had been told. Feelings of betrayal, hurt, anger, and red-hot rage flowed through her. She jumped up from her seat and said in a frighteningly calm voice, "I need to think, I'm going for a walk and I'll be back. Angela, come with me, please?"

Looking at her watch, Angela saw that, although it felt an eternity had passed, it had only been an hour since she arrived at Mrs. Covington's house. They still had three hours until the girls got out of school. Getting up and joining Elise she turned to Mrs. Covington, "We'll be back," was all she said then led Elise out the front door.

As soon as they were outside, Elise turned to Angela with rage filled eyes, "Why aren't you angry? Why aren't you screaming? My god, Angel, they stole our life from us!" As she ranted, Elise pounded down the steps that led to the beach. Once on the beach Elise reached for every object that she could lift and started throwing them. Every can, every rock, every piece of driftwood was hurtled as far as her arm could throw. When she bent down and picked up an empty beer bottle, Angela reached out and stopped her from smashing it against the rocks. Elise spun around and looked at Angela, "I need to break something, give it back!"

With uncanny calm, Angela said softly, "No, baby, throw any of the rest of this, but not the glass. Angel plays on this beach, doesn't she? I won't let you do something that might harm you or Angel later when you walk on this beach."

Angela's words penetrated Elise's rage and as she realized that even now, Angela was protecting her and her daughter her rage fled and the hurt took it's place. She flung herself into Angela's arms and sobbed until she had no more tears to cry.

Finally, she pulled herself together enough to croak out, "Why are you so calm about all of this? Aren't you angry?"

Angela continued to hold her precious friend and love, caressing her back and stroking her hair as she answered, "Baby, I am angry and I am hurt. But I also understand that, although he was dead wrong, your father did what he did with good intentions."

"But.." interrupted Elsie.

"Please, let me finish," Angela continued, "Yes, your father was wrong. Yes, what he did hurt us for a lot of years, but El, it does neither of us any good to be angry with him, or with my father for that matter. They're both gone and what's done is done."

Angela turned Elise's face up and looked into her eyes, "I know that if you thought you could keep Angel from harm, you would do anything to protect her. I would do the same for Ellie. I would do the same for both our girls. I understand why your father did what he did. I also know that your mother's generation was raised to think that even if you disagree with your husband, you obey him. I can't blame her for doing what she thought was right for her."

Elise shook her head, "I don't know, Angel, they took all those years from us!"

Angela pursed her lips and grinned a half grin then said, "Yeah, but in the end they couldn't keep us apart, could they? The fates brought us back together, Baby, isn't that what is important now?"

Elise was silent for long moments as she contemplated Angela's words. Finally, she looked into the eyes she loved and said, "Yeah, that is what's important. I'm so glad we found one another again, I love you so much, my Angel."

"And I love you, Ellie mine," said Angela as she leaned down and kissed the tear swollen lips. Their kiss turned passionate within moments and tongues dueled as hands roamed through soft hair, over shoulders and backs and lower to cup firm backsides. Finally breaking the kiss, Angela gasped, "This isn't the place or time, baby, we need to slow down."

Elise nodded and worked to get her raging libido under control. She had never desired anyone or anything the way she wanted Angela. The strength of her passion overwhelmed her. She looked up into Angela's eyes, reached up and caressed her strong cheekbones and down along her jaw and whispered, "I want you."

The passion that had been momentarily banked, flared to life in Angela's blue eyes, then she closed her eyes and groaned before saying, "El, I want you so badly I ache to my soul, one kiss from your lips and I'm swollen and wet for you. Don't you think, for even a moment, that this waiting is easy for me." She took Elise's hand and placed it over her heart, "Feel that? My heart feels like it's beating out of my chest because I can't contain the love I feel for you, there are no words to tell you, El, words just cannot convey everything I feel."

Awed by Angela's declaration, Elise answered with one of her own. "Angel, my Angel, I have never intimately touched another person in love. I have never felt passion inside my soul the way I do now, with you. I thought I knew was wanting was all those years ago when we wrote our letters of young love, but that was child's play compared to what I feel for you now." Taking Angela's hand and placing it over her heart, Elise continued, "You own this, Angela. You hold my heart and soul in your hands. There is no one else I would trust with them. When the time is right, I want to give you all of my passion, I will show you how wet and hot and swollen I get from your kisses. I will give you what I've never given another soul…me."

Angela's hand slid from the space over Elise's heart and up to cup her face, "I am the most blessed woman in the universe, I will treasure you and this gift you'll give me for all time." She then leaned down and placed a soft kiss on Elise's lips.

Elise finally rose to her feet and put a hand out to help her tall friend up, "I guess we should go let Mom of the hook, huh?

Angela glanced sideways at Elise and said, "Yeah, she's probably worn a hole in the Berber by now."


A few weeks after the meeting with Elise's mother, Angela phoned Mrs. Covington with a special request. When Mrs. Covington answered the phone, Angela launched into her plea.

"Hello, Mrs. C," said Angela.

"Well, hello Darlin', how's my tall, dark and devastatingly beautiful daughter?" asked Bonnie.

Taken aback by Mrs. Covington's question, Angela paused, "Daughter?"

"Oh come now, Angela, I see how things are between you and Elise. You have always held a special place in my heart and I have no doubt that you will be a part of this family for whatever time is left in this world. Oh, and another thing, I'd be honored if you would consider callin' me Mom, or Mama instead of Mrs. Covin'ton."

Angela cleared her throat of the lump that had formed then said, "Thank you, Mama, it's a privilege I'll cherish. Um, Mama? I was wondering if I could ask a favor of you. I'd like to take Elise out on a date, a real date without the children and I was..."

Before she had a chance to finish her sentence, Bonnie interrupted Angela, "Of course, I'll watch those girls! Why it's been too long since I had my grandbaby to visit and now I'll have two of them to love and spoil rotten!"

Angela groaned as she thought about how true those words were. She had no doubt that the two little girls would be pampered and primped and given whatever they desired when they stayed with Bonnie Covington.

Bonnie's voice broke into Angela's thoughts, "Now, don't you go frettin', Angela, I spoil my grandbaby, but she knows that grandmama's word is law and she is expected to behave when she is in my house. It will be no different for your Ellie." As the light went on in Bonnie's mind she said, "You named your baby after Elise, didn't you, Darlin'?"

"Yes, I did. I couldn't imagine anyone else I would want to name her for. I'd never stopped missing her, Mama." answered Angela.

"Oh, Angel girl, I know. It was same way for Elise when she named little Angel. Even though the circumstances were what they were, Elise still wanted that baby and named her Angel while she was still in the womb." Bonnie confided.

Angela and Bonnie worked out the details for the date Angela had planned that following Friday night then said good-bye to one another.

When that Friday finally arrived, Angela had all of her plans set for a special evening. She and Elise had made plans to take the girls out for dinner and then to the movies. What Elise was unaware of was that Bonnie and Angela had tweaked those plans just a bit. Angela hoped that the evening would work out as she planned and that she and Elise would be finally be able to spend some special time alone together.

After the girls got to their respective homes after school Friday, both mothers supervised their daughter in doing their assigned homework. Then both girls were bathed and dressed for a casual evening out. While Elise was getting herself ready for their night out, only a few miles away Angela was rushing through the house packing an overnight bag for Ellie and then placing an evening outfit of her own it a garment bag for later. She had chosen her custom-tailored black leather suit and a sapphire silk shirt to go beneath it. She checked her make-up kit to ensure that everything she needed was there before she zipped it closed and placed it at the bottom of the garment bag. After checking on Ellie's progress, Angela took her garment bag and Ellie's small overnight bag and placed them in the trunk of her car. Before long the two of them were in their car and on their way to pick up their blonde best friends.

Upon arrival at Elise and Angel's house, the adults exchanged quick kisses, and the little girls gave one another exuberant hugs, even though they had been at school together most of the day!

"You ready to go?" Asked Angela

"Yup, all set" answered Elise.

"Then let's move 'em out, ladies" Said Angela as she held the door open for all of her companions.

When Angela drove past the turn off to Old Town San Diego, which was where they had planned to have dinner that evening, Elise sweetly pointed out that she has missed the exit. "I know, El, but I decided I'm not really in the mood for Mexican food tonight. I should have checked with you first but, do you mind if we go somewhere else?"

"Hey, Mutt, if you don't want Taco, you don't have to have no stinkin' Tacos" answered Elise.

Angela smiled and said, "Gee, thanks Jeff, you're da best!"

"So, where are we going to go, Mom?" asked Ellie from the back seat.

Angela looked in the rear view mirror to see her daughter and replied, "It's a surprise, Sweetie."

The girls tried their hardest to squeeze the surprise out of the tall adult but she was not budging and they finally started guessing on their own.

"Chuck E. Cheeses!"

"Johnnie Rockets"


On and on, they called out guesses but were never rewarded with an affirmative answer. It wasn't until Angela took the La Jolla exit and headed toward the Covington home that Angel finally squealed, "We're going to my Grandmama's!"

Elise turned curious eyes toward Angela, "Are we going to Mom's?"

Angela smirked, "Yes, she said she wanted to meet Ellie so...."

Elise took Angela's hand and placed a kiss on the back, then pressed the hand to her cheek, "I think that's perfect, love. Thank you for the surprise."

Angela was glad she was adept at keeping a stoic face in place because she was bursting inside at how well the plan seemed to be going.

When the foursome reached Bonnie Covington's home they all piled out of the car and headed for the front door. Angel grabbed Ellie's hand and they ran to the front door and rang the doorbell. It only took a moment for the bell to be answered by a beaming Bonnie Covington.

"Well, now who do we have here?" asked the older woman

"Grandmamma, It's me, Angel!"

"Well, so it is, my big Angel girl," then looking at the girl holding Angel's hand, "Angela Janice Covin'ton, I think you should introduce your Grandmamma to this beautiful creature beside you."

In her most adult voice, Angel did as instructed, "Grandmother Covington, I'd like to introduce you to Miss Elise Jacqueline Popodopolis. Ellie, this is my Grandmother, Mrs. Bonnie Covington."

Bonnie extended her hand and shook the dark haired girl's hand, "It is so nice to meet you, Elise, may I call you Ellie?"

"Yes, please, Mrs. Covington, everyone calls me Ellie"

"Good, and I hope you'll call me Grandmamma just as my Angel girl does." Then turning to Angel she said, "Angel I am so proud of you! That was a perfect introduction."

"Now, where are my hugs?" She said as she took Angel in her arms for a big squeeze and a kiss.

"I need a hug from my big girls too" commented Bonnie.

Once hugs were exchanged and everyone was in the living room, Bonnie looked over at Angela and gave her a sly wink. Looking down at the little girls, Bonnie said, "I've ordered dinner from your favorite Chinese place, Angel girl, how would y'all to like to drive with Grandmamma to go pick it up?"

Jumping with excitement the girls readily agreed to go with Grandmamma.

After the girls were buckled into the back seat of Bonnie's Jaguar and they pulled away, Angela took Elise's hands and said, "So this was a good surprise?"

"Gods, yes, Sweetheart, I love it!" smiled Elise.

"Think you could handle a fed more surprises?" asked Angela with a smile.

Elise's eye grew wide, "Why? What?"

Angela squeezed the hands she was holding and said, "Well, I asked your Mom if she'd watch the girls so we could have a real grown up date tonight. I have reservations for 8:00 at The Marine Room, and then I thought we'd just see where the evening leads us. What do you think?

Tears filled Elise's eyes, "I love it, I love you." Then she paused, "WAIT, The Marine Room? I'm not dressed for The Marine Room!" As she looked at her watch she knew she'd never have time to drive home, get dressed and ready and make it back to La Jolla for an 8:00 reservation.

"Honey, Honey" Angela said firmly to stop Elise's panic, "Your Mom took care of everything. She has clothes and shoes here for you, she said you two wear the same shades in makeup so you can use hers. So we have plenty of time."

"I need to go jump in the shower!" exclaimed Elise.

"Didn't you shower before I picked you up? Your hair was still a little damp..." puzzled Angela.

"Of course I did, but that was a kid's date shower, not a 'I'm going out with my lover shower'!" called Elise as she went through her mother's room and into the expansive master bath.

Angela shook her head and laughed, "A kid's date shower? Gods, you are such a girl sometimes!"

While Elise was in taking her "Adult date shower", Angela went out to the car to grab her garment bag and Ellie's overnight bag. While she was closing up the trunk, Bonnie and the girls drove into the garage and got out. With a twinkle in her eye, Bonnie looked at Angela, "So, did she say yes?"

"You could say that," smiled the dark beauty, "She in your room now taking a 'grown up date' shower, whatever that is."

Laughing out loud, Bonnie said, "Darlin' a 'grown up date shower means she's fixin' to come outta there and blow your socks off!"

"Mama, she blows my socks off every time I see her. She doesn't need anything extra. I'd want her if she wore a burlap sack." Angela said.

Bonnie shooed the girls into the house then took Angel by the arm, "Come on, Darlin' I think you need to get ready for your 'adult date' as well."

Bonnie showed Angela to the guest bedroom with its adjoining bath and left her to get ready. She then went to check on the girls and to ask them to please set the table in preparation for their dinner. Once that was done, she went in to her own room and opened the closet to pull out the clothes for her daughter's date. Just as turned from the closet, Elise came out of the bathroom with her head wrapped in a towel. Elise rushed over and gave her mother a huge hug and kiss, thanking her for helping Angela accomplish the wonderful surprise.

"You are entirely welcome, Elise. Now, go do your hair and makeup then we need to get you dressed to go out with your tall dark and drop-dead gorgeous date!" She pushed her daughter back toward the bathroom and said, "Scoot!"

Once Elise had done her makeup to perfection and had her hair fixed, she went back into her mother's room to get dressed. 'In whatever my mother has for me' thought Elise grudgingly. Her mother wasn't' in the bedroom, so Elise called for her. As Bonnie entered the room she had a cross look on her face, "Elise Covin'ton, we do not holler for one another in this house, you know better than that. What kind of example are you settin' for those two girls out there?"

Properly chastised, Elise apologized for her rude manners then asked what she was supposed to wear that evening. First, Bonnie gave Elise a bag containing beautiful matching green silk panties and bra and a pair of hose with garters. At her daughter's raised brow, Bonnie said, "She'll love them, believe me."

"MOTHER! What makes you think she'll see them?"

"Honey, I may be old, but I am not dead and I am not blind. I see the way you two look at each other. Now get those things on and let's finish gettin' you ready."

After Elise had donned the soft under things, Bonnie told her to close her eyes. The look of unease on her daughter's face prompted her to say, "Trust me, Honey, I promise you'll like it."

As Elise closed her eyes she felt her mother slipping a dress carefully over her head. Once the dress was over her head and her arms were through the sleeve holes she felt her mother tugging and smoothing the fabric in place. "All right, my love, take a look"

When Elise opened her eyes she couldn't believe what she saw. The green silk dress fit her perfectly. The Vee of the bodice was low enough to display cleavage without being brash, the fabric criss-crossed over her breasts then the skirt flared out slightly and ended well above her knee, showing off a good bit of her fit thighs. "Mother, this is beautiful," Elise sighed.

"Oh, I just knew it would be perfect on you!" her mother beamed, "When Angela called to ask me to help her tonight I just had to go shoppin' for you.

"Thank you Mama."

After donning the heels her Mother handed her, Elise took one last look in the mirror then decided she was ready. As she walked into the living room, she saw that Angela was standing looking out toward the ocean. "Angel?" she called softly.

Angela turned around and her breath caught in her chest as she saw Elise. "Oh my gods, Ellie, you look stunning."

At the same moment, Elise took in the amazing outfit her date had on and her knees came close to buckling at the desire that burst through her. "You are the most amazingly beautiful creature I've ever seen, Angel mine."

"Wow, Mom, you look pretty!" chirped Angel, Jr. "and you look very handsome, Ms. P!"

"Yeah, you guys are HOT!" Ellie chimed in.

The girl's comments cut the tension and everyone smiled.

Angela looked at Elise, her eyes slowly gazing down the smaller woman's shapely body. When she reached the Amalfi encased feet her eyes made the trip back up the body she desired, when her eyes reached Elise's silk covered breasts, she saw that the nipples had hardened her eyes shot from the luscious breasts to look into desire-filled pools of green.

Clearing her throat, but not taking her eyes away from Elise's face, "I think it's time."

"Absolutely," answered Elise, her voice an octave lower than usual.

Angela blinked her eyes and cleared her throat once again, "Dinner, time for dinner. You ready?"

With a sultry smirk, Elise whispered, "Very."

'Gods, give me strength,' Angela prayed as she showed her date out the door.

As Bonnie Covington watched the exchange between the two women, a smile appeared on her lips. It was good finally see the real light back in her daughter's eyes. Once the adults left for their date, the remaining females started their own "date" night.


As Angela drove the few miles to The Marine Room, Elise looked out the windshield and said softly, "Please tell me the girls are spending the night with Mother."

"They are," answered Angela in the same soft tone.

The restaurant Angela had chosen was quiet and elegant with windows right on the water, so that diners can gaze at the ocean, and if they're lucky, watch the grunion run or the waves beat against the glass. When they arrived at the restaurant, Angela valet parked the car and escorted her beautiful date into the building. They descended the staircase to the main dining floor and were soon seated at one of the window tables. After perusing the menu, the women ordered their dinners. Angela chose the closest thing she could find to steak and potatoes and Elise ordered the Alaskan halibut in a macadamia crust, with tricolor orzo and saffron Sambuca tarragon sauce.

While waiting for the dinners to arrive the women sipped glasses of wine and stared longingly into one another's eyes. Elise smiled after long moment then nodded toward the window at her right side, "What a waste of a beautiful view, you bring me to a wonderful place with a breathtaking view of the ocean but all I want to look at is you."

"Baby, you're more beautiful than any ocean, besides, your eyes are the same color as those waters but they hold so much more, I love you, El," the statement tapered off at a whisper.

Elise blushed at the compliment and wished that she could lean across the table to kiss her heart's desire. Their loving gaze was interrupted when the servers brought their dinners to them. Elaine looked down at the plate that was placed in front of her and smiled. "I always have to force myself to start eating when I'm served food like this. It's so pretty on the place I feel like I'm disturbing a work of art when I go to eat it!"

"I know," agreed Angela, But why do they always put this stuff all over everything? she asked as she picked up the garnish on her plate with a look of disgust.

"It's pretty, Angel, just put it down and eat your steak," said Elise. She secretly loved when her beautiful love got uncomfortable with the frivolities life sometimes threw her way. Angela had always been that way, preferring classic lines and basic colors over flair and dramatics.

As dinner progressed, the women's eyes kept meeting and holding, desire evident in blue and green orbs. When the server came over to ask if they would like to order dessert, soft music started in the dance area of the establishment. They ordered crème' Brule for Elise and the Mixed Berry dessert for Angela, then Angela reached across the table and took Elise's hand, "When we finish dessert, will you dance with me?"

"Yes," answered Elise without pause, "You don't care...?"

"What? That people might be bothered by two women dancing together?" Answered Angela, "No, I don't care. I want to hold you in my arms and dance with you, I doubt anyone will give a damn, though, I mean who could blame me for wanting to dance with the most exquisite woman in the place."

Another blush colored Elise's face, "My Angel, you hold that title. You take my breath away. I'll be proud to dance with you, here or anywhere."

After dinner the women moved into the dimly lit dance area and slid into one another's arms. Angela held one of Elise's hands against her shoulder and slid her other hand around the smaller woman's back. Elise slid her free hand inside Angela's jacket to rest against the silk covered back. The music was soft and slow and soon Elise moved closer to her tall beauty and rested her head against the strong leather covered shoulder. Mmmm, leather smells so good mixed with your natural scent, it does something to me," the blonde murmured.

"Glad to hear it, I like doing 'something' to you," whispered Angela as she placed a soft kiss at the crown of the blonde head.

"Angel, take me home."

Without saying a word, Angela dropped the hand that had been slowly stroking Elise's back but maintained her hold on the hand that she had been holding to her chest and led Elise off the dance floor and up to the parking lot to claim the car. When they were safely buckled into the car, Elise reached over and put her hand on a leather-encased thigh, causing Angela to a sharp intake of breath. Angela covered the hand on her thigh and gave it a squeeze before raising it to place kisses on the back and fingers. "Baby, the things you do to me."

Remembering Angela's earlier comment, Elise replied, "I like doing 'things' to you."

A deep groan came from Angela's throat as she shifted her concentration to her driving. She needed to get them home safe and in once piece so that she could show Elise exactly what kind of 'things' she wanted to do. By mutual consent, the thirty-minute ride to Elise's downtown Victorian was accomplished in anticipatory silence.

Once inside the house, Angela and Elise remained silent as Elise led them up to her room. As they reached the side of Elise's king size bed, Angela turned to sit on the bed and pulled Elise between her knees. She Looked into Elise's eyes and husked, "Kiss me, El."

Elise's lids drew heavy with desire at the tone of Angela's voice. She slid her fingers into Angela's dark tresses and leaned in to kiss her with everything she had. The kiss was fire, power, desire raging out of control and lips moved, tongues slid from one warm mouth into the other and teeth nipped at desire-swollen lips. Elise's hands, which had been wrapped around Elise, began to roam over the small compact body before her. The large hands slip up from Elise's waist until she felt the swell of soft breasts against her palms. Elise whimpered as she felt Angela's hands cupping her breasts, the whimper turned into a moan as thumbs stroked against erect nipples through the fabric of green silk. As Angela continued to gently squeeze Elise's breasts and caress her nipples, she moved her kissed down Elise's neck, to her shoulder and down her sternum. As her lips reached the fabric of Elise's bodice she looked up into emerald eyes, "Off, please, let me take this off of you," she pleaded.

The blonde head nodded and Angela's hands went to the back zipper of the dress and slowly lowered it. Once the zipper was undone, Angela's hands slid over Elise's hips and down the outside of her thighs until she reached the hem of the dress, once there, she took hold of the hem and lifted the dress up and off Elise's body. As the dress was raised, Angela's eyes roamed over the body that was unveiled and her breath caught in her throat. The dress was carelessly dropped to the floor as Angela croaked, "Oh sweet Athena, you are beautiful." Her hands returned to Elise's breasts, caressing them until she felt a physical need to feel the soft peaks against her tongue. She planted soft kisses along the upper swell of the perfect breasts then ran her tongue under the upper edge of the cups. She felt more than heard the moan that came from Elise and she felt Elise's hands leave her hair, she looked up as Elise reached behind herself to unclasp the garment. "Oh gods, El," Angela sighed.

"Please, Angel," Elise pleaded as she cupped her own breast and held it, offering the taut peak to Angel's lips. Angela swallowed, and then quickly divested herself of her leather jacket before wrapping her arms around Elise's waist to pull the offering to her waiting lips. As she devoured the warm breasts with her lips and teeth, her hands roamed over the rest of Elise's body, cupping the firm buttocks, sliding down tight thighs to encounter the top of silk stockings covering the shapely legs.

Elise's hands were busy at the buttons of Angela's shirt; her hands were shaking so much she could barely get the buttons undone. When the blouse was finally open, Elise pushed it down and off of the luscious woman in front of her. "Baby, you are way over-dressed," breathed Elise as she tugged on the waist of Angela's leather pants.

"Oh, yeah, gods, come here," panted Angela as she passionately kissed Elise's soft mouth again. "Want to help me with these?" she asked with a sexy smile.

"Mmmm hmmmm, stand up, sexy," Elise said after she'd pulled the boots off of Angel's feet.

Angela stood on unsteady feet and watched as Elise's hands unbuttoned and unzipped her pants and slid the leather down her legs. She watched as green eyes studied her body, the look in those eyes caused a rush of moisture between her legs. When the eyes stopped at the level of her breasts, Angela held her breath until she felt the small hands reach up to cup and caress the sensitive mounds. A finger hooked into the front of Angela's bra, "Off," demanded Elise.

With a smirk, Angela reached back to unhook her bra, then allowed Elise to slide the straps down her shoulders and off her arms. She watched as Elise sent the garment flying across the room but didn't see where is landed since her eyes closed as she felt a moist hot mouth close over her right nipple. She wrapped her fingers in soft blonde tresses and pressed Elise's face tight into her chest moaning with pleasure. Soon, she felt Elise's teeth gently grazing the erect nipple, she sucked in a breath at the pleasure, "Yes, El, baby, you can bite harder," she stated.

Elise backed away from the breast she had been feasting on and pushed the tall brunette back onto the bed. Once Angela was on the bed, Elise stretched out beside her then reached out to capture Angela's nipple once more. As her mouth sucked, nipped and bit one aching nipple, her fingers were working on the other neglected bud. Angela's hands held tight to the woman loving her, encouraging Elise's loving exploration of her body. Once Elise had thoroughly loved each breast with mouth and hands, she began to kiss down Angela's abdomen until she reached her navel. She swirled her tongue around and into the small cavity and looked up into Angela's eyes. Angela looked down at the blond head resting on her belly, at the questioning look in the green eyes; she raised her own dark brow.

Elise cleared her throat, "I've read books and on-line stories, but I've never," Angela reached down and gently stroked Elise's face, encouraging her to finish, "Every story I've read, I've imagined myself loving you, I want to feel you against my tongue, I want you to be the only woman I'll ever taste."

Tears filled Angela's eyes, "El, come here," she pulled on the blondes arm to bring her up so that she could hold her against her body. Kissing Elise thoroughly, she finally said, "I want that too. I want to feel your mouth and hands on me. I want to be the first and only woman you taste." after kissing Elise again she looked back into her eyes, "And I want you to be the first woman I touch, taste, fill. I've never been with anyone other than Miklos, El, and he never held my heart and soul as you do, he only had my friendship and my body. I love you, Elise Melinda Covington."

"I love you, Angela Xena Popodopolis."


Angela woke in the predawn hours feeling warm, content and a little bit tender from her night of love with Elise. They had explored one another's bodies until both had fallen into an exhausted sleep. As Angela lay on her side with Elise tucked tightly against her, she inhaled deeply. Angela's eyes closed as the scent of their lovemaking wafted up stirring memories of the previous night.

Elise's mouth kissed down Angela's throat then to her chest where she spent long moments loving Angela's breasts. Soon, Elise kissed and left small bites farther down Angela's body until she reached the patch of dark curly hair at the apex of the long legs. Elise spent moments, eyes closed, as she rubbed her cheek against the soft springy curls and inhaled the scent that was uniquely Angela. The scent caused Elise's heart rate to increase, her mouth to water in anticipation and made her own sex moist with desire. She placed a kiss on the apex of the soft mound, before she insinuated her shoulders between Angela's thighs parting them. With her thumbs, she parted the soft lips of Angela's sex and simply looked at the gift she had opened. The look of utter wonder and love that came over Elise's face as she studied Angela's most private area caused tears to form in Angela's eyes. Elise raised her eyes to Angela's and whispered, "Beautiful, Angel, you are so beautiful" then she lowered her mouth to the soft, damp area that beckoned her.

The taste of Angela burst across Elise's tongue and caused her to moan in pleasure. At first her tongue was tentative as it moved against Angela's clitoris, but as she felt Angela's hips move against her mouth and heard Angela's moans of delight, her strokes became bolder. She used the flat of her tongue to lathe over the entire clitoris, then using only the tip she stroked one side then the other. She alternated strokes and small bites on the swollen nub, loving the feeling of the silky soft skin that surrounded it. Elise was so lost in her enjoyment of tasting Angela that Angela had to gently tug on her hair to get her attention, "El, baby...inside...please...now" begged the dark-haired woman as she writhed under the attentions of her beautiful lover.

As Elise looked up, her green eyes blazed with determination and a feral smile covered her lips. "Gods, yes!" she gasped as she brought her fingers to Angela's warm, soaked entrance. She entered Angela and thought that her heart would burst from the love and wonder she felt as the soft, strong walls of Angela's vagina gripped her fingers. Elise stroked her fingers in and out of Angela as she matched the rhythm set by Angela's thrusting hips. Her fingers moved and explored the new territory until she curved her fingers and touched a soft, spongy area deep inside Angela. "GODS, El, yes, yes, yes, right there!" screamed Angela. Elise's heart raced as she realized that the spot she had found inside Angela was sending her over the edge of ecstasy. As Elise concentrated her thrusts against that spot she chanted her love for Angela until she felt her fingers gripped in a vice-like hold as Angela screamed out her name and combined it with a few deities as well as declarations of undying love. Elise was delighted to feel that after the initial spasms of orgasm calmed, Angela's body continued to tremble with small spasms of aftershock.

Angela held her arms out to Elise, "Come here, I need to hold you." As Elise settled against the sweaty side of her lover, Angela whispered, "Thank you, thank you, thank you..."

"Oh, baby, no, thank you." smiled Elise, "How can I tell you how that felt? Touching you, loving you, so far surpasses any fantasy I've ever had, I have no words...".

As Angela reminisced about the love she had shared with Elise, her hand stroked the soft skin cuddled against her. Simply thinking about how Elise had touched her caused moisture to flow anew between her legs and made her ache to make love to Elise again. She leaned forward and began to kiss the naked shoulder beneath her lips and her hand slid down the muscled abdomen of her blonde lover. Elise reacted innately to Angela's touch as she tucked her bottom more snugly into Angela's groin and moved rhythmically against her. Angela's began to alternate kisses with bites against Elise's soft shoulder and neck as she allowed her hand to move further south on the Elise's luscious body.

The kisses, bites and insistent touches finally roused Elise from her slumber and she rolled onto her back and wrapped her arms around Angela's neck. She pulled Angela's face in to her own for a long, sensuous kiss then husked, "what a way to wake up, gods, Angel, touch me."

"I am", answered Angela in a low sensuous voice as she went on to demonstrate the many and varied ways she had dreamed of touching her love.

Later that morning, Angela awoke to the feeling of pressure in her bladder and slipped out of bed to use the restroom. After washing her hands and splashing water in her face, she looked up into the mirror and studied her countenance. She looked different, she was sure of it. A bright smile broke out on her face and then she smirked at herself for being such a sap. 'Guess I don't mind being a sap as long as I'm her sap', she thought.

After she returned to the bedroom, Angela strolled back over to the bed. She stood for long moments, purely studying her sleeping lover. Although Angela was wide-awake, she saw that Elise was sleeping peacefully so she decided to let her rest. She leaned over and pressed a soft kiss into the strawberry-blond hair and whispered, "I love you" and smiled when a soft mumble of "Love you, N'gel" emanated from under the covers.

Angela made her way downstairs and into the kitchen and snooped until she found where Elise kept her coffee, then started a pot brewing. As she glanced at her watch she was astounded to realize that it was well after ten o'clock. Angela smirked at how late she had slept then smiled brightly at the reason she had needed the extra sleep. She poured herself a cup of coffee then picked up the phone and dialed Bonnie Covington's phone number.

"Hello? Covington Residence, Ellie Popodopolus speaking" answered a young voice.

Angela beamed at the mature way her small daughter had answered the phone. "Hey love, how's my big girl this morning?" she inquired.

"Hi Mom!" squealed Ellie into the receiver. "Grandmama, it's my Mom." Angela held the phone away from her ear as she heard her daughter holler.

"Hey, young lady," she said sternly, "You know better than to yell when you're on the phone."

"I'm sorry Mom, but Grandmama's out in the kitchen and I'm in the den so I had to yell," explained Ellie.

Sighing, Angela said, "We'll talk about this later, I am in too good a mood to argue with you right now."

Hearing her mother's words and the happy tone of her voice, Ellie silently mouthed, "Yes!" because she was sure that her mother would forget to bring up the yelling incident and that she would be spared any further punishment.

"Soooooooo, Mom, did you have a good date with Angel's Mama?" Ellie giggled.

Angela couldn't keep the smile off of her face or out of her voice, "Yes, Ellie, I had a wonderful date. How was your time with Angel and Mrs. Covington?"

"Oh, Mom, it was GREAT!" beamed Ellie. She then proceeded to give an almost non-stop narration of the events of the previous evening. She told her Mother how good the dinner was and that Angel and Gradmamma Covington had taught her how to eat with chopsticks and that she had only dropped a little bit of food on to the carpet, but that Grandmamma hadn't gotten angry. She then told Angela a blow by blow account of the movie they had rented and about taking a walk on the beach before going to bed.

"Wow, baby, that sounds like a great evening!" commented Angela.

"It was the best!" Ellie sighed.

"Honey, I'm so glad you had a good time! Now, I'd like to speak with Mrs....um...Grandmamma Covington, will you please take the phone to her?"

"OK Mom, Hey, when are you coming to get us?" inquired the little girl.

"That's what I need to discuss with Grandmamma Covington."

"Oh, ok, just a sec" said Ellie. A few moments later Angel heard her daughter say, "Grandmamma, it's my Mom, she wants to talk to you."

Angela heard a mumbled "Thank you, Ellie" then a much clearer, "Hello, Angela, and how are you this mornin'?"

Angela could hear the smile in Bonnie Covington's voice and couldn't help the blush that rushed up into her face. "I'm fine, Mama."

"Mmmm Hmmm, I'm sure you are, and how is my beautiful daughter?" the teasing tone continued.

A deeper blush colored Angela's face and before she could answer the question, she felt a pair of hands circle her waist and felt Elise's warm, still sleepy body snuggle up beside her. She snaked an arm around Elise's body and quickly placed a kiss on her lips before answering in husky tones, "She's wonderful."

Bonnie laughed outright into the phone as she heard the dulcet tones of her daughter's lover. "Glad to hear it! Now, what are the plans for today, do you know yet?" she asked.

Angela was finding it difficult to pay attention to Mrs. Covington's questions because Elise's hands had found their way inside her robe and her lips were leaving a trail of kisses up her neck.

Even after taking a deep, cleansing breath, Angela's voice shook as she said, "uh, no, we haven't discussed it yet this morning."

Elise reached up and took the phone out of Angela's hand, "Mama, we'll call you in a few hours," she spoke into the receiver before promptly hitting the off button.

"Elise, you just hung up on your mother!"

"I told her we'd call her back so I didn't hang up on her, now...where was I?" Elise commented as she stripped the robe from Angela's body, pushed her onto the nearest flat surface, and proceeded to ravish the tall beauty on the kitchen table.

It was early evening by the time the new lovers arrived at Bonnie Covington's house.


In the weeks that followed Elise and Angela's first official date, the women spent as much time with one another as was possible. Many evenings were spent together at one or the other of their houses, which pleased the younger girls to no end. The evenings they were forced to spend apart were agony for Elise and Angela because their hearts ached whenever they were separated.

On one such evening, Angela needed to meet with a prospective client for her security consulting business. It was unusual for her to meet clients in the evening but the people in question were planning an extended trip out of the country and their original security consultant had botched their home system so badly that it was worthless. The extra fee they were willing to pay Angela in order to have her do an inspection and then install a state-of-the-art security system on their property was too good to pass up.

When Angela had called Elise to tell her that they wouldn't be able to spend the evening together, Elise had been disappointed but she understood Angela's reasoning. "Angela, you absolutely need to do this. If these people like your work I'm certain they have friends and business contacts they will refer to you," soothed Elise.

"I know, but Baby, we've missed seeing each for the past three nights and I'm going nuts!" complained Angela.

"Love, I miss you every bit as much as you miss me...if not more..." started Elise.

"Impossible! I miss YOU more." countered Angela.

"Oh, no...woman, we are not going to get into this again!" Elise laughed.

Having broken the seriousness of their earlier conversation, Elise decided to broach the question that was on her mind, "Hey, my Angel, what will you do with Ellie when you're at your meeting?"

Angela grinned as she admitted; "I was kind of hoping that she could go stay with her best friend. You see, I have an 'in' with her best friend's Mama so I thought I could persuade her to watch Ellie."

"Oh, you did, did you?" Elise chuckled in response.

A quiet, almost subdued voice answered, "Yeah, what'cha want in trade?"

"Mmmmm, I'm sure I'll think of something," purred Elise.

The purring tone of Elise's voice sent a shot of desire directly to Angela's core, "I'm willing to pay whatever price you name" she growled.

Elise answered, "I'm counting on it."

At 5:30 that evening, Angela arrived at Elise's to drop Ellie off. When Elise opened the door, her breath caught in her throat at the stunning woman on her doorstep. Angela wore a blue silk turtleneck beneath a crisply tailored black suit. The blue of the shirt and the expertly applied cosmetics set off the blue of her eyes in a way that caused Elise's heart to pound out of her chest and sent a rush of heat to her core.

"By the gods, you are beautiful" gasped Elise.

Humbled by her love's exclamation, Angela smiled softly. "Elise Melinda, you are the beauty that lights my heart."

Green eyes gazed into blue for long moments until, at last, Elise stood on tiptoe and placed of soft kiss of promise against Angela's crimson tinted lips.

"You need to get going if you're going to make it to your meeting on time, but oh, the things I would do to you if we had time"

Angela's eyes closed at the rush of passion Elise's words induced, "Believe me, if I could, I would carry you up those stairs right now and love you until neither of us could stand."

A low moan escaped Elise, "how late will your meeting go?"

Sighing, Angela answered, "I'll be very late. My potential clients, the Richardsons, are going out of the country early next week so if the meeting goes well I'll start my assessment tonight." She then held up Ellie's small overnight bag with a shy grin and a single arched brow, "As a matter of fact, I figured I'd be late enough that if you don't mind..."

Smiling and shaking her head Ellie took the bag from her lover's hand, then looked down at Ellie, "Well, Ms Ellie, it looks as if you're spending the night tonight."

"YAY!" beamed Ellie as she ran past Elise to find Angel.

Both women laughed at the child's exuberance, and then Elise pulled Angela into the house and beside the doorway so that she could press a proper kiss on Angela's lips. When the kiss broke, Elise pointed at Angela, "Stay right there."

Angela saluted, "Yes Ma'am".

Elise disappeared for a moment and when she returned she took Angela's hand, turned it palm up, and placed an object in the center, she then curled Angela's fingers around the cool piece of metal. Angela uncurled her fingers to look at what had been placed in her palm. Tears filled her eyes as she looked at the shiny house key lying in the palm of her hand.

"Whenever you're done with your client, you come back here and let yourself in. Then, you come upstairs into my bed where you belong."

With a grin, Angela once again saluted, "Yes ma'am, whatever you say." Then she sobered and looked into shining green eyes, "El, I don't know what to say, I may be out until early this morning."

Laying her hand on Angela's arm, Elise assured her tall lover that no matter how late, or how early, she finished with work that she was expected between Elise's sheets. "And Angel, that key isn't just for tonight. I want you to keep it always. No more knocking on this door. I am so in love with you and whenever you want to be here, I want you here."

Angela stared at her beloved, moved beyond words. Once she found her voice she uttered, "I'll treasure this, I treasure what it means. I love you, El."

The petite blonde glanced at her watch then raised a brow to her lovely companion, "You need to go. Please drive safely, I know you're going to impress the stuffin' out of those people so I won't expect you back until early in the morning."

Grinning, Angela remarked, "How can I lose when I have my very own cheering section?" She leaned down and placed a parting kiss on Elise's lips, "I'll be home as soon as I can."

As Angela drove away from Elise's house she looked into her rear-view mirror, 'Home', she thought, 'this is home, she is home for me.' She continued on her drive with a grin plastered on her face.


As predicted, Angela's work kept her out until the very early morning. It wasn't until 2:00 am that she used her new key to let herself in to Elise's house. The simple act of unlocking that front door with her own key caused her heart to swell. The knowledge that Elise trusted her enough to give her free entrance into her home, that she wanted her there, affected Angela deeply. Upon entering the house, Angela noticed that lights had been left burning for her in the entry way and in the upstairs hallway. She smiled 'El's lighting my way home' she thought as she extinguished the foyer light and headed up the stairs.

Angela walked quietly to young Angel's room and checked on the girls. She placed soft kisses on each forehead and pulled kicked-off blankets over the small sleeping forms. As she stood looking down upon the two girls, her entire being filled with joy, love and deep contentment. She turned and left the girls' room and walked to Elise's door.

Being as quiet as she could, Angela entered her lover's bedroom. Elise had left the bathroom light burning and the bathroom door was open a crack so that a small amount of light illuminated the bedroom. Again, Angela smiled at her lover's thoughtfulness. She walked over to the side of the bed and looked down on the sleeping Elise, then hurriedly turned to use the restroom. As Angela stripped out of her business suit, she saw that Elise had left wooden hangars on the counter with a post-it note attached. "So that gorgeous suit doesn't get ruined..." it read. Angela was suddenly overwhelmed by the multitude of small, incredibly thoughtful things Elise did for her. 'She is so good to me, I don't deserve it' she thought, 'I will accept this, and I'm going to do everything I can to make sure she feels just as cherished'.'

After brushing her teeth, with the toothbrush Elise had left for her, Angela turned out the bathroom light and padded over to Elise's bed. As she slipped between the sheets, Elise stirred, then moved to cuddle against Angela, her head tucked against Angela's shoulder, "You're home" she sighed.

Reaching down to place a soft kiss against Elise's lips, Angela whispered, "Mmmm, yes, I am."

"I take it you got the job?" asked a groggy Elise.

"Yes, I got it. I'll tell you about it tomorrow, I am so tired can barely keep my eyes open." Pulling Elise closer into her body she went on, "Good night El, I love you."

Elise raised her head to place another kiss against Angela's lips and murmured, "I love you." Within moments both women were entwined in one another's arms, fast asleep.

Much later that morning, Elise woke twenty minutes before her alarm had a chance to go off. She planned to turn the alarm off to allow Angela to get as much sleep as she could. Before reaching over to turn off the alarm, Elise snuggled into the warm body that was behind her. She relished the feel of Angela's body spooned against her back. She took a deep breath and let it out slowly as she ran her hand up the arm Angela had wrapped around her. The couple lay on their left sides, Angela's right arm surrounded Elise, and her right hand was cupped around Elise's left breast. Elise covered that hand gently, and savored the feelings of love, desire and safety the embrace instilled in her.

Elise finally reached over to turn the alarm off then, as gently as possible, slipped out of Angela's embrace and out of the bed. As she extricated herself, Angela stirred and, knowing Angela's propensity to wake easily and immediately, Elise quickly whispered that she would be back. She leaned down and stroked Angela's ebony hair and placed soft kisses against her temple whispering for her to stay asleep. It tore her heart to leave the warm cocoon, but the two little girls down the hall were not going to get themselves ready for school.

Elise walked down the hall to Angel's room. She walked over to the bedside of the two sleeping girls then sat on the edge of the bed and rubbed first one then the other girl's back, urging them to wake up. Elise smiled when she saw that Ellie woke almost the moment she touched her. The little girl's blue eyes popped open and she sat up, looking wide-awake and ready to move. 'Just like her Mom,' thought Elise as her heart swelled with love for both of the dark-haired females in her home.

Elise leaned over and placed a kiss against the dark hair, "Good morning, Ellie mine."

Ellie's eyes brightened, "Good morning, Ms. Covington!"

"We need to wake up sleepy-head here," said Elise, nodding toward the lump that was Angel.

Ellie made a rude noise, "good luck! I tried to wake her up when we were at Grandmamma's and it was impossible."

With a rueful look Elise answered, "I have to go through this every day. We've worked out a little routine. Why don't we see if it will work this morning, hmmm?"

"Ok, what do we do?" asked Ellie

Elise uncovered her daughter, and then she scooted up onto the bed so that she was leaning against the headboard. She then picked up the sleeping form and held the warm body in her lap. She rocked Angel and placed kisses on her hair, her cheek and her eyes. After a few minutes, Angel's green eyes opened slowly and she actively snuggled into her mother's arms. Elise looked over at Ellie, "She responds to a gentle wakening better than she does to an abrupt one."

A tender look came over Ellie's face and she reached out to stroke Angel's hair as Elise had done. "C'mon, Angel, you gotta wake up. We're doing show an' tell today, remember?"

Angel's green eyes began to blink more rapidly and finally managed to stay open. She reached up and took the small hand that stroked her hair and held it in a gentle embrace. "I'm awake, I'm awake" yawned Angel.

Elise shifted Angel to sit on her right side then pulled Ellie in tightly against her left side. She gave both girls a nice long good morning snuggle, then kissed the top of each head. "Ok, girls, time to get up and get ready for school. I'm going downstairs to get breakfast ready. I'll expect you in the kitchen in 15 minutes."

"Yes, Ma'am" agreed both girls.

As Elise got up off of the bed she turned back, "Please be very quiet as you get ready."

"Is Pop still sleeping?" asked Angel.

"Pop?" asked Elise.

Angel blushed, and looked as if she'd been caught at something, "Um, uh, Yeah, I mean Ms. Popodopolis".

"Mmm Hmmm" Elise answered, "We'll talk about this downstairs while you eat breakfast."

The girls looked at one another conspiratorially and then hopped off the bed and began to ready themselves for school.

Elise was aware there was something up with the two girls but decided to let things slide until breakfast time. She went downstairs to start breakfast and to make lunches for both girls.

Fifteen minutes later she heard two sets of small feet coming down the stairs and turned to see two, almost identically clad, little girls bounce into the kitchen. Both girls wore blue jeans and sneakers. Each girl wore a solid colored T-shirt tucked into the jeans, Ellie's shirt was blue-green and Angel's was green-blue. The colors were similar, yet the subtle difference in hue was perfect to bring out the color of each girl's eyes. "You two look wonderful!" complimented Elise.

"Thanks!" chirped the two girls as they looked at one another proudly.

As Elise set the girls' breakfast in front of them she looked at Angel and asked, "All right young lady, what was that 'Pop' comment about?"

The girls looked at one another and Elise could see a short, but silent, communication flow between the two. Then she saw a small nod from both girls before Angel answered, "Well, Mama, we've been talking" began Angel, looking at Ellie then back to her mother, "You and Ms. Popodopolis are um, well, um, you're better than friends, right?"

Elise couldn't keep the blush from her face, "Yes, we are better than friends."

"Right," Angel went on, "Ellie and I thought that since you guys are kinda like, well, like together, and since we just know that we're gonna be family that me calling Ellie's Mom Ms. Popodopolis and Ellie calling you Ms. Covington just felt too..." The girl paused as if looking for the right term.

"Formal," supplied Ellie.

"Yeah! Too formal, thanks El" Angel smiled at her best friend, "Anyway, Mama, we came up with family names for you guys and started using them. Until I blew it this morning, we've only used them when it's just Ellie and me, but...maybe we can use them with you guys now too?"

Elise had to concentrate on her daughter's quick words to catch them all. Taking a moment to allow the words to sink in and to let her mind process what her daughter was saying, she then said, "So, the name you came up with for Ellie's Mom was 'Pop'?" two small heads nodded. "How did you get that and what did you come up with for me?"

"We got Pop from their last name," Angel beamed, thinking that it had been very clever of her and Ellie. Since the first letters of Popodopolis was a parental nickname, it seemed perfect to them.

"Ok, I get that, what about me?" asked Elise

Ellie spoke up, "We just figured we could both call you Mamma since I call Mom, Mom."

Both girls looked up expectantly into Elise's face, hoping to get permission to use their special names for the parents.

Elise's mind was reeling. She hadn't realized that the girls had been discussing their future, much less figuring out special names for both her and Angela. Part of her was excited, almost ecstatic that the girls were accepting the relationship between their mothers, yet another part was cautious about jumping in too far, too fast.

"Girls, I love that you've put so much thought into this. I think you came up with some really good ideas." Elise paused before going on, "But I think we need to talk about this when Angela is here."

Two little faces fell, breaking Elise's heart. "Aw, babies, you're breaking my heart here. I tell you what, I'll talk with Angela and we'll figure out a time for all of us to talk very soon, ok?"

Both girls sighed with resignation, "Ok".

Elise looked at her watch, then handed each girl her lunch bag. "Right now, it's time to catch your car pool." She walked the girls out to the front of the house just as the car pool minivan pulled up to the curb. Elise leaned down and hugged Angel, "Have a good day, Munchkin." She then turned and hugged Ellie, "You too, Punkin'," she smiled into the young blue eyes.

The girls looked at one another, and then ran to the minivan as they loudly declared, "Munchkin and Punkin!! Great and mighty warriors, righter of wrongs, defender of the downtrodden, boldly going where no one has gone before!"

Shaking her head and laughing outright, Elise returned to the house. She quickly rinsed the girls' breakfast dishes before she put them in the dishwasher. Once the kitchen was cleaned up, she made her way back upstairs and went directly to her bedroom. She shed her robe as she walked toward her still occupied bed. As Elise slipped beneath the covers, warm arms reached out and captured her. She was pulled into a tight embrace and kissed thoroughly.

After parting from the kiss, Angela smiled into Elise's green eyes, "Morning beautiful."

"Morning gorgeous", answered Elise. "Did the girls wake you?"

"You mean, 'Munchkin and Punkin!! Great and mighty warriors, righter of wrongs, defender of the downtrodden, boldly going where no one has gone before?'" Angela answered with a laugh, "Yeah, our little warriors' battle cry would wake the dead!"

"Oh, love, I'm sorry. They had been so good up until then," sighed Elise as she felt a warm hand slide up her thigh and over her hip.

"I've had enough sleep," Angela answered, and then her voice dropped to a husky grown before she said, "I am hungry though."

The tone of Angela's voice sent sensual shivers throughout Elise's body. "You are, are you?" she asked on a sigh.

"Oh yeah" sighed Angela as she moved in to kiss Elise's soft lips.

That kiss turned into many kisses, then Angela moved her kisses down Elise's neck as her hands caressed Elise's curves. She cupped soft breasts in her palms then moved down to take one taut nipple between her lips. She suckled first one breast then the other, and then placed kisses across both breasts. Her kisses turned more passionate as she heard Elise's moans. In her excitement, Angela straddled Elise's thigh. She rubbed her swollen femininity against the firm appendage. "Gods, El, I can't get enough of you!" she gasped.

Elise pressed her leg more firmly against the slick heat of Angela's sex, then pressed Angela's head more tightly against her breast, "You feel so good, Baby" she gasped, "kiss me harder, my Angel, mark me."

"Oh, gods, yessssssssss", Angela groaned deeply, as she lost control and left several love bites on Elise's breasts. "Baby, I need to taste you," Angela moaned as she kissed down Elise's body.

"No, Angela, wait," panted Elise.

Concerned blue eyes met desire-filled green, "what Baby?" asked a concerned Angela.

"I want you too," panted Elise. "I read...I've read stories where..."

Angela realized what Elise wanted and slowly moved back up to kiss Elise's lips passionately, "Yes," she whispered, "but I think you need to be on top baby. I'd be too heavy for you."

Losing her patience, Elise flipped the two of them so that Angela was beneath her, then she turned her body and placed her mouth over the swollen wet lips between Angela's thighs. She felt Angela's mouth close upon her and then both women were lost in giving and receiving pleasure. The women used fingers and mouths; they took turns with one another. When Angela felt too overwhelmed by Elise's mouth, she paused her loving of Elise just long enough to fully experience the attention being lavished upon her. Once Elise brought her to wave after wave of orgasm, Angela resumed her loving attack upon Elise's body. She parted the soaking lips and lovingly stroked the extended clitoris. She felt Elise's hips gyrate against her and felt the moans that came from her love. As Elise's hips increased in their movements, Angela brought her fingers up to enter her.

"YES!" gasped Elise against the thigh she grasped.

Angela scooted up farther on the bed so that Elise's legs were at her waist. She looked down at Elise's beautiful bottom and the treasures exposed between the open thighs. With unfettered passion, she moved her fingers in and out of Elise, allowing her thumb to graze over her swollen clitoris. She soon felt the walls of Elise's body grip her fingers as Elise screamed out her release."

"Stop, baby, stop," Elise finally gasped. Turning back to face the same direction as Angela, Elise wrapped her body around her taller lover. "I swear I left my body just then. It's like went somewhere 'out there' and met in a perfect place of love."

"You felt that too?" asked Angela.

"Gods, yes, it's perfect," sighed Elise as she placed a soft kiss against Angela's lips.

The women held one another for long moments while they delighted in the closeness they shared until they finally decided to rise and start their day. After a lengthy shared shower, the women dressed and moved downstairs to feed their grumbling stomachs. While they ate their late breakfast, Elise told Angela about the conversation she'd had with the girls. She told her about Angel calling her 'Pop' and the story behind it.

"What do you think we should do?" Elise asked.

Expelling a breath, Angela answered, "Wow, I don't know. I understand that calling us Ms. Popodopolis and Ms. Covington is a bit formal for our situation and neither of us believes it's proper for children to call adults by their first names, so..." breaking off to ponder the possibilities, Angela took Elise's hand, "I guess it comes down to whether it's too early for the girls to call us names that show we're a family."

"Yes, I think that is what we need to decide," countered Elise. Taking a deep breath she continued, "Angela, as far as I'm concerned, we are a family. I never want to be away from you again. I loved you when we were children but that was nothing compared to the way I love you now. I couldn't love Ellie more if she had come from my own body." Elise looked into shining blue eyes, "So, I guess it depends on how you see things." Elise's heart pounded as she waited for Angela to answer.

Angela stood up out of her chair and moved to Elise's side where she dropped to one knee then captured Elise's hand, "Elise, you are my family. You and Angel fill the hole I've had in my heart for so many years. The moment Ellie was born, I fell in love with her. But there was still an aching left that only you can fill. I never want to be parted from you either El. I feel a connection with Angel that is as strong as the one I share with Ellie." Pausing, she placed a kiss against Elise's lips, and then continued, "Even in death, Elise, I will never leave you."

Tears streamed down Elise's cheeks as she slid out of her chair and knelt in front of Angela. "I love you, Angel mine."


A comfortable pattern formed for Angela, Elise and the girls. Angela spent many days and too many evenings working on security projects. The Richardson's had been extremely pleased with the work Angela had done, and had spread the word to friends and clients. As a result, Angela had more work than she knew what to do with. She had actually had to turn down a few potential customers only to have them say that they would wait until she was available. Things were going well!

Both young girls would stay with Elise on the evenings that Angela had to work late. Elise liked this arrangement because on those nights, Angela would use her key to let herself into Elise's house, she would then come upstairs, check on the girls and then join Elise in bed. Some nights, Elise would be so fast asleep that Angela would simply place a soft kiss against her skin then drop off to sleep herself; but other nights, Elise would stay awake until Angela slipped between the sheets and then the two women would make love until they both fell into an exhausted sleep.

The girls had been given the go ahead to use their 'pet' names for their parents. Both girls wound up calling Angela "Pop" on a day-to-day basis, though Ellie stilled called her mother "Mom" when they had heart-to-heart talks or "Mommy" when she had an owie that needed to be mended.

One afternoon, Elise was working in her home office when the phone rang. She was in the middle of some complicated coding so she allowed the answering machine to pick up the call. "Hello, Ms. Covington, this is Jodine Smythe, the nurse from Coleman Prep. If you can please call me at your…" Hearing that the call was from Angel's school, Elise grabbed up the phone.

"Ms. Smythe, this is Elise Covington, is there a problem with Angel?" Elise asked anxiously.

"I'm afraid so, Ms. Covington. There was an altercation on the schoolyard and Angel's arm is injured. I think it would be best if you come right away and take her to have it X-rayed." informed the infuriatingly calm nurse.

"X-rayed? What happened?" demanded Elise as she hurriedly went through the house and collected her purse and keys.

"I believe it would be best if you come to get Angel. We'll explain everything when you arrive. She is in no immediate danger, but her arm should be looked at as soon as possible."

"I'm leaving now, I'll be there within twenty minutes." informed Elise.

"We'll see you then, Ms. Covington." Answered Ms. Smythe.

As Elise got behind the wheel of her car, she dialed Angela's number on her hands-free cell phone. 'Please answer, baby, I need you' She thought.

"Angela Popodopolis" the phone was answered.

"Angela? Angel's been hurt at school. I'm on my way there now." Elise's voice shook as she informed her love.

"Angel's hurt? I just got a call to come and get Ellie!" Taking a breath, Angela continued, "What happened?"

"I have no idea. The school nurse just called and said I need to come get Angel and take her to get her arm X-rayed. What's wrong with our Ellie?"

"From what I gather, she's got one whopper of a black eye. I'm mainly going in because the principal wants to talk to me about whatever happened on the schoolyard." Angela informed Elise.

"How far are you from the school right now, Baby?" Elise asked.

"I'm pulling in as we speak, love. I was heading for the Principal's office, but now I'm going to go to the nurse's office first to check on our Angel girl. I'll wait with her until you get there, then I'll go on ahead to the Principal's office. Once I have that out of the way I'll meet you wherever you take Angel."

"Thank you love, I should be at the school in fifteen minutes or so," said a relieved Elise.

Angela jumped out of her car and rushed into the administrative office building of the school. The receptionist saw her and assumed that she would go directly to the principal's office and was surprised to see the tall woman march right past the door to that office and down to the nurse's station.

"Ms. Popodopolis, Ellie is in the principal's office. She isn't injured to the point of needing to stay with the nurse." informed the receptionist, trying to be helpful.

"I understand that, but my other daughter IS injured enough to need the nurse's care and I'm going to sit with her until Ms. Covington arrives." declared Angela, her blue eyes filled with concern. "Will you please send Ellie into the nurse's area so that I can take care of her as well?"

The receptionist simply nodded then headed in to the principal's office so that she could send young Ellie in to be with her mother and 'sister'?

Angela's heart clenched when entered the nurse's area and saw Angel. She was sitting on a cot holding an ice pack to her forearm and she had tears streaking down her cheeks. Angela quickly crossed the room and knelt in front of the little girl.

"Hey, Munchkin," she said softly.

The moment Angel realized that Angela was there she began to sob. She immediately leaned in to Angela's embrace and cried her little heart out into Angela's chest.

"Mommy, it hurts," she sobbed.

Angela's heart broke at the pain in Angel's voice yet at the same moment, it filled with joy that she had been called 'Mommy'. She rather liked when the girls called her Pop, but at a time like this, it felt so good to be Mommy. She wrapped Angel in her arms and rocked her until the sobs began to subside, and then she took a tissue and mopped the tears from the small face.

Angela carefully cupped the injured arm, "Let me take a look little one," she said.

"Be careful," warned Angel.

"I promise," Angel assured her. She then removed the ice pack and gently began to inspect the injured area. The arm was clearly broken just above the wrist.

As Angela was inspecting the little girl's arm she felt another small body lean against her side. She replaced the ice pack on Angel's arm then reached around and pulled Ellie into a hug. After the hug ended Angela held Ellie away from her and looked into the little girls' eyes. Angela's eyebrows disappeared beneath her dark bangs when she saw the dark purple shiner around her daughter's left eye.

"Did you two have a fight?" She asked incredulously.

An angry scowl came over Ellie's face. "No. We didn't fight. I'm not supposed to say anything until we're in the principal's office so that…" a look of disgust covered the small face, "everyone can have their say."

It was impossible for Angela's eyebrows to go any higher on her forehead so her eyes simply opened wider at her daughter's comment.

"Ok, honey. As soon as Mamma gets here and takes Angel girl to the hospital, we'll go to the principal's office." She gently stroked the small black eye, "This hurt?"

Small shoulders shrugged, "Yeah, a little."

Angela moved to sit on the cot beside Angel. "Would you like me to hold you until Mamma gets here?" she asked softly.

The small blonde head nodded and Angel leaned against the tall woman. Angela carefully picked the little girl up and set her on her lap. She then indicated that Ellie should sit beside her so that Angel's lower legs rested on the girl's lap.

"There ya go, we'll both hold you, how's that?" Asked Angela.

Again, Angel only nodded but she also leaned her full weight into Angela's chest. The three of them sat like that until Elise finally walked into the room. Even through her adrenaline packed panic, Elise thought her heart would burst at the sight that greeted her. 'My family,' she thought. She quickly moved to join the threesome.

As soon as Elise was close enough, she brushed Angel's blonde bangs back and leaned in to kiss the warm forehead. "Baby, what happened?"

Angel's green eyes once again filled with tears. "Sally pushed me down really hard and I hurt my arm bad!" she cried.

"What?!" exclaimed Elise. The need to confront whomever pushed her child warred with the need to get the little girl medical attention. Elise's body shook with rage that someone would push her daughter so hard that she broke her arm.

Elise felt Angela's hand take her own. Her blue eyes bored into Elise's angered green orbs, "El, you take our Angel to the ER. I'll take our little 'Rocky Balboa' here to the principal's office and find out exactly what happened."

It wasn't' until Angela made the reference to the fictional prizefighter that Elise looked over and noticed the shiner on Angela's eye. As she took that in, she felt her anger raise another notch. "What, in the name of Hades, is going on?" she demanded.

"I don't know yet, love, but let's get you two off to the ER and I'll go find out. The only thing I'll ask is that you stop in with me to the principal's office and let her know that…well…" Angela's voice faltered for a moment, "that I can speak for both of us."

The look of fierce determination that covered Elise's face was almost enough to make Angela smile, "You bet your sweet gorgeous ass, I'll tell her you can speak for us."

"Ok then, let's get going," Angela said as she stood with Angel still cradled in her arms. "You grab Rocky and let's get to the principal's office."

Elise turned and offered her hand to Ellie, "C'mon, Rocky, let's go."

"Who's Rocky?" a confused Ellie asked.

The women realized their movie references were going completely over the little girl's head. The irony of the generation gap gave them a small laugh, relieving a bit of the tension they felt.

Once the foursome arrived at the principal's office, Elise asked to speak with the principal privately for a moment. She noticed that Sally and her mother were sitting in the waiting area outside the office and that neither of them looked happy.

Once she entered the Principal's office she made it clear that she would only take a moment because she needed to get her daughter to the ER.

"I understand, Ms. Covington, we can talk about what happened here after you get young Angel taken care of."

"You can count on the fact that I will be back to address this issue, Principal Timmons, but, in the meantime, I wanted you to know that Ms. Popodopolis has full authority to speak for me until I am able to be here."

"I see," Commented the attractive salt-and-pepper haired principal. "I'm sure you realize that any legal action that might be necessary on Ellie's behalf can only be authorized by you," the principal paused and the soft look in her eyes told Elise she understood the nature of Angela and her relationship, "please be assured, I will take Ms. Popdopolis's words on this issue with Angel in the same manner I would take the word of any child's parent."

Elise nodded, "Thank you. Ms. Popodopolis and I will discuss this situation this evening and if there is any action we think I need take on Angel's behalf, I will let you know tomorrow."

"Understood," replied Principal Timmons.

The exchange only took a few minutes and once it was done, Elise went back out to the waiting area to retrieve Angel. After Angela carefully transferred the small girl into Elise's arms, she bent and placed a soft kiss against her soft cheek then whispered into the small ear, "We'll see you at the hospital as soon as we're done here, baby."

"Ok, Pop," Angel replied. Then, looking down at Ellie she said, "Don't you let them get you into trouble, Ellie. You're my hero."

Ellie's mouth quirked into a lopsided grin at being called Angel's hero. "I'll always protect you, Angel. We're friends forever, remember?"

"Friends forever" repeated Angel.

The women's eyes met as they both relived similar moments from their own childhood. A feeling of warmth invaded both adult hearts at both the memory and at the reality that history was indeed repeating itself in their daughters.

"Where are you going to take her?" Asked Angela.

"I'll take her to the ER at Scripps Mercy I guess." Answered Elise.

"All right, El. We'll come over there as soon as we're done with the Principal. We'd better go in now. I'll see you as soon as I can. I love you, El..." She leaned in and placed a kiss on Angel's forehead, "I love you too, my Angel."

"I love you too," Elise answered. She looked from one set of blue eyes to the other set of matching blue, "I love both of you."

"I love you too, Mamma," Ellie said solemnly.

Elise walked out to take Angel to the Emergency Room while Angela and Ellie entered the principal's office.


Principal Timmons greeted the mother and daughter; she then stuck her head out the door and indicated that Sally James and her mother, Petra, should join them. Once they were all inside the office, Principal Timmons closed the door and sat behind her desk.

"All right, here is what I know," the principal began, "at the afternoon recess, Ms. James was witnessed speaking to Angel Covington. At one point during the heated discussion, Sally was overheard using some extremely inappropriate and hurtful words!"

"But!" Sally started to interrupt.

Principal Timmons raised her hand in warning and with a stern look cautioned, "Miss James, you are in enough trouble right now as it is. I would not push the matter by interrupting, if I were you."

"Yes Principal Timmons," said Sally, though her face held a look of defiance.

"Thank you," replied the principal, "Where was I? Ah, yes, before any of the teachers could intervene, Sally forcefully shoved Angel to the ground. When Angel landed, she seriously injured her arm. She is, as we speak, on the way to the Emergency Room to get treatment." The principal paused to look at the faces of the two adults facing her. The face of Angela Popodopolis was a stoic mask, but beneath the surface her blue eyes flashed with carefully guarded anger. Ms. Jame's face was much more expressive, showing confusion mixed with disappointment and anger.

"While Angel was on the ground, writhing in pain I might add," Principal Timmons sent a stern disapproving look toward Sally, "Sally attempted to kick her."

Petra James gasped at this last bit of information, "Principal Timmons, you must be mistaken. I cannot imagine Sally doing something like that!" she cried desperately.

"I am quite certain of the facts as I witnessed the events myself," explained the Principal. "Now, I say Sally attempted to kick young Angel because the moment Angel was pushed, a dark-haired blur..." Principal Timmons eyes moved to look at Ellie, "raced across the schoolyard and stood between the fallen Angel and Sally. It was at this point that Sally again used derogatory statements and proceeded to punch Ellie in the eye."

Taking a moment to look from one young girl to the other, Principal Timmons asked, "Is that an accurate description of this afternoon's events?"

Ellie nodded her head, whereas Sally shrugged her shoulders and maintained her defiant facial expression.

"Miss James, what do you have to say for yourself?"

"I don't know," pouted the little girl.

"Sally, did you push Angel down and then punch Ellie in the face?" asked Petra.

Again the small shoulders shrugged. Sally's eyes looked everywhere but into her mother's eyes.

"Answer me, young lady," demanded the increasingly angry mother, "Did you do the things Principal Timmons described?"

Finally, Sally realized there was no way she could avoid facing up to her actions so she admitted, "Yeah, I shoved Angel and then I hit Ellie. But they made me so mad!"

"You know better than to push or hit another person. I don't care what they did, there is no excuse for you to have done those awful things." Exclaimed the distraught Mother.

Angela's firm voice entered the discussion, "Ellie, what stared all of this?"

Ellie's tear filled eyes stayed focused on the floor, "Angel told Sally that she wanted you to talk to her class on Parent's Career day. Sally said that you had to be her parent and Angel said that you were her parent," taking a deep breath Ellie continued, "Then Sally said you couldn't be her parent because she knew her Mom and you were my Mom and besides you were a woman so you couldn't be Angel's other parent." A sad look came over Ellie's face, "Angel said that you were so her other parent because her Mamma loves you and we're a family."

Angela's hand moved to rub comforting circles against Ellie's back, encouraging her. She leaned in close to her daughter and assured, "Angel was exactly right, baby, we are a family." She then took Ellie's chin and brought the young blue eye up to meet her own, "What happened after that, Ellie?"

Ellie forced herself to look into her mother's eyes, "Then Sally said…" Ellie's eyes began to fill with tears, "she said that Angel was a freak and that her mom was a stupid dyke."

Angela's eyes closed against the pain she felt, both for herself and for her two daughters. The fact that such a small child could spew such hateful words broke her heart.

Ellie continued with her story, "After Sally said that, she said that if Angel's mom was a dyke then Angel must be one too." A small smile came to Ellie's lips, "Then Angel said that she's rather be a dyke than to be a meanie like Sally. That's when Sally pushed her down. Mom, she pushed her really, really hard!"

Pulling Ellie onto her lap, Angela gave her a reassuring hug. "I know she pusher her hard. Is that when you came running?"

"Yeah, I was already headed over there 'cause I could tell that Sally wasn't being nice and I wanted to make sure Angel was ok."

"Good girl," complimented Angela with another hug.

"I couldn't get to Angel before Sally pushed her, Mom. But when I saw Sally try to kick Angel while she was on the ground I ran as fast as I could and got between them. That's when Sally yelled at me and told me to get out of the way and called you a name too." Ellie's eyes dropped to the hands in her lap as she told the last part of her story.

Again, Angela lifted the little girl's chin and met her eyes, "What did you do when she called me a name?"

"I remembered what you always tell me, Mom, even though I wanted to hit her, hard, that hitting isn't the answer and that I have a responsibility to control my temper so I don't hurt people. But it was hard, Mom." Ellie whined.

"I am so proud of you, Ellie." complimented Angela.

"Anyways, I just stood there and did the breathing exercises that Master Kang taught us and I didn't say anything back. When I turned to check on Angel, Sally slugged me!"

Angela couldn't keep the smile off of her face at the astonishment in Ellie's voice. She shook her head slightly and said, "Yeah, I was kind of wondering how she had managed to get a hit in on you."

Looking over at the Principal and the Jones's Angela explained, "Ellie and I have been taking martial arts lessons since she was four. She holds a red belt in Tae Kwon Do."

Petra Jones's eyes grew to the size of saucers. The realization that her daughter had come through the incident unscathed was amazing.

With an embarrassed look Ellie said, "I lost my concentration because I was focused on Angel." She then looked over at Ms. Jones, "Ms. Jones, I wouldn't' have hurt Sally, even though I wanted to, but I should have been able to block her punch without even blinking."

Angela ruffled the child's dark hair, "Hey, give yourself a break. You maintained your cool, you protected Angel and you learned a lesson about not letting your guard down."

"Yeah, I guess," muttered Ellie.

Principal Timmons chose that moment to speak again, "I appreciate and commend your restraint, Miss Popodopolis." She then turned to Sally, "Miss Jones, your actions were inexcusable. You know that physical violence will not be tolerated in this school and you also know that respect for others is just as important here." The principal folded her hands on top of her desk, and looked at the elder Ms. Jones, "I don't believe in suspending a student when they misbehave. I am of the opinion that most children see the time off from school as a kind of reward."

Petra nodded.

Principal Timmons continued, "First, Ms. Jones, I need to ask you what your thoughts are regarding the verbal remarks your daughter has made toward Angel and Ellie's parents."

Petra aimed a stern look at her daughter, then turned back to look at Principal Timmons, "I'm not only shocked that she would say such heinous things, but it hurts me to my core that Sally has the ability to be so cruel. To be honest, I don't know where she learned such terms much less that she knows what they mean!" She looked again at her daughter, "I've tried to teach her how powerful words are and I've tried to instill in her that the only evil people in this world are those that would do harm." Her eyes filled with tears and her voice quivered as she continued, "It seems I have not taught her those lessons, and that I have also somehow missed that she has the ability to be one of those hurtful people."

"Where did you learn such hateful words, Sally?" She asked her daughter.

Hearing the hurt in her Mother's voice chipped much of the ice from around Sally's heart, "Grandpa Ellis said that Aunt Bev and Aunt Sally were degenerate dykes and that they were going to hell. He said that any girl that likes girls or any boy that likes boys should be locked away from decent people."

All of the adults in the room were shocked to hear those words pouring from a seven year old's mouth. For a moment no one spoke, but then Ms. Jones finally said with a sad sigh, "Honey, I know you love your Grandpa Ellis, but…look at me…" Petra waited until her daughter's eyes met her own, "your Grandpa is wrong. The things he said to you are hurtful and hateful. Your Aunt Bev and Aunt Sally are not going to hell, they are not doing anything wrong." She took her daughter's hands, "Is what Grandpa said the reason you stopped wanting to go visit your Aunts?"

Sally's face was filled with confusion, but she nodded and affirmative answer to her mother's question. Her mind reeled, trying to understand the conflicting messages she had received from her Grandpa and now from her Mother.

Petra looked at Principal Timmons and then at the Popodopolises, "I see that I have some brainwashing to undo here. I hadn't realized that her Grandfather was filling her mind with such hatred and bigotry." Her eyes sought out Angela's "I am truly sorry that she said the things she did, and I can hardly believe she was capable to inflicting such physical harm on your daughters. There is no way for me to make up for that. Please, send Angel's hospital bills to us and we'll pay them." A smile crossed Petra's face, and then she looked down in to her daughter's face, "Actually, Sally will pay for them."

Sally's eye grew wide. She knew hospital bills were expensive, how was she going to pay for a hospital bill? Her Mom must be saying that just to sound good.

Petra's Motherly intuition told her what was running through her daughter's mind so she continued, "All of Sally's allowance will go toward the hospital bills, she will also be given extra chores around the house to earn extra income and that money will go to pay the bills. She may not see any allowance money in her own pocket until she's thirty, but she will pay Angel's hospital bill."

Angela decided she liked Petra Jones. She was obviously distressed about her daughter's horrid actions and it seemed as if she would show the girl that actions came with consequences.

"As soon as the bills arrive, we'll forward them to Sally." Angela said solemnly.

The conversation that followed included Principal Timmons's discipline plan for Sally as well as a discussion about respect for others. Sally was made to apologize to both Ellie and Angela for her actions and a promise was made by Petra that the issue was not closed and that she would do everything in her power to make her daughter understand the seriousness of her actions.

As the discussion wound down to an end Angela looked at her watch as the cell phone in her jacket pocket began to ring. She pulled out the small phone and flicked it open. "Angela Popodopolis," she answered.

"Hi love," Elise's tired voice came through the earpiece. "We've been waiting here all this time. They still haven't called her in."

"Oh baby, you're kidding?" asked Angela anxiously.

"No, and she's really hurting. This isn't right!" cried Elise.

"Honey, let me make a phone call. I'll call you right back," said Angela.

"Oh, I'll have to call you back. They won't let me use the cell phone inside the hospital so I'm on the pay phone in the waiting area," informed Elise.

"Ok, just keep calling until you reach me. Talk to you in a few. I love you, El and tell our Munchin that I love her too."

"I will, and I love you two too." Elise said as she hung up the phone.

Angela disconnected from her call with Elise then pulled out her palm pilot and looked up the number of her orthopedic doctor. She dialed the number, hoping that Dr. Greene would be willing to squeeze Angel into his schedule. After only two rings the receptionist answered the phone and Angela explained the situation. After being put on hold for a few minutes, Angela heard the doctor's voice come on the line. She repeated her dilemma to the doctor and he promptly said that he would see Angel as soon as they could get to his office. Angela thanked the doctor and hung up the phone hoping Elise would phone her back quickly.

Realizing she had been ignoring the other people around her, Angela apologized, "I'm sorry, that was Ms. Covington and the ER still has them waiting. I've arranged to have my orthopedic see her so we need to get going."

"Of course, I understand," Principal Timmons answered. "I'll call the Covingington house later to check on Angel, if that's all right with you?"

"We'd appreciate it," answered Angela. Then to Mrs. Jones she said, "I hope you can help her understand all of this. I don't envy you right now."

"Thank you, Ms. Popodopolis, and again, I am so sorry for all of this." Ms. Jones replied.

Standing up, Angela bade everyone good-bye then took Ellie's hand and led her out to her car. As she stared the car her cell phone began to ring. She set the phone in the hands-free cradle then answered, "Angela Popodopolis."

"Hi Love, what's up?" asked Elsie.

"Baby, go tell those Neanderthals in the ER that you don't need them. I called Dr. Greene and he said he'd see Angel as soon as we can get her to him. I'm on my way to get you right now, just wait outside the ER and I'll pick you up."

"You're kidding? That's wonderful. They just told me that there was some huge accident on the freeway and that's why there is such a long wait. They said it would be at least another hour before they can get to Angel." Elise growled, "I am so angry right now I could scream!"

"Calm down, El, we're almost there," soothed Angela.

A few minutes later she pulled into the parking lot of the hospital Emergency Room. Elise and Angel were waiting outside and Angela hopped out of the car and went around to help Angel get settled in the seat beside Ellie. The trip to Dr. Greene's office took only ten minutes and Angel was taken to the doctor as soon as they entered the office.

An exam and X-ray session were followed by a trip to the casting room where Angela chose a purple colored fiberglass for her cast. The doctor said that the cast would have to stay on a minimum of six weeks, but that the break should heal without trouble.

After they were done in the Doctor's office, the family piled into Angela's car and they drove back to pick up Elise's auto that was still in the hospital parking lot. The girls stayed in Angela's car for the ride home and Elise stopped on her way home to pick up pizza for their dinner. The group was subdued the entire evening yet both Mothers felt that it was necessary for them to talk about what had happened. The family discussed the hurtful things that were said and, as painful as it was to admit, Angela and Elise told the girls that they might have to endure more encounters of small-minded bigotry. They discussed how much the cruel words hurt and they used the incident as a lesson for Ellie and Angel about how very powerful words are and how words, wrongly spoken, can easily lead to physical violence. It was a huge lesson for such small girls to have to learn, but since it stared them all right in eye they couldn't avoid it.

Once the girls were settled in bed for the night Angela and Elise went downstairs and huddled together on the soft couch. The stress of the day caught up with Elise and she clung to Angela as she wept tears of frustration, anger and hurt.

"Our babies shouldn't have to put up with this kind of thing!" Elise rasped, "They should be swinging on Monkey Bars and playing dodge ball, not dodge fist!"

Angela agreed wholeheartedly with Elise, "I know. I hope that Principal Timmons will do something so the other students know that what happened today won't be allowed to happen again."

After a moment a knowing smile crossed Angela's face, "Oh, I think Principal Timmons will make very certain the students know that Sally's behavior will not be tolerated. I think Sally's words and actions hit a bit too close to home for Principal Timmons, if you know what I mean" she arched a brow and sent a meaningful look toward Elise.

"Ahhh, that's right, Principal Timmons has that beautiful wife at home, doesn't she?" smiled Elise.

"Yup, but her wife can't hold a candle to the woman that hold's my heart" Angela whispered against Elise's ear.

"You amaze me, my Angel. We've had the most horrific day, our girls were hurt and yet you know just the right thing to say to make me feel completely loved and cherished," Elise leaned back to look into Angela's eyes, "Do you have any idea how much I love you? We'll get through this…together."

"Forever, El." Angela said softly before placing a kiss on Elise's lips. "Baby, it's been a crazy day, I'm sure you're as exhausted as I am, let's head up to bed. I want to wrap you in my arms and hold you close all night."

"Perfect," sighed Elise.


Two weeks after Angel and Elise's schoolyard encounter with Sally, Angela was finishing up a job for one of her larger clients, Mr. Reynolds. As was her custom she met with clients, personally, at the conclusion of every job to walk them through their custom designed system. As she walked through the luxurious beach home with Mr. Reynolds, he repeatedly stated his happiness with the way the system was designed and with its thoroughness. He was impressed that, although his 'vacation home' would be protected close to the level of fort Knox, the security system design flowed flawlessly with the interior design in a way that it was practically imperceptible to the untrained eye. Granted, the design was costly, but cost was of no consequence when it came to the safety of his family. As Angela's walk-through concluded, Mr. Reynolds thanked her profusely for her excellent work then he turned to her and asked her if she had any family. Angela's guard immediately arose; she feared that Mr. Reynolds would turn out to be another one of her clients that assumed that because she was a beautiful woman and unmarried, that she was fair game. Mr. Reynolds keen eye picked up on the subtle change in Angela's demeanor and guessed at the reason. He quickly assured her that he had no personal interest in her. He told her that he was so impressed with the design and execution of his new system that he wanted to give her a bonus, of sorts.

Angela assured him that she cost of the system would leave her with a tidy profit and that a bonus was not necessary but Mr. Reynolds insisted that she hear him out. He said that if, after he explained his idea for the bonus, she still wanted to refuse he would let the matter drop. Thirty minutes later, Angela drove away from the job site wearing a huge grin on her face.

Although she hadn't made plans with Elise that evening, she directed her car to Elise's house instead of her own. She was anxious to speak with Elise about her 'bonus'. She glanced at her watch and saw that she would have a few hours to spend with Elise before the girls got out of school. 'I hope Elise likes this idea!' thought Angela as she pulled into Elise's driveway.

As Angela walked to Elise's front door she pulled out her key. Although her first instinct was to knock on the door, she had learned the previous week that when Elise had given her the key, she had given her Carte blanche to enter her home. When Angela had knocked on the door a week previous, Elise had answered it, then had put her hands on her hips and glared at the taller woman and asked, "Did you lose your key, Baby?"

Angela had been confused, "Um, no. I just thought…it's not my house so…"

Elise had then grabbed Angela by the front of her shirt and hauled her into the house. She poked the taller woman in the chest as she said, "I don't give out keys to just anyone, Ms. Thing. When I gave you that key I told you that you could use it to come in whenever you wanted. I meant it."

Blue eyes had opened wide at the feisty blonde's speech, "Ok, ok, I just thought that you wanted me to use it when I came in late at night so I wouldn't have to wake you…"

"No, that wasn't what I said and that wasn't what I meant," stated Elise. "As far as I am concerned, you can come and go here whenever you want," another poke in the chest, "Got it?"

Angela smiled a 100-watt smile, "Got it!"

Elise had leaned up to capture Angela's soft lips in an enthusiastic kiss, "Good." And that, had been that.

Angela smiled again as she remembered the encounter then she let herself into the house. Figuring that Elise would be busy in her home office, Angela headed to the back of the house. When she reached the office, she leaned against the arched entryway and took a moment to study the woman she loved. Elise was completely engrossed in her work and hadn't noticed Angela's arrival. The security specialist in Angela cringed at how easily someone could sneak up on Elise.

"Hey," Angela said softly.

Elise jumped, "Gods! You startled me." Angela saw an odd look cover Elise's face and noticed that she had reached up to cut the power to her monitor. She didn't think very much about it, since she would have done the same thing if someone, even Elise, were looking over her shoulder as she designed a system.

"Sorry, Honey, I thought it would be better if I said something instead of doing what I really wanted to do," Angela smiled and waggled her eyebrows at Elise.

A knowing smile covered Elise's face, "And just what was it that you really wanted to do, Ms. Popodopolis?"

"Turn back around and I'll show you," Angela answered in a husky tone. Elise swiveled her chair so that she was once again facing her now black computer screen and waited. After only a moment, she felt Angela's hands as they covered her shoulders then slid down her arms and around her waist. She then felt Angela's lips against the side of her neck. "This, is what I wanted to do," Elise felt a shiver of desire flow through her as Angela whispered against her ear.

"Oh, Baby, that is so much better than just a 'hey', but I think I would have had a heart attack the moment your arms touched my shoulders!" Elise commented.

"Yeah, you were pretty lost. I had been standing there for a few minutes before I said anything." Angela informed her.

Elise admitted that she became tunnel-visioned when she worked. Angela voiced her concerns about safety issues and suggested that they sit down to discuss the possibility of a security system for Elise in the near future. Elise agreed that it might not be a bad idea, that ever since Angel and Elise's encounter at school, she had been feeling less secure. She realized that there are some wackos in the world that might try to do their family harm simply because of the gender make-up of their relationship. Once that issue was covered, Elise said, "This is such a great surprise, I'm so glad to see you, my Angel."

Angela, who had maintained her hold around Elise's waist, said, "I'm glad to see you too, El." She placed another kiss against Elise's soft neck, then nibbled a path up to her ear and nibbled that as well, "But I'm not just here to fool around, I want to talk to you about something."

The affect that Angela's nibbles had on Elise made it difficult for her to talk, she cleared her throat then asked, "Angela, if you want to talk you're going to have to stop doing that. If you keep nibbling on my ear like that, I'm going to throw you down on this desk and have my wicked way with you!"

Angela moaned, "Forget talking." She then made a full-on assault of Elise's sensitive ear.

True to her word, Elise quickly took the upper hand and did indeed take Angela atop her desk. As soon as Angela was once again able to breathe, she made a counter attack on Elise. Parry, thrust, lunge, the 'battle' lasted until both women lay naked and sweating in an exhausted heap on the floor of Elise's office.

Elise rested on her rug-burned side as she lovingly ran her fingertips over the front Angela's body. "What was it you wanted to talk about, love?"

Angela kissed Elise's forehead, "Thank you for that amazing loving, baby. Talk…oh…yeah." Gathering her thoughts, Angela began to tell Elise about the bonus Mr. Reynolds had offered.

"The client I finished up with today was very happy with his system and has offered me a bonus."

Elise broke in, "Angel, that's great!"

Angela hugged Elise tighter to her body, but held up her hand to halt Elise's enthusiastic comments, "Wait, love, let me tell you about it. It's not exactly the usual bonus."

Elise raised her head from Angela's shoulder and looked into the blue eyes, "Ok, tell me about it."

Angela nodded, "Mr. Reynolds is one of the top executives with Disney. He asked me if I have a family, and I told him that I had two young daughters and a beautiful partner…" Angela felt Elise's arms tighten around her, then continued, "He offered us a complimentary week in a Suite at the Disneyland Hotel with passes to the park for all of us."

Elise's face broke into a huge smile. "You're kidding!? That would be perfect. When I asked Angel what she'd like to do for her birthday, she said she wanted to go to Disneyland…with Ellie, of course."

Angela smiled, "Of course. I'll call Mr. Reynolds tomorrow and tell him that we'll take him up on his offer."

"That's great, honey. Should we tell the girls or should we keep it a surprise?" asked Elise.

A lopsided grin came over Angela's face, "If we tell them now they'll drive us crazy with 'How much longer until…' questions. I vote for secret."

Elise nodded, "I agree completely. Oh, this is going to be so great, Angel!"

Angela wiggled her eyebrows at Elise, "Yeah it will. I hope that the suite has a door between where the girls will sleep and where we will sleep."

Elise couldn't stop the blush that covered her face, "you do, huh?"

"Mmmm hmmmm, I do." smiled Angela. Angela checked her watch and sighed, "I should get home. Ellie's due to be dropped off in twenty minutes."

Elise reluctantly accepted that Angela would have to leave. They made plans for a Friday night 'Adult Date', agreeing that Elise would arrange for Bonnie to keep the girls overnight. After lengthy good-bye kisses, Angela headed for her home.

After Angela left, Elise returned to her office, "Whew," she said to herself, "That was a close one!" She walked over to her computer screen and powered up the monitor. The P2 Logo of Angela's security company swirled slowly in the center of the screen. Elise smiled and sat down to work on the web site she was designing as a surprise for Angela's birthday. The elaborate and classy design was to be one of the gifts she would give her lover. Angela's birthday was only two days before little Angel's big day. Elise shook her head at the seeming coincidences of all of their birthdays. Angel and Angela's birthdays were 2 days apart in late October and Elise and Ellie's birthdays fell on the same day in April. 'Surely the fates had a hand in all of this' pondered Elise.


Two weeks before the planned birthday expedition, Angela received a package from Mr. Reynolds. When she opened the thick manila envelope and looked through the contents her eyes grew wide. "Oh my god," she gasped as she looked at the bounty before her. Her immediate action was to pick up the phone to call Elise.

When Elise picked up the phone, Angela barely gave her time to say hello before saying excitedly, " Baby, get over here!"

"Angel, what's wrong?" asked Elise worriedly.

"Nothing, you've got to see what Mr. Reynolds sent. Get over here!"

"I'm on my way!" Elise laughed.

When Elise arrived at Angela's house, Angela led her in to sit at the kitchen table. Once they were settled at the table, Angela pulled out the package from Mr. Reynolds and handed it to Elise, "Look at this, baby!"

Elise took the package and opened it. The first item was a letter from Mr. Reynolds that thanked Angela for her superb work. The letter gushed with praise and made it clear that Mr. Reynolds would be recommending P2 Security to anyone and everyone who needed the kind of services that Angela could provide. "Wow, love," Elise's eyes looked up filled with pride, "this is a wonderful letter."

Angela shrugged the compliment off, "It's what I do. Look at the rest."

Elise gave Angela a look of consternation, but she knew better than to get into a discussion about Angela's blasé attitude right then. Instead she concentrated on the rest of the package. The package not only contained a notice of the complimentary suite at the hotel and four annual passes to the Disneyland parks but also restaurant comps and passes to Universal Studios, and Medieval Times Tournament! When Elise took a closer look at the package she noticed something. "Honey, did you notice that he sent you a hotel comp for the Hilton in Studio City too?"

Angela smirked, "Wow, a client that actually listened when we talked. I remember that when we were talking about our families I mentioned that Angel was dying to go to Disneyland and the California Adventure and that Ellie wanted to see Universal Studios and Hollywood. This is Amazing, now both girls will get a special trip for their birthdays. First, Angel gets Disney then, in a few months, Ellie will get her wish to see Universal Studios and tour Hollywood."

"The girls are going to go nuts, you know that don't you?" asked Elise.

"Oh, yeah. But we'll win the 'Best Moms of the Year' contest hands down," smiled Angela. "Has Angel asked you what you're going to do for her birthday?"

"For both of my Angels' birthdays…" smiled Elise. "Yes, of course, she's been driving me crazy with questions and guesses. I still think it's better that we haven't told the girls where we're going. They would be so hyper about it they'd never sleep."

"Ain't that the truth," smiled Angela.


The day finally arrived for their trip to start. The women had planned and plotted to make the event a surprise for both girls. They had each packed suitcases for themselves and the girls and had taken them over to Bonnie's house for hiding. They told the girls that they were going to have a family birthday celebration at Grandmamma's house for Angel and Angela.

When they arrived at Bonnie's, the door to the house opened before the four of them were even halfway up the front walkway. Bonnie walked out to meet them with two huge balloon bouquets. She handed the first bunch of balloons to Angel and the second one to Angela. "Happy birthday to our Angels!" she exclaimed, as she kissed first the girl then the woman on the cheek. Both of the birthday girls blushed with pleasure at the loving attention of the older woman.

The group spent the evening celebrating the birthdays. Bonnie gave gifts to both Angel and Angela and small gifts were given to Angel from both of her Moms. When they saw the disappointment on Angel's face at the seemingly small bounty, the women smiled at one another. Elise looked at Angel and asked, "What's wrong honey?" Small shoulders shrugged as the little girl quietly said, "Nothing, I guess."

Elise's heart went out to her daughter. "Hey, love, you've got another gift coming tomorrow on your real birthday…ok?" Angel's blue eyes immediately brightened,

"Really?! What is it?" Asked the little girl.

"It's a surprise and we're not telling." Smiled Angela.

Angel took a deep breath as if to say something, then thought better of it and simply nodded.

Elise looked over at Bonnie and asked, "Mama, is it on?"

"All booted up, on line, and ready to go, Darlin'," answered Bonnie with a wink.

Elise took Angela by the hand, "Come on, gorgeous, time for one or two of your gifts from me."

"One or two of?" asked Angela.

"Yup…I plan on spoiling you rotton, Angel mine." Smiled Elise as she led Angela into Bonnie's study. Elise pulled out the chair in front of Bonnie's computer and motioned for Angela to sit down. As soon as the tall brunette was seated, Elise swiveled the chair around so that Angela was facing the computer screen. "Ok, type in www.p2security.com," instructucted Elise.

Angela did as she was instructed and smiled as the home page of the web site Elise had designed came up. The swirling P2 logo and the slick menu options along the sides impressed her. "Go ahead and explore, baby." Elise said softly.

Angela's eyes misted as she realized how much loving thought and work had gone into this gift. "You designed this for me?"

"Yes, I looked through all your brochures and information packages to get the information. If you want to add or delete anything, just let me know and I'll make the changes." Elise answered.

"Baby, it's wonderful. I've been thinking I need to get a web site, but before I found you I had no idea how to go about doing that. Thank you so much, El, I love it…and you spoil me." Reaching up, Angela pulled Elise down for a long thank you kiss.

With a gleam in her eye, Elise said, "You can explore the site more later, I have something else for you." She pulled out a CD ROM and put it into the drive. She bent to whisper in Angela's ear, "Do you remember our phone conversations last week while you were out of town?"

Angela's eyes met Elise's and her voice dropped to a sexy husk, "Of course I remember. Gods, you have no idea what it did to me, talking to you like that."

Elise blushed as she thought about what she was about to do. "I got the idea for this after our 'conversation' the first night you were away." She reached over Angela's shoulder to pull up the video display program then pulled up the file on the CD Rom. She handed Angela a pair of earphones that were connected to the computer then said, "I'm going to go check on the girls and get them down for the night. I'm going to lock the door on my way out." Pointing to the earphones, "Put those on, then hit this key to play your gift."

Angela's eyebrows had disappeared into her bangs, but she nodded her understanding, so Elise leaned in to kiss her, then left locking the door behind her. Before she headed in to take care of the girls, she leaned against the locked door with her heart racing. She had never done anything like this before and she hoped Angela's reaction would be a good one. As she nervously stood there, she heard Angela's muffled voice moan, "Oh…gods….oh….gods…" followed by a deep groan. Elise smiled at Angela's reaction to her second "gift" then went to find the girls.

Once the girls were tucked into bed, Elise went to talk with her Mom. "Mama?"

Bonnie looked up, "What's on your mind, love bug?"

Elise took a deep breath, "Mama, I'm going to ask Angela to marry me. I want to adopt Ellie and I want her to adopt Angel."

"Darlin', nothing would make me happier!" Beamed Bonnie, "You two belong together. You sit right there, Honey, I'll be right back." When Bonnie returned, she held a small box in her hand. She handed the box to Elise, "I've been holding this for the day you would be ready."

Elise opened the box and gasped. Tucked into a bed of midnight blue velvet was a wide ring. The design of the ring struck a chord in Elise's soul. The ring was half yellow gold and half white gold, the pattern resembled the cogs of a gear. Set into each square cog of yellow gold was a small round blue sapphire. "Where is this from?" Asked Elise.

"It's the ring your Aunt Janice gave your Aunt Melinda." Bonnie answered quietly. "They said the design goes back thousands of years to a weapon wielded by Mel's original ancestor."

"The pattern looks and feels so…. familiar." Elise said softly. "This is perfect, Mama. Pray she'll say yes."

"Darlin' there's no doubt in my mind about that!" said Bonnie with a knowing smile on her face.

As Elise was tucking the girls in bed and talking with her mother, Angela sat transfixed in front of the computer screen. Her mouth had gone dry, her nipples had become as hard as erasers and her panties had quickly become soaked as she watched the 'movie' unfold. She remembered that, during their first session of phone sex, she had told Elise that she wished she could see what Elise was doing while they talked. Obviously, Elise had taken her seriously, because there on the screen was Elise dressed only in an emerald green teddy, on her bed with a telephone headset on. The sound from the video was Elise's side of their conversation. Angela remembered the conversation clearly as she watched the video unfold.

"What are you wearing?"

"The green silk teddy you love."

Groan, "Gods, you look so beautiful in that….and out of that."

"Mmmm, well, I'm in it at the moment."

"I wish I could see you."

A small giggle, "I wish you could too."

"Are your nipples hard?"

"Mmm Hmmm"

"Touch them through the teddy for me."

Moan, "Angel, gods, that feels so good. Touch yours for me too."

Groan, "El, that feels so good."

"Oh yeah, Angel mine, it feels like heaven."

"Caress your belly through the silk, move your hand slowly over your body for me."

Heavy Breathing. "Angel, stroke your thighs for me."

"You feel so good, El. Pull the top of your Teddy off, let me touch your skin."

As Angela watched, the entire conversation was acted out in front of her. Culminating in Elise's naked body writhing in orgasm calling her name into the phone, her eyes staring into Angela's from the screen.

Angela was so aroused from watching the video that she couldn't move. She rewound and watched her beautiful love no less than four times. She finally closed the program down, pulled the CD out of the computer and went to find the love of her life to show her what the gift had meant to her.

The next morning Elise and Angela woke up the girls at 6:00 am. As usual, Ellie was awake almost immediately, but Angela tried to roll over and cover her head with blankets so that she wouldn't have to wake up yet.

Angela smiled at the sleepy girl, her heart swelling at the similarity between mother and daughter. She sat on the edge of Angel's bed and brought the sleepy girl into her arms, rocking her slowly and laying kisses on her face and hair to gently bring her awake.

The sight of Angela gently waking her daughter brought such an overwhelming joy to Elise that tears filled her eyes. She smiled down at Ellie and held out her arms to the girl. Ellie didn't hesitate and went immediately into Elise's embrace. After rocking the dark haired girl for a time she said, "C'mon, Ellie girl, let's get you dressed then go help Grandmamma get breakfast going while Angel finishes waking up."

After breakfast was eaten, Elise and the girls helped Bonnie with the dishes while Angela went into the garage to retrieve their packed bags and placed them into the car. Once that chore was done, Angela went into the house and signaled to Elise that everything was ready.

Once the last dish was put into the dishwasher, Elise said "Girls, it's time for us to get going. Give Grandmamma a kiss then we'll get on the road."

"Aw, Mom, do we have to go home already?" whined Angel.

"Did I say we were going home?" asked Elise with a twinkle in her eye.

Angel's eyes brightened, "We're not going home? Where are we going? Ellie's coming with us, right?" the questions came machine-gun fast out of Angel's mouth.

Laughing, Elise reached into her pocket and pulled out the four passes to the Disney resort. She waved them in front of Angel's face. Angel's eyes opened as big as saucers and after the realization of what she was seeing set in she let out a scream that threatened to deafen anyone near her. "Ellie! We're going to Disneyland!"

The girls did a happy dance and hopped around like crazed creatures for a full five minutes. Finally, Angel ran over to her parents and, still hopping, asked, "When are we leaving…can we go now? C'mon, Mom and Pop…let's go!"

Elise reminded the excited birthday girl to thank her Grandmama for her generous gifts and the special birthday celebration she had given her. As the little girl rushed through her 'thank you' to Bonnie, Elise's eye caught with Bonnie's and they shared a 'Mommy bonding moment'. Once hugs and goodbyes were exchanged with the eldest member of the family, the four younger females piled into the car and began their week-long vacation.

When they at the Disney Resort, Angela blinked at the vast changes that had happened since the last time she'd visited the park. The parking lot she remembered from her childhood was no longer in existence. The only thing that looked even vaguely familiar was the distinctive profile of the Matterhorn mountain. "When did all of this happen?" Angela pondered aloud.

"Good Lord, I had no idea!" Elise exclaimed. "How do we find the entrance to the hotel?" As she looked at the street signs she said, "Oh! Baby, turn here. That sign says Downtown Disney/Resort Parking…maybe that's it."

Angela turned the car where Elise indicated and after only a few missed turns, they finally found the entrance to the Disneyland Resort Hotel. Angel and Ellie were fairly bursting at the seams to explore everything they saw. Their parents, however, were ready to find their room and take a nap. Between their marathon of love-making the previous night and trying to rein in two very excited little girls during the two-hour drive the women were exhausted. Elise looked over at Angela and smiled ruefully. "We're going to be so completely wiped out after this week…"

Angel's smirk was accompanied by a snort, "We're going to need a vacation to recover from our vacation."

When the family of four reached the reception desk, Angela pulled out the packet she had received from Mr. Reynolds. She presented the front desk clerk with the letter and certificates and waited as the perky, squeaky clean, girl punched information into her computer terminal. After only a moment, the clerk's eyes sparkled up at Angela and Elise and she smiled enthusiastically as she passed over two key cards. "Welcome to the Disney Resort Ms. Papadopolis! You're booked into the VIP suite so when you get into the elevator, just pop this key card into the slot and it will bring you up to your rooms." Pausing to take a breath, she continued. "If there is anything you need, just ask one of the cast members. All meals, room service and amenities are available to you at no charge. We hope you have a great time at the Happiest Place on Earth!"

Just then a side door opened and out walked Mickey Mouse carrying a gaily-wrapped package. Angel's eyes about popped out of her head when she realized that the oversized tag on the package had her name on it. Mickey strolled over in his Mickey-mouse way and tipped his head to the side as if pondering something. He pointed first to one girl then the other as his pointed to the tag. "I'm Angel! I'm Angel!" The birthday girl squealed. Mickey handed over the package and then gave first Angel, then Ellie a big hug. He then indicated that Angel should open her up her package. The package contained Disney memorabilia, Disney T-shirts and sweat shirts, socks and even jean jackets with Disney characters embroidered on the backs. There was four of everything…two sets that would fit the younger pair and two sets for the women. The jean jackets even had their names embroidered on the breast pockets…one for each of them.

"Whoa…" Elise muttered, completely amazed at the bounty. "Angel, what do you say to Mickey?"

"Oh Mickey, thank you so much! This is the best birthday in my whole entire life!"

After saying their good byes to Mickey Mouse, Angela and Elise herded their daughters onto the elevator and finally made their way to their suite. Once again, the couple were overwhelmed by the generosity of Angela's 'bonus'. The Suite consisted of a huge common living room/dining room which was flanked on two sides by bedrooms. One room contained two queen sized beds as well as a sitting area. Attached to the first bedroom was a bathroom that could have doubled for a skating rink it was so large. The floor, sink counters and bath enclosure were all done in alabaster colored marble with gold fixtures. The second bedroom contained the biggest bed any of the family had ever seen. A separate sitting area as well as a dressing area accompanied the larger room as well. The bathroom off the Master bedroom made the first room's luxurious bathroom look like the john from the corner Shell station. The sunken tub and separate shower stall with multiple showerheads were separated from the toilet and bidet. The girl were fascinated by the bidet and, after it's function was explained to them, they giggled about 'water up the heiney' for long minutes.

The adults felt a bit shell shocked from the day's surprises and excesses and the need for some down time became paramount. Angela decided that she would bite the bullet and lay down the law. "Ok girls, your Mama and I need to rest for a while…" She gave a stern look in response to the whining groans. "I know you're excited to be here. I know you want to go play in the parks but you are so wound up that you're going to make yourselves sick." She looked at her watch and then continued, "It's only noon. We'll order up some lunch and then I want you to go into your room and rest for a while. We'll have plenty of time to go to explore after that."

The girls realized that they had no choice in the matter and acquiesced to their mothers' wishes. Once lunch was ordered and eaten the girls went into their room while Angela and Elise collapsed on the massive bed. "This is too much…" Angela commented about the overwhelming generosity of Mr. Reynolds.

Before she dropped off to sleep Elise snuggled against her tall partner and mumbled, "You must have installed one hell of a security system, lover…"

Hours later, Elise woke up in a highly aroused, erotic state. A warm, wet mouth was attached to her left breast and long fingers were stroking her sex from front to back and back to front. Her hips were already rocking to the rhythm set by her dark lover's hand and she realized she was a breath away from climax. "Oooooooh, Angel, ooooh yeah, right there…don't stop, don't you dare stop."

Angela's low husky voice breathed in her ear, "I'll never stop. I love you, Cum for me El." The passion in Angela's voice along with the warm vibration against her ear sent Elise over that blissful edge. She arched into Angela's body as she moaned her lover's name as a prayer.

"Think they're done?" The women heard a young voice whisper a bit too loudly.

"No. I only heard Momma moaning; in a minute, Pop will scream and then maybe they'll come out."

Elise buried her face against Angela's body, "Oh my god, Angela, they've been out there listening!"

Angela was torn between mirth and ire. Mirth won out. "Baby? Look at me." Once she had Angela's gaze locked with her own, Angela continued, "All they heard was their parents loving one another. We've never tried to hide our love from them and we've never been particularly careful about being quiet; so I'm not surprised that they've heard us." Angela finally let out a low chuckle, "At least they know our loving is very mutual since they obviously feel they need to wait to hear both of us scream!"

Elise once again buried her face against Angela's breasts, though smiling this time. "I guess we should go talk to them."

"You mean I don't get my opportunity to scream?" teased Angela.

Elise captured her tall lover's mouth in a passionate kiss then promised, "I'll make you scream until you're hoarse later…I'll make 'em wonder why their Pop is walking funny for days."

With a loud moan, Angela threw her legs over the side of the bed and rose from the bed. She looked back at Elise and smirked with a whisper, "You'd better put your clothes back in order, 'cause I'm gonna let the monsters in." With that, she walked over to the double doors of their bedroom and yanked them open. Two small squealing bodies fell into the room and onto Angela's feet. Ellie looked up sheepishly, "Hi Mom…."

Angel's expression matched Ellie's, "Yeah…um…Hi Mom." She thought she might buy some points by using the "Mom" card.

Angela stood towering over the two girls with her hands on her hips and a stern expression on her face. "Just what were you two doing outside our door?"

Two small faces blushed, but Ellie spoke for the pair, "Um…we woke up from our nap and wanted to go out to the park, so…" She broke off to look for support from Angel then continued, "We came to get you."

At that point, Elise piped in, "And when you came to the door….?"

Angel answered her Mother in full blush, "Uh, um, we heard you guys…um…well Mom you were moaning and stuff."

Elise tried her best to keep from blushing, knowing that she had nothing to be ashamed about, "C'mere girls," she patted the bed to indicate for them to join her. "It's fine that you came to get us. But, if you hear sounds like you heard, that means your Mommy and I need some private time. If this happens again, we want you to go back to your own room or somewhere in the house and we'll be out when we're done with our private time."

Angela jumped in with, "If you're sick, or there's an emergency, you can always knock. Adults that love each other need to have private time together and having two sets of ears outside our door was not very private, was it?"

"No ma'am." Both little girls admitted.

Elise took two little chins in her hands and looked into her daughters' eyes, "I want you to tell me the truth. I think you both knew better than to sit outside this door once you heard what you heard, isn't that right?"

Two sets of little shoulders shrugged and two sets of eyes tried to avoid the intense scrutiny of a Mother's look. "You are both old enough to know it is impolite to listen in on others. I think you wanted to go out to the parks so badly that you ignored what you knew was right. Isn't that right?"

Twin sighs filled the room. "Yes, Mama. I knew I should go back to our room. My Jiminy Cricket was saying so." Admitted Angel.

Elise gave her daughter a hug, "Thank you for admitting to that. Next time you hear your conscience speaking to you, I want you to listen to it."

Angela spoke up, "How about you, Ellie?"

Ellie admitted that she, too, had known that the right thing to do would have been to return to their room and wait; but that her desire to go out to the parks had overridden her conscience.

The Moms looked each other in the eye and communicated with parent telepathy, Angela indicated with her eyes that Elise should be the one to mete out a punishment since she was the one that had been listened in on.

Elise took a deep breath and launched into what she knew would be as much a punishment for the adults as it was for the children: "Well, girls, since the parks are what kept you from doing what you both knew was right; You're going to have to wait another day to see them."

"WHAT?" Screached both girls. Angel launched into, "But we admitted that we did wrong, isn't that enough?"

Angela's firm voice joined into the fray, "Oh no, daughters of mine, admitting to something wrong doesn't cut it. There are always consequences to be paid when we make the wrong choices."

Elise heard Ellie mutter, "We shouldn't have admitted we knew it was wrong…"

Elise brought Ellie to stand in front of her and said, "Ellie, that would have simply compounded the problem. You would still have been punished for your actions so that you learn the lesson, but you would have also lost a lot of my respect for you by lying…and that would have broken my heart."

"I'm sorry Mama." Ellie's voice was husky with unshed tears. "I don't want to make you sad."

"I love you both so much." Elise admitted as she took both girls into a hug. Elise looked up at Angela, "Um…speaking of privacy, Do you think I could have a little time alone with our girls, honey?"

Angela's eyes opened wide in surprise but she agreed to give the threesome the private time Elise asked for. "Um, sure, I'll just go take a walk on the grounds for a bit. Will twenty minutes be enough time?"

"I think so, Baby." Elise smiled.

"Ok, I'll see you in a bit. Anything you want while I'm wandering?" Angela asked.

Elise's eyes twinkled, "Bring us a surprise."

"Mmm Hmmm…" Angela smiled before she exited the suite.

After Angela was gone, Elise turned to the two girls. "I have something very important to talk to you about. Let's go in the other room and pour ourselves some sodas then we'll talk."

"Are we in more trouble?" Angel asked.

Elise gave her daughter a one armed hug, "No, little Angel mine, not at all."

Once sodas were poured and the threesome was seated on the comfortable couch in the central room, Elise started in. "You both know how much I love all of you. Ellie, I've loved your Mother since I was your age. I've never loved another person and can never love another person as much as I love her." Elise paused and looked at Angel, "I was the luckiest woman in the world when the fates gave you to me. No Mother could love her daughter more than I love you."

Angel piped in, "I love you too, Mama."

Ellie seconded the motion with, "I love you just as much."

Elise swallowed the ball of emotion in her throat before she continued, "I want to ask Angela to marry me. I want us to be a real family. I'd want to adopt you, Ellie and I'd like Angela to legally adopt you, Angel. Is that ok with you two?"

Elise became very concerned when the girls became very quiet and their faces became clouded. "Do you not want me to marry your Mother, Angel?"

"No!" Ellie was quick to answer, "I mean, yes. I want you to marry Mommy." She stopped as her little brow wrinkled in concern, "It's just that…if you marry Mommy and you guys adopt us…" Her eyes tracked to meet Angel's, pleading for help.

"We don't want to be sisters, Mama." Angel finally admitted.

"You don't?" an obtuse Elise asked.

"No," Ellie stated firmly. "You can't marry your sister…and we're gonna get married when we're old enough." After taking a deep breath she continued, "We're gonna go to college and I'm going to be a doctor and Angel's gonna be a commercial artist and then we're going to get married and have babies and buy a house."

Angel jumped in, "And we can't do any of that if we're sisters!"

Elise's jaw unhinged. She simply didn't know how to react to the girls' urgent plea. After taking a deep breath, Elise sighed, "I need to think girls. If I take you both down to The Day Care Center, will you promise me to stay there until your Pop or I pick you up?" Two little heads nodded.

Elise dropped the two girls off at the Disney day care center, a glorified video arcade with staff to watch the children, and then she walked out onto the campus of the Resort to ponder this new dilemma. Elise leaned heavily against a log railing beside one of the large man-made ponds on the resort. She sighed as she looked at the refection of the beautiful sunset on the water's surface. Her mind roiled with how to handle this unexpected stumbling block. Just as Elise was inhaling into yet another sigh, she felt two arms slip around her waist and her nose picked up the distinctive and calming scent of her lover.

Angela pulled Elise close and placed a kiss against the crown of her head. "Why so deep in thought, El?"

Elise turned within the circle of Angela's arms and snuggled against the taller body. She soaked in the feeling of safety and serenity she unfailingly found while in Angela's embrace. "My talk with the girls didn't go anything like I expected it to. They really threw me for a loop and I'm trying to figure out how come to grips with it."

"Why don't you share it with me and we'll handle it together, Baby?" Angela slid her hand in comforting circles against Elise's back.

Elise closed the tiny space that separated her body from Angela's and laid her head against the strong shoulder. Tears escaped from her eyes as emotions overwhelmed her. "I wanted to do this perfectly. I wanted romance and candle light and a sunset on the beach."

Angela's brow wrinkled and one brow raised, "Do what, Love?"

Elise raised her head from its resting place and surveyed the surrounding area. Just down the path a bit she saw a small grouping of trees that was a bit more private than their present position. She pulled herself away form Angela and reached for her hand to lead her to the stand of trees. Once they were in the small grove, Elise turned to Angela and pointed to a wooden bench, "Have a seat, Angel mine."

As Angela sat on the bench, she expected Elise to sit beside her. Her heart began to beat like a timpani when she saw Elise drop down to one knee in front of her. "Elise?" Angela's voice shook.

Elise reached into her pocket and pulled out the antique ring her Mother had given her. As she held it up she said, "Angela, I've loved you for as long as I can remember. I've known since we were little girls with scraped knees that you were the other half of my heart and soul. The years we spent apart didn't diminish my love for you…they only made me appreciate having you in my life all the more." Elise reached up and kissed the tears falling from Angela's brilliant blue eyes, "I want to spend my life with you. I want to blend our families into a single unit. My day isn't right when I don't wake in your arms. I can't sleep without your heart beneath my ear. You are everything I want, everything I need; you are the breath and the soul of me. Will you please be my partner, my wife, my love forever?"

Angela slid off of the bench and her knees joined Elise's in the dirt, "Yes. God, Yes." She croaked through her emotion filled throat. She cleared her throat and made her own declaration, "Elise, being apart from you was the worst thing that I've ever endured. My first thought when Elise was born was that I wished she was yours. Every major accomplishment in my life, I've shared with you inside my head and heart. Miklos was a good friend, but you have always been my heart's completion. Being with you forever is heaven for me. I love you, El." Their kiss of commitment went on much longer than propriety would have dictated in a public place but neither woman gave a damn about that. After oxygen deprivation force the couple apart, Elise finally slipped the ring onto Angela's finger. Angela's mouth slipped into a brilliant smile when she looked down at the ring that felt like home on her finger and then slipped her fingers into her own pocket and pulled out a similar, but smaller, ring and slipped it onto Elise's finger.

Elise's surprised eyes lifted to meet Angela's, "Where…when…how…"she stammered.

Angela laughed out loud and leaned forward to place a kiss against the blabbering blonde's lips. "Your Mom gave it to me when I asked her for your hand."

"You did?" Elise's smile was brighter than the brightest star.

"Yup, I sure did." Angela smiled back. "Now, my love," Angela assisted Elise up off of her knees so that they could sit on the bench, "Your proposal was about as perfect as it gets so why were you so upset before?"

Elise's smile dropped off of her face, "Oh, god, Angel, the girls don't want to be sisters."

"What?" Angela was as shocked to hear this news as Elise had been earlier. "Why? They're inseparable, the adore one another!"

A pretty blush covered Elise's face, "That's the problem, love." Elise finally smiled at the situation, "They do adore each other. So much so that they already have their life planned out including College, marriage and babies….together…as a couple."

Angela's blue eyes widened, "They're only little girls!"

Elise stroked Angela's thigh, "How old were we when we knew, Honey?"

This brought Angela up short and a smile covered her face, "A year younger than these two are right now."

A giggle escaped Elise, "Exactly. And we didn't have the complication of having our parents marry one another…making us sisters."

Angela smiled brilliantly, "Well, I suppose Greg and Marsha Brady could have married one another and they wouldn't have had to worry about two-headed babies, right?"

"Ew!" Elise laughed, "I guess you're right." She reached out and grasped Angel's hand. "Shall we go tell the girls that they have two Mom but that they don't have to be sisters?"

"Yup, let's go get Munchkin & Pumpkin, the fearless duo. I'm sure they're terrorizing the staff at the Day Care!"

A month later, in front of family and friends, Angela and Elise exchanged vows promising their futures to one another. At their side stood two beaming little girls in outfits that matched their Moms'. After the ceremony, Little Ellie and Angel conspired together figuring out what they would do differently in twenty years when they had their wedding. Soon wedding talk was forgotten and the two girls became simply two girls as they played and enjoyed the attentions of the gathered crowd. Angela and Elise circulated through the guests and accepted the well wishes of their circle of loved ones. When the band struck up the first song, Angela led Elise out onto the dance floor and pulled her close as they danced their first dance as a married couple. They only had eyes for one another and the crowd that encircled them stood in awe at the glow the two women exuded. Even when other couples joined the newlyweds on the dace floor, the couple remained lost in one another. It took Bonnie three tries to cut in to dance with her new daughter-in-law.

"Y'all ready for the Honeymoon, Angel?" Bonnie asked with a twinkle in her eye.

Angela's white teeth flashed in a brilliant smile, "I'm ready for so much more than that, Mom. I'm ready for the rest of my life…and beyond. I couldn't handle life without her any more than I could survive without air."

Bonnie put her palm against Angela's cheek, "I know, Darlin'. I've always know." Bonnie sobered a bit, "You know Elise is nervous about the trip, don't you?"

With a crooked smile, Angela answered, "I know. But Mama's so excited to see her again. She's worried that Elise will hate her because she didn't oppose Papa's part in our separation and Elise still thinks that Mama doesn't like her." Angela's eyes tracked the crowd and spied her wife dancing in a circle with their daughters. She felt her heart fill impossibly fuller at the sight and had to shake herself away from the feeling to continue on, "I'm sure once they spend a little time together, they'll work it out."

Bonnie nodded, "And I'm trustin' you to shield her from any serious hurt." Angela nodded her agreement. After another moment, "I still say you're going to pay for takin' my grandbabies away for a month!"

Angela laughed, "You'll survive, Momma. Besides, you get to see them all the time and Mama hasn't seen Ellie for almost a year. And she's just now getting to meet her newest Grand child."

"I'm glad you're takin' tonight for yourselves before you fly to Greece." Bonnie smiled.

Angela bent down and placed a kiss on the alabaster skin of Bonnie's cheek, "We appreciate you watching the girls so that we can have the night alone."

Bonnie playfully slapped her daughter in law's arm, "Charmer. Now go claim your wife from that bore that's claimed her." Angela looked over to see Elise dancing with one of her computer nerd friends.

The reception lasted late into the night, but the newlywed couple made their escape amongst showers of rose pedals early in the evening. The Limousine ride from the reception hall to the hotel became a setting for foreplay. When the driver pulled up in front of the hotel, she grinned at the moans that emanated from behind the dark glass separating the driving compartment from the passenger section. The driver cleared her throat loudly and tapped on the window. Finally, she lowered the glass a smidge and warned the couple that they were at their destination, "Just knock on the window when you're decent." Their friend teased. Finally, the message got through to the passionate couple and they put their clothing to rights before they tapped on the window. After hearing the tap, the driver opened the back door of the long car and winked at her passengers, "Congratulations, you two." Angela unfolded herself from the back seat and turned to help Elise from the vehicle only to hear her wife snicker.

"What?" Angela asked. Elise grinned and pointed to the front of Angela's shirt. Angela looked down and groaned when she saw the diamond studs off kilter and the tails of her shirt clearly three inches different in length. She grinned as she wagged her finger at her wife, "It's your fault…you just couldn't wait…" her grin grew as she continued, "Lucky lucky me."

"Mmmmm," Elise moan low, "I haven't even warmed up yet Angel, wife, mine."

Angela caught the driver's eyes to determine if she had heard the conversation. She had. So Angela raised a brow and said, "Again I say, 'Lucky lucky me."

The couple had checked into the hotel earlier in the day, so they avoided the check-in rigmarole and quickly made their way to their honeymoon suite. Angela scooped Elise up into her arms and carried her over the threshold. Somehow, Angela found her way to the huge bed without breaking the kiss Elise initiated. The couple found out that it is possible to completely strip one another without interrupting a passionate kiss. Clothes flew across the room to fall into sad heaps as the couple's passion flamed bright. Angela worshiped Elise's skin with her mouth and fingers. As she kissed and licked trails down the lithe body, she moaned in passionate delight while she savored every flavor and texture. When she reached the apex of Elise's thighs she inhaled deeply through her nose and savored the essence that was uniquely hers. Angela's blue eyes darkened to violet as she looked at her lover's downy covered mound. She reverently placed her thumbs on Elise's outer labia and opened the treasure before her. Elise's breathe caught in her throat as she watched her wife's reverence, but when Angela whispered possessively, "Mine" before she lowered her mouth to feast, Elise lost the last thread of control and sighed into the night, "Yours." Their loving alternated between tender loving and wild, raw sex that lasted until the light of the new day when they fell into an exhausted but sated sleep.

Very late the next morning, after a refresher course in marital relations, the newly weds "helped" one another shower and dress for the day. It was time to go pick up their daughters and continue their honeymoon in Greece.

The End?

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