Seeing Is Believing
One: These ladies and gents are my creation. They are a combination of people
I have met throughout the years. They can not be used without my permission, and
to do so would just be plain rude.
Disclaimer Two: There is only the mention of violence, a little use of foul language
(donıt think of me as a potty mouth), some tension, some laughs and yeah, some
This installment of Perspectives takes place directly after the events of See
No Evil. Didnıt you all want to know what happened the morning after? (g)
Dedications: (To my Partner) Glad youıre feeling better baby. Donıt know what
I would do without you. (To an Outstanding Bard) Leans in close--- Pssst! Hey
Kodi? Did I spell everything right? LOL!
This installment is a little light. There are some emotional scenes, but it doesnıt
have the dark patches that the other installments did. I hope you enjoy.
Chapter XV: Itıs Not What You Think. . . Really
Barb stared at the retreating back of her friend. If her jaw scraped the floor
anymore, her lip would get carpet burn. Did Cory just say what I think she said?
And did she mean? Naw! It couldnıt be.ı The older woman shook her head and proceeded
further into the living room. She smirked as sleepy green eyes looked up at her
from the couch.
"Ugh, uh-huh. What are you doing over here this early?" He asked groggily as he
pushed his rumpled form in a sitting position.
The woman threw herself in a nearby chair. "This is one of our workout days."
He peered bleary-eyed at the watch on his wrist. "Itıs barely eight oıclock. Now,
thatıs sick." He pulled the covers back and straightened the t-shirt and shorts
that had ridden up during the night.
He got a chuckle in return.
Getting up, the young man headed straight for the kitchen. "You want juice or
"No, itıs okay. You go ahead. Iıll just wait on Cory."
He shrugged and retreated.
Now alone, Barb scrunched her brow in confusion. Taylor was going to go work out
with them? Whoa, I wonder what happened between them yesterday? Ugh, should I
ask? Maybe Iıll just wait until I see them together at the gym, just to see how
Crossing her arms over her chest, Cory leaned against the doorway watching the
sleeping form. She had slept in this womanıs arms last night, and for the first
time, she had felt comfortable and content. The irony of it was that it was with
a woman she was sure she hated a few weeks ago. Now, I donıt know how I feel.
Grateful to be passed it and where we are now I suppose. Who knew that an intelligent,
funny, compassionate person was under that unapproachable veneer?ı Closing the
door, she quietly walked further into the room. Getting a closer look, she peered
into the face that could be devoid of emotion one minute and alive with expression
the next. Right now, she just looked peaceful and young as if there wasnıt a care
in the world. Isnıt that how she made me feel last night? Like everything was
going to be okay? I believed her, and I still do. How did she do that?ı Something
tightened in the blondeıs chest and knotted in her stomach as the lanky form sighed
and cuddled the abandoned pillow to her body. Dammit! What is thatthat feeling
I keep getting? Itıs down right distracting.ı
Cory shook herself from the self-imposed reverie. Knowing that they needed to
get going, she leaned over the dark haired woman and reached out to touch her.
A small hand covered the expanse of the sleeping womanıs bicep, and the blonde
felt scorched by the smooth heat that radiated from the supple skin. It made her
want to crawl right back into bed, back into that warmth. She fought the urge,
just barely, with a shake of her head and gently squeezed the flesh beneath her
"Taylor, wake up."
"Mmmrph?" An indiscernible sound exited the dark womanıs lips as she tried to
burrow further under the covers.
ıOooh, somebodyıs not a morning person I see.ı "Taylor, we need to get going."
Cory shook the silent form.
The still sleeping woman turned on her back, scrunched up her face in disgust,
but refused to open her eyes.
ıOookay, this is a bit much.ı She quietly observed the mussed woman. Dark hair
streaked broad shoulders and covered an expanse of her face with thin strands
caught in moist, slightly parted lips. Feeling caught staring, the blonde looked
around the room then rolled her eyes at her own antics. She felt a smirk form
as a little imp took purchase on her shoulder. She knew she should have brushed
it off, but it was a really big imp. Leaning as close to the reclining form as
possible, the blonde said sweetly, "Baby?"
Dark eyebrows hiked, disappearing into bangs. "Hmm?"
"The showerıs ready. Donıt you want to join me?"
"Mmmhmm?" Full lips turned up into a smile.
"Youıd better get up then, while itıs nice and hot." The petite woman's smirk
got bigger with each word.
Ebony brows bunched in confusion and pale eyes slowly opened. Right away Taylor
felt out of place but comfortable. The events of the night before came back in
a flash, making her eyes open wider. I stayed and held Cory all night. I slept
with her and now sheıs grinning down at me like she knows some secret.ı The admin
blinked and her head exploded in a scream. I SLEPT IN CORYıS BED LAST NIGHT WITH
HER IN IT! OH SHIT!ı She bolted up into a sitting position almost smashing heads
with the surprised blonde. Taylor ran an aberrant hand through her hair, rubbing
the imaginary knot caused by the huge book of ethics she envisioned hitting her.
Mental eyes rolled. 'Calm down. Not a damn thing happened.' Pale blue eyes glanced
around the room, deliberately avoiding the form at the side of the bed. 'Still,
what's going on with me? I knew better than to do this.'
'She needed you,' Little Shelley quipped.
'That doesn't simplify things. It only serves to complicate them.'
Only if you want it too. Be a friend to her. It could help you both.'
'What's that supposed to mean?"
The voice was suspiciously quiet.
Cory held her hand over her heart as it continued to jump in surprise at the woman's
sudden moves. 'She won't look at me. Uh-oh, I think we crossed some line last
night, and she doesn't know how to deal with it. Or, she's just regretting babysitting
me.' A lance of pain made her clutch harder at her chest. 'I didn't mean to be
so needy.' The caseworker sighed under her breath. 'Okay, this can be played two
ways. I can pretend that yesterday and last night never happened, putting us back
in square one, or it can be approached bluntly and forced out into the air like
the unavoidable pink elephant. Well, I've never been one to cut corners. . .'
Unreadable blue finally glanced up into moss green. Taylor stared at her employee
unblinkingly and decided to let her take the lead. The blonde bit her lip, but
a smirk formed anyway. She knew exactly how to play this. Coming around the bed,
she sat down, causing the other woman to scoot over. Green eyes sparkled with
mirth when a familiar dark brow rose in question. Cory bat blonde lashes coquetishly.
"So, am I to think that you don't respect me this morning?"
The other brow raised over shocked blue. Silent seconds ticked by before the air
was pierced with a bark of rich laughter. The blonde's smirk turned into a full
fledged smile as she watched the admin's face go through a gamut of expressions.
The forming tension was broken.
Taylor sobered slowly. The woman really was priceless. She always seemed to know
the right thing to say to completely change to tone of a situation. 'She obviously
has no regrets. So, why should I? I was just being there for a friend, right?'
Little Shelley clapped in the background. Pale eyes took in the slightly rumpled
form of the woman in front of her. Short blonde hair stuck up in the oddest places
and usually alert eyes still seemed bleary. Taylor let loose a smirk of her own.
It really was a sin for someone to look so cute in the morning. She pushed the
distracting thought to the back of her mind and asked huskily, "I guess you're
feeling better this morning?"
Cory's breath caught as a tiny shiver traveled the length of her spine at the
sound of the other woman's voice. 'Oh no, that did not happen!' She screamed at
herself. Green eyes rounded as the tall form sat up further and spoke again. "Cory?"
The shiver was bigger, longer this time. 'Oh God, no! This is nothing. Nothing.
Do you hear me? It's just emotional left overs from last night. Yeah, that sounds
good.' Knowing the astute woman would be able to tell if something was wrong,
Cory smiled and hoped it wasn't too bright. "Yeah, thanks so much for putting
up with me. I really didn't want to be alone with those kids on my mind. Damn,
I still canıt believe that happened."
Blue eyes studied the figure in front of her. "I know, but you look a little more
rested than you did at the office, despite what happened. I hope you donıt mind
me asking, but have you picked out someone to talk to?
"No, itıs okay. As my boss and a friend, I donıt mind you knowing. Her name is
Dr. Zawid. I got the word of mouth from a couple of people over at CPS that she
is really good. Hopefully, when I call tomorrow, Iıll be able to get in to see
her this week."
"Um, if you need somebody to go with you, Iıll be more than willing."
Green studied blue to see if it was a token offer, but the other woman looked
back at her serious and sincere. "Thanks so much, but I think Iıll be okay."
Cory nodded as a large, elegant hand snaked from under the blanket and made its
way to her nearby knee. The blonde swallowed and tried to ignore the flash of
heat that crawled up her flesh. Taylor sucked in a breath discreetly, expecting
to hear a crackle in the air because her hand was sizzling. 'Whoa, what the hell?
Ah, it's got to be emotions seeping over from last night. Things were pretty high.'
They both studied the supposedly comforting hand then eyes met and gazes locked.
A whip of fire flashed between them, making it almost impossible to maintain eye
contact. Clearing her throat, Taylor was the first to look away. Cory's gaze fell
once more on the hand that refused to move away.
Ungracefully, the blonde jumped up from her seat on the bed, dislodging the fire
stick from her skin. "Um," her voice sounded shaky, even to her own ears. "I'm
gonna go shower." She pointed toward the living room, and blonde brows wrinkled
in confusion. 'Who is that waiting for us out there? Oh God, she mentally snapped
her fingers.' "Barb is waiting , uh, if you want to go to the gym with us." Not
bothering to look back, she grabbed some clothes out of the appropriate drawer
and headed toward the bathroom.
The two inhabitants in the living room glanced at each other in confusion and
suspicion at the sound of unfamiliar laughter and closing doors. JR shrugged his
shoulders and plopped more cereal into his open mouth. Barb squinted and looked
back toward the bedroom. It was taking Cory too long. Something was definitely
up. I can hardly wait to see what it is.ı
Taylor blinked and looked at the vacated space on the bed. "Uhm, okay." She cringed
again envisioning that book of ethics swinging toward her head, especially since
another employee was going to be privy to this delicate situation in a matter
of minutes. She then looked at her hand, expecting to see little burn marks. Little
Shelley whispered softly, ıGo on, you can admit it.ı
ıI think that Iım attracted to her.ı She recalled the frission of awareness that
hissed between them. No, I know Iım attracted to her.' Blue eyes closed and a
pink tongue speared out of its home to lick suddenly dry lips. From day one, the
petite blonde brought with her a bombardment of emotions. It ranged from irritation,
dislike, and respect to this, the unexplainable. The one thing that inevitably
stood out during it all was the simple fact, which she grudgingly admitted to
herself, that she had felt more alive in the past few weeks than ever before.
The adminıs eyes reopened. Still, things were no clearer.
She had admitted simple truths, but didnıt feel free, knowing that there was only
one road to travel, the straight and narrow. Ethical concerns made sure of that.
Taylor laughed silently. Jumping the gun a little? Itıs not like sheıs been pining
away for you all this time. The woman seems as straight as a month of Sundays.ı
She threw the covers off her short clad legs and swung them over the side. I
donıt need these kind of complications anyway. Attraction, I can deal with. Itıs
not like we see each other every day. Still, maybe I should end it right
here; cut my losses; and move things back to a safer zone.ı
The dark haired woman cringed remembering the name calling and animosity. No,
thatıs not even an option. Then where do we go from here?ı Her face was one of
resolve. Friendship. Yeah, thereıs nothing wrong with that. Sheıs loyal, a good
listener, great to be with, and not intimidated by me in the least. It makes being
in this city a little more bearable. That wins her points right there.ı The tall
woman got up and walked the expanse of the room, refusing to admit the sting of
emptiness at the thought of things regressing to the way they were before.
Cory stood rock still as the water beaded and slid down her body. Youıre borrowing
trouble girlie, so don't even go there.ı She pushed her hands through short wet
locks, slicking her hair back and dispensing with the excess water. Maybe Iım
just feeling a little too grateful, and Iım responding to that emotionally. God
knows that sheıs done more than most people that I call friends would do. Barb
has a husband, so itıs not like she can come running when I need a shoulder. Taylor
stayed with me. I still canıt believe she did that after all I said to her. What
kind of woman would do that? I need someone like her in my life, and I donıt want
to ruin it with misplaced feelings and attractions. I donıt want to take advantage
of what sheıs done for me. I wonıt let myself, despite the vibes Iım getting.ı
With her mind set, she stopped the shower and prepared herself to face whatever
was in the next room.
Minutes later, the petite form re-entered the bedroom rubbing her wet hair with
a towel. With the curtain open, the room was now illuminated in light, and Taylor
stood in front of it, observing the day as it began. Cory tried to hide the gasp
as the towel fell from her fingers. The rays of the sun loved her, making to taller
woman glow. The caseworker couldnıt decide if the other woman was reflecting it
or if the sun was just wedding with another source of heat and light. The blonde
blinked and looked on fully aware of the increased cadence of her heartbeat.
Thatıs when it hit her. Something had changed between them last night the bond
of friendship had been cemented, but it was interwoven with respect, awareness,
and so much more. Warmth pooled in her belly then spread to her entire being,
knowing she was venturing into something that she never had before. Fear should
have been the first emotion, but there was only eagerness. The person in question
began to turn around. Cory quickly retrieved her towel in time to meet the other
womanıs eyes, and saw quiet affection shining in them instead of reluctance and
Pale blue smiled into twinkling green. "Hey."
Cory smiled back before she answered, "Hey yourself."
Taylor grinned crookedly as she sat back down on the edge of the bed. "You look
better. At least you got rid of that distracting cow lick."
Cory sighed inwardly. Good. Things are okay.ı The blonde made her way across
the room to the mirror, but she paused on the way to give the taller woman a mock
slap on the shoulder as she passed by. "Be nice or I wonıt let you use the extra
toothbrush. No one likes to talk to a person with bad morning breath."
"Is that a polite way of telling me that I stink?" With a raised eyebrow, she
looked at the smaller woman standing in the mirror.
"Well actually, I wasnıt aiming for polite, but hey, if it makes you feel better,"
the other woman answered with a cocky grin.
"Oooh, your quick wit astounds me," the admin chuckled. I canıt believe that
I was even thinking about ending this. I could talk to her forever. I bet she
could even give Wendy a run for her money.ı She couldnıt seem to stop the smile
that stuck on her face as joy bubbled to the surface.
Taylor looked back up at the petite blonde as she turned from the mirror. In quick
succession, the caseworker blew on the comb, twirled it and pretended to put it
back in an imaginary holster. "What can I say? When Iım hot, Iım hot." She threw
the comb back on a nearby dresser. "So, are you going with us? Iım sure Barb wonıt
mind driving by your place and waiting on you."
"Well, Iıd hate to ask her to go through all that trouble. Hey, why donıt you
swing by my place with me, and I can give you the grand tour? Then, we could meet
her at the Community Center. I just want to get a light work out in before it
gets too late. They are supposed to deliver my equipment sometime this morning,
and I want to be able to lift too today. I could use some help assembling it if
ıUm, did I just ask her to come to my place?ı ıUh-huh, thatıs what I heard,ı
Little Shelley added.
Cory looked down at her friend and blinked. "Do I get lunch and dinner if it takes
longer? I donıt work for free you know."
"Sure. Iıll even cook."
The blonde stared back at the other woman incredulously. "You cook too? Will wonders
never cease. Oh, she of many skills."
Taylor smirked. "You donıt know the half of it. Now, lead me to that toothbrush
so we can get going."
The caseworker was still stuck on the last statement. Hmm, I bet I donıt, not
even a fraction. Did she say something? Yeah, toothbrush.ı "Oh, itıs the one still
in the package in the medicine cabinet. Thereıs towels too if you want to wash
The woman disappeared into the bedroom. She didnıt bother closing the door, giving
the blonde a good view of the goings on. She watched silently as thoughts whisked
through her head. It really was a thing of beauty, the camaraderie that they shared.
It developed over such a short period of time. Sure, the blonde had to admit that
there was awkwardness at first, but it disappeared quickly. She also had to admit
that she had never felt so comfortable around a person she had professed to hate
not too long ago. Still, they talked and joked like old friends.
She treats me like that too, being quick to listen and lend a shoulder.ı The
petite woman reached for her sneakers as another thought flowered. She had never
been a touchy feely person, never a cuddler, but the playful, affectionate touches
came so easily with Taylor. The other woman didnıt seem to mind that or the fact
that she was used as a pillow the night before. Interesting.
Taylor hummed quietly as she brushed her teeth. Iıve enjoyed myself the past
couple of days. Sheıs fun to be with, and Iıll be damned if she doesnıt keep me
on my toes.ı The brunette rinsed the toothbrush and looked around for a brush
to tame the wild mane on top of her head. "Hey Cory?"
The blonde tugged on a shoestring and looked up. "Yeah, whatıs up?"
"Do you have a brush that I can use? It looks like squirrels have been playing
in my hair." Taylor heard the other woman chuckle.
"Yeah, hold on."
Barb tapped her foot impatiently and rolled her eyes as JR continued to giggle
at some cartoons. That has got to run in the family,ı she said to herself, knowing
her friendıs affinity for Scooby-Doo. She looked at her watch and tapped it. This
canıt be right. Sheıs been in there over an hour. Maybe she fell asleep or maybe
somebody really is in there!ı The older woman shook her head. No, I know sheıs
not involved, and she wouldnıt pick up anybody off the street. Would she? Maybe
Iıll just go knock and see whatıs going on.ı She got up to do just that when she
heard a door open and laughter.
Taylor gave the smaller woman a playful shove.
"Hey, no pushing the short woman around. Itıs not my fault you dribbled toothpaste
on your shirt."
"Yeah, but you could have told me before I put my hand in it and spread it."
Their laughter broke off when the almost forgotten inhabitants of the living room
stared at them as though they came out naked and growing extra heads.
Barbıs jaw dropped and this time, she could feel it. Her bottom lip would have
carpet burn for sure. At that moment, she couldnıt figure out for the life of
her what face she was making. All the muscles in her face had gone slack.
JR looked from his sister to the woman he had met yesterday and snorted loudly.
"Hey Bunch? I thought you said you didnıt want her?" He glared at his sister indignantly.
Cory scowled at her brother, making sure her eyes had turned to daggers. For once,
she wished that she lived in Ally McBealıs world. Her brother would be dead from
sharp projectiles shooting out of her eyes, and she could make the floor open
up and swallow her whole. She didnıt dare turn around, already feeling the tension
coming from her back. Oh great, one step forward and two steps back. What the
hell were they thinking anyway?ı Her eyes widened. Oh God, they think that we.
. . aargh!ı She peered at them both through squinted eyes, seeing Barbıs slack
jawed expression. Oh yeah, thatıs what theyıre thinking.ı She mentally collected
herself. First things first, she would take care of the stiff as a board woman
behind her later. Pursing her lips, she aimed at her brother first. With saccharin
sweetness dripping in her voice, she fired.
"Why thank you Wipe. I have never been in the closet before. Thank you for showing
me what it feels like to come out." She continued to glower. At east he had the
audacity to look ashamed. It was her boss for goodness sake. The blonde reloaded
and looked at Barb.
"And donıt you look at me like that. You know me better. Besides, I told you that
she was here." She couldnıt keep the slight anger from her voice. "If you both
must know, she was nice enough to stay with me last night after I found out about
the Smith children. I donıt know what I wouldıve done without her. How dare you
think" Her previously fisted hand came up to cover her mouth. She knew it was
probably irrational, but the tears came anyway. Finishing her sentence, the caseworker
sobbed, "I would never do anything like that! Do you think Iım some kind of tramp?!"
Two pairs of eyes looked on startled by the outburst, and one pair of blue bored
into her back as she ran into the solitude of the kitchen.
Feeling the shock wear off, Taylor frowned at the other people in the room. If
she was a lesser person, a prejudice person, or a straight person, Cory would
probably be out of a job, but she was none of those things. So, sheıs not as
straight as I thought.ı The tall woman ignored the relieved thump of her heart
to concentrate on the situation at hand. Cory had just been outed in front of
her boss and friend. She could only imagine how the caseworker was feeling.
"You know, I donıt know her near as well as you two proclaim, and I got the feeling
that she wouldnıt do what you assumed she did."
JR looked down at the remote control in his hand. "I didnıt know. I wasnıt thinking.
God, sheıs not gonna be in trouble at work is she?"
"No, her sex life is none of my business." Yeah, right.ı
"Iım so sorry. Me and my big ass mouth." He shook his head then let it hang.
All the while, the wheels turned in Barbıs head. Assuming that they slept together
wasnıt farfetched, considering the chemistry and tension that came off them in
waves, but she could understand why her friend would be hurt, especially with
her emotions all over the place like they had been lately. She sighed loudly.
"I guess we really put our feet in it. She did tell me that you were here, but
I thought I heard her wrong. It was a mistake, and given the evidence, weıre only
Taylor looked from one to the other. "I understand that, but I donıt think sheıs
thinking about that right now."
"We should go talk to her," JR added. Taylor held up a hand as they headed toward
"No, let me go in first. I think sheıs mostly worried about how Iım reacting to
Cory pulled open the cabinet door and stared blankly at the contents inside. Everything
had been ruined by one phrase. I could be out of a job that I love and a friendship
could be over before it really started.ı An empty feeling invaded her stomach
at the last thought. In a short time, she had learned to care probably more than
she should. The blonde laughed without humor. Hell, I know Iım feeling more than
I should, and now. . . ugh! That jackass!ı She slapped her hand palm down with
vehemence on the counter. Sheıs probably disgusted or scared or a combination
of the two.ı
Green eyes looked up startled as the tall form of her boss entered the kitchen.
Cory opened her mouth to speak but was stopped when the other woman held up her
"Listen Cory. Let me go first. Does what I just found out back there make you
a different person? Have you been showing me who you really are?"
The blonde glared in shock and anger. "Iıve never been fake, and I wonıt start
"Good, I just needed to know that." Youıre the faker! Tell her! She ignored
the outraged voice. "Then as far as Iım concerned, nothing changes between us.
I want you to be yourself around me. Your job is safe. You are in a very PC and
liberal field after all." Coward. Why donıt you tell her? Itıs going to come
back and haunt you," Little Shelley whispered. She gritted her teeth to silence
the voice. "So, we honestly donıt have anything to worry about, but those two
in there are really worried. Theyıre only human Cory. Go talk to them."
The petite blonde smiled, feeling a weight lifting from her shoulders. Well,
that was almost too easy.ı Still, she believed the other womanıs acceptance. There
was no indication that she shouldnıt. With the bond that had formed between them,
came trust, and she didnıt want to do anything to strain it.
"Um, I think youıre right. I think I overreacted a little, but I just didnıt know
what was going to happen."
Blue eyes twinkled back at her laden with sincerity. "I figured that. Go on, go
talk to them. We have a tour, a bench, and lunch to get to."
Coryıs smile widened as she brushed by the other woman. Reaching out a hand, the
blonde squeezed the brunetteıs arm as she made her way out. Taylor watched her
leave but didnıt immediately follow. Reaching up, she closed the cabinet door.
You really are a coward. Why didnıt you tell her?ı Silently, she answered her
own question. Because, it would add fuel to the fire, giving the attraction that
she could feel, fuel to grow. She had a feeling it would indeed grow with the
possibility of feelings being returned. Maybe if she kept her own sexuality a
secret, it could function, as a mental block needed to keep the fire doused. Maybe.
Cory looked at the two sheepish forms. "Guyıs listen" she paused feeling the
taller womanıs presence behind her. "Listen, I may have overreacted just a little,
but you two should know me better than that, and Wipe, you divulged some information
that could have messed up a lot of things. If Taylor wasnıt who she was, this
could have turned out badly."
JR got up from his perch on the couch to saunter over to his sister. His eyes
were dark with hurt. "Iım so sorry sis. I just have diarrhea at the mouth sometimes.
Itıs just that I saw you with her yesterday, and I just put two and two together
and came up with five despite me knowing how you are." He looked at her from under
long blonde lashes. "Forgive me? Iıll do whatever you want to make it up to you."
Coryıs mind rattled with possibilities. She could never stay mad at him for long
because he was too damned cute. That didnıt mean that she couldnıt make him suffer.
She smiled cryptically. "Oh, youıll pay for this. Youıll just have to give me
some time to figure out how."
He blinked, looked at her and blinked again.
She had to resist the urge to cackle, especially when she saw his Adamıs apple
bobbing up and down. Turning to Barb, Cory raised a blonde brow. The woman threw
up her hands. "Hey, I donıt know if you know this face or not, but itıs my Iıll
eat shit if you want me toı face. Iım sorry, Kid. Even though I didnıt say much,
I guess the look on my face was enough."
"Iıll be okay. I was scared more than anything about what the outcome would be,
but you wear that face awhile. I like it on you."
The tall, lanky form leaning against the wall had to swallow a chuckle. She really
does know how to stick it to them. I sure as hell donıt want to be on her bad
side anymore.ı The apologies went on for a few long minutes before Cory and Taylor
finally climbed into the Accord.
Chapter XVI: Teaching and Learning. . .
The two made small talk on the way to Taylorıs apartment. The blonde caseworker
pursed her lips in surprise when she figured out that they were heading to the
"good" side of town. I guess those with the power really do get paid all the
big bucks.ı Right away the younger woman knew that she was entering a swanky establishment.
They had to pass through a security booth first, where the guard checked Taylorıs
license plate. The grounds were impeccably groomed. It looked as though each tree
was the same height, each blade of grass mowed to a certain length. It sort of
reminded her of that movie The Stepford Wives, where everything was based
on some utopianı ideal. Sick, sick movie. Though she seemed to be a controlled
person, Cory got the feeling that this was not the adminıs kind of place.
"Um, no offense, but this place looks like something from a coloring book. Itıs
way too perfect."
Taylor turned to the other woman as she parked the car. "Tell me about it. It
reminds me of some sort of military establishment. Itıs definitely not the kind
of place where I can go streaking after midnight. The board of directors found
this place, and I guess they thought it would be to my liking. Heh, were they
ever wrong. Iım scared to throw a piece of paper on the ground. Have you ever
seen that futuristic cartoon where the robot sweepers come out when even a spec
of dust is on the floor?" She waited for the nod. "I got a feeling that this place
has those but a whole lot bigger and meaner. Scary."
Cory giggled then smirked triumphantly. "I figured that this place wasnıt you."
They walked side by side heading up a small flight of stairs. "Know me that well
already do you?" Taylor couldnıt help but smile, knowing she had let the petite
woman in on things that werenıt privy to most.
The blonde found something interesting in a perfectly symmetrical bush in order
to hide the impending blush. "Uh, you could say that I sometimes have a feel about
people. Not always, but Iım usually right." Except for what I was thinking about
you at first.ı
She waited as the taller woman unlocked the front door only to follow her to another
door that led further into the complex. The blonde rolled her eyes at the puke
green carpeting. Well, at least some things donıt deviate.ı The place and the
neighborhood was vastly different than the run down bomb-zone like neighborhoods
that she frequented, but the carpeting, she almost chuckled, was frighteningly
the same. To top it all off, they got on the elevator that required yet another
damn key. The brunette pushed a button and Cory jumped when the elevator mechanically
replied, "Sixth floor. Thank you." She looked over at the other woman in the process
of rolling her eyes and answered the elevator sweetly, "Why thank you Geeves."
Taylor snorted ungracefully.
They finally made it to the apartment, and Cory followed her boss in eagerly.
The admin threw her keys on a table close by as the blonde glanced around. The
living room alone was huge. It had to be to house the rather large entertainment
center that contained what looked like an over thirty inch television, stereo
and DVD. "Oh my." She took in the rest of the area. The couch wrapped around,
making it look like it seated a small army. The rest of the furniture consisted
of comfy looking chairs, a bookcase, and expensive looking tables all following
a motif of black and gold. Paintings of artists that she didnıt recognized graced
a couple of the walls, and in a far off corner toward the back a fragile looking
dining room set found its home. The caseworker finally sat down on the couch and
almost moaned at the feel of it. Taylor took it all in with mirth shining in her
eyes. "I take it you like? Do you think itıs me?"
The blonde gave the other woman the once over then nodded. "Oh yeah, definitely."
Dark, sleek and powerful.ı
The tall woman smiled crookedly. "Mmm, glad you thank so. Um well, Iım going to
go hop in the shower, so feel free to roam around. Iıll give you the official
tour when I get out."
Cory waited until the woman disappeared behind the door before she jumped up and
headed to the bookcase. Can tell a lot about a person by what she reads.ı She
started as far up as she could see. Hmm, letıs see. Sociology, Psychology, Social
Work.ı She bit her bottom lip as she went on. Ah, here we go. Thereıs Toni Morrison,
Mary Higgins Clark, Cornwell, and Sandra Brown. Interesting. Well, she certainly
has a wide range of reading material.ı The blonde followed the bookcase down.
And, she obviously loves a good mystery.ı Having seen her fill, she turned to
glance at the intimidating looking entertainment center. Now, Iıll probably blow
something like that up if I got my hands on it.ı She veered away from it and headed
for a door she assumed led to the kitchen.
Taylor vigorously scrubbed her body, feeling the need to hurry. Eagerness to be
in the same room with the petite blonde made her giddy. She rinsed and turned
the shower off.
My God, I would want to cook in here too.ı The black tiled floors shined to a
sparkle, as did the counter tops of the same color. A food processor and an array
of other appliances sat on the counter, pushed back against the wall. She continued
to look around. Damn, I didnıt know that you could get a kitchen this clean.ı
The refrigerator was one of those huge ones with an ice and water dispenser. The
blonde felt the bite of curiosity and reached to pull on the handle.
"Something told me that you couldnıt sit still." Amusement dripped from the brunetteıs
"Yeow!" The caseworker jumped at least two feet in the air as her heart stopped.
"Dammit all to hell!" She turned to look at her smirking friend. There was no
way that she could hide the blush, and the enjoyment sparkling in blue eyes didnıt
help any. "Heh, I was, um, I was just. . .oh bloody hell, you know what I was
"Sorry, didnıt mean to scare you. Well, much." The dark haired woman grinned toothily.
"Har, har." She pretended to scowl, but a smirk formed instead in the face of
such a brilliant smile.
"Well, come on Iıll give you a quick tour so we can get out of here. Iıll start
with the back rooms since youıve seen everything else."
Cory followed behind her obediently. They came to the first door. "Now, thereıs
nothing much in here. Itıs my office, and thereıs only a computer, desk and stuff
scattered all over. Youıll have to look over the mess. That big empty, clean spot
over there is where the bench is going to go." The blonde caseworker poked her
head in, seeing papers covering the desk. Well, sheıs flawed like the rest of
They walked on. Taylor took in a deep breath. It had been a long time since a
woman had seen it, let alone been in her bedroom. It was sort of a strange feeling.
Coryıs eyes widened. The king-sized bed was covered in what looked like black
satin with a multitude of pillows both large and small adorning the head of the
bed. An antique chest and dresser made their home against the wall, and little
nightstands polished to a high shine stood on both sides of the bed. She could
picture the womanıs lanky form lounging, stretched out on the bed like a large
cat. She blinked to dispel the image.
Taylor watched the expressive face, wondering what the woman was thinking. "Um,
the bathroomıs in there, and one of the things I love about this place is the
walk in closet. Thereıs an extra bathroom next door that I hardly ever use, and---"
She was interrupted by the sound of the buzzer. Getting a quizzical look, she
clarified the sound, "Oh, thatıs the intercom. Security has to clear it with the
tenants to let anybody in, but Iım not expecting anyone. Iıll be right back."
Cory took one last glance at the room and followed. She came in on the end of
"Yeah, Mark, go ahead and send him up." She looked up as she heard the approaching
form. "Itıs the equipment. Theyıre early."
"Oh well, thatıs okay. Iıll just cancel with Barb if you donıt mind me working
out here? All itıll take is a quick phone call. Iım sure she has her cell with
"You sure? I donıt want to monopolize your day." Say yes.ı
"Itıs okay. Monopolize away, just let me use your phone."
"Sure go ahead." Yes!ı
A few minutes later, Taylor was looking down at bits and pieces of metal and rubber.
She glanced upward when the blonde returned and raised an eyebrow at the wary
look on the womanıs face.
"You know. Iıve never noticed how nosy Barb was until today. I felt like I was
going through a round of twenty questions."
"Really," she replied tentatively. The woman is astute enough to see right through
me sometimes. I wouldnıt be surprised if she saw something today.ı "I wouldnıt
worry about it." She waved the other woman over. "Cımere and look at this." She
smiled at the shocked look on the womanıs face. "They donıt bring them to you
"Fraid not. I think we should eat first then tackle this. What do you say?"
"Sounds good. Do I get to see whatıs in the fridge?" She asked excitedly.
Taylor chuckled. "You can look till you heartıs content, and you can put on some
music or something, if you want."
Cory glanced back at the ominous looking entertainment center. "I donıt know.
Iım not mechanical, and I donıt want to break anything."
"Oh, donıt worry about it. Itıs easy. Just pick out a CD from the stand, and push
this button here and here and put it in there," she pointed to a particular section
of the stereo. "Donıt worry about breaking anything. Iıll just take it out of
your check," she deadpanned. The brunette turned away, but her playfulness was
revealed by an almost indiscernible chuckle. She laughed out loud when the irate
caseworker smacked her on the back of the shoulder.
Taylor propped the door open as she entered the kitchen, while Cory kneeled in
front of the CD rack. We have Anita Baker. No, not feeling bluesy. It looks like
hereıs all the stuff that The Pretenders ever made. No, not in the mood. Tori
Amos, Luther Vandross, Janis Joplinıs Greatest hits. Eh, maybe laterı "Oh, yeah,"
she said out loud.
Taylor got out mushrooms, onions and peppers from the crisper. She sat them on
the cutting board and went to poke her head out the door, curious to see what
the other woman was up to. "What?"
Cory waved the CD. "Blondieıs Greatest Hits. I love them, and I hear Debbie Harry
was something back in the day." She almost failed in hiding the lecherous smirk.
Taylor raised a dark brow. Oh yeah, she was something alright.ı "Well, put it
on and get in here."
"Okay, okay, Iım coming." She followed the other womanıs instructions with the
stereo then made her way to the kitchen. She watched the knife fly as the brunette
chopped vegetables. "Look in there and tell me what else you want in your omelet."
Cory stood in front of the refrigerator refusing to move a muscle. "Cory?"
"Iım waiting for my drum roll,ı she said in an even voice.
Taylor felt the laughter bubble up and push its way out as her eyes rolled heaveanward.
"Oh good God. Lady, youıre something else."
The blonde turned, sticking out her tongue. "I know, and thatıs why you like me."
ıAmongst other things,ı the admin thought to herself.
The caseworker opened the fridge amidst dramatic oohıs and ahıs that caused blue
eyes to roll again. She hummed along with the music. "My god! This thing is full.
Give me a second to find something." She pushed through containers of yogurt and
cans of V-8, finding ham and cheese that she sat on the counter with a triumphant
slam. Closing the refrigerator, she leaned her body against the counter. "You
know. Your taste in music is as diversified as your taste in books."
Taylor gave the woman a small smile over her shoulder. "I know. It was a college
thing that stuck. It was the kind of music they played at parties. I wasnıt really
into music until then, so I guess you could say I was sort of a wallflower until
college. Being around all those people sort of brought me out, so to speak." She
started on the onion. "As far as the mystery novels go, I used to work as a clerk
overnight at a convenience store. They held my attention and kept me up. Some
of the authors were pretty good."
"Mmm, I used to be glued to those sappy romance novels until I found out that
I was reading the same book over and over again. They all have the same formula
and never deviate from it. I like Sandra Brown though her stuff is kind of mystery/romance,
and she doesnıt have wimpy women as characters."
"Ugh, Iıve never been able to get into those. They insulted my intelligence. Who
ever heard of a thirty year old virgin?" They both chuckled.
Taylor broke egg after egg into a mid-size bowl. She stirred and began to hum
along with The Tide is High. Cory watched the forearms, exposed by the
t-shirt, bunch and work with each turn of the spoon. She was yanked from her musings
when the older woman asked her to get the skillet from underneath the counter.
After doing so, green eyes scanned the kitchen once more, and she thought about
the expensive looking furniture in the other rooms. "Uh, I donıt mean to be blunt,"
she paused for a second, "well, sometimes I do, but do you get paid that much
to afford all of this stuff?"
"Um, well actually," she turned back toward the other woman. "Can you hand me
the butter? Itıs on the side door. Well, I, uh, inherited a lot of the furniture
from my parents after they died. They left me a lot of money too, but I was old
enough to see that I didnıt need the strings that came with it. So, I kept what
I needed to go to college and maintain a nest egg. The rest went to charity."
"Oh, Iım sorry about your parents." Green eyes darkened with sympathy.
Taylor smiled in thanks. "Itıs okay. It was a long time ago." The dark head hung
and ebony tresses hid her face.
Cory took a step forward and pushed the strands away to reveal a haunted look
in the blue eyes. "No, itıs not okay. I think I hit a nerve. Do you want to talk
Taylor turned away hiding her face again. "Uh, itıs kind of hard. I havenıthavenıt
talked about it in a long time." She paused for a few minutes, making the other
woman think that she had pushed too far, but she was surprise when the deep, husky
voice began to wind its way around the story.
"I was eighteen, and. . ."
Long minutes later, Cory had bunched the womanıs t-shirt in her fingers. Distant
blue looked down, waiting to see the pity shining in familiar green. Instead,
she saw them dark, watery with unshed tears. "Oh God, Taylor. I canıt even begin
to imagine, and you were all alone. I donıt know if I would have made it through.
Do you know what that says about you?"
There was a small shake of the brunetteıs head.
"Do you even realize how strong you are? What kind of courage that takes to get
through? Youıre an extraordinary woman, and I donıt even think thatıs the tip
of the iceberg."
Baby blue warmed at the words. "Thanks" Her voice came out as a croak. "Um, thanks.
I donıt think anyone has ever told me that before. It sort of means a lot coming
from a friend."
A small hand let go of the wrinkled arm of the t-shirt and moved down to take
a larger palm in her hand. She squeezed affectionately. "Good because I think
that Iım going to be saying it a lot."
Blue and green gazes held. They stood, studying each other. Electricity arced
between them, almost taking the blondeıs breath away. She looked deep into luminescent
blue and saw what lay there, a wounded soul, a soul that looked more than a little
lost at the moment. It wasnıt the right time. If there was ever going to be one,
this wasnıt the right one to acknowledge the pull between them. If it happened,
Cory got the feeling that she would know when, but right now, she had figured
out what they both needed.
Taylor took in a deep breath. She felt naked. The woman looked at her like she
could see right through. A sliver of fear made it up her spine to mingle with
the electric tendrils. She almost jerked back when the blondeıs other hand caressed
the side of her face. Part of her wanted to run and part of her wanted to lean
into the touch. Instead, she just did nothing. The sense of loss was profound
when the womanıs hands fell away, but they was replaced by a flash of heat and
a sense of belonging, when small arms wrapped around her body. She bit back the
sob and embraced the smaller woman, pulling her in.
One large hand took purchase at the nape of the womanıs neck, caressing downy
hair. While the other, rubbed the expanse of her back. The younger womanıs arms
tightened around her friend, but instead of taking air away, Taylor received a
little peace. Cory held on for dear life, feeling the taller body sagging into
her. They both needed an outlet for overworked feelings. She thanked God that
she had picked the right one.
The embrace lasted for a few more minutes before the blonde broke it. She tried
to peer into blue that wouldnıt meet her face. "Hey, itıs okay. Donıt close me
Azure finally looked upon her friendıs face. "Iım sorry. Iım just not used to
"Believe it or not, neither am I. I guess weıll both find our way, huh?"
Taylor ran a shaky hand through her bangs. It was stopped mid-way by a deep growling
sound. Blue eyes widened. Cory looked down at her stomach sheepishly. "Uh, I think
it wants food."
The admin chuckled despite herself. "It sounds angry."
"No, itıs just letting me know that the countdown has begun. Uhm, why donıt you
go set the table while I finish up in here?"
Taylor looked at her suspiciously. "Can you cook?"
"Am I a Hoosier born and bred? Hell yeah, I can cook! Now, go set the table."
Sitting and eating, the two women were sometimes full of laughter and sometimes
somber in their lessons about each other. The talking went on for hours, and the
unassembled bench was left sitting in parts in the living room. Time flew and
reluctantly, Cory glanced toward the clock. The brunette noticed. "You gotta go,
"Unfortunately, yeah I do. Thereıs things I need to get to at home to keep at
least some of my weekend routine working."
Taylor looked away, trying to hide her disappointment. "Well, okay. Let me get
this mess cleaned up."
Cory grabbed the womanıs hand as she reached for her plate. "I had a good time,
and believe me if I thought I could get away with it, I would stay longer. But,
I donıt want to be up all night finishing laundry and stuff."
"I understand, but we need to do this again." Blue bore into green.
"Yes, we do." Cory replied softly.
Finally finished with the little things around the apartment, Cory huddled under
the covers, staring up at the dark ceiling. This day had been eventful to say
the least. She had found out and revealed so much. There was nothing like being
outed to keep the day from getting too dry. She smirked. Then her look turned
serious. It was certainly a day of discovery. In a few short hours, she had found
that a woman, a friend, she thought overflowed with esteem and confidence was
just as vulnerable, maybe even more so, than the next woman with her own fears
She was brought back to the outside world with the ringing of the phone and frowned
in concern, knowing phone calls this late were usually not good news. She picked
it up anyway.
"Hey, I didnıt wake you did I?"
The blonde felt her toes curl at the sound of the familiar voice. "Taylor, no
you didnıt. I was just laying here. Are you okay?" She said urgently.
The admin pulled the silky covers up to her chin, and smiled, admitting that she
loved the sound of concern in the womanıs voice. "Yeah, Iım fine, in the bed myself.
I actually called to make sure you were okay. Is JR back yet?"
"No, heıs not, but itıs just a little after ten. He should be in after while because
heıs leaving early in the morning."
"Um, so youıre alone. Are you okay with that?" Ask me to come over.ı
Cory swallowed remembering the safe feeling of sleeping in the other womanıs arms.
"Yeah, Iıll be okay. Uh, listen. Iım gonna be a little late in the morning because
I need to call and make that appointment."
"Donıt worry about it. Take all the time you need." She liked this talking on
the phone. She had never been one to really do that, but it seemed so free and
easy with her.
"Thanks. It means a lot that you called."
"Just wanted to make sure that you were okay." Get off the phone before you say
something mushy.ı "Listen, feel free to call me anytime during the night if you
ıSheıs so damned sweet.ı "Donıt worry, I will, but you have to promise to do the
A throaty chuckle caused the younger womanıs toes to curl again. "No problem.
Iıll let you go so that you can get some sleep."
"Kay, Iıll see you tomorrow. Bye."
"Bye yourself." Taylor held the phone until she heard a click. Hanging it up,
she pondered her own possible need to see someone like Dr. Zawid. With all the
voices in her head, she was sure that she was getting schizophrenic. Damn that
Little Shelly anyway. I did good today without her interference.ı Yawning, the
sleepy woman flopped over on her stomach.
Cory stretched, letting loose a sound dangerously close to a purr. Muttering to
herself, she fluffed the pillow. I hope this Dr. Zawid is good with multiple
problem solving because I think I now have more than one. Her eyes flittered closed
on a sigh. There was no way tomorrow could top today.
Copyrighted İ Minerva 2000
Well folks, I hope you enjoyed my day in the life installment
of Perspectives. I wanted to concentrate on them getting to know each other
a little. Let me know what you think. Drop me a line at Minerva.
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