Chapter 56

Michelle hiked Toby up on her jean covered hip and reached for the keys that lay on the glass table. Taz stood nearby, fidgeting and whimpering at her impending departure. The blonde smiled at the sound. "I know. Got used to having me around again, huh?" She deposited the keys in her jean pocket.


"Yeah, but I need to do this. It's who I am now. I can't just sit around anymore and wait for life to happen, especially now since we've caught a break. That was the old me." She paused and glanced down at her son, who cooed and gave her a gummy smile before reaching for a shoulder length blonde tress that had fallen forward. "Now, I'm somebody we can all be proud of," Michelle whispered. She licked the tip of her thumb and wiped away a dark smudge on the toddler's chin. "Besides, I miss being around all those books, and let's not forget Annie."

Taz bumped the blonde's leg, and let out something between a whimper and bark.

"Mmm, I like her too." Michelle looked at the Husky. "I do hate to leave you alone all day though. Maybe we need to really see about that doggie door or . . ." She clenched her hand into a fist as an idea formed. ". . .Kevin and Cam can take you and keep you entertained while no one's home."

"Wuff! Wuff!" Taz pranced around his mistress.

Michelle snickered, "Like that idea do you? Let's just hope they aren't the kind of kids to put firecrackers in your ears. Well, it's probably too late today, but I'll take care of it when I get home. How does that sound?"

The Husky whimpered.

"Patience," the blonde admonished. "You won't be alone all day. I'm sure Bobbi will be in around lunch time. Either way, I have to go. It's my first day back, and I don't care if it's a volunteer position or not. I'm not going to be late." Who knows? Maybe it's the right time to ask for a job. Michelle scratched behind the dogs ears and headed toward the door. Grabbing the diaper bag that she left near the entrance some time before, she draped it over her shoulder and pulled the door open, letting in the sunshine.

Green eyes adjusted to the glare that seemed to illuminate all of outdoors. Michelle opened up the heavy screen door and peered outside. The skies were a flawless blue that seemed to go on forever. It made the green that surrounded her seem deeper. Grass and bushes dotted the neighboring lawns in symmetrical perfection. With quite a few children already outside laughing and frolicking, the neighborhood depicted the perfect picture of contentment. Michelle breathed it in, letting it soak in deep.

"Gaaa!" Toby exclaimed.

Michelle chuckled. "Yeah, I got the feeling that it's going to be a great day." She pulled the door shut behind her and stepped out onto the small porch. The petite blonde scanned her surroundings once more before turning to lock the door. Something caught her eye. White envelopes stuck out of the mailbox. She smirked. Guess we were too occupied yesterday to come and check the mail. A pleasant shudder went through her body, and heat flooded her face. Not that I'm complaining.

She leafed through the mail seperating bills from junk. Her eyes widened as a thick white envelope came in to view. Michelle's breath stopped in her chest, and her hands started to shake. "Oh, my God!" She husked. Having only one hand free, she brought the envelope to her mouth to rip open, letting the other mail fall forgotten to the ground. The blonde shook out the contents and read them quickly.

She screamed and pushed her way back into the house. I can't believe this! Oh my God! I can't believe this. Her insides quivered in some unnamed emotion as she tried to register what was happening. Toby looked up at his mother unsure whether to cry or laugh at her antics. Instead, he just clung to her.

Looking through the now open door, Taz gazed at his mistress in confusion. He could not tell if she was elated or simply sad.

Michelle slammed the door closed and glanced at the Husky. "Let's go," she murmured hoarsely. She stuffed the papers in the diaper bag, and without pause, they headed straight for the kitchen. She marched briskly down the hall aware of her sweating palms and erratic heartbeat. "Have to tell, Bobbi." She stopped in front of the doctor's office door. It was already cracked so she pushed it open even more. Disappointment crushed her to see that it was empty. Michelle took a deep breath and listened. Her ears perked at the distant sound of her lover's voice. She's in with a patient. I should have guessed. Michelle sighed and peered down the hall toward the waiting area to see the receptionist's desk occupied for the moment, but faster than she could blink her eyes, Janine stood up.

"Hey!" The blonde yelled as she practically ran down the hall.

Surprised, Janine spun around. Brown eyes widened when she realized who it was. Well, as I live and breathe. The nurse cleared her throat and shifted from foot to foot nervously. "Um, what can I do for you, Michelle?"

The petite woman stopped in her tracks, and the Husky sat down obediently at her side. Taz stared at the nurse curiously and waited for a cue from his mistress. "I'm, uh, looking for Bobbi, but how are you?" Her smile was warbly at best, and she resisted the urge to bounce on the balls of her feet. Michelle tried vehemently to clamp down on the emotions threatening to bubble over. She mentally rolled her eyes. This is ridiculous. It feels like I'm about to burst!

Janine blinked then blinked again as she took in the blonde's flushed face. "I'm doin' really well, but are you okay?" It looks like she's dyin' to tell somebody somethin'.

"Huh?" Totally caught up in her own thoughts, Michelle almost missed the question. "Oh! Yeah, I'm fine. B's in with a patient?"

"Yeahhh." The nurse drew the word out not believing the other woman for a minute. "I was about to go back in and assist. I'll tell her you're here if you wanna wait in her office?"

"Oh, sure." Michelle turned as they all headed back down the hall. Abruptly, the blonde stopped and looked over her shoulder, meeting the brunette's confused gaze. Janine looks different. Maybe things are turning around for her. "I'm really glad things are working out for you. It looks good on you." Michelle gave the nurse a dazzling smile as she ducked into the office.

Janine stopped mid stride and blinked again. Before she knew it, the nurse found herself smiling as well. It does? She chuckled inwardly. It looks good on her too.


Bobbi carefully felt under the woman's neck for swollen glands. She watched her patient's well-lined face for any sign of a wince, but she did not have to. "Ah," she muttered as her fingertips swiped over a protruding gland. "Well, one of them is swollen. Let's have a look at those tonsils. She took out a tongue depressor. "You know the routine," she muttered with a soft smile gracing her features.

"Ahhhhh." It was barely a whisper.

The raven haired doctor pulled a pen light out of her lab coat pocket and shined it down the older woman's throat. "Mmm, I'd definitely say you're infected, Ida. I'm gonna do a quick test for strep while you're here too. Either way, you keep resting that voice. I'm going to give you some antibotics, and you should be fine in a few days."

Ida nodded and closed her mouth. She shivered and pulled the sheet that had been graciously provided around her for extra warmth. Forever cognizant of her appearance, the woman glanced at the doctor, and upon seeing her attention elsewhere, Ida adjusted the blonde wig, and reached for the compact that was conviently tucked away in her purse.

The door opened suddenly, causing Ida to snatch her hands away. Janine smiled at the patient then walked toward the doctor. The grin that covered her face refused to go away. "Um, you have a little somethin' in your office waitin' for you." Brown eyes twinkled mischievously. "It's about ye high." Her hand lowered to Michelle's height. "Actually, it's three somethin's."

Bobbi could not help the flush that rushed to her face nor could she stop the crooked grin from forming. "Is that so?" Do I miss her already? I just saw her a couple hours ago.

"Uh huh." Janine continued to smile. Whoa, those are the most words we've said to each other all week that didn't have to do with patients, and they came out nice and easy. It's a start anyway, and I do miss talkin' to her. We have a lot in common.

Bobbi cocked an eyebrow as she observed the smile that seemed to be permantely attached to the nurse's face. It's almost like she's teasing me. It's refreshing not to have that tension between us. It's a good start I hope. "Charmed you did she?"

The nurse chuckled. "How'd you guess?"

"She seems to do that to everybody. Something about that smile and the twinkle in her eyes."

"And the fact that she has you wrapped around her finger has nothin' to do with it?" Janine asked jokingly.

Bobbi let out a bark of laughter and turned back to her patient, who just happened to be looking at them strangely. The doctor cleared her throat and tried to fight the blush that already had her in its grasp.. "Um. . . yes . . .well." She scratched the back of her neck. "Uh, Jan why don't you get a sample and test for strep, and I'll go attend to the surprises in my office."

"Yeah, you do that. I'll take care of Mrs. Pilsner." The nurse added with a smirk firmly in place. Then, I'll call Tammy and see if she's free for lunch.

Ida peered at the nurse studiously, going over each stunning feature. "I coulda looked like you when I was younger," she rasped. Her voice sounded like sandpaper on granite.

"Mmm," Janine muttered as she turned her back to the older woman to get out the appropriate tools.

"I could have. Wanna see a picture?"

"Shhh, Ida. You need to save that voice."


"Shhh," Janine brought a finger up to her lips as she approached the woman. She stopped midway and canted her head to the side. "Um, Mrs. Pilsner? You might wanna. . ." the nurse pointed at her head. "And I don't know what you're talkin' 'bout. You're still a looker."

Ida Pilsner gave the young nurse a smile that threatened to split through the caked on makeup. "You're a good girl," she murmured huskily as she opened her mouth.


Michelle blew out an impatient breath as she spread a blanket out on the floor of the doctor's office. Toby sat down obediently and shook his keys with vigor. Taz surrounded the infant with his body as best he could and whimpered at a particularly hard yank of his fur.

The blonde smiled at him apologetically as she began pacing back and forth in front of them. Two sets of eyes watched her as the petite woman muttered and fanned the single sheet of paper in her hand. God, Bobbi where are you? I'm bursting here.

As if she had conjured up the devil, the office door opened to admit the raven haired doctor. Green and blue met. A dark brow rose high into dark bangs. Well, she definitely anxious about something. "Chelle? You okay?" She glanced around the room. Toby gave her a gummy grin and went back to his keys and his torture of the Husky. Taz looked on miserably, but Bobbi didn't have time to process it all as the blonde's voice raised enthusiastically.

"No! Now close the door and get in here!" Michelle uttered excitedly as her hands gesticulated wildly. She practically bounced on the balls of her feet.

The other brow went up as Bobbi did as she was told. "Oookay. You've got me curious as hell. What has you bubbling over?"

Michelle practically skipped toward her lover and shoved the paper into her hands. "Read it!" She squealed. The blonde brought her hands to her heated face and watched as the brunette skimmed the letter.

Bobbi gasped and glanced upward quickly. Their eyes met, and screams filled the office. Michelle threw herself into her lover's arms as they danced around like children. "Can you stand it?! I got in! I got in!"

A sudden knock at the door startled them both. "Yes?!" They called out simultaneously.

Janine poked her head inside. Full lips twitched as she observed the situation. The petite blonde had her slight form tangled around the doctor in an array of arms and legs. The twitch turned into a smirk. "Um, you two might wanna keep it down. The people in the waiting area are startin' to look at me funny."

Ice blue eyes narrowed, but the frozen look was thawed by a mischevious smile. "Isn't that why I pay you? Too keep the natives from getting restless?"

Janine chuckled. "Oh, you pay me, but it's not enough to do all that." The nurse looked from the brunette to the blonde whose features were flushed with excitement and embarassment. Her smile widened, and her eyes twinkled knowingly. "It's always the quiet ones with the most fire." She nodded her head briskly in Michelle's direction and ducked out the door.

Michelle watched her go. I did do the right thing in talking to her. She continued to stare at the now closed door but became acutely aware of questioning azure eyes waiting to snare her attention. She glanced downward to meet them. "What?" Michelle smiled enigmatically.

Bobbi peered at her lover a little while longer. I swear there is something between those two. Nah! A grin turned her lips upward. "Nothing. So, how does it feel to be a college girl?"

Michelle closed her eyes slightly as if she were taking mental inventory. Pride and happiness bubbled forth. "It feels. . . amazing. It's like everything is clicking into place after all these years. I have family, friends, and now this. It's all I ever wanted." She looked into smiling blue eyes.

"You deserve it, Chelle. We both do, and it's about time too. Life has been crappy long enough," Bobbi whispered.

"You may be right about that one," Michelle reached up toward a strand of midnight that had escaped during their jubilation. She pushed it behind the doctor's ear and brushed the chisled chin with her lips. "Spring seems far away, but it really isn't."

Bobbi's skin tingled where warm lips touched it. "Mmm, yeah it'll be here before you know it. I love that you got this opportunity, but to be honest I'm gonna miss having you around. I mean, it was weird when you started working at the library, but this is different. We had so many rituals that I looked forward to that we don't get to indulge in anymore." Ugh, do I sound like a petulant child or what? This is selfish, B! Take it all back. Bobbi shook her head vehemently. "No, forget I said anything. I think it all came out wrong anyway."

"Shh," Michelle captured her lover's face in her hands. She smiled slightly at the softness that greeted her. "No, it came out right. I miss sitting and watching Facts of Life and The Golden Girls with you. I miss Billy too." She murmured and blushed. "But I like what we do in the mornings now better." She bit her lip and smiled sweetly.

Bobbi chuckled knowingly as she pulled the blonde into her body. Michelle shivered at the deep, husky sound. "We just have to make new rituals," she finished breathlessly.

"Mmm, I hear ya," Bobbi's gaze fell from jade eyes to red lips. She watched avidly as the blonde's pink tongue protruded and moistened the corresponding flesh. A slow rolling heat lit her from within. She tried to suck in a breath only to find that there wasn't any air to breathe.

Michelle swallowed as overwhelming awareness sparked between them. Her stomach clenched almost painfully as desire pooled there. I'll be three sheets to the wind for the rest of the day if she kisses me now. "Um, don't you have patients?"

Bobbi smiled slyly. Subterfuge. She recognized it and decided to wade through it. "They can wait." Light blue eyes darkened to a rich dangerous cobalt. With a single finger, she traced from the tip of her lover's nose to the outline of full, moist lips. "Do you know how beautiful you are? How proud I am of you?"

Mesmirized, Michelle could only nod in acknowledgment.

"How much I love you?" The doctor's head descended slowly and stopped when they were a hair's breath apart. She heard an anxious whimper and felt hands at her back ball up the soft cotton combination of the white labcoat and powder blue tee to score flesh. The tail of her shirt hung loosely out of tan khakis as curious fingertips explored the dip in the brunette's back.

Arousal teemed through Michelle's body, and they had barely touched. She fought valiantly to keep her hips from rolling against convenient thighs. She tried to move forward and close the distance between them, but Bobbi moved her head away quickly. Michelle groaned in protest. "Bobbi," she whispered almost begging for the crushingly hot kiss that was sure to come. I have to have this. I'll just have to be those three sheets for the rest of the day.

Slowly, Bobbi filled the final distance between them. The brush of her lips was whisper soft. Michelle groaned in surprise and pleasure. She brought one hand up to the doctor's face to pillow against her cheek, needing the extra contact. Moist lips brushed, lifted and clung whenever possible. The kisses were caresses of gentle reverence. The pleasure became secondary to the emotion behind it---a font of joy and love that seemed infinite--filling them the point of overflow. Michelle cried out hoarsely as she opened to accept it all. Her breath left her, leaving a throbbing heartbeat that roared in her ears. It was the sweetest sound. Then, she felt it. Another heartbeat that was as loud and powerful as her own. She covered it with her hand, feeling one with it and the woman who owned it.

Finally, tingling lips parted. Bobbi did not dare open her eyes. She didn't want the floating feeling to end. Every time we touch I go higher. How is that possible? "Whoa," she uttered huskily.

Michelle licked her swollen, throbbing lips, tasting the doctor there. "Yeah, wha. . .what was that?" She rubbed her hand over the brunette's still pulsating heart.

Azure eyes opened as their owner settled down to earth. "I don't know, but it was something wonderful." Bobbi leaned her head forward until their foreheads touched. "We connected somehow deeper than we have before. I could feel it."

Michelle nodded gently. "Like something else clicked into place." She sighed as her lover pulled her impossibly closer.

"Scared?" The doctor asked, wondering at her own lack of fear.

"Not in the least," Michelle answered confidently. Every day I get in a little deeper. I want to be in it up to my eyeballs.

Bobbi blew out a relieved breath. "That makes two of us."

They wallowed in the moment a little longer.

Bobbi looked down at the woman in her arms and raised an elegant eyebrow. "You do realize we have to celebrate this? It's not every day the woman I love gets accepted to college."

Michelle chuckled. "What do you have in mind?"

"Hmm, maybe an early dinner and a matinee? I was gonna close shop early today anyway."

Green eyes widened. "The movies!? We never did get the chance to go did we? That sounds great!"

The doctor smiled. "Consider it a date then. I know this is another first for you, so I'll try to make it memorable." Blue eyes glittered.

Jade eyes narrowed. "What are you up to?"

Bobbi cackled. "Nothing. Not a thing."

"Uh huh. Well, I guess I'll see you when I get back from the library." Michelle tried to step out of the circle of the brunette's arms only to be held there.

"Ah, ah, ah. Gotta give you a goodbye kiss. I know you're anxious to talk to Annie, but give me a few more minutes." Dark brows wiggled suggestively.

Michelle could not help herself. She grinned. "You're bad."

"Yes, and?"

The blonde snickered. "Bobb--" Her words dissolved into a hungry moan as the doctor's lips claimed hers. It was the kiss she had expected before, and the power from it swallowed her whole. Michelle's insides melted as the inferno like heat blasted them. She whimpered and wound her hands roughly into dark tresses.


Michelle found herself staring into space as she removed the key from the ignition. She brought her other hand up to her lips and pressed her fingers there. I can still feel . . . She shivered. "Ugh, I got to get hold of myself. I knew this was going to happen." Michelle shook her head and smiled as she gathered the diaper bag before opening the driver's side door. She stepped out and reached for the back door. Toby squirmed eagerly, anxious to be released from his confines.

The blonde clucked her tongue as she retied the white bib that had somehow come loose over the white and navy blue striped t-shirt. "You're just as messy as your other mom. Let's not pick up any bad habits from her. Her room is a mess."

Toby giggled as if he understood every word. Michelle reached for the buckles still engaged on the car seat. With a sudden intake of breath, realization hit. "She is isn't she? Just like your mom?"


Michelle chuckled as her heart thudded in giddy acknowledgment. "Well, your mom is gonna drive me crazy, My only hope is that you find a woman that does the same to you someday." The petite woman paused as she finished unbuckling the belts. "Or man." She bypassed the hands that reached out for her and scooped up her son. "Little man, I can't even think straight right now. I just got into college, and all I can think about is her touching me. How's that for messed up priorities?" Toby wrapped his chubby arms around his mother's neck. "Annie's gonna take one look at me and tease me mercilessly." Michelle sighed and locked the jeep doors before heading toward the main building.

She stopped halfway as a smile spread slowly over her features. A loud laugh escaped her lips. "Who am I kidding? I love it! I love it all!" A hard tug on shoulder length tresses got her immediate attention. Toby cooed at her gently. She glanced the area to find several sets of curious eyes on her. Michelle grinned at them all, hoping that they could get swooped up in her happiness.

Michelle pushed open the door to the library. She grinned and shook her head as she recalled the first time she'd entered through those same doors. It seemed ages ago, a lifetime ago, and so much had changed. As she made her way further into the library, a familiar voice rang out from the vicinity of the front desk.

"Well, look at what the sun revealed!" Clad in bright orange calypso pants and matching shirt, Annie rushed over to embrace her friend. Michelle chuckled as she returned the hug. "I didn't expect you to be back so soon. I know you said the coast was clear for now, but I just didn't. . .you don't let any moss grow under your feet do you?"

"Noo, I've learned that it's better not to."

"Hmm, good lesson," the clerk muttered as she tweaked the infant's nose teasingly. Annie straightened, causing the customary trinkets that adorned her body to clang, and studied the younger blonde with astute eyes. "It seems. . .that every time I see you something momentous has happened. I'm glad this time that it is something joyful."

Michelle laughed. "God! How do you do that? It's almost eerie. Am I that transparent?"

The clerk sighed and smirked. "No, no. I'm just that good."

The younger woman could feel her eyes rolling before she could even think to stop it. "Uhm, then tell me what the momentous occasion is?" She quirked an eyebrow.

Annie chuckled. She turned away momentarily. With a brisk hand signal and nod to the other clerk behind the desk, the blonde woman headed toward the seated area. Without a word, Michelle followed.

Before she could sit down, Annie reached for the infant, who went into her arms gladly. Michelle sat the diaper bag on the table and watched the display with warmth shining in her eyes. Toby settled into the clerk's lap without so much as a peep of protest.

The blondes' eyes met, and Annie's smile was big enough to crinkle the skin around her eyes and mouth. "Every day you're deeper in love with her," she murmured softly.

Denial never graced her thoughts. "Yeah," She blushed hotly. "Loving her is the simplest thing in my life. She's my best friend. . .my everything." She paused, trying to gather her thoughts. "I should be scared that I'm giving so much, but I'm not because I getting even more in return. My life changed for the better that night of the blizzard. Bobbi rescued me in more ways than one."

"Ah, your white knight, huh? I sensed that vibe around her."

Michelle grinned. "Of sorts, but I think. . . no I know that I rescued her right back."

"When you get down to it, it sounds like fairytale stuff," the clerk added wistfully. "A fairytale we all want."

The younger woman snorted gracelessly. "No, my life has never been like a story book. It's all been so incredibly real. There's only been a drastic change in reality, and there's something else."

"Mmm, somehow I knew that." Annie uttered as she adjusted the infant in her lap.

"I got in."

The clerk's blond brow rose. "Got in?" Slowly, realization dawned. "Oh. . .ohhhh! You mean school!?" Her voice heightened with excitement. Annie clasped a hand over her mouth and looked at her friend sheepishly. "That's great news!" She whispered and reached out to grab her friend's hand.

Michelle clutched at the appendage and practically bounced in her chair. "I know. I can hardly wait. Bobbi was just as enthused as I was."

Annie nodded. "Well, that's a given. I'm surprised you two aren't off celebrating."

"Oh, we will later. She had patients, and I had decided before hand to come here."

"If I'm not being too nosey. . .well, if I am I'm gonna ask anyway, what do you two have planned?"

Again, Michelle found herself bouncing. "An early dinner and a movie. I know this is going to sound weird, but I've never been to one before. So, I'm really looking forward to it. If our first date was any indicator, I'm going to remember this one for a long time."

"You're getting everything you deserve. You know that right?" The clerk inquired.

"Bobbi pretty much said the same thing."

"So how are you two going to do the romantic thing with the little one along?"

Michelle shrugged. "Didn't stop anything the last time. I wasn't really thinking about it."

Annie shrugged back. "Well, I have a solution to that. Let me take him. I get off early today anyway, around two-ish. Leave him with me. You can call when you get back. I'll bring him right over."

Michelle blinked at the suggestion, expecting to feel apprehension. It did not come. I trust her just as much as I do Bobbi. "You'd do that?"

The clerk watched the younger woman closely. "I don't think that's the question. The question is would you let me?"

Without the slightest bit of hesitation, Michelle muttered, "Yes, I-I would really appreciate that. Good thing he has enough stuff in that diaper bag to last all day." She shook her head in shock. "Whoa, who would have thought I would ever get to this point? I was just reminiscing when I came through the doors. I was so scared. No, I was beyond that. I was terrified."

Annie smiled. "I know I didn't get to see you a lot, but it was like watching the daughter I never had grow up. Every time I saw you there was this huge change that seemed to push you forward even more. I must say that watching you has made me start to believe in a lot of things again. Love and hope are powerful things." A far off look crossed her face.

"Yeah, they are. I can attest to that." Pushed the fear right out of my life. They sat in silence for a few comfortable minutes before Michelle broke into it. She glanced at the clerk. She looks like she's very far away. "Where were you?"

"Huh?" Annie blinked. "Oh, I was just thinking that maybe it's time to give it another go with my family. People change. You've shown me that. It can't hurt to try. You've opened me up to more than you know, Michelle. Maybe it's not too late to start believing in that fairytale again. There's something about you that touches peoples' lives."

Michelle swallowed and met the other woman's eyes. They sparkled with warmth and sincerity. "I never really thought about it that way. I hope it works out. Everybody deserves happiness in one form or another. That's a lesson I've learned too." They shared a few moments filled with quiet smiles. Toby pierced it with a particulary loud coo that caused them both to chuckle.

"It's good to be back here. I knew I would miss this place. A lot of things opened up for me here." She glanced toward the stacks, remembering how she had first reveled in the knowledge at her fingertips. "I miss reading to the kids. Do you think anyone will show up today?" Michelle asked.

Annie's espression turned sheepish again. "I don't think you'll have any problem with that. I've been reading to them while you were away. I know how much this position meant to you, and I didn't want you to lose it to another volunteer."

Michelle turned her palm up into the hand that still held hers and squeezed. "I don't know how to thank you." It's such a change to have people being good to me. I think deep down I knew all along despite the cruelty I've seen.

"You already have kiddo."

Michelle's smile was huge enough to cover her whole face. Maybe now would be a good time to ask about the job situation. Better now than never. She bit her lip. "Uhm, I was doing some thinking this morning, and I think it's about time I take things a step forward. I wanted to ask you about the possibility of a job." The young blonde watched as surprise skittered across her friend's features, but before she could open her mouth, Michelle began to babble. "It doesn't have to be much, and I don't really need a lot of money. I can learn to do just about anything. . ."

Annie held up a hand to stop her companion. "Whoa! Slow down." She paused and her voice softened. "Are you looking for something full or part time."

Michelle almost squealed in delight until the clerk shot her a look. She cleared her throat and muttered, "Um, part time I think."

"Hmm, what a little miracle. It just so happens that we're taking applications for library assisatant. You'd just reshelve books mostly and monitor the floor for patrons who need help. I imagine it would be a great starting out job for you."

Green eyes widened in joy. "Can I have an application?" Her voice was husky with excitement.

"Most certainly." Annie canted her head to the side. "Your propensity for momentous occasions and changes seems to be growing today. Don't you think?"

The young blonde laughed outright. "You have no idea."


Bobbi pushed herself away from the desk and swiveled around in her chair. The thick ponytail on top of her head flew from side to side as she lifted her legs to gain maximum speed. In the midst of it all, the brunette chuckled. After one more twirl, she stilled herself, but a small satisfied smirk formed on her face as she pushed the chair back under her desk. If anybody looked in here right now, they'd think I've lost my mind. In a way, maybe I have--the best way possible. She sucked in a deep breath. "I wish mom and Stevie were here to see it all." Bobbi reached for the picture on her desk. I guess in a way you guys do see. So this is what it's like to feel complete? The doctor marveled at the fire and abject joy that seemed to consume her from the inside out. "Ah, Chelle, I don't think it can get any better than this." We have it all at our fingertips, and no one can take it away without a bloody fight.

A knock at her office door, wrenched Bobbi from her thoughts. She smiled slightly as Janine poked her head in. "The coast is clear," she murmured with amusement.

A dark brow rose as a snicker escaped the nurse's lips. "In that case, do you mind if I come in for a minute?"

"Not at all. What's up?" Please don't let earlier be some kind of fluke.

Janine meandered further into the office. Gotta take the bull by the horns here. I want this to work. "You realize we have spoken more words to each other in the past few hours than we have in over a week?"

Bobbi nodded her head in concession. "Yeah, I did notice that. I figured it would happen or it wouldn't. There was no forcing it."

"True. Um, so you want to try this friendship thing again?" Janine held up her hands in supplication, but a smile graced her features. "I've had practice since the first time. I think I've got the hang of it so far."

The doctor quirked a brow. "Oh really?"

"Yeah. Let's just say thank God for Jiffy Marts. I've learned a lot of things over the past few weeks about myself and about people in general."

"Those are the hardest lessons to learn aren't they? Michelle taught me well."

Well, she started my education with a bang. "She's quiete the woman."

Bobbi leaned forward, wanting badly to give this woman the benefit of the doubt. "I'm curious. How would you know that?" Her look turned serious.

Janine swallowed. Tread lightly here, Jan. I've turned over a new leaf. I don't want to crumble it all up just like that. "We've talked on occasion. Not that much." Her expression became thoughtful. "She looks too young to be so insightful."

The doctor let out a relieved breath. Of course they've talked. Janine works in my office for goodness sakes. Calm down, B. "She's been through a lot and learned from it."

"I sensed as much. Can I be honest with you?"

Bobbi nodded. "Yes, please do. There's no other way to start a friendship."

"Um, you knew how I felt about you. . ." Janine started and paused.

"Yeah, I did." Bobbi shifted in her chair, recalling every single uncomfortable moment with the nurse.

". . . I'm over that. I would like it to be all water under the bridge." I don't think I could ever tell her the things I did, but it's good that they're settled between me and Michelle. She gave the doctor a hopeful look.

"I'm gonna be honest here too, Janine. I didn't trust you, and I don't completely now. But, I'm willing to try because that's who I am now. I do see the difference in you though. Nothing about you is forced anymore. It was like you were acting before."

Janine snorted. "You're not too far off there." She gave the doctor a self-depreciating smile. "I don't want to keep you, but just let me say thank you for givin' me a chance."

"Mmm, you're welcome. I hope it works out for both our sakes." Bobbi's serious expression turned into a small smile. "What's the hurry? Hot date?" Attempting to bring back the banter that was present earlier.

The nurse laughed. "No, no just lunch. Maybe someday it'll be a hot date."

"Well, why don't you take the rest of the day--extend that lunch? I was gonna get out of here early anyway. I, on the other hand, do have a hot date."

Janine smiled. "Thanks, doc. You're not too bad."

Bobbi chuckled as the other brunette walked out the door. "Neither are you."


Michelle followed the hostess as they weaved through the small sea of tables. Aware of the doctor trailing behind her, she ignored the curious stares from the other patrons. The petite blonde scanned her surroundings, taking in the small restaurant. The tables were few and far between, covered with a red checkered cloth and adorned with candles and an array of sweet smelling, multi-colored flowers. The smell of spices and cooking food assaulted her senses, and the soft sounds of violins and other string instruments wafted through hidden speakers. Even the dim lighting, aided by the tinted windows, screamed intimacy. All the while, a amused smirk lit her features. It expanded at the slight mumble she could here coming from Bobbi's vicinity.

They were seated in a private corner. Like magic, menus, water, garlic bread appeared, and the hostess vanished. Michelle's eyes danced with excitement. "Where did you find this place? Have you been here?"

Bobbi grumbled some more before answering. "Heard about it from a patient. It's supposed to be the best. It's family owned and has been around forever."

Michelle traced the face of the menu, feeling the raised letters with her fingertips. "Tino's, huh? I think I like it here." The blonde opened the menu, glancing through its contents. Still amused eyes raised to peer over the top.

Bobbi sighed, feeling her lover's gaze. "Stop it," she whined.

Michelle chuckled. "I can't. The image is seared on my brain. I really enjoyed the show. I haven't seen you do that in ages."

The doctor rolled her eyes but could feel the edges of her lips curve upward. "Well, I've found other distractions. I was just. . .bored with waiting, and I was excited about finding that song! I haven't heard it in years."

"Hmm, what was the name of it again?"

"Promise you won't laugh?"

The blonde snickered. "That, I can not promise you. Tell me anyway."

The brunette sighed. "Not an Addict by K's Choice."

Fair brows scrunched together. "I thought it was about drug addiction. Interesting, but it was more interesting finding you prancing around the living room lip syncing."

Bobbi groaned. "Well, I thought I was gonna be alone for a while."

Michelle covered her mouth to keep from laughing. "Taz was there. I think he was laughing at you."

"No! I swear he was trying to sing along."

Michelle laughed even harder. "I remember the first time I caught you doing that. You did get rid of those pants didn't you?"

Bobbi shot her lover an indignant glare that was tempered by a teasing smirk. "Got you talking didn't it?" She asked tritely.

"Hmm, yes, it was a good icebreaker." Michelle countered.

"Oh, is that what it was?"

"Mmm that and it was hilarious. I found myself chuckling about it even as I was trying to go to bed."

"Oh har, har." Bobbi paused. "Can I tell you something?" She smiled alluringly.

Michelle turned the page of the menu and glanced back up. "Sure. Anything. You know that."

"You look beautiful, and if I haven't told you, I love the way you've let your hair grow out. It suits you even better than the shorter hair cut did."

The blonde blushed hotly. "Uh. . ." God, how does she make me feel like I'm the most beautiful person in the world? She looked down at the simple beige blouse, buttoned to the point where only a hint of cleavage but an expanse of pale flesh was showing, and the plain green skirt that stopped a few inches above her knees. The last of the ensemble, the matching purse lay on the table. The outfit was just as unremarkable looking as it was when she bought it earlier today, but somehow, suddenly, she felt like each stitch was priceless.

Bobbi leaned back in her chair and watched the attractive flush cover the petite woman's features. Absolutely breathtaking, and she gives herself to me. Amazing. The doctor's smile widened even more. "I still love it when you do that." Plus, it got her to stop talking about earlier.

"I love the way you make me feel." Michelle murmured, as warmth infused her. "Like I'm the only other person in the world who matters, and I love you for it." She leaned forward and covered the brunette's larger hand with her own. Jade eyes narrowed and a cryptic smile ghosted across her face. "I know what you're trying to do. I'm onto you, and it's still funny," she added smugly.

Bobbi's mouth fell open. She sputtered. "But, you do it to me all the time!"

"Yes, and that's different." Michelle took a long pull of her water and reached for a piece of bread as she sat the menu down.

"Oh, good grief." The raven haired doctor shook her head in amusement. "I meant what I said though. . . " She canted her head to the side, and blue eyes glittered dangerously. Ooo, I'm about to be bad. "Even though I already know, I'm dying to peel away each piece of clothing to see what's under there."

Michelle nearly choked on her food.

"So do you think the people here would object to me making love to you right here on this table? Nobody knows us here anyway. It is the next county over."

The blonde gasped. "Bobbi." Heat seeped into her veins and pooled between her legs. Her breath turned ragged. How does she do this to me? I can barely breath now, barely think.

Bobbi licked her lips and observed her lover from under hooded eyes. "Hmm?" I mean that don't I? Hell, yes I do. I can almost see myself doing it. Their eyes met across the table, and the air thickened with awareness and crackled around them.

"Are you ladies ready to order?" The waiter, who suddenly materialized, asked.

They both started in surprise. No tip for him. Bobbi clamped down on the growl that threatened to burst forward, but decided to give the young man the stink eye anyway.

Well versed in the body language of customers, the waiter bowed slightly and eased away.

Bobbi glanced at Michelle. Green eyes twinkled back at her laden with enjoyment. She reached for her water again and proceeded to fan her face. She's gonna be the death of me one day. What a way to go. "I'd say this date is definately going to be memorable." Her thoughts strayed to her son. "Do you think I should call and check on Toby again?"

The doctor chuckled. "It's just started. You just wait, and as far as the Peanut is concerned, he's in good hands. I know it's the first time we've been away from him, but I have my cell. Annie knows to call if something happens." Bobbi waited a sufficient amont of time before returning to her mischievious self--all of thirty seconds. Under the table, Bobbi pushed off her loafer and began to move her foot in a definite direction.

Michelle's eyes widened as she nearly jumped into the air. "Bobbi! Behave!"

"Nuh uh. 'S too hard. Besides, don't you wanna experience everything you can? Push the envelope?"

Instead of answering, the blonde simply stared, revealing a wealth of emotions in one gaze. Yep, gonna die with a big ol' smile on my face. "You are really, really bad." Michelle picked up the menu once more. "So what looks good?" She flushed at the implication of her words, especially when she heard a deep chuckle. "I mean, what should we start with?"

Bobbi guffawed.

"Ooo, I mean, soup or salad?"

Bobbi held her hands up in surrender. "Okay, okay. I'll try to be good." She reached for a piece of garlic bread. "So, how did you get Annie to take Toby for the evening?"

"I wasn't even thinking about it really. I was just going to bring him with us. She suggested keeping him, actually. I didn't even hesitate. It seemed natural, giving him to her like that." Oh geez! How could I forget about the job? Sometimes, Bobbi completely throws me off kilter. "There's something else too." A smile spread across Michelle's face.

The doctor swallowed down her last piece of bread. The smile was infectious. Bobbi grinned too as if already knowing that it would be good news. "I'm listening." She leaned forward.

"I, uh, applied for a job at the library." Michelle held her lover's gaze, wondering what she would see there. Just like that, their conversation shifted from the sensual to the serious.

"You're kidding! That's great. You always said you wanted to work at a library. I hope you get the chance."

Michelle's heart melted at the excitement written all over her lover's face. I knew she would be happy for me. "Me too. If I get it, it'll be on temporary. I'm not going to work while I'm in school."

"Good idea, especially when you don't have to. I wish you'd let me pay for everything, but I know you want to do this on your own. Financial aid should take care of everything. It's a place I'm almost sure Max won't look since he won't suspect anything like that. I'm glad we were able to come to that conclusion. Now. . ." Bobbi waved her hand, and miracously, the waiter returned. ". . .we need to celebrate properly. Champagne please."

With a crisp bow, he was gone again.

Michelle squirmed excitedly. "I've never had that before! What does it taste like?"

Bobbi chuckled good naturedly. "You'll just have to wait and see. I don't think you'll be dissappointed."

"And you're doing all of this for me?"

"You deserve it more than anybody else I've ever met. I love you, Chelle." Bobbi grasped her lover's smaller hand and engulfed it in her own, squeezing slightly.

"I love you. . ."

The waiter returned. He cleared his throat discreetly and sat down the glasses. The two women stared up at him patiently. "Our finest," he murmured. Confident in his choice, he did not even offer Bobbi a sample. He simply filled the two flutes and waited.

Michelle stared at the bubbly liquid then glanced at Bobbi, who urged her with a nod. She brought the flute to her mouth, keeping eye contact with her lover across the table the whole time. Michelle took a minute sip. She chuckled in surprise at the tingly bubbles. "Oh, I like that. . .the bubbles!" She took a longer sip. It was the waiter's cue to leave.

Bobbi watched on warmly, not wanting to miss a thing. Michelle laughed with each pull from her glass, enjoying the concoction immensly. She sat the empty flute back on the table and glanced, with eyes full of joy, at the doctor. "Um, can I have some more?"

Bobbi let out something between a sob and a laugh as emotions welled within her. "Yes, and I'll join you." She filled their flutes and gazed at her own drink, feeling as though she was experiencing it for the first time. Everything with her is like the first time. Blue eyes moved upward, seeing that the blonde was about to beat her to the punch. "Hold on. We have to make a toast."

"Oh, I didn't think about that." She brought their glasses together, and they clinked lightly.

"To the past, present and future," Bobbi muttered, and Michelle repeated. Their eyes met and held for a small eternity, marking the moment in memory before consuming the champagne.

A little while later, they decided to start with the salad. As an entree, Michelle munched on her shrimp alfredo and stole little bites of chicken parm from Bobbi's plate. They chatted, laughed and exchanged long heated looks between a shared desert of chocolate chip cheesecake. As they finally got up to leave, Bobbi smirked inwardly and left a generous tip for the nameless waiter, despite her intial protest. Things had gone well after all.


Michelle wrapped her arm around her lover's as they neared the ticket booth. She cemented herself to the doctor's side, refusing to move away. Bobbi smiled secretly, wallowing in the warmth that surrounded her. She leaned down, kissing the top of the blonde's head, ignoring the look from the ticket clerk behind the glass partition. "Having a good time, Chelle?" It was a question Bobbi did not even need to ask. The petite woman at her side was teeming with energy and bubbling over with excitement.

"Are you kidding?!" She exclaimed. "It feels like I'm about to burst. I guess this is the feeling I missed when I was a teenager. It just makes it more intense now." Michelle glanced up at her raven haired companion. "Or it could be the company."

Bobbi chuckled. "Flatterer."

Michelle's smile was huge. "What movie are we going to see?" They both scanned the board despite the obvious impatience of the young woman behind the glass. The clerk huffed and put a piece of gum in her mouth.

Bobbi ignored her until she started popping the gum. . .loudly. She looked down at her lover. "Maybe we should let all those people behind us go first, huh?"

Michelle sighed as she spotted the mischievous glint in the doctor's eyes. She decided to play along. "Um, maybe we should."

They both turned simultanously, glancing at the empty space behind them. Even the clerk craned her neck. The two women spun back around. Bobbi smirked. "Hmm, what do you know! There's nobody there! How bout that!" She gave the clerk a sarcastic smile and leaned forward reading the woman's name tag. "What about that, Amy?"

Michelle rolled her eyes at her lover's antics. I'm beginning to think she enjoys this kind of thing way too much.

Atleast Amy had the wherewithall to look abashed. "Um, take your time."

The doctor bared her teeth. "Thank you. We will." They browsed the movie board again. "So what looks good?"

Michelle shrugged. "You're asking me? Are these up to date movies? I don't remember seeing any of the previews on television."

Bobbi snickered. "You would have a little over a year ago. Remember where we are. It isn't Minneapolis. I just want you to enjoy the experience."

"Hm, I think I understand what you mean, and that's sweet of you." Michelle continued to stare at the selection. Her brow scrunched in consideration. "How about Gladiator? That sounds like an interesting name for a movie. Heard anything about it?"

"Oh yeah, I hear it's really good. The lead actor won an oscar for it. Takes place back in ancient Rome. You're into history. I think you might like it. Let's give it a try," Bobbi added.

Michelle nodded. "Gladiator it is. We'd better hurry. It's about to start."

After paying for the tickets, Bobbi shoved the torn slips deep into her pocket. We're making our own memories here, Chelle.


Minutes later, they stood in front of the concession stand where an assortment of candies were safely asconced behind a large wrap around glass case that seemed to trap the man behind it also. "Mmm, I don't know Bobbi. I don't think I can eat anything after the lunch we had. We'll have to remember that place the food was excellent." She glanced around the small theatre. Movie posters adorned the walls framed in garishly flashing light bulbs. The walls were a puce green to match the darker carpet, and the artifically cooled air was ladened down with the smell of popping corn, hot dogs and pretzels. All in all, nothing stood out about it. Just the company. She thought.

"It was wasn't it? I think I'm gonna be dreaming about that cheesecake for weeks." Bobbi paused. "We have to get something. It's sorta tradition. Greasy popcorn, sugary drink and a good movie."

"We're going to have to share it."

Bobbi grinned. "That was my plan all along."

Michelle glanced up at her lover. Her eyes narrowed. "You are going to behave aren't you?" Her heart leapt just thinking about the possibilities.

The doctor's grin widened. "I promise nothing of the sort. Besides, you don't really want me to." Their eyes met and smoldered.

Michelle gasped but said nothing. Well, she's got my number.

Bobbi's expression was smug. Gotcha, Chelle.

The young man behind the counter gawked as he followed the banter between the women. Like a tennis match, his eyes went from one to the other as they hit the ball back and forth. He was thoroughly entertained.

Bobbi cleared her throat as the worker continued to stare. "Excuse me?" Her voice was laced with amusement. Still, he said nothing. She resorted to snapping her fingers.

"Um, huh?" He finally answered.

"Medium buttered popcorn and a large Dr. Pepper please?" These kids are too much fun these days. I'm starting to enjoy this way too much. Her gaze dropped to Michelle, who was staring up at her with knowing eyes. Bobbi smiled sweetly. And she knows it too. Ah, gotta love a woman who tolerates my idiosyncrasies.

Bobbi carried their purchases as they walked down the hall toward the appointed theatre. Michelle stayed close to her side. "So, are we the only ones here?"

"Don't know. Could be for this movie. There could be other people around watching something else, but I'm guessing either everybody here has seen these movies a hundred times, come earlier, or later." She handed the blonde the soda. "Hold this. We'd better hold hands. It's gonna be pitch dark in there. Don't wanna lose you."

Their fingers intertwined. "Not going anywhere," Michelle muttered as they entered the darkened theatre. She peered at the screen, seeing a dancing soda and hot dog singing and prancing across it. She chuckled at the cheesiness of it.

They ambled down toward the front. Michelle did notice other people scattered about, but there weren't many. Again, she scanned her surroundings, seeing the same green, illuminated by the screen. It was almost comforting, but the overwhelming excitement was still present. She squeezed Bobbi's hand in acknowledgement of it. I was denied all this just because of their own unhappiness. It's sad momma. You're really sad. She closed her eyes briefly and shook her head to clear it. It wouldn't do to wallow in the morose. Not today, not ever again.

They took a seat off the side near the front. Michelle sat the soda in the holder and got comfortable. She watched as her taller companion folded herself into her seat. Bobbi put the container of popcorn between her legs and dipped into it almost immediately. Michelle reached over for some of the buttery treat, but stopped midway as her squinted eyes spied its location. "Bobbi!" She hissed.

"Wha! What'd I do?!" The doctor mumbled around a mouth full of popcorn.

Michelle pointed toward the brunette's lap.

Bobbi laughed almost spewing the contents of her mouth. She swallowed slowly in an effort not to get choked, but continued to chuckle. "You don't mind putting your hand down there any other time."

Michelle's mouth dropped open. "Oh my God, what has gotten into you today? You're positively wicked." Who am I kidding? I love this playful side of her.

"I know. Just giddy about getting out of the house I guess, and of course most of it's you." Bobbi picked up the Dr. Pepper and took a long sip. "Besides, who are you kidding? I thought you liked it when I'm like this."

The blonde reached over and scooped up a handful of popcorn. "Well, yeah. There is that." She could envision dark brows rising in amusement. "Get that look off your face."

Instead of a reply, Bobbi leaned forward until her lips almost touched her lover's ear. "You love it," she whispered hotly.

Michelle whimpered audibly as unforgivable heat blasted through her body, and she nearly swooned as her earlobe was sucked into the doctor's wet, warm mouth. "You are going to be bad aren't you?" She husked.

"Oh yeah. After all, I have to show you a good time, and you haven't made out until you've made out at the movies."

The blonde fought the urge to wound her fingers in dark tresses and pull the doctor to her. Yep, huge smile. "Let me guess. Tradition?"

"You betcha." The brunette answered as she went back for another taste of her lover's delectable earlobe.

Michelle gasped, "But the movie's starting!"

Bobbi sighed and pulled away reluctantly. "Oh yeah, I guess we could watch some of it." A sexy smirk spread over her features. And the rest of the time we'll be watching each other. I don't think either one of us can help that.


Sometime later, Michelle looked on, rivited to the screen, as Maximus took down man after man before a roaring crowd. She sat watching in awe of the main character, a man of honor, principle and hoping that men like that did not only exist on the big screen. I knew I would have fun, but not this much. I feel like I'm in the thick of things, and it's like I'm literally a kid again--hormones raging and everything. Without turning to look, Michelle reached for the soda, but felt warm skin instead. She turned in the blackness, able to make out Bobbi's form angled towards her. They each had one hand wrapped around a seperate side of the cup. After trading many fleeting caresses over the popcorn, the awarness wound tightly around them.. Fingertips brushed and electricity arced between them. Suddenly, the blonde wished she could see sparkling blue eyes staring back at her. Michelle took a deep breath, hoping to counter the jolt the touch brought with it. It did not help matters as Bobbi's thumb began to caress hers back and forth in a rhythmic pattern. A sizzling bolt inched up her fingers and zinged up her arm, leaving a rash of tingling gooseflesh in its wake. She gasped at the effect. Needing to connect even more, Michelle searched through the darkness for azure eyes that she knew were there. The air crackled around them just as it always did. God, I hope this feeling lasts forever. It's too big not to.

For Bobbi, the noise of the theatre filtered away, leaving only the rush of her breath and rapid beat of her heart. All of this just feels perfect like it was meant to be, meant to happen. She leaned forward and over the chair arm between them, feeling intense green eyes bore into her. The container of popcorn slipped from her lap to the floor. Bobbi was beyond caring. She had to taste, to touch. With fingers still cool and damp from the condensation of the soda cup, Bobbi reached out toward the form of her lover. Warm, silky flesh graced her fingertips, and her fingers spread wide cupping the cheek she'd captured.

Michelle's breath stopped, and she swayed forward as if hypnotized by the woman in front of her. She leaned into the hand scoring her flesh, waiting, hoping and somewhere near desperate for what was coming. Searching and seeking through the flickering darkness, they finally found themselves impossibly closer---torsos almost touching as they tried to push past the chair arm between them. Baited breath escaped in an audible quiver. As each second passed, Bobbi recalled the flush of Michelle's face, the lovingly hungry look in her eyes each time they touched, each time the kissed. This knowledge filled her now, spurring her on. Then, the inevitable happened. Warm, moist lips met in a whispered caress so soft that it was almost undetectable. A needy whimper was the only evidence. Mouths brushed and lifted slowly, teasingly in an attempt to savor each instance of contact.

Michelle's hands found themselves ensnared in black tresses as the doctor's searching fingers left a trail of fire over her face an neck. Her mouth opened on a husky moan, and she pulled Bobbi to her in hopes of increasing the ardor of the kisses. It was to no avail. As a result, hungry whimpers escaped her throat. With a mind of its own, Michelle's tongue snaked out to flick sensously against Bobbi's lower lip. The doctor's insides quivered, and unable to resist, her own tongue broke free of its self imposed prison, meeting its counterpart in wet play.

Michelle shivered and cried out. The sound got lost as the Roman mob on the screen screamed Maximus' name. Finally, open mouths met in unhurried fashion. They drank from each other as if they had been thirsty for years. Arousal shimmied between them, leaving breathing ragged, chests heaving and thighs throbbing, but they were reluctant to be baited by it, wanting to continue the slow game of pure eroticism. Sustaining each other, they exchanged breath and hoarse moans.

The sound of loud, surprised laughter and the feel of the sudden breeze as someone whizzed passed them, startled the couple. They broke apart almost immediately but did not pull away completely. Bobbi craned her neck to see someone who had been obviously further down front than they were run for the exit. Without a moment's more hesitation, she turned back to Michelle, who had buried her face in the doctor's neck. Damn. Carried away much, B? Knowing Michelle was embarrassed, the brunette gave her a minute as she peered up at the screen to see Maximus and Comidus fighting in the forum. She ignored the display not caring one iota. Bobbi continuously rubbed a hand through the blonde's hair. I hope I didn't push too far. I just wanted to give her everything. Ah, hell, and I couldn't help myself. The doctor sighed. "Chelle?" She said loud enough for her lover to hear. "You okay?" She felt a slight nod.

Michelle breathed in Bobbi's scent as she tried desperately to return her breathing to normal. Whoa, I think she was right about the making out thing. It was something about knowing that other people could see us. I don't want to stop. When she kisses me, I melt. In the blonde's mind, there was only one thing to do in this case--take the initiative. Her mouth opened hotly over Bobbi's neck, and she felt as much as heard the doctor's sharp intake of breath.

"Uh. . .uhm Chelle? Don't you wanna stop?" Bobbi groaned as her lover answered her with a slight suck on her neck. Oh yeah. I'm not the only one who likes to be bad. The doctor whimpered as the blonde's tongue swiped her chin, leaving a warm, wet trail. Lips soon followed as their mouths met again in a hungry clash of urgency. Their collective moans got lost just as they got lost in each other. This time they stoked the fires of arousal, purposely seeing how far they could go without actual touching. It left them both swollen and achy.

It wasn't the sound of triumphant music signifying the end of the movie that stopped them this time, but the sudden flicker of the lights. They pulled apart slowly, and eyes finally met. Both sets were heavy with arousal. Bobbi licked her lips, savoring the taste left there. Michelle reached out to touch. Her fingertips trailed over moist, swollen flesh. Their gaze held, heating everything around them with its intensity. No words passed between them because they had already spoken volumes to each other.

"Ahem." A distant voice sounded behind them. Bobbi turned slightly toward the sound but refused to look away from the blonde completely. "Uhm, unless you ladies are gonna buy tickets for the next showing. It's time to go."

Bobbi stood and smiled slowly, reaching out a hand to Michelle. "Yes, it is," She whispered. Her head canted to the side and her grin widened as she took in flushed features and bright eyes. "Most definitely."

Michelle took the hand offered to her, but she reached for the nearly forgotten soft drink too. Suddenly, she needed something to wet her dry throat. The moisture had abandoned her to pool in parts directly south. Wow, so this is what I was missing out on. I think if I had done this with someone else it wouldn't have been the same. No where near. She glanced at the green walls. We really, really need to come back here. Then, looked at the doctor. The brunette's hungry gaze made her shiver. Really, really huge smile.


Darkness encroached as they crossed the county line heading back to Ivanhoe. A charged silence laced the cab of the jeep, and Michelle didn't dare pierce it because of the fear it would dissapate or rage out of total control. Despite all that, she decided to take the chance anyway. She glanced at Bobbi for the thousandth time in as many minutes, feeling and almost seeing the heat roll off her tense form. "That was a great movie," she murmured softly.

Bobbi turned slightly, catching her with intense eyes and waiting. "Mmm," was her only reply, knowing her voice would come out raspy and hoarse.

Michelle paused as she drowned in those unfanthomable eyes. "Um, I think that I would like to see the ending someday," she finished demurely.

Blue eyes widened. Well, I'll be damned. Bobbi threw her head back and laughed.

Michelle watched with a bemused expression before she joined in the laughter.

They came to a stop light and Bobbi, still chuckling, looked at her lover fully. "I thought we made our own ending."

The laughter started again even harder than before. The funny thing was that it didn't diminish the coiling sexual tension between them a bit. In fact, it heightened it. By the time they pulled into the driveway, the air between them was smoldering with the awareness of what was to come.

With the turn of the key, they were inside the house at last. Michelle brushed past the brunette. She trembled as their bodies touched and headed toward the phone. What am I doing? I know what I want. It's like I'm caught up in this game we're playing. "I'll call Annie, and let her know we're home." Her voice sounded loud in the quiet. She picked up the reciever with the intention of dialing. Michelle stopped suddenly, holding her breath. From several feet away, she could feel the doctor's heat encroaching. Her hands shook in anticipation.

Taz padded out of the kitchen, heading toward familiar voices. He stopped at the end of the hallway, observing the scene. If they could have, the Husky's eyes would have rolled. His tongue lolled out of his mouth, and he turned to go back toward his previous destination.

Bobbi inched forward, slowly. She's loving this almost as much as I am. She stopped as their bodies came into light contact, leaning in until her lips were a scant centimeter away from her lover's ear. "Call back in a couple hours," she growled.

Michelle whimpered brokenly. With trembling hands, she replaced the reciever. That voice promised pleasure. It promised to satiate her growing hunger and start it all over again. She gave into it gracefully. Large hands came from behind, circling her torso, scorching it with fire. A wet tongue flicked inside her ear as demanding hands cupped her breasts. Michelle cried out, arching her back and burrowing further into her lover's embrace.

Somehow, the ended up on the couch--naked, writhing, and straining against each other, enjoying life while a weapon of death lay hidden inches from them.


The mid morning sun was making its way high in the sky, renewing and rejuvenating almost everything. Marsha stared sightlessly out the window at the cars and lives that passed by. Her stare was without ardor or emotion--the hollow look of one long dead. Suddenly, she coughed and blinked, subconsciously reminding herself that she was among the living. She gasped as she saw her horrid, sallow reflection in the glass and turned away from it immediately. The need to escape was strong, and Marsha groaned as prematurely aged bones protested her quick movements.

She stood slowly and glanced around the house that had become an utter trash heap. Still, that wasn't what she saw--alone with no place to run, no place to hide. That's what she saw. Marsha panicked as the reality of the situation closed in on her. Alone. The word reverberated in her head. It was a place she did not want to be. No! Her thoughts screamed. Not after I tried so hard to teach her so that she would never forget me, never really leave me. She shoulda been too scared. Fear had been her friend for a long time, and she had used it well. Today, it turned on her, increasing the panic.

She ambled as quickly as she could toward the back, toward the bedrooms. Marsha stumbled and splayed her hand against the wall to pull herself up. Her breathing rasped in and out as she looked toward the end of the hall. Gingerly, she got up and headed toward the closed door.

Finally, she stood in front of it. Knarled hands reached out under the premise to touch, but Marsha pulled away as if afraid of being burned. She swallowed hard and tried again. Her hand encircled the knob and turned. The door creaked open, a musky smell greeted her, making her cough. After getting her bearings, Marsha took a couple of steps inside. She scanned the room. It was barren, except for a small bed, meticiously made. There was nothing of Michelle there--no scent, no residual feeling, and no left over bric-a-brac. There never was any. It was a place of purity--a perfect place to hide from cruelty.

From far away, Marsha heard a slight wheezing. She jumped in surprise when she realized that it was coming from her. She closed her eyes an attempted to take a deep breath. Flashes of the past assualted her, and none of them were happy memories. Alone. Isolated. Unloved. Forgotten. She'd seen the emotions appear and chase themselves across her daughter's face numerous times. Today, she recognized them for what they were. Fear overwhelmed her as all the other emotions started to bombard her. Suddenly, she understood everything Michelle felt as if she were experiencing it herself. It shook her from the inside out. Tears leaked from her eyes as her anxiety grew.

Marsha understood, and she hated her daughter even more for it.


Max Sr. groaned as as he folded his large frame into his favorite chair. His appearance was haggerd from his pale face to the old Vikings t-shirt and well worn pants he wore. Once seated, he leaned forward and deposited his head into his hands in an attempt to stop the room from spinning. A loud ruckus from the vicinity of the kitchen caused a bold of pain to shoot through his tender head. Despite the hangover, old habits die hard. He was still a moderately early riser. He growled in bad temper. The growl turned into a chuckle as he delineated the reason for the noise. She probably can barely walk.

Liquor always made him mean and his aim deadly accurate. Last night those things did not changed. As he entered his abode last night, seeing her face irritated him to no end, so he created another expression--one of pain. She didn't even show that much anymore these days, but he had his ways to make her scream still. Max wiped the grit from his eyes and leaned back. His hands went to his slightly protruding belly. It churned and protested the amount of alcohol that had been deposited inside. It's a sin that good booze causes all this trouble. He groaned again as he made himself comfortable and reached for the remote. As he picked it up, his fingertips grazed against something else--a couple of envelopes. Forgot I put that there yesterday.

He grabbed the envelopes and scanned them. Max glanced up quickly, narrowing his eyes toward the kitchen. Now, I get to see if she was hiding something from me after all. Bills just don't disappear. He ripped open the copy of the phone bill. There were several pages full of numbers he did not recognize. Rage boiled inside him. For the moment, he banked it and got up to retrieve the phone. I've got some investigatin' to do. Dialing *67 first, he punched in the first number. When a woman answered, he cleared his throat and asked as politely as possible if she knew his wife.

Max Sr. made phone call after phone call, and all the while his rage grew to a white hot intensity. When he finished one page of numbers, he would ball it up and launch it across the room. For a split second, it relieved some of the pressure from his anger. Why the hell did she call these numbers if she didn't know these people? Determined, he carried on.


Bobbi chuckled as she looked at the infant through the gate. It blocked the entrance into the hallway leading to the kitchen. Obviously affronted, Toby cooed loudly and shook his keys at the doctor. It only made her laugh harder. Lifting a long leg, she stepped over the gate and sipped from the glass of juice in the process.

Sitting on the floor, covered by a blanket, Michelle turned at the sound of her lover's laughter. "Hey! I thought you were getting that juice for me?"

"I did. I was just taking a sip. You know, testing it." Bobbi glanced behind her to see Toby, crawling as quickly as he could behind her. "Getting these gates were a great idea, he's all over the place. Now Taz, doesn't have to work as hard."

The Husky looked up from his place on the blanket at the sound of his name. He wuffed quietly and went back to his nap.

Bobbi sat down beside her lover and leaned back against the couch. "Here is your juice my lady."

Michelle smirked as she accepted the glass. "You're going to be late for work. You're not even dressed."

"I am so. I have on a t-shirt."

"Yeah, but nothing's on under it." The blonde quipped.

"Mmm, you got me there. Besides, I can be late. I had a late night." Bobbi cut her eyes slyly toward Michelle.

Green eyes peered sideways. "Don't you dare try to blame me for that."

"Well, it is partially your fault anyway for looking like you do, sounding like you do, tastin--"

"Bobbi! I get your point."

The doctor snickered. "You know, Annie didn't even blink an eye when I answered the door. I must have looked a mess. I'm pretty sure she knew what we were up to even though we told her it was okay to bring Toby over."

"I don't think anything shocks or surprises her."

The phone rung, piercing their together time.

"I wonder who that is this early in the morning," Bobbi muttered as she snuck another sip from Michelle's juice glass. "You're closer."

Michelle scowled, but reached for the phone anyway. "Hello?"

Dead Silence.



Michelle shrugged and hung up the phone. "Whoever it was, I think it was a bad connection. I couldn't hear anything."

"Check the caller ID to be safe," Bobbi whispered. Better to be safe than sorry.

"It says unavailable."

"It could have been telemarketers. They've been calling lately, and it's after nine. Primo time for them." That's the way B. Convince yourself of that too. Their eyes met.

"Yeah, you could be right." But who are we kidding, they're not giving up. Michelle raised her chin a little higher. "It doesn't matter who it was. I'm not going to run away shaking in fear again."

Bobbi reached for her lover's hand. "Neither am I." That I believe.


Surprise flushed Max Sr.'s face red. He knew that voice anywhere. The sensation of being stunned displaced his anger for a moment. There was another loud bang in the kitchen. The rage came back almost robbing him of breath. He shook with it. All this time, she was betraying me. All this time, she knew where that little bitch was. She's gotta pay. He stood slowly and just as slowly, a thought weedled its way through his brain. There's no way I let a couple of women beat me. They don't know who they're messin' with. They don't know a damn thing.

He clenched his fists. I've got to win this whole thing. There's no other way to put them properly in their place. I wanna see their faces when they found out they lost. Then maybe. . . maybe they won't see anything else ever again. First things first, I need to find out exactly where she is, and who she's with. A dark chuckle escaped his throat. Max now had something that he was running out of before--time; time to plan; time to strike.

next part

Things are coming down to the wire not folks. Sorry it took me so long, but my life has been in utter shambles. I'm trying to put it back together again. Feedback is appreciated, and if I don't answer right away rest assured that I care and your words mean a lot. If you're so inclined drop me a line at Minerva

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