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    Chapter 2

    The locker room was empty as she changed into her lululemon golf gear. Black flared pants, white trainers, seafoam-green polo shirt. She went to the mirror to fix her hair under her visor. A godsend, this thing. Kept the sun off her face and her flyaways in check. She tucked her hair in carefully, wondering again about its shade. Carrie liked the reddish tone, but Bette had always— She stopped and stared at herself in the mirror.

    ‘What do you like, Tina?’ she said softly.

    The woman in the mirror looked solemn. Tina smiled at her. She smiled back. A frisson ran across Tina’s scalp. She recognised it as the thrill of being exactly who she fucking wanted to be . . .

    ‘Maybe I like golf,’ she said. Her reflection didn’t flinch. ‘I like golf,’ she said louder, shaking her shoulders and letting her hands hang loose, ready for anything. Then she laughed. ‘Well,’ she put her hands on her hips, ‘how about that?’

    ***

    The club was pleasantly busy. Tina’s teeing area was near the middle, so she walked past six or seven other golfers to get to it, all men, all white, all middle-aged. She remembered Carrie saying that the numbers of lesbians playing golf was nothing like she’d been led to believe when she took up the game, and it would seem to be true. Not that I’m looking! Tina reminded herself, with a ditzy little shake of her head.

    She set her bag down, propped her clubs against the little bench and set about getting ready to hit things. It was a beautiful day for it. Not too hot. The sky an endless wash of azure blue. She lifted her face to the gentle breeze and closed her eyes. The sounds of graphite slicing through the air, the piercing clonk of clubface on ball, the hubbub of voices, occasional laugher, a phone pinging . . . Yeah, this was what she needed today. This was her new happy place!

    Half an hour later, it was more like her crappy place. What even was this game? Nothing was working! Her grip? Nope. Stance? Nope. Alignment? What alignment? Everything was off. She picked a Titleist out of the bucket and saw that she only had five left. Wrap it up after these, and she could go back to the city for some retail therapy before meeting Angie for dinner.

    Comments

    1. Editing this because I think it was misinterpreted. I love your story (and your other stories – which is why I commented on how well you write B & T). I’d much rather read your stories than watch GQ. That’s the upshot of what I was saying. Sorry it hit you incorrectly. If still not taken as a compliment, I’ll delete the comment. It truly was meant to say you’re doing much better story-telling than the show writers are.
      ——–

      You write B and T so well, and I so appreciate your efforts to make sense of nonsense – turning the GQ insanity into something believable. But it actually makes GQ even more intolerable. GQ is like the old days of LGBTQ movies and fiction, when the audience was so desperate for stories of themselves/ourselves that they/we would gobble up whatever slop was fed to us (cough -“Bar Girls” – cough). Are we still that desperate? And why do actors as smart as JB and LH put up with it? I’m sure they’re not starving. I’m just mystified, and a little peeved. (Could you tell?) I have no intention of devoting precious time to the next season – unless someone indicates that it is redeeming itself. But that seems almost impossible now. They’ve made the characters so unrecognizable, and have them doing such uncharacteristic things, that the only thing that could save it would be if the season ends with Bette waking up next to Tina, turning to her, and saying “I had the strangest dream….”

    2. Hey Lady,

      This ‘wee’ story is anything but!

      You are mixing up all these emotions. feelings & conflicts in both Bette & Tina.

      We can tell they still love each other even though at the moment neither are willing to show a spotlight on those feelings.

      I know you will eventually bring them home to one another and I will kneel before your feet for doing it!!

      Can’t wait for that to happen.

      Excellent as always.

      Thank you for the hope.

      Stay well my friend.

      • Hi Collins….. Thanks so much for reading this chapter and for commenting. You are a great buddy. :-) I enjoyed writing our girls again. As SuperK once said (I think on Twitter), a lot of the best Tibette ff begins with them apart. I do like writing attraction every bit as much as I like writing consummation, so I’m planning a long arc for this story…
        L

    3. The fact that Tina in her conversations with herself is constantly comparing Carrie to Bette does not bode well for the Carrie and Tina relationship. And the insistence of the counselor for Carrie and Tina to have evenings of “positivity” actually sounds like torture. It appears that the therapy consist of playtimes or periods in which you don’t broach problems but stick to only those things that are positive in your life. It avoiding the negative and thus avoiding the problems or disagreements. How does one establish a real relationship when one must be Pollyanna when with the other? Being Pollyanna will not produce a real understanding and a well adjusted relationship. If you cannot be who you are in front of your partner, well, then everything is an act and will cause nothing but a disaster at some point. The key for any successful relationship is to be able to accept and live with who people are and to a great extent even enjoy their uniqueness. I do not see that in either Carrie or Tina.

      One more point… for Tina and Bette. In most situations, people’s first response is generally what is the most true. Tina’s response on the golf course is more than likely how she really feels and what she truly believes. Just because she was stressed and tired and aggravated did not make the words less true. It just means that it was not her intent to allow Bette to hear it. So her days later pronouncement that what she said was just not true? Well, that is what the lie is….. and she is trying to revise history or Bette’s understanding of what the truth is. This is somewhat reminiscent of the “We don’t want to hurt Jodi” episode only she is thinking about Bette and Pippa. My recommendation is for Tina to get a good therapist and get to the place where Tina can live as her authentic self and who she is. Then find the person who allows her to live her life as Tina Kinnard. And in the end, I believe that person is Bette Porter. It always has been and it always will be.

      I look forward to what you write in this story…. but you are right. The only was to fix Gen Q is to write in a Bobby Ewing returns to the cast type episode after being killed off the season before.

      I do want to express a feeling that I have about Gen Q…. first, I believe that Season 3 will be the last for Gen Q. If it should get a Season 4, I fully expect that neither Jennifer Beal nor Laurel Holloman will sign on for another season. Jennifer originally signed on for three seasons and will need to renew her contract to continue. Laurel Holloman has been a guest star for the first two seasons and has not received very little mention in her role as such in Season 1 or 2 and no mention yet for Season 3. She has been included in video teasers which only use Season 1 or 2 clips. That leads me to believe that what she does for the show is not appreciated by the showrunner nor the publicity officials the contribution that the character of Tina Kennard contributes to the show. For without Tina Kennard, there is no Carrie. And without Laurel Holloman, the ratings would not be as good as what they are. Jennifer Beals is an outstanding actress and appears to be increase demand in the time since Covid. And even though the character of Bette Porter is achieving much of the goals set out by Beals for Gen Q, the show cannot achieve the goals set by the showrunner as long as Bette Porter is main attraction to the show. For me, the quality of the stories told on Gen Q with the exception of the Bette Porter story are so inadequate as for me, are not stories at all. The appear to be a little more than snippets of film strung together in hopes that the audience can use their imagination to make sense and produce a story. After seeing the original, I asked myself – what did this series tell me about the lesbian community? Why was it important to see this series? I came up with more than a half dozen answers which I will not bore you with. I ask myself the same question about Gen Q except maybe substituting LGBTQ for lesbian? And I can barely come up with a single answer. Many years ago, Lauren Holloman said that if she went back to films, she wanted to do something that was impactful. I think that is why Jennifer Beals signed on to the project to begin with. She thought that to revive Bette Porter and some other characters some years later with some new stories might be impactful for the community. My question to them and to you – is Gen Q impactful? We have had two seasons now and what are we seeing as the overall theme and message of the series? I am not going to respond to my own question. I leave it to you to formulate your own thoughts.

      Thank you for allowing me to post this comment. If it offends you, I will gladly remove it….

      Martha

      • Hi Martha – good to hear from you again. :-) It’s been a long time since I posted any writing here and thank you for reading and commenting.

        Just to deal with the part of your comment that’s about the actual story…. Tina is the viewpoint character in this chapter. She does not have full self-awareness yet. What you’re seeing is the death throes of her delusion about Carrie. And yes, they have a terrible therapist. All deliberate, all part of the setup.

        I’m not offended by your comments about GQ. I don’t even disagree with them. But, as with slntrdr and Lilya, the only practical advice I can offer is that you don’t need to read what I post if it’s only going to bring you down or annoy you, and then because you feel like you need to convey that to me, you end up bringing me down and turning something that was making me feel happy into something I want nothing to do with.

        It seems to me that people have a need for a conversation about GQ. Why not start one? It’s been done before on here. Not every post has to be a story. Or join/observe the Tibette conversation on Twitter. There are a lot of interesting opinions there.

        All best
        Largo

    4. Largo…. may I remind you…. I do not know how I am going to react to a story until I read it… it is only after that I can even begin to know how I feel. My response is my response and is not intended to be judgmental of you your work. I have no problem with you story on the whole. It is not my purpose to bring you down…. you have a path and a style and I am only a reader. Perhaps I should just return to a silent reader… Thank you for your work and please carry on…. And feel good about what you do.

      • Hi Martha – thanks for replying.

        To me, without readers this site would be pretty pointless. Speaking for myself, you and everyone else who reads my work are incredibly important. I write to give myself enjoyment or something to think about or a pleasant daydream, and that’s what I want for my readers too. I don’t doubt for a moment that you did not intend to bring me down, but your comment was on the back of two others that I felt were kind of telling me not to write GQ canon. But that was the idea that sparked something in me, so I went with it without too much thought.

        I’ve also told people I would write another series of ‘Real Tibette’ stories to run alongside the new GQ season, but to be honest I’m rethinking that now. There is a HUGE amount of planning and writing and rewriting that goes into something that like, not to mention the hours spent trying to piece together the episodes from what i can find online because I can’t even watch the show in my country until about three months after its been broadcast.

        So all that’s by way of saying that comments matter. Keeping the air in my balloon matters, or it just crashes back to earth. So I do appreciate you coming back to comment again, and for explicitly encouraging me to keep writing this story.

        Best wishes
        Largo

    5. Largo

      Well girl, loving the angle. At this point I crave new Fanfiction about our girls. The only thing GQ did was give us a starting point for more angst. Their lack of creativity is astounding and disappointing, in that ppl like you and I, who do not get paid to write stories can come up with things that are far more creative. I am like give me the show, I will do it for free. LOL

      Keep going my friend, can’t wait to see where you go with this.

      K

      • Hi Kelly *waves* Thanks for reading and for taking the time to comment.

        I share your incredulity that GQ is written by professional writers. I used to think I was just being biased and a bit stroppy in thinking that the ff I’d read on here was better, but then I saw the reviews of GQ in the mainstream press, which almost universally slammed the writing. It’s like EVERYONE can see it except the people making the show?

        Anyway, I’ll keep on with this, lol… Thanks so much for the support. It means a lot :-)
        L

    6. Largo
      My lucky day. Somehow I missed when you first posted this and found it today when I was responding to some comments. I love your writing, have I told you that lately? This line had me hooked…

      “And confusing, because what did it really mean to be compatible? Do some compatibilities matter more than others? Tina knew that Bette wouldn’t know Better Call Saul if she found it in her soup, and yet . . . Hadn’t they’d been in love? And when it was good, wasn’t it everything?”

      Wasn’t it everything?”

      Goodness. Wasn’t it, Tina… hello….wasn’t it??

      You mentioned that Tina wasn’t there yet… that her journey back to Bette may have more twists and turns and even though we the readers can see it a mile away we have to wait until Tina figures it out. It’s almost like watching the stupid teenager in a horror movie explore the woods by herself… I want to shake Tina to make her see sense. What a beautiful story of yearning, my favorite kind and just what I needed today.

      Please write the third chapter soon. This is pure gold.
      BK

      • Thank you, BK. I love your writing too and am humbled that you enjoy mine! I’ve had to try and be more disciplined with POV with this story, so I’m going to alternate between B and T in the chapters, I think. So in this one, because it’s a Bette chapter, Tina is very much still a black box, I’m afraid….

        Thank you, as ever, for the encouragement. I need to get some reading done soon – you and Collins and SuperK, for sure

        Largo

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