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    chp 69+70

    Chapter 69
    “Did you have a nice time ? “ James asked as he brought in Bette’s coffee and placed it on her desk. It was Tuesday morning and Bette had just come back from a long weekend with Tina to Las Vegas. They had left on Thursday morning and arrived home late Monday night – most other people would take Tuesday off to recover but it was typical of Bette that she was at her desk by 9am – albeit looking like she had had way too much of a good time.
    “We had a great time “
    “Win anything ?”
    “Tina did”
    “How much ?”
    “$3800 “
    “On ?”
    “On the slots she won £1000 “
    “And didn’t lose it all again ?“
    “She surprised me – she’d lost about $70 on the slots but as soon as she won she walked away “
    “That is something that you would do “
    “It is – but its nothing something that I would have thought she would do “
    “The majority of people wouldn’t walk away when they won money on the slot machines “
    “I know but she did and then she put $500 on the roulette wheel and won straight away and that was when she said was going to cash her chips in “
    James laughed
    “She is the sort of customer that casino’s hate “
    “I have to hold my hands up and say that she has ice for blood “
    “Did you not want to stay and see if you could fleece the casino ?”
    Bette laughed and shook her head “You know what – yes I did – I started to say that she was on a roll and we should give it another spin “
    James laughed “Bette – she’s wonderful “
    “She looked at me – told me not to be so silly gave me a $100 chip for luck “
    James was laughing hard now “That woman is just fantastic “
    “I know she is and she’s mine James “
    James smile benevolently at her “ Don’t you ever break her heart Bette – I will personally give you hell if you do anything to hurt her “
    Bette lent back “I promise you that I will not hurt her – she’s just the greatest. I love her – I am so lucky that she loves me and what we have is awesome “
    “I would be happy to arrange the wedding “
    Bette raised one eyebrow at her assistant
    “Just saying – I am a very good organiser – I come cheap as well “
    “So I gather “ Bette said acidly
    “I am glad you had a great time “
    “We had a blast – it was good to be with her and just doing whatever we wanted – we are planning to go away again for another weekend break “
    “What about a proper holiday ?”
    “She’s about to start two new jobs – it might be difficult for a few months. I know that Peggy will let her take Fridays off and stuff like that but she’s got to fit in with other people at the book store”
    “Do you think that in time Peggy will offer her a full time job as Helena’s assistant or something ?”
    “Its possible “
    “So what is she going to do with the money she won ?”
    “She hasn’t decided – she paid for everything for the rest of the weekend but I don’ think that amounted to more than a couple of hundred dollars. She might buy some clothes for her new job “
    “What is she doing today ?”
    “I left her fast asleep – she doesn’t start at the book store until next Tuesday but she is starting her Peabody job on Thursday “
    “How is it going to work – two jobs ?”
    “Peggy and Helena will let her work any day she wants – I think her book shop days will probably be Monday to Wednesday “
    “No Saturday’s “?”
    “Her contract is for a certain number of hours – I guess there will be times when she has to work late or Saturdays. Its very flexible “
    “Are you both happy about it ?”
    “Yeah – she is really excited about both jobs “
    “And you are just happy she’s not working with all the drop-outs ?”
    “I didn’t say that “
    “You didn’t have to “
    “Don’t you have any work to do ?”
    “Yes boss “
    Bette knew that when James called her “ boss “ he was always being sarcastic – she raised one eyebrow and he grinned before leaving. Bette picked up her coffee – what was Tina planning to do with that money ?
    Tina arrived at her mother’s law firm just after 1pm.
    “Is she free Donna ?” Tina asked her mother’s secretary who was sitting at her desk typing away
    “Hello Tina – yes – she’s eating her lunch at her desk “
    “Good for me that she is so predictable – how are you anyway ?”
    “Fine – you look sensational “
    “Thank you “
    “Have you lost weight ?”
    “Is that a sly way of asking me if I am getting laid ?”
    “Well you look as if you are to me “
    “What’s she been saying ?”
    “I gather you have a new woman “
    “Yes I do “
    “The staff picnic is in two weeks “
    Tina had forgotten about the famous staff picnic. She went every year as a show of solidarity to firstly both her parents and now just for Emma. She had only missed 2 picnics in over 18 years. Tina suddenly thought about how fantastic it would be to attend the picnic with the stunningly hot Bette Porter on her arm – that would be such a buzz.
    “Meaning ?”
    “Meaning a lot of people would love to see you with that smile on your face that you have “
    Tina perched on Donna’s desk “You know my girlfriend has an assistant called James and he claims to know her better than anyone else “
    “Yes ?”
    “So would you say that you know my mother better than anyone else ?”
    “I know how miserable the two of you have been since Kate died and I see a spring in her step in the last couple of weeks and the last few times I have seen you – well – you are just radiant “
    Tina smiled “Thanks “
    “So far this week your mother had had an manicurist come to her office and she took lunch yesterday and came back with lots of clothes bags “
    Tina chuckled
    “So – as she is famous for being like a clam with jaw-lock ?”
    “She’s not seeing anyone “ Tina said “But maybe she is ready to “
    Donna smiled and touched Tina’s arm “Its about time she did Tina “
    “I have never seen it before but you do remind me of James “
    “Is that a good thing ?”
    “Just that I wouldn’t do your job or his if you paid me a million dollars “
    “If you could tell her that next time she’s dishing out the pay rises and bonuses “
    “Afternoon mother “
    Tina said walking into her mother’s office – the one with the great view across the city
    “Hello Tina “
    Emma was eating an apple as she looked through a newspaper. Tina sat down facing her mother.
    “Nice to see you – did you and Bette have a nice time in Vegas ?”
    “It was trashy and over the top and totally without taste and we had the greatest time “
    “That’s good – did you two take in a show ?”
    “We saw a couple of things but 4 nights is really not enough to take in the full neon horrors of the place “
    “Did you do any gambling ?”
    “Funny you should ask me that but yes we did – I won nearly $4000 “
    “Wow Tina –that’s impressive – on what ?”
    “Slots and roulette “
    “Did you walk away ?”
    “I did “
    “Good girl “
    “I think it had slipped my mind to tell Bette that your darkest secret is how much you love a casino and how you taught me to be such a mean poker player “
    “It’s a lot like being in court – you have to read the signs and know what sort of hand you have and whether to hold or fold “
    “And I kind of hinted that it was all new to me “
    “Why ?”
    “Because I could and because I just wanted to see the look on her face when I won and walked away”
    “See – I think Bette would be a good poker player – she’s got that kind of face “
    “She has but when I won on the roulette she wanted to go again and I had already decided that I didn’t want to waste the whole night gambling – not when we had a fantastic room and we were alone in Vegas “
    “So what did you do ?”
    “There are some things that a mother does not need to know “
    Emma laughed and threw her apple core into the bin
    “Fair enough “
    “So I came back from Vegas with $3500 “
    “And what are you going to do with it ?”
    Tina placed the gift bag on the table and smiled
    “For you “
    “Me ?”
    “Just to say thank you for that fantastic dinner the other night and for really making an effort with Bette “
    “Tina – I had a great time and it was really nice to cook for both of you “
    “I know Bette’s been prickly about me “
    “She has been protective of you – I promise you I was much worse with Kate “
    “Are you going to open the bag ?”
    Emma smiled and took the bag – it was a couple of cook books and a bottle of her favourite perfume which didn’t come cheap and a small box. She removed the box and open it – it was a butterfly brooch
    “Oh Tina –that’s gorgeous “
    “I hoped you would like it “
    “Its lovely – thank you “
    Emma got up and embraced Tina “Thank you darling “
    “You deserve spoiling “ Tina said
    “I love cook books – and I was just watching Nigella on cable the other night “
    “But do you watch her for her cleavage like we do ?”
    “Oh good grief yes – she is so utterly smutty. I know there is supposed to be a link between sex and food but she doesn’t leave much to the imagination “
    “Good to know that I inherited your smut gene as well “ Tina said “ You need to get a date “
    Emma returned to her seat and smiled across at her daughter
    “I have one on Friday night with someone that Peggy has picked out “
    Tina laughed “Really – tell me more “
    “She’s a CSI investigator “
    “If you have landed Stella Bonesera – Bette will scratch your eyes out and if its Sara Sidle I will “
    “I have not landed a date with any fictional CSI investigators Tina – she is real “
    “Is she the female equivalent of Mac Taylor ?”
    “I have no idea “
    “You two can swap gruesome murder stories “
    “I am sure she can out gruesome me any day of the week”
    “What’s her name ?”
    “Val “
    “And how does Peggy know a CSI person ?”
    “I have no idea – I am taking the approach which Bette advised me – just go with it. As everyone from Donna to Rosemary to Melvin to my own daughter keep telling me how controlling I am – well for once in my sad life I am leaving it all to fate. “
    “Well done mom “
    Emma looked at her daughter “I am hoping that the good luck that brought you and Bette together might rub off on me “
    “I hope it does – you deserve some fun “
    “I know “ she lent back “Having Rosemary and Melvin in my life again has been a reminder of how much fun I used to have before I had all this to worry about “
    “But the firm is doing well ?”
    “The firm is doing splendidly well – in September we are taking on more staff than ever – we are high profile and all our huge cases are ones that we win – even when we shouldn’t “ Emma looked at the photograph of Kate on her desk “I just thought I would always have her to share the good times with”
    “I know “ Tina said “I have been thinking about what she would have said about Bette “
    They both went silent – both missing the woman that had been so much of a rock for both of them.
    “What do you think mom would have said about Bette ?”
    Emma smiled “ She would have out done Rosemary in how welcome she would have tried to make her. She would have asked a lot of questions and been the first to hug her and tell her how fantastic you are and tell you how beautiful Bette is. She would have been thrilled Ti “
    “Can I ask you something ?”
    “Sure “
    “Did you both always want kids ?”
    “Yes “
    Emma didn’t ask Tina why she had asked that question – the silence hung
    “Bette wants kids “ Tina said
    “And you don’t ?”
    “No “
    “Is that no not now or no not never ?”
    “Its no not ever “
    “Why ?”
    “I have thought about it and its never been something I have thought I might want “
    “But Bette is older than you and it has crossed her mind “
    “She kind of assumes that one day she will “
    “You want my advice ?”
    “Sure “
    “You both need to get your relationship so its solid – maybe think about one day living together. I used to think that you two were doomed because you both seem such dreamers and romantics but I see that you two compliment each other and you can and will make it work. Never say never Tina – the thought may seem alien to you right now but one day in the future the thought of a Kennard-Porter baby would be one that thrills you and makes your heart sing with joy. Just enjoy what you and Bette have and concentrate on making it even better “

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    1. This is a funny, funny chapter….. The banter between Emma and Tina with Bette trying to be the innocent bystander. The banter between Bette and Tina. Peggy and Rosemary show up….. So funny.

      Its like having a child in her first ballet!! Everyone is showing up for the send off. If I were Emma, I’m not sure that I would be feeling the love of my friends and child. It’s an overwhelming lack of trust that Emma will not do what she says she will do and she doesn’t know how to dress herself.. Hopefully she won’t come out in the well preserved hooker skirt from Tina’s youth.

      This lack of desire to have a child is somewhat concerning to me for Tina. Emma’s advice was spot on. Concentrate on their relationship and keep an open mind.

      Thanks for this chapter….love to see more…. keep it coming.

    2. Great chapter!

      Really funny that everyone showed up at Emma’s home. It is great to have your daughters and friends support.

      Tina, listen to your mom, make sure you and Bette are in a stable healthy relationship and than you both can pick up the discussion about children.

      Looking forward to the next chapter!

    3. From my experience i can say that it’s not hard to walk away from casino if you are won, much harder to walk away after you lost – walk away and not tried to return your lost money by betting more.

      Thank you for the chapter!

    4. Nice one! i love that Emma is getting more relaxed. She’s so much more sympathic :-)
      Loved the LV story and the short cross-talk with Tina and Emma about her poker or gaming skills.
      But the best scene is the last one. Peggy and Rosie showing up. Too good! Just like bffs. Wouldn’t be surprised if all four change their plans for the evening and go spying on Emma and Stella Bonasera (love the CSI references).

      Thanks for posting!

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