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    I Will Not Let You Fall

    Holding her cup of coffee close, Tina decided to take a look at their garden one more time. As far as she knew, it had rained heavily earlier in the night, so she was going to check on the state of some of the flowers that needed special maintenance.

    She shoved her feet into slippers and headed toward the front door. Swinging the door open slowly, Tina shivered as a cold draught curled around her body, but then she raised her eyes and the world suddenly stopped.

    The earth stopped rotating and time stood still.

    Her heart stopped beating. Her lungs stopped their steady rhythm.

    Strength momentarily left her. The coffee mug slipped from her paralyzed fingers and crashed to the floor with a loud noise, its contents splashing across the hardwood floor.

    ”Bette…” her lips drew the name without releasing any sound.

    For a moment Tina braced herself by gripping onto the door frame for support as she stared with eyes wide in utter shock at the half-slumped figure that sat on the porch step, a mass of dark curly hair dangling limp against the back.

    Breathing with effort, Tina forced her wobbly legs to move away from the door and rush to Bette. She nearly fell to her knees between Bette’s legs on the lower step and immediately took Bette in her arms. She said nothing, but clung to Bette with frantic need as hard sobs racked her anguished body. Ragged breaths tore from Tina as she tried to breathe past both grief of having been close to losing Bette and relief of having Bette finally coming back to her, safe and alive.

    Somewhere between the sobs Tina realized that there was no response from Bette, physical or verbal. She suddenly realized that the body she was holding was numb and felt different to the touch. Pulling back, through the tears Tina looked at the woman who owned her heart, for the first time in half a year.

    The emaciated state in which Bette appeared sent a wave of chills running down Tina’s spine. Her face was sunken in, the cheekbones standing out sharply. Her curly hair lay greasy and lank against her head, gray strands intruding among the dark brown. Generally Bette looked like she hadn’t washed in days. She was dressed in a black tank top underneath a gray flannel shirt and black jeans – all dirty. It was then that Tina’s senses got assaulted with the smell of heavy, oily fumes of diesel.

    Comments

    1. Zhenya says

      Hi! Thank you for the new chapter!

      So, Bette is return, but is she really fully return? Because like Tina i don’t recognize her anymore. What happen with her during this month?

      And what about Tina’s secret – what is it? Maybe Tina find a way to communicate with her family in US and Bette find out?

      I guess we need to wait and see.

    2. proteonomics says

      Hi Valerie:

      What a very nice surprise, wonderful chapter.

      Finally, she is back but changed, I believe all the suffering and starving have made their toll on her. She never was the easiest person in the world, but she was much better after she left jail, but now she has gone very far back.

      I believe it’s jealousy about Kate, like when Tina was still in college and had those girls after her, Bette has gone back to that; but now, I believe Tina can make her change to her nice way to be. At least Bette is reacting and is not numb anymore as when she arrived

      I think Bette needs time, but she owes an explanation to Tina. All those emotions, hidden in Bette’s mind and heart are making too much pressure, and now we see her reaction against Tina, who has sacrificed a lot, leaving family, friends, job, house, stability, just for her, that is something Bette should consider before going crazy against her.

      This has been an excellent chapter. I look forward to the next one, I know everybody is busy, but perhaps you could post the next one soon.

      Thank you, again Valerie.

    3. Martha3128 says

      Whoa!!! What on earth is up with Bette? She is in need of some counseling badly! She is so dark and so withdrawn. Here Tina has been waiting for her for what a year and has no clue what has happened to Bette. She has had her own demons to face and control. She has had to forge a new life in a foreign land with people she doesn’t know very well and were not of her choosing. If I had been in this group, I would have insisted that Bette be treated by a medical doctor immediately. Explanation to the doctor: We have no idea why she is in this physical condition. She just show up one day like this. Yes she is our friend from America and no we had no idea she was coming.

      It takes more than a few days to get over a starving bout. And if she remained in this mental state for more than a week, then a private counselor would be brought in. She is being cold to everyone in the household, not just Tina. As to this secret of Tina’s. Bette refused to allow Tina to visit her in prison because she did not want Tina to see her in that manner. Once out of prison, she was reluctant to see Tina until they accidentally met and her friend encouraged Bette to see her and made arrangements for Bette to see her. At every crossroads, it has been Bette calling the shots. It has been Tina who has soften Bette’s heart and made her see that she really wants Tina as her life’s partner. Tina has remained loyal to Bette for years with the exception of the seventh through the tenth year of Bette’s imprisonment when she got together with Brenda, the heart doctor. Wasn’t Tina under the impression that Bette was in prison for many more years to come when she got out on parole? Bette is right; underneath it all, she is a monster. At least she is right now. The question becomes is that who she wants to be?

      I am really glad that Bette is in Auckland now. But I really want to see her become the Bette Porter we all know and love. I want to see her value and treasure Tina for the woman she is. Please do not let Bette snuff out Tina’s love for her like a candle. I feel its really close now.

      Great writing….cannot wait for the next chapter.

    4. Bibi28 says

      Hi Valerie,

      What a pleasent surpise to see a new chapter!

      Wow, what happened with Bette? What makes her to act so cold and withdrawn, especially to Tina? What is Tina’s dirty litte secret and is that one of the reasons she acts so cold to her?

      I am worried about Bette, what happened when she was forced to do odd jobs for Helena and does Helena have anything to do with Tina’s secret?

      It has been quite an attack on Bette’s body and mind, working for Helena and the long journey on a cargo ship must have been intensive without food and drink.

      Her dark and gloomy feeling she has always been known for has increased tenfold and I’m worried about her. She needs help or has to open herself to Tina so that Tina can help her to become old Bette again, the one Tina has fallen in love with.

      What nobody said in their comments is the fact that everyone who lives in the house that Bette has cared for, uses their own names and that outsiders know it. I understand they think they are safe and fully trust their partners, but it is a big risk that they have taken. Kate seems to know Tina as Tina and not by her nickname. Very unwise.

      Ok, a very large comment, but that deserves this story!!!

      I hope you will update soon! Thank you!

    5. BnTinmyhead says

      Great up date so drug out only to leave us hanging on Tina’s last words.. sounds like our Miss Helena have feed Bette a bit of information that didn’t set well with her…enough that may have pushed her off the edge. Problem is how you get her back she seems so lost almost brainwashed well I guess only time will tell right.. thank you waiting to see what up next.

    6. JBLH says

      Always so happy seeing an update from you!!

      Wow it doesn’t seem like Bette is gonna get out of this anytime soon. I am curious as to what Tina has done or what she thinks she’s done and why Bette would be as enraged about it since she was away from Tina for a long time and was the sole reason for that.

      I don’t see Bette holding that animosity if it was over Tina attempting to make that call. Or maybe it’s the jealousy between her and Kate but nothing happened as far as we know. I’m thinking like everyone else Helena fed her false information since she used to be in love with Tina. Oh man.

      Please don’t make me wait too long!!

    7. Escorpion2494 says

      Hola Valerie que bueno que hallas subido el capítulo me dejaste intrigada con lo que le pasó a bette y quisiera saber cual es secreto de Tina que bette sabe esperando con ansias el siguiente capítulo gracias por tus historias

    8. Angel1981 says

      I really don’t like how this Bette treated with Tina. She obviously forgot that Tina abandon all her life only to be with Bette.
      And about what Tina’s lie she’s talking? I bet it something to do with Helena.

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