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    is this love chp 121

    CHAPTER 121

    Tina threw a pile of clothes on her bed and picked the first one up. It was a pair of jeans that had seen much better days – there was a rip in the knee. Tina shook her head – ripped jeans was not a look that she liked that much so she took them off the hanger and threw the jeans on the floor. As she now had all the time on her hands there was no reason why she shouldn’t make her priority de-cluttering her stuff so there was less rubbish when she moved in with Bette. She had an interview with the MBA Director of Studies later in the week but until then she had lots of time on her hands. She was still trying to get her head around the wonderful gift that Bette had given her – her own study in Bette’s house. She had started to go upstairs to just stare in awe at how beautiful it was – she was lucky in ways that it was almost impossible to articulate. What she wanted to do now was to make Bette happy by moving in as soon as she could. It was in her mind that they would spend their first Thanksgiving together – that would mean a lot to both of them and by Christmas they would be getting used to sharing their lives. Tina picked up the second item, regarded it for a few minutes and cast it aside to the pile that was going to the women’s refuge. She was well into her task when someone knocked at the door. It was lunchtime so maybe it was Bette – but if it had been Bette she would have called to ask what Tina wanted for lunch.
    “Good afternoon Tina “
    “Hello mom “ Tina said less than enthusiastic at seeing her mom at the door.
    “Are you going to invite me in ?”
    “I guess so – come in “
    Emma walked in and looked around the sitting room – there was a large pile of cardboard on the sofa. Emma looked at the cardboard and then back at Tina.
    “I am starting to pack my stuff so I can move in with Bette”
    “So soon ? I thought you were not planning to move before Christmas”
    “I don’t have anything else to do with myself do I ?”
    Tina was expecting an argument with her mother about the job. Not only was Tina annoyed that her mother seemed to think that she should still take the job but it was also the whole attitude that Tina was seemingly incapable of making a decision.
    “You have a job – a very good job with the Peabody Foundation”
    “I don’t – my contract runs out on Friday for the part time job and I didn’t sign the contract for the other job and I will not be “
    Emma’s sigh was very obvious – Tina crossed her arms and looked at her mother
    “Why would you want me to work for a woman who has been so duplicitous towards you and Helena ?”
    “Because none of it has anything to do with you “ Emma replied
    Tina really couldn’t understand why Emma was taking this attitude
    “It has everything to do with me “
    “Its between Peggy and Helena and me “
    “You are my mother “ Tina said “So yes – it damn well has got everything to do with me. She tried to get you to be unfaithful to Helena “
    “I knew it was a set up”
    “And it doesn’t bother you ? It doesn’t bother you that Peggy would stoop so low ?”
    “Not really – I have calmed down and if I disapproved of someone my daughter was dating I am not 100% sure that I would not do everything that I could to end that relationship”
    “So its just as well you approve of Bette or you would be sabotaging us ?”
    “I don’t know – I know that Bette is good for you “
    Tina frowned “Have you ever tried to sabotage any of my relationships ?”
    “I would have liked to scupper your last disastrous relationship but I didn’t – it was not easy “
    Tina shook her head “You are basically accepting what Peggy did – you cannot be serious – you are condoning what Peggy did – she tried to split the two of you up”
    “Yes but she didn’t and if either of us had fallen for Peggy’s trick well then – it would not have been a good comment on our relationship. The fact is that I saw through it and we faced Peggy down and for 3 weeks she has left us alone “
    “And does this calm attitude towards what Peggy did extend to Helena not resigning from the company “
    “Helena’s resignation stands. She was thinking of moving on anyway – I am sure she told you and Bette that in past. So she is looking at her options “
    “So am I “ Tina said – there was no way that she understood what on earth was happening in her mother’s crazy head. Talk about double bloody standards.
    “And what are your options ? Going back to work for that ghastly charity ?”
    “Oh stop being such a fucking snob mother. They took me on when no one else would and I was happy there and I did a lot of good work. Just because I worked with poor people and you only defend people with more money than brains – or morals”
    “Those PEOPLE paid for your schooling “
    This was an old argument between the two of them – one that Tina just didn’t want to re-hash. Neither of them was even prepared to see the other person’s position so it was just a waste of oxygen. Tina shook her head
    “I am not working for Peggy . I think what she did was despicable and you two seem to be just shrugging it off. Oh and thanks for the email telling me to take the job – that ruined a day of my holiday – but you probably knew that”
    “WHAT ! “
    “You heard me – how the hell do you think I reacted when I got that email ? I was shocked – though that’s probably my fault for being shocked at anything you do. I am not going to work for Peggy – I do not like the way she thinks that she always knows what is best for everyone. If she thinks that its okay to pull stunts like that on her own daughter what the hell does she think its okay to do to people who work for her”
    “She isn’t like that “
    “How the hell do you know ? “
    “I think you are being unnecessarily emotional about this Tina – you have to think about what is best for you. What are you planning to do ? “
    “I have plans “ Tina said as haughtily as she could
    “Such as ?”
    “Plans I will tell you about when I am ready “
    “Meaning you have no plans at all – really Tina – I can tell when you are lying”
    “I am not lying – I have something in the pipeline. Bette and I talked a lot about it when we were on holiday and I made some enquires “
    “So – why can you not tell me ?”
    Tina knew that it didn’t take much to turn her into a stroppy teenager again – and she could feel the same thing happening now
    “Because nothing has been sorted – I am going to see someone later in the week and in the meanwhile I am going to get rid of a lot of things that I don’t want or use so that when I move in with Bette she is not faced with my junk “
    Emma looked annoyed
    “And what does Bette say about you turning down the chance to earn almost $90,000 a year ?”
    “Bette wants me to do what is best for me and she accepts that working for Peggy is impossible at the moment “
    “it’s a unique woman who would say that it didn’t matter that her girlfriend had turned down that amount of money “
    Tina was just about keeping her cool “What matters to Bette is that I am happy and she knows that I would not be happy to work for Peggy”
    Emma’s “tut “ spoke volumes, Tina mentally counted to ten to calm herself down
    “Bette is amazing -I am very lucky to be with her and I do not intend to do anything to let her down – her or me. I know that its not just about me any more – its about the two of us “
    “And how will you pay your way ?”
    “I am not worried and neither is Bette. I will find a job even if its packing shelves”
    Tina had deliberately used that as an example so it would annoy her mother just a little bit more. Emma shook her head
    “One of these days you will realise how privileged an upbringing you had and that you cannot keep freewheeling “
    Tina’s patience was coming dangerously close to snapping “ What is it mother ? Is it that you cannot understand how any daughter of your has the morality to refuse to work for a woman who thinks its okay and even reasonable to try and break up her daughter’s relationship by paying two escorts to tempt them. I am sorry for being a disappointment to you. It looks like I inherited Kate’s moral standards as you don’t have any. If you will excuse me I am going back to sorting out my clothes. I am donating some of my old things to a women’s refuge – though I suppose you cannot understand that gesture either “
    With that Tina turned and went back to her room. She heard the front door clashing a few seconds later. Tina sat on the edge of the bed and took several deep breathes – it was amazing how her mother could make her an angry as she could. She sat trying to calm down before giving up and going off to get changed so she could go for a long run. There were times when she agreed with Bette who had once said that running was the only thing that helped her to placate her demons. Tina’s demon was alive and well and called Emma Kennard.

    Page 1 of 3123


    1. Well done Tina… now Helena needs to go tell Emma to back off. Leave Tina to make her own decisions and live her own life. Emma job as chief caretaker and decision maker for Tina is over and has been for several years. If Emma wants any kind of relationship, she needs to understand that it is not Tina role in life to do what her mother thinks is best, no matter how well intentioned and how strongly she believes it to be for the best. Emma just needs to let her daughter live her life and offer advice when asked.

      I know this is fiction, but I found the base salary of $90,000 per year incredibly low for a top executive position in New York City that required a 50 to 60 hour per week time commitment and much travel. Throwing in an MBA as perk plus other normal executive perks still puts it into the low end of compensation for such jobs. Compare Tina’s offer to say the Communications Director for the White House – its a high hour demand, much travel, leaving little personal time for family. That job pays $175,000 per year and is considered low pay for such demands but is limited by law to that level of pay. Peabody Foundation is competing for Tina with similar free market employers whom they perceived to have superior skills and has been given a test run. Further, if Bette is not clearing over $250,000 per year after expenses (lease payments, salaries, supplies, utilities and taxes), she would be hard pressed to meet her personal life style expenses – restaurants and bars, weekends away, gifts to parents, and three week away in the West Indies. Living in New York City is not cheap. And since all indications were that Tina’s offer was higher than Bette’s annual take from her gallery, the figure came in as a surprise. Based on that, Peggy’s offer does not carry the attraction that was indicated. In fact, it would be a no brainer to turn it down. In defense of the offer, I would presume that Tina’s salary from the book store and her part time position at the Peabody would probably total only about $75,000 per year tops. So $90,000 would look like a significant increase. But Tina should not be comparing the new job to the what she was doing. She needs to compare the new job to similar situated jobs with the same requirements and skill sets in the geographic region. And if Peabody Foundation really wants Tina, they would at least meet competitive rates for similar jobs with similar skill sets in the New York area.

      Sorry, that’s a bit technical

      I love the story…Tina is doing great. Hang in there. And keep it rolling.

      • Kinda witcha on whether there was a simple “typo” on Tina’s base salary, but I personally was a “government” worker so not knowledgeable as to what private-sector executives would earn for NYC. Is $190k more true to reality??

    2. Love this story. Good for Tina. Glad that she kept her plans to herself. But admit to trying to sort it out. Emma is so pompous. Really despise that woman. Always trying to tear her daughter down. Shameful. It’s all about money and power. She acts ashamed of Tina when she should be very proud of her and that is just terrible. She claims to have good intentions but clearly that is not the case. Kate is probably the only one who was ever able to put Emma in her place – and now it is probably Rosemary and Melvin and Bette and maybe finally Tina as well.

      Also, this is not an excuse, but at least Peggy has a more personal reason for being concerned about Helena’s relationships: past financial use and wanting to one day soon have grandchildren. Helena’s judgement isn’t that great having invited Dylan to her party. Why did she do that? Peggy sees it. Even Bette knows this about Helena and she knows why Peggy feels the way she does. This does not excuse Peggy at all. Helena deserves to make her own mistakes. But Peggy has seen Helena as rather weak in the past and used and hurt by women interested in her for her money. Of course this is not the case with Emma but Peggy also believes a grandchild is off the table while Helena is with Emma. At least Peggy has motives that are somewhat understandable. Peggy feels badly about Tina. Emma is flippant. Tina should not break ties with Peggy. Emma is just plain mean.

      This being said, Helena coming to talk to Tina is pretty strange in my book. I am actually disappointed in her. Also disrespectful to both Tina and Bette. She has quit the Peabody Foundation for the time being claiming she wants to see what else is out there. She also knows it is hers whenever she chooses to return. Nice problem to have. She tells Tina that she understands and accepts Peggy for who she is as well as her intentions. That is fine for Helena. That is Helena’s choice. I even get it. That is their orbit. But Emma and Tina is a different matter and should be off limits. Frankly Helena doing Emma’s bidding is kind of creepy if you ask me. Helena wanting to be with Emma at all is odd. Seems she has gone from one controlling woman to another. Helena decides to get out from under Peggy’s thumb only to take orders from Emma? This is not a truly free Helena. Helena knows she is wrong to try to convince Tina but will she double team Tina or anyone else whenever Emma barks? What attracts Emma to Helena? Remember she wanted to fix her up with Tina. I wonder how Emma will ultimately react to an unemployed finding herself free spirit no longer attending society functions Helena? What if Helena decides to do charity work? Interesting times ahead. Love it!!!

      • Billy I agree
        I think it was strange that Helena came to talk to them too. Also that Bette didn’t get upset with her, given that Rosemary in another chapter said Helena said something to them as well. Too bad, this should be a really happy time for Tina… moving in with Bette and finally finding her path to a great career that she will be really good at. I feel for her, a meddling mother, a meddling best friend of her partner and having to leave a job she seemed well suited for. Just as she is gaining some confidence too.
        Great story Ally, even better because we don’t have to wait too long to get the next installment. Thank you so much for this break away from a crazy world…

        • Yes it is a bit overwhelming. And they return to a pile on from both Emma and Helena. Helena should not have bypassed Bette. No wonder Tina has moments of doubt about Bette and worries that she will finally get tired of all of the drama. Poor Tina. Not sure what it will take for things to calm down. Bette is so easy going about it. Will she stay that way?

    3. To me, EMMA is NOT, no matter her words, interested in doing “what’s best” for Tina! Not by a long shot. She kept saying that what happened was between herself, Peggie & Helena Y E T she sends Helena to supposedly fortify her trifling argument. 🤮

      She clearly doesnt “really” give a flip about Tina nor the effect her intrusions may have in diminishing the relationship between Tina & Bette, should Bette fall into disfavor with her up the road. Emma will eventually set Tina up to have to “choose” between herself & Bette . . . And she will loose!

      Emma’s motivation is money/things first. Period. From the jump, Emma was set to displace Bette by “tempting” Tina with Helena because Peabody’s have lots of 💰💰💰; so it’s no wonder she quickly forgave Peggy for the shit she pulled 🤨

      Gosh I’m glad Tina pressed through the heaviness that her Mom has used to make her feel like a “teenager” who’s decisions and choices are ridiculed. A SUPER revelation from Tina is that she DOESN’T have to share her dreams with everybody. Thrilled that Emm couldn’t get Tina to spill the beans. Emma’s “dream” is to FOREVER control Tina’s every step 😡

      As is true in real life, NOT everybody understands or approves of your dreams, because your impact is revealed when we fulfill our dreams, our way. Keeping some dreams in the safe cocoon of our own thoughts is a MUST more often than not, E S P E C I A L L Y when a domineering, abusive person is in our life.

    4. Thinking about Bette . . . How it “seems” like she may be blaise in not commenting, nor jumping in to “defend” Tina. I think she just has years of experience in watching a domineering/controlling person like Peggy operate. Especially when it comes to manipulating Helena

      She’s a friend to both women but for different motivations. I think Bette has also spent innumerable hours talking to her parents and has heeded wise counsel to stay as much s is possible, out of other people’s’ business.

      I think she is also forever diligent in knowing that either of these two women could or would allow themselves to become antagonist with respect to her and Tina. She KNOWS that Tina is her future.

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