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    Keep the gallery or give it up?

    Chapter 16

    Now that she’d turned Jenny’s criminal case over to Maddie, Alex was focused on the dissolution of the Wentworth-Porter Gallery partnership. She called Bette to schedule a meeting but instead of going to the office Bette suggested that she and Tina have dinner with Alex at the Planet.

    After they finished their entrees, and the table was cleared they split a bottle of wine and told the server to leave them undisturbed until they signaled when ready for coffee and dessert. Alex started the conversation by asking Bette what she wanted to do.

    “Sever all ties with Kelly, and I suppose that means giving up the gallery. What else can I do?”

    “Bette you’re an equal partner, your name has given credibility and stature to the Wentworth-Porter Gallery that all of Kelly’s millions couldn’t buy. You love the gallery business, you’re an icon in the artworld and you have clout. Why would you give that up when you’ve done nothing wrong?”

    “What I did wrong is not listen to Tina. She didn’t trust Kelly and warned me about making a snap decision, but I argued. I guess I was so eager to get back into the gallery business I got caught up and fell into her trap.”

    “Babe, I just didn’t trust her around you and I was right about that, but I agree with Alex getting into the gallery business wasn’t a mistake. It’s what you love.”

    “Alex, do you think I have any legal standing if Kelly made me a business partner as part of a personal agenda?”

    “Bette, I don’t doubt that Kelly Wentworth came to Los Angeles with an agenda. Maybe she’s gay or bisexual or just wanting a dalliance into an alternative lifestyle. Maybe she realized she’d made a mistake in college by rejecting you and wants to rectify it. Whatever the reason she came after you is irrelevant. You signed on as a business partner. You invested your knowledge, your reputation, and status which has proven its worth. The Porter name and your connections is what attracts clients of high caliber. From what you’ve told me of Kelly’s sexual proclivities, she’s already in breach of the moral’s clause. This isn’t about ‘buyer’s remorse’ Bette. You didn’t do anything wrong. You’re the victim here. She’s bad for business and now that she’s set her sights on you the business is in jeopardy. Your business partner is a sexual predator that made inappropriate sexual advances towards you. Her actions put the business at risk. She’s created a hostile work environment where you are not able to function in your full capacity as a partner or feel safe in her company.”

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    Comments

    1. Bat,
      It’s been a joy to travel with you on this creation on what happened with ol Kelly after she & Jenny tried to slay Bette with false innuendo that Bette was “once again” unfaithful toTina, when NOTHING of the sort was thought of nor carried out by our girl.

      Bette has always ended up in deep do-do when she thinks she’s “in control” of a situation. Pretty much she doesnt know how to say “NO”. She hates cutting ties. From the jump, Tina has been the one to see thru pretty much any bodies shytt when it comes to someone who wants to jump Bette’s bones.

      Tina is VERY AWARE that Bettes’ sexual vibes are picked up by male & female “radar” and she knows how to handle that. She knows that more often than not, Bette will UNDER-estimate the signals she is sending out and miss the “red flags of warning”.

      I love your 1st page of this chapter. Bette owns up to her unwillingness to understand &heed Tina’s warnings and is willing to take extreme measures of getting out of the gallery business rather than have it cause division between her & Tina. Oh how I love Alex’s sober& prudent thinking. She really knows the law, and that Bette’s contract with Kelly is really setup to protect Bette’s investment & reputation.

      And 3 wiskey shots & “hip-hip hurrah” that James faithfulness will be rewarded with the soon-to-be “Porter-Bolen Gallery”!!! Bette has come a LooonngggG way in realizing that other people are as gifted & talented, and responsible as she. And that her most trusted friends can and WILL make sound choices that will show their love/respect for her.

      Lastly, I like that U’re exploring one of the questions we TLW fans have had and that is “what’s the connection btwn Jodi & Kelly”? Why are they buddies??? During the restroom scene at the Dance-A-Thon where Jodi revealed that “Kelly had told her” that Bette was “unfaithful” to Tina, we all were like WTF??? What was Kelly doing even talking to Jodi about “anything”??? So looking forward to how you write scene

      • Great comment, Dumplin. I agree that Alex is a terrific lawyer and a great new character. And yes x 100 to the question of how Jodie and Kelly know each other. That was a huge loose end at the end of TLW.

    2. What I did wrong is not listen to Tina. She didn’t trust Kelly and warned me about making a snap decision, but I argued. I guess I was so eager to get back into the gallery business I got caught up and fell into her trap.”

      “Babe, I just didn’t trust her around you and I was right about that, but I agree with Alex getting into the gallery business wasn’t a mistake. It’s what you love.” THIS response is Tina at her best!

      1. Affectionate: “Babe” . . . .
      2. Intuitive & tactful: I just didn’t TRUST HER around you . . .
      3. Insightful and encouraging: I AGREE w/Alex. Getting into the gallery busi WASN’T a mistake. It’s WHAT you LOVE.

      TINA understood that as long as Bette released her energy, passion, creativity & talents in a way that fulfilled and satisfied her heart/soul, Bette was also free to release the same toward her wife & children. The grass would NEVER be “greener on the other side of the fence”. She could then fulfill another life-passion and that was to be in a monogamous, intimate relationship.

      • DumplinT

        Thank you so much for commenting and your insight into exactly what I had hoped to portray in this chapter. Both Bette and Tina are showing growth in their personal relationship and professional careers and balancing the family life. We know Bette has a tendency to overestimate herself and thinking she can control things, that are not in her control. She’s slowly learning the lesson of listening to others and accepting help and advise. I appreciate you taking the ride with me as I try to find justice for Bette for the Kelly thing. Take care and stay safe..

    3. Glad Kelly is out of the picture! Now let’s see if she had contact with Jodi before she came back to LA.

      I love to see how Tina & Bette work together as spouses, they really mastered the communication tool.

      The Porter-Bolen Gallery is a great idea, James is part of Bette and visa versa, they have such a long past and future as partners in the Gallery.

      This story line is something i remember, it looks similar to something i have read before. But that happens more often because some stories are similar but different.

      I look forward to the next chapter!

      • Bibi28

        Thank you for reading and commenting. Yes, it’s familiar because I posted it before then took it down to revised it. Glad to be rid of the Kelly partnership in the gallery, and now James and Bette have a chance to make their dream come true. Bette and Tina are definitely on the same page now and looking forward to their new life in New York. We’ll see where the Jodi/Kelly storyline goes, I’m still working on figuring it out. Take care and stay safe.

    4. Hi BAT2012

      Sorry this comment is so epically long. I am catching up on my reading and find it easier to read the whole story and drop one comment rather than do it per chapter. Hope it’s not too annoying. :-)

      So, I love this story because it was always ridiculous the way what happened with Marci was just dropped. The show always does this. It has no grasp of stakes. So this is an excellent point of departure from canon.

      >>>“Because I’m not everyone else, and you made me a promise.” Tina answered simply.<<>>In that moment she’d shattered Tina’s long-standing belief system that she had to acquiesce to Bette’s needs and wants never expecting compromise.<<>>“One time she’d just been hitchhiking from Vegas with a couple of teenagers stoned out of their minds, but the other time she floated off in a raft boat in the Pacific Ocean and got picked up by a billionaire in his yacht and sailed off to Mexico.”<<<
      This made me laugh out loud again… TLW was so soapy!

      Clever twist on the meeting of Molly and Shane when Shane is buying a gift for B&T. And of course the demise of Shane’s trust in Jenny over the letter. It was always awkward, Shane’s loyalty to Jenny and so much of her (Jenny’s) behaviour was just resolved via her death, which left so many loose ends. It’s good to see these being addressed in a logical way, with an injection of both common sense and straight-up legal consequences.

      I love that you have Bette making James a partner! That is so lovely, as he is such a loyal and supportive figure to her.

      Okay, so now we’re on a cliffie…. Was there a conspiracy between Kelly and Jodie??? I think that’s very clever if there was. I’d have loved to see that on TLW.

      Hope you can post an update at some point, but I’ll add this story to my favourites (now I worked out how to do that!) and hope to see more from you when you can.

      Thanks, BAT20212! I enjoyed reading that very much
      Largo

    5. Hi again – something went a bit funny with my last comment. I think I used a character to distinguish quotes that Word Press doesn’t like! Anyway, I hope it still makes sense.

      I meant to say that Tina’s line – that she’s not everyone else and B made her a promise – was really beautiful.

      L

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