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    Remember Who You Are 40

    ONE YEAR LATER

    Bette let herself into the house, juggling three grocery bags and her briefcase with the agility of someone used to managing five things at once. She set her keys, sunglasses and briefcase on the table by the entry way, then made her way to the kitchen to put the groceries away.

    Everything on Tina’s list found and purchased, which made her absurdly happy. She paused to notice the Mexican Sunflowers in a colorful vase by the kitchen window and smiled, knowing that meant Tina’s garden would be in full bloom and how happy that would make the blonde.

    “Notice the flowers, Bette…” Tina was always reminding her… “pay attention to the beauty around you, you are always in such a rush…”

    So, she stopped to notice the flowers, smell the roses so to speak. It made Tina happy and that was something Bette highly approved of. It had been a long year and Tina had been through so much.

    She had to go to two separate stores to find the right brand of almond milk and Kashi cereal Tina requested but was successful at Trader Joes. Which is where Tina instructed her to go in the first place when she handed her the list this morning. But the small market near her office was so much more convenient. And also woefully understocked and tragically overpriced, as Tina would tell her again when she heard Bette went there anyway.

    She took a moment to admire the full fridge, fruit and veggies, juices and creams. Condiments lined the shelves and it looked like a salad was already prepared for dinner. She remembered when half empty cartons of three-day old Chinese food greeted her on Fridays, grim reminders of her solitary life, sitting on her shelves like soldiers of failure.

    Bette Porter bringing home groceries. And not minding one bit. She still remembered when she was by herself, having lost Tina, devastated… alone. She felt that loss keenly then, the empty places on her bookshelf where Tina’s books had been, the missing pictures, the dead plants. The emptiness of the house that now practically hummed with life. It had taken a shift for both of them, a commitment to making the relationship work, to talk things out, to listen. But the shadow of the almost-loss never quite went away for her, a reminder to Bette that relationships are purposeful, and the need to stay focused on theirs.

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    Comments

    1. Hiya BK,

      Woo – this looks like a marvelous chapter.

      I will put my tired feet up, get something icy cold to drink & read to my heart’s content!!!!!!!!

      Thanks so much for all the effort you put into this.

      I am sooooooooooo looking forward to finding out what’s been going on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      All my best Lady.

        • It is just fantastic my friend. Read my comments below.

          Thank you SO very much for all the effort you put into making this well worth the wait to read.

          This SHOULD have been the way IC wrote the series & they would still be on the air & never left.

          Thanks ever so much – go raibh maith agat (thank you in Irish)!!!!!!!!

    2. Made a tall glass of iced tea and I am now sitting on the porch ready to read this chapter! Can’t wait to see where you take us on this next adventure! Talk with you when I finish reading.

    3. I was SO excited to see this update BK, and you did not disappoint! I love their intimacy, and the depth you’ve given to both Bette and Tina’s characters. I’m interested to see how things work out with bringing Lucy back into the gang. Also, loving that Tina is pregnant!

      Of course, my main delight is that you’re searching for Boo!!! I’m already in love with how you’re beginning to weave her story – I can’t wait to find out why Boo left, where she went, and who Honey is. GAH, I’m so hooked on this story! I love how involved and obsessed James is with Boo as well.

      I will wait (patiently…?) for your next update; and gurl, don’t worry about it being too long of an update – there’s no such thing – make the chapter as looooong as you want hunny!! 😂 Thanks for writing!!!! 🙏🏼🥰

      • Lots to unpack Elizabeth… why did Boo leave her only grandchild? Who is Honey? And, yes… James is obsessed as you will see in the next chapter. He could not be more excited than he is about unraveling this mystery. I will need to spend some time thinking and planning the next couple chapters, which I don’t normally do but there is a lot of history and river magic to unfold. Thanks for your interest, so glad you are along for the journey. And Bette searching for Boo was your idea so thank you.

    4. Oh, BK, you’re spoiling us with more of “Remember who..”. Fantastic! I can hardly wait to read it but I’m dead tired (it’s close to midnight) and will probably fall asleep if I start now. So I’m going to enjoy it tomorrow during breakfast.
      Until then, have a nice night!
      cheers
      kp

    5. Wow…. what a cliff hanger! As Bette says: this is the clue to lead her to Boo. Now why did Tina respond like she did? Sudden burst into tears when looking at an article which is almost 10 years old. I have a guess that Honey and Boo are tight – possibly lovers. Tina probably met her early in her life and knew that she and Boo were friends. And this is probably where Boo went when she left the river community. I really hope this is good news for Tina and not some horrible new chapter of her childhood trauma.

      Bette does need to be more open with Tina. She needs to make an effort and take the time to keep Tina updated as to the stresses and doubts she has with this pregnancy. Bette is in a better place than she was in the first pregnancy, but she has to be completely open with Tina or there will be problems.

      I realized that Bette wanted to surprise Tina with the gift of a reunion with Boo. It’s really a sweet gesture, however seeing that Bette’s disappointment at failing to find her, she needs Tina to smooth this disappointment and this feeling of failure. I just hope Tina sees this action by Bette as it is intended – a gift of love to her wife.

      Really a lovely chapter. I’m pleased that they are pregnant and that they are still close and moving forward in their lives. I’m still worried (as Bette is ) about Lucy. Lucy is such an unknown factor. Tina tends to trust people a little too quickly. Lucy has learned deception from her mother since she was in diapers. But she did not learn how to have a relationship with others because her mother did not teach here how they is supposed to work. Lucy is in her early twenties and has no close friends, no current lover, but did have a long running physical relationship with Eric. Unless Lucy is receiving counseling too, she cannot be trusted, no matter what she says or does. She may have grown up with both of her parents, but she did not get anything close to a loving, nurturing childhood. Donna was simply not capable.

      Thanks for writing this chapter…it was certainly a pleasant surprise. And personally, I love long chapters. Please give us more when you can….

      • Martha
        As always I love your in-depth analysis. Bette does need to be more open with Tina. The pressure and stress she is already feeling for the baby will only grow as Tina’s belly gets bigger so time to start unloading on how she feels. Sometimes secrets start out as well-intentioned, but Bette is at the point in her search where Tina needs to be brought in.
        You are spot on about the parenting model Donna provided – to both her girls. Being younger than Tina does not mean Lucy escaped from leaning bad habits and how to treat people. Time will tell. I have a feeling Bette will be ever vigilant. More to come…

    6. I just adore this story. I have been trying to figure out why. For one thing there is a kind of quiet grace in the way you describe Bette and Tina’s love for one another and also in the general telling of the story. There is a lyrical even poetic quality that is quite beautiful. Even when filled with drama. The flow and pace enable the reader to connect with the characters in a very meaningful way. Bette’s shopping excursion is just one example: “She took a moment to admire the full fridge, fruit and veggies, juices and creams. Condiments lined the shelves and it looked like a salad was already prepared for dinner. She remembered when half empty cartons of three-day old Chinese food greeted her on Fridays, grim reminders of her solitary life, sitting on her shelves like soldiers of failure.” The simple act of shopping at Trader Joe’s and later looking inside the refrigerator reveals so much about Bette. The well stocked frig symbolic of just how right and healthy both literally and figuratively she and Tina had become. You have significant talent.

      Bette’s love for Tina is so immense. And vice versa. Even as Bette endeavors to find Boo and feels she has failed and reflects on her fears regarding letting Lucy into their lives – every move and every thought motivated by her love for Tina. She knows she needs to share her concerns with Tina as confirmed by her own thoughts and her conversation with Shane. Yes, she needs to open up to Tina. And she is trying. Please, Tina, see Bette and listen and recognize her unselfish purity of heart.

      I am so incredibly happy you have continued this story and appreciate the time you put into your chapters. The effort shows in the quality of your writing. I like that the chapters are a little longer. I was not surprised that Bette decided to look for Boo and am captivated to learn about Honey. And I am a little unsure about Lucy. Depends on if she is having any contact with Donna. But I am thinking you are tying up loose ends and paving the way for our girls to become blissfully happy parents. This is your fault as I am still on a high from the previous chapter and their trip to the river. And luckily for us the journey continues. I feel the need to start at the beginning once more. This is a truly beautiful story.

      P.S. I would be remiss if I did not include more of my previous example. This reveals so much: “She had to go to two separate stores to find the right brand of almond milk and Kashi cereal Tina requested but was successful at Trader Joes. Which is where Tina instructed her to go in the first place when she handed her the list this morning. But the small market near her office was so much more convenient. And also woefully understocked and tragically overpriced, as Tina would tell her again when she heard Bette went there anyway.” This made me laugh and smile. So very Bette. So very sweet. Baby steps. Bette will most likely always be a work in progress. But she is also totally committed to getting there.

      • Billy
        I am humbled by your kind words and so appreciate what you said. I am not a writer by trade so this is really just a fun hobby and it is so nice to see that you and others have enjoyed my efforts at telling a story. I did not think about the symbolism of a fully stocked fridge and what that meant as far as the health and well being of Bette’s relationship but you are so right. To me, Bette always gives so much outwardly while inside she is not doing as well. I try to show that in small ways that implicate a bigger picture and you see it too. Thank you.
        I loved the chapter with their trip to the river too. It stands out to me for many reasons, but I think when ever we can get them away from their normal settings they show the connection and love they have for each other in new and interesting ways. Tina’s background is completely different from Bette’s and learning about it adds a layer to Bette’s understanding that is fun to write about.
        Thank you for commenting and for your thoughtfulness in your post. I love hearing what parts of the chapters resonate with readers so please stay with me as we continue this journey together.
        BK

    7. Wow I sat down with my favorite vodka and cranberry juice and settled in for (I looked ahead) 30 pages of what I knew would be enjoyable. Well you certainly didn’t disappoint me! I am as on the edge of my seat for the next chapter as I have been for these 30 Pages you are gifted truly!

      • Sharon
        I love how everyone is telling me what they are drinking while they read the story. I love a good vodka and cranberry myself so I think you made an excellent choice in beverage! So glad you are enjoying the story and hope you continue to enjoy the story as it unfolds.
        BK

    8. Never, never apologise for too long a post on this wonderful story! You could apologise for a cliffhanger:-)!

      I agree with everyone who says how much they love the way you have progressed Bette and Tina’s characters and their relationship in this Story and love reading Bette’s thoughts!

      Please post more soon, as long a post as you like!
      Thank you for sharing your talent, stay safe,
      SG

      • Thank you SG. I will half apologize for the cliffhanger. At that point I realized how long the chapter was going to be AND I needed time to figure out where the story goes next so BOOM. Stay safe!

    9. Hey BK,

      My heart always jumps in joy when i get a notification that you have posted a new chapter!

      It is such a wonderful treat to read about your Bette and Tina!
      ” I agree with everyone who says how much they love the way you have progressed Bette and Tina’s characters and their relationship in this Story and love reading Bette’s thoughts!” Thanks for this quote SassyGran! I fully agree 💯 with it!

      They have learned to cherish their love, to not take each other for granted, learned to open up and talk with each other honestly.

      I am not so sure about Lucy, like Bette i think she is able to hurt Tina again but i understand Tina’s wish to see if they can build a healthy relationship as sisters. Tina knows and is really listening to Bette’s fears about phrase three.

      And the best news is that that Tina is pregnant!!! I am just as excited as Bette and Tina! And Kit reminding Bette about the daddy blues when she told her she was a bit weepy today, fantastic and it served it purpose, Bette did talk to Tina about it! The most important for both is to communicate at all times so that they will not fall back in old behavior.

      And poor Bette, so devastated that another link to find Boo was up to nothing, but due to James termination there is a possible link with Honey. I find it so sweet of Bette to try to find Boo for Tina, but Tina bursting out crying when she sees the picture is quite upsetting and worries me!

      BK, you did another fantastic job with this chapter!!! Thank you my friend 😘

    10. Oh BK,
      This story makes me so happy. They are so lovely with each other and the way you express that in words is so beautiful. I love a weepy Bette, so fiercely protective of her wife and her new baby….Baby!!!! I’m so excited for them.

      And I understand Bette wanting to surprise Tina with finding Boo. She would do anything to make Tina happy, and it’s the one missing piece. Who is Honey?!?! Can’t wait to find out. Again, I love a good cliffhanger!

      Oh girl, and the shower sex was amaaazing. Loved the positioning, and how true it is that Tina on her knees was definitely the one in control.

      Oh yeah, and you gave an awesome nod to one of my favorite lines of Bette’s from the show! “We are going to deploy a mission to ascertain the disposition and intent of one Ms. Lara Perkins.” Yesssss!

      Can’t wait for the next chapter. This story is just so beautifully written.

      Risky

      • Risky
        I had written the shower scene and a good part of the chapter when you posted your hot and steaming shower scene and I was like oh noooo, I can NOT compete with that. But it fit the narrative and the scenes were so different that I left it in. Your Bette pulled out all the stops with the colored lighting and shower jets, so sexy!
        And thanks for catching the quote on the mission deployment, it is one of my favorite lines from the OG Lword too. You have an eye for detail my friend!
        Looking forward to the next chapter of your story. I am worried that the time for fun and pool gatherings is over and they will have to start the investigation into the golden apple. Your story is very James Bondish (minus the villain with the cat on his shoulder… unless that is coming) so I hope there is more leather and motorcycles and Tina hanging on to Bette for dear life.

        Enjoy your weekend
        BK

        • BK, U’re right that this thrillah is definitely James Bondish, but I see Goldfinger hold up in some castle in the high Swiss Alps plotting & planning shit.

          He will meet his match messing with leather-clad, bad ass riding Bette & Shane 😎😎. I actually Goggled the bikes since Risky described them in such detail. YUP! NO wonder those two couldnt wait to take those beauties for a spin!! Dangerous!!

        • I know exactly what you mean about the shower scene. That happens to me, too. I read a chapter of your story or another of my favorites and realize that something sounds similar to a chapter I wrote in May, but haven’t posted. But these stories are all so different. Don’t ever think that’s you’re competing with any of them or that you need to remove anything because of it, I don’t. I think it’s really cool how we are all writing about the same characters we love. There’s bound to be a little overlap. Plus, there’s really only so many places that you can make love without it being strange, and the shower is a good one. So excited where your story is heading and can’t wait to find out who Honey is! I love your Bette and Tina!

    11. BK,
      Know matter when you post, or how many chapters you heal us with, it only takes a moment and we are there in the words of the pages.

      Comments from: Collins, Finn422, Elizabeth, Kiwipit, Martha3128, Billy, SassyGran, Bibi28, Sharon, RiskiKity and the others to come COMPLETELY express my heart for sure! 😍

      Somehow you always have humor that 😄. That part of how Tina told Bette that she knew of her secret admirer the Manager at Trader Joe’s had her clerks (with googly eyes)running around filling up the cart with all the stuff on (Tina’s) shopping list had me 🤣🤣🤣. Tina KNOWS Bette so well😜. She knew it was one thing for Bette to agree to go grocery shopping and quite another for her to actually bring home what was on the list! HeHeHe!

    12. BK, what a wonderful chapter! No need to apologize for the lenght of it, I thouroughly enjoyed every page :-) After I read it this morning, I took some time to let it settle and think about my comment.

      First of all, what a cliffhanger! Seems like despite all therapy Tina’s past can still unravel her quickly. But I’ll think positive and maybe it’s a good, emotional memory of Boo that got Tina all teary. I hope Bette is misinterpreting her reaction and Tina is simply overwhelmed. Can’t wait for the story behind Honey and the necklace to be revealed. I understand Bette though, why she did all the investigations without telling Tina. She started it during Tina’s phases of therapy, so she wouldn’t burden her with the search results as long as they led to nothing.

      It’s interesting that Bette still seems insecure and unsure of Tina. Why does she still fear that Tina will leave her?
      I hope that Tina will show her strong side and will bring Bette to talk about her fears. She has to get to the bottom of Bette’s insecurities and show her wife that there is no need for Bette to put pressure onto herself.
      Not even with more responsiblities of doing the shopping or cooking.
      Love this quote: “..with a baby coming… she would need to take more of a role in the shopping and homemaking.” As if Bette is looking for every small thing where she could stumble and fail (in her own perception only) with the consequence that Tina will leave her.

      I really hope that she finally trusts in herself that she is good enough for Tina, that they are equal partners. It’s cute how Bette does everything to make Tina happy. But it’s just as important that she cares for her own happiness as well. She needs to let Tina take care of her as well. Everyone else sees how great and solid their love is, why won’t she?

      Money and jobs aren’t issues this time around, they both have no experience in raising a child and didn’t have the “model parents” to learn from – not only Bette. But they have so much love to give to a child, Tina needs to get Bette to see that they will face every challenge together.

      I noticed you wrote “…her bride..”. They always referred to one another as “wife” but are they already legally married? Maybe a proposal from Tina would help Bette to see that Tina is in for life?

      I love how you show us how their bond strengthened during the last year. So sweet how they still get their strenghth, their energy from one another. A touch, a hug, even a look is enough to power up their emotional batteries.
      There are so many little things by which you portrait their happiness of being together.
      The scene when Bette enters the house comes to my mind “..Tina’s running shoes on the mat just outside, her running watch on the table next to her cell phone. She sighed. Content. Home.”
      Pure happiness of having Tina in her life. Love it.

      Gosh, there is so much more in this chapter. Lucy back again? Shane’s comment, Kit’s observation….
      Definitely worth a few re-reads.

      Thank you for sharing with us, BK. It’s been a pleasure once again. Time for La Ola to cheer you.
      Anxiously looking forward to the next chapter, even if it’ll be shorter ;-)

      Take care, stay safe and sound
      KP

      • KP
        This is a wonderful, wonderful comment and exactly why I love when readers engage and ask questions. You broke down the chapter like a thesis my friend, and I really appreciate how insightful you are. So many conflicting emotions for our dear Bette with a baby coming – and she does not handle emotions very well on a good day. Hopefully this will evolve as she finally comes to the realization that Tina is in for the long haul (current rubbage of a show not withstanding).
        You gave me some things to think about, which is great. Thank you so much!
        BK

    13. Hello BK,

      Wow, you had us hooked from the first chapter of this awesome novel & you have not disappointed in the least all these chapters later!!!!!!! This has truly been one of THE finest novels I have ever read on this site, or in actual print for that matter!!!!!!! Congrats my friend.

      You shower scene was smoking HOT!!!!!!!!!! It just furthered their unique connection & deep desire for each other.

      And as many of your other fans have said here – Bette Porter shopping?????????? OMG – & then Tina’s explanation for why Bette goes to Dale’s – funny. And oh so loving that Bette would go anywhere in the universe for Tina!!! Such love & devotion.

      And Tibette going to be Mommies!!!!!!!!! Lovely!!! This time things have to work out for them – RIGHT?????

      Bette with her Daddy Blues!!! Poor baby

      Like KP mentioned – I don’t remember them actually marrying? Bette called Tina her ‘bride’????

      Lucy?????? Will she turn out to have some good in her???

      And then Bette trying to find Boo – awesome & if I know you mt friend – it’s just a matter of time. But then, Who is Honey?????

      Much more to reveal & I am sooooooooo looking forward to it.

      Awesome writing BK & sooooooo proud of you!!!!!!!!!!

      • Collins
        Thank you for your kind words. I so appreciate the support from you.
        Yes, gotta love Bette with Daddy Blues. As they would say in the south…. bless.
        Not sure about Lucy yet…..
        Stay tuned!
        BK

      • Thank you SUPE, loving your story too. I love the idea of seeing more of Bette and Tina in love while they are parents, not arguing over money and spending time at monasteries. LOL

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