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End of Chapter 45…
She heard rapidly approaching feet and looked up to see Yaya and Jena Beth rushing down the hall to see her. Jena Beth was distraught and appeared to still be wearing her pajamas despite the fact that it was almost 2:00 in the afternoon. Bette stood and walked to greet them, “what’s wrong? Where’s Rosie?”
Jena Beth burst into tears, her hands shaking as she covered her face. Yaya stepped in, leading Jena Beth to sit in the chair Bette just vacated. “She’s missing,” Yaya said, as always directly to the point. Bette’s heart, up in the clouds all day after her night and morning with Tina, fell … crashing to land in the pit of her stomach. She felt sick.
“What do you mean, missing? She’s four…” Bette looked back and forth between the two women, fighting down her anger, her panic.
Jena Beth spoke, her words trembling. “She’s gone. She’s not in the house or at the store. No one has seen her since last night. Please, Bette… she will come if she hears you calling for her, please help us find her…”
“Since last night? Are you telling me that Rosie has been gone all fucking night and you are just now coming to get me?”
“Tee, Tee… Baby, wake up…” Bette moved some hair off Tina’s face as the blue eyes slowly opened, blinked and opened wider, focusing on the brunette. Bette waited a moment, even though her heart was beating faster than she ever felt before… she waited… knowing she needed Tina. Needed her desperately.
She laid her hand on Tina’s chest where she could feel the steady beat of her wife’s heart, consistent, reliable, soothing. She could feel the warmth of Tina’s skin through the thin shirt.
“Bette? Honey. You ok?” Tina asked, she swallowed, her voice husky with sleep. She had been in a deep sleep, Bette could tell by the limpness of her body, the steady breathing, the incomprehension in her eyes.
She felt terrible for waking the blonde, knowing how important it was for her to rest, to heal. Tina’s brain was still foggy, muddled with sleep and the edges of a headache. Bette kissed her on the mouth, Tina’s lips were dry but so sweet and she kept her face close so that she could talk softly and allow Tina to wake up slowly.