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Bette looked at the scars and then looked at Tina’s face, she knew what this meant. She reached out and gently ran her fingers over the scared flesh. Tina didn’t move, she let Bette touch her.
“I wasn’t worth killing yourself over Ti,”
“You have no idea, you were more than worth it you sill are. I thought I’d lost you, I thought I would never recovery. I wanted an out. a total and utter out. The motel manager found me, called me an ambulance and I ended up in San Diego, I have had three surgeries on each arm, but I have nerve damage which makes them shake. That will be with me for the reason of my life. I left San Diego and went to Boston to a rehab centre there. I had to come to terms with losing you and myself. I’m sorry Bette. I really am.”
“You have nothing to be sorry about. I hate that I caused you to do this. my worst fear was that you were dead. I called local hospitals but never thought you’d gone that far out. I’m such an ass.”
“You could be.” Tina smiled for the first time and Bette grinned.
“I see you’ve reopened the Bette Porter Gallery,”
“Yeah, the CAC let me go at the end of my contract. My father passed away shortly after you left and I used the money he left me to open the branch in Santa Monica and then once that was making a profit I opened one in New York, I’m making a good living.”
“I’m glad, you seem happy,”
“Because I’m here with you,” Bette replied.
“I don’t think I am solely the reason,”
“No, I’m pregnant, and now the morning sickness has gone I’m enjoying it. I’m lonely but I am hoping that will change.”
“Have you meet someone?” Tina asked, as she rolled her sleeves back down.
“I have remeet someone,”
“Oh, Jodi?” Tina had no idea that Bette meant her.
“I mean you,”
“Bette, I’m a mess, look at me.”
“You are still Tina Fucking Kennard. You’re still the love of my life and the woman I want to spend the rest of my life with. We can take this slow, I know this is hard. but I would like to see you, spend time with you, get to know you again. have a relationship with you again. I’m overstepping I know. but I’m pregnant. In four month’s time I’ll be ready to burst, as Alice kindly put it. I would like us to very much try and start again.” Bette smiled.
Tina reached over and the first time touched Bette’s fingers interlacing them with her own. It felt like it had ten years ago when they had first started dating. It made her feel alive, wanted. needed. Bette’s touch was unique to her.
“Bette I’ve not had sex or been with anyone since the gallery opening,” Tina admitted.
“Oh God, even after rehab,”
“I wasn’t ready, I’ve only recently started going out but I’m very aware of my scars and I don’t show people. You’re the first person I’ve ever willing shown. I’m not ready to jump your bones yet but I would like to get to know you again. spend time with you, perhaps fall in love with you again, but I have to do it on my, erm our terms.”
“I can go with that. I really can. Life has changed a lot for me.”
“Do you still live in the house?”
“No, I’ve moved, I’ve got a lovely three story house in West Hollywood. I bought about six months after we broke up. I think you’d love it.”
“I can’t wait to see it.”
“Why don’t you come by next Sunday? It’s family day.”
“I’m not sure I’m ready to see the others.”
“They have missed you, it will be okay, please.”
“Okay, I would like that. Erm, here.” Tina wrote down her cell number as well as her office number. “Call me, we can talk, get to know each other again. take the time.”
Bette wrote her own number down and passed it to Tina, who smiled and took it.
They both sat there for a little while longer, talking. Remembering their good times. Enjoying each other’s company. Remembering that before the hell of it all, they really did love each other. They were both hoping this was the start of something for them both.