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‘I can’t see me loving nobody but you, for all my life . . .’ Tina half sang, half hummed, as she rinsed their cups and Bette switched off the lamps and TV.
They’d talked a little about the ending but, really, what was there to say? They liked it. They felt hopeful. Above all, though, it didn’t matter! Because it wasn’t them.
‘Crazy shit indeed,’ Bette smiled, echoing her fake self’s words as she went to set the alarm.
‘Y’know, it’s a shame we can’t let Kit see that,’ said Tina, who was standing holding Solly in her arms like a big doggie baby.
‘Well, we can’t,’ said Bette, as if Tina had not just said that.
‘I know,’ Tina laughed. ‘But we could have a lot of fun with her and what she said to you on the Pink Ride.’
Bette now laughed too. She’d told Tina many, many years ago about her sister’s trepidation about them getting back together that time when their affair had come to light in such an awful way. And the show was, if nothing else, an interesting counterfactual around what might have happened, how Kit might have been proved right, if Tina and Bette had not shown up the way they did, day after day, year after year, in therapy and in daily life, in every thought and intention, following their hearts, nourishing their passion, protecting their friendship as their true compass.
Now, on the kids’ landing, they took the slightly unusual step of looking in on Angie, just opening her door a tiny crack. She was lying in bed, on her tummy as usual, fast asleep with Wide Sargasso Sea on the floor where it looked to have fallen from her hand.
Tina leaned back so Bette could see her before pulling the door closed and moving on to Ben. He, too, was out for the count. Spread-eagled on his back in just boxer shorts beneath a huge black and white poster of Muhammad Ali. Bette rubbed Tina’s back. Just the tiniest hint of loving impatience to get to bed, to continue what they’d started earlier before either of them gave in to school-night common sense.
Next, it was Sasha. Curled up with Pat, the little blue and gold fishes in her nightlight throwing dancing shadows over her beautiful form.
Bette moved in behind Tina and spoke close against her ear.
‘I know I’ve not been the biggest fan of that show but I liked that ending.’
Tina smiled. ‘Our story is better.’
‘Yes,’ said Bette.
The slightly sibilant ‘s’ made Tina’s skin prickle with arousal. Bette knew it would. It was why she’d said it. It was the way they were.
Tina leaned back against her wife. Bette kissed her neck and tightened her arms around her waist. Solly stood at the bottom of the stairs, waiting, like we all do, for the next chapter.