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    The Roommates – Fast Forward to 2019: Chapter 46

    Tina frowned again. “Go on.”

    “Before you and I met, I went to New York to get her to do a show at my gallery. We ended up making out, but I wouldn’t go any further with her. At the time, I felt like it was wrong to begin something with her when I was still married.,” said Bette.

    “You were still married when you met me. You’re married now,” said Tina.

    Bette stood and wrapped her hands around Tina’s waist once more. “You’re different. You’ve always been different. How I feel about you is unparalleled.”

    Tina swallowed thickly. “Go on.”

    “She and I ended up getting high together and just hanging out. Like really, super high. She agreed to do her show with me. She’ll have a spring debut at The Porter Gallery.”

    “Now you’re working with her?” asked Tina.

    Bette tightened her grip. “Yes. But I have stressed that she and I are just friends. She gets that. She respects my relationship with you.”

    Tina just stared daggers at her.

    “She came to LA for Despondent. She was with me most of the night. Kind of like….like my date.”

    Now it was Tina whose anger was boiling. She pushed Bette away from her. “What the fuck, Bette?”

    Bette sighed and moved closer, closing the gap between them. “You know what we did, T?”

    “What?”

    “We hung out in the gallery. We schmoozed the guests. And then she and I spent most of the evening talking about you. She wanted me to make sure you knew about her. She doesn’t want it to seem like there’s anything going on between her and I,” said Bette.

    Tina’s arms were now folded across her chest. “There’s nothing going on?”

    Bette held on to Tina’s waist. “No. But….”

    Tina squinted at her. “What?”

    The brunette spoke softly. “I was angry with you last night. I was wrong. I jumped to conclusions.”

    “What did you do, Bette?”

    “We were in her limo together. That’s how I followed you.”

    “Okay.”

    “And I kissed her.”

    “You what?” asked Tina. She pushed away again.

    “I kissed her, Tina. I initiated it. I was heartbroken and jealous after seeing you with Henry. But Carmen wouldn’t let it go any further,” said Bette.

    “She wouldn’t let it go any further?” asked Tina.

    “Exactly. We made out. That’s where it ended.”

    Tina looked at her. “If she hadn’t stopped, would you have fucked her?”

    Bette blushed and tried to swallow over the lump in her throat. “I want to say no. But honestly, I don’t know, Tina. Maybe I would have.”

    Tina shook her head. “What the hell? I’m out here working to keep us together and you’re making out like a goddamned teenager. In the back of a limo no less. Like fucking prom night!”

    Tina’s hands were on her hips and she was furious.

    Bette tried to stay serious, but she found that she couldn’t. She felt the tingles of a smile tickling her mouth and she did smile. And then she laughed out loud. She really was a teenager. A teenager trapped in the body of an adult. Of course she was making out in the back of a limo. That’s what teenagers did.

    These were the thoughts that sounded in her mind, making her laugh even harder.

    “Why are you laughing?” asked Tina, her face set in anger.

    “We’re both ridiculous, T. We’re a perfect match, Tina.”

    This time Bette’s eyes were watering with humor and not sadness.

    “What?” asked Tina.

    “Baby, I’m sorry. I should have told you about Carmen. I was acting silly. I’m not going to do that ever again. I love you very much, and I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner.”

    Tina was still frowning.

    Bette gently took her hands and guided them both to the couch. She lay back and pulled Tina down to her. The blonde rested her head on Bette’s chest, listening to the calming heartbeat. “No looking back, right?” asked Bette.

    Tina sighed, the anger dissipating, and snuggled against her girlfriend. It was hard to stay angry with the ripples of mirth Bette set forth. “No, Baby. No looking back. You and me?”

    Bette kissed her forehead. “You and me, T. Always.”

    Comments

    1. Funny, they both resolve things like teenagers as well. This relationship is very new and there has been no real time to form trust or commitment for either of them. Bette is upset about Tina’s lying yet she fails to see that she has been in constant emotional turmoil – the impending gallery show, the attack, the addiction to drugs and alcohol, Sidney in rehab, the efforts to terminate her marriage, her own bad behavior, the finding of Tina and dealing with Tina’s not so straight forward behavior. With the exception of the first weekend they were together, there has literally been no real opportunity for Tina to talk to Bette when she didn’t have more problems than she could deal with. So she set out to fix her problems on her own once she believed that Bette loved her and wanted her.

      As to Bette, well she has not been exactly honest either. Although she told her about Sidney, she is still hiding the attack from her. Tina has made assumptions from Bette’s behavior and physical evidence. Not once has Bette made a straight out declaration that Sidney raped her. The simple fact that she did not want Tina to know shows a level of mistrust and shame. And for a few days Bette wondered if she could ever be intimate with anyone again. These are not circumstances which Tina felt comfortable adding to her concerns with the fact that she was also married and in a difficult situation in getting a divorce.

      And the big thing that Bette has yet to disclose is why she has a teenage mind in the body of a 34 year old woman. This is actually the most major event of her life outside of being born. Although, there may be no necessity to Tina about this, it is still a form of lying to Tina.

      Bottom line is that we all lie to certain extent. We withhold information in order to control the circumstances and influence outcomes. We disclose information when its convenient and at the most opportune times. Some times it works in our favor and sometimes it causes havoc. The bottom line is – what is the purpose behind these lies and non-disclosures? I do not think that Bette nor Tina have any purpose to harm the other. Both have a noble purpose in protecting and sparing pain for the other. As their relationship grows and they know one another better and can build their trust in one another, none of these lies and incidents will be very meaningful in their futures.

      Bette is still very immature. If Bette had known that Tina was married and Tina had come to her with her plan to keep Henry clam and in the dark, would Bette had granted Tina approval to have sex with Henry? I think not. I believe that this is a case that the only way Tina has to make her plan work was to have sex with Henry. She had already set the scene up with her mom in that she was thinking about having children and with her Dad that she and Henry would be moving to New York soon. You know Henry would tell her Dad if Tina and he were enjoying the bedroom, Henry would also confirm to Stephen that Tina was talking about having children and moving to New York. This is a case where the goal is a noble one and it would be far easier to get forgiveness than get permission.

      The importance or the meaning of sexual relationship are in the eyes of the beholder. Most people have been raised to believe that sex is an intimate sharing of ones body and soul and should be only to someone in which you are committed. However in getting to that committed relationship, many have used sex as a means of exploration, self-fulfillment, sport, tension release or even as a tool to meet some objective with someone whom they are not committed at all. In this story, Bette sees Tina’s sexual relationship as a betrayal of her relationship with Tina. Tina sees this sex as being a means to get what she wants – a pacified Henry and parents. Having sex with Henry is a means to be with Bette long into the future. In this story, both Alice and Tasha see that Tina had a noble purpose behind her act and the fact that she told the truth to all of them when asked should count for something. If Tina was lying to protect herself, she could have simply said No, I didn’t sleep with Henry. If Bette had a mature understanding of her relationship with Tina as it now exist, she would accept that this particular sex act was not a sharing of her body and soul for the purpose of dishonoring her relationship with Bette. As Tina said, I saw no other alternative.

      This is an excellent chapter. I hope that Bette will get to the point where she does feel she needs to go find the alcohol whenever something gets her emotionally upset. I hope she gets to a point that when there is conflict, she can simply go to the back yard and ask for some time of solitude rather than jumping in car and heading out on the highway. Tina has been a courageous soul in that she has always run toward the problem rather than delay and avoid it when it comes to Bette. Standing and fighting is not easy, but its the only way to get proper resolution.

      This chapter and the last one are really good. I see a great examples of what communicating and forgiveness can do in a relationship. There are always two sides to a story and somewhere in the middle lies the truth. Bette and Tina have a long way to go to build a solid relationship. But they did in 2005 as well. Neither are perfect human beings, but they are perfect for each other. They just need to work on their personal problems and get to know each other better.

      Thank you for this post…..love your story….

      • I love your analysis and heartily agree. You hit the nail on the head regarding Tina and why she slept with Henry. She needed to tow the line and ensure that her father and family all believe she is committed to them. It would be harder for her to explain the continued lack of intimacy after she spent so much time buttering him up.

        This piece of your analysis was particularly insightful:

        “Bette is still very immature. If Bette had known that Tina was married and Tina had come to her with her plan to keep Henry clam and in the dark, would Bette had granted Tina approval to have sex with Henry? I think not. I believe that this is a case that the only way Tina has to make her plan work was to have sex with Henry. She had already set the scene up with her mom in that she was thinking about having children and with her Dad that she and Henry would be moving to New York soon. You know Henry would tell her Dad if Tina and he were enjoying the bedroom, Henry would also confirm to Stephen that Tina was talking about having children and moving to New York. This is a case where the goal is a noble one and it would be far easier to get forgiveness than get permission.”

    2. Geez.. I have whiplash… your killing me… lol.. Bette is funny at the end and Tina has no right to be to upset.. Bette was acting out on a lie she was keeping from her.. how was she to know.. great chapter but if I were Bette I would want to know from now on where Tina was and what she was going to do before she did it..so they would be on same page.. I still dont see how having sex with Henry is helping her cause.. If money is moved what’s the fuck purpose.. there is more Tina hasn’t revealed just wanting to know is it going to hurt lol.. pull that fucking bandaid quick… so they can go back to bed.. lol. And I will work and read. Lol thank you great as always

    3. I’m 100 % with Martha. Basically my thoughts. :-)

      Tina had sex with her (still) husband to pretend and play the dutiful, happy wife. So what? She uses him to free herself from the shackles of husband, pre-nup and father.
      I’m still curious of her plan in detail though. The move to NYC would get evil dad off her back but it is also far away from Bette. Okay, that probably means Bette would be off Darth Kennard’s radar and therefore safe. But that can’t be easy especially in this fragile state of T + B’s relationship.

      I still think that Bette could help with Tina’s plan somehow. It could give her the feeling of control of their future together. Working together and freeing Tina would give her a new purpose and more confidence in herself.

      Oh and what a statement! “Because inside, I’m really an immature 20-year-old kid.”
      I guess that is as close to the truth as it gets. I can very well imagine that in time the old memory of her “other life” would be overwritten with the experiences of her older self. Bette would forget the other timeline and only remember the life of 2020’s Bette. Just like Dana vanished.

      Okay, getting way ahead of everything ;-)

      Thank you so much for posting and moving things forward. Please continue this beautiful work of yours.

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