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    Uncharted Territory

    ‘But I thought, this was just an intake.’ 

    ‘Are you having second thoughts?’ 

    ‘Not at all.’ I say holding up my head with pride and clenching my jaw.  

    ‘Now go on then.’ 

    In a haze I move from one examination to another. The leg holders of the gynecologist table feel cold against the back of my knees. The speculum even colder, stretching me in ways I never want to think about ever again. And that’s just the beginning. Smear test, echo, something that I can’t pronounce and by the time I reach the x-rays I’m madder as hell.  

    ‘Mrs. Porter-Kennard?’ 

    ‘What?’  

    ‘You can get dressed and wait in the waiting room. We will call you in again for the results.’ 

    Entering the changing room I snatch my phone from my purse. The screen is empty. As empty as I am. Quickly I discard the gown and change back into my own clothes. In the waiting room the receptionist congratulates another couple with their pregnancy. I walk over to the corner where I was sitting previously. The pointer on the clock drags from one second to another. When she gets home tonight I have to sit her down for a heart to heart. I need to know where we stand.  

    ‘Porter-Kennard.’ The assistant yawns. And I get up with a deep sigh.  

    ‘Let’s see what we have here.’ The doctor puts on her reading glasses and leans closer to the computer screen. ‘This is…hm interesting.’ 

    ‘What do you mean?’ 

    ‘Shhh.’ She rubs her chin and leans even closer to the screen. I rub my sweater over my stomach to try to remove the sticky gel and leave my hand there. ‘There is no easy way to explain this.’ But she starts anyway. Smothering me with medical terminology and killing me with every word. ‘So long story short it would be a miracle if you would ever get pregnant. I’m sorry.’  

    Bette chokes. While covering her mouth with one hand she pulls me into her with her free arm and holds me in a way that I was craving for that day. ‘Baby…’

    ‘Maybe it wasn’t meant to be, with your doubts and my .. malfunction… maybe it just wasn’t meant to be.’ My chest tightens and my tears wet her shirt.

    Swallowing she forces back her own tears, not allowing herself to cry. ‘Don’t say that. Don’t you ever say that again. You’re my everything.’

    ‘I wanted nothing more than to be the best wife, a romantic lover, the most selfless provider, and one day, the world’s best mom together with you. I failed miserably but I still do. I do… I’m not sure how but maybe you could show me.. one day. When we’re both ok again.’ 

    ‘Do you think you can live with it? Because you said…’

    ‘I said that I love you. That’s what I said. Not nearly enough. I love you.’ She lifts my chin up and tenderly catches every tear that rolls down my cheek. ‘Please let me be everything that I wasn’t for you.’

     

     

     

    Comments

    1. They’ve been through so much that even when they are doing well, a part of me worries for them. Bette taking a trip to L.A. on her own? I’ve never been happier that Tina could join her in the end. But the last part of the chapter killed me… I wish they can have the family that they want.

    2. The good news is that this was a long chapter and the sad news is that this story is almost over and the end of this chapter was so sad. I feel for both of them. I really wish and hope that one day they will have their family!

      The description of Paris, beautiful written! I visited Paris a few times and it’s such a beautiful place!

      Glad that Tina came to LA at the end, came home, the home she left to go to Paris. This is a very important step in their relationship.

      Diana, i love her!

    3. Love the longer chapter. This is such a great story. It can’t be ending, though, that is not ok. Just when they are coming back together. It needs a second verse, please consider continuing it. :)
      One things I love about your writing is that you show the connection in the dialogue you write – no easy task – but artfully done here. It’s in the shorthand way that they talk to each other and in the way they read each other so well. You don’t tell the reader – Tina missed Bette – you add them talking about Tina being in a grumpy mood because she is accustomed to hitting snooze since Bette has been with her and this morning she had a hard time getting to work on time because of it. It’s delightful and adds such depth. Thank you !

    4. I’m one of the silent readers. I absolutely loved this story and your writing is beautiful. I almost want to go to France now! I look forward to reading more of your work.

    5. Oh my fucking God! What an brilliant chapter! The way Tina was like struck with lightning when Bette told her that she loves her. The way you used content of the purse to show Tina collecting herself and then hanging up! And then the voice text and the way Tina subtly used LDR to tell Bette that she loves her too, just bc it wouldn’t do it justice to say it over the phone for the first time after such a long time. And then their acknowledgment with ‘I got your text’/‘I got your flowers’! And what an amazing way to show through Helena and Winny what divorce does to the surrounding, it’s such a heavy ballast that impacts everyone.
      The way you showed how Bette misses working but how she grew and learned what really matters! I love Bette in the gallery! And the way you used Tina starting to write again as a reference to her growing feelings for Bette (as Tina said bf ‘It had nothing to do with Paris’). Not only that you said you are about to finish the story, but you write it in so many small details, that you make it beautiful but painful obvious! (Sorry for all exclamation marks – this story makes me that excited!) And then… at the end, the twist I’ve never seen coming… I could feel how lonely Tina was without you putting too much effort in it. It broke my heart. Seeing this story and it’s tone it wouldn’t surprise me anymore if it would happen they end up with just the two of them. It would be so sad and yet it would fit this story.

      BK is right though-sequel maybe?

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