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A fine state of affairs, part 8 by Marieke Vink


The days that followed were strange to say the least. Kerry did not want Abby to think she was avoiding her, nor did she want to give Abby hope that there was something more to expect than just being colleagues. Kerry decided that just because Abby had declared herself to her, it didn't mean Kerry should suddenly pretend to be interested in her. She had not paid special attention to Abby before so why should she start doing it now. That would make Abby think Kerry was only interested because she needed an ego boost.

"No special attention before? Come on Kerry, you know you are lying through your teeth now. You have been protective of Abby for months, you have been talking about her for weeks, the woman has practically hogged ALL our conversations lately. Who are you trying to fool? I am a shrink remember!"

"Look Kim, I am just not ready to say anything about it yet. Yes I like Abby. Yes I am a little confused after what she told me, but what do you expect me to do? Take her by the hand and tell her I want her and that I love her and that I want to do all kinds of things with her that most straight women have never even heard of? I know it is something that.........."

"Formerly straight." Kim interjected with a smile.

Kerry had lost the momentum of the conversation and Kim's remark made her go quiet.

"Formerly straight? Is that how you see me?"

"No Kerry. This isn't about you. I was referring to Abby. But now that you mention it, I almost forgot you used to be straight too."

"Your point being?"

"Just because she slept with men before doesn't make her a woman who is just curious about women. She is not the kind of person who would sleep with you out of curiosity. She knows you are much too serious and besides, she is way too classy to do that to you."

"Ouch. Touchť. OK...........look, I know you two are friends so I am sure she told you more about all the things going on in her mind. I just.........."

Kerry fidgeted nervously with her hands. Sleep had not come easy in the past few days. This whole mess had started to wear her out. How was it possible to just ignore feelings? How was it possible that Abby had to be the one telling her? Wasn't Kerry the experienced lesbian here? Had she been so blind or had she simply not paid attention to her own feelings?

"Kerry?"

Kim tried to get Kerry's attention by putting her hand over the small pair of hands on the table. Kerry looked up at her dinner companion, a look of total bewilderment in her eyes. Kim thought

"Sweetie, how bad can it be to just go for a drink? Lunch maybe. She is dying for at least some kind of response from you. Since she told you there has been nothing from you. No rejection, no acknowledgement. You have to give her something to work with. Get over your confusion and admit you are interested. It doesn't matter that you didn't see it before. You see it now, don't you?"

A long silence followed. Kerry played with Kim's long fingers. She had fond memories of those fingers on her body, inside her body. Until not long ago, the memory of Kim touching her would have been enough to bring Kerry to tears. It had taken them a long time to get over each other. Kim had found Lori, Kerry had found Sandy eventually. Neither of them had been permanent. There had been so many things unspoken between Kim and Kerry that they were both unable to move on with their lives. When Romano had offered Kim her job back, Kerry had thought she had won. Until she found a memo that the horrid little turd had made her President of County General's Diversity Committee. Kim had rescued her by volunteering to be vice-president. And so they had ended up working together for long hours, writing speeches, giving lectures and eventually, in between all the work, they had sorted through the pieces of their shattered love life. And they had found friendship instead. They decided to settle for it. Realizing they were both dynamite and although they were fine as friends, as lovers they were potentially fatal for each other. Yet Kerry sometimes still thought of Kim as the one she would always have a weak spot for. If Kim would ask, she would still give up everything and try again. You don't forget your first love so easily. But Kim never asked and Kerry hoped she never would.

Kim had been the world, the sun and the universe, the Alpha and the Omega of Kerry's world, the person Kerry would have died for without a second thought, Sandy had been respect, friendship, rebound, acceptance and sexual attraction. And now with Abby, Kerry realized there was love. Maybe it wasn't earth-shattering, maybe Abby wasn't forever. But Abby was now. And Abby was in love with her. And love was probably a much healthier feeling than the complete dependence Kim and Kerry had felt for each otherís survival.

"Yeah, I think you are right. I just didn't want Abby to think I would only come on to her because I am only curious."

"Kerry, she knows you are not just curious."

"How would she know that?"

Kim squirmed in her chair and Kerry's eyes lit up in anger.

"You didn't!!!!!!!! Jesus Kim, what were you thinking? This is MY life. You had no right no tell Abby what I tell you. What kind of friendship is it if I can not trust you?"

"What do you expect me to do Kerry? Two of my best friends have the hots for each other. I tell one of them to just be bold and tell her. She does and then the other friend freezes and does nothing. Well I am sorry but I would be a very bad friend if I did not sort of try to help you guys along just a little bit. Geez Kerry, I know you don't expect women to fall for you, but you are a bloody attractive woman and yes, women fall in love with you. It would be so nice to see you would get over your insecurities and not be so stunned and apprehensive every time it happens. You always act as if you feel nobody could ever love you and therefore they must be yanking your chain when they tell you they are in love with you. Let me tell you, I was in love with you, I loved you more than life itself, and I still do, I believe Sandy loved you too but you weren't ready to love her, but I am sure as hell that Abby is in love with you. And she is not yanking your chain. She is confused, head over heels, she admires you, respects you and very much in love with you. And in time, I believe she could actually love you. And you? Are you ready to love again Kerry? Or at least give it a try?"

Finally Kim let go of Kerry's hand. She had been taken aback by the look in Kerry's eyes. She had expected to come for dinner tonight and tell Kerry to get her ass in to gear and ask Abby on a date. She had not been prepared for the turn the conversation seemed to have taken. She and Kerry were over. For months. And she was certain she was over Kerry. And Kerry was over her. But their relationship had struck so deep, like none before, and none after. Kim had known Kerry was The One. Kim had realized that after Kerry, everything would feel like second best, unless she was able to place Kerry in a separate space in her heart. If she allowed Kerry to keep filling her heart, there would never be room for someone else. So she decided that Kerry would get her own little space and that the rest of Kim was for another woman who would some day cross her path and sweep her off her feet. It was better this way because she and Kerry were dangerous to each other. But if Kerry ever asked.................but she never did and Kim was grateful for that. As friends they were happy together, as lovers they were constantly strangling each other.

"Do you think Abby likes seafood? I make a mean paella."

"I think it might be smart to go somewhere more neutral the first time. Giulliano's is always good. Not too posh, not too busy."

"Giulliano's it is then. I trust you will tell Abby or do you think I should tell her myself?"

"No way Weaver. I am not going to make this easy for you. You are on your own from here. I promise my lips are sealed from now on. I will not play messenger anymore. I wanted to set you two up for a date and I trust you will actually ask Abby. I trust you. Now let's go or we will miss the movie. What was it again? Something about space ships and the end of the world?"

"Nah, Deep Impact. About a meteorite thatís going to hit the earth or something. Totally stupid story but it has some gorgeous women in it."

And with that, Kerry threw some bills on the table and handed Kim her coat.

A fine state of affairs, part 9