A story of lesbian love.
The sexy bitch with the bloodshot eyes stood at the counter indifferently. I knew immediately upon seeing her that I wanted her.
I met Rhonda in June, 2001. It was a warm summer evening and I went into the Amour Du Jour Party Store for a cold six-pack and a pack of Zig Zags. As I walked up to the counter to pay, our eyes met. I was drawn into her soul immediately and I knew there was something beneath the surface that was causing her great pain.
“Seven Twenty-nine,” she said coolly.
“Can you break a fifty?” I asked as I put the papers in my pocket.
“I guess so,” she remarked as she sifted through the cash drawer. I handed her the bill and she gave me my change.
“Can I have a bag please?” I didn’t really need one but I didn’t want to leave. I was attracted to her despite her cool demeanor. As she hurriedly put the beer into a sack, I asked if she was having a bad day.
“Yes,” she answered as she shoved the package toward me across the counter.
“Anything I can do?”
“Okay, well, see you later.” I wasn’t ready to leave but was at a loss for an excuse to stay.
“Bye,” she muttered.
I walked out reluctantly as if something was tugging at me to stay. I glanced at Rhonda as I left, and her facial expression indicated great sadness.
I made it a point to stop at Amour every night. Each time I tried to strike up a conversation, she seemed too distracted to say much of anything. One day, before walking in, I decided to ask her out. She always wore a leather armband and had a very cool rainbow prism tattoo on her right upper arm. I had a feeling, or maybe it was wishful thinking, that she was gay. As I placed a bag of chips and a pint of butter rum Schnapps on the counter, I asked her, “Having a pretty rough time of it, aren’t you?”
“Yeah, I guess.” I was hoping for more conversation this time.
“Anything I can do?” I asked again as I had a few times before.
“I don’t think so. Let’s just say my heart is broken.”
“I’m really sorry.” I wanted to sound sympathetic but the selfish side of me saw this as a promising possibility. “I hate to see you so sad. Hey, would you like to go for a drink after you get off work?” I was stunned at my straight-forwardness. Rarely did I have such nerve.
She looked surprised at first, but then a slight smile appeared on her face. Perhaps the dyke earring I always wore had given me away, too.
“Do you live around here?” she asked, the first hint of friendliness surfacing.
“Yeah, just a few blocks away.”
“Well, I could meet you at D’s at 11:15.” I quelled my excitement at her mention of a gay bar, giving further indication of her sexual orientation.
“OK,” I said. “See you then.”
As I picked up the beer, I smiled at her and saw her eyes tearing up. I knew she was deeply troubled. I don’t know what drew me to her, but something about her assured me that she’d show up at D’s that night.
I walked into D’s fashionably late at about 11:20. I looked around the crowded, smoky room. It occurred to me that I didn’t even know my new friend’s name. I spotted her sitting in a booth near the back. I walked over and sat down across from her.
“Hi,” she said shyly.
“Hi. By the way, my name is Marie.”
“I’m Rhonda.” Her deep voice was timid as she cast her eyes downward.
“I bet you’re glad to be off work.”
“Do you work full time there?” I struggled to initiate some conversation.
“Well, you seemed pretty upset at Amour today. Do you want to talk about it or just forget about it and have a few drinks?”
“I don’t know.” I was getting nowhere fast. I tried to think of some titillating conversation but wasn’t having too much luck.
“Well, maybe it seemed pushy asking you to meet me, but I thought you might need to talk.”
I was beginning to think it was hopeless. I ordered a drink and asked her what she wanted.
“A double shot of Don Q please.”
“Damn, girl, you don’t fool around!” Of course, I was hoping she did.
“I wanted to get really fucked up tonight.”
“Must be pretty bad.” I really was concerned despite my alternative interest. She hesitated only a moment, then blurted out in pain.
“I caught my girlfriend cheating on me a couple of weeks ago. In fact, I think it was the day you first came into Amour.”
“Wow, I’m really sorry.” I placed my hand on her arm and gently rubbed it. When the waitress brought our drinks, Rhonda tried to pay but I stopped her.
“This one’s on me,” I said as I flashed a smile her way. We sat and talked for two and a half hours, and we seemed to feel quite comfortable with each other by the time we left. She told me about her three-month relationship with Kathy, an Irish redhead with a shot of whiskey in one hand and a joint in the other. Frankly, this didn’t seem to describe the kind of woman Rhonda would be interested in over the long haul. At least I hoped that was the case.
We walked out to the parking lot together, and as she got into her truck, she thanked me for my kindness.
“Can I take you to a movie tomorrow night?” she asked.
“Well, I usually make it a rule not to date women on the rebound, but I guess a movie is innocent enough,” I said as I smiled mischievously.
“Good. Call me at Amour tomorrow and we’ll set something up.” She kissed me lightly and I watched her drive away.
* * *
“It’s Marie. How ya doin?”
“A little better today, thanks.” Rhonda’s words told me one thing but her voice told me another.
“How late do you work tonight?”
“Still want to see a movie?”
“No!” Rhonda suddenly began sobbing and told me that her girlfriend packed up and moved out last night while we were at D’s.
“But I thought it was over anyway once she cheated on you.”
“Yeah, well, maybe.” She was uncertain about her reply. “But she didn’t even leave me a note or anything. She just packed up her stuff and left.”
“Take it easy, Rhonda. Want me to come over right now?”
“No, I’m okay.” She began to calm down a bit but her voice was still noticeably shaken.
“You know, I would have thought you’d have kicked her out when you first found out.”
She hesitated before she answered.
“Well, I thought about it, but I knew I’d have a hard time paying the bills by myself. And I guess I didn’t want to admit that it was over. I thought I loved her, Marie. But I hate her, too. I can’t believe she did this to me. I don’t want her back but it’s hard to let go.” The sadness in Rhonda’s voice touched my heart deeply.
“How about I come over tonight?” I was worried about her. I had really grown very fond of her in the short time we’d known each other.
“Sure, that would be cool. You know where the Romeo Apartments are?”
“I’m in 7B.”
“OK. Is 8:30 okay?”
“Yeah, that’s fine. Thanks, Marie.”
“No problem. Hang in there and I’ll see you tonight.” As I hung up the phone, I had mixed emotions. Part of me was excited about getting to know Rhonda better. The other part of me was cautious and concerned about getting involved with someone who apparently had some baggage.
But I really liked her. She had big brown eyes that sparkled in the light, and her dark hair was just beginning to gray at the temples. When she smiled, her essence shined though. She was on the tomboyish side, and I’d always been attracted to butches more than femmes. In her right ear, she wore a gold hoop with two Venus icons suspended from it. Her left ear sported a diamond stud. Her full figure was sexy, and her ample breasts definitely caught and kept my attention.
I decided to keep my date with Rhonda and showed up at her place about ten minutes late. After all, I didn’t want to seem too anxious. I rang her bell and waited nervously for her to answer. I was really attracted to her and felt like a teenager on a first date.
The door opened and before me stood the sexiest woman I ever saw. Rhonda was wearing jeans and a red silk shirt. She didn’t wear makeup; she certainly didn’t need any. Her beauty was striking and my heart was filled with excitement at the sight of her.
“Hi,” she said as she flashed me one of those drop-dead smiles. “Come on in.”
Her apartment was modest but tastefully decorated. In the living room was a large sofa and matching armchair in a muted gray fabric with a teal and plum geometric design. There was an end table on either side of the sofa and each held various nature books and lesbian magazines. A dove tail floor lamp rose up and over the sofa and a large Thomas Kinkade print hung on the wall. A pastel-colored candle display adorned a built-in window shelf and a Hummel collection was arranged beautifully in a maple and glass hutch.
Rhonda invited me to sit down and asked me what I’d like to drink. As I sank into the comfy sofa, I asked for a shot of Schnapps. She fetched it and a peach cooler for herself, and sat down right next to me. She lit a joint and offered it to me.
“How you doing tonight?” I asked with genuine concern as I toked on the doob.
“Okay, I guess. I’m getting more used to the idea. The more I think about it, she really didn’t care about me the way I cared for her. She used me a lot. Hell, she even took my stereo when she left.”
“That sucks. Sounds like maybe you’ll be better off once you get through this.”
“Maybe. But it hurts. She didn’t even leave me a note.”
“Would that really have made you feel any better?”
“Well, I guess it would have told me she cared enough to do at least that much.”
“That’s true .” I didn’t want to be too critical of Kathy because it really wasn’t my business.
“I’ll be okay. I just need time.” Rhonda put the joint in the ashtray and lay her head on my shoulder. I put my arm around her to comfort her and she began to cry. I squeezed her a little tighter. After a few minutes, she lifted her head and looked at me with teary eyes. She pulled me toward her and kissed me. I was taken by surprise but managed to respond in kind. Before very long, we were necking quite intensely; so intensely, in fact, that neither of heard the doorbell. Suddenly the door opened and a short, slender, redhead appeared.
Rhonda looked up, startled, and said, “What the hell are you doing here?”
“I came to apologize but obviously you aren’t missing me in the least!” The woman walked toward us as she spoke. Rhonda jumped up and started screaming at her, crying at the same time.
“You’ve got a lotta damn nerve, bitch. You fuck around on me and then have the balls to show up here and accuse me?! Get the hell out of here!” Rhonda was livid.
“I realize I was wrong. I still love you and I wanted to try again. But it looks like I’m not the only unfaithful one. How long have you been seeing this bitch?” I stood up. My first impulse was to knock her on her ass, but Rhonda went after Kathy, screaming and swinging. She soon realized what she was doing and hollered, “I hate you” as she sank down into the chair. Kathy ran out of the apartment and Rhonda sobbed uncontrollably. After she settled down a bit, she went for her drink. Her tone changed.
“I’m over it. I don’t care anymore. They can have each other.” Rhonda turned to me, red-faced and puffy-eyed. My heart went out to her. I’d been hurt in a similar fashion a few years before, so I knew what she was going through.
I stayed and talked with Rhonda until about two in the morning. I think it was therapeutic for her. The next day, I stopped at Amour to see how she was doing.
“I’m okay today, Marie. I really am. It will take a little while but I really am okay with it now.”
“Come over tonight. I’ll make us dinner. How about seven o’clock?”
“Sure, sounds great.” I’m sure the excitement in my voice was obvious. As I turned to leave, Rhonda walked out from behind the counter. She embraced me and I melted. “See you tonight,” she whispered seductively into my ear.
At seven o’clock sharp, I rang Rhonda’s doorbell. The door opened, and she stood before me in cut-off shorts and a low-cut t-shirt. I walked in and immediately caught a whiff of dinner. It smelled like something Italian.
“Hope you like lasagna.”
“Sure, love it.”
“Good. It’ll be about a half hour. Want a drink?”
“That cooler you had last night looked pretty good.”
“OK.” Rhonda went to get a couple of coolers, then returned and sat on the sofa next to me again. We sipped our drinks and talked for awhile. We had a very romantic candlelight dinner, and then reconvened on the couch. We talked for awhile and learned about each other even more. We had so much in common. It seemed as if we’d known each other a lifetime.
Rhonda turned to me and kissed me tenderly. I was as excited as she was and returned the kiss with equally intense passion.
“I need you, Marie.” She looked into my eyes, and I fell in love.
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