Physical therapy took its toll on Bianca. ‘Stubborn ass’ was a term many had pointed at her over the years, and she was diligently consistent when it came to her physical recovery. Her therapist, James, was a cheeky little shit who’s company she enjoyed immensely. He was tough, but carried with him a wicked sense of humour that Bianca appreciated. He was also able to rein her in when she wanted to keep going, but her body needed the rest...usually.
After multiple expletives had passed Bianca’s lips, Jodie shook her head, giggling, and headed for the kitchen. “I told you you needed to bloody stop it. No sympathy from me - this is totally self inflicted.”
Bianca tossed a pillow towards her, her aim appalling. “Shut up.” Flicking aimlessly through the tv channels, Bianca bit back a moan of discomfort. She was in agony. The drugs were yet to kick in. She’d been sitting on the couch for about half an hour, torn between shuffling to find a new position every few minutes, or simply surrender to the pain.
It was all Jodie’s fault. That afternoon, as they were getting into the car to go to the hospital, she’d laughed. That whole-hearted belly laugh at Bianca’s crude retort. And in that single, insignificant moment, all Bianca wanted was to lean over and kiss her with everything she had.
So, she strutted into physical therapy - with her cane, and had let James give her hell. When he begged her to stop, she gave herself hell. And when Jodie picked her up, her body was so exhausted that it didn’t command every bit of brain power to still her hands and not touch the woman. That gorgeous, gorgeous woman.
“Oi” Jodie snapped her fingers in front of her face. “You good?”
“ ’Course,” as she grabbed the nip of whiskey that Jodie was holding for her. Oh yes, she’d sleep well tonight. Whiskey always lulled her.
Or not. Jodie hadn’t let go of the glass. Their fingers were touching. She held Bianca’s gaze.
Sure? All Bianca could think about was the burning sensation under fingers, quickly spreading to consume her whole body. Fire. She was on fire.
“Fucking sore is what I am I tell you. I swear to God, the day I can sit on the toilet without holding onto the wall...I’ma be a happy lady!” she exclaimed, then took a sip of her old dear friend.
Jodie eyed her, but didn’t press, instead grabbing the remote and flipping over to the movie channel. She was aware, painfully. Her heart pounding, her body aching. Begging, to feel the woman that sat merely inches from her. She grabbed a pillow, pulling it tight to her chest, as they tied to decide what to watch.
She looked good. Bianca knew it, too. Always did. That confident, sexy woman had thrown her cane away not three days ago, and here she was, strutting around the pub with a limp. And Jodie couldn’t tear her eyes away. As she watched Bianca strike up a conversation with another person waiting at the bar, she was well aware that her body was running away with her. Her head knew things, questioned things. So did her heart. But her body? Since that night their fingers had touched around the whiskey glass, it was screaming louder and louder for the taller woman now animatedly gesticulating in the line to be served.
After what seemed like forever and a day, Bianca finally made it back to the booth, but she did not sit down. Setting her friends drink on the table, she exclaimed that she was off to dance. Jodie’s eyes followed her the entire way. The dance floor was busy enough. Not so packed that she lost sight of her, not empty enough that she was the only person out there. Not that that would have stopped her. Jodie smirked. No, that definitely wouldn’t have stopped her.
Jodie was at war with herself. Hell for leather she was. That woman. She watched her. That seemed to be all she was doing. Bianca found her new friend she’d met waiting in line and they were swapping cheesy dance moves to go with the cheesy 80s tune. Jodie watched. And watched, as she sipped away her beverage. The local pub had always been a good call. The resident DJ played an eclectic mix of music, so everyone won. But he was also reliable. After all these years, as soon as the clock hit 1030, the harder dance tunes came on to stay. She finished her beverage as the fourth dance mix started blaring. Jodie’s head - and heart - lost the battle to her body...on this round anyway.
She hadn’t seen her make her way towards her. Dancing, pretty much on one leg, required a lot of concentration. Rhythm, she had. Moves she had. But two legs, she technically didn’t have. Her left leg, surprisingly, had become the stronger of the two. She knew she’d pay for this in the coming days, but God she wanted to dance! So she was dancing! Making sure to keep far more weight on her left leg. Don’t quite bend the hip this way, don’t step too big...twirking?? Out of the question! Then she felt that arm snake around her waist from behind. The body press against her, pulling her close. Her body exploded. She was on fire and throbbing and burning all at once. That breath against her neck.
Her right hand covered the one Jodie had around her waist. Their hips moving as one. Their bodies knew each other. So well. Her left hand reached up behind her to find the nape of Jodie’s neck. Seconds. They surrendered to their pulsating bodies, the electricity, that intoxicating, physical explosion, for seconds.
And then they were dancing. Space between them. Bianca needed space. She smiled, singing along. Pretending, unaffected. Touching this woman, God help her. Her body was burning. But Jodie found her again. Raked her hands over her body as she bent low to the ground, and let them roam as she snaked her way back up. Seconds. She was throbbing in seconds. Bianca's hands on Jodie's hips, finding skin underneath her shirt. Fire. Suddenly, reality. The music faded back in, the bass rocking her chest. A passer-by bumping in to her. Just a little longer.
Seconds. She held on for seconds. Pulled that woman in hard to her, fighting off reality. The uncertainty, the history. She could hear lyrics. Jodie snaked a hand up her back, found the nape of her neck. People singing. Badly. Bodies pressed tight. Teeth lightly nipping an earlobe.
And then black.