tagLesbian SexHomebound Ch. 02

Homebound Ch. 02

byJodiHutchins©

Thank you for all the comments on the first chapter of Homebound! The tale continues where the last chapter left off.

Thanks again for reading and I look forward to more feedback/comments.


Rachel Emily Moore -- Present Day

Caffeine. I needed caffeine, that was all. The dream from the night before had me on edge and that's putting it lightly. I sipped the coffee, stepping out on the balcony and breathing in the damp air, a thick fog hanging through the adjacent buildings and a layer drifting over the bay. It was the perfect weather to coincide with my mood and the feelings swirling around me. Why hadn't Jo texted me? Maybe I had been too forward giving her my number. I had heard the trepidation in my own voice when I called out to her the day before. Kayla had noticed it too.

"What the hell was up with that?" Kayla had asked as we pulled away from the parking lot. I tried to ignore her question, turning up the volume on the stereo. She huffed and switched it completely off, turning to face me in the passenger seat. "Rachel, what was with that?"

I swallowed and kept my eyes on the road as I lied, "Nothing." She hit me in the arm with her elbow and I threw her a scowl. "What the crap?"

"Don't lie. What was up with all that? Do you and Ms. Vasquez know each other?"

My heart raced. Jo Vasquez. Well, not only did I now know her full name, I knew where she worked. God, that was awfully creepy. "Okay, fine, you caught me," I started but quickly digressed. "What're mom and dad doing tonight?"

"Don't you change the subject."

"Seriously. What are they doing?"

She sighed, kicking her shoes off and placing her dirty, sweaty feet up on my dash before she answered. She was irritated with me but I wasn't about to come out to her and then drop her off at home to stew on it. "Dad is out of town on some business crap and you know mom is probably already at the damn church for bible study."

"Want to have dinner at my place?" I asked.

"Fuck yes," was her quick reply.

When we got to my condo, I ordered a pizza. She plopped down on my couch and turned on the TV. I sat on the opposite side of the couch and she immediately turned to me. "So, Kayla," I said, chewing my lip. She raised her eyebrows, waiting for me to continue. My heart was racing and I could feel a layer of sweat forming on my forehead. "I...uh," I took a deep breath and closed my eyes. "I'm like you and Matt. I'm gay; I like women. I have for a long time and haven't told anyone in the family besides Matt."

It was quiet, the sound of the stupid reality TV show the only sound as I waited and finally opened my eyes. Her jaw went slack and her mouth hung open. "I fucking knew it," she exclaimed, jumping up from the couch and doing this silly little dance. I couldn't help but laugh as she twirled in a circle and threw her hands up.

"What are you doing?"

"Are you boning my cross country coach?" she shouted, her excitability flooding the room. I squeezed my eyes shut and slapped my forehead.

"No, Kayla, I'm not 'boning' your coach. We met a few weeks ago and I told her I didn't want to pursue anything because of my closet status." I wasn't about to tell her that I did indeed have sex with her gym teacher and I was too afraid to delve into an actual relationship.

"Closet status?" she inquired. Duh. She didn't understand it yet. I kind of figured with her ever constant smart phone use, she'd have researched the heck out of the LGBTQA community. I thought she'd know more than I did at this point.

"You know, nobody knowing about it. The last thing I need is mom finding out."

"Oh, duh," she whispered, understanding flashing across her face. Her mood was effectively deflated and she withdrew.

The doorbell rang, halting our conversation. I paid the delivery person, took the pizza to the kitchen and ushered my sister to get food. With pizza on our plates, we headed to the couch, taking up where we'd sat before. The living room was silent for a while, save the television going on about some popular singer. My words had frightened Kayla, that much I was certain, but her face held a look I couldn't discern.

"She's really hot," Kayla muttered before taking another bite of her pizza.

"Who?"

"Ms. Vasquez," she said, her cheeks as red as the tomato sauce on the pizza she was biting into again. I chuckled and shook my head.

"Well, while I agree with you there, it still doesn't fix the problem. I'm pretty sure I hurt her feelings," I admitted, looking down at my plate. "I saw her at the farmer's market a few weeks ago and she told me she wanted to talk to me, but," I paused, a fresh wave of guilt settling over me. "I saw elder Tom. He came up and talked to me and I didn't want to risk him seeing me talking to an obviously gay woman so, I left." I sighed, the food on my plate becoming unappetizing. In hindsight, I should've just stayed and talked to Jo that day and I knew it.

"Why, though?"

"Why what?"

She put her plate on the coffee table and fixed her gaze on me, her brows scrunched. "Why would you do that when you don't even like going to church? You don't have to hide it or worry about mom being mad and kicking you out like Matt. You're almost thirty and have a job and your own place," she snapped. I don't think she intended to hurt me with her words, but it did hurt. I had to protect her from whatever our mother would do if she found out Kayla was gay as well. Although, I didn't want to make Kayla feel guilty for this either, because it wasn't her fault.

"You don't understand; I'm not ready." It was a lame excuse and I know that now, but I couldn't and wouldn't tell her I was living a lie to protect her. The conversation lagged after that and I was grateful for as much. I asked her about school and her girlfriend, Kendall. The digression had her smiling again and I was thankful I was able to dodge any further discussion of my coming out. We finished dinner and I took her home, bidding her a goodnight before heading back to my condo.

I checked my phone for the millionth time since I gave my number to Jo and came up empty, again. I wasn't surprised. I thought perhaps I was being ridiculous. She could easily want nothing to do with me for the way I had treated her, and I expected as much. But, now I knew her last name. So, I did what any millennial with a smartphone and a decent Wi-Fi connection did; I looked her up on social media. She didn't have a very strong presence, but she did have a page. Josephine Vasquez. I knew Jo must've been a nickname. Pictures of her with a gorgeous woman named Ana and a man named Alejandra. They could've easily been her siblings or just friends but, as beautiful as this Ana was, I worried maybe she was already in a relationship. Why else would she be fine with a one-night stand? The question had crossed my mind numerous times since I started picking up women once a month but it didn't bother me until Jo became one of the many I'd done it to. It was painful to consider she was already with someone and I was simply a night of excitement. I closed out of Facebook and crawled into bed, my chest tight and eyes burning again. I couldn't understand what was going on with me. Just seeing her face in a picture made my heart race and my hands become clammy. I prayed for a restful night's sleep but I got anything but.

I had another strange idea and grabbed my phone from the bedside table. Opening up a new search on Google, I looked up reincarnation. I'd learned a tiny bit about it in my world culture class during my prerequisites in college and at the time, didn't think much of it. It was frowned upon by the church to believe in such things. The beliefs were associated with Hinduism, paganism, Buddhism, all the religions The Church of Ladder Day Saints collectively looked down upon. There were so many results from my search. Past life regression. Stories of people suddenly being fluent in foreign languages. Children having detailed awareness of events they knew nothing about. Dreams of memories. The fine hairs on the back of my neck raised and I had to put my phone down.

The next morning, the dream was still lingering in my mind, the feeling of Abagail's hands encircling my, I mean, Keiko's waist and picking her up, carrying her to a soft bed in a dimly lit cabin. The only light had come from a crackling fire in the hearth. It was a beautiful dream, but it was tinged with sadness.

I balanced my cup of steaming coffee on the edge of the railing, watching the fog outside curl around the branches of an evergreen tree. Saying it was strange is an understatement, of course. I knew these things about an imaginary person. Keiko was the eldest child of two Japanese immigrants, her and her four siblings being second generation Americans. She loved Abagail, even though she was told it was wrong. Her family was devout Christian, her mother and father converting shortly after the move from their motherland. Her whole family had been relocated to a Japanese internment camp after the president executed order 9066 during World War Two. I didn't know how I was aware of this knowledge. I figured I must've read a book about it or maybe it was actually an article in National Geographic; anything but reincarnation. At least, that's what I wanted to believe. Whatever the case, it made me uncomfortable and I tried to shoo away the thoughts. I checked the time, thankful I only had an hour until my shift.

*******

Josephine Daniela Vasquez

Texting Rachel had been on my mind all morning through classes. I tried to bite back the urge to contact her, but I couldn't stop myself. I finally conceded at lunch time, sitting behind the little desk in the shared office in the locker room. It was my downtime and I absently nibbled on a couple crackers, my nerves making my stomach feel uneasy. The students were off to lunch as well as many of my coworkers, so I had the back office essentially to myself. I pulled my phone from my bag and opened a new message.

Hey Rachel, it's Jo. Thanks for giving me your number.

Yeah, real fucking articulate. I immediately regretted it when the 'sent' notification popped up. I took a deep breath and tried to remain calm. With roughly twenty minutes until my next class came in, I was hoping I'd get a reply. Maybe a 'hey, no problem,' or 'Hey, we should hang', or even 'Go fuck yourself, you stalker.' At that point, I was hoping for something, anything, even if it was a brush off. I wanted to know I was being crazy for having feelings for a woman I spent one night with.

She was making it clear she didn't want anything to do with me, that is, until she gave me her number. Now, that gave me all kinds of twisted notions of hope. Maybe she wanted to date me, maybe she wanted another amazing night together. I wanted it to be both. I wanted to feel her lips against mine again, the feel of her on my body, her soft voice groaning in pleasure. The thought of hearing my name on her lips had my stomach in knots and an undeniable heat between my thighs.

The bell rang before I got a reply and I headed out to the gym to finish off the day. It went by slowly and I kept myself from checking my phone the rest of the school day.

I leaned up against the padded wall of the gym as the students began to file in for cross country practice after the end of the school day. Kayla came through the entrance and walked up to me. "Hey, coach," she said, her cheeks a vibrant red.

"What's up, Kayla?" I feigned my calm but inside I was anxiously hoping she'd have something to say about her sister. I looked out as the students gathered in their respective spots as they waited for everyone to show up. The sound of sneakers skidding across the gymnasium floor and their distant conversations filled the silence as I waited for her to speak.

"I know about you and my sister," she whispered. I nodded, my face expressionless. What could Rachel have told her? "She thinks she hurt your feelings."

The words hit me on an exhale and I turned to meet her eyes. "What?"

"I think she thinks you hate her or something because she's in the closet. I don't know. She didn't really get into it but she has the hots for you," she said. My co-coach blew the whistle and, with a nod, Kayla ran over to the group of other teens. Throughout practice, I felt a little shell shocked. Was she telling me the truth or was she pulling my leg? The kid didn't seem like she would say something just to goad me but my mind wasn't being very rational. Nothing surrounding Rachel in my life was rational. The familiarity of her emerald eyes, not the color but what lay behind them. The relentless dreams. The staunch desire to be with her. The unexplainable ardor I felt for her that I had no business feeling.

My phone buzzed in the pocket of my shorts. I tried to ignore it but after a few short seconds, I had to look.

Hey Jo. I'm glad you texted me. I work until seven but do you want to grab a cup of coffee or maybe some dinner?

My hands were shaking as I read it and a smile spread across my lips.

That sounds great. How about the tea bar on Prospect after you get off?

I was giddy and elated but I had to hold it in. What if she was going to tell me to back off in person? I rolled my eyes at my insecurity, the sensation so foreign to me. I'd never been that insecure and it was infuriating. Rachel got me way out of my comfort zone, stirring feelings I'd never experienced before and causing me to second guess each movement, each word.

Okay. See you at 7:30.

The rest of practice was uneventful without any more texts from Rachel. I wanted to ask Kayla more about her sister, but she hurried along with another girl out into the parking lot after practice. I guessed she was catching a ride with someone else beside Rachel that day.

When I got home, I showered and scoured my closet for something nice to wear. It was nearing six o'clock and I still hadn't decided on what. "Ana!" I shouted down the hall. She poked her head up the stairs and I ushered her up.

"What's up, Jo?"

I sighed and smiled sheepishly. "I kind of have a date." She raised her eyebrows and grinned.

"Ah. Where are you going?"

"The tea bar," I said, realizing it sounded super dumb.

"Okay, let me see," she said, stepping into my closet. She came out with a pair of jeans and a cute black polo.

"You sure?" I asked incredulously. It seemed a little too casual, but we were just getting tea, anyway. And it was possibly a rejection date.

"Yes. And when are you nervous about a date?"

I chewed my lower lip. I wasn't going to tell her that this woman had me all kinds of bent out of shape. I just imagined it, Oh, Ana, it's this woman I'm having weird dreams about who told me she really didn't do relationships, yet I keep bugging her and thinking about her and I'm just crazy about her. "I really like her," I said instead.

She smiled. "I don't think I have ever seen you this frazzled before. I wish you the best of luck, my friend." I smiled back, and she gave my shoulder a squeeze before leaving my room. I opted out of styling my little faux hawk, going for a tousled look instead. That way, if Rachel ran her fingers through my hair, it wouldn't get stuck in product. Not that I really thought she'd be that close to my hair, but a girl can dream, right?

I made it to the little tea bar twenty after seven. The spicy scent of chai engulfed me as I stepped inside, and I closed my eyes, allowing the aroma to hopefully calm my nerves. God, I was nervous, which, as I've established, was not my norm.

After I ordered an oolong, I sat on one of the comfy armchairs in the back of the shop and carefully sipped the hot liquid. I hoped that the tea combined with the atmosphere would calm my anxiety down enough that I could carry on a normal conversation with the woman whose presence in my mind wouldn't abate.

It was a cozy place, instead of normal tables and chairs, there was a handful of recliners, beanbag seats, wingbacks, a few Barcelona chairs, and fluffy rugs. Little side tables were scattered around the space, none of them matching and each as eccentric as the venue. Bizarre artwork adorned the wall, from abstract monochromatic canvas, lovely landscapes of the beautiful of the mountains around us to a collage of pictures depicting people in what seemed to be compromising positions.

It was ridiculously hipster, but I fucking loved it. The jingle of the bell above the threshold rang and I looked up to see Rachel walking inside the building. Her long blonde hair was braided down her back, her emerald eyes scanning the area, presumably looking for me. However, she didn't see me and made her way to the counter instead of continuing her search. The pale purple scrubs she wore moved with her body and, although baggy, I could still make out the swell of her breasts and her round backside. I tried to bite back my lust because I wasn't sure how our interaction was going to end.

Tea in hand, she looked around and I raised my hand, catching her eye. She ambled over to me, stepping over a fuzzy brown rug and sitting on a chair beside me. "Hey," she said.

"Hi, Rachel." I sipped my tea, my brain suddenly incapable of forming conversation as I looked into her green eyes. She finally dropped her gaze and stared into her tea.

"I'm sorry I didn't stay at the farmer's market to talk to you that day."

"It's okay," I said. She sounded so guilty, I reached out and touched her arm. The skin contact forced a gasp from me and she met my eyes again. She didn't move her arm, though.

"I don't know what it is about you...," she began, searching my face. I nodded. She felt it too. Holy shit, she felt what I was feeling, this uncontrollable urge to be next to her, to touch her, to kiss her. "You know what I'm talking about?" she asked, her voice barely a whisper. I nodded for a second time, words failing me yet again. She sighed and took a drink of her tea.

"Your sister is funny," I digressed because I wasn't sure how she felt about me feeling the same thing she was. Her reaction to me acknowledging it was odd and it skewed my urge to continue the discussion.

"Is she?"

"Yeah. She told me you have the hots for me," I said, winking. The confident me was back, albeit, only briefly. Rachel blushed at my comment, her lips curling.

"Well, she wasn't lying but I may have to have words with her for telling you."

We fell into a comfortable conversation about her sister and sports. Finally, I couldn't stop myself from asking her, "So, you're in the closet?"

She sputtered on the sip she had in her mouth and blinked. "Yes," she muttered after wiping her face with a napkin. "It's complicated."

"Isn't it always." I stated. She smiled and finished off her tea. "Do you want to go for a walk?" I asked. She nodded.

The air was cool, a light drizzle falling from the sky as we stepped outside, and I wanted to reach out and take her hand. I didn't, though after her admission in the tea shop. She was in the closet and it would feel wrong to push her like that.

I could only imagine her own reasoning behind not coming out. To be honest, it didn't feel like any of my business. I knew nothing about being in the closet. When I realized my appetite for the same-sex, it was a few short years after my mama had passed and I didn't give a shit what my foster families thought about it. It never occurred to me that I should keep something secret for the sake of making others feel comfortable. Fuck that.

I wanted to say this to her, but I held it back. It wasn't my place. I did want to ask her about the dreams, if she had anything similar happening to her. However, I didn't want to sound like a goddamn crazy person, so I kept my mouth shut on that topic. I felt a little solace just knowing she was feeling the strange connection as I was.

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