One Saturday, Willow and Tara spend a lazy night in bed. Tara tries to concentrate on the DVD they've hired, but finds herself glancing frequently at Willow. Even in the dark she can see the look on Willow's face; the look that means she has a question that won't wait until the movie finishes.
"Tara, at work the other day, Jennifer said I looked good."
"Should I be jealous?"
Willow swats her, playfully. "Lia seemed to think I was going to be giving birth any minute. Tara, maybe I have a pregnant glow."
Tara laughs. "There's only one hole in that theory. You're not pregnant, honey." She switches off the DVD player and turns over to spoon Willow, however Willow has already climbed out of bed and is rummaging through a drawer. Tara sighs. She loves her wife's whimsical nature but sometimes it's inconvenient. Especially when a girl wants to spoon.
Willow takes a pregnancy kit from the drawer and goes into the bathroom. She feels her heart racing and the suddenness makes her giddy. She has tried this so many times and she's not sure she can bear failing again. She can't help praying that this is the moment.
Tara, doubtful that it is, waits for the news. "Well," she says, "what was the result?" There's silence. "Baby?"
Willow doesn't reply. A moment later, Tara hears the toilet flush and the sound of something being pushed into the trashcan.
She feels Willow climb into bed and reach out for her. The blond runs her fingers down Willow's arm. She is used to this. They have been unsuccessful so many times and although it hurts Tara, she knows Willow regards it as a personal failure.
She runs her fingers across Willow's face and feels hot tears pooling on the skin. "Will," she whispers, "I'm sorry." She wishes she knew the right words to bring comfort.
Willow, not sure how to speak or what to say, switches on the bedside lamp.
And Tara sees the smile.
Willow wants to make a statement to the world. She has seen her doctor and her pregnancy has been confirmed. This is her first day back at work since she found out the news. She wants every person - from the water cooler supplier to the team of men fixing the elevator - to know that there is a child growing inside her.
Telling everyone is not a good idea, the doctor told the couple. He suggested waiting another month so that the chance of miscarriage would be reduced. But many people at Willow's work are close friends and she knows that they will support her no matter what happens.
She wears a maternity dress given to her by her mother. Sure, her mom had leant her the dress and said "this will probably fit you during your third trimester," but she doesn't care. She hasn't told her family the news. Only her mother knows she is even trying.
The thin, blue material doesn't touch either of her hips. It hangs awkwardly, swinging as she walks. She puts a jacket over the dress and does up the buttons, wondering how long it will take until she has to buy larger clothing sizes.
Tara walks her to work, holding her hand. When they reach the main entrance, the blond leans in for a kiss, and Willow notices tears in her eyes.
"I love you," Tara says, before leaving.
She walks in and Jennifer gasps. "Oh my god," the brunette says, reaching out to hug her. "Are you...?"
Willow beams, not answering. She walks into the office and everyone stares, not wanting to ask, just in case.
Lia makes eye contact with her and gestures toward the boardroom.
As soon as she shuts the door, Lia smiles. "Congratulations, Willow," she says, "I'm happy for you and Tara."
Willow smiles. "Thanks."
She can't help remembering her job interview, years ago. She was young, fresh out of college, and full of confidence. Lia had lifted her eyebrows, taking in Willow's colorful attire. "I guess they didn't teach you this at school," she'd said to Willow, "but law firms require presentation." Ouch, Willow had thought.
Lia changes the topic. "We had a great response to the advertisement. I think at last count we had 340 job applications in Jennifer's inbox."
"Oh, wow." Willow's eyes widen.
Lia is good at many things; she has diplomas and certificates spread like wallpaper over her office walls. But tact is something she never learned. "So... when do you think you'll be leaving?"
Willow is ready for this. "Now. This morning, if that suits you."
Lia's jaw drops. She had expected the redhead to put up one of her infamous fights. "Uh," she stammers, "that's fine. Take as long as you need. And remember, this place is open to you. If you ever need to pick up any of your stuff, or search through your files or even just use our resources, they're yours."
"Thanks, Lia," Willow says, but her mind is far from files and resources.
Cary glances at her as she leaves the boardroom, and volunteers to help take her things home.
The young boy is full of questions. Is it true that she's gay because whoa, he's never met anyone gay before. He wants to know if Tara is going to be mom or dad. He's curious about how they got pregnant. And, finally, he asks what Willow is going to do to occupy herself over the coming months.
She smiles at him, blaming his age for his ignorance. "It's going to be great," she says, "I'll have time to do all the things I don't usually have time for. I can go to the doctor. I can spend time with my family. I can keep in shape. I'll learn to knit and read books on pregnancy." Her mind buzzes with options and possibilities. She has never taken off more than a week of work.
Cary tries to keep a straight face. "But you seem the type to thrive on stress," he says, more accurate than Willow appreciates. "How will you cope without phone calls and meetings and clients?"
"I don't think it's going to be a problem," she says, annoyed. "I'll be just fine, Cary. Now go back to work, you're going to get into trouble."
He wishes her luck and leaves.
She walks into the house, her eyes travelling over the furniture and walls as though seeing them for the first time. "Well, house, it's gonna be just you and me for a long, long time."