Return to The Game of Love Chapter Sixty-Nine

The Game of Love

Author: Shai
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: Unfortunately neither Tara nor Willow are mine. Neither's anyone else in this fic for that matter!

Willow woke up the next morning and just lay in bed for a while, with a dreamy smile on her face. Tara had kissed her the previous night. "Actually she kissed me really early this morning" Willow corrected herself, her hand reaching up to touch the spot that the blonde has kissed. She sighed happily, allowing her fingers to rest over the spot, wishing it was the lips that had left their permanent mark there that she was caressing instead. Before finally falling asleep that morning Willow has made a pact with herself - She wouldn't get ahead of herself and read too much into the kiss, but that would not stop her from enjoying the fact that Tara HAD in fact kissed her on the cheek, which COULD be the beginning of something. After lying around for a few minutes lost in her own world, Willow decided that it was time to get out of bed. Rolling over to her side she checked out the small alarm clock that was on the bedside table, and her eyes went wide. 'Oh my God! It's 11:30! What will Susanna think of me, sleeping in this long?' Not wanting to seem like a rude houseguest the redhead practically jumped out of bed and hurried into the shower.

15 minutes later Willow walked down the stairs, her hair still damp from the shower. Marie was just putting the phone down, and smiled when she saw Willow. "Good morning Willow, did you sleep well?"

Willow smiled and nodded, before saying "Yes, thank you."

Marie nodded back before saying "Miss White is out near the pool, and she's asked you to join her when she wakes up. Would you care for breakfast now, or would you rather just eat lunch at 12:30?"

Willow wasn't very hungry, so she said "Lunch sounds like a better option."

Marie nodded again before saying "How about a cup of tea?"

"That would be wonderful" Willow smiled, thinking how nice Marie was to her.

"I'll bring it right out Willow" Marie replied, and smiling at her once more she walked towards the kitchen, as Willow made her way out into the sunshine, where Susanna was sitting under a large umbrella. As the redhead walked her way she noticed that Susanna was engrossed in reading a folder in her hands, and the coffee table placed in front of her was also covered in folders, along with a tray with a cup in it. "Where's Tara?" Willow wondered, as she got within 10 steps of the blonde woman.

Sensing the presence of another person around her Susanna looked up and smiled when she saw that it was Willow. "Good morning" she smiled. "You're up early, Donny hasn't come over for breakfast yet which means that he's probably still passed out at his cottage!" she added.

Grinning, Willow sat down. "Good morning" she replied. "What time did you wake up?"

"Oh I was up at 8:15 honey. By the time you get to my age you don't really need that much sleep anymore" Susanna smiled wryly.

"My Mom and Dad say the same thing" Willow said, and both women laughed.

"Where's Tara? Still passed out too?" Willow enquired, as Marie came out with a tray and placed it before Willow, who smiled her thanks at the Hispanic woman.

"Tara was up and out even before me. She told Marie that she had to get to the stadium early to work out some details for the concert. Apparently she'll be back by late afternoon, and she's left a message for you to be ready to leave by 4:30." Susanna said.

Willow nodded, and reached forward to add some sugar to her tea. She was disappointed that Tara wasn't around, because she was looking forward to starting her day with a look at the blonde. 'Hell, I wanna start all my days with a look at her' she thought, stirring her cup of tea.

Susanna interrupted her thoughts, "Well, it looks like you can help me out then...unless you have something else planned for the day or something?"

Shaking her head Willow quickly said "Nope, I don't have anything planned. What did you need help with?" she asked, honestly curious and also glad that she'd have something to help take her mind of Tara and the kiss for the rest of the day.

"My show that I'm filming on Wednesday. We're talking to a couple of homosexual girls for the first half of the show, about what it was like coming out, how long they took to realize that they were gay, and things like that, and then for the second half we have Melissa Etheridge coming on and talking about being gay. What do you think?" Susanna said simply, finally finishing and looking at Willow seriously.

The redhead just sat there. 'What do I think??? Say something, she's looking at you!' "Ummm..." she said finally, looking at her cup of tea and deciding it was the right time to take a sip. "I think it's a great concept" she finally said, bobbing her head up and down just so that she was doing something!

"Yeah, I thought so too. I mean I've done the whole 'gay', 'lesbian' and 'bisexual' subject a few times before, but this time I'm making it slightly different." Susanna had not missed the flustered look on Willow's face when she had told her the concept. 'Ok, I need to put Willow at ease before anything else' she decided. Of course that she had the best part of the day helped. "See, I'll not only be interviewing the girls but I'll also have sound bytes from their friends and family talking about how they dealt with knowing that their friend or daughter or whatever was gay, and how difficult or easy it was for them to accept that. I already have the history here so that I don't get taken by a major surprise or something when we're live! In the second half I'll have sound bytes from famous lesbians like Martina Navratilova and Portia de Rossi, talking about what life is like for them being gay. Basically what we're trying to show is that being gay doesn't change the person that you are and your sexuality really has nothing to do with the way you conduct the rest of your life, and that's what we'll be focusing on."

Willow nodded, and Susanna could see that she was visibly relaxing and warming to the subject. "What do you need my help with?" the redhead asked.

"I'd like to know what questions a regular person like you or me would ask someone who was telling us their coming out story, or about the ways that their sexuality was affecting their relationships with other people, and other questions like that" Susanna answered, remembering how she'd decided before falling asleep that she needed to know why her daughter and Willow didn't seem to be acting on what was obviously a mutual attraction. Willow nodded her head, and she and Susanna put their heads together and started brainstorming.

2 hours and many cups of tea later Susanna and Willow had come up with almost 75 questions for Susanna to keep referring too. Throughout the brainstorming sessions Susanna had discreetly managed to get Willow's view on a lot of the subjects, and had drawn some conclusions of her own. The redhead had said that she didn't know any 'out' lesbians personally, and the older and wiser woman realized that that was one of the reasons, at least at the subconscious level, why Willow was handling things the way she was. Without actually asking whether Willow did indeed like her daughter Susanna had managed to get Willow to let it slip that she wasn't averse to a lesbian relationship, and she "totally understood why someone would be attracted to another woman." Susanna had also noticed that Willow seemed to go off into her own private reality for a few minutes after she said that and had to stop herself from smirking. Susanna on her part had pretended to read a few negative reactions to parents with regards to the coming out of their children, and had voiced her disproval of their reactions. "At the end of the day you have to love your children for what they are, and let them make choices that make them happy. Any parent who truly loves their children for what they are will understand and accept that".

Yes, Susanna was sure the last night itself that this redhead liked her daughter, and even now didn't doubt that. It was just that she understood Willow's mind a little better now, and believed that the girl just needed a little more faith in herself before she acted on her instincts.

As Marie came out for the 5th time to call them in for lunch, the two women rose to go in to eat - One feeling a little better about what she was going through after hearing about others like her, and the other confident that she'd gently pushed someone in need of help in the right direction.

As Susanna entered the shade of her home she knew one more thing though - There was still work to do with Tara, and since it was her own daughter, she'd use a more direct approach.

Continue to The Game of Love Chapter Seventy-One

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