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Hello, this story here is called A Sweet Surrender. This is the story of Cassidy Monsignor, a young woman in love with her best friend, Andrea Cates. In this story, we go through her struggles and her pains; we live through the love she feels towards Andrea. Could Andrea's love for Cassidy reach a depth even she is not aware of?
Like always; don’t hesitate in letting me know what your thoughts are on it. Thank you again, Katia.
"A Sweet Surrender"
By Katia N. Ruiz
A day made for lovers, for best friends, for family, a day for everything that had to do with love. In the street, the knowledge of this day seemed to be so tangible. It seemed as if all the lovers of the world had come out, walked about with their hands clasped together, their eyes locked to one another, everything locked together. Best friends allowed themselves the freedom to hold each other longer than usual. Hallmarks and other stores for lovers, friends and family, overflowed with customers. Stuffed animals, big and small, were practically sold out, cards too, distraction was evident on people’s faces.
If only best friends could also be lovers, Cassidy Monsignor wished silently, sighing audibly. Her light golden brown eyes scanned the crowd with amusement, watching it as it turned almost rampant. Last minute shoppers, she reflected with a smile. The line to the cashier was long and slow, people were loosing their patience, audibly complaining. Cassidy looked down at the two stuffed animals she held. The soft white bear with the little red heart attached to its chest was for Andrea, her best friend, with whom she happened to be desperately in love. The other, a pink puppy, was for her "lover-of-the-month,"- as many people reflected of her dating habits- she smiled at the thought, Robie. She still had to get flowers and jewels for both of them.
She reflected on this "lover of the month" business, frowning. It seemed to her that she didn’t last with a woman long enough to start a relationship, much less to fall in love with. Either she’d grow tired of the woman, or the woman would assume that nothing would come out of her association with Cassidy. Robie hadn’t been smart enough as of yet, but that was okay. She didn’t push Cassidy for anything; she seemed to be on her own little agenda of single life, like Cassidy. Cassidy liked her, very much, but the attraction was purely sexual. Sex with Robie, whose name really was Robin, was immensely great, but there was no mind or heart bonding of any kind, like there was when someone was in love. When they weren’t having sex, she and Robie would talk, they would tell each other things, getting to know one another.
Cassidy was so deep into her thoughts that she didn’t realize she’d reached the cashier. The young woman behind the counter smiled at her as she snapped her back to attention. She was attractive, long black hair picked back into a ponytail, brown eyes flirty and sensuous. Cassidy’s eyes focused again, she apologized as she placed the little stuffed animals on the counter. The cashier woman, whose nametag said "Amistad", was methodically running the little price tags through the scanner with graceful hands. It was so obvious to Cassidy, and everyone who watched, that she was stalling, and shamelessly flirting. She sent little dimpled smiles in Cassidy’s direction, attempted to make small talk. Cassidy was amused, and at the same time thoughtful. Why can’t Andy look at me like that? She wondered almost childishly. Hell, every other woman seems to!
And that was true, it seemed that everywhere she went there were at least two women who hit on her, straight or lesbian. It was annoying at times, but some times she liked it, especially when she felt an attraction in return, when she couldn’t help but want at least a little romp with them. Those moments went by quickly and satisfactorily; she knew how to avoid them afterwards, or how to manage it so that they didn’t ask for anything more from her. Robie had been the one to approach her, with a little help from a mutual friend, pointing out that there would be no strings attached, that she was not looking for a serious relationship with anyone either.
Andy wasn’t like Cassidy, she was more a home person, and she liked being in a one on one relationship, believed in faithfulness and foreverness. She told Cassidy so, but never made a big deal of Cassidy’s lifestyle, she was the sweetest woman in Cassidy’s world, and no one could change that. It had been a little over a month since she’d last seen her and that made her conscience and heart cry out. She’d been the one avoiding seeing her, had been the one holding back.
All because of Jeffrey.
She felt a flash of fury at the thought of Jeffrey Rosenthal, Andrea’s boyfriend. She didn’t like him, and she knew he felt the same way about her. There was no love lost between them. She knew he was aware of her deep feelings for Andrea, knew that every time he kissed Andrea in front of her and smiled, he felt he was winning a battle.
In the past year, ever since Andrea began her relationship with Jeffrey, Cassidy held back and had stopped calling so often, though she was always there every time Andy needed her.
She paid the cashier without so much as a second glance, and left the store. She still had things to do before her double date that night. Doubles date that included Andrea and Jeffrey.
Andrea Cates smiled to herself as she wrapped the gift slowly and neatly. It was important to her that Cassie like it. She paused as she thought of her best friend. Her Cassie, who’d always been there when she needed her, who was so sweet and loving. She knew Cassie had been avoiding her, even though she’d always been there when she needed to. She would see her that night, as a matter of fact, after not having seen her in over a month. Occasional phone calls, that’s all they would have; Cassie was distant and Andrea wanted to know why.
Every time she asked Cassie if it was because she didn’t love her anymore, like a child seeking approval, Cassie would protest and convince her otherwise, but as soon as they were on safer ground, she would pull back again. Andrea would be hurt; Cassie had always been there before.
Andrea smiled as she remembered happier moments with Cassie. They’d grown up together, their families being so-so close friends. Andrea came from a loving Caucasian family, a family that welcomed Cassidy, even though she seemed to be different. They were a family that was close, two older brothers and a little sister, that being Andrea. They all had hearts too big for their bodies, and everyone loved them. Cassie’s family was completely the opposite. Cold parents and no siblings had caused Cassie to grow up cold and almost unyielding.
Andrea always managed to break her ice, she never wondered how. But she knew that having made sure that Cassie visited her everyday, that her unyielding parents allowed her to come over, had made a small place in Cassie’s hard heart to be warm. And that was what made them best friends. Andrea was the one who kept their friendship alive, practically since they’d been born. They went to school together, took all kinds of courses just so they could be together. They rode bike together after school, learned how to roller-skate together, and told their deepest secrets to one another. So when Cassie told her of her sexuality, Andrea took it without question and accepted her the way she was. She accepted her girlfriends, made sure her boyfriends weren’t bigots and made sure they went on double dates together.
Cassie’s family turned their backs on her and disowned her without a thought. Cassie had attempted suicide, and her parents didn’t care. All Cassie had was Andrea. Andrea helped her out; her parents were helpful also, providing a roof for Cassie. Cassie won a scholarship for her writing ability, and was lucky to have been accepted into one of the best schools for journalism there was. Andrea had been there all the time, had comforted her when she cried disconsolately, had helped her with money whenever she needed it. Cassie always told her she wouldn’t be where she was now if it weren’t for her.
Andrea knew that was definitely the truth.
Cassie was successful as a writer; her books were all over the bookstores, bought non-stop by fans. She also wrote lesbian fiction, and had a vigorous following of old and young lesbians. Andrea, though she didn’t consider herself a lesbian, had read all of her books and articles, and loved them. Cassie also wrote for a newspaper and was very recognized for her journalism skills.
Andrea snapped back from her thoughts of Cassie and realized she hadn’t moved a finger. She glanced at the clock hanging from the wall. FIVE THIRTY!
She had to start getting ready.
Her hands began to work on the gift again.
Robie Stanfield opened the door to find Cassie there. She felt a shiver run through her body as Cassie smiled her sensuous half smile. Robie’s brown eyes ran the length of her lithe body, liking what she saw. Cassie’s dark hair was long and wavy, flowing thickly down her back and over her wide shoulders. She wore dark blue slacks that were snug around her thin waist and a peach colored sleeveless V-neck sweater, nothing underneath it. Her skin was bronze and flawless, her neck long and graceful. Robie finally looked up at her face, a face that left her sighing, so beautiful it was.
Robie finally invited her in, unaware of the things Cassie held in her hands. "Robie," Cassie said with a husky voice, as she pushed the door closed. Robie turned around to face her and Cassie stepped up close to her. Robie closed her eyes; she could smell the delicious scent of Cassie’s Dolce & Gobbana cologne. "Happy Valentine’s day." Cassie said softly, her Portuguese accent thick, and pressed her soft thick lips to hers. She knew the effect she had on women, and she relished it. She pulled back and handed her the pink roses and stuffed pink puppy, along with a gift-wrapped box. "You’re ready, I see." She whispered huskily, looking Robie over.
Her golden eyes ran the length of Robie’s body, slowly and sensuously. Her eyes danced. Robie could feel her intense eyes on her; she shivered. She wore a red silk dress that reached down to her knees; her shapely legs were bare. She wore red high heels, but she was still shorter than Cassie’s five-foot-nine frame. She attempted to concentrate on her gifts from Cassie, which included a gift-wrapped box of DKNY perfume, but she was painfully aware of Cassie’s eyes on her body. She felt so lucky, that a woman as gorgeous as Cassie should waste her time with her was a mystery. Though Robie was very attractive, she felt that she was nothing compared to someone like Andrea or Cassie.
"Do we go?" She asked, her voice breathy, her body trembling with desire. Cassie was looking at her with such heat in her eyes, she felt as if she were being touched by it.
Cassie smiled softly, a jolt of sexual energy radiating through her. "Where’s my gift?" She asked hoarsely.
"How could I have forgotten!" Robie exclaimed as she hurriedly left the living room and came back with a small velvet box in her hand.
Cassie took it and kissed her again, lingeringly on the lips. She opened the little box and smiled at what was inside. A gold plate, with "Cassidy" spelled out with diamonds. It came with a medium-thick gold chain. Cassie lifted it out of the little box and looked at Robie with smiling eyes. "Put in on me, I love it." She said gently.
Robie stood very close as she clasped the chain behind her neck, then she let it drop, rested her arms on her shoulders. "Tonight," She promised softly. "I’ll give you an even better present."
Cassie threw back her head and laughed, revealing a set of beautifully straight and even white teeth. "I’m sure you will." She said softly.
Jeffrey kept the smile on his handsome face as Andrea stared at her gift with a surprised smile. The little gold plate with her whole name inscribed into it was beautiful. She smiled at him, a genuine sincere smile. She’s so beautiful! He thought as he kissed her softly. She had the kind of hair that was always made people want to touch it and run their fingers through it. It was soft and curly; dark, people said black. Her sweet smile made people smile also, made people unwittingly fall in love with her.
She was small, seemingly delicate, she made people want to take care of her, and she could pass for someone of the age of sixteen. Her eyes were blue, like the sky. She had a beautiful oval-shaped face, her nose was thin and straight, her lips were soft and glistening invitingly. But the truth was that she was as independent as a person could be, took care of herself, lived on her own and liked it. She taught tenth grade English at a high school, was loved by all of her students.
But there was one exception to her rule of independence, one exception Jeffrey hated, and that was Cassidy Monsignor.
Every time Andrea was having a hard time about something, the first person she’d call would be Cassie. God, how he hated her! And he couldn’t say anything at all to Andrea, because he knew he’d loose her. He was so glad Cassie disliked him enough to strain and pull back on her friendship with Andrea. And that surprised him, because she was so in love with her that she couldn’t hide it. But soon, he’d make the move to take her completely away from Cassie, the move he knew would destroy Cassie completely and make her pull away forever, and that would be to ask Andrea to marry him.
He would win the war, a war Cassie wasn’t even trying to win. Jeffrey smiled smugly to himself as he helped Andrea into her jacket.
"We made reservations for four." Jeffrey said, with an air of self-importance, his arm around Andrea’s shoulders protective.
The old matron’s eyes were trapped on Andrea, his smile foolish, revealing a set of teeth too white and clean to be real. Only Jeffrey would notice that. "Your name, sir?" He asked with a thick French accent, his old wrinkled hands nervously twisting his pen around.
"Jeffrey Rosenthal." Jeffrey replied, proud of Andrea’s effect on people.
The matron was reluctant to move his eyes away from Andrea, as if she would disappear as soon as he looked away, like a mirage. He found the name and walked them into the restaurant’s non-smoking area. Andrea looked around at the decorations and was awed. The place was beautiful and tasty; everything seemed to be made of wood, beautiful shiny wood. The tables were spaciously set apart to give the waiters the perfect space to walk through without bothering the clients. There was a small dance floor; the band would play tastefully soft music.
The matron pulled the chair at the table for Andrea, smiling at her gracious thank you. "I am at your service." He retorted. My, this guy’s completely smitten! Jeffrey thought with amusement. "Would you like anything to drink while you wait for the rest of your party?" He asked eagerly.
"Don Perignon." Jeffrey said, dismissing him with a look.
The Don Perignon arrived shoved delicately into a silvery bucket full of ice a few minutes later. The waiter brought four glasses, filled two and left them. Not long after, the old matron brought in Cassie and Robie. Jeffrey didn’t fail to notice the way Andrea’s face lit up at the sight of Cassie, and neither did Robie. Jeffrey poured Don Perignon for Robie and Cassie, remaining civilized as he returned Cassie’s unsmiling greeting. He flinched when Andrea threw her arms around Cassie and held her tightly.
Robie smiled at Jeffrey, aware of the jealousy seething from him. She knew of Cassie’s feelings for Andrea, but she didn’t drive herself crazy like Jeffrey seemed to do. One reason being that she never fell out of love with her previous lover, who was gone on some type of project for the museum for which she was an archeologist. From time to time, her ex-lover would write her, sweet promising letters, proving she hadn’t fallen out of love either. She hadn’t told Cassie of this yet, but planned to tell her soon.
"Robie," Cassie said over Andrea’s shoulder. "You remember Jeffrey." She flipped a hand between them.
Jeffrey smiled at her sincerely and took her small hand into his larger one. "I do remember," He said, his smile turned flirty. "It is a pleasure seeing you again."
This guy is so full of himself! Robie thought with amusement. Her opinion of him hadn’t changed since she met him a little over a month before at a party both Andrea and Cassie had been invited to. Andrea finally let Cassie go, and they sat down. Their assigned waiter brought their menus. Cassie didn’t look at the menu, and ordered a tasteful dinner based on seafood; she was a vegetarian. After a while, they ordered.
Andrea was ecstatic, immensely happy to see Cassie again. "Cassie," She said breathlessly, taking her hand. "I’m so happy to finally see you!" Her voice broke with emotion, her eyes filled with tears.
Cassie smiled tenderly, and gently wiped the tears from her cheeks with her thumbs, pressing her palms to her cheeks. "I am too." She whispered the love in her eyes and voice unmistakable; only Andy couldn’t see it. She brightened suddenly, and turned to Robie. "Let me get it, Robie." She said eagerly, giving her a grateful smile. She lifted the little stuffed bear and gift box from Robie’s hand and handed it to Andrea, whose beautiful face was glowing with feeling. Cassie said: "Happy Valentine’s day."
Andrea’s smile full and wide, her eyes twinkling. God, no wonder Cassie fell in love with her! Robie thought. I would too, if it weren’t for Isabelle. Andrea’s arms were around Cassie’s neck again; she was laughing with delight. "Thank you," She said shakily, unable to hold back her emotions. She smelled the stuffed bear and smiled at Jeffrey. Her grinning eyes returned to Cassie’s. "It smells like you, Cassidy." She whispered.
I could swear Andrea’s in love with Cassie too. Robie thought to herself, smiling. Her eyes went to Jeffrey, and her smile faded. But then what is she doing with this pompous asshole? She watched Andrea open the gift box and beam proudly as she stared the beautiful bracelet inside. The food arrived, and they spoke while they ate. Jeffrey made sure he kissed Andrea from time to time, smiling smugly at Cassie behind her back. Andrea asked Cassie and Robie how things were with them, about their jobs, about everything she could find to ask about. She was unaware of the way Jeffrey leered at Cassie, and when Cassie became pensively quiet, she didn’t know why either.
The band began to play at nine o’clock, soft beautiful music Cassie recognized from her childhood. She asked Robie for a dance, excusing herself from the table. She guided Robie through the slow rhythm, her hand on her hip holding her close to herself. Robie wrapped her arms around Cassie’s neck and rested her head on her shoulder, pressing her face against the smooth neck. "Andrea must be very naïve." She commented, trying to sound casual.
Cassie frowned, pulling back to look at her face. "Why do you say that?" She asked.
Robie laughed, and looked directly into her eyes. "Because she doesn’t realize how much in love with her you really are." She said, and felt Cassie stiffen against her. Cassie never told her of her feelings for Andrea. "And because she’s with that asshole."
Cassie didn’t respond and skillfully guided her throughout the song, never missing a beat. Andrea watched them with a dreamy smile on her face; she planned on asking Cassie to dance with her afterwards. Jeffrey held her hand, but didn’t ask her to dance; he wasn’t one to dance. There were a lot of things he wasn’t into that Andrea liked, some called him uptight, and he called himself "too good for trivialities."
Robie and Cassie returned to the table after a couple of songs, and as one of Andrea’s favorite songs was starting, she asked Cassie to dance with her. Cassie looked at Robie, who smiled and shrugged in consent, and at Jeffrey, who glared at her with deep hate and jealousy. Before Cassie could set her to what she felt would be a safe position between them, Andrea drew close and wrapped her arms around her neck. Cassie reluctantly wrapped her own arms around Andrea’s small waist, taking a deep breath as Andrea pushed herself closer to her.
The band played the slow ballad, Chicago’s "If you leave me now," a well known love song. Andrea felt a sense of peace in Cassie’s strong arms, her body felt warm close to hers; she felt complete after that whole month of not seeing Cassie. Her eyes filled with tears again and she looked up at her. Their faces were close together and she could feel Cassie’s sweet breath against her lips. "Why did you leave like that?" She asked suddenly, her voice thick with tears, not realizing the magnitude of her hurt. "What did I do to you, Cassie?" Cassie’s eyes widened as the tears spilled from Andrea's eyes. "You’ve been different the past year, why?"
Cassie was speechless, she didn’t know she’d hurt Andrea to that extent. "Oh, Andy," She sighed, feeling her own tears wet her cheeks. "It’s not you, babe. Trust me, it’s not you." Her voice shook. "I’m sorry I’ve been so distant." She tightened her grip on Andy and rocked her gently. She pressed her lips against her forehead and closed her eyes with the emotion in her heart being almost unbearable; she held her for a long time, until their tears subsided.
They were unaware of Jeffrey’s cold blue eyed glare, of his anger practically burning Robie with its radiation.
Copyright January 1999 by
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