I usually don't do forwards, preferring to hook you (or not) with my opening lines, however this has been a work in progress for a while and needs some introduction. It will be a six part series and while it's not the greatest love story ever told, I hope you enjoy their journey as much as I have. While my characters are not real in your world, they aren't based on anyone specific, they are very real to me and discovering their story has been one of the things to get me through these past several months. A forewarning, this is a slow build and a love story first, though I hope you enjoy the sex that comes. I'm a new writer, so I appreciate feedback! Hope to hear from you.
Chapter 1: Cliché
Being a lesbian as a softball player seemed a little cliché. But there it was, Sarah was a lesbian.
Not that she was ashamed of this realization, she just didn't expect it. She rarely shared details of her sex life with anyone. Well, lack of sex life. Which is probably why it took her until sophomore year of college to put the actual label on her sexuality.
"Sarah, I mean, I appreciate you telling me, but, like...I knew that? I mean, I've known you were gay." Her roommate, teammate, and best friend, Carly, giggled through the phone.
"How did you know? I didn't even know!" Sarah groaned as she tossed her long, dirty blonde ponytail over her shoulder.
"What do you mean? Sarah, of course you are. I never brought it up because I thought you just didn't want to talk about that kind of stuff. But it's not like the obvious signs weren't there." Carly giggled again as Sarah switched the phone to her other ear and resumed pacing around the park. She had no idea what possessed her to stop her daily run and call her roommate to come out, but here she was, sweating, pacing, and bearing her secrets over the phone.
Carly took a deep breath through the receiver. "Well, you've never brought up guys in any kind of sexual context. You actively cringe when you get hit on by them. But with girls you're smitten, like, you just show more interest. Also, you watch lesbian porn."
"How the fuck do you know what kind of porn I watch?!" A jogger passing Sarah in the park blanched at her outburst and quickly slipped by her on the path.
"Hon, we're roommates... and I might have peeked at your browsing history once or twice." Carly didn't even have the decency to sound embarrassed.
"Carly, that's really weird."
"I'm nosy! I can't help it. Anyway, is that why you called me at ten in the morning on a Saturday? Just to tell me you like tacos more than hot dogs?"
"You know it!"
Sarah sighed. "No, I called you because I thought you'd like to know before we sign our housing applications for the fall. I wanted to be honest and give you a chance to pick a different roommate."
There was a pregnant pause. Sarah waited for one of the hundreds of scenarios she'd imagined. Since her realization a few weeks ago, Sarah had played coming out to her best friend over and over in her head. She had no reason to think Carly would freak out, after all, about half of their team was gay. But working with teammates is still different from living together. She didn't want Carly to be uncomfortable. She wanted to give her friend an out to choose a new roommate, one who wasn't a confused lesbian. But of course, Carly broke the silence in a truly Carly-way.
"Sarah, are you going to start hitting on me?"
"What? No, I-"
"Are you going to have lesbian orgies in our room?"
"Carly, what the hell? Ew-"
"Are you going to keep watching tv with me, help me study, and clean up after my microwave messes?"
"I-," Sarah paused, Carly was the messiest cook she'd ever met, it was their running joke that Carly could ruin microwaving water. Sarah's heart beat with hope, "Yeah, I will."
"Then I don't need another roommate. I've got mine. Okay?"
Sarah couldn't help it, she teared up a bit. "Okay."
"Good. Now for the love of all that is holy, will you let me go back to sleep? I did that horrible workout coach sent us yesterday and my arms are going to fall off if I have to keep holding this phone up." Carly whined in pain to add dramatics to her request.
"Okay," Sarah smiled.
"I'm glad you're figuring things out. Thanks for telling me," Carly's serious voice was rare.
"Yeah. See you in 4 weeks?"
"Yes, unless I die from one of these workouts!"
Sarah laughed again as she hung up the phone. The little profile picture of Carly was of her dressed as Thor from their Halloween party last year with the worst blonde wig they could find sitting crookedly over her real blonde hair. It made Sarah smile again as she swiped back to her playlists. Her roommate knew and still wanted her. Maybe the other people in her life would take it just as easily. Maybe this wouldn't be such a huge deal. After all, she wasn't seeing anyone, so it didn't really matter either way.
Chapter 2: Moving In
Four weeks later, Sarah and Carly were moving the heavy wooden furniture around their dorm room, trying to configure a set up that would allow them enough room for a couch and the massive TV Carly's brother had handed down to them. Bunk beds made the most sense, but Sarah absolutely refused to sleep on the top, so Carly conceded and took the top bunk. Their desks were set up on the opposite wall, framing the window on either side. Sarah dropped her book bag and some cords on her desk while Carly tossed all manner of boxes, bags, and shoes on hers. Sarah knew that was the most use Carly's desk would see all year. She wasn't much for using it except as a shelving unit. Most of Carly's studying happened while she sat on the floor and pouted about her latest procrastination fiasco.
"Sarah, let's hang up string lights on the ceiling again!"
Sarah groaned, "That always takes forever and half burn out by January anyway."
"I don't care, they make our room so cozy! Besides, I'm the one who climbs up there, you've just got to hand me the hooks and lights. Pleeeease!"
So they spent the next hour and a half stringing lights in a diagonal pattern across their ceiling instead of unpacking duffles or organizing their closet. Despite being the shorter of the two, Carly was the one to climb the chairs and stools to get the lights and hooks attached to the ceiling. Sarah, being afraid of heights, was relegated to untangling and handing off the hooks. But when they were done, she admitted it made the room look more comfortable.
By that evening, most of their team was on campus for the semester, so they all met up at the central dining hall to have dinner together. Rowdy was the best word to describe their group, but the women seemed to be taking that term to new levels as they caught up on news from the summer and shared excitement for the start of the new school year.
"I'm going to throw a welcome back party next weekend, ladies!" One of the seniors, Tara, stood up from the table to get their attention. "At our new house. It'll be the best college party ever and you bitches better come!" Tara threw her curly, brown ponytail over her dark shoulder, bare in her halter top despite the cooling temperatures outside. She kept her voice low and leaned in to describe the party details. Her long limbs and natural height meant she had to lean over a bit to keep her hands on the table. Sarah laughed with the rest as Tara described the copious amounts of alcohol she'd purchased and the yard games she was planning.
"Tara, you can't, we'll get caught and Coach will have a field day with our workouts."
Tara's dark eyes flashed. "Shut up, Becca, no one's going to snitch. Besides, those of us who can legally drink aren't doing anything wrong! Coach will get over it."
Sarah glanced at Carly and shrugged. They were only twenty, but had been to some college parties last year and had no trouble. As long as they were smart, they'd get back to campus fine, plus it was team bonding. They all agreed to keep quiet as Sarah joined Carly and a few other women from their dorm as they stood and stretched, the team dispersing for the night. On the walk back to their building, Sarah noticed the air just beginning to feel like fall.
Carly was the shortest of the group, but bounced along faster than most of them with their casual walks. Her blonde bob was pulled into a tiny ponytail with strands loosely falling around her face and tucked behind her ears. Despite her size, Carly was their fastest runner and one of the better hitters. A fact she was quite proud of. She bounced with her chaotic energy down the sidewalk.
"Sarah, we still have to plug in all those TV cables if we're going to watch a movie tonight!"
"Ugh, right." Sarah hated technology. Well, she hated setting it up, changing it, or troubleshooting it.
The other girls walking with them laughed, "Let us know if you need help, Sarah. You know, since Carly is going to be useless with that."
"Hey! I'm an excellent manager. Plus I already hung our lights today, so I've done my job." Carly stuck her tongue out at them.
As they made it back to their hallway, Sarah heard a chiming ring signaling that Carly's phone was going off in her pocket. She whipped it out.
"Go ahead, I'll set the TV up," Sarah rolled her eyes as Carly gave her a winning smile then danced off down the hall to answer her phone.
Sarah unlocked their room and started sorting through various cords draped over desks and dressers. Carly would probably talk to David for an hour. She couldn't blame her roommate though, the two were inseparable since last year. They began dating around last Thanksgiving, David was in the engineering program and was one of the dorkiest and best people Sarah knew. Carly and David didn't seem to have much in common at first, but the more Sarah saw them together the more she saw just how much fun they had. David had the best board games and always tried to include Sarah, even to the point of bringing his own roommate to set up a double date game night a few times for them. Sarah smiled, she wondered if Carly told David about her summer revelation and if David would feel awkward about those set-up attempts now.
Suddenly, Sarah wondered if David would feel awkward about Carly being her roommate. She hadn't thought about that in all her other coming-out scenarios this summer. What if David didn't want Sarah hanging around anymore? Great, one more thing to worry about now. As if her social anxiety needed more fuel, she began running through scenarios where Carly came back in the room and told her that David was uncomfortable with her living with a gay roommate. Her worries distracted Sarah from the TV cables enough that she didn't make any headway with it.
But when Carly finally came back, she gave no indication that David was anything but excited to start up game nights again. They spent the rest of the night fighting TV settings and cables while munching on slightly burned microwave popcorn. Sarah really needed to chill, if her being gay was this much of a non-issue with her best friend, did it really matter what anyone else thought?
Chapter 3: The Party
Tara's party was epic. At least, that's what they told her when they arrived and saw the coolers, yard games, and swarm of bodies filling her backyard. David had picked up Sarah and Carly at their dorm and drove them out to the off-campus neighborhood where Tara and her roommates lived. As their designated driver, they knew they could trust him to be smart and still have fun at the party. Also, as Carly had stated, he wouldn't even be going to a party without them, so he should really just be happy they invited him at all. David gave her a smirk and a light ass pinch for that comment.
Sarah drank in the afternoon humidity as they grabbed their first beers from the cooler and found a couple open lawn chairs. Summer had decided to make another stand and it was a warm night, making the cool beer much appreciated. She was glad she'd chosen shorts and a couple layered tank tops for the outdoor event. Like most of her clothes, the shorts were a bit longer than most women her age wore, comfortable, and hid most of her massive, muscled thighs. Her razor back tank tops were eye wateringly bright colors, hot pink and that tennis ball yellow-green color over a blue sports bra that didn't really match, except for the fact that they were all equally extreme shades of color. She'd pulled her dirty blonde hair into a high ponytail that fell down to her back with the sides against her head braided tight. Sarah wore her hair long, but always kept it up and out of her face.
Carly sank onto David's lap, her short skirt flipping up a bit. "So, are you going to chat up some ladies tonight, Sarah?"
Sarah choked on her beer.
David laughed, "Yeah, now that I know your preferences, we can set you up properly." He gave an apologetic smile as Carly snorted.
"Yeah, um, nope. I'm good."
"Come on! Let us find you a friend for the night. We'll be your exploratory committee!" Carly snorted again at her own joke and Sarah caught the way David smiled at the sound.
"Nope, you do your own exploring, I'm good. I'm going to drink and then kick everyone's asses in that one ladder game."
"Um, there will be no ass kicking, except by me, I'm the reigning champ at ladder ball, Sarah." Tara came up behind them with a laugh. She had a beer in one hand and a woman on the other arm. "This is Kate. Kate, this is Sarah and Carly, two more teammates."
Kate smiled, she was about the same height as Tara but had long red hair where Tara's was brown. She wore a tight, teal dress and kept Tara's arm wrapped around her waist with her hand. "Hi, ladies! Nice to meet more of your team. I've seen you play."
Sarah and Carly gave their hellos.
"As I said, I can kick your ass at ladder ball, come on, I'll show you!" Tara jerked her chin toward an open set. Sarah drained her beer and jumped up from the lawn chair.
"Okay, you're on!" Competition was one thing Sarah understood. She could overcome any amount of social awkwardness as long as a little friendly competition stood. That's probably how she had come to like David, his constant suggestions of board games brought out that competitive side of her, the side that was all fun and no awkward conversation. Carly and David waved goodbye to her and leaned into each other more as Sarah followed Tara and Kate to the game area.
While Tara explained the rules, Kate went to get them more beers. Her bright dress wove through the crowd, standing out among the other partiers. Tara waved the bola around, a string with two golf balls attached at each end and pointed out how the points on the vertical ladder worked.
"Thank you, doll!" Tara said as Kate reappeared a minute later and gave her a kiss on the cheek. She handed another drink to Sarah and drew up a chair on the sidelines to watch them play.
It definitely got competitive.
Tara was really good, but Sarah was a fast learner. They'd played four rounds, each winning two in an alternating pattern. Kate's cheering and their smack talk had drawn a small crowd around their game. It didn't escape their friends that the two competitors' names rhymed and the chanting was hilariously mangled.
The last throw of the game would decide the winner. Tara had to get the bola on the top rung while Sarah only needed one more point and so needed the bottom one. Tara's bola sailed through the air and hooked the top, eliciting shouts from the on-lookers who understood and cheers a second later from those who hadn't. Sarah eyed the bottom rung, narrowed her gaze, but a flash behind the ladder caught her attention, pale legs. Long legs. She followed those legs up to a pair of ripped shorts, short shorts. Those shorts were topped with a green tank top and the face of a woman with thick, curly, dark hair. She smiled with her full lips as Sarah swung the bola back. It wasn't like Sarah to get distracted during competition, but something about the curve of those lips sent a jolt down her spine.
Eyes darting back to the rung, Sarah let loose the bola, but watched it sail and slip sideways until it fell at the feet of the dark haired woman. Far from the ladder. The crowd alternated cheers and sighs. Those who wanted to see Tara defeated clapped Sarah on the back and rolled their eyes as Tara lifted her arms in victory.
"I am the champion!" She shouted as Kate collided with her and planted a kiss on her smiling mouth.
The teammates shook hands a bit aggressively, then Sarah went to retrieve her bola to put it back on the ladder for the next two competitors. The dark haired woman wasn't there, but Carly and David crashed into her view laughing and complimenting her ball game. They handed her another drink and asked if she wanted to go dance. Sarah declined but headed that way to watch. David and Carly were supremely awkward dancers, but it was too adorable not to try to catch a photo or video of them. She dragged a chair up to a corner, a little ways from the make-shift dance area and pulled out her phone. Her reward for her foresight were a few good shots of David walking like an Egyptian and Carly trying to spin into his arms, but elbowing him in the sternum instead.
Chuckling to herself, she sent the photos to Carly and Carly's brother. Then she scrolled some social media and read through a football update that talked about the big college match-ups for next Saturday. The three beers were hitting her system harder, or was it four? She put her phone away and relaxed into the lawn chair, watching the party around her. Her arms ached from the day's workout, but the alcohol was starting to numb it a bit. Teal movement out of the corner of her eye brought her out of her reverie.
"Sarah? Hi! You look like you're enjoying yourself." Kate's tall frame loomed over her slightly and she tucked a chunk of red hair behind her ear as she smiled at Sarah. "That was a good game, Tara hasn't had much competition in a while, you almost had her."
"Yeah, my beginners' luck just ran out. I'll get her next time though."
"No doubt," Kate swayed looking a little unsure. That's when Sarah noticed the dark haired woman with the long legs and almost non-existent shorts was standing just behind her shoulder. "Um, Sarah, this is my friend Roisin. We're in the dance program together." Kate said her name low, drawing out the end 'RO-Sheen'. Sarah blinked and sat straighter.
"Hey," Roisin's voice was smooth and a little higher than Kate's. She extended a hand and Sarah shook it firmly.
"Ro is a huge softball fan. But, maybe you can explain to her what a shortstop does?" Kate erupted in drunk giggles as Roisin elbowed her in the stomach.
"Thanks, Kate. Good-BYE, Kate." Roisin's face was firm and just a little pink as Kate turned her giggling self around and headed off.
"Uh," Sarah began eloquently.
"Sorry about her. She's...drunk." Roisin pulled up a lawn chair and sank down next to Sarah.
"Yeah, no. I mean, of course. Are- Are you having fun?" Brilliant Sarah, totally riveting conversation.
Roisin ran her hand through the side of her thick, black hair. Up close, Sarah could see the ringlets of curls growing frizzy in the last bit of summer heat and humidity. Her green tank top clung around shoulders glistening with sweat. Sarah didn't dare look lower than her shoulders.
"I am. I enjoyed your game with Tara. You're competitive."
"Yeah, I know. Can't help it. It helps in sports though." Sarah's voice sounded a little strange to her. Her mind sluggish from the beer, but buzzing from the beautiful woman sitting so close.