"It isn't kindness Mina, but... Love." Lucy breathed softly, her eyes locked on the brunette's.
Mina remained silent but smiled at her friend's response.
Not wanting to waste her brief moment of courage, Lucy leaned in to brush her lips against Mina's cheek. She repeated the action closer to the brunette's lips and again at the corner of her mouth before finally attempting a kiss.
She had been so close. Close enough to feel the slight intake of air and the heat radiating from the other woman's lips.
It was not meant to be though, as Mina pulled away ever so slightly in the seconds just before their lips connected.
"Lucy." She breathed, her tone somewhere between amused and scandalized. It stung, but the blonde knew the reaction could have been far worse. She could deal with the amusement and now, the giggles.
The blonde gently pressed her forehead to Mina's, her heart aching in her chest. "I love you, Mina."
She kept her eyes closed tight and focused on her other senses. Mina was silent but the blonde could feel her smile slowly leave her face. Lucy's fingers twitched against the soft flesh beneath them before falling slightly to rest on the brunette's neck.
Lucy's eyes fluttered open slowly and her heart nearly broke in two when they finally met Mina's. She appeared to be lost in thought, brow slightly furrowed and a small frown playing at her lips.
"Is this what you've been trying to tell me?" She asked, her frown deepening when she noticed the hurt that flashed across Lucy's features.
The blonde pulled her hand away quickly and tried to sit up. "No, no, it's nothing. Forget I said anything."
"Lucy-" Mina said, sitting up to move after the other woman. She grabbed her gently by the forearm and tried to coax her into looking her way.
"No. Please Mina, just drop it. I was merely trying to make a joke..." The blonde muttered, the words acidic on her tongue. She kept her eyes away from the brunette's, not wanting the other woman to see the truth in them.
Mina's jaw flexed and she shifted closer to her friend, she could tell that Lucy was lying. She had never seen her act this way. She was always so sure of herself, so confidant and open. Slipping her arms beneath Lucy's, Mina embraced her from behind and placed her chin on the other woman's shoulder.
"I don't believe you." She said softly, her eyes closing. She had felt her friend's body stiffen when she had wrapped her arms around her and she had remained rigid. "Please talk to me, Lucy."
"I can't." The reply was weak and the blonde's voice almost cracked from the pent up emotion. Her eyes were blurry, tears burning to be released.
"Please..." Mina begged softly, turning her head so that her nose was just beneath her friend's ear. She could feel Lucy shudder in her arms at the contact. It was then Mina realized that she was going about it all wrong.
"Lucy, look here." The blonde shook her head, keeping her body turned toward the wall and away from the brunette.
"N-no, I should be going... I have to meet with the seamstress tomorrow if I am to talk to her about those adjustments." Lucy said, trying weakly to force Mina's arms apart so that she could stand up from the chaise longue they were seated on.
She briefly thought that she had broken free but Mina caught her before she could rise completely and somehow coaxed her into turning. "Don't run from me, Lucy... We tell each other everything, don't we?"
The blonde swallowed thickly, guilt and embarrassment twisting her stomach. As much as she was regretting having broached the subject in the first place, Mina was right, they did tell each other everything.
Taking in a deep and unsteady breath, Lucy exhaled slowly. It did nothing for her nerves but it had been worth a shot.
"I love you, Mina. I have for a long time... But I- I have not come to terms with it until just recently." She said quickly, "I never wanted this to happen... I swear. And if you think me vile and never wish to see me again I shall stay away..." She said, turning her head to face the wall once more.
"Lucy... I could never think that way of you. And I would never wish for you to stay away." Mina said, her voice gentle. "I will admit... I am surprised but..."
The blonde looked back cautiously, tears barely held at bay in her glossy eyes.
"I am flattered." Mina said, a shy smile tugging at her lips. "I've never thought about love that way... With another woman." She continued slowly, cautiously. She didn't want to scare Lucy into clamming up again but she also wanted to be honest.
Lucy sniffed, unsure of what to say to that. She didn't think that the concept of to women loving each other was any different than a man and a woman but she realized that wasn't what Mina meant. She was surprised when she looked back up to find Mina staring at her lips. The blonde's heart skipped in her chest before setting into a faster rhythm.
Mina was leaning in before either of them realized what was happening but again, contact never came.
The two started and pulled away quickly as heavy footsteps and a slamming door downstairs drew the brunette's attention away. Jonathan's voice carried through the house as he called for Mina.
"I should go." Lucy said, taking advantage of Mina's diverted attention to rise to her feet.
"I will see you in a few days for your fitting." Lucy said, pausing but not looking back.
When the only reply she received were a few footsteps from behind her, Lucy moved once more for the door. It opened before she could reach for the handle and she gave Harker a half hearted smile as she brushed passed him.
"Hello to you too, Lucy." He said, shaking his head before turning back toward his Fiance.
The brunette accepted his kiss automatically, her eyes flitting toward the still open door as she heard the door to their home close in the distance. Jonathan's voice barely registering as he asked her about her day.