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We’ll Start Over Again

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Susan doesn’t know why Jenny has several lengths of beautiful, silky rope stashed away, but she isn’t complaining. Maybe she’ll ask in the morning.

Maybe she won’t, because if she mentions this in the morning, everything will be utterly fucked. But she would like to know about the rope.

She kisses Jenny hard, pushing her down onto the bed and straddling her hips in one quick, fluid motion, and Jenny squirms beneath her, moans low in her throat.

Susan ties Jenny up deftly, firmly, each movement slow and purposeful. She thinks about every bit of shitty pop psychology behind what she’s doing, behind Jenny’s reactions, and Susan’s own. The way Jenny’s breath catches as the ropes pull tight and the way her eyes glaze as she looks up at Susan with parted lips. The way Susan’s whole body responds to her, to this, like little bursts of electricity underneath her skin.


They had been completely shitfaced the first time. A frantic, messy kiss behind the pub and then a tangle of mouths and fingers and limbs back at the flat, and it was awkward and new but also so bloody good.

Susan had never shagged a woman before. Well, not since uni, and that hardly counted.

They hadn’t talked about it, not afterwards, when Jenny had gone out before Susan woke up, leaving her to nurse a horrific hangover on her own, nor in the days that followed, and Susan resigned herself to it being a one-night stand. Definitely not her first, though perhaps, she had to admit, her best.

She was resigned, and she was completely fine with it, and she was absolutely ready to find a decent-looking bloke to shag in a way that definitely wasn’t about making Jenny jealous.

But then it had happened again.

They were less drunk the second time, though neither of them would have admitted it. And the third, and the fourth.

The fact was that Jenny and Susan were friends, and friends spend a lot of time together, and they were both going through a bit of a dry spell, and, well, things happen. And the boys were idiots about everything to do with women, but they did have one thing right - Jenny had the most fantastic arse Susan had ever seen.


Susan kisses a leisurely way down Jenny’s long, lithe body, enjoying every inch of soft skin, taking her time to lavish affection on each of her breasts, to run the palms of her hands over Jenny’s flat stomach, and to nip at the rise of her hip bones.

“What do you want, Jenny?” she asks her, and Jenny’s eyes blaze.

“I want you to fuck me. Use your mouth. And your fingers.”

Susan tries to ignore the effect Jenny’s commands have on her. She looks down at Jenny, naked and open and so fucking beautiful. She watches her strain against her bonds, and aims for her best Head-of-Year tone. “What did you say, Jenny? That wasn’t very polite.”

For a moment, Jenny says nothing and Susan has a flash of worry that she’s gone too far, but then Jenny’s mouth twists into a smirk and her voice drops low and heavy with need.

“Please? I want you to touch me, now, please? Please fuck me?” She draws in a shaky breath. “Susan. Please.”

And Susan is lost, her face buried between Jenny’s thighs, slick wet heat against her tongue as Jenny shifts and whimpers and begs her not to stop.

Later, with Jenny released from her ties, one leg draped carelessly over her back, and her eyes half-closed, Susan presses her face into the warmth of Jenny’s neck. What she says next makes its way through the pleasant fog of exhaustion and satiation that has wound around her brain.

“God, I love you.”

Shit. Shit. She wants to swallow the words as soon as they’re out, a needle of ice forming in her stomach.

Jenny doesn’t reply, and Susan wonders if she’s imagining the way her body tenses, the way the air in the room cools, wonders if maybe she’s just asleep.


Susan is on her third cigarette, or maybe it’s her fourth, and it’s half past three in the sodding morning, and she’s freezing her tits off standing on the garden steps, and if she was Simon, she would probably just leave. Leave this flat, leave her job, leave the fucking country, and never have to face Jenny again.

She’d have to sneak back in and find her clothes first though, because she refuses to get the bus to nowhere in knickers and a t-shirt and coat, because that’s much less funny when you’re not nineteen and pissed.

The back door opens, and Jenny comes to stand next to her, looking out at the dark. Susan sneaks a glance at her out of the corner of her eye, silhouetted against the light from inside. She looks calm. Composed. Somehow put-together despite the old pyjama bottoms and rumpled sweatshirt and last night’s smeared eyeliner. Susan wants to scream at her, or to kiss her, to shove her up against the wall and make her lose every bit of self-control all over again.

“At my old school, a teacher was fired for being a lesbian. That’s not what they said, but that was why.”

“I’m not saying I want us to... come out, or anything. Jesus Christ, can you imagine what Kurt would say?” Susan shudders.

Jenny is completely deadpan. “Yes. I can.”

And Susan is quiet then, because she can imagine it too. What Kurt would say, and what Brian would say, and what Liz would say, and what fucking Clare would say, and she feels faintly ill.

The back of Jenny’s hand brushes the back of hers, and Susan isn’t sure if it was an accident. It’s Jenny who eventually breaks the silence. “I thought we were friends. Who just… shag sometimes.”

“It’s all right,” Susan finds herself saying, even though it isn’t all right at all. “It doesn’t have to be anything else. If you don’t feel...”

Jenny turns then and looks her full in the eyes. “I didn’t say that.”

Susan has never wanted anything in her life as much as she wants to kiss Jenny at this exact moment, and Jenny’s gaze has dropped to her lips and Susan has read enough textbooks on body language to know what that means, and it takes every ounce of her willpower not to close the distance between them.

“The thing is,” she says instead, “we’re very good at the shagging part.”

Jenny starts, and almost laughs. “We are.”

“And we’re very good at being friends,” Susan continues, warming to her subject. “And we’re professional, adult women who know what we want and know how to talk about what we want.”

Jenny is laughing now. “We are,” she agrees again. She has taken Susan’s hand in her own and Susan isn’t sure exactly when that happened. Jenny focuses on her again. “So what do you want, Susan?”

Susan looks at her, and lays herself bare, exposed under Jenny’s scrutiny.

“I want you. I want us. I want us to do what we’ve been doing but I want to be able to talk to you about it over breakfast. I fucking love you, Jenny Paige.”

Jenny’s smile is wide and as bright as day. “About damn time, Ms Gately. I’ve been in love with you for months.”

It’s Jenny who pushes Susan up against the wall, but it really is fucking freezing, and the wall has sharp bits sticking out of it, and Jenny isn’t wearing any shoes, so they head inside.

School tomorrow is going to be hell, and they have a hundred things still to talk about, still to sort out, but that can all wait, because Susan is in love with a brilliant, gorgeous woman, and she’s going to take her back to bed.