Bridget took Franky's hand, tugging her to follow. She was still hobbling, probably in pain. Franky's shoulder was definitely throbbing. This was an intense day, but a good one, Franky thought. In fact, maybe the best. How could the worst turn into the best? She couldn't think that one through right now.
“I think first…,” Bridget drew out her next sentence: “We have to decide what to do with this..." She led Franky into her bedroom and handed her a small box, about the size of a watch. It was gift-wrapped in a platinum-coloured wrap with a bow atop. Franky tried to show an interest in the gift, but, truthfully, all she could see was her Gidget right now. Like a fuckin’ goddess, Franky thought. If there ever was a miracle, it would come from this woman. She was goodness and truth and compassion and love. It was all she would ever want, today and tomorrow. It was hers for the taking.
Bridget re-captured Franky's attention by bringing the box to her chest, then extended it to Franky.
Franky laughed: “What is this, a watch, in lieu of prison alarms?”
“Open it and see!” Bridget said gleefully. She wore her silly look of triumph.
Franky took the gift, but she was flustered too. “Gidge, when are you going to stop giving me gifts? I never have anything for you. I didn’t expect…”
“Just open it, darling,” Bridget urged. She kissed her. “You have no idea of how much of a gift you are to me, how I value you." "And don’t worry, I'll capitalize on your worth. Priceless will get me a long way...”
Franky still had other things on her mind, but she obliged herself to bow and wrapping. That off, she exposed a beautiful jewellery box. She held it to the light (as if that would help her guess the contents, but she didn’t quite know what to do….). When she opened the box she gasped.
On a black velvet inlay was the bullet that had been lodged into her shoulder days ago.
“This brought us back,” Bridget was saying hesitantly, apologetically. “I thought... maybe we could take it to a silversmith and make a piece of jewellery from it. Two pieces… Split it in half…. Each of us….” She was floundering, unsure now. “I know it’s kind of cheesy but… it’s kind of like the kite, Franky, for us, okay?”
Franky couldn't help but wonder how she'd acquired it. Something to do with her charming graces, Franky knew. This woman was so bad-ass. But who would want to save a bullet? Did she want this bullet??
Bridget’s impatience spilled over into worry. Would Franky want a reminder of the whole business? What was she thinking?! It symbolized being falsely accused, imprisoned, on the run, shot...
She panicked. “Darling, it’s okay if you don’t want it. I... It was just a silly thought. I… I didn’t mean to be insensitive. I should have thought it through better….”
Franky’s eyes spilled tears. Yes, it was symbolic of all those things, but look what it did, where it brought her, who it gave back to her. “It’s perfect, Gidge,” she managed.
Bridget breathed a huge sigh relief. Her enthusiasm revved again: “We just have to decide what to do with it.” She cupped Franky’s face. “Like we just decided what to do with us.”
Franky laughed. That sound, Bridget thought – I want to hear it forever.
“And what did we decide to do with us, Gidge?” Franky asked straight-faced.
Bridget gave her the Frrankyyy look.
Franky couldn’t hold out any more: her eyes flashed, eyebrows rose, tongue shot between the teeth. Her expression was open, desire writ large. Bridget knew the cue and was more than ready.
AT 9 PM the doorbell rang.
“Baby, can you get the door?” Bridget called from the bedroom. “That would be your favourite take out.”
They decided it was fitting to eat on the couch. They loved that couch: it held their caresses and their love-making, their arguments and parts of each others’ souls. And now this, redemption. A second chance.
“Fuckin’ fabulous,” Franky responded to the first bites. “With the exception of a bullet in your house, this is beginning to feel like home again.” It's the only home I know, she thought, and the only home I want.
Franky looked at Bridget, who was slurping noodles. She thought: I want to always be with her. I want it to always be now. She met Bridget's eyes and felt her heart melt, again, into her forever-kind of love.