DISCLAIMER: Characters not mine.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Before Jo and Blair, and before Laverne & Shirley, there was Mary and Rhoda
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
Love Is All Around You
It was another Saturday night and Rhoda Morgenstern found herself waiting for Mary Richards to return from her date with random guy of the moment. She chided herself for being so jealous of Mary. After all Mary was a pretty swell girl and any guy would be lucky to have her, even if it were for one date. No, she resolved to be happy for Mary. She was just a little ticked off because she was all alone on yet another Saturday night, that's all. At least that is what she told herself. Deep down inside, Rhoda knew exactly why she was upset but it was a secret she had to keep inside her, deep, deep inside.
A few hours had passed and Rhoda could here the front door downstairs open. Only one set of foot falls could be heard and she felt all the tension in her body melt away. Mary was finally home. And she was alone.
She waited a few minutes before she left the attic to go down to Mary's apartment. She stood in front of Mary's door and took a breath before she knocked. Feeling that she had taken enough time to compose herself, she knocked on the door. "Hey Mar, it's me Rhoda." The woman inside called out for her to come. And as she walked through the door, Rhoda realized this was what she was waiting for all day, a little "girl" time with Mary.
She walked into the spacious, tastefully decorated apartment to find her best friend in the kitchen making a pot of coffee. She walked over to the dinette set chairs and took a seat.
"So Mar, how did ya date with what's-his-name go?"
"Barry? Oh Rhoda. I would have probably been better off if I had stayed home and washed my hair."
"That bad huh?" She couldn't help but smirk as she said this.
"Well, he spent the entire ride to the restaurant talking about himself. Then he spent the entire meal talking about himself. I finally got fed up and told him I wasn't feeling well and left him there. Then I took a cab back to the office so I could finish up some paperwork for Mr. Grant."
"Tough break kid."
"Boy do I feel stupid."
"Rhoda, why would you feel stupid?
"Well, here I was all alone feeling like Cinderella's ugly stepsister and you're the one that got stuck with the pumpkin. I tell ya Mar, I definitely got the better end of the deal." She waited for the other woman to laugh and was rewarded for her efforts when Mary gave her what she had dubbed the "Mary Smile." It was the kind of smile that started with her lips and ended at her eyes. Rhoda loved Mary's smile. It was the kind of smile that just washed over you and made you feel warm all over. The feel of slender fingers enveloping her forearm brought her out of her revelry, "You do know you're far from the 'ugly' stepsister, don't you.?"
"I dunno Mary, next to you "
"Oh Rhoda stop. You happen to be " there was a slight pause as Rhoda waited expectantly for Mary to continue, " a very attractive, desirable woman, Rhoda." Mary's voice was some how different and there was a seriousness in her eyes that Rhoda seldom saw. "I should go get the coffee." Rhoda watched Mary go back into the kitchen to retrieve the coffee pot and two mugs. A blush crept up Rhoda's cheeks as she thought about Mary's words. It wasn't so much what Mary had said, but the look in her eyes when she said it, that excited Rhoda. When Mary returned with their caffeinated refreshments and oatmeal snack, Rhoda felt a nervous tickle in her stomach. And suddenly it dawned on her just exactly what was happening. The reason why she was jealous of Mary's dates, and the nervous feeling she got lately when she was around, not to mention the instant smile she had at the very sight of her best friend.
When Mary sat down next to Rhoda on the pull out sofa and handed her the cup of coffee she had prepared for her, Rhoda sat her cup and saucer on the coffee table and did the same with Mary's cup. She took hold of Mary's hand and placed it in her own. She found the confused look on her best friend's face to be quite endearing and somehow it gave her the courage to do what she had longed to do, and she slowly leaned over and placed her lips upon those of the other woman.
There she was, little Rhoda Morgenstern from New York, kissing Mary Richards, big time associate producer of a local news station. Downstairs Mary was kissing her, Rhoda Morgenstern. Her best friend Mary. Perky and annoyingly optimistic Mary. Straight-laced girl scout, by the book, innocent, Mary. But in that moment, she was Rhoda's Mary. And Rhoda's Mary tasted like coffee, milk and sugar, oatmeal, and after dinner mints. At that moment, she decided she liked Rhoda's Mary the best.
She let out a slow whistle after the kiss ended. She didn't expect Mary's lips to be so impossibly soft. Nor did she expect the feeling of rightness that followed. But the biggest surprise of all was that Mary had kissed her back. "Ya know, if I hadda known you kissed like that Mar, I woulda did it a long time ago." She said as she let out a slight giggle.
"Yeah Mar?" She replied.
"Shut up and kiss me."
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