"I know!" Maureen agreed. "Makes quite the fun story! Mostly…I think."
It was late afternoon on a Saturday, and they were walking side by side, heading towards Arizona and Callie's house. They had an excellent lunch at a restaurant within a walking distance from the house. Callie left Arizona the car, 'just in case,' and she felt more comfortable knowing she was still close by in case she was needed.
"I have to tell Arizona, she will flip," Callie said, still laughing.
"Yes, this sounds like solid small talk, but I'm not done with you yet," Maureen said and pulled Callie into a kiss, right there in the middle of the street. Callie moaned quietly. Maureen still tasted like chocolate from the dessert they shared. Yes, lunch was fantastic, she thought while Maureen pulled away, ending their kiss. But before she had a chance to get too far, Callie pulled her right back in, putting one hand on her hip, and the other on her neck. She added some tongue for good measure and Maureen could feel the goose bumps forming on her arms.
"Wow, someone is eager," she finally teased as they broke the kiss.
"Well, what can I say? You taste delicious," Callie said and winked.
"Don't make me respond to that, because a response to this will never be less than extremely dirty, and that doesn't bode well with our plan of taking things slow. That kiss didn't help matters, either," Maureen admitted as they started walking again.
"What are you talking about? Kisses are the best medicine to everything!" Callie announced cheerfully.
"Except for maybe blue balls," Maureen joked, "or the female equivalent of blue balls. Whatever that might be."
"It's actually blue bean," Callie stated.
"Wha… what? How? Why? As in… why do you know this?"
"I like to be educated and know all the terms kids use these days," Callie shrugged, "in lesbianism," she added.
"Why is it even a bean?" Maureen asked.
"It actually refers to the clitoris. As in – when the clitoris is being sexually stimulated but there's no actual orga…"
"Okay!" Maureen cut her off. "Stop! Just stop it! This is making things so much worse!"
"Hey, you asked. I'm just quoting. Innocently," Callie defended.
"There was nothing innocent about that quoting, Callie," Maureen said suggestively.
"As innocent as poetry reading," Callie said and winked.
"Riiiiight," Maureen said and rolled her eyes.
"Well, I would very much like to argue with you about the subject some more, however, this is me," Callie said as the house came to view. They stopped next to the mail box.
"I had a lot of fun today, as always," Callie said with a soft smile.
"Me too. When can I steal you for a bit again?" Maureen asked.
"You know how it is. We'll have to play it by ear," Callie said apologetically.
"That's okay, I understand. I just wish I could start seeing you more than once every other week," Maureen admitted.
"Yeah," Callie said and smiled. She liked Maureen, a lot, but she wasn't sure how far she wanted to go with what they had, and the more they postponed the physical aspect of their relationship, the more Callie felt like there would be a lot of expectation involved. Like the waiting itself was an unofficial promise for a commitment. She needed more time to sort things out.
"I'll text you tomorrow?" she finally asked.
"Sounds good," Maureen said and leaned in for another soft kiss. "Good night, Callie."
"Good night, Maureen, thanks for the lovely walk."
"It was my pleasure," Maureen said genuinely and turned to leave.
Callie stood alone for a few moments, wondering what it was all going to lead to. She was glad that even though certain aspects of her life were somewhat vague, one thing was certain - she had an amazing family she could come back to, and count on, and that wasn't going to change.
Callie walked in to find Arizona on the couch, covered in a blanket, and watching American Bakeoff. An empty huge ice cream container was set on the coffee table right in front of her.
"Hi!" Callie said in surprise. "You're home!"
"Yeah, where else would I be?" Arizona asked, already in mourning for her long lost pre-pregnancy social life.
"I don't know. It's surprisingly nice out. I thought maybe you and Sof would go to a museum or for a walk or something."
"She's in her room, reading a book. This kid has outgrown us, Callie," Arizona stated.
"Not possible, we are awesome!" Callie announced, dropped her purse and walked to the couch to sit next to Arizona.
"Someone is in a good mood. Lunch with Maureen went well?" Arizona asked.
"It was fun. But that's not why I'm in a good mood. Well… it's one of the reasons why I'm in a good mood. The other reason I'm in a good mood, is because I'm extremely amused," Callie explained.
"Amused because…? Please, share with the rest of the class."
"So guess what?" Callie said.
"What?" Arizona asked, in ever growing confusion and anticipation.
"Maureen used to date your ex, Joanne," Callie said victoriously.
Arizona stared at her shocked and with her mouth agape.
"Wait… is this a Rent joke?" Arizona asked in puzzlement.
"Nope. I swear! I personally find this to be hilarious."
"I'm not disagreeing with you. How does she know Joanne?" Arizona asked.
"She doesn't really, not anymore. But she used to know her. Probably the same way you used to know her. If you know what I mean," Callie said teasingly. Teasing Arizona was always extremely easy, but Callie just came back from a conversation loaded with flirting and insinuations and she couldn't help herself. She was on a roll.
"Oh, eww! Callie, no!" Arizona said disgusted as realization hit her. "You can't sleep with her now because it'll be like you're sleeping with Joanne by proxy and that's just… wrong. So so wrong!"
"We're not there yet, Arizona," Callie said and laughed at the outburst.
"Yeah, but you might be. You've been going out for a while. Wait, you guys were talking about me?" Arizona asked in surprise.
"Hmm, yeah, Arizona, you're not exactly something I can hide when I'm talking about my life. Nor do I want to. We're having a baby together," Callie stated the obvious.
Arizona stared at her with an unreadable expression on her face.
"What?" Callie asked in confusion. "Is it not good that I'm mentioning the mother of my child, or the fact that I'm about to have another one?"
"No, Callie, of course it's good. It's just…" Arizona was trying to gather her thoughts. "Should we talk about this some more? I mean, dating while we're doing this? As in - what it actually means?"
"Hmm… I thought we did," Callie said in slight confusion, "but sure if you want to we can talk about it some more. What do you think?"
"I don't know," Arizona responded a bit too quickly.
"Well a month ago you were all like 'yeah, I don't mind! Go date! Feel at home!'" Callie said, starting to worry that her home privileges might expire sooner than expected.
"I totally meant it! It's just…"
"What?" Callie asked, but Arizona said nothing. "Arizona… be honest. It's okay either way. There's no right or wrong answer here. Just… talk to me. Tell me what you're thinking. I want you to feel comfortable sharing your thoughts. This…" Callie gestured at the gap between them, "is a safe space," she concluded and made Arizona giggle.
Arizona looked at Callie for a few more moments and took a breath before she started speaking again.
"I mean, again, assuming someone will be crazy enough to actually get seriously involved in this, I guess it should be okay."
"Yeah? Because you got all quiet for a second there. Twice, actually."
"Yes, Callie. I mean, we both want the other one to be happy, right?"
"As long as we let each other know if anything gets serious."
"Is it getting serious?"
"I can't tell quite yet. For now it's just fun. I really haven't seen her more than three, maybe four times."
"Well, you know what they say about the third date…"
"That when you have no time and have a pregnant woman at home and a kid at elementary school nothing happens after said date?" Callie offered.
"Arizona, Maureen and I are having fun but my priorities are very clear to both me and her. Are they clear you to you?"
"Of course they are, Callie, don't be silly! I just don't want you to feel like you are missing out on something."
"Well, good. Why don't you tell me about her? Is she good enough for you? Do I need to have 'the talk' with her?" Arizona asked teasingly and made Callie chuckle.
"No talks need to be had!" Callie reassured. "And Maureen…Well, let's see. She's nice. Smart. Funny. Really pretty. A great kisser," Callie said and nudged Arizona's hip.
"That's important," Arizona confirmed with a smile that didn't quite reach her eyes. Callie, who wasn't looking directly at her because she was still concentrating, didn't notice.
"She also doesn't work at the hospital, which is great," Callie added.
"Super great," Arizona agreed, trying to shake off her sudden melancholy.
It started to sound to Arizona like Maureen and Callie might be getting serious after all, even though the brunette seemed adamant that it wasn't the case.
Arizona couldn't help but noticing she didn't want Callie and Maureen to get serious. She wasn't sure what to do with that notion that sprung on her all of a sudden. But she thought she didn't care for it very much. She wasn't exactly lying. She was okay with it. But… she was okay with it two months ago. Now? Now she wasn't so sure. Which didn't qualify as lying either. Nor did it matter anyways. Callie and she weren't together. Being annoyed or unhappy about each other's romantic life wasn't something they did. Nope. They were happy for one another, supportive of one another.
"What about you, aren't you seeing anyone?" Callie asked, pulling Arizona out of her inner turmoil. Arizona was happy for the distraction, though.
"Of course!" she said sarcastically, "all the time! Can't you tell by how I'm never home when you get here? I just have so much energy."
"Hey," Callie said softly and put her hand on Arizona's, "if you ever feel like you need a night off, you know, before things get really crazy, let me know, okay? I can drop Sofia at Mer's and take you out, or I can watch over her so you can go out with someone else. I'll even pick you up after your outing if you need me to. Okay?"
"Okay. Thank you, Calliope," Arizona said gratefully.
"I don't want you to feel like you're missing out on something, too," Callie said, squeezed Arizona's hand, and finally got up. "I'm going to change," she said, bent to kiss Arizona on the top of her head, and left the room.
Arizona heard Callie's words loud and clear. She could do whatever she wanted, allowed to do whatever she wanted and be with whomever she pleased. She wasn't supposed to feel like she was missing out. But if that was the case, then why did she feel like she was?