~ MVP ~
by C. E. Gray

Standard Disclaimer: This is an Uber, so the characters will probably remind you of our two favorite ladies, but other than that, it's mine. Let me know if you want to borrow anything, or the like.

MVP is copyrighted ©2001 CE Gray

Sex Disclaimer: But of course! This is the story of two women who love each other, and have been known to express that love. Nothing extremely graphic, as always, but if you can't handle a little love, I suggest you click "back".

Language Disclaimer: Let's just say I'd be in big trouble if I ever talked like this in front of my mother. There are lots and lots of bad words in here, because a six-foot tall woman is not someone you want to piss off, but when she gets mad, she does curse. Please have a bar of soap handy.

Thanks to: Again, thanks to my beta and best friend, Amber, and my friend Charlene, for all their input into this story. And for keeping this little bard going when things got tough. I love you guys!

No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader.

- Robert Frost

Without further ado, the story!


Part 2


The tall woman knocked on the Donavon's door, and cracked a smile when Jeffrey opened the door a little, to see who it was.

"Hey, little man," she grinned, but her grin quickly faded when the door was slammed in her face.

"Jeffrey!" Cody heard Jennie scold, from inside. "You know better than that! You go back out there and apologize, right now!"

A few moments later, the door was opened again, and an angry young towhead was visible. "Sorry," he mumbled, looking down at the ground.

"That's okay," said Cody, trying not to let it show how much the move had really hurt, kneeling down to be eye-level with the boy. "You ready to play?"

"Don't wanna," he said, and turned around and went to his room, muttering, "I 'pologized," to his mother as he passed by.

Jennie sighed, and motioned a grim looking baseball player indoors, closing the door softly behind them.

"I'm sorry," said the blonde, taking Cody's hand. "He's been a little upset."

"So I gathered," murmured the tall woman. "Better to be driven out among men than disliked of children. Can I talk to him?"

"Sure," smiled Jennie, squeezing the woman's hand, encouragingly. "I'll get us something to drink while you two talk, okay?" Cody nodded, gathered her courage, and walked down the hallway.

"Jeff?" she asked, gently, lightly rapping on the closed door that led to the boy's room. "Can I come in?"


Cody's heart broke as she heard sniffles in the young child's voice. "Please? I just want to talk to you, Jeff," she pleaded.


The star sighed. "Jeff, I'm really sorry that you found out through James that I'm leaving," she admitted. "I was going to tell you tonight, honest. I'd like another chance to tell you, and talk to you about it, if you'll let me," she added, quietly.

The boy inside frowned a little, as he wiped away his tears. A grown-up was asking him for another chance? Wow. He'd never felt so... big. Maybe he could talk to her, just for a minute...

"Jeff?" asked Cody, when she didn't get a response.

Slowly, the door opened. "'Kay," said the child, inviting Cody to sit on his bed.

"Thanks," smiled the woman, sitting beside her small friend on the edge of his small, but soft, bed.

"Why do you have to go?" was the first question Jeff asked, before he could stop himself.

"Because I'm a professional baseball player, Jeff," explained the star. "It's my job to play baseball, and I go where my team goes. I have to play a few games soon, and they're in another state. I won't be gone long," she added, and brown eyes met her own.

"How come you didn't tell me before?"

Cody sighed. "Because I don't want to go, and telling you means I really have to leave," she admitted, quietly. "But, I'll call you from the hotel, and I'll be back before you know it. In fact," she added, a small smile on her face, "I'm going to leave you with a very important job. Okay?"

The youngster nodded, his eyes wide. "Okay," he agreed.

"I want you to take good care of your mom for me," she said. "Now, it's a big job, but I trust you can handle it. Can you do that for me? Because I'm going to worry about you both while I'm gone, but I'll feel much better knowing you're here to watch over her," she explained, and the boy grinned.

"I'll do it!" he said, and Cody grinned.

"I knew I could count on you, little man," she said. "Can I have a hug?" The boy nodded, and threw his arms around the woman's neck, Cody hugging him back just as tightly.

"I'll miss you," he said, and the tall woman swallowed.

"I'll miss you, too," she said, and pulled back. "What do you say we play some ball, hm?" Jeff grabbed his ball and glove and ran out the door, a smiling Cody on his heels. The tall star winked at the blonde woman as they rushed out the door, playing baseball for a little more than an hour, before a tickle fight ensued, and Cody ended up chasing Jeffrey through the house. Catching him, she picked him up by his waist, held him to her chest, and let herself fall back onto the couch, releasing her hold on the boy as she landed, smiling at the laughter of the young child as he bounced into the air.

"That was fun!" he exclaimed, straddling Cody's waist as he pinned her down.

"Yeah," agreed the star, grinning. "Can I get up, now?"

"No!" he smiled, trying to hold her wrists down, and failing miserably. Even with two hands, the boy could barely hold one of Cody's wrists, much less both of them. But, Cody didn't try to get up, and let the boy think he had her.

"Uh-oh," she said, "I'm trapped. I guess this means I can't go home tonight, huh? You think this is funny, don't you?" The boy giggled, and nodded, his eyes getting very wide as he suddenly found himself on his back, Cody pinning him to the couch.

"How'd you do that?" he asked, in awe.

Cody grinned, and winked at the boy. "You'll never know," she said, and kissed the crown of his head. "Now, you'd better get to bed, before your mom kills me for keeping you up past your bedtime."

"That's right," said Jennie, and Cody glanced up at the blonde, who stood in front of the couch, the playfulness in her blue eyes sending a small shiver down the woman's back.

"Aw, but, Mom," the boy protested, and the star put her left hand over his mouth, quelling any arguments.

"No buts, little man," she said, raising a dark eyebrow at him. "Believe me, they don't work. Off to bed. I'll see you in a few days, all right? Remember what I asked you to do?" The boy nodded. "Good. Be good," she added, helping him to his feet, and tucking him into bed, somehow managing to get herself snared into reading Sam I Am three times, until the youngster fell asleep.

"Whew, I'm glad he's still talking to me," admitted Cody, as she sank into the couch next to the small blonde, who handed her a glass of soda.

"I'm glad you were able to work things out," Jennie agreed, smiling. "You know what I realized this morning?" Cody shook her head. "He's really growing up. He dressed himself this morning, and even combed his hair. It's just going by so fast," she sighed, and Cody put her arm around the young woman.

"But you know what's important?" countered Cody, and this time Jennie shook her head. "The fact that he's growing up well. He's a smart kid, a good kid, a very nice young man, and that's all because he's been raised right. You're doing a great job with him, Jen," praised the star, and the small blonde smiled.

"Thanks," she said, curling into the tall woman's side.

"And you do a terrific job with the kids at the daycare, too," she continued. "I expected to see a bunch of four-year-old tornadoes running around, wreaking havoc, but they were all very well behaved, and it's clear they adore you."

I think they love you as much as I do, she added, silently.

"Thanks," repeated Jennie, a slight blush appearing on her fair cheeks. "And thank you so much for putting up the playground. The kids love it, and it's safe," she added, smiling. "You have no idea how much that means to me."

Cody returned the smile, and kissed her, softly. "I'm glad you're happy," she said, truthfully. The blonde was leaning into her left side, and Cody made a move to wrap both arms around the young woman, but decided against it when her shoulder began screaming at her. Lifting young boys does not heal a sore shoulder, nor does lifting fifty-pound bags of sand.

"What's wrong?" asked Jennie, confused. She'd seen the woman's hand start towards her, and also saw it move back. Sitting up to face the tall star, she frowned when she noticed a look of pain on her face.

"Cody, what is it? What's wrong?" she asked, anxiously.

"Nothing," said the woman, trying to reassure the blonde. "My shoulder's just bothering me, is all. Think I pulled a muscle or something a few days ago," she added.

"And you've been playing baseball and building a playground?" exclaimed the woman, shocked. "No wonder you're in pain. Have you taken anything for it?"

Cody shook her head.

Jennie pointed to the floor. "Sit," she commanded, and Cody raised an eyebrow, but did as she was told. The blonde pulled the woman back until she was sitting on the floor next to the couch, and then placed her legs on either side of the tall star's body. Gently, but with strong and skilled fingers, she began massaging the woman's strong shoulders, loosening the tense muscles, loving the feeling as Cody's tension drained away.

"Mm," murmured the star, appreciatively. "That feels great." She closed her eyes and let her head fall forward, allowing herself to totally relax, and revel in the feeling.

When Jennie's hands were too tired to do any more, she moved the woman forward, sat down next to her, and scratched her back for a moment. If Cody thought she was completely relaxed before then, she was wrong. By the time the blonde was finished, the star was about as tense as a wet noodle.

And it felt terrific.

Turning, she pulled the young woman close, and gave her a strong hug. "Thank you, Jen," she said. "I think I should pay you. That was wonderful."

Jennie smiled. "I'm glad you're happy," she said, echoing Cody's words from earlier in the evening, drawing a knowing smirk out of the tall star. "Do you want more soda?" she offered, getting to her feet.

Cody sighed, and stood beside her. "No," she said, "I need to go." Jennie's face fell, no matter how hard she tried to stop it, and Cody pulled her into her arms. "I'm sorry, Jen. I really don't want to go, you know."

The blonde nodded, slipping her arms around the tall woman's waist. "I know," she said. "But you have to. Just be careful, okay? Call me when you get in," she added, as more of a question.

Cody smiled inwardly at the show of concern, and agreed. "I will," she said, "I promise. And I'll call every night to check on you and Jeffrey, too." Jennie smiled and her eyes danced at the offer. "Well, I guess I'll see you in a few days, then." Leaning down for a kiss, Cody let herself get lost in the feeling, as she wrapped her arms around the smaller woman, pulling her even closer.

Jennie eagerly pressed herself against the taller woman's frame, clasping her hands behind the star's neck to deepen the kiss. Slowly, Cody pulled away, much too soon for either woman.

"Now I really don't want to leave," she muttered, hugging Jennie tightly, before reluctantly letting her go, and walking towards the door.

"Cody," called Jennie, as the woman opened the door, and turned back at the sound of her name. "Be careful, please. I'll miss you."

The tall woman nodded. "I'll miss you, too, Jen. Talk to you tomorrow," she added, and gently closed the door behind her. Suddenly, the door opened again, and Cody stuck her head inside.

"Do you think Joe would miss me if I didn't go?" she asked, and Jennie laughed, walking over to give her a light kiss on the cheek.

"Go," she said. "You have to."

"Aw, but, Jen," whined Cody, and the blonde chuckled as she placed two fingers over the tall star's lips.

"No buts, remember?" she said, and Cody smiled. "Go. I'll be here when you get back," she assured, kissed Cody lightly on the lips, and then urged her out the door. "Cody Madison, if you don't walk out this door right now, we're both going to get in trouble!"

Cody raised an eyebrow over her shoulder as she walked out. "I like trouble," she said, her voice rich, sending a shiver through Jennie's body as she closed the door behind her.

My, she thought, pleasantly, what she does to me with just her voice... Worrying about the tall star already, Jennie fell into a dreamless sleep.

* * * * *

Cody sighed as she threw her bags down on the hotel room bed. The rooms were nice, a large bed with a nice TV, a VCR, and more importantly, a clean bathroom. Picking up the phone, Cody made sure the air conditioner was on - she knew as soon as she stepped off the plane that Phoenix's motto of "It's a Dry Heat" wasn't kidding - and then dialed the number for information.

"Uncle Mac's Daycare," she said, when the operator prompted her for the number she was searching for. Jotting down the number, Cody smiled as she punched them in, knowing it would surprise Jennie to get a call at work, but the tall woman had promised she'd call as soon as she got in, and they'd just arrived at the hotel.

"Uncle Mac's Daycare, this is Jennie, may I help you?" she greeted.

Cody smiled. "Hi," she said.

"Cody?" she exclaimed, happily surprised. "What are you doing calling over here? Is everything okay?"

"Everything's fine," she said, gently. "I just got in, and thought I'd call you, like I said I would. I understand if you can't talk at work, I just wanted to let you know I got in all right," she added, and pictured Jennie's smile in her mind.

"Thank you," she said, honestly. "You're right, I do need to go, but can you call me at home later tonight? I'm sure Jeff wants to talk to you."

Cody agreed. "Sure," she said. "I have a game later this afternoon, but I'll call sometime after that, if its not too late."

"Okay," said the blonde. "And thanks again, Cody. I miss you already," she admitted, softly.

"I miss you, too," said the star, and it was the truth - she missed not being able to ride over in her motorcycle and see the woman whenever she wanted, and knew it would be even worse when she didn't have a special young man to play catch with later on in the evening. "I'll call you later. Bye," she said, and Jennie echoed the same, as they hung up, reluctantly.

Damn, Cody, she thought to herself. What are you gonna do if you have to go out of town for a week, huh? Or somewhere really far away? You can barely stand three days in the next state!

A sudden knock on the door interrupted her thoughts. "Cody, its Matt," announced the man, and the tall woman opened the door.

"Why aren't you changed?" he asked, as he stood in his uniform. "Joe asked us to change into our uniforms, because he wants us out at the stadium in twenty minutes."

"Shit," said Cody, "I forgot." Tearing into her duffel bag, she changed where she was, mildly amused when Matt turned around, offering her some privacy. "I called Jen," she admitted, and Matt grinned.

"I thought so," he said, glad the woman was finally going to talk to him about the young woman. The two friends had talked about everything since high school, and he was thrilled when they met up again with the Warriors.

"She asked me to call her when I got in, and I didn't want to worry her," she continued, and Matt nodded.

"Right," he drawled, and laughed when he could feel Cody's sharp gaze on his back. "I'm kidding, C-girl. She really is a nice woman," he added, and Cody agreed.

"She is," she said. "And beautiful. You didn't really get to meet Jeff, but that's her son. He's a great kid," she gushed, glad to have someone to talk to, so she could finally let loose with how she felt. "We play catch every night, and he's doing really well."

"How old is he?" asked Matt, turning back around as Cody laced up her shoes.

"Almost six," responded the woman. "He's got the cutest laugh."

Matt chuckled. "You've got it bad, C-girl," he said. "But, I'm happy for you. It's about time you fell in love again." He paused, expecting her to deny the accusation of being in love, and his jaw hit the floor when she didn't.

"Hey, I've never been in love before her," the woman protested. "Maybe I thought it was love, but, honestly, Matt, I've never felt anything like this in my life. I mean, I want to be with her all the time, and we have a great time when we're together, and I feel like I could listen to her talk forever!" she grinned.

"I don't know if that's love, but I hope it is," she confessed, and her friend smiled. "Come on, let's go play some ball before Joe chews my ass."

The two ran down to the lobby, barely making it in time to jump into the van, where their teammates were waiting. Matt was silent on the ride over to the stadium, processing everything Cody had told him, and deciding that if Cody wanted to have a relationship again, there was nobody nicer he could think of to be the other-half.

It's been too long since she's been with anyone, the man thought. Maybe Jennie's just what she needs...

The game went well, and the Warriors won an easy 10-3 victory against the Diamondbacks. At the end of the game, everyone darted into the van, hoping to escape the press, because beating the home team usually didn't go over well, no matter how professional the reporters tried to be.

"You want some company for dinner tonight?" offered Matt. "I don't wanna go to the celebration, and I figured you wouldn't either, so do you want me to bring something up to your room?"

Cody nodded. "Sure, Matt," she said. "Thanks. I'll see you in a little while." Going their separate ways once they stepped off the van, Matt went to his room to order pizza, while Cody went to her own to dial the house of a certain blonde in California.

"Hello?" answered Jennie, and Cody grinned.

"Hey," she responded. "I know it's kind of late," she said, as her watch turned over to read 7:59, "but the game just ended."

"That's okay," said the blonde. "Jeff's been waiting up for your call, so I'll let you talk to him so he can go to bed, and then I'll get on again afterwards. Here he is," she said, handing the phone to her son, who could barely contain his excitement.

"Hi, Cody!" he exclaimed. "Guess what?"

Cody smiled. "What?" she asked, sounding just as excited.

"Mom said that if I'm good, maybe when you come back, I can go to one of your games! I get to watch you play!" he explained, happily.

Cody thought for a moment. Tickets aren't that cheap, she realized. Jennie's probably just talking about buying a ticket for Jeff, and not being able to go herself. Well, fuck that! I'll buy their tickets myself! she decided.

"Jeff, can you keep a secret?" she asked, and the boy eagerly said he could. "When I get back, if you've been a good boy, I'll make sure that both you and your mother get to go to a game, okay? But, don't tell your mom!"

"I won't," he promised. "Thanks, Cody. Goodnight," he said.

"Goodnight, little man. Sleep tight," she said, and he smiled, sleepily.

"Bye," he said, and handed the phone to his mother, before walking into his room and falling into his bed, asleep before his head even hit the pillow.

"What was that all about?" asked Jennie, pressing the phone against her ear.

"Nothing," replied Cody, smiling to herself. "We won the game tonight."

Jennie smirked. "I know," she said, "I watched you on TV. How's your shoulder, by the way?"

"It feels a lot better, thanks," said the tall star. There was a knock on her door, and she sighed. "Well, I think I'd better go. Matt's here, and he's bringing dinner. I'll call again tomorrow, okay?"

"Okay," said the blonde. "Sleep well, Cody."

"You, too, Jen," replied the woman. "Bye. Come in!" she called, as she hung up the phone. "Hey, pizza!" she exclaimed, seeing the box the man carried in his hands.

"Yep, dig in," Matt announced, helping himself to two pieces, pouring two plastic cups full of soda. "Compliments of the manager of the Pizza Parlor, when he found out who I was and just who I was having dinner with." Cody laughed, and took a few pieces for herself, before settling down on her bed for a nice night with one of her closest friends.

* * * * *

Just as Cody had said, she called every night, or before the game if it would be too late afterwards, and talked to both Jeffrey and Jennie. She made sure that Jeff was keeping up with his practices, and praised him when he told her he'd - somehow - managed to figure out how to juggle three tennis balls. The tall star kept up with Jennie, too, making sure that Mac wasn't giving her any trouble.

"I don't think I'll have time to call tomorrow before I leave, and I'll be home late, but I'll see you on Sunday, okay?" she said, when she called Friday night, being scheduled to fly back after the game the following night.

"Okay," agreed Jennie. "Be careful, and I'll see you soon." Cody smiled as she hung up, realizing how lucky she was, and just how caring Jennie was. Every phone call she'd made had ended with a "Sleep well", "Sweet dreams", or "Be careful" on both women's parts.

While it was nice to talk to them over the phone, and keep in touch, Cody couldn't wait to get back - Monday was the 4th of July, and she planned on taking Jennie and Jeffrey out to the home game for the best fireworks display either one of them had seen.

* * * * *

At 11:30 Saturday night, Cody stumbled into her house, not paying any attention to the flashing screen that indicated she had messages, just falling onto her bed, exhausted. The Warriors had won the game, but only after having to go two extra innings to break the 7-point tie, and Number 23 was dead on her feet.

The tall woman had just closed her eyes when her phone rang. Grumbling under her breath, she hit a button on the box next to her bed, enabling the speaker phone - she kept the receivers in various parts of her home, in case she wasn't able to be in the living room around the computer - and growled, "This better be a fucking emergency for whoever the hell this is to call me at 11:30 at night."

"Cody, it's Garret," said the man, and Cody frowned.

"Garret? What's going on? Can't this wait 'til morning?" she asked, rubbing at her eyes.

"No, it can't," said the man, sternly. "I've been calling every ten minutes since nine o'clock."

"Mind telling me why?"

The man sighed. "Cody, its Jennie."

The star sat up so fast her head spun. "What?" she demanded, switching on the lights with "Computer, lights." Flinching when the light was too bright, she corrected, "Dim lights," and then continued trying to figure out what was happening.

"What's wrong? Is she hurt? Where is she?" She belted out her questions as she slipped on her shoes, snarling when she put them on the wrong foot in her haste.

"She's down here at the bar, and she's drunk off her ass," he said.

Cody paused. "Wait a minute, Garret," she said, thinking that maybe the man was confused. "Jennie doesn't drink."

"Then there's some other beautiful blonde sitting here, at your table, drowning in her own scotch glass," he snorted.

"Fuck," cursed the woman. "How bad is she?"

"Do you remember that guy who used to come in here every Friday night when you were a teenager, get himself so drunk that he couldn't stand up, and then pass out on the floor?" he asked, and Cody nodded.

"Yeah," she said. Garret had been forced to call a cab for the man too many times for Cody to count. Thanks to him, Cody had learned the meaning of the words "shit-faced" and "plastered".

"Well, Jennie makes this guy look like the Pope."

"Jesus!" exclaimed Cody, floored. "Oh, shit. Where's Jeffrey?" she asked, her throat dry. She hoped the young boy wasn't watching his mother drink herself into oblivion.

What if she's drinking because something happened to Jeff? she wondered, and sank back down onto the bed with the heavy thought.

"Jeff's here, in the back room," he said, and Cody reminded herself to breathe. "Has been since they came in, actually. He just walked back here, curled up, and went to sleep. You call a cab and come get her, Cody," the man ordered. "She won't let anyone else come near her, but I'm waiting for her to pass out any second. Frankly, I'm surprised she's still managing to sit upright. I'll take Jeffrey for the weekend," he added.

"Thanks, Garret," said the tall woman. "I'll be there as soon as I can." As soon as the star heard the dial tone, she punched in seven digits, and ordered a cab, telling them there'd be a big tip if the driver could get to her house in ten minutes. The woman took that time to fully wake up, and try to figure out what in the world could have happened to drive the small blonde to drink.

Nine minutes later, the sound of a horn honking brought her out of her dismal thoughts, and she ran out the door.

"Garret's Restaurant," she commanded. "As fast as you can." The driver didn't ask any questions, he just sped down the road as fast as he safely could, stopping in front of his destination ten minutes later.

"Thanks," she said. "Wait here until I get back." The man nodded, accepting the ten dollar bill, and relaxed in his seat, wondering how long he should wait for a mere ten dollars. Figuring about ten minutes, he turned up the radio, and put the cab in park as his customer walked in the door of the bar.

"Bartender, gimme another," came a slurred voice, and Cody turned the waitress away, coming up behind the small blonde, who sat at Cody's table with an empty glass in her hand, and five others on the table.

"Hey, what're ya doin'?" she asked, upon seeing the woman with her drink leave.

"I was going to ask you the same question," said the tall woman, and Jennie tilted her head back until she could see Cody.

"Why're you standin' upside-down?" Jennie asked, a goofy smile on her face.

"Come on, Jen," said the woman, slipping her arm around the woman's waist, attempting to hold her up as they stood. "Time to go home."

"Huh-uh," said the blonde. "I wan another drink."

"You don't need anything else," said Cody, sternly. "Now, let's go. You can tell me why you're drunk later," she added.

"Cody?" she asked, her voice suddenly weak.


"Why is the ground tilting?" The liquor finally taking effect, Cody caught the woman in her arms as she passed out, and carried her to the cab.

"Donavon residence," she said, rattling off the address, and the driver obeyed. "It's okay, honey," she muttered, and was extremely startled when the blonde placed a sloppy kiss on her cheek.

"Ooh, I get to sit on your lap!" she giggled. "Kinky."

Cody raised an eyebrow at her. "Well, you're a happy drunk, I'll say that for you," she said, wryly. "Think you can walk into the house?" she asked, when they arrived.

"'Course I can walk into my own house!" she said, taking her arm out of Cody's grasp, trying to walk up the sidewalk as Cody paid the cab driver, and he drove away. "Oh, oh, okay... I can do this... well, if the stupid ground would stop moving!"

Cody sighed, and placed her hands on the blonde's smaller shoulders, leading her from behind. "Jennie, tell me you have your house key," she said, and the woman happily dangled the chain in front of her face. "Very good, now open the door." Fumbling with the keys, Cody took them from her, finally found the right key, and led the intoxicated blonde into the house.

"Hey, it's dark in here!" the woman complained, as Cody shut and locked the door, putting the keys on the kitchen counter.

"Jennie!" Cody yelped, when she suddenly felt two small hands travel up her sides. "Stop that," she commanded, grabbing Jennie's hands, quickly trapping them in her own larger ones. "Come on, let's get you into bed. You're so going to regret this in the morning."

"Cody," she said, as the tall woman sat her down on the bed and began taking her shoes off.

"What?" replied the star.

"I don't feel so good..."

"Oh, no you don't!" said Cody, helping the woman to the bathroom, but not before she managed to get foul smelling bile on both women's shirts.

Thank God stain removers also get rid of odors, she thought. Finding the washcloths, Cody soaked one in cold water, and held it against the sick blonde's forehead, trying to comfort her as she peeled off her shirt.

"Feeling better?" asked Cody, when the woman sat back on the ground away from the toilet, and nodded, allowing Cody to remove her soiled shirt. "Okay. Then let's get you back into bed."

"Only if you come, too," purred Jennie, and Cody rolled her eyes. Covering the small blonde up with the blankets, her eyes widened when the woman tugged on her arm, hard, pulling her down onto the bed beside her.

"That's better," she grinned, straddling Cody's hips.

"Jen, you don't want to do this," gulped the tall star.

Shut up, you idiot! Of course she wants to do this! Who are you to deny her?

"Yes, I do," insisted the blonde, placing soft kisses all over the woman's face.

"Jen, you're drunk. You don't know what you're doing," she said, deftly sliding out from under the young woman, when nimble fingers began working on the button of her jeans. I want this, but not until we can both enjoy it. "I won't let you do something you'll regret later."

Jennie pouted. "I won't take no for an answer," she said, and Cody forced herself to climb out of the bed.

"Then I'm sleeping on the couch," she decided. "I will not stay with you when you're too drunk to realize what you're doing."

"Cody, I - I'm sorry," came the soft voice, as Cody turned to leave. "Please, don't leave. I'll behave, I promise. I just... I don't want to be alone right now. Please," she repeated, and Cody felt her heart break at the scared tone of the blonde's voice.

"Okay," said the tall woman, gently, climbing back in beside her, kicking off her shoes as she laid down. "It's okay, I'm right here. I'm not leaving," she said, when she felt the small woman grip her waist tightly, and hold on for dear life.

"Rest now," she whispered, kissing the sleeping blonde's forehead. "We'll talk in the morning."


Jennie groaned as she woke up the next morning, and felt like her head had been run over by an 18-wheeler. Pausing when something felt different, she was startled to find that she was at home, and had been stripped of her shirt, clad now in only her bra and jeans.

"Morning," came a voice, and Jennie jumped, turning to see a smiling Cody standing in the doorway of her small bathroom, also wearing just a bra and her jeans.

"Hi," said the blonde, tearing her eyes away from the tall woman's muscular build, as Cody walked over and kissed her forehead.

"How do you feel?"

Jennie eyed the tall woman, carefully. "Did we...?" she asked, and Cody laughed.

"No," she assured her, "but it certainly wasn't for your lack of trying. You know, you're damned hard to resist." Jennie rolled her eyes, and pulled the blanket over her head.

Moments later, it was pulled down, and the blonde looked into smiling blue eyes. "I promise, we didn't do anything. You just got sick, so I had to soak both our shirts in cold water," she explained.

"Thanks," said Jennie, and Cody grinned. "And thank you, for not letting me make a fool out of myself. You could have easily taken advantage of me," she added.

Cody shrugged. "Not my style," she said. ... anymore, her mind finished. "Hey, you never answered my question - how do you feel?"

"Better than I should, I think," she said. "I usually don't get a bad hangover, just a headache. Oh, God, where's Jeffrey?" she asked, suddenly in a panic.

"Relax," said Cody, running her fingers gently through the short blonde hair. "Garret offered to take him for a few days. He didn't see anything, he was asleep in the back room the whole time."

"Good," she sighed, curling up into Cody's side as the woman lay beside her, and snuggling even closer when the tall star wrapped her arms around her.

"Mind telling me what caused all this?" she asked, and frowned when she felt hot tears hit her shoulder a moment later. "Jen?" she asked, concerned, hugging the woman tighter when she realized she was crying. "Hey, what's going on here?"

"I just had a really bad day," she sniffled.

"I gathered as much," said Cody, softly, rubbing her back. "You wanna tell me about it?" Jennie nodded, and Cody gave her time to gather her thoughts, holding her tightly.

"It started yesterday morning," she began, "when I got to work. Being a Saturday, there weren't too many kids, but Mac was there." Cody stiffened at the mention of the man's name, but said nothing, and let Jennie continue with her story.

The bulge of a man walked in the door, and immediately wondered why there

were no children visible. Hearing laughter, he walked outside, and saw the brats and his only remaining employee out around the playground. But something was different... that wasn't his playground!

"Jennifer!" he bellowed, and Jennie encouraged the dozen children to keep playing, while she approached the owner.

"Yes, Mr. Donaldson?" she replied, coming to stand beside him.

"What in the hell is that?" he demanded, pointing to the tire swing.

"That's a tire swing, sir," she responded, and he sneered at her.

"Well, I know that! What the fuck is it doing on my playground?" he shouted.

"I replaced the old one," Jennie told him, quietly.

"With MY money?!"

"No, sir," she said. "I had a few friends take care of it for me. This one is sturdy, and safe, and the children enjoy it."

"I didn't give you permission to change a goddamn thing, did I?" he asked, and Jennie sighed.

"You said that I could do something about it on my own budget," she reminded. "And this didn't cost you a cent."

"You're getting closer and closer to unemployment with these little fiascoes, Jennifer," he snarled. "Next time you pull a stunt like that, you and your little boy will be out on the streets, understand?"

"Yes, sir," she replied, softly, as he stormed inside and slammed the door.

"Mom?" asked a sweet voice, and Jennie looked down at her son.

"What, Jeffrey?" she responded.

"Where's James?"

Jennie paused for a moment, making sure the youngster wasn't out on the playground, before remembering that he hadn't been dropped off. "I don't know, honey," she replied. "Maybe his mom didn't have to work today. They might be doing something together."

Jeff sighed. "Okay," he said. "Can you come watch me on the monkey bars?" Following her son out to the playground, Jennie clapped for him when he made it all the way across, and then started a mini-Olympics with the other kids.

By the time the kids were all on their way home, except Jeffrey, of course, Jennie had had to deal with four angry parents. Three of them were unhappy because they felt that Jennie couldn't handle the daycare by herself, when they learned the other two people had quit, and threatened to pull their children out if they complained once about not feeling included.

The other parent, Timothy's father, was upset because he said that he had been out of town for a while, only to return and learn that his son had been injured on the daycare's slide. When Jennie showed him the new playground, however, he graciously apologized, and took the child home.

"What do you say we stop for dinner, hm?" offered Jennie, and Jeff agreed, his excitement growing when he realized they were going to the local Pizza Parlor, where he could play games until his heart was content.

"Mom!" he exclaimed, as they tried to find a table to eat their pizza. "Look! There's James and his mom!" Jennie followed her son's finger, after telling him it wasn't polite to point, and sure enough, there sat the young boy and his mother, eating pizza as they talked and laughed.

It was clear that James got most of his genes from his mother, judging by the woman's long blonde hair and dark blue eyes that bordered on gray. The woman didn't look to be much older than Jennie, and she had a kind face that took years away when she laughed.

"Can we go sit with them?" he asked, and Jennie told him to ask Mrs. Riley. "Mrs. Riley," said the young man, walking up to the woman, "can me and my mom sit with you and James?"

"Hi, Jeff!" cried the young boy, scooting over to give his friend room, and Harriet Riley smiled, allowing room for Jennie, as well.

"Certainly, Jeff," she replied, kindly. "Have a seat."

"Thank you," said Jennie. "Would you like any more pizza?" she offered, but Harriet shook her head.

"No, thank you," she said. "I'm sorry I didn't call to let you know James wouldn't be in today, but I just didn't think about it, and I wasn't expecting to take the day off."

"That's all right," said the young blonde. "Here, why don't you boys go play some games," she said, both mothers handing each boy a few dollars, smiling knowingly at each other as their sons scampered off.

"Jennie, I'm sure you know by now that something has been going on at home," said Mrs. Riley, gently, and Jennie was surprised by her bluntness, but nodded.

"Jeff told me that James mentioned something to him about having to act mean because that's what his father did," she confirmed.

"Well, I kept James home because I wanted to talk with him," she said. "He decided that he didn't want to live around his father if he kept being so violent to both of us, and I know he's not going to change, so I decided to spend some time with my son, after telling him we would do whatever he felt was best. I'm filing for divorce on Monday," she added, and Jennie took her hand, supportively.

"This isn't as hard as I thought it would be," she admitted, having no clue why she was telling the small blonde in front of her everything, only knowing that she needed to tell someone, and Jennie was the first adult she'd seen all day, having spent the day at various amusement parks with her child.

"It's been a long time since we've loved each other, and I need to do what's

best for James, as well as myself," she said, and Jennie nodded.

"If you or James need a place to stay, or someone to talk to, you're welcome to give me a call," said the gentle blonde, jotting her number on a napkin and handing it to the woman, who smiled, gratefully.

"Thank you," she said. "I think we'd better be going, now." The woman finished her soda, and gave the small woman across from her a quick hug.

"Thanks again, Jennie. I'll see you Monday morning.

"James!" she called, and the young boy came running up to her, Jeff not far behind. "It's time to go," she said, and the boy looked disappointed, but waved goodbye to Jeff and Jennie, before taking his mother's hand, and walking out the door.

Jennie was glad that Harriet knew what she had to do to get a better life for both her and her son, and was willing to do it. The young blonde and her son ate their pizza quickly, and then Jennie joined in on a few games, before announcing that it was six o'clock, and time to go home.

Happily, clutching the small action figure he'd bought with his tickets, the young boy skipped out to the parking lot, and climbed in the passenger side of his mother's car, his imagination running away with him as he played with his new toy.

Once home, mother and son played catch for a while, Jennie knowing she wasn't

nearly as good as Cody, but glad that Jeff seemed to be having a good time, nonetheless.

"Mom, Cody's coming back tonight, right?" he asked, as they walked inside, the cloak of darkness having put an end to their game.

"That's right," nodded Jennie, "but she's going to be tired, so we won't see her until at least tomorrow."

The boy looked up at her, his eyes hopeful. "Have I been good enough to go watch her play?" he asked, and Jennie smiled. Her son had been very well behaved, he always was, and she was going to keep her promise - all she had to do was find the money.

"Yes, I think you have," she said, and he gave her a big hug. "We'll ask Cody when we can arrange it, okay?" The boy nodded, and sat down on the couch to watch TV, being able to stay up a little later since he didn't have school the next day.

"Can I watch my cartoon movie?" he asked, and Jennie said he could, since the

movie was only half an hour long, and he'd probably be asleep by the time it was over. Putting it in the DVD player, she hit play, and, sure enough, as the movie cut off, the boy was asleep in his mother's arms.

Jennie carried him into his room, tucked him in, and then walked back out to the living room, placing the disc back in its case. She was ready to turn the TV off and go to bed, unable to stop thinking about what Mac had said, when a scene on the news caught her attention, and she paused.

"Volume up," she ordered, until she could hear what was being said.

"A hit-and-run driver is on the loose tonight, responsible for the deaths of two people, a mother and her young son. Witnesses say the black Mercury Cougar was doing the speed limit, when a white four-door vehicle sideswiped them, sending them crashing head-on into the cement barrier here on the freeway," said the reporter. "The white vehicle then sped off, leaving the scene.

"We have just been informed that we can release the names of the two fatalities in this horrible accident. They are Harriet Marie Riley and her five-year-old son, James Douglas Riley. Both were killed on impact."

Tears fell freely as Jennie sobbed, unable to continue her narrative, Cody herself shocked by the news, as she held the woman tightly.

"I just put Jeffrey in the car and drove down to Garret's before I knew what I was doing," she sniffed. "I was so upset that something like that could happen to a child. I never thought it would happen to someone I knew. And she was so close to being happy again… I'm sorry."

"Hey, it's okay," crooned the tall woman, gently. "Next time, talk to Garret about what's bothering you if I'm not around, instead of ordering drinks, okay?" The blonde nodded, and rested her head on Cody's shoulder.

"This wasn't exactly what I had in mind to welcome you back," she said, hiccuping as her tears slowed. "I was gonna make you dinner, and watch the sunset..."

Cody chuckled, touched by the thought. "That's all right, honey," she said, not even noticing the endearment. "We can do that another time. Besides," she continued, grinning, "sleeping topless with you wasn't all that bad."

Jennie smacked her arm, but smiled. Then, she paused, going over what Cody had said. "Did you just call me "honey"?" she asked, and Cody swallowed, thinking she'd messed up.

"Yeah," she admitted, meekly, startled when Jennie laughed and kissed her lips. Cody raised a dark eyebrow at her. "You're not mad?"

Jennie shook her head. "Why would I be mad? That's sweet," she smiled.

"But, I mean, we've only been together for a week," observed the star, and Jennie frowned for a moment, thinking that it seemed like she'd known the woman for much longer than just a few days.

Suddenly, the blonde grinned. "This is definitely the fastest moving relationship I've ever been in," she said, and Cody looked worried. "I usually don't sleep with anyone until at least the second week." Cody laughed, relieved the woman wasn't bothered by the pet-name.

This is new to me, too, thought Cody. I don't usually fall in love with the first beautiful set of green eyes I see. She smiled to herself. But, there's a first time for everything!



"What's wrong?" asked Jennie, and Cody looked at her.

"What do you mean?" she asked.

The blonde gave her a long, hard look. "You haven't said a single quote since I woke up this morning. Just wondering if you're okay," she said, and Cody glared at her.

"I'm fine," she said. "Would you like for me to say a quote?"

"Uh-huh," nodded Jennie, and Cody bit back a pleased smile. No one had ever actually asked her to phrase the quotes she knew, and when she knew it would bring the woman she loved enjoyment, she was all too happy to comply.

"What about?"

"Hm... how about, love."

The tall woman took a deep breath, and thought for a moment, before letting

it out all at once. "Love... okay. When you love someone all your saved-up wishes start coming out, Elizabeth Bowen. ...I don't want to live - I want to love first, and live incidentally, Zelda Fitzgerald.

"And, my personal favorite," she grinned, rolling over to lock eyes with the small blonde, "is by Dorothy Parker. Love is like quicksilver in the hand. Leave the fingers open and it stays. Clutch it, and it darts away."

"I like those," murmured Jennie, pulling Cody's head down for a long kiss.

"I know lots more," smiled the star, kissing the smaller woman again. "How's your headache?" she asked, chuckling.

Jennie raised an eyebrow at her. "Shut up," she said, smirking, as their lips met again, and the tall woman above her pulled back to place gentle kisses at the hollow of her throat. Gentle hands entangled themselves in jet black hair, tugging Cody back up.

Breathless, Jennie pulled away. "Cody, this is too fast," she said, and the star sighed.

"You're right," she agreed. "Next week good for you?"

That got her a slap in the arm. "I'm serious," the blonde insisted. "That's too big a step to make in such a short time."

Cody nodded. "I know," she said. "But, is it my fault you're so beautiful I can't keep my hands off you?" The blonde blushed, and Cody laughed, kissing her forehead.

"You like embarrassing me, don't you?"

"Just stating the facts," protested the star, grinning.

"Flattery will get you everywhere," laughed Jennie, and Cody grinned.

"By God, I hope so." Jennie groaned, and buried her head in the tall woman's strong shoulder as she blushed again, feeling the woman beneath her shake as she tried to control her laughter.

The blonde raised her head to find the star biting her lip, so she rolled her eyes, and sighed, dramatically, "Go ahead." The laughter that rang out was contagious, and soon Jennie was in a fit of giggles, helped along by Cody's tickling fingers at her sides.

"Okay, okay, I give!" she exclaimed, and Cody stopped tickling her, still laughing as she gave her a hug. "No fair - you're bigger than I am."

"Yep," confirmed Cody. "That just means I can do more things for you."

"Really?" asked Jennie, raising an eyebrow at her. Playful mood, are we? "Well, in that case, the floor could use a good vacuuming, the kitchen needs cleaning..."

Cody put her hand over her mouth. "You don't want to have me around the kitchen, remember? It's a disaster," she reminded, and Jennie smiled, taking her hand away so she could talk.

"Then I'll teach you," she said.

Cody blinked a few times, obviously surprised. "You'll what?"

"Teach you how to cook," elaborated the blonde. "That is, if you want me to."

Visions of food fights and other much more naughty things to do with food danced in her mind, and Cody smiled. "Sure," she drawled. "It's just, no one's ever offered to do that for me before," she admitted.

"Well, what do you say we get started? I don't know about you, but I'm starving," she said, and Cody gave her a look that said, "Yeah? What else is new?" and received another light slap in her arm. "Come on. Hey, is my shirt clean?"

Cody shook her head. "Nope, not yet," she said. "Mine isn't ready, either." She sighed, heavily. "Guess I'll just have to stay like this."

Jennie tossed a large shirt in her face. "Put it on," she ordered. "Consider it a prevention of what shouldn't be."

"Damn," muttered Cody, just loud enough for Jennie to hear, as she slipped the shirt over her head, as the small blonde laughed and found a shirt for herself. "So, what are we gonna have for breakfast?"

Jennie shrugged. "How about biscuits and gravy?" she offered, and Cody grinned.

"Sounds good," she agreed.

"From scratch."


Forty-five minutes later, two flour-covered women finished their meal. Cody had started the flour fight when she sprinkled a small amount of flour over the blonde's head, and Jennie had finished it by dumping a handful of biscuit batter down the taller woman's shirt. Jennie let Cody do most of the cooking, she just supervised and answered questions, and while the gravy was a bit dry, the biscuits were delicious.

"That was good, Cody," praised the blonde, and couldn't believe the woman was blushing.

"Thanks," she shrugged. "I think I have more food on me than in me," she smiled. "But, it was fun. Thank you."

"You're welcome," said Jennie, kissing her softly, squealing when Cody spread

cold batter over her chest, taking it from the remnants of the goo that was still down her own shirt. "Well, I guess it's time to clean up the kitchen."

When Cody began gathering dishes to put in the dishwasher, Jennie stopped her. "You cooked, so I clean," she explained.

"I started the food-fight that made the mess," countered Cody, with a grin, "so I'll help." The blonde smiled, and within ten minutes, the kitchen was spotless again.

"When do you think we should rescue Garret from my son?" joked the blonde.

Cody laughed, but shrugged. "I think he'll be okay through today," she said. "But, tomorrow, I'm taking you and the little man out to a ball game - no arguments. The Warriors' stadium always gives a good fireworks show on the 4th, and you may as well have the pleasure of watching me play, too," she added, waggling her eyebrows as Jennie grinned.

"Well, in that case," she sighed. "Thanks." Kissing her soundly, Jennie was glad for a moment that her son was indeed out of the house, because she and Cody made quite a scene in the middle of the kitchen.

* * * * *

Cody stayed the night, allowing herself to get roped into making dinner and doing the dishes, but she really didn't mind, because it meant Jennie finally had a chance to relax. The tall star insisted that the blonde sit on the couch while she made dinner - which ended up being soup and a sandwich, but wasn't half bad - and then served it to her where she was.

Both women ate their meal on the couch, and afterwards, Cody collected the dishes, refusing help from Jennie, and loaded them into the dishwasher. That done, she went back into the living room, and sat down next to the small woman, taking her hand.

"Thank you," smiled the blonde, happily. "You know, I could get used to having you around."

Cody grinned. "That was the idea," she said. "I really don't mind doing things for you, you know. Can I ask you something?"


"What do you do for fun?"

Jennie frowned. "I'm not sure I understand," she said, slowly.

"Jen, I look around, and I see everything a little boy could want," explained the tall woman. "But I don't see a single book that doesn't rhyme, a single DVD with real people instead of animated characters, or a single puzzle that doesn't say "Ages 3-10" on the side. What do you do to relax?"

The woman sighed, and shrugged. "I haven't thought about it, actually," she said. "I'm a single mother, with a full-time job. Not only do I have to make sure the bills are paid on time, I have to make sure Jeffrey has everything he needs. I'm usually too busy to worry about having fun," she admitted.

Cody paused - she hadn't thought about it like that. "There's a quote I heard, but I can't remember who said it. The quote was: "Mothers never really think alone. They think once for themselves, and then for their child". I didn't understand that until I met you," she smiled.

Jennie nodded. "That's true," she said.

"It's settled then - you and Jeff are going to a baseball game tomorrow night." Jennie grinned, and gave the tall woman a hug. Cody held the woman in her arms until she fell asleep, and then carried her into her bedroom, wishing her good night as she left a note on the vacant pillow and fell asleep on the couch.

* * * * *

When the blonde awoke the next morning, she groaned when she realized she was

in her own bed, alone, and it was already past 9 o'clock.

"First she has to come pick me up from a bar because I'm too drunk to go home on my own, then she cooks me dinner and I fall asleep on her," she muttered. "Great job of welcoming her home, Jennie."

Green eyes brightened when she noticed a note on the bed. Picking it up, she rubbed her eyes to get them to focus, and read the short letter.

It read:


I know you must have been tired, so

I figured I'd let you sleep in your own

bed alone, since I wasn't sure what we'd

end up doing sober…! I crashed on the

couch, hope you don't mind.

See you in the morning.


Jennie smiled. Wasn't sure what we'd end up doing sober, she thought to

herself. God, how bad did I try when I was drunk?!

There was a soft knock on the door. "Jen, you awake?" came a soft voice. The blonde grinned. "Yeah," she said. "Come in."

The door opened, revealing a smiling baseball player, and her small protégé. "Morning," said Cody.

"Hi, Mom!" The young boy jumped into the bed beside her, giving her a big hug. "Cody said you didn't feel good, that's why I had to stay with Garret yesterday, but we had fun and we played games and I got to play with a cat!"

Green eyes locked with blue ones, as Cody shrugged, and the verdant gaze brightened, glad that Cody had taken care of the situation.

"That's right, honey," confirmed Jennie, returning the youngster's embrace.

"How long have you been home?"

"Since seven," voiced the star. "I picked up your car, and then drove to Garret's, where I acquired a little hitchhiker." Jeff grinned, and Cody laughed when he stuck his thumb out like Cody has shown him, when he had asked what a hitchhiker was.

"Thanks," said Jennie. "What time is the game tonight?"

"It starts at 6:30, but Joe wants us there about four to practice and stuff," she explained. "You're welcome to come with me for the practice, if you want, or you can wait until the actual game starts."

"What do you think, Jeff?"

"Practice!" squealed the boy. "Can I practice with you?"

Cody started. "Uh, I'm not sure, little man. I'll have to talk with my coach, but I'll see what I can do, okay?" she offered, and the towhead nodded. Suddenly, she kneeled down, and whispered something into the young man's ear. He nodded anxiously, and with a wink, Cody led the boy out of Jennie's bedroom.

A few minutes later, the door opened, and Cody helped Jeff balance a tray of food in his hands.

"What's this?" asked the blonde, unable to keep the grin from crossing her face.

"Breakfast in bed," replied Cody, smiling.

"Yeah!" agreed Jeffrey, jumping up on the bed next to his mother, once the tray was settled over her lap. "Cody helped me make the eggs and stuff, and I did the toast all by myself! Huh, Cody?"

Cody grinned. "That's right, little man. You did a good job," she praised, and the boy contentedly squirmed onto her lap, since his mother's was taken up by food.

Jennie smiled at her son. "This all looks so delicious, I don't know where to start," she said, looking at the scrambled eggs, toast, and fruit that covered her plate, along with a glass of orange juice.

"Here!" said Jeffrey, helpfully handing his mother a piece of cantaloupe.

"Mm, that's very good," affirmed the blonde. "Did you two already eat?" The

two nodded, so Jennie finished her meal, making sure to tell both Cody and Jeffrey how much she enjoyed it.

When she was done, Jeffrey took the tray, and carefully walked it back out to the kitchen.

"Boy," sighed Jennie, happily, "one cooking lesson and I get breakfast in bed!"

Cody smiled. "Glad you liked it," she said, stealing a quick kiss.

Turning towards the door when she heard a sniffle, her blue eyes turned worried when she saw a sad looking young boy standing there, tears in his eyes.

"What's the matter, Jeff?" she asked, kneeling in front of the child.

"The glass broke and I spilled the juice on the floor," he said, in between sniffles, feeling bad that he had ruined his mother's special breakfast. Cody had said they were going to help her feel better, and now he'd gone and messed it up.

"Did you cut yourself?" was Cody's first concern, and the boy shook his head.

"Okay. You go see your mother, and let me clean it up, so you don't get hurt. Hey," she said, tapping his chin so he looked into her eyes, "it's okay, little man. I appreciate your help this morning."

The boy smiled a little, a grin that widened when Cody ruffled his hair on her way to the kitchen, and he scampered up next to Jennie, who soothed his frazzled nerves and assured him he wasn't in trouble.

A few minutes later, Cody returned, a smile on her face. "All done," she announced. "Nothing to worry about, Jeff." The boy grinned, and leapt to his feet when the tall woman suggested they give Jennie some time to shower and get dressed.

Half-an-hour later, Jennie smiled as she opened the door, and saw Cody and

Jeffrey in the living room. Cody was pacing, and Jeffrey was imitating her, going in opposite directions.

"How long does it take her to get dressed?" asked Cody, jokingly, not realizing Jennie was nearby and within earshot. "Does it always take her this long?"

The boy nodded. "Yep," he said. Jeff had to join in; he was already pacing like Cody, like an adult, now he just had to say things he heard big people say... "Women," he sighed, heavily, and Cody burst out laughing.

"You're telling me," said Jennie, and the two jumped, looking into amused green eyes. "I'm ready. Unless, of course, you'd rather me go back and change clothes," she said, smiling sweetly.

"No, no, that's fine," said the tall woman, in fact eyeing Jennie's current

outfit rather appreciatively. The small blonde wore jeans and a T-shirt, but both were snug, and showed off the curves of her body. Cody briefly wondered if she'd need to take a stick, to beat off all the men that were sure to follow her girlfriend, tongues dragging on the ground.

"What do you say we go get lunch, and then head over to the stadium?" she offered, and Jennie agreed, insisting that she would drive. Cody agreed, and Jeffrey clambered into the back seat, as Cody got into the front passenger seat beside Jennie. The small blonde smiled when her son insisted he wanted McDonald's, and Cody quickly agreed, so she pulled into the parking lot, and the three walked inside.

Cody helped Jeffrey retrieve the drinks and condiments, and the two selected a table, happily blowing the paper from their straws at each other, until Jennie caught them. Both looked so cute and guilty, the blonde couldn't help laughing, and kissed them both on the forehead, much to the suspicion of the surrounding patrons.

"Happy meal, chicken nuggets, and two cheeseburgers," she called, handing out

the appropriate food to each one of them. As Jeffrey happily played with his toy, Cody walked up to the front counter, and purchased the other two toys in the set, enjoying them herself before handing them over to the young boy.

"Thanks, Cody!" he exclaimed, beaming.

"No problem, little man," she smiled, ruffling his hair, as she loved to do.

Jennie shot her a grin, and the star winked at her, as the people at the table closest to them left, upon seeing their joined hands.

When lunch was over with, Cody drove to the stadium, the fingers of her right hand interlocked with those of the blonde's left, as Jeffrey made up scenarios with his new action figures. Jennie, on the other hand, was constantly glancing over at the tall woman on her right, trying to get used to seeing her long dark hair in a braid. It made it easier for her to put under her helmet, Cody claimed, but it was strange for Jennie to observe, when she wasn't used to it.

"Cody, is James gonna be there?" he asked, referring to the tall star's friend, whom he remembered from a few days ago at the daycare.

"Yep," confirmed Cody. "And the rest of the guys, too. James' son is probably going to be there, so you'll have someone your age to play with," she added, and the boy seemed excited by the news.

Sure enough, as Cody led Jennie and her son through the bleachers, they ran into James' wife, Leslie, son, Mike, and young daughter, Jessica. Jeffrey and Mike hit it off

instantly, as did Jennie and Jessica and Leslie, so Cody slipped away, secretly glad she didn't have to worry about Jeffrey joining in the practice, as she met James down on the field after she changed.

They were early, as it was only about two in the afternoon, but Cody knew most of them liked to have more time to practice before a game, and even work on perfecting a few moves. Playing a quick game with the five people they had out there, one person hitting the ball to different parts of the field to exercise the catchers, before hitting one as far as they could, and running until they were tagged out.

Jennie and Leslie had a good time watching the men, and one woman, play their best, and chatted idly about raising kids. Mike and Jeff, on the other hand, ran around the bleachers, playing with Jeffrey's new action figures, and the few toys Mike had brought along.

When it was about five, people started filing in for the game, as the players

left the field, and the two mothers called their sons over to them, to keep an eye on them. Just over an hour later, the stadium was packed, and the game began.

The Warriors were playing against the Dodgers, and gave the team a run for their money. By the fifth inning, the score was 9-3 in favor of the home team, and Jennie was cheering just as loudly as the other fans, rooting for number 23.

As Cody stepped up to the plate, the fans began chanting her name, and she glanced up, sparing Jennie a quick grin as she met her gaze, and then concentrated on the task at hand. With a loud crack, the fast ball was sent flying over the wall, and every fan in the stands was on their feet, as three people crossed the plate, followed by Cody, who was met by high-five's in the dugout.

"Nice hit, C-girl," praised Matt, and the woman just smiled, accepting the applause with charm.

By the end of the last inning, with a score of 16-5, no one cheered louder than Jennie and Jeffrey, when Cody caught a home run hopeful at the wall, ending the game. When the cheering died down, the players were asked to leave the field, as the fireworks were about to begin.

Changing quickly, Cody slipped into the stands, found Jennie, and sat with her and her tired but excited son as they watched the celebration. The display was gorgeous, with red, blue, purple, green, and many other colors exploding above the fans.

When it was over, however, Jeffrey was sound asleep in the strong arms of his tall friend, not moving in the slightest when Cody carried him out to the car, and lowered him gently in the back seat.

"Did you have fun?" asked Cody, as she sat down in the front passenger seat, and worked on taking down her hair.

Jennie nodded. "That was great, Cody," she grinned. "Jeff had a good time, too. Thank you." Exchanging a quick kiss with the star, Jennie drove home, her son pleasantly worn out, not even waking up when she pulled in the driveway.

Jennie opened the back door, and was about to lift Jeffrey into her arms, when she heard the phone ring. Running to the door, she unlocked it in a hurry, trusting Cody to take care of her son, which she knew the tall woman would do without hesitation.

"Hello?" answered Jennie, breathless from running to catch the phone before

the caller hung up.

"Hello, dear," said a voice. "I've been calling all night."

"Sorry, mom," sighed the blonde, propping the phone up on her shoulder as she

motioned for Cody to put Jeff to bed. "We went to see the fireworks down at the Warriors' Stadium."

"Oh, that sounds like fun. Listen, honey, there's someone I think you should


"Mom," pleaded Jennie.

"Come on, Jennie," insisted the woman. "It's not like you're with anyone!"

Jennie was silent for a moment, wondering what to say to that, and her mother gasped. "You are?"

"Well…" muttered the young woman, briefly wondering how fast she could

change the subject.

"That's wonderful! Why didn't you just say something?" Dana continued without waiting for her daughter to answer. "You simply must bring him over for dinner so your father and I can meet him! What's the name of your latest love?"

Jennie sighed. "Cody," she said. Well, she wasn't lying.

"Details, honey!" demanded Dana, laughing. "Tall? Short? What?"

"Tall, black hair, gorgeous blue eyes," gushed the blonde, and then bit her tongue.

"Wonderful!" her mother repeated. "Why don't we all get together for dinner

Wednesday night? How does The Olive Garden sound? Maybe you can find a baby-sitter for Jeffrey," she added, and Jennie agreed.

"Okay, mom," she said. "I'll see if Cody's free. Talk to you later. Love you," the blonde concluded.

"Love you, too, honey. Oh, this is going to be great!" Dana repeated.

Shaking her head, Jennie hung up the phone as Cody came up behind her and gave her a gentle hug. "Everything okay?" she asked, softly.

"My mom wants you to meet her and my dad at dinner Wednesday night," she said, returning the hug.

Cody grinned. "I'll behave," she promised. "Your parents will think I'm the nicest friend you've ever had."

"Cody, I'm going to introduce you as my girlfriend," she explained.

"Are you sure?"

The smaller woman nodded as she sat down on the couch, Cody following suit and sitting next to her. "I want my parents to know me for who I am," she said. "I'm tired of making up excuses to get out of dates my mother has set up. And I am not ashamed of you, so I'm not going to act like it!"

Cody smiled. "Well, I'm glad to hear that," she said. "As long as you're sure, because I'm willing to restrain myself from holding you for one evening, if I have to."

Jennie laughed. "I'm sure, but thank you. I guess this means I have to find a baby-sitter for Jeffrey, since he won't want to go with us," she sighed.

"Why don't you let me ask James? I'm sure he wouldn't mind keeping him for

another night," she said. The two women had already planned a night at the movies Tuesday night, but Cody didn't think her friend would have any objections to watching the boy two nights in a row.

"Besides, Jeff and Mike seemed to have fun together," the woman added. Jennie agreed, glad Cody had taken care of the problem, and snuggled deeper into the star's arms.

"You played really well tonight," she said, adding, "You were the best one out there," and Cody chuckled.

"Thanks," she said. "I think you're just bias."

The blonde grinned, and mumbled into the strong shoulder, "Hm, I am. Cody?" she asked, after a silence.


"Thank you."

"For what?" asked Cody, startled by the sudden gratitude.

"For letting us go to practice with you," was the response. "Jeffrey really enjoyed it, and so did I. It meant a lot to both of us," she finished, quietly.

Cody smiled. "You're welcome, honey," she replied. "Anytime you feel like sitting in the sun and watching me sweat, you just let me know. I think we wore the little man out, though," she added, grinning as she got up and stood in the doorway of the boy's room, just watching him sleep.

Jennie came up beside her, and wrapped an arm around her waist. "He really is a great kid," whispered Cody, kissing the top of the blonde head.

"Only because he's got you for a model," came the soft reply.

"Model?" asked the star, taken aback.

"He looks up to you," confirmed the blonde, and then glanced up to see the stricken look on the tall woman's face. "Does that bother you?" she asked, concerned.

"No," assured Cody, once she found her voice. "It's just, I'm not really much of a role model."

The smaller woman smiled. "Sure you are," she said, and was startled when the tall baseball player drew back, and started walking to the front door.

"Cody?" she asked, afraid she'd said something wrong.

"I'll, uh, I'll see you tomorrow night for the movies, okay?" she said, chastely kissing the blonde's cheek as she walked out the door and into the night.

"Okay," said Jennie, to the closed door, wondering what in the world had just happened.

Continued in Part 3.

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