A life, unlived, was about to end.
She lay on her deathbed, the wound too deep to heal. She thought maybe she was diseased — maybe always had been — and she was just too afraid to pass that disease on to anyone else.
Maria walked in. The woman who she had spent so long watching, quietly pining for, the woman she had secretly fallen in love with. That had been the worst thing of all, because she had never asked for it, never wanted it. But at least she could say that they were friends.
She closed her eyes, unable to look at her. She forced out slow breaths, heart pounding as it broke. Just seeing her broke her, and that old desire rose up in her again. She would die, die, without even the simplest touch. It was more than she could bare.
She opened her eyes. Those dark brown eyes instantly melted into hers, concern and love written softly in them.
“Kiss me,” said Beth before she could stop herself. A lifetime of repressed desires was released in that one sentence. Yet she felt cold with fear. Surely Maria would never understand… she had really destroyed everything now, blown up their whole relationship.
Maria looked at her in surprise, and Beth squeezed her eyes closed, unable to look at her. She couldn’t watch her love and life fall apart at what Maria would do next.
For a moment, there was silence. Beth thought perhaps Maria had already left. Then she felt a soft pressure on her lips. It was actually happening!
Her eyes shocked open, and Beth pressed her lips back in return, savouring the brief feeling. Finally, Maria broke away.
“You kissed me,” said Beth, still shocked.
“You’re an idiot,” said Maria. “All you ever had to do was ask. I was waiting.”
“You… were… You… love…” Beth paused, barely able to voice it.
“You,” said Maria at the same time that Beth said, “Me?”
Maria smiled. “Yes.”
“Too little, too late,” Beth smiled sadly.
“Not at all. You got your last kiss,” said Maria.
“First,” Beth corrected her.
Maria smiled wider. “Well, we’ll just have to remedy that.” And she kissed her again.