I drove all night

She’s kind of out of her element; Suzi normally does this sort of thing. Don’t misunderstand, when she wants to be, Didi can be quite romantic. Like the time she sent orange and purple and yellow roses (Didi’s team colors) to Suzanne’s hotel room when her team came into town for the first time after Didi had been drafted. Or when, after winning that game, Didi took the woman out to the local sports bar for drinks and let her share the free drinks sent to their table. Yes indeed, Didi Tate is a die-hard romantic. However, showing up unannounced is something her lover would do, not Didi. Nevertheless, Didi’s stepping out of her comfort zone and into the lobby of the Hyatt Regency hotel in LA to surprise her girlfriend.

“Hello.” Didi approaches the lady behind the counter with a smile and reads her name tag, “Marianne, I’m Didi Tate and I’m supposed to be meeting Suzanne Baird here can you tell me what room she’s in?”

“Why sure,” Marianne smiles back, “let me just check the guest list for your name.” She taps on the computer keys and Didi stops her.

“Oh, I won’t be on there. She doesn’t know I’m coming. It’s kind of a surprise.”

Marianne’s smile falters, “Oh, I’m sorry then. I can’t tell you which room she’s in. I’d have to call her and let her know that you’re here. She can then opt to have me send you up or come down and get you. Would you like for me to call her?”

Disappointed that she can’t have the room number and surprise Suzanne herself, Didi almost misses the sound of someone calling her name Just as she opens her mouth to let Marianne call up to Suzi’s room, she hears the voice. “Didi Tate!”

She turns and scans the faces behind her. Suddenly a familiar one emerges, “I’ll be damned!”

She turns to Marianne, “Thanks anyway. I think I just found a friend who can help.” She turns away from the counter and calls to her friend, “Shay!” She hugs the woman when she gets close enough, “Thank God! Someone I recognize!”

Shay laughs as they part, “Me too! What are you doing here?”

Didi blushes slightly, “Surprising someone you and I both know.”

“Ah, I see.” Shay nods, “You never were good at surprises.”

Didi’s face falls, “What’s that supposed to mean?”

Shay chuckles, “Suzi’s gone out with a few of her friends from that summer program she helped out with and I don’t have a damn clue where they went.”

“Shit!” Didi sighs, “I drove all night!”

“I know.” Shay pats Didi on the back, “But I have a key-card to her room, so I can just let you in!”

Didi smiles, “That would be awesome! Thank you so much. Now I just have to figure out where they are.”

Shay leads Didi to the elevators, “Well, I could call her and find out. Act like I’m gonna go out and want to meet them wherever they are.”

Didi lets Shay onto the elevator first, “If you don’t mind, that would be great.”

“No problem.” She dials Sue’s cell phone number as Didi’s cell starts vibrating on her hip.

Didi laughs, “You can hang up, this is her.” She flips open her cell, “Hey baby. What’s up?”

The elevator stops at the 10th floor and they exit to the right. Shay leads Didi quietly to 1034 and opens the door. “Yeah? I can barely hear you. It’s so loud there. Where are you?” Didi grabs the nearest pen and scribbles “Havana” on her hand, “Where’s that? Like close to the hotel?” Shay covers her mouth to stifle a giggle and Didi waves her hand for her to keep quiet, “Oh yeah? About a block away. That’s good that it’s close. Well listen, sweetie, I need to get some sleep, but you have fun okay? And I love you.” Didi nods and listens to Suzi say her goodbyes and I love yous, “Good night honey.” She claps her cell closed with a loud laugh, “She’s around the corner at a place called Havana. I’m gonna change and bust up in there.”

Shay laughs, “Well that’s good that she’s not half way across the city. I’m gonna go now.” She hands the key-card to Didi, “She’d want you to have this. Just don’t lose it because she’d kill me.”

Didi pulls the woman into another hug, “Hey, thanks a lot.” When Shay pulls away she asks, “Are you sure you don’t want to come with me? Do a little dancin’?”

She shakes her head, “Nah.” She grins big, “You know I’m getting too old for stuff like that.” Just before she closes the door, she salutes Didi, “Have fun, kid.”

Didi changes into a tight green, shirt with a deep, ruffled v-neck and a tight pair of jeans. Her simple black boots and silver earrings are the only flashy accessories she puts on. She checks her hair for loose strands and grabs her bag as she leaves.

Using directions from the front desk she finds the club without a problem and pays the cover charge with a smile. She stands in the doorway looking around the room and then spots it…that smile. She’d know that smile anywhere on the planet.

She looks for another face in the crowd and finds it under the big neon sign that flashes “Dance”. She saunters up to the DJ and makes a request before going to the bar and buying a Bud Light for herself and sending a raspberry kamikaze to her girl’s table. She takes the last empty bar stool and waits, eyes on her lover.

The waitress approaches with a single shot glass on a tray and offers it to Suzanne. Suzi’s face breaks into a grin and she laughs. “Where did this come from?” She takes the shot quickly, feeling the burn down her throat matching the burn she feels for the only woman she knows who would likely have called in a single shot over the phone.

The waitress uses her thumb to point over her shoulder, “From the lady at the end of the bar.”

Suzi’s face blanches and she strains her neck to scan the bar. Her eyes fall on a brunette at the end who raises her Bud Light in a toast before taking a long swig. She gasps, “Oh my fuckin’ God!” She pushes her friend out of the booth, “Hurry! It’s Didi!” As she weaves her way through the crowded bar, she notices that Didi hasn’t moved from her seat. And she also notices the strains of a Celine Dion song. She smiles to herself as she comes within inches of Didi’s smiling face.

She yells over the music, “You drove all night, huh?”

Didi slides off her bar stool and wraps her arms around the woman’s waist, “Yes I did. And I would do it again even if it meant that I only got to see you throw back that shot and smile in my direction.” Suzi wraps her arms around Didi’s neck and smiles.

She points to the speakers above their heads, “You didn’t wake me from my sleep to make love to me.”

Didi’s face nears Suzi’s for a kiss, “Only because you’re not asleep.” When they part Didi smirks at the lyrics of the song, “I didn’t creep into your room, Shay let me in.” She laughs, “Is that alright?”

Suzanne smiles, “I won’t punish you too much.”

Didi wiggles her eyebrows and laughs loudly, “Oooh! Hurt me baby!”

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