By Knightmare Elite

This is an excerpt of what was supposed to be a much longer story. I figured since it has been sitting in my folder for nearly a year, I'd post it. I know people are tired of me updating the same stories forever's something new.

For the better part of an hour, Gabriel stood before her open closet. She blindly tossed another shirt in annoyance. "I can't believe that little snot borrowed my jeans without asking, again!" She rifled through the meticulously organized closet for a suitable alternate.

"Gabby—is here!"

Gabriel turned down her stereo and cracked the door.

"Did you call me, mom?"

"I said your fiancée is here."

Gabriel looked back at her clock. It was a quarter past noon. She ran over to the window, slowly turning the blinds. In the driveway was Coreen's Jerez Black Metallic BMW M3 convertible.

"I'm still getting dressed, tell her to come up."

Moments later came a knock at the door. Gabriel walked past the failed outfits and took a seat at her dresser. In only lace undergarments, Gabriel regulated herself to makeup in light of her fashonista better half.

"It's open."

"Happy Birthday!"

Gabriel looked over at her girlfriend, smiling at the bouquet.

"What's up pretty girl?"

Coreen stuck out her tongue at the given nickname. It was an exasperating effect of her half Indian ethnicity. She was gifted with the face of a princess; sun kissed bronze skin and curly blonde hair.

"You said you were getting ready over an hour ago."

"Roslyn borrowed the jeans I was going to wear, and spilled fruit punch on them."

Gabriel reached for the bouquet, instead, receiving Coreen's lips in a rushed kiss. She licked the moisture between their parting lips, drawing in Coreen's tantalizing perfume. "Aggressive much?"

"Can't a girl miss your lips?" Coreen plucked out the envelope and set it on Gabriel's thigh.

"I have no idea what to wear now."

"Calm down, you have more than enough to work with."

Coreen sauntered over to the closet, skimming the categorized lot.

Gabriel opened the envelope and read the card. "Just wishing a very Happy Birthday to my most cherished, love Coreen. Aww, you're sweet."

"I know it's corny. I figured there's little I could put on a card that I don't already tell you."

"No it's sweet, thank you," Gabriel, in focus of Coreen's denim clad backside, whispered. She smiled as Coreen parted the tops and leaned forward, arching her back to a heart shaped frame. "What's this?" Her fingers grazed a thin box amongst the roses.

Coreen spun around clutching a chocolate brown midriff.

"I know you don't like me buying you jewelry, but-"

"We've talked about this—you don't have to buy me things." Gabriel untied the bow and lifted the box cover. Her hands shook seeing a diamond tennis bracelet. "How much did this cost?"

"Is that really important?" Coreen stood and took the box from Gabriel's hand. "This is your birthday present, so you're obligated to accept it without protest. Look, I promise you, nothing more after this."

Their lips met as the bracelet was locked around Gabriel's wrist.

"All right, I'll make an exception, only because it's my birthday."

Coreen handed the midriff to Gabriel and returned to the closet. "It goes well with this." She turned around with a chocolate & pink corduroy ruffle skirt." She approvingly placed it against Gabriel's waist.

"I don't want to spend my 19th birthday looking fifteen."

"Are you calling me a pedophile?" Coreen put Gabriel's hands on her hips, closing the space between them with her lips.

"My mom is going to flip when she sees this bracelet. It probably costs more than the new flat screen she finally got off layaway."

"Oh hush; it may be the most expensive thing I've ever bought you." She brought Gabriele's hand to her lips, kissing the diamond engagement ring. "It's not the most important."

"I don't consider this a gift. It's a declaration of our love and proof that you're my bitch."

"No, I'm your girlfriend, fiancée, future wife, but not your bitch. My mother didn't raise a ho," Coreen insisted.

"I still can't forget the first time I met your mom. She was the first Indian woman I had ever met with a British accent."

"That was her regional dialect, she can understand Hindi, just not speak it."

"The only time you ever speak Hindi is when she gets on your nerves."

Coreen shrugged. "What little I can speak, I picked up from that summer with my aunt."

"It would be so sexy if you had your mom's accent. I'm weak for British girls."

"My mom's not British. And can you believe she said I talk like a ditz! She actually said that—don't laugh, it's not funny!"

"Come on, you've got blonde hair, money out the ass, and you live in a goddamn castle. That voice was bonded to you at birth."

"Not true, if I grew up in India." Coreen batted her eye lashes. "Then I would talk like this," she said, impersonating her mother.

"Do that again," Gabriel whispered.

"Will you get dressed already! If you dilly dally any longer, we won't have time to eat before the concert."

"I can't believe I'm going to see Usher on my birthday."

Gabriel pulled on her top and adjusted her bra.

"You came with me to see Paramore."

"But we always go to concerts together."

Coreen picked up a brush and went through Gabriel's hair.

"My parents keep asking me why we haven't set a date."

"We've only been engaged for three months."

"We've been dating four years."

"We've known each other ten."

"Best friends falling in love isn't a crime." Coreen lifted their hands to show matching engagement rings. "Changing your mind?"

"Never, I've dreamt of marrying you since I was sixteen."

Coreen thumbed through Gabriel's hat rack. "Have you given any thought to a traditional Indian wedding?" She unhooked a cotton candy pink knitted hat.

"I am not wearing that!"

"But it'll look so cute, especially with your pink wedges. You never wear them! Just try it on, pretty please?"

Gabriel crossed her arms under the strain of Coreen's pouting. "I'm going to be the only black girl there rocking some hardcore pink."

Coreen sauntered over with the wedges in hand. She gave Gabriel a shove, sitting her on the bed with foot willfully extended. "And to think, my great grandparents used to do this for a living."

"Sometimes, we're not so different." Gabrielle's adjusted the weighty bracelet on her wrist. "Sometimes."

"Oh hush." Coreen gently held Gabriel's right foot and gave it a sincere kiss. She glanced up at a complacent smile, and slipped on the shoe. The other foot received a softer kiss before being nestled within the shoe. "Have a look."

Gabriel walked before the mirror, somewhat satisfied with her appearance.

"I guess this can work."

"Goodie!" Coreen took out her camera, squeezing next to Gabriel for a picture. "Check us out."

Gabriel touched her nose ring and sighed. "I look like an oreo."

"No sweetheart, there's no mistaking my wifey's black." Coreen pointed to a bedside picture. It was of Coreen and Gabriel in the fifth grade. "I looked so ethnic back then. Puberty saved my life."

"Yes, we were so young, innocent."

"Hetero and misguided."

Gabriel turned the camera on them for another picture. "My mom always thought you were gay. She said you were too friendly with me, now she sees why."

"Mine says if I must be with a girl, it should at least be with a nice Indian girl. My dad still has a hard time accepting we're engaged. Remember her face when we came out?"

"First and only time I was ever got thrown out of your house," Gabriel noted.

"We talked it over, and I can confidently say my parents have little issue with their biracial daughter dating a black girl. It's still stressful sometimes."

"Yeah, a beautiful half white lesbian socialite growing up in Hillsborough. Talk about a tale of adversity."

"I'm going to let that slide on the basis of it being your birthday." Coreen took out her keys and handed them to Gabriel. "We need to get going."

Gabriel took the keys and stuffed them in her bag. "My mom won't let us leave without inspecting my gift."

Coreen took Gabriel's hands and they walked to the door. "Spend the night with me."

"Will that be my final birthday present?"


Gabriel smiled on her lingering prospects, and the aroma of Coreen's perfume, as they walked down the stairs. The kitchen was bursting with love. At least, that's how Gabriel's mother described it. Over the past year, she began a remodeling project. On the list was their six year old refrigerator, repair spans were getting too close for comfort. A garbage compactor replaced an unsightly trash bin, and a top of the line stove was an income tax splurge.

What Gabriel's mother treasured most was her restored dining table. It was made of hand carved hardwood, in a dark cherry finish. Oval shaped with enough room for six, in reupholstered chairs. They rested above a Venetian rug, like the table, passed down through the generations. It gave their dining room a distinct identity, with cat and mouse salt and pepper shaker set forever present.

"Oh my Jesus, that's a lot of ice," Gabriel's mother, while drying her hands on a table cloth, gasped.

"Mom, don't start."

Coreen took a seat at the table, careful not bunch the carpet. Out of habit, she never wore shoes in their house, their carpets were too nice.

"I may have overdone it again."

"No shit," Gabriel, with pearly smile, muttered.

"Let me have a look at that," Claudine requested.

Gabriel extended her wrist, eyes traversing the gentle contours of her mother's face.

Time had been good to Claudine despite the initial hardships. Starting as a mere sanitation worker, Claudine worked diligently and raised two children all while earning a bachelor's degree in logistics. A small office and financial progression were second to her fingers, traversing the bracelet's gem laden exterior. Claudine's heart was at ease in the assurance her values succeeded in Gabriel, and she would blissfully wed Coreen.

"Does that mean you're okay with it?" Gabriel skeptically asked.

Claudine held Gabriel's hand within her own, eyes flicking between the two women. "You already have Coreen's heart; everything else is just a discouragingly generous token of affection."

"I know I promised not to get anything else. But when I saw it, I knew how beautiful it would look on my baby's wrist." Coreen leaned over and breathed heavily against Gabriel's ear, pressing her lips softly against the agitated skin.

"Stop," Gabriel bashfully whispered.

Coreen drew away, intertwining their fingers atop the table. "Sorry…"

"Please, like I haven't seen you two kiss enough to last a lifetime. It's cute how embarrassed Gabby can get when you kiss in front of me," Claudine laughed.

Coreen shrugged. "We made out in the food court yesterday, she initiated."

"Don't even go there, we're as openly affectionate as any other couple," Gabriel said.

"Baby calm down, I'm just messing," Coreen teased.

"Anyway, don't let me hold you up. I'm sure you've got a wonderful night planned," Claudine said.

Gabriel eased out her chair and rose on an air of excitement. "We're going to the sold out Usher show, front row. After that we're having dinner at The Silver Chalice, not sure after that. I'm likely staying over Coreen's."

"I read an article about that place. It's supposed to be one of the top restaurants in California. With that kind of clout, I'm afraid to think what an appetizer costs," Claudine mused.

"My dad has business lunches there. He says it's overrated so I'm seeing for myself. Would you like us to bring you back anything?" Coreen offered.

"No thank you. I have lemon blueberry bread in the oven. It'll just be me and Roslyn tonight. I'm making a small chicken and broccoli casserole," Claudine said.

"Well then, I'll give you a call later," Gabriel, while giving her mother a hug, said.

"Have a wonderful evening," Coreen said. She gave her future mother-in-law a soft kiss on the cheek, and slipped her fingers into Gabriel's as they left.

I'd appreciate a review. :)