Chapter 58:  Truth Hurts

Serena Benson walked in her house and threw her purse and keys on the coffee table.  “These AA meetings are killing me,” she muttered.  She walked over to the end table to check her answering machine.  No messages.  She had hoped Olivia would call since she was now in AA again.  Maybe she still thinks it’s too soon to make a difference, she thought.  In all honesty, she couldn’t say that she blamed her.  She thought she needed something more powerful than just AA, but she didn’t want to even consider checking into rehab until the semester was over.


She went to her bedroom and sat down at her desk.  Opening up her laptop, she logged in to check her email.  Spam, a few messages from students about office hours or assignments, and more spam.  She was about to delete one last message as spam but something told her to stop.  She didn’t recognize the sender, but the subject said, “What’s done in the dark…”  She double clicked to open it.  All the blood drained from her face as she read the text:


            There once was a girl who was mighty bold,

            Yet she had many secrets left untold,

            Frolicking down the beach hand in hand,

            Making out gleefully in the sand,

            Oh, what adventures lie ahead tonight!

            For Olivia Benson and her blonde socialite.


As she opened up the attached photos, she felt sick.  “I knew it, I knew it, I knew it!” she yelled, slamming her fist on the desk.  Any feelings of wanting to reconcile things with her daughter immediately were trumped by this new discovery.  She remembered how she’d overheard their phone conversation earlier in the week before Olivia had fled to Alex’s.  In addition to that, there were all the signs she’d noticed over the past few months but ended up denying—spending almost every moment together, holding each other while sleeping, Alex’s panties on her bed, Olivia’s slipup when she said she wouldn’t stop “seeing” her.  Each piece of the puzzle got bigger.  She was livid with her for telling such a blatant lie and she wanted nothing more than to confront her. 

Her first instinct was to call her and demand that she come home immediately.  Her next instinct was to wait until she walked through the door and then let her have it.  However, something told her to hold off until she caught them in the act.  She didn’t want to give Olivia the opportunity to make up some outrageous lie again.


As for a current course of action, she needed to tell Madeline.  She hadn’t believed her when she’d told her she suspected something was going on, but now she thought that Madeline had just been in denial, too.  She packed up her laptop, walked to the living room to grab her keys and purse, and was out the door in a flash.




Madeline was in her study when she heard a knock.  “Come in,” she called, taking off her glasses.


Janice came in and announced, “Madam, Serena Benson is at the gate.  Should I buzz her in?”


What does she want now? Madeline thought.  Even though she had her reservations, she smiled at Janice and replied, “Yes, that will be fine.  Thank you.”


Janice nodded and took her leave.  Madeline stood up, straightened out her skirt, and went to the living room to await Serena’s arrival.


A couple minutes later, Janice escorted Serena in to see her.  Madeline motioned for her to take a seat in the armchair across from her.  “What’s on your mind, Serena?  How has AA been?”


“It’s been fine.  But that’s not what I’m here to discuss with you.”


Madeline crossed her legs.  “Then what is it?”


Janice brought in tea and set the silver tray on the coffee table.  When Serena politely declined a cup, she asked, “Is there something else you would like, ma’am?”


Serena shook her head and answered, “No, thank you.”


“You should try some,” Madeline said.  “It’s a Moroccan blend.”


Plastering a smile on her face, Serena replied, “Maybe next time.”


After serving Madeline and asking her if she needed anything further, Janice picked up the tray and exited the room.


As Madeline added a lump of sugar to her cup and stirred, Serena pulled her laptop out of her bag and said, “I’d like to show you something.”


Madeline took a sip of her tea and responded simply, “All right.”  She put on her glasses.


Serena opened up the email and then sat beside her on the loveseat.  Madeline’s expression changed from a look of shock to a frown as she read the email and viewed the pictures.  After several moments of silence, she pursed her lips and finally said, “It seems like our girls have an enemy.”


Serena looked at her in awe.  “That’s it?  You’re not angry that our daughters are in a lesbian relationship?  I told you they were more than just friends but you wouldn’t listen!”


Madeline sighed.  She decided to choose her words very carefully because she didn’t want to add fuel to the fire.  “I’m not going to say that I’m comfortable with these photos, but I’m also not going to say that I will love Alex any less because of them.  Clearly someone has ulterior motives by sending them to you in the first place.”


Mouth agape, Serena exclaimed, “All you can say is that you’re not comfortable?  You’re not worried about the scandal this will bring on your family?  Who knows how many other people have received this email?  I thought you’d be furious!”


“That’s obviously the reaction the sender wants us to have.  I refuse to satisfy this troublemaker’s bloodlust.”


Serena stood up and started pacing back and forth in front of Madeline.  Against her better judgment, denial set in again.  “Perhaps this is just a phase or…or maybe just their idea of fun experimentation.  I mean…it’s Spring Break, right?  That’s the time several girls get a little wild and crazy and do stuff they wouldn’t normally do.”


Madeline realized that she would’ve tried to make the same rationalizations if they hadn’t already confessed their love for each other to her.  “It could be,” she lied.  “But will you honestly love Olivia any less if it’s more than that?”


Serena frowned.  “It cannot be more than that,” she said through gritted teeth.


Madeline folded her arms.  “And why is that?”


Serena narrowed her eyes.  “You seem to be on their side.”


“I’m just trying not to let my emotions cloud my judgment.  You never answered my question.  If Olivia is a lesbian and truly in love with Alex, would you stop loving her?”


“It’s not about love,” Serena spat.  “It’s unnatural and a disgrace.  They are both beautiful girls; they could have any guy they wanted!  In fact, Olivia has had boyfriends before, so she cannot be a lesbian.  She has to be at least somewhat normal.”


“If she is a lesbian, she is still normal, Serena.  She may have only dated boys because it was what was expected of her and in that case, trying to mold herself into something she wasn’t is what was abnormal.  Maybe she stopped denying who she really was and is happy now.  Teens are under an enormous amount of pressure to conform.  It has to be scary to deal with a different sexuality from the majority on top of all the other problems teens face day to day.”


Serena shook her head regretfully.  “This is my fault anyway.  If I had been a good mother to her, she wouldn’t have needed to turn to another female.”


Madeline raised her eyebrows.  “You really think it’s about that?  I know a woman whose daughter is homosexual and she is the model example of what a mother should be.  In fact, she and her daughter are best friends.”


“If it’s not that, her aversion to men stems from the fact that she hates her father and thinks he’s representative of all men.”

“I don’t believe that.  Isn’t she good friends with that fellow Elliot Stabler?  And you said yourself that she’s had boyfriends before, so how is it possible that she hates men?”


Serena glared at her.  “Why do you insist on glorifying this behavior?”


“Why do you insist on condemning it?  You’re contradicting yourself.  By your logic she’d be asexual; she’d hate women because of your parenting and men because of her father.  If she’s gay, she doesn’t need a reason to be any more than we need a reason to be heterosexual.  She just is and nothing can change that.  You either accept her or remain upset with her the rest of your life.  Besides, you could very easily be blowing this whole thing out of proportion.”


Serena cocked her head and folded her arms.  “Sounds to me like you’ve suspected this about your own daughter longer than you care to admit.”


“It’s just that my opinions have evolved with the times,” Madeline said, not caring to divulge anything more than she needed. 


Serena noticed that she was being cryptic but wanted to push her anyway.  “Is Alex a lesbian?” she asked pointedly.


Madeline said sternly, “I’d have no way of knowing.  That is none of my business and certainly none of yours.”


“A mother has a right to know what her daughter is doing!” Serena snarled.


“Yes…but as long as she’s safe, she’s happy, and she’s not breaking the law, that’s all that matters to me.”


“Our daughters are kissing in public, grabbing each other’s breasts, and practically having sex and you don’t think they’re breaking the law?” Serena asked indignantly.


“As you said, it’s a beach and it’s Spring Break.  I’m sure a lot of that is going on.”


“I never would’ve allowed Olivia to go on vacation with Alex if I knew this was their whole intention!  They’re probably having sex right now!  In fact, I never would’ve allowed her to associate with her at all!”


“What exactly are you saying, Serena?” Madeline asked, glaring at her.  “That my daughter somehow turned yours into a lesbian?”


“I wouldn’t put it past her!” Serena retorted.


Madeline stood up to meet her eye to eye.  “No one turned anyone into a lesbian and I deplore your baseless accusations.  How do you even know Alex is the first girl she’s been with?”


“I don’t know, but I’ll damn well find out,” Serena growled, snatching her laptop and storming through the foyer.  She hadn’t expected Madeline to be so blasé about it, let alone defend them.  She had expected her to be even angrier than she was since her family’s name had a lot more at stake.  Since that plan had clearly backfired, she was afraid that Madeline would give the girls a heads up and they would deny, deny, deny if confronted.  Now she knew she’d have to come up with another strategy if she actually wanted to catch and discipline them herself. 


Madeline rushed after her.  “Serena!  Serena, wait!”  However, it was to no avail.  Serena jumped in her car and sped off down the driveway without so much as giving her another glance.




“Alex, not another two-inch skirt!” Olivia protested sarcastically, gawking at her light blue frilly, layered skirt.


Alex grinned.  “I thought I’d show a little leg.”


“I didn’t know your ass was part of your leg, too!” Olivia responded.


“But you like my ass,” Alex said, pulling her to her and kissing her.


“No, baby.  Not the tongue thing,” Olivia said, pulling back.


“You love it when I do that little trick,” Alex grinned, taking another step toward her.


Olivia giggled and turned her back to Alex.  “You’re just tryna make me give in.”


“Look at Olivia Benson giggling like a schoolgirl,” Casey teased.


Alex jumped on her back.  “I can put my tongue other places,” she murmured, snaking her tongue behind her ear.


“I see London, I see France…” Serena began singing.


Olivia’s eyes slammed shut as she tried her hardest not to moan.


“…I see Olivia wetting her underpants,” Casey finished dryly.


Alex laughed and Olivia opened her eyes.  “I’m not getting wet,” she insisted.


Alex smirked.  “Right.”


Olivia grabbed Alex around the waist with one arm and pulled her off her back.  “Enough playing for you now.”


“I see Alex’s tighty whities,” Casey observed.


“Nice cheekies,” Serena said.  “The lace is sexy.  I have a pair like yours but mine are pink.”


“And mine are green,” Casey said.


“Lime green or normal green?” Alex asked.


“Lime.  I wanted to be exotic,” Casey said with a grin.


“Cute,” Alex responded.  “Liv also has a pair.  You should see how cute her ass looks in—”


“Yes, let’s all stand around and talk about our underwear,” Olivia interrupted with a hint of annoyance in her voice.


 Alex pinched Olivia’s nose.  “If you’re a good girl tonight, I’ll let you lick the lace.”


Olivia flushed red.  “Alex…don’t tease me in front of them.”


Alex bent over and shook her ass at her.  Looking over her shoulder and seeing the look of complete horror mixed with arousal on Olivia’s face, she laughed and said, “Nah, teasing would be what I just did.”


“Baby, your ass cheeks are showing!” Olivia shouted.


“That’s why they call these panties cheekies,” Alex said with a wink.


“Don’t you have a longer skirt?” Olivia demanded.


“You’re one to talk.  Your shorts are pretty short,” Alex said.


“But when I bend over no one sees my ass!”


“But we can certainly see your nipples about to pop through that tank,” Casey murmured.


Olivia looked down and said, “This is Alex’s fault!  And anyway, it has a built-in bra.”


Serena smiled at Casey and said, “So much for that.”


Alex reached out to tweak a nipple.  Olivia swatted her hand away and protested, “You’re making it worse!”


Alex licked her lips.  “It’s your fault because you won’t wear bras.”


“I do, too wear bras!  Well…when the occasion calls for it,” Olivia replied.


“And I wear longer skirts.  Well…when the occasion calls for it,” Alex mimicked, smiling and folding her arms satisfactorily.


“I’m going to have to walk behind you the whole way…” Olivia whined.


Alex’s smile widened.  “Good.  That way no one can stare at your tits.”


Casey smirked at Serena and said, “Nice to see they’ve reached a fair tradeoff.”


Alex reached out and twisted the other nipple.  She yelped as Olivia responded with a slap on her ass.   


“As much as I’d love to stand around and continue watching the two of you play fondle tag, we really need to get the alcohol,” Casey said.


“Don’t forget hot dogs and marshmallows to roast!” Alex chimed in.


“I want s’mores, too,” Serena said.


“I want to get out of here sometime tonight,” Casey replied.


Alex grabbed her handbag and slid the straps over her arm.  “Ok, ok.  Where are my keys?”


“On the table,” Olivia informed her.


As they were getting in Alex’s Range Rover, Olivia looked at her and exclaimed, “I just saw all your ass when you got in!”


Alex rolled her eyes.  “Oh, come on!  You did not!”  She put on her seatbelt and drove away from the hotel.


As they were on the way to the grocery store, Olivia pressed the voice command button and said, “Lengthen Alex’s skirt.”


Casey and Serena laughed from the backseat while Alex groaned.  She pushed Olivia’s finger away and said, “Someone will go to bed horny if she keeps this up.”


Olivia grinned.  “Oh, really?”  She started slowly stroking up and down the length of Alex’s thigh.


Alex turned bright red.  “Liv, I can’t drive while you’re doing that!”


Casey leaned over to Serena and whispered, “Light blue is not the color you want to be wearing if you have a big ol’ wet spot.”


“I heard that!” Alex exclaimed.  She pushed Olivia’s hand away.


Traffic was heavy and they rode in silence for a few more minutes.  Well, that is until moans were heard.  Olivia crinkled her forehead and turned around while Alex looked in her rearview mirror.  Casey and Serena were busy making out and caressing each other’s bodies.


Alex cleared her throat loudly.  “Don’t mind us!”


“Can I make a bet on who orgasms first?” Olivia joked.


They ignored them.  Olivia grinned at Alex and started to slide her hand over to her.


Alex grabbed her wrist as they rolled to a stop.  “One romp at a time!  This isn’t the sexmobile.”


“Hey!  I just wanna put my hand on your knee!” Olivia insisted with a laugh.


Alex smiled and released her wrist.  “Ok.” 


“You know I was just messin’ with ya earlier,” Olivia said, drumming her fingers against her knee.  “I think the lace cheekies are cute…and sexy.  So is your skirt.”


“I know,” Alex said, reaching out to stroke her hair.  Olivia suddenly got a pensive look.  Alex stole a glance at her as they started moving again and asked, “What’s wrong, sweetie?”


“You think anything will come outta that fight with Abbie?”


Alex squeezed her hand reassuringly.  “No, she’s just talking shit.”


“Maybe…but I just have a bad feeling about things.”


“That’s just gas,” Alex joked.


Olivia laughed.  “Let’s hope so.”  She turned her head to gaze out the window.  As the colors and lights of the city whizzed by, she tried to shake her feeling and concentrate on the great week that was in store for them.