Page last updated: January 1, 2005
The days passed, and the two young women learned to devise ways of doing things to compensate for their limitation. They traded which wrists would be tied together each day, since they were both right-handed.
They took a lot of ribbing from the other students, but Jo's brawler attitude put most of it to a stop after a few days. And since Blair didn't want to let Jo get the better of her, she just laughed off the cutting remarks and said they were beneath her. She did her best to avoid her friends, though, and Jo was perfectly happy to help her in that department, since she didn't like Blair's friends anyway.
But after a week, Jo realized she was having withdrawals from her bike. She hadn't been able to work on it or ride it anywhere since being tied to Blair, and that was unacceptable.
"No, Jo. I'm not getting on that death machine of yours," Blair argued.
"Come on, Blair. I'll let you wear the helmet," Jo tried to persuade her.
"No," Blair remained firm.
"It's a lot of fun, ya know; the open road, the wind on your face," Jo enthused.
"No," Blair said again.
"Ah, come on, Blair. Please? I can't go the whole month without riding my bike."
Jo tried to think. What could she offer as a bargaining chip? She didn't have money, not that Blair needed money; she had plenty of her own.
"I'll take you into town, and we can go shopping, okay?" Jo finally offered.
Blair perked up at the mention of shopping. She hadn't been able to go anywhere with her usual friends, and she'd been feeling some withdrawal symptoms of her own at not charging anything to her credit cards for several days. Against her better judgment, she nodded her head.
"All right. But if we get into an accident, I'll never forgive you," Blair warned.
Jo decided not to comment. She didn't want Blair to change her mind about going.
"Great. Just let me get my jacket," Jo said happily and donned her jeans jacket over the green army fatigues T-shirt she was wearing.
"What about me?" Blair asked plaintively.
"Oh, right," Jo said, as she realized Blair would need some protective clothing, too. "All right, here. You take my jacket, and I'll just wear a couple flannel shirts. They're thick enough to keep me warm," Jo reasoned, as she handed over her jacket for Blair to put on.
Blair took the jacket and slowly put it on. It was a little big on her, but it fit well enough. She noticed it smelled like Jo, and it wasn't an entirely unpleasant scent.
Jo finished pulling on a second long-sleeved shirt over the first and then handed her white motorcycle helmet to Blair. They tied the string onto their wrists and headed down the stairs and outside.
"Wait. How is this going to work?" Blair asked, as Jo straddled the bike.
Unless Jo drove one-handed, there was no way for Blair to sit behind her with her left wrist tied to Jo's right. Jo looked at her wrist in despair. Then Blair grinned.
"Oh, I think I just had another one of my brilliant ideas," Blair said smugly, though she wasn't sure why she was so happy she'd figured out a way for them to ride the motorcycle.
Jo waited, as Blair untied the string around her own left wrist and retied it to her right. With their right wrists tied together, Blair was able to climb onto the bike behind Jo, and then she just held onto Jo's forearm in order to keep from letting her arm hang from the string.
Jo smiled happily.
"Hang on," Jo told the blonde and started up the bike.
Blair wrapped her left arm around Jo's waist and closed her eyes. She knew Jo knew how to handle her bike, but she was still scared.
Jo took a few deep breaths. She'd never ridden with another person on her bike. Her heart was beating kind of fast, and she suddenly wished she'd only put on one flannel shirt because she was feeling really warm. She could feel Blair's body pressed into her back, which was where she felt the most heat, and she did her best to ignore how nice it felt having Blair's arm around her stomach.
Jo decided she was thinking too much, and she suddenly gunned the engine, almost doing a pop wheelie out of the driveway. They roared down the street towards the center of town. After a few minutes, Jo called back over her shoulder.
"Hey, do ya mind? I'm tryin' ta breathe up here."
Blair minutely loosened her grip on the girl's waist. Their sudden movement onto the street had almost sent her off the back of the bike, and she'd held on for dear life. But now that they were moving steadily, there wasn't as much need to hang on so tight.
"Sorry," Blair yelled into the wind. "So, how am I going to bring anything back from the stores? This thing doesn't have a trunk," Blair pointed out needlessly.
"Just have 'em deliver," Jo yelled back.
Blair nodded, satisfied. It would be like sending presents to herself, and she'd get the thrill of opening the packages to see what she'd bought all over again.
They arrived at the main strip of stores, and Jo parked the bike at the end of the block. Blair switched the string to her other wrist again so that they could walk side by side, and they headed towards the nearest boutique.
After two hours of shopping, Jo was beginning to regret her bargain. She'd only gotten half an hour of bike riding, and Blair was getting four times that for shopping. She said as much to Blair, but the girl didn't seem too disturbed.
"We can just ride around a little more on the way home," Blair offered.
Jo frowned. She couldn't understand why Blair was being nice to her.
"Are you feelin' all right?" Jo asked curiously.
"I'm fine. I kind of like riding on your bike, that's all," Blair admitted reluctantly.
"Oh. Okay," Jo replied, a little surprised, but pleased nonetheless.
After another hour, they finally left the last store, and Jo drove them down every road she could find for another two hours. By the time they returned to the school, it was after dinnertime, and Mrs. Garret began questioning them as soon as they walked through the door.
"Where have you two been?" Mrs. Garret asked.
"Jo took me shopping. I needed to spend some money," Blair explained.
"Yeah, and then we just rode around for a bit," Jo added.
Mrs. Garret looked at them in surprise. Maybe her plan to get them to stop fighting was actually working.
"Well, next time, let me know if you're going to miss dinner. I was worried," Mrs. Garret told them.
"Sure, Mrs. G," Jo promised.
"Hey guys. We're playing Gin Rummy. Want us to deal you in?" Natalie asked from where she and Tootie were sitting at the table in the common room.
Jo and Blair looked at each other, and Jo shrugged her shoulders.
"Sure," Blair responded.
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