Nikki doesn’t quite know what to make of the women when they first meet, she knows one of them is David’s ex, his friend now... and yet, as she looks at the group, she’s aware of only one person, well, she focuses on one person.
David had told her what had happened with Pete and Tina, that they had fallen out, that Tina had left the man, Pete was, thankfully, not violent, just foolish apparently. She found that even though she was still tentative around the men, and the majority of the women, all of them seemed so quick and smart and... posh... but she felt somehow less nervous knowing at least she wasn’t the only one still finding a place in the group, and she wouldn’t be the only one who didn’t come with some sort of posh accent.
Nikki knows, too well, that they know her past. They have all been treating her like she’s made of glass since they met her. All, that is, except Tina. Tina is happy to see her, sweet and warm and openly friendly.
They come together naturally after the first few slightly awkward meetings and Nikki finds that she can’t help but love the way Tina’s dark brown hair falls slightly into her eyes, the same sparkling grey eyes that have so caught her attention. She loves the way Tina’s sharp cheekbones are flattered by a soft, almost flirtatious smile and the way Tina’s hand never seems to leave her own.
She eventually finds her voice, admits that she still hasn’t been sleeping well, that she is uncomfortable alone, although she is glad David managed to win her the house in the divorce. Nikki is alone in the house though, and no amount of security makes it easier to sleep.
Tina surprises her. Offers to move in. To keep her company. She finds it is easy to say yes. Easy to let Tina care for her.
Tina is still soft and tender with her when she moves in, they can laugh, and smile, and she knows that she will be able to be honest with the woman, tell her when she’s struggling. Tina’s gentle kindness has taken off a little of the rough edges of loneliness and fear, she feels safer with Tina by her side than she has done in months.
Nobody is surprised when Tina finally admits she plans to date Nikki. They have already picked up on how well the two match. Tina seems happiest when she is free to fuss over Nikki, and Nikki is happiest when Tina is with her, they work. They love one another, that much is clear. Now, all they need is freedom.