Joan waited outside of Vera's office, growing more impatient as time went on. She knocked on the door, not even waiting for a reply as she opened it.
Vera was busily going through some paperwork, glancing up and sighing. “Not now, Joan.”
“Have you forgotten about today?”
Vera raised a brow, looking slightly irritated. “I have quite a lot on my plate right now, so you’ll have to be more specific.”
Joan tightened her jaw, shaking her head. “You have no idea, do you? You’re such a disappoinTment.”
Vera glared at her, and Joan would have smirked if she wasn’t so angry. Instead she returned the glare. Normally such a look would have intimidated others in the past, but Vera was becoming more used to it. Not quite as phased by it as she used to be.
“Ferguson, you’re here in my prison. You don’t get to speak to me that way.”
“Your prison?” Joan gave a small, smug smile. “It will never be your prison. You wouldn’t have been in this chair if it weren’t for me.”
Vera’s eyes tightened, a flicker of hurt in her eyes before they hardened. “Is there anything else you’d like to say about how I conduct my job?” Vera asked coolly.
Joan was hurt that Vera hadn’t even penciled this into her calendar. She knew how important this was to Joan. After all it was her idea.
She kept her mouth closed, the movement of her tongue sliding over her teeth. “Nothing more than the usual. I’ll leave you be, Governor.”
Joan wanted to slam the door, but instead she closed it ever so quietly. Anger could be like that for her. She wanted to scream, to grip Vera’s arms and shake her. But instead, she didn’t let such feelings overwhelm her. Or at the very least, she tried to bring them back under control. Just like what her father taught her.
She walked swiftly down the corridors, ignoring the verbal jabs from the other prisoners and the disgusting sexual taunts from Gambaro. She was beginning to develop a very tiny bump, and she was glad that her tracksuit hid it well for now. She wondered how much longer she could hide her pregnancy from the other prisoners.
She felt someone grab her arm, and she yanked it back. Gambaro snickered, licking her lips at her and waving her tongue. “Have you nothing better to do with your time, Lucy?”
“Oh, I’m sure I can think of plenty of things to do. Why don’t you come and visit me and the boys, Freak? We can give you a very good time. Maybe finish what we started.”
Joan narrowed her eyes, but her heart began to pound. Would she always have to watch her back until they got their pound of flesh?
She was about to speak until she heard another voice. “Juice, what did I say? Leave her alone. If you can’t, then we’ll just have to have a little chat at the steam press.”
Bea stared at Juice, glaring at her. Joan raised her brow while they walked away, looking over at Bea. “Thank you,” she said quietly.
“Don’t thank me. I’m not doing this for you. I made a promise to the Governor. And if you weren’t in your... situation that you are now, I wouldn’t try so hard to keep that promise.”
Joan nodded. “I see. I’m still grateful to you.” That was partly true, even though she deep down hated Bea for defying her in the last few months. She made her to be a fool, and the only reason why Joan was keeping even more of a low profile was because of her baby.
She would have kept a low profile for other reasons, but even she had principles, a moral code if you will, to put the needs of her baby first before her own.
She sighed as she stood outside the office of Bridget Westfall. She may not want to attend these mandatory sessions, but she would always be on time for them.
“Hello, Joan. It’s good to see you again. And I’m glad you decided to come on your own,” Bridget said, smiling.
Joan rolled her eyes. “I didn’t exactly have a choice. Vera forgot about my session today, so I had to go without her.”
“How did that feel when she forgot?”
Joan wasn’t expecting that question. She fully expected Westfall to take Vera’s side and berate her for even thinking she would have time to attend.
“It made me angry,” she said flatly.
“I imagine you would be since you two have developed a close bond. What else did you feel?”
“All I felt was anger,” she reiterated. “What else would there be?”
“I’ve found that anger is often a mask for hurt. But maybe all you did was feel anger like you said.”
Joan swallowed. “I do feel… hurt. I know she’s very busy, but I would have thought she’d have made this a priority to attend. I guess I’m no different to her than the other prisoners.”
“Do you want to feel different?” Bridget asked curiously.
“I am different. I was her mentor, and once her friend. She’s the one who wanted me to do this, and it was completely against my wishes. Yet she’s not even here. I always knew she was disloyal,” she said quietly.
“Is loyalty important to you, Joan?”
“Yes. Loyalty and trust.”
“Do you think you can learn to trust me?”
Joan hesitated. “I don’t know.”
Bridget nodded. “I hope we can work on that, especially since we’ll be seeing each other for the next few weeks. Tell me, how was it for you when you were in the psychiatric hospital?”
“I don’t remember everything I experienced there, but it felt like a different kind of prison. But sometimes… sometimes I felt safe,” she whispered.
“What made you feel safe there?” Bridget asked softly.
Joan remembered the times she spoke to the psychiatrist, and how she listened to music. How gentle he was with her in the beginning.
“I didn’t have a choice to be there, but I remember listening to music. And my doctor was… he was kind.”
“Everyone needs kindness, Joan.”
Joan’s eyebrows furrowed, remembering exactly what happened between them as time went on.
“What are you feeling now, Joan?” Bridget asked gently.
“I don’t understand how someone so kind can later be so deceptive,” she said quietly.
“Who are you referring to?”
“That doctor. How could I not see it?” She said. She had recognized it later, but by then she decided she had to use it for her survival, as a way to get out of there.
Bridget’s eyes softened. “Is that how you became pregnant?”
Joan’s breath hitched. “Yes.” Damn the emotions caused by this pregnancy!
“Did you want to have a relationship with him?”
“No, I didn’t. I’m not even attracted to men, but it happened. And I let it happen,” she finally admitted with shame.
Bridget shook her head. “He took advantage of you. You weren’t in a position to be able to think clearly and give proper consent.”
“I’m disgusted with myself for even encouraging it.”
“Do you think you encouraged it?”
“Well, if I didn’t say no, isn’t that what I was doing?”
Bridget took a deep breath. “Just because you didn’t say no, does not mean that you encouraged it. Sometimes in these situations when we develop a rapport with someone in that position, things can become blurred. He obviously knew how to get you to trust him and feel comfortable around him.”
Joan remembered how he spoke to her about her childhood and intimacy or lack thereof, and the times she felt vulnerable and lonely. When he first began to touch her arm or leg, she was confused on how to respond to it.
“Is it possible to feel disgusted but also confused by wanting someone… anyone to give you affection?”
Bridget gave her a sad but compassionate look. “It’s possible to be disgusted, but also your mind and body feel confused when you’re lonely and desperately want comfort and affection. You were in a very vulnerable state, and he should have never abused you in that way. Please remember that, Joan. It’s not your fault for what he was doing to you, and it’s not your fault for feeling any of those things.”
It was when Bridget handed her a box of tissues that she realized she was crying, silent tears rolling down her cheeks. Her voice was tight with emotion. “I never wanted it. I never wanted that with him.”
“I know. He’s a predator, and they often know exactly what they’re doing. Rape and sexual abuse like that can be very insidious. You were a victim and I believe you, Joan.”
Joan felt all of the tension drain away from her body once those words were spoken, not realizing just how important it was to hear her say that. It was one thing to come from Vera, it was another to come from Bridget.
“I am no victim.” Words spoken then as a defense mechanism, not only to him but within herself. To protect herself from everything she experienced.
“Thank you,” Joan said quietly, wiping her eyes with her thumb.
“You’re welcome. I’m afraid our time is up for now, but I hope to see you again next week. With or without Vera. This was a good session, and I’m hopeful for ones we have in the future.”
Joan nodded, feeling a little vulnerable and self conscious at her display of emotion.
“If Vera does come, will you tell her what we discussed today?” Joan asked warily.
“No, I won’t. Our sessions are strictly confidential. Everything you tell me in this room stays here. I’ll see you soon. Have a good day, Joan.”
It was late at night now, and she hadn’t seen Vera since she was in her office.
You forgot my session, and you’re not here now. Typical.
Remembering how it went with Westfall, she stared at the wall in the dark. Bending her knees, she wrapped an arm around herself.
Alone, rejected. Just like with everyone else. Why did I think Vera would be any different?
She tried to hold onto the anger she felt, but all that was left was pain. She wondered if this was how Jiana must have felt when she was pregnant. Scared and alone.
She heard the sound of keys unlocking her cell. She could make out the slim outline of Vera in the darkness, listening to her soft footsteps as she approached her bed.
“Joan, are you awake?”
Joan didn’t say anything, breathing quietly. Vera sighed and sat on the bed next to her. She stiffened when she felt Vera touch her back.
“Not now, Vera,” she said, repeating the same words Vera said to her earlier.
Vera pulled her hand back. “I’m sorry about earlier. I was very busy and feeling stressed. The time of your appointment completely slipped my mind, and I’m sorry I wasn’t there for you.”
Joan felt a lump in her throat, hating herself for being on the verge of tears. “Today was hard but I got through it.”
She closed her eyes when Vera stroked her hair, feeling as if she was going to break down sobbing from all the emotions she felt today. The ones she expressed, and the ones she held in.
“I should have been there.”
“Yes, you should have, but I’m the prisoner and you’re the governor. We can’t always be together,” she said sadly.
“I’m trying to be here for you the best that I can. You’re not alone. Just because I’m busy doesn’t mean I don’t think about you.”
Joan was silent, realizing how irrational she felt in this moment. Of course Vera wouldn’t always be able to be there. They weren’t in the right circumstances for this to happen. She caressed her stomach, wondering if her child would ever feel as alone as she did.
“I’m always alone. No one can ever mend that feeling,” she whispered.
Vera kissed her cheek, her lips trailing over her cheekbones and neck. Joan closed her eyes, not able to resist as she turned towards her and kissed her. Vera caressed her cheek, kissing her deeply and tenderly. Joan sighed into her mouth, unbuttoning her uniform shirt.
Vera kissed her again, whispering against her mouth. “Let me try to mend whatever I can between us.”
She kissed her jaw and neck, slowly taking off each other’s clothes. The warmth of Vera’s naked skin against hers made her hungry for more. She spread her legs and wrapped one of Vera’s legs around her hip. She could feel how hot and wet Vera was, pushing her thigh in between her legs.
They laid there together, this time allowing Vera a little more control than she did before. Vera rocked her hips against her, moaning softly when Vera pressed her hands over her wrists onto the pillow.
She surprisingly liked the gentle pressure on her wrists, arching her body to feel more of Vera, kissing her neck.
Vera’s hand traveled lower until she felt her stroking and spreading her wetness around. Her body hummed with arousal, slowly rocking her hips with hers.
“Will you let me taste you?” Vera whispered, kissing her.
Joan shivered, not having felt that with a woman in quite some time. “Are you sure?”
Vera nodded. “Yes, I want to. Let me take care of you tonight.”
Joan held her close, kissing her neck and shoulders before kissing her deeply and passionately. She needed Vera up here for a little bit longer before she did. She needed that connection.
Vera seemed to understand, caressing and holding Joan tightly. She moaned into her mouth as she kissed her more deeply, rolling her tongue over Vera’s.
Vera stroked her breast and shoulders, her neck as she moved against her. And Joan trembled with desire when Vera kissed slowly down the rest of her body.
Soft kisses were placed against her stomach, gentle ones that she kept giving her. Hands lovingly stroked her stomach over her small baby bump, and she spread her legs willingly for Vera.
Vera kissed her inner thighs, sucking on her skin as she held her close, kissing her wet cunt and licking it slowly up and down. Joan moaned, loving the feel of her soft mouth and tongue.
“You’re so wet,” Vera whispered, kissing and sucking gently on her wet lips. Joan stroked her hair, beginning to rock her hips into her mouth.
Vera’s tongue slid inside her, and she moaned and squeezed her tongue deeper inside. All she wanted to do was grind herself against Vera’s mouth and tongue. Vera moaned softly, licking and teasing her as she thrust her tongue in and out.
Joan let out soft, low moans when she felt Vera’s tongue slowly lick up and down again, this time focusing on her clit and making soft, and slow circles. Joan circled her hips, rocking them a little faster.
She arched her back when Vera started to suck her clit into her mouth, her hips twitching in response. Vera pressed down on her hips, holding them down as she licked and sucked.
She panted, rocking her hips faster and whimpering when she felt the beginning of her orgasm. She gently held Vera’s head to her, lifting her hips and grinding against her mouth.
“Come for me, Joan. Let go,” Vera whispered hotly.
Heart pounding, she felt her body flush with heat as she tensed and trembled, coming in Vera’s mouth.
She closed her eyes, moaning softly when Vera moaned with her. She panted, stroking Vera’s hair, twitching a little when Vera gently kissed her clit and wet lips.
“I’m too sensitive,” Joan said, her hands shaking as she ran her fingers through her hair. Vera rested her cheek against her inner thigh, kissing and stroking her skin.
Vera hugged her hips before moving up to wrap her arms around her. Joan blushed with embarrassment, feeling suddenly very vulnerable and exposed at how easily she came undone in Vera’s arms.
“What’s wrong?” Vera asked, kissing her softly.
Joan sighed, stroking her hair and arm gently, bringing Vera’s head down to rest against her breast.
“Nothing is wrong. I’m just not used to letting someone else have that much control,” she whispered.
Vera looked up at her. “Are you okay? Was it… nice?”
Joan smiled. “It was more than nice. I wouldn’t always let just anyone do that with me, so consider yourself lucky.”
Vera smiled back. “Thank you for letting me.”
Joan cupped her face, kissing her deeply. “I don’t know how to explain it, but I wanted you to take control. I needed it. I’m not used to needing anyone.”
Vera hugged her, kissing her softly as they laid together. “I don’t always act like it, but… I need you too.”
Joan’s eyes softened, caressing Vera’s cheek and kissing her forehead. “I need you tonight. Please stay,” she whispered.
“You don’t have to ask,” Vera said, nuzzling her neck. Joan sighed softly and closed her eyes, holding Vera close in her arms.