Thinking about Big Cheese's comment. It reminds me of Eastern Europe - for so many years they were oppressed under communism, and the ethnic tensions which were rife before seemed to just disappear. But they hadn't disappeared, they were just frozen while the people contended with a bigger threat. Following the revolutions, a lot of these countries destabilised, in a kind of "Right, where were we?" wave of reawakened violence.
Solinvictus - Oh, dear. Matchmaking. The joys. Was your mother involved by any chance? Mothers seem to do that, it's instinctive, I think.
Don't be too quick to assume the girl is a lesbian - I was a tomboy (still am a bit) and did not have a boyfriend for years, but I'm not a lesbian. It just took me a while to find the right bloke, and I'm a one-man-woman, so I didn't have much interest in random relationships. I have a friend who is a lesbian and is a far more feminine dresser than I am. The stereotypes often don't fit.