tagRomanceYou Never Know Ch. 04

You Never Know Ch. 04


Everyone in this story is over the age of 18.


About ten long weeks later, I was really starting to show and had to wear baggier and baggier clothes to hide it. I supposed everyone just thought I was indulging too much in Ben & Jerry's, but I knew that excuse wouldn't hold for much longer when my stomach was sticking out like a beach ball. J., a couple of other close friends, and S. were the only people who knew exactly what had caused my sudden weight gain. No one at work knew and I hadn't told my parents yet. I was avoiding talking to them like the plague, but I couldn't hide it from them for much longer. I was used to telling them nearly everything.

S. came over almost every other day and often spent the night with me. I didn't know how he explained that to his wife, and I didn't ask. We had sex whenever my roommate was out of the apartment. We couldn't get enough of each other. S. always handled me carefully, like I was a doll, and he constantly made sure I was comfortable and healthy. He was at every doctor appointment and went shopping for baby clothes with me. He even researched sex positions during pregnancy, for when I was too big to handle most of the usual ones. One Saturday morning we were cuddling in my bed and I decided I couldn't wait any longer. I had to ask him.

"S...." I murmured, glancing at him over my shoulder. "How is it that -- that you can be here with me so often? Doesn't she wonder where you are?"

"I told you," he said, his fingers playing over my swelling stomach, "I'm out of the house for work a lot, so it's really nothing new." I sighed, and turned so that I was fully facing him.

"S.," I said, looking directly into his eyes. He looked away.

"It's not going well," he whispered. "She asked me for a divorce the other night." I gasped.

"Oh, sweetie," I said. "I'm so sorry." Deep inside, I felt a spark of triumph, and I loathed myself for it. I buried my face in his shoulder, in case he could see the truth in my eyes, and rubbed his back. "What are you going to do?" I asked. He shrugged.

"I don't know," S. said helplessly. "You're the first person I've told." Something occurred to me and I started. S. looked at me.

"Does she know? About us?" I asked urgently. He inhaled.

"I don't think so," he said carefully, "but I can't be absolutely certain. She might. But I don't think she could know everything, unless..." He trailed off and I shook his arm.

"Unless what, S.?"

"Unless my brother told her," he said reluctantly.

"You told him? I thought I knew everyone who knew!" I cried.

"I'll call him later," S. said. Then he looked at the expression on my face. "I mean right now!" He rolled off the bed and searched for his phone among the discarded clothing on the floor. I lay back and covered my face with my hands.

"Did she tell you why she wanted a divorce?" I asked him, my voice muffled.

"No," S. said, and I heard him press a couple of buttons on his phone. "That was all she said. She called me." My eyes widened between my fingers. She didn't even have the guts to tell him in person? I could have told S. about the baby over the phone, but I had worked up the nerve to tell him to his face. I moved my hands to my stomach protectively.

"M.?" S. said on the phone. I propped myself up and watched him talking. "Listen, did you tell anyone about...about the pregnancy?" He whispered the last few words, as if someone was listening in. His face relaxed and I exhaled in relief. "Good," he said, reaching over and taking my hand. "Don't tell anyone, okay? I mean anyone, M." I could hear his brother talking on the other line. "I...I don't know. I guess so?" S. pressed his cell to his chest and whispered, "M. wants to know if he could take us out to dinner in the city." I considered. There was always the risk that someone who knew S. would see us -- which was why we rarely left the apartment together -- but it was a really nice offer and I didn't want to turn him down.

"As long as it's somewhere...out of the way," I said, and S. squeezed my hand in understanding.

"Sure, M.," he said, the phone back to his ear. "6:00? Okay. See you then." He hung up and plopped back down on the bed with me. "That should be fun," he said enthusiastically.

"Yeah," I agreed. "That's really sweet of M. So...I guess he's...okay with all of this?"

"All of what?" S. asked, chuckling. "You and me? And this?" He leaned over and kissed my stomach. I nodded. "Yeah, he's cool with it. Listen, I'm sorry I told him and didn't tell you that he knew. I'm just really close with my brother and he knew what happened at the wedding and all..." He trailed off.

"You have nothing to be sorry for," I assured him. "We're having a baby, S. Both of us have the right to tell the people we love." I frowned a little.

"What's wrong?" S. asked. By this point, he was good at picking up the changes in my mood. A little too good.

"Nothing," I said, "it's just that...my parents don't know yet. I don't know how to tell them." I knew my mom might be a little more rational and under control about it. My dad would freak out. "I guess I'll tell my mom first and see how that goes."

"That sounds like a good idea. Want me to be with you when you tell her? For moral support?" he asked. I smiled.

"That would be great. Thank you." I leaned over and kissed him. We both glanced up when we heard J.'s keys jingling outside the door.

"Hey!" she greeted us as we emerged into the hallway. "How are you guys? How's the little one?" She came up to me and squatted so she was even with my stomach. "Hi, baby!" She gave my bump a pat.

"We're good," I told her. "S.'s brother is taking us out to dinner and I get to worry some more about telling my parents about the baby." J. grimaced.

"You haven't told them yet? I'd do it soon...get it over with, like ripping off a Band-aid." I laughed.

"Well, that's the plan. I guess we could call her tomorrow?" I said, looking over at S. He nodded.

"Oh, you're going to tell her together?" J. asked, looking surprised.

"No, not exactly. S. will be there, but I'm not sure my mom will want to talk to the guy who knocked me up," I joked. S. poked me good-humoredly and J. nodded understandingly. She had been great -- very supportive and helpful, especially when S. wasn't around -- throughout the past few months.

"Well, I am going to make brunch for everyone -- all four of us," S. announced, kissing me on the cheek on his way past me into the kitchen. I smiled and cradled my belly. It was becoming a habit. I touched my stomach whenever I was worried, or happy, or just thinking about S. and I. J. watched me knowingly and grabbed my arm, gently pulling me into her room.

"I want the dirt," she said in a hushed voice as soon as we were out of S.'s earshot.

"What dirt?"

"What's going on with S. and Her?" she asked urgently. J. always referred to S.'s wife as "Her." You could hear the capital H in the way she said it. I listened to make sure S. wasn't coming back. All I heard was clattering pots and pans, so I quietly closed her door until just a crack was left.

"She asked him for a divorce the other night," I told her. J. almost shrieked but I managed to clap a hand over her mouth just in time and it came out as a muffled squeal.

"Shh! He just told me a little while ago." I carefully removed my hand and J. sank back onto her bed.

"Wow," she said. "Wow."

"I know!"

"You know what this means, right?" she asked me. I shook my head. "You can get married! As soon as the divorce is final!" she said excitedly. I raised my eyebrows.

"Well, I don't know about that...I mean, I've definitely thought about it, but isn't jumping out of one marriage and right into another a bad idea?"

"Not when the people getting married are perfect for each other!" J. exclaimed. I bit my lip and considered. "Besides, the divorce will probably take some time to finalize. It's not like you'd be getting hitched tomorrow."

"Maybe," I said finally. J. beamed.

"I'll start planning!" She pulled a giant stack of bridal magazines from underneath her bed.

"Where did you get those?" I asked incredulously. J. shrugged.

"All over. I started picking them up every now and then after you told me you were pregnant. I knew this would happen; I knew it was right for you guys," she chirped happily. I couldn't help but smile too.

"Maybe," I repeated softly to myself. The scent of pancakes wafted in through the cracked door. My stomach had been sensitive lately but the baby seemed to like pancakes, and S. happened to be extremely good at making them. I inhaled contentedly. Everything was going just right.

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