A few months ago, when I was laid up in that hospital bed, I didn’t think I’d be alive today much less be expecting a baby and engaged to an angel with a dirty mouth. But here I am. Here we are, Camryn and me, taking on the world… in a different way. Things didn’t quite turn out how we planned them, but then again, things rarely do. And neither of us would change the way they turned out even if we could.
I love this chair. It was my dad’s favorite chair, and the one thing he left behind that I wanted. Sure, I inherited a fat check that will set Camryn and me up for a while, and of course I got the Chevelle, but the chair was equally sentimental to me. She hates it, but she won’t say so out loud, because it was my dad’s. I can’t blame her; it’s old, it stinks, and there’s a hole in the cushion from my dad’s cigarette smoking days. I promised her I’d get someone in here to clean it, at least. And I will. As soon as she figures out whether we’re going to stay in Galveston or move to North Carolina. I’m fine with either, but something tells me she’s holding back on what she really wants, because of me.
I hear the water from the shower shut off, and seconds later a loud bang vibrates through the wall. I jump up from the chair, letting the remote control hit the floor as I rush toward the bathroom. The edge of the coffee table clips the shit outta my shin as I pass.
I swing open the bathroom door. “What happened?”
Camryn shakes her head at me and smiles as she leans over to pick the hair dryer up from the floor beside the toilet.
I breathe a sigh of relief.
“You’re more paranoid than I am,” she laughs.
She glances down at my leg as I rub it with my fingertips. She sets the hair dryer back on the counter, comes up to me, and kisses the side of my mouth. “Looks like I’m not the one of us who needs to worry about being accident-prone.” She smiles.
My hands cup her shoulders and I pull her closer, letting one hand fall down to touch her little rounded belly. I can barely tell she’s pregnant. At four months I thought she’d at least be emulating a baby hippo, but what do I know about this stuff?
“Maybe so,” I say, trying to hide the red in my face. “You probably did that on purpose just to see how fast I could get in here.”
She kisses the other side of my mouth and then goes in for the kill, kissing me fully and deeply while pressing her wet, naked body against mine. I moan against her mouth, wrapping my arms around her.
But then I pull away before I fall into her devious trap. “Dammit, woman, you’ve gotta stop that.”
She grins back at me. “You really want me to stop?” she asks with that up-to-no-good smile of hers.
It scares the shit out of me when she does that. Once after a conversation laced with that smile, she stopped having sex with me for three whole days. Worst three days of my life.
“Well, no,” I say nervously. “I just mean right now. We have exactly thirty minutes before we have to be at the doctor’s office.”
I just hope she’s this horny throughout her entire pregnancy. I’ve heard horror stories about how some women go from wanting it all the time until they get really big and then if you touch them they turn into fire-breathing banshees.
Thirty minutes. Damn. I could bend her over the counter real quick…
Camryn smiles sweetly and jerks the towel from the shower curtain rod and starts drying off. “I’ll be ready in ten,” she says as she waves me out. “Don’t forget to water Georgia. Did you find your phone?”
“Not yet,” I say as I start to ease my way out the door, but then I stop and add with a sexually suggestive grin, “Ummm, we could—”
She shuts the door in my face. I just walk off laughing.
I rush around the apartment, searching under cushions and in odd places for my keys and finally finding them hiding underneath a stack of junk mail on the kitchen counter. I stop for a moment and take a particular piece of mail into my fingers. Camryn won’t let me throw it away, because it was the one she looked at when giving the 911 operator my address the morning I had that seizure in front of her. I guess she feels like that piece of paper helped save my life, but really what it did was help her eventually understand what was going on with me. The seizure was harmless. I’ve had several. Hell, I had one when we were staying in the hotel in New Orleans before we started sharing a room. When I finally told her about that later, needless to say, she was not happy with me.
She worries all the time that the tumor will come back. I think she worries about it more than I do.
If it does, it does. We’ll get through it together. We’ll always get through everything together.
“Time to go, babe!” I yell from the living room.
She comes out of our room dressed in a rather tight pair of jeans and an equally tight T-shirt. And heels. Really? Heels?
“You’re going to squeeze her little head in those jeans,” I say.
“No, I’m not going to squeeze her or his head,” she counters as she grabs her purse from the couch and shoulders it. “You’re so sure of yourself, but we’ll see.” She takes my hand and I walk her out the door, flipping the lock on the knob before I close it hard behind us.
“I know it’s a girl,” I say confidently.
“Care to wager?” She looks over at me and grins.
We step out into the mild November air, and I open the car door for her, gesturing inside with my palm up. “What kind of bet?” I ask. “You know I’m all for betting.”
Camryn slides onto the seat, and I jog around to my side and get in. Resting my wrists on the top of the steering wheel, I look over at her and wait.
She smiles and chews gently on the inside of her bottom lip in thought for a moment. Her long blonde hair tumbles down over both shoulders, and her blue eyes shine with excitement.
“You’re the one who seems so sure,” she finally says. “So, you name the bet and I’ll either agree to it or I won’t.” She stops abruptly and points her finger sternly at me. “But nothing sexual. I think you pretty much have that area covered. Think of something…” she whirls her hand around in front of her “… I don’t know… daring or meaningful.”
Hmmm. I’m officially stumped. I slide the key in the ignition, but pause before turning it.
“OK, if it’s a girl, then I get to name her,” I say with a soft, proud smile.