Authors: L. B. Simmons
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Copyright © 2013 by L.B. Simmons
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Edited By Jennifer Roberts-Hall
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Table of Contents
About the Author
For N ~
“Alex! Where are you?” Harlow yells, parading into my bedroom. As stealthily as possible, I lift my dress and tiptoe my way to the bathroom, quietly locking the door behind me.
. I’m pretty sure she’s honed in on my actual location, but I choose to remain silent, hoping to throw her off for a couple of minutes.
That’s all I need.
Just a couple of minutes to collect my thoughts and gather my wits.
Turning slowly, I narrow my eyes, challenging the reflection staring back at me in the mirror.
White? Am I sure?
I nod my head with absolute certainty.
Yes, I am.
I mean, I have three children; it’s no secret I’m not a virgin. But, Blake should have the “perfect” wedding. It’s his first and I would like to grant him the full experience. He deserves nothing less, and if I can, I would like to give it to him. So, here I am in my beautiful
wedding dress, wanting him to have everything that he deserves. And everything that goes with the perfect wedding.
Harlow’s new Wonderbra for better lift. Since it’s a cup size smaller than every other bra she owns, I’m inclined to believe she bought it just so I could
it. Thirty-three, with three kids, and after breast feeding…I definitely need all the Wonder
I can get.
I haven’t found anything yet, but I will. I’ll just grab one of Kyndall’s hair clips if I have to.
Um, well, looking at myself in the mirror, I can’t help but laugh.
Yes, I could constitute as that…
My dress. Yes, that’s it. There is absolutely nothing
I would have to give Blake.
The only wedding rule I don’t plan on following is seeing Blake before the wedding. I’ve had my fair share of bad luck so that one doesn’t really concern me. I would like to think I’ve been granted a reprieve.
Gliding my fingers over the delicate lace at the top of my dress, I take a deep breath in through my nose. “I don’t know if I can do this again,” I say out loud to myself. “I’m too old.”
Okay, I know I’m not
old, and I’m being a tad overdramatic, but honestly some days I
feel over eighty-five.
“Too old for
? What are you talking about, Alex?” I hear Harlow’s strained voice behind the door as she jiggles the handle. “And why the hell is the door locked?”
Exhaling a deep, frustrated breath, I roll my eyes and follow it up with my trusty death glare.
A couple of minutes, that’s all I ask.
“I just need a second, Harlow. Don’t you have some maid of honor stuff to do?”
“Yeah, I guess you’re right. I’ll get right on that.” I note the thick layer of sarcasm she’s pouring all over that comment, but let it go because there are more important things at hand. Pressing my ear flush against the door, I listen to her heels
their way out of the bedroom. I’m halfway tempted to look under the door to make sure she’s not just pretending to leave with fake footsteps because I’ve fallen victim to that ploy a time or two.
Turning around, I slowly drag myself back to the bathroom counter. “I can do this.”
My stomach flips once and tumbles twice. I swallow thickly while grinding my teeth.
This does not bode well for my wedding day.
I run my hands over the white satin; my brown eyes finding the reflection with which to resume the previous pep-talk. “So what if you’re thirty-three? You can do this. People do it all the time. You. Can. Do. This.”
“Can do what? What the
are you talking about, Alex? Why are you so nervous? Seriously, I’m starting to get worried.” Wide-eyed at her audacity, I watch the doorknob as it turns back and forth, Harlow obviously messing with the lock from the other side.
I guess I need to hide those tiny little screwdrivers that I use when Rylie decides to lock bathroom doors…
. Normally, I would be glad Harlow’s privy to their top secret location, but right now, not so much.
I’m cut off mid-sentence as she masters the locked door in record time, hastily making her way into the bathroom. “Dude, give me a sec–”
“What the hell’s going on, Alex?” She interrupts again.
She attempts to gain further entrance and I block her full force, wedding dress and all. With narrowed eyes we exchange glares and while doing so, I take a moment to really look at my best friend for the first time today.
I’ve been a little preoccupied.
If she hadn’t just busted into my private affirmation session, I would have loved to tell Harlow how absolutely gorgeous she looks. I picked out just the right shade of dusty rose for her dress because it really does compliment her light skin tone. Her make-up is done with expert precision and her hair is in a messy side bun just like mine, with her red curly locks falling in soft tendrils that frame her face perfectly.
She must be reading my thoughts, which tends to happen
too often, because after another quick second of looking at her, she dodges to the left and shouts, “If you mess up my hair, so help me, Alex!” Not easily daunted, I shuffle myself right in front of her while fanning out the bottom of my dress. The more room I can take up, the less likely she is to dart by me.
She immediately jerks back to the right, but I stick with her
. Definitely on top of my game today.
Unfortunately, she has about a half a foot of height on me, so she immediately sees the bathroom counter.
And what’s lying on top of it.
I watch a sly smile spread across her face. “Secrets? Hmm, very interesting. Why?”
“Because, I still have
minute. There’s nothing to say just yet, but, thank you for breaking in…
She looks down at me, cups her hand over her mouth, and then giggles.
I’m so glad to have a best friend who, without fail, always seems to find the utmost amusement every single time life throws me a curveball. “And here I thought you were just nervous about getting married. I should have known when you stopped eating bacon at breakfast.” She lets out another small giggle, then tilts her head slightly to the right. “Alex, why didn’t you tell me?” Shutting the door behind her, she locks it while still looking at me.
“There wasn’t anything to tell. And there’s still not
not for another
seconds or so.” Harlow cranes her neck as far as she can to try to catch a glimpse.
“Ohmygod! Harlow, chill out! As if I’m not nervous enough.”
Taking a break from her neck lengthening exercise, she once again tips her head in my direction. Still smiling, she places both her hands on my shoulders. “Alex, what is there to be nervous about? You’ve done it three times before. What’s one more?”
Oh, my best friend and her infinite wisdom…
“You’re kidding me, right? We’re talking about the possibility of another child here, Harlow, not whether or not I should add another half-mile onto my daily run.” We let out a simultaneous laugh.
Right, like I run…ever.
I’m not even sure why I said that. Even the remote possibility of being pregnant is screwing with my brain.
Releasing a quick nervous breath, I turn my body away from hers to face the mirror. I let out a long, deep sigh and gesture towards my reflection. “That’s why. I’m too old. I can barely keep up with Rylie. Can you imagine a
old. If you’re old, then I’m old so that can’t be true. And Rylie...” She pauses and shrugs her shoulders. “Well, let’s just hope she’s going through an extremely energetic and inquisitive phase.”
“Case in point, there’s no way I can handle another one. They get worse the more I have!”
I watch her lips quirk up, and my eyes follow her in the mirror as she moves to stand next to me. Placing her arm around my shoulders, she pulls me into her body, giving me a much needed squeeze. I lay my head on my best friend’s shoulder as she continues. “Plus, we don’t know
yet. Why don’t we just take a peek at the test before we start having an unnecessary emotional breakdown, hmm?” She stares at my mirror image for just a little while longer. I can tell she’s thinking because she has that far off stare when she’s challenging her brain.
She’s totally counting.
My suspicions are confirmed as, right on cue, her green eyes move away from mine and fall directly to the counter. “Time’s up, Alex.”
I knew it.
Her eyes flicker back to mine and I just stand there. Not moving.
We hold each other’s stare until she widens her eyes at me in a rather threatening manner. I exasperatedly roll my eyes back at her, but, knowing she’s right, I eventually nod my head and drag myself to where the potentially life-altering contraption waits. I glance back at her over my shoulder, hoping maybe she’s kind enough to have disappeared, leaving me alone to discover my fate.
She nudges her head in the direction of the test and I purse my lips, giving her one last protest. “Fine!”
Once again facing the counter, I reach forward and close my eyes. Taking in a deep breath, I allow myself a few seconds of peace in an attempt to calm my heart which seems to have found its way into my throat. Working through my thoughts, I try to tune out my best friend standing in the corner, nervously shifting her stance and sighing out loud over, and over, and over…
A baby? Wow. Never in a million years would I have thought I would be doing this again. Blake! Ohmygod! Blake will flip out! He’s going to be so excited!
Just the thought makes me smile and I open my eyes. Maybe I
Picking up the test, I take my first glance.
Inching my face closer, I narrow my eyes to get a better look. Then slowly, I tilt my head thinking maybe that will help.
Holding the test up higher, I try looking at it that way.
“Alex! Seriously, I’m dying over here!”
Internal eye roll.
I squint even harder, and as I again bring it closer for another look, a hand magically appears over my shoulder and tries to grab it out of my grasp. Luckily, my reflexes are still at top speed. I drop the test to my waist and throw my elbow back just a little to provide Ms. Nosey Parker ample warning. “Back. Off. Harlow. Give me
“How long does it take to read the damn test? It’s either positive or not. What’s the problem?”
I raise it back up and look again. “Well, the problem is I can’t tell if there’s a second line. It kind of looks like it, but I can’t tell for sure.”
“What? You’re crazy. Let me see it.” She snakes her hand over my body and grabs the test before I have a chance to deflect.
I watch her eyes as she attempts to focus them. After a few seconds, a small smile appears on her face as she raises her eyebrows, looking at me over the stick in her hand. “Alex, there’s another line. Clear as day. There are
blue lines. Here, see for yourself.”
She hands the test back to me and I take another look.
Yep. Two blue lines.
“Well, it wasn’t that clear just a second ago.” I continue to stare, wondering where the hell this other blue line came from, when realization finally strikes. I lay the test back down on the counter and whirl around to face Harlow. “Harlow, I’m gonna have a baby!” With my heart pounding, I run over to her and throw my arms around her neck. “I’m gonna have another baby!” I shout as we both jump up and down together from pure excitement.
I’m gonna have another baby. Holy crap.
Unwrapping my arms, I attempt to slow my heart rate and gradually back away from Harlow to take a seat on the commode. All this crazy ruckus is making me light-headed. Once the back of my legs feel the cold porcelain, I plop down onto the seat. “I’m gonna have a baby.”