Read Waiting for Him (Waiting Series Book 3) Online
Authors: Dawn Stanton
Waiting for Love
Copyright 2015 by Dawn Stanton
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Cover design by Letitia Hasser RBA/Designs
Edited by Laura from Edits for You
This book is a work of fiction. Any similarity to real events, people, or places is entirely coincidental. All rights reserved. This book may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without the permission of the author, except in the case of brief quotations used for review. If you have not purchased this book from Amazon or received a copy from the author, you are reading a pirated book.
The author acknowledges the trademarked status of products referred to in this book and the author is in no way affiliated with any brands, songs, artist or musicians mentioned.
This book contains mature content, including graphic sex and emotional triggers. Please do not continue reading if you are under the age of 18 or if this type of content is disturbing to you.
This book is dedicated to all the readers, bloggers and anyone else who has supported me by reading my books. I couldn’t write without all of you. Thank you for making my dreams come true.
I’ve made a horrible mistake. It’s the kind of mistake that’s so enormous it’s going to change the course of my life and the lives of two other people I care about as well. In spite of all the turmoil this error in my ways is causing me, it’s also the best thing that’s ever happened to me. When I think about the long term reward, I can’t regret my actions, no matter how ill thought out they were. I’m only sorry for the hurt that this situation will cost those that I love the most.
I’ve grown up hearing that “there are no accidents” and that “everything happens for a reason.” I believe that’s the case and I have to hang on to the belief that all of this has happened for a greater purpose.
I’ve been carrying around a secret for five months now and no one else knows the truth. It’s a heavy burden for me to bear on my slight shoulders, but I don’t feel like I deserve a respite from the weight of it. I have the gift of life growing in me and I’m still in awe of the fact that I’m going to be holding my beautiful baby boy in my arms in four more months. Nurturing this tiny human inside of me is the greatest blessing that I could ever receive.
I’m trying to focus on all the good and not think about the fact that I don’t know who the father of my son is. There’s a fifty-fifty chance that this baby is my fiancé Jeff’s son or my ex Garrett’s. I haven’t found a way to tell Jeff that he may not be the father and I haven’t even told Garrett that I’m pregnant; never mind that the baby might be his. I know I need to stop being such a coward and come clean with Jeff. It’s time to face the music, bite the bullet, pay the piper, put my big girl panties on or any other cheesy idiom that means I need to own up to what I’ve done. Jeff needs...and deserves to know first. It’s going to devastate him and destroy our relationship. I have to accept that we’ll most likely be over and that he won’t be able to forgive me. Then I have to find a way to sit down with Garrett and calmly inform him of what’s going on. He’s going to be shocked, to say the least. We’ve barely spoken to each other over the past few months and I see him at work all the time.
Talk about awkward.
I know time is of the essence so I send Jeff a text.
Can you come straight home after work?
It only takes a few seconds before my phone alerts me of his reply.
Sure baby. Everything ok?
I knew he would assume something’s wrong, but I couldn’t take the chance that we wouldn’t discuss everything tonight. I’m forcing myself to take care of this before I can change my mind.
Yes, I just want to talk to you.
I leave it at that. If I say anymore, he’ll know something’s wrong and he’ll just worry about me. I don’t deserve his concern.
Ok, be there asap.
My stomach clenches with fear when I venture to guess what the outcome of our talk will mean for Jeff and I. I have a horrible feeling about this and I can't shake it. It doesn't take psychic ability to know that this situation has disaster of epic proportions written all over it.
About twenty minutes later Jeff is walking through the front door of our apartment. I’m half lying, half sitting on our couch, with my head on the arm rest and my legs curled up beside me. I’m tired and I’d like nothing better than to take a nap and escape from this much-needed conversation. He immediately walks over to where I am.
“Are you okay, baby?” He presses his hand against my forehead to see if I’m feverish. “You look a little flushed.”
Why does he have to be so sweet?
Especially right now when I’m about to annihilate his entire world as he knows it.
“I’m fine,” I say, sitting upright and resting my feet in front of me on our coffee table. “I’m just a bit tired, but that goes with the territory I guess,” I say gesturing at my tiny little baby bump. I haven’t even had to buy maternity clothes yet, although all my waistbands are about to bust. They’re being stretched to maximum capacity and I’m going to have to invest in some elastic waist pants or leggings and some loose sweaters and blouses to camouflage that I’m pregnant. For obvious reasons, I’m trying to keep it a secret for as long as possible.
Jeff sits down on the couch next to me and rubs my thigh with his strong manly hands. I love the way his fingers look wrapped around my leg. It’s possessive and sexy and I hope it’s not the last time I ever see it. I inhale a deep breath and try to mentally prepare myself for what I’m about to do, but I’m not sure that’s even a possibility. I need to spit it out and there’s no real way to candy coat it.
“So I wanted to talk to you about something that happened a while ago and I haven’t had the courage to discuss it with you.” I glance at J and his eyebrows are already furrowed as if he knows that nothing good is going to come from what he’s about to hear.
“That night that I went to the club with Hailey and Garrett showed up,” I pause to make sure I have his full attention. “He and I didn’t just kiss like I told you.” At this point, my eyes well with tears and Jeff squeezes my thigh as if to brace himself for what’s coming. “He and I had sex,” I whispered raggedly as I start to cry tears of sorrow. “I’m so sorry, Jeff. I never meant for it to happen and I was horrified after it did.”
“What the fuck, Shelby? Why am I just hearing about this now and why didn’t you tell me when it first happened?” His breathing is labored and his fists are clenched as he waits for me to answer.
“I don’t know that I was ever going to tell you J. I didn’t want to hurt you. I love you and I didn’t want to lose you. It was something that just happened in the heat of the moment and I felt so cheap and dirty afterward. I was drunk, but not drunk enough not to know that I shouldn’t have done that. I don’t want you to think I’m trying to make excuses.” Jeff shakes his head and angrily grits his teeth, before standing up from the couch. He starts to pace back and forth.
“I can’t fucking believe you would do this to me...to us. How could you?” His question cuts me right to the quick and it’s not something that I haven’t asked myself, at least, hundreds of times. There’s no adequate answer for him or for myself. I have no idea what possessed me to have sex with Garrett that night. If I could do it all over again, I would do it differently for sure.
“I have no excuse J. I’m not sure what happened, but I made the worst decision I could have. There’s more I need to tell you.” I wait for a moment, trying to think of the kindest way to say what I need to say.
“This baby could be Garrett’s. We didn’t use anything and I had just gotten over the stomach bug which is what caused my birth control to fail in the first place.” Watching Jeff’s face crumble as he realizes the depth of my betrayal and what the consequences of my infidelity might be, makes me feel like the worst person in the world. Tears are falling unchecked down his cheeks and I know that there’s no way we’re ever coming back from this. I’ve done it. I’ve broken his heart.
“I hate you for what you’ve done. You’ve tainted the single greatest thing in my life. There isn’t anything that I want more than for us to start our family together. Why did you wait so long to tell me, Shelby? Are you that cruel that you wanted me to get attached and fall in love with him, only so you could pull the rug out from under me?” His tone changes with anger and I know I deserve it. I’m disgusted with myself for what I’m putting this beautiful man through.
“Does Garrett know?” Jeff asks as he continues to pace back and forth across our living room.
“No, I haven’t told him yet. I wanted to talk to you first.”
“Well thanks for that, I guess. It would have been nice if we could have had this conversation months ago. When can we find out who the father is?”
“There’s a test they can do where they insert a needle into the amniotic sac, but it’s not without risk.”
“I don’t want the baby in danger. If I have to wait until he’s born, then so be it. In the meantime, I’m going to find my own place to live. You and I are through.” I start to sob as I take in his words. He’s still thinking about what’s best for the baby, over what he wants. I know it’s going to kill him to wait another four months to find out if he’s the father. I’m so sad that I’ve irreparably damaged our relationship. At this point, I’m not even sure he’ll want to remain friends with me. I don’t even want to remain acquainted with myself, how can I expect anyone else would want to?
The drive to Bentley Academy, the private school where I teach English, gives me some time to think about everything. Watching Jeff pack his bag last night and leave without saying goodbye was like an instant replay of when he did the same thing five months ago. I’m almost positive that this time there won’t be a happy ending waiting for us when all is said and done. There’s no magic wand to wave and make it all disappear. Life can be messy and this is one of those times when the stress of it all is overwhelming. It’s almost as though I’m sinking in quicksand and I’m just trying to keep my head above the muck. It seems like it’s a losing battle and maybe I should just throw in the towel. I’ve been fantasizing about moving away and not telling anyone where I’ve gone. It might be nice to reinvent myself and start anew. There’s something to be said for having a clean slate. Mine is currently covered with tally marks noting all of my recent transgressions. As much as I’d like to run away from this situation, I know that isn’t the answer. Either Jeff or Garrett is the father of my son and will hopefully, want to be a part of his life.
As I pull my Audi into a parking space, a sense of panic washes over me. Today is the day that I need to speak with Garrett. I have to make him set aside some time for us to talk and obviously it can’t happen while we’re at school. It will have to be after hours and maybe I can get him to agree to come to dinner. Jeff won’t be there so I won’t have to contend with him being pissed about it. I guess being single has one advantage. I can do whatever I want without seeking out his opinion or taking his feelings into consideration.
As I walk through the main entrance of the ivy-covered brick building, I glance at my cell phone screen and note the time. I have an hour until my first class begins. I purposely came in early, hoping for a moment to speak with Garrett. The heels on my cowboy style ankle boots make a clacking sound on the well-polished tile floor as I walk down the hallway where his office is located. His door is the last one on the right and as I rap my knuckles against the cool wood, I want to run in the other direction and avoid this awkward conversation altogether.
“Come in.” I hear his voice clearly before I turn the knob and enter his office.
“Shelby.” He looks surprised to see me and my name ends up sounding like a question when it passes through his lips.
“Garrett, do you have a moment?” I ask as I stand there feeling uncomfortable and wringing my hands.
“Sure, what can I do for you?” He asks and I can tell from his tone that he’s regaining his composure.
“I need to talk to you about something that’s very important, but I don’t want to do it here. Do you think we could meet for coffee after work today? Or maybe you could stop by my apartment on your way home.”
“What’s going on Shelby? You and I haven’t exchanged more than a brief hello in months. Where is this need to talk suddenly coming from?” I close my eyes and will myself to continue with my plan instead of turning around and walking out of here like I’m inclined to do.
“I would prefer not to have to discuss anything with you Garrett, but there’s something that we need to talk about and it can’t wait. I don’t want to get into it right now. This is not the time or place for what I need to say. Will you come to my apartment this afternoon? I’ll be there whenever you can make it.” He carefully studies my face with his hazel eyes and he must find the answers he’s looking for because he agrees to come over whenever he finishes up here. Surprisingly, he doesn’t mention Jeff at all.
“Thank you, Garrett. I appreciate your cooperation on this matter.” I meet his eyes with mine for a brief moment before I spin on my heel and walk out the door.