Evan lifted the weight to his chest and slowly exhaled as he lowered it.
Pregnant? There’s no way. He thought back to their last night spent together. It had been one week since he and Samantha had sex. She wouldn’t know if she was pregnant yet, would she? But then, he remembered their first encounter at her house. It had been one month since he first slept with her. If she were pregnant, it would have happened the first time they had sex, without protection. It could have been avoided if he’d left her house as he should have. But he couldn’t leave her home because she had drugged him. Damn her.
Evan’s thoughts were interrupted by a deep voice standing beside him.
“You look deep in thought.”
Evan turned to the voice. Joe, Emma’s ex-boyfriend, looked much better than the last time Evan saw him. “What’s up, man?”
Joe curled his arm, lifting a weight five pounds heavier than Evan’s. He slowly lowered his arm, then set the weight on the ground. “I’m good. Better than I was the last time you saw me,” he chuckled.
“You remember that?”
Joe nodded. “Yeah, unfortunately. But it’s the last time I picked up a drink.”
“Good for you.” Evan curled his arm again, lifting the weight, and focusing on his reflection in the mirror.
Evan hesitated before responding. “She’s good.” He glanced at Joe’s reflection in the mirror. He seemed lost in thought.
“Good to hear.”
Emma never spoke of her ex-boyfriends. Evan had never asked because that would give her permission to ask about his past relationships, and it was a topic he wanted to avoid. But at that moment, curiosity got the best of him. “Can I ask why you guys broke up?”
Joe reached for the weight on the ground and placed it back in its holder. “I fucked up, big time.” He turned to Evan and grinned. “Snorting coke and partying at all hours of the night got the best of me,” he chuckled.
“I guess that would put an end to things, huh?”
“Yeah, it sure did. I’m sober now, but it’s too late, obviously,” Joe grinned again. “I’m glad she found a guy like you. She deserves to be happy. But I won’t interrupt any more of your workout. Take care.”
A knot formed in Evan’s stomach as he watched Joe walk away. He didn’t know the guy from a hole in the wall, but at that moment, he guessed Joe would be a better man for Emma than Evan could ever be himself. That thought didn’t sit well with him.
Evan spent the next four days going to work and staying the night at Emma’s. She often slept at his house, so he felt like he owed it to her and the cat to stay at her place for a change. Plus, he didn’t want to risk seeing Samantha. He didn’t put it past Samantha to find out where he lived and show up uninvited.
After Samantha appeared at his work and told him she thought she was pregnant, he hadn’t heard from her. She promised Evan she would take a pregnancy test the following day, but it had been four days with no word about results. “No news is good news,” he kept telling himself. But every time he received a text message, Evan panicked, then felt a sense of relief when it wasn’t Samantha on the other end.
“Look at this,” Emma said as she climbed into bed and sat cross-legged next to Evan. She placed the laptop she held onto his lap and pointed to a headline from the local news site. “It doesn’t look like the homeless problem is going away anytime soon.”
Evan squinted to get a better look at the screen. “I thought they agreed to open the shelter to get everyone off the street?”
“Well, according to this, it was denied.”
“Great, just what we need around here is more people living in the streets. I noticed someone come out of the woods by my house last week but haven’t seen him since. So, with all the transients around, you need to be careful when you’re showing property.”
“Just because they’re homeless doesn’t mean they’re dangerous, Evan. Besides, I’m always careful.” Emma reached for the laptop. She lifted it from Evan’s lap and gently placed it on the floor beside the bed. Then, she turned to Evan with a seductive grin. “Let’s not worry about that right now.”
Evan grabbed her arm and pulled her close. Before long, they were making love, and Evan was too distracted to hear his phone alerting him to a text message from Samantha.