November 6th 2017
Things had quietened down at the office and despite having to work over the weekend, Calvin felt relaxed and happy. He spent most weekends working anyway, but this weekend had been relatively quiet, much to his joy.
Their previous project with Mr Andrews was a success as the client was very pleased with the design, and while Calvin had handed over the actual building and construction of the desired room to the architectural and interior design management within his company, he would still be overlooking it because he knew what a difficult client Mr Andrews could be. And if need be, he would step in. But for now, he would enjoy the quiet days at the office while they lasted.
Calvin’s lips pulled down into a frown as he stared at Audrey who was sat opposite him at the kitchen island.
He had spoken too fast.
Chewing the mouthful of scrambled eggs that was currently in his mouth, Calvin continued to stare at Audrey, in bewilderment regarding the words that had just left her mouth.
Audrey tried not to squirm under his scrutinising glare, waiting for him to finally respond.
Placing his fork down on his plate, Calvin reached for his glass of water and took a few sips. He swallowed what remained in his mouth and dabbed at his mouth with a napkin. His eyes then travelled up from his half-eaten plate of food to his wife, who hadn’t even touched her breakfast yet. “I don’t understand,” was what he said.
Audrey nodded her head in understanding. She knew even before she asked him that he wouldn’t be thrilled with the idea, that he would oppose it. And to think that he hadn’t even heard the second half of it yet.
She offered him a small smile. His frown deepened at the sight.
Audrey exhaled quietly and cringed on the inside. This wasn’t exactly how she pictured this conversation would take place. She had hoped that he would take the idea on his chin and think about it rationally, but alas, that was just wishful thinking. She knew Calvin, and he tended to act out without thinking at times, especially when the decision affected him.
She cringed inwardly before she opened her mouth to repeat what she had said only moments ago. “What I said,” she began, suddenly very nervous. “Was that I want to get tested.”
“For?” He asked, quirking a questioning eyebrow in her direction.
“To see if I really am infertile.” She informed him, her words quick and smooth, perhaps too smooth.
“Like you don’t already know.” He scoffed and returned to his food. He picked up his food and enjoyed another mouthful of eggs, that being the only thing left on his plate as he had already finished his toast and cereal. He had thought that she was finished speaking, but his head swung up in surprise when she carried on.
“I just want to be sure.”
“Okay, so why should I care?”
Audrey resisted the urge to flinch at how cold his words were. “Because I want you to take the test too.”
Calvin paused, his hand tightening around the fork in his hand as he stared at Audrey, this time, not because he had misheard, but because he wished that he had misheard. She didn’t waver from his smouldering gaze, yet she found herself wishing that she had just kept her mouth shut.
“What did you say?”
She took in a deep breath; she was going to need it. “I think you should take the test too, just to be sure that you’re not infertile either.” She told him, not looking up to meet his eyes. She was afraid of what she would see in them.
He clenched his jaw, not at all happy with the direction in which her words were pointing to. “What are you insinuating?”
“Nothing.” Audrey was quick to answer having noticed the way that his eyes narrowed and his nostrils flared. He was mad. At her.
“Don’t lie to me.” He barked at her, furious.
“I’m not lying, and I’m definitely not trying to get at something.” She explained to him, hoping that he would just believe her for once instead of just jumping to conclusions and accusing her of whatever he felt like. “I just think that it would be a good idea if you took the test too, so that we could both be sure.”
“And how do you plan on making me take the test?”
His eyebrows furrowed in confusion. “What do you mean?” He asked, not at all sure.
“I guess you could say that I’m just hoping that you’ll take the test for yourself. But if not, then it’s okay.” She explained, her eyes wandering around the area behind his head. She wasn’t really focusing on anything and even though she appeared to be nonchalant, she was really anxious for him to say something. And when he didn’t, she just carried on speaking. Anything would be better than an awkward silence right now. “I’m going to take the test myself anyway, regardless of whatever you choose to do.”
Audrey sighed when Calvin didn’t say anything.
Instead of just sitting and staring at him, she decided that she should finish her breakfast before she got started with work. Even if she wasn’t in the office most days, she still had to work from home.
It was only when she had finished her plate and his, and placed them both in the sink that he spoke. Audrey nearly dropped the plate that she was cleaning when his voice sounded through the air, loud and clear. “I’ll take the test.” He said to her. “I’ll take it.” He repeated, almost as if he was assuring himself rather than her.
“You will?” She asked, turning to glance over at him over her shoulder.
He nodded. “When will you book the appointments for?”
Audrey let out a quiet, strangled sound as she turned around to finish cleaning the plate that was still in her hand. “I’ve already booked the appointments for today?”
“What does that mean?”
She sighed. “That means that I’ve had the appointments booked for some time now, but I just haven’t had the courage to approach you about it.”
“What made you tell me about it today?”
“Because the appointments are for today.”
“Of course.” He nodded once again, twiddling his thumbs. “And what if I had said no?”
“Then I would have gone alone.” She informed him.
Calvin watched as she placed the dishes on the rack to dry, washed her hands and then left the kitchen, no doubt to head to her office to get started on the work that was lined up for today.
He had to get to the office himself, but it seemed that he would be taking an extended break today.
He had changed his mind, but it was now too late. He was already here, and he was already dressed in the ridiculous hospital gown that they made patients wear. It was even more ridiculous since he wasn’t a patient.
Calvin had changed his mind about getting the fertility test done once the gynaecologist had walked in. But it was too late. It didn’t take too long, but Calvin had gritted his teeth and kept his jaw clenched all throughout, only speaking when spoken to and only with as few words as possible.
It was definitely very awkward.
By the end of it, Calvin had surpassed tense and was now on stiff. He barely acknowledged the gynaecologist when he explained what they would be doing next and all the other details that there may be, not that Calvin would know since he wasn’t listening.
When he was finally left to himself, he changed out of the gown and back into his suit shirt, suit and matching pants, feeling much more comfortable, yet still very agitated.
He should have said no when he still had the chance. But he couldn’t deny it, there was a part of him that wanted to know, that wanted to be sure that it was not his fault that Audrey and him couldn’t have a family. He had done the test to prove it to her.
Well, that was what he was telling himself anyway.
Calvin walked out of the room and down the stairs, walking fast in hopes to leave as soon as possible. It was only when he came to the ground floor and found Audrey waiting for him in one of the chairs near the reception did he stop. Audrey had headed up before him for her test, so it only made sense that she would be finished first.
She hadn’t seen him at first, but when he slowly edged away from the receptionist desk and towards her, she stood up. It was a good thing that they were in a public place or Audrey was sure that Calvin would have been screaming at her by now.
Audrey rocked back and forth on the balls of her feet, feeling extremely nervous. She almost felt like she was a child again, waiting to get told off for misbehaving. “How did it go?” She asked, her voice quiet. She made an attempt to smile at him, but she was sure that it came off as more of a grimace.
Calvin just stared at her and shook her head. “It was terrible.” He muttered. He was quiet, quieter than Audrey had been, but they were standing so close that she managed to hear him clearly despite the fact that it was rush hour in the hospital.
She wringed her fingers together, needing something to do with her hands. “Are you okay?” She asked, feeling timid.
“No.” He pursed his lips and raised his face so she could see his eyes. A storm was brewing behind his pupils and Audrey knew exactly what that meant.
“I shouldn’t have brought you here.” Audrey found herself saying. There was no doubt that Calvin had not felt the least bit comfortable having the test done on him. Audrey knew him well enough that even without saying it, she knew what he wanted.
He shook his head. “No.” He repeated, his voice a little louder this time.
“Let’s go home.”
Calvin nodded and turned around, already heading towards the exit, not even waiting for Audrey to grab her bag. She had to weave through the crowds of people that were coming in and out, and by the time that Audrey had passed through the exit, she could see Calvin getting into the car.
She watched as he started the engine and drove out of the car park. Audrey wondered sometimes why she even bothered with Calvin.