#69 Baby fever
“Really?” Caroline asks, wiggling her eyebrows at me from the screen of my phone. “He’s massive?”
She just got back from her honeymoon and we’re catching up on everything that happened the past two weeks. She was a little angry at first that I didn’t tell her what happened at the wedding sooner, but now we’re moving onto lighter subjects. Of course, Aston is one of them. Although light may not be the correct word to describe him.
“Imagine the biggest cock you can think of,” I tell her. “And then add another two inches. It’s the king of all cocks, I swear to God. That man could make a fortune if he decided to get into porn.”
“Hmm…” Caroline purses her lips. “Damn. I always thought he was hot. Maybe I should have hit that before getting married.”
I laugh, knowing that she’s joking. Caroline doesn’t care about size – back in high school when she was dating Jordan, she was even a little scared of how big he was. And sure, she always had a soft spot for Aston, but not a single atom of her body is sad about marrying Nathan. She’s glowing right now, even through the phone. “Well, Nathan is way older than you, so he’ll probably die before you do. I’m sure Aston will still be single and yummy even when he’s old and grey. You could always hook up with him when you’re a hot young widow.”
“Don’t even joke about that,” she scolds me, her expression worried now that I’ve brought up the fact that one day in the far-away future, Nathan will no longer be there. “Are you sorry that you never slept with Aston back when you still could?”
I shake my head, but Caroline notices something is off right away.
“Spit it out,” she tells me sternly, with that scary teacher look on her face.
“I just… We walked in on him and Annabel a few days ago.” I explain the whole situation, including the amazing life-altering sex on Dshawn’s motorcycle and my musing about Aston’s paintings. “Aston and I haven’t talked since. Not really. He drove me to work yesterday, since Dshawn and him still don’t want me to be on my own now that Melchior seems to be back in town, but things just felt… off. I don’t know. I feel like… like…” I can’t even describe my own feelings.
“Do you think he truly wanted to sleep with you back in the day?” Caroline asks, a frown on her face. “I mean, your friendship has always consisted of going dancing, talking about sex and making suggestive jokes, right? Don’t you think that deep down, both of you always figured that one day you’d get drunk and stupid enough to actually end up in bed together?”
“Yeah…” I say slowly. Maybe that’s it. “It’s not like I want to sleep with him now, or that I ever truly did in the past, but he was always… I don’t know, a mistake waiting to happen? And it’s not like he never hinted at it, especially when he was drunk.”
“He also told Dshawn that you’re not capable of monogamy, remember?” Caroline goes on with a frown. “And that you can’t go without sex for a week. He’s basically been planting seeds of doubt in Dshawn’s head from the moment the two of you started dating.”
“No…” I hesitate, not sure if she’s right or not. “We talked about that and I don’t think he meant any harm. He’s been very supportive of both me and Dshawn, actually. I truly believe he’s happy for us.”
“He can be happy for his friends and still wish he’d get to sleep with you,” Caroline insists.
“He’s got Annabel,” I argue, not wanting to go down this road. “And probably ten other girls as well. Aston doesn’t need me. And he’d never put our friendship in jeopardy. Nor would he do something like that to Dshawn. They’re basically brothers.”
“I’m not saying he needs you or that he’ll act on it, but I do think that he wants to.” Caroline laughs at my sullen expression. “Why don’t you just talk to him? It’s not like you to shy away from things like this. Look at how well you and Dshawn handle the things life throw at you two. You’re all grown up, Shaughna. Act like it.”
I stick my tongue out to her. “Don’t insult me, woman.”
She burst out laughing. “You sound just like Dshawn.”
“Enough about me. Let’s get back to your honeymoon. Are you pregnant yet?”
Her face turns bright red in a matter of seconds. “No! Of course not. I’m still on the pill. I’m nowhere near ready for that!”
I immediately catch onto what she’s truly saying. Caroline always says “we feel” and “we think”, like she and Nathan are one single entity. Now, she’s only speaking for herself. That can online mean one thing… “He wants to have another kid, doesn’t he?”
She grunts. “Yeah… the subject came up. If Nathan gets his way, I’ll have a baby growing in my belly sooner rather than later. I just don’t think now is the time. We haven’t been together for a full year. Moving in together, getting married… I know that we move fast, but I’m only 25. A kid? Right now? Hell no!”
“Yeah, I get that. I can’t imagine having a kid at our age. Then again, Nathan is older than you and he’s always wanted a house full of kids. You can’t blame the guy for wanting to procreate with you.” I laugh at the way she scrunches up her nose. “Come on, Car, we both know you’ll have a whole bunch of kids with him.”
“Yeah, okay,” she agrees, rolling her eyes. “Not now, though. Maybe in a year or so. I just want to get used to being a stepmother before I move on to being a mother. And I could use some time with my brand-new husband before adding a baby to the mix.”
“Fair enough.” I sigh, trying to imagine Caroline holding a little baby with her eyes and Nathan’s dark hair. “You’ll be a great mom one day. Your babies will be so cute.”
“Stop it!” she complains, turning even redder. “You sound like Nathan. He’s got the worst case of baby fever. I thought that women were the ones who get all broody after getting married, but Nate is the worst. The minute we got back from the honeymoon he took me to one of the spare bedrooms that isn’t being used right now and started talking about how he wants to decorate it for our baby. I’m not even ready to stop taking the pill! Why the fuck is he already picking out paint colors for the nursery?”
“Does he know you’re not ready?” I ask, feeling bad for her. I would run for the hills if Dshawn did that to me. No way that this body is ready to carry a kid right now. Thank God that my boyfriend doesn’t want kids yet.
“Yeah, you know me, I’m always honest,” she says, smiling a little. “I told him that there is no fucking way that he’s going to put a baby in me until I’m ready and that it is going to be at least another year before I’ll even consider getting off the pill. He’s just so excited that we’re now married and ready to start our lives. And you know him, he’s always using sex to get me to agree with things.”
“Oh my God, he’s trying to get you to want a baby with him by screwing you?” I can’t help but laugh at that. “Is it working?”
She shrugs. “No, but I’m enjoying the process. Although I could use a day off right now, honestly. The honeymoon was exhausting.”
Roaring with laughter, I wipe tears form my eyes. Nathanial Storm is one strange man. “Sex every day sounds amazing,” I say when I’m done laughing.
“Oh, it is,” she agrees, smirking. “But it was two or three times a day for two weeks straight, in all places and positions you can possibly think of. Plus… I mean, you know what I like, so just imagine that. I’m bruised all over and I’m just so… raw. I think he broke me. Why do you think I’m wearing a scarf in fucking July?” She pulls down her scarf a little to show me her neck where the signs of a fading bruises are still evident. “I seriously had to delete half of the pictures he took of me the past weeks, because it looks like I’m either the clumsiest person ever or he’s abusing me.”
Every time I think that I’m done laughing, she says something that cracks me up again.
“Stop laughing!” she shouts into the phone. “I’m actually grateful that Rose is staying with us this week, because that usually means we have less sex and we keep it down a bit, so I think I might get to heal before he tries to fuck me into wanting to be pregnant again. Let me tell you, that man is so good at what he does that I might just agree to it if he keeps this up. Fucking hell, I feel like I’m still coming down from an orgasm that lasted for two straight weeks.”
“I know the feeling. Dshawn is the king of oral sex. He can give me a never-ending orgasm using nothing but his tongue.”
“Really?” Caroline’s eyes go wide.
“Didn’t he ever do that to you?” I ask, feeling a little smug when she shakes her head. “Trust me, you’re missing out. He’s the best I’ve ever had.”
She smiles sweetly. “That’s because you love him. I feel the same about Nathan. In the end, it’s not about how big someone’s dick is or how hot they are. It’s about love, compatibility, trust…”
“True, although it doesn’t hurt that our men are hot as fuck and have decent-sized dicks.”
Right when I utter those last words, Dshawn walks into the living room, finally awake. It’s Saturday and I’ve got the morning off before having to head into work this afternoon. He slept in, but I woke up from Caroline’s phone call.
“Who has a decent-sized dick?” he asks, yawning.
“You,” I reply with a smile at my boyfriend.
“And Nathan!” Caroline yells into the phone.
“Why are you talking about my dick this early in the morning?” he asks, flopping down next to me on the couch and waving at Caroline when I move the phone in his direction. “Hey Car, how was the honeymoon?”
“Amazing,” she sighs. “I’m sure Shaughna will tell you all about it later. Now tell me, Dshawn, why the fuck did no one bother to tell me that Melchior is back in town? You should have told me about him texting Shaughna! And the vibrator thing… that was fucked up!”
“No need for you to worry, Aston and I have it covered,” he assured her.
I roll my eyes. “Yeah, I’m not even allowed to get the mail without a chaperone.”
“Good,” Caroline says in a tight voice. “That motherfucker is the worst human being in the whole entire world. He should stay the fuck away from you. I’m glad that Dshawn and Aston are watching you all day. Makes me feel a little less worried.”
“Not you too!” I complain, sinking into the couch cushions while I look up into the screen at my best friend.
Before she can respond, Nathan appears behind her, his hands on her shoulders, kneading them. Her eyes close for a moment and she leans into his soothing touch.
“Hi there, hot daddy,” I say, grinning at him. “I hear your ovaries are rattling like crazy.”
Nathan frowns at me. “Men don’t have ovaries.”
“Okay, fine, your balls have caught baby fever,” I say, winking at him. “You might want to wait a little while, though, because I’m not sure if it’s healthy to do all the kinky things you and Caroline get up to when she’s got a bun in the oven.”
He’s looking a little upset now. “Hmm. Yeah. Maybe.”
“Stop talking about this,” Caroline grunts, giving me a stern look. “I’m never telling you anything ever again. Just wait until Dshawn gets rattling ovaries.”
“You’ll be waiting a long time,” my boyfriend chimes in with a sour expression. “A very long time.” He puts and arm around me and squeezes. “I’m enjoying the practice, though.”
We all laugh at that and finally hang up, making kissy faces at each other. Well, me and Caroline make kissy faces. Dshawn and Nathan just nod at the screen and say “bye”.
“Speaking of babies,” Dshawn says when I put down my phone, “how about we go work on ours?”
“W-what?” I ask, my eyes going wide. He just said that he doesn’t want kids for years! What is he talking about?
He grins at me. “Don’t freak out. I meant our business plan. That’s kinda like our baby, right?”
“Oh,” I breathe. “Okay. Fuck, you had me scared there for a minute. Please don’t ever do that to me again. My IUD is not coming out before we’re both in our thirties and absolutely sure that we won’t fuck up the poor kid.”
Dshawn gives me a kiss and gets up to bring his laptop over to the couch. We’ve got another meeting at the bank in a few days, although we’re no closer to getting a loan than we were when we started this. We’ve been to a few more banks since the disaster with Finn McCoy, but no one is going to just give us the loan we need. Still, we keep trying, saving up, fine-tuning the plan. We’re not ready to give up on our dreams yet.
When we’ve been working for an hour and Dshawn is making us some coffee, my phone rings. It’s Aston.
“Hey,” I say when I pick up, still feeling weird around him even when he’s not in the room.
“Hey girl,” he says, not sounding any different than usual. “You need me to drop you off at Giovanni’s in a little bit? I’ve got a PT job at a client’s place only two blocks from the restaurant, so I could totally swing by on my bike.”
I tell him to wait a moment and repeat the offer to Dshawn. He just nods and hands me my coffee. He was planning on driving me himself, but if Aston picks me up, he can stay here and work on the business plan some more. It makes sense. Then why do I feel so strange about it?
Aston picks me up an hour later, grinning at me when I step out of the apartment building with my helmet underneath my arm. Since I’m spending so much time on the back of motorcycles these days, I got myself a nice helmet instead of using the old battered ones that Aston and Dshawn usually throw at me. Mine is dark blue with yellow and red flames on it.
“You look good,” he tells me, winking. “Hop on and get all horny.”
I roll my eyes, unable to resist his easy banter. “Please, I’m over that.”
“Sure you are,” he replies darkly. “Dshawn told me all about your little adventure in my garage. If you want to try that on a different bike, feel free to use mine.”
“I’m not sleeping with you!” I say, freezing just when I’m about to get on the bike.
“What?” he asks, sounding genuinely confused. “I meant you and Dshawn. What the fuck are you talking about?”
“Oh,” I breathe, feeling stupid. “Nothing. Let’s just go.”
“Okay then…” He waits until I’m settled in behind him and waits for me to put my arms around him before firing up the bike. “Hold on tight!” he yells when he takes off, feeling that I’m not grabbing him the way I normally do.
Grunting, I do as he says, trying to get rid of the weirdness between us. It doesn’t help that I’m already getting turned on and that I’m thinking about his huge cock buried in Annabel’s slender body. What the fuck is wrong with me? This is Aston, one of my best friends in the world. Why is everything suddenly so awkward between us? Or well, why am I so awkward? He doesn’t seem to behave or feel any differently.
When we arrive at the restaurant, I just hop off and wave at him before hurrying inside. I don’t even know what to say to him anymore. I head into the back to put on my apron and greet Kieran, who tells me about the problems that he ran into this morning with a supplier. I promise him to get right onto fixing those and make my usual round through the kitchen to make sure everything is still clean and in order. I trust Kieran, but the new guy that we got to replace Hollister leaves stuff out of the fridge a bit too long sometimes and I don’t want to give anyone food poisoning.
The next few hours are filled with phone calls, training a new waitress, talking to a customer who sent back his desert because he didn’t like the powdered sugar on his apple pie, and taking care of bills. When I’ve got a moment to spare, I head into the kitchen to have Kieran fix me up a sandwich. I eat it leaning against the counter, observing the wait staff placing and picking up orders. I spot a few things that could do with improvement, but they’re going a good job overall.
“What’s on your mind?” Kieran asks while flipping a burger. “You seem… quiet.”
I shrug. “Have you ever felt like you suddenly don’t truly know your best friend anymore?”
He shakes his head. “Who are we talking about here? Caroline? Is this because she got married? Or Franny?”
“Oh…” Kieran nods. “Did he tell you he’s in love with you or something?”
“What?” I ask, almost choking on my sandwich. “No! Of course not! Why would you say that?”
Kieran laughs. “Please, Shaughna. Everyone who’s ever seen the two of you together knows that there’s something there. A girl like you and a guy like him can never truly be just friends. My wife had a male best friend back when we met in college. Didn’t last long. He liked her, she liked me, and the friendship fizzled out.”
“That’s not me and Aston!” I argue. “Plus, he’s my boyfriend’s best friend. He’ll always be in my life.”
“Sure,” Kieran says, not sounding genuine at all. “I’m sure he will be.”
Is he right? Is it impossible to be friends with a man? I’ve never really thought about that. I don’t think Kieran is right, but I also don’t know what to make of the awkwardness I feel around him lately. Maybe Caroline was right and I should just talk about this with him.
My mind is made up for me when Aston is the one to pick me up after my dinner shift that night. He must have been wanting for a long time, since my shift ran long, but he doesn’t complain. I was expecting Dshawn, but I’m pleasantly surprised that Aston is the one leaning against his bike in the parking lot. We really do need to talk.
“My place?” Aston asks the moment he sees my determined expression. I guess he felt the awkwardness after all and knows as well as I do that we need to have a heart-to-heart.
“Okay,” I agree, shooting Dshawn a quick text that I’m hanging out with Aston and that he’ll drop me off at home later. Dshawn just tells me to have a good time, not seeming to find anything strange about me and Aston hanging out with him. And he shouldn’t. Aston and I have been hanging out since I was 18 and I still spend a lot of time with him even now that I’m Dshawn’s girlfriend. Of course he doesn’t think it’s weird. I’m the one making a big deal about nothing.
Hopefully, this talk will help clear the air.
Author's note: next chapter will hopefully be up later tonight or tomorrow night. Work started last week, so I've onle got time during the weekends now. Sorry! I will just post everything I manage to write whenever I've got it, but at least once a week, hopefully more.
So, let's hear it: what do you think is going on with Shaughna and Aston? Is he in love with her? Is she confused about him? Can men and women be friends without things getting weird? Let's hear your thoughts. :)