We're not telling anyone.
The flames danced at first light and already Tia and Jordan were sitting around cooking sausages on the open fire. I crawled out of my tent, leaving Liam sleeping peacefully and joined them on the logs.
I wanted to ask Tia everything, how she told him, what he said, how he reacted but I felt too awkward to bring it up so instead I sat quietly, watching as he overcooked the meat.
“We’re not telling anyone.” She finally said, making Jordan look up from his food. I nodded in affirmative right away.
“She knows?” He asked with wide eyes. Tia gave him an expression that said ‘duh’ but that only made his face screw up in annoyance. “But you won’t let-” He started to complain before Tia cut him off.
“We’re not telling anyone.” She ordered again.
“Um... congratulations?” I said slowly, Jordan gave me a half smile and from his mood I couldn’t gauge his thoughts on Tia’s pregnancy.
The atmosphere was honestly quite awkward, It seemed like I was an onlooker caught in a couples fight. They needed to process this huge news, they needed to apologize to one another for last nights argument and they needed to maturely figure out their next steps together. But there wasn’t a whole lot of talking going on between them.
Zak crawled out of his tent and joined us around the campfire, he looked like a zombie first thing in the morning. His hair stuck up everywhere and he rubbed his tired eyes. We all went quiet and watched him place himself down opposite us.
“Don’t stop on my account.” He said through a raspy voice, the three of us shot each other knowing looks. “I heard your conversation yesterday on the edge of the cliff.” He flicked his finger between Tia and I. “I guess you thought I was in my tent... I wasn’t I was checking my phone in Jordan’s car with the windows rolled down. Heard every word.” He smiled smugly and then snatched the cooked sausage out of Jordan’s hand and placed it between two fresh pieces of bread.
“You didn’t think to stop us, knowing that the conversation was private?” Tia said with a tone.
“Thought never crossed my mind.” Zak replied with sausage meat rolling around his mouth. “Actually, I turned the music off so I could hear you more clearly.” Jordan spluttered a laugh but one dangerous glare from Tia had him straightening his expression.
“We’re not telling anyone.” She repeated her words from earlier.
“My lips are sealed.” Zak said, mimicking a zip across his lips.
“About what?” Our heads all turned behind us to see Liam heading our way, he didn’t look like a zombie when he first woke up. He looked radiant and fresh, it truly wasn’t fair. He sat down beside me and slung his arm around my shoulders, I instantly felt warmer than the fire had allowed.
“Nothing.” Tia spat out abruptly.
“Have you two made up now?” Liam asked with a mocking tone. The question instantly made everyone, except Liam tense. We all looked at one another with secretive glances again.
“Mmhmm.” Jordan mumbled, really focusing on the sausages.
Minutes past by, minutes of awkward atmosphere and tension. Everyone communicating with facial expressions that Liam couldn’t follow or understand. I could feel in his body language that he was getting irritated or tense.
“What’s going on with everyone?” He finally asked.
“Nothing.” We all replied at the same time like a choir of voices. Liam dropped his arm from my body and shuffled away from me a few inches. He rubbed the back of his neck.
I hated how uncomfortable we were making him feel, I hated feeling like they dragged me into something that entailed me lying to Liam, or at least hiding the truth from him. I couldn’t bare it so I made an excuse to leave, claiming I needed to use the bathroom.
I walked past a few of the trees, no idea where I was really headed. I just wanted to get away from the atmosphere at our camp site. Silently I counted each tree I passed just so I didn’t get lost.
“Liv...” I heard his voice call me back and when I turned around he was jogging to catch up with me. I smiled falsely, trying to fool him or myself that everything was fine. “Is it about me?” He asked and my brows furrowed with confusion.
“Are they talking about me? Did something happen? Did I have a nightmare? Did you tell them something? Maybe about the statement or ... us ... or ... the trail?” I felt the features on my face fall soft, there was strong vulnerability in his eyes that broke my heart. Softly I caressed his cheek, feeling the rough hairs of his stubble from not shaving for a while.
“No it’s not about you, I would never tell them anything about you or us. That’s yours to tell. But that’s why I can’t tell you why they’re all acting so strange. It’s not mine to tell.” He nodded his head underneath my hand.
“But it’s not about me?” He asked quietly.
“It’s not about you.” I confirmed.
His whole demeanor relaxed in an instant and our eyes turned to the rustle coming between the trees.
“Hey.” Jordan announced, shooting us one of those boyish head nods. Liam gave him one back but I just watched the encounter between the two. “So I gotta tell you something - hold on.” My mouth dropped open a little, wondering if he was seriously going to go against Tia’s wishes and tell Liam. He walked over to a near by tree and started fiddling with his zipper.
“Ew!” I shouted, turning my back to him even though I couldn’t see anything anyway. Once he was done he paced over to us.
“So I gotta tell you something, but I can’t tell you. So you’re gonna have to guess.” I turned around to face Jordan with my best ‘what the heck’ stare.
“Gonna need more than that.” Liam laughed.
“Finish the sentence. Tia is...” Jordan tapped his foot on the ground and I moved my face from Jordan to Liam and back again in disbelief.
“Tia is angry.” Liam exclaimed, Jordan shook his head.
“Tia is upset.” Liam poorly guessed again. Jordan shook his head and them mimicked a pregnant belly with his hands all the while he whistled a tune and looked the other way.
“Tia is pregnant?” Liam asked slowly.
“Oh my God Liam, I can’t believe you just guessed that. That is so random but since you did, you leave me no choice but to say yes. Yes she is.” Jordan spoke with an innocent tone. I gave him a deadpan stare. “Olive, you witnessed that was a total unprovoked guess, right?”
“Shit man, what you gonna do?” Liam asked ignoring the theatrics from Jordan. He sighed loudly.
“We’re gonna keep it, we’re gonna raise it and we’re gonna love it.” Jordan said with a complete sincere tone. He sighed lovingly. “I think... I think I already do.” He added, making me swoon inside.
“Me too.” Liam added, taking me by surprise.
“Me three.” I chirped in, knowing that my best friends baby could only bring more love and happiness into this world.
We walked back into the campsite, Tia was deep in conversation with Zak about something or other. Lola and Ben had also woken and were helping themselves to the burnt sausages.
“Liam knows.” Jordan announced quite loudly. Tia’s face instantly grimaced.
“Fuck sake Jordan!” She protested.
“Knows what?” Lola inquired.
“Nothing.” Tia replied.
Lola gasped and put her hand over her lips. “You are pregnant.” She claimed and Tias eyes widened.
“I told you not to tell anyone.” Tia swatted Jordan on his upper arm and Jordan rubbed the sting away.
“He figured it out, the guy is far too smart. What could I say?” He shrugged. The secretive, sly smiles didn’t go a miss between Liam and Jordan but I was wise enough to keep my mouth shut and not get involved.
“Nobody mentions this again.” Tia told everybody around the circle. We all just quietly looked at each other, none of us feeling brave enough to speak what everyone was thinking.
“Uh Tia, I don’t think you’re going to be able to hide it forever.” Except Lola, who is brutally honest.
“Nobody mentions it again.” Tia shut her down and we all just nodded our heads.
“We gotta get on the road, this one has been... weird, maybe we’ll go back to it just being the guys next year.” Jordan said casually earning himself a disapproving stare from all of the girls.
“You’ll be knees deep in baby diapers next year, can’t see you doing much camping.” Zak laughed.