© 2020 by Sara Leanne Adams
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or used in any manner without the written permission of the author.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.
This book contains graphic sexual content which is not suitable for persons under the age of 18.
I sighed heavily, lowering myself to the toilet lid. My tiny bathroom was so cute, and so me. Red and black, my favourite colours. Everything matched. The towels, shower curtain, peel and stick tiles, even my toothbrush.
My life was great. All my dreams were coming true. I had a prestigious, highly classified position working for a popular United States Senator, a woman who was running for president in 2020. My political aspirations were becoming a reality faster than I ever imagined they would.
And there was a very good chance I’d fucked everything up. All because of a urinary tract infection.
How could I have been so stupid? I was a genius, with an IQ of 182. I could solve complex mathematical equations and participate in intelligent conversations with the President of the United States. But I didn’t know that antibiotics decrease the effectiveness of birth control pills.
One gorgeous summer morning, I was sitting in a cafe near the White House, enjoying my peppermint latte while I perused The Financial Times. I glanced up to find a gorgeous man watching me. He was older, his salt and pepper hair and mature face giving him away. Our eyes locked and he grinned, holding up his copy of The Financial Times. He collected his paper and coffee and headed to my table.
My heart was racing with excitement. It was a moment straight out of a romance novel. I might be career driven, but I’m still a woman. I wasn’t immune to indulging in the occasional fantasy about meeting my soulmate. We fell into easy conversation before making dinner plans for that evening.
A whirlwind summer romance ensued. I was smitten. Brent Collins was perfect for me. He was a divorced, forty-five-year old financial advisor with no interest in having children. And he was intelligent.
Mitch, my ex-boyfriend, was a fun guy, but I could never have deep, intellectual conversations with him about finance, politics and world issues. Brent was well-educated and worldly.
I stared at the pregnancy test, mocking me from the other side of the sink where I left it after I peed on the stick. I didn’t want children. They would put a serious crimp in my political career.
I chose my career over love. I had a great guy. My childhood best friend and high school sweetheart. Mitch Dawson. My first love. But we wanted different things from life. He ended our relationship last year, deciding he wanted the family I refused to give him.
A few months later, he had a one-night-stand with my best friend, Carla. She got pregnant, but suffered a late miscarriage. They got married last summer, adopted a baby, and are expecting again. I’m happy for them. Carla can give Mitch the family life that he desires.
It was time to face the music. I took a deep breath, rising from the toilet seat as I squeezed my eyes shut. I said a quick prayer and grabbed the stick.
Who was I kidding? The writing was on the wall. I missed my period for the first time in my life, and I vomited three mornings in a row.
I opened my eyes, two pink lines verifying what my logical brain already knew. I was pregnant.
I stared at my phone, my heart beating rapidly as my thumb hovered over Brent’s name. He would be furious. There was no doubt in my mind. This was one hundred percent on me. My mistake. Maybe I shouldn’t even tell him. Just go have an abortion. He didn’t want kids. But that would be wrong. He had a right to know.
“Hey, lover.” His smooth, baritone voice spilled through the phone. “How was your day?”
“It was fine,” I lied, my voice hitching.
“Is everything okay?”
“It will be,” I whispered. “Can you stop by for lunch tomorrow?”
“What’s going on, Whitney?”
“I’ll tell you about it tomorrow. I’ve gotta go.”
“You’re really worrying me, honey.”
“I’ll see you tomorrow, Brent. Bye.” I hung up before he could question me any further.
I tossed and turned all night. What if Brent decided he wanted this baby? Could he stop me from having an abortion? What if I couldn’t go through with an abortion? Would he break up with me over this? Blame me?
At five I gave up on sleep and dragged my tired ass into the shower. At least I had the morning off work. I’d managed to get a doctor’s appointment that morning. Best to confirm the pregnancy and get the process started. The sooner I had the abortion, the better.
Dr. Norah Cascara’s office was located in a medical building a few blocks from The White House. I parked in the underground garage and pushed the button for the twelfth floor. Just before the door closed, a man stuck his hand in.
“Sorry,” he mumbled when he entered the elevator. He looked at the buttons, but didn’t select a floor. “Looks like we’re going to the same place.” He glanced at me briefly before lowering his eyes to the floor.
My spidey sense tingled with awareness. The man was giving off suspicious vibes. I slipped my hand into my purse, feeling around for my mace while I kept one eye on him.
He was short and balding with a cheesy, seventies moustache. His trench coat and shoes looked expensive, but he reeked of cheap cologne. He was very strange and a tad shady. I breathed a sigh of relief when the elevator stopped to pick up a man and woman from the second floor.
When we reached the twelfth floor, well-dressed Mr. Creepy got off with me. I bolted down the hall and into the doctor’s office. Thankfully, he didn’t follow me inside.
“Are you okay?” the receptionist asked.
“Yeah,” I whispered, glancing nervously over my shoulder. “There was a weird guy on the elevator.”
“What’s your name?” she asked, looking up at me with an impatient scowl. Wow. She obviously didn’t care why I was upset, so why bother to ask.
“Have a seat and the doctor will be with you shortly.”
I tried to flip through a magazine, but I was too wound up to read anything. This appointment was just a formality. There was no doubt in my mind that I was pregnant. I wasn’t the type to waste my time on unrealistic, false hope.
I gathered my coat and purse and followed the nurse down the hallway.
I stowed the sandwiches in the fridge and took a seat at my kitchen table. Not feeling up to preparing anything, I stopped at a deli on the way home from the doctor’s office. I wasn’t hungry, and Brent probably wouldn’t be either after I gave him the news.
I didn’t even look at the monitor when the doctor was doing the transvaginal scan. It was better that way. I wasn’t keeping the baby, so it was wise to distance myself from the life growing inside me.
Twelve o’clock came and went. At twelve-fifteen, I texted Brent. Twelve-thirty rolled around with no response. I had to leave for work at one. Where was he? I called him, but it went straight to voicemail.
“Brent,” I said, failing to keep the annoyance out of my voice. “Where are you? I have to go to work, but we really need to talk. Call me. I need to see you tonight.”
By the time I got to work and settled in my cubicle, I was starting to get really worried. It wasn’t the first time I’d been stood up by Brent, but he always sent a text. He was probably just tied up with a client. I turned on my computer and tried to concentrate on the research project I’d been assigned.
At three o’clock, I decided to get a tea. The cafeteria was full, but everyone was speaking in hushed tones, their attention focused on the television on the wall.
“What’s going on?” I whispered, taking a seat next to my friend, Sally.
“You didn’t hear the news?”
“Senator Graham’s husband was killed in a car accident this morning.”
“Oh no.” I glanced at the television as they showed a picture of a car crumpled beyond recognition. “Wow.”
Senator Melinda Graham was my boss and my idol. A ball busting, no-nonsense chick. I wanted her life. A well-respected politician devoted to her career. She was married, but had no children.
I watched the news report, listening as they talked about Senator Graham. You’d think she was the one who had been killed. They went over every detail of her life and her political career. Melinda Graham and her husband had been married for ten years. Brent Graham was a financial advisor.
I broke out in a cold sweat, my eyes fixed on the television screen as dread seeped into my gut. It wasn’t possible. Except it was.
Brent Graham was my Brent. His picture was right there on the news. Brent Collins and Brent Graham were the same man. The father of my baby was married to a United States senator. And he was dead.
My head was spinning when I stood up to leave. I had to get out of there. I had an affair with Senator Graham’s husband! I was having her husband’s baby! I made it a few steps before my legs buckled and everything went black.