The Baby Game: Section Eight
It was almost eleven. Where was she? They'd predicted rain that
night and he didn't want her to be flying into a storm.
He'd been listening for the sound of the door to open for most of the forty
minute meet and greet. The five of them were in a private room with
some people from Nabisco having a little one on one interview session and
he knew that she'd be coming back during the session to tell him the news.
Normally he was so anxious about things, but that day was important.
He was going to find out first off if he was going to be a father which in
itself would change his whole life, but also from that news he could guage
if he and Serena should stay together.
He'd had a nightmare that previous night that everything would fall apart
and that she would leave him immediately. He knew that they got along,
but getting along and raising a child were two separate things. The
second was something that he wasn't about to take lightly. If this
was going to work he was going to have to be there in his child's life.
"So on this next album we worked with a lot of people. We had Steve
Wonder," JC said then looked at the young girls, "You know who he is right?"
JC smiled, "I'm sorry...I don't mean to insult your intelligence, but sometimes
I actually have to explain who he is. Anyway he's a great harmonica
player so we put him--"
"Can you excuse me?" he asked when he saw movement out of the corner of his
eye as he spoke to JC and a few fans about the upcoming album. His
heart rate doubled in speed. He couldn't see passed most of the people,
but he caught sight of the side of her face and knew that this was the moment
he'd been waiting for. "I've got to go and meet with someone real quick."
The girls nodded and looked at JC which gave Lance the chance to get to her.
He almost embarrassed himself by practically running towards her, but he
carefully avoided everyone in the room making sure not to make too big of
a scene on his quest.
When he got to her he took her hand and pulled her behind a wall that would
keep their conversation half-private. Staring at Wes who started to
follow them. "Stay right there," he said, "I'll just be around the
"Don't move from there Bass or you'll be hearing from my lawyer," he said
angrily then looked at Serena, "How you doing babe?"
Serena cracked a smile from her serious expression seeming to like the way
that Lance was getting ordered around. It wasn't normal for him to
not be the boss and somehow he had a feeling that she liked him better not
being the one in contrrol. "Fine Wes. What about you?"
"Good," he said and glanced back at the crowd, "You and Lance have
fun out here for a minute."
"I'm sure we will," Lance said with a nod and pulled her away from Wes.
She took a deep breath, but didn't say a word. He could tell her mind
was going a mile a minute and so was his, but he needed an answer from her
on it. He needed a definite answer to what was going to happen.
"Tell me girl," he said impatiently tugging on her hand.
"Yes," she said nodding.
He'd expected a smile at least, but didn't get anything from her. She
was nervous, more nervous than he'd ever seen her before.
"Yes?" he asked making sure that he'd heard her right. He'd thought
that this news would be something that would make her happy, but it didn't
seem that way so far.
"Yes," she repeated.
He started to see a panicked look in her eyes. He hadn't seen her in
two days and she looked tired, as if she hadn't been sleeping since she'd
left the tour to go home. "Honey, don't do this." Moving quickly
he pulled her against him, holding her around the waste with one hand while
cupping her chin with the other hand. "We talked about things, everything
is going to be fine."
"Everything isn't going to be fine," she said firmly.
"Something is wrong with the baby? Somethings wrong with you? Tell
me what the doctor said," he asked rambling a little as fear crept over him.
He hadn't thought that things might go badly for the baby. He should
have gone to the appointment with her. He should have been there with
her to get checked for her pregnancy. He should have been by her side
when they told her if their baby was going to be healthy or not.
"No, no the baby is fine," she said softly watching him with a nervous smile
on her face as he traced a hand over her stomach. They'd been trying
for a few months now to actually get her pregnant with no luck. The
doctor had said it might have been stress considering that they were both
still on tour and the pressure now to actually get pregnant was high. "I'm...I'm
just scared to death about all this."
"Don't be sugar," he said, "We've got everything under control. All
your stuff is already at my house and we've got the best doctors in Orlando
on our side and I told you that once everyone around here knows about this
that they are going to support us. The guys already think that it's
great that we found each other--"
"It's not the support that I'm worried about," she said taking a huge shaky
breath, "I'm worried about my body blowing up like a balloon and for a watermelon
sized THING coming out of me."
"Awweee," he said, "Sweetheart...it's gonna be fine. We'll get you
to do those Baby and Me Aeorbics and stuff."
A smile slid across her lips, "You've been researching too much again haven't
"Guilty as charged," he said with an embarrassed smile, "I got bored last
night while you were back in Orlando."
"Oh," she said. She moved away from him and looked around the corner,
"When are you out of here?"
"Ten more minutes?" he guessed sliding his eyes up and down her quickly noting
every curve. He couldn't believe that his baby was now growing inside
of her. He'd been preparing for this moment for a few weeks now, but
it was here and he had to admit he was completely overwhelmed by the sense
of peace he now felt. They had finally started down the path to parenthood
and he was ready to walk beside her on this journey instead of running the
other way. "Why? What's up?"
"I'm tired from flying around today." She was distracted by the sound
of laught for a moment then looked back over at him. "I was going to
go out to the bus and take a nap," she said, "But if you're gonna be done
in ten minutes then I'll stick around and catch lunch with you guys."
Lance slid his arms around her pulling her back towards him hugging her closely
against him. "How about you go out to the bus and relax and I'll be
out in a while? I moved all your stuff on there two nights ago after
"You did?" she asked turning to look at him where he'd perched his chin on
her shoulder, "How'd that go over with the guys?"
"They understand that I'm in love with you," he said, "Really it wasn't that
big of a deal. I had room and Joey is so into Brianna and Kelly that
he won't even notice you're there."
"Is she out here again?" Serena asked.
"Yeah," he said, "Until tomorrow."
"Maybe I should go drill her with questions before she leaves," she said.
"Questions?" he asked.
"She's the only person I know who has had a baby in the last year or so,"
she said, "I bet she has some great insight on what to expect in the next
"Hmmm," he said nuzzling his lips against her neck, "I bet she does."
"Lance you need to go," she finally said when his hands began to roam.
"I'll see you after this or right before the show...like always."
"Ok," he said backing away then looked at her with a pout, "At least send
me off with a kiss or something. I missed you the last few days and
especially last night."
"Fine," she said with a sigh and kissed him then giggled when he leaned for
"I'll see you in a while ok?" he said.
She nodded and pushed him away and around the corner. He leaned back
behind the wall to watch her walk down the hall and out towards the buses.
His smile couldn't be hidden. He was going to be a father in a few
months and the woman walking down the hall just then would someday be his
wife. He hadn't yet asked her, but he was planning on it. The
first reason was the obvious, she was going to be the mother of his child,
but the second took a little getting used to: He was in love with her.
Serena had a headache and a backache and being on tour again wasn't what
she wanted to be doing right now. After her doctor's appointment the
day before in Florida she'd spent the evening with Lance's mother, who'd
been told of the situation and although wasn't pleased at all that he was
going to have a child before marriage, had been making an effort to get to
know her. It hadn't been the most comfortable day between the two of
them, but by dinner time at least they could laugh a little while they talked,
something that Serena hoped would improve over the months.
When her cellphone rang as she was climbing the bus wiping the soft fall
of rain from her hair and forehead. She pulled it out and answered
it seeing that the number was an Orlando based number, "Hello?"
"Serena honey," the woman's voice said.
"It's Diane," she said, "I just wanted to call and make sure that you made
it back to New Orleans safely. I knew that there was a storm supposedly
coming in so I wanted to make sure that it didn't hit before you got there."
"Yeah," she said moving further into the bus and grabbed a towel off the
rack first smelling it before she wiped her face. Knowing that she'd
been gone a few days, she knew that things probably had gone to hell while
she was away. She didn't expect that there would be physical dirt on the
cloth, but she knew it probably wasn't the freshest. "I did.
I'm sorry...I should have called and let you know like I said I would."
"No worries," she said, "I just wanted to make sure that you were ok."
She held the phone against her ear and refolded the towel and threw it over
the towel bar. "Well thank you for thinking of me."
"I also wanted to apologize for--well for the tension between us yesterday.
My son is the one I should be upset with if I'm upset at anyone and I didn't
mean to make you feel unwelcome."
"Really its ok Mrs. Bass," she said, "I totally understand where you're coming
from. We both didn't plan on this and the surprise of the baby coming
isn't really the way that I thought I'd be meeting you...ya know?"
"Still," Diane said, "I'm very sorry about being not so hospitable."
Serena could see this conversation going on for hours so she finally took
the initiative to end it. "Really Mrs. Bass, it's ok. How about
we start fresh from here? I understand where you're coming from and
you understand where I am in all this."
"Sounds good honey," she said, "And if you or Lance need anything during
the next few months don't hesistate to call me. Lance has all the numbers
to get in touch with us and I would hope that you'd feel comfortable enough
to use the numbers too."
"I will Mrs. Bass," Serena said, "Thank you very much for that."
"We'll I'll let you go, knowing my son and his schedule you've probably only
got another five or so minutes of peace and quiet so I'll let you enjoy them."
"Thanks," she sighed out, "I think I'm gonna take a little catnap if I can."
"Sounds like a good plan," Diane said, "I'll talk to you later."
"Bye," Serena sang out then hung up the phone and moved towards the back
of the bus. Instead of taking the empty bunk that she ususally slept
in, she crawled into Lance's bunk, tucked herself under the covers, shivering
once when her body hit the cold sheets then put her head on the pillow, falling
asleep before she knew it.
The rain had started to come down a little more so when he got outside he
ran towards the bus. It was something strange to be out there in the
open like that, without anyone telling him to get an umbrella or not to go.
It felt good, a little bit of freedom after being cooped up all morning.
Even after knowing that she was in town he still needed a little bit more
of a release to ease the tension and a quick run through the puddles with
Wes and Eric coming behind him was just what he needed.
"She went to take a nap," James, their driver said from his seat at the table.
"Thanks," Lance said and moved his hands through his hair. They were
wet so he wiped them on the thighs of his pants then, slid out of his jacket
and threw it on the couch. "I'm gonna go check on her." He ran
his hands through his hair a second time and shook them off a little this
time. "I'll set an alarm for like an hour, ok?"
James nodded. "There's a towel back there ya know."
"Thanks." Lance rolled his eyes and grabbed a towel on the way back
to the bunks, throwing it over his head to dry off.
When he pushed the curtain back on her bunk the sheets were in the same position
they'd been in before. With a smile he moved back the curtain to his
bunk and found her. She was there waiting for him. He looked
at his watch and set his alarm for an hour from then so he could take a little
nap before he had to work. "Sugar move over."
He watched Serena moved her head to look over at him. She looked dead
tired, but she smiled sleepily at him before she turned her head back towards
where it was facing the wall before she moved so she was closer to the wall.
He watched her back and the way she curled into the blanket and was careful
when he crawled in with her.
"Sugar you feeling ok?" he asked sliding his arms carefully around her.
"I have a headache," she mumbled. She shook her head a little.
"And my back hurts," she whined.
"Did you take anything? I mean can you take anything?" he asked softly
moving her body carefully so that he could hug her.
"I took some tylonol," she mumbled and pulled his arm tighter around her.
She moved so that she could kiss his cheek then lay down again, "I took some
before I got on the plane."
Lance moved his hand and pushed her hair out of her face when it covered
her eyes. "You want some more? I think I have some in the cabinet.
If not I can find some for you."
"No," she said pulling him against her, "Just lay with me and rub my back."
As much as Lance wanted to just curl up and sleep the next hour away she
did seem like she was upset still so he thought he'd indulge her need to
be babied a little. She curled her arm back and pointed towards her lower
"Where sweetie?" He moved her shirt aside and rubbed the small of her back
for a while.
"Thank you," she said.
"Is this from--" He found himself feeling stupid for asking, but he
thought he should at least see if it was from that or from something else.
"Is this from the pregnancy?"
"No," she said and turned towards him, "I don't expect so." Her eyes
closed for a moment then opened again. "I mean I'm not all that far
"Are--When are you due?" he asked.
"Middle of May," she said.
"May is my birthday."
"Yeah I guess," she said with a shrug.
"I'm sorry," he said, "I didn't mean to sidetrack you...what's wrong with
"I think it's mostly from stress and stuff, you know?"
"Stress sugar?" he asked moving to kiss her, "I told you that this was all
going to be ok."
He didn't want all expect her to move away from his kiss, but she did, moved
to hug him instead. "I know you did." Her arms hugged him tightly
and she felt like she was shaking a bit. "But it's still a worry."
"Sugar don't hold onto me so hard," he said moving her back a little, "Sugar
"I'm scared to death," she said and the tears began to flow.
Lance leaned and turned on the light above them so he could see her and watched
closely. "Did you talk to my mom about it the other day?" he asked.
"No," she said, "As much as you love your mother and as much as I love you
I don't want to say anything bad about her, but your mom and I weren't really
getting along at the time so we didn't really talk about it. She asked
me if things went ok and I said yes, but we didn't--"
"Sugar you know my mom really isn't like that," he said with a worried expression.
"She's not thrilled with the idea of you being a father so soon and I don't
blame her. I didn't think about that when we were planning this.
Your parents are probably devistated--" She sucked in a breath as she
started to hyperventalate. "I mean it's not the thing that everyone
wants for their children you know? It's all about marriage and and
family values and everything."
"It's not about that," he said then paused, "I mean it is about that, but
it's more about them wanting me happy and you make me happy so they're gonna
have to learn to live with it."
"Learn to live with it?" she asked pushing him. She rolled over him
and moved to stand up in the small hallway, "What am I some kind of disease
or something? Just give them a little medication, a little tranquilizer
and they'll be able to handle the stress of knowing that their son got a
woman pregnant out of wedlock?"
Lance moved into the small hallway and saw James now standing in the living
room looking at them. "We're fine," Lance said and motioned sympathetically
for him to go back to what he was doing, "We just need a minute to discuss
Serena moved to the back room and was about to shut him out when he pushed
the door open and closed them both inside.
"I'm ruining your life," she said.
"You aren't ruining my life," he said, "You aren't. I made the decision
to be with you and if my parents aren't used to the idea of me being a father
then they'll have to deal with it. They aren't going to be upset with
you and when the baby comes they aren't going to be thinking about that.
They'll be thinking about their grandchild and about how much they love the
two of us for having such a great baby."
As she turned to face the window he put a hand on her arm to turn her around,
but she wouldn't turn. "This is so easy for you." Her tone was
accusing and he hated hearing that tone from her.
"Easy?" he said rubbing his forehead, "This is not easy for me. I mean
physically you have a lot more to battle with, but I'm stuck here wanting
to make things better for you and easier for you and you won't let me."
"Stuck?" she asked turning to glare at him. He couldn't imagine what
the hormones in her body were doing at the moment, but the reaction to his
statement was ridiculous. She fell into the seat across from him and
began to cry uncontrollably. "Great. Stuck."
"This is a no win situation with you isn't it?" He sat down and sighed
stared at her for a moment then moved across to sit next to her. "Serena,"
he pleaded, "Please don't cry...I don't know what to do for you when you
do and I'm not sure how to make you stop."
"I'm just tired and I need to sleep," she said, "And my back hurts and I
just need to get away."
Lance took a breath, pushed himself up and moved to help her stand. "I've
got some calls to make anyway before the show starts," he said, "Why don't
you go back to bed and we'll talk tonight if you're awake or tomorrow morning.
"I'm sorry Lance." She leaned towards him and hugged herself up against
"Just go back to bed sugar and rest. I bet you'll feel better when
you wake up."
When the sound of the engine starting up roared underneath her and the bunk
began to vibrate she opened her eyes. It was still dark in her bunk
and she was alone so she moved to roll over. Her stomach hurt and her
head ached and the lump of a backache that had been bothering her earlier
was still there.
The door sliding open reverberated through the bus then she heard the screams
of the fans waiting outside. It took her a moment to sit up, but by
the time she had she heard Lance's voice in the front of the bus. "That
Pulling her shirt into place she rubbed her eyes and came out into the living
room. It was already full of the five security guards and the five
group members so she slid into the closest seat, which happened to be the
bench seat at the table. She scooted all the way over and yawned, leaning
her head against the window to watch the boys. She wondered how they
could be so energetic after running around on stage for almost two hours.
Even in perfect health she would be dead to the world if she did the routines
that they did on stage. She knew that they would eventually crash from
their adrenaline high which would mean a good nights' sleep along side Lance,
but until then she was going to be subjected to locker room behavior from
all of them.
It only took a few minutes for Lance to notice her. He slid in next
to her only far enough so that his butt was on the seat. He was sweaty
and he knew enough to stay away from her so that she wouldn't get sweaty.
"You ok?" he asked leaning to kiss her before he pulled his shirt over his
head then caught a towel that someone threw in his direction. He opened
it and rubbed it over his face then wiped down his chest and arms.
"I feel better," she said softly trying not to stare at him. It was
staring at her like that which had gotten her in trouble in the first place.
"Not perfect, but better."
Security and the other guys were trying to figure out where to stop to eat
that night and when to off-load everyone onto other buses. The decision
making process was causing a lot of noise considering the adrenaline rush
everyone was on at the moment.
Lance got a bit distracted for a moment to put his vote in on the dinner
choices then turned back to her. "It's good that you're feeling a little
better...Is your back still hurting?"
"I'm sorry." He leaned and kissed her forehead then leaned back.
"These guys will be out of here in a little while."
"I don't mind them," she lied. Normally she would have loved to have
the guys around, but tonight she wanted to be alone with Lance, "I missed
them Lemme catch a shower and we'll eat something ok?"
"I'm not really that hungry," she said.
He frowned at her, leaning an elbow on the table so he could prop up his
chin to look at her comfortably. "Sugar you need to eat something."
She put her hands in her lap and tried to fight back the urge to tell him
to leave her alone. She didn't need a keeper and wasn't about to let
him baby her the way his mother had the other day. Someone would have thought
that she was as big as a house ansd needed twenty-four hour care already
with the way those two bugged her. "I know and I have been, but I just
woke up and I'm not hungry yet."
"At least order something when we eat and we'll put it in the fridge.
It's gonna be a while before we get where we're going.
"Fine." She pouted and crossed her arms over her chest.
"Please don't be upset Sugar...I just don't want you to get hungry in the
middle of the night or something and not have anything to eat. We haven't
gotten refilled since the last stop and haven't got much to eat.
"Why do you keep calling me sugar?" she asked yawning again.
"Do I bore you that much?" he asked with a laugh.
"Just answer my question." She pouted more.
"Cuz you're so sweet," he said with a corny smile.
Irractic emotional behavior usually wasn't her style, but she found herself
tearing up again. Being a gentleman was always Lance's way, but his
compliments now seemed to hit a part of her that she hadn't expected for
him to find in her. It had been such a long time since a man had been
that sincerely sweet that she almost didn't know how to react.
Working relationships were always strange, but this partnership was something
else. Lance had wanted to jump into a relationship with her and although
she knew he would be great at it, she had still been a bit weary of his offer
so she'd kept her heart out of it. Even when they'd been in bed together,
creating the child she now carried, she'd kept a part of herself from him,
but now, with him being so sweet to her she knew that the last little bit
of her was going to be given away soon.
"What's wrong?" he asked, "What'd I do?"
"Nothing," she said wiping her face. "Everything."
"Which is it?"
She knew she was confusing the hell out of him, but he'd signed up for this
journey and was going to have to put up with her until and maybe after this
baby was born. She still wasn't sure of the future, but she hoped they'd
both be there together.
"Are you feeling ok?"
Serena looked up from the papers in front of her and found Chris staring
at her. He had his glasses on and his lap top open and they were supposed
to be discussing produciton costs for the new Men's line for Fumanskeeto,
but things hadn't been going that well for them that morning. "Yeah,"
she said, "I'm just tired. I had that flight out and back in and haven't
gotten back on schedule."
"You sure?" he asked.
"Yeah," she said, "I just hate this numbers stuff."
Pregnancy should have been something that she should be celebrating, but
at the moment and after her trip home she wasn't in the mood to be happy
about her current condition. She wanted to tell him, wanted to see
the look in his eyes because she knew that even if he was going to be shocked
that he would love the idea of becoming an honorary uncle. She'd seen
him with his sisters and family and he was the one person in the group who
seemed to think that the old saying was true. The more, the merrier.
One thing held her back from standing on the table and screaming out that
she was going to be a mother. She wasn't sure when exactly Lance wanted
to tell the others so she wasn't exactly sharing her good news with anyone.
Eventually they would all know, but for the moment she didn't want to spoil
it for them.
"Numbers stuff," he said. "That's a good one. It's not really
even that hard. I just need to know how much you want to spend on your
"My creations?" she asked.
"Oh," he said, "Did I forget to tell you that I gave you a promotion?"
"Promotion?" she said leaning back. A hand went to her stomach and
the other went to her forehead.
"You don't want more money and more control over the designs?" he asked.
She wanted to scream at him for this. There was enough going on right
now before throwing her work into it. Her design for Farzana's dress
had gotten a lot of press and the last few months she'd been getting requests
for more designs. She'd done a few dresses, but things had slowed down
a little and she'd liked the idea of resting, especially if she was going
to have a baby soon.
"It's not that," she said with a half smile putting her hands in her lap,
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to ruin the surprise. I'm just tired
and it's not getting into my head, ya know?"
"Sure," he said. He got up from where he was sitting and began to walk
passed her. "If you don't want the job I can always find another designer."
"No," she grabbed onto his hand as he walked by. "No. I want the job."
Chris looked down at her a smiled a little then sarcastically rolled his
"I'm sorry," she said, "I've got other stuff on my mind right now Chris.
I don't mean to make light of the situation."
He looked at her for a moment. "You're pregnant."
"What?" She let his hand go and pulled it into her lap again.
"You are aren't you," he said, then moved to sit next to her. "You
are and you don't look happy about it."
"I am," she said begining to tear up, "I am, but I'm not."
"Awe," he said, "Come on." He put an arm around her and hugged her,
"It's gonna be ok. You've got Lance and all of us are excited about
"I know," she said and wiped her face, "I'm not worried about you or him
"Well then what is it?"
"His family," she said, "I never thought about his family. I never
once thought that what I was doing with him might ruin his relationship with
his family. I mean my parents and I aren't on the best of terms, but
I'm older than he is and I don't need them as much as he does...and with
him being in the business like this I know that he needs them--"
"Breath girl," Chris said, "Lance knows that his mom and dad will love him
no matter what. They may not be throwing a parade in his honor, but
they love him and they aren't going to disown him over this."
"We should have got married or something. We should have at least done
that much to make this seem more--" She cut things off before she said
too much. They all knew that she and Lance had gotten involved, but
they didn't know the exact situation. They weren't really in love with
each other, or at least she wasn't a hundred percent sure about it.
She didn't need to draw attention to that information and she wasn't going
to ruin the plan now.
"You love him and he loves you and it'll be ok. His mother and father
will fall into place eventually. They're parents. They have to
be critical of the ones we fall in love with. It's like their job or
Serena took a breath and smiled at him. "How did you get so smart?"
"I'm the only college graduate here," he said with a laugh. "Don't
worry about all this stuff. It'll work out in the end and in the mean
time everyone around here is going to help out."
The voice startled them both.
"What are you doing with my woman Christian?" Lance said.
"It's Christopher James," Chris said sliding out of the seat next to her.
"I was just celebrating with your woman."
"You told him?" Lance asked.
"She told me?" Chris said then turned to look at Serena, "You told me that
you got a promotion and a raise?"
Lance moved and sat down next to her while Chris took his seat across from
her. "You got a promotion?"
Chris looked back at his papers and laughed. "She's the head designer
of the Men's line for next year."
"You are?" he asked.
She tucked her hair behind her ear and nodded.
"Sugar that's great," he said and leaned and kissed her. "We should
celebrate or something."
"No," she said and leaned against him, "Really, it's ok."
"Well at least we should go out to dinner or something."
"You can take me too," Chris said.
"We'll do something," she said and closed her eyes a little.
"You still not feeling good?" he asked.
Chris immediately sat up. "She's feeling fine...great...perfect...right?
She just got a promotion and a raise...did I say raise? I thought I
told you about the raise."
"Chris!" Serena finally said, "It's ok."
"He guessed," she said.
Chris frowned, "I have a lot of sisters. I've seen the signs before."
"Are you feeling ok?" Lance said moving a hand to her forehead. "Did
you sleep ok today?"
"I didn't get a nap."
Chris leaned back and looked at them, "We're almost done with this stuff
and I have some calls to make back to my sister and mom so I'll leave you
guys to it."
"To what?" Serena asked with a laugh knowing that the comical nature of what
he said might bring up the spirits of the three of them.
Chris made a noise that sounded like porno music, "Whatever you two crazy
kids want to do with your afternoon."
"Get out of here old man," Lance said.
"I'm going," he said, "I'm going."
When he was out of the bus she started stacking up her papers.
"Stop," he said, "Leave this all here. I came out here to ask you something."
"What?" she asked. "I already ate lunch today and I've--"
Lance frowned, "I wanted to ask you something more than that."
"Well what dinner? Or maybe a nap? That's what I need isn't it?"
"No," he said.
Lance moved from the chair and pulled her up. "I have something to
talk to you about and I should have done it a long time ago...but you know
me. I'm dumb like that."
"What is it?"
"I went shopping while you were gone and I have a present to give you, but
I also have a question to ask."
"Oh no," she groaned. She knew it was coming and she wasn't sure that
she could handle him doing this. Not like this. He needed to
ask her because they were in love, not because his mother wanted him or that
he felt the need to do it because he felt guilty about not doing it before.
"Oh no what?" he asked.
"Don't do this," she said, "Please don't do this."
"Don't do what?" he asked.
"Whatever you're going to do," she said, "Just don't do it.
"But I want to," he said, "You don't even know what I'm going to do."
"Yes I do and I don't want you to do something that you're not ready to do."
"Just come on," he said pulling her outside. "It's not that bad.
I just need your opinion on something."
"Opinion?" she asked, "So that's what they call it today? An opinion."
Outside she found two matching Escalades parked in front of the bus.
Justin was leaning against one and Chris against the other.
"What's going on?" she asked.
"I'm gonna buy one and I want to know which color," he said, "Red or black,
or we can get a white one or--"
"You want to know what color car I like?"
"Yeah," he said with a shrug, "What did you think I was going to ask you?"
She smiled and felt stupid for thinking that. She hadn't discussed
things with him about their future together. She knew they'd be living
together, but after that she wasn't sure what would happen between them.
She made a mental note to herself to talk to him about it later and gave
her opinion on the car color. "Black. Definitely black."
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