I sit on the bathroom floor with my arms wrapped around my knees, wondering how this can be.
“Come on, babe! Open the door! I gotta pee!” Liam demands.
“In a minute!” I yell back.
“I don’t have a minute. Seriously babe, if you don’t open this door, I’ll be mopping up a puddle out here soon.”
I sigh, stand up and open the door.
He pushes past me. He doesn't even notice my tears. However, that doesn't surprise me. Lately, Liam notices very little about me. Sometimes, I wonder if he notices me at all.
I drift into the bedroom of our dorm flat in a daze. I open my palm and look down again at the pregnancy test in my hand. This isn't supposed to happen. I am on the pill. It is my last year of college. I am supposed to graduate. I am about to earn my journalism degree. I grip the test in my hand while trying to think of what comes next.
Liam comes into the room and starts to strip out of his lounge pants in order to get dressed for the day. “What’s wrong with you? You’ve been awfully moody lately. Is it your time of the month?” he asks while pulling on his shirt.
I don't look at him. I can't look at him. “Liam, we need to talk.”
I hear him audibly groan. “Babe, we talked about this. Nothing happened at the Frat party with those girls. I swear, but you know me and the boys are in charge of the new pledges. It’s our job to show them a good time and a party wouldn’t be a party without some hotties to attend.”
“The boys and me.”
He stops zipping up his jeans and looks confused. “What do you have to do with the guys?”
“I...no,” I say shaking my head, “the proper phrase is the boys and me, not… never mind.” This conversation is pointless. “That’s not what I want to talk to you about.”
“Oh. Well, what’s up?”
“Do you remember the last time we slept together?"
“Do I? Hell yeah! You were pretty hot that night,” he gives me that grin I used to love and one of his eyebrows rose. “You looking to do that again, because I’m already running late for my physics class, but I would totally miss it for that."
I sigh. When had we come to this? Liam and I have been together since high school, so much in love that we couldn’t even think of attending different universities. It’s always been Cat and Liam, Liam and Cat. But lately, with my workload and his partying, we are more like roommates with benefits than a real couple.
Tears burn my eyes as I look at him. “No, that’s not what I mean. Something … something went wrong. I don’t know how but…” I open up my hand and the word PREGNANT is clearly visible on the test
He jumps back from me as if I am holding out some venomous snake.
“Whoa! What is that?” he says, pointing to it.
“What do you think it is, Liam?”
He ran his fingers through his already messy brown hair, “but Cat, it says… “
He can't even bring himself to say the word.
“Pregnant, it says pregnant.”
“No, no, no, no… this isn’t possible. This is… this can’t be… YOU… you’re on the pill!”
I didn’t care for the accusatory tone of his voice like this somehow is entirely MY fault.
Then suddenly, he starts to laugh. “Oh, I get it! Good one, Cat. You and your sorority girls think this one up or did you come up with this one on your own?” He places his hand over his heart and breathes a sigh of relief. “You really had me going there.”
“This isn’t a prank, Liam. I AM pregnant.”
“Yeah, okay.” He picks up his bag, grabs his laptop, and kisses my cheek. “I’m late for class. I’ll see you tonight.” And with that, he skips out the door, still chuckling while on his way to class.
“No, you won’t,” I say to no one, as I sit there alone in the room. No, wait. I'm not alone, as my hand presses against my stomach. “Guess I’ll never be alone again will I, Peanut?” When did I decide to nickname the baby? "Come on, Cat," I admonish myself. "You know you’d never even think of …" I shudder at the thought of giving up this child. “Nope, not even up for discussion, which is why I have to go.”
Guess it’s just you and me now. Maybe your Dad will come around. Right now he’s a little shell-shocked, but one thing is for certain. I need to get away. I need a place to think this through.
It’s funny how your whole world can change and yet stay exactly the same: the same route to Lit Class, same stairs to Visual Media, same professor dropping his knowledge on us students. I sit down next to my best friend, William, and he takes one glance at me and looks shocked. For a second, I have this ridiculous notion that somehow he knows my secret, but that would be insane.
“You look like hell girl, what happened to you?” The brown skin on his forehead crinkles in concern. He looks deeply disturbed by what he sees.
It is then I realize I didn’t bother to look in the mirror before leaving for class. In fact, I am not even sure I ran a brush through my hair. I know I didn’t bother with makeup. Not that I wore a lot of it, to begin with, but with the sleepless nights I’ve been having, a little concealer would go a long way.
I quickly finger comb my auburn hair and tie it back into a haphazard ponytail high up on my head, thankful I always have a hair band around my wrist. “I look that bad?”