LN Part 42: Baby by RedPhantom ()
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Ann saw Carla sit down with Andy. She could feel Andy get more and more agitated. She tried to go over to him but Elos, oblivious to what was happening, kept her where she was. Finally, Andy exploded, said something about Annie and the baby, and then stormed out.
She started to follow, but her father’s voice stopped her.
“Ann. I’d like to see you a moment,” he said sharply.
Ann hesitated. She thought about ignoring him to follow Andy.
‘Go,’ Pt’this said in her mind. ‘I’ll check on Andy.’ She saw Sapphire make her way to Carla. She turned and followed her father.
“Did he just say you had lost a baby? Were you pregnant?” Emeton asked once they were alone.
“No, he wasn’t talking about me. It was another woman he knew named Ann or Annie rather.”
“And he had a baby with her? I thought he said he wasn’t married.”
“He wasn’t married, and there was a baby,” Ann said softly.
“So he abandoned them to come here?”
“No. They died before we met. Andy got drunk one night, and a friend of his sister took advantage of him and ended up pregnant. He was going to take responsibility for the child, but she and his sister died a few months later.” Ann explained.
“He never married her?”
“Would you have Sapphire marry Remtani?”
“She raped him?”
“No. But he felt violated. He doesn’t remember. He only knows what happened because he woke up with her in his bed. That’s why he doesn’t drink.”
Emeton nodded. “Go check on him.”
Pt’this found Andy sitting on the bottom step leading to his room. There were tears in his eyes. Pt’this sat next to him.
“Why does she have to be like that? I was hoping she’d be better where she was staying sober. Things seemed to be going so well and then she had to bring up Sarah.”
“Sarah?” Pt’this had never heard of a Sarah before. He didn’t know what it was.
“Sarah was a girl I was in love with before I met Ann. I asked her to marry me, and she laughed in my face. Mom knows how devastated I was when she left.”
“She left and took the baby? I’d be devastated too.”
“What? No. She didn’t have a baby. That was Annie.”
Pt’this’s head whipped up. “Ann was pregnant?”
“No, not Annlonna. Annie Hennings, a friend of my sister. Just after Sarah left, my sister and her friend Annie came out for a visit. There was a party, and I got wasted, uh, very drunk. Annie kept trying to kiss me. She was pretty drunk too. The next thing I remember was waking up with her in my bed. They left later that day. I didn’t talk with her again until she called to tell me she was pregnant. A bit later she and my sister came out to see me so we could discuss things and there was an accident, and the three were killed.
“It’s all tied together. I can’t think of one without remembering the rest. But my mother is so drunk all the time, she doesn’t remember the baby.”
“It’s hard to lose a child, even when you never get to see the baby.” Something in Pt’this’s voice told Andy he was speaking from experience. “People who haven’t gone through it don’t understand. Parents aren’t any better than anyone else in that matter.
“I haven’t seen my parents in ages, but when they were still alive, there were times they drove me rocky. My dad would say things about Pt’bur that were so insensitive like I wouldn’t care that he was gone. I can’t imagine what he would have said about the baby.
“Someone once told me you can’t pick your family, only how you react to them. It sometimes helps to remember that.”
“Who told you that?” Andy asked.
“Thailyn did. No, Ann did.” Pt’this smiled. “I think they both did, actually. She’s so like him despite having never met him.”
“Oh Jeez, don’t let my mom hear you say that. It’s bad enough I look like my birth father. If she thought I might act like him too…” Andy shuddered at the thought.
“You are nothing like him,” Pt’this assured him.
“You never met him.”
“He hurt your mom. You’d never do that.”
“But what about Annie? I don’t even remember what happened. What if I hurt her?”
“You didn’t. I’ve watched you with Ann. You aren’t the type.”
“How can you be sure?”
“Tell me. Did you sleep with this Sarah?”
“Did you sleep with this other Annie before this?”
“Did you want to?”
“No! She was like a sister to me. She and Chrissy, my sister, had been best friends since they were little.”
“So my niece is the only woman you’ve wanted to sleep with?”
“Your niece is hot, but no. I wanted to sleep with Sarah.”
“But you didn’t?”
“I wanted to get married first.”
“You didn’t sleep with two women you were attracted to, but you forced yourself on someone you weren’t?”
“I was plastered.”
“Plastered means drunk?”
“You were never drunk around Sarah?”
“Sure I was.”
“But you never slept with her?”
“I said no. Stop asking.”
“Would Sarah have slept with you if you’d wanted to?”
“It sounds like you had every opportunity but didn’t. There were times you could have with Annlonna, or at least tried. She would have let you do a lot more than you’ve done. So why do you think you forced yourself on someone you weren’t even attracted to?”
Andy had no response.
“Carla and Steve raised you well. More often than not, I think that is more powerful than blood ties.”
Andy nodded. “I hope.”
“Are you okay now?” Pt’this asked.
“I think so.”
“Good because there’s someone else waiting to talk with you.” He pointed. There stood Ann waiting far enough away to not overhear but near enough they would know she wanted to join them.
Andy smiled and beckoned for her to come. When she neared he held his arms open for her, and she sat on his lap with an arm around him. He held her close.
“I’m sorry I didn’t come right away. I had to deal with my dad first.”
“I understand. I suppose I should deal with my mom too,” Andy said.
“Sapphire’s dealing with her,” Ann said.
“Uh oh, that’s what I’m feeling from her,” was Pt’this’s response.
“I feel sorry for Sapphire,” Andy said.
Pt’this laughed. “Feel sorry for your mom instead. You’ve never seen Sapphire get angry.”
“Sapphire?” Andy asked surprised. He hadn’t seen her angry. She was usually so soft-spoken he couldn’t imagine it.
“She doesn’t get angry often, but when she does, she makes Drepal look nice.”
“Remind me not to make her angry,” Andy said.
“She’s calming down now,” Pt’this reported. “But I’ll bet it’ll be a while before she’s had her say.”
“Are you ready to go back inside?” Ann asked.
“I suppose.” Andy sighed.
They went back to the rehearsal. Everyone there was gracious enough to pretend like there had been no outburst, just a simple break. They continued the rehearsal the best they could while missing one of the brides and the mother of one of the grooms.
Andy estimated it was a good half hour before his mom and Sapphire returned. Both looked as if tears had been shed. Sapphire went straight to Pt’this’s side, and he held her.
“I’d like to talk with you further, in private, but right now, I’d like to say I’m sorry,” Carla told Andy.
He nodded but didn’t trust himself to say anything.