“You think I don’t have problems? You think there are times that I don’t wonder about what happened? If there’s anything I could have done to change it? I do all the freaking time, but I’m going to be a mother soon, Bishop. I can’t allow myself to give in, to stop fighting. Preacher was a victim in this as well.”
Bishop snorted. “Yeah, right.”
“He was. He was drunk. You cannot tell me that you haven’t done some stupid things when you’ve been intoxicated, because I know for a fact you have. You can’t even deny it, so don’t even start to.”
“Robin, I don’t want to fight with you.”
“I don’t want to fight with you either.”
“It’s not like it’s going to be important. Once the baby is out, I’ll get you back.”
“What do you mean?” she asked. She wasn’t going to point out he still had her. They had never slept together, but it didn’t for a second stop them from being close. She missed her friend a great deal. It wasn’t the same without him.
“My dad can have the baby. No one needs to know it’s yours. He can say it’s from the club. You’ll give birth, and then we’ll be free to be together. No one needs to know it’s your baby.”
“You do know people have seen me around town. They know I’m pregnant.”
“Dad will handle it. It’s not like you need to take care of it. Dad took care of me, and he can handle your kid. It doesn’t have to know that you’re its mom. You can give it up.”
She laughed, but it wasn’t a happy sound. Stepping back from him, she looked at the nursery. “That’s what you want? Me to give it up?”
“Not to some stranger but to my dad, sure.”
“And you’d be happy with that?”
“Yeah, why not? We’d go back to being us.”
She stared down at her wedding band and turned to look at him. “I don’t know what you think is going to happen, but I want to be part of this baby’s life. I want to know my daughter, Bishop. I look forward to meeting her. There’s no way I’m going to give her up.”
“You’re going to ruin your life because of this.”
“Having a child is not ruining my life. I wish you’d stop being so selfish.”
“You think I’m being selfish. You’re decorating a nursery.”
“Which you wouldn’t care about if this baby I was carrying was yours. I don’t see what the big problem is. You’re screwing all the girls you can get your hands on. You think I don’t know about the entire cheerleader team being at your beck and call? You want me all to yourself that’s fine, but I will only have sex with you when I’m ready. All of the other girls and women from high school to the bars, to the club, all of it will stop. You will have to learn to keep it in your pants.”
“Don’t talk fucking stupid.”
“You say you love me so much and you can’t stand for me to have this baby inside me, but you couldn’t even keep it in your pants when we were supposed to be dating. You think I didn’t know about Milly? You fucked with her, and guess what, she fucked with you. She wanted you a hell of a lot more than you wanted her, and look what happened.”
“Are you saying this is my fault?”
“I’m saying the person responsible for it is gone and she did this, but you’re making this worse. Everyone is trying and you’re too busy throwing your anger and hatred around, and it’s not helping anyone. It really isn’t. You need to get over this. Whether you like it or not, this is your sister. I’m going to be her mother, and I’m not changing my mind.”
He nodded. “Fuck this.”
Bishop turned on his heel, stormed out of the room, and she flinched as she heard the door slam closed.
Collapsing onto the floor, she stared up at the ceiling. Tears filled her eyes. “I know you heard some of that, but don’t worry, he’ll come around. You’re going to be so loved and you’re going to hate all of the attention and love.”
She sat on the floor, staring up at the nursery for way too long. Her stomach started to growl, and she remembered Preacher had made a bunch of snacks for her to warm up in the microwave.
Getting to her feet, she left all the paint and walked downstairs. It was becoming a struggle to see her feet.
Padding toward the kitchen, she opened the refrigerator and took out a burrito. He’d even left a list of instructions on how to heat it up.
Grabbing her plate, she sat in the dining room, eating her food, when she heard the door open and close.
“Bishop?” she asked around a mouthful of food.