Lisa was making up her face in front of the mirror when Ethan came up behind her and kissed her on the cheek, saying, “How’s my sweetest baby mama doing?”
Lisa’s hand froze in mid-air. “Baby mama, seriously?” He only smiled. She turned to look at him.
“I was wondering….how you managed to do it?”
“Get me pregnant…you never told me…”
“Come on Liz, I thought we ended that chapter last night.”
“The fact that I went all emotional last night doesn’t mean I’m okay with it.”
“Whatever but it’s done, okay? And it’s not that the situation can be reversed or something…unless you…” He paused to look at her.
“You’re not considering it, are you?”
Lisa shrugged, putting her cosmetics in a small bag.
“I didn’t say anything, did I?” She walked out. Ethan remained frozen at the spot, dumbstruck.
“Congratulations, my dear! I can imagine how elated you and Ethan must be feeling right now!” her mother exclaimed with delight, squeezing her daughter’s hand in affection. Lisa gave her a tight smile.
“On the contrary mother, this isn’t actually joyful news.”
“And why not? Having a child is a blessing!”
“I know but the timing is wrong, mum. We planned to wait till next year because we both had urgent things to attend to. We were supposed to focus on our careers…”
“Lisa, in marriage, there is no perfect timing for having kids. At every point in time, there’s always something urgent to do so you have to make time to have kids, dear,” her mother advised. Lisa sighed.
“I want to feel happy about this, mum; trust me I am but…I’m hurt that Ethan would get me pregnant without my consent.”
“Whatever he did, don’t push him away, Liz. You need him now more than ever. Take that from me.”
“Yes mum, I hear you. I’ve to be on my way now. Let me say goodbye to dad,” Lisa said. She got up.
“Are you sure dad’s illness is nothing serious? We could always take him to the hospital for a quick check-up,” Lisa said with concern in her voice.
“It’s old age, my dear. Don’t worry about it too much.”
“If you say so. See you soon mum.” They hugged.
“Take care of yourself and send my regards to Ethan and tell him congrats for making us grandparents.” Lisa smiled as she sat inside her car.
“Take care of yourself and dad.”
“You know I will.” She drove away.
“Are you serious? She actually said that?!” Mike asked, stunned.
“She didn’t voice it out but it was very obvious that’s what she meant. I can’t believe she’d consider her job so much of a priority that she’d even think of doing away with our first child,” Ethan complained. He heard Lisa’s car pull over.
“She just arrived. Got to go; see you soon.” He hung up. The door opened and she entered. Ethan seemed consumed in the magazine he was reading.
“Hi,” she greeted. He responded likewise, not taking his eyes away from the magazine.
Lisa bit her lip as she walked towards him and knelt before him and placing her hands on his knees.
“Hmm?” He glanced at her.
“Can we talk?”
“Actually, it’s dinner I want.”
“I’ll get right to it but…please?”
“What is it?”
“I apologize for my silly and rude attitude this morning. It was totally uncalled for and undeserving to you. I’m deeply sorry.” He only stared at her.
“And I promise it will never happen again.” He continued to stare at her.
“I know it was very disrespectful on my part and that I hurt your pride of being a father and I really regret it.” She paused.
“Aren’t…you going to say anything?”
“Where are you coming from?”
“I went to see my parents…to tell them the news….” She saw a flicker of pain in Ethan’s eyes.
“I thought I told you to let me know when…you know what, it doesn’t matter anymore. You’ll do whatever you please anyway,” He said as he got up.
“I’m sorry, Ethan; I didn’t mean to take what you said lightly. I felt bad for what happened this morning so I went to talk to my mother about it. I needed some motherly advice.”
“Obviously you do,” he said, heading towards the door.
“And where are you going?”
“But you haven’t eaten dinner yet.”
“I will take care of it.”
“Ethan please, don’t walk out on me now.”
“I need some fresh air and it’s evident I’m not going to get it here,” he said, opening the door. He stepped out and closed the door.
Whatever he did, don’t push him away, Liz. You need him now more than ever. Take that from me, her mother’s words rang in her ears. Tears flooded her eyes. She took her phone to call him but she stopped herself.
“No, he needs some time alone…let me leave him be,” she said to herself.
When Ethan returned, he went up to the bedroom. Lisa was reading when he entered. He went straight to the bathroom. When he opened the door, Lisa got out of bed and walked towards him.
“I’m sorry Ethan; the last thing I want is to make your house uncomfortable for you. This place has always been your sanctuary and I don’t want to take that away from you.”
“I’m tired Lisa; I want to sleep.”
“I hope you’re not going to sleep still angry with me,” she pleaded.
He took a book lying beside the lamp and started towards the door.
“I said I want to sleep and I can’t do that with you talking so I’ll find somewhere else to sleep peacefully.”
“Okay, I won’t talk again but please don’t leave your bedroom.”
He opened the door and left the room.
“Aren’t you going too far with that, Ethan? She has apologized,” Mike asked.
“I just want her to promise herself not to pull such a stunt again. I think this is perfect.”
“Fine; but don’t stretch this overboard.”
“I won’t. Goodnight, Mike.” He hung up.
Lisa eyes opened suddenly. She realized Ethan’s side was empty. Last night’s events flashed in her memory. She groaned as she sat up. She looked at the clock and realized it was 8a.m.
“Oh no….” She jumped out of bed and rushed outside.
She opened the guest room door and found it empty and checked two other rooms but they were all empty.
“He left without eating…again…now I’m finished. He’ll definitely send me packing,” she said in despair. She went back to the bedroom.
Lisa was about to descend the stairs on her way to work when her phone rang. She took it.
“Mum….surprised to hear from you this early. I hope all is well.”
“I wish it was so…but I’m afraid it’s not.”
“Why, what happened? Is it dad? Has his illness become serious?”
“I’m sorry I had to tell you this now but your father insisted. He has cancer and it has gotten serious.”
“What?” Her feet slipped. Her mind went blank when she hit the floor.
“Hello, Lisa…Lisa….are you okay?”
Lisa’s eyes opened. Her brain told her she was in a hospital.
“What…what…am I doing here?”
“You had a minor accident, Mrs. Richards. You have nothing to worry about.”
“Minor accident? What happened?”
“You tripped down some stairs. You are fine.” Lisa gasped when she remembered she was pregnant and quickly touched her tummy.
“And…and my baby?” The nurse gave her a reassuring smile.
“Both of you are safe.”
“Thanks Abby.” Lisa’s head turned sharply at the sound of the voice near her. It was Ethan, sitting beside her. She hadn’t noticed him until now.
“Sure Dr. Richards. I’ll excuse you two.” She left.
“How are you feeling?”
“I feel better with you by my side.” He got up.
“Then I’ll sign the discharge papers so you can go home and rest.”
He started towards the door.
“Ethan…” He stopped. He turned to face her.
“You were so determined to get it out of your way, weren’t you?”
“No Ethan; it was an accident. I would never…”
“I wish I could believe that.” He turned and left the room. Tears ran down her face.
She heard her phone rang. She turned her head to find it beside her. She took it.
“How are you feeling, sweetie? Ethan told me you blacked out. I’m sorry.”
“It’s okay…. I’m fine. How’s dad?”
“The doctors are checking on him.”
“At the usual hospital?”
“Yes, dear. I hope your collapse didn’t cause any complications concerning your baby.”
“Not at all, mum. I’ll be discharged very soon and I’ll meet you there.”
“Okay dear; I do need you by my side now.”
“I’ll be there soon; take care, bye.” She hung up. The door opened and Ethan entered.
“Sign here.” She took the form and pen from him and signed. She gave it to him. She got off the bed.
“Yeah…there’s something I’ve to take care of.”
“But you need to rest.”
“Don’t worry, your baby is safe with me,” she said as she took her phone.
“And…um…since I don’t have my purse with me, I’d like some money to take a cab,” Lisa said.
“You can have my car keys,” He offered, taking it out of his pocket and giving it to her.
“But how will you come home? You hate cabs.”
“I’ll find a way… I’ll let Mike drop me home. What I hate more is to have my wife and unborn child in a cab,” Ethan said, touching her cheek lightly. Lisa smiled shyly.
“Take care of yourself, will you?”
“You too, honey. Should I expect you home early?”
“Yeah.” He opened the door for her.
“I’ll see you at home.”
“Will be expecting you,” Lisa replied as she left the room.
“You’re finally here!” They hugged.
“Has the doctor told you anything yet?”
“Not yet. I’m really getting worried.”
“But he was taking his medication, right?”
“Then he’ll be fine. Please sit down and let me find someone who’d be ready to tell us something.”
“You’re in!” Lisa said excitedly when Ethan entered.
“And I hope you didn’t eat dinner outside…” she added prayerfully.
He chuckled. “Why would I do that when I have a home to return to?”
Lisa smiled with joy. “Great then. Go shower up and I’ll set the table.”
“Sure.” He went upstairs.
“It’s okay,” Ethan said as Lisa was serving him. She placed the plate in front of him. She sat and began to serve herself. Ethan stared at her. Lisa paused.
“Is anything wrong? You don’t like the food?”
“No, it’s not that. You know I love your cooking. I just love to stare at you.”
“Hmmm….being stared at by my adorable husband is surely one of the best ways to end one dramatic day.” They both smiled.
“So where did you rush to when you left the hospital?” Ethan asked when they retired to bed.
“I went to meet my mum at the hospital. It seems my dad’s condition has gotten critical. That caused my blackout in the first place.”
“I’m sorry to hear that. If you need any help, let me know.”
“Of course.” There was a pause. “Ethan…about what happened today… I want you to know that I’ve no such intention of hurting our child.”
“I know; I’m sorry. That was inconsiderate of me.”
“I’m sorry for everything.”
“I forgive you.”
“I’m glad to have you back on this bed. Last night was horrible without you,” Lisa said, wrapping her arms around him.
“Even worse for me; never felt that cold.” He kissed her.