Your weekly dose of my work in progress! I need to think of a better name for this, if it is going to be a regular thing, eh?
“No you couldn’t. I don’t want that, out on the boat for weeks, then having to come home to some woman waiting for me to mow the lawn or fix the sink.”
A gasp slipped out of her mouth.
“Aw shit. Ev, you wouldn’t want that either. It’s no life for anyone. All that waiting. I’m sure Bobby knows someone who could take care of this situation for you. He knows everyone. We’ll get you fixed up and it will be like nothing ever happened.”
“You don’t want the baby?”
“It’s not really a baby yet.”
“But it will be.”
David was watching the TV and not looking at her. His face was getting red but he wasn’t yelling. She could make him come around.
“It’s your baby. You know that. And you know that when my Aunt finds out she’s going to kick me out. Please let me come live with you. I won’t have to quit my job for at least six more months, I could cook and clean for you. We don’t have to be a family, but I can’t imagine that you wouldn’t want to know your child.”
David’s face had taken on a purple hue. His eyes met hers with an intensity that made her skin cold. “I’m only going to say this one more time. I won’t have anything to do with that baby, or with you as long as you’re pregnant. I don’t want a baby. I’m not going to be a Daddy. I’m not going to pay for it, and I’m sure as hell not going to take care of it. Now, I like the idea of you being here to cook and clean, but not with no baby. Get rid of it, and we can talk about you spending more time here.”
“Evelyn! That’s the end of this.”
Her fists were balled in her lap, and she couldn’t budge her eyes from his face. Evelyn had hoped if he couldn’t be swayed by her imminent need, than he might be persuaded with the convenience of having a live in woman. She had underestimated his selfishness.
Moving in with David had been a long shot, but she’d had to take it. Her preference would be for her Aunt to forget the ultimatum she’d issued six months before when Evelyn had started dating that “good for nothing Harman boy,” that if she got pregnant she would have to find somewhere else to live. If Evelyn’s upbringing had taught her anything, it was that Rachel forgetting was unlikely to happen. Rachel had an elephant’s memory.
After eight years of sleeping on her mother’s boyfriends floor, or couch if she was lucky; going to school late, hungry and dirty; learning to lie while looking adults in the face. The small cottage near the beach, with her own room, a bathtub, and a full fridge had been a refuge for her. It would be such a lovely place to raise a child. She was sick to her stomach thinking about having to leave it.
Evelyn grabbed her purse from the floor and stood to go. She wished she had smart parting words for David. Ones that would make him change his mind and apologize for being such a dick. But as she stood there, hands shaking with anger, nothing came. She positioned her body as to block the television and said: “Good bye,” with what she hoped was grave finality.
“Can you change the channel for me, while you’re up?” he asked as she strode to the door with as much confidence as she could muster. Letting the door bang closed behind her, she jogged down the street. She didn’t look back when she got to the corner. He wouldn’t be watching from the window.
Sliding on her headphones she pressed the play button down on her walkman. Hall and Oates told her how her kiss was on their list and Evelyn wished it were true. A cool breeze off the ocean blew her skirt against her legs as she walked home. Evelyn looked down at her abdomen. It was rounded, but it was always rounded. Rounded was probably the nicest way to describe it. She was a good cook and not one to say no to a sweet treat. Thanking god for her curvy figure, she figured she could conceal her condition from her Aunt for a few more months, but by the end of the summer she’d begin to show and wouldn’t be able to hide it any more.
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