“The moment you know yourself you have known the most precious thing in existence.” Osho
“What was I thinking? God knows I shouldn’t have come here. This is wrong on so many levels.” Xavier buttoned his shirt and stepped into his Ferragamo loafers.
Ian lay back in the middle of the bed, watching his lover dress and dismissing the part about Xavier saying he shouldn’t have come there. Ian dismissed Xavier’s short rant because at the end of the day, Xavier was where he wanted to be--in his bed.
“This is not what you regret, Xavier. What you regret is having to go home to Pepper when you know that’s not where you wanna be. It’s not too late to get an annulment you know.”
Xavier tucked his shirt inside his jeans and turned to face Ian head on, with arms folded. “You can’t be serious.”
“An annulment? It’s too late for that.”
“Okay, then a divorce. Irreconcilable differences, anything that’s quick, fast, and in a hurry. I told you, I’m not gonna be anybody’s side piece or second choice. You feel me?”
Ian got out of the bed, walked over to his nightstand, and picked up his pack of cigarettes and lighter. Lighting the cigarette, he sat back down on the bed. Taking a long pull before slowly exhaling a trail of smoke, he spoke up again. “I tried to warn you about her from the jump, but you wouldn’t listen. But it’s not too late to get out of it. I know a lawyer who can help. His name is Trevor Price. He visits Holy Rock from time to time. You know him?”
“Nah, I can’t say I do. But that’s nothing strange. There’re thousands of people in and out of those church doors every week. I don’t know a fifth of ‘em.”
“No problem. You just say the word and I’ll give him a call.”
“You’re taking me too fast, bruh. I know I got into the marriage thing too quick. I didn’t wanna marry her. I don’t know why I let her talk me into it. But now, I’m stuck.”
“Stuck? What do you mean you’re stuck? A divorce is quick. Y’all don’t have kids. You don’t have common property together, and you’ve been married less than a year. Why are you making this out like it’s going to be impossible to get rid of her?”
“Ian, I just can’t up and leave her. Not when she says she’s carrying my kid.”
Ian took another pull and then another one from his cigarette before mashing it out in a fish-shaped ashtray he kept on the nightstand. “What the hell did you just say?”
Xavier looked like he’d swallowed a canary. “You heard me, she’s pregnant.”
Ian stood in front of Xavier, cheeks deep red, eyes blazing with anger. “That bee is pregnant? Is it supposed to be your kid?”
“What are you talking about?”
“You heard me. Is it yours? A female like her, you can’t be too careful. She wanted to trap you and this is a good way to do it. I can’t believe you.”
Ian smacked his forehead and did a quick swivel. His disgust was apparent in his voice and the way he began pacing the hardwoods.
“I’m going to handle it,” Xavier tried reassuring Ian. “As far as whether I think the kid is mine or not, I don’t have any reason to doubt Pepper. Contrary to what you might think, she is not the kind of girl you’re making her out to be. I need you to stop worrying about her. I promise I got this. Trust me.”
“I did trust you. Look where it got me. You got married on me.” Ian turned and walked off, disappearing into his bathroom, slamming the door behind him.
Xavier waited a few seconds, still confused himself about his situation. He turned the doorknob. It was locked.
“Come on, Ian. Don’t be like that. Open the door.”
Ian responded by turning on the bathroom radio drowning out Xavier’s pointless begging. Next, the sound of rushing water could be heard as he turned on the shower and stepped inside. He didn’t want to hear any fake explanation Xavier was trying to throw his way. Enough already.
Xavier continued beating on the door. “Ian! Open the dang door. Let me explain!”
Xavier grew increasingly frustrated until he couldn’t take it anymore. He stormed out of Ian’s bedroom, ran down the hall, and out the front door. Tears streamed as he got into his car and drove off. He didn’t know what to do. He still needed time to digest the idea for himself. Him? A daddy? What had he gotten himself into? A baby meant he would be forever obligated to Pepper. Was he ready for his life to change in such a dramatic fashion? Ian had been right all along. He had bitten off more than he could chew. He cared a lot about her but a kid with her? That was a whole other matter, but it was out of his hands.