MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD.

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She leaned against me, exhausted. Dark circles hung under her eyes, but even if they hadn’t have been there, I’d have known she hadn’t slept last night. 

Had any of us? 

The bowl of oatmeal sat in front of her, untouched, and I briefly contemplated feeding her, as though she was a baby. She had to eat, especially now that she was… that she was… 

Pregnant.  Now that she was pregnant.

“Annemarie,” I began hesitantly. “Are you… okay?” It wasn’t enough. It would never be enough.

She pursed her lips, swallowing and shaking her head. Her eyes shone with tears. 

I took a deep breath. “We should talk. At some point. All things considering.”

“Because I’m pregnant with your kid?” Her voice shook, but it was still steadier than I’d expected. “Yeah. I know.” She sat up, grabbing the spoon forcefully and shoving oatmeal into her mouth so hard I worried she’d choke. 

“Anne?”

Annemarie squeezed her eyes shut, a single tear sliding down her cheek. “So talk. I saw your face, last night. I know what you’re thinking.”

I recoiled. “Which is what? What do you… know I’m thinking?”

She took a few more shaky breaths, leaning on her elbows and staring at the porridge. “We should have been more careful. We should have done more. God,  Bran, we were already waist-deep in crap, and this one more massive thing to deal with.”

I was cracked in two. “It isn’t just one more thing to deal with, Annemarie, it’s our kid! And yeah, maybe we should have done any number of things then, but it’s not then anymore. It’s now. And we’ll- you’ll– decide what to do about it. We can start from there.”

She pushed the bowl away from her, folding her arms and burying her head in them. “I’m so, so scared, Brandon. I don’t know what to do. And that… Ebony, she took one of the few things I could control away from me last night.” 

“When to tell us. When to tell me.”

Annemarie nodded, head still in her arms. 

I bit my tongue. “How long have you known?”

 

Quick note: the featured images on my writing portfolio posts have little to nothing to do with the excerpt. The way that they formatted, however, was a bit nicer than they were without any pictures! I’m going to hopefully replace them with more pertinent images in the future, but this may take some time as I am using my own material. 

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