Sunday, February 11, 2007

I guess the pills worked after all...

Saturday, December 23, 2006
Steve and Tim's house

If she truly is pregnant, I have to get her to admit it. Why would she want to hold back information like that, anyway?

Maybe she wants to spring it on me for Christmas. Wouldn't that be cool? I give her a flattering ensemble from Bebe, and she congratulates me on being some kid's personal ATM machine for the next 18 years. Actually, 18 years would be a bargain.

I would confront her on it, but I'd hate to ruin the surprise. Besides, what if I am wrong? I never have seen any concrete proof...

Wait a minute.

It's been at least a week since we've put out any garbage. If she's taken a pregnancy test at home since then, I should be able to find it.

I sift through every trash pail in the house, then dump three overflowing Hefty bags on the garage floor and patiently sift through the rotting apple cores and the slimy skeletal remains of the rotisserie chicken we ate five days ago. Five unseasonably hot, chicken-decomposition- friendly days ago.

I breathe through my mouth as best I can, but the smell manages to find me in little wisps, and it's far from springtime in the Rockies. I have all I can do not to gag.

I finish inspecting the garbage; no discarded pregnancy test. Of course, she might have taken the test at a friend's house, or maybe she threw it away somewhere other than home. That's what I would have done.

But there is another way: My neighbor is having a Christmas Eve party tomorrow, and liquor will most definitely be flowing. I wasn't planning on going, but I'll take her, and see if she has anything to drink. She's always good for a shot or a glass of wine at parties like that, so if she sticks to the Diet Coke with lime, I'll be very suspicious.

Christmas Eve, 2006 8:15pm
Kevin's house

I'll wait for Kevin to offer her a drink. Can't look too obvious, you know.

"Steve!" Kevin shouts, lifting me off the floor in a drunken hug.

"Hey Tim!" he says, kissing her twice on the cheek, then staring at her.

She looks at me briefly with a sly smile, as if to say, "Charming friends you have!"


There are only about 10 people here, and the conversations have slowed to a near standstill. Normally, this is the point where I would bail, but I still have something to do.

"So Kevin, do you still brew that beer of yours?"

"I haven't for a long time. It's just Sam Adams tonight, I'm afraid. You want one?"


"Um, sure! Tim, I'm getting a Sam Adams. Do you want anything?"

"No thanks, hon."

Christmas, 2006, 7:45am
Steve and Tim's house

She sits alongside me on the couch, and we drink in the atmosphere one final time before opening the presents.

"Merry Christmas, Tim."

"Merry Christmas, Steve." She kisses me, sits slowly back down, then leans over and kisses me again, slower.

"Honey?" she says.

Here it comes. Finally, after all this waiting!

"I just want you to know how happy I am with you, how much I care about you. You helped me so much with my life, encouraging me when I was looking for my job..."


"We've been through a lot together--my surgery, your dad being sick--my mom mom. I love you so much."

"Me too!"

"I bet some married couples have not been through what we have. So, maybe it's time for us to be a married couple."


"Steve," she says, with a deep breath, "will you marry me?"