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Title: "I'm Having Kevin's Baby"--Part One (1/WIP)
"Guys don't get pregnant, Howie," Nick said, grabbing the sides of the toilet and managing to drag himself to his feet. He felt shaky and could see his pasty reflection in the large mirror as he leaned over the sink and splashed water on his face.
"Right. So you keep telling me," Howie said, handing him a towel.
"It's Kevin's fault. Entirely," Nick said, feeling highly annoyed
"I warned you to be careful. You said--and I quote--'Guys don't get pregnant. I don't need a condom.' I guess maybe next time you'll listen to me." Howie put a steadying hand on Nick's arm and handed
Nick gave a rueful laugh. "Yeah, well I wasn't the one who needed a rubber. Like I could've convinced Kevin to use one."
"Safe sex is always a good idea, Nick. Kevin always preached safe sex to me."
Nick ran a hand through his damp, tousled hair. He looked like shit. He felt like shit, too.
"You think the lab could've made a mistake, Howie?"
Howie sighed. "Right. And all those home pregnancy tests we did? You were sure they were wrong, too."
"Well, they didn't have me pee right at that clinic."
Howie laughed. Nick couldn't help joining him. The situation was weird enough to actually be funny.
"Like I wanted to try and explain that one, Nicky. 'My friend here--this guy--is knocked up. Please test him.' Right."
They moved out of the bathroom, both giggling madly. Nick felt his stomach aching from laughter.
"Stop, please. I'll end up back there puking my guts out again."
They sat down side-by-side on the sofa, Nick sprawled and Howie with ankles neatly crossed.
"When are you planning to tell Kevin?" Howie asked, leaning to look into Nick's face.
"Try never," Nick answered, shutting his eyes and throwing an arm across his brow.
"You have to tell him, Nicky," Howie said, rubbing one of Nick's legs.
Nick opened his eyes and sat up. "Right. I need to tell 'Mr. Doesn't-Plan-On-Having-A-Baby-With-His-Wife' that we're expecting one. He'd love that."
"He'll adjust. The same way he would if Kristin showed up pregnant."
"I bet. I have a feeling if Kristin got preggers without Kevin picking the time, he'd make her abort it."
Howie gasped, his round eyes growing rounder. "He would not, Nick. Don't even suggest it."
Nick laughed. "Wanna bet? Even if she just forgot to take her pill--or the pill didn't work--I bet Kevin would be furious. He may act like that's an equal 'partnership,' Howie, but I'm not buying it. That's bullshit. He wears the pants and calls the shots."
Howie giggled. "Most times. I mean, he's been known to show up in skirts."
Then they were both giggling again. Nick only stopped when he could no longer catch his breath. He was holding his sides and gasping, eager to avoid vomiting a second time.
"You wouldn't... you wouldn't want to get rid of it, would you?" Howie asked in a cautious voice.
Nick was stunned into momentary silence. "No," he said quietly. "It's mine. I'm keeping my baby no matter what."
"But it's going to be a mess, Nicky," Howie said, his face solemn.
Nick frowned and ducked his head, staring at his big hands. He tried to imagine gently holding a tiny baby in his huge paws. "I'm keeping my baby," he said, his voice soft but firm.
Nick looked up and found Howie grinning at him. "I'm glad, Nick. I don't believe in abortions, Howie said, pausing. (Of course Nick already knew Howie's Catholic upbringing was opposed to the practice.) "I'd want you to consider having it adopted if you didn't want to keep it."
"My baby," Nick said, rising and walking to the window, "is not an 'it.' My baby is a person. And I'm keeping him or her." Nick gazed out at the sunshine feeling his stomach beginning to settle. It was a lovely day.
Howie put a hand on Nick's shoulder. "I'll help any way I can. But it'll be a media nightmare," Howie predicted.
"No shit," Nick answered, still staring out the window.
"You have to tell the other guys, Nick. And your family."
"I'm taking the cowards way out," Nick said. "I'll wait until I have to. In the meantime, it's just between you and me." Nick turned and stared into Howie's face.
Howie nodded, glumly. This was obviously one secret he wasn't looking forward to keeping.
"Kevin will kill both of us if we wait," he attempted.
"Tough. Even when I do tell, I'm not telling him I think he's the dad."
"Why not? Who else would it be?"
Nick laughed. "He's not the only guy I've ever fucked, Howie. As you well know."
Howie blushed. "That's not the point, Nicky."
"Isn't it? He knows I've been with other guys. There's no reason for him to assume the baby is his."
"Why not tell him? It's not fair to him, Nick."
Nick turned back to again gaze out the window. He could hear kids shouting in play somewhere in the distance...
"It's not about fair, Howie. Life's not fair. I'm not taking a chance of screwing up Kevin's life just because he got me knocked up. It's my baby and my problem. That's the only fair thing, really."
"You can't do it all alone," Howie said softly.
"I'll manage," Nick replied, feeling tears springing to his eyes. How was he going to get through it without help?
"Nicky, you know I'll always be here for you," Howie said, kneading the shoulder he was touching.
Nick turned and impulsively hugged Howie. They were both grinning.
"Thanks, D. I'll need you. Thanks."
Suddenly it seemed okay. Yeah, Nick knew he'd get fatter than he'd ever been (he could already imagine what people would say) and the media would make a mockery of his condition. But it was a beautiful day. He had Howie to support him. He was going to have a baby--which was truly a wonderful thing. What the heck, he might as well feel happy as sad...
Heck, maybe he could 'hide' the whole thing from everyone but Howie. Hey, this might be easier than he'd thought...
There was a pounding on the door of their suite. Both men turned toward the sound.
"You awake, Carter?" they heard Kevin Richardson's voice calling. "You said you'd do that radio interview. You'd better get out here pretty quick, Nick, or I'm coming in after you."
Howie glanced into Nick's eyes. Nick offered a glum expression. Maybe this wouldn't be easy. Not easy at all...
-the end part one--back to top of page-