Chapter 20 : Baylin

As Tayden unloaded the car I sat on the steps watching him. I’d offered to help him unload the car, but he’d insisted he had it. So instead I sat outside as Rain said her goodbye’s to Patrick. She’d been acting all lovey dovey with him the entire weekend, even though for some strange reason she didn’t want him to be her boyfriend.

Honestly, I was kind of jealous. She could have a relationship with him. A relationship with anyone but Tayden would be extremely awkward on my part. But then again, a relationship with Tayden would be awkward as well.

When Rain walked towards us, she smiled. “Guys I’m going out with Patrick tonight, don’t wait up okay?” I nodded and she grabbed her bag before hopping in his truck and zooming off.

After chickening out on the camping trip, mostly because we were in the same tent together, I’d decided that when I got home I’d tell him the first time we were alone. I took this as my chance.

“Tayden…”I started, getting up. We’d basically returned to normal, not acting significantly different than what we did before everything happened. So telling him this might jeopardize that, but what other choice did I have?

“Baylin, I already told you I’ve got it. You’re not helping with the bags. I can manage, I’m a big boy you know.” He shot me a big grin then walked in the house with Rain’s bag.

As he came out I reached out and grabbed his hand, stopping him in his tracks. “Tayden we need to talk.” He slowly turned to me, waiting for me to go on. “It’s about the night of the party…” I swallowed, ready for this secret to be out of me already. I’d barely been able to admit it to myself, but maybe admitting it out loud would help me come to terms with it myself.

“Oh God, Baylin. Seriously? So we…fucked. Twice. It’s not that big of a deal, people can screw around and still be friends. Do we really have to keep bringing it up?” his tone was harsh, he obviously felt regret for what we’d done. So the next words that came out of my mouth were the hardest.

“Tayden I’m pregnant.” It felt like hours before he made any reaction to the news I’d just sprung on him. He opened his mouth as if he were going to talk, then shut it back. He took a deep breath and seemed to hold it in his chest for a while before letting it out and blinking fast, looking around the outside of the house.

He stayed silent, walking past me to sit down on the steps. His hand covered his mouth and his eyes jerked to my belly as I walked towards him. He shook his head and I stopped in my tracks. He put his face down in his palms and then ran his hands through his hair, stopping when they came to the back of his neck.

“You’re not shitting me, right?” I shook my head slightly, yet he caught the movements. He got up and walked past me towards the car before grabbing his own suitcase and walking inside the house. I followed him, suddenly pissed.

“That’s all you can say Tayden? You’re not shitting me? Would I…shit you about something this serious? You can’t possibly think I’d make something like that up for the sake of making you freak out. Do you not know me at all?” I wanted to slap him but I kept my hands firmly planted at my side following him into the guest bedroom, which had transformed into his room overnight.

“And you’re sure you’re pregnant?” I nodded. “And it’s really mine?” I nodded once again, sitting on the edge of his bed and picked at the end of my shirt.

“I wouldn’t tell you this if I didn’t think you needed to know. Tayden what are we going to do?” he seemed to ignore my question and walked over to his side table, before flinging everything into the wall with a quick flick of his arm.

“Shit. Shit Baylin. Mother fucking fuck. God, fuck. Shit. How could I be so stupid? Fuck." I honestly thought he was going to cry he was so angry, and it scared me.

“Tayden calm down.” He turned to me and it scared me more than ever.

“Calm down? You want me to calm down right now? Seriously? You just fucking told me you’re having my god damn child and you want me to calm down.” He laughed dryly, “Impossible.”

He flung his arm across the top of his dresser, two picture frames and a lamp shattering on the ground. “Tayden stop, you’re scaring me. I’m so sorry.” I burst out into tears and he closed his eyes, shaking his head.

“What the hell am I going to tell my parents? What are we going to tell your parents? Rain? We were going to keep this a secret Baylin, we weren’t going to tell her anything happened between us. What do we possibly do now?” I shrugged and rubbed my belly.

It wouldn’t be flat for long, and Rain wasn’t stupid enough to not notice. We’d have to tell her eventually, and we’d have to decide what to do with it.

“I’m not getting an abortion Tayden. But if you don’t want it-” he seemed to growl as he said his next words.

“It’s my fucking child, of course I want it. Robert isn’t my real dad Baylin. I call him Dad, but he’s not. My real father abandoned my mom after she got pregnant. I was maybe a week old. There’s no fucking way I’d do that to you and…and our kid.” I nodded.

“I went to the doctor, she said I’m healthy, and if things keep on like this it should be a healthy child.” I sniffled and Tayden slumped against the wall, sliding down to sit around the broken glass. I went and sat next to him, putting my hand over his.

He pulled away, closing his eyes. I turned my head, my lip quivering. Why’d he have to shut me out like this? I know this is big news and I’d probably be freaking out if I was in his situation. But the last thing I’d want would be to be alone. But him and me, we’re two different people.

“Are we going to tell Rain now?” Tayden groaned.

“Look, I don’t feel like talking about this anymore right now. I just…I need time to process before we go into every detail, okay?” He stood up, storming out the room in a rush. I heard the back door close and I wiped my eyes. Crying wouldn’t help a thing.

Getting up and walking over to the pile of belongings he’d thrown, I wiped my eyes and looked down. I walked out his room and to the kitchen, grabbing the broom and dustpan. I swept up most of the biggest pieces.

Bending down I picked up a picture of a man and a baby. The man was in scrubs, a giant smile on his face as the baby cried in his arms. I flipped the picture over and felt like I was suddenly invading his privacy.

Tayden Michael O’Connel – 1 day old

That could only mean one thing, the man in the picture was his father.

I’d given up on cleaning and held the picture in my hands. The frame it had been in was shattered to pieces. I brought the picture with me to my room and sat on my bed, curled in a ball, just staring at it.

How could someone do something so hurtful and leave their child like that? I’d known Tayden for my entire life and not once had I ever wondered if Robert was his real father. They had the same color hair, and a strong defined jaw. Of course Tayden didn’t treat him like anything but a father. He’d actually been one when he’d needed him, not like his biological one.

I placed the picture next to my bed, on the sand next to my lamp. I closed my eyes and drifted off, only awaking later at the sound of our front door closing.