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Once.

We slept together once.

It wasn't supposed to turn into anything, just be a bit of fun and get my mind off everything; a one time thing.

But, that would mean life wasn't completely against me.

Which of course, it is.

Nothing was supposed to come out of this, especially not a baby.

Yet, here I am, heaving my guts out in a cubicle in the loo of the restaurant I work at and I bet the reason would be because that one night led to me procreating.

Classy, Taylor. Classy.

"TAYLOR BOWIE! IF YOU AREN'T OUT OF THAT RUDDY LOO AND MAKING ME MONEY IN FIVE MINUTES, I AM DOCKING YOUR BILL!" the booming voice echoed from outside.

Henry Acreman, ladies and gentleman. My boss is truly lovely. Because, after all, getting yelled at by employers is said to reduce vomiting.

I wipe my mouth with the back of my hand when...oh no.

No no no.

Here it comes again.

I fall to my knees once again in front of the linoleum throne and get violently ill for the third time today.

Ugh.

I flush away the putrid contents and proceed to wash my hands, checking my watch once again.

Lottie, my coworker and best friend, should be getting back from break any minute and she was supposed to be bringing with her my test.

My pregnancy test.

Because all these other girls can sleep around with the whole town, but when I do it once I wind up with a baby. It's just like when I was ten and went to a carnival with six or seven friends and some kid with chicken pox was there - for some unknown reason - and I was the only one of us to catch it. My luck just works out that way.

I had tried convincing myself for the past week that there was no possible way I could be - y'know, with child - but I couldn't live in denial anymore. Either I was pregnant or had some weird disease. Oddly enough, I kind of hoped it was the latter.

Finally, the door burst open and Lottie scrambled in, locking it behind her, a small, brown, paper bag in her hands, "sorry it took so long," she gasped. "Acreman told me to tell you that he's losing patience with you and that I'm supposed to tell you to 'put on your big girl britches and get to work' before he gets someone more qualified 'like an ape' to do your job for you."

Again, my boss is lovely.

"You got it though?" I asked quietly, eyeing the bag which she was tearing open to reveal a small white box.

She handed me the box and as I took it I noticed for the first time that my hands were shaking.

"Tay," Lottie said, placing her hands on my shoulders, forcing me to make eye contact, "calm. Don't psych yourself out. Stress can cause you to be late and you've probably just caught a stomach bug."

I wanted to mention all the other symptoms, but my throat decided that talking wasn't an option.

She continued her motivational speech when she noticed I wasn't replying, "remember last year when it was me in your place? You stood right here in this loo and told me it was probably nothing and that I was just overthinking. And you know what? You were right. It was negative and everything was fine. So please, just take the test, then you'll realize you're upset over nothing and we'll go back out and make some tips and everything will be good as new."

I nodded, trying to convince myself there was any possibility that it could come out negative.

I locked myself in the cubicle and took out the little stick. I never knew a four inch piece of plastic could control my entire life. Once I had done the thoroughly awkward task of peeing on the object, I slowly walked out and set it tenderly on the edge of the sink.

Now, we wait.

"What if it is positive though?" I ask quietly, the thought making me want to throw up for the fourth time today. "I can't be a mum...I'm sixteen! And we barely even know each other..."

Not to mention the fact that I have no money at all whatsoever. I work full time because without my job we would be homeless with no food. My job is the reason ends meet at all.

"If it's positive, which it definitely won't be," she said, "then you deal with it from there. You have options, after all."

I didn't say anything, I knew she was getting at abortion. I may not want a child, but I couldn't kill it.

After what felt like hours, her watch said that it had been three minutes which meant that the test was ready.

I started towards it, but stopped short of the sink, suddenly unable to move.

Thank you, feet, for picking the most opportune time to stop functioning.

"Tay?" she asked cautiously.

I shook my head, which made her furrow her brows, "No. No, I can't. I can't. You look."

She looked unsure, but nodded quietly and walked over to the sink, picking up the stick (unsanitary, I know - but desperate times call for desperate measures).

"Well, what does it say?" I pushed as she stared down at the little piece of plastic with an unreadable expression.

She set it back down on the sink without a word and pulled me into a close hug, stroking my hair and telling me that everything was going to be alright.

I couldn't stop the big, fat teardrops that were falling like rain from a cloud. They slid down the mounds of my cheeks and fell to the ground, crashing like tiny waves against the floor. My knees began to buckle under the pain but I willed them to hold me.

I didn't have to even see the dreadful test to know what it said; it just confirmed everything that I already knew.

"Shh," Lottie whispered, "it's all going to be okay."

"What am I going to do?" I gasped into her shoulder.

One time. We slept together one freakin' time. He barely knew me, he won't want to raise a baby with me. Afterall, who would?

"Tay," she sighed, "it's all going to be okay, remember?"

I knew she was just trying to be helpful, but I wished she wouldn't say that, it was a lie. Everything was not going to be okay. 'Okay' had never been a factor in my life.

"IF YOU GIRLS ARE NOT OUT IN SIXTY SECONDS, YOU ARE BOTH FIRED!" Mr. Acremen boomed from outside the cramped bathroom.

Lovely lovely lovely.

I pulled away from Lottie, which she objected to, "Tay, don't you listen to that git, we'll come out when you're ready."

Except I wouldn't be ready until a time machine was available.

I looked myself over in the mirror and immediately wished I hadn't. My eyes were swollen and my whole face was bright pink with highly visible tearstains. Great.

I straightened my skirt and took a deep breath, mentally preparing myself to go out there and put on my best show despite the fact that my life was essentially over.

My father would kick me out, that much was certain. The only time he spoke to me was when he demanded my paychecks and tips or when he had one of his episodes and went on a rampage. Our flat was already too small for the three of us and it wasn't uncommon to go to bed hungry. How was I supposed to bring a baby in to that?

"I have to go, I can't get fired. I'm already in enough trouble as it is, I can't afford to lose this job."

She didn't argue with me. She stroked my arm, again trying to comfort me because she could see I was about three seconds from another breakdown.

No.

No breakdowns.

I have to be brave, whatever that is.

Before this I thought bravery meant dropping out of school to work full time so my little brother neither went hungry or got taken away.

Before this I thought bravery was living with my abusive drunk of a father and not complaining.

Before this I didn't know bravery meant raising a baby at sixteen, without a father because I made a stupid decision with a boy I barely knew.

This new definition of bravery made me want to throw myself on the ground and cry, but I couldn't do that.

My child - my baby - is counting on me.

My baby?

Those words shouldn't even be put together, I shouldn't be old enough to even think those words.

Here I was, a screwed up teenager having a conversation in her head about the new life apparently growing in her womb.

I picked up the stick and and tossed it in the garbage before I headed out, but not without seeing the most horrible word in the entire English language printed on it.

Positive.


A/N: Sorry it's so short - the rest of the chapters will be longer, if you like it that is. This was just a prologue to set up the story. I would love a message in the box, if you don't mind, telling my what you like, dislike, etc.

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