Possibly, haha. But my new one will be updated tomorrow. The past couple of weeks have been especially hectic.
Thank you very much!
Oh my gosh you’re the first one to catch on, haha!
I will, thank you!
Thank you! There will be more!
Thank you very much!
Haha thank you!
There may be, haha.
Haha thank you!
Here we go! I hope you all like it. I have gotten so many review on this story. Well, I hope it’s alright.
The sun came streaking through the curtains brightly. Charlie was wrapped in my arms, breathing slowly. He had crawled in last night after a bad dream, and I couldn’t resist cuddling up with him. I kiss his forehead and slither out of bed. After going into the kitchen and quickly whipping up a batter for pancakes, he comes staggering out of the room.
“Morning, kiddo,” I say quietly. He smiles sheepishly and rubs his eyes, climbing up onto the stools in front of the counter.
“Can I have some milk please?” he asks. I smile and open the fridge, grabbing the milk container and pouring it into a glass that’s lying on the island. I hand it to him and his small hands wrap around the glass tightly. He chugs it down in an instant and wipes his white mustache. I giggle and pour a clump of batter onto the griddle. Within a few minutes I have three small pancakes made for each of it. We sit at the counter, slathering syrup and butter onto our plates and lopping it all up with giant forks.
“Mhmm,” I say, wiping my finger along his lip to clean up the sticky mess. “That was good.” I suck my finger clean and he giggles, taking our plates and hopping off the stool, putting them into the sink. I get up, too, grabbing our silverware, and kick him in the butt as he heads towards his room to get dressed. I go to my room as well and throw on a pair of jeans. I rummage around in my closet for a shirt, and finally pull out a black t. I thought I’d take Charlie into Central Park, and since it was a little chilly out lately, I also grabbed my brown, cropped leather jacket and a red scarf with flowers adorning the sides. I slipped on a pair of pink socks and then stuck my feet into my Ugg boots. I may be a mom, but I still definitely had it going on. I walk back into the main area of the apartment, and glance in the living room, noticing Charlie in a blue polo and khakis sitting on the couch watching cartoons. I smile as the phone suddenly rings.
“Hello,” I say as I grab it from the receiver.
“Hey,” my friend Alyssa chimes through the phone. “What’s going on?”
“Eh, nothing much,” I say solemnly. “I’m taking Charlie to Central in a little bit.”
“I suspect more,” she sings. “What’s going on? I can always tell when you’re upset, you know that. Don’t bother hiding things from me anymore.” I force a laugh and sigh, looking back at Charlie and then walking down the hall, making sure he was out of ear shot.
“I bumped into Josh the other day,” I say once I’m safely distant.
“Josh… oh. Oh! Josh as in ‘Josh’ Josh?!”
“Yes,” I whisper. “Josh as in Charlie’s Josh.” She makes a gasping noise and starts to scream.
“Oh my god… are you guys back together?!” she wails. I roll my tongue around in my mouth, a knot forming in my stomach.
“Quite the opposite, actually,” I retort. “I kind of told him off.”
She grumbles loudly. “Rachel you’re going to have to tell him sooner or later.”
“No, I won’t,” I snap. “If Charlie wants to seek him out when he’s eighteen, that’s fine, but I am not telling Josh. You know what the media would do! It’s exactly why I didn’t tell him in the first place. Even seven years after The Hunger Games came out, he’s still as famous as ever. They can’t have a real relationship that way…” I trail off into my thoughts, thinking over and over about how Charlie doesn’t and will not have a father figure, at least not ‘til he’s older, and that’s only if Josh wants to be a part of his life.
“Whatever,” she grumbles. “I have to go to work, but we’re still on for later at my place, right?”
“Sure,” I say with a laugh. We hang up and I walk back into the kitchen, placing the phone back down. Charlie and I finish getting ready and we head out. We drive the car for a short amount of time, parking it in a parking spot across from the Natural Museum of History. Charlie and I walk for a long time, spotting out birds and chipmunks and all those things he absolutely loves. Then I put him on my shoulders, gripping his ankles tightly. I spin us around in a circle and he yelps. After stopping for a pretzel and a hot dog, now that it was around eleven thirty, we sit on the steps on the museum, debating whether or not we should go in or if he wants to tag along while I go shopping.
“It won’t take long,” I protest. “Really. I just need a new dress for that teacher of the year thing.”
“You’re teacher of the year, mom,” he says. “You shouldn’t have to look nice.” I burst out laughing, holding my sides.
“Point taken,” I say in between gulps of air. “But still. You know grownups.” He looks across the street and sighs.
“Fine,” he agrees. “But I get to help pick out the dress.”
“Deal,” I say, extending my hand. He shakes it and we head out.
After picking out a lovely green dress from one of my favorite store, we start heading back to the apartment. We drive by Ben and Jerry’s though, and we both look at each other’s with smiles. I turn the car back around, pulling in. We run inside and up to the counter, gleaming down at all the different flavors. Charlie picks out a simple chocolate cone and so do I. He’s definitely my son.
When we’re done, we start our walk back to the car, giggling and wiping away our sticky faces, when I bum straight into someone. Their phone goes flying across the sidewalk, landing face first.
“Oh my god,” I say, still staring at the phone. “I am so sorry.”
“Never thought I’d hear those words come out of your mouth,” a familiar and husky voice half murmurs half whispers. I freeze instantly, my muscles tightening, my stomach coiling, my head spinning, a feeling my body and mind can only recreate with one person. My hand flies for Charlie’s hand, but he’s already taking off towards the phone. My good little boy. I turn on my heel slowly, slowly, slowly, not wanting to at all. His eyes are dark, his body tense, and his mood half miserable half happy.
“Hi,” he says, looking me up and down. I bite the inside of my cheek hard until I taste blood. I don’t respond back, not until Charlie walks back along next to me, iPhone in hand.
“Here you go,” he says, handing it to Josh. He smiles and takes it.
“And who’s this?” he asks, still staring and smiling at Josh but I know he’s really asking me, and I don’t want to answer. I don’t want to be here. I don’t want this.
“I’m Charlie,” he says, sticking out his tiny hand. Josh takes it, shaking it slightly.
“Thanks for my phone, little man,” he chuckles. Charlie smiles and leans against my legs, his head resting on my stomach.
“Josh,” I croak out, my voice barely a whisper. Speak up, god dammnit. Be brave. “This is my son, Charlie.” He’s not surprised. He knew. He knew as soon as he saw us together, but the look of hurt in his eyes still shines through.
“Ah.” His eyes flash from Charlie to me, from Charlie to me, and then to the ground.
Does he know? He couldn’t know. Fuck he knows.
“Well I’ll let you two get on your way,” he says, before smiling once more at Charlie and pushing past us, walking down the street. And then… snap. Something inside me explodes, a rush of adrenaline, maybe.
Or maybe it’s something else.
“Wait!” I call out, my voice quivering, shaking, nervous. He turns around, the corners of his mouth trying it’s hardest to suppress a smile. I jog towards him, almost toppling him over. He chuckles slightly, trying not to sound too excited.
“We were just,” I say, stammering as my breath quickens. “We-“
“Rachel,” he says his voice quiet yet stern. “Rachel I just-“
“I know,” I say. “Josh there are things that I haven’t told you. Josh there are reasons why I left, and I’m, I just… I don’t know.”
“Neither do I,” he confesses, smiling. I smile back, and my head and thoughts tumble forward, everything happening so fast, and I literally have to stop myself from telling Josh that Charlie is his son. I have to literally push the thought out of my head. I have to lie to myself and tell him Charlie is not his son. I have to lie. I have to lie. I can’t let it show.
“Do you, I mean, do you two,” he fixes himself. Good job, Josh. “Dinner. Would you like to go to dinner? With me?”
“Sure,” I say, a little too excitedly, so I cough to make it seem like I had to talk fast. I glance at Charlie, who’s smiling.
“I want Friendly’s,” he says, tugging at my jeans. I chuckle and pick him up.
“Sure, babe,” I say. Another glint flashes through Josh’s eyes, but this time I can’t tell what it is? Is it sadness? Is he sad I have a son? Or is it joy? Is he happy for me?
Or is it something completely different? Is he… jealous? Is he jealous of whom the father is? Is he jealous that he’s not?