Calendar Girl: November(8)

By: Audrey Carlan

I cupped his face. “Wes. I’m right here. I was never there. You survived something horrible. You watched one of the worst things possible happen to someone you care about. But it was not me. I wish there were some way in the night that I could get you to feel that. Take you away from that place, out of that line of thinking.”

Wes wrapped his hands around my naked back. “You are. What you’re doing. How you help me in the night. It’s getting better. I promise it is.”

Tears pooled at my eyes. “So me dragging you here isn’t making it worse?”

He smiled, did an ab curl, and slid me along his chest until our noses could touch. He kissed me long, slow, and so very deep, hand cupped around the nape of my neck to hold me at his mercy.

With little nibbles against my lips, he gently moved his face back an inch. “You’re the only thing keeping me sane. Without you, without our love, I’d have gone down a very nasty path. Mia, you give me a reason to carry on, a reason to live. You give me hope for what’s to come. Being with you is not a hardship. I wouldn’t have come if I thought being away from you was a good idea.”

I snuggled into his chest and kissed the space directly over his heart. “And if you hadn’t come, I wouldn't have this sparkly ring on my finger.” I wiggled my left hand so he could see, and I could see the diamonds glittering in the moonlight. It was spectacular and stole my breath every time I looked at the simple design. The style was just right for me and proved my man knew me very well indeed.

He huffed. “Don’t think for a minute that I wasn’t going to ask you the first chance I got. I bought that ring right after I left Miami.”

“Miami! But that was months ago!”

He chuckled. “Yes, but if you remember, we had very little time before you were off to Texas, and then I was on assignment. The assignment from hell.”

I cringed.

“After that, I needed to heal. Didn’t want you thinking that I was asking out of some kind of PTSD distress, or trying to pick up the pieces of my life in haste. I wanted you to know I was ready, seriously ready to commit to you and our life together.”

“I love you, Weston Charles Channing, the third.” I said and smiled.

“The third.” He mouthed mocking me.

So I gave him something else to mouth by shutting him up with mine.

* * *

The phone rang three times before she picked up with a breathless, “Hello.”

“Gin, what’s going on? Why are you out of breath?” I glanced at the clock and it read eleven o’clock in the morning, eight Pacific Time.

Wes and I’d stayed in today, resting, watching movies, and having room service. We were both scheduled for some pampering couples' massages in the hotel spa in an hour, but I figured now was as good a time as any to give my girls the news. I’d called Maddy already, and she was ecstatic. Talked all about us having a double wedding when she graduated. Humoring her was the only option when dealing with a full-on over-excited Maddy. I did, however, neglect to tell her that Wes believed he was marrying me on New Year’s Day. That was something I wanted to tell her in person, over drinks, possibly more than a few.

“Um, no reason. Ohhh, uh…mmm. Stop it,” she said through the phone, but I doubted she was talking to me.

“Oh, you little ho-bag. You’ve got a man there!” I giggled into the phone and tsked for her benefit. She’d be giving me a steaming bag of shit if the roles were reversed.

“Huh? No. No man. Me? Pshaw.” She over-exaggerated. “Fuck…right there.” She whispered in a way I could tell the phone was away from her mouth, but nowhere near far enough for me not to hear her words.

“He’s fucking you right now?” Blech. There are some things you don’t want to share with your best friend. This was one of those things.

“Mia, babe, this is a bad time. So…so…bad…” Her voice trailed off.

“Really? Okay, well, just wanted to give you a heads up that Wes asked me to marry him. I’m getting married on January first, destination to be determined. Enjoy your fuckfest.”

I pressed the End button and counted down waiting for it.

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