My feelings for Davina grew as winter turned into spring. We told each other constantly how much we loved one another and by the end of February we talked seriously about moving in together next semester. She more or less stayed every night with me (meaning Max had to sleep in the living room) and we kinda wanted to share a house just the two of us in the autumn. It’d be nice. Only one big problem.
“ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR DOGGY-BRAINED MIND?!” Max screamed at me when I broached the subject with him. “Okay, okay, okay. Look at it this way. You are being hunted down by powerful magic-users, faeries, werewolves, vampires, and all sorts of beings. I… am part of your protection. Moving into a house alone with her means not having me.”
I scrunched my face up in annoyance. “Yeah, well. You could move in as Mr. Fluffy. She likes you as a cat a lot. She likes cats.”
Max made a whining sound. “Yeah well. She rubs me the wrong way.”
“I thought you liked her!”
“Oh, she’s okay,” he sighed and I folded my arms, pointing out what he just said. He blinked then began grinning broadly, his fangs gleaming. “Ahaha I meant it literally. She rubs me the wrong way when she pets me. She likes to rub my lower back a lot, real fast. The kind of thing that sends my butt in the air. It’s all right for a short period but after a while it bugs me but she keeps petting me like that. She hates me licking her arm, too. I tried licking her arm last night and she pulled her arm away and told me ‘no’ and she booped my nose.” Max looked horrified. “She BOOPED my NOSE, Zaid! Stop laughing at me it’s not funny!”
“Yes it is!” I shrieked then went closer and tapped the end of his nose. “Boop!”
“Nnnnnawwwwwaahhnnnn!” he wailed, rubbing his nose furiously. I just booped his nose again. “Staaaahp it.”
“Boop. Boop,” I said, tapping his nose until he grabbed my wrist. We began wrestling until I flipped him over onto the bed and pinned him down. He struggled against me and I put all my strength into keeping him pinned down until he stopped, pouting up at me. I leaned in real close and said, “I win. Looks like the pupil’s gotten stronger than the tutor.”
He shifted under me and with his body under mine like this I began to get those strange thoughts again. If I didn’t have a girlfriend… or… had such intense interest in women…
I quickly pulled away, hopping off the bed, feeling uncomfortable now by how my body reacted. “I’m moving in with Davy,” I said, determined.
Max sat up in the bed. “With or without Mr. Fluffy?” he asked unhappily.
I looked down, not sure how to answer this. “Could you stay as Mr. Fluffy…?”
“I could. I’ve done it before. Before Gretchen assigned me to watch over you I spent almost all my time as a cat.” He flopped off the bed and came over to me, but didn’t touch me thankfully. I didn’t want him touching me. I didn’t want… those thoughts in my head. They just confused me way too much. “If you don’t want me though, I won’t.”
I sucked air in through my teeth, shrugging a bit. “Does it make sense? We can’t… I mean, one day we’ll have to live apart. Won’t we?” He remained completely silent at that. I turned, seeing sadness in those yellow-green eyes.
Time seemed to stretch on for an eternity (and maybe it did, who knew with the problem with the time bubble) and just when those strange, confusing feelings were about to overwhelm me Max lifted his hand and placed it on my face. “We don’t have to worry about it yet, Zaidy-boy. You and Davy move in together and I can go as Mr. Fluffy. But what about Lumie? She gonna stay here with Noah?”
“I guess I haven’t thought about that,” I mumbled. “It’s her decision really. But I think I just–I think Davy and I should… I think I want to live with her next semester.”
Noah and I spent our final months living together having a blast. We got drunk more than I could remember, staying up late and I wound up missing more than a few classes. Lumie tried pushing me into better grades but it didn’t stop me from having a two-person party with Noah more often than not. I did work hard at my projects though. I didn’t want to fail and since my absences would mark against me it just meant throwing myself into my assignments even harder. Unfortunately despite my best efforts I had to do better by the time finals came around.
I spent every waking minute studying. No more beer, not even dates with Davy. I studied until I thought my eyeballs would drop out of my head and even then I failed my a class. I did not want to take another summer course but again, I did not want to have to go beyond the four years so since kinesiology wasn’t offered for the summer, I chose another class to do over the summer so I could repeat kinesiology in the autumn.
I thought I had things going well. I thought my life was on track well enough. I had my summer plans set out before be and then in the autumn I’d be moving in with the woman I loved. And still no worries on the supernatural front. Things were going great, despite having to repeat. But life threw me a major curve ball that hit me right in the face and shook everything up.
“WHAT?!” I shouted, jaw dropping to the floor. Davina looked at me in tears and I fought harder to keep my tone down. “Okay. Davy. Um. I… I think perhaps you should tell me again because I really don’t think I heard, uh, heard right.”
“You heard me just fine,” Davina said, going to the window, shoulders hunched over, arms around her body. “I’m pregnant.”
I swallowed but it didn’t help the lump in my throat. Pregnant. I made sure the barriers were up so Lumie couldn’t hear any of this. “Are you… sure? I mean. Maybe you’re just… peeing a lot?”
“I’m pregnant,” she cried out. “I–I did the test. Several times. I’ve been having symptoms but hoped…” She turned and fell against me, leaving damp spots on my shirt as she cried. “I missed my last period. I bought a home test and it turned out positive and I bought about three more and each of them said the same.”
I held onto her tighter, resting my chin on her head. “Did you go to the doctor? Maybe the home tests were wrong?”
“They’re not wrong, I’m pregnant, I know I am.” She backed away, pulling her shirt up a bit so she could touch her belly. “What are we going to do? My mother is going to murder me. I know… I know women having babies like this is no big deal for most people but my parents–my parents aren’t like that.” She slumped against me once more. “I’ll be cut off. I can’t afford college on my own! I’ll have to drop out, I’ll never finish law school, I’ll just become some waitress pouring coffee and complaining about swollen feet and–“
I kissed her so she wouldn’t keep going on like that, then kissed her again. Her arms slid up around my neck and I dipped her down, kissing for quite a while before finally pulling back. “Calm down. It’ll be fine.”
We lay down on the bed, holding onto each other tightly, her crying softly. I felt super sick to my stomach, trying to think clearly but having a hard time. My girlfriend was pregnant. I had gotten her pregnant. I knew she took birth control but it said on the box only like, 99.9% effective or something like that. And we had been hit with the 0.001% chance. Fuck.
Eventually Davy fell asleep and I got out of bed, putting the blanket over her body. I kissed the side of her head then went downstairs considering grabbing a beer but deciding getting alcohol into my systems to cope with this sort of problem would be a bad idea. I didn’t want it to become a habit. Instead I grabbed a glass of juice and sat in the living room, staring at the blank TV. She’s pregnant. My girlfriend is pregnant. I swigged all the juice down in two big gulps then let the glass drop to the floor.
I bent forward, burying my face in my hands. After everything my sister went through and this happened. Of course she hadn’t taken any precautions while we had. Davy is pregnant, I’m–I could have a baby. Unless she wanted to get rid of it. If she didn’t… what would I do? Take care of it, take care of her… I loved Davy with all my heart. And if she wanted to keep the baby…
I sat up straight, looking at the stairs. I love her. An idea formed in my head and I decided why not? We were moving in together anyway. We loved each other. We’d known each other for well over a year, been dating for almost a year… why not propose?
Davy stayed at the house all the next day, mostly curled up in my bed. I remained with her almost the whole time except when I left to go get a ring even though I couldn’t really afford anything fancy. She deserved a ring at least and I bought the best one I could.
That night I ordered a pizza and we sat on my bed, talking quietly about everything but the pregnancy. I took her hand at one point, pressing the ring into her palm. Davy stared at it then at me as I got up, too nervous to remain sitting there. Her lips formed words but no sound came out.
I smiled. “I mean it. If you want to. I’d like to marry you.”
“You–wh… what? Really?” She studied the ring in shock. “You’re proposing?” She scrambled off the bed, holding the ring up at me. “You really mean this?”
“We could get married quickly,” I said, taking her hands. “And pretend the baby is from the honeymoon. We could do that.” I reached up, tucking her hair back behind one ear. “Then your parents wouldn’t be so furious. But it’s up to you. If you want to marry. And when you want to get married. If–mmmm!”
She kissed me and then put the ring on her finger before throwing her arms around me to kiss me again. “Yes, I’ll marry you, Zaid,” she said between the kissing. “I love you!”
“I love you too,” I promised, kissing her back and then sliding my hands down to her stomach. “And the baby.”
“A honeymoon baby,” she said. “But that means… You know what that means right? We need to–to get married soon.”
“I know.” I stroked her cheek, feeling a bit dizzy from all this suddenness. “I’m scared, I won’t lie. But I know that I can’t imagine my life without you.” I cradled her head in my hands and drew her in for a long, deep kiss. “I love you so much.” I ran my thumb along her cheek as she smiled. “Imagine. Mr. and Mrs. Danevbie. The gorgeous, sexy, high-flying lawyer with… with…” I paused, trying to think about what I’d do with my degree. “Well. Maybe… a teacher.”
“A teacher? You?” she giggled.
“Hey, I could get a teaching job once I get this degree. In physical education. Maybe a teacher… and… also working at teaching sim fu. And a little baby.” I rubbed her belly. “A little Davy-and-Zaid baby. A little boy or girl.”
“A boy,” she said, meeting my eyes. “A mini-you.”
“I don’t care which gender.” She put her hands over mine and I blinked a few times, knowing I needed to tell her something. “Nobody will know about the baby being, uh, pre-honeymoon, right? We’re not telling anyone?” When she agreed with this statement I bit my lip, hoping she didn’t feel upset about this. “Lumes will have to know. Um. Don’t look at me like that. You know she and I can read each other’s minds. I can’t hide this from her.”
“It’s a parlor trick,” Davy said, brow furrowing as she ran a finger across my cheek. “Don’t tell her. Please.”
“She’s going to find out. I’m sorry–I–I can’t help it. I can’t!” I protested since she continued to give me the look. “Only she will know. I swear.”
She pressed her face into my shoulder, arms around my waist now. “She is your twin. But nobody else, okay? Not Noah, not Max. Nobody.”
“My lips will be sealed.”
>WHAT?! YOU KNOCKED HER UP?!< Lumie screeched the moment my barriers went down. I reeled back, pressing my hands against my ears even though it had been done in my head. >Oh WATCHER Zaid, and you’re marrying her? Wait, don’t do it.<
>Excuse me?!< I clenched my teeth, wishing she wasn’t downstairs so I could smack her for thinking such a thing.
>No. I mean. You shouldn’t marry her just cause she’s pregnant,< Lumie said quickly, full of apologetic feelings. >You shouldn’t do that.<
>You know I know her. I’m marrying her because I love her. Yes, the baby does have a little bit to do with it but I would eventually. We were moving in together and–and we’d be married eventually. I love her. Completely.<
>If she wasn’t pregnant right now, would the engagement still be on?< my sister asked, already knowing the answer but pushing my buttons regardless.
My gaze lowered and I sighed. >No. Not right now. But I do love her. A ring and a baby won’t change anything.<
>Oh, brother–you’re a moron. I love ya but you’re a moron,< she groaned in my head. >It’s going to change everything. Especially a baby. I–I went through a pregnancy and gave the baby up but it still changed everything, and still effects me now. So don’t pretend it won’t change things.<
I put up my barriers, not wanting to hear anything else she had to say on the matter. I knew a baby would change everything. But we would make it.
So my wedding day happened a lot sooner than I ever expected but I knew I had made the right decision even if my family thought I was crazy for getting married so out of the blue like this. We had one week to warn everyone. We simply told our families that we decided that we wanted to get married, we loved each other, and we didn’t want to wait because we would have college classes to deal with later on and having wedding planning to do plus college classes wouldn’t go well. And why wait a few more weeks… when we both had summer jobs and summer courses?
“I still think you should wait,” Pa said, coming into the room where I waited for the small ceremony to start. I went over and gave him a tight hug. “But your dad and I got married pretty quickly too. So.” He sniffled and then pulled a handkerchief, blowing his nose. “My baby is getting married.”
“Your other son is already married,” I pointed out, rubbing his back.
“Yes but you’re my baby!” he wailed. “My littlest, my baby, my baby boy, my–“
“Chance, love, maybe it’s best not to make him feel like a little boy on his wedding day,” Dad said, coming into the room and scowling at the sight of his husband crying. Pa turned and clung to him, sniffling more. Dad rolled his eyes at me and I smiled. “You about ready for this?”
“As ready as I’ll ever be,” I said, straightening my floofy thing Davy wanted me to wear and feeling grateful my deodorant worked enough to stop my pits from getting soaked. “You guys are–are fine with… me and Davy getting married, right?”
I had asked this them multiple times and they never really answered, always just saying they said that as long as I was happy. They both said it again this time but I pressed them for a yes or no answer, needing a yes or no answer. Dad let out a long, heavy sigh. “It’s too complicated for a yes or no answer. We think that you’re rushing into it. We’d prefer you to wait. However… it’s your decision.”
“We love you so much,” Pa said. “We just want you to have the best, happiest life you can have. And if marrying Davy gives you that happiness then we’re all right with it even if we think it’s too soon.”
I hugged them both tightly then went out to the archway, feeling like I might vomit. The fact my brother couldn’t make it made it worse. He had a ton of intense things going on with the clan but promised to try. Unfortunately it turned out to be a promise he couldn’t keep. He called me earlier in the morning, really upset and I told him it was fine even though I felt bitter and angry. My wedding day. Okay, a sudden and.. out-of-the-blue wedding but still. My wedding day. And my brother couldn’t make it.
“Hey,” Noah whispered, taking his place next to me as my best man since Vilkas couldn’t make it and Max refused to be in the wedding.
“You still look like a dork in that suit,” I snickered and he rolled his eyes then made a face. I tried not to laugh more and quickly recovered as the music started.
“Dude, you still have time to back out,” Noah reminded me, then he let out a hiss of pain as I elbowed him sharply. “You didn’t even make any announcements in the papers.”
I clenched my teeth, not wanting to say that announcements in the paper wouldn’t have happened anyway. Davy had asked if we could but I suggested we just focus on the quick wedding and getting things together. Thankfully she agreed, not questioning my real reasons for wanting to keep it quiet. It had been three years in hiding from my enemies. They were still after me, judging by the e-mails Uncle Kay sent. Hopefully they assumed my family and I had moved to Australia. But I still didn’t want to risk the name ‘Zaid Danevbie’ being in the papers.
The music strengthened and I turned, my heart leaping into my throat at the sight of Davy coming down the aisle on her father’s arms. Our eyes met and she smiled. I grinned back and my twin told me it looked like a sunbeam had hit me.
They reached the arch and I took Davy’s hands, pulling her close to me. “You look incredible,” I whispered.
“And you look so handsome,” she responded, eyes never leaving mine. I wanted to kiss her now but managed to resist the urge.
The officiator spoke, going on about love and the bonds of marriage. Davy and I spoke traditional vows, trying to appease her parents since they were both already pissed off at the shotgun wedding (though didn’t know it really was a shotgun wedding in all the senses). At least her father didn’t make it more so by bringing his.
I slid a ring on Davy’s finger, promising to love, honor, and obey.
Davy slid a ring onto my finger, promising the same.
“You may now kiss the bride,” the officiator said and I didn’t need any more prompting.
I kissed her hard on the mouth, wrapping my arms around her and dipping her down a bit. I pulled her back upright, unable to believe it. Married–we were married. I had a wife. I grinned and kissed her again. She giggled in response and held my hand tightly, turning so we could be announced as Mr. and Mrs. Danevbie. Everyone cheered, a few people sniffled, and Davy’s mother cried.
After loads of pictures, Davy and I swept into the other room for the reception. Everyone took their seats and then Noah and Ashlynn–Davy’s cousin and maid of honor–began pouring champagne. I felt Davy stiffen next to me at the sight of a glass being filled in front of her. We hadn’t thought to say no alcohol…
“Speech time!” Noah stated loudly, raising his glass. I reached down and took mine and very slowly, Davy took hers. I glanced at her but she just smiled at me. “Okay, okay. Zaid here is my best friend. I didn’t have many friends in school and I came to college only expecting to find someone to room with.” He put his hand on my shoulder. “Little did I know instead I would find someone who’s actually more of a loser than I am.” I snorted, shaking my head as a ripple of laughter spread in the room. “Really though, I had no idea I’d find a friend like Zaid. We’ve been through a lot together. And I am so happy and grateful that I went through all this with him. Now, he met Davina first. When he introduced us I thought… wow what a beautiful woman. Then when she and Zaid began dating I thought wow, what a crazy woman.” More laughter and Davy took my hand giggling. “Obviously her taste in men is a bit weird, choosing this ugly beast.” I looked up mouthing the word ‘thanks’ as he winked at me.
“But… these two… make each other so happy. You can see it in the way they look at each other, the way they they seem to forget there’s anything else out there in the world other than each other.” I picked up Davy’s hand, kissing the back of it. “And sometimes when they get that way, I think how incredibly lucky they both are, to have found each other like this. I know a lot of people here, myself included, were surprised at a wedding so fast but…” Noah squeezed my shoulder again. “But they are so in love it’s as if they’ve had an entire lifetime together already. To Zaid and Davina!”
I raised my glass then took a sip, eyeing Davy. She pressed the rim against her mouth and tipped it back, but her lips were closed so tightly that the liquid merely wet her lips. She set the glass down then went back to holding my hand, both us us happy as Ashlynn made her speech which ended with her mentioning Davina being so in love she willingly made her name a tongue twister. Then she reached under the table and produced the game ‘twister’ for us, saying it was a game for any couple, causing Davy to go brilliantly red, shooting obviously joking glares at her cousin. Then we clinked glasses again and Davy once again wet her lips without taking any alcohol in.
The caterers set the buffet out and we got our food, talking happily with our friends and family as we ate. No one seemed to notice Davy didn’t drink anything stronger than pop except Lumie who knew because I knew.
We cut the cake, putting frosting on one another’s noses.
Then after dessert we shared our first dance as husband and wife. I held her close, wanting to tell her over and over how beautiful she looked, how happy I felt, how wonderful this all was… but I couldn’t speak very well, so I just pressed my forehead against hers and enjoyed the moment with her in my arms.
The night wore on with laughter, champagne, and dancing. Vilkas called at one point to congratulate me and apologize again for not being able attend. After I got off the phone with him I realized maybe it worked out for the better he hadn’t come since he would have known by his wolfy senses that Davy had a bun in the oven.
I danced with my sisters, Grams, Davy’s friends, and at one point her mother who inquired about the wedding happening so fast. We hadn’t had any chance to be alone but the question still took me by surprised. “We wanted to be married quickly because of college classes and our jobs and–“
“Tell me the truth, Zaid,” she said, meeting my eyes with a steely gaze. “I know my daughter and while she does react impulsively… this seems a bit too spontaneous even for her. I need to know. Did you get her in trouble? Is that why you’re marrying her a week after proposing, not even a year of dating?”
I had no idea what to say, feeling rather panicky about the question. Did I lie? Tell the truth? Try to change the subject? Before I could make any decision, Pa came over to ask about if he could finish off the chicken dumplings. I promised him it’d be fine and he kissed my cheek before going back to the buffet table, his bare feet scooting along the floor. He had started off the day wearing shoes but quickly shed them before the ceremony ended. I smiled, turning back to face Mrs. Gilbert only to see her lips pursed and her eyebrows pointing down.
“Is something wrong?” I asked, giving her a twirl to the music.
“Nothing,” she replied haughtily. “Does your… parent… always go around barefooted?”
“Uh, yeah, he does pretty much all the time,” I laughed. “He’s super clumsy. Shoes pinch his feet and he trips so much more with them on.”
“And you have a brother that didn’t have the time to come here?”
I bristled slightly at the phrasing of the question. “Um, he’s really busy. He’s got a lot on his plate. His clan’s got–“
“Clan?” she cut me off looking shocked.
“Werewolf clan,” I said and the shocked look got worse. She stopped moving, just staring at me. “Ummm… the clan’s got… uh, a lot of stuff going on.”
“He’s… a werewolf?” she asked, her voice squeaking in fear.
Oh, crap. I wracked my brain and realized it had never been brought up in any conversation. “Yeah. He’s a werewolf.”
“So. Two fathers and… a werewolf brother,” she said slowly. “Was he scratched as a baby?”
“Scratching doesn’t turn one into a werewolf,” I said, trying to keep my tone pleasant. “Only biting. And no, he’s a full-blooded were. He was born a were.”
Her eyes flicked over to my fathers. Dad had a dumpling on the end of a fork, feeding it to Pa in a disgustingly cute manner. “Neither of them are…?”
“Oh, no, my brother was adopted.” I didn’t feel okay with any of this conversation. I may have wanted it to get off the subject of Davy’s womb but not to this.
“They adopted a werewolf?” She faced me again, looking very suspicious. “Whatever for?”
I stepped back, anger surging through my body. “Because they wanted to. Do you have a problem with werewolves? Or supernaturals in general?” I remembered the way she had said ‘two fathers’ and couldn’t stop myself from saying, “Or gays?”
The muscles in her jaw flexed and she folded her arms across her chest in a very defensive manner. “I believe the song has ended.” With that she returned to her husband’s side, whispering in his ear. His eyes widened and he eyed my fathers with a disturbed frown.
My nostrils flared but Davy came over, a hand on my arm, pulling me into a dance. She chattered about something one of my sisters said but I didn’t really listen. I just tried to calm down. Her mother disliked supernaturals and probably gays too? And judging by the look on Mr. Gilbert’s face he felt the same.
Welp. Seemed like our families were in for some tense times. And I imagined it would only get worse when eight months down the line a baby popped out.
I looked over at Max who had barely spoken all night long, who had spent the entire reception in the corner of the room looking unhappy and fidgeting with his suit. Now he met my gaze and I gave him a half-smile. I wanted to go over to him and be reassured that things would work out.
I felt a finger on my cheek and Davy turned my head. “Stop being so interested in Max. You keep looking at him.”
“I do not,” I chuckled.
“Do so. How come… how come he wasn’t the best man? I thought you two were really close?” Davy asked.
“He didn’t want to be in the wedding,” I explained. “Why?”
“Nothing. I… I guess it’s nothing.”
I kissed her forehead and held her against me, slow dancing despite the upbeat music. “My beautiful, incredible wife,” I murmured.
She rested her head against my chest, giving a happy sigh. “My handsome, wonderful husband.” And those words filled me with such happiness it washed away any strange feelings I had about Max’s sad eyes and demolished my fears about our families clashing. It didn’t matter. Davy and I loved each other. We’d make it through anything.
We had to.
Bonus wedding pics!
(Lumie was the ONLY one who showed any emotion during the whole ceremony…!)
(while Max just looked sad during the entire thing!)
(the only one who threw rice. He seemed really into it, too!)