The air-conditioning was on – but for some reason, the car was colder than it was moments ago.
Moments ago, when we left the cinema holding hands. It’s funny how physically close to someone you can be and yet be oceans apart. Sure, she was right next to me; I could smell the lingering scent of her body lotion mixed with her own smell, but I couldn’t guess what she was thinking. I wanted to ask her what; or make a witty comment about the movie we just watched –
But there was a look on her face that silenced me.
We were driving – or rather I was driving towards her house and the silence filled the car with sound. To hide my increasing nervousness, I pushed the radio power button – but she laid a hand across mine. I pushed the button again, turning the radio off but she still held onto my hand.
I turned towards her slightly, keeping one eye on the road. I had watched too many films of guys driving and being distracted by the women beside them. She was staring at me intently and frankly; I started to sweat around the balls.
‘Is anything wrong?’ I asked.
She swallowed. I started to feel the chill – a chill that had nothing to do with the car air-conditioning. My heart was beating so loudly I could feel it pounding against my eardrums. I held her hand back, realizing how cold it was. I pulled my hand free and turned off the air-conditioning – and then, I held her hand again.
‘I – I’m pregnant. Ba – Seun, I’m carrying your baby.’
You know, the reason I don’t answer all those ‘what would you do’ questions in those Facebook groups is because I know it’s hard to say what you’ll do in ANY situation – except you’ve actually lived through it. If someone had told me before I went into the cinema that evening that everything I thought I knew about myself would change in less than four hours, I’d have sworn heaven and earth.
I’m carrying your baby.
And as I sat beside her, driving towards her house I realized I never meant all the things I said to her. Ideas about ‘always loving her’ and ‘wanting to be with her’ were just that; ideas that couldn’t survive in the real world. I opened my mouth to say something – anything, but I had no idea what, so I closed it back.
I looked at her –
She was in the corner of her seat, sobbing quietly. I didn’t notice when she let go of my hand. Comfort her; the kind part of me insisted. Tell her it will be fine – that everything will be okay.
But I couldn’t bring myself to tell one more lie.