Maya was pacing the floor madder than a feral cat locked in a cage. The day after the modeling show, she popped into the bookstore to pick up a copy of the TIE THE KNOT wedding magazine . She didn’t pick up on it at first, because she was so excited to flip to the middle and see all the great shots they had gotten of her in the wedding dresses. The pictures were just beautiful and it made her sentimental all over again, thinking of Ian on their rushed wedding day. But then she flipped back to the front and really looked. There she was on the front cover, a picture of her from her bare shoulders up. It was obvious to her what they had done. They were trying to make it look like she wasn’t wearing clothes and in essence referencing back to those leaked naked photos. Was she ever going to be able to get away from that one stupid mistake. Well, she had gotten a lot wiser in the last two months. A picture on a cover was never just a picture on a cover. Its what sells and sex appeal sells.
There was no point in calling Eddy to talk about it. He would probably just laugh again like he did when that unfortunate incident happened and then tell her she was being paranoid. He didn’t call her last night either. She woke this morning still holding her phone on her chest. She checked her caller I.D., but no call. She thought about calling him but she knew his show would have gone pretty late last night and didn’t want to wake him up.
Maya was just about to leave for school when she had a knock on her door. She opened it to a vase full of flowers being held out.
“Someone got flowers!” said a voice behind the bouquet. Chloe entered her room and placed the vase on her desk. “Read the card. Ooooo, I bet they are from Eddy!”
Maya, pulled the card out from among the flowers and slid it open to read it.
Maya let out a gasp. Ian? Did that mean that Ian had been at the modeling show? No, he couldn’t have been. It was by special invite only. How would he have gotten in?
“What does it say?”, Chloe said starting to reach for the card. Maya quickly snatched the card back and stuck it in her pocket.
“Oh you know, just some sappy stuff. They are beautiful aren’t they!” Maya replied turning towards the flowers in an effort to distract Chloe.
“He is just so sweet. Just like him to make sure they sent over your favourite shade of purple! Oh look at the time, we got to go!”
Maya and Chloe raced off to their first class of the day, but Maya’s head was not in school. She stared out the window contemplating the situation. The sound of the students pushing back chairs and gathering their things brought Maya out of deep thought, and it was then she realized that she hadn’t heard a word the teacher said. All she could think about was those flowers and Ian. She knew she should probably speak to Ian and thank him for the gift. But she wasn’t sure just how she wanted to go about it. She had been terrified of this moment since the day she left, for she knew it was foolish to think she would never hear from or speak to Ian again. There was Jin to think about after all. But to be honest, she did think it would be years later. Should she text? That seemed the cowardly way out. Write a note and drop it in the mail? A little more personal. Or should she swallow her pride and her fear and pick up the phone to call? But it wasn’t just fear, she didn’t want to get into a big long discussion or fight over her leaving. Not when emotions were still too fresh. So she decided to write him a note.
Thank you for the beautiful flowers, I just love them. You remembered my favourite colour!
I think of you often
No Scratch that. Try again.
Thank you for the beautiful flowers. They are sitting on my desk in my dorm room and give the room such a lovely scent.
Hmmmm, how should she sign it? Your wife? Sincerely Maya? Love Maya? She mulled that over for a few minutes and decided on just Maya. She walked down to the mailbox and dropped it in. By now it was about five in the evening and she still hadn’t heard from Eddy. She hoped that nothing was wrong.
When Maya stepped back into the Sorority House she was stopped by Chloe.
“Do you have a minute to talk?” she asked Maya
“Sure. What’s up?”
“Well, its just,” she glanced around the room and lowered her voice. “I’m worried about something. I think I might be pregnant.”
“Umm, Okay. Why do you think you might be pregnant?” Maya whispered back to her.
“I’ve been sick in the morning for the past three days. I had this funny strange feeling come over me the other day and then everything started happening.”
Maya’s heart started to race. That strange funny feeling had happened to her too. With Jin.
“You’re sure you aren’t just coming down with something right?”
“I don’t think so. What am I going to do? I can’t be pregnant. Not now! I have a boyfriend back home. He will never forgive me and I love him so very much.”
“The important thing is that we don’t put the cart before the horse, kind of thing. Let’s go to the hospital and take the test. Worry later.”
“Okay, but you will come with me won’t you?”
“Of course. It’s going to be fine. You’ll see”
Maya and Chloe spent three hours in the hospital waiting for her test results to come back. Chloe didn’t want to leave, so Maya wandered the hospital. She came upon the maternity ward and spent some time staring at the babies in their incubators through the glass partition wall. They were so tiny and beautiful, each and everyone of them. ‘I wish I had a picture of Jin’ she thought. Thoughts of Jin brought tears to her eyes and that part of her that she had locked away to protect itself opened up.
“My precious little boy,” Maya whispered to the glass. “I love you so very much.”
“Maya? Maya guess what?” Then Chloe saw Maya’s face. “What’s wrong?”
“Oh,” Maya giggled slightly to cover her foolishness. “Nothing is wrong. Babies just make me weepy” she lied. “Did you get your results?”
“Yes! Not pregnant! Thank goodness! We should go out and celebrate!” Chloe said
“If you don’t mind. I think I would just like to go back to the Sorority House and get an early night. I’m suddenly just beat. Maybe we could hang out tomorrow though.”
“WELL, you know….I could just come back and cuddle in bed with you, uh huh!” Chloe said wiggling her eyebrows at Maya.
Then they both burst into laughter remembering that awkward conversation they had, the morning after their drunken bed play.
“Come on,” she said to Chloe grabbing her hand. “Before you get yourself into even more trouble!”
Maya had a fitful restless night. She had trouble falling asleep and when she did, she had dreams of Jin crying and calling out for mama. She kept running and running but could never quite reach him. I’m coming she would yell to him and his screams would just get louder. Then his screams started to fade away and the room got darker and darker till she was standing in a pitch black room. She called for Jin several times but all she heard was silence.
When Maya woke, her face was wet with tears and she rolled over and quietly cried into her pillow. When she was feeling a little better, she grabbed her phone to check for any calls. Nothing. She was really starting to get worried about Eddy and vowed that if she hadn’t heard from him by the end of the day, she was going to call him. She was sure that talking to Eddy would help calm her nerves and make her feel better.
As it was Saturday, Maya didn’t have anywhere to be so she spent some time just lying in bed thinking about the week ahead. Just as she was getting up, someone shoved a piece of mail under her door. She grabbed it and hopped back up on the bed. Maybe it was a letter from Sun! But she opened the envelope and pulled out a picture that had been ripped out of the TIE THE KNOT wedding magazine. Attached to it was a note, that read:
This is my favourite one! You look positively glowing in it. But you look beautiful in anything you wear!
I’m glad you loved the flowers!
Maya was so shocked by the note that she couldn’t move. She had no idea what was going through Ian’s mind or what he was possibly thinking. Confusion turned to worry and worry turned to a pounding headache. So Maya crawled back into bed and fell back to sleep. Sleep now she thought. Worry later.