Just saying it brought me more relief than I thought possible. Dr. Anshon nodded and asked, “Are you pregnant? It sounds like the early months of pregnancy.”

I shook my head and frowned. “No. I haven’t missed a period, so we can rule that out.”

She stood up and patted me on the shoulder. “Well, I think I know what you’re worried about and while I can’t say for sure it’s not what your mother had, I can say let’s get some blood and see what’s going on so we can get you back to feeling on top of the world, just like a newlywed should, okay?”

“Okay. Sounds good.”

She scribbled something on my chart and turned to speak to Jana. “Please escort Nina to the lab. Tell them I want these back ASAP.”

Dr. Anshon turned back to face me. “Don’t worry about my putting a rush on these tests. It’s just that I don’t want to see you worried any longer than you have to be. Give me a couple days and I’ll give you a call when I find anything out. Until then, go home and enjoy that new husband of yours, okay?”

I nodded, thankful for her kind gesture and for making sure we found out what was going on as soon as possible. As I left with Jana to head down to the lab, I hoped what she found out was something simple and not the one thing that would put an end to all my dreams and happiness.

* * *

Jordan stood next to me holding up a shirt in front of her. “Is it me?”

I examined the floral pattern next to her face and shook my head. “It’s a little hippie for you, isn’t it?”

Shrugging, she hung the shirt back on the rack. “I don’t know. I thought maybe I should find a new style, but you’re right. I’m not a flashback kind of chick.”

“Why do you need a new style? I like this Jordan.”

She frowned slightly and shrugged again. “I don’t know. I just figured maybe I should change something up. You know, since Gage is out in LA with all those beautiful people, I thought maybe I should change things up a bit.”

I smoothed her long blond hair away from her face and shook my head. “He’s only gone for a little while, Jordan. That doesn’t mean he’s going to get all Hollywood on you. He liked you like this. Why would you think you should change?”

“I don’t know. Just feeling insecure, I guess. I’m so very…well, New York, but what if he wants a sunny California girlfriend instead?”

“First of all, you do remember who we’re talking about, right? He’s more down-to-earth than any man I know. Second of all, you being New York is exactly what makes you so fantastic. This is the greatest city in the world, and you are its finest example of that greatness. You’re gorgeous, smart, and genuine. No one talks the talk and walks the walk like you do. Don’t change anything, you hear me?”

Nodding, she forced a smile. “Got it. Thanks for keeping me on the straight and narrow, Nina. I guess I was just feeling a little worried about all those stunning actresses he’s probably seeing every day and night out there.”

“He’s got a stunning elementary school teacher right here, so who cares about those starlets? He wouldn’t like them anyway, Jordan. More likely, he’s simply doing his silent as a statue thing while he guards that kid Tristan got him set up with. It’s just for a few months and then Mr. Teen Superstar will be done with his movie and back here and Gage will be back with you.”

“You’re right. Forget a new style.”

I knew what was bothering her. Gage had dated an actress before he came to work for me, but that was then. Now he had my beautiful best friend in his life. “That phony grin tells me all I need to know. You’re worried about him meeting someone out there, aren’t you?”

“Not just someone. Her. You told me he seemed pretty sad about her when he told you about them. What if he’s not over her?”

Whipping out my phone, I Googled Angela Macaran. At the bottom of the first page of search results I found what I was looking for. Turning my phone toward Jordan, I pointed at the screen. “There. No worries, even though you shouldn’t have any.”

She leaned in and squinted at the screen. “Actress Angela Macaran on location in Paris with her husband.” Looking up at me, Jordan smiled. “Well, I guess that’s that.”

I pulled my phone back and shut off the screen. “So no more talk of her with Gage. And forget about any of those other starlets. Got it?”

Grabbing another shirt from the rack near us, Jordan saluted me. “Got it, Sarge.”

“Good. Now let’s get out of here and get some lunch. There’s a salad with my name on it.”

Jordan began chastising me about my weight obsession, but my phone rang, saving me from her lecture. Looking down at the screen, I saw it was Dr. Anshon’s office. “Hang on. I have to take this.”

Turning away, I swiped to answer the call and pressed the phone to my ear. My heart raced as every worry I’d worked so hard to conceal came rushing to the surface. “Hello?”

“Nina, it’s Jana from Dr. Anshon’s office. She wanted me to call you to let you know you have nothing to worry about. The tests came back. You’re pregnant.”

All of a sudden, the world seemed to come to a dead stop. Pregnant? That was impossible. I hadn’t missed a period. How could this be? “Jana, is the doctor sure? I haven’t missed a month.”

“Dr. Anshon was surprised too since she remembered you saying that, but that’s why she wants you to get checked out immediately. She had me make an appointment for you at a specialist OB-GYN who handles high risk pregnancies. Don’t worry, though. It’s not that she’s convinced anything’s wrong, but the fact that you haven’t missed your period and the test still shows you’re pregnant means this is a unique case. You have an appointment with Dr. Michaelson this Monday at eleven. If you need anything between now and then, don’t hesitate to call, okay? And congratulations!”

I mumbled my stunned thanks and pressed End on my phone. The store felt like it was swimming around me, so I grabbed onto the clothes rack and shook my head to clear out the confusion. Pregnant. Tristan and I were going to have a baby.

“Nina, what’s wrong? Who was that on the phone?”

“The doctor. She found out why I’ve been so tired lately.”

A look of pure terror crossed Jordan’s features, and she grabbed a hold of my shoulders. “It doesn’t matter what she said. Tristan’s not going to take the word of just one doctor. You’ve got enough money to fly around the world and find a cure for whatever it is, but I can tell by your face that it’s bad.”

Slowly, I shook my head. “No, it’s not.”

Jordan’s expression of fear turned to one of confusion. “It’s not? Then why do you look like you’re going to fall over?”

“I’m pregnant. Dr. Anshon says I’m pregnant.”

I’d never seen such happiness in Jordan’s green eyes before. “Pregnant? Oh, my God! You’re going to have a baby!”

Nodding, I smiled, still unable to believe it was true. A baby. We were having a baby.

“You look like you’re going to pass out. Let’s find you a seat.”

I looked around for somewhere to sit and saw a chair near the dressing rooms. Making my way over to it, I barely kept myself standing my legs were so shaky. Sitting down, I dropped my bag and turned to face Jordan crouching next to me. “I wasn’t expecting this. I guess I’m just surprised.”

“Honey, I imagine you two have been at it like bunny rabbits, as all newlyweds are. If you aren’t on the Pill, it was bound to happen.”

“I actually stopped taking it when Tristan left. I was never very good at remembering anyway, so it was easy to stop. Then when he returned, I just never started again.”

“Then you could be up to four months pregnant already?” she asked in amazement.

Lowering my voice, I explained, “I haven’t missed a period. I wasn’t holding out on you. I just didn’t know. What if that means something’s wrong?”

Jordan gently ran her hand up and down my forearm to ease my worries. “Don’t think like that. There are women who go the entire nine months without missing their period. I saw one on the Discovery Channel who never even knew she was pregnant. She just thought she was putting on winter weight. Then one day she felt like she had bad stomach cramps and before she knew it, she was the mother of a perfect baby boy. She barely made it to the hospital. So don’t worry. That little boy or girl growing inside you will be just fine.”

“Thank God for your love of the Discovery Channel or I’d never know about these things,” I said with a chuckle. This was why Jordan was the best kind of friend. Even in moments when I was terrified, she knew just what to say to make me smile and forget my worries.

“Damn right. Somebody’s got to watch the medical oddities of this world. You know what this means, right? You don’t have to be consigned to Salad Hell. Now you’re eating for two.”

“Oh, that’s good because I wasn’t looking forward to that. I should call Tristan and tell him.”

“Good. Let’s get out of here and get some real food in you. I’m starving too, so it’s perfect timing.”

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