“What’s up with her?” Bishop asked.
“She doesn’t want to bore you with the details of preparing the nursery, especially as you’ve been so strict as to not want to be part of it, or the baby’s life.”
“She told you about that?” Bishop asked.
He hadn’t spoken to his son about seeing Robin on the night he found her upset. “She did. I’ve got club business to attend to next week, and I need to know I can trust you to take care of her.”
“Of course you can.”
“Can I? You’re rarely around. I’ve got it on good authority you don’t even hang out with her at the high school. You avoid her like the plague. Tell me again why I should trust you to take care of her?” He put his hands on his hips as he stood up to confront his son.
“I know I haven’t been the best … friend right now, but I’ll get better at it.”
“Son, the time you had to be pissed about this has passed. You need to get over whatever kind of shit you’re dealing with and see that this is not Robin’s fault. It’s not anyone’s that is alive.”
“I know. I know. You tell me how you’d handle it if your best friend came home pregnant with another guy’s kid and you had to marry her.”
“Bishop, you didn’t have to marry her. You volunteered. All of this could go away. I will make sure the marriage is annulled, and handle the rest. If you really want to call it a day and you can’t get over your petty shit, then tell me now.”
“I don’t want to stop being married to her, but I want her back.”
“She hasn’t gone anywhere, son. She’s right here, but you’re going to lose her if you’re not careful, which would be a real shame because you’ve got a keeper.” He’d wanted to hit his son, hurt him.
Bishop didn’t deserve to be with Robin. He spent way too much time blaming her for what fucking happened. He was done accommodating the little shit.
“This is your last chance, Bishop. If you don’t do as I ask, take care of her, when I get back, you’re out.”
“You’d kick me out of my own home?”
“You’re eighteen. This is not your house. Be lucky I don’t charge you fucking rent.”
He left Bishop to deal with his parting words. He meant every single one of them.
Robin was in the nursery, staring at his artwork. She chewed on her thumb and immediately pulled it out of her mouth when she saw him.
“That can’t happen,” she said.
“I … don’t … I’m sorry.”
“You don’t have to apologize. We will both forget it ever happened. Like the night we made our little girl. It didn’t happen.”
“Okay, fine. It didn’t happen.”
“Unless what?” she asked.
“You want it to have happened?”
They heard Bishop moving around, and he truly believed if his son hadn’t made more noise, she’d have given him an honest answer.
“No, we should forget it ever happened. We’re … it’s the paint fumes and everything else. You know, we need to keep our heads on straight and not let this get to us. It was the fumes. There’s Bishop to consider, and I don’t know what happened. It was the spur of the moment.”
She pressed her lips together. “Did you … like it?”
“What we did, the kiss?”
“Robin, we’re supposed to be forgetting about it.”
“You’re right. Totally right, I’m sorry.”
He moved up close, and she didn’t step back. She tilted her head, and he stared into her eyes. “I loved the kiss, but it won’t ever happen again and I won’t ever think about it.”
Bishop stopped outside Robin’s room. It had been a long time since he’d gone to see her at night.
He didn’t stink of another woman. He’d already showered, but the idea of going to his own room, to sleep in his lonely bed, didn’t appeal.
You’ve fucked three different women this day alone, and not once did you think about her.
Let her go.
He knocked on the door and waited for her invitation. She was sitting in bed, reading another pregnancy book.
“Hey,” she said.
“Hey. I … erm … I don’t want to sleep alone. I know I have no right to ask you to let me hold you, but I really want to.”
“Bishop, I don’t want to argue with you, but I’m still pregnant and you’ve hated being near me.”
“Are you sure you can handle it?”
“I can handle it. This baby, it’s part of you, and whatever is part of you, I can handle.”
“Are you sure?” she asked.
There she goes, always caring about you. Always being considerate to your delicate sensibilities. What do you say in return? Oh, that’s right, you screw other women.
“I’m sure.” He stepped into the bedroom, closing the door behind him.
He knew his father had been spending a great deal of time with her, and not for the first time, he wondered if there was something going on.