“I’m not a liar, Erik. I may be a lot of things, but a liar is not one of them,” she said, her body heating with anger.
“I never said you were. Excuse me for being a little freaked-out right now; it’s a little much for me to take. I mean, you pop in here and say, ‘Hey I’m pregnant. Oh, and by the way, it’s yours.’ ”
“How do you think I feel? I’m freaked-out, too, but I’ve kept this quiet long enough. I’m starting to show. I’ve got decisions I need to make and I need to know if you want to be part of them.”
When she looked up, he was looking at where their child was growing. If he was to put his hand on her stomach, he would have been able to feel the baby move. Not that she was going to suggest that; she couldn’t even imagine him touching her right now, or ever again for that matter. She might be irritated, but there was no denying the sexual attraction she had for Erik Titov, even if he had broken her heart.
“I can’t believe this,” he muttered, running his hand through his hair. “Why did you wait so long to tell me?”
Piper held a finger up as she said, “I did try calling you, but you never called me back and I figured if you wanted to talk to me you’d call.”
“I’ve been busy. Leave me a message if it was that urgent! Also, I saw you like four months ago; you could have told me then.”
Piper said heatedly, “Oh, when I was puking my brains out? Yeah, I didn’t feel like talking.”
“There is no reason to be a bitch,” he deadpanned as he pinned her with a look.
“Oh, I’m sorry, let me be happy that I came here as you question the paternity of my child,” she said, crossing her arms.
This was going so bad. In a perfect world, Piper would have told him about the baby and Erik would have wrapped his arms around her, kissing the stuffing out of her, then ask her to marry him, and after this baby was born, they would have at least five more. It wasn’t as if she was truly expecting that, but she was expecting him to at least be a bit more compassionate. Nope, instead she gets Erik doubting if the baby is his.
“Um, excuse me, but for six months you’ve kept the fact that you are pregnant with my alleged child! How do I know that you didn’t get knocked up by some other guy and now you are trying to pin it on me because that guy ran out on you?”
Oh, she was going to kill him. She was going to murder her child’s father.
“You jerk! I’m not like the whores you’ve been hanging with, claiming that they are pregnant just to get your money. I am a good person who made the biggest mistake of her life by going home with you. You would know that if you had given me the time of day. You ran out on me and left a prize behind!” she yelled, pointing to her stomach. “I don’t know how to handle this. I don’t know what to do. All I know is that I am pregnant. With your baby. And I thought maybe I should let you know. That you would want to know.”
Nothing was said for a few moments as they stood with their eyes locked on each other. Their chests were rising and falling in unison, as everything around them was silent. The only thing Piper could hear was her own heartbeat and Erik’s labored breaths.
“I don’t know what to say,” he finally said.
Piper shook her head. “Me, neither, but I thought I should tell you. I’ve already told three people, and I thought it was time to tell the baby’s daddy. I’ve got to tell my whole family next; they need to know.”
He nodded. “So Audrey, Reese, and Harper know? Do they know I’m the father?”
One would think that she would have told her twin sister first, but Piper hadn’t. She didn’t want to hear the disappointment in Reese’s voice, or be scolded by her, either. She really hadn’t even wanted to tell Harper yet, but she needed to explain to her why she couldn’t be a surrogate for her and Jakob.
Piper shook her head. “No, Harper and Audrey don’t know it’s you; only Elli does.”
Erik’s head whipped up. “You told Elli?”
His voice had a little edge to it and his eyes seemed wider. Piper nodded as she said, “She was the first one I told.”
“Oh f**k,” he said, leaning over and bracing his hands on his legs. “You told my boss, before you told me?”
“Um, she is like my sister. I wasn’t thinking of you,” she shot back.
“Obviously, you haven’t thought of me at all. You didn’t give me any options in this. Nothing. You just did what you pleased and kept this from me. Are you crazy?”
Piper’s eyebrows shot up. How friggin’ dare he?
“Excuse me? I did try calling you, but some f**king ho always answered the phone. At least I finally came by and told you. I could have just kept it from you altogether. Maybe I should have.”
“If only! That would have made this so much better, but instead you go and tell my boss! I mean f**k, Piper. If you wanted to f**k me over, at least do it in private.”
Piper’s face was hot with anger and she was sure she was going to reach out and knock his head off.
“You made it very clear that you never wanted to see me or to f**k me again. I kind of understand you’re angry about my telling Elli, but get over it. She is only concerned about me, the baby, and how I am going to make it. She hasn’t even brought you up! Anyway, it really doesn’t matter who I’ve told. I’m not here to discuss that,” she said, shaking her head. Her anger was beginning to get the best of her. She was letting the fact that he hurt her and left her fuel this argument when really all she needed to know was what he wanted to do about all this. “I need to know if you are going to be involved. I know that we won’t be together, I get that, but I’m wondering if you’ll be in our child’s life. And I’m here to tell you now, I don’t care either way.”