Lucy sat in her car next to the old road that led out of town. She still felt horribly drained as she looked at the rain falling, washing away the dust and dirt from the earth.
How she wished that her mother was still alive. She so desperately needed to talk to someone about everything that had happened. What a fool she had been, letting things get so out of hand. She should never have started the afair with Mark. She should have read the signs that were so obvious like the secrecy and the fact that she could never call him when he wasn’t with her or the fact that she had never been invited to his house.
Lucy turned the key in the ignition. What do I do now Lord? How do I face my shame?
Lucy drove on and on as the wipers swished out a rhythm of their own.
Every moment on her own brought a reminder of what she has done. She was standing on the brink of losing everything that was important to her. Her selfrespect and everyone else’s. If her pregnancy became known everyone would know who she was. She was the other woman. The Scarlet letter that has to be avoided. Her colegues at work will despice her and shun her from their clique.
Lucy placed a slender hand over her abdomen. I’m sorry little one. So, so sorry to be bringing you into this world like this.
Just then she realized that she had to quit her job and move away because she couldn’t face the shame of it. She had to think about her child’s future happiness. She couldn’t let her baby be born in shame. Even if this was the twentyfirst century people still looked down on children who was born out of wedlock especially if they were the result of a extra-marital afair.
On her way out of Riverdale she stopped at the offices of Mcdonald&co. When she finally had the courage she went inside and resigned.
For a brief moment she had wanted to tell Sheila who was the receptionist everything that has happend but she stopped herself. There was no point in spilling the beans. No one had to know.
Before she left she said bye to her old friend and colegue Anne but she wasn’t there.
She left Anne a simple note before she left the office for the last time.
She drove to the highway that headed to Clearview that was about two hours drive away. She tried to keep her mind blank but still the memories came flooding back, suffocating her little by little.
She gave way to the tears again as the realization hit home. She was twenty-eight and pregnant with no job or a medical aid and barely enough savings in her bank account to last through out her pregnancy. What on earth was she doing?
She thought about praying as she drove but so far it hasn’t helped one bit so she desided against it. If she was going to survive she had to do it using her own wits. She sat back in the carseat, relaxing as she continued to drive.
She could find new employment somewhere but it involved struggling to raise her child on her own, full time daycare and state-provided medical care. Lucy closed her eyes for a brief second. After the recent scandal involving newborn babies dying because of lack of care by the nurses who worked at some other state hospital she wasn’t keen on the idea of giving birth in one. Ofcourse their were millions of children who managed to grow up just fine under such circumstances.
Lucy switched gears as she stared straight at the road in front of her.
Not my baby.
As the sun began to shine weakly through the clouds Lucy knew what she had to do. It wasn’t the ideal but it would have to do.
Lucy pulled over on the side of the street infront of a neat little double story house.
Maybe he could give her a job at his successfull advertising company, she hoped as she got out of her car.
She knocked three times on the door and waited.
“Lucy?” Matt asked surprised, “What are you doing here?”
Lucy swallowed hard, “I need your help.”
Matt looked at Lucy worried. He hadn’t expect to see her again since she had broken it off with him a couple of months ago but he was glad that she came. He had been praying night and day that she would come back to him. Finally the Lord has answered his prayers.
“Can I come in?” Lucy asked softly, interupting Matt’s thoughts.
He opened the door wider and without thinking twice Lucy walked inside. She would beg her ex on her knees if she had to as long as her baby was provided for. It may be awkward at first to work for him but she had no alternative. She had acted on impulse just a few short hours ago when she left her life behind in Riverdale and she wasn’t feeling sorry for it but that meant that she had to get new employment fast if she wanted to prevent her baby from being born in poverty.
Before she knew it she layed her cards on the table, telling Matt everything before she could stop herself and she felt even worse for doing so. Matt was her ex. He had nothing to do with the huge mess she had selfishly created for herself.
Matt listened intently at Lucy as she spoke, his heart aching seeing her so troubled and distraught. He knew he should be disgusted by her actions but instead it was the oposite. His heart filled with more love towards her. It was as if God was whispering in his ear to give her another chance. He knew with a certainy in his heart that he still wanted to marry her even though she was broken and falling to pieces at his feet, begging him for a job.
She told Matt everything and when they had talked everything through he asked her again to marry him like a did a couple of months ago. Matt knew he was her second choice, a means for her to survive. He knew she didn’t love him like he loved her yet he still felt the need to make her his wife.
“Lucy I won’t give you a job,” he said softly, taking her slender hand in his, “I want to give you more,”
Lucy looked at Matt confused as she sniffed softly into a tissue. What on earth was he saying?
“I hope you don’t run away this time but I would rather marry you than have you working for me,” Matt said, knowing it sounded stupidly absurd.
“Why?” Lucy asked disbelievingly. He couldn’t be serious. After everything she had done to him he should hate her or gain some pleasure out of her problems. He shouldn’t be proposing again. It made no sense.
His pale blue eyes rested on her face and he took a deep breath before he spoke, ” I know it sounds weak, perhaps even stupid but I still love you Lucy. Maybe you don’t feel exactly the same but I’m sure that I can be a good husband to you and maybe in time you could love me again,”
Lucy shaked her head, “And the baby? You do realize that…”
“I will love the baby just as much because it’s a part of you Lucy,” Matt kneeled infront of Lucy, “I know you don’t get it and maybe you don’t even believe me when I say it but I have always loved you Lucy. I have never stopped, ” Matt swallowed hard at the lump that formed in his throat, “Don’t ask questions that I can not explain the answers to. Just say yes and marry me,”
Unable to speak Lucy just nodded yes with her head as she cried. Maybe she was being selfish again but Matt was offering her and her unborn child the promise of love and a future as a family. And perhaps in time if she could forgive herself she could love him the way he deserved to be loved.