We’re sitting at the kitchen table watching Rose make tea when my calm evaporates, and I can’t hold inside my unanswered questions any longer.
“So… you and Alistair?” I start because there’s no easy way around this, and I figure we should dive right into the nitty-gritty.
“It’s not vat you think.”
“You’re pregnant. How can it not be what I think?” I shake my head, releasing her hand. “I’m not stupid, Hilda.”
I watch her carefully. “You were together.”
“Ve got clozer vile you vere… and it just happened. One time. Uh… maybe more. I…
Fuck. Of course, it did.
“Please don’t explain.” I pause to collect myself, taking a shaky breath in before I continue. “I-I knew we were never exclusive, and I have no expectations for the future, if that’s what you’re worried about.”
“But I am vorried, and I don’t vant you to be upzet. You aren’t ready for this.
“How do you know what I’m ready for and what I’m not?” I raise my voice, barely keeping control. “I’m not as fragile as you may think. So, stop treating me like I’m some fucking precious doll that’s going to break under pressure. I’m fine.”
“You aren’t fine, Bella. I can zee it. I know you’re hurt and disappointed. Things haven’t been the zame zince…”
There’s a sudden banging on the door to our apartment, causing all of us to jump.
“Fuck! He’s here. Bella, I’m zorry.”
“Hilda!” Alistair continues.
She storms over to the door, opening it in a flourish and yells, “Vat? Halistair, I’m done talking to you! I’m trying to talk vith Bella.”
“I’m not done talking to ye.” Alistair fires back, furious and panting as if he’s run a marathon, trying to catch up with her.