February 12, 2008
By Colie Kreps, MontAlto, PA

“Im just not in love with you anymore.”
It was the most tired, worn out excuse she’d heard.
“Sure, is that jerk code for ‘I found someone else, she’s not pregnant, and I’m leaving you
because its less work and less responsibility?” Her voice dripped with sarcasm and the venom of
a scorned woman. He didn’t speak, just sat in front of her, eyes pleading, almost asking her not to
make it difficult. She glared at him. She wasn’t in the mood for this crap today, her feet were
swollen, her stomach huge with child, and he was telling her now that he was leaving? She’d
known for months that he’d been sneaking around on her, and he chose now, of all times to tell
her, just three days before their baby was due?
“Get out.” She pointed to the door. Like an obedient puppy, he got up and walked through the
door without looking back.

6 Months Later
Jen sat in her rocking chair, baby in her arms. She felt so alone, and so out of place. Her house was quiet, even with the noises of traffic on the nearby interstate were hushed tonight. Nel looked up at her, smiled, and cooed in a way that was so natural to babies.
“You just don’t want to go to sleep, do you?” The response was playful kicking, and joyful screaming, “Alright little miss Nel, here you go.” She set the baby down on all fours, letting her crawl around on the nursery floor. Jen looked at the clock for what seemed like the millionth time tonight, seven a.m., two more hours and she would be pulling another shift at the factory. She looked at Nel, who was playing with Jack, the Jack Russell terrier. They were playing tug of war with her sleeve. Nel’s laughter filled the room as he let go, and she landed on the floor. She smiled at this picture, knowing that someday it would come back to her. The sound of the doorbell interrupted her moment.
“Come on baby, lets go see who it is.” She pulled Nel into her arms, and walked through the house to answer the door. She peered through the peephole to find a tall man standing on her front porch. She cracked the door, allowing the chain she had installed to do its job.
“Who are you?” Jen knew her voice was small, knew he could read her every emotion in her voice. She despised her self for being so weak.
“Jen, it’s me, Logan. I called and told you that I was in town this week, and I was wondering if you wanted to get together?”
Logan? Oh, yeah, her best friend in highschool. She undid the chain, and swung the door open. She could tell by the look on his face, that this was not what he expected. Nel cooed, and opened her arms, leaning forward like she wanted to hug the strange man in the doorway.
“You had a baby?” His eyes looked sad suddenly, “you never told me.”
“She’s only six months old.” She knew that it wasn’t the explanation he was looking for.
“The father is-“
“Not in our lives.” She smiled down at Nel, who was clinging to her, now that the excitement of meeting a new person had passed.
“God Jen, I’m sorry.”
“We get along just fine.” She paused for a moment, “I’ve actually got to go to work today,” He frowned, “but, I have off tomorrow, if you want to do lunch.”
A smile graced his face, and he watched Jen pull the baby up higher on her hip, “Sure, around one then?”
“That’s fine, but for now, would you like to come in?”
He stepped into her small apartment, looking around to find a nice living space.
“Are you just going to stand in the hall, or would you like to sit down?” Jen indicated a small green couch in the room right off the hall. She shook her head at how awkward and uncomfortable he looked, just standing there.
“Jen, uh, your dog apparently doesn’t want me to sit down.” He was laughing, it looked good on him. She put Nel down, and picked Jack up off the couch.
“I never knew you were so afraid of ankle biters, and im sorry to tell you, but I have two.” She smiled, nodding towards Jack and Nel, who had resumed their game of tug of war. He laughed again. She sat down in the chair across from him, crossing her legs under her.
“I have a little time, if you want to start catching up now.”
“Tell me about what you’ve been up to.”
“Isn’t that obvious?” She smiled.
“Okay, tell me what happened then.”
“You sure you want to hear this one?”
“I wouldn’t ask if I didn’t want to know.”
“Okay, well, after college, I met this guy named Dylan. We started dating, then we started hooking up, you know the drill.” She paused for a moment, unsure weather or not to go on. “I fell in love with him, and I guess he loved me back, because he proposed to me. Two weeks later, a truck hit his car. He died.
Right after he died, his brother moved in with me, as a sort of suicide watch type thing. It was kind of weird, but because we could relate over losing the same person, we bonded, and as I said, you know where that leads. I ended up pregnant. When I told him, he acted happy, but when I started showing, he stopped coming home later and later, and finally he didn’t come home at all. He was spending all of his down time with his other woman. He left me three days before I had Nel, hasn’t bothered to come around since.” She said all of this as though it didn’t bother her, the pain in her eyes the only give away that it hurt to talk about.
“Im sorry Jen, I really am.”
Nel had made her way over to where he was sitting, and was pulling on his pant leg, curious once more about the intruder in her home.
“What’s her name.” He asked, scooping her up off the floor, and placing her on his lap.
Jen called in sick to work that day, taking time off to catch up with her old friend. Logan spent two weeks in Seattle, getting to know Jen. He adored Nel, he treated her like his own daughter. Before he left, he gave them plane tickets to come to Georgia, where he lived. Then he drove away.

Just like every other guy. Jen thought, watching him pull out of her drive way. She looked down at the plane tickets resting on her kitchen table. Her flight was scheduled for three weeks from now. She was forcing herself to go, after all, what could it hurt? She smiled at the thought of seeing him again. These past two weeks had been an odd experience. Seeing her best friend after three years, having him fall in love with her little girl, spending so much time with him. She knew that he didn’t want to be more than friends, but as long as he didn’t break Nel’s heart, that was fine by her.

Logan drove to the airport, thinking about the past two weeks. The way she smiled, the way she carried her head high, proud of who she was. He was falling in love with her, there was no denying it. Not with just Jen either, her baby girl was adorable. He turned into the parking lot, and found a parking spot between two large SUVs. He got on his plane still thinking about Jen.

She stood in the terminal three weeks later, Nel perched on her hip. She scanned the crowd for any sign of him. Jen felt a tap on her shoulder, and turned around to see if it was him. Behind her was a small man in a tidy blue suit.
“Ms. Park?”
“Yes?” she was cautious, not knowing this man.
“Mr. Adams requested me to come pick you up. He had some last minute adjustments to make at your house.”
“Okay. Wait, I have a house?” The man smiled at the bewilderment in her eyes.
“You do now.” He motioned for her to follow him.
When they were outside, he went to a stretch limo waiting in the pickup area. He opened the door, and waited silently for her to get in. She moved slowly, feeling as if she were in a dream.
Five minutes later they pulled up in front of a white farm house, with a Mercedes parked in front of it. Logan rested on the porch, sitting in a white wicker chair. He smiled as she stepped out of the limo.
“What’s all this?” She asked, climbing the steps to the porch.
“It’s a house I own, that I’m letting you stay in.” He smiled, standing to greet her, “It’s good to see you again.”
Nel squealed in delight at seeing him again, reaching out for him. He took her from Jen, walking toward the house as he did so. Jen followed him in.
They never left the house, Logan asked Jen to marry him while she was in Georgia, and she agreed. A year later, Nel had a little brother named Dylan. Logan’s family became Jen’s, she never felt alone, or out of place again, she finally found the peace and serenity she’d been looking for.

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