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Waking Up Married(2)

By:Mira Lyn Kelly

It was almost enough to make her laugh, only it really wasn’t     funny and her body was otherwise engaged.

“There can’t be much left” came the gruff voice from behind     her.

As the spasms subsided, she hazarded a glance at the man she’d     married. Beyond the contemplative expression, those dark eyes didn’t offer up     much to read.

“There isn’t...” she groaned. “I’ve been on empty for a few     rounds already. This...is just my stomach making a point...I think.”

“Hmm. Really driving it home, I see.” The touch of dry humor     pulled her focus back to him again. To the details she’d missed in the first     pass. He was tall. And not because of her near-floor-level perspective. Tall     enough so as he leaned against the open doorway, his free hand hung in a loose     grip from the top of the frame mere inches from his head. And he was built in a     powerful, lean-strength kind of way where the muscles across his chest, abdomen,     shoulders and arms were well-defined but without the extreme bulk of serious     bodybuilders. This guy just looked really fit. And as if that weren’t bad     enough, he was classically handsome too, with a blade-straight nose, high     cheekbones and an assortment of even features so appealing she suddenly wondered     how long she’d been staring.

From her little hangout on the floor...by the toilet...where     she’d been throwing up.


Really, the humiliation couldn’t get much worse. But it didn’t     matter. This guy and all his good looks weren’t a part of her plan. So what if     he was handsome, or that she’d seen hints of the kind of humor she typically     appreciated, or that she was, in fact, married to him? She’d had enough close     calls in her life with men she’d actually known, and     she was through with the whole business.

Still, pride had her stumbling to her feet on limbs that were     clumsy and tight from the combination of dehydration and kneeling too long.     Limbs that weren’t quite working. Suddenly she was going right back down until     two strong hands gripped her beneath her arms, holding her steady as she     regained her footing.

The contact was awkward. Her, trying to hold herself apart;     him, trying to support her without getting too close. “Thank you.”

“Not a problem.” And then after a pause, “Just one of the     benefits of having a husband around, I guess.”

She nodded, exhausted, overwhelmed, but somehow more grateful     than words could convey for that bit of superficial exchange. As much as they     needed to, she wasn’t ready to talk about what happened last night. About how     they were going to sort it out this morning and over the next however long it     took to get an annulment processed.

Not until she’d at the very least had a shower, tooth-brushing,     floss and several intensive minutes with the most mediciney mouthwash she could     get her hands on. Glancing down, she added a change of clothes to her list. And     then, committed to doing her part, she replied in kind, “Knew there was a reason     I’d picked one up.”

The low answering chuckle had her daring another look over her     shoulder.

It was the smile that did it. That brought the melee of     vodka-soaked images into order enough for her to see at least a glimpse of the     man from the night before rather than the near stranger she’d woken beside this     morning.

Oh, God. What had she gotten     herself into—and how fast could she get herself out of it?


Twelve hours earlier...

“OH,         COME ON, screw the sperm bank.”     Tina sighed with a dismissive flutter of her candy-apple acrylics. “Where’s the     fun in that?”

Megan Scott tipped her glass, swallowing the last decadent     drops of white-chocolate martini, then slumped deeper into the plush cushions of     the lounge chair she’d taken up residence in some forty minutes before.     Contemplating another drink, she did her best to ignore the incessant bickering     her fellow bridesmaids had perfected through a lifetime of practice.