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Author's Chapter Notes:

Alyssa tells Sean the truth about the afternoon she spent with Nick. Shayla makes a not so veiled threat.

Chapter 9 – Coming Clean

Alyssa sat at her kitchen table, staring at the pictures that laid out in front of her in disbelief. She still was baffled by their existence. Was there really some loser out there who had nothing better to do than follow her and Nick around for an entire afternoon, snapping pictures? And the worst part was the way that the photographer had spun the pictures into something complete untrue; making something so innocent appear so scandalous. It was amazing how the person behind the lens could portray their subjects in any way that they wished. As artists they could skew reality and have their pictures tell whatever story they wished. These set of pictures in front of her clearly told the story of some kind of secret, adulterous love affair. If there was anything farther from the truth, she sniffed to herself, amused by the irony of the whole situation.

The amusement did not last long. Glancing over at the clock behind her, the harsh reality of the situation came crashing down on her. Sean would be walking in that door any moment now and as much as she would’ve liked to ignore the situation that hung over her ominously, she knew she’d have to come clean to him about the pictures, which would mean admitting that she lied to him about her afternoon with Nick. When she’d first gotten Nick’s message about the pictures being leaked, she actually almost didn’t believe him until she’d went online and googled them herself. With the proof right in front of her face like that, there was no denying it. She was going to have to break the news to Sean now before the pictures wound up in some tabloid.

Of course she’d considered just plain not telling him. She’d be able to get away with it… Maybe. Thankfully in most of the pictures she was wearing sunglasses and even the ones where she wasn’t weren’t the clearest. To anyone who didn’t know her very well they might pass the pictures by without suspecting that it was actually Alyssa in the photographs. Sean would be able to tell, but then again he wasn’t the kind who read tabloids or who had any remote interest in celebrity scandals. Still Alyssa realized that she couldn’t take the risk of a friend of Sean’s making some kind of comment or him overhearing any rumors. It would only blow up in her face and make her seem guiltier in his eyes. Honesty is the best policy, she assured herself taking a deep breath.

Her thoughts were interrupted by the sound of the front door opening. The noise made her spring up from her seat as she watched her husband step inside the doorway. She tried to gauge his mood from the expression on his face, but his face was blank. Afraid that she’d lose her nerve, Alyssa met him at the door with a light peck at the corner of his mouth. “How was work?”

“It was all right,” Sean answered, looking at her a little strangely. “What’s going on?”

“What do you mean what’s going on? Nothing’s going on,” Alyssa quickly replied.

Sean still looked suspicious. “You never meet me at the door like this unless you want something.”

Alyssa sighed, seeing the perfect opportunity, but dreading Sean’s imminent reaction to her confession. She knew very well how Sean felt about Nick and he knew he’d be pissed to find out about the pictures. She wondered if he’d even believe her, or if he’d buy the paparazzo’s interpretation of the events afternoon which included Nick buying her a diamond necklace and then the two of them sneaking out for a secret rendezvous on his boat. “Well, there kind of is something I need to talk to you about.”

“Okay…” Sean now looked concerned. “Is there something wrong?”

“Not exactly. Maybe we should sit down at the kitchen table,” she suggested.

Sean still seemed puzzled, but obliged, taking a seat at the table. Alyssa took the seat across from him, gathering up the internet photos before Sean had a chance to look at them yet. “I have something that I need to tell you, but you need to promise me that you won’t get mad, okay?” she began.

“Uhh sure…” Sean answered slowly. “But why would I get mad?”

Alyssa sighed. “There’s something that I haven’t exactly been completely honest about.”

She could tell just by the way that Sean’s lips tightened that he was already dreading what she was about to say. Still though, he remained silent, just looked at her quizzically, almost urging her to continue. Alyssa took another deep breath and nervously clenched her fingers together. “Remember that day I came home late last week? When I was out looking at wedding dresses with Teri?”

“Yea… The day your cell phone died and I tried calling you like a billion times, but you never picked up. I was worried sick about you.”

Alyssa looked away already feeling guilty. “Yea… That would be the one. Well, I wasn’t exactly honest about where I was or who I was with.” Already she could see Sean tensing up. She imagined that his mind had to be reeling with possibilities at the moment. She wouldn’t be surprised if he’d already jumped to the worst possible scenario.

“I don’t understand… Who were you with?” he asked in a shaky voice.

She bit her lip, bracing herself for the imminent explosion sure to come. “I was out with Nick.”

There was dead silence for a moment, almost as if the information had to process for a moment in Sean’s brain. Once it seemed to sink in his face immediately began to redden. “You were with Nick? What the fuck Alyssa?”

She held up a hand to interrupt him before he could go any further and start slinging accusations at her. “It’s not what you think Sean, so please don’t get angry. I bumped into him at Teri’s and he invited me to grab some lunch with him. Then he had to buy Shayla a birthday present and he asked me if I’d go with him because he could use a woman’s perspective. We shopped around a little bit and then we stopped by his boat because he had to pick up some things from it. We were just hanging out and I should’ve called and told you where I was, but I just didn’t think of it.”

Sean sat back against his seat feeling utterly confused. He wasn’t quite sure how to react. The whole conversation was not making sense at all. “I just have one question. If this happened last week, and it was as innocent as you claimed, why didn’t you just tell me the truth as soon as you walked in the door? Instead you lied to my face. You point blank, straight up lied to me! Why?”

Again Alyssa looked away knowing that she had definitely been wrong to hide the truth from him. I should’ve just been up front with him about this, she realized. It’s not like I had anything to hide. “You’re right. I really should’ve been more honest with you. I was just afraid to tell you that I was out with Nick because the last time we bumped into him, you made it pretty apparent that you didn’t like him. I thought that you’d be pissed to find out I was hanging out with him.”

“Well, yea I’m pissed!” Sean’s voice rose. “I mean I think I have a right to be! Suddenly my wife is mysteriously close friends with the ex boyfriend that broke her heart? And she doesn’t even bother to tell me? In fact, when I asked where you were you lied. And now a week later you suddenly feel compelled to tell the truth? What am I supposed to think?”

“I’m sorry,” she apologized in a small voice. “You were already mad at me that night. I didn’t want to make it worse.”

“So, you think that I’m going to be any less mad tonight? If anything its worse because now you’re keeping shit from me.” He buried his head in his hands and groaned in frustration. “I just don’t fucking get it! We never had any problems keeping things from each other. We were always honest with one another. Then out of the blue your ex boyfriend pops back into the picture and lately all I’ve been getting from you is lies!”

“I have not lied about anything else concerning Nick!” Alyssa’s voice all of sudden rose in indignation. “So, I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

“Let me remind you then. You lied to me that he was famous, you lied to me that you still kept in touch with him, and you’re probably lying to me when you say that you don’t still have feelings for him,” he accused, ticking off each lie with his fingers.

“Get off the whole fucking jealously thing Sean! You may be my husband, but you have no say so in who I can or can’t be friends with! Maybe I just like hanging out with Nick because he’s a good person and he’s funny. Not everything has to be sexual between a guy and a girl.”

“Funny, that you’re the one who brought up there being something sexual. If you’ve noticed I haven’t accused you of there being anything sexual between the two of you. Do you have a guilty conscience or something?”

Alyssa could feel herself begin to lose control over her composure and could already feel her infamous temper beginning to boil. “It almost feels like you wish something happened between the two of us!” she pointed out. “Sorry to disappoint you, but my conscience is anything, but guilty. I told you everything exactly the way it happened. If you’d rather believe that I’m still pining away for my ex boyfriend then go right ahead, but don’t think its going to stop me from choosing to hang out with who I want to when I want to.”

Sean seemed unfazed by her response. “You still haven’t denied that you still have feelings for him. I find that very interesting.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” she asked glaring at him.

“If the relationship is as innocent as you claim then you shouldn’t have a problem telling me that you don’t have feelings for him.” His eyes narrowed in her direction, challenging her. “Go on… Tell me you don’t still get that rush whenever you’re around him.”

“This is fucking ridiculous! I should not have to prove anything to you! Are you that insecure that you need me to reassure you that I’m not still in love with Nick? Come on Sean! Listen to how pathetic you sound right now!”

Sean grinned. “Just as I thought. You can’t do it. You can’t fucking bring yourself to say it.”

“I can too,” she argued. “I just choose not to because I’m not into playing your little games. Believe me; I’ve been in your shoes. I’ve been the one questioning and accusing and letting all my petty insecurities interfere with my relationships before, and it leads to nothing but trouble. If you think that this is going to solve anything between us, you’re dead wrong. You’re just making it worse.”

“I’m making it worse? Alyssa think about all the things that asshole has done to you! Think about the number he did on your confidence! When I first met you, you were so damaged that you were barely able to let your guard down for me to really get to know you. I had to undo all of the damage that he inflicted on you, and now you want to go back to being friends with this guy? Why?”

Alyssa sprang up from the table. By trying to make himself look better and trying to remind her that he’d broken down all her walls, it felt like he was only trying to pin medals on himself to give him the upper hand in the argument. To a certain extent he was right, but he hadn’t done all the work. She herself had to be willing to change and it had taken a lot of work on her side as well, which he refused to acknowledge. “You act like you did it all! Yes, you did help me regain confidence in myself again and made me realize that I’m worth a lot more than I realized. But, in the end it was my decision to change and just stop giving a damn about what people think. So don’t you dare try to take full credit for putting me back together again! As for my relationship with Nick, we’re friends. We’ve talked things over between the two of us and we’re both very happy with our current partners, but we’ve shared so much throughout the years that there’s no way we can just go back to being perfect strangers. I want him in my life as a friend. I choose to have him as a friend! And if you don’t like it, then that’s too bad. You’ll have to live with it, because it’s my decision. I just thought that you’d prefer it if I was actually honest and open with you about it, instead of being sneaky and underhanded. That way you can’t accuse me of having some secret affair with him or something!”

“This is being honest and open? Telling me that you hung out with him a week later after it happened? Which reminds me, you still haven’t explained to me why you only picked now to tell me about it?”

Alyssa sighed realizing that he had her there, but if she showed him the paparazzi pictures now it would probably only make him angrier and think that she only told him about her friendship with Nick because she felt forced to now that the pictures had been leaked. But, she couldn’t not tell him either. Knowing that she was royally screwed she slid the pictures that she had in front of her across the table at him. “I waited to today to tell you because I found out that some paparazzo snapped some photos of Nick and me last week while we were shopping. They were made out to look way more scandalous then they really were, so I knew I needed to explain myself to you before they get published in some tabloid. I was trying to do the honest thing now, while I still had the chance.”

She bit her lip as she watched Sean rifle through the photographs she’d printed off the internet. The hurt expression on his face only made the situation that much more painful for Alyssa and all of a sudden she could feel all her emotions swirling together as tears stung her eyes. “I’m really sorry Sean. I wish I told you earlier, but I was stupid. I never meant for it to work out this way. I didn’t want to hurt you.”

“I’d say it was a little late for that,” he muttered as he crumpled the pictures up in his hand. “I need to be alone for a while. I think I need some time to think about all of this.”

“Okay,” she agreed in a choked up voice, trying her best not to let the tears flow down her cheeks. He didn’t reply as he grabbed his keys and just walked back out of the house like their argument had never even transpired. Alyssa managed to hold her head up high until the minute she heard the front door slam. That was when the dam finally broke and she finally let herself break down. She’d definitely fucked up big time.

It was close to midnight when Alyssa finally heard the front door creak open from her and Sean’s bedroom. She’d forced herself into bed almost two hours ago, but found that sleep was the last thing on her mind. Instead she’d laid their wide awake and crying. She had no one to blame for her fight with Sean, but herself. She found herself wishing she could rewind time and just tell him the truth about her hanging out with Nick. Who knew that something that seemed so insignificant could wind up causing so many problems? She’d never seen Sean so angry before and it made her wonder exactly how he intended on resolving the issue. She couldn’t exactly see him serving her with divorce papers over something like this, but their fight had gotten pretty ugly. Things were bound to be tense between them as a result.

But what bothered Alyssa the most was Sean challenging her to admit to him that she had no feelings for Nick. She had already established to herself that she didn’t, so why couldn’t she just humor him and tell him what he wanted to hear. Instead she had to stubbornly refuse, which looking back, she had to admit had probably just only made things worse. The truth was though that she just couldn’t will herself to speak those words. It’s not because I still have feelings for Nick, she’d told herself. It’s only because a part of me will always love him, but not in the way that Sean seems to think. Still, deep down the whole situation had made her feel uneasy and filled her mind with doubt. Was there a little something there? Her thoughts drifted back to their encounter in Tiffany’s, and those unexplainable feelings she had experienced when he’d helped her remove the necklace. Was she only fooling herself by thinking that they were nothing? Was she just in denial?

Between both the actual argument with Sean and her mixed emotions about whether or not she still had romantic feelings towards Nick, Alyssa had tossed and turned for what felt like hours, wide awake. She definitely wasn’t looking forward to getting up and going to the work the next morning, and for a moment or two she actually considered calling in for a substitute and taking the day off, but quickly changed her mind. That wouldn’t be fair to her students.

She listened quietly, her breath caught in her throat as she heard Sean’s footsteps coming up the stairs. A few moments later she heard the sound of water running in the bathroom. She rolled over so that her back was to the door and clenched her eyes shut, pretending that she was asleep. She wasn’t certain what mood Sean was in and she didn’t want to continue to argue with him. She felt a sliver of light flood into the room against her closed eyelids as he entered the bed room and then she heard some rustling noises which she assumed was him getting undressed. The bed sank down a little with his weight as he slipped underneath the covers beside her. His next move shocked the hell out of her. His hands snaked their way around her waist and he leaned down to leave a light kiss on her shoulder blade, right near the strap of her tank top. Alyssa froze, unsure of how she should react. It was almost as if the entire scene from earlier that night had never taken place.

Before she could further analyze the situation, Sean’s voice broke through the tense silence. “Lyss, I’m sorry for earlier.” He nudged her body with his hand. “Please, I know you’re awake. We need to talk.”

Alyssa took in a deep sigh before slowly rolling back over, so that she was facing him. She knew that her face probably had to be streaked with tears and one look at Sean told her that he’d been feeing just as miserable as her the past few hours. Sean gripped her hands in his and looked down at her guiltily, as if he finally realized how out of line he had been with her. “I shouldn’t have reacted that way. I just was really upset that you felt that you couldn’t tell me the truth. I don’t want to have a marriage where you’ll afraid to tell me where you are all the time.”

“I don’t want that either,” she admitted in a small voice. “I wanted to tell you about hanging out with Nick. I guess I was just afraid that you’d automatically assume the worst. I should’ve told you sooner.”

“And I should’ve been more accepting.” Sean sighed. “I’ll admit. I don’t like the guy. I probably never will. And he might be a great guy, but I just can’t get past the fact that he hurt you. But I also can’t exactly prevent you from being friends with him either. You were right. I’d feel more comfortable if you could be open with me about him then having everything all secretive and suspicious. I promise I’ll try to at least be polite to him, okay?”

Alyssa just nodded. “Thank you. Honestly I don’t expect the two of you to be buddies. That would be just weird and awkward. But I really would appreciate it if you’d at least just accept him as one of my friends. Nothing is going to happen between us. I love you and he loves Shayla, so there’s no reason to worry. Worrying and living in fear that I’m going to cheat on you is only going to drive us farther apart. Believe me. I speak from very personal experience. When I was dating Nick I lived in constant fear that he’d cheat on me, so much so that it prevented me from letting my guard down long enough for us to really connect a lot of the times. Then eventually that distance that I’d created caused him only to cheat in the long run.”

Sean just smirked. “I guess if you can put all the blame on yourself for him cheating, you really have forgiven him.”

“I’m not putting all the blame on myself. He was wrong too. I’ve just learned that people don’t just cheat in relationships to cheat. There’s usually something missing that they’re trying to fulfill. Most times both members of the relationship are at some degree of fault. Someone who is perfectly content and happy is not going to cheat. They have no reason to.”

“I guess that makes sense,” Sean reluctantly agreed. “Anyway I acted like an ass and I’m sorry about it. I’m glad you told me before those pictures wound up on the front cover of US Weekly or something.”

“That was exactly my reasoning for telling you now. I still can’t believe that they were taken in the first place! And I guess I can’t blame you or anyone else who takes one look at them and believes the rumors that they’re trying to spread.” Alyssa sighed. “They were definitely taken at the most inopportune moments.”

Sean nodded his head. “That’s for sure. I’m rather curious myself about the necklace one. That looked pretty straightforward and intimate. What was really going on there?”

Alyssa felt her cheeks redden a little bit as she struggled to explain. “Nick decided that he wanted to buy Shayla a necklace for her birthday, so we were in Tiffany’s and he saw one he liked, but he wanted to see it on somebody first. He asked if I would model it for him and I couldn’t exactly say no, so I did. He wound up liking it, so the sales woman went to get a box and I was having trouble undoing the clasp, so he helped me with it. That’s all that happened. Trust me it’s not in the least bit scandalous.”

“I’ll take your word for it. And I promise I’ll be more trusting of you, especially when it comes to Nick.”

“And I promise that I’ll be more open with you and I won’t hide things anymore,” she swore. “I’m glad that everything worked out between us.”

“Yea me too. I’m sorry for reacting the way I did. We really shouldn’t be fighting like this, especially when the future is so uncertain.” Sean paused and stifled a yawn. “Anyway I probably should let you get to sleep. You have school in the morning.”

“All right. Goodnight.” Alyssa snuggled up against him, trying to make herself comfortable among the pillows. She closed her eyes, but realized that there was still something that she needed to say to him; that he needed to hear. Opening her eyes again she looked back ay him. “By the way, I don’t still have any feelings for Nick. In case you were wondering.”

She could just barely make out a little bit of a grin on his face and she knew the reassurance was exactly what he needed to hear. “Good. It’s comforting to hear that,” he told her.

Again Alyssa tried to fall asleep, but found that she still couldn’t relax enough. Now instead of worrying over her fight with Sean she was worried about what she’d just said to him. She’d promised to be completely honest with him from here on out, but even she wasn’t sure herself if her last statement had been completely true or not.

It had been a few days since Nick and Shayla had arrived at their home in Tahoe and Nick had to admit that the impromptu getaway had definitely been a good idea. Since they’d arrived they hadn’t fought once. In fact, they’d probably spent more time together than they had in a long while. One of the biggest disadvantages of being involved in a relationship with somebody else in the entertainment business was the fact that they operated on two completely different time schedules sometimes. It was very seldom that the two of them had any downtime at the same exact time as one another, which was what made their current situation even more perfect. Now that he was back on another hiatus from the guys and he only had his record company on his plate right now, Nick could choose to work when he wanted to, a situation he wasn’t exactly familiar with, but had to admit that he definitely could get used to. Now that Shayla was on “forced vacation” Nick had the liberty to take the week off as well which was very nice.

Another one of the advantages of being up in Tahoe for the week was that there weren’t very many people around and there really wasn’t lot of things to do. It left their sources of entertainment pretty limited to movies and spending a lot of time in bed, which Nick had absolutely no problem with. Recently it had become increasingly harder to squeeze in any time for sex since Shayla had begun filming her own show, so the two of them were taking full advantage of their surroundings. It almost felt like a much needed second honeymoon for them.

I could definitely get used to this, Nick thought to himself with a smirk as he stretched back out against the plush pillows that lined the head of the bed. As if she were reading his mind, Shayla curled up next to him, her chest still heaving from their activities only a few moments earlier. “You do realize that you’re totally spoiling me, right?”

Nick shot her another innocent smirk. “What do you mean, spoiling you?”

“I’m getting so used to this that it’s going to be really tough going back to work on Monday. “ She sighed in contentment as she buried her head in his chest. “Can’t we just stay here forever? Screw the rest of the world. We’ve got all that we could ever need right here.”

He just lightly laughed. “As tempting as that sounds I’ve still got to go back into the studio with my artists next week. I’ve been slacking a bit with the label. And you have a pretty fully packed schedule there yourself.”

Shayla dramatically groaned. “Must you remind me?”

Nick gave her a sympathetic look. “You don’t sound very happy with what you’re doing.”

She just shrugged. “It’s all right. Just a lot more work than I thought it was going to be.”

“And you wanted to squeeze a baby into the mix? I guess you’re regretting all that now.” Nick froze for a moment, realizing that he’d probably just opened a can of worms, but then quickly relaxed. If she was this overwhelmed now, clearly she’d have to see that a baby would only just make things worse.

He felt Shayla tense beside him. “I’m not regretting anything. In fact I still would like to have a baby. I just need to get settled into my new schedule a bit more. Once I’m comfortable we should spend another week or two up here and work on making that happen.” The dreamy smile that had been on her face faded as soon as she noticed Nick’s obvious lack of enthusiasm. “You’ve been considering the idea too, right?”

Nick remained silent for a moment. He had promised her that he’d kick the baby idea around in his head, but it had more been just to appease her. If anything he was more dead set against the idea than he was in the beginning, seeing how stressed out Shayla had become with work. “Honestly?” he slowly answered. “I really haven’t been.”

“Nick! You promised that you were going to consider it!” she whined. “You mean to tell me that you haven’t even thought about it one little bit?”

“If you’re asking if I’ve changed the mind, the answer is no. I still don’t think that the time is right for us to start considering having children. As of right now I don’t want kids. End of story.” He knew that his response sounded harsh, but the only way that she’d hopefully get the message would be by being blunt with her.

Shayla let out a frustrated sigh. “Can’t you just give me a reason, Nick? Just one good reason why you’re so dead set against the idea? I just need to understand where you’re coming from better.”

Nick sat up and looked down at her. “You want a reason? I’ll give you one obvious one right off the bat. Since you’ve started taping your show you’ve been barely keeping afloat energy wise. You’re getting up to be at the studio early in the morning, and staying out to cover parties until late hours of the night. You’re only getting maybe five hours sleep tops a night. You’ve become very cranky and I can tell you’re stressed out. How the hell are you going to be able to keep up this schedule if you’re pregnant? Furthermore, how are you going to be able to do everything you’re doing and be a good mother to a newborn baby?”

Shayla looked torn as if she knew that he had her there, but didn’t want to admit it. “I can cut back a little for a baby. I’d figure something out!”

“Just like you’re cutting back now, huh? Instead you keep adding more and more to your plate. When are you going to realize Shayla that you’re not Wonder Woman? You can’t do it all.”

She didn’t respond to this comment, but Nick could tell by the expression on her face that the wheels were turning in her head. Finally after some tense silence she came up with a response. “Okay… Can I just ask you a hypothetical question here?” Nick nodded his head. “I understand where you’re coming from. Maybe it is the wrong time for us to be planning on having a baby, but what happens if by some twist of fate I accidentally do get pregnant? Say we get back to LA and in a few weeks I find out that I’m going to have a child? Then what? Clearly you’re not going to expect me to get an abortion because there’s no way in hell I’m doing that. So, what would you do?”

Nick sighed. This was the same question that Alyssa had posed to him while they were shopping for Shayla’s birthday present and he answered it the same way that he had done with Alyssa. “I guess then I’d have to accept it and we’d work it out. I’d be scared shit, but no I’m not going to like make you have an abortion or something. What kind of person do you think I am? But what’s the point in playing the ‘what if’ game. We know the possibility of that happening is pretty slim. You’re on birth control.”

Shayla just shrugged. “Birth control isn’t always one hundred percent effective. Sometimes you forget to take a dose or two and it can fuck up your whole cycle. Especially when you’re overwhelmed. You tend to get very forgetful.”

Nick’s eyes narrowed. He wasn’t sure if it was just an innocent statement or a veiled threat. You never could quite tell with women. “Is this your way of telling me that you’ve been forgetting to take your birth control pills?” He could already feel his pulse start to quicken and a shaky feeling rumbled throughout his stomach as if he were going to be sick.

“Maybe…” Seeing the frightened look on her husbands face she quickly changed her tune. “Ok, no. I just wanted to see how you’d react. It is possible though.”

Now he was pissed. How dare she try to play games with him like that? He’d had his fair share of mind games with other women he’d dated in the past, but he thought that Shayla wasn’t into things like that. Apparently he’d been mistaken. When it came to desperate women wanting to get pregnant it seemed like they’d stoop to any level. He’d like to believe that Shayla would never go as far as conveniently “forgetting” to take her birth control pills, but now that the seed of doubt had been planted in his mind he couldn’t be too careful. What if she’s stopped taking them for a while now and I just haven’t realized it? His mind thought back to all the sex they’d had so far that week. If he hadn’t felt sick before, now he had to fight back the urge not to vomit.

Without another word he pulled the covers away from him and leapt out of bed as if he couldn’t get out fast enough. All of a sudden he felt the overwhelming need to shower although the damage might have already been done.

“Where are you going?” Shayla asked in a concerned voice.

“I’m taking a shower,” he mumbled as he headed towards the direction of the bathroom.

“Do you want me to join you?” he heard her voice call from back in the bedroom.

“No!” he quickly responded. He himself was surprised with how firm it had sounded. Great, now she’s going to think that I’m like disgusted by her or something.

Shayla sighed to herself as she heard the bathroom door slam behind Nick. She honestly hadn’t meant for her comment to come across like she was plotting to trap Nick into an unwanted pregnancy. That was just psycho and wrong on so many levels.

But she could easily see how he could very well think that. Sometimes, like for instance just now she just had a bad habit of plain not thinking before she spoke.

It was that very same annoying quality that was about to get Shayla’s marriage to Nick into even more hot water when another set of pictures resurfaced, although these were scandalous and damaging in a completely different way than the paparazzi pictures were. These were much more personal.