Hi everyone!!! The next four chapters are up, as Monica receives shocking news, Cheryl and Chris take their relationship further, and Riana and Shawn admit their feelings for each other.

Seven

As everyone was going on with their lives, no one noticed that the beginning of the semester was now at the middle, and midterms were approaching. Riana was in her room typing a term paper on her computer, when Cheryl walked in and headed towards their closet.

“Where are you going? Shouldn’t you be studying for midterms?”

“Yes and no. I’m going to study, at Chris’ place.”

“He has his own place now?”

“Yeah; he couldn’t take it anymore with his roommate, so he called the RA and moved him to a private room.”

“Cool, but how did he swing that? We’re in the middle of the semester.”

“I guess he has connections; how this look?” Cheryl asked. She pulled out a Carolina blue sleeveless dress.

“Don’t you think it’s a little cold to wear that?”

“No.”

“Whatever.” Riana said. She started to type away on her paper.

“I’ll be back by 11.”

“Fine,” Riana said while looking at the computer screen.

Cheryl goes over to her dresser. She started to talk while going through the drawers.

“I know I’m going to sound crazy, but I’m concern about Monica.”

Riana stopped typing and turned around to face Cheryl.

“I know.”

“She hasn’t been herself lately. In fact, she hasn’t insulted me in three days.”

“She has been kind of passive lately. I was thinking it was because of midterms, but Mon’s not the type to worry about things.”

“You think something is going on with her?”

“If there is, she could talk to us about it; we are her friends.”

“Whatever it is, I think she wants to deal with it on her own.” Cheryl said. She gave Riana a smirk and goes to the bathroom to change. Riana saved her paper and walked out of her room.

While Riana and Cheryl were talking, Monica was in the bathroom looking anxiously at the plastic tube staring in front of her. She didn’t want to look at the slip but she had to.

Time should be up. I have to find out sooner or later.

She looked at the tube with a determined look. She stared at the two blue lines and almost fainted. The tube slipped out of her hand and fell on the floor with a loud thud. Monica fell on her knees on the bathroom tile crying hysterically.

Cheryl was on the other end of the bathroom door waiting for Monica to open up. After waiting for two minutes, she was wondering if she was okay.

“Monica! Monica, are you okay? You’ve been in there for a while.”

Monica was still on the floor crying harder than before.

Riana walked over to the door and stood beside Cheryl.

“She still hasn’t come out? She has been in there for almost an hour.”

“Something is seriously wrong. You know how I feel about Mon, but even she is scaring me right now.”

Riana started to pound on the door with her fist.

“Open up Mon! We need to talk to you.”

There was no answer.

“Come on Monica! We’re concern.” Cheryl said.

“Stand back.” Riana said to Cheryl.

Cheryl went towards the wall while Riana stepped back a few feet from the door. She ran to it with force, causing the door to come open.

Riana and Cheryl walk in and noticed Monica on the floor with her head on the toilet. She was sitting there with a spacious look on her face.

“Mon, are you okay?” Riana asked.

Riana walked over to Monica and tried to sit by her in the small bathroom. Cheryl went over to the bathtub and sat on the edge.

Monica looked away from the two and stared at the wall.

“Monica, we noticed how you been acting lately and we’re worried about you. I know things been hectic with us since school started, so it’s understandable how you’re feeling, but I know something else is bothering you. You know you can tell us.”

Monica looked at Riana and Cheryl and started to cry again.

“Ah sweetie, you’re scaring us. What’s wrong?”

“I’m pregnant!” Monica yelled.

Riana looked at Monica and shook her head. Cheryl sighed and put a hand on Monica’s shoulder.

“We’re here for you¸ Mon.” Cheryl said.

Riana looked at Cheryl and smiled.

“I can’t believe this is happening! I was trying to be so careful and now I have a baby growing inside of me. How can I raise a child? I’m a college student working at Sack and Save! I barely have money to pay rent let alone raise a child.”

“You’re not alone. Cheryl is right; we’re here for you with anything you need.”

“Thanks guys, but this is my concern. I’m not saying that having a child is a problem; I would love to have kids, but this is not the time for it.”

“Do you know who the father is?” Cheryl asked.

Riana looked at Cheryl in disbelief.

“That’s inappropriate Cheryl.”

“It’s okay. I’ve been sleeping with Donnell, but we’ve been using condoms the whole time. So the only person is Malcolm. We didn’t use protection that night.”

“Damn Mon! You have to Donnell.” Riana said.

“Have you even told him about Malcolm?” Cheryl asked.

“No, he doesn’t know.”

“After two months! Mon, how could you keep this a secret since August?” Riana asked.

“And how come you just now realizing you’re pregnant?” Cheryl asked.

“I don’t know. I haven’t been having symptoms until now. I’ve been having regular periods.”

“First, you have to tell Donnell everything. Since you’re just realizing you’re pregnant, it could be a possibility that it could be his.” Riana said.

“And what if it’s not? This could destroy everything that I have with him. If this baby is Malcolm’s I don’t know how things will be.”

Riana put her arms around Monica and gave her a hug. Cheryl looked at the two and sighed.

Monica buried her head into Riana’s chest and started to cry all over again.

***
Britney was back living under her parents’ roof. After much begging and pleading, she was able to get her old room back. She didn’t tell them the real reason why she moved back home. She just said that they lost their apartment due to late payments.

After what happened between her and Isaac, she completely cut all ties with him. He continued to call her various times throughout the day that she had to change her.

Good thing he doesn’t know where my parents stayed.

She felt so bad because she didn’t know what an asshole he was. She wrecked her friendship with her best friends over him.

How dumb could I be?

She was sitting at her desk looking at her computer screen in a daze. She had a midterm paper due the next day, but her mind wasn’t on it. As she started to type on the French Revolution, her phone began to ring. She picked it up and hit the talk button.

“Hello.”

“Hey Britney, it’s Riana.”

All the color drained from Britney’s face. She haven’t heard from Riana since the day she kicked her out of the apartment. She seen her and Cheryl on campus, but they just gave her smug looks and walked past her. Monica was the only one who would say hi to her.

She sat down on her bed with a surprised look.

“Hey Riana. How are you?”

“I’m not calling to chat, Britney. I’m calling about Monica.”

“Is she okay?”

“Yes and no. She found out she’s pregnant.”

“Wow. How is she doing?”

“She’s okay physically. Mentally, she’s a wreck. She’s distraught because she doesn’t know who the father is. She has her mind set on Malcolm because they had unprotected sex, but it could be a possibility that it’s Donnell’s.”

“Can I talk to her?”

“She finally went to sleep, so she can’t talk, but I was calling because maybe you could come by. I think it would really cheer her up if she saw you.”

“Sure, I’ll come by.”

“Okay. I’ll make sure not to be here when you do.”

“You don’t have to avoid me. It’s your apartment.”

“I’ll probably be working on my journalism project, so you could come by. I better go.”

“Okay. Thanks for calling.”

“No problem. I figured we were friends at one point. I thought you needed to know what was going on.”

“Riana, I want to apologize about Isaac. I’m sorry that we’re not friends anymore due to my involvement with him. Now I know that he’s wasn’t worth losing my friends over.”

“Don’t you think it’s a little too late for that? Bye Britney.”

Before Britney could say anything else, the phone went dead.

Britney sighed and put the phone on her bed. She lay down and looked up at the ceiling.

“If you only knew, Ri. I’m so sorry.”

***
Cheryl was now at Chris’ dorm room studying for their literature midterm. She was looking at her book unable to concentrate.

How can I? she thought. She looked over at Chris who was sitting on the bed busily looking through his notes. It took all of her strength not to go over to him and throw him down on the bed and kiss him.

Chris put his book beside him and stood up. He started to stretch, showing off his muscled arms and six-pack abs.

“I’m taking a break. You want anything? Soda, water.”

“Water’s fine.” Cheryl said, walking over to the bed.

Chris went over to his mini fridge and got two bottled waters from it. He walked back to the bed and handed Cheryl one.

“Thanks.”

“How’s everything going at the apartment?”

Cheryl laughed and took a sip of water.

“Things are about the same. Everyday it’s always some drama. I feel like I’m living in a soap opera.”

“What’s going on now?”

“Where should I start? Monica found out she’s pregnant.”

“Damn.”

“And that’s not all. She doesn’t even know who the father is. She thinks it’s this guy she had an one-night stand with, but it could be a possibility that it’s Donnell’s. So she’s a wreck right now.”

“That’s messed up.”

“I know. I know I had my share of problems with her, but I know she’s scare right now. Just the idea that she’s young and have enough to deal with and now she have this person growing inside of her. She doesn’t know what to do or who to go to. I can’t imagine what she’s feeling right now. That’s why I told her that I would be there for her if she needs someone to talk to.”

“That’s great. You are putting your feelings to the side to help her.”

“I know.”

“Have you talked to Britney?”

“That bitch can stay gone. I’ve seen her around campus. I even heard that she broke things off with Isaac.”

“At least she came to her senses.”

“It’s a little too late for that isn’t it?”

Chris nodded and decided to move to another topic.

“Do you understand what’s going to be on the literature midterm?”

“I think so. I hope I do well since this will determine our final grade. I can’t believe after all those assignments we done that only the midterm and final exams will count as our grades.” Cheryl said.

“I know.” Chris said.

Cheryl didn’t want to talk about literature or about her roommates anymore. She wanted to get to know Chris.

“Let’s talk about something else. I’ve known you for a few months, but I still don’t really know you.”

Chris smiled.

“Okay, I can tell you a little about myself. As you know, I’m 20 and was born in Dallas, but moved to Houston when I was 10. I have one sister who’s a senior in high school. Resse and I were inseparable growing up. We did everything together. We got into a lot of trouble too. When I met Shawn, he was later included in our clique and we got into even more trouble. We had a lot of fun growing up. I guess that’s why Shawn and I are so close. He’s like the brother I always wanted.”

Cheryl smiled.

“That’s sweet.”

“Okay, I told you a little about me, so what should I know about you?”

Cheryl looked straight into Chris’ eyes.

“Well I grew up here in Houston, and I have an older brother and sister, making me the youngest. Out of the three, my parents always stood me out from the others. It’s not like they loved me more and them less, but they always treated me differently. They considered me to be their rising star. I’d always done things through my parents’ eyes. I tried to make them happy by doing the things they wanted me to do, but it just wasn’t enough. And when I wanted to do something that made me happy, my parents would always shoot it down, saying it wasn’t for me. Take my major for instance; my dream was not to be a psychologist. In fact, I hate psychology, but it was what my parents wanted me to do. My dream was to become a doctor. I remember when I was younger I used to put on this white robe and pretend that it was a lab coat and make my stuffed animals be my patients. I used to love playing “doctor” on my friends.

“I remember when I was graduating from high school and I told my parents what I wanted to major in. You know what they told me? They said that ‘it’s not for me and that it’s not their dream for me.’ You know how much that hurt me to hear that from my parents? They are supposed to be the people that support you on everything. I guess I was wrong on that one.”

“No, you’re not. Parents are supposed to be there for you, no matter what; but your parents are making decisions they feel are best for them. You can always change your major from psychology to pre-med.”

“I know, but I can’t.”

“Why not?”

“Because they’re paying for my tuition. I figured since it’s their money they can say what they want.”

“That’s not true.”

“Don’t you think I know that? I know I should stand up for what I think is right, but I can’t. They’re my parent and I love them. I don’t want to hurt them.”

“I understand that, but when are you going to stop making them live your life? Cheryl, you’re 20 years old. You have to start living your life for you and not for your parents.”

Cheryl looked at Chris and tears started to flow down her caramel cheeks. What Chris said was true and she waited for years to let everything that was built up in her to finally come out.

“Cheryl, I know you love your parents, but you have to talk to them and tell them how you feel. You can’t keep this bottled up.”

“I know. Before I came to Shaw, I had my heart set on joining a sorority. I told my mom about it and she said I shouldn’t waste my time on a sorority. She made me so angry that day because I felt I didn’t have a mind of my own. It hurt me so bad to know that my mom did not care about what I wanted to do or how I felt.”

Chris’ heart went out to Cheryl as she was pouring her feelings out to him. He wished he could take her pain away by telling her everything will be okay, but he know it’s not.

He put his around Cheryl and she put her head on his chest. She felt good that she told Chris what she kept inside of her for years. She was glad he was there for her.

“I do feel better.” Cheryl said. “I kept my feelings in about my parents for so long. I haven’t even told Ri about them.”

“Really? Why not?”

“I don’t know. I guess I felt it was best to keep it to myself.”

“So why you decided to tell me?”

Cheryl smiled as she touched Chris’ chest.

“Because I feel safe with you.”

Chris looked at her and put his hand on her heart. He noticed how fast her heart was beating. She was just as nervous as he was.

Ever since he met Cheryl in their literature class, he quickly became intrigued in her. From the time they have spent together, he started to develop feelings for her that he never felt for anyone. He didn’t know whether to tell her how he felt, but he couldn’t control his feelings anymore.

“What’s wrong?” Cheryl asked.

“Cheryl, I can’t deny what’s going on between us anymore. I really like you and I want things between us to go further.”

She looked at Chris with a surprised look.

“I believe you’re beautiful inside and out and I really think you like me too.”

“How can you tell?”

“I can tell in your eyes. The way you look at me. I know you want me just as much as I want you.”

Cheryl became teary-eyed all over again.

“Why are you crying?”

“Because it’s true. Ever since I seen you in class I wanted to be with you. I didn’t know you felt the same way.”

“Well I do.”

The two looked at each other, no longer resisting their desire. They gave into the feelings they had built up in them for two months. Cheryl lay down on the bed as Chris stared at her. He moved his hand down the side of her body as Cheryl touched his cheek. She shivered with delight from his touch. She pulled Chris towards her and kissed him. She lifted up his shirt, taking it off in one swift move. Chris sighed as he got up from the bed.

“We can’t do this. Not right now.”

“What are you talking about? I’m wet just thinking about you inside of me. We both want this,so what is the problem?”

“It’s not that. I just want things between us to be perfect. I don’t want us just have sex. I want to make love to you.”

“But you will.”

“You don’t understand. Usually when I’m with a female, I don’t care what happens or who I hurt; as long as I get mines. You are so special to me, that’s why I don’t want to hurt you.”

Cheryl tilted Chris’ face to hers and looked straight into his brown eyes.

“You could never hurt me.” she said softly.

Chris opened his mouth to speak, but Cheryl wouldn’t let him. She put her lips to his and kissed him softly. The two lay down on the bed. Chris reached over to the lamp near his bed and turned it off. He was still able to see due to the light shining through from the outside.

“I still want our first time to be special. So let me set something up and you can keep your pretty self right here.” he said.

He kissed Cheryl on the lips again and went to get some candles.

While he was doing that, Cheryl decided to make herself comfortable. She slipped out of her sleeveless dress and put it on the floor. She took off her bra and panties and laid them on the floor as well. She lay across the bed completely naked in the moonlight.

Chris walked back over to Cheryl and stood in front of her in amazement. He couldn’t believe the beautiful sight in front of him was the woman he was falling for.

“Am I dreaming?”

“No, you’re not.”

“I have to do one more thing.” he said. He went over to his stereo and put a CD in. He walked over to Cheryl, laying back on the bed as he pulled her closer to him.

“I need to ask you something?”

“Okay.”

“Are you a virgin?”

Cheryl smiled. “No, I’m not. Why you thought that?”

“I don’t know. You just look so innocent.” he said while stroking her hair.

“I may be goody-two-shoes, but I do have a freaky side.”

Just the thought of Cheryl saying those words made Chris hard.

“You’re so beautiful.” He said, kissing her neck.

Cheryl closed her eyes as Chris slid down to her chest. He took her breast into his mouth. Cheryl moan as he moved his tongue around the nipple. He smiled as he moved his tongue to her other breast. He went to her stomach, kissing her navel. He looked up at Cheryl with a sexy grin. He moved his tongue between her legs, causing Cheryl to moan excitedly.

While Chris was doing the job right, Cheryl didn’t want to scream since she knew people would hear her. Instead, she bit her lip.

As he was putting his tongue in place Cheryl couldn’t imagine, her entire body was suffering from convulsions. She couldn’t help the loud moan that was coming from her lips, letting Chris know she was about to come. He pulled away from Cheryl, going towards her face.

“I want you. Now.” Cheryl said.

Chris kissed Cheryl’s cheek and went into his nightstand drawer to pull out a condom. He slipped it on and gave Cheryl a kiss that melted her insides. He slid himself inside of Cheryl with a moan that sounded good to his ears.

Cheryl sighed when she felt Chris inside of her. She glanced at him with a look of desire in her eyes. As Chris began to move inside of Cheryl, all the feelings he had for her were showing with each thrust. Cheryl clawed Chris’ back, moaning softly from his movements. As their feelings for each other intensified, they felt emotions they never experienced with other people.

Not caring if anyone was listening, Cheryl let out a piercing scream as she held on to Chris.

As soon as Cheryl came, so did Chris, as he stared at her. The two kissed each other passionately as he pulled Cheryl close to his chest. The two snuggled against each other as they fell into a deep sleep.

Eight
The next morning, and Riana was getting ready for her class. She looked over at Cheryl’s bed and realized she didn’t come home last night.

I guess she spent the night at Chris.’

She went to the bathroom and began combing her hair when Monica walked in.

Riana looked at her and smiled.

“How are you feeling?” Riana asked.

“Like crap. This morning sickness is horrible.”

“Eat some crackers; it should help.”

Before Monica could say anything else, she went to the toilet and began to vomit.

Riana looked at Monica throwing up and left the bathroom.
As she walked into the kitchen, she heard key jingling and the door opening. Cheryl walked in, closing the door slowly. She was hoping no one was up or have already left. She looked up and saw Riana in the kitchen. She immediately cursed to herself, immediately heading towards her room.

“Good morning Cheryl.”

Cheryl turned around and gave Riana a bright smile.

“Isn’t it, Ri? I thought you would have left by now.”

“I will. So I see you stayed at Chris’ last night.”

“Yeah. We didn’t finish studying until late so I just spent the night there.”

“Did you sleep with him?”

Cheryl looked at Riana and smiled. “Why would you think that?”
“Your dress is inside out.”

Cheryl looked down and realized the tag was showing in the front. She looked up and went into the kitchen.

“And what if I did? Ri, I never felt this way about a guy before. Chris is one of the nicest, sweetest guys out there and I’m so grateful that he’s in my life.”

“That’s great, but you barely know him. How are you going to sleep with him if you haven’t given a chance to know him?”

“I thought that too, but last night was so special. I thought it was the perfect moment for me and him to take things further.”

Riana looked at Cheryl and went back into the kitchen.

“I know that look, Ri. You think I’m going to get hurt. I’m not, so you don’t have to worry.”

“I know how you are with guys. If one thing happens and mess this up between you and Chris, it’s going to destroy you.”

Cheryl put her hands into Riana’s and smiled.

“Ri, I appreciate that you’re concern about me, but I’m a grown woman and I can take care of myself. If things between Chris and I don’t work out then it’s my problem and I would have to handle it, okay.”

“I guess so.”

“Thanks, cuz. Now what about you and that fine friend of Chris’. What’s his name again? Oh yeah, Mr. Walker I believe.”

Just hearing Shawn’s name made Riana blush. While working on their project together, Riana started to develop feelings for her partner. She wanted things to go further between her and Shawn, but she’s afraid she’ll get hurt again.

I don’t know if I can go through that pain again.

“What’s going on between you two? I know you’ve been working long hours on your journalism project.”

“Yeah, we’re almost finished.”

“I’m not talking about the project, girl. I’m talking about what’s going on between you two?”

“Nothing. We’re just friends.”

“Come on; I’ve seen the way you look when someone mention his name. Even now you’re blushing.”

“I know. I do like Shawn, but I can’t go through another relationship. I can’t go through the pain I’d suffered with Isaac.”

“Shawn wouldn’t hurt you like that jackass did. Isaac is a piece of shit that didn’t deserve you. Shawn is nothing like that. I’d seen how concerned he was when you were in the hospital. Anyone could tell that he really care about you.”

Riana sighed and sat down on the couch. She put her head in her hands and shook her head to clear her mind. She knew what Cheryl was saying was true. He has been sending her signals, but she tried to ignore them. She knew that Shawn wanted her.

Just like I want him. But I can’t let him in my heart. Not right now.

“I know he does, but right now, I don’t think I can get into another relationship.”

“I understand about what happened between you and Isaac. I know he hurt you, but when are you going to forget about him? You need to move on Ri. That’s the only way you are ever going to be happy. Now that I said my piece, I have to get ready for my midterm.”

“Okay. I’ll see you later.” Riana said.

Cheryl smiled and went into their room.

“I hate when she’s right.” she said.

She grabbed her backpack and went out the door.
***
Instead of having a midterm in their journalism class, Professor Williams wanted her students to work on their projects, so Riana and Shawn spent the entire morning interviewing students over their topic and getting their piece together for their story. After working nonstop, the two decided to take a break. They were now at the student lounge drinking slushes and talking about their other classes.

“How you think you did in your other classes?” Riana asked.

“I think I did pretty well. I mainly had to write papers through.”

“Me too; it was cool of Professor Williams to let us work on our projects instead of having class.”

“Yeah; I think out of all my instructors, she is the best.”

Riana smiled as she sipped some more of the thick drink.

“I can’t believe we’re drinking slushes when it’s forty degrees outside.” Shawn said.

“I know, but they are so good.” Riana said smiling.

“You heard Chris and Cheryl are officially a couple?” Shawn asked.

“Yeah; I think it’s great. Chris is a nice guy and Cheryl needs someone like him in her life.”

“Chris is my boy, so I’m happy for him. He’s like my younger brother.”

“Speaking of brothers, you never told me about him. Why I never see him when I come over?”

“He’s been pretty busy with work lately. I hardly ever see him anymore. I’ll introduce you to him one day.”

Riana smiled.

“What are you doing for the rest of the day?” Shawn asked.

“Nothing. Journalism is the only class I have today.”

“You want to go back to my place so we could get this story to editing?”

“Sure, let’s go.”

The two got up from their seats and left the student lounge.

***

When Shawn and Riana arrived at his apartment, they immediately went to work. They put together everything they got from the students they interviewed from the past couple of days and this morning. While Riana was sitting on Shawn’s couch writing her dialogue for the story, Shawn was sitting in an armchair nearby looking at Riana work. He loved watching her work. She looked serious as she looked at the piece she just written. She didn’t like what was printed, so she balled it up in her hands and threw it on the floor.

Damn, she’s sexy.

“Why are you staring at me?” Riana asked.

“I wasn’t staring at you.”

“Yes, you were. I can tell when someone is staring at me.”

“If you can tell someone is staring at you, then you should have noticed me watching you for a while now.”

Riana looked at Shawn and smiled.

“I knew you were, I was just waiting on when you were going to say something.”

Shawn smiled and goes over to the couch. He sat beside Riana and grabbed the notebook she has in her hand and placed it on the coffee table.

“What are you doing?”

“We’ve been working since we got here. I think we need to take a break.”

Riana sighed as she lean back on the couch.

“I guess you’re right.”

Riana suddenly started to become tense in her back. Shawn noticed her shrugging her shoulders.

“Mind if I give you a massage?”

Riana smiled.

“Not at all.”

Riana faced the TV while Shawn began rubbing Riana’s shoulders. He lowered his hands down her back, gently applying pressure in areas that were tense. The feeling Riana was experiencing was sensational and she didn’t want it to end.

Shawn glanced over at Riana and noticed her eyes were closed. He knew she was enjoying it so he was doing a good job.

“Are you enjoying it?”

“Yes. How did you learn to do massages so good?” Riana asked in a satisfied tone.

“No one really taught me. I just know a female body and how to satisfy it.”

Riana opened her eyes and turned to face Shawn.

“Oh, really.”

“Yeah.”

Riana sighed. After having his hands on her made her think what else Shawn can do.

“What are you thinking right now?” Shawn whispered.

“A lot is going through my mind.”

“Like what?”

“Like how much I want to kiss you.”

Shawn stared at Riana as he put his hand on her chin. He lift her face to his and stared into her eyes.

“What are you waiting for?” Riana asked in a seductive tone.

Shawn smiled as he slowly moved his lips to Riana’s. Even through the two kissed before, this time it was something they both wanted. The two kissed each other slowly, savoring every moment. The two pulled apart and smiled at each other.

“That was nice.” Riana said.

“Yeah, it was.”

“Shawn, there’s something I have to tell you.”

“Ri, I have something to tell you too.”

“Can I go first please?”

“Sure.”

“Ever since I saw you at the club, I wanted to know more about you. It was something about you that made you different from other guys. You helped me through so much these past few months and I just want to say thank you. If you didn’t pull me from that bar, I could have been raped or even killed. All the times we spent working on this project helped me get through my breakup with Isaac and being around you helped me realize that there are still some great guys out there.”

“You’re welcome. I was just helping a friend out.”

“You consider us more than that now, do you?”

“Yeah, I do.”

Riana stood up from the couch and went over to the window. She looked out at the crisp, beautiful day wondering what the hell she was doing.

Shawn went over to Riana and wrapped his arms around her.

“Do you feel that way about us? Or you just think we’re friends?”

“That’s the thing. I don’t know what to think. We only known each other for two months, and I feel like I want to be with you, but I can’t.”

“Why not?”

“I don’t want to be hurt again. I gave everything to Isaac and look what he given me in return. A broken heart.”

“You think I’m going to do the same?”

“I know you won’t. You’re a great guy, but my heart needs to know that I’m not going to get suck into something that I can’t control.”

Shawn turned Riana around to face him. He gave her a look that took Riana’s breath away. He looked so sincere and concern that she knew right then that he was the right deal.

“Baby, you are so important to me. You may think I’m bullshitting you, but I’m not. I need to tell you something that may shock you a little, but I hope it doesn’t scare you.”

“What is it?”

“Riana, I had a crush on you since the first day I lay eyes on you last year on campus. I always wanted to talk to you, but at the time you were dating Isaac, so I didn’t want to stand in the way of that. I guess that’s why the night at the club when I saw you I wanted so bad to talk to you, but I could tell your heart was with Isaac.”

Riana couldn’t believe what she was hearing. How she didn’t pick up on the fact that Shaw had a crush on her for so long!

“Wow, this is amazing.” Riana said. She went back to the couch and sat down slowly.

“I didn’t mean to upset you, but I had to tell you. I wanted you to know how I feel.”

“So at the club, was spilling your drink on me was on purpose, or just pure luck?”

“Pure luck. I didn’t know it was you at first until I started talking to you. Maybe it was a sign for us to be together.”

“I don’t know what to say.”

“You don’t have to say anything. I just want you to know that I want you in my life, and I will wait for you as long as you need me to. I’m not going anywhere, baby, so you probably have to get used to me being around you.”

Riana started to laugh, but she knew Shawn was serious.

“I’m sorry I’m laughing. You’re pouring your heart out and I’m sitting here laughing.”

Shawn looked at Riana and gave her a kiss so beautiful it didn’t matter how silly Riana was acting.

“What does this means?”

“It can mean whatever you want it to be.”

“Okay, but we have to take things slow. We can’t just jump into things.”

“That’s fine with me.”

“And we can’t have sex.”

Shawn looked at Riana as if she lost her mind.

“Huh.”

“We can’t have sex. Even though I want to; believe me I do, but I made a vow to remain a virgin until I’m ready. I guess that’s why Isaac went to Britney since I wouldn’t give him any. He hated the idea of me waiting to have sex. I hope that’s not a problem. If it is, then maybe I’m not the girl for you.”

Shawn wondered if he could go a long time without sex. He was one of those guys who got sex when he wanted, however he wanted. But as he look into Riana’s eyes and seen the look of innocence in her, he knew what he had to do.

“I’m willing to make that sacrifice with you. You are so precious and if that’s what you want, then that’s fine with me.”

“You could be saying that now, but how I know you won’t get tired of me and find some girl who is willing to give you what you need? I can’t compete with that.”

“Ri, I said I will support your decision. I’m not like other guys who cheat on their girlfriends and I certainly will not mess up anything I have with you for some piece of ass. I will like you no matter if you’re a virgin or not. You don’t have to worry about me leaving you. Besides, I think it’s wonderful that you’re saving yourself for the right person. Losing your virginity is something that needs to be cherished and shouldn’t be taken lightly. I’m proud of you for sticking to your beliefs.”

Riana smiled.

“No one has ever said that to me before. Usually when I tell a guy I’m a virgin, they don’t want anything to do with me.”

“I’m not like most guys. I think it’s great.”

Riana kissed Shawn on the cheek.

“You know, this conversation is turning me on.”

Shawn smiled.

“I’m glad it does; but remember, you’re saving yourself.”

Riana laughed as she playfully hit Shawn on his shoulder.

“Can I ask why you want to save yourself?”

“I guess it just something I believe in. I always thought it was best for the person I know I’ll be spending the rest of my life with. I always thought the man I love should be the one who appreciate my body and not someone who don’t give a damn about me. I look at Monica and Britney and even Cheryl and wonder is sex really everything? I can imagine it feels good and you can get so much pleasure from it, but after it’s over, what else is left? Most men my friends been involved with didn’t care about their feelings, they just wanted what they had and was through with them. I don’t want to go through that. I’m not saying I’m waiting until I’m married, but I just want to know that the guy I’m giving everything to will be with me for the long haul.”

Shawn put his hands in Riana’s and smiled.

“That’s why I would never hurt you. I will be by you no matter what.”

Riana touched Shawn’s cheek.

“So, since we’re not having sex, what else can we do when we’re alone?”

“I think we can find some other things to do to keep us occupied.”

“What you have in mind?”

Shawn caressed Riana’s shoulders, which sends tingles throughout her body.

“You’ll see.” He said as he put his lips to hers.

The two begin to kiss as they lay down on the couch. Shawn lifted up Riana’s shirt as he planted kisses onto her stomach. He unzips her jeans as he moves his lips towards her navel. He slowly takes off her jeans and panties and spread her legs. He immediately began to move his tongue between her legs, making Riana lean her head back on the couch and breathe heavily.

She was glad that Shawn understood where she was coming from. Most guys believed a girl shouldn’t stay a virgin while in their 20s, but Riana was determined to. But how the way Shawn was making her feel at that moment, she didn’t even know if she could believe that theory herself.

Nine

Monica was pacing back and forth in the living furiously biting her fingernails. She just talked to Donnell and he was on his way over. He noticed she been acting strange lately and wanted to know what was wrong. She told him to come over so they could talk. Now she was nervously wondering how she was going to tell Donnell she’s pregnant and the fact that he might not be the father. As she took deep breaths, she realized she felt more nauseated than earlier that morning.

“Please God, help me get through this.” She prayed.

As soon as she opened her eyes, the doorbell rang. Monica stopped dead in her tracks and tried to regain her composure. She went to the door, took another deep breath, and opened it. Donnell was on the doorstep looking finer than ever. He gave Monica a kiss on the cheek as he walk into the apartment.

“Is everything okay? You didn’t sound too good on the phone.”

Monica closed the door and gives a tiny smile.

“I’m fine, baby. Did you want anything to drink?”

“Nah, I’m good.”

“Okay.” Monica said. She goes over to the couch and sits down besides Donnell. Her mind was telling her not to tell Donnell about her cheating on him, but she knew she had to.

“What did you want to tell me?”

Monica took Donnell’s hands in hers and looks straight at him. The nauseated feeling she was having before was coming back in a major way and she thought she was going to throw up in Donnell’s lap.

“Whatever I’m going to tell you, you have to promise me you will not get upset.”

Donnell looked at Monica with a confused look on his face.

“What’s going on Mon?”

“I have two things to tell you. The first thing is that I’m pregnant.”

Donnell’s face suddenly became pale from the news he just received. He couldn’t believe what Monica just told him.

“You’re pregnant! But how? We were careful every time.”

“I know, but I am. I’m two months actually. I went to the doctor today.”

“Why didn’t you tell me sooner? I could have gone to the doctor with you.”

“I know, and I’m sorry. I just thought I needed to do this on my own.”

“Why? You know I would have been there for you.”

Monica got up from the couch and started to walk around the living room. She didn’t want to look at Donnell. Just the idea that she cheated on him was bad enough, but being pregnant by another man who didn’t care about her was even worse.

“There’s more. Remember the night when we all went to the club and you had to work?”

“Yeah; what about it?”

“I met someone that night. We talked and had a few drinks…”

“You’re not saying what I think you’re saying.” Donnell said.

He went over to Monica and turns her around to face him.

“Please tell me you didn’t.”

Monica turned away from Donnell with tears in her eyes.

“I can’t lie to you. I can’t.”

“You cheated on me? With a complete stranger!”

Monica started to cry while Donnell went to a wall and put his fist through it. The noise startled Monica, causing her to jump.

“Why, Monica! Why did you have sex with another man? I thought everything between us was going so well! What made you do it?”

“I don’t know! I can’t explain what happened that night.”

“I knew you would fuck up again! After all those times I’ve took you back, you still let me down. And the things I have done for you! How could you do this to me?”

“I’m sorry Donnell. I didn’t mean to hurt you.”

Donnell looked at Monica as if she was crazy. He couldn’t believe she would stand in front of him and tell him that. After all the late night working and going to school, he didn’t need the added stress of her doing whatever she wanted. And now she’s pregnant and don’t even know who the father is!

“This can’t be happening.” he said.

He ran a hand through his bald head and gave Monica a look that scared her half to death. Monica never had seen Donnell look so angry before. Even the times when he found out she was cheating on him with some of his friends, he never looked at her like he wanted to kill her.

“I’m guessing you slept with him raw, huh? If you’re going to creep on me, you should have had the decency to use a condom! How the hell I know you haven’t given me a disease from all your whoring around!”

Monica never felt so low in her life. Not only did she hurt the one man that made her special, but now, she felt alone. Even Donnell wouldn’t stay with her. Not after what she done to him.

“I wish I could say something to ease your pain, but I can’t. If I can take back what I’ve done I would in a heartbeat, but I can’t. I have to live with the fact that this child I’m carrying could be a result from a one-night stand that I met at a club! This is not how I wanted my first child to be conceived from. I wanted it to be conceived with love, not from some night where I just wanted to get laid!”

“Oh, and that’s my problem! I thought you said you would never cheat on me again. Being the fool I am, I believed you. I tried to make things work between us, but you were the one who kept messing it up. Sure, I’ve done my dirt too, but not as much as you.”

“I understand that, and I’m willing to change if you let me.”

Donnell laughed at Monica.

“How many times have I heard that? When are you going to learn Monica? You’re 20 years old and you’re still playing childish games. Now you’re bringing a baby into this. I should have listened to myself and stayed the hell away from you when I had the chance, but I figured you’ve changed. How dumb was I to know it wasn’t true.”

“I’m so sorry.” Monica said in between tears.

“I don’t know why you’re crying? You brought this on yourself. I don’t feel sorry for you. Who I feel sorry for is the child growing inside of you, because they don’t know what’s going on. If the baby is mines, I will take care of it because I’m not some dead beat dad, but don’t expect me to be with you. I can’t be with you anymore, Monica. You hurt me too many times and since you dropped this on me, I definitely can’t be with you.”

“Donnell, please don’t do this! I need you more than ever now. I need you to be here for me and the baby!”

“I can’t. I will be there for the baby, if it’s mines, but I can’t be there for you. Why don’t you call the guy you fucked that night? He’ll be glad to know he could be the daddy.” Donnell said.

He went to the door and opened it. Britney was about to ring the doorbell when Donnell threw the door open. He walked past Britney and went towards the parking lot.

“Hello to you too.” Britney said.

She looked at Donnell leaving and wondered what was going on. When she went inside, she knew right away. Monica was on the floor crying her eyes out.

“Oh, Mon.” Britney said.

She ran over to Monica and sat beside her. She put her arms around her.

“He left me!” Monica said in a fit of tears.

“I know. It’s okay Monica; you have me and Ri. We’re here for you.”

The two lay on the floor wondering how their lives became so complicated.

***
Riana and Shawn were in Shawn’s bedroom cuddled up watching television. Riana felt as if she was in heaven. Being in Shawn’s arms felt so good she didn’t want to leave out of them.

Shawn looked at Riana and kissed her on her cheek. He couldn’t believe his dream girl was in his bed snuggle up next to him. Even though they didn’t have sex, it felt good to be in each other’s arms cuddling together.

“This feels so good.” Riana said.

“I still can’t believe this is happening.”

“Believe it.” Riana said as she kissed Shawn’s neck.

“How did you like my performance earlier?” Shawn asked.

Riana smiled.

Just thinking about Shawn’s tongue between her legs made her moist.

“It was great. Hell, it was excellent. Besides, I thought you knew how I felt when I came.”

“I know; I just wanted you to say it.”

Riana laughed and grabbed a pillow from under her head. She hit Shawn in the head with the pillow. Shawn laughed as he grabbed his pillow and the two started a pillow fight.

Shawn snatched Riana’s pillow and the two fell on the other side of the bed. He lay on top of her as he pushes some hair from her eyes. He looked at her for a second, mesmerized by her beauty. He leaned into her and kissed her on her lips. Riana returned his kiss while moving her hand down his back.

“You made me so happy today.” Shawn said.

“I never thought I could find someone like you. Now I know that dreams really do come true.” Riana said.

Shawn kissed her again and smiled.

“Are you hungry? I could order a pizza.”

“You don’t want to leave either, do you?”

“Why would I? I have everything I need right here.”

“Besides food.” Riana said while laughing.

“Okay smart ass. I’ll go order a pizza. What do you want on it?”

“Pepperoni with cheese, and maybe some Canadian bacon.”

“Okay.” Shawn said.

He kissed Riana again and goes towards the armchair for his cell phone.

While Shawn was ordering the pizza, Riana’s cell phone started to ring. Riana went to her purse and tried to look for it through the sea of mess that was occupying the inside. While she was still looking for it, the tone of Kem was filling the room as Riana finally found her phone. She pressed the answer button.

“Hello.”

“Hey Ri.” Britney said.

Why I didn’t look at the Caller ID without answering? Riana thought.

“What do you want?”

“I’m at the apartment visiting Monica. You have to come home. I think Monica maybe in trouble regarding the baby”

“What happened?”

“She told Donnell everything. He was really upset and stormed out. I found her curled up on the floor crying hysterically. All of a sudden she couldn’t breathe. I called her doctor and she told me that Monica cannot be under any stress at all.”

“Why you didn’t take her to the hospital?”

“Her doctor told me would be fine if she calmed down. She told me Monica has a high risk pregnancy and that she can’t be under stress. If she is, she could go into premature labor.”

Riana sighed and ran her hand through her wavy black hair.

“What you want me to do Brit? Is Mon okay now?”

“She’s fine now. She’s sleeping on the couch.”

“Okay, I’ll be home soon. Thanks for being there for her.”

“She’s still my friend, Riana; just like you are.”

“I’ll talk to you later.” Riana said.

She hung up the phone and put it on Shawn’s nightstand.

Shawn stared at Riana and put an arm around her.

“Is Monica okay?”

“She is now. She had some problems earlier regarding the baby. Brit said that Monica has a high risk pregnancy and if she’s under any stress, she could possibly miscarry.”

“Wow. Whatever you all do, you have to be there for Monica. More likely, Donnell knows what happened, otherwise she wouldn’t be under stress. As her friends, no matter what is going on, you have to put your feelings aside to help Monica.”

“What does that supposed to mean?”

“I meant with you and Britney. I know you haven’t squash what happened. I know what Britney did was wrong and she should have gotten her ass kicked for it, but from what I know you two have known each other since you were little. You’re going to let some guy come between you and what you mean to each other?”

“Britney messed up when she slept with Isaac.”

“I understand that, but why do you care now? You’re with me, so what difference does it make what Britney done?”

“I would have never thought Britney would do this to me. We’re supposed to be friends. Friends don’t do that to each other.”

“I know, but you have to let things go in order to move on. I’m not saying you should become friends again, because that’s not my place to say whether you should or not, but at least forgive her for what she done. Maybe she didn’t realize what she was doing or she did, but just got caught up in it.”

Riana looked at Shawn and started to scream.

“This is so frustrating! Honestly, I want to patch things up with Britney, but I can’t get pass the fact what she done. I can’t trust her anymore and it kills me to say that because she’s been my best friend for years. It hurts because we should all be here in that apartment helping Monica out the best way we can. I miss her and I want her back in my life, but I can’t risk letting her back in.”

“I completely understand, but look at us. Before today, you were scare to get into another relationship because you thought you might get hurt again, but you took a chance with me. Why can’t you do the same for someone you known your entire life?”

“It’s not that simple.” Riana said while staring at the wall.

Later That Evening, and Riana and Shawn walked up to Riana’s apartment to check on Monica. As Riana opened the door, she noticed Britney was still there watching Monica sleep.

“Hey; how long has Monica been sleeping?”

“A while now.”

Riana went over to Monica and laid a hand on her forehead. She sighed and looked at Britney.

“Thanks for being here for her. I know she really needs someone here, especially after what happened with Donnell.”

“Mon is my friend. I’ll always be there for her.”

Riana looked over at Shawn. He nodded.

“Can we talk for a second?” Riana asked Britney.

“Sure.”

The two goes outside and closed the door. They walked down on step and sat down on the iron stairs.

“Listen, I know things between us haven’t been the best lately.”

“I know; I wish things between us can go back to the way it was, but I know it’s not.”

“Things will never be the same between us. We were the best of friends, but now we barely speak to each other.”

“And it’s all my fault. Ri, I didn’t mean for any of this to happen. I guess I got caught up in being in love with Isaac that I didn’t realize I was hurting my best friend. I know you don’t want to hear this, but I’m so sorry for everything. I’m really am.”

Riana sighed. She waited a moment to speak, but she couldn’t find the words to say.

“Are you going to say anything?” Britney asked.

“Frankly, I don’t know what to say. A part of me wants to forgive you and become friends again, but the other part feels I can’t trust you anymore. I missed you so much as a friend because you have been there for me through so much, but I can’t get pass the fact that you was with Isaac. How do I know you won’t do it again with Shawn or with some other guy I date?”

“I won’t betray you like that again Ri. What happened between Isaac and me was horrible and I feel terrible about it. If I can take it back I would in a second, but I can’t. All I’m asking is to please forgive me for what I’ve done. I missed you and Monica so much it hurts. You two are my girls and I can’t imagine living my life without you two. You’re my sisters.”

Riana looked up at the sky and shook her head. All the things Britney was saying were so genuine and kind, but she don’t know if she could accept it.

“Now that I look back on everything that has happened, I look at myself and wonder what was I thinking? I lost two of my best friends and I hurt the closest person that was like a sister to me over some guy that wasn’t even worth it.

“You know that Isaac was cheating on me too. I found him with another girl the day you kicked me out. Not only that, but he hit me too. Not only is he a cheater, but also abusive. I feel so bad because after all I said and the actions I took for him wasn’t even worth it. All along I should had listened to the people that cared about me the most.

“Isaac didn’t care about us being friends or the fact that what we done destroyed so many people; the only thing he cared about was what he could get from people. Me being the naïve girl I was, I fell for all the things he said to me. I feel like such a fool.”

“Don’t say that. You’re not a fool. Isaac is. He didn’t care about anyone, but himself. I’m glad you realized it. I just wish it was sooner.”

“Me too.”

Riana put her hand on Britney’s hand and smiled.

“Are we friends again?” Britney asked.

“I guess we are, but promise me one that that you won’t pursue any more of my men.”

Britney smiled.

“I promise. What made you change your mind?”

“Someone told me something tonight that changed my mind. He said that we been friends for so long and no matter what happened in life your family and friends will always be there to support you. It going to take some time for me to trust you again, but I know that as best friends, we can get through anything together.”

Britney smiled as she put her arms around Riana. The two hug each other tightly. Britney was in tears while Riana was smiling at the sky. When they pulled apart, Riana wiped Britney’s tears with her hand.

“I’m glad we’re friends again.” Britney said.

“Me too.”

Monica and Shawn walk outside and saw Riana and Britney hugging. Monica smiled while Shawn nodded his head in approval.

“At least the day ended on a high note.” Monica said.

The two turned and smiled at Monica.

“How are you feeling sweetie?” Riana asked.

“Like shit. I’m pregnant, and the one good man that was in my life is gone. But I’m glad we’re all friends again. I missed us being together.”

“I think we all did.” Britney said.

“Come here.” Riana said.

Monica walked over to Riana and Britney and the three shared an embrace that was full of happiness.

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