Fire amp brimstone, p.23
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       Fire & Brimstone, p.23
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         Part #8 of Neighbor from Hell series by R. L. Mathewson

  clenched his jaw tightly shut.


  Chapter 43

  “What’s he doing now?” Melanie whispered, hiding behind her as Rebecca cracked open the bathroom door a little wider and stuck her head out the door.

  “Still ransacking my room,” she whispered back.

  “Why is he ransacking your room?” Melanie asked, making her roll her eyes.

  “How the hell would I know?” she asked, seconds before she was forced to shove Melanie back when Lucifer suddenly stormed out of her room, so that she could shut the bathroom door shut and lock it.

  “This is bad,” Melanie mumbled, stating the obvious.

  Sometime in the last twenty minutes of so, her boyfriend had lost his damn mind. As soon as he saw the positive test result he’d nodded to himself several times, went pale, kind of wavered on his feet a bit there, mumbled something about New Hampshire and stormed off, kind of freaking them out a bit. Since that special moment that terrified them to their very being, he’d gone a little…nuts. When he wasn’t tearing apart her room, he was raiding their kitchen, and mumbling something about needing “sustenance,” with the help of Mojo, the little traitor that she’d once considered her sweet little baby.

  Speaking of baby…

  She folded her arms over her chest, turned around to face the woman that had started it all, cocked a brow and said, “Explain.”

  Melanie worried her bottom lip as she said, “I can’t.”

  “Yeah, you really can.”

  “I really can’t,” Melanie said, leaning back against the counter.

  “Oh, I really think you can,” she said, narrowing her eyes on the woman that had broken her boyfriend, a job that was rightfully hers.

  Looking down at her feet, Melanie shook her head. “I really can’t.”

  “He thinks I’m pregnant, Melanie,” she reminded her.

  “I know,” Melanie said, sounding absolutely miserable.

  “So, start talking,” Rebecca said, guessing that they had ten minutes before Lucifer broke this door down and took his mental breakdown to the next level.

  “There’s nothing to talk about,” Melanie said, and as much as she hated pushing her best friend to talk about something before she was ready, right now she didn’t have a choice.

  “That pregnancy test says otherwise,” she said, leaning back against the door. “Who’s the father?”

  “I’m not ready to talk about that.”

  “I didn’t even know that you were dating someone,” Rebecca said, listening as Lucifer stormed past the bathroom and headed back to her room. The sounds of Mojo following after him followed a few seconds later.

  “I’m not,” Melanie said, shaking her head. “It was a one time thing. I haven’t even spoken to him since it happened.”

  She digested that for a minute before asking, “Are you going to tell him?”

  “When I’m ready,” Melanie said, and she didn’t have to ask if she was going to keep the baby. There were just some things that you didn’t have to talk about when it came to your best friend.

  “I’m going to have to tell Lucifer,” she said, sighing when she heard what sounded like him tearing through her bureau. She had absolutely no clue what he was looking for, but whatever it was, it couldn’t be good.

  “I know,” Melanie said, quietly.

  “You know I’m here when you’re ready to talk, right?” she said, reminding Melanie that she was always going to be there for her even though it was a given.

  Melanie looked up at her and blinked. “Is this our Hallmark moment?”

  “It is,” Rebecca said, sighing heavily.

  “Should we get a cup of tea, hold each other and cry with Michael Bolton playing in the background?”

  “We should,” Rebecca said, solemnly.

  Laughing, Melanie pushed away from the sink and pulled her into a hug. “I’m sorry that I didn’t tell you.”

  “You should be,” she said, returning the hug. “Are you happy?”

  “Terrified,” Melanie admitted with a nervous chuckle, “but yeah, I’m excited about this even though it doesn’t feel real yet.”

  “Well, it’s not going to until you’re the size of a whale,” Rebecca pointed out, because she was just that helpful.

  “Bitch,” Melanie said, laughing as she playfully pushed her away.

  “Whore,” Rebecca said, sighing heavily as they returned their attention to the locked door.

  “Takes one to know one,” Melanie said, grabbing her hand and gave it a squeeze.

  “Will you go with me when I visit him in the insane asylum?” she asked.

  “No,” Melanie said, shaking her head slowly as she released her hand so that she could push Rebecca towards the door.

  “Bitch,” she said, sighing as she reluctantly unlocked the door, knowing that it was for the best if she explained everything to Lucifer before it was too late.

  Opening the door, she took a deep breath and-

  “Who’s the father?” Lucifer demanded, looking incredibly pissed.


  “I’m sorry. What’s this now?” Rebecca asked, shifting a nervous glance to her partner in crime.

  Glaring at Melanie, he repeated himself, “Who’s the father?”

  “What the hell are you talking about?” Rebecca, always the faithful friend, asked as she came to Melanie’s defense.

  He gestured to the walls and reminded them, “Paper thin walls.”

  Rebecca shrugged as she pushed past him, or at least tried to, but he wasn’t quite done. “Congratulations,” he said to Melanie, but his eyes were locked on Rebecca.

  “Um, thank you?” Melanie said, shifting nervously. “Is there any chance that I can leave?”

  “Are you going to tell me who the father is so that I can beat the shit out of him?” he asked, never taking his eyes off Rebecca, who was now glaring at him.

  “That’s sweet, but no. I can handle this one on my own,” Melanie said, sighing with relief when he nodded and moved aside so that she could leave. Once she was gone, he stepped inside the bathroom, giving Rebecca no other choice but to step back so that he could close the door behind him and lock it.

  “Is there a reason that you’re keeping me hostage in my bathroom or is this part of your nervous breakdown?” she asked with a glare that most likely matched his own.

  “It’s most likely part of my nervous breakdown,” he admitted, shifting his attention to the medicine cabinet.

  “What exactly are you looking for?” she asked as he searched for the one thing that would return his sanity.

  “I’ll let you know when I find it,” he said, shutting the medicine cabinet and shifted his attention to the drawers beneath the sink.

  “If you’re looking for antipsychotic medication, you’re out of luck. I crushed the last pill up this morning and sprinkled it on my gluten free Cheerios,” she said, dryly while he struggled to keep it together.

  “Smartass,” he said absently as he pushed aside a box of tampons and-

  Sighed when he found what he was looking for. Grabbing the pink box, he shut the drawer and forced himself to breathe. Licking his lips, he turned around and held the box out to her.

  “I’m going to need you to do this,” he said, holding the pregnancy test out to Rebecca, who cut him some slack and took the test from him without an argument.

  “I’m not pregnant,” she said with a helpless shrug.

  “Then you won’t mind taking this test,” he said, opening the bathroom door and stepping out into the hallway when all he wanted to do was stay with her, but he knew that she would just kick his ass if he tried that shit.

  “I’m not pregnant!” she yelled through the door.

  “Take the test, woman!” he yelled back, rubbing his hands down his face as he stood there, trying to figure out how he was going to handle this if that test came back positive.


  “She’s on the pill,” Melanie
said as she walked past him, carrying a bag of candy bars with her.

  He already knew that, but he needed to make sure that everything was fine. Seeing that pregnancy test in her hand had fucking terrified him, because he wasn’t ready for this. There was no doubt in his mind that he wanted to be with Rebecca and that he would do the right thing if the test came back positive, but a baby?

  “It’s going to be negative,” Rebecca said in a singsong voice as she opened the door and strolled towards her bedroom.

  He hoped like hell that she was right, because he wasn’t sure that they were ready for a baby. They’d only been together for a few months and he knew that it probably made him an asshole, but he’d been hoping to have more time with her before he had to share her.

  Rubbing his hands down his face, he pushed away from the door and walked into the bathroom, deciding that there was no point in putting this off. The closer he got to that white stick on the counter, the heavier his legs felt.

  She was on birth control, he reminded himself as he closed his eyes and took a deep breath. They were going to have to start using condoms, he decided as he took another deep breath. He opened his eyes and found himself staring at the eight letters flashing on the small screen telling him that he didn’t need to worry about buying condoms anymore.

  Chapter 44

  “So, what exactly were you trying to achieve by tearing my room apart?” she asked as she looked around at the mess that was her room and really wished that she could blame him for it, but sadly, it seemed as though he’d cleaned up whatever mess he’d caused as he’d torn through her room.

  They really needed to discuss the possibility of OCD one day, she thought even as she wondered if she could talk him into organizing the rest of her room. Maybe if she was really nice to him he would-

  “It’s positive.”

  “What?” she asked absently as she glanced at her messy bed.

  “The test,” he said weakly, “It’s positive.”

  “That’s not funny,” she said, praying that he was joking, but the problem was that he would never joke about something like this.

  “I’m not laughing,” he said softly, standing there, looking completely lost and making her sigh, because he’d obviously read the test wrong.

  “You probably just read it wrong,” she pointed out, giving him a reassuring smile as she headed back towards the bathroom, “It’s no big deal.”

  She should have waited for the test results, she realized as she carefully stepped over Mojo, who had apparently given up trying to make it to the kitchen and had flopped down on the hallway floor to conserve his energy. She walked into the bathroom and grabbed the test. As soon as she had it in her hand she walked back to her room, sighing when Mojo forced her to wait so that he could slowly flop over onto his other side.

  As she stood there, waiting for Mojo to finish the impossible, she couldn’t help but wonder how they’d ended up here. Her best friend was pregnant and she’d had absolutely no idea that she was even seeing someone, which made her realize just how selfish she’d been lately. She was so damn wrapped up in Lucifer and everything else going on in her life that she’d forgotten to make sure that her best friend was okay.

  Melanie was pregnant, she thought, slowly exhaling and shaking her head in wonder, because it didn’t feel real. Shouldn’t one of them be panicking? Because this felt like a panic kind of moment, but she just couldn’t wrap her mind around it. Maybe once Melanie started puking day and night or became a crabby bitch who had to waddle everywhere it would finally sink in.

  That’s probably around the time that they would both panic, because they weren’t ready for this and yes, they were in this together. Melanie was her best friend and pretty much the only family that she had. She was going to need help and even though Rebecca had absolutely no idea how to work a diaper, she was going to be right there by her side.

  The small, disgruntled grunt let her know that Mojo had given up and was ready to allow her passage. After leaning over to scratch behind Mojo’s ears, she carefully stepped over him and headed back to her bedroom where she’d left Lucifer on the verge of another nervous breakdown.

  Walking into the room, she gave him a reassuring smile as she raised the pregnancy test and-

  “Oh, what the hell,” she said, shaking her head in disgust as she turned around and walked back out of the room. “How old are these pregnancy tests?”

  “What?” Melanie asked with a frown as she came into view, holding a spoon and a tub of raw chocolate chip cookie dough.

  “The pregnancy tests. How old are they?” she asked, holding up the faulty pregnancy test.

  “I just bought them yesterday. Why?” Melanie asked as she took a bite of cookie dough.

  “Because they’re faulty,” she said, shaking her head as she dropped her hand to her side.

  “No, they’re not,” Melanie said, frowning in confusion.

  “Yes, they are,” she said, because clearly the one in her hand was broken.

  Reminding herself that there was still a good possibility that she wasn’t allowed to beat Melanie for the next nine months, she forced herself to take a deep, calming breath, because obviously Melanie wasn’t seeing the big picture here. “They don’t work,” she said evenly.

  “Yes, they do!”

  “No, they don’t!” she yelled back, getting more pissed with every passing second.

  “How the hell would you know?” Melanie finally asked, realizing that they weren’t getting anywhere like this.

  “Because according to this test, I’m pregnant,” she said in exasperation as she held up the white test that she was barely resisting the urge to throw against the wall.

  Melanie eyes widened at that announcement while her mouth worked soundlessly for a few seconds before she finally managed a gasped, “You whore!”


  “Then you carefully roll the condom down the banana,” Melanie said brightly as she finished rolling the condom that she’d apparently forgotten to use, down a large banana while he stood there alongside Rebecca, glaring at her.

  “Not. Fucking. Funny,” he bit out, wondering how Rebecca had managed to resist the urge to wring her neck.

  “Bitch,” Rebecca added with a glare of her own.

  “Did you want me to go over this again?” Melanie offered, smiling as she pulled out another condom.

  Instead of answering her, he reached over and snatched the banana out of her hand. Pulling the condom off, he tossed it aside, peeled the banana and took a big bite out of it, all while glaring at the woman that was taking too damn much pleasure in their downfall.

  “So,” Melanie said brightly as she clapped her hands together, “what shall we talk about?”

  They simply glared at her until she took the hint, tossed the condom back on the kitchen counter with a sigh and muttered, “Kill joys,” before she walked back to her precious couch. As he stood there beside Rebecca, staring at the kitchen cabinets, he realized that he had absolutely no idea what he was supposed to say to her.

  He didn’t know if she was happy about this, scared, or pissed since she’d decided to shut down once Melanie had explained that she’d gone to the doctor yesterday morning to confirm the test results. He glanced at the clock on the stove and realized that it had been forty minutes since she’d realized that the positive reading might be correct.

  “Any chance that Aidan would be willing to see me today?” Rebecca asked, sounding pissed.

  So, he had his answer.

  She was definitely pissed.

  Great, the one response that he had absolutely no idea how to deal with, but at least she’d given him something to do besides standing around, trying not to panic.

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