Prologue *Unedited draft. Trigger warnings in comments to prevent spoilers*
I stare at the sodden toilet paper, the scarlet stain bringing bile to my throat as fear constricts my chest. As if on autopilot, I discard the toilet paper and pull more off the roll, closing my eyes and willing a different result with everything I have. Tears sting and a wave of nausea washes over me as an even darker stain mocks me. I don’t know why Simon springs to mind in this moment, but suddenly it is three weeks ago and I’m back at Simon’s apartment heaving into the toilet.
I wipe my mouth with the back of my hand and rest my forehead on my arms. This is disgusting, I should move, I know I should, but I just don’t have the energy. At first, I thought I had food poisoning from the snacks backstage and then I thought it might be a bug, but when I mentioned it to Sam, she pointed out that no one else had been experiencing symptoms and then, ever-the-logical one, pointed out that I only had one symptom.
I raise my head and look at the pregnancy test lying next to me on the floor, my relief paramount, and that in itself is telling.
Only one line.
Another wave of nausea washes through me and I vomit spectacularly into the bowl. I don’t hear the footsteps approaching over the sound of my gagging, but I can’t miss the anger in Simon’s tone.
I manage to stop vomiting, inhaling deep breaths through my nose and exhaling out my mouth as I watch Simon swipe the test off the floor. He stares at it, his face blotching an angry red, and then he waves the test at me like a weapon.
“What the fuck is this, Hayley?”