The day Amanda told Elliot about the father of her baby had to be his worst Thanksgiving ever.
Not that Elliot liked Thanksgiving much. He really didn't. Usually, that meant eating too much, or getting sick. It was not his favorite holiday. It was just that solemn day to get Christmas started. And they'd been planning to get married sometime between Christmas and January 1. On the 28th to be exact.
He didn't know what to think now.
He'd promised he was going to take it like man. He knew something had been bothering her, but he just thought it was being miserably pregnant. The fact that he'd done this to her. He felt awful about that. And now it wasn't his fault at all. Someone else's.
He wanted to wash his hands of the situation. He would have. He could have, but really she was his best friend.
"Best friends just don't do this to each other!" He told her trying to sort it all out. "Do they? Why didn't you tell me when, you know, when you got back? You could have told me!" His voice had been so raw when he talked then. He thought he'd lost his voice now.
They had been alone in his car at the time she told him everything, outside Kyle's house.
"You would have left, you would." She shrugged as if he had a secret society of females just waiting for him. He didn't think he so. It would have just given him more time to get used to the idea.
"I doubt that." He shook his head. "Its just, it could be my baby."
"But its not." She was so sure.
"I mean, you and me, before you left, we could have. We should have. That's what I mean." He was in tears about that.
"I guess." She winced tears.
"But you were-" Air puffed up his cheeks and he blew out a breath as if he didn't know what would happen now. "And Eric! Eric of all people!" He shook his head. "I have to put up with that guy?" He was hurt.
"He doesn't want to-" She started.
"He'll want something. He will." Elliot nodded as if he was sure of it. It was hard to even look at her. He felt so defeated. Didn't she know he was like his arch-enemy, or something. "Its his baby!"
"But I want to be with you." She told him.
He still felt shaky from their talk. He hadn't told her they were through. He hadn't told her anything, and now he'd finally got up the nerve to talk to Eric who was leaving to go back to the University.
"So how's it going?" He felt like an insurance salesman of some kind as he approached Eric. He plastered a smile on his face, but really there was no reason to smile. If he had it in him he would knocked that look off Eric's face, but there he was with a cat carrier.
"I dunno." Eric looked as if he were ready for a bomb to go off.
"Have a good Thanksgiving?" He made small talk.
"You don't have to be nice to me." Eric finally said as if he knew exactly what this was about.
"I can't make you go away, either," Elliot said so restless.
"I'm sorry." Eric shrugged. "I wish I knew what I could say or do-"
"What do you want to do?" Elliot glared at him.
"Are you going to marry her?" Eric wanted to know.
"I want to." Elliot winced.
"Then you should." Eric nodded. "I mean, I'll help. I will. Its just not so easy right now. I want to get through school. But I'll start up a savings account. Its not like I want to totally be out of the picture. I don't. But I don't want to be in the way, either."
Elliot nodded. Maybe nothing had really changed. But it had, and he'd need time to get used to it. Yet it felt like a frigid wound in his chest that he'd have to get used to living with. That sort of pain was hard to ignore.