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The Best Laid Plans


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I just know that in the not-too-distant future I'm going to find I have no time to write this and be struggling to update, but I thought I'd better start it while it's at least vaguely timely.Hope you enjoy!

Story Title: The Best Laid Plans
Type of story: Long fic
Main Characters: Oscar, Maddy, Skye, Matt, Olivia, Evelyn, Josh, Roo
BTTB rating: T
Genre: Romance/Drama
Does story include spoilers: No
Any warnings: Sexual content: Mild to moderate. Violence: None planned. Language: None.
Summary: The teens have just sorted out their relationships...so naturally something has to come along to throw them all into upheaval.

CHAPTER ONE

Oscar paused in the door of Angelo’s, slowly scanning the room for a sign of his date.He picked her out instantly of course.She was sat with her back to him, wearing a simple white dress that was very her.He continued to hesitate, breathing into his hand to make sure his breath didn’t smell and wondering why he was so nervous.

  Skye turned, gave one of those broad smiles that were scarily infectious, and waved at him.Oscar waved back and threaded his way through the tables to sit down opposite her.“You been waiting long?”he asked.

  “No, just got here,”Skye claimed.There was a slight awkwardness to her tone that led him to believe otherwise.She waved at Josh, who was manning the bar, and he took the cue to bring the menus over. “Should we order?”

  Oscar glanced briefly at the menu, gesturing to his usual.He turned his attention back to Skye, who was biting her lip nervously as she scanned the options.“You kept your glasses on,”he remarked.

  Skye looked up, looking worried that she’d committed a major social error.“Is that a problem?”

  “No, no,”he reassured her hastily,“You look great with or without them.”

  Skye smiled, relaxing, and turned back to Josh.“I’ll have that one,”she decided, handing him back the menu.

  Oscar realised that they were both nervous.He wasn’t quite sure why he’d suggested the date, except that she was pretty and he enjoyed her company, which seemed like good reasons, especially after Evelyn had told him with an air of exasperation that Skye obviously liked him.It had made him stop and think, and ponder that while he hoped he’d left his awkward schoolboy days behind him, in truth it was only a few months ago and they weren’t really that different.

  “I’m trying not to ask you how school’s going,”he remarked,“Because that would be a sign that I’ve turned into one of those middle-aged people who don’t know what the cool stuff is anymore.”

  Skye smiled.“To be honest, I’ve never really known what the cool stuff is either.Give me the sub-atomic structure of a quark any day.”

  “That’s what I always say,”Oscar agreed,“Remind me to show you some of my engineering textbooks sometimes.”

  “I’d like that,”Skye agreed.

  Oscar looked at her admiringly.“You know, I think you’re the first girl to say that to me and mean it.”

  Skye blushed slightly.“I’m one of a kind,”she joked.

  Oscar’s expression didn’t change.“You certainly are.”

***

Matt and Maddy were dancing.The bar around them was full of couples but they were only focusing on each other, hands clasped, swinging each other around the dance floor.“Do you think we should be heading back?”Maddy shouted over the music.

  Matt gave her a disappointed look. “What are you, eighty?”

  “I just don’t want to wake Roo up!”

  “Well, we’ll wake her up either way!”As if to demonstrate his point, Matt pulled Maddy towards him and kissed her enthusiastically.

  Maddy responded at first but then pulled away, not least because she’d remembered that they were surrounded by complete strangers.“Kind of proves my point.”

  Matt mulled this over.“A few more drinks first!”

  Maddy let him pull her over towards the bar.“Is that a good idea?”

  “Of course!That’s the best thing about uni:They have a bar!”

  Maddy looked fondly at him.“Okay, one more.”Matt’s expression suggested he wasn’t going to take that for an answer.Maddy laughed.“Okay.A few more.”

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Wow, thank you so much for the amazing response! This chapter's a bit short but hopefully it'll be worth reading and I promise they won't all be like that!

CHAPTER TWO

“So, how did it go?”asked Olivia when she and Skye were in the kitchen the next morning.

  Skye beamed broadly.“It was great.We had loads in common, we talked for ages about simply everything…”

  “Yeah, never mind the teen mag stuff.Did he kiss you?”

  Skye looked momentarily bemused.“It was our first date.”

  Olivia stared hard at her, as if waiting for the punchline.“You’re serious, aren’t you?”she said after a moment.Skye nodded.“You are way too innocent at times.”

  “Just because I’m not making out all over the house like you and VJ.”

  “VJ and I have a perfectly healthy relationship, I’ll have you know.”

  Skye pondered the comment.“Do I have a relationship?”

  Olivia thought for a moment.“Well, are you going to see each other again?”Olivia nodded, smiling.“Then congratulations.You’ve joined the ranks of the couples.”

***

Oscar was feeling relaxed and happy as he walked near the beach.He noticed Maddy coming in the other direction with a tray of coffees.Things were still slightly awkward between them after their break-up, but they were doing their best to keep things civil and friendly.“One of those for Matt?”he asked.

  Maddy nodded.“We kind of need them after last night.”

  “Good night?”Oscar tried to sound casual.

  “Uni bar.What about you?”

  “Ah, I had a date actually.”

  Maddy’s expression seemed to take in every emotion conceivable before she settled on interested. “Anyone I know?”

  “Skye.”

  Maddy struggled to process that.“Isn’t she a bit young for you?”

  “Age gap’s about the same as between you and Matt.”Oscar leaned against the railing, encouraging Maddy to stand next to him.“How’s that going anyway?”

  Maddy thought for a moment, unsure what answer to give.“He makes me happy.”

  Oscar studied her and then nodded.“Good.”

  “What about you and Skye?”

  “Early days but…yeah, I think so.”

  Maddy smiled.“That’s good too.”

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Once again, I'm overwhelmed by the response.Thank you for the encouragement, it's really helping me get into the story knowing people are enjoying it and that can only be good for all of us!

CHAPTER THREE

Oscar was just coming back from a swim when he caught sight of Skye on the beach.She was sat on a towel, reading a book.He dried himself off and went over to her.“Odd place to be doing that,”he remarked.He glanced at the cover.It seemed to be some sort of romance novel.

  Skye smiled.“I like sitting on the beach and I’m not used to having one just outside my front door yet. It’s a bit of a novelty still.”

  Oscar nodded and sat down next to her.“Yeah, Evie and I were like that when we first came here.After all that time stuck out on the commune, it felt nice.Guess we’ve got used to it.”

  Skye shook her head.“I don’t think I’ll ever get used to it.”

  Oscar gestured to the book, which was now hanging loosely in her hands.“Are you set on finishing that by lunch or do you fancy doing something?”

  Skye cocked her head in a curious fashion.“What did you have in mind?”

  “Well, there’s the Diner or the surf club.Or we could go really mad and take the bus to Yabbie Creek.”

  Skye mulled this over.“And what would we do in Yabbie Creek?”

  Oscar paused.“Would you like to go bowling?”he asked at last.

  Skye smiled.“I would very much like to go bowling.”

  “That’s settled then.”Oscar coughed awkwardly.“Um, one other thing.”

  Skye looked at him in anticipation…and then he leaned forward and kissed her.She melted into the kiss, their lips gently touching and responding to each other, before he leaned back again.“Just wanted to do that,”he explained.

  Skye could see his cheeks had gone slightly red and sensed hers were the same.“When’s the next bus due?”she asked.

  “About twenty minutes.”

  Skye nodded.“Just checking,”she replied and kissed him again.

***

Matt arrived back at the flat expecting a greeting, but instead the place seemed to be empty.He looked around in confusion.“Maddy?”he called out.

  His reply was a retching noise from the direction of the bathroom.He hurriedly entered it to find Maddy bent over the toilet bowl, vomiting.He crouched by her in concern, gently rubbing her back.Maddy twisted round and sat with her back resting against the wall.

  “Hangover?”Matt asked hopefully.

  Maddy waved a hand helplessly.“I don’t know.It doesn’t feel like it.It just came on suddenly.”

  “It’s not the…the cancer, is it?”Matt voiced the question with extreme reluctance, aware it was on both their minds.

  “Feels more like when I was having chemo.Which I’m not.”Maddy shrugged.“I don’t know.”

  Matt got up and helped her to her feet.“Come on.”

  Maddy looked at him in confusion.“Where are we going?”

  “Hospital.The sooner we get this checked out, the sooner we can find out it’s nothing.”

***

Skye carefully measured her step before hurling her ball down the lane.The ball knocked down five of the remaining pins, leaving one standing.She raised her arms in a gesture of triumph and Oscar nodded approvingly.“Why do I get the feeling you’ve been practising?”he asked.

  “No, I haven’t.It’s just all about working out the angle.Taking into account the slope of the lane and the weight of the ball.”

  Oscar gave an admiring smile.“Has anyone ever told you you’re not like other girls?”

  “I imagine people say the same about you.”Skye noticed Oscar’s raised eyebrow and reddened slightly. “That you’re not like other boys, I mean.”

  Oscar nodded in understanding.“Well, who wants to be the same as everyone else?I’d rather be with someone like you.”

  Skye smiled and kissed him gently.Oscar held up his ball and nodded towards the lane.“Want to give me some tips?”he asked.

***

Maddy lay on one of the beds in the examination room.Matt was sat next to her, reaching out to hold her hand.Nate was running an ultrasound scanner over her stomach.“What is it?”Maddy asked, studying his expression.

  “Yeah, come on, doc, don’t keep us in suspense,”Matt prompted nervously.

  Nate switched off the machine and looked at Maddy.“Well, the good news is you don’t have cancer.”

  Maddy processed the remark, not quite ready to relax yet.“Is there bad news?”

  Nate hesitated.“There’s other news,”he said at last,“You’re pregnant.”

  Maddy’s eyes widened in surprise.She looked across at Matt, who was equally shell-shocked.“Okay, I guess there could be worse news than that,”Maddy said at last.

  Matt nodded in agreement.“Um, what do we do now?”

  “Talk it over with each other and with your families,”Nate suggested.He looked at the monitor.“I’d say you’re four months along, so if you’re only just getting nausea now you’ll probably escape the worst of it.”

  “Four months?”Matt did a quick mental calculation.“That’d be round about the time we got together.”

  Maddy followed his thought process.“Around the time I broke up with Oscar.”

  Matt let the news sink in.“And you two were..?”

  “Right up until a few days before the formal.Two or three weeks before we got together.”She looked hopefully at Nate.

  Nate looked awkward.“I…wouldn’t like to give a conception date with that much accuracy.”

  They all lapsed into an uncomfortable silence.

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Thank you once again for all the support!

CHAPTER FOUR

Evelyn arrived home to the not entirely welcome sight of Oscar and Skye kissing on the couch.She rolled her eyes and made a loud coughing sound that caused them to disengage and turn round.“Don’t mind me,”she complained, heading through the room and upstairs.

  “Sisters,”Oscar sighed,“They’re really annoying, aren’t they?”Skye lowered her eyes and Oscar mentally kicked himself.“And now I’ll put my other foot in my mouth.Sorry, I forgot.”

  “It’s okay,”Skye replied, managing to smile,“You’re right, Lisa was annoying at times.”

  “You don’t talk about her much.”

  “I couldn’t talk about her at home, with Mum the way she was.And no-one here knew her.I guess I’ve got used to missing her quietly.What about you?I heard about what happened to your other sister.”

  Oscar sighed.“Yeah.We didn’t know Denny long but…I still miss her.She was a part of the family.”He patted Skye on the leg.“Sorry, I’ve kind of brought the mood down here.”

  “It’s okay.”Skye smiled.“But I had better get going.For a start, I’ve got another annoying sort-of sister who’ll be wanting an update.”She got to her feet and gave Oscar a lingering farewell kiss.“You’re going to call me, right?”

  “I’m going to call you,”Oscar confirmed.

  Skye smiled and headed on her way.

***

Matt and Maddy walked back into the flat in silence.Maddy went over to the couch and sat down.Matt hovered behind her, unsure of what to do.“Should I get you anything?”he asked at last.

  Maddy turned round and looked at him.“You could talk to me.”

  “Right.Yeah.”Matt awkwardly walked around the couch and sat down next to her.“How are you feeling about all this?”

  Maddy sighed.“Confused.”

  “Yeah, that’s pretty much where I’m at.It’s like…I might be a dad, but I might not.”

  “Well, I’m definitely going to be a mum,”Maddy pointed out.

  “Yeah.How does that feel?”

  “Like you said:Confusing.I don’t know what it means for me.”She looked him in the eye nervously.“For us.”

  “Is there a way to find out?Who the father is, I mean?Before the baby’s born?”

  “Yeah, they can do a test using the amniotic fluid.”Maddy grimaced.“Trust me, I’ve looked into it in the past.But it would help if we had the other party involved.”

  “Other party?”Matt struggled with the term.“You mean Oscar.”

  Maddy nodded.“I need to tell him.”

***

Skye arrived back at the beach house to a sight that curiously mirrored the one that had greeted Evelyn not that long earlier:Olivia and VJ were kissing on the couch.Skye, however, was grinning from ear to ear and that didn’t change.“Hello!”she greeted them cheerily before heading to the fridge for a drink.

  Olivia looked round at her and shared a look with an equally bemused VJ.They both got up and headed over to the kitchen counter, staring through it at her erstwhile housemate.“Okay, I know that being annoyingly chirpy isn’t exactly unusual for you but this is something else,”Olivia mused.

  Skye’s face was the picture of innocence.“Is it?”

  “Didn’t I see you getting on a bus with Oscar earlier?”VJ asked curiously.

  Olivia’s jaw dropped open.“You’ve kissed him.You have, haven’t you?”

  “There may have been some kissing involved,”Skye conceded with a bairly concealed smirk.

  Olivia gave a squeal and dashed into the kitchen to hug her.“How was it?”

  “It was amazing,”Skye confirmed.

  VJ gestured towards the front door.“Um, if this is going to get all girls talk, I might just…”

  Olivia gave him a piercing glare.“Stay where you are.I haven’t finished with you yet.”VJ held up his hands in a gesture of surrender and Olivia turned her attention back to Skye.“When we have a free moment, you are going to tell me everything.”

***

Evelyn came back downstairs with a certain degree of caution but when she got there Oscar was merely standing in the kitchen getting himself a juice.“Your schoolgirl girlfriend gone home then?”she asked sarcastically.

  Oscar rolled his eyes.“Don’t say it like that.”

  “Like what?”

  “Like I’m the creepy old guy hanging around the school gate and she’s just a kid.’Cos I actually get more intelligent conversation from Skye than I do from you.”

  Evelyn let the minor insult slide and went to join him.“Well, you look happier than you’ve done for a while, anyway.”

  Oscar looked at her, genuinely touched.“So, I get your approval then?”

  Evelyn gave him a wry look and patted his hand.“Yes, little brother, you have my permission to date any swotty schoolgirl that you want.”

  The sibling bonding moment was interrupted by the entrance of Maddy.She looked from one MacGuire twin to the other, eventually focusing on Oscar.“Can we talk?”

  Evelyn rolled her eyes.“Okay, I can take a hint.I’ll go and find a caravan to dust.”

  Oscar waited until she’d gone before turning back to Maddy.“Did you need my help with something?”

  Maddy took a deep breath.“I’m pregnant.”

  Oscar stared hard at her for a long moment.“Congratulations, I guess.How’s Matt taking it?”

  “He’s…confused, same as I am.Oscar, I’m four months pregnant.”

  Oscar cast his mind back, seeing if the dates matched up the way he thought they did.“Just before we broke up.”

  “Or just after,”Maddy stressed.

  “So, the father..?”

  “Could be you, could be Matt.It’s kind of 50/50.”

  Oscar stared at her blankly, then turned and started heading for the stairs.“Oscar, speak to me!”Maddy protested.

  Oscar turned on her, angrily.“What am I supposed to say, Maddy?You’re having a baby and it might be mine.Am I supposed to hope it is, hope it isn’t?What exactly do you want from me?”

  “I just…”Maddy floundered, not sure herself.“It’s something that we need to sort out together.The three of us.”

  “You know this is so typical of you!”Oscar exploded,“I’m finally getting my life sorted out, I’m putting you in the past where you belong, I’m getting on at uni, I’ve got a girlfriend who actually likes me for me, not just as some stop gap, and you dump this on me.”

  “Well, I’m sorry this is so hard on you but this is happening to me too!”Maddy snapped,“You could still be off the hook but I’m the one that has to deal with this baby.So let me know when you’re willing to be a grown up about it.”She stormed out, leaving him fuming.

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Again, thank you so much for the response.I can't guarantee the updates will keep coming this quickly, in fact there'll be a bit of a gap in the not-too-distant future of which more later, but while I'm managing them you might as well read them!

CHAPTER FIVE

Evelyn had listened as Oscar repeated the conversation he’d had with Maddy to her.When he finished, she cleared her throat awkwardly.“Hate to point this out but this is sounding awfully familiar.”

  Oscar sighed.“I think there is a baby this time.”

  “Are you sure?Because Maddy might be my friend but she does have this knack of messing things up for you.”

  “Yeah, but this time rounds it’s Matt she wants and she’s already got him.She wouldn’t come round here if she wasn’t sure.”

  “Okay, fair point.Guess this must really be a thing then.”

  Oscar sighed deeply.“Why did this happen now?I’m finally getting things together with Skye and then Maddy has to drop a bombshell on me.”

  “What are you going to do?”

  Oscar shrugged.“Going out and getting wasted is sounding pretty good right now.”

  “Don’t you think you should go and see Maddy?”

  “Ball’s in her court.”

  Evelyn wasn’t going to let the point drop.“Oscar, Maddy came to see you.She’s done her bit.The ball’s in your court.”

  “Maybe.”Oscar headed towards the door, looking back in his twin’s direction.“But I’m really not in the mood to serve it at the moment.”

***

Roo arrived home to find the flat in darkness.So when she turned the light on, she was startled to find a familiar blonde sat on the couch.“Gosh, Maddy, you gave me a shock.What are you doing sitting here in the dark?”She received no response so went closer, and saw the tears streaking her surrogate daughter’s face.Immediately, she was filled with concern.“Maddy, what’s wrong?Where’s Matt, has something happened?”

  Maddy looked up at her sorrowfully.“I have really messed up.”

***

Olivia came downstairs to find Skye sat at the table staring at her phone.“What’s wrong?”she asked, noticing Skye’s mournful face.

  Skye tried to look unconcerned.“I just thought Oscar might ring, that’s all.”

  “He hasn’t?”Olivia suspected it was a stupid question but she thought she’d ask it anyway.Skye shook her head.“Well, maybe it doesn’t mean anything.He might have just been busy.”

  Skye didn’t seem encouraged by the news.“Nice to know I’m that forgettable.”

  “I didn’t mean that.”Olivia was struggling to know what to do.If she was honest, prior to sharing a room with Skye she hadn’t really gone in for the girly chat thing.

  “Maybe he just wanted a bit of fun.We’ve made out a bit and now he’s moved on.”

  Olivia sat down next to the other girl and put an arm around her.“Well, if he has then he’s not worth getting upset about,”she replied,“Just…see what happens in the morning.”

***

Josh was getting rather concerned about Matt.He’d been slumped at the bar in Angelo’s ever since it had opened, getting steadily drunker.And he didn’t look like stopping.“Don’t you think you’ve had enough?” Josh ventured cautiously.

  Matt shook his head.“No.I’ve not had enough.You know why?Because I still remember who I am.And at the moment, I am trying very hard to forget that.”

  Josh looked up hopefully when Oscar entered…until he saw Oscar looked about the same as Matt did when he first came in.Oscar looked at Matt in a way that suggested he was considering hitting him with a table, then turned back to Josh.“I’ll have whatever he’s had.”

  “Oh brilliant,”Matt complained,“Just what I need.The nerd who might have got my girlfriend pregnant turning up.”

  Josh winced.“Is this Maddy?”he asked somewhat redundantly.

  “She was my girlfriend when I might have got her pregnant,”Oscar retorted,“And maybe if you hadn’t jumped in there so quickly, there wouldn’t be this confusion.”

  “And maybe if you’d admitted you’d made out with another girl instead of jumping back in there, we wouldn’t have the possibility of your genes continuing,”Matt responded.

  “Yeah, because we’d get really intelligent genes from you.”

  “Your kid’s probably going to end up as Rain Man!”

  “Okay, can we calm this down, fellas?”Josh ventured hopefully.

  Matt and Oscar continued to glare at each other but thankfully no punches or insults were thrown.In the end, Matt got up from the bar.“Knock yourself out.I’m going to find a bottle shop.”

***

Maddy and Roo had retired to the table where Maddy had related recent events to her foster mother.Roo continued to look at her sympathetically as she came to an end, then let out a deep sigh.“Oh, Maddy.”

  “I know.It’s like I haven’t learnt anything in the last year and a half.Pregnant and not knowing who the father is.Even one of the candidates is the same.”She bit her lip.“It’s real this time though, Roo.I saw the baby on the screen, I heard its heart beat.”

  “I wish I’d been there for that.”

  “Oscar lost it when I told him.Matt wasn’t here when I came back, goodness knows where he is now.” Maddy covered her face with her hands for a moment, then swept her hair back in frustration.“It’s all just a mess.”

  “You know…I should point out that there are other options.”

  “I know.But I saw the baby on the screen…I’m a mum, Roo, I can’t just get rid of the baby like that.”

  Roo smiled fondly.“You know, believe it or not, I understand exactly how you feel.”She saw Maddy’s puzzled look.“I’ll explain one day.”

  “Want to explain what I’m supposed to do now?”

  “Well…the first thing you need to do is get Matt and Oscar to calm down long enough for the three of you to sort this out.”She noticed Maddy’s sceptical look.“Didn’t say it’d be easy.”

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Thank you for all the comments! Heads up: I'll be going on holiday on Wednesday.I'm not sure if I'll manage to post another chapter before I go away and I definitely won't be able to post one while I'm away, so look out for long gaps.

CHAPTER SIX

It was the next morning when Evelyn was heading to the surf club and nearly tripped over a body sprawled alongside it.It took her a few moments to identify the person sitting up against the wall, shielding his eyes from the sun.“Matt?!What are you doing there?”

  “Keep it down, will you?”he grumbled,“I’m trying to find a way to turn that light up there off.”

  Evelyn glanced up in the sky for a moment.“I think you need to wait eleven hours.”

  “Okay.Wake me up when they’re over.”Matt closed his eyes and let his head loll to one side, looking as though he was ready to go back to sleep.

  Evelyn nudged him with her foot.“Matt!You can’t stay here.”

  Matt still didn’t open his eyes.“Well going home would result in a conversation I don’t want to have.”

  Evelyn crouched down beside him.“Oscar told me.”

  At that, Matt reluctantly roused himself and looked at her.“He did, huh?”Evelyn nodded.“Well, that just about makes my day complete.”

  “Look, I was in the middle of one of these messes once and I know it’s not easy.But sleeping all day and drinking all night isn’t gonna help.”

  Matt sighed.“Anyone ever tell you you’re annoying?”

  “Oscar, all the time.”

  Matt held out a hand.Evelyn got to her feet and helped him up.“You want to shout me a smoothie first?” he asked,“I think I need the liquid.”

***

Oscar had been hoping for a quiet welcoming reception at the beach house.That hope disappeared as soon as the door opened to reveal Olivia in full bodyguard mode.She glared at him angrily.“You had better have a good explanation, mister.That girl has been sat up half the night waiting for you.And I swear, if you upset her again…”

  “Livvy,”Skye interrupted,“Can you leave us alone?”

  Olivia looked as if she didn’t want to do that at all but felt compelled to do so.“If I hear her crying, I will be back down here,”she warned before heading upstairs.

  Oscar looked at Skye.She looked fragile and vulnerable, but she was trying to put on a strong front.The breath she took before speaking was almost audible.“So, is this the break-up speech?I mean, not that we were really together in the first place but if you’ve decided you just want to be friends, then fine, let’s get it over with…”

  Oscar crossed the space between them and gently placed a hand on her shoulder.“I don’t want to break up with you,”he told her,“And as far as I’m concerned, we are together.I’m worried that when you hear this you won’t want to be with me.”

  Skye seemed wrongfooted by that remark.“Why do you think that?”

  It occurred to Oscar that the only way to say it was to say it.“Maddy’s pregnant.And it could be mine.” He saw all the conflicting emotions on Skye’s face:Shock, a bit of relief but a lot of fear replacing it.He gave her a moment to process the news.“She came round and told me last night.I’ve been trying to get my head around it but I shouldn’t have left you hanging.I’m sorry.”

  Skye managed a weak smile.“Well, I can tell why you’d have other things on your mind.How are you feeling?”

  “I really don’t know.I guess I want to be a father one day but I’m not sure I’d want it to happen like this. It’d be easier if it was Matt’s, but…I guess at least a part of me wants it to be mine.And then the other part of me tells that part that it must be crazy because that’d be a huge colossal mess and…are you going to break up with me?”

  It seemed to take Skye a while to realise she’d actually been asked a question.“Not right now,”she managed at last.

  “Right.”Whatever Oscar might have said next was interrupted by the bleep of a phone message.He took his phone out of his pocket and looked at it.“It’s Maddy.She wants to talk at her flat.”

  “You’d better go then.”

  “Guess so.”Oscar looked at her sincerely.“I really like you being my girlfriend and I don’t want to break up with you.”He gave her a peck on the mouth before heading off.

***

Maddy looked up from her phone.“Oscar’s texted back to say he’s on his way.”

  Roo nodded.“What about Matt?”

  “Haven’t heard back from him yet.”

  “Do you want me to stick around when they turn up?”

  Maddy reluctantly shook her head.“I’ll need to speak to them alone.”

  It was at that moment that Matt entered.He held up his phone.“I got your message.”

  Roo coughed.“I’ll be downstairs in the Diner.”She slipped past Matt, giving him a reassuring pat as she did so.

  “Where were you?”Maddy asked, her tone slightly frosty.

  “First Angelo’s, then the beach,”Matt said awkwardly.

  “Matt, I need you with me on this, this baby could still be yours.”

  “I get that but…it might not be.And what am I going to do if it’s not?”

  Maddy looked at him evenly.“I guess that’s up to you.”

  Matt seemed to realise he’d overstepped the mark.He went over to her and hugged her.“Look, I get that this is hard for you, all right?I’m here for you.”

  “I invited Oscar over,”Maddy admitted.

  Matt sighed.“Okay.Well, I guess that had to happen sooner or later.”

***

Skye was sat at the table again when Olivia finally ventured downstairs.At least she wasn’t staring at her phone anymore, which was a good sign.“Has Oscar gone?”Olivia asked.

  Skye looked round and nodded.“Yeah, he left a little while ago.”

  Olivia sat down in the seat next to her friend.“Did he break up with you?”

  “No.Actually, he thought I might break up with him.”

  Olivia was thrown at that.“Why would you want to do that?”

  “Maddy’s pregnant.”

  Olivia didn’t even try to hide her shock.“It’s his?”

  “He doesn’t know, she doesn’t know.”

  Olivia thought hard.“Skye, you are going to break up with him if it is his, aren’t you?”

  Skye almost looked shocked at the suggestion.“Livvy, I like him.He hasn’t done anything wrong, he’s still the same person.”

  “Yeah, I know that but…are you really ready to play stepmother?”

  Skye looked forlorn.“Why is this happening now?I’ve wanted Oscar to like me for so long and now that he does, things might be messed up between us.”

  Not knowing what to say, Olivia put an arm round her friend and Skye rested her head on her shoulder.

***

Oscar was greeted by Maddy at the door of the flat.He soon noticed Matt was already there.Not really sure what to say after their confrontation the previous evening, he just gave a brief nod.

  Maddy took a seat in the middle of one side of the table, leaving Matt and Oscar to sit opposite each other and at right angles to her.“I’m going to keep the baby,”she told them,“Whichever one of you’s the father, I’m going to have it.I don’t know what I’m going to do then, but I’m not having a termination.”

  “I guess that’s up to you,”said Oscar after a pause.

  “Yeah, course,”Matt agreed.

  Maddy seemed to falter slightly.“So…what are we going to do now?”

  “Are we going to find out which one of us it is?”Oscar asked.

  “You hoping it’s you?”Matt retorted.

  “Are you?”Oscar fired back.

  “Let’s not argue,”Maddy suggested,“Do you want to find out?”

  Oscar shrugged.“Could solve everything.If it’s not me, then I just step back out of this.”

  “And what if it is you?”Matt returned.

  Oscar stared at him impassively.“Then I’m staying in.”

  Maddy looked at her boyfriend hopefully.“Matt?Do you want to find out?”

  Matt hesitated, then nodded.“Yeah, let’s do it.After all, chances are it’s mine, right?”

  Oscar’s expression didn’t change.“Well, we’ll know soon enough.”

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Thank you for the comments and for the holiday wishes! I have managed to hammer out one more chapter but this will definitely be the last one until I get back.

CHAPTER SEVEN

“Great hogan’s ghost!”That was Alf of course, but Zac and Leah’s expressions matched his for bewilderment.Maddy, Matt and Oscar sat at the opposite end of the table from them at the caravan park, with Roo, the only adult present already aware of the situation, standing off to one side.Alf shook his head.“How do you kids get yourselves into these messes?”

  “It wasn’t planned,”Maddy protested awkwardly.

  “It’s just us crazy kids doing what crazy kids do!”Matt offered.He grinned broadly.No-one else did.He shrugged.

  “Have you any idea what you’re going to do?”Zac asked seriously.

  The three teens all exchanged glances.“We’re going to get a DNA test,”Oscar said at last.

  “We’ve spoken to Nate, he arranged an appointment for us and they can fit us in today,”Maddy added.

  “Well, that’s good,”Leah agreed, trying to sound optimistic,“And then what are you going to do?”

  “I’m going to have the baby,”Maddy stressed,“Whatever the result.”

  Alf glared at Roo, who held up her hands.“Hey, this isn’t my doing,”she pointed out,“I wasn’t even living here then.”

  Evelyn and VJ had been listening from the kitchen but now VJ spoke up.“Does Skye know about this?”

  “I told her,”Oscar confirmed.

  “And how did she feel?”

  Oscar looked awkward.“She’s letting me know.”

  “How about I run you guys to the hospital?”Roo suggested.

  “Good idea,”Maddy agreed, eager to get out of there.

  Matt and Oscar looked at each other.“Maybe we should catch you up,”Matt suggested.

  “We need to talk a few things over first,”Oscar noted.

  “Yeah.”

***

Matt and Oscar walked in silence until they reached the caravan park, away from the prying ears of the house.Then Matt cleared his throat.“So…we kinda said some things last night.”

  “We did,”Oscar confirmed,“Some things that…tested the limit of…whatever friendship we’ve got going on.”

  “So I guess the sensible thing to do at this point would be for us to say that whichever one of us is the father will be awesome at it and we’ll all stay friends regardless.”They lapsed into silence as they contemplated the idea.

  “I’m not really sure that I would be an awesome father,”Oscar mused at last.

  Matt sighed.“Me neither.”

  “I’m finding I’m actually quite nervous about it.I mean, I’m not having panic attacks, which is an improvement on the last time I found out I might be a father, but still…”

  Matt thought hard.“I guess the thing we have to remember is this must be pretty hard on Maddy too.”

  “True, and the two of us at each other’s throats isn’t helping.”

  “So, maybe we call a truce for her and the baby’s sake?”

  Oscar nodded.“Agreed.”He took out his phone.“One moment.”

***

“You cannot be serious!”Olivia was protesting.

  “Why not?”Skye fired back.

  “Because it’s crazy!You’re crazy!”

  “Well, that’s not exactly news.It’s still not a reason.”

  “Oi!”Irene stormed in through the back door and glared at the arguing pair.“What the blue blazes is going on here?”

  Olivia looked challengingly at Skye.“Well, go on, tell her.”

  Skye sighed with the air of someone who was already fed up with having to repeat the information. “Maddy is pregnant and it might be Oscar’s.”

  “Oscar that you’ve just started dating?”Irene asked.

  “Unless there’s another Oscar that Maddy’s been with,”Olivia replied.

  Irene looked at Skye with sympathy.“Oh, love.”

  “And she’s thinking of staying with him anyway,”Olivia continued.

  Irene continued to address Skye despite the interjection.“Love, are you sure?”

  Skye floundered slightly.“It’s just…if the baby wasn’t here, I’d want to be with him.And if the baby isn’t his, then that’s not a problem.So…why wouldn’t I want to be with him if it is his?”

  “Love, you would be taking on an awful lot,”Irene told her,“This baby would be in his life for good and you’d have to accept that.He wouldn’t be able to just drop everything and make you a priority anymore.”

  “Trust me, you’re well out of it,”Olivia stressed.

  Skye’s phone went off.She looked at the message and looked up.“It’s Oscar.He says they’re at the hospital getting the DNA test done.”

***

Matt, Maddy and Oscar sat together in the hospital corridor, waiting to go in.“What do you reckon the chances are of one of us being the father?”Matt asked.

  “Well, if we had an equal chance, then it’d be 50/50,”Oscar remarked,“Of course, there’s other factors that would influence it.”

  “Like?”

  “Like…what point Maddy was in her menstruation cycle at the time, the frequency of ‘the act’, relative sperm count…”

  Maddy’s expression had grown more and more horrified during the speech.“Too much information, Oscar!”

  Oscar shrugged.

  They glanced to the right as they heard footsteps and were surprised to see Skye coming down the corridor.Oscar got up and went to meet her.“I got your message,”she told him.

  “I didn’t mean you to come down here.”

  “I know but…I wanted to let you know…as far as I’m concerned, we’re still together.And I’m here. Okay?”

  Oscar smiled.“Okay.”

  A nurse came out of the room.“Maddy Osborne, Matt Page and Oscar MacGuire?”

  Maddy and Matt got up and headed into the room.Oscar kissed Skye on the cheek and followed them.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks for all the comments! So, back from holidays, and this might be a good time to admit that I've been writing ahead.So the good news is I've got a chapter waiting to post now I'm home(I'm not all that sure of it reading it back but let me know how you think...).The bad news is it may take me longer to update again.Especially since I immediately bust my monitor and I'm not sure how long it'll keep working...

CHAPTER EIGHT

Oscar and Skye came running out of the sea back to their towels, both smiling.It had been two days since their visit to the hospital.In that time, they had been putting the test out of their minds and concentrating on getting their relationship back on track.So far, it seemed to be working.

  “So how do you feel after getting up close and personal with the local coastline?”Oscar asked as they dried off.

  “Wet,”Skye replied with a smile,“But I guess it’s nice to try new things.”

  “Everyone who comes to Summer Bay should get dunked in the water at least once,”Oscar confirmed. He gave her a mischievous look.

  “Don’t even think about it,”Skye warned him.Oscar took a step towards her and she took a step back. “Oscar, I mean it!”

  Before Oscar could go any further, his phone gave an Incoming Message beep.Part of him wanted to ignore it, but he sensed that wouldn’t be an option.He picked it up and scanned it, then looked at Skye. “It’s from Maddy.The results are in.”

  Like him, Skye instantly became serious.“Do you want me to go in with you?”

  Oscar shook his head.“No, I’d better do it myself.I’ll let you know.”

***

Maddy and Matt were already waiting in the corridor.Maddy shot her boyfriend a worried look.“What’s going to happen if we don’t get the result we want?”

  Matt seemed to be avoiding her gaze.“Let’s not worry about that yet,”he said at last.

  Oscar approached.“Are we going in?”

  “We were waiting for you,”Maddy explained.The pair got to their feet and, with Oscar, went into the doctor’s room.

  The doctor looked up as they entered.“Madeleine Osborne and..?”

  “The two potential fathers,”Maddy admitted awkwardly.She nodded to them in turn.“Matt and Oscar.”

  “Sit down.”The doctor gestured them into the chairs.He produced an envelope, opened it and scanned the contents.“Well, you’ve got a quite definite result.Chances of Matthew Page being the father:0%. Chances of Oscar MacGuire being the father…98.5%.”

***

The three of them left the hospital room together, then paused in the corridor.“So, er, what do we do now?”Oscar asked.

  “What do you want to do?”Maddy countered.

  “Well…I get that we’re not together.But I’m still the father so I want to be involved.You know, appointments and decisions.And I want to help look after the baby when it’s born.”

  Maddy managed to force a smile.“Yeah, that sounds okay.”

  Oscar flicked his gaze over to the other former potential father.“That okay with you, Matt?”

  “Yeah, fine, whatever,”Matt agreed.

  “You could come back to the flat with us now,”Maddy suggested,“We could talk things through.”

  “Can we make it later?”Oscar asked,“Just, I want to talk to Skye in person.”

  Maddy nodded.“Okay.Well…call us when you’re coming over.”Oscar headed off to the lift.Maddy turned to Matt, but found she wasn’t sure what to say.“Let’s go back to the flat,”she said at last.

***

Skye answered the door when Oscar arrived, but seemed to retreat a few steps as she allowed him in. She stood there, staring at him, knowing why he was there.“It’s me,”he explained at last,“I’m the father.”

  If he’d been hoping Skye would relax at that, he’d have been disappointed.Instead, she just gave a nod. “Congratulations, I guess.”

  “Yeah, I’m still trying to process it myself.Being a father, it’s pretty awesome and scary and confusing and messy but…I guess it’s a good thing.Once I work out what to do about it.”Oscar took a few steps towards her:Not quite touching distance but closing the gap between them.“Skye, I really don’t want things to change between us but if this is something you can’t deal with, then I understand.”

  Skye lowered her gaze momentarily, but when she looked up again she was resolute.“Oscar, I really like you.And I would love it if this didn’t change anything but…can you give me time?”

  Oscar smiled reassuringly.“Yeah, take all the time you need.”He gestured to the door behind him.“I’d better go now.”

  “Oscar!”Skye called after him.He turned round and she ran to him, giving him a tight hug.“I really am pleased for you.”

  Oscar smiled, then left her alone to think.

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Thank you muchly for all the comments! My workload has just increased which may affect my ability to update, or may not... Anyway, hopefully you'll like this chapter!

CHAPTER NINE

Leah and Zac were cuddled up on the couch in the caravan park.“So, how does it feel knowing you’re going to be a great-uncle?”Leah asked with a slight smile.

  Zac grimaced.“It’s an odd feeling, I admit.”

  “Must be strange for Oscar.”

  “Yeah.And I’m not sure what advice I can give him.My own experience of fatherhood wasn’t that much of a success.”

  Leah looked at him sympathetically.“You still miss Hunter, don’t you?”

  “Yeah, but he’s happier with his grandmother.To be honest, I’ve been more of a father to Oscar than him.And you know what?I think he’s going to be okay.”

***

“Why aren’t you freaking out?”Evelyn demanded as she and Josh followed Oscar through the caravan park.

  Oscar shrugged.“I’m just choosing to look at the positives in the situation.”

  “What positives?”

  “The fact that there’s going to be a child out there that I can mould into a wise and peace-loving person who will make the world a better place.And you know the first lesson I’ll teach them?Never listen to Auntie Evie.”

  Evelyn glared at him.“Very funny.”

  “I thought so.”

  “What about Skye?”Josh asked.

  Oscar’s smile faded slightly.“I’m not sure.”

  “I was in her position once,”Evelyn reminded him, with a sideways glance at Josh,“Or I thought I was anyway.And I decided I couldn’t cope with it.She might not either.”

  “Well…I hope she can.”Oscar smiled again.“But anyway!I need to see Maddy.”

  “Can you believe him?”Evelyn asked as they watched Oscar scurry away.

  “I guess it’s kind of admirable in a way,”Josh suggested.

  Evelyn sighed.“Yes, I guess so.”

  “Wanna go down the beach?”

  Evelyn hesitated.“I’ve got things I need to do.How about I catch you up?”

***

Maddy took a deep breath before walking into the flat’s living area.She picked out Matt, sat with his arms folded.The universal posture of unapproachability.She approached him anyway.

  “Are we ever going to talk?”she asked.

  Matt sighed.“What is there to talk about?You’re my girlfriend, you’re having a baby…and it’s not mine. What am I supposed to do with that?”

  “I don’t know,”Maddy admitted,“But we need to do something.This is happening, this baby’s gonna be living here with us.”

  “Don’t I know it,”Matt agreed bitterly.

  Maddy tensed.“Do you want me to get rid of it?”

  Matt looked long and hard at her.“No,”he admitted at last,“But…this is just a lot to handle, okay?”

  They were interrupted by an awkward cough from the front door.Oscar was standing there.“Bad time?” he asked.

  “Nope, you’re just in time.”Matt got to his feet.“I’ll leave you expectant parents to it.”He headed out of the flat.

  Oscar looked questioningly at Maddy.Somehow, she managed to relax and smile.“Come on in.”

***

“So it’s definitely Oscar’s?”Olivia pressed.

  Skye resisted the temptation to roll her eyes.“I said so, didn’t I?”

  “So now you’re going to take a step back, right?”Olivia looked at Skye, looked at VJ as if hoping for support that wasn’t entirely forthcoming, then looked back again.“Right?”

  Skye looked as though she was mulling the question over.“I’m thinking about it.”

  “Skye!”Olivia protested,“If you stay with Oscar, you’re going to have to deal with this baby.You’re going to have to…take it for walks and change nappies and wave rattles at it.”

  “Do they still make rattles?”VJ asked.

  “Not the point.Do you really think you can cope with that, at our age?”

  “Did your mum?”VJ questioned.Olivia gave him a betrayed look and he shrugged.“My mum talks.She wasn’t much older than us, right?When she had you?”

  Olivia looked as though she didn’t want to answer the question but Skye was looking at her as well now. “She got pregnant when she was in Year 12,”she said at last,“She’d repeated a year, she left school before she had me.She’d planned to go straight on to uni but I delayed things a bit.Not that she ever let it affect how she treated me.”

  “What about your dad?”Skye asked.

  “He died when I was just a baby, I don’t remember him.I think Mum thought he was the love of her life. No-one else came close, not even Uncle James and he did his best to make sure we were looked after.”

  “Maybe I could be like that,”Skye suggested,“Maybe I’ll be someone else this baby can count on.”

  “Look, I had a lot of stepfathers growing up,”VJ told her,“I’m not saying it was Mum’s fault but…every time I got close to one of them, they were gone.So…you need to be really sure before you decide to be with someone who’s going to have a baby.”

  Olivia took a deep breath.“It’s your choice,”she admitted at last.

***

“So you don’t mind me having the baby over sometimes?”Oscar asked.

  “Well, I’ll need him or her with me to start with,”Maddy commented,“But when they’re a bit older, yeah, sure.”

  Oscar made a note of the fact in the jotter that he’d amused Maddy by producing.“Is it too early for me to be buying things for the baby?”

  “Like what?”

  Oscar thought it over.“Cute baby grows?Cuddly tribbles?This place is gonna need a cot…my place is gonna need a cot.Unless we have a portable one and move it about…no, that’s a silly idea.”

  Maddy smiled.“You can buy all the baby grows you want.”

  Oscar scribbled furiously in his pad.“Schools?”

  “Too early.”

  “Yeah.You might have moved by then.Summer Bay High will still have the same uniform though, might be an idea to keep one around…”He closed the pad.“That’s all I can think of for now.”

  “Well…feel free to come back if you think of anything else.”Maddy looked at him with a certain amount of fondness.“You’re really psyched about this, aren’t you?”

  “Weirdly?Yes.I may be a complete failure as a father but…I don’t know, I think I’d like to be good at it.”

  “Well, you’re heading the right way.”Maddy handed Oscar his pad as he stood up.“I shall speak to you soon.”

  Oscar nodded eagerly.“That you will.”

  As soon as he’d left, Roo emerged from an inner room.“Sounds like you two were getting on.”

  “Yeah,”Maddy confirmed,“You know, it’s weird but…I actually think he’ll be a great father.”

  “And Matt?”

  Maddy looked awkward.“Yeah, I’m sure he’d have been a great father too.”

  “Past tense?Maddy, if you and Matt are gonna be together, then you’re going to have to look after this baby together.And one day, you and Matt might have a baby as well.This is something you need to sort out.”

  Maddy nodded.“We will.I promise.”

***

Evelyn was writing at the desk in the caravan park house when Josh entered.“Hey, I waited for you down by the beach,”he noted.

  Evelyn hastily folded up the letter she’d been writing.“Sorry, yeah, I’ll just be there.”

  But her secrecy had already caught Josh’s attention.He looked at the envelope, and the prison issue paper next to it, and quickly made out the name on both.“Wayne Snelgrove?Tank?You’re writing to him in prison?”

  Evelyn winced, aware that the conversation she’d been trying to avoid was on her.“He wrote to me first.I wasn’t sure about writing back but…I felt sorry for him.It was after you got your sight back, I promise.”

  “That guy nearly killed me, I was blind for weeks, and you feel sorry for him?”

  “I know but…he didn’t mean that and…Josh, please…”

  Evelyn tried to grab hold of Josh’s arm but he shook her off.“Save it, Evie,”he snapped and stormed out.

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As ever, big thank you for all the comments! Well, I'm going to be away at the weekend so won't be able to work on this then.So to save myself a lot of work tomorrow, I thought I'd get a chapter up tonight.Hope you enjoy!

CHAPTER TEN

“Doctors…at…ten…on…Thursday,”Oscar intoned as he wrote the note in his pad.He looked up at Maddy.“So is there anything else we need to discuss?”

  Maddy’s gaze flitted to the bag he’d brought with him.“Show me.”

  Oscar’s face was a picture of innocence.“Show you what?”

  “What did you buy?”

  Oscar sheepishly pulled out a Spider-Man baby grow.“I stumbled across a website.”

  “Remind me to have it closed down.”Maddy relaxed into a smile.“But I’m sure our Spider-Boy or Girl will appreciate it.”

  Oscar put the outfit away.“Matt not around?”

  “He had to work at Angelo’s,”Maddy explained, not sure why she suddenly felt so defensive,“How are things going with Skye?”

  “We’re still doing that ‘giving each other space thing’ so…”Oscar broke off as his phone bleeped.He looked at the message.“Looks like she’s decided she’s had enough space.She wants me to come round.”

***

Oscar let himself into the beach house.Skye was there waiting for him.He studied her, trying to get a clue from her expression, but she just had the same soft, neutral look.“I was round at Maddy’s,”he explained. If there was going to be awkwardness, it was best to get it over with.

  Skye nodded.“I guess you’re going to be doing that a lot.”

  “Having a baby together, kind of comes with the territory.”

  “I get that.And…I think I’m okay with it.Oscar, I’ve waited a long time for you to like me.”She hesitated slightly.“You do like me, right?”

  Oscar nodded.“I really, really like you.”

  Skye crossed the few paces between them.“I really, really like you too.And if the worst thing about you is that you want to be a good father, then we’re doing pretty well.I’m in this.”She kissed him, softly but intensely.Then she looked him in the eye.“And I want to show you how committed I am.Let’s go upstairs.”

  Oscar blinked in surprise.But he let Skye take his hand and lead him to her room.

***

Maddy looked round as Matt came in.“How was work?”

  “Okay,”Matt answered,“Josh was there.He’s still pretty cut-up about the break-up.”

  “Evie is too,”Maddy confirmed,“She didn’t mean to hurt him, she just felt sorry for Tank.”

  “Guess it’s no fun finding out that your girlfriend’s pen pals with her ex,”Matt commented,“Or pregnant by him.”

  Maddy sighed deeply.“Matt…”

  “How is Oscar?”

  “You’d find out if you joined us.”Maddy looked at him seriously.“You’re a part of this too, Matt. Neither of us wants to leave you out of discussions.”

  “I’m sure you’ll manage okay without me,”Matt replied and headed to their room.

***

Oscar and Skye were kissing on the bed.Oscar broke off and carefully removed Skye’s glasses.Skye gave him a rueful look.“You know I can’t actually see you now?”

  Oscar pondered this.“Have you got your contacts handy?”

  “Yes.”

  “Pop them in?”

  Skye rolled out from under him and sat on the edge of the bed.Looking in her drawer, she quickly extracted her contact lenses and put them in place.“Better,”she announced as she lay back down.They started to kiss again, then Skye pulled back.“You have got birth control, haven’t you?”

  “Er, yeah,”Oscar admitted,“Not that I was assuming anything just…history.”

  “No, no, it’s a good thing.We don’t want to make the situation any messier than it is.”

  They resumed kissing but this time Oscar pulled back.“You are sure about this?”

  Skye sighed.“Are you trying to put me off?”

  “No, it’s just…This is your first time, right?”Oscar looked at Skye, who nodded awkwardly.“Well…I really wanted my first time to be special, and while it was happening I thought it was, but the next day I found out it hadn’t meant as much to Maddy as it had to me and…I don’t want to do that to you.”

  “Okay, you realise saying things like that just makes me want this more?”Skye examined him closely. “Would it mean as much as you as it would to me?”

  Oscar looked at her seriously.“Yeah.”

  “Then I’m really sure about this.”

  They kissed again, and this time neither of them pulled back as they began undressing each other.

***

When Matt reappeared, he saw Maddy sat on the couch looking uncomfortable, moving her arms about as though trying to reach an itch.“Are you okay?”he asked.

  “Just stiff,”Maddy answered,“Massage?”

  “Er, yeah, sure.”Matt came over and started awkwardly rubbing her shoulders.

  Maddy shot him a look.“Can you not do it like that?”

  “Like what?”

  “Like I’m your sister!I’m still meant to be your girlfriend.I’m pregnant, not ill.”

  Matt stopped the awkward massage and took a step back.“You’re pregnant by Oscar,”he stressed.

  “And what, that’s meant to make a difference?You’ve barely been in the same room as me since we found out, let alone touched me.You turn your back on me every night, and given what we were like before, that’s pretty hurtful.”

  Matt stared at her incredulously.“You expect us to still sleep together?”

  “Yes!That’s what we do, isn’t it?”

  “You’ve got a baby in there and it’s not mine.I’m sorry but…I just can’t do this.”Matt disappeared into his room again.

***

Oscar and Skye were lying cuddled up together, a feeling of contentment washing over them.“Did that go okay?”Skye asked,“It felt like it went okay.”

  “Yep, that was okay,”Oscar confirmed,“I think it was even approaching…good.”

  Skye nodded in agreement.“I feel different,”she noted,“Is that strange?”

  “No, no.I feel different too.”

  Skye looked at him in surprise.“Really?”

  Oscar gave her a reassuring smile.“Really.”

  They kissed, their bodies moving closer together again.

***

When Matt appeared again, he was carrying his bags.Maddy looked at him and got to her feet in shock. “No!You can’t be serious!”

  Matt sighed.“Come on, Mads, this isn’t working.I’m gonna talk to Leah, see if I can get my caravan back.”

  Maddy could feel her eyes stinging with tears.“Are you breaking up with me?”

  Matt shrugged helplessly.“I don’t know.Maybe it’s just, I dunno, a break.But we can’t just carry on like this, can we?I dunno, maybe some time apart will do us good?”

  Maddy couldn’t think of anything to say.Instead, she just flung her arms round him and hugged him. Matt accepted the hug for a few seconds, then pulled clear and hurried out of the flat.

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