My Happy Ending – Chapter 11

Two mornings later, Nick was awoken by the loud ringing of his cell phone. Grumbling, he felt around before answering it.

“Hello?”

“Nick!” Came the screeching voice of his publicist from the other end of the line. “We need to do some damage control!”

Nick sat up in bed. He surveyed the room, and quickly noticed that Ashleigh was no where in sight. Assuming that she and Joey had once again gone out for breakfast, he laid back down. “What? Why?”

“The paparazzi saw you at dinner the other night. They printed a big story about how Ashleigh’s pregnant, and how you two haven’t been getting along lately.”

Nick groaned. He knew that going out in public had been a bad idea, though he supposed it couldn’t really have been helped. Ashleigh had wanted to go out to dinner with her friends, and Nick couldn’t exactly shelter her. The media had been bound to find out sooner or later. “Great.”

“There’s pictures of you guys too.” Juliette rambled on. “You should make a statement.”

“Saying what?” Nick challenged, getting annoyed. Though, it wasn’t Juliette’s fault. It was her job after all, to inform Nick of these things and help him fix them.

“Saying that you and Ashleigh are doing fine, that you want this child and that you’re excited.” Juliette practically screamed at him. Nick sighed, this really wasn’t something he wanted to deal with at the moment. He had enough on his mind already. He didn’t exactly want to lie to the media and tell everyone in the world he was happy about this, especially when he hadn’t sorted out all his feelings yet. Though he knew that Juliette wouldn’t let him off the hook without some sort of confirmation.

“Fine. Just tell them that.” Nick said, sounding exasperated. “I gotta go Jules. Later.” He said, flipping his phone closed.

Stepping out of the bedroom, he saw that Ashleigh and Joey were sitting at the kitchen table eating breakfast.

“Well, look who’s awake.” Ashleigh smiled, and Nick rolled his eyes.

“Morning.” Nick mumbled, sitting down beside Ashleigh. “Not sick today?” He asked, putting his head on her shoulder.

“Not really.” Ashleigh replied, taking a sip of her coffee. “Do you want something to eat? We got Bagels.” She said, motioning towards the large bag sitting on the kitchen counter.

Nick pondered that for a moment, and then walked over to the counter to prepare one of the bagels for himself. Deciding he’d better let Ashleigh know about the paparazzi issue, he spoke as he spread cream cheese on one of the bagels. “Ashleigh, you’re not gonna like this but-”

“I know, I’m famous.” She beamed, holding up the issue of the Star that featured she and Nick. As Nick sat back down, she handed him the magazine which was already turned to the page with their article on it.

(Yet Another One Of) Nick Carter’s Failing Relationships

Unlikely duo Backstreet Boy Nick Carter and his girlfriend Ashleigh Dane are having a little trouble in paradise. Surprise, surprise. The two were reportedly engaged earlier in the year, only to break things off in the matter of a few weeks. Rumour has it that the two of them were separated until Ashleigh found out she was carrying his child. Since then, the two have been back together but things have been less than perfect. They’ve been spotted arguing about baby names among a group of friends while out for dinner in her home town of Minneapolis. Is Nick getting struggling with being a father before the baby is even born? We’ll keep you posted!

Nick shook his head in disgust as he read the article. “How do they find out this stuff?” He asked in disbelief. “This is ridiculous.” He sighed, taking a bite of his breakfast.

Joey shrugged, picking up the magazine and looking at the photo that accompanied the story. “At least they got a really good picture of you guys.” She commented. That much was true, despite the negative nature of the article, Ashleigh and Nick looked quite happy in the photo.

“I guess.” Nick muttered. “It’s still irritating that they won’t butt out of my life. You would think they wouldn’t care after all this time. I’m sorry Ash.”

Ashleigh just smiled. “Don’t be sorry. I’m in a magazine! And I know that’s not how you really feel, so don’t worry about what they say.” She said, giving him a quick kiss on the cheek.

Nick gave her a weak smile, but he couldn’t help but feel a little guilty. The magazine was partially right, he was getting cold feet a little. No longer was he worried about the fact that Ashleigh didn’t want to marry him, he now had much bigger things to deal with. Like not messing up his child’s life before it even started.

“I’ll leave you two alone for a bit.” Joey said, getting up and quickly leaving the kitchen. Ashleigh nodded to her and then once again turned to Nick.

“That article is kind of right though, we really should be thinking of baby names.” She smiled. “Have you thought of anything?” She asked.

Nick shook his head. Naming the child was the furthest thing from his mind. “No, I haven’t.” He paused for a moment, dreading the inevitable conversation that was sure to follow. “Have you?”

“A little bit. Maybe like… Jordyn for a girl and James for a boy?” She suggested.

“Sure, that sounds good.” Nick replied, having no clue whatsoever. In the long run, did the name really matter?

Ashleigh narrowed her eyes at him. “You don’t have any input at all?”

Nick put his head in his hands. He really wasn’t in the mood to discuss anything to do with the baby. “No. I don’t.”

Ashleigh continued to look at him strangely. He wasn’t acting at all like himself. Sure, she could just chalk it up to stress, but that wouldn’t really solve anything. Nick usually opened up to her about his problems, what was the difference this time? “What’s wrong, Nicky?” She asked softly, putting her hand on his shoulder.

“Nothing.” Nick spat. “Everything’s peachy keen.”

“Nick…” Ashleigh sighed, rolling her eyes. He really did seem like he was in a bad mood. “Is it about the article? Really, I don’t care what-”

“It’s not that!” Nick exploded, unable to contain his emotions any longer. He was sick of acting like everything was alright when it wasn’t. He was sick of pretending. “It’s just too much stress Ashleigh. I can’t do this.”

“What are you talking about Nick?” Ashleigh asked him carefully, almost afraid of the answer. Was he breaking up with her? She didn’t think she could bear the thought.

“This baby thing. I can’t do it.” He said slowly.

Ashleigh sighed. She knew it was too good to be true. “There’s not much we can do to change this, Nick.”

Nick sighed. “I know that. I just wish this hadn’t happened.”

“Well it did Nick, we had sex and it happened. God.” Ashleigh replied, starting to get irritated. His indecisiveness as of late was really starting to get to her.

“Well we should have discussed this before hand!” Nick nearly shouted, standing up from his chair. “I mean, we should have talked about it before we even did it the first time.”

Ashleigh laughed and shook her head. “Oh yeah, that would have been great. As we were leaving the club, ‘Hey Nick, if I get pregnant, what are we going to do?’” She said sarcastically. “I’m sure that would have gone over really well.”

“I meant once we got back together.” Nick replied through gritted teeth. “Besides, I’m sure you wouldn’t have forced me to keep the baby when you were eighteen.”

Ashleigh glared at Nick. Forced him? She and him had talked about it, and she’d thought they’d made the decision to keep the child together. “Forced you?” She yelled. “I never forced you! God Nickolas, I can’t fucking believe this! I’m so glad we’re not getting married, because you have no idea what you want.”

“Ashleigh, I just need some time to think.” Nick sighed, running a hand through his hair. “This is a lot to handle so suddenly.”

“Then go think.” Ashleigh said bitterly. “Go back to Florida and think. And tell me when you’ve made up your mind on what you want.”

Nick looked at Ashleigh in horror. Was she actually telling him to leave? As confused as he was, he knew he definitely didn’t want that. “Ashleigh…” He pleaded, but she wouldn’t have it.

“No.” She said. “Pack your shit and leave. You figure it the fuck out or you go find a stupid girl who won’t give shit how little you care. I’m through with this, Nick.” She said angrily.

Nick just stood dumbfounded as Ashleigh stormed out of the kitchen. He sighed, and began to walk to the bedroom. Evidently, packing was his only option, so that was what he planned to do.

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