“I need you to do me a favor.”
He could have asked me this over the phone but I knew if it was important enough for him to drive all the way from Sugarland then it was serious. I’d finished bbq’ing a while ago but the grill was still smoking. I handed him a beer and waited for the other shoe to drop.
“You know I love my wife right? I can’t even remember the last time I’ve been over here, not because you aren’t still my best friend but because I really don’t mind spending every single free moment I have with her. I need you to hear me out before you say anything. Don’t react or overreact, just hear me out.”
The more he paced the more I was hating it was Sunday and I couldn’t go buy something harder for us to drink.
“I’ve never loved anyone in my life more than I love this woman. Growing up, I never really felt like I had a family. My mom remarried, had other children, never knew my father. My grandparents were old. You were like my brother, you are my brother but it’s not the same. I didn’t feel like I had a family until I found her.”
I didn’t know where he was going with this but I could see in his eyes and the way he was crushing these beers in one gulp that it wasn’t going to be good.
“She’s pregnant bro, she’s glowing and happy and talking about baby names.” I cut him off and stood up to congratulate him. He pushed me away and slammed his fist into my punching bag!
“I can’t have kids! I can’t have fucking kids! I got an STD when we were in college, I never had any symptoms. Went to the doctor and got some blood work done for something else and they told me. I probably should have told her but I just couldn’t lose her. Now this?!”
He handed me a wallet sized sonogram picture. “I don’t know whose baby that is but it’s not mine.”
I was at a loss for words, I could see why he was stressing so hard but that didn’t change the fact that I didn’t know what he wanted from me. I didn’t have to say what was understood, he was going to ask me or else he wouldn’t be standing here right now.
“She’s the only family I have and I’m not breaking my vows. This child is half hers and that’s enough for me, that’s enough for me to love him or her and to be the best gotdamn father in the world. But I can’t walk this earth knowing that at anytime so man can come rip my family apart.”
Our eyes met and for the first time I understood what he was asking me. What I hoped he was asking me.
“I could have my lawyers get him to sign over his parental rights but what guarantee is that? I could pay him off but you know as well as I do he’s more than likely to just come back and ask for more. I need this to be permanent.”
He said it, a part of me thought it but it’s no way I thought he would actually ask it.
“We aren’t killers man, yeah, we’ve done some shit, blurred some lines but you’re talking about premeditated murder!”
He hit the punching bag!
“I’m talking about saving my fucking family! I’m talking about not losing my wife! I’m coming to you because there isn’t a person on this fucking earth I would come to for this but you! You’re my brother, the shit we’ve done, the shit we’ve seen. I’ll owe you my life, you owe me.”
I didn’t want him to say it, to bring it up. I wanted him to ask me because we were friends, brothers, not because he helped me once when I was young and stupid. I did owe him for sins I would never forget, sins I would never wash off. I knew people, I worked in circles where I could get this done for him. But no matter what it would always leave a trail. I would have to do this myself.
“There are other ways, just tell her the truth, tell her you know.”
“Right now, she doesn’t think she did anything wrong. She thinks this is my baby, all the sex we have, all the times I’ve cum in her. Right now she doesn’t think she’s living a lie. If I tell her I know her, she’ll never be able to forgive herself and if she can’t forgive herself how can she live with me?! This is the only way.”
To bring a life into this world we would have to take a life….
Part II tomorrow