Cara: LyingMature

I stared at Anna who was peering in to her soup like it could tell the future, and felt my mouth bobbing around like a goldfish'.

"She - no... you can't be serious?" She shrugged and I sat back in shock. "Woah."

"That's disgusting." Megan scowled. "I can't believe she'd do that to you."

Anna shrugged again, not looking up.

"Well it's over now." I tried to comfort her. "She'll go on with this guy and have her baby and you can go your way with Megan." I smiled at both of them, putting my hand on Anna's arm reassuringly.

"She- she lost the baby. And Dann. She's on her own."

I glanced at Megan. She wasn't used to Anna's... temperament. I wondered how she'd cope. She looked as though she was fighting between being concerned for Anna, and worried that she might still have feelings for Leanne. Which I had to admit, it seemed like it, with her reacting like this. But I knew she loved Megan. Maybe Megan didn't.

"Don't worry. I know we used to be friends before uni, but that doesn't mean you have to feel bad. She fucked you over, and although it's upsetting that she lost her baby, you don't have to feel that you have to be nice just because we used to be friends."

Anna looked up at me, and then at Megan.

"I just... I feel bad for her. Imagine losing a baby?"

I squirmed. In a way, I felt like I had. I was holding a big secret inside me, something that was terrifying me. Kidney problems. What if I died? My dreams of Sam and I, a child between us...

I snapped back to the present where Megan was hugging Anna.

"Don't worry babe, she's behind you now. It's a terrible thing, but she looked like she'd dealt with it. Bounced back. And she'll be ok without you as a friend."

"I don't know..."

"She will be." Megan said sharply. I glanced at her and saw she was instantly regretting her tone. She put her head on Anna's shoulder and kissed it. "She will be." She said softly.

"I'm just going to go to the toilet." I muttered and left them alone.

Inside the cubicle I sat on the lid of the toilet and put my head in my hands. Kidney problems... blood tests... dialysis... how long until I reached the stage where my kidney's failed? I was stage four... I'd looked it up as soon as I'd left the hospital. Stage five was dialysis and kidney transplant. I was terrified. My throat was choked like someone was strangling me from the inside, my chest hurt and tears pricked at my eyes.

I couldn't break down here. Anna wasn't to know. No one could know. I wasn't ready to accept it myself yet, and the biopsy results wouldn't be in for a couple of days. I would wait until then. Or maybe after that... I didn't want to let them worry. It was nothing, I convinced myself, it was nothing.

I made my way back to the table and sat down. Anna and Megan were making out and didn't even notice. I waited a few moments and then cleared my throat. They jumped apart.

"So.... that's sorted then." I grinned. Anna blushed but Megan laughed and gave me a wink.

"Hey Cara, I meant to ask, did you hear back from the doctors yet?"

"Oh yeah," I breezed, "I went in and she said it was nothing much. The toilet thing is something to do with diet and the sudden change in how much exercise I get, same as the cramp. I don't know, as soon as I found out it wasn't anything I stopped listening." I laughed and then picked at my salad.

"What did she say about the eating?"

"Probably to do with missing Sam. And I've got it back. I had two bagels this morning." I lied.

"Good. Don't worry, Sam will be back soon. When is it?"

"Next Tuesday. She'd have been back on Sunday but there's a long weekend thing from Friday to Monday for gallery owners. Apparently there's a large auction she wants to go to on Monday. She's going to outbid people for another Degas."

"Another?" Megan asked.

"The first time I went to one of her art evenings she had a Degas. It was beautiful."

"Maybe she'll give it to you." Anna said. I gave her a look. "What?"

"Why do you always assume that she buys me everything?"

"I'm not saying she does. But she has money and-"

"Anna, seriously, I don't want to hear about Sam having money again. We live in a cheap flat about a gallery. Sure it's a gallery she owns, but she saves her money. She doesn't go buying me Degas or presents every day."

"Ok ok." Anna muttered, looking back down at her food.

"I can't believe that's how you see our relationship."

"It's not Cara. You're blowing it waaaaaaay out of proportion."

Megan was backing away in her seat, still holding Anna's  hand.

"Fine, whatever." I sulked, and went back to my food.

"Oh come on Cara." Anna poked my arm. "I'll tickle you."

I had to smile. Being grumpy wasn't the plan. I had to be normal. I relented and gave her a shrug and a smile, and continued eating.

"So, how's things with you two?" I teased, pushing the attention away from me. "Started planning the marriage yet?"

"Oh you're the one getting married." Megan grinned. My breath caught and I hurriedly swallowed past the painful lump that had formed in my throat.

"Are you alright?" Anna asked.

"Food... caught...." I coughed a little and grabbed my water, taking a gulp and then letting out a relieved breath. "I'm fine." Good cover, I congratulated myself. And then I felt bad. Not telling Anna... but she suspected nothing and was kissing Megan again.

"Wonder when Sam'll pop the question." Anna teased once she'd returned to me.

"Maybe I'll do it." I retorted and saw her smiled slip slightly.

"Oh. Wow. You thinking about it?" She asked cautiously.

"Maybe I am." I said defiantly.

They stared at me.

"Woah." Megan grinned. "How amazing is that? You two are so great together."

I looked at them for a moment and then relented.

"No, I'm not thinking about it. Well, I kind of am but in a 'aw wouldn't it be nice someday' type thing instead of, 'I'll do it on her birthday' type way." Suddenly I stopped. Her birthday... I couldn't tell anyone till Sam's birthday was out of the way. I wouldn't ruin it for her.

"Would you actually be the one to do it though?"

"Well it'd certainly surprise her." I grinned. "But no,  I think I'll leave that one to her."

I couldn't let on how terrified I was that all of that might be slipping away...

The End

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