Chapter 27: If Only Us... Chapter 27

Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Romance

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Life moved on.  The three of us settled down into a routine where alternate mornings either Virginia or I would get up and see to Marie’s needs.  Once she was able to take nourishment from a bottle, I could even feed her and let Virginia sleep in; which she appreciated.  In the time since she’d given birth, her weight had dropped.  Not drastically, but enough to be noticeable.  I tried to feed her protein-laden meals but sometimes she just didn’t want anything ‘heavy’.  When her mom read her the riot act she started taking better care of herself.

We added a little extra money to the amount my parents were paying their maid and she began watching Marie when we went to school.  School was now almost totally different for the two of us.  She and I still horsed around with friends, but there was always an undertone that we couldn’t put a finger on.  We discussed it one night and I think Virginia was able to correctly figure out what was happening.  We were now the ‘old married couple’.  We had crossed over from being simply teenagers and moved into a world that teens kept partially blocked.  Virginia’s best friend, Paula, said it best one evening at dinner at our house.

“It’s like you guys aren’t with us anymore.  Every one of us has fears and hang-ups but you two have made them almost go away.  Take dating, for instance.  There isn’t a guy in school that doesn’t sweat out asking a girl or even his girlfriend out to a dance, but you two have that built in now.  And you,” she said, turning to Virginia.  “You don’t have to keep worrying about where and how much you’ll let Tom touch you.  He has range rights now and can roam anywhere.  Maybe I’m not being very clear about it, but it’s almost like you’ve grown five years in the last year.”

“I think you’re expressing yourself very well, Paula.”  I said.  “Maybe we have grown up mentally, but we’re still just eighteen.  I see what you’re saying though.  And, you’re right.  If I get a little, um, tense, at a movie or dance I know I can just wait until we get home.  Other guys don’t have that option and that generates anxiety.  Right?”

“Putting it basically, yeah.  You’re right.  But it goes deeper than that.  You guys got married so young that it’s almost like you chopped off your right to be frivolous, weird, impulsive, and just a little bit nuts.  You became an, an, an authority figure I guess.”

“Authority figure?!  Really?  How do you figure that?”

“Okay.  You coach the soccer team on weekends now.  You used to just hang with the guys and hate gym class.  Now you’re the one with the whistle calling them to order.  You’re not any older, but you have the authority to really make things stick.”

“I never thought of it that way at all.”

“And you, Virginia; you’re not just another young girl struggling to become a woman.  You don’t have to sit in health classes and listen to some old woman go on about the dangers of men’s penises.  Hell, you’ve given birth for God’s sake!  You should be the one standing up there and relating everything you went through from the decision to have that baby to childbirth.  I know you well enough and I think I have enough brains to see how nice a guy Tom is to never think that was an accident.  I think you both planned it, but it took a lot of tears to make it happen.”

“Paula, I had no idea that we’d crossed any line at all,” Virginia said in a soft voice.  “Do you think that there is some way we can regain our loss, or is it permanently gone now?”

“I think it’s gone now, Ginny.  Tom began running with the guy pack many years ago, cut you out of the herd, and staked his claim.  I could see the effect having a permanent boyfriend had on you.  You got a bit less nervous, if that’s the word I want.  You knew you’d have a date for dances, movies, trips, and everything else.  The rest of us were, and are still, in there dressing, teasing, and blushing trying to capture someone like Tom.  It’s a fact that now, when I mention you to any of the other girls, they seem to refer to you as someone they used to know.  It sounds cruel, but that’s just the way it is now.”

She turned to me.  “You’re not immune from this either Tom.  You don’t have to stand around the edges of a dance floor and rate the chances of dancing – or anything else – with all the girls in the hall.  I know all you guys do it, but guess what – now you don’t have to.  Think back on the last dance you two went to.  Did anyone else come up and try to cut in on you?  What would you have done if you were hanging out with the bunch of guys rating every girl and they happened to pick out Virginia as someone they’d like to move in on?”

“I’d have probably gone into fight mode.”  I raised my hand to the back of my neck and rubbed.  “Yeah, I can remember doing just that,” I said ruefully.

“There, see what I mean.  If Virginia wasn’t your wife you’d probably chuckle and make a different estimation of the odds.  Now you can’t do that because the odds just went to one hundred percent.  See what I mean?  You’re simply not ‘real’ teenagers anymore.”

Paula subsided back into her chair and sipped her cup of coffee.  Virginia and I held hands across the table and then we turned to Paula.  Virginia spoke first.

“Paula, all we can do now is try and remain friends to those we were friends with before.  You and Carol and Shirley and Cleo and the others have always been my friends.  I have no intention of giving that up.  I don’t care if Tom and I have given up our place in the teen hierarchy; we’re still just us.”

“But you have more responsibility now Virginia.  You have Marie to take care of.  You can’t take off for a weekend bike trip and just leave her.  We can.  If it pisses off our parents, we’ll take the heat.  Your parents would look on it as a little time for you two to get together.  My parents would think the worst and ground me for a month.  See the difference?”

“Yeah, I do,” I spoke up.  “Neither one of us wants to lose friends over this.  I hope we don’t.”

“I don’t think you will, but that loose-jointed goofing around will be gone.  Think about it.  You can’t go out now with the guys and have a few beers downtown without having that little voice in your ear warning you that Virginia – your wife – is going to get mad.  Unconsciously, it will put a small damper on the partying.”

I gave a sigh, and agreed with her on every point.  I stood, gathered the plates, and turned to the sink to rinse them off.  I barked out a short laugh as I did so.  Virginia asked me what was so funny.  When I told her that I’d have never done this before we got married.  We all had a laugh.  I realized I had moved on in my life.  I was only eighteen, but had already segued into adulthood.


Submitted: July 17, 2013

© Copyright 2022 B Douglas Slack. All rights reserved.


Add Your Comments:



Oh lord... I could never do that. No children for me, ever (unless I adopt). And I couldn't get married at eighteen. I want to get in trouble still for going out when I shouldn't or spending the night with a guy. Security... It's something for when I'm thirty, I guess. But you never know, I might just wake up and change my mind. :P

Mon, December 9th, 2013 3:22pm


When we got married, my wife had just graduated from High School - I had been in the navy for just a year (after a year of College in Montana). She - 18, me - 20.

Mon, December 9th, 2013 7:49am

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