Holy Cheese Whiz, I had just slapped Brian. Across the face. Hard. Now I was sprawled on my side on the guest bed, sobbing my eyes out, and I felt a sudden pang of sympathy for my crazy, out-of-control Becky because at the moment I was:
C.) In desperate need of some pickles. And peanut butter.
It was a bad combination. To top it all off, I was too horrified at my girlish hiccuping to face the two men in the other room. I was just crying myself out when the knocks began.
"Hey man, let me in."
It was AJ. I turned my head, staring at the closed door. Some of my tears flew in my mouth and I blanched at the salty taste that filled my entire mouth.
"C'mon, I didn't call you fat," he complained.
"I didn't call her fat!" I heard Brian say. "She's not fat, she's pregnant! She's...she's glowing!"
"She's not a she, she's a he!" AJ retorted. He knocked on the door again. "Nick, let me in so I can give you some advice."
I rubbed at my face. "What kinda advice?" I asked pathetically.
"Advice to get your dick back."
I bit my lip, hesitating for a second. I could hear AJ and Bri still bickering out of the hall. After a moment, I awkwardly got off the bed. I walked over, unlocked the door, and opened it just wide enough for AJ to get in. I met Bri's eyes for a moment, did a full-bottom lip quiver and slammed the door.
"You're a mess. You're a damn mess." J said.
"Am I a hot mess?" I asked.
J smirked. "Okay, that was a total Nick statement."
"What do you mean?"
"You were an attention whore as a man and you're an attention whore as a woman."
I gasped. "I am not!"
"You're doing to Brian what you do to all the fans."
I narrowed my eyes. "You're mean. Get out."
J bounced back on the bed. "Nope, you're gonna hear me out."
I folded my arms and didn't respond.
"You don't need Nurse Umbridge anywhere near you to change you back. Remember what happened with--" J paused. "Remember what happened during the incident we will never mention again?"
"Yeah. You two switched back on stage."
"Exactly. But we only switched because we came to an understanding."
"That doesn't help me!" I said, dropping my arms to my belly. "What am I supposed to understand?"
"What happened right before you became..." J waved his hand towards me. "This?"
"Well..." I bit my lip. "Becky was puking, I was trying to watch the game, and Brian called to ask me to pick him up from the hospital."
"And what? I left!"
"What happened with Becky?"
"Nothing! Well, I mean she was still puking and I didn't really tell her where I was going but..."
"Seriously? Jesus, Nick. Don't you see?"
I stared at him blankly. "See what?"
J bounced up and began to pace the room. "You really are a dumb blonde, you know that?"
"Blondes have more fun!"
J poked my belly. "Obviously." He smiled so wide that I was sure his face would crack. "I will shit my pants if this kid comes out with Brian's big ass nose."
AJ pressed his thumb to his nose. I felt a sharp foot kick me and blanched.
"What are you talking about? This kid isn't coming out!"
J rolled his eyes. "What goes in has to come out! Remember? You were there when we raced Ro to the ER!"
The worst fear I've ever experienced in my entire life suddenly took hold. I grabbed AJ's shirt and shook him slightly. "You've got to help me! I have to figure out a way to change back before that happens! I can't push this thing out!"
J undid my fingers. He backed up. "Well, I'm no expert, but it looks like we have about three weeks to make that happen."
"Three weeks?" I said in relief. "You and D weren't switched that long."
J didn't look confident.
"Nick, you don't understand. Understanding Howie's a lot easier than understanding women. Hell, I'm not doing too bad on the wife and dad front, but I still don't understand Rochelle half the time. And I just have a gut feeling that's what you need to do."
"Then I'll do it." I said simply. It didn't matter that AJ was clueless on women. I had sisters. I had to have some clue. Right?
"Speaking of doing it," AJ said, breaking into my thoughts. "What's going on with you and Rok?"
I felt myself turn scarlet. "What are you talking about?"
"I didn't believe you at first on the phone, but seeing for myself..."
I rolled my eyes. "Don't be stupid. It's nothing. I mean we kissed, but we were caught up in a moment and--"
"You kinda cheated on your wife, man."
"No way! I mean Brian's cute and all..."
"Do you realize you just called Brian cute?!" J sputtered. He looked nervous, and I daresay a little grossed out.
"Nevermind," I said quickly. "Besides, it's not like Brian would ever cheat, yanno? Like I mean...all the way."
J glanced at the door. I watched him run his hand along his neck.
"Yeah. I guess you're right..."
"Of course I'm right. Can you get me some pickles?"
"Yeah. And some peanut butter?"
J stood up and headed towards the door. He yanked it open and cupped his hand around his mouth.
"Hey, Rok! Your princess needs some prego food!"
Okay so one mistake and the world thinks Nick is my "princess" -- alright so by world I mean AJ, but still -- and I'm stuck in the kitchen smeaking peanut butter on pickles.
Just for the fun of it, I arranged them on the plate to form the letter "N". It seemed like something Nick would do.
I knocked on the door. AJ stuck his head out. "Thank you," he said, taking the plate and disappearing back into the room. I heard the lock on the door click.
I stared at the door. I knocked again.
"Yes?" AJ called.
"Can I come in?"
Some whispers and hushed speaking ensued.
"No," AJ called back, "Sorry!"
I sighed. "This is stupid," I said.
"You called me fat!" Nick's shrill voice emanated from within.
"You aren't fat!" I yelled back. "You're pregnant."
"Don't judge me!" Nick yelled.
"I'm not ju--"
I jumped at the sound of the buzzer for the door and blinked in confusion towards the dining room. The bedroom door opened just far enough for Nick and AJ to both stick their heads out. Nick's was on top, his hair hanging down in AJ's eyes. AJ blew the hair out of his face. "Who's here?" NIck demanded.
"I dunno," I answered. I trotted towards the dining room. I heard the door open wider behind me as Nick and AJ moved into the hallway.
"I'm coming, I'm coming," I said, as though the person downstairs could hear me. I reached the intercom and hit the speak button. "Halloooo?" I called before hitting the listen button.
"Brian? It's me... Becky."
"HOLY SHIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" Nick's squeal was shriller than shrill. It was ultrasonic. "Holy shit!!!!" I heard the bedroom door slam again.
I hit the speak button, "Hey Becky.... what's up?"
"Can I come up?"
AJ was suddenly beside me. "How the hell you gonna explain --" he waved his hands towards the hallway to indicate Nick.
"I have no freaking idea."
"Hellooo?" Becky called, and I realized I still had my thumb depressing the button. "Hellooooo? Brian?"
I hit speak, "Yeah... Yes. I mean, yes. Sure. Hold on." I let it go and looked at AJ. "Now what?"
AJ grinned wickedly. "Let her up."
"He's gonna kill me."
And with that, I hit the button to buzz Becky in.