Months after a no-strings-attached one-night stand, Chimney and Maddie's "friendship" is finally returning to normal. Until one night they're at a party and Chimney accidentally drinks from her glass instead of his own...and it's water.
Her hands were tightly wrapped around her beer can, and she was using a koozie. Both were odd sights; Maddie was strictly a wine person, and Buck wasn't the type of host to think of providing koozies for his guests. He noticed how tightly she was holding it, and how tense her body language was, but he figured it was just because Buck was telling a story from their childhood; that always had her stressed.
He also knew that he was paying too close attention to her; that he really needed to break this habit. So what if they'd had sex? It was one night, they were both feeling lonely after her divorce was finalized. She'd made it very clear that it was a one time thing, and the last thing Chimney wanted to do was pressure her after he knew how her marriage had ended.
So they'd spent one night together. One beautiful night, and the memories still haunted Chimney's dreams.
But they had moved on. They'd had to. They didn't want the 118 finding out, and they weren't in a relationship. She wasn't his to lose, so he knew he had no right to consider this a loss.
But still. He did.
He wanted her back, though he'd never had her.
"Chim," Hen called. "Buck got this wild ghost pepper salsa, you have to come try some."
"Am I a teenage boy with something to prove?" Chimney joked, but walked over to the kitchen where everyone was clustered, placing his beercan onto the sideboard. Buck's eyes were watering, and he had grabbed a gallon of milk from the refrigerator.
He saw Maddie standing off to the side, gently shaking her head. When she noticed him looking, she ducked her head, placing her beer can down on the sideboard.
Chimney looked at the table. There was indeed bowls of salsa set out, and he shrugged, grabbing a chip. He might as well try it, he was fine with spicy food.
"Be careful," Bobby warned lightly. "Buck finished all the milk."
"I did," Buck rasped, setting the gallon back on the table.
"I'll be fine, I grew up eating spicy foods," Chimney said.
"Not this kind," Hen warned, but Chimney had already grabbed a chip, and taken more than a fair scoop of the salsa.
He popped it into his mouth, chewing quickly. The salsa burned, but really, it was fine. "See, I'm well versed," he said, and the others, disappointed, turn back to see Buck going in again for more salsa. Chimney rolled his eyes, and then felt the first burn touch his throat. Fuck. This was hotter than he'd thought, but he couldn't blow his cover.
He ducked behind Hen, grabbing the beer he'd left there, and taking a quick drink before anyone noticed. He flinched in surprise as water hit his throat instead of beer, and then he noticed that this can wasn't cold and metallic in his hands; it had a koozie on top.
Fuck, he'd taken Maddie's.
She was currently standing by Buck, arms folded tight over her chest, but a smile on her face as she watched her brother's antics. Chimney quickly set the can back down, grabbed his own, and then carefully considered the situation.
Maddie, a confirmed wine drinker, was seen drinking beer with a koozie covering it. He slid the koozie down when Maddie's attention was taken again by Buck, and saw that it was a can of Dasani water instead.
Maddie, a confirmed wine drinker, was actually drinking water. Secretly drinking water, no less. She'd gone to the lengths of bringing her own water, and putting a koozie on it so that it was
Chimney's head felt a little dizzy, and he forgot all about the burning in his mouth. He took a sip of his own beer. Maddie had come back over to the sideboard, and had grabbed her drink. She smiled tightly at him, and took a sip.
"Trying one of Buck's new IPAs?" Chimney asked idly, and Maddie startled a little.
"Oh, yeah," she said, flushing. "It's pretty good."
"Did you try the one from the drug store or the special one he grabbed from that new brewery?" Chimney asked, making up both things solely to put her on the spot, because he was feeling suspicious.
"Oh, the um, the brewery one," Maddie said. "He insisted I try it because it's new."
"Of course," Chimney said, taking a sip of his own beer. "Nice koozie."
"Yeah, my hands get cold," Maddie stammered. She smiled tightly, again, and then slipped away.
Chimney felt bad for putting her on the spot like that, but he wondered at the course of events. Maddie had snuck water into a party, lied about drinking beer, and now she could barely meet his gaze.
This was barely months after they'd slept together, and while he had worn a condom, he also remembered that they'd gotten a little sloppy during round two, and the condom hadn't gone on as soon as it should have. She'd left before he woke up in the morning, and he hadn't known what to say. Honestly, he'd been a little out of it, having had a couple shots of tequila to make sure he didn't lose his nerve when she'd texted she was coming over, and that part had slipped his mind.
Fuck. Was she pregnant?
He could see her talking to Buck, and then leaving the kitchen. Chimney knew that maybe he should leave it alone, maybe she just had PMS and maybe this was absolutely none of his business.
But. On the off chance that she was pregnant with his child, he knew he had to follow her. "Hey, I'll see you later," he told Hen, and she nodded.
He finished the beer, and tossed it into the recycle bin. Maddie had grabbed her purse, and had already slipped out the door.
Chimney grabbed his jacket, and hurried after her.