CHAPTER FIVE: The Argument
"Did you ever find out what was wrong with John?" Chris asked Stephanie. He slipped into the bed next to her in their shared hotel room and propped himself up on his elbow so he could get a better look at her.
"Yes, and it's kind of weird but I don't think it's going to be that big of a deal," Stephanie answered, looking at him.
"So?" he asked expectantly.
"So...what?" she replied, lifting one eyebrow.
"So aren't you going to tell me what's wrong with him?"
"I told you, honey, it's really not that big of a deal," she said, looking away as she remembered exactly what John's little problem was. She had been a bit surprised at the nature of the dreams John had been having, and she vaguely wondered what Chris's reaction would be.
"You know we don't keep secrets in our relationship, Stephy," he said in a low voice, looking at her as he spoke. "And besides, if he's having any kind of problems...well, I'd like to try to help him through it. We've sort of become friends because of you, and I-"
"I know you have the most pure intentions, sweetie, but I think you'd totally overreact to the situation," she said seriously. She could just imagine him getting pissed off if she told him what was really wrong with John. She'd seen Chris get mad before because of how other guys felt about her, and it hadn't been pretty... Of course, his anger was never directed at her, but she had to admit, he did have some jealousy issues, and the only guy he really trusted her to be around was John... But how long would that last if she told him what was happening?
"Look, babe, just tell me," he said in a gentle, yet pleading tone. He reached over and lightly touched her cheek. "I'll stay cool, I promise."
She couldn't resist his touch, and he knew it. It was her weakness. She sighed, and then she just let it all pour out. "John's been having these dreams about me...dreams where I show up at his room door at, like, two in the morning to talk...but we never talk. Instead, we end up kissing."
"Is that his dream...or his fantasy?" he asked, sitting up in the bed.
"He says that it's just a dream, and I believe him," she said, sitting up as well.
"Well, I don't believe it," he said, frowning. "I'm a guy, and I know what I feel when I'm with you. What if he feels that, too?"
"He's not in love with me, Chris," she said, already wishing that she'd never told him about the dreams. "You don't have to worry about that."
"How do you know that, though? Did you ask him if he was in love with you?"
"I didn't feel any need to ask him that. It doesn't matter."
His mouth dropped. "Steph, how can you say that it doesn't matter? It matters a lot! He probably wants you."
"It's not that serious," she said, exasperated. "He says they're all just dreams. He knows the difference between reality and a dream."
"So he's had this dream more than once?" he asked in a quiet voice.
"Apparently," she replied. "But you have no reason to worry about him, though. I'm yours, Chris, forever. You and I are getting married really soon, and then it'll be official."
He was silent for a minute, going over what she'd said to him in his head before speaking again. "I don't think you should hang out with him for a while," he said carefully.
"What?" she asked incredulously. "You want me to stop hanging out with my best friend because of some stupid dreams?"
"They're not just stupid dreams, Steph! I took Psychology, ok? So I know that dreams have different meanings," he said, crossing his arms across his chest. "So yeah, I kind of want you to stop hanging with him, at least for the next two weeks."
"How can you ask me to do that? He's my best friend," she emphasized. "He's the one who helped me plan that whole Valentine's Day thing for you. He and my dad helped me out with the whole thing, and now you don't even want me around him?"
"Steph, you know that I'm an insanely jealous man when it comes to you. Can you blame me for that?" he asked, reaching out to touch her. "I went so long secretly loving you and being forced to watch you with other men, and now that I have you, I always have this fear that one of these days, you'll just up and leave me for a better man..."
"You don't have to be so insecure in your relationship with me. I'd never leave you," she assured him. "You should know that by now, Chris. I want to spend the rest of my life with you... I'm going to spend the rest of my life with you...and nothing is going to ever change that, especially not some silly dreams that John's been having."
"Good," he said, lying back down in the bed and pulling her with him. "Because I love you so much, Steph, and I don't want to lose you."
"You're not," she said firmly, looking at him. "I've told you this innumerable times, but I'll tell you again. I'm yours, and nothing's going to change that. I love you. Only you."
He looked at her, observing the look of sincerity on her face before relaxing. "Did we just have an argument?" he asked her.
"Yeah, I think that would classify as a small dispute," she replied. "It's weird, isn't it?"
"It is weird," he agreed. "We rarely have arguments. I mean, I can count on one hand how many arguments we've had since we got engaged on Valentine's Day..."
"Other couples have arguments all the time, and do you know what they do afterwards?" she asked, lowering her voice.
He smirked at her. "They make up..."
"I hear makeup sex is the best," she said wistfully. "Too bad I'll never know..."
"Oh please. Any sex with me is the best, because I'm the best and you know it," he said, leaning over her. "And if you really want to know what makeup sex is like... I'd be more than willing to give you a demonstration right now."
"Do it, then," she demanded, and she smiled as he leaned down to kiss her. She pushed him back for a minute and looked at him. "Chris?"
"Yeah?" he asked.
"Just so you know, I took Psychology, too," she informed him smugly, and then she reached over and turned out the lamp on the table next to the bed. "Now come here..."