No matter how much Leah tried, the shorts were not going to button over her pregnant belly. The stretch fabric strip in the back was pulled to its limit and yet the button was not close enough to the hole. She had larger sizes of shorts but it just seemed to worry her that this change occurred so rapidly. She knew any growth of her abdomen meant it was expanding to hold her unborn child but the loss of her figure was still weighing on her.
She didn't bother finding the bigger shorts, she slipped on a maternity dress and made a show of waddling out of the room.
"All hail the fail whale," Leah muttered to herself as she muddled through the house and into the kitchen.
"What was that?"
Paul was seated on the counter, mustard dotted along his jaw and legs swinging along. A decade taken off and he could pass for his own son. Leah wiped his chin on her way to the sink. Early on in the pregnancy Leah found solace in Paul, talking about the things that worried her and would kill Jake to hear, while the experienced friend calmed and helped out where he could.
"Just talking to myself," Leah spoke between sips of water.
"Dude, last time I checked that's not in the list of symptoms you should be going through," Paul took out another chuck of sandwich and guffawed.
Leah rolled her eyes and gulped the last of her drink, "And 7 weeks is nowhere near a full term but this isn't the average gestation is it."
Paul's turn to flinch, "Don't use that word. Makes it sound like bad gas. Which you should have in a few days. Rach hated it."
Leah's face froze in horror, "You gotta be shitting me. I already lost my temper, my sense of when to stop eating, my figure and next up is my control of my gastro-intestinal system?"
Paul only slightly chuckled. Leah's face was still marred with doubt and anger. When he noticed he tried to argue it away, "You still have a figure, it's just a . . . fuller one. And the gas should ease up right before the baby is born. It's all part of the price you pay for that darling little kid inside you."
Leah clutched the empty glass a little tighter, "Not sure it's a price I wanna pay anymore."
"You don't mean that."
Paul's voice had a tone that sounded like he was trying to convince her of the fact.
Leah's shoulders slumped and she leaned her head against a nearby cabinet, "I don't. I feel guilty just for saying that. But I felt like a stranger in my body once and it's scary to have it happen again."
Paul hopped off the counter and started rubbing her back, "I know. But you made it through before and you will again."
Leah swayed to lean against Paul. Though she was face first buried into Paul's chest, Leah's voice still made it's way into his ears.
"I just have this feeling inside building up. Like I'm changing. And I start fearing that Jake won't like it."
"Jake loves you and the baby so much. How could he not like the wonderful changes going on?"
Leah grunted, "That's not what I meant. We haven't . . . done anything since I got pregnant. And it just adds to my frustration."
Paul peeled Leah off him and held her shoulders in his hands and looked her straight in the eyes.
"One, I did not need to know that you and Jake haven't been doing the horizontal tango lately. Ew. Two, I can tell you from experience that guys still wanna tap their pregnant girlfriends. Don't make that face, I'm trying to help. Three, go talk to him. Don't expect him to read your mind, he's not Edward Cullen."
"Go ahead and mention Edward Cullen and your sex life with Rachel. 'Cuz that couldn't possibly turn me off completely."
Paul reminded himself that Leah was a pregnant woman who would hit back before he snapped and slapped her, "You missed the point, Lee."
Leah rolled her eyes, "I got it. Talk to Jake. Now let me go before the bruises form and I have to return the favor."
Paul let go and grabbed the last of his sandwich on his way out.
Leah called after him, "Where are you going?"
She got a muffled response, Paul still had a bite in his mouth as he talked and stepped out the door, "If you're going to talk to Jake now, I gotta go. You'll be rolling around in the sheets in no time."
Leah's cheeks reddened as the door met its frame.
She padded over to the bedroom and flopped on the bed, hoping to wake up Jake. Somehow, he was still soundly sleeping away. Leah, defeated and tired, opted to just snuggle up to him and lull herself into a nap. Once she was a bit closer, like instinct, Jake's body turned and his arms wrapped around her.
"You cute, oblivious, adorable idiot."
"Love you too, Lee."
Leah shifted to look up at him. Sure enough, his eyes were closed but he was smiling.
"I fucking knew you'd wake up if I let all this weight smash down on the bed."
Jake chuckled and cracked an eye open, "All this weight? Are you referring to your body or a set of barbells?"
"Don't make this something that's just in my head, Jake. Another day and you won't be able to fit your arms around me," Leah wiggled out of the wrap and sat up.
"Because you're holding a whole 'nother person in there. Leah, what's wrong with you? You've never been this vain."
Leah sharply turned her head in his direction, "Vanity? You think that's what . . . ugh, we're not gonna get anywhere by fighting. I don't care that what I look like until you start pulling away."
Jake pulled her back down to lie with him and started nuzzling her neck, "Does this seem like I'm pulling away?"
"And soon, we'll fall asleep and it'll be another day that we haven't done anything more than hugged."
Jake laughed, "You're put out that I haven't put out. Pregnancy hormones must be women's Viagra or something."
Leah held back unwelcome tears, "Nice one, Jacob. Are you by any chance related to Jack Black? I'm sure you and him could hit the town and find some girls that are still pretty and not sex-crazy or hormonal at all."
Jake recoiled internally and tried to soften his tone, "Leah, baby, I didn't mean it like that. I was just surprised, that's all. And don't think for a minute you could lose me that easily. There's no girl better for me than you."
Leah moved again, so that their eye met as she pressed her lips to his, "Then prove it to me. Make love to me."
Jake didn't respond immediately and Leah started moving away again, utterly shattered.
"No, Jacob, I get it. I don't appeal to you sexually right now. I'll just wait until after the baby is born."
Jake practically threw himself on top of Leah to keep her from leaving the bed.
"Get off of me, Jacob."
"No. And stop saying my name like that."
Leah was already crying again, "Like what? How could saying your name, Jacob, possibly hurt you like I'm hurt right now."
Jake was still over her, carful not to press too hard against her belly, and his voice was much more pleading than before, "I'm not trying to hurt you, Lee lee. I love you so much. But this isn't like us: fighting, you using my full first name."
"That's just it, Jake. I'm still me inside here. I still want to do the things we did before."
Jake frowned, still confused and hurt, much like Leah, "I didn't know. I thought it'd be better to not try and force you into anything. It's not like you did anything that screamed 'I miss sex' to me. "
"What was I supposed to do? Say 'Get in bed now'?" Leah couldn't help but chuckle at the image of her dragging Jake into the room, kicking and screaming.
Jake found the smallest nugget of hope in the smirk, taking the opportunity to try and turn things around, "I would have liked it. Dominant Leah sounds really hot."
Leah spoke softly, "Then why didn't you respond earlier, when I asked you to make love to me."
Jake swallowed, he was still nervous about taking advantage of his pregnant girlfriend, "Well, it wasn't a command or anything, it was a request. Not exactly dominant."
Leah stared him down, completely serious, "Why are you so avoidant? You still haven't directly said that you still find me attractive."
Frustrated, Jake broke down and began to give in to Leah's wishes, "Lee, you're still attractive to me. In fact, I don't think I've found you sexier than right now. It's actually been so hard for me to keep from worshipping your new body like I want to."
Just as flustered, Leah begged again, "Don't hold back. Both me and this baby are a lot stronger than you think."
Jake held on to the last of his reservations, the intensity showing in the small spasms of various arm muscles. Leah could see the back and forth of Jake's thoughts in his eyes and decided to take the initiative. She flipped them both over, sitting herself on top of him. She kissed along his neck and moved her hands along his upper arms, lightly dragging her fingernails across his skin at certain points. Jake laid back and tried thinking of baseball. But when Leah rolled against him slowly, Jake clutched at her hips, at first to stop them then to move them harder.
"Jake," Leah shakily whispered near his ear.
He sat up, clutching her close in his lap, and started kissing along her neck and the chest line of her dress. Leah's hands moved through his hair and clumsily clutched at his shirt to try and take it off. Jake reluctantly pulled his lips from her skin briefly to remove his shirt.
A soft moan passed through Leah's lips and Jake growled his response from his face's place between her breasts. Leah dug her nails into his shoulders as his tongue wiggled against her skin. Leah wriggled with delight and Jake mumbled in-between his kisses.
Leah was breathless before they even got down to business.
Jake smirked up at her, "I like the new fullness to your chest. Best hormonal byproduct ever."
Leah laughed as she kissed him and things went lusty again soon enough. Jake was getting quite worked up and wasted no time in moving the bottom of Leah's dress half way up her swollen torso. Unwilling to separate, he resorted to ripping away her panties and apologizing half-heartedly.
The sex was quickly paced but long lasting. Leah has discovered the rumors of pregnancy increasing the chance of multiple orgasms were solidly founded. And Jake was treated to quite the view of his new favorite side to Leah.
Afterward, the couple laid in bliss, talking and discussing the other changing aspects of their relationship.
"So, you really like them," Leah peered down at what had been earlier seen as a nuisance for her to get used to.
"Yes. Definitely," Jake kissed her forehead, "And you're absolutely sure this is okay for you and the baby."
Leah rolled her eyes, "So sure. I even asked Carlisle. Apparently, even up until the day I go into labor, sex is fine and even beneficial."
"I am quite enjoying the benefits," Jake chuckled.
"I think he was talking more about the work it does for my uterine muscles, Jake."
Jake lightly laughed as his eyes closed and he began drifting to sleep. Leah stayed awake to watch him a bit before contentedly resting Jake's hand and hers on top of her large belly. Content would be the best word to describe Leah at that moment.