Max sat at her friend Carmen's work waiting for her to be ready for lunch giving a heavy sigh as she rubbed her baby bump gently. She was about 6 months along at the moment and she was not doing well. Her ex had left her right after she found out about the pregnancy and hadn't contacted her since. She was trying her best to come to terms with being a single mother but she also thought that now she would never find anyone to be with her.
Pedro came into the back smiling some as he saw Carmen finishing up some makeup on another actor "Hey Carm...how you doing?" He asked sighing as he sat down and running a hand through his hair. He had lost his wive to cancer nearly a year ago now and being a single father to two younger children was really starting to wear him down. He had stopped doing any kind of acting outside of the city so he could be there for his kids but he was scared that with the theatre going down a bit he might have to find something else.
Carmen sighed quietly, looking over her final touches and gently tapped the girl on the shoulder "You're done sweetie." She told her smiling a little, looking over at Pedro finally. "Hey! I've been worse... How're the kids doing? You ready for lunch?" She asked him. "We picking up Clay on the way or meeting him?" She asked her friend, motioning for Max to follow "Pedge this is Max, Max this is Pedro." She introduced them and headed out with them. Sh'd known Pedro for years, she'd been good friends eith his wife having worked with her as an MUA on many shows and she'd promised Lita that she would make sure him and the kids were getting on okay.
Clay was finishing up his shift at the garage, checking up on the time and grumbling to himself a bit as he finally clocked out. He'd promised Pedro that he would go with him and his friend to meet this girl. He didn't appreciate being set up with people but he definitely owed Pedro big after he'd helped him out financially a couple years back. He headed out to his own beat up car and headed out to go meet them at the café restaurant they'd arranged, deciding he would at least try to get on and be nice to the girl.
Pedro smiled happily at her "Hey, kids are good. Taila not wanting to get up and ready for classes." He said shaking his head a bit "Not a morning person just like her mother." He murmured while he walked with her smiling some at Max waving at her "Hello there its very nice to meet you." He said happily
Max waved at Pedro and got up to follow them out "Oh hello there, its very nice to meet you too." She said before looking to Carmen "Thank you for taking me out, heaven knows I need it." She said not even knowing about Clayton coming along
Carmen smiled some, "Hey, I'll drive." She assured him, taking them to her car and making him sit in the back, "Once we get back I'm gonna drop Max off at her place before we come back here, no complaining about being kidnapped." She told him., driving to the restaurant and enjoying the peaceful quiet a little, needing to talk to Pedro in private but it could wait.
Clay got there first but waved as Pedro and the two ladies pulled up, remembering Carmen from a few parties but Max he had never met before, walking inside with the other three and smiled at her, guessing it was Max that he was being set up with "Hey, nice to meet you, I'm Clay." He told hr
Pedro raised an eyebrow and gave a small nod "Um alright then." He said chuckling a bit before he looked over at Clay waving at him before he looked to Carmen "Taila wants you to do her makeup for the school dance coming up for mother's day....she really wants to be there." He explained quietly to Carmen
Max looked at Carmen in complete shock when she saw the other man get in. He was definitely a looker but she had no idea why they were getting another person to join them "Oh um hi...nice to meet you too,I'm Max." She said quietly her hand resting on her bump
She nodded and walked inside with him, leaving Max to chat with Clayton some. She needed someone to get her mind off of things and from what Pedro had said, h would be perfect for her. "Yeah I can do that... You gonna take her? Is José going as well?" She asked him gently, giving his shoulder a little squeeze.
Clay got their table for them and turned to look at Max again, pulling her chair out for her before sitting down. "I take it you were dragged into this as well?" He chuckled a little and turned to face her. He didn't really know what to say to Pedro these days so he was finding it easier to talk to a complete stranger.
Max gave a small nod as she sat down taking a deep breath rubbing her bump some "Yeah...I um...I'm sorry but I didn't know abkut this." She murmured giving a small sigh "So um...how do you know Pedro or Carmen?"
Pedro gave a nod and sighed heavily "Yeah she wants him to go but I'm not going to force him. He hasn't been doing well lately without her there." He explained quietly as they walked behind Max and Clay.
Carmen nodded some and took a seat next to him, making sure Max and Clay were both otherwise occupied before sh turned to face him. "So I found a different hotel, just until I find a place to rent... But Jack's left me a parting gift... and I don't really know what I'm gonna do... I'm pregnant." She told him quietly, just wanting his advice and comfort.
Clay nodded some "I was guilt tripped into it... I'm guessing that uh, that the dad isn't around." He said gently, not one to beat around the bush. "You having a boy or a girl?" he asked her curiously, glancing over the menu but already knowing what he wanted. "What do you do for work?" He asked her as well, picking at a piece of bread from the basket on the table.
Max frowned some and at his questions "You sure do ask a lot of questions huh?" She asked before glancing over the menu "If you must know though, he isn't in the picture. Its a boy and I'm a photographer, but after the baby is born I'll probably have to find something else." She said sighing heavily "So what do you do?"
Pedro smiled seeing Clay and Max getting on seemingly well at the moment. He sighed some and frowned as he heard her "Carmen...no...you can't be in a hotel when you're pregnant." He said quietly sighing some "Come stay with me please? I've got a spare room perfect for you." He said
He shrugged a little "I'm just curious is all, no judgement here." He cracked a smile at her and started fiddling with his napkin. "I work at a garage during the day but in the evenings... I'm an artist.. Though I wouldn't call it a profession, it barely makes enough to eat from at the moment." He told her a little embarrassed that it hadn't been going well so far.
She frowned and gave a shrug "It's temporary, Lisa's gonna show me a place next week she thinks is perfect... I haven't decided yet if I'm gonna keep the baby though... I'm only a few weeks, I still have time to stop this... I just don't know what to do." She sighed quietly, frowning some when he took his glasses off "Jeez Pedge how much concealer am I gonna have to put on yuo... Are you getting any sleep lately?" She asked him concerned. He worked hard anyway but with two kids as well, she was worried he was stretching himself too thin.
Max gave a small and soft smile nodding softly when she realized he really was only curious "An artist huh? Do you have any photos of your work?" She asked biting her lip gently
Pedro sighed heavily and took his glasses off tp give them a quick clean "I still don't like the idea of you stayinf in a motel, but for what it worth...I think you should keep the baby. I kmow the father is a jack ass but trust me....its one of the greatest gifts you'll ever get." He explained to her and sighed a bit "I've been having to stay up late helpimg with homework and then practicing lines." He explained quietly "Then having to cook dinner make sure they got their showers, hell make sure I got my own...its been weighing hard lately."
Carmen frowned and reached over, rubbing his back, "You can't keep doing this to yourself. You're gonna get sick... Tell you what, I have a proposal to make.. i'll move in with you to stop your complaining... You let be a nanny for the kids, you won't have to find someone they don't know... I promised Lily I would take care of you guys... We can help each other with this." She suggested "Think it over alright?" She smiled and gave his shoulder a squeeze, glancing over to see Clay and Max were geting on so she looked through her menu.
HE nodded and pulled his phone out, showing her the piece he had just finished, "I'm keeping this one though... I like it too much." He chuckled quietly and leaned back some "Hey you got everything you need for your baby? I got a sister who's been about to take out all her baby stuff out cause her kids are grown but if you're looking for anything I can ask her." He told her. He chatted with her through the rest of lunch and walked a little slower with her at the end, heading back to the cars "Hey you wanna go get coffee tomorrow? I know you probably shouldn't drink it but like... tea or something?" He asked her a little shyly
Max looked at his phone and smiled wide at the painting he had done "Wow this is beautiful." She said softly to him. The rest of the lunch had gone very well, she was happy to talk with Clayton and get lost in what was happening. Once they had started to leave she blushed lightly when he asked her to coffee "I'd like that very much." She said giving a soft laugh before she handed him her phone "Give me your number, we can set up a time."
Pedro sighed heavily and gave a small nod as he listened to her. He knew she was right, he needed help but he didn't want to ask for it. He thought over her offer through the lunch smiling some when he saw how gold Max and Clay seemed to be getting along. By the end of the lunch he walked with Carmen to her car and bit his lip some "You wouldn't mind helping with the kids? I'll make sure to pay you as well, I'm not sure how much nanny's make but I'll give you something."
She turned to look at him and nodded "I'd be more than happy to.... The MUA work is drying up a little at the moment and the yard only wants me for part time on the weekends, minimum wage would be enough... You're not gonna find cheaper than that." She told him honestly and got back in, making sure Pedro got in the back as well, waiting for Max and Clay to be done "Come on love birds, I got a job to get to." She called back to them
Clay smiled some, looking over at Carmen's car and nodded, giving her his number, "Text me when you're available, I've got a few days off now so I'm around all the time." He told her, not even caring about seeming too eager.
Carmen took Max straight home after that and eventually returned to work with Pedro, getting him in her chair to tidy him up for the performance. "Let me know when you want me to move in alright?" She smiled, giving him a quick hug before sending him off for the matinee performance and she started packing her things up to head back to the motel she was calling home for now, getting in and starting to pack a few things into bags sighing happily.
Clay pulled up to Max's place, carrying a couple tubs of ice cream and some old comedy movies in a grocery bag, the other one had ingredients for him to make dinner with, banging on her door happily and grinning when she opened the door "Hey beautiful.. Two tubs of ice cream per your request, I got options for our movie and I got dinner sorted too." He told her, kissing her cheek as he walked in with her. He didn't care one bit that their dates meant hanging out on her couch when she was too tired to leave the house or anything. Their previous date had been him building a crib for her and he'd been happy to do it. "You have a good morning?" He asked her
Max smiled happily as she opened the door and saw Clayton there holding the exact ice cream she had requested giving him a kiss on the cheek "Oh you got the exact stuff, thank you." She said happily before letting him in. Clay had been nothing short of a dream for these past few weeks. He was completely understanding and had no issues with her pregnancy which meant the world to her.
Pedro sat at home running a hand through his hair as he tried his best to memorize lines for his play. Carmen was currently in another room helping his son with some homework while his daughter did her art lesson. He was thankful to Carmen as of late. Though it had only been two weeks he was beyond thankful for her. She had been doing great with the kids and he was starting to somewhat catch up on sleep
Carmen made her way back into the living room with José and passed Pedro his homework, "Can you just check that? I can't tell if we're right or not." She told him frowning some, "Oh don't look at me like that I'm an LA Mexican." She laughed some as he gave her a funny look about checking the spanish, "Dinner will be sorted in just over half an hour." She told them both, ruffling José's hair as she left.
"Papa how long is carmen going to stay here for? She cooks better than you and I'm gonna miss her food if she goes." He told him, squishing himself in to sit next to his Dad while he looked ovr his homework.
He smiled and set the bag down in the kitchen "I was thinking maybe tomorrow, I got work but maybe you come over to my place, you gotta get out of your house a little bit and I got some stuff to get done but I still wanna see you." He told her, kissing her cheek while he started getting things out to make dinner with. He was thankful every day so far that Pedro had made him go on that lunch date to meet her. He already knew she was the one for him and he didn't care what they did together as long as he got to spend time with her and be in her company.
Pedro looked over at Carmen as she came in and raised an eyebrow when she asked him to look over the spanish homework. He chuckled some and ruffled his son's hair when he sat next to him glancinf over the homework "Not sure...maybe a while maybe not. Its up to her." He explained
Max smiled softly at him and gave a small nod "Yeah that sounds nice..." she said softly biting her lip gently rubbing her bump as she watched him "So could I make dinner? You always make dinner for me." She said giggling softly as she felt the baby kick
Pedro chuckled some at his son and smiled a bit before looking at Carmen as she came back in the room "Josè wants you to stay forever." He said giving a small chuckle and smiled more at her "Have you thought about the baby at all?"
Max gasped and threw a towel at him "You asshole! Yeah I can cook." She said smiling more blowing a kiss at him "I can make you some damn good spaghetti."
He chuckled quietly and kissed her cheek, pulling her in close as he could. “I’m just asking. You’d be surprised what some of my exes have done with my kitchen.” He muttered frowning for a moment. “You decide yet on enchiladas or tacos?” He asked her having got stuff for both just in case.
Carmen smiled and nodded some. “Smart boy that one. He knows aunt carmen makes better food than dad does.” She smiled at him, pausing when he asked about her predicament. “I’ve decided I’m keeping it.... I don’t need a man to raise a baby with me. Yes it would be nice but it’s not necessary and I’ve always wanted kids of my own. I’m not gonna block the opportunity I’ve been blessed with.” She explained to him
Max smiled happily and swayed with him some "Mmm echiladas for sure." She murmured before kissing him softly sighing happily "You are something else you know that?" She said quietly
Pedro chuckled a bit before giving a small nod "I think thats a good idea and if you need anything I'm here." He said happily reaching for her hand giving it a squeeze "So....boy or girl?" He asked smiling