Chapter 12

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(Ruby's POV)

"Is that any way to greet your best friend?" Jasmine answers me in a teasing tone as she steps towards me. "I'm after travelling half way across the country; I expected a warmer greeting."

"Shut up," I tell her with a smile before pulling her into a hug. A chat breaks out among the guests in the room, leaving me to talk to my best friend whom I haven't seen in over three months.

"You've gone so big, Ruby," she says, pulling away and placing both hands on my stomach. "You look like you're going to explode. Are you sure you're only having one baby?"

Ryan chuckles from beside me. He wraps an arm around my waist and kisses my temple, before murmuring; "I'll be right back, babe."

"So," Jasmine smiles the second Ryan leaves. "Did you say yes?"

"Did I say yes to what?"

"To being his girlfriend? Don't tell me he chickened out again." She flicks her long brown hair over her shoulder, waiting impatiently for a reply.

"How did you-"

"So he did ask," she squeals. "Please tell me you said yes!"

"Ja-"

"Of course you did," she continues, not even letting me get a word in. "How could you say no to Ryan? I mean, the guy is pretty much in-"

"Jasmine, will you please slow down," I finally manage to say after placing my hand over her mouth. Her tongue slides out between her lips and licks my hand. "Ew!"

"Sorry," she winks. "Couldn't resist. I'm just so excited to see you!"

"I'm so excited to see you too, hun,"

"I actually can't believe that you two finally got together. You did get together, right?"

"Yes, we did."

"I knew it!" she squeals once more, her brown curls bouncing as she hops around on the spot.

Whereas my appearance, for obvious reasons, has changed dramatically over the past few months, Jasmine's hasn't. Her beautiful chocolate brown hair is a little bit longer than I remember. Her eyes, a mixture of green and light brown, twinkle like they always do. She's dressed, as usual, in her favourite designer brands; a pair of deep blue Tommy Hilfiger jeans, a white cami and a checkered shirt from Abercrombie, a pair of Ugg boots and, of course, her signatory Michael Kors handbag. Looking at her, anyone would think she was a stuck up barbie. However, I know different.

I remember the first time I met Jasmine; we were only five. Even then, she was well dressed. Ever since her Mom died when she was a toddler, her Dad took it upon himself to shower her in everything she could ever ask for. I guess you could say that spoiling his daughter was his way of grieving.

I recall how jealous I was of the girl in the pretty red dress, playing on the swings in the local park. A young boy, a little older than us, ran up behind Jasmine and pushed her off the swing. She fell to the ground crying. Naturally, me being the most demanding five-year-old that I was, stormed over to him and practically ordered him to apologise to her. When he refused, I pushed him backwards into a puddle of mud, before turning to help the sniffling girl. Ever since that day, we'd been the best of friends.

"So," I say. "Are you going to tell me why you're here? Don't you have college?"

"I'm here for your baby shower, silly," she replies, linking her arm through mine as we head to a nearby table. "You hardly thought I was going to miss it?"

"Jas, I didn't even know about it."

"Oh, yeah. Well, either way, I wasn't going to miss it."

"Thank you," I smile.

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