Saturday, September 8 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway
“I don’t think I’ve seen this much rain in my life, ever,” Sarina comments as she glances out the window of the bus.
It was late in the morning, but the pair hadn’t moved. There was no point as NASCAR had already cancelled everything for the day, stating they’d try to run both races tomorrow with no practice, and the fields set by owner points. Therefore, Chase was set to start 11th in the Cup race, and 10th in the XFINITY event.
“I’m not complaining,” Chase says as he wraps his arms around her, with it not being lost on her that her hands were on her stomach.
“Oh face it – you’d rather be in the racecar right now than here.” Normally, that was an easy answer. However, as the news from yesterday still was stinking in, he had no complaints.
“I’m very comfortable here right now. I could actually stay here all day.” She actually wished they could do that as there was nothing better than cuddling together. However, the rain just meant other plans would go smoother.
“Kyle and Samantha are coming over, remember? Sam told him the news, and he has a reaction for me. Oh, and we need to go see the doctor.” Chase nods his head, remembering the plan. He was glad that Samantha was close friends with one of the regulars, and she’d be there with them each week with knowledge to help as necessary.
“Make sure that I don’t miss any appointment at all. I want to be there for them all, I don’t care.” She actually smiled in hearing that as she rolled over, kissing his lips lightly.
“On a brighter note, we don’t have to worry about condoms…” He chuckles to himself, before taking a deep breath.
“The stick said that you’re more than four wee-”
“No, it’s not a winner’s baby, Chase. The conception would’ve been sometime in July, into August.” Chase thinks back through, trying to place an exact spot as Sarina just rolls her eyes. “Oh come on, it doesn’t matter now….”
The pair eventually got up, getting dressed with Chase making breakfast. It wasn’t long after before there was a knock on the door, and they both knew who it was immediately. Chase simply opened with a smile, as he stepped back to let the pair in.
“Brexton has gone over to see his Uncle Kurt and Aunt Ashley,” Samantha informs them, knowing the question would probably come up. However, it was the furthest thing on the minds of Sarina and Chase as they sat on the couch together. “Now, isn’t morning sickness easier to deal with when you have someone to care for you?”
“Absolutely, but thankfully baby Elliott is behaving today,” Sarina comments, glad that Samantha killed some of the tension in her thoughts with a conversation breaker.
“I think that maybe due to you having that off of your chest to worry about. Stress isn’t good for the baby…” Sarina nods her head, having heard that a couple of times from others. It was why she was always on the keep Lindsay calm patrol when they watched races together.
“The rain may be a pain in the ass, but it’s helping with keeping things relaxed…” She then glances up at Chase, as he keeps an arm wrapped around her.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen this much rain in one location before..” Sarina chuckles, having said the same thing earlier that morning to Chase.
“It’ll be interesting going into tomorrow without a single lap of practice,” Chase finally perks up, as he keeps his eyes on Kyle. He was surprised at how quiet he was being.
“You at least have the XFINITY race to give you an idea of conditions,” Kyle finally joins in as Chase nods his head. That was certainly one advantage to being unexpectedly asked to drive for Spencer.
“I’m sure you’ll be stealing notes from Christopher and Ryan.” Kyle had to give Chase credit as he had read his mind perfectly.
“There’s nothing like getting a feel for it yourself, though.” Chase couldn’t argue with that, either. “So I guess congratulations are in order for you both. So congratulations on the pregnancy.”
“I swear we were trying every preven-” Sarina immediately headed down the apologetic road.
“Samantha already pleaded your case, Sarina,” Kyle cuts her off as Sarina takes a calming deep breath. “Hey, it happened; there’s nothing you can do now. Do I believe that you were taking those measures? I would hope so after everything. Does it matter? Nope, since baby showed up anyway. The only discussion we need to have is how to handle the situation.” Sarina knew that the next set of words out of Kyle’s mouth would determine her future. “Having seen the struggles of pregnancy firsthand for parents to be, from my own experience and helping Samantha with Bundle of Joy, I understand why you can’t go through with an abortion and would rather take your chances. In that regard, I do hope that everything works out for both of you so you don’t have to go through that heartbreak, again.”
“Thank you,” Chase and Sarina say together, nerves still swirling through Sarina’s mind.
“Sam, when you have the next gala, please let me know so I can help you out,” Sarina adds as Samantha nods her head in approval. “I totally get why you want to help these ladies, and I want to help as well.”
“I appreciate that sweetheart,” Samantha comments, before glancing back towards Kyle as she knew there was more to be said.
“Samantha told me that you still want to finish the season with KBM, though?” Kyle questions and Sarina nods her head. “And you’re in agreement with this, Chase?” Chase was surprised that Kyle called upon his opinion, as he was ready for the decision to come out and go forward from there.
“I know it’s risky so please don’t warn me of those risks,” Chase starts as Samantha bites her own tongue, having done that already with Sarina. “But just like me, you should understand where she’s coming from. That’s the competitive fire, determination, fuel to be the best that you can be. You realize the work and sacrifice it takes to get to where she is right in the championship fight. Could you just walk away like it was nothing? Could you have no regrets? I don’t want Sarina living with those regrets, so therefore I am onboard for her to do this. Regret can be worse than failure because it leaves so many unanswered questions. Regret can drive you into theories that make it so you can’t sleep at night. Sarina has been through enough. She doesn’t need those regrets lying on her shoul-”
“We’re not just talking about the baby anymore, are we?” Samantha interrupts and Chase takes a deep breath, shaking his head no. “Sarina told me some of the things that you both went through with Alison. It’s okay to still feel pain from that. It’s okay to still not be totally over that as it won’t happen overnight. It’s okay to want to vent sometimes. But Chase, I don’t care what you regret, it is not and never was your faul-”
“I know that now, Samantha.” Chase takes a deep breath as Sarina rubs his back, knowing this was a touchy subject. “I made the choice to go to therapy and it helped. I was able to reach into those emotions, address them and open the biggest can of worms that you’d never think possible. I know it wasn’t my fault. I know I can’t stall over those regrets because no matter what, Alison would’ve found a way; she was that crazy.” He then swallows the lump in his throat as he thinks about the letter that he still hadn’t chose to open from her. “I’m just bringing up that time, and those feelings so Kyle can see where my decision came from.”
“Thank you as it’s nice to see your perspective,” Kyle says as he glances down at the ground, still conflicted. “As your boss and team owner, I feel responsibility with this decision should something happ-”
“I accept all the risks, Ky-” Sarina interrupts, feeling that he was going to turn her down.
“I get that, Sarina. That’s what Samantha said you told her, and that’s what Chase just said to me. But, regardless, it’s still on my conscious.” Kyle hoped he didn’t regret saying the next words that he was going to say, but ultimately, he had decided upon this immediately after speaking with Samantha yesterday. “As long as you’re ready to accept the risks, I will allow it without any second guessing or holding you back. Like Chase said, I understand the drive to succeed more than anyone. I just hope I don’t regret it.”
“When there’s a championship trophy in the KBM shop, will you regret it?” Kyle chuckles, shaking his head no. “That’s what I plan to deliver you, boss. You’ve given me all the tools and more to get the job done. It’s now time for me to make you proud.” Kyle then stands up, switching over to the couch with Chase and Sarina to sit beside her.
“Whether you win the championship or not, I am proud of you. I’m proud of how much you’ve grown since I met you. I’m proud of how much trust and commitment you’ve shown, and the relationships that you’ve been able to form after being so scared to trust a single person. I’m proud of the lady that you’re growing into.” Sarina wipes the stray tear from her eyes.
“Pregnancy hormones….” Samantha chuckles as Sarina immediately pulls Kyle into a hug. “That means more than you could realize coming from you. Thank you…”
“Just make sure that man over there doesn’t hurt you or I’ll have to kick his ass.” Chase just rolls his eyes as Kyle shares another hug with her before going back over to Samantha.
“I almost feel like I’ve been threatened by a fath-” Chase comments
“Older brother feeling, please,” Kyle interrupts. “I’m not that much older than you guys.”
“So who do we tell next?” Sarina wonders out loud as Chase lets out a sigh. Alan, Lindsay and Ryan were the easy choices being there that weekend, but his parents were high up on his personal radar.
“It’s up to yo-” Chase starts as Sarina just rolls her eyes.
“Every decision isn’t mine to mak-”
“The baby is growing inside of yo-”
“You’re the father so you’re just as much responsible.”
“Do you think Chase is letting her decide everything so he can pick the name?” Kyle wonders as Samantha just chuckles, with them not catching the couple’s attention.
“I am just wondering if it’ll be a boy or a girl,” Samantha adds as she glances back at Kyle. “Either way, they’ll be full throttle from birth with them as parents.” Kyle glances over at the pair discussing things, before turning back to Samantha.
“Do you think they’d let their kid race?” Samantha nods her head as she couldn’t see either stopping their child. “Chase may get overprotective if it’s a girl.”
“I don’t want to think about a girl. Brexton may find a girlfriend.” Kyle’s jaw drops in shock as Samantha keeps her eyes locked on him. “Let that sink in….”
“I don’t think I could handle my kid dating a miniature version of them.” Samantha smiles as she looks back over at the pair.
“It could be worse, Kyle. Brexton could date Scarlett.” Kyle spits out his drink that he was sipping on, catching the attention of Chase and Sarina as Samantha just laughs.
“Do I want to know?” Chase questions as Kyle shakes his head no.
“Scarlett and Brexton together….” Kyle offers as Sarina feels her own tinge of sickness at the thought.
“It could be worse. Brexton could end up with Taylor.” Kyle then gives Chase a ‘really’ glance as Chase smiles. “Sorry, I still hate your teammate.”
“There are some days that I want to kill Denny, too.”
The joking continued into the afternoon, before the quartet made their way over to the care center for the meeting with the doctor.
Sarina and Chase had to admit that Samantha had a good idea, and Dr. Lee Carson certainly knew her stuff when it came to babies which would be beneficial. The group hit it off immediately, with the couple suspecting no issues moving forward despite the secret that was set to play out.
The bigger surprise, though, was finding out that Sarina was indeed very pregnant, actually eight weeks along already. Chase’s mind immediately had done the math already, smiling as he remembered the nice night at the beach.
“She’s a Daytona baby,” he commented out of blue as Sarina just rolled her eyes. “You took care of my ankle a little too well that weeken-”
“No more hauler sex,” Sarina responds with a theory of her own as Chase just laughs. “Actually, I take that back. Hauler sex is the best kind at times.”
Sunday, September 9 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway
“Is the track flooded yet?” Sarina asks as she glances up from her plate as she eats her omelet.
“If there was more banking than I would say yes and we should go canoe racing,” Chase answers as he sits down across from her.
“This better be the last day of rain. We’ve ran out of movies to watch, stories to tell, games to play, and let’s face it – we’re going to run out of food soon, too.”
“Well, that’s good as you need to make sure you eat since you’re eating for two.” She then rolls her eyes, knowing that was the first of many lines she’d hear over the next several months.
“I am going to try and keep my firesuit as long as I can before going a size up….” Chase shakes his head, as he knew that wasn’t going to last. “Damn, I am going to be fat…”
“You’ll still be cute.” She then glances over at him.
“You’d say that even if I was wearing a paper bag.” He nods his head yes as she just lets out a sigh.
“I’m sorry, but you’re adorable no matter what you’re wearing. Your inner beauty shines through..” She glances over with a smile. “And to be honest, you’re going to make an amazing mother.”
“You’ll be an even more amazing father. The sweetness that you’ve shown me proves that.” He then grabs his phone as it goes off, looking at the latest text message. “Alan?”
“I sent him a picture of the pregnancy test stick and he sent back asking if Kyle cut my balls off.” Sarina breaks out laughing, spitting her food across the table at him. “Oh, I see how it is…”
“I’m sorry…” She then chuckles as he flings a piece of it back at her.
“Food is meant for eating to feed the baby, not for usage as a weapon against your fiancé.” She smiled at the simple mention of ‘fiance’ as it just sounded so perfect. “He did offer his congratulations, and wished us the best given the circumstances.”
“Did you tell him about the full plan, though?” Chase nods his head, having typed that out in the last series of messages before this response. It was odd to share over text message, but he didn’t want to chance saying it in the garage area tomorrow as someone may overhear.
“He asked me if I had a bucket of tums ready, along with a stress ball and gum. I told him maybe for Talladega, but other than I’d be fine. He just said to be careful.” Sarina lets out a sigh as she glances down at her dish.
“So in other words, he doesn’t necessarily agree to the plan…” Chase shakes his head no as he sets his phone aside.
“Let’s face it – not everybody is going to agree with us because not everybody understand where you’re coming from, or what we feel as drivers. They haven’t been there through everything from rock bottom and where you started to where you are now. What have I always told you in these moments?” Sarina slowly looks up at him.
“To just believe in yourself, and remember you’re stronger than they think you are and do your own thing because you’ll do it right.” He smiles as it was nice to hear her recite it perfectly. “But what about if your parents argu-”
“It doesn’t matter to me, Sarina. All that matters to me is how we feel about this as it’s our baby, our decision.” He then reaches over and grabs her hand. “I love you. Stop worrying about everybody else. All that matters is you, me, and that baby.”
“I love you, too.” She then kisses his hand before he slowly lets go. “Now, I am telling Rudy when I get back to North Carolina. When are we telling your parents, Ryan, Lindsay, Kelley, and Dale?”
“We need to tell Kelley and Dale before they announce anything – if we’re at that point.” Sarina smiles widely, knowing that it was pretty much a done deal from their last meeting. “So we better say something soon.”
“We could tell your parents at dinner this week on Tuesday.” Chase glances out the window, before looking at her.
“If we get the race in on Monday, we’re going to JRM on Tuesday and then having dinner that night with my parents. We’ll follow that up with telling Ryan and Lindsay in Vegas.” Sarina nods her head in agreement.
“If we don’t get the race in on Monday, I say screw it, let’s go home.”