Mercedes woke up, uncomfortably aware of something wet between her legs and feeling an all-too-familiar ache behind her hips. David sighed sleepily and squeezed her. Carefully extricating herself from under her husband's arm, she got out of bed and walked to the bathroom. Closing the door, she flicked on the light, pulled down her underpants and sat on the toilet. Looking down at the fresh bloodstains, she sighed. Well, no question now, she thought. Guess I'll have extra money to spend in Mexico. She reached for the box of tampons under the sink.

David stirred as she climbed back into bed. He gathered her close and she relaxed into the curve of his body. He kissed the back of her head and she listened to his breathing slow into sleep. Staring into the dark, she wondered why she felt so disappointed.