A blur; the perfect word to describe Zach’s life up to date, the perfect description of how the last twenty four hours had panned out for both him and Natalya. He wasn’t even awake yet, as his mind continued to party without him – his pulse returned to his inner ear sanctuary causing him to stir and groan as a response to the induced mayhem that had ensued just a few hours prior to dawn. His eyes burned as he forced himself awake; his body aching from head to toe, and without knowing exactly why. The room was dark, the type of dark where you can barely make out your hand, and thank God for that, since the pounding in his ears soon shifted to his head. What had happened last night? The scent of alcohol, cigarettes and cigars and the mix of both his cologne and Natalya’s perfume lingered in his sinuses, burned in his sinuses reminding Zach of the debauchery. 

For all he knew, Zach was in his own hotel room, but even he wasn’t that sure – was he really? He had only seen the hotel room that he and Natalya got for their stay in Vegas for mere minutes before taking to the streets, with a question mark as to when the two would return to its plush safety for the night. Who was he with? Was he really going to spend the night with some strange person with Natalya at his side? And though it was movie-esque type of Segway into the so-called “perfect” Vegas vacation; the type of secret he could take back home and either hold onto or brag about to his friends – with Natalya with him, there would be no way he would find himself leaving with anyone else but her; not even in a bad Las Vegas fantasy weekend. 

Zach found his way to the bathroom, shutting the door behind him as he flipped on the light; an audible groan leaving his lips as he clutched the edge of the sink – he had to still be drunk, there was no way this was a hangover, and maybe that was a good thing… He let his hands run through the luke-warm water as he noticed a ring on his left hand; wetting his face, rubbing the sleep from his eyes – and yes the ring was still there. He twisted the ring from his finger, tugging it from his finger as he brought it eye-level, his eyes focusing as he tried to put two and two together though the equation had already been solved. He was married? And in Vegas… Married, in Vegas…
The minute that Natalya opened her eyes, she knew something was wrong. The pounding in her head was a very clear indication that she had drank herself stupid, and the warm body sleeping next to her was an even bigger sign that she'd done something she shouldn't have. She couldn't remember the last time she'd had a one night stand, let alone do so while Zach was with her. That wasn't something she ever thought she would be capable of doing. Zach was her best friend, someone that she loved deeply, and the idea of leaving him alone while she went off with some random guy was not something she ever considered.. not that she ever believed he'd have any problem with being alone in Vegas; he was after all a very attractive man, capable of having his own fun and finding someone who would want to share it with him. At the thought of that, Natalya let out a deep breath, letting her head fall back against her pillow. As soon as her head touched the soft pillow under her, she cursed herself silently, the small movement causing the pounding in her head to become louder. Yeah, she definitely wasn't thinking the night before.

She wasn't ready to deal with any of what was going on. That was supposed to be Zach's night; a celebration of his birthday. How was she supposed to face him knowing she'd run off on him, gotten completely wasted, and done whatever it is she'd done? The last thing she could clearly remember Zach and her were in the bar having drinks, and she'd finally gotten him out on the dance floor, something which she'd been trying to do for a while. That felt like a million years ago to her, and deep down she knew that wasn't what she should be remembering.

The feeling of movement next to her brought Natalya back to the present time, and she brought her hands up to her face, trying to clear her mind. She knew she couldn't hide for much longer, but she was willing to try. She almost held her breath as she felt the weight of the person next to her shift, before he was out of the bed and had disappeared into the bathroom. Natalya knew that would only give her a few minutes to compose herself, but those were a few minutes that she would cherish. Sitting up in bed, she reached next to her, flipping the switch on the lamp. She contemplated sneaking out of the room, but as soon as the lights went on, the light glimmer of something that looked like a ring made her heart drop down to her stomach. "Shit!" She cursed to herself, knowing things had just become more complicated. She knew what that ring meant, she'd teased enough of her friends when they went off to Vegas about doing something of the sort.. they'd never done anything like it, and now there she was, the one who had gone out and gotten herself married in Vegas.

Pushing herself clear off the bed, she looked around the room, trying to figure out where she was at. The room looked incredibly familiar, and what looked like her bags were sitting in the corner of the room. She'd brought someone back to her room. That realization made her feel worse about the situation. Not only had she left her best friend while she was completely intoxicated, she'd gotten married, and brought a complete stranger back to her room. Looking down at herself, she sighed softly, the dress shirt that was clearly not hers the only thing covering her body. She didn't want to do it; the pounding in her head told her not to do it, but it was only a matter of time before reality would come crumbling down right in front of her. Slowly making her way to the bathroom, she paused in front of the door, knowing the person in there was going through the same thing currently was, before she finally let her hands go to the door, lightly knocking.

Zach stared at the ring, unable to come up with any words to form any sorts of a thought that could possibly explain what was going on. Setting the ring on the edge of the sink, after having to almost pry it from his finger, his hands shaking the entire time; he again rinsed his face with water, hoping that each time the cold water made contact with his skin with would wash away a little more of this weird and fear and loathing in Las Vegas-esque type of moment he was having. His head was still spinning, and his pulse was now rapidly making its way from his toes to his ears, and now his stomach was beginning to churn and he hoped that it was just because of the alcohol but really, right now, he couldn’t tell. How could this have happened? Well, he knew how it had happened – hell, he practically allowed it to happen after all this is the city where this type of “mistake” happens the most, under the influence of alcohol of course, but how does the average Joe deal with it? His thoughts began to race into one another and everything coherent was soon out the window as he now took a seat on the edge of the tub, his head resting in his hands as he tried to come up with sort of answer to this chaos. 

How was he going to explain this to his family? His friends, his co-workers – sure he didn’t have to wear the ring, but there was no sweeping this under the rug forever so-to-speak. He was sure this would come back to haunt him eventually, and then how would he deal with it. How was he going to explain this to Natalya? The one person who had to practically drag him on this vacation; the predictions of a punch straight to the face were how Zach was assuming Natalya was going to deal with it. 

The knock on the door snapped Zach back into reality, panicking with not knowing what to do now, or who was on the other side of that door, he slowly stood up from his seat on the edge of the tub, and turned off the water which he had forgotten and left running. Once, he tried to answer. Something, anything, his mouth opened and nothing. Nothing audible, just silence as he looked at the ring sitting on the edge of the sink in all of its glimmering almost mocking in the mistake glory, before turning his attention to the door. “Yeah?” he finally choked out as he reached for the door , taking one last deep breath before opening the door– it was now or never, face the music and the face he apparently married.
That voice; there was no way she wouldn't recognize that voice. Natalya's breath caught in her throat as soon as she heard the simple word coming from the other side of the door. She couldn't have; there was no way that the person behind that door was Zach. Closing her eyes, Natalya let out another deep breath, letting herself sit back on the bed as soon as she felt if touch the back of her legs. Bringing her hands up to her face, she stared down at the floor, not wanting to see the person who she knew was going to walk out of that bathroom. Suddenly she no longer wanted to face the truth. 

When she heard the door finally open, she couldn't help but risk a glance in that direction. As soon as she did so, her entire world came crashing down. She knew she'd crossed a line, one that she didn't know how to come back from. "Zach?" she said softly, not sure he would even be able to hear her, and at the same time hoping that he hadn't. 

She was going to be sick, between the pain in her head and the sick feeling in her stomach, she knew she was going to be sick. Pushing herself of the bed, she practically bolted toward the bathroom, pushing the door behind her, leaving it only slightly ajar. She leaned on the floor, positive that she was going to empty the contents of her stomach - - which she was sure consisted of nothing but alcohol, but that sweet release never came. Instead, the sick feeling got worse, and the pounding in her head became unbearable.

"Za - - Zach..?" Natalya mumbled risking another glance in his direction, feeling like she'd just gotten punched in the stomach at the look on his face, but at the same time sure that same look was mirrored on hers. "What did we do, Zach?"
Seeing Natalya’s face both the blessing and the curse Zach had asked for; her voice was the comforting tone he needed to hear knowing he hadn’t left with someone strange in the middle of the night leaving her to her own devices or even worse – with someone equally as strange, and that she was the body behind the knock upon the door. But now, she was the body standing before him with a ring that matched his own, a matching distressed look. “I don’t know…” Zach managed to mumble, a cop out for sure, but not a lie – he didn’t know what they got themselves into, he didn’t know what had happened, the only thing he knew at this moment was that they were still together, no strangers, no leaving with other people, and that was at least one thing that set Zach’s mind at ease. 
As his first instinct, he reached for Natalya pulling her into a hug and holding her tight, maybe out of fear of being apart from her in a city such as Las Vegas, or fear of her spending the night with someone else which was something he really didn’t want to think about especially with a sour stomach… either way Zach wrapped his arms tightly around her his usual protective nature coming to the surface. “What did we do?” He mumbled into her hair, though it was clear as to what they did – the words repeated mostly to himself as he needed a reminder, what did they do, how did they get to that point, when in their night did they find time to get married. Now was it better or worse because it was Natalya on the other side of the ring? Perhaps Zach would find out once he had sobered up a little bit more though he was pretty damned sober at the moment.
In her mind Natalya knew that everything that could go wrong, would very possibly go wrong, but one look at Zach's face, and the feel of his arms around her, and she almost felt like things were back to normal. It was almost like she'd just gotten home from a very bad date and he was letting her know everything would be okay, and he was there for her. Out of everything that could possibly go wrong that was what scared her the most; the possibility that Zach would no longer be there to comfort her when she needed someone. "How did this...?" She couldn't finish her sentence, she didn't want to know how they got there, she simply wanted to know how to fix it.

"Zach.." She said quietly and mostly to herself as her arms wrapped tighter around him. She didn't want to let him go; she knew as soon as she did she would have to face reality. There was nothing but irrational mumbling coming from her, she knew that, but she had no idea how to answer his question. It was very obvious what had happened -- they both knew what had happened, they just didn't know how they had let it happen. Under different circumstances, with someone else, she would have been angry -- at herself, at him.. but this was Zach. This was someone that she loved and couldn't lose. "Whatever this is.. however this happened..." She could feel the knot in her throat coming back, and she was finding it harder to speak, the tears that she had been fighting back finally threatening to spill over, "I don't want to lose us.." She added, her voice cracking, "I can't lose us.." She wasn't lying, she couldn't lose him; he was the biggest constant in her life, and she needed him there.
Zach’s mind was racing and he was still unable to comprehend a single thought as to what was going on, what had happened, and what to do next; his head pounded mostly from the booze, but he was certain that his mind running on overdrive wasn’t helping. He tightened his grip around Natalya as he listened to her talk, shaking his head to everything negative she thought could happen between them, because really regardless of whatever situation they had landed themselves into, and regardless of whatever they were going to have to do to fix it when they got home, there was absolutely nothing that could ever come between them. “Stop…stop,” Zach mumbled, as he kissed the top of her head, his attempt to end her worrisome rant. “This isn’t going to come between us…” he said, as he pulled back so that he was now looking at her, brushing the hair from her face and doing his best to comfort her with his unsure re-assuring words, and his no-fail works-for-everything-else, kisses to the forehead, everything he knew he was good at when it came to calming Natalya down -- and yeah he wasn’t able to describe what “this” was to her or himself even, but it was now their soon to be unspoken common bond that they could add to their list of things the two would go through together. “Nothing has come between us before, and nothing will start now, okay?” He said, as he again wrapped his arms tightly around Natalya, pulling her close. And truthfully, Zach was just as afraid of losing Natalya as she was of losing him, but at this moment one of them needed to be in that unsure positive frame of mind in hopes that this wasn’t going to destroy their entire friendship that they had spent years perfecting to a science.
She needed to snap out of it; there was absolutely nothing that she was going to accomplish by freaking out the way that she was. In the very back of her mind she knew that he was right -- they had already gone through so much throughout the years that this shouldn't be any different for them. Granted, this was a lot bigger than most other things, but they'd always been strong. "I know... in the back of my mind I know that.." Giving him a small, but still very sad smile, Natalya pulled away from him, instantly missing the comfort that his body offered. "Got more than we bargained for for your birthday, huh?" She said, trying to lighten the mood, but still not exactly seeing the humor in it herself.

Making her way back into the bedroom she sat down on the bed once more. Looking down at herself, she couldn't help but shake her head; She still couldn't believe what she'd done. "Could be worse..." She said as she looked up at him, running her hand through her face. "Could have married a complete stranger..." 

If there was one positive thing about the entire situation, it was that she really did love Zach. And if she ever stopped being so chickenshit about it and finally admitted to it, she could even say she was in love with him. That was the whole point to marriage, wasn't it? Love? Now if it was only that simple their mistake really wasn't such a mistake.

"Well... " She added as she laid back on the bed, her eyes coming closed, almost hoping to block out all reality and not having to get up again. "At least I can say I do love my husband.."